Suzie Costello was one of the more surprising characters developed for the first season of Torchwood – as actress Indira Varma recalls in the CD extras, she was presented in the first episode as if she’d be a regular, but was then killed off. And came back and was killed off. She certainly had what might be termed an interesting relationship with the truth and morality, and that side of her underpins Guy Adams’ excellent return for the character in this new audio.
It’s a story filled with very dark humour as Suzie learns that Alex, the other human left alive, is a target for alien hunters. It’s made very clear what the only possible outcome can be, but Torchwood (both the series and the organisation) is usually very good at pulling surprises out of the hat and taking the plot in an unexpected direction. Adams trails various potential red herrings as the story progresses and the resolution is built completely out of the characters that he’s presented during the play.
It’s a three-hander, but feels like much more, thanks to some strong work from director Scott Handcock and sound designer Steve Foxon, while Blair Mowat’s score deliberately harkens back to the very early days of the show. Varma drops straight back into character – the final track is chilling in its implications and she plays it exactly right – while guest stars Naomi McDonald, as the sometimes very annoying Alex, and Nicholas Burns as a sardonic robotic referee are equally strong.
Verdict: Once again this incarnation of Torchwood proves that being adult does not have to mean gratuitous sex, violence and swearing, but can be about dark moral choices. Highly recommended. 10/10