You've probably heard friends mention Timeless in passing. If you haven't, you need to get new friends (I kid, mostly), and you need to add this sci-fi time-traveling show to your "summer binge list" ASAP.
I expected to like this series, but I didn't expect to be the spokesperson for it. Now, whenever someone asks me for a show recommendation, I blurt out the title with such pride and gusto, it's like I'm personally responsible for its brilliance.
There is so much the: refreshing premise, beloved cast, lifelong friendships, and a conspiracy theory!
There is such a passionate fanbase, they persuaded NBC to un-cancel the series and greenlight a second season.
Unfortunately, history is repeating itself, and the series has been on the proverbial chopping block for more than a month now.
Waiting for a renewal decision has been more frustrating and anxiety-laden than any of Lucy, Wyatt and Rufus' trips.
But regardless of the verdict, here's why YOU should be jumping aboard the lifeboat to watch Timeless here.
And if you have time, start tweeting #RenewTimeless enough times to get Matt Lanter's attention.
It's So Much Fun
I know that sounds incredibly cliche but seriously, you will have a blast getting invested in this series. Each episode travels to a different point in history and focuses on a specific event that happened that day.
The possibilities are endless, and we're constantly in awe as the pages of history books come to life, and the trio finds themselves rubbing elbows with the likes of Harry Houdini, Harriet Tubman, and John F. Kennedy.
The poignant "what if" moments have been my favorite part since they really show you how one seemingly innocent moment in time could alter the future completely.
You'll Become a History Buff
They make history fun again! These are the moments you've probably heard about in those boring old textbooks, but now, you're living through them. And living through them while knowing what happens next! Knowing the future is a huge responsibility which they also touch upon often. Imagine meeting Abraham Lincoln and sitting in the balcony box just before he got shot, almost becoming one of notorious serial killer H.H Holme's first victims, or meeting your idol Marie Curie. We don't blame Lucy for geeking out.
And if you glossed over some things in history class or flat out didn't pay attention, this is a nice albeit quick refresher. Sometimes, I even learn a thing or two about an awesome historical figure that I've never heard of like leading lady/inventor Hedy Lamarr. Look her up, you won't regret it.
The Cast is Unbelievably Talented
History aside, the series is character driven, and there is so much talent within this group of people. Each performer is so captivating, they make it an easy watch. They were all recruited to the Time Team because they serve a greater purpose.
Lucy is the historian whose expertise helps them figure out significant moments about the date the Mothership jumped to. Wyatt is delicious eye-candy and a former soldier who is trained to fight and protect his team. And Rufus starts off as the shy one but quickly emerges as the heart and soul of the trio. He's also the pilot so without his programming skill set, they don't get very far.
The Supporting Cast
And unlike most shows, the supporting cast is just as layered, complicated and intriguing. Denise Christopher from Homeland Security has integrity and is the backbone of the missions, Connor Mason is the genius who invented time machines, Jiya is the resourceful techie who helps get the Lifeboat out each time, and Garcia Flynn is a multifaceted villain who you can't help but root for.
The Fashion Is Everything
I would walk a mile in Lucy's shoes simply to be able to wear those period ensembles. Sadly, I don't think I'd pull it off the way she does. She channels everyone that came before her; her looks range from the Civil-War era's elliptical skirts to the 20s flapper dress to a wool suit that would put Jackie Kennedy to shame. The wardrobe doesn't just serve as their disguise, it brings the past to life in visually stunning way!
There's a Cultural Relevance
Before Rufus goes on his first mission, he acknowledges that "no place in history will be awesome for him." And he's right. Nothing is ever as difficult for Wyatt as it is for Rufus, a black man traveling to time periods when slavery was in full-swing. While it shows you how far we've come, it also shows you firsthand how difficult life was for the "others." And because of his skin color, he's a target and is oftentimes stuck doing the lesser jobs as to not get made.
There are also plenty of limitations for Lucy as she's a woman traveling to time periods where they weren't encouraged to have a voice. I was so struck during one episode when Lucy spoke up for herself and a man scoffed at her then told Flynn to "control his wife."
Makes You Appreciate Your Time Period
That being said, spending some time in various time periods really makes you appreciate ours. We may still have a long way to go, but things are much better now than they were back then. There are moments that are downright scary for Rufus and Lucy. It's a testament that no matter how many issues we have now, it's still vastly better than when they thought powerful women were witches that should be hung.
Rufus summed it up perfectly: "I'm in the damn Stone Age, but, man, I hope you live a long, long life. Long enough to see Michael Jordan dunk, Michael Jackson dance, Mike Tyson punch, really, just, any black guy named Michael."
Timeless doesn't shy away from making things awkward or uncomfortable because hey, this is our history and we need to be reminded of it on occasion especially now with the Black Lives Matter and Me Too movements.
