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[personal profile] azn_jack_fiend
As I mentioned in the voice post, I am a dumbass. For some reason, I thought the premiere was tomorrow. I was all prepared to go several hours early and wait in line in front of the theater for a good spot. Instead, I logged on to Twitter and saw some posts that the premiere was TODAY. Luckily, my husband took care of things at the house while I rushed out, jumped into my toaster-car and burned rubber down Ponce (an awful twisty road) and got there just in time. The tickets were all sold out, but the Starz people let me and a few other latecomers in anyway, and got a bench for us to sit on. But after our group, the theater was absolutely packed and they had to turn people away.

Here are some of my observations.

- This episode moved fast. I don't understand the review I remember that said it started slow. It threw us into the middle of things, and by the end of the show we're introduced to almost all the major characters (except Jilly) and the central conflict is made clear.  There are hardly any quiet character moments. The few included are beautiful and meaningful, however: Gwen at her father's bedside, for example. Just a tiny little scene that gives a wonderful insight on her family and suggests to me she was always more of a daddy's girl.  The shot of Jack alone in an abandoned apartment, eating out of a pan, was terribly sad and atmospheric and evocative even though we could barely see his face.

- the action was awesome. I'm afraid the suspense suffered for me simply because I'm such a spoiler fiend, and scenes from the first episode are heavily featured in promos.  But even though I knew exactly what was going to happen when Gwen reached for the earmuffs, IT STILL FUCKING ROCKED THE CASBAH.

- Rex. Rex is amazing. He's in pain and bleeding and popping pills and staggering and insulting Wales for almost the whole episode. He's like a force of nature. When he's moaning and hurting and clenching his face in pain I sucked in a breath and my chest hurt too (although to be honest that might have had something to do with the humongous torta al pastor I'd eaten for dinner from a taqueria on Buford Highway).  Mekhi Phifer fucking nails it. This character is really not at all like his FBI character on Lie To Me; the body language struck me as totally different.

- I'm fascinated to see how characters have or have not evolved. Gwen seems like she's changed. She has a wistfulness and sadness about her and whole different level of maturity. Rhys doesn't seem to have changed. I don't like his character, and that's mainly because he reminds me of people in real life I dislike because they believe they're entitled to take their anger out in ways that strike me as overly threatening. He does have a yelling episode with Gwen that seems totally consistent with the way he's always been portrayed from S1 on. Yes, I can see what's lovable about Rhys, but I don't love him.  I don't think he's changed. But Gwen has changed. I wonder what that means for their relationship. I'm really curious.

- Jack is a mystery at this point in terms of how much he has or hasn't changed. He's all over the place, literally and figuratively. One minute large and in charge, exerting total control of the situation. The next minute seeming lost and confused and wondering. JB is not acting as subtly as he does in CoE, but he's not hamming it up either. He's pretty much unique and perfect in terms of expressiveness.

- Esther is still a cipher at this point, but I like her vulnerability and fragility. It's there without being obnoxious. And Dr. Juarez is a great counterbalance to Esther. More hands-on sort of physical presence, similarly dedicated and determined, but by no means superhuman. She's easily cowed by the weird-ass doctor in the autopsy scene, for example. I'm fascinated to see how she'll be tested and maybe come out stronger.

- Bill Pullman was creepy as hell. It seemed like he had some kind of tic or hiccup in the jail scene, and it was almost painful to watch. It had me wondering if it was the aftereffect of the execution chemicals in his system.

- We saw the preview for the next ep, which includes Jack having an intense conversation with shirtless bleeding Rex. Ahhhhhhh. Too bad my "Jack has intense conversation with shirtless bleeding Rex" fic is already jossed.

In short, I loved it. The only thing that sucked about the premiere is that I can't see the next episode this Friday! But I'll get a chance to rewatch it and remember the awesome lines I didn't quite memorize the first time. In closing, like Rex says, GODDAMN WALES! I HATE WALES! FUCK OFF WALES! Just kidding, I love Wales. Hahahaha. Oh man, I bet RTD et al. had such a fun time writing this.

Date: 2011-07-06 02:46 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rm.livejournal.com
This is the first time I am really excited now!

Date: 2011-07-06 03:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] azn-jack-fiend.livejournal.com
Yeah, it's really happening! I've been waiting so damn long for this! RARRGH!

Date: 2011-07-07 12:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] count-to-seven.livejournal.com
I've spent the last year being bit of a stick in the mud about it, but I was blown away. Be excited!

Date: 2011-07-06 12:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] neifile7.livejournal.com
WOAH.

Thanks for the writeup! You've whetted my anticipation even more than all the clips and previews. It's finally sinking in how soon I'll be able to see Jack and Gwen again, and the new characters sound beyond awesome.

