The latest Torchwood monthly adventure from Big Finish is now available. ‘The Last Beacon’ is the second release from this series of stories, following last month’s highly enjoyable, ‘The Death of Captain Jack’. These two stories couldn’t be further apart in approach making a wonderful juxtaposition.
‘The Last Beacon’ is written by none other than Ianto Jones himself, Gareth David-Lloyd. It stars David-Lloyd, as Ianto and Burn Gorman as Owen and features a large and well performed supporting cast. The unlikely duo of Ianto and Owen hit the road together, tracing a signal coming out of a small Welsh mountain village. With their cover story intact and their gear packed they go undercover to uncover what’s happening.
This is less an adventure and more of an experience. Ianto is clearly infatuated with the idea of camping and roughing it while also getting to know a bit more of his colleague. He does all he can to make the most of their time together while Owen hates every moment. Picture Ianto as Clark Griswold, the over eager father of ‘National Lampoon’s Vacation’, and Owen as the hard to please children. They get up to some antics as they meet the locals and through their ordeals learn more about one another. Comedy ensues.
The adult nature of Torchwood is still present. There’s some graphic sexual language and some fighting but this is a relatively peaceful story that doesn’t indulge in the mature content. While Torchwood has always tackled tough subjects and made social comments, this is quaint. It wants to celebrate community and friendship in Torchwood’s most wholesome way possible.
This isn’t a comedy, per say, but it’s riddled with jokes and our two leads are clearly having fun playing up the humour. Be sure to stick around after the interviews for more silliness. The supporting cast all do a fine job of keeping things authentic, yet light. Director Scott Handcock found a beautiful balance to make this feel both genuine and charming.
Ianto and Owen fans will be more than pleased to tag along for this hike. This isn’t an ‘important’ release, so much as good character building. David-Lloyd has written a script we didn’t know we wanted and t’s a refreshing break from some of the grim topics Torchwood tackles. While both this and ‘The Death of Captain Jack’ are comical, this has a lot of heart and will no doubt rest well with fans. This current run of Torchwood stories is off to a great start!
A signal in a Welsh mountain is calling an ancient battlefleet to Earth. Owen Harper and Ianto Jones head up into the Brecons to stop it.
The problem is – Ianto really loves camping.
Torchwood contains adult material and may not be suitable for younger listeners
Written By: Gareth David-Lloyd
Directed By: Scott Handcock
Burn Gorman (Owen Harper), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Ellie Darvill (Pat), Daniel Hawksford (Bryn), Rick Yale (Bashy), Luke Williams (Brogan), Charlotte O’Leary (Kerys), Kristy Philips (Jemma), Laura Dalgleish (Receptionist), Richard Elfyn (Ryan), Marilyn Le Conte (Ianto’s Nan). Other parts played by members of the cast.
Producer James Goss
Script Editor David Llewellyn
Executive Producers Jason Haigh-Ellery and Nicholas Briggs