For years, fans of Doctor Who spinoff Torchwood have hoped that Captain Jack Harkness and his team still had a few more investigations in their future. Chief among them has been John Barrowman, the actor who played Harkness, but recent comments from Barrowman seem to imply that there's a certain Doctor Who executive who is standing in the way of a Torchwood revival.
Many fans, particularly those critical of his work, have assumed that it must be the man in charge, Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat. Moffat has heard about these comments and responded by essentially saying in statement to Doctor Who News that he literally doesn't know what Barrowman's problem is:
You may be aware that John Barrowman has been saying, publicly, that I've been blocking a new series of Torchwood," Moffat said in a statement to Doctor Who News. "To be very clear—I haven't blocked it; I wouldn't block it; I wouldn't even be ABLE to block it. I didn't even know a revival had been mooted till I read about it on the Internet. As John perfectly well knows, it's not my show and I could no more prevent it happening that he could cancel Sherlock. I am bewildered, and a little cross, even to be included in this conversation.
For the record, I really liked the show (especially the third series) and would be very happy to see more - monsters and mayhem, why not? But the fact is, it has nothing to do with me. Please pass this on to the anxious and the angry - I've had enough hate mail now.
Here are Barrowman's original comments, from a panel at Honolulu Comic Con in August (as heard in the video above):
Without giving too much information away, I was on a phone call with one of our executive producers, telling me the obstacles we'd have to face in order to bring [Torchwood] back. And I don't like to see obstacles because my feeling is that it's a good show and it deserves to come back. And being told that it can't until it's got approval with certain people involved with Doctor Who...
I don't understand why one show has to have the approval of another in order to come back. But that might change when somebody leaves.
It sounds like Barrowman thinks Torchwood stands a better chance at returning once Chris Chibnail, a former Torchwood writer, replaces Moffat as Doctor Who showrunner. Perhaps Barrowman will also then get his wish to return Doctor Who as Captain Jack.
Barrowman isn't the only Torchwood cast member who wants another season. Eve Myles has also said that she wants to see Torchwood Season 5 happen. In the meantime, fans of the series will have to make due with the Torchwood audio dramas, starring Barrowman, and the Torchwood comic book series, written by Barrowman.
Torchwood was a spin-off of Doctor Who that aimed at a more mature audience and told a more mature set of stories. Then Doctor Who showrunner Russell T. Davies created the series, which had Captain Jack and the Torchwood team investigating strange occurrences and unwelcome alien visitors around Cardiff.
A new Doctor Who spinoff, Class, premieres this October.