Gwen Fucking Cooper-Kicking Ass and Taking Names! She really has come a long way since she showed up with those pizzas.
Rhys-cute side-kick stuff, but the guy just doesn't do much for me. I was also reminded of The Original Spy's recaps and her mentions of Rhys' Dyspantsia. A little more of near naked Rhys than I really needed to see.
Ianto-Looking annoyingly emo, but at least not talking very much.
Lois-I'm liking her, but she also reminds me how much was lost with Tosh's death.
Evil Government Bureaucrats are....Evil?
And YAY for Naked Jack, even if the most gorgeous arse in the world was deemed unsuitable for American Eyes, while I felt I saw way too much of unappealing butt of Ianto's b-in-law.
Hubby noticed--WITHOUT PROMPTING--that Naked Jack appeared to have every intention of getting in the front seat with Gwen while still naked. I made him re-run the part a few times. I honestly wasn't sure, but he insists. Also big laughs on Jack NOT covering up and making damn sure Gwen got a good look.
So, about Jack...I feel like RTD et al have written his immortality and healing properties in such a way that I no longer have an emotional reaction to his physical pain and suffering. No matter how icky they make it, or how much moaning and groaning is included, you know it's gonna be fine and he's gonna be fine. So the tension of "gotta save Jack" doesn't really work anymore. It's very Perils of Pauline. Since they're NOT going to kill him or write him off the show in episode 2, we KNOW they're gonna save him and he's gonna come swaggering out. Which he does.
The pattern was established with LoTL, where it was implied that the Master had done all kinds of nasty shit for a solid year and aside from the artfully placed dirt, Jack was still smiling and flirting with Tish. (YAY TISH.) In fact, I kind of wished Jack had gotten in one flirty line with scary Goverment Agent lady before she dumped the cement.
Then we had a whole Series 2 of Jack getting killed, and every time it carries less and less weight. By the time we get to Fragments, with Emily and Alice, it's practically a joke. In fact, that's how it feels now. It's not something horrible Jack goes through, it's a running gag. As if the Vaudeville act has become his life. (Which may be why Ianto's "Did they kill you?" hug feels so forced.)
And that's also why, (prior to seeing it) I'm less convinced about this whole "Jack is broken" thing at the end. Yes, mental pain is different than physical, but he swaggered away from LoTL, he recovered from the "buried for 2000 years," and he appeared to be just hunky dory at the beginning of CoE, so obviously the whole Gray thing didn't touch him that much, or even Tosh and Owen.
Yes, I know who dies next and why and how. I know he gives litany in the 5th episode and then books for parts unknown, but since we've seen how little things stick to him, it's very hard to buy into even that as something he can't recover from. Reserving judgement (somewhat) on that, but holding firm, that the immortality has been written in such as way as to make a major dent in the suspense factor. (Which I'm sorry to say, pretty much nullified what might have been Ianto's Crowning Moment of Awesome with the fork-lift or whatever he was driving because we KNEW it was gonna be fine.)