5 reasons why Doctor Who fans should watch Torchwood

Doctor Who has been one of the most popular science fiction TV shows in the world for decades. With its time-traveling adventures and quirky characters, it has captured the hearts of fans of all ages. However, many fans of the Doctor may not be aware of another amazing show set in the same universe: Torchwood.

Torchwood is a spin-off from Doctor Who that first aired in 2006. The show takes place in Cardiff, Wales and follows a team of investigators who work for the Torchwood Institute, a secret organisation that investigates extraterrestrial phenomena and defends the Earth against alien threats. The team is led by Captain Jack Harkness, a charming and enigmatic time-traveler who first appeared in Doctor Who.

For Doctor Who fans who haven’t yet given Torchwood a chance, here are a few reasons why you should:

  1. Torchwood expands on the Doctor Who universe

One of the best things about Torchwood is that it explores the Doctor Who universe in more depth. While Doctor Who focuses on the adventures of the Doctor, Torchwood takes a closer look at the impact of the Doctor’s actions on the world around him. The show also introduces new creatures and technologies that haven’t been seen in Doctor Who before.

  1. Torchwood is more mature and darker than Doctor Who

Doctor Who is known for its family-friendly tone, but Torchwood takes a darker turn. The show tackles more mature themes like sex, death, and politics, making it more suitable for an older audience. Torchwood also isn’t afraid to take risks, with unexpected plot twists and character developments that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

  1. Torchwood has a diverse and dynamic cast

The Torchwood team is made up of a diverse group of characters, each with their own unique personalities and backgrounds. Captain Jack is a pansexual time-traveler who can’t die, while Gwen Cooper is a former police officer who becomes embroiled in the world of Torchwood. The team also includes Toshiko Sato, a brilliant scientist, and Ianto Jones, a former coffee boy who becomes an integral part of the team.

  1. Torchwood has some of the best writing and acting on TV

The writing, although there are some clunkers in series 1, and acting on Torchwood are mostly top-notch. The show’s writers weren’t afraid to tackle complex and controversial issues, and the actors bring their characters to life with nuance and depth. John Barrowman’s performance as Captain Jack is particularly noteworthy, as he brings a sense of humour, charm and a real darkness to the role while also portraying the character’s emotional depth.

In conclusion, Torchwood is a must-watch for any Doctor Who fan. The show expands on the Doctor Who universe, takes a darker and more mature tone, has a diverse and dynamic cast.

Here are some outstanding Torchwood episodes:

  1. “Countrycide” (Season 1, Episode 6) – The team investigates a series of brutal murders in a rural village and soon realises that the culprits are not human.
  2. “Children of Earth” (Season 3, Episodes 1-5) – In this five-part miniseries, an alien race demands that Earth gives them 10% of its children or face annihilation. The Torchwood team must make impossible choices to save the world.
  3. “Adrift” (Season 2, Episode 11) – Gwen investigates the disappearance of people who have been snatched by the Rift and discovers the heartbreaking truth about what happens to them.
  4. “Captain Jack Harkness” (Season 1, Episode 12) – Captain Jack and Tosh find themselves stranded in 1941 during the London Blitz and must find a way back to the present.
  5. “Exit Wounds” (Season 2, Episode 13) – The Torchwood team faces their deadliest enemy yet as Captain John Hart (played by James Marsters) returns with a plan to destroy the team and the entire city of Cardiff.

These episodes showcase the diverse themes and storytelling that make Torchwood such a standout series in the Doctor Who universe.

The Importance of Companions in Doctor Who

Since its debut in 1963, Doctor Who has been a sci-fi television phenomenon, capturing the imagination of audiences worldwide. The show’s longevity and success can be attributed in large part to the iconic companions who have traveled through time and space with the Doctor.

These companions serve not only as the Doctor’s trusted allies but also as a human perspective on the fantastical universe of Doctor Who. In this post, we’ll explore the crucial role companions play in the show, how their characters have evolved over time, and some of the most memorable companions to date.

Section 1: The Role of Companions in Doctor Who

Companions serve as our window into the world of Doctor Who, allowing us to experience the adventure and wonder of the show through their eyes.

Companions as grounding agents: As an alien time traveler, the Doctor can sometimes seem removed from humanity. Companions help him stay grounded and relatable by providing a human perspective and emotional connection.

Doctor Who often tackles complex themes like love, loss, and loyalty. Companions provide a relatable human element to these themes, giving them emotional weight and depth.

