Reviews

‘Timeless’ Review: The Curse of Bad Timing in ‘Hollywoodland’

(Photo by: Justin Lubin/NBC)

Timeless gave Lucy and Wyatt shippers everything we’ve been wanting in one glorious trip to the “Hollywoodland” of 1941.

And then they tore our hearts out, snatching that magic away in the blink of an eye (or, to be accurate, the beep of a text message alert).

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

(Photo by: Justin Lubin/NBC)

Let’s start with the basics: a Rittenhouse father deposited his sleeper agent son in the past. 15 years later in 1941, that son was a film producer (working on a Jurassic Park project). His mission: steal the one and only copy of Citizen Kane aka RKO281 as a favor to William Randolph Hearst in exchange for a weekly column in his papers.

Given everything we know now about media cycles and the ability of propaganda to sway public opinion, we have to give Rittenhouse credit. The popularity of Hearst papers and magazines and the influence that column could provide would be the perfect launch pad for spreading their cause to the masses and shaping opinion in their favor.

(Photo by: Justin Lubin/NBC)

Thankfully, the Time Team received an assist from Hedy Lamarr. While it was Lucy’s turn to fangirl this week, Hedy bonded with Rufus after she caught him pretending to be Langston Hughes (while she did not buy his Fresh Prince poem, I loved it). She helped the team get into the party, taught Rufus a better way to spy through a wall, and promised to give the film back to Orson Welles after the team reclaimed it.

In return, Rufus gave the actress/scientist a piece of valuable advice: he encouraged her to remember to renew her patent (she basically invented Wi-Fi ahead of its time and lost out on the recognition). She took his advice to heart because when the team returned to 2018, Rufus informed Lucy that Hedy gave up acting and in addition to the credit for her discovery, she also profited billions.

(Photo by: Justin Lubin/NBC)

(Okay, so the show is playing a little fast and loose with history more often than not. But it’s hard to be disappointed to see a woman get recognition and compensation for her work. So we’ll forgive this fictional slight even if it does make us question what else changed because of her new path in life).

Onto the main woman in Rufus’ life: Jiya had another vision. This one depicted Rufus at some point in the past killing a man. Agent Christopher found her after it happened so they were forced to come clean with her. She insisted Jiya see a doctor, but Mason told Denise there was no point. Other members of his team had come back with similar injuries: one had died from the brain aneurism and the second was being treated for schizophrenia.

But Jiya received a clean bill of health from the doctor. Not only was there nothing wrong with her brain, but the heart murmur she’d had all her life was gone. While Jiya was obviously thrilled with her clean bill of health, Mason and Denise remained worried. And we’re just plain curious. What’s happening? Why’s Jiya different? And who is Rufus going to kill?

(Photo by: Justin Lubin/NBC)

Speaking of killers, guess who’s finally out of jail? Since Lucy couldn’t pinpoint why a trip to 1941’s Hollywood mattered, they turned to Flynn once again. He was in the infirmary after being stabbed by a Rittenhouse agent, who he then killed. He wanted out for real this time and even though Agent Christopher hesitated, Lucy said she could get him out.

Again, I have to call out the show for being a little too convenient. The prison Flynn’s in just happened to be built and empty in 1941? Okay. But like Hedy’s success, I’m not mad about it. Because enemies working together is my favorite trope. Agent Christopher slipped Flynn a piece of paper holding instructions in 2018 and Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus planted everything he would need behind the wall of his cell in 1941.

(Photo by: Paul Drinkwater/NBC)

While I still do not believe Flynn is 100 percent trustworthy, I do appreciate his general disdain for everyone and everything so having him in the bunker is going to be fun. Especially since no one else wants him there. That place is going to feel smaller than ever now (and he’s probably not going to remember to put the chair in front of the shower door, either).

All right, shippers, back to the good stuff: Lucy and Wyatt pretended to be a singing duo in front of the Hollywood producers and that posed a problem when Logan & Preston were asked to perform. Because Wyatt cannot sing and Lucy was severely out of practice. But Wyatt pushed her up onstage anyway. And what did she belt out with her eyes on Wyatt’s? “You Made Me Love You.”

Talk about heart eyes (on both sides—or all sides if you count those of us watching at home). Afterward, the two had a serious conversation by the pool. They compared their pasts; hers was nerdy, his was troubled, and she told the story of Hedy and George: business partners with a crush and the misfortune of bad timing because she was married when they met (we see you, heavy foreshadowing).

Then, Wyatt told Lucy she saved his life. And he didn’t mean in the literal sense despite her cheeky joke about which time. He told her that he’d given up caring after Jessica died. She admitted she’d done the same thing after her mother let her believe he was dead. More heart eyes and then finally, FINALLY the kissing we’ve been waiting what feels like centuries for.

(Photo by: Justin Lubin/NBC)

After some quality naked time (breathe, fandom, breathe), the two agreed they’d keep things between them for now since no one needed to know their business. Cue Rufus walking in (God, I love this show). Wyatt ordered his pal to be cool, but Rufus made few promises (he ships it). Wyatt and Lucy continued their couple-y cuteness throughout the rest of the mission and when they returned to 2018.

For about five minutes. If that. Wyatt was put off by Flynn’s appearance and Lucy assured him they had each other so nothing else mattered. While they joked about already taking the big step of living together (my heart), Wyatt received a text message, made an excuse, and then set off all the alarms by leaving the bunker.

Anyone not new to TV (or paying attention to the Previously On opening) knew exactly what was coming. Wyatt rushed to a bar where a familiar woman was working: Jessica. Jessica is alive. Of course she is because that’s how TV works.

But she’s probably a Rittenhouse agent…right???

(Shippers, get the wine and the tissues…and maybe a time machine).

About the author

Mandy Treccia

Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Executive Editor since 2016, formerly as Editorial Director from 2012-2016. She is an avid TV watcher and card carrying fan girl prone to sudden bursts of emotion, ranging from extreme excitement to blind rage during her favorite shows and has on more than once occasion considered having a paper bag on hand to get her through some tough TV moments. Her taste in TV tends to rival that of a thirteen-year-old girl, but she’s okay with that. Follow her on Twitter at @SourceMandy.