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‘Torchwood’ star John Barrowman opens Commonwealth Games with same-sex kiss

Well done to Torchwood star John Barrowman, who opened the twentieth Commonwealth Games in Glasgow last night with a kiss.

The ceremony, which was held at Celtic Park in the city’s east end, began with a kitsch musical number performed by Barrowman and comedy actress Karen Dunbar celebrating Scotland’s diverse culture and history. In front of an estimated television audience of 1.5 billion, Mr. Barrowman kissed one of the kilted male dancers during a sequence on Gretna Green—the romantic village where eloping couples have traditionally married.

The kiss was accompanied by shouts of “Here’s to equality in Scotland.”

The bill for gay marriage in Scotland received Royal assent in March this year, and the first gay weddings will take place in 2015.

The theme of the opening ceremony was equality for all, and Mr. Barrowman’s kiss highlighted the fact that homosexuality is a prisonable offense in an astonishing 42 of the 54 Commonwealth nations taking part on the games.

Among the other artists taking part in the “Friendly games” opening ceremony were Rod Stewart, Nicola Bendetti, Amy MacDonald, DJ Mylo, Billy Connolly, Susan Boyle, Karen Dunbar, Ewan MacGregor and 41 Scottish Terriers. Read a review here.


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
For ‘Doctor Who’ fans only: ‘The Ballad of Russell & Julie’

Above, the real Julie and Russell

Newly leaked on YouTube: David Tennant, Catherine Tate and John Barrowman in this charming tribute to the outgoing Doctor Who production team of Russell T. Davies and Julie Gardner, when they, and Timelord Tennant, departed from the series a few years back. This was shown at the wrap party after their final episode.

The song is a riff on “Let’s Do It,” the signature number of beloved British comedienne, Victoria Wood. The “Russell & Julie” lyrics were written by Jennie Fava.

Via Neatorma

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
‘Torchwood: Miracle Day’ trailer
01:15 pm


Russell T. Davies
John Barrowman
Eve Myles

If you recall me raving about the Torchwood mini-series, Children of Earth a couple of years ago, you’ll understand why I’m so excited to see that Torchwood is returning next month. There’s a new sneak preview for Torchwood: Miracle Day, featuring John Barrowman as Capt. Jack Harkness, that’s just been released. Gwen Cooper’s back too, shooting down a chopper with a bazooka… just like old times.

Bill Pullman joins the cast (SPOILER ALERT: I read he’s the “baddie”) for this series and it does seem like they’ve “de-gayed” Capt. Jack, as was widely speculated about when an American version of Torchwood was being discussed in 2009. According to press materials from the Starz premium cable channel (where Torchwood will now air in the US, instead of BBC America): “The only thing that could call Jack Harkness back [to Torchwood, which was decimated in the bleaker than bleak last series, of course] is his unstated love for Gwen Cooper.”

Gimme a break. Still, I’m massively looking forward to this. Apparently the action is centered in Los Angeles, this time round, great for we locals! Torchwood: Miracle Day premieres on Starz and BBC1, one month from today, on July 8th. Series creator Russell T. Davies has written the first episode.

If you want to read a bunch of spoilers, read them here.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Will U.S. version of Torchwood ‘degay’ Capt. Jack Harkness?
09:25 pm

Pop Culture

John Barrowman

Rumors have started that the U.S. version of the hit British sci-fi series, Torchwood, would “de-gay” pansexual hero, Captain Jack Harkness, for American viewers. Not if actor John Barrowman has anything to say about it.

”I hope wherever [the franchise] goes that the show stays the same,” says the openly gay Scottish thesp. “The last thing I would want would be for Jack to become this heterosexual, straight hero. He’s an omnisexual guy. He likes men, women, aliens, whatever. I think we should continue going down that route.”

Any effort to de-gay Capt. Jack would be followed by a “really big discussion,” Barrowman stresses, adding that it would ultimately be up to series creator Russell T. Davies and producing partner Julie Gardner to fight that battle.

Regarding the status of a U.S. version, Barrowman confesses that he has “no information” beyond what’s already been reported: That Fox has commissioned a script from Davies and that Barrowman would almost certainly slip back into his signature role. “Julie has said, as has Russell, that there will be no Torchwood without John Barrowman as Capt. Jack,” he says. “If I am asked to do Torchwood again, I will do it at the drop of a hat — whether it’s in America or back in Britain or if it’s for a film. I absolutely love Capt. Jack.”

Me, too! And I’m a happily married straight man. Viva Capt. Jack! Don’t change a thing!

Would U.S. Torchwood turn Capt. Jack straight? (Entertainment Weekly)

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
John Barrowman Dons Drag in La Cage aux Folles
10:30 pm

Pop Culture

John Barrowman
La Cage aux Folles


Torchwood star John Barrowman is currently appearing on the West End stage in full drag in a production of La Cage aux Folles.

I have to say this getup is rather in better taste than the dreadfully gauche Ed Hardy t-shirt I saw him wearing at the San Diego Comic Con while charging $20 for autographs.

The Daily Mail says:

Torchwood star John Barrowman releases his inner diva as he takes to the West End stage as a drag queen.

The actor is barely recogniseable as he dons several revealing dresses to play Zara in comedy La Cage Aux Folles.

Following in the footsteps of Jason Donovan and Brian Conley who took on similar roles in Priscilla Queen of the Desert and Hairspray, Barrowman is said to have slipped into the part with ease, delighting audiences.


Posted by Jason Louv | Leave a comment
Torchwood: Children of Earth



I probably should have blogged about Torchwood: Children of Earth yesterday, when it started its five consecutive nights run, but BBC America (and the newly launched BBC America HD channel) is airing the previous night’s show before the new episode starts each night (and there are plenty of other ways to catch up obviously).

For those of you who agreed with me about how much I hated the new Harry Potter movie, believe me again when I tell you that the new Torchwood season three mini-series is one of the finest, most action-packed, unpredictable, FREAKY and most deeply moving sci-fi tales I’ve ever seen. Totally raises the bar for the genre in so many, many ways.

Torchwood: Children of Earth boasts one of the most intelligent and sophisticated long form scripts in the history of the genre. I don’t want to give anything away to American viewers who still have four shows left to go, but my god when you find out what the aliens really want with the kids, WHOA, it is fucking dark! The lead actors John Barrowman, Eve Myles and Gareth David-Lloyd are terrific and guest star Peter Capaldi proves once again that he’s one of Britain’s finest acting talents. It’s truly a milestone.

It’s also a new high water mark for the already illustrious career of creator, lead writer and executive producer Russell T. Davies (“Queer as Folk,” “Doctor Who”) who had this to say about his multi-layered tale: ?

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment