Toshiko "Tosh" Sato, born 1975, applied her scientific skills to the Torchwood Three team, after having worked for the Ministry of Defence. Beautiful, brilliant and insecure, much of Tosh's private life remained mysterious even after her death. She lost her life after enduring severe blood loss from a gunshot inflicted by Gray, but before the wound claimed her life, she fought on long enough to help Owen Harper save Cardiff from a nuclear disaster, even though it cost him his life as well.
Early life Edit
Toshiko's logout screen gave a date of birth as 19 September 1981. (TV: Exit Wounds) This was due to an incident she had whilst trying to stop a torrent file from corrupting the world. (AUDIO: torchwood_cascade_CDRIP.tor)
Toshiko was really born in London in July 1975. Her parents moved to Osaka, Japan, in 1977, then back to the UK in 1986. Her Japanese-born grandfather worked at Bletchley Park, and her parents were in the RAF. (TV: Greeks Bearing Gifts) She had a brother whose death she felt some responsibility for, feeling that she had abandoned him. (AUDIO: torchwood_cascade_CDRIP.tor)
At a young age, Toshiko enjoyed being a member of Maths Club at her school. When she moved into her own flat, she didn't have a flat warming party as there was no one she wanted to invite. (TV: Adam) She was a big fan of Steve Ross's comic books (AUDIO: Believe) and was obsessed with Tetris. (AUDIO: Zone 10)
Tosh worked at the Lodmoor Research Facility, run by the British Ministry of Defence. Blackmailed, with her mother's life at stake, Tosh stole plans to make a sonic modulator and successfully built one, even though the plans were faulty. She was arrested by UNIT and held indefinitely without trial, and then saved by Jack Harkness. He complimented her on making a functional model with only the schematics available and offered her a job with Torchwood as an alternative to spending the rest of her life in a UNIT holding cell. (TV: Fragments)
Life with Torchwood Edit
Every year for a day, Torchwood Three woke up Tommy Brockless, a World War I soldier frozen in 1918. During the four years Toshiko worked for Torchwood, she fell in love with him. (TV: To the Last Man)
Toshiko was present in the Hub on 26 March 2005 when it was temporarily frozen in a time bubble for a day by Torchwood One's Rajesh Singh so that director Yvonne Hartman could procure a Drahvin scanner from the Hub unhindered. Observing the frozen Toshiko, Yvonne remarked that she was "cute". (AUDIO: One Rule)
While covering for teammate Owen Harper, who was suffering from a serious hangover, (TV: Exit Wounds) Tosh, pretending to be a medic named "Dr Sato", performed an autopsy on the supposed pilot of a spaceship crash inside Albion Hospital. The pilot, (TV: Aliens of London) which Tosh nicknamed the "Space Pig", (TV: Exit Wounds) was not dead, but in shock or hibernation. The creature's x-rays were nothing like she had seen before, and Tosh assumed "that's what aliens looked like". The creature, which was still alive, broke free from the morgue and injured Tosh.
After soldiers shot down the shocked creature, the Ninth Doctor explained to Tosh that it was an ordinary Earth pig and that "someone's taken [the] pig, opened up its brain, stuck bits on, then they've strapped it in that ship and made it divebomb". Tosh realised from this that the technology couldn't have been from Earth, and that the aliens were faking aliens. She did not appear to realise that she had met the Doctor. (TV: Aliens of London)
Tosh tracked the location of the meteorite containing a sex gas creature. When it escaped, she discovered the gas released ultra-powerful pheromones. Tosh cornered the creature, which had possessed Carys Fletcher, at the Conway Clinic. There, Jack tricked it into leaving Carys and trapped it in a portable cell, where it succumbed to the Earth's poisonous atmosphere. (TV: Day One)
Ianto Jones helped awaken the partially cyber-converted Lisa Hallett from beneath the Torchwood Hub. The team escaped, but Ianto ran back to her. After Lisa had put her mind in the body of Annie, Tosh, Jack, Gwen and Owen shot her. (TV: Cyberwoman)
The Torchwood team travelled to the Welsh countryside to investigate a series of gruesome murders. The Torchwood SUV was stolen by a group of cannibals that harvested travellers once every ten years. The team followed the cannibals to their village, Brynblaidd. Right as his team were captured, Jack stepped in and incapacitated the cannibals. The cannibals were arrested by the police. (TV: Countrycide) Tosh suffered from intense nightmares after the events in Brynblaidd. (AUDIO: Broken)
Tosh had a romantic affair with "Mary", a female alien who tried to use their relationship to gain access to her technology, which Torchwood had previously confiscated. (TV: Greeks Bearing Gifts) Ianto later characterised Mary as Tosh's girlfriend. (AUDIO: Broken) In order to gain Tosh's confidence, the alien allowed her the use of a pendant which granted her the temporary power of telepathy. Tosh used the device to save the lives of Carol and her child, about to be murdered in a domestic incident, but she became suspicious of the device when its use gave her insight as to how her teammates regarded her. Jack tricked Mary into being teleported into the Sun with her own technology. Afterwards, Tosh decided to destroy the pendant, fearing what consequence such a device could have for humanity. (TV: Greeks Bearing Gifts)
Tosh investigated a series of strange deaths including one person who died by his head exploding on a bus to Gabalfa. She attended one of Simon's therapy sessions. She started coming here because of how she heard what he colleagues thought of her. After the session she talked to Simon about his situation. She later asked Daphne what had happened to her son Karl after being killed. Karl was keeping a record of the strange deaths. She thought that something was odd with Simon after Jolly Otter had a brain aneurysm after his confrontation. She theorised that Simon used the group to fuel his powers. She confronted Simon after he attacked a fascist with his power. Tosh later confronted him about what he had done. Tosh later theorised that Simon was actually a catalyst for Janet's power. Janet asked Tosh to help her to stop Simon. (AUDIO: Instant Karma)
