John Barrowman (Captain Jack), Eve Myles (Gwen), Kai Owen (Rhys), and Tom Price (PC Andy) all reprise their roles in Torchwood: Miracle Day, which hits Starz on Friday (July 8), but what about other fan favorites from seasons past? Take a look at what their former castmates are up to these days.
Gorman excelled at the snarky arrogance of Dr. Owen Harper. But just when we were warming up to the deeply selfish, hedonistic bastard, he died. Twice. (The first time he was left in limbo, the second time was permanent.) The American-born Gorman has hardly been taking time off since his Torchwood demise: he’s had roles in the 2009 adaptation of Wuthering Heights starring Tom Hardy, the Ricky Gervais/Stephen Merchant-directed Cemetery Junction, and several UK TV series. Oh, he just so happens to be co-starring in a little film sequel called The Dark Knight Rises, directed by this unknown British bloke named Christopher Nolan.
You can’t get more tortured than Torchwood’s resident tech geek, Toshiko Sato. Not only was she cruelly dismissed by her crush Dr. Owen Harper, she endured disastrous love affair after disastrous love affair, saw her mother kidnapped, and was murdered by Captain Jack’s brother. Mori has had a bit better fortune than her former alter ego: she played Yoko Ono in the 2010 BBC telefilm Lennon Naked (see pic, opposite Doctor Who‘s Christopher Eccleston) and appeared in an episode of the ABC medical drama Private Practice. And she’s been recruited for Syfy’s upcoming drama Three Inches, which could see her paired with a former Torchwood castmate. (More on that later in this slideshow.)
He started off as a coffee boy and ended up as one half of Janto (Jack/Ianto), the premiere same-sex pairing in all of sci-fi. His death in Children of Earth produced a volcanic reaction from the couple’s fanbase. David-Lloyd has weathered Ianto’s slaying fairly well, parlaying his newfound notoriety into roles in Syfy’s film Red Faction: Origins and the web series Girl Number 9. And Ianto lives on in a series of Torchwood radio plays.
In the series premiere, Torchwood member Suzie committed suicide after making a foolish attempt on Captain Jack’s life. She was briefly resurrected with the “risen mitten” later in the season. Since her last appearance on Torchwood, Varma’s been working almost non-stop on both sides of the Atlantic. She’s done episodes of Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Bones, and Hustle and has had regular roles on BBC America’s Luther and Fox’s Human Target (see above right).
Remember Ianto’s Cyberwoman girlfriend whom he kept hidden in the basement? Who later went completely apes*** and terrorized the entire Torchwood crew? She was played by the gorgeous Caroline Chikezie, who most recently appeared in the 2010 Nigerian movie musical Inalé.
Denby-Ashe has played daughter to Robert Lindsay and Zoe Wanamaker on the BBC family comedy My Family since 2000. But the versatile actress took a break from sitcom suburbia to play Toshiko’s sexy alien bar hookup in the 2006 episode “Greeks Bearing Gifts.” The eleventh and final season of My Family has started airing in the UK.
Playing Eugene, a ghost striving to unravel the reasons behind his hit-and-run death, Paul Chequer was responsible for some of Torchwood’s most tearjerking moments. Last year, Chequer showed us a darker side on Sherlock as DI Dimmock.
In an elegiac episode from Season One, Captain Jack Harkness went back to 1941 to share a dance – and a kiss – with the handsome American GI (Rippy) from whom he took his name. The Texas-born Rippy had been acting in Britain for years before scooping his Torchwood guest spot. He’s maintained an active TV career while also touring with the comedic theater group Reduced Shakespeare Company. (Check ’em out if you’re in the D.C. area in July.) Rippy’s most recent TV credit was a 2009 episode of the lusty Showtime series Secret Diary of a Call Girl, starring Billie Piper of Doctor Who fame.
“Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang,” indeed. Few Torchwood characters have made an entrance quite like Captain John Hart, who greeted ex-lover Jack Harkness with an extended beatdown/makeout session. Since appearing on Torchwood, the former Buffy star suited up to play Buzz Aldrin in the UK telefilm Moon Shot, and he has made guest spots on numerous U.S. TV series, including Numb3rs, Lie To Me, Caprica, and Hawaii Five-0. As we teased earlier, Marsters is set to join Torchwood co-star Naoko Mori in the Syfy series Three Inches.
In the episode “To the Last Man,” Lewis played Tommy, a World War I soldier stuck in the present day and Toshiko’s (umpteenth) doomed love object. Most recently, Lewis appeared in this year’s well-received production of A Passionate Woman (see above), alongside Kay Mellor and Hollyoaks hunk Stuart Manning.
In the Season 2 episode “Sleeper,” Amuka-Bird played Beth, an alien “sleeper agent” with strange technology embedded in her arm. Amuka-Bird has not lacked for work since Torchwood, appearing on The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, Small Island, and as government minister Samantha Willis on the post-apocalyptic drama Survivors. This fall, she’s set to appear opposite Idris Elba in the upcoming Luther miniseries.
Yet another of Tosh’s many failed flings, Adam (Bryan Dick) infiltrated the Torchwood team by implanting each member with fake memories of him. Since his Torchwood appearance, Dick played the vicious drug dealer Daniel Stafford on Ashes To Ashes, the war vet ghost Sykes on Being Human, and Ernie Wise opposite BAFTA winner Daniel Rigby in the Morecambe and Wise biopic Eric & Ernie.
After her departure from the TARDIS, Doctor Who companion Martha Jones met up with her old mate Captain Jack for a three-episode arc of Torchwood. Agyeman was reportedly set to appear in Children of Earth, but she’d already booked her role as Crown Prosecutor Alesha Phillips on Law & Order: UK, which is set to begin its fifth season across the pond.
Captain Jack’s mentally unstable brother Gray wreaked havoc on the Hub at the end of Season Two, resulting in the deaths of Owen and Toshiko. The handsome Nieboer has been cast in the second season of Downton Abbey and appears opposite Harry Potter‘s Rupert Grint and The Reader‘s David Kross in the Norwegian war drama Comrade, set for a 2012 release.
In Children of Earth, Lois was the plucky PA who spied for Torchwood by wearing contact lenses fitted with cameras. The marvelously named Cush Jumbo most recently played straight girl Becky on BBC3’s Sapphocentric drama Lip Service, which premiered last fall.
Previously known for portraying Princess Margaret in the 2005 drama The Queen’s Sister, Cohu nabbed the part of Captain Jack’s daughter in Children of Earth. (Cohu is only a year younger than Barrowman.) The actress has since appeared on mysteries like Midsomer Murders and Silent Witness (see above).
In Torchwood: Children of Earth, the always-brilliant Capaldi played John Frobisher, the British Home Office Secretary who becomes a tragic figure when confronted with an unspeakable choice. Capaldi is best-known for playing the profane and monstrous PR guru Malcolm Tucker on the political comedy The Thick Of It, which has been commissioned for a fourth season. Last winter, he played against type as one of the Magi in the BBC’s adaptation of The Nativity (see pic).
Kevin Wicks founded BBCAmerica.com's Anglophenia blog back in 2005 and has been translating British culture for an American audience ever since. While not British himself - he was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri - he once received inordinate hospitality in London for sharing the name of a dead but beloved EastEnders character. His Anglophilia stems from a high school love of Morrissey, whom he calls his "gateway drug" into British culture.