Thursday, March 15, 2018

Timeless 2x01 Review: "The War to End All Wars" (Welcome Back, Time Team!) [Contributor: Jenn]

“The War to End All Wars”
Original Airdate: March 11, 2018

Last year, Timeless was one of my favorite shows. It had everything I could possibly want: traipsing through space and time, an ongoing mystery, morally ambiguous villains, cliffhangers, and slow-burn romances. So when it was announced that the NBC darling was cancelled and then promptly uncancelled a few days later, you can imagine my emotional rollercoaster. Thankfully, Timeless is back — in all of its splendor — for a few episodes, and if “The War to End All Wars” is any indication, we’re in for a fun ride.


Six weeks has passed since the finale. Rufus, Wyatt, Agent Christopher, Jiya, and Connor Mason are alive, but secured in a bunker after Mason Industries was blown up — along with all of the other employees. Wyatt is going stir-crazy in the bunker because he’s desperate to search for Lucy. Our heroine, meanwhile, has chosen to play double agent with her Rittenhouse mother and Emma — the woman who has nothing but shifty eyes for Lucy. With Rittenhouse seemingly in control of time and space and history and all that fun stuff, it’s Lucy’s personal mission to destroy them; and Lucy is willing to sacrifice herself to do so.

At the bunker, the team snaps at each other because nothing will make you more irritated than the inability to figure out how to make the Lifeboat functional again, a lack of proper showers, and the dingy, dark walls of a bunker. Even Rufus is a bit darker. Still, the team does — of course — manage to get the ship off the ground and into the past, where Wyatt and Rufus are fully prepared to rescue Lucy, no matter the cost.

Lucy’s focus is on maintaining her cover as a Rittenhouse fangirl, especially because Emma is so suspect of the woman’s motives. So when the Lucy, her mom Carol, and Emma find the target they need (a man named Nicholas, injured in the war and being aided by his friend and fellow soldier) and Emma essentially gives a Voldemort-esque “kill the spare” directive to Lucy... the woman shoots and kills the innocent soldier. When Emma realizes that Nicholas is more gravely injured than she suspected initially, the three women head out to find Marie Curie to procure her “petites Curies” — a mobile X-ray machine. Unfortunately, when Marie Curie and her daughter accidentally stumble across the Mothership, Emma decides it’s time for a historical rewrite and aims to kill both pioneering women. Lucy stops her, standing in front of the women, but it’s Wyatt who ends up rescuing Lucy in the nick of time by threatening to end Nicholas’ life if Emma doesn’t let Lucy go.

Meanwhile Lucy’s mother makes no real earnest moves to save her daughter (there’s a small attempt in there somewhere), and Lucy realizes she can’t even rely on the redemption of her mother from Rittenhouse’s clutches anymore.

The biggest plot takeaway though is integral to the season — Wyatt and Rufus, while getting into a scuffle with soldiers, discover an iPhone on one of them. As it turns out, Rittenhouse has decided to plant covert agents in time who live their lives in history and wait for Rittenhouse’s instructions. Oh, and Nicholas? Yeah, he’s important to Rittenhouse. More importantly, he’s important to Carol Preston — he’s her grandfather.


Lucy’s storyline is the most heartbreaking for obvious reasons: she’s killed an innocent man, and even though Wyatt tells her that it wasn’t her fault and she was forced to, Lucy tells him that it’s not true. She had a choice; she chose her cover. Lucy also reveals that her plan was never to return to the present-day. She was fully prepared to blow up the Mothership and herself with it. It’s really dark, but it’s obvious that Lucy felt she had no other choice left. And it’s so hard to watch this usually optimistic, hopeful woman hit the point in the story where she believes all her friends to be dead, Rittenhouse to be winning, and her options to be nonexistent.

As if this wasn’t enough to deal with, Carol Preston abandons her daughter in favor of Rittenhouse. When Lucy tries to tell Wyatt, later, that her mother would never have let Emma kill her, Wyatt questions that statement. And then in a moment of profound brokenness and overwhelming grief, Lucy admits she doesn’t even believe her own statement. Wyatt holds her close as she cries and tells her that even though she’s lost everything else, she has not lost him.

Lucy will never lose Wyatt. This man will go through hell or high water or any time period in order to get Lucy — his Lucy — back. When Rufus tells Wyatt that he’s in love with Lucy (in the most hilarious, “DUH!” way), Wyatt hesitates to confirm that. But Rufus is about one schmoopy look away from smacking Wyatt upside the head. The truth is that Wyatt and Lucy have every reason to be guarded around each other: they work in a very dangerous adventure game where their lives are on the line constantly. Wyatt’s already lost one woman he loves; he doesn’t need to bat two for two.

But it’s telling that Wyatt and Lucy are totally vulnerable with each other. They confide in one another. They support one another. And they love one another. That final Wyatt/Lucy scene would be proof enough, but then there’s the fact that without Lucy, Wyatt is a lost and angry puppy dog. He needed her, he couldn’t find her, and he was ready to chew out every person who suggested she was dead when he knew — in his heart of hearts — she still had to be alive. 

Wyatt/Lucy is a focus of Timeless’ second season, with good reason, but I honestly just loved seeing the Time Team back together again. Reunited, they naturally fell into their roles -- Lucy as the heart, Wyatt as the protector, and Rufus as the navigator and voice of reason. (Also the comedic relief because I missed Rufus’ little comments.) We’ve added Agent Christopher, Jiya, and Connor Mason to the bunker which is sure to be fun. 

Timeless has always been a show about the humanity behind history, and I love that it’s continuing to embrace what made it so great. I’m looking forward to a new season of adventures and our favorite characters saving the world. How about you?

Timey-wimey bits:
  • I’m 100000% on board for Wyatt/Lucy this season. I know angst in this show is inevitable, but I want all of the scenes with Wyatt cuddling Lucy please and thank you.
  • Apparently Emma ensured that Lucy’s sister could never return in any timeline. I’m really not sure how that’s even possible, but apparently this chick went to great lengths (at the approval of Carol, by the way) to secure that inevitability.
  • I love Susanna Thompson playing a shady mom. She is so, so great at it. I miss Moira Queen.
  • Guess who’s back again? Flynn! Because of course.
  • “You can’t smell history in books.” “... ‘cause who would want to?”
  • Emma, to Carol regarding Lucy: “You can’t protect her anymore.” Wyatt: “I can.” Can we just take a moment and appreciate how desperately he cares for her?
Who’s ready for more of Timeless this year? Sound off in the comments below with your favorite moments from the premiere!


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