Oooo looky a big scary demon! and its killing everyone! but whats this? Captain jack! He's got too much livin to give! Whats that you say? Deus ex Machina?
Yeah, but how close is that to Dr. Who? I forget the name of the episode, but it was the planet that wouldn't flush down the black hole. Doc goes down, finds the devil, and shows him who's boss.
I think that what it comes down to is the characters. The stories in Torchwood
and Dr. Who are, more often than not, lame (with "Blink" being a huge exception).
Think about all the episodes of Dr. Who where the doctor and sidekick are almost nowhere to be found. I mean, an episode where a bunch of Doctor conspiracy theorists get together to form a cover band? That one episode carried more lame than all the natural
lame of Dr. Who and Torchwood combined.
But, I love the characters in Torchwood. I'm not looking for some intellectually challenging experience - I like the simplicity. It's an easy break from a crappy day.
Although the Doctor (especially David Tennant's) carries more awesome than just about any other television hero
ever, it doesn't mean Torchwood sucks. I think the comparisons only happen because they part of the same general franchise.