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|Place of origin:||Cardiff|
|First seen in:||Everything Changes|
|Main actor:||Kai Owen|
- You may be looking for Rhys Ap Williams.
Rhys Alun Williams was Gwen Cooper's husband. Although originally he did not believe in the existence of aliens nor know his partner worked for Torchwood, he came to accept both facts and become himself an associate of Torchwood Three. However, he was reluctant to let Gwen continue in the work, more so after their daughter was born.
Rhys was the son of Barry and Brenda Williams. He was born and raised in Wales. As a child, he was a member of the British Boy Scouts. (TV: Children of Earth: Day Three) Rhys would often be told stories by his great uncle Bryn, though he never paid much attention, to his later regret. (AUDIO: The Devil and Miss Carew) Around the age of twelve Rhys was attracted to a girl named Cerys Morgan. Rhys did not fall in love with anyone else until he met Gwen. (TV: Something Borrowed) After leaving secondary school, Rhys enrolled in college. (TV: Adam) He had a sister who visited him and Gwen in 2005. (PROSE: Slow Decay)
Relationship with Gwen
Rhys and Gwen met in college. Rhys fancied her as soon as he saw her because of her personality and looks. Their first kiss took place in a supermarket, after Rhys had become irritated with the customer service agent. (TV: Adam) For their first date Rhys took Gwen on a picnic on the beach, not knowing it was a nudist beach. (AUDIO: The Sin Eaters) After Gwen and Rhys had moved in together and Gwen had qualified as a police officer, Rhys helped her celebrate with champagne, declaring himself "so proud" of her. On another occasion, Rhys attended the sixtieth birthday party of Mary Cooper. His zip malfunctioned, resulting in Gwen chasing him around the flat to staple his trousers shut. (TV: Ghost Machine)
Rhys was aware of stories about alien invasions. He did not believe them, speculating that they were mass hallucinations caused by terrorists putting psychotropic drugs in the water supply. (TV: Everything Changes) When Gwen began working for Torchwood, she let him believe she worked for nothing more exciting than generic "special ops". As Gwen became more involved with Torchwood, Rhys grew irritated with her evasions and long hours. Gwen broke off a date to go bowling with him to investigate a meteorite fall with the team. (TV: Day One) After he and Gwen had another argument when she missed dinner because of her work, she used the Ghost Machine to relive memories of an earlier, happier relationship. (TV: Ghost Machine) On another occasion, Rhys grew angry and afraid for their safety when Fairies vandalised their house. (TV: Small Worlds) Rhys was with Gwen when he learned she had been lying to him about the nature of Emma-Louise Cowell, whom she had taken in as part of her work. He hated Gwen's readiness to lie to him. (TV: Out of Time)
Unknown to him, Gwen had a brief, sexually charged encounter with the alien which had possessed Carys Fletcher (TV: Day One) and had an affair with Owen Harper to help deal with her lives at home and at work. (TV: Countrycide) She admitted the affair to him but also slipped Rhys retcon so he would not remember her confession. (TV: Combat)
To manipulate the Torchwood team into opening the Rift, Bilis Manger gave Gwen a vision of Rhys stabbed to death on the floor of their apartment. Gwen used a stun gun on Rhys and moved him unconscious to a holding cell in the Hub. Manger freed him and stabbed Rhys to death himself. When Torchwood opened the Rift, Rhys vanished from the autopsy room and re-appeared alive at his apartment, unaware anything had happened. (TV: End of Days)
After Jack Harkness left Torchwood and Earth, Gwen and Rhys become engaged. Rhys was going to get down on one knee to propose but this didn't quite work out due to an inconvenient back twinge. Shortly after Jack returned to Earth, Rhys became manager of Harwood's Haulage. (TV: Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang)
Becoming aware of Torchwood
Some time later, one of Harwood's lorries crashed. Torchwood investigated, finding alien meat in the lorry. Gwen grew suspicious and Rhys became suspicious of Gwen. He followed Torchwood to a factory where the meat was processed and found Gwen had been lying to him about her work with Torchwood. He suspected her of having an affair with Jack Harkness. They argued but she finally came clean about her job, which Rhys eventually accepted.