While working on a time lock in the Hub, Tosh went to Russia as she had cracked the pulse which had come from an object above Russia. She worked with the KVI to investigate Zone 10 and met with its director Maxim Ivanov. She told Maxim that Torchwood was indeed investigating him before his death and wanted to know about Zone 10. She bargained with Maxim to take her there. She thought that the KVI had brought the Committee to Earth. Maxim later worked out Torchwood didn't know that Tosh was in Russia. She worked out that Zone 10 was riddled with time distortions. At the centre of Zone 10 she met with Anna Volokova. When she found out that the FSB agent wanted to kill Anna she devised a plan to escape. She discovered that Anna was kidnapped by the Committee. Maxim told Tosh that Anna was a bargaining chip to stop the war between the Committee and the KVI. She realised that they could use the landing module to escape. Anna told her that Torchwood had been the ones to invite the Committee but Tosh didn't believe her. She was given Object One by Anna, who was given it by the Committee. She worked out that the message was created as they both escaped Zone 10. (AUDIO: Zone 10) Tosh managed to reverse engineer the properties of the object in order to make it give good luck. Whilst using it, she stopped a war in Africa just by hearing about it, and went on a date with Owen, who kissed her. Believing that nobody should have that power, she sent it into another dimension and removed her memories of it using retcon. (AUDIO: The Torchwood Archive)
When Gwen revived Suzie Costello with the resurrection gauntlet for questioning, Tosh was unable to look her former teammate in the eye. Instead of keeping her alive for a minute for a brief interrogation, Suzie kept the link between her and Gwen. After Jack's bullets were useless against Suzie, Tosh was ordered to destroy the gauntlet, which killed Suzie and saved Gwen. (TV: They Keep Killing Suzie)
While investigating reports of loud music from the 1940s, the Rift sent Jack and Tosh into 1941. Tosh hid messages that preserved her half of the Rift equations that could get her and Jack home. Owen used these to open up the Rift, bringing Jack and Tosh back to the 21st century. (TV: Captain Jack Harkness)
Owen's actions caused cracks in space and time to spread from the Rift. While cleaning this mess up, Tosh saw an apparition of her mother, telling her to reopen the Rift and undo the damage. The team turned against Jack. Owen shot Jack and reopened the Rift to send everything that had come through back. The opening of the Rift forced out Abaddon, who Jack defeated. (TV: End of Days)
Following Jack's departure, Toshiko was briefly promoted to team leader under Torchwood guidelines as their longest-standing member, but subsequently deferred command to Gwen when she was temporarily rendered mentally unfit to command after exposure to an alien artefact. (PROSE: Kaleidoscope)
While chasing a Blowfish alien through Cardiff, Jack saved a family's life and quickly took over Torchwood again. Torchwood met an old lover of Jack's, Captain John Hart, who had come through the Rift searching for some canisters that had also come through. He told Torchwood that they contained radioactive bombs. Tosh tracked down where each of the canisters were. While searching for one of the canisters with Owen, John wounded them and stole the canister. Ianto recovered Tosh and Owen and Tosh found where Gwen had been poisoned so that she could be treated. They caught up with John, but the contents of the canisters were actually components of a bomb that latched onto the DNA of the owner of the canisters' murderer. Jack and Owen confused the bomb by injecting John with the DNA of the Torchwood team and safely disposed of it. John forcibly left 21st century Cardiff. (TV: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang)
During one of Tommy Brockless' yearly awakenings, the past and present time shifts began to occur, which the uniformed thought of as "ghosts". To prevent a temporal catastrophe, Tosh and the team saw to it that Tommy returned to 1918, after the couple had a short sexual relationship. (TV: To the Last Man)
She fell in love with Adam Smith when he gave her memories that they were in love. When she was told the truth, she still couldn't bring herself to take the retcon pill until she realised it was the right thing to do. (TV: Adam)
Toshiko was personally responsible for shutting down the Pharm. By that time she had actually taken the initiative to ask Owen, with whom she had feelings, out on a date. She was extremely saddened when Owen was fatally shot in the chest by Aaron Copley. (TV: Reset) After Owen's return to life via the resurrection gauntlet, she still maintained hope for a relationship, to Owen's disgust given that his currently-deceased status prevented anything sexual from taking place. (TV: A Day in the Death) Later, however, he seemed less negative about the idea. (TV: Something Borrowed)
After Owen brought Torchwood's attention to the Church of the Outsiders, Tosh was tasked with seducing Frank Layton in order to search his house. She forced Owen to listen to her have sex with him as revenge for making her do it. (AUDIO: Believe)
She was contacted by Stephen Heinz a couple of years after the fall of Torchwood One. He booked her on a train to London. He wanted her help with something he found about 27 people disappearing at once. He played her the recording of Nikki. He told her that he was worried that he was next because of his investigation. She used the salvaged Torchwood One technology in Stephen's flat to trace it. She worked out that there was nothing in common between the victims, as they didn't download the same files. She tracked more than one type of this strange occurrence using Stephen's birth date. She tracked it to Max and watched the virus take over him. She worked out that the virus came from multiple torrents. She used the Torchwood servers to download all instances of the virus to try to stop it. The virus took her voice and used her guilt of her brother's death. She saved the virus on her Torchwood profile. (AUDIO: torchwood_cascade_CDRIP.tor)
Toshiko and the rest of the team minus Gwen were investigating an old factory that had detected Rift activity. She was caught up in an explosion of rubble and survived by the help of Gwen but had a broken arm. (TV: Fragments)
Tosh was shot by Gray while communicating via radio with Owen, talking him through his task of preventing a nuclear meltdown at a power station in Cardiff. She talked to Owen about how he would die from the meltdown and they discussed the date they had never gone on. Her wound was fatal and she died in Jack's arms after he arrived back at HQ with Gwen and Ianto. She told them how she had failed to save Owen.
