Monday, July 28, 2008

TODAY'S TWD: TORCHWOOD & U.N.C.L.E., TOGETHER AGAIN FOR THE FIRST TIME


This is the final "Turn Left" Tiddlywinkydinks to involve a full episode of 'Doctor Who'. We've been looking at those episodes of 'Doctor Who' which were set in the past and which should have had dire effects for the Earth if the Doctor was no longer alive to be the planet's guardian. (That premise was established in the episode "Turn Left".)

The world could have been - SHOULD have been! - destroyed several times over if the Doctor had not stepped in to save the day. So why did the basic set-up of daily life in London seem so normal for Donna Noble at the beginning of "Turn Left"?

Unlike the episodes which I looked at before, I don't think the four historical episodes (and two of the three suggested) could have been rectified on their own. The villains involved were all too powerful and should have wreaked havoc which would have made an impact to the present day.

So I think somebody else stepped in to take care of matters in each episode. And this being about Toobworld, I think those somebodies would be from other TV shows!

"THE UNICORN AND THE WASP"
I can hear you groaning now. I probably beat this episode to a pulp for a while with all of the posts I ran about it. Sorry about that; it's just that I found the topic of Agatha Christie's tele-version to be fascinating.

But this time we're looking at those same events and those same characters in a different timeline in which the Doctor and Donna never showed at the Eddison Estate in 1926.

First, let's just go over the basic details:
The Doctor and Donna crashed a party at the country estate of Lady Clemency Eddison and her husband Colonel Hugh Curbishley. Soon after, the bodies began to drop.

Professor Peach actually died before the Doctor showed up - killed in the library with a lead pipe. Then there was the housekeeper, crushed by a falling gargoyle, and the son of Colonel Hugh and Lady Clemency, knifed in the back.

Assisted by the novelist Agatha Christie, the Doctor determined that the murderer was part human, part giant wasp (from an alien race known as the Vespiform). Thanks to quick thinking on Donna's part, the Vespiform drowned in a pond.

So what would have happened if the Doctor and Donna had never shown up?
Well, we never saw it, but it could be that Torchwood (London branch) was already on its way to deal with the alien menace anyway. After all, as their motto states, "If it's alien, it's ours." And how could they resist a giant sentient wasp and a "firestone" power source?

So in the original timeline, Torchwood would have shown up too late to be of any use other than as a "mop-up" squad - retrieving the Vespiform corpse from the pond for further study, as well as dredging up the alien Firestone.

Without the Doctor's involvement in the new timeline, Torchwood would still have arrived to either kill or capture the Vespiform, but the body count would have been higher; perhaps even Agatha Christie would have eventually been murdered by the giant wasp. And then the world would have been denied "Murder On The Orient Express" and the mystery novels based on the life of Miss Jane Marple. (In Toobworld, the characters share the same world as their creators.)

But you may be wondering why I think Torchwood would be on its way to the Eddison Estate so soon in both timelines. It's because I think that by 1926, a former guest character of 'Doctor Who' would have been a member of Torchwood, someone with precognitive abilities who could have foreseen the need for Torchwood to respond to the situation even before it began. And that character would have been Tim Latimer, who had been a young schoolboy encountered by the Doctor in 1913. ("Human Nature"/"Family Of Blood")
Even without contact with the Doctor, Tim Latimer would still have had his gift of the Second Sight. And because of his service in the British army during World War I, it may have even come to the attention of the government. From there, it's easy enough to see how Torchwood would have gained that information and then recruited Tim Latimer to become a member of Torchwood.

Using his precognitive abilities, Tim would have led Captain Jack and the other members of Team Torchwood to the Eddison Estate; there to do battle with the Vespiform.
[Picture actor Thomas Sangster as being thirteen years older, and he could be meeting Lady Clemency Eddison in this shot....]

Torchwood may even have had enough time before they left for Lady Eddison's estate to contact the aging Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs. The purpose would be for any insight that he could give them with regards to giant wasps, as he was involved in the study of bees in his retirement there. They may have even dealt with him in the past to learn more about his case about the Sussex Vampire and whether or not it was something Torchwood should be involved in. (Again, Sherlock Holmes is another example in which the character shares the same world as its author. Since the Doctor seems to be making the rounds of all the great British authors, one day he may meet Arthur Conan Doyle.)

There's one other TV character whom I think may have been a member of Torchwood back in 1926 - future head of the U.N.C.L.E. branch in New York, Alexander Waverly. If the novel "The Rainbow Affair" has a counterpart in the TV Universe, Waverly accepted a position with Department Z in 1932. (Department Z would be involved with the protection of state secrets against espionage during World War II.) But before that, he may have worked with Torchwood, which would have made him an excellent choice to serve the British government in Department Z.

Perhaps in other cases, Torchwood may have crossed paths with other sleuths of the 1920s, like Tommy and Tuppence Beresford or Albert Campion. But for the purpose of this examination into the revised version of "The Unicorn And The Wasp", I'm going to keep things simple and have Torchwood consist only of Captain Jack, Tim Latimer, and Alexander Waverly on this case.
It might have been nice to include an alluring female from another TV series or TV movie set during that time period. But since Tim Latimer was in his late 20s by this point in Time, I'm sure Jack might have found some way to make do.....

Say no mo'!

SHOWS CITED:
'Torchwood'
'Partners In Crime'
'The Man From U.N.C.L.E.'
'Campion'
'The Adventures Of Sherlock Holmes'

BCnU!
Toby O'B

1 comment:

MediumRob said...

If you want to go even further, wasn't the organisation that UNCLE had to face in the pilot movie (the one without Mr Waverly) called WASP?