Thursday, 2 June 2011

Expect Spoilers in SFX's Exclusive Interview with Torchwood's Russell T Davies

Interviewed in SFX's 210th issue, the former head writer of Doctor Who talks about the themes and characters involved in Torchwood: Miracle Day.

Here are two of our favourite questions asked of Russell T Davies.
SFX: Are there similarities with Children Of Earth in terms of looking at how quickly "civilised" society can take a turn for the worse?
"Well I've always been fascinated by the fact that we think we're so far away from Romania, or Rwanda, or Kosovo… and we're not! We don't have better instincts than Rwandans do. It's fascinating how paper-thin it is. We were getting at that with Children Of Earth – we showed it there. That purposely ended with children being taken from homes to be killed, which you see happening in Rwanda and think, 'It's a million miles away', but it's not, it's next door. So that's continuing into this, because I loved that.
"Y'know, you sit in every drama launch where they're going, 'What this show is really about is what it is to be human!' [laughs] What the f**k's that?! I don't even know what that question means, but I do think you can look at how society works, and how we are responsible for each other, and what responsibilities you have for yourself, against your family, against your friends – it's fascinating."
 . . . SFX: Tell us how the paedophile/child killer character, Oswald Danes, fits into it. I gather he gets out of jail after his execution fails.
"Well, his argument is that his execution didn't fail, and there's no legal precedent for this. You don't release someone because the rope snapped – that's not true. His argument is that it was carried out, to the best of everyone's possibility, and that the fact that death has ceased to exist has absolutely nothing to do with anything – or the legal system – so he gets out on a technicality. And then the only way he's ever gonna get a police guard, or a motel room, or any sort of food without being stoned in the streets is to ride this media wave and survive it. And at the same time, Torchwood is looking for anyone who may or may not be connected to this problem.
"At the same time there's a very important subtext, which is that here is a child killer saying that he's been forgiven. Jack killed his own grandchild and has never forgiven himself, and would never believe Oswald's lies for a second. So there's a fantastic collision between these two men being terrible opposites, with a very bizarre common ground between them. It's fascinating territory that – really difficult."
But these are just two random questions from the fabulous full interview.

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