As the team deleted Tosh's profile on the computer system, an automated video message she had recorded played. In it, Tosh thanked Jack for saving her life, and proclaimed her love for Owen and the rest of the team. She reassured them that it was okay that she was gone. (TV: Exit Wounds)
Though dead, Tosh's presence was still felt by the others. When faced with certain death at the hands of the Daleks, who were about to overrun the Hub, Gwen expressed her desire to "go out fighting, like Owen, like Tosh"; (TV: The Stolen Earth) she and Ianto were saved by a time-lock defence system that Tosh had been working on before her death. The Hub was sealed in a time bubble, preventing a Dalek from entering to finish them off. (TV: Journey's End)
After the 456 incident, Jack revealed that he felt responsible for Tosh's death, along with those of all the other Torchwood operatives who had died under his command. (TV: Children of Earth: Day Five)
Alternate timeline Edit
In an alternate timeline in which John Hart took control of the Torchwood Institute and became King of the British Empire, Tosh was likewise a member of Torchwood Cardiff, but died before Gwen Cooper was recruited by the king, who recalled that her death was "very sad, and messy and painful to watch" before agreeing to never speak of it again with Ianto Jones. Nevertheless, Ianto visibly burst into tears as John decided that Gwen would inherit Tosh's desk. (AUDIO: The Death of Captain Jack)
Tosh considered herself to be a rationalist. (PROSE: Slow Decay) She was a computer genius and arguably the most intelligent member of the Torchwood team. Despite her intelligence, she was insecure and not very confident in her abilities.[additional sources needed] She didn't like to be studied. She could complete a Rubik's cube within a minute, even when Owen peeled off and replaced several of the stickers. (PROSE: Another Life)
Tosh was in love with Owen Harper but because of her insecurity, she found it hard to tell him how she felt.[additional sources needed] Tragically, both Tosh and Owen were killed before they could get into a romantic relationship. (TV: Reset, Dead Man Walking, A Day in the Death, Exit Wounds)
Toshiko worried Jack. While she was at the heart of the Torchwood team, she didn't realise it. She felt more remote. Jack suspected that beneath her reserved exterior, there was a supernova of emotion which he didn't want to damage the team. (PROSE: Slow Decay)
Behind the scenes Edit
Torchwood website Edit
The series 1 version of the Torchwood website had correspondence from Tosh in an unsent draft sent to her aunt discovered by Ianto. It was translated from Japanese into English by Ianto. It said that "for the last week", Tosh was with a woman, referring to Mary, "going from a schoolgirl crush on Owen through to a fantastically fulfilling sex life with a complete stranger". She called it "a week of firsts", including: Tosh's first one night stand, lesbian kiss, lesbian "shag", and the first time Tosh was late to work because of sex.
Other matters Edit
- During her first on-screen appearances, in Aliens of London, Tosh was a pathologist called in to autopsy an "alien pilot". When reintroduced in Torchwood, she was a computer specialist. In her final appearance (Exit Wounds), the character would explain this discrepancy by explaining she was filling in for Owen, pretending to be an MD because Owen had a hangover.
- Tosh left a resounding impression in the Torchwood universe and in the final episode of Children of Earth Jack admits that he feels responsible for her death. It is assumed her body was destroyed when the Hub was blown up by a bomb.
- The name Toshiko means "genius child".
- Toshiko was the only known member of Torchwood Three other than Jack Harkness to have met an incarnation of the Doctor. Gwen and Ianto had spoken to the Tenth Doctor through the Sub-Wave Network during Journey's End, but Tosh was the only one to have physically met an incarnation of him.
- Tosh was dubbed in German by Ditte Schupp in Aliens of London and Natascha Schaff in Torchwood.