Torchwood Sargasso review

Sargasso by Christopher Cooper was the June 2019 Torchwood release from Big Finish. Its main character is Rhys Williams (Kai Owen), who finds himself on a container ship stranded in waters he’d rather not be in. The cover gives a lot away, but that’s just the invitation to the party, assuming your idea of a party involves being chased around an eerie container ship by aliens!

Sargasso

The product page gives away a lot of the context:

The seas of planet Earth are choked by plastic. Plastic that no-one has a use for and no-one can get rid of.

Rhys Williams finds himself stranded on a container ship in a sea of debris. People on board are dying. Because, luckily, someone’s found a solution to Earth’s polluted waters. The Nestene Consciousness can never have too much plastic.

The warning about plastics is both contemporary and if very blunt, also very relevant. Set sometime after Gwen has decided to have no more to do with Torchwood, Rhys and Kaitlin Russel (played by Sydney Feder) struggle to survive when surrounded by humanities waste come to life.

What’s strong about this story is how credible Rhys is as a character. He’s got depth, compassion and experience. He’s not a superhero, but he does have the right attitude, the will to survive and it’s not the first time he’s faced aliens. Every step is credible and through Rhys we also share our guilt at contributing to the build-up of plastics in the environment and end wondering just what the solution to pollution might be. The Nestene certainly has its own ideas!

As crossovers to classic Doctor Who monsters go I liked the way this story got on with dealing with its antagonist and didn’t labour the point about them having been here before. All in all a good story, well told / acted / directed.

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