beccaelizabeth: my Watcher tattoo in blue, plus Be in red Buffy style font (Default)
[personal profile] beccaelizabeth
Soooo... that's messy. Warnings... well, there's an infection, itching, squirmy things under their skin, self mutilation, hallucinations, and setting out to kill everyone they love.

So that could be considered disturbing on several fronts.

Also, several strands of plot are about breaking into or out of quarantine.
Quarantine is serious business and the story shouldn't expect us to side with breaking quarantine.
And I cannot be having with the whole secretly evil vaccine plot at all.

Sooo... not liking any of the parts here.

Also, I remain puzzled who they think their audience is. The middle disc is Jack and Ianto in the Hub. Jack is dying horribly, telling Ianto he loves him, but that's a side effect of the virus, which makes them kill people they love. So that's a whole middle of the story all about Jack trying to kill Ianto because he loves him. Because Ianto always knew Jack would be the death of him. Shippers aren't looking for that particular brand of angst, right? That's a bit much even for Torchwood.

Do they just not like Jack/Ianto? Then why focus on them?

Though to be fair things go equally poorly for everyone else too, albeit more briefly, including Gwen/Rhys.

But okay, actual specific thoughts:

Dark.
Why do I think I like Torchwood?
I mean when the team aren't actively trying to kill each other, when they're just working together to stop bad things, it's often interesting, but this?

It started and ended kind of okay, but the meat of it was all that partner betrayal angst, and it's bloody cheap partner betrayal. No reason, no logic, no expression of buried resentment or hidden sides of the personality, just virus.

Also, I think I must have misunderstood the plot at some point, because if Jack got infected twice then a vaccine based on his blood can't be worky, right? I mean, if it didn't make him immune, it wouldn't make anyone else immune. So maybe he wasn't infected the first time? But I thought he was, and then burnt to death, and reset. But maybe he just ran in and burned?

I don't know. Either it's confusing or I'm just confused anyway.



So. Plot.

Drugs company develops something from hybrid alien technology. It's meant to read minds so people can find bad guys. But version one makes victims kill people. So they invent a version two. And call it a vaccine, because people can't catch both. And then decide to inject all of the UK, because being mind controlled and constantly monitored is better than being dead, which could be an interesting spin on the surveillance state if the story hadn't got stuck on other things.
But Jack can turn it off by hacking it? But they also need a cure made from his blood?

I guess I'm confused by the science fiction bits. The clear bits were mostly people following their loved ones around trying to kill them because they love them.

The ending is the two people who kicked it all off, driving out of the city, laughing, because they don't know when they'll crack and try and kill each other.

So, you know, cheerful.



Also, there's a weird layer where everyone is jealous and it's maybe supposed to be romantic.
Rhys is apparently glad Gwen only tried to kill him and not Jack. Because infected people try and kill people they love. So.
And in the middle Jack wouldn't want to kill the guy he knew from the fifties, just Ianto.
And it ends with Jack and Ianto kissing and cheerful... because Ianto just told Jack he was infected too and could tell from the trying to kill him.

So, basically, twisted.



The first disc set up a reasonable problem, the second was Jack and Ianto trying to kill each other, the third was a little of Gwen doing that to Rhys and quite a lot more plot resolution.

So I started out liking it okay and by the end it was confusing but okay, but the middle...

why would we like that?



Also, I'm not sure the science fiction matched up with the relationship angst. Or, it does, but only via 'a really bad idea and it didn't work right'.

Like, the idea was explained when the bad guys reported on what they thought happened to Torchwood. Infect one member of a cell, they go infect the others, they kill each other, and all their data gets uploaded. Intelligence and clean up at once. Except there was some bit about it only killing Bad Thinking Citizens, and how it must be confused by modern morality having more shades of grey? But that's a completely different set of angst and didn't play through anywhere. So it's just a virus that makes people kill people they love. Which it wasn't meant to be. So... the bit where infected got labelled Bad Thinking Citizens didn't connect to anything else.

I mean I can see the connection between moral condemnation of infected and an infection that kills the people you love, but it's not in the fictional science even a little.



Okay, so, I found it unpleasant and wasn't entirely concentrating, but I still feel like it didn't quite stick together.



All the familiar characters got something to do but that something was quite a lot be ill and get shot. Also some running around and seeing things happen. The solving things part... well that needed the skills of Tosh and Owen, and got the skills of Jack and a random. Somewhat unsatisfying really.

Not that I'd want to put Tosh and Owen through this plot. Dark enough as was.




I feel a bit like I disliked it too much to review it fairly. Maybe it made perfectly good sense and I just didn't like the topic. But I disliked it quite a lot.

The bit in the middle did have a bunch of feels, relationship angst, explaining to a complete stranger that Jack had never said "I love you" for serious so him saying it now made the whole thing worse, a bit of kissing while Jack was so messily injured Ianto didn't know how he was still moving, let alone still attempting murder, some confessions of not knowing how they'll live without each other that'll hurt even more considering, and then some holding Jack while Jack was dying again. Sooo... if you're into the kind of extreme hurt comfort that can find the feels in the hurt coming from the same place as the comfort, I guess this might do something for you.



This was not what I wanted from a story.

But I can't say dark is tonally inconsistent with canon.

Maybe I don't want Torchwood.

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beccaelizabeth: my Watcher tattoo in blue, plus Be in red Buffy style font (Default)
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