Date: 2011-07-06 01:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] azn-jack-fiend.livejournal.com
Oh yeah!

It really struck me as a perfect balance between old and new.

Date: 2011-07-06 02:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 51stcenturyfox.livejournal.com
That sounds GREAT.

I sort of share your feelings about Rhys... sometimes. I'm very bothered and flinchy about watching domestic arguments generally, and when he goes off, it bugs the hell out of me, but Gwen gives it back and she's with Rhys, so they presumably accept each other's quirks there, and she thought his Rhys-the-rant thing was charming when they first went out, so hey. He makes up for it with me at the points when he's super-proud of her.

I can't WAIT to see this!

Date: 2011-07-06 02:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] azn-jack-fiend.livejournal.com
Yeah, it's weird, because it's not the conflict itself, or the yelling, or the hand-waving -- I'm used to some very physically expressive people, men and women, and none of that in isolation especially bothers me -- but something about the entitlement of it gets to me, I think. But I do agree that Rhys is a good (realistically flawed) character in that he's supportive of Gwen when the chips are down.

And oh man, Gwen is sooo good in this.

Date: 2011-07-06 02:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] 51stcenturyfox.livejournal.com
Yeah, I think this kind of entitlement is common enough among many guys, though. So it's realistic "typical bloke" stuff anyway, put there for the sake of plotting.

/Doylist

I had no doubt Gwen would be good! Can't wait to watch and discuss!

Date: 2011-07-06 02:39 pm (UTC)
ext_422268: (Jack Miracle Day)
From: [identity profile] ravenja1170.livejournal.com
via [community profile] torch_wood

Thanks a lot for your review! It sounds great! Enjoy your second watch of this episode on Friday :)

Date: 2011-07-06 02:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] azn-jack-fiend.livejournal.com
Thank you so much, glad you liked the review :D

Date: 2011-07-06 04:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rambleinblue.livejournal.com
I'm not Janto or Ianto EMO or anything, just curious if there was any mention of Ianto in episode one ??

Thanks for the review....I can't wait to see it.

Date: 2011-07-06 04:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] azn-jack-fiend.livejournal.com
Nope, no mention.

Jack did use "Owen Harper" as an alias at one point, however. I have a suspicion there will be a reference to Ianto at some point.

You're welcome!

Date: 2011-07-06 07:04 pm (UTC)
trobadora: (Torchwood)
From: [personal profile] trobadora
Yay, this sounds great! Thank you for the write-up. :)

Date: 2011-07-06 07:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] azn-jack-fiend.livejournal.com
THANK YOU :D

Date: 2011-07-06 07:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dreamscapemusic.livejournal.com
I adore Rhys, but that was one of the things that made me a little uncomfortable at moments during the first series. Just the say that he would explode at her, you know?

And I agree with someone higher up, your write up is making me more excited for the new series than any of the official stuff that's been released.

Date: 2011-07-06 07:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] azn-jack-fiend.livejournal.com
Gosh, thanks! I tried to stick with impressions more than detailed A then B then C happened.

Yep, I've always felt the same way about Rhys. Ambivalent and uncomfortable. But I think Kai Owen does a fantastic job at acting him.

Date: 2011-07-06 08:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hab318princess.livejournal.com
8 days and counting...
(well, unless I come across a link - will not go looking for an illegal download but that is personal choice)

Thanks for the review and stoking the excitement!

Date: 2011-07-06 08:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] azn-jack-fiend.livejournal.com
You're very welcome! Sorry you have to wait so long in the UK though, that sucks :-(

Date: 2011-07-06 08:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hab318princess.livejournal.com
it does, but that's life... as other countries pipe up (Sweden and France that I know of) they don't have it at all - then there's the audio plays on 11, 12 and 13 on the radio and JB's Tonight's the Night on Saturday... I'll be okay :D

Date: 2011-07-06 08:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] roboticduck.livejournal.com
I was at this premiere too. Great review! I loved Rex, heck I am pretty taken by all the new characters, but especially him.

The shot of Jack alone in an abandoned apartment
This said more than words. I am glad they included that shot. I want to know what happens next, ack.

Lard

Date: 2011-07-07 12:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] count-to-seven.livejournal.com
He was pulling the twitchy evil!Kline face before the chemicals. I'm still not sure what to make of him.

Have a nitpicky question that skirts the line of spoiler. It actually kept me up last night.

Date: 2011-07-07 02:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tw-31988.livejournal.com
lovely review. and i agree with pretty much everything.

although i don't know why but that entire scene in which Rex leaves the hospital in crutches had me laughing so hard.

i have to add: Jack using Owen Harper as his name was cute and i found the soundtrack to be quite engaging. My screener didn't have the 'Next Episode' clip though. :'(
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