Section 2: The Evolution of Companions in Doctor Who

Doctor Who began with Susan, Ian, and Barbara, who served primarily as passive observers.

Over time, companions have become increasingly integral to the show’s plot and character development. In recent years, the show has become more diverse and inclusive in its portrayal of companions. We’ve seen characters of different races, genders, and sexual orientations, bringing a broader range of perspectives and experiences to the show.

Today’s companions are far more than just passive observers. They’re integral to the show’s plot, often driving the action and making key decisions.

Section 3: Memorable Companions in Doctor Who

Sarah Jane Smith is undoubtedly one of the most beloved and iconic companions in Doctor Who history. Portrayed by the late Elisabeth Sladen, Sarah Jane was first introduced to the series in 1973 as a journalist investigating the mysterious goings-on at a nuclear research center. From there, she became a recurring character, traveling with both the Third and Fourth Doctors and quickly establishing herself as a fan favourite.

What made Sarah Jane so special was her intelligence, her bravery, and her unwavering moral compass. She was never content to sit on the sidelines and watch the Doctor do all the work – instead, she was always eager to get involved, using her investigative skills and quick thinking to help save the day. Sarah Jane was also an incredibly empathetic character, always putting the needs of others first and standing up for what was right, even when it was difficult or dangerous.

After her time on Doctor Who came to an end, Sarah Jane went on to star in her own spinoff series, The Sarah Jane Adventures. The show followed Sarah Jane as she continued her adventures in the world of aliens and time travel, and introduced a new generation of fans to the character. Sadly, Elisabeth Sladen passed away in 2011, but her legacy lives on through her iconic portrayal of Sarah Jane.

Overall, Sarah Jane Smith is a true legend in the Doctor Who universe, a character who exemplifies everything that makes the show so special – intelligence, bravery, empathy, and a sense of wonder and adventure. Her impact on the series and on fans around the world cannot be overstated, and her memory will continue to inspire and delight viewers for generations to come.

Donna Noble was a standout character in the world of Doctor Who, brought to life by the talented actress Catherine Tate. With her quick wit, sharp tongue, and no-nonsense attitude, Donna quickly became a fan favourite. Unlike many other companions who may have been in awe of the Doctor, Donna was never afraid to challenge him and push back against his sometimes overbearing personality. This made for a dynamic and entertaining relationship between the two characters.

In addition to her comedic timing and strong personality, Donna’s backstory was also a key aspect of her character development. In the episode “Turn Left,” it was revealed that Donna’s life had been shaped by a chance encounter with the Doctor, which led to her experiencing a series of traumatic events. This backstory added depth and complexity to the character, showing how her experiences had shaped her into the person she was when she became the Doctor’s companion.

Donna’s friendship with the Tenth Doctor was a highlight of the show’s fourth series. The two characters had a special bond that was different from the Doctor’s relationships with other companions. They challenged each other, supported each other, and shared a deep respect and affection for one another. This was evident in their final scenes together in the episode “Journey’s End,” where the Doctor erased Donna’s memories to save her life. The scene where Donna tearfully pleads with the Doctor to not make her forget their time together is a poignant moment that showcases the strength of their bond.

Overall, Donna Noble was a standout character in the Doctor Who universe, with her comedic timing, strong personality, and dynamic relationship with the Tenth Doctor making her one of the most memorable companions in the show’s history.

Amy Pond was one of the most beloved companions in the history of Doctor Who. As a character, Amy was complex and multifaceted, with a rich backstory that was central to her personality and motivations. Her childhood encounter with the Doctor, where he promised to return but failed to do so for many years, led her to develop a strong sense of abandonment that would shape her relationships with others throughout her life.

Karen Gillan’s portrayal of Amy was masterful, capturing both the character’s fiery determination and her underlying vulnerability. Her chemistry with Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor was electric, with their playful banter and undeniable chemistry making them one of the most memorable pairings in the show’s history.

Amy’s eventual departure from the show in the episode “The Angels Take Manhattan” was a heartbreaking moment for fans, as she and her husband Rory were sent back in time and forced to live out their lives in the past. The scene where the Doctor reads Amy’s final message to him, in which she tells him that she lived a happy life and that he should always remember her as the girl who waited, is a tear-jerking moment that still resonates with fans today.

Overall, Amy Pond was a pivotal character in the Doctor Who universe, with a backstory and personality that made her one of the most interesting and compelling companions the show has ever seen. Her impact on the Eleventh Doctor and the show as a whole will not be forgotten anytime soon.

