This couplet of Timeless episodes works well as a pair in showing the breaking down and then strengthening of the #TimeTrio. I waited on their review for this week so we can have something to chat about while the show is not airing tonight!
The Worst Dinner Date Ever – “The Party at Castle Varlar”
So far this has been the episode I felt was the least interesting of all the episodes so far – which disappointed me because they had Ian Fleming as a character. Sean Maguire played a wonderful Fleming, but for a show that was trying to pull off a spy game with Nazis, it felt a bit flat and slow.
The important piece to take away was Wyatt’s slipping on his faith in how to do his job. You can see he is getting frustrated at not being able to kill Flynn his way, and that he can’t work how he wants and make Lucy “happy” with his actions at the same time. He doesn’t care so much about changing the history around him. The one thing he can do, though, is help Lucy overcome her fear of field work and give her confidence to accomplish her mission. It’s the largest connection we’ve seen develop between the two, one initiated by Wyatt as well. He’s starting to open up more, which is good for his character development.
Plot wise, seeing that the previous mission revolved around a nuclear warhead, it was a bit of an unexpected turn to not have it about the nuke but instead Flynn trying to give Wernher von Braun to Soviet Union before he would surrender to the USA and go on to start programs that would be the foundation for NASA, among other things. What I find interesting in the writer’s interpretation of this: we get hints of Wyatt’s past and regrets that he has on the people who died because of him. When Wyatt brings that point up to Wernher, he shows no regrets about his actions as long as it gets him to the moon on day. However, in reading the real history of the man, when he surrendered to the Americans, it was because of the realization of what he had created and his regret of it. To me that felt that they took the historical element out of context to be able to give Wyatt that point, where-as he could have instead had a conversation with this man for healing. Thankfully he will get that from Bowie while in “The Alamo”.
When they return, the status of NASA is not the piece of history that they check up on, but instead that Ian Fleming wrote a Bond story that utilizes their mission and story as the plot of his book. It felt like another Kripke connection to Supernatural in which one of the characters (Chuck) turns the first 3 seasons of episodes into a series of novels. I also loved that Rufus stood up for himself this episode, telling his boss that he won’t spy on the team anymore. Are we surprised then that Rittenhouse sent people after him to threaten his family if he didn’t fall back in line? Nope. That scene was pretty much the same scene you see anytime an agent tries to get out of the job but can’t. For a show that enjoys twisting what you think is going to happen versus what does happen, I was disappointed in the reliance of the common threats of the big, bad Rittenhouse.
Hilariously enough though, what has to be the best episode so far in Timeless follows what I feel is the worst one. I may be a bit biased since I’m a westward expansion history geek, but seeing that I’m also a James Bond fan I think I can be truthful about both against each other.
Always Remember “The Alamo”
In “The Alamo”, we’re treated to a bloody battle that history dictates no man was going to survive once Santa Anna breached the walls. I had the luck to be able to visit the real Alamo in January of 2015 and tour the site. You can feel the history bleeding off the walls, and imagine just what it felt like to be trapped inside staring death in the face. Jim Bowie, Davy Crockett, Lieutenant Colonel Travis… so many American legends died here.
It was a big undertaking for Timeless to take on such a rich and important piece of history like this, and they knew it. The production crew had started getting the set and costumes built for this episode right at the start of production for the season. You can see a behind the scenes video of this episode on my episode preview blog post here. They wanted to make sure they protected the feel and integrity of this important piece of history.
This episode also got everything right when it came to the characters, and this was an amazing episode for Wyatt’s development. Wyatt gets his frustration out about his position on the team which I think the others needed to hear to be able to help him redefine his place and how to accomplish his mission. As we get further into the episode, we see them working together and trusting each other with their parts of the job as the heat of battle and their own possible death draws closer. When they return, he gets to see how much his team needs him when Lucy and Rufus refuse to work without Wyatt when they learn he is being reassigned because he hasn’t killed Flynn yet. In the end, Wyatt shows that he is now happy to be a part of this team.
We get wonderful moments between Davy Crockett and Rufus, and watching Rufus learn the “real” story of Davy Crockett and the real stories behind the legends. Wyatt gets to bond with Jim Bowie, who he confides his past in while helping re-strategize the defense of the Alamo to give the civilians more time to escape. We also get good moments between Wyatt and Lucy: one where he’s preaching about the real meaning behind Travis’ letter she is trying to write once he is killed, and another where she now helps him through his PTSD and guilt to be able to survive the mission. I can see that they are pushing them more towards a possible relationship developing between them (sorry fiancée Noah – you never stood a chance).
Flynn also gets pushback on his plans; a hard realization that not everything can go as planned on his end when Santa Anna refuses to let the women and children go. I liked seeing that, making Flynn realize that while he’s changing the past to get his own agenda fulfilled, he’s also creating ripples in time that he didn’t want to effect but can’t always control.
And finally, we also get Lucy’s mother revealing about her father and how she came about. There is a piece of paper with her father’s name on it, but we don’t get to learn it. I, however, have a theory on this. We know Flynn has a journal that she had written, and that she will aid him in the future. There is some form of kinship between them and I think that the significance of Amy disappearing and this mysterious father is also linked to Flynn. How does Flynn know the future if he himself isn’t from it?
My theory is that Flynn is Lucy’s biological father who came back from the future in a way to prevent Rittenhouse from doing something to her. If not father, then half-brother with the same purpose. That’s why he doesn’t want her to come to harm and to stop trying to stop him.
So what do you think? Do you have your own theories about how Flynn and Lucy are connected? What about Wyatt and Lucy’s bonding experiences in these two episodes? Leave a comment below and let’s discuss what’s to come. Timeless returns on November 14th with “The Watergate Tape” – until then check out the promo photos and teaser in my preview post here.
Hit me up on Twitter @AliSkyRichards or @ThreeIfBySpace to speculate what’s going to happen when the #TimeTrio meets Nixon. And, as always, hit subscribe to keep up to date on Timeless and all your other favorite shows!