Not only do U.K. viewers get to watch Torchwood: Children of the Earth this week, but over the weekend they got the latest Torchwood radio play to follow, "The Dead Line" (which, unfortunately, is geoblocked for those of us in the US). The story follows a mysterious phone call which puts people into a coma but it also offers a heart breakingly tender moment for the Janto fans.
But don’t venture any further if you’re looking to avoid any SPOILERS.
Arrogant and over confident due to his immortality, Captain Jack answers one of these calls to see what they’re like and winds up in a coma like the call’s other victims.
As Ianto and Gwen race to stop the coma-inducing phone calls, Ianto (Gareth David-Lloyd) delivers a heart wrenching monologue to the comatose Jack. If you can’t listen to the episode, you can read a transcript of the speech.
Not only does Ianto confess how deeply his affection for Captain Jack goes, but he also expresses his worry about not meaning as much to Jack as Jack does to him:
This must be the longest that I’ve ever looked at you and not seen you smile. I’ve watched you in your sleep; did you know that? So many times. Just woken up beside you in the middle of the night and watched you. Watched your eyes moving behind your eyelids as you dreamed. And tried to imagine what a man like you could possibly dream about. The things you’ve seen; the lives you’ve lived; the people you’ve loved. I wondered if you were dreaming about me, I hoped you were dreaming about me.
But lets be honest, Jack. I’m… nothing more than a blip in time for you, Jack. Everyday, I grow a little older. But you’re immortal. You’ve already lived a thousand lifetimes. How could you watch me grow old and die? How can I watch you live and never age a day?
I suppose we both know that will never be a problem. Not in this job. No one in Torchwood ever lives to draw their pension do they? Even by some miracle I survive to see my hair turned grey, or God forbid fall out, I don’t kid myself that you’d still be around to see it. One day, you’ll go again, just like you did before.
At the episode’s end, when the source of the calls is defeated and Jack comes out of the coma, they both awkwardly overlook Ianto’s confession.
Jack claims he doesn’t remember anything from the coma and Ianto passes what he said as just "a little" bit of talking. At that point, John Barrowman gets his chance to make the Janto fans squee in delight when Jack responds, "You will never be just a blip in time, Ianto Jones. Not for me."
Okay, I admit it, the plot holes and bad choices often pull me out of Torchwood (and "Dead Line" has a big one, unless I missed the part where they explain how this is a very special EMP that doesn’t affect life support machines or hard drives with patient histories) but the Janto romance always manages to pull me back in.
"You will never be just a blip in time, Ianto Jones" is just the thing to get me excited for Children of Earth‘s debut on July 20, which promises plenty of focus on Janto.
Now if only other sci-fi shows would realize how a steamy gay romance can get viewers to overlook plot holes.