Captain Jack Harkness: Captain Jack (played by John Barrowman) is an incredibly important character in the Doctor Who universe. Introduced in the 2005 reboot of the series, Jack quickly became a fan favourite due to his charismatic personality and his ability to add humour and lightness to even the darkest of situations. However, Jack’s significance goes beyond his entertainment value. He is a complex character with a unique backstory and a deep understanding of the dangers and responsibilities that come with time travel. As a result, Jack often serves as a moral compass for the Doctor and his companions, challenging them to think critically about the consequences of their actions. Additionally, Jack has his own series, Torchwood, which explores themes of secrecy, morality, and the consequences of power. All of these factors make Jack Harkness an integral part of the Doctor Who universe and a character whose impact will continue to be felt for years to come.

Section 4: Big Finish Companions

Big Finish is a production company that has been producing licensed Doctor Who audio dramas since 1999, featuring both classic and new series Doctors and their companions.

Big Finish has created a number of original companions, including Evelyn Smythe, who traveled with the Sixth Doctor in a series of audio dramas.

Evelyn, played by the late Maggie Stables, was a history professor who brought a unique perspective to the show. Her intelligence and no-nonsense attitude made her a fan favorite and added an extra dimension to the Sixth Doctor’s character.

Other notable Big Finish companions include Charley Pollard, who traveled with the Eighth Doctor and has since made appearances in other Big Finish productions, and Bernice Summerfield, who originally appeared in the New Adventures novels and has since become a staple of Big Finish’s Doctor Who universe.

Big Finish companions have become beloved additions to the Doctor Who universe, expanding on the show’s mythology and giving fans even more ways to experience the adventures of the Doctor and his companions.


The companions of Doctor Who are more than just sidekicks; they’re an essential part of the show’s success. Their role has evolved from passive observers to active participants, and their diversity and complexity have made them relatable and memorable. As the show continues to evolve and change, we can expect to see even more diverse and compelling companions, each bringing their own unique perspective to the universe of Doctor Who.

Big Finish review-Torchwood: The Last Love Song of Suzie Costello

The Torchwood range from Big Finish is a triumphant return to the beloved sci-fi franchise.

Led by the talented Indira Varma in the role of Suzie Costello, “The Last Love Song of Suzie Costello” is a slow-burning romance that gradually builds to a satisfying conclusion.

Rafaella Marcus’s writing is sharp and insightful, bringing out a softer side of Suzie that we haven’t seen before. Director Steven Kavuma’s deliberate pacing allows the characters to breathe and shine, while the sound design by Shane O’Byrne and score by Blair Mowat add depth and dimension to the story.

Indira Varma’s performance as Suzie Costello in “The Last Love Song of Suzie Costello” is a true highlight of this Torchwood trilogy. Varma effortlessly captures the character’s complexities and nuances, delivering a layered and compelling portrayal that is a joy to listen to.

On audio, Varma’s voice carries a weight and richness that adds a new dimension to her character. She expertly navigates the emotional highs and lows of the story, conveying a sense of vulnerability and strength that makes Suzie all the more relatable and sympathetic. Varma’s chemistry with James Backway, who plays the captain of the crashed spaceship, is palpable. Their exchanges are charged with a simmering tension that makes their burgeoning romance all the more engaging and believable.

This is a must-listen for Torchwood fans, and a testament to the enduring appeal of the franchise.

The Last Love Song of Suzie Costello is available on CD or as a download from Big Finish.

Big Finish review-Torchwood: The Lincolnshire Poacher

Mysterious signals lead the Torchwood team to investigate the Moil, where they encounter a series of numbers that seem to hold a secret. The story follows the team as they try to unravel the mystery, with Greg, an antagonist played by David Shaw-Parker, at the center of the intrigue. Greg’s routine, which involves recording audio while working in the Moil and setting traps, adds to the eerie atmosphere created by the use of real-life number stations.

Meanwhile, Ianto is trapped in a boiler room, and the reality around the team appears to be collapsing. As the story unfolds, the tension builds, and the Lincolnshire Poacher waits in the wings, adding to the creepy atmosphere.

Gareth David-Lloyd gives a stirring performance as Ianto, and the direction by Lisa Bowerman and sound designs by Toby Hrycek-Robinson create an immersive experience. The use of atmospheric music adds to the overall effect.