Wonderful Guest Stars
You know how I mentioned the superb cast both core and supporting? Well, even the guest stars are incredible! These notable actors effortlessly bring historical figures to life by capturing the essence of who they were and how they carried themselves. A few key ones include OUAT's Sean McGuire as Ian Fleming, The Vampire Diaries' Annie Wersching as re-curring Rittenhouse member Emma, Arrow's Susanna Thompson as Lucy's brainwashed mother, and The Librarians' Matt Frewer as Rufus'-mentor-turned-Flynn-conspirator Anthony.
There's a Celebrity Following
Not only does the show have well-known guest stars, they also have a dedicated celebrity following. Mark Hamill, William Shatner and Leslie Jones have been very vocal about their love for the series. But the biggest fan is Kelly Clarkson. When the series was first on the brink of cancellation, she kickstarted the #RenewTimeless campaign to save the series. Surely, Kelly gets what she wants, right?
The Trio's Friendship
Procedural dramas always have a core cast leading the action but this trio is one-of-a-kind. Their friendship was unlikely at first, but their bond unbreakable now. They have each other's backs like no other group of friends I've ever seen because their survival is based on trusting each other. They have a "no soldier left behind" mindset -- there is no Lucy without Wyatt and Rufus, no Wyatt without Rufus and Lucy, and no Rufus without Lucy and Wyatt.
They keep each other grounded, keep each other sane and most importantly, keep each other safe. And there's always a shoulder to lean on or an ear to listen because no one else will get it quite like the people who have been in the Lifeboat with you.
The Love Story
Every good series has a love story and a love triangle. Those are just the facts. Wyatt starts off as a broken soul who's only motivation to travel back in time is to resurrect his late wife. Lucy finds herself in a marriage with a man she barely knows when history is altered and her sister seizes to exist.
As time goes by and they spend more time together, their friendship naturally progresses into something more. Yes, it's very will they or won't they at first, but they have such an intimate and emotional chemistry on-screen, the buildup to their eventual romance is captivating. And of course, the minute they do finally give into the passion, they encounter an obstacle you never saw coming!
A little humor is always necessary when telling such an intense story. The series loves to make fun of itself and plays on trending topics, specifically when the trio is forced to think of nicknames on the spot. In 1937, Lucy introduced them as Nurse Jackie and Dr. Dre and said that they were from General Hospital.
There are moments that evoke chortles like Lucy denying any involvement with Donald Trump becoming President. And who doesn't love all the Star Wars references or how they subtle reference Back to the Future when JFK accidentally travels back to modern-day America?
Time Travel, Baby
The concept of time travel is beyond fascinating, but it isn't novel. Many shows have dabbled with it and oftentimes, unsuccessfully. However, Timeless' formula works because they follow their own rules and it actually advances the plot.
Time travel can get really messy, for obvious reasons, so it's important you are familiar with how it all works: they aren't able to go back a time where they already exist because a run-in with yourself is awkward and life-threatening. You cannot go back to the same moment in history twice which adds a level of permanency to their missions. The butterfly effect is also why Lucy is so adamant about preserving history; one wrong move can erase people, cure them, bring them back to life, or set our society back thousands of years.
There are always exceptions to the rule, however, and the writers have figured out how to bend their own rules without breaking them. You'll just have to watch to see what I mean.
The Writing Is Unexpected
Sometimes, you'll think that you know the outcome of a storyline, but the writers are so clever, they pan out twists that you never really see coming. These writers just have a way with cliffhangers that again, aren't done for the sake of doing them but actually advance the storyline. They also have figured out the perfect formula for exploring real human emotions, relationships, and insecurities that fans can relate to even if they are confined to their own time period.
Timeless excels in the diversity department. Out of the whole cast, there are only three caucasian actors, one of whom is a vulnerable man and the other, a female historian. Jiya and Agent Christopher are two strong female characters; the former is in an interracial relationship and the latter, in a same-sex marriage. Rufus and Connor are both tech-savvy and successful black men who are forced to reinvent themselves. Timeless has really made sure that they hold up a mirror to today's society and showcase how people from all walks of life bring different experiences and necessary lessons to the table.
The Big Bad
How I got through this whole thing without once mentioning Rittenhouse is beyond me. In the series, they mention the big bad roughly 100 times in every episode and with good reason: Rittenhouse is a formidable threat to the very fabric of America. They are also the reason for all of the trio's missions. Flynn first warns us about the very-real-threat that they pose and soon, we learn that they have control over Connor Mason.
Though their agenda isn't always 100% clear, they have ties to powerful historical figures, access to various time periods, and a deep need to eliminate democracy and take over the world. Did I mention there are no limits to how far they will go to get what they want? Yep, I know all this conspiracy theory is what really got you hooked on the series!