Timeless and the Miracle of Christmas: A Message of Hope

TIMELESSIMAGE1

Image Source: NBC

Sweet clockblockers, our time together has wrapped up in a sad little bow but that’s okay. The best things in life don’t always last a lifetime, sometimes, the best things can be found in two seasons plus a movie. And Timeless was special from the very first jump to the last — it never once failed in evoking all sorts of emotions, and I suppose, in reality that’s the best kind of final episode. Do I wish certain things went differently? Yes, and I won’t go quietly about it, but in the end, I found myself filled with hope above all things engulfed with gratitude because this show gave me one of my favorite characters in existence (Lucy Preston), and one of the most exemplary showcases of friendships that series in this genre are often lacking in. “The Miracle of Christmas” wasn’t perfect, understandably so, but it was a beautiful finale meant to showcase the power of goodness above all things.

Timeless’ final episode reminded us of what the show’s often done a gorgeous job of representing — free will and the significance of our choices. The ongoing debates of fate vs. free will has easily been the reason I’d decided to write about this show in the first place, and in “The Miracle of Christmas” especially, it tackled those themes in a way that felt suitable for the holiday spirit remarkably. And I suppose, it’s only when I avidly choose to look at this way that I can understand why my least favorite part of the finale had to happen. Garcia Flynn has had one of the strongest character developments I’ve seen in a long time, and I was rooting for his happiness from the very beginning. I was rooting for him to find himself in the aftermath of defeating Rittenhouse and I was rooting for him to find a purpose in the world again despite the encompassing grief that had fueled his actions. There’s always a clear distinction between heroes and villains, and while the world of fiction benefits from multifaceted characters who are neither, in this case, Garcia Flynn’s place in the hero column and the acknowledgement matters.

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2018 Best of the Year Reviews: 10 Episodes

This is always the hardest category to write about but simultaneously my absolute favorite. The best part of it is remembering the very first time I watch the episode and think, “Yup, I need to talk about this for year-end reviews.” But it’s interesting because I was a little stumped this year. I didn’t want to repeat episodes from shows and I wanted a wide variety. We can thank Brooklyn Nine-Nine and The Good Place for making my choices so hard with a ton of amazing episodes. Oh how I adore the comedies on TV right now.

For more end of the year reviews, check out our Top 10 Performers, 10 Characters, and 10 Relationships.

  1. “Start”
    The Americans

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: I don’t know how Katie (Nerdy Girl Notes) would cover this show weekly because I could never find the right words. And I especially can’t find the words for “Start.” The final episode of The Americans needs to be seen by every single TV enthusiast in the world. I can understand that the genre may not be everyone’s cup of tea, in all honesty, at times, it was even too heavy for me, but I’m grateful to know that I’ve seen the best thing on TV. (This sentence was not meant to rhyme, but we’re sticking to it.) “Start” was the perfect conclusion. It wrapped the series up in the most finely crafted bow I’ve ever seen, tying loose ends so wondrously not many before it have mastered. It gave its audience some of the most haunting images to hold onto and I’m sure, without even trying, rendering many of us utterly speechless. Maybe eight years from now when I’m less distraught over “They’ll remember us. They’re not kids anymore.” I’ll be able to talk about just how encompassing “Start” was, but today’s not that day. Or maybe when I’ve finally gotten Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell’s meticulously somber expressions and the stoic, yet crumbling physicality out of my mind, I’ll be able to talk about it more. But for now, let this just serve as my plea to get you all to watch The Americans because it’s truly unmatched. There are no words that could rightfully encapsulate the magnitude of this finale’s greatness.

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2018 Best of the Year Reviews: 10 Relationships

After I’ve found characters whose lives I’m invested in, my brain then automatically goes towards intricately analyzing the relationships they’ve got — both platonic and romantic because I’m a big believer in the fact that no one should ever be alone in this world. No one can accomplish anything alone. And ultimately, we as people aren’t meant to be alone. Each of the relationships chosen for this category are ones that have done an exemplary job of teaching viewers what it means to compromise, to trust, to believe, and to love deeply. Each, in their own unique ways, have effortlessly made people better. Heck, Marvel’s T’Challa wouldn’t be as successful as Black Panther if he didn’t have such a loving team on his side.  Relationships shape us, break us, and teach us some of the greatest things we could ever learn in the world. And to love with a profound intensity in our hearts often does the trick in bringing our souls to ease even when nothing else is going our way.

For more end of the year reviews, check out our Top 10 Performers, 10 Characters, and 10 Episodes.

