Staggering Stories Podcast #112: It is a Silly Place

Torchwood: Miracle DaySummary:
Adam J Purcell, Andy Simpkins, Jean Riddler and Keith Dunn talk about Torchwood: Miracle Day episodes three and four, plus Starz’ Camelot, find some general news, and a variety of other stuff, specifically:

  • 00:00 – Intro and theme tune.
  • 01:19 — Welcome!
  • 01:56 – News:
  • 02:04 — Karen Gillan: Treading the boards, a new film and maybe back for S7?
  • 06:00 — Doctor Who: New Adventure Game – The Gunpowder Plot.
  • 07:59 — Torchwood: Starz aren’t jumping to make more.
  • 11:34 — The Tripods: Film version in the works?
  • 13:59 – Torchwood: Miracle Day episodes 3 and 4.
  • 33:05 – Starz’ Camelot.
  • 41:35 – Emails and listener feedback.* Hit us yourself at
  • 83:39 – Farewell for this podcast!
  • 84:09 — End theme, disclaimer, copyright, etc.

Vital Links:

9 Responses to "Staggering Stories Podcast #112: It is a Silly Place"

  1. Below is the feedback we kindly received for this podcast.

    These will be presented in rough order of when we received them. This won’t match the order in which we read them out!

    As ever, please feel free to comment on them here on the blog, though please note we won’t read any such replies on the podcast, for that please continue to email us at

    Thank you all!

    • Dear The Staggering Stories Crew,
      I write to you with a review of the 1996 novel of the TV Show Neverwhere which you reviewed a while back. I’m currently going through a Neil Gaiman “Phase” so I have just finished it.

      Neverwhere starts as all of the best novels start, with a Scottish man, Richard Mayhew is a pretty typical character and rather suffers, I feel from “Main Character Syndrome” a condition in which the principle character possesses only a few character traits, loyalty, nobility etc. just enough to get you on their side but no more, as a result Richard plays the part of observer for the most part of the book, finding things happen To him rather than Because of him and therefore we find that the supporting characters are far more compelling, de Carabas is wise and wonderful and Hunter mysterious and Awesome and that’s not to mention the terrifying double act of Croup and Vandemar. For those interested, other characters who suffer from Main Character Syndrome are Frodo Baggins, Harry Potter, Luke Skywalker, Twilight Bitch and Will Turner so this is not really a problem with the book. It’s just that one would far rather be Aragorn, Han Solo or De Carabas than their respective principle-part-playing-pals.

      So, the book starts off strongly. With Richard’s selfless act getting us on side with the man very effectively. What follows is, I feel one of the most terrifying pieces of fiction I have ever read. The idea of being closed out of one’s own life as happens to Richard is, as I say terrifying and the book carries it off well. The sheer hopelessness of Richard’s situation provides the strongest chapter in the novel. His journey to the rat king, then to the market bridge also is a creative chapter which is thoroughly enjoyable to read. The dangerous land of London Below comes through in Gaiman’s writing skills and draws the reader in effectively.

      Another of the book’s stand out features is the threatening double act of Mr Croup and Mr Vademar. Two characters who’s introduction is Laugh Out Loud funny, yet their initial introduction could not be further from the true nature of the villains. They are grotesque, foul and seem to be to all intents and purposes unstoppable. Once they have their eyes on you, you’re going down. This makes them, I feel probably the best thing about the book, their success in the murder of De Carabas clinching their fear factor.
      Unfortunately, though I feel this is where the book goes downhill. In the British Museum it becomes clear that Croup and Vandemar’s employer doesn’t want Door and Richard dead so the threat of the characters is lost, what’s more the “twist” where Hunter is the traitor can be seen from a mile off and the mystery of the key shaped object in Mayhew’s pocket was kind of predictably, a key. However, it’s not just the twists that spoil the excellent set up a little, but the fact that everything just seems so easy. The battle with the great beast, I cite in particular. It takes Richard literally a paragraph to defeat this terrible monster that had been built up for a the best part of the book.

      All this said, however I would still say that Neverwhere is worth borrowing from the Library. The characters are strong and it’s all worth it for the chapter where Mayhew is removed from his own life. However, I would also say that if you wanted to read a Neil Gaiman book for the first time, you should go for “American Gods” , a work of genius and a modern classic.

      Well, that’s all folks. I had fun writing this review so I might do one for American Gods and Anansi Boys when I get the chance if that’s all right?

