Torchwood: Miracle Day (8/10)

Torchwood: Miracle Day (1&2/10)
Torchwood: Miracle Day (3/10)
Torchwood: Miracle Day (4/10)
Torchwood: Miracle Day (5/10)
Torchwood: Miracle Day (6/10)
Torchwood: Miracle Day (7/10)
Torchwood: Miracle Day (9/10)

They said you were the Devil, but other people said you were a Blessing.
– Angelo

The quote flew right over my head in the last episode.  Watching it again, I understand the significance.  It must refer to what Stewart Owens told Jack in episode 6, when he talked about “the Blessing” being found in Italy in the mid-1990s.  And so it is.

This Torchwood episode was generally low key, with a lot happening.  Last week, the woman behind the kidnapping of Rhys, Mary, and Annwen, offered Jack the chance to meet Angelo Colesanto, “the one man who knows how the Miracle began.”  It was an offer he couldn’t refuse.  So this week saw them driving to Las Vegas and Angelo’s mansion – he’s obviously done well out of the information Jack let drop about the future.

The woman is none other than Olivia Colesanto, Angelo’s granddaughter.  And she’s not Illuminati (my useful label for the people behind Phicorp), as I thought.  Olivia is carrying out her grandfather’s request bring Jack to him.

Angelo is a very old man, unconscious, and on a life support system.  He could be anywhere from 100 to 110, kept alive this long by a strict health and medical regimen, all in the hope of meeting Jack again.  And now kept alive by the Miracle.  Bit of a disappointment that Angelo wasn’t even conscious.  I expected more sparks to fly at the reunion.

Olivia tells of how it began in 1928 with men from 3 families – the ones Jack saw inspecting him before the purchase – Ablemarch, Costerdane, and Frines.  Unable to use Jack’s blood because Angelo freed him, they hope to find the key to immortality through other avenues of research – in the 1990s it’s stem cells.  Angelo is kept away from the project, not respected because of his relationship with Jack.  But they’re all searching for the same thing.  Then, in 1998, word reaches Olivia that the “Blessing” has been found, obviously Jack’s blood taken by the Italian woman.  Esther’s search for the family names reveals the astonishing fact that nobody has those names, and there are no public records of them.  So put a line through Illuminati and write in Families.

As Esther waits outside in the car, in phone contact with Rex, Friedkin and his CIA division capture her and everybody in the house.  They’re all arrested under the Miracle Security Act – “this is the same as treason now, folks” – and Friedkin takes Rex off separately for some private revenge.  But he doesn’t know that Rex is wearing the handy dandy Torchwood contact lenses, which are playing the scene on Angelo’s monitor.

Rex: How much did the Families pay you?
Friedkin: It wasn’t about the money.  You can’t escape them.  The Families don’t just pay me, they own me.  They are everywhere.  They are always.  They are no-one.
Rex: And they are listening.

Friedkin’s boss, Alan Shapiro, has followed him, and is listening to the confession in the other room.  He arrests Olivia and Friedkin, but as they’re about to be driven off, Friedkin blows himself up, and everyone else in the car.  So now Rex and Esther are vindicated.  The CIA and Torchwood form an uneasy alliance, which is not helped when Shapiro really pisses Gwen off.

Shapiro: You’re that English girl, Cooper, have I got that right?
Gwen: No. I’m not English, and I’m not a girl.

Jack finally gets some time alone with Angelo when everyone rushes outside for Friedkin’s detonation.  He talks about Ianto and promises to take care of Angelo.  “See you later, old man.”  Then he kisses Angelo on the lips.  At which point, Angelo dies.  Really.  Jack thinks the monitor is faulty, but it’s true.  He’s dead, Jack.  The kiss must have something to do with it, considering what his blood can do, and nobody else in the world is dying.

Shapiro wants to know why, and orders Torchwood to stay in the house until he does know.  I like this Shapiro.  A curmudgeon’s curmudgeon.