  1. Matthew Clairmont and Diana Bishop
    A Discovery of Witches

A witch and a vampire walk into a library. . .If you’d told me a year ago that I’d be sitting here today writing about a fantasy romance between a witch and vampire, utterly compelled by their story I would’ve told you you’re crazy. But yet here we are, wine in hand, crying into the glass over the relationship I didn’t know I needed in my life. Matthew and Diana are magic together. (I kid you not, friends, the show’s theme song just came on shuffle. Magic.) Personally, a brooding man who hasn’t known love for centuries finding light and wonder in a woman is right up my alley of tropes, for it tells the all-consuming story of what it truly means to be destined for someone, bound by an unseen but potent line that’s been fortified through time and continues to grow beautifully when it begins to intertwine with adoration. There’s so much that could be said about how beautifully their meeting plays a significant, inspiring role in their lives, specifically, at this point in time, Matthew’s love for Diana, which has brought out the magic in her. And in retrospect, how effortlessly she’s brought light back into his life. The laughter, the sincerity, and the unshakeable belief in one another continues to stun me. Matthew and Diana have found something powerful with each other that’s helped them both not only see the greatness in themselves, but the resilience, too. Belief from another person can serve as unparalleled strength and inspiration, thereby, the tireless choices they each make to hearten and challenge one another has made their story that much more captivating. I can’t conclude this without paying homage to Matthew Goode and Teresa Palmer’s exquisite chemistry with one another, each playing on the other’s emotions beautifully in a poetic rhythm, which results in each moment, even the quiet, most delicate spectacles of intimacy feel like a work of art.

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2018 Best of the Year Reviews: 10 Characters

For the past few years, this category’s been the most difficult — trying to pick through my favorites without too much repetition from past years and the desire to give other characters the opportunity to be on here as well. But my inability to choose could’ve been due to the fact that there just weren’t that many options in the first place. And this year’s special — in both the TV verse and cinematic. And these ten characters are ones I’m certain I could not love more even if I tried. Some old with exceptional growth and some new pushing me into a state of gratitude for just how great TV’s been this year.

For more end of the year reviews, check out our Top 10 Performers, 10 Relationships and 10 Episodes.

 

The Ladies

  1. Lucy Preston
    Timeless
Timeless - Season 2

Source: NBC

I don’t think there’s ever been a character as adored as quickly as Timeless’ Lucy Preston. And season two pulled the darling historian through the darkest of revelations only to have her come out of it even more generous than before. Lucy’s heart is inexpressible –there hasn’t been a character like her in a while, and it’s been a stunning ride watching her continuously open her heart despite the fact that the one person she trusted most in her life turned out to be the villain in her story. Whether it was fighting alongside the women who were to be executed during the Salem Witch Trials, standing with Suffragette Alice Paul, or welcoming Jessica to the team despite her feelings for Wyatt — Lucy’s benevolence is selflessness in its most evident form. She is nobility personified, for even when she could be choosing for herself, fighting for her own future, the other person’s effect is always taken into deep consideration, too. But the thing I appreciate most about Lucy is that even with all the compassion running in her veins, she’s not one to allow anyone to take advantage of her — she understands that goodness and naiveté aren’t the same thing. She’s fought back when she needs to. She’s cried when she’s been in pain. She’s doubted. She’s believed. She’s gotten excited. She’s shown viewers a wide range of emotions authenticating the fact that women are beautifully complex. She’s many things, but above all, she’s a woman who’s walked through fire and instead of letting it burn her, she’s used it to fuel the good fight instead. She’s walked out with the flames as phoenix feathers — stronger, wiser, and even more compassionate than before.

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2018 Best of the Year Reviews: 10 Performers

There’s nothing I appreciate more every year than performances that make me want to ramble and scream about over rooftops. Performances that are so well done, words suddenly become nonexistent. And this year especially, the top performers were so fascinating, I couldn’t even choose as easily as I often do. I almost added more than I could write for because there were a far more than 10 of them I wanted to talk about. 

For more end of the year reviews, check out our Top 10 Characters, 10 Relationships and 10 Episodes.

