Last Thursday afternoon at Comic-Con International in San Diego, “Torchwood” cast members John Barrowman (Captain Jack), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones) and Naoko Mori (Tosh Sato) joined executive producer Julie Gardner for a panel discussion about the series, and CBR News was there.
The panel kicked off with a discussion about the sexuality in the show, which Gardner insisted was not as pervasive as most people think. She said the show is really about “loss and love” and “fancying people and not knowing what to do about it.”
Barrowman, for his part, lamented that Captain Jack himself doesn’t get a lot of action. “He keeps his coat on,” Mori said.
“Coat sex, safe sex,” Barrowman agreed.
Mori said she has a lot in common with Tosh in that she’s a bit of a geek. “But geeks rule the world,” she was quick to add. “Tosh is learning about herself, coming out of her shell. She’s a late bloomer.”
“She’s dead!” Gardner cut in, eliciting groans from the crowd who were just as happy to forget that Tosh was killed in the most recent season.
Barrowman said that Tosh’s death scene was one of the hardest scenes they ever had to film. “We were losing a team member, and a part of our ‘Torchwood’ family,” Barrowman said. “And Naoko acted it so beautifully.”
Interesting footnote, Barrowman and Mori once acted opposite each other in a production of “Miss Saigon,” so “Torchwood” was the second time that the actress had died in Barrowman’s arms. “I’m sorry she had to die,” Gardner said, to which fans started chanting “Bring her back!”
David-Lloyd said the part he enjoyed most about his character is the mysterious elements. “You don’t know a hell of a lot about him.”
Barrowman, whose character Captain Jack first appeared on “Dr. Who,” said he’s enjoyed the evolution of the character. “When we first met him he was not a very likable person,” Barrowman said, but he feels like Jack has been humanized over the course of “Torchwood.” “There’s a lot of John Barrowman in Captain Jack.”
“There’s a lot of Ianto in there as well,” David-Lloyd quipped.
Barrowman re-enacted his reaction when he first heard that Captain Jack was spinning off into a “Dr. Who” sequel. “I’ve got my own series!” he squeeled. “I’m going to be an action hero! I might get my own figure! I love science fiction!”
Gardner said that she and Barrowman were in a bar in central London when she broke the news, and she literally had to put her hand over the actor’s mouth to keep him from making a scene.
At this point the panel opened up the floor to questions from the audience. One fan asked about a version of “Downfall” that’s currently on YouTube which changes the subtitles so that Hitler is talking about the end of the most recent season of “Torchwood.” “I thought they had far too much time on their hands,” Barrowman said. “It was funny, though.”
Gardner announced the deal had just been made to air “Torchwood” season 3 on BBC America. The third season will be in a completely new format with only five episodes. “It’s going to be one huge story,” Gardner said. “There’ll be a ticking clock, a big event, and it will push the ‘Torchwood’ team into new territory.”
Barrowman revealed he’d read the script for the first episode of season three. Though he was warned not to reveal any details, he did say it was “incredibly action packed” and “it leaves you wanting more and more and more.”
Gardner added that the episode was written by “Dr. Who’s” Russell T. Davies, and that “bad things happen.”
One fan posed the following question to Barrowman: “Of your fellow three panelists, marry, shag, push off a cliff.”
“Tosh is dead,” Barrowman said. “Naoko, no offense, you’re going off a the cliff. But I’d shag her before I threw her.”
“I’d have to shag Julie,” Barrowman continued. “I know she has a wild side to her.”
“And I’d have to marry Gareth, because I’ve seen him naked.”
One fan asked if Barrowman had any interest in playing Captain America. “Captain America is one of my favorite superheroes,” the actor said. “I would love to play Captain America. My manager probably just sent an e-mail to the studio to let them know.”
“He’s busy!” Gardner protested.
It looked as though Captain Jack had died in the season 1 finale of “Dr. Who,” and one fan asked how Barrowman felt when he learned that character was coming back? “I was ecstatically excited,” Barrowman said. “If you buy my book, the story is in there. It’s called ‘Anything Goes.’ And it did.”
One fan asked if Barrowman and Mori would treat the audience to a rendition of “Miss Saigon’s” “Sun and Moon.” Barrowman said he’d never had to learn “Sun and Moon,” but they did sing a few bars of “Solo Saxophone.”
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