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Published:July 8th, 2011 13:43 EST

Torchwood Comes to U.S. TV in 'Miracle Day'

By Paulette Cohn

Death takes a holiday in Torchwood: Miracle Day, the fourth season of the series that originated on the BBC in the U.K. and now has moved to STARZ in the U.S., premiering Sunday at 10 p.m.


Of course, the idea of no one on earth dying and its ramifications is not a new one, but the issues that face mankind without this natural method of population control are brought to the forefront in this action-packed series.


"It`s an instant overnight population boom where, suddenly, the Earth relies on people dying.  That`s how the whole system works:  the food, the room, the temperature.  So, suddenly, you`ve got a crisis affecting everyone on the planet, and that`s where the Torchwood team and our and-new characters come in," says Torchwood creator/showrunner Russell T. Davies.

For the uninitiated, Torchwood is the British organization that searches out unexplained phenomenon, kind of like The X-Files, with original cast members John Barrowman as the immortal Captain Jack Harkness and Eve Myles Gwen Cooper the equivalent of Dana Scully and Fox Mulder.

They are joined in season four by Mekhi Phifer as CIA agent Rex Matheson and Bill Pullman as convicted pedophile and killer Oswald Danes, who is strapped down on the table and subjected to lethal injections to be executed, but lives since no one can die. That is the beginning.

"Rex is trying to figure out what Torchwood is and what`s happening and why the Earth is being targeted and humans in particular are being targeted and what`s going on," says Phifer, whose character has an added incentive because he is one of those who would have died. "So he goes on this whole investigative tirade, if you will, and he`s kind of a cocky, arrogant kind of guy and, a little full of himself at certain points, but when it all hits the fan, he is very dedicated, very focused and really wants to help find out what the hell is going on."

In Torchwood: Miracle Day, the inability of mankind to die is not considered to be a natural occurrence. Someone`s got to be behind it, so it is a race against time as Matheson investigates a global conspiracy. The answers just happen to lie within an old, secret British institute. As Matheson keeps asking, "What is Torchwood?," he is drawn into a world of adventure, and a threat to change what it means to be human " forever.

"It`s very important to say that, in many ways, while loving and embracing everything we have done in the past, this is a new start for Torchwood," Davies concludes.