This lull in the action allows other bits of the plot to catch up.  Jack and Gwen talk about the implications of Angelo’s death.  “Are we in trouble?”  “Yes.”

Rex and Esther are happy to be back in the CIA family and talk to their friends in the office.  Charlotte offers to help Esther’s sister in the psych ward.  They get news that Danes is in Dallas, playing the Cowboys Stadium.  “He’s preaching hellfire and salvation, which makes Oswald Danes the most popular man in the world right now.”  This is against the background of a plunging stock market and the threat of economic collapse.  Rex tells them to get a spy close to Danes and Jilly.

Esther calls her sister.  She knows Esther called Child Protective Services.  But it doesn’t matter because she wants to volunteer for Category 1, and put Esther’s nieces on the list as well.

Gwen talks to Rhys.  Her mum’s pissed off about being kidnapped, but wants Gwen to “go get ’em.”  Her dad is “not good.”

And then it starts again.  Esther notices that the floor beneath Angelo’s bed looks different from the rest of the room.  Shapiro has the floor taken up, revealing a strange grid underneath the bed.  Jack doesn’t want to tell him what it is, supported by Gwen, so Shapiro has her deported.  All Jack will say is that it’s a morphic field transmitter.

He needs to get himself and the alpha plate, the critical part of the device, away from the CIA and any government.  This piece of alien technology used to be in the Torchwood Hub in Cardiff, so Angelo must have retrieved it from the ruins.  It’s null field stealth technology, which would be too much of a temptation for any government to have.  “This timeline would be terminal.”  That’s why Torchwood was secret.  They steal the alpha plate, but Jack gets shot in the getaway.  Esther drives him away while Rex stays embedded within the CIA.

Back to Danes and Jilly Kitzinger in Dallas, who I have missed horribly.  From now on we shift back and forth between the 2 locations, but I’ll focus first on Las Vegas, then Dallas.

Jilly is back on cracking form, talking about Danes sharing a stage with the Bisected Bride.  “You know, car accident sheared off everything below the bikini line.  Got married a week later, propped up in a box.  Basically, she’s made up of positive thinking and colostomy bags.”  Jilly gets some brilliant lines.

But Danes isn’t interested, turns the music up loud so he can’t hear her, and demands a woman.  The CIA spy, turns up in the form of Shawna, an irritatingly positive and cheerful intern, who attaches herself to Jilly.  There’s a foreshadowing of Danes’ eventual fate, when Jilly reveals that she won’t have to put up with him.  “Not for much longer.”

Jilly orders up a woman for Danes.  It doesn’t end well.  She is freaked out by Danes wanting “a date,” meaning a meal, a show, that sort of thing.  She’s prepared for almost anything except this.  “If you want to pretend that you’re normal, no way.”  And before leaving, she reveals something she’s learned from another client – a senator – that under an Emergency Mandate a new classification is going through Congress.  Category Zero.  Jilly explains – it’s the ovens for those who should die for moral reasons.  “What you had was a wonderful delay, and now it’s time for that adventure to come to an end.”  Danes beats her up and goes on the run.

The creepy Families suit, who previously told her she was doing so well, now offers her a promotion.  This after shooting Shawna dead in front of Jilly, because he knows she’s a CIA spy.

Families Guy: Way above Phicorp.  We’re Families business.  Interested?
Jilly: Yes.
Families Guy: (On phone to Charlotte) She’s with us now.

Yes.  Charlotte, Esther’s best friend and CIA colleague, works for the Families.

Another cliffhanger.  Jack is on the run with Esther, and dying from a mortal wound, while Gwen is on a flight back to Wales.  Torchwood is scattered and broken.

One puzzle solved.  The creepy Illuminati (now Families) triangle comes from the curious way the 3 original Families  businessmen sealed the deal in the cellar.  Each one clasped another man’s wrist, forming a triangle.

For the rest, I’m content to wait until next week.

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