You know, reading the spoilers and reaction posts which are written primarily by Jack/Ianto shippers, looking for ways to say it's all about our couple, making me think that the schmoop is going to be over-whelmingly pukey.
And here's what really happened:
They started with the Jack finding Gwen's wedding ring scene. You can try and spin that one all you like, but he was HURT. John's eyes said it all.
Loved the "hen party" and the cross-cutting to the chase scene. Bad-ass Gwen with gun. Hey, once Jack has taught you how to shoot, you're good to go. Reference to Rhys' cock? I know I haven't posted it yet, but I wrote my Jack/Rhys two weeks ago and I called that one.
Pregnancy humor. I wonder how many Jack's been through, his own and others? I love it when he does an actual eye-roll.
Is there a rule that there has to be one scene per episode where Ianto's function is to lurk somehwere in Jack's vacinity in a really annoying, creepy, way?
But I will give kudos for sending him wedding dress shopping especially since he's now apparently exuding gayness from every pore, while Jack still has the ability to strut like the omni-devil he is from time to time. (More of my personal fanon coming soon to a fic near you.)
Gwen/Rhys domestic drama stuff. Eve & Kai always managed to pitch those scenes perfectly. They feel so absolutely real together, you can feel the love and the pain and the fear in both of them. Brilliant.
Tosh/Owen. Awwwwwww. Could I possible love Dead!Owen anymore than I do? "Drop dead gorgeous."
Ever seena dead man dance? Fred Astaire in Easter Parade. I know someone who's going to nuts over that one.
Cardiff folks, where did they do the wedding exteriors? Nice place.
Rhys/Jack tension. Woof! Bring it on.
Loved Gwen's parents. Swansea humor.
Is this the first time we've seen the notorious "Banana Boat?" And all he does is make crude advances to Tosh. "Big Box?" Tsk, tsk. Of course Gwen's friends were no prizes either.
Nice Gwen/Tosh scene. Very sweet. Apparently all the Owen stuff and the nastier bits of Greeks Bearing Gifts, are all forgotten. I'm ok with that. Gwen/Tosh femslash? Please. Please?
Someone where in there, the obligatory Jack/Ianto sexual innuendo, which seems to say that Ianto is a size queen, which doesn't surprise me since we learned about his lack of endowment back in Adam. No wonder Jack's bored, buying toys, looking for uniforms etc.
Owen looking yummy in his Galaxy Astros shirt. Is that a joke or a real team? Please enlighten me.
"Mama's out there looking for Gwen."
J.O.I to the rescue. "You need me, Jack." Yes, Owen, he does. Jack doesn't like Owen/Ianto getting along. Presumably that might mean that they start paying attention to eachother instead of both fawning over him. You think he'd take advantage and get some of that threesome action he's been craving.
Ewwwwwww! Icky black spider thingy. But YAY for tough, kick-ass, Tosh, threatening Banana with "falsetto."
Jack musing about Gwen still having "inner conflict." (It ain't Gwen who looks conflicted, sweetie.) Ianto talking about how they want it perfect. I got no snark for that.
Because of reading the reaction post, I thought it would be the shape-shifter/Jack doing the wedding interruption so I wasn't too invested in that as an emotional Jack/Gwen moment, but even without that, a lot of concern came through, but I'm not counting that as Jack/Gwen, just Jack worried about a team member.
Great lines all over the place: American with no sense of timing or fashion.
And the Lone Ranger didn't have a thing with Tonto. Get away from her you ugly bitch.
Owen wants to talk to Rhys? I'd be really worried if I were Gwen. Dead!Owen is much cooler, but if he wanted to make a scene, he certainly could have fucked things up much worse than Jack, given that whole "coming so hard you forget where you are," thing. Obviously that has been forgotten, but not by us. Did they show Gwen/Owen in the Owen flashback episodes in A Day In The Death? I know they showed the Alien Sex Spray and Diane, but I think NOT Gwen although I could be wrong. I have a theory that they need to white-wash that to keep a Jack/Gwen hook-up alive as any kind of possibility. I know theoretically Jack wouldn't care, but I think there's a limit to how skanky she can look and still be considered worthy of the pretty, pretty boy. (Of course to the J/I crowd she can't anyway, but that's their beef.)
Rhys/Gwen running to the barn or whereever they were...Eve's pregnancy pad did NOT look convincing there.
Shapeshifter!Jack-Still kind of hot. OK, that's when I knew it was the shape-shifter, so again, I knew he wasn't really going for Gwen there, but still, John TOUCHING Eve---hot.
YOU GO RHYS! Rhys with a chainsaw. Rhys saying "fuck!"
But Jack still shoots the alien with the BIG GUN and picks up Gwen and presents her to Rhys like a trophy. (Eye roll.) The hero always gets the girl. (Hmmmmm.) Who's really the hero of the show? Do the J/I'ers really want to admit their boy is a girl?
Tosh/Owen --- Awwwwwwwww!!!!
The part that had the most shippy potential on both sides and had me clutching my stomach in anticpatory shmoop-fear:
Jack dancing with Gwen. Ianto cutting in. I know I was watching it with my anti J/I glasses on, but I also tried to see what was happening. Sorry kids. The Jack/Gwen dance was dripping with unspoken stuff and the Jack/Ianto was board (and bored) stiff. THAT WAS NO CJH DANCE. I know that in the Who/TW verso dancing equals sex, but I've already accepted the canon-sex. I stand by my anti-J/I schmoop contention that it's JUST sex. In fact--that dialogue. "Will you miss me?" "Always" "What will you do while I'm gone?" "Pizza, Ianto, saving the world."
THAT'S YOUR GREAT LOVE? Ianto is something he "does," and gets listed after the pizza and it happens while he's waiting for Gwen to get back.
And he really didn't look all that thrilled about Ianto cutting in, and I have to go with the Jack/Gwen contingent, he looked completely distracted afterwards.
Gwen's Mom/Rhys's Mom----Old broad femslash? (Ok, I'm obsessed, but really, I WANT MORE FEMSLASH!)
BEST OF ALL-SERIOUS HAPPY DANCING:
He went back to the hub ALONE. Yes, boys and girls A-L-O-N-E!!! With his memories and his box of photos including YESSSSSS a photo of being married to a woman. A very pretty woman. I don't retract my "Where is Jack's omni-ness?" ranting, but at least there's a hint he's dipped his wick into something with a pussy in the last 100 years or so.
ETA: I went back and read the reviews in the torch_wood Review
Post for the episode. While the Reaction Post, which allows reactions during the actual broadcast, was dominated by Jack/Ianto-squeeee, the later, more thoughtful reviews seemed to realize the extent to which the so-called relationship was actually being dissed in favor of the Jack/Gwen UST. I thought this one: http://tencrush.livejournal.com/94516.html summed it up really well.
I certainly understand the impulse to squeeee uncontrollably over every appearance and addition to your ships canon. How many times did I do it with House/Wilson, back when you actually did have to wear the slash-glasses to see it? And I can imagine a House/Cameron shipper, for instance, watching the same episode, let's say...Maternity or Daddy's Boy and seeing it totally differently and thinking they were getting their own
level of fan-service the first time around.
You do need a more thoughtful period, even if it's only a few minutes after the episode ends to collect your ideas and get a better sense what really happened. Obviously biases and ships will still prevail, but it's not going to the same ZOMG EEEEEEEEE!!!!!! JACK WUV IANTO (or JACK WUV GWEN, or JACK WUV RHYS) effect.
Only four more episodes to go? Waaaaaaaahhhhhhhh!!!!