It seems incredible that this season of Torchwood: Miracle Day was just ten episodes long. So much happened and the action took us to the four corners of the Earth, yet paradoxically the pace was painstakingly slow at times. The season opened with a miracle: one day, at precisely 10.36 p.m., people stopped dying. What seemed to be a blessing quickly became a curse as the true implications of The Miracle became clear. The Earth began to edge towards overpopulation, resources became scarce, markets destabilised and ultimately, the global economy collapsed, leading to a great depression.
The governments of Earth responded by declaring three categories of life. In retrospect, it was only really one category of life that they were interested in and that was the category of people that should have died, but didn’t as a result of The Miracle. Those people were declared Category 1 and by the time we reached the latter part of the season, these people were earmarked for immediate transfer to overflow camps where they would be destroyed in mass ovens in a process described by detractors as “institutional murder”.
A red herring ran through much of the season, leading the audience to believe that a pharmaceutical company, PhiCorp, was behind The Miracle but that idea was laid to rest midway through the season.
The last remain members of the Torchwood team, Gwen Cooper (Eve Myles) and Captain Jack Harkness (John Barrowman), were reunited in Torchwood: Miracle Day. They were joined by Esther Drummond (Alexa Havins) and Rex Matheson (Mekhi Pfifer), both C.I.A. agents who joined the Torchwood team when they become the targets of a growing conspiracy at the agency. Throughout the Torchwood series, Jack was famously immortal but this was reversed by The Miracle, making him the only mortal man on Earth.
Following a flashback sequence in the seventh episode, “Immortal Sins”, it soon became apparent that a sinister group known as The Families were behind the Miracle, that it somehow all centred around Jack's blood, and something known as The Blessing was at the bottom of it all.
Jack formed a theory that The Miracle was triggered by a morphic field but he did not know who or what was behind it, how they had manipulated it or what they wanted.
At the end of “The Gathering”, the Torchwood team was split between Shanghai and Buenos Aires. In Shanghai, The Mother Colasanto (Frances Fisher) showed the Blessing to Jilly Kitzinger (Lauren Ambrose), warning her that it showed people their soul and had been known to lead to suicide. Kitzinger was duly impressed by the Blessing and convinced of her own righteousness. Across town, Gwen tended to Jack’s gunshot wound as Oswald Danes (Bill Pullman) noticed Jack’s blood being drawn across the floor. In Buenos Aires, Esther Drummond and Rex Matheson met up and Esther was carrying several pints of Jack’s blood.