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Exit Wounds
Series: Torchwood - TV Stories
Series Number: Series 2
Story Number: 26
Enemy: Gray
Captain John Hart
Setting: Cardiff, 2009
Writer: Chris Chibnall
Director: Ashley Way
Producer: Richard Stokes
Broadcast: 4th April 2008
Previous Story: Fragments
Following Story: Children of Earth: Day One



Captain John Hart returns to have his revenge on Torchwood and take Jack as his prisoner. Jack and his long lost brother, Gray don't have a good reunion and can the rest of the team trust John?


Following on from Fragments, Toshiko detects Rift activity in three locations across Cardiff. She and Ianto go the central server building, where Three Cowled Men with scythes approach menacingly. The agents shoot them down as they get closer. Meanwhile, Owen sedates a Hoix in a hospital using a packet of cigarettes and a special mixture. Finally, Rhys drops Gwen off at the police HQ where Weevils have killed "the four most senior officers", causing panic.

During all this, Captain Jack goes to the Hub to face Captain John, who claims he loves Jack before shooting him with two machine guns. When Jack comes back to life, he is chained above the ground and finds out John is angry because he was very rude to him in front of people "that hardly knew me". After an electric shock to silence him, John tells Jack that he hopes he can stop him, he really does. Then, as the rift manipulator is activated, John tells the Torchwood gang to go to the roofs of their buildings.

They all make their way up to the top of the central server building, the hospital and the police HQ. Gwen, Andy, Rhys, Toshiko, Owen and Ianto look on as John, from atop Cardiff castle, detonates explosives in 15 prime locations that cripple the city. He then whisks Jack back in time, to meet Gray. As it turns out, Gray is in control, threatening John into action. Gwen takes control of the team and the police, directing them all as to what to do. She makes her way to the hub where she finds John has returned to help the team after being forced to bury Jack alive in Cardiff 27 AD. Gray activates a signal and weevils flood the streets of Cardiff. This prevents Toshiko and Ianto from reaching the nuclear power station to stop a meltdown.

Owen goes to the nuclear facility, reminding his teammates that he's king of the Weevils. John, Toshiko, Ianto and Gwen are attacked by Weevils at the Hub, but manage to subdue them - only to be locked into cells by Gray. Owen, at the nuclear facility, waits for instruction from Toshiko, as he tells a scientist to leave. Toshiko tells Owen her plan, but is then shot by Gray, who kicks away her device. A knocking interrupts his taunting and he heads for the morgue. Tosh agonisingly makes her way down the steps to the autopsy room, gets her device back, still bleeding from her wound. She denies that she's hurt when Owen asks and helps him to flood the room he's in with coolant, thus avoiding the meltdown.

As this is happening, Gray discovers Jack in a cryo-chamber in the morgue, placed there by Torchwood 1901 on his request. He tells Gray he forgives him and Gray refuses to give him absolution, so Jack uses chloroform to put him to sleep. He then frees the others from the cells and they head back to the main area.

At the same time, a power surge seals Owen in the room where the coolant will soon flood. Toshiko, dying, asks Owen to calm down, who refuses, demanding for her to give him one reason why. Tosh tearfully replies "because you're breaking my heart" and he calms down. The two talk as they prepare to die. Coolant pours into the room where Owen is trapped and he accepts his fate, telling Toshiko it's okay and apologising for not having that date because they "just missed each other". Toshiko slumps, bleeding to death as she watches the screen show Owen's signature vanishing. Jack and the others arrive, but Toshiko dies in Jack's arms.

Jack, Gwen and Ianto watch Tosh's final message in tears

Jack freezes Gray and says his goodbyes to John before helping Ianto and Gwen to do Owen and Toshiko's final logout. Upon finishing Toshiko's, a video appears in which she thanks Jack, admits her love to Owen and finally hopes she "did good" and didn't die for nothing. Gwen is unsure of whether she can continue, but Jack tells his last two comrades that they'll start from the end.


Production crew

to be added


Story notes


  • This episode follows immediately on from the events of Fragments, with Tosh still nursing the broken arm suffered in the explosion.
  • The first scene of the episode, in which the team piles into Rhys' car (the SUV having been stolen), marks the last time the complete team (as of Day One ) would be together.
  • Captain John Hart returns in this episode. He was last in TW: Fragments.
  • Gray returns in this episode. He was last seen properly in TW: Adam although he made a brief appearance in TW: Fragments
  • A Hoix appears in this episode. A Hoix first appeared in DW: Love & Monsters.
  • Owen refers to himself as 'King of the Weevils', a title previously coined in Dead Man Walking. Additionally, the Weevils cower before Owen as they did in both Combat and Dead Man Walking.
  • Toshiko first appeared in DW: Aliens of London. This episode refers to the events of that episode and establishes that Toshiko was working for Torchwood, not UNIT at the time, and that Owen was supposed to conduct the examination of the "space pig" but was hungover, so Tosh covered for him.
  • When Jack is trying to stop Gray in the Hub, he tells him he forgives him, which is very similar to how the Doctor stops the Master in DW: Last of the Time Lords.
  • Sadistic Torchwood operative Alice Guppy (TW: Fragments) returns, and it is she who is responsible for having Jack dug up in 1901. It is stated that the younger version of Jack is on an assignment at this time, and the older Jack is put into cryo-freeze to avoid contaminating the timeline.
  • Doctor Angela Connolly previously appeared in TW: Dead Man Walking.
  • In the previous episode, it is stated that Jack had "died" and resurrected approximately 1,400 times since becoming immortal. Due to the nature of his imprisonment, it's now impossible to calculate times resurrection occurred for Jack between his burial in 27 AD and his eventual recovery in 1901; the number could now potentially be in the hundreds of thousands.


