FANDOM


ImagesAvailable

Owen Harper MD was a member of Torchwood Three in the 2000s.

Following his fiancée Katie's death due to an alien parasite, Owen accepted Jack Harkness's offer to join Torchwood as its medical officer. He had sexual relationships with his colleagues, Suzie Costello and Gwen Cooper, but was unaware of Toshiko Sato's feelings for him for some years. After being killed by Aaron Copley, Owen was restored in a state of living death in which he could not die but also could not heal.

Owen died for good after saving Cardiff from nuclear meltdown, his body being irreparably destroyed.

Biography Edit

Early life Edit

Owen was born on 14 February 1980, (TV: Exit Wounds) or at some point in 1981 in Plaistow, part of London's East End. (PROSE: Slow Decay; TV: Dead Man Walking) He could hear the Hammers playing at home from the back bedroom of his house, where he would listen and make up his own commentary. As a child he enjoyed watching Scooby-Doo. He would later call himself a "true" fan of the series. (PROSE: Slow Decay)

He had a difficult relationship with his mother, so much so that, on his tenth birthday, his mother told him that she did not have to like him, only love him. (TV: Adam) He lost his virginity in a school stationery cupboard when he was fifteen. (PROSE: Slow Decay) When he was sixteen, his mother packed a bag of his belongings. Despite being unclear if he was leaving voluntarily, Owen claimed that it was "the nicest thing [she'd] done for [him] in years". (TV: Adam)

Watching his friends growing up and becoming car mechanics and estate agents, Owen decided he wanted to do something which meant something. His father died of an aortic aneurysm, he decided he wanted to be a surgeon so that he could stop the same thing happening to himself (PROSE: Slow Decay) and so that he could save others, giving his life meaning. (TV: Fragments)

Owen attended college in London, where he had a short relationship with Megan Tegg. Megan wanted to get married, but Owen was not interested in a long-term relationship and so walked out on her. (PROSE: Another Life) He trained for seven years to become a doctor, (PROSE: Slow Decay) writing his thesis on immunology with the help of Aaron Copley's published works. (TV: Reset) He then spent a year as a junior houseman at Cardiff Royal Infirmary, (PROSE: Slow Decay) where he became engaged to junior doctor Katie Russell. (TV: Fragments) He once woke up in another woman's bed before going to work with a hangover and tending to Michael Bellini. (PROSE: Trace Memory)

Owen and Katie got engaged. Unbeknownst to the two of them, she had an alien parasite in her brain which had the effect of causing what they believed to be a degenerative neurological condition. (TV: Fragments)

Career with Torchwood Edit

Recruitment Edit

A grave day

Owen after Katie's death (TV: Fragments)

Despite his superior insisting that what she had possessed no cause, Owen insisted on Katie being given more tests, resulting in the parasite, believed to be a tumour, being found. Relieved, Owen took her for surgery not long after she forgot his name. During the surgery, Jack Harkness arrived and informed him of the parasite, which had killed her and the surgical team. Jack claimed he needed to take her body and sterilise her, something Owen refused to allow, resulting in the doctor being sedated.

Owen awoke in a ward where he told others the unbelievable story about aliens. No one believed him and he was advised to take some leave. Owen tried to use security footage but Jack had altered it, leading to him feeling hopeless and disillusioned. After Katie's funeral, Owen was at her grave when he saw Jack in the distance. Enraged, he ran at and assaulted Jack, eventually crying in his arms. Jack offered Owen a job with Torchwood Three so that he could save people and find purpose without Katie. Owen reluctantly accepted. (TV: Fragments)

Early career Edit

On his second week on the job, Owen was hungover and unable to investigate a "Space Pig" incident. Toshiko Sato covered for him that day, an example of the many times that Tosh stepped in to save him. (TV: Aliens of London; Exit Wounds) He had a sexual relationship with Suzie Costello (TV: They Keep Killing Suzie) and had a key to her house which he used spontaneously, including once when she was with Blon Fel-Fotch Passameer-Day Slitheen. (AUDIO: Sync)

Owen, Jack, Tosh and Suzie were later joined by Ianto Jones (TV: Fragments) and Sebastian Vaughan. (AUDIO: The Vigil) One adventure, known as Operation Goldenrod, involved Owen trying to separate people who had been melded together. (PROSE: Slow Decay)

Joined by Gwen Edit

Owen was indirectly responsible for Gwen Cooper gaining access to the Hub by his ordering from Jubilee Pizza under the name of "Torchwood". (TV: Everything Changes) He captured Carys Fletcher inside a portable prison cell after she was taken over by the Sex Gas and later cornered her at the Conway Clinic where it was destroyed. (TV: Day One)

