John Barrowman

Britwatch: Torchwood’s John Barrowman Joins the Cast of the CW’s Arrow

Shame on me for not sharing this particular bit of news last week! The one and only John Barrowman – most famous for playing the amazing Captain Jack Harkness on both Doctor Who and Torchwood – will be joining the cast of upcoming CW superhero drama Arrow.

While I am somewhat ashamed (alarmed?) to find myself encouraging others to watch programming on the CW (which, total hypocrite alert, because I do love some Supernatural), I’ve heard lots of good things about Arrow. I skipped this particular panel at Comic Con back in July, but my roommate went and raved about this show for two days afterward. So, that seems promising, at least.

Arrow is an adaptation of DC Comics character Green Arrow, and apparently this particular version is supposed to be short on camp and heavy on actual seriousness and drama. Barrowman has signed on for a recurring guest role in the freshman drama’s first season, and, per Entertainment Weekly, producers are keeping pretty mum about who is character is supposed to be. Word on the street is that Barrowman will play a “well dressed,” “mysterious” and “wealthy” man who is “an acquaintance of the Queen family and a prominent figure in Starling City.” I know next to nothing about Green Arrow, as apparently I am more of a Marvel girl these days, but that description certainly screams villain to me. Anyone with more knowledge of this universe care to take a guess?

Truthfully, I would be more excited if this news were that Torchwood were coming back for another season (and that Miracle Day had somehow never existed because it was terrible), it’s still great to see Barrowman getting more work in the US because he’s fantastic and deserves to be a big star here. So, here’s hoping “recurring” becomes “regular” pretty quickly.

Torchwood’s John Barrowman to Star in ABC Period Drama Pilot, “Gilded Lilys”

Everybody wants to be like Downton Abbey! ABC is currently developing its own period drama pilot for next season called Gilded Lilys. The project is being described as an upstairs-downstairs look at the opening of the first true luxury hotel built in New York City in 1895.

Now the American costume drama is set to have a very British lead – Torchwood and Doctor Who star John Barrowman has joined the cast for the pilot (and presumably the series, should it get picked up). Barrowman will play Julius Ashford Lily (see, the “Lilys” of the title are the family, get it?), the charming playboy son of the family

Produced by Shonda Rhimes and Betsey Beers (Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice), the series boasts an already impressive cast list, including Brian F. O'Byrne, Blythe Danner, Madeline Zima, Matt Lauria, Matt Long, Brigid Brannagh, Maury Sterling and Sarah Bolger.

Barrowman is fantastic, obviously, and I'm quite fond of Bolger thanks to her great performance on The Tudors, but I’m not sure what to think of this pilot. It’s clearly trying to take advantage of America’s current mania for costume productions (thanks, Downton!). To be frank, I’m not instantly in love with the concept, but I'm at least a little bit curious. So we’ll see how we go.

And while I still expect to see Barrowman return to Doctor Who for some sort of appearance (even if it’s tiny) during the 50th anniversary festivities next year, I do wonder what this pilot means for the likely future of Torchwood. If this series is successful, have we seen the last of Gwen and Captain Jack?

Source: TV Guide