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Published on January 23rd, 2011 | by Meredith Burdett

Torchwood – Whoniverse or Not?

Doctor Who genius Russell T Davies was recently at the Television Critics association to promote the latest series of Torchwood that’s due out this year.

The former show runner commented that he is very pleased with how the new series, under Steven Moffat’s reign is unfolding:

“Of course I love it! Steven Moffat’s most important role is to get me a DVD before that Saturday of transmission,” says Davies. “This new season it’s going to go out on BBC America on the same day, but I still want the DVD because it won’t have adverts…

“This morning before I came to Pasadena I was sitting there reading the Doctor Who Series Companion Part 2 and reading about the cut scenes from ‘The Hungry Earth’, and I thought, ‘What a fan am I?”’Can’t wait for the new series, can’t wait!”

Davies is still Executive Producer on the two Doctor Who spin off series Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures but how exactly do the three programmes connect these days? Russell remarked:

“I really don’t want to know what’s happening…I have to know some things, because I am still running The Sarah Jane Adventures, and there’s no specific crossover, but we have to make sure we’re in the same universe. For example I got a call from my agent yesterday about something in Doctor Who, that I’m not going to tell you, but it thrilled me, and I thought God that’s exciting! I have tiny moments of contact, but I don’t want too many of them because I want to sit and watch it like a kid.”

Both the Tenth and Eleventh Doctor’s have appeared in The Sarah Jane Adventures in the past year with only the tiniest of cameos at the end of Torchwood series one. But how embedded in the Doctor Who universe is Torchwood?

There have been cameos from Torchwood monsters in Doctor Who but never a full on meeting of the lead characters from both shows. Certainly Torchwood is a much more adult show and encouraging children to watch it is something Russell T Davies is keen to avoid.

Captain Jack has dipped in and out of the Whoniverse and Gwen and Ianto have been involved in Dalek escapades but will Torchwood ever truly align with the Doctor Who world? We’ll have to wait and see…

(Via AssignmentX)


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What happens when an eight year old kid watches the 1993 repeat run of Planet of the Daleks? He pretty much ends up here writing about the show that grabbed hold of him and never let go!

4 Responses to Torchwood – Whoniverse or Not?

  1. avatar 23skidoo says:

    Well let’s see: Season 1 ended with a cliffhanger leading directly into Utopia (and featured the Doctor’s hand as a co-star, to boot); Season 2 featured Martha Jones; after season 2, Jack, Gwen and Ianto assisted the Doctor; Season 3 featured direct references to the events of The Stolen Earth/Journey’s End the Doctor was mentioned by name. No, I don’t think there’s been any connection at all. ;) What’s hilarious is everyone has missed the “SEASON FOUR” part of the equation. It’s part of the same show, ergo it’s as much a part of the Whoniverse as the Sarah Jane Adventures. On a serious note, though, it is great to see that the Doctor Who production team is still in touch with Davies regarding major plot developments. One can read between the lines that Moffat must have something big up his sleeve if he thought it has the potential to affect Torchwood!

  2. @23skidoo fair points but the question was:

    “will Torchwood ever truly align with the Doctor Who world?”

    Series 1 and 2 of Torchwood have more direct links both plot wise and thematically than Series 3, where as you say the Doctor is mentioned by name – in a way that *could* easily be edited out in future.

    Whether Moffat and RTD are in contact or not has wider implications than this question, as RTD is in charge of SJA which clearly remains within the Whoniverse.

    But there is no such clarity with Torchwood, a series in which 2 major global events will have taken place in two consecutive series with which the Doctor has played no part…

  3. avatar Leosw4 says:

    But there is no such clarity with Torchwood, a series in which 2 major global events will have taken place in two consecutive series with which the Doctor has played no part…

    Thats true Christian, but Gwen if I recall did specifically mention the Doctor in the voice over in the last series, noting that the Doctor was not around for the events involving the 456.Presumably these events are ‘fixed’-unless all time can be re-written, which in that case the whole premise of the Whoniverse in undermined-where was he when the Hitler rose to power or why did’nt he avoid the Titanic sinking?

    He does’nt need to be involved, not would I expect him to-otherwise there is no point in having two spin offs. Granted SJA is more Doctor friendly and long may this continue.

  4. avatar Carn says:

    I didn’t think there was any question that it’s all the same universe.

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