It’s silly, but as I started writing this review, it struck me that there’s just two more episodes left of Timeless, two more episodes of Rufus’ wit, of Wyatt’s protectiveness, of Lucy’s resourcefulness, of the family that they’ve managed to create between the three of them. Just two more episodes of the time team.
And, no, it wasn’t my intention to start this review with a plea to watch this show, to tweet about it, to write to NBC and make sure they Renew Timeless, but I must. Because, how can this be the end of this story? It feels like we’re barely scratching the surface. There’s so much more these people could teach us, so many situations our heroes could find themselves in, so many more challenges they could conquer.
Jessica. A Lyatt romance. Rufus finally coming clean with Jiya. An Mason/Agent Christopher confrontation. About 50 different time periods we know nothing about.
This can’t be the end of the story. It just can’t.
(Please, refuse with me)
“The Lost Generation” picks up, of course, with the consequences of Wyatt’s ill-advised decision, not just on himself, but on Rufus and Lucy, who are, effectively, his family. And, because the show must go on or something like that (and also because season finale time means CONSPIRACIES), Lucy and Rufus are forced to travel in time without Wyatt.
You can imagine how well that goes. Never separate the time team, that’s the real lesson of this episode. People die if you do.
So, let’s delve into “The Lost Generation” and examine family, the one you’re born with, the one you make for yourself, and the forces that led poor Dave to his ultimate demise.
CHOICE OR BLOOD?
The episode goes a little heavy-handed with the fate symbolism, but then again, this is something the team, and especially Lucy, have been fighting from the beginning. When you have a time machine and you can actually affect events in the past, you start thinking that the idea of fate is ridiculous. Nothing is set in stone. You can change anything and everything.
(That’s why Wyatt tried. That’s why Lucy still hangs onto the hope that she can get Amy back, even though the idea seems ridiculous.)
And yet, Lucy’s dad (talk about family issues) insists that Lucy is tied to her fate, that she’s a member of Rittenhouse, and that there is really no choice to be made, it’s a matter of blood. Lucy, understandably, fights back, not just because she’s an actual person with a brain who can make her own decisions, but because it’s ironic to be hearing all these things about the destiny she’s meant for from the father who never even tried to contact her.
From what we know, Lucy’s not his only daughter. So, though the mystery has been answered, it really hasn’t. Why is Benjamin Cahill so interested in Lucy, in particular, following in his footsteps? What makes her so special?
Will we even get these answers?
Charles Lindbergh is meant to be there to contrast to Lucy, to show us a guy who, deep down, probably wants to do the right thing, and yet is unable to fight back against the life that has been chosen for him. We’re meant to see him as a cautionary tale of what Lucy could be – what she refuses to be.
Because if our girl has proven anything – if her adventures, if Wyatt and Rufus, have taught her anything, it’s that we all make our own fate. Nothing is written in stone – not life, not death, not even love. It’s all about the choice, and then the next choice, and then the one after that.
If there’s one thing that’s clear after this episode, though, is that the issue of Rittenhouse is way more convoluted than two more episodes can reveal. This show has a lot more story to tell, and to do it justice, it’s going to need another season to do it.
#RenewTimeless? Wait, that’s not a question, no. Renew Timeless. Yes. Please.
I DESERVE THIS
Wyatt’s journey in this episode is one of putting others above himself, or, in a way, pushing his disappointment, his anger and his self-hatred away to be able to help the only two people that mean anything to him anymore.
Yes, he loved Jessica and he lost her. And yes, he didn’t get her back. He might never get her back. But giving up means that he will never get a chance to, and giving up also means abandoning the people who’ve helped him break out of the shell of careless disaffection that he’d built to protect himself.
And yet, before Agent Christopher pushed him, that was his first instinct. Why? Well, because giving up is easier. Because, when you’re in a hole of your own making, it’s hard to see what’s out there, waiting for you. For Wyatt, ever since he first caught a glimpse of the time machine, finding a way to get Jessica back has been his purpose. Everything else has been incidental.
Take that away and what does Wyatt have – what is he? That was what we needed him to find out. Each of the members of the team has gone through their trial by fire, so to speak, that has reaffirmed their place in this family, of sorts. It was Wyatt’s turn.
If we’ve learned something about Wyatt in these fourteen episodes is that he’s a guy who loves wholeheartedly. He doesn’t understand love by halves – when he cares, when he lets himself care, he’s all in. And Wyatt cares about Lucy and Rufus, he cares enough to put them before himself. He doesn’t think he deserves a second chance, that he deserves to be responsible for the safety and well-being of other people, and yet, it’s not like he can run away now. No, he’s already in too deep.