The Moil, an archaic word for “to work hard, often in the mud,” creates a sense of mystery and ambiguity, and the writing partnership of Lauren Mooney and Stuart Pringle shines through in the unique story and experimental themes.

Overall, The Lincolnshire Poacher is a strong addition to the Torchwood monthly range, with its strange, dark, and mysterious story keeping listeners guessing throughout. It’s a must-listen for fans of the show and anyone who enjoys immersive audio experiences.

Please note that Torchwood contains adult material and may not be suitable for younger listeners.

Torchwood: The Lincolnshire Poacher is available to buy from Big Finish.

Running Down Corridors Episode 1 series 2

Welcome to Running Down Corridors, where we explore the fascinating world of the Doctor and their adventures through time and space.

In this episode, we’ll be discussing the latest Doctor Who special, “Legend of the Sea Devils”. The Sea Devils are a classic Doctor Who monster that first appeared in the Jon Pertwee era, and have since become a fan-favorite. In this special, the Doctor and her companions find themselves in the middle of an underwater battle between the Sea Devils and a group of humans.

We’ll be discussing the themes and messages of the episode, as well as the performances of the actors and the special effects. We’ll also be exploring the history of the Sea Devils in Doctor Who, and how they’ve evolved over the years. Additionally, we’ll be delving into some of the behind-the-scenes details.

So join us for an exciting discussion of “Legend of the Sea Devils”.

This podcast is part of The Bad Wilf Network. Check out www.badwilf.com, for information on all our other shows.

Artwork by Penny Smallshire.

Check out BeeblePete’s review of Doctor Who am I?

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Doctor Who viewing stats

Here’s a subject nobody ever gets bored of hearing. Doctor Who’s overnight viewing stats.

Doctor Who Survivors of the Flux was watched by 3.82 million viewers, according to unofficial overnight figures.

The figure is a slight increase from last week’s episode, The Village of Angels, which received an overnight of 3.45 million in the overnights. The seven-day consolidated figure, which includes all those who watched the episode within one week for chapter four was 4.55 million. This is the lowest seven-day consolidated rating since the series returned in 2005.

What do these figures mean? Absolutely nothing. The way we consume our media has changed dramatically over the past decade. We’re no longer beholden to broadcast times, people time-shift and record it. Others watch on iPlayer. My kids for example have absolutely no idea what day their favourite TV shows airs, having to watch it “live” would seem like a bizarre concept to them. However, they know exactly how to access the shows they like via streaming services.

Although the figures seem low in a traditional sense, Doctor Who is still performing strongly. It was the 8th most-viewed programme on BBC Television for the week and the 21st most-watched across all British television.

Big Finish review-Torchwood: The Red List

The pandemic may have stalled plans for the official seventh series of Torchwood, but producers James Goss and Scott Handcock haven’t just rested on their laurels this year, like the rest of us. In the past 12 months, they’ve given us Torchwood tales about mould, coffee shops and Sontarans. We’ve also seen the return of Yvonne Hartman, Zachary Cross, Billis Manger and, Adam Smith. I’ve barely managed to take the bins out and these guys have continued giving us the best version of Torchwood on any medium.

This month’s release teams up Mr Colchester with a modern-day version of Ace AKA Dorothy McShane, for an adventure set in South America. The duo is both independently there to investigate a revolution but are stuck in a hotel under quarantine.

Mr Colchester, who is played as brilliantly as ever by Paul Clayton, begins the storey with a monologue.
This works as a great way to convey information to the audience, without feeling unrealistic or forced. I think we’ve all probably spoken to ourselves this year. Clayton is clearly having a great time, reprising his role as fan-favourite Colchester and it’s great to hear Sophie Aldred play an older version of Ace, it just goes to show how much work she puts into her performance as a younger version of the character on the main range. As the two versions are so clearly different.

The two leads have great chemistry and play on the mundanity that comes with a lockdown.
They’re supported in this adventure, by Xavier, a hotel technician played by Manuel Pacific. Xavier is there to receive the brunt of Colchester’s complaints and Pacific does a tremendous job, with such a small role.

Scott Handcock, as always, is a fantastic director who is able to get real genuine and believable performances from the three cast members. Steve Foxon’s sound design is flawless and perfectly encapsulates the Latin ambience and compliments Blair Mowat’s music incredibly well.

It’s difficult to review this audio fully, as it’s impossible to do so without spoiling. So I will say, it’s a lot of fun and features the best-written characters from both Torchwood and Doctor Who. It ends on a cliffhanger and I for one, hope this isn’t the last we’ve heard from Colchester and Ace.

