Rhys is planning a lads’ night in. Barbie in the back yard, few tins, mates and bants. But the only person who turns up is Ianto – who hasn’t been invited. Hell is other people, especially when they’ve brought board games.
Something goes wrong. The two of them could be trapped together for eternity at a barbecue where the sausages never cook, and worse, the brewskis remain forever out of reach.
At first it almost seems too over-the-top on both Rhys and Ianto’s end, but then you get further along in the audio and you realise they’re both putting up fronts. I love the subtleties of Ianto trying to help Rhys but also not taking any bullshit. The twist was heartbreaking and impactful, and the HEAVY symbolism was honestly worth it.
The end was sweet.
Overall, this is such a good audio. Packs a punch, which you wouldn’t expect from an audio called “Rhys and Ianto’s Excellent Barbecue” but it’s Torchwood, so. How could it not emotionally kick you in the teeth?
Would definitely recommend to anyone. Will be relistening to it a few times myself in the future, for sure.
As with any audio with Ianto, it was an automatic pre-order for me. You never see Ianto and Rhys spend any major time together in the series before Children of Earth and yet Rhys is genuinely emotional when he finds out about Ianto, beyond just being sad his wife lost someone. This fills in that gap and establishes them as more than mere acquaintances. It deals with serious subjects but also offers some laugh out loud moments. Ianto is adorable as ever as he tries to save the day. It also gives Rhys some new depth as more than just Gwen’s husband. I highly recommend this audio for anyone who wants to laugh and cry multiple times in an hour. (It’s Torchwood, what else do you expect?)
Damn this is an amazingly written one!
What can I say that’s spoiler free?
There is definitely a double crescendo in this audio. The increasing tension due to the antagonist of the month is paralleled with the increasing tension between the protagonists.
The suspense for both tracks builds and builds (in a wonderful way) and both resolutions are outstanding. Things that have you wondering at the beginning make so much sense with hindsight and you end up wanting to listen to the audio again with the new information.
I think what I like best about this audio is that it takes you places you didn’t expect it to go. And, something rare for Torchwood, it doesn’t just give closure on the plot but it provides emotional closure to the characters (and by transition to the audience) as well.
Speaking of the characters, this story shows why Rhys and Ianto are such good characters and good people. And the actors portray them brilliantly.
Basically, I laughed, I cried, and I ended up wanting to immediately listen to it again.
Literally not what you expected, but oh my, you’ll be more than pleasantly surprised. To quote Stefon from SNL, this audio has everything – Rhys cooking, Ianto’s generally awkwardness around strangers, an excellent analysis of toxic masculinity, and unexpected sadness. Don’t be dissuaded by this last bit, even if it creeps up on you; the sadness only makes this audio even more brilliant and excellent and is also mellowed a bit by the hijinks and wacky antics of Ianto and Rhys. I demand more audios with Rhys and Ianto, Big Finish.
There were three things I expected from this audio: Rhys, Ianto, and a barbecue. And it delivered perfectly on all three, but everything else was very creative and surprising. And deep. Emotional. In a good way.
If you’re looking for a lighthearted story about aliens and friendship, this isn’t what you’re looking for. If you’re looking for a story about friendship, love, and support, with some alien stuff going on in the background, you’re in the right place.
It also features a wonderful and REALLY satisfying resolution. 10/10, get it!
The story starts quite strange and very awkward. I’m not a social persion and I would consider getting invited to a barbecue not a thing I would enjoy – especially with a bunch of strangers. So I felt quite uncomfortable at the beginning. But then it evolved into such a fun ride! Lots of humor, it was quite scary, very emotional phone calls and real twist in the story that was so well done. Ianto and Rhys don’t share many scenes usually. Technically I think they have a similar background, but in reality they are so different. The story was really a fun ride and I’m sure I will listen to it again and again. I was a bit distracted by Ianto’s choice in food and beverages… it didn’t match with previous audios and TV at all – but it definitely created fun moments.
Really great to see topics like toxic masculinity being explored in Torchwood. Ianto and Rhys have such a great dynamic, and comedy was on point. It was a great listen! Definitely something I would want to listen to again.