A Look Ahead to "Torchwood" Season 2
Warning: Spoilers for "Doctor Who" season three and "Torchwood" season one below. Mild spoilers for "Torchwood" season two.
If you're hooked on BBC America's airings of "Torchwood," you'll be glad to hear that work on season two has already begun. It won't air until January of 2008 in the UK and no word yet on a US air date, so the creators were understandably tight-lipped about what was coming. "If I say too much now, it'll be old news by the time it comes out," says head writer Chris Chibnall. Still, they did share a few tidbits from the upcoming season.
Chibnall says, "In season one, It's almost like a dysfunctional family It's about these kind of disparate people trying to work together, trying to work each other out. In season two, that family is much more tight-knit. And it's about them going out in the world as a very close-knit team."
We'll see more of Jack and Gwen together. "A very important part of season two is how does their relationship, how does it affect and how does it change their personalities," says Chibnall. Of the others, he says. "We have a lovely Toshiko episode in season two. I'm so excited. It's really great. Her emotional awakening that you see in season one plays into season two." Owen's "got some great stuff in season two. I keep doing that, don't I? 'And then in season two - I'm not going to tell you, I'm sorry,'" he laughs. "In season two, [Ianto's] more central to operations. He's not just making the coffee. As good as his coffee is. You'll see more of him."
Freema Agyeman will cross over from "Doctor Who" to reprise her role as Martha. "She'll join 'Torchwood' for three episodes as a qualified doctor," says producer Richard Stokes. "She works very closely with Owen, because something happens to someone on the team that requires her attention specifically. And obviously, she works very well with Captain Jack. We were very keen that when she came in to the team it didn't feel like she and Jack were siding together and the rest of the team were all upset about it. She just blends into the team, in three episodes in a really good way. She's great. And she's lovely to work with, absolutely lovely to work with."
Martha and Owen both have strong personalities and a clash between them seems inevitable. Will we see Martha slap Owen? "I don't think she does physically!" laughs Stokes.
"Off-camera," suggests prosthetics supervisor Matt O'Toole.
"But verbally, there's a little bit of sparring there, yeah," Stokes admits.
Although Martha spends most of her time with Captain Jack and Owen, she has an interesting dynamic with others on the team. "By writing the scripts we've found that actually she and Gwen have a real sort of similarity - the humanist outlook of those two characters," Stokes says. "Which I suppose makes sense, because when Russell reinvented 'Doctor Who,' the new series, he always wanted the Companion to be the audience's way into the world of 'Doctor Who.' You have this extraordinary science fiction iconic figure of the Doctor and you want a very human companion. And in 'Torchwood,' there's a similarity there, between Captain Jack and Gwen. When Martha joins, you can see the similarity in how those characters work. They work very well together."
"With Ianto, there's always that slight jealousy as to, 'just how much time did she spend with Captain Jack?' You know, how close did she get?" says Stokes.
Will there be competition between Gwen and Martha? "It's very interesting, because the answer is no," says Stokes. "But we went through several drafts of the script to make sure that it didn't. What we didn't want to do was to make the conflict within the group. We wanted the group to be united in what they were fighting against. But no, they actually all get on very well. I mean, obviously there's conflict there, because this is drama. But they have a discussion relatively early on, basically about Captain Jack, and it clears the air."
Another anticipated guest star is James Marsters, best known as Spike on "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." "He's a character who's a match for Jack," is all that Chibnall will say. "I can tell you he's absolutely brilliant. I've seen all the filming that he's done. I know he's had a great time. He did a gig in Cardiff while he was there. Wrote a 'Torchwood' song, I believe! An absolutely delightful man. Brilliant actor. Him and John Barrowman together, on screen, the scenes are fantastic. It's such fun!"
Chibnall's reluctance to share details didn't stop his actors from letting a few things slip. Barrowman told Popnography.com that James Marsters is "a very good kisser" and Marsters told fans recently that Barrowman was "a better kisser than Sarah Michelle Gellar." In fact, Barrowman told the Chicago Tribune, "There’s a scene between [Marster's character] and Jack when they first meet, all I’ll say is, this scene is so hot, so horny, so horny, so violent, that all the fans who watch it are going to [er, appreciate it greatly]."
Sex, drama, science fiction, horror - Chibnall loves the variety of writing he gets to do for "Torchwood." "You get to do all this and you get to write Captain Jack being omnisexual across Cardiff and play with Weevils and also do very kind of domestic scenes as well, with Gwen and Rhys and stuff like that. The range, the scope in 'Torchwood' of drama, from running through the streets, guns and lasers and all that and then also incredibly intimate, personal relationship and comedy."