4.07: Miracle Day - Immortal Sins

Dave

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In the present day, Gwen takes Jack hostage to free her kidnapped family; the two have an intense, and brutally honest conversation. Flashbacks show Jack on-mission in 1927 New York and falling in love with an Italian immigrant named Angelo (Daniele Favilli), but Jack's immortality soon causes him to be viewed with fear and suspicion by the religious community of Little Italy; his torture and bloodletting provide "the blessing" at the heart of the Miracle today. With some intervention from Esther and Rex, Gwen's family are saved by PC Andy and Jack and Gwen are saved from the Miracle Day conspirator (Nana Visitor), who then persuades Jack to come along with her by telling him one man is still waiting for him: Angelo.
Speaking of last weeks episode Teresa said
If it was the set-up to the next episode, the set-up was better than the pay-off.
I was also very disappointed with this. The sex is surely unnecessary? I'd say completely unnecessary if it were not for the big reveal at the end that Angelo is behind Miracle Day to make it relevant. (So, it all comes down to a spurned lover?)

It was a different episode, very focused on Jack, very slow (and that was odd given the increasing pace of recent weeks) and gave us no update on what else was going on in the world. And we then find that Jack would have gone with Nana Visitor anyway, whether or not Gwen kidnapped him.

Jack on a mission to 1927? He's already lived through 1927 once, if not twice. Did he miss that creature the other time(s)? On the other hand, the Jack we know now, knows a lot more than the Jack who first lived through 1927.
 

PTeppic

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Despite the pace it was a cracking episode for me. More in the overall than the parts perhaps, but the series is improving each episode. And gorgeous final scene...
 

TheEndIsNigh

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Well...

I agree with Dave about the sex. I assume the budget is now getting thin and having spent so much on the earlier episodes they are now having to cut back. That 'alien in the box' was certainly 'old school' short on money, fairy liquid bottles stuck together stuff. The final scene, was that filmed near a certain quarry? No doubt they've saved a few bob for the final episode, but I think we have a few weeks of dross in both the plot and the effects.

That wrist band thing is starting to put the TARDIS to shame in the things it can do. Why have we never seen any of these wondrous abilities before. That Harkness guy will be flying around wearing a blue coat and sticking his hand into a railway lamp soon.

The thing is, would any of us watch this crap if it wasn't for the fact it all started as a Dr. Who spin off?

Does the program have any merit in it's own right or are we so desperate to watch anything with a 'remotely' SFF theme, that we will watch anything?

I think the latter. To be honest, I despair (no surprises there then either)

Moving forward, it seems, from the 'Flash Gordon' look what happens next week cliff hanger**, that it's all about forbidden alien technology. Surprise surprise.

** Is this an American thing? It seems to be almost mandatory that serial episodic stories on TV spoil there own plot. It used to be that a cliffhanger was enough to ensure the viewers returned for the next installment. Time was you went to school and discussed last night's installment and speculated about what could happen to save our hero.
 

Dave

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The thing is, would any of us watch this crap if it wasn't for the fact it all started as a Dr. Who spin off?
I actually thought it had great potential when it first began - I assumed it would be a British 'X-Files' and when they said 'adult Dr. Who', I thought they meant more complex and thought-provoking story-lines.

Some of the episodes actually lived up to my expectations but I don't think adding sex, violence bad language for the sake of it is necessary, and I'm no Mary Whitehouse. If the story needs it, then fine, if they just want to push the boundaries, then I'm not interested. I'm well aware that science fiction shows have been at the vanguard of pushing the boundaries - the first inter-racial kiss on 'Star Trek' - but anything goes now on mainstream TV.

Do we need all this sex? Rex and Vera - that makes Vera's death and Rex filming it more poignant. Jack and Angelo - well we apparently have the revenge of a spurned lover to deal with now. Jack and the barman - no, just purely for pushing the boundaries of what can be shown on TV.
 

steve12553

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I actually thought it had great potential when it first began - I assumed it would be a British 'X-Files' and when they said 'adult Dr. Who', I thought they meant more complex and thought-provoking story-lines.
On the other hand, on the west side of the pond, we are seeing the uncut episodes for the first time. The program is shown on a premium channel rather than BBCAmerica (which was obviously edited, at least for langauge, in past years) and we are seeing the whole show with an adult rating. I do suspect though, that the gratuitous sex doesn't do a thing for the storyline. It is probably mostly expected there because it is expected on a premium channel.
 

TheTomG

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As is often the case, it feels overly long to me right now. I had expected they would follow the old Dr Who format of "4 episodes makes one story arc, with three stories per season" kind of thing, which kept the pacing pretty good. It seems the whole season here will be this one story, and while the premise and its consequences are cool to explore, I think it could have been done with much greater intensity and focus.

Uncovering what the module does, for example - did it need both groups uncovering it separately? That just pads out the story unnecessarily to me. And indeed, some of the sex could easily have been stripped away and still let us understand the spurned lover.

The other annoying thing is that we are trying to guess who or what is behind it all - and turns out there was no way we could because they didn't tell us about Angelo yet! There is an element of whodunnit, and the thing about that genre is you have to leave clues and let people guess, and it's no good introducing those clues in episode 7.

I also didn't get how the story starts telling us about 1927 (or whatever it was) for no reason, other than suddenly we have to know now because the big reveal is coming up and you have no idea about it. There was nothing that prompted Jack to think or discuss the past (and clearly he was not thinking about it, this was just the story telling us, out of joint, about these events, not because any of the characters had to think about it or bring it up, but only because we the viewers needed to know about it if the plot was to be able to continue.) That felt very artificial, and basically told us "Yeah we know you were trying to guess all along what was happening, but there was no way you could have known because we hadn't told you this, muahahha!"

In amongst the cool ideas though, I did love the people killing Jack over and over and over - nightmarish! What a thing to be immortal and come back to life just to be brutally murdered instantly, and then have that repeat and repeat and repeat - a form of torture that no mortal could undergo.

So, I wish they kept the focus on the cool stuff, stripped out some fluff and padding, and tightened up the plotting and tension. Then we might have had an awesome series on our hands!
 
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