A Love Letter to ‘Timeless’

The Timeless movie event will conclude filming soon, so I figured this was the right time for this. Now, let me be clear, this is not a goodbye letter. I’m not saying goodbye, mostly because I don’t want to, and I’m not ready. For as long as there’s even a tiny shred of hope, I’ll continue fighting for this show.

But this is an acknowledgment – of how much this show has meant to me and so many others, of how much this show has changed us.

Now, we hear this a lot, or at least I hear it a lot. TV is meant to touch us deeply, and Timeless is not the only show that has done it. It’s not even the only show that ever will. But there is a certain magic about it, a combination of things that have made this fandom latch onto the show the way it has.

First, there’s the smart writing. I don’t say this lightly. As someone who watches TV and writes about TV, it’s refreshing to be able to write about a show that remembers continuity, that builds upon the actions of its characters, and that puts heart over plot, again and again.

And not only that, a show that does it while doing the one thing TV has yet figured out how to do in 2018, looking and sounding and tackling the issues that regular people go through.

This follows through to the acting, because smart writing never comes through unless you have people who love the words they get to act out, people who understand the importance of the message they’re sending. People who care about making what they’re giving us the best possible product they can.

You can’t sell diversity unless you have both of those things, the right actors, and the right writers and show-runners who are committed to not just telling a good story, but telling a real story, and respecting the differences of the characters they’re writing, and the actors they hired.

Sometimes watching Timeless felt like a dream. Watching a female lead and four POC in the main cast was more than a dream, though; it was something I never thought we could get. Watching the main white male act very much unlike the toxic masculinity stereotypes TV itself has made real, and even the ‘villain’ of sorts, have more depth and soul than some supposedly good characters have, was equally, not just amazing but utterly inspiring.

And I think that’s the thing about Timeless, that’s why we’re here, that’s why everyone keeps fighting: because Timeless has inspired us. It gave us history in a way that was interesting, and that pushed us all to go deeper, to learn more. It gave us diversity in a way that felt normal, and that made us ask for more in anything else we watched, because if this show could do it, why couldn’t others?

More importantly, though, this show gave us hope. Hope that things could get better, not necessarily with a time machine, but with heart, and with knowledge, and with effort. Because life isn’t fixed, and we can changed it. We can also be heroes, just by speaking up, by voting, by not staying still when life requires us to fight.

That’s the message of Timeless, and that’s probably why it’s attracted such a large community of mostly smart women fighting this fight online. Strangely enough, though, I know many men who watch it and enjoy it, but the ones leading the fight to get more are mostly women, maybe because we’re used to fighting. We’ve had to fight for what we want over and over.

And we’ve had to learn to not give up.

So, today, and every other day, I want to say thank you. Thank you to every person behind the scenes of this show, to every writer, to every director, to everyone who ever loved this show as much as we did. Thank you to this cast, who made us fall in love with the good guys and the bad guys, who gave depth to absolutely everyone with the power of their performances.

Thank you for making us feel. Thank you for teaching us a lesson, or maybe, for reinforcing one we already knew.

Thank you for bringing us together. For gifting us with a community of like-minded people who will fight the battles that are needed, not just for a TV show we all love, but for a better world that can hopefully reflect the reality Timeless taught us was possible.

Thank you for Timeless. Whatever comes next, we’ll carry the show and the lessons with us. And that’s not something many TV shows can say.


One very grateful clockblocker.

Remember, the Timeless movie event will air December 20th, at 8/7c on NBC. Don’t miss it!

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