      >From Stephen

      P.S. It was very exciting to see you all at Comic-Con. Who knows, I might pluck up the courage to make eye contact with someone other than Adam next time…

    • Hello team!

      Just wanted to share some stuff from San Diego! Couldn’t get into the Torchwood or Dr Who panels (So no Eve M, Matt S or Karen G).

      But….I did see a TV Guide panel on new supernatural shows with John Barrowman and Mark Shepard.

      (Among many others from other shows like Secret Circle, The River, True Blood, Teen Wolf and GRIM).

      John was of course very John. He sang happy birthday (first as Marilyn Monroe) to a male fan cos-playing as Capt Jack. And then walked into the audience and made out with the fan!

      (He then said into the mike to the fan: “Please don’t have herpes!”)…

      John did make some interesting comments about Who crossing over with Torchwood. About how Jack could go back to Who but the Doctor shouldn’t come come over to Torchwood. (As one is a darker adult show versus a more family friendly show).

      Okay…be seeing you!


    • Dear Team…
      Ahhh! My frakking iphone! Why the heck did it send the photos sideways? That’s not how it looked when I sent them. Grr. Well, I will resend but they are for you all not the website, eh? (Please do not inflict my pasty, puffy self on the international scene).

      Oh, I forgot to say that the guy from Bedlam was on the panel too. And GRIM looks scary and great. It is being done by some Buffy/Angel alums and is a cop show…about policing the paranormal. One character is a descendant of the Grimm family and finds out that all his family’s fairy tales were actually criminal profiles and also dire warnings. Very cool.

      Ah, along with will the many Matt Smiths and one David Tennant at SDCC I finally saw a cute chica as a Matt Smith Doctor walking around. (Not sure how to react to that though).

      The Smiths were okay but the Tennant guy was eerily spot on. Hair, coat, vest, face, and teeth all kind of implied to me that a ganger got to Tennant!

      (I tried to get his attention by calling out “David” but when he didn’t turn around I then called out, “David Tennant” to which he responded. Hah! As DT’s Doctor would have said).

      And….changing tack….I really like Miracle Day! Horrible title, weak ad campaign, ugly posters around town but…..excellent show!

      I just hope it doesn’t end up as fantastically depressing as Children of Earth. Of course if Jack’s daughter is working with some big bad for revenge over her son then I guess it will.

      (John B did say at Comicon that the new / current series is going to be even darker than CoE. Noooooo!)

      By the way what’s up with the “Anti-Christ / Anti-Torchwood” triangle logo of the secret bad guys? (An upside-down Christian cross or the letter T both make a triangle if you trace around it). Or maybe it is just those gosh darned Free Masons or the over-used Illuminati.
      Oh, and HAH again! Now you all got to experience what we did with the stupid American Holiday delaying Dr Who. You had to wait for Torchwood! And had to try to avoid spoliers like did! Who’s crying, “As long as it has aired it is fair game” now, eh?

      Just imagine if someone from the USA and tweeted or emailed you that “Jack can die now!” a week before you could have even pirated it? Kind of puts the River Revelation on the other foot now doesn’t it?

      Moving on….you all are still made of awesome. If I am ever in the UK I will buy you all a pint! Just one for all of you to share, though, ha-haaaa! (Just kidding, I’ll spring for a pint each).

      Be seeing you!
      Adrian from America

    • Hello Team! (and assorted oddities including HoP, cardboard Amy etc etc….), from sunny Birmingham.

      I’m a long-time listener of your podcast, but I think this is my first ever feedback. Why did I wait so long?

      I just wanted to drop you a line to say I love love love your show, and you always make me laugh out loud, even when I’m listening in public, at the bus stop or on the bus itself! The number of times I’ve had to cover my mouth to hide my grin and prevent folk from wondering who the loony is…well, anyway.

      Great news that Who will be back on August 27th, according to the current news from Comic Con, anyway. I thought they’d make us wait longer, but then again, they’ve got to fit Merlin in before Christmas too. And the trailer for the rest of the season is great – although, was that River I spotted wearing an eye patch!?!?!? Can’t wait to see what that’s about!

      At the time of writing I’ve only seen 2 episodes of Torchwood: Miracle Day, and I’m still not sure about it. It’s just too……American, and I know that’s a bit of a stupid thing to say, but it is! I’ll continue to watch, and I have heard that episode 3 is amazing, so, we’ll see.

