That's pretty dark for CBBC show isn't it?

TV As #whowatch wanders onwards, I've reached the moment when chronologically Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures intermingle which on the one hand demonstrates that tonally they're not that different, especially in relation to the kinds of dialogue which appears. Here's a line of dialogue:

"I doubt men like you fair too well in prison."

It's a convincer. The main character uses it to convince the bad guy to do the thing they need to get to the next bit of plot or episode resolution and it looks for all the word like something Captain Jack might say.

Except, it's Sarah Jane Smith.

It's from Warriors of Kudlak, the first series riff on The Last Starfighter, as the human who's being addressed has been collaborating with an alien, utilising a version of Laser Tag to find adolescents talented enough to go to war on some far off world. When Sarah-Jane threatens him initially, the human suggests that the police aren't likely to believe the whole alien thing, which is when she points out that there's enough evidence of his child abduction leading to the line ...

"I doubt men like you fair too well in prison."

That's pretty dark for CBBC show isn't it? You're probably thinking the same things I am and there's not really a clear way of explaining what she means in a not adult way other than, bad men don't do well in prison which is true because they're prisons. Or something. I'm trying to think like a child, which is usually pretty easy for me as you know.

The writer, Phil Gladwin, didn't write another one. His other screen credit that year was an episode of ITV's grim police procedural Trial & Retribution which is a really quite strange juxtaposition. I'd ask him about it via Twitter but he's not updated since this fairly telling Tweet:

Either way, it just goes to show how difficult it must be deciding what should and shouldn't be in a television script for children.

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