Using a quantum transducer obtained from Bernie Harris, Owen saw Ed Morgan rape and murder Lizzie Lewis in 1963. He tracked down and threatened Ed in the present and held him at knifepoint. Although Gwen stopped him, Ed threw himself onto the knife and died. (TV: Ghost Machine) Owen developed an addiction to the game Second Reality, which he played using the avatar Glendower Broadsword. Through the game, he met up with his former lover, Megan Tegg. (PROSE: Another Life)

Whilst hiding from the partially cyber-converted Lisa Hallett, he and Gwen kissed, beginning their affair. (TV: Cyberwoman) He offered his information on Roundstone Wood when Torchwood became aware of the Fairies (TV: Small Worlds) and helped defeat Thomas Vaughan and the Arcanis Servitorus, who almost killed him, Gwen and Ianto. (AUDIO: Hidden) He went with Ianto to Hengoed to find the origins of a beacon, where he decided to forget Torchwood's rules and allow Pat to remain in the village. (AUDIO: The Last Beacon)

Owen gwen affair

Owen and Gwen give in to their sexual tension. (TV: Countrycide)

Owen joined the team on a mission to the Brecon Beacons to solve a series of murders. He and Gwen kissed again and, after stopping the Brynblaidd cannibals, slept together. (TV: Countrycide) Although they attempted to keep it secret, Tosh learnt of the relationship due to the telepathy pendant, for which Owen was angry. (TV: Greeks Bearing Gifts) He comforted Gwen after she survived Suzie's leeching of her life force (TV: They Keep Killing Suzie) and helped remove Eugene Jones's possessions after he died. (TV: Random Shoes)

TORCHWOODx110x1099

Owen and Diane Holmes. (TV: Out of Time)

After the Sky Gypsy landed from 1953, Owen began a casual sexual relationship with Diane Holmes and fell in love with her, being devastated after she decided to fly into the Rift. (TV: Out of Time) He was left disillusioned with his relationship with Gwen and they called it off. He joined Mark Lynch's Weevil Fight Club and was prepared to allow a Weevil to kill him but Jack came to his rescue, for which Owen chastised him as he felt "totally at peace". (TV: Combat)

His feelings for Diane led him to open the Rift after Jack and Tosh were transported to 1941, (TV: Captain Jack Harkness) for which Jack fired him. He returned and relieved Jack of his command, shooting him and opening the Rift further, unwittingly unleashing Abaddon. After Abaddon was defeated by Jack, Owen broke down and hugged him. Jack forgave him and he was allowed to continue working at Torchwood. (TV: End of Days)

Jack's absence Edit

Owen and the rest of Torchwood found that Jack had disappeared. (TV: End of Days) In his absence, Tosh briefly became leader before passing command over to Gwen. (PROSE: Kaleidoscope) They were sent by Harold Saxon on a "wild goose chase" to the Himalayas to keep them from ruining his plans. (TV: The Sound of Drums) Owen failed to show up to the opera for Tosh's "Not-Valentine's" Valentine's Day. (AUDIO: Dinner and a Show)

After Jack's return Edit

Whilst dealing with a hostage situation, Jack returned and shot the Blowfish that threatened them. Owen managed to treat Gwen's poisoning by Captain John Hart, who wounded him and who Owen saved using the team's DNA to confuse a bomb that would kill John and Gwen. (TV: Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang) He correctly believed that Beth Halloran had been the one to kill one burglar and injure another. He, Jack, Tosh and Ianto shot her down when she threatened Gwen. (TV: Sleeper)

Owen woke Tommy Brockless up for his annual awakening and warned Tosh not to get too close to him as he did not want her heart to get broken when he returned to 1918. He helped the others send Tommy back and injected Tosh with a sleeping agent that allowed her to connect to him across time. He consoled her over her loss. (TV: To the Last Man) He tried to make a sedative for the Cash Cow but found that it was impossibly, instead euthanising it to put it out of its misery. He also helped Rhys recover from a gunshot wound in the shoulder (TV: Meat) and later became meek and pining for Tosh due to Adam Smith's manipulation, being restored after taking retcon. (TV: Adam)

Owens first death

Owen dies protecting Martha. (TV: Reset)

Joined by Martha Jones, Owen helped look into and infiltrate the Pharm, having a flirtatious relationship with her. The two identified and examined Reset, which was being made and administered by Owen's old hero Aaron Copley. After beginning the shutdown of the Pharm, Owen was shot by Copley and died gasping in pain with Martha unable to save him. (TV: Reset) He was 27 years old. (TV: Dead Man Walking)