Torchwood: The Red List is available to purchase from the Big Finish site and goes on general release on the 31st January 2022.

Episode 266: Returning T Davies

As nobody else on the internet is talking about it, Martyn, Sam and their friend Antoni felt duty-bound to tell that world that legendary screenwriter Russell T. Davies, who was was responsible for reviving Doctor Who in 2005. Has announced that he will be returning to helm the show once again.

Davies was the showrunner for the first five years and oversaw the ninth and tenth iterations of the Doctor, played by Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant. During his tenure, he also launched two spin-offs ‘Torchwood’ and ‘The Sarah Jane Adventures.’

He will be coming back to the series for the 60th anniversary and beyond. He’ll be taking over from current showrunner, Chris Chibnall, who is leaving the series. Chibnall has been showrunner since 2016 when he took over from Steven Moffat and has been a very divisive showrunner amongst Doctor Who fans. He and Jodie Whittaker announced that they will be leaving the show together.

Russell T Davies said in a statement, “I’m beyond excited to be back on my favourite show. But we’re time-travelling too fast, there’s a whole series of Jodie Whittaker’s brilliant Doctor for me to enjoy, with my friend and hero Chris Chibnall at the helm – I’m still a viewer for now.”

Chris Chibnall added, “It’s monumentally exciting and fitting that ‘Doctor Who’s 60th anniversary will see one of Britain’s screenwriting diamonds return home. Russell built the baton that is about to be handed back to him — ‘Doctor Who,’ the BBC, the screen industry in Wales, and let’s be honest everyone in the whole world, have so many reasons to be Very Excited Indeed about what lies ahead.”

BBC director of drama Piers Wenger said, “As the 13th Doctor prepares to embark on new and extraordinary adventures, the winds of change are blowing… bringing with them news to delight ‘Doctor Who’ fans across the globe. We are thrilled that Russell is returning to Doctor Who to build on the huge achievements of Chris and Jodie. Thank you to the two of them and the team in Cardiff for all they continue to do for the show and hello Russell, it’s wonderful to have you back.”

Joining Russell on this new adventure will be Bad Wolf. A production company established by former Doctor Who producer, Julie Gardner.

Personally, I think this is tremendous news. Russell T Davies has written some phenomenal drama post-who, so I’m excited to see what he brings to this new era.

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Artwork by Penny Smallshire.

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Equipment used in the creation of this feature was purchased through a grant from Graeae and The Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

If you’d like to support the show, then please shop via our Amazon link. A small percentage goes our way, at no extra cost to you. We also have a Ko-Fi.



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Captain Jack removed from Time Fracture event

The creators of Doctor Who: Time Fracture have made the decision to no longer include John Barrowman’s Captain Jack Harkness, as part of their immersive experience premiering in London later this month. Barrowman had filmed the cameo a couple of weeks ago.

This decision comes after The Guardian broke news about allegations surrounding Noel Clarke. After the article was published, social media users started sharing videos of Barrowman’s former castmates talking about his on-set antics.

Immersive Everywhere said:

“Immersive Everywhere has taken the decision to remove this pre-record from Doctor Who: Time Fracture. We will continue to include content that pays tribute to this brilliant show that is Torchwood so as not to disappoint its fans, and are working on an exciting storyline to be announced soon.”

After he was contacted by The Guardian journalists, Barrowman said:

“With the benefit of hindsight, I understand that upset may have been caused by my exuberant behaviour and I have apologised for this previously. Since my apology in November 2008, my understanding and behaviour have also changed.”

Doctor Who: Time Fracture opens 26 May. Tickets are available for pre-order here.

Episode 251: Paul Clayton interview

Martyn is joined by actor, writer, producer and director, Paul Clayton. Paul is perhaps best known for his work on Peep Show, Him & Her and, Torchwood.

The podcast is available from all good podcast services, such as but not limited to Spotify, Amazon Music, PodchaserPlayer FM, Stitcher, and Apple Podcasts.

We also have a Smartlink.

Equipment used in the creation of this feature was purchased through a grant from Graeae and The Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

If you’d like to support the show, then please shop via our Amazon link. A small percentage goes our way, at no extra cost to you. We also have a Ko-Fi.

Check out Paul’s website.



Paul Clayton-@ClaytonCast

Martyn – @BadWilf

Gerrod –@InGerrodsMind

Pete – @BeeblePete