5 November 2006
John Barrowman (Captain Jack), Eve Myles (Gwen), Burn Gorman (Owen), Naoko Mori (Toshiko), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto)
Kai Owen (Rhys Williams), Caroline Chikezie (Lisa), Togo Igawa (Dr Tanizaki), Bethan Walker (Annie)
|Written by||Chris Chibnell|
|Directed by||James Strong|
|Produced by||Richard Stokes|
Ianto Jones (Gareth David-Lloyd) is revealed to secretly house his girlfriend, Lisa Hallett (Caroline Chikezie), a half-converted Cyberman, in the basement of the Torchwood Hub. Ianto wants to turn her into a human again, but by doing so her Cyberman influence takes control, and the rest of the team must stop her before she could become a threat to Earth. However, Ianto still believes she can be saved.
The episode was among the first pitched for the series, as creator Russell T Davies saw a potential to continue the story from The Doctor Who episodes “Army of Ghosts” and “Doomsday”. Episode writeroriginally intended the episode to appear sometime midway through the series, but was ultimately brought forward to the fourth slot. It was filmed in the third production block. Because of the limited numberof filming locations and cast members, it was among the cheapest episodes in the first series. It was seen by almost 1.4 million viewers after its original broadcast and received generally mixed reactions from critics, though the producers regard the episode as one of their favourites in the series.
The Torchwood Three team, sans Ianto Jones (who remains behind), go out for a drink. Alone in the hub, Ianto brings in Japanese cybernetics expert Dr. Tanizaki (Togo Igawa) down to a basement deep inside, home to Lisa Hallett, Ianto’s girlfriend. They both worked in Torchwood One during the events of Doctor Who “Doomsday”, when Cybermen partially converted Lisa before the invasion ended.
Ianto has since cared for her by placing her in the basement with a conversion unit to keep her alive. Ianto wants Tanizaki to reverse the process. Tanazaki is able to make her breathe on her own again, but by that time, the team is recalled back to deal with a rogue unidentified flying object. When Tanizaki brings Lisa back down to the basement, her Cyberman influence takes over and she kills him by attempting to “upgrade” him.
This causes a power flicker in the Hub, Ianto makes an excuse to look into it himself and finds Tanizaki’s body. As he leaves Lisa to hide the body, she drains even more power by re-entering the conversion unit. Believing the Hub is under attack, team leader Jack Harkness (John Barrowman) sends Gwen Cooper (Eve Myles) and Owen Harper (Burn Gorman) to the basement where they find the abandoned conversion unit. Jack runs down to find Owen unconscious and Gwen about to be converted.
He stops the process and attempts to shoot Lisa, but Ianto stops him, allowing Lisa to escape. Ianto pleads with Jack that they try save her, but Jack affirms that there is no cure.
Ianto approaches Lisa to reason with her, only to end up being knocked unconscious. Jack buys technical expert Toshiko Sato (Naoko Mori) time to go to the surface to recharge the emergency power cells by allowing himself to be “deleted” (death from electrocution by a Cyberman’s touch) twice by Lisa, though he would survive due to his immortality.
To allow the rest of the team to escape, Jack sprays Lisa with a special “barbecue sauce” that summons the pet pterodactyl, as it attacks her, the team escapes by the invisible lift. Ianto punches Jack for his actions, uttering he is”the biggest monster of them all.” Meanwhile, a pizza delivery girl (Bethan Walker) unwittingly enters the Hub to find a seriously injured Lisa. Ianto runs back to the Hub, but is stopped by Jack, who threatens him at gunpoint with an ultimatum, either he will execute Lisa, or if he does not do so in ten minutes, Jack will enter and kill them both.
Ianto returns to the basement and is devastated to find Lisa dead. He then sees the delivery girl, who has a large cut across her forehead, Lisa.