Undeath Edit

Before Martha could perform Owen's autopsy, Jack located the second resurrection gauntlet and used it to resurrect Owen temporarily, giving Jack enough time to get the passcode to the morgue and Tosh time to confess her love. However, it ended up bringing him back permanently and with Death manifesting through him. Although they managed to stop Owen from being taken over, Death stalked a hospital in the hopes of claiming thirteen lives before Owen stopped it. (TV: Dead Man Walking)

Owen Revives

Jack revives Owen. (TV: Dead Man Walking)

Although once again conscious and sentient, Owen Harper, post-death, found he had limited bodily functions. His wounds would not heal, he could not breathe or blow air and he could not sleep. He could swallow liquids and food, but he had no sense of taste and he did not digest food; it had to be removed or somehow expelled from his body. After an unsuccessful attempt to get drunk, Owen stood on his head to allow gravity to drain fluids from his system. His lack of blood flow made erections impossible and he was encouraged to maintain regular physical exercise to prevent rigor mortis from setting in. (TV: Dead Man Walking, A Day in the Death)

Due to Owen's inability to heal, Jack was initially hesitant to allow Owen to take part in regular operations again and demoted him to "tea boy", but soon Owen was back out in the field. His lack of breathing and other bodily functions proved useful to the team when he was able to circumvent a heat-based alarm system to recover the Pulse from Henry Parker. He later stopped Maggie Hopley from killing herself. (TV: A Day in the Death)

On Corpse Day, Owen was sent by Torchwood to help Andy Davidson investigate the disappearance of a number of girls. They found that they had been kidnapped by Glynn Lewis as mates for his Weevil son, Sonny. Owen helped Jan deliver Sonny's child, after which the girls convinced Sonny to kill Glynn. (AUDIO: Corpse Day) He went to Gwen and Rhys's wedding after Tosh asked him to and helped stop the Nostrovite. (TV: Something Borrowed)

Owen brought the Church of the Outsiders to Torchwood's attention after they stole data from a UNIT storage facility. As Jack had no interest in the mission and sympathised with the Church, Owen was in charge of the operation. He had Ianto infiltrate the Church and Gwen go after Andromeda Ross whilst Tosh was tasked with seducing Frank Layton. Tosh forced Owen to listen to her have sex with him as revenge for putting her in that position. She later told him that he was a bad leader. (AUDIO: Believe)

Attempting to find the truth about Megwyn Jones's killings, Owen and Andy infiltrated her prison as employees and went with her to the Hope when she agreed to show where the bodies were. The Hope briefly gave Owen a fix of life which slowly faded and he used his time in the dirt to convince it to kill Megwyn when she attempted to use it. (AUDIO: The Hope) The Ghostmaker left him alone due to his lack of breath (TV: From Out of the Rain) and did not help Gwen with her mission to bring peace to the parents of those taken by the Rift. (TV: Adrift)

Final death Edit

Owen at peace

Owen, at peace as he dies. (TV: Exit Wounds)

Several weeks after his death, Owen was tasked with stopping Turnmill Nuclear Power Station from going into meltdown and destroying Cardiff. He kept in contact with Tosh at the Hub and managed to redirect the radioactive waste, but was trapped inside. Although he initially did not plan to go quietly, he had a heartfelt conversation with Tosh and resigned himself to death. The waste entered the room and the comm signal from Owen was snuffed out shortly after muttering his final words, "Oh, God". Tosh died shortly afterwards. (TV: Exit Wounds)

Legacy Edit

Owen left a resounding impression on the Torchwood staff. His photograph was still pinned up on Gwen's desktop (TV: Children of Earth: Day One) and Gwen also expressed her desire to "go out fighting, like Owen, like Tosh" when faced with a Dalek invasion of the Hub; (TV: The Stolen Earth) the loss of Owen and Tosh continued to emotionally affect the survivors of Torchwood Three for months. (AUDIO: Lost Souls)

After witnessing the deaths of a couple in a café who she had been unable to save, Gwen remembered the deaths of Tosh and Owen and how utterly powerless she had felt. (PROSE: Bay of the Dead)

After the 456 incident, Jack revealed that he felt responsible for Owen's death, along with those of all the other Torchwood operatives who had died under his command. (TV: Children of Earth: Day Five)

The ghost of Ianto Jones' father mentioned Owen among the loved ones his son could have seen again if he let Syriath free from the Cardiff Rift. (AUDIO: The House of the Dead)

When he was inspecting an operation during Miracle Day, Jack Harkness used the name Owen Harper. (TV: The New World)

When leaving Torchwood, Gwen mentioned how she loved Owen, as well as Tosh and Esther Drummond. (AUDIO: Herald of the Dawn)

Alternate timeline Edit

In an alternate timeline in which John Hart took control of the British Empire and the Torchwood Institute, Owen operated an incinerator at Torchwood. Having murdered Rhys Williams, the King ordered Ianto Jones to have Owen dispose of Rhys' body. (AUDIO: The Death of Captain Jack)

Personality Edit

A habitual womanizer, Owen rarely turned down an opportunity for seduction. He had a dark side, willing to manipulate people. Owen was a narcissistic genius who was perfectly aware of his own considerable intellect. He possessed a quick, sardonic wit and often lightened dark situations with his humour. However Owen's cavalier exterior hid a soul in constant torment.

