Saturn Awards Relish Torchwood, Diss the Doctor

DOCTOR WHO

The nominations for the 38thAnnual Saturn Awards were just announced, and while I was glad to see a lot of love for TORCHWOOD: MIRACLE DAY, I was shocked that DOCTOR WHO garnered only one measly nomination — and that for best youth-oriented series.

Now, I’m not going to reopen the age-old question of whether DOCTOR WHO is really a children’s program; it was created to be one, but quickly morphed into something entirely different — something truly sui generis. And, to the Saturns’ credit, judging by the competition, “youth-oriented” here refers to teen-agers, not toddlers.
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TORCHWOOD: MIRACLE DAY – the first teaser

Hey, check it out! Follow this link to the first teaser trailer for TORCHWOOD: MIRACLE DAY! at least it sounds interesting…

Well, this really is just a tease! Nobody knows much about what happens in this series, which is pretty remarkable in this modern age of the spoiler. All anybody knows is that one, everyone stops dying; not a single human being on the planet Earth dies. This is not as good as it sounds. After watching this non-spoilery clip, we barely know much more than that. However, we do catch mention of the last death on Earth…

Here’s how the Starz TORCHWOOD Web site describes the series:

One day, nobody dies. All across the world, nobody dies. And then the next day, and the next, and the next, people keep aging — they get hurt and sick — but they never die. The result: a population boom, overnight. With all the extra people, resources are finite. It’s said that in four month’s time, the human race will cease to be viable. But this can’t be a natural event – someone’s got to be behind it. It’s a race against time as C.I.A. agent Rex Matheson investigates a global conspiracy. The answers lie within an old, secret British institute. As Rex keeps asking “What is Torchwood?” he’s drawn into a world of adventure, and a threat to change what it means to be human, forever.

TORCHWOOD, premiering July 8, stars John Barrowman (DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES) as Captain Jack Harkness, Eve Myles as Gwen Cooper, Mekhi Phifer (ER) as Rex Matheson and Bill Pullman (Independence Day) as Oswald Danes.

TORCHWOOD: Set photos

Yep, that’s Torchwood 3’s Gwen and Rhys confronting PC Andy in TORCHWOOD: MIRACLE DAY!

SFX is the place to see 10 behind-the-scenes pics from filming of the fourth TORCHWOOD series. They feature John Barrowman as Captain Jack, Eve Myles as Gwen, Kai Owen as Rhys, Mekhi Phifer as Rex and Tom Price as PC Andy.

My question at this early point in production: Which characters will survive bloodthirsty creator Russell T Davies’ story this time? CHILDREN OF EARTH cost us Ianto, while Tosh and Owen bought it in series 2. (Also, will PC Andy finally be detailed to Torchwood this series?)

T:MD is filming in the United States and Wales concurrently, and set to premiere on July 1 in both the USA on Starz and BBC1 in the UK.

TORCHWOOD: THE NEW WORLD Casting

Dichen Lachman

Is this a conspiracy? The new season of TORCHWOOD has added two more CIA operatives, in the lovely forms of DOLLHOUSE active Dichen Lachman (ex-Sierra) and ALL MY CHILDREN vet Alexa Havins (ex-Babe). Lachman also did a stint on a soap opera: Australia’s NEIGHBOURS.

Havins will play the previously announced female lead, Ester Katusi, a CIA analyst with a crush on colleague Rex Matheson, to be portrayed by former ER doc Mekhi Phifer. No name has been released for Lachman’s character. Bill Pullman (Independence Day), will be playing way against type as depraved murderer/pedophile Oswald Jones. (I guess casting him as the president of the United States would have been too easy?) In addition, Arlene Tur (Bebe, CRASH) has been cast as Vera Juarez, described as a surgeon. I cannot express how highly I approve of the gorgeous Lachman’s casting. I loved her in DOLLHOUSE, where she made Sierra such a complex character: soft and beautiful as a rose, but steely strong beneath the surface.

I’m really looking forward to TORCHWOOD: THE NEW WORLD, if for no other reason than it takes my mind off obsessing about DOCTOR WHO. If TNW is even half as good as last year’s CHILDREN OF EARTH, we are in for a treat. It has been too long since I’ve seen John Barrowman’s Capt. Jack Harkness, Eve Myles’ Gwen, and Kai Owen’s Rhys. And three cheers for the return of Tom Price as PC Andy! Remember Jack’s cameo in DW’s “The End of Time, Part 2”? Gwen and Rhys haven’t been glimpsed since the end of COE.

The best part is that the forthcoming fourth season will be broadcast here in the colonies on Starz concurrently with the premiere on BBC One back in the U.K. So no trauma-inducing wait for the series to migrate across the pond.

I have a feeling that 2011 is the year that everything changes…