      And now I have a 30 second recommendation – the novels Rivers of London and Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch. I read Rivers of London earlier this year and have just finished Moon over Soho and I absolutely love them. They tell the story of a young PC serving in the Met, who gets himself involved in an unusual case one night while on patrol. He then finds out about a hidden department within the Met, which consists of one senior officer who deals with cases involving supernatural/magical elements. He also finds out that he has a talent for magic himself and is transferred to this department, to become the first apprentice wizard for many many years. The stories themselves are involving and unusual, and they are told from the point of view of the PC, Peter Grant, and melds the magical with the modern world in a delightful and funny way. I’d definitely recommend you reading them and I can’t wait for the further adventures of PC Grant.
      Well, that’s all for now – thanks for the show it’s always a highlight when a new one is released.


    • Hello staggering stories team

      So time has passed since I last wrote back then I was 10.
      Lots has changed since 2009

      I have seen children of earth, am in the process of watching Miracle day, tried fish custard and it is actually tasty:-P mmm yum, Lots of stuff has happened but the most important thing is that I became 12. Damn I hate high school. Why does everyone hate torchwood? It is a work of GENIUS!! but I digest

      Yesterday I can’t remember what happened I think a silent was with me but I have no idea. And if you think you are a doctor who fan answer me this. What time did doctor who start. I’ll tell you in the next email.I loved torchwood miracle day. I think that the BBC working with Starz America was a great idea and made a great series so far. Keep up the good work BBC. Anyways I need to go and steal some tardis

      From Daniel

      PS. POTATO( in Keith lemon voice please )
      PPS. Have you ever heard of chameleon circuit they do doctor who fan music
      PPPS. I got my tardis:-D

    • Greetings Staggering Storytellers and various inanimate sidekicks.

      Been a while since I last wrote, and I hope you are all well. First I thought I’d wait writing in because I knew you’d get a lot of feedback after Good Man Goes To War, and then that pesky real life kept getting in the way again.
      I was quite lucky with the finale in that I got to watch it live in a cinema at my old university. I’ve never watched Doctor Who with such a large group of people before and it was brilliant. The atmosphere was fun and tense. When Amy was giving her big speech at the beginning and said “and this man is your father” almost the whole theatre gasped thinking it was the Doctor. But no, it was the ever awesome Roman Rory. Then the next day I watched it again with friends and one actually punched the air at the Doctor’s reveal. I’m really looking forward to the new series, especially since the alleged August 27th start date means that an episode of Doctor Who will be airing on my birthday! I know I’m probably too old to find that exciting, but I can’t help it.

      Was sorry that I didn’t run into you guys at LFCC, but the place was so crowded I’m not really surprised. Maybe next time. I did have a good time though on both days and got some nice convention swag and Mark Shepherd’s autograph. I was even in costume on sunday as San from Princess Mononoke.

      I’ll keep this short and sweet and will leave you with this link to a very adorable fan song about the episode The Doctor’s Wife, sung by a young fan with an ukulele: She also has a cute song about Rory.

      Keep on staggering



      Quick fire reviews!

      Deathly Hallows Part 2 – Good, not myf avorutie film though (thats still half blood prince) The music in the openign is brilliant, liked the end bits, cried during snapes memories

      Torchwood COE ; DAY ONE – love the setup.
      DAY TWO – Love Jacks rebirth
      DAY THREE – Love that ending
      DAY FOUR – Hate that iantos dead
      DAY FIVE – hate jack.

      Torchwood Miracle Day – Ep 1 – my least favourite ep, but still rather good

      Ep 2 – Fvaourite ep – its just agood old romp

      Ep 3 – Some btis are a bit ood, and some charcters have agood old romp.

      Hope this is in on time A.K.A MISTER M

      P.S Whats that brain?
      P.P.S i forgot to mention Her?
      P.P.P.S For the whole feedback
      P.P.P.P.S Even those legs
      P.P.P.P.P.S Betetr mention them then (and her of course)
      P.P.P.P.P.P.S fruble
      P.P.P.P.P.P.P.S Karen Gillan (and those long lovely, unbelivably sexy legs)

  2. […] the guys aren’t sure what it is ( “Time-Flight” ). Staggering Stories Podcast has Episode 112: It is a Silly Place, Adam J Purcell, Andy Simpkins, Jean Riddler and Keith Dunn talk about Torchwood: Miracle Day […]

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