His constant rage, while usually under control, would occasionally explode, once going so far as to shoot Jack Harkness dead (unaware of the fact that he was immortal at the time) because he felt that Jack didn't care about what he and the others had lost. (TV: Combat, End of Days) While he pretended to be largely self-interested, Owen had empathy as shown by his obsession with avenging Lizzie Lewis' death. (TV: Ghost Machine)

Three of Owen's favourite things were eating, sleeping and having sex and he was greatly disappointed by the fact that he couldn't do any of them when he was brought back to life after being shot dead. (TV: Reset, Dead Man Walking)

He was deeply loyal to the Torchwood team and had a protective relationship with Gwen Cooper. Owen liked to project an aura of callous indifference; he himself was often unaware of his own feelings, most likely including his love for Toshiko Sato. (TV: Adam)

Skills and abilities Edit

A skilled doctor, he could heal several injuries; even his own; such as bullet wounds, (TV: Countrycide, Captain Jack Harkness) cuts, (TV: Dead Man Walking) and poisons. (TV: Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang) He could also reanimate a frozen body, (TV: Sleeper) diagnose the Black Death in patients at a hospital, (TV: Exit Wounds) quickly check for a pulse, (TV: They Keep Killing Suzie) understand various chemicals which could stop a rift creature from consistently growing in size and how to give lethal injections. (TV: Meat) However, he wasn't perfect proven when he misdiagnosed a dead cadaver for having died naturally and not shot by a woman, (TV: Greeks Bearing Gifts) and couldn't give accurate instructions to Toshiko on how to heal his bullet wound, forcing him to do it himself. (TV: Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang) Further more, he was initially inferior in skill to Martha Jones, not checking a dead man's medical records or their bloodstream for any anomalies, but he later managed to test a victims blood effectively (TV: Reset)

After being resurrected, he no longer needed to breathe, enabling him to stay conscious underwater for at least 36 minutes; (TV: A Day on the Death) he essentially had no breath to steal. (TV: From Out of the Rain) Being dead also meant he wasn't "fresh" so he wasn't eaten by a carnivorous alien. (TV: Something Borrowed) Due to his tissues cells being dead, he was impervious to pain demonstrated when he didn't realise he cut his hand with a scalpel (TV: Dead Man Walking) and could break his fingers willingly. (TV: A Day in the Death)

However, this did mean he was unable to heal naturally, forcing him to constantly redress any wounds he sustained, as well as no longer being able to enjoy natural pleasure such as taste and sex. He was also vulnerable to rigor mortis, forcing him to exercise regularly to stave it off. (TV: Dead Man Walking) He had no body heat, which meant he couldn't be picked up by heat signals, along with being unable to die by electrocution. Hair growth evidently ceased as well; Owen realised that he would never "have a beard." (TV: A Day in the Death)

Strangely, Weevils began to stalk, cower before or worship him, (TV: Dead Man Walking, AUDIO: Corpse Day) enabling him to cross Cardiff without being attacked during the uprising (TV: Exit Wounds) despite previously having almost been killed by one in his first life. (TV: Combat) He later called himself "King of the Weevils". (TV: Exit Wounds)

He was also able to beat Duroc as he had already died, something no one else but a girl called Faith had achieved. (TV: Dead Man Walking)

Despite being a doctor first, he was skilled with guns, (TV: Day One et al.) could disarm an opponent by taking and using their own weapon (TV: A Day in the Death) and was occasionally quite violent. (TV: Fragments) He was a skilled hand to hand combatant, being capable of pinning a man single handedly and later held his own against three more men. (TV: Combat) He also overpowered Ianto Jones in a fight despite the man tackling him to the ground. (TV: Captain Jack Harkness) After being resurrected, he tended to avoid direct combat due to becoming rather brittle, becoming more stealthy and taking opponents by surprise. (TV: A Day in the Death) However, Owen was once overpowered by a Welsh police officer, who pinned him against a wall with little trouble despite Owen resisting. (TV: Dead Man Walking)

Other information Edit

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.

Fandom may earn an affiliate commission on sales made from links on this page.

Stream the best stories.

Fandom may earn an affiliate commission on sales made from links on this page.

Get Disney+