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TV Review: Torchwood – “Countrycide”

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A young woman drives on a lonely country road at night. She sees a body in the road and stops. She exits the vehicle and approaches it but finds it’s just a pile of clothes. She gets back into her car but finds her keys missing and her tires flat. Her car remote activates, unlocking the doors while a hooded figure comes and attacks.

The Torchwood gang are driving along the same road. They’re investing the disappearance of 17 people all within a 20-mile radius. Gwen wonders aloud if the Rift has spread this far and Jack admits that it’s possible, especially with the increasing activity. They stop to set up camp.

Owen complains about being in the country and having to rough it as the others quietly set up their gear. They are being watched but are unaware of it. Trying to lighten the mood, Gwen asks everyone who they last kissed. Owen tells all that his last kiss was Gwen, much to everyone’s surprise. Tosh’s last kiss was Owen. Jack asks if last kiss includes non-humans, making everyone groan. Ianto says his last kiss was Lisa (the Cyberwoman from last ep). Owen takes off in search of firewood and Gwen tags along.

As they walk, Gwen and Owen argue about the kiss. Owen thinks her sex life with Rhys is too boring and that sex between the two of them would be explosive and that’s why Gwen is denying their attraction. Just as about they’re about to come to blows, Gwen spots a hooded figure, but it gets away. Gwen spots something on the ground, covered. They uncover it to find a body stripped of its flesh and organs.

Owen examines the body. It’s a male, killed somewhere else and dumped here. Jack doesn’t think it’s the work of weevils. They suddenly hear the sound of their SUV starting up. By the time they get back to their campsite, the SUV has taken off, running over their tents. Ianto tracks the car’s signal to a small village a couple of miles away. Seems like it’s one big trap but Jack decides to head to the village.

Once at the village, the team split up. Tosh and Ianto go in search of their vehicle and Jack and the rest go investigate the pub (and have a pint or two?). Back in the pub’s kitchen, Gwen finds another body, partially stripped of flesh. Jack and Gwen go to the next house where they find another body. They go to the next house, but when Gwen opens the door she is greeted by a shotgun blast in her side. Jack rushes in to see a scared man, holding the gun. He says he thought they were “them” and had come back for him. Owen examines Gwen and finds most of the buckshot is just flesh wounds and starts to extract them.

Tosh and Ianto come up to a locked building. Ianto points to the SUV that is further up the hill but when he turns, Tosh is gone. He starts to look for her when a hooded figure pushes him down to the ground. The two find themselves locked in a cellar with no way out. Tosh finds hundreds of pairs of shoes and clothing. It’s when she opens the fridge  that she realizes that they’re not being held captive. They being primed for dinner.

Jack, Gwen, Owen, and the young man make it over to the pub and barricade themselves inside. Owen thinks the Rift has dumped some alien serial killer in the countryside. The lights go out and whatever is out there tries the doors. The cellar door starts to open but Jack fires into it. The young man takes shots at whatever is trying to come through the front door. As the others duck from the return of gunfire, our Red Shirt young man gets dragged out. Despite Jack’s protest (and too easily he gives in), Gwen and Owen follow the young man while Jack goes into the cellar to see his kill.

An older woman, Helen, enters the cellar where Tosh and Ianto are. She says she’s a nurse and wants to check to make sure they’re okay. Freaked from what they’ve seen, Tosh and Ianto are a bit wary, and rightly so. They tell Helen about the other three in the village. Helen tells them they can’t be helped and that she was sent to collect Tosh and Ianto for the “harvest” which happens every ten years. With no choice, they follow her.

Down in the pub’s cellar, Jack finds a masked man and questions him. His name is Martin.
Out on their search, Gwen and Owen encounter a cop who tells them there is a village meeting tonight. They spot a light and head towards it, the cop following. Tosh and Ianto are taken to a kitchen which looks more like a human butcher shop. These people are aliens, they’re cannibals. Turns out the whole town is in on it. GROSS!

Ianto head-butts one guy, Evan, allowing Tosh to escape. Evan catches up with Tosh but Owen apears, holding a gun on him. He wants the cop to arrest him but the cop just laughs. Evan is his uncle, why would he arrest him? They take the three back to the village. As Evan is about to bleed Ianto like some farm animal, Jack crashes through with a slow-moving tractor. He jumps out with a shotgun and fires away with precision, disabling all the villagers. He’s about to shoot Evan but Gwen yells at him not to. She wants to question the man to find out why they were doing this. Jack puts his gun down.

Back at the pub, Gwen questions Evan, who explains their cannibalism is a tradition. Every decade they target travellers and take them. Gwen asks why but Evan doesn’t answer. He finally leans over and tells Gwen, “’Cause it made me happy.” Gwen is shaken by the whole episode.

We find Gwen in a bedroom, wearing only a man’s shirt. We hear her talk about the plans she had for a normal life, but that was before she met Torchwood. And now she has had experiences she cannot share with anyone. Owen steps forward and tells her she can now and they kiss!

This episode was obviously meant to move the Owen-Gwen relationship forward. Should we call them OGwen from now on? Still want to see more about Tosh and Ianto and a little more on Jack’s past, but I imagine we’ll get to that. I love the show in that it’s very X-Files-ish in its concept and execution. Jack as Mulder, Gwen as Scully. Now if we can get Cigarette Smoking Man to make an appearance!

What did you think?

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About BeTheBuddha

  • Joseph

    If they were alien, then why were they taken away by ordinary cops?