Rhys became involved in a mission to uncover and destroy an alien meat-trading racket and ended up taking a bullet to protect Gwen's life. Jack insisted that Gwen retcon Rhys after this event. Because Gwen enjoyed finally being able to be honest with Rhys, she couldn't bring herself to drug him again and demanded that Jack allow Rhys keep his memories of Torchwood. (TV: Meat)
When Gwen's memories were corrupted by Adam Smith, she forgot about Rhys. Returning to her flat, she believed him a stalker. Rhys enlightened her about their relationship and she came to accept his version of events. Gwen's full memories of her relationship were presumably restored once Adam Smith was defeated. (TV: Adam)
Wedding and aftermath
A few weeks later, Rhys and Gwen were married. On the morning of his wedding day, Gwen phoned to say she had been impregnated by a Nostrovite. Rhys wanted to postpone the wedding, but Gwen insisted that it go ahead, only for the mother Nostrovite to arrive, taking the form of a guest. Jack accused Rhys' mother of being the Nostrovite. Rhys punched him in the face. Rhys removed the Nostrovite foetus from Gwen with the singularity scalpel and tried to kill the mother with a chainsaw, but Jack killed her instead. Gwen and Rhys were wed at the altar, although the memories of all the wedding guests were erased. (TV: Something Borrowed) Gwen and Rhys honeymooned in Paris. (TV: From Out of the Rain) After their honeymoon, Rhys suggested they start a family, but Gwen said it wouldn't be possible with her job. Rhys was angry that her work with Torchwood had removed her from real life. Gwen realised that she had to share more of her job with Rhys, and he comforted her after she recounted to him the story of Jonah Bevan. (TV: Adrift)
When the Torchwood team were trapped in a warehouse explosion set by Captain John Hart, Rhys helped Gwen rescue them. (TV: Fragments) He worked with her former colleague Andy Davidson to keep a crowd of angry Weevils contained. (TV: Exit Wounds) Although never given official status with Torchwood Three, Gwen identified her husband as a member of Torchwood (AUDIO: The Dead Line) On another occasion, Rhys rescued Gwen from the malevolent Miss Joanna Carew after she investigated events around the death of his great uncle Bryn Williams at the Ivydale Nursing Home. After rescuing Gwen, Rhys asked if this made him an official member of Torchwood. Gwen said that he wouldn't want to be. (AUDIO: The Devil and Miss Carew)
Rhys was a member of the renegade Torchwood team after the destruction of the Hub. Assisting in Gwen's escape to London, he acted as helmsman for the team, cooking for them and helping Ianto set up the base. During their escape in a lorry, Rhys learned Gwen was pregnant. Rhys, disguised as an undertaker, went with Gwen to free Jack, who had resurrected after the Hub's destruction. (TV: Children of Earth: Day Two)
The renegade team came across the abandoned Torchwood One facility, where Jack had hidden a few years before. Rhys helped gather more supplies. (TV: Children of Earth: Day Three) He was entrusted with the footage of the government's deal in their plan to hold the government to ransom. Rhys stored the images on a laptop in a secret location outside the Houses of Parliament and waited for Gwen to give him the order to release the files to the public. After Jack and Ianto confronted the 456, refusing to surrender a single child to them, Ianto and Clement McDonald died. Gwen told Rhys that their plan was over. (TV: Children of Earth: Day Four)
With Jack in custody, Frobisher arranged for Gwen and Rhys to be flown back to Cardiff on a helicopter. They were greeted by Andy on arriving. Gwen considered aborting her pregnancy. They went to Ianto's sister's house to save his niece and nephew. Rhys led the children from there to an abandoned warehouse to hide before the army arrived to secure the last of the children for the 456. After the 456 were defeated by Jack, Rhys and Gwen emerged unharmed, with Ianto's niece and nephew saved. (TV: Children of Earth: Day Five)
After the fall of Torchwood
Six months later, Rhys was at Gwen's side, expecting their child. He comforted her when Jack ran away from Earth. (TV: Children of Earth: Day Five) After the fall of Torchwood, and with Gwen a mother to their new baby, John Hart was forced to team with Rhys on a time travel mission involving Ianto. (COMIC: Shrouded)
After Anwen Williams was born, Rhys and Gwen lived in an isolated part of Wales. Rhys tried to have a normal life, to stop Gwen from thinking of her work with Torchwood. When they visited Gwen's father Geraint at the hospital and learned of Miracle Day, he did not want her to investigate it. Rhys was swept up when Rex Matheson found them and they were attacked by unknown agents. (TV: The New World) Rhys' lack of official standing in Torchwood meant that Rex had no interest in him and he was left behind with Anwen. (TV: Rendition) Later, when Geraint was returned to the overflow camp, Rhys went there with Andy's help and was at his bedside when he regained consciousness and died as the Miracle ended. (TV: The Blood Line)
In common with most of Earth's population, Rhys initially believed that alien interference with Earth in the 2000s was mass hallucinations induced by terrorists putting psychotropic drugs in the water supply. When Gwen put this theory to Jack he called Rhys stupid. (TV: Everything Changes)
Rhys was easy going, amiable and straightforward. He had a cheeky sense of humour and little modesty, such as when he was seen naked by a complete stranger. (TV: Out of Time) He knew how to charm Gwen out of her moods. He would joke with Gwen about her "Secret Squirrel" job. However, his relationship with Gwen began to fall apart and a note of anger and suspicion began to emerge. (TV: Combat) He appeared to come to terms with things, and later was quite capable of mixing talk about buying a house and Torchwood business with ease. (TV: Children of Earth: Day One) Rhys liked root beer. (AUDIO: Fallout)
Behind the scenes
- The production team had originally intended Rhys to die at the end of series one but this was overruled by Russell T Davies, who felt that without Rhys, the show's main link to the real world would be lost.
- Although Rhys plays a recurring role in the first two series, actor Kai Owen was not given star billing until the third series.
- In The Sarah Jane Adventures television story, The Day of the Clown, a paper with the name Rhys Williams written on it is seen the notice board in Luke, Clyde and Rani's classroom.