  • Unofficial overnight ratings indicated Exit Wounds was the most watched programme on BBC2 all day and had a 12% audience share, the 20th most watched programme of the day.


  • It was well known that Owen was going to die, but it remained unclear who else was going to die. Rumours were that it would be either Tosh or Ianto.

Filming Locations

to be added

Discontinuity, Plot Holes, Errors

  • In the episode casefiles on the Torchwood site, the morgue inventory incorrectly lists Torchwood 1901's sealed cryo-unit (with Jack inside) as 005, when in fact it was 003.

Several other tie-in websites for both Torchwood and Doctor Who have made similar mistakes and/or contradicted on-screen information. No official announcement has been made as to whether or not the sites qualify as canon - if they do not (and there is substantial evidence to suggest they may not be canon) then this discontinuity can be chalked up as a simple error on the part of the website management and left at that.

  • In Last of the Time Lords Jack said he could still age - so how come he doesn't age when he is underground? Furthermore, why do his clothes not rot away while he is buried?

Jack doesn't revive instantly and ageing only occurs in living bodies. He would have spent almost all of the time underground dead with occasional bouts of living lasting 3-4 minutes at a time until he suffocted. In End of Days he was shown dead for several days before revival, so if it was at roughly the same rate he would only be alive for an hour or two a month, so a day a year (especially since the deaths occurred so closely to each other). Also he has stated that his aging has slowed, but that he knows it still occurs. A few thousand years is a drop in the bucket compared to 5 billion. As for the clothes, they're never shown damaged (see Fragments for example), so presumably they're not of 20th century Earth origin. Also Jack's aging is at a rate unknown to all.

  • When he finally emerges from the morgue, Jack seems to be completely psychologically fit and unperturbed by the experience of having repeatedly suffocated to death several hundreds of thousands of times while buried alive. By conservative estimates (as stated above), he would've been dying at a rate of 15 times a month, which when multiplied by 12 (months in a year) and 1874 (years he was buried) would equal 337,320 highly traumatizing deaths by suffocation. And he's just fine?

In Fragments, they mentioned that Jack had died thousands of times already, perhaps he was simply used to it. Also, he was uncovered in 1901 and we see that he talks to the contemporary Torchwood employees in which he tells them to freeze him, so presumebly he had that time to recover, he is seen there looking shaken and had recovered before he was frozen (we don't know precisely how much time he spent in 1901, granted the risk of meeting himself meant it was probably short). There may have been some technology which furthered a quick recovery.

  • Why does Gray call Jack, Jack? Jack didn't choose to use this name until he was an adult.

John could however have told Gray that Jack was now the name his brother was going by, and could have used it for convenience. Jack could also have been his given first name or possibly a childhood nickname. He could have chosen the name "Jack Harkness" for convenience in case he ever bumped into a person he knew before he renamed himself. Jack Harkenss could have been Jack's real name completly but he assummed the identity (as in the life as well as the name).

  • The Time line is completely messed up. In Fragments, it was 21 months since Ianto joined. That must be after Doomsday, making Fragments February 2009 at the earliest. It also had Owen joined 4 years earlier making that 2005. However this episode states that Tosh covered for Owen as a Doctor in his second week - obviously a reference to Aliens of London - but that was 2006. Jack also states that 107 years have passed since Torchwood uncovered him in 1901, suggesting 2008. Perhaps their calendar is based upon the one used by UNIT. Jack could have been confused as he may seem time as irrelevant considering his "immortal" like status.
  • How does Gray know about Jack's immortality? John presumably told him.
  • Jack isn't buried very deep. This raises two issues: how does Gray know he wouldn't be dug up once Cardiff builders start reforming the land in the coming centuries? And since Jack is indestructible, couldn't he have dug his way out eventually? Since Gray is a time-traveller, he knew where to leave Jack so he wouldn't be disturbed (indeed, it's still a park in 1901). Jack later tells John that he saw the burial as his penance, so he may have chosen to not try and escape, perhaps realizing that John's signal ring would eventually attract Torchwood. Also, Jack isn't super-powered; it may have simply been physically impossible for him to move with the weight of the dirt on him.
  • What happened to John's signal ring? It's probably in Torchwood's possession.
  • It's odd that Jack would not be aware that an older version of himself resided in the morgue. Wouldn't he have discovered this earlier? Several episodes have indicated that Jack isn't completely familiar with everything in the Hub (for example, Ianto was able to maintain a secret facility within the hub for Lisa Hallett in Cyberwoman without his knowledge. Also, To the Last Man indicated that Jack was accustomed to following decades-old instructions, so presumably he was told either in 1901 or when he took command in 2000 to never open a certain chamber. Dead Man Walking, meanwhile, established that Jack didn't even have the access code for the morgue, so presumably he couldn't have opened the chamber if he tried. In fact this may be the reason why Jack wasn't in possession of the access code in the first place. Why would anyone want to go looking through dead bodies.
  • Toshiko broke her arm the previous episode, but seems to be able to move around without apparent hinderment. She said she had taken medication; perhaps it was some alien drug that repaired the arm to allowed her to use it while broken. It may have been a minor fracture, too. She only thought she had broken her arm.
  • After Owen stops shouting from inside the nuclear plant he is heard taking deep breaths, something he can't do since he is dead. Old habits die hard. Or possibly it's purely psychological.

DVD releases

  • This story along with the rest of has been released in Torchwood Series 2 boxset and Torchwood: Complete Boxset

See also

to be added

External links


Torchwood Series 2
Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang  • Sleeper  • To the Last Man  • Meat  • Adam  • Reset  • Dead Man Walking  • A Day in the Death  • Something Borrowed  • From Out of the Rain  • Adrift  • Fragments  • Exit Wounds

This article uses material from the "Exit Wounds" article on the Dr Who wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

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