‘Torchwood’ review: Season 2 of Big Finish’s audios concludes with ‘Made You Look’

Fans of Stephen King or even Scooby-Doo will know there is something chilling about seaside resorts out of season.

With that in mind, Gwen Copper (Eve Myles) sets out for Talmouth, a seaside town nobody has heard from in days. Is it aliens or something worse? Gwen steps off the train to find out.

Guy Adams’s story, ‘Made You Look’ is deeply atmospheric. As Gwen explores the Marie Celeste-like town, she becomes acquainted with the threat posed by Darkness, a barely glimpsed horror voiced by Matthew Gravelle (Broadchurch).

As Gwen finds the few people still alive she also realises she is trapped with no clear way out and no time to think through the threat posed by a horror that scoffs at guns and can influence perception.

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As ever for this range the story is mostly a two-hander, and Gwen teams up with local B&B owner Mrs Rhodes (Marilyn Le Conte) and the landscape becomes disturbingly surreal and claustrophobic as Gwen struggles to make sense of her situation.

Writer Guy Adams takes his time revealing the plot and allows his characters room to breathe. Scott Handcock’s direction is nicely paced and all the performances are sharp. Myles in particular gets the balance between control and fear just right.

The tension builds towards an end of season cliffhanger just as the stakes are getting even higher. In the end this is the only downside to an otherwise excellent story. While cliffhangers are an acceptable way to end a season, there is little pay-off for the listener.

Often there would be a victory of sort then the realisation something bigger is at stake; in ‘Made You Look’ the story ends just at the moment when the listener needs to hear more. This is not to say it isn’t a worthwhile investment, and even without knowing when the next season will be, it’s a strong story with plenty to enjoy.

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Released in August 2016 by Big Finish.

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