A young lady is on a drive out in the country when she spots a body in the road. Turns out it's not a body, but clothing trussed up to look like one. She tries to get away from whatever set up this decoy, but to no avail.
Torchwood is on the scene and goes out camping nearby. Gwen decides to play a nice campfire game of "who was the last person you kissed?". Tosh hasn't kissed anyone in months, but Owen was her last, Ianto lies and says his last kiss was with Lisa and he doesn't want to talk about it, Jack just sort of sidesteps the question, and Owen informs the group that he snogged Gwen during the Cyberwoman attack. Gwen isn't happy with the whole group knowing about that.
Turns out this local area is the source of several mysterious disappearances. As they set up camp, Gwen and Owen go out and get firewood, Owen grilling her about the kiss they shared a few episodes ago. While this is happening, they find a flayed body in the woods, all the meat and organs gone. While investigating, the team hears the SUV being stolen. They track its signal to a nearby village.
Ianto and Tosh go look for the SUV while the other three check the area. They find a rather nervous kid who blasts Gwen with a shotgun. Owen fixes her up and the two share a tender moment.
Meanwhile, Ianto and Tosh get close to the SUV, but get captured by our Monster of the Week. They come to in an underground bunker where they find human meat in a fridge. Wondering what alien could be doing this, they're let out of captivity by a nurse who says she has to lead the two to "them".
Turns out she's one of "them". Our "aliens" are merely cannibalistic humans. Gwen and Owen, having separated from Jack, get held at gunpoint by a police constable who's in on the act, and everyone gets gathered together to prepare for the village's "harvest". Just then, Jack busts into the building on a tractor and incapacitates the cannibals.
Afterwards, Gwen interrogates the patriarch, trying to figure out why they cannibalized people. The only response she gets is "it made me happy".
Shell-shocked by the ordeal and unable to confide in Rhys, Gwen has now begun to find solace in sleeping with Owen.
This episode has the distinction of being, as of 2011, the only televised episode of any Doctor Who franchise series to have absolutely no science fiction aspects in the story (other than Jack's immortality, which isn't necessary to the plot, and incidental Torchwood technology). This is Played for Drama, as Gwen has to come to terms with humans being just as horrifying as aliens sometimes.
- Adorkable: Ianto may look good in a suit, but he also looks adorable and initially very out of his depth striding around the countryside in a raincoat and jeans. If Cyberwoman established that Ianto was actually a character of some weight in the show, this episode establishes him as a character we actually like.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: This shows why Jack is the leader in the first place. Harm his team and he'll come crashing in.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Poor old Tosh.
- Alternate Company Equivalent: Conceptually, the episode is very similar to the Supernatural season 1 episode The Benders, which also involves human hillbilly cannibals as the Monsters of the Week on a normally supernaturally-driven show.
- Artistic Licence Gun Safety: Even more egregious than the standard Torchwood fare, although one of the team is injured.
- Bed Mate Reveal: At the end of the episode, Gwen laments about all the things she's seen. We're led to believe it's a narration, but it turns out she's talking to Owen.
- Big Damn Heroes: Go, Jack.
- Break the Cutie: All the things Gwen has seen are starting to take a toll on her.
- Cannibal Clan
- Cold-Blooded Torture: A heroic but still terrifying example for Jack.
- Deadpan Snarker: As usual, most of the team, but Owen in particular.
- "Only in the bloody countryside!"
- For the Evulz: The patriarch's reasoning for their cannibalism. It made him happy.
- Hillbilly Horrors: A rare British example, but with all the usual US tropes.
- Horrible Camping Trip: Complete with Owen failing at the concept of a tent.Tosh: Need any help getting it up, Owen?
- Ianto: You know, I never liked camping.
- Humans Are the Real Monsters: Possibly one of the most disturbing examples in the Whoniverse.
- Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: The Harvest
- Idiot Ball: Tossed around to an excessive degree even for a Torchwood mission - Gwen starts an incredibly uncomfortable conversation for no real reason, Owen leaves the keys in the car (which allows it to be stolen), the team split up to charge around houses and into dark rooms with cavalier abandon, and they all wave guns at each other even more than normal. Even Jack spends a bizarre amount of time insisting that Ianto and Tosh (who've been locked up in the cannibal cellar) are grown-ups and can handle themselves.
- I'm a Humanitarian: It's not aliens this time.
- It's Probably Nothing: Ianto thinks a screech is a fox. It isn't, obviously.
- Jack Harkness Interrogation Technique: Apparently, Jack was pretty good at torture back in the day. He uses it on one of the attackers.
- Let's Split Up, Gang
- Oh, Crap!: An extended moment when Tosh and Ianto are trapped in the basement:"That body we found in the woods -" "Don't think about it""Shoes. Dozens of them."
- Only a Flesh Wound: Not only Gwen's, but during Jack's big gunfight, it appears no one ends up dying.
- Roaring Rampage of Rescue: In through the wall comes a tractor, and out of the tractor comes Jack Harkness with a shotgun, and he is real pissed.
- Status Quo Is God:
- Stiff Upper Lip: Owen jokes Gwen should lie back and think of Torchwood while he sets to digging the shotgun pellets out.
- Town with a Dark Secret
- Vomit Discretion Shot: Gwen doesn't think much of flayed bodies.
- We Have to Get the Bullet Out: Once Gwen gets pegged in a non-vital area with a shotgun, Owen immediately sets to work trying to get the pellets out. This is mostly to set up a tender moment between the two.
- Wham Line: "...'Cos it made me happy."
- Would Shoot A Girl: Jack