With a new member of the team in place â€“ for seems like forever â€“ Jack, Ianto and Gwen seem to be loving life. Toshiko, meanwhile, is in love with blond team member Adam, while the shy and bookish Owen maintains his secret crush on Toshiko…
Hang on a minute! This canâ€™t be right!
30 seconds into Adam and itâ€™s quite obvious who Adam is, and how he is toying with Torchwood, such is our familiarity with the series and the genre.
Somehow he can create false memories…
This all puts us in place for some interesting moments between Gwen and Rhys; she has no idea who her fiancÃ© is! Meanwhile, Jack and Ianto seem closer than they have in previous instalments, while Owen is a horrible pastiche of the real Tosh.
The “new” Tosh, meanwhile, is bit of a bitch, and Adamâ€™s slightly crazed body worshipper.
Thereâ€™s no other real way to say it. The influence of Adam hasnâ€™t swapped Tosh and Owenâ€™s personalities, rather suppressed Owen and remodelled Tosh.
So who or what is Adam?
It isnâ€™t really explained, but his power is strong, and grows with each person who believes in his existence. What is particularly vivid about him is the way he steps into the memories of our heroes, in particular Jack…
We see Jack on the Boeshane Peninsula, first referenced in Last of the Time Lords and the clue to his future existence as the Face of Boe. Jack recalls the last time he saw his father and younger brother, referenced back in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, and Adam uses these memories to gain a foothold on Jack.
What Adam didnâ€™t reckon on, however, was Ianto and his diary. Imagine that, the butler keeps a diary…
*November 12 2006:
Went to Tesco, bought dinner for me and Lisa. Fed Lisa baby food.
*November 13 2006:
Lisa is dead. They killed her. I killed her!
*November 14 2006
Missing Lisa. Quite fancy Jack though.
But I digress.
Thereâ€™s little distracting direction and camerawork on Adam, the soundtrack is pitched right and the dialogue is good. All the usual performers are on song; I found the actor playing Adam to be slightly weak and not quit charming enough (he also resembles some local neâ€™er-do-well who an ex-girlfriend once dumped me for, but thatâ€™s another story). Scenes on the Tatooine-like peninsula are bound to raise comparison with Star Wars or Dune, but frankly thatâ€™s a little unfair, I feel. Woodland would have looked like Endor.
Although the truth behind Adam is signalled early on in proceedings, the episode does up the quality dial for Series 2, and leaves the viewer wanting more.