At this point, all Wyatt can do is jump in. And, as we saw at the end of the episode, when Wyatt jumps in, he comes with inspirational speech and everything. And he comes ready to fight. Which, considering that there’s only two episodes left and absolutely everything had gone to hell in a handbasket, is probably a good thing.
The Time Team has been in better shape. But this is not the end of the road for them, not by any stretch of the imagination. Yes, they’re battered and broken down, but they’re getting ready to get back up. And they’ve got allies – Agent Christopher, Jiya, surely, and maybe, if push comes to shove, even Flynn and Emma.
Because, who’s the bad guy here, Flynn or Rittenhouse? And if you can only take out one of those, who do you take out? What’s more important? We don’t know yet – but if Agent Neville and the rest of the people suddenly populating Mason Industries are anything to go by, Rittenhouse is probably the bigger evil.
Wyatt calls what happens to Mason Industries and the supposedly very secret time machine project a takeover, and it’s nothing if not hostile. Wyatt’s little rebellion was just an excuse, this was probably the plan all along. Why let someone like Agent Christopher, who doesn’t have Rittenhouse’s best interests at heart, continue to be in charge if they can stop it?
And they can – which begs the question – how big is Rittenhouse? Is it President big? Head of the NSA? Both? And, is there any way this show can wrap this all up in two more episodes? The answer seems clear – no. Will they even try? I’m going to go with no on that one, either. Cliffhanger endings make fans engaged – and this show needs fan engagement if it hopes to get a second season.
In a TV landscape populated with shows that don’t understand characterization, don’t try for diversity and don’t respect the journey, losing Timeless would be devastating. It would be the equivalent of Rittenhouse winning. Don’t let the bad guys win, NBC. Please, be the hero we need.
We beg you.
There’s this quote I’ve always loved and that comes to me every time I get to review this show. It has to do with family, and specifically, with the family you build for yourself. Wyatt has no one else, Rufus has a loving family, Lucy’s got her mom and plenty of daddy issues, and yet, the family they’ve made for themselves is the one that’s getting them through all these adventures.
Simply put, Wyatt, Lucy and Rufus are a family.
“When everything goes to hell, the people who stand by you without flinching — they are your family,” the quote states. Of course, that doesn’t mean to the exclusion of all others, but it means that you can choose your family. It’s not all fate – there’s an element of choice.
Just like with everything else.
That’s the biggest message of this episode, of this show. Fate is this undefined thing, and yet, fate does not rule us all. Even if we have no time machines in real life, we still get to make our own choices, we still get to decide who we want to be and what we want to do. Fate is not a certainty. The future is in our hands.
And when that future comes – and it will, Wyatt, Lucy and Rufus will face it the way they’ve done everything this season: together. They’re stronger that way, after all.
THE LYATT CAVEAT
Oh, the hugs. I’m getting spoiled here. The hugs. How can I have so many Wyatt and Lucy feels when we got less than a minute of them together?
I’ll tell you how: because these writers know what they’re doing, these actors know what they’re doing. Yes, Rufus, Lucy and Wyatt are a family, but there’s a separate dynamic between Lucy and Wyatt that belongs only to them. It’s not wholly romantic, not yet, though there’s elements of romance, elements that were awoken after that undercover kiss.
What it is, though, is this deep sense of belonging. Lucy and Wyatt feel safe with each other, they gravitate towards each other, they trust each other, and they know, not so deep down, that if they let themselves go down that path, their feelings might consume them. Will they? My gut says not anytime soon, but my heart says yes.
Either way, I don’t expect a smooth ride. I expect bumps along the way. And I’ll welcome all the bumps, because, if they’re coming, that means there’s Timeless for a while. And that’s never a bad thing.
- I’m sorry, but the only one who gets to call Lucy ma’am is Wyatt.
- Goodbye Dave, we hardly knew you.
- Like, legit. I had to look up his name and everything.
- I feel really bad for him – he was just a guy doing his job. That being said, he didn’t seem to be that good at it.
- “I thought Wyatt was your guy.” – Flynn, you sly dog. You ship it too!
- Wyatt MacGyver, is that you?
- Yes, I often wonder if things in my life are either fate, God or the Force. We’re on the same page, Wyatt.
- Ernest Hemingway was a disappointment. And yet, at the same time, he wasn’t. Funny how things work out.
- Agent Christopher the bad-ass. Do we get to see Jiya go full-badass too?
- Mason, I hope bad things happen to you. Very bad things.
Timeless airs Mondays at 10/9c on NBC.