Actually, I really enjoyed Children of Earth. There, I've said it (cue cries of "You fiend! What have you done with the real Ming?!").
I really didn't care for the first season. To me it seemed that Rusty's idea of adult and mature was like a teenagers: lots of swearing and sexual references is really grown up, right? The characters also came across as a bunch of knobs and, worse, incompetent knobs. I loved the theory (from luckykaa
?) that they only thought they were an elite black ops team. Actually, they were the crap ones that London couldn't fire because they were civil servants so they were sent out to the boonies of Cardiff...
Second season was an improvement but, for me, it was still something to watch when convenient, not ASAP.
CoE was a revelation though. I watched the first one live but, on the other nights, I was out fencing, meeting US colleagues for dinner or at a beer festival and yet, I watched the recording as soon as I got home. I loved the sense of a massive doomsday event running throughout CoE, the believable portrayal of those in power, the idea that sometimes, there is no perfect decision and those decisions have consequences you have to live with. The mood and tone actually started to strike me as reminiscent of New Galactica. Quite frankly, this seems worlds apart from the first two seasons and is what it should have been from the start.
One thing though: did Jack have any plan when initially going to confront the 456 beyond stamping his feet and going "No, shan't, so there!"?
I must admit that I was initially a bit surprised that, just as I decide that Torchwood (neée Torturewood) has actually got really good, there seems to be a lot of comment out there declaring that Torchwood is ruined forever (along with Jack Harkness). With hindsight, I suppose it's logical - if it's evolved and matured enormously into something I like, it'd be probable it's changed in ways that will alienate some existing fans.
I thought the format worked well too - one episode a night: just about the perfect balance between building anticipation on my part and driving me mad with the wait.
A few specific comments:
- I seem to recall Lois figuring out there's something odd about Colonel Oduya because he's not wearing a British uniform. Er... in what way? Only thing non-standard about his uniform I could see were the UNIT wings.
- What is it with Who and Torchwood that senior military officers now have to be black (and, in the case of UNIT, have African names)?
- John Frobisher - superb character and performance by Jim Capaldi. His way out was shocking and yet very believable
- Ianto's death - must admit, I find it hard to get very bothered about that but, then again, I've wanted a bullet in his head ever since Cyberwoman!
- Given they were supposed to be the government's definition of the least desirable 10% of the country's children, the ones rounded up seemed awfully well dressed (in uniform, no less) and, well, white...
- Again with the squaddies with G36s. I guess that's because clone G36 airsofts are a lot cheaper than SA80s ;-)
- The black ops sniper in episode 2 was more than a little crap...
- If the Doctor thought Harriet Jones'actions as PM were reprehensible, I'd love to know what he'd make of this one's! Then again, I've more than once thought the current Doctor was a bit of a knob too...
So, in conclusion, loved it, hope there's more like it to come. It'd be ironic that if it got shitcanned just as it became a show that impressed me. Or maybe something interesting to note ;-)