The Actors

  1. Matthew Rhys
    The Americans

The Emmy winning performance of the year. (It gives me unbelievable pride and joy to say that, as if I know Rhys myself and he is some distant uncle of mine.) But truly. There’s been nothing quite like this year’s most intensely gripping performance that I’ve yet to find the words for. Phillip caught a bit of a break from the spy life this season, but that meant a lot more work for Rhys in order to show us sides of him that we’d not known in the last five years. And while Phillip was seemingly calmer, Rhys was actually showing us a more frantic angle, especially when it came down no longer understanding his wife or being able to converse with her. It was during the simplest, most quiet moments that Rhys was reminding us of just how much is at stake and just how fleeting this new life of his would be. But then the final few moments of the series happened and just when you think Rhys has probably outdone himself, the confrontation we’ve all been waiting for takes place, and the greatest mic drop in TV history occurs. The Americans excels in a number of ways, but its strongest suit has been the carefully nuanced performances, and although this was the scene we’ve long waited for, I don’t think any of us could’ve imagined the vulnerability it would’ve been filled with. Vulnerability we should’ve probably been prepared for, but at the end of the day, we could never — or rather, at least I couldn’t have. The sheer pain and utter shame Rhys projected while they “confessed” everything to Stan was nothing short of brilliant. The faint break as he states “I finally got caught” or the most sincere reveal throughout the confrontation, “You were my only friend in my, in my whole shitty life” shattered me. Finales in the espionage genre often have their actors go out with a bang, but with The Americans, the bang surprisingly doesn’t involve a gunshot, instead, “Start” concluded with a man and a woman on a bridge, in a country they can no longer call theirs, trying to remain hopeful. And hope is an emotion The Americans has had a special way of revealing. Rhys’ tensed jawline, the palpable dejection in his eyes, and the damaged, hollowed spirit that stood before us was the very paradigm of greatness. Matthew Rhys (And Keri Russell) have always spoken far more in silence than they have with words, and such robust silence can only be described with so few words, it demands to be felt. And it was. 

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Timeless 2×09 “The General” and 2×10 “Chinatown” Review

Spoilers Ahead

Who lives. Who dies. Who tells your story?

Episode Summary | Time in History: Where didn’t we go is the question? What didn’t we do? Who didn’t we meet? Timeless’ explosive, remarkably bold two-hour finale did a number on our hearts and there are no words. (Seriously though, there are no words. I’ve been staring at this article for an hour now.) Both “The General” and “Chinatown” carried the weight of sincerity in an encompassing finale that explored raw human emotions beautifully. Timeless and its characters are a representation of its viewers, they’re terrorized, broken, privileged, hurting, loving, fearful, strong, and so much more. And if this two-part finale reminded us of anything, it’s that the world we live in is not only far more vast than we can imagine, but it was an acute ode to the fact that every human being’s story matters. We are made up of our beliefs, our fights, our journeys, our heartaches, and sometimes, our quiet solitude. It’s been one heck of a season with none of our characters in the same place as they begun and if that’s not superb character development through intricate storytelling, then I don’t know what is.

There’s a fight in all of us. There’s a fight in all of them. And to find that fight is to find ourselves, only we must be cautious that through every little change, we choose each other over and over again. The human race is dependent on kindness. It’s dependent on adoration. And it’s dependent on stories. As much as this is a homage to season two, a review of these episodes that aired, it’s also a plea for a renewal — it’s the choice to dissect why these stories matter. And no matter what this show’s future holds, this two-part finale left us with an extraordinary message — find your fight and run towards it. Don’t stop until you have it.

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Timeless 2×08 “The Day Reagan Was Shot” Review

Spoilers Ahead

Be you.

Episode Summary | Time in History:  1981! Sometimes, we save historical figures but other times, we save one of our own, and this week on Timeless, that’s exactly what we did. When the time team follows the mothership to the 80s, they quickly come to find that the Rittenhouse sleeper agent’s objective is to wipe out Denise Christopher from existence. Jiya accompanies them in the fourth seat because Flynn’s alive at the time so he can’t do so. Rufus is still extremely anxious over his forthcoming “death” (let’s be real, that’s not happening, or at least, it better not.) Jessica drops a massive bombshell on Wyatt. Flynn and Lucy discuss the journal. And once again, conversation saves the day. Also, Denise Christopher for President.

Timeless continues to shine for its authenticity — consistently being the series that chooses to have significant conversations through a groundbreaking, organic approach. While there’s a great amount of progress that’s taken place in our world today, there’s still a lot of hesitation, cultural and religious approaches that play a massive role in the lack of acceptance. But the importance of conversation is the key to achieving that all-inclusive love that I presume all Holy books discuss. While I can personally only vow with the Christian perspective as The Bible is the only one I’ve read, I imagine that every religion’s foundation is love. There’s no holy book out there that teaches the world to hate, and to deny this fact is an insult to the God who’s served. That said, incorporating both Indian culture and Hinduism into the episode in order to tell us Denise Christopher’s story was a remarkable way of illuminating something that’s a rarity in the television realm. It was a bold, beautifully raw form of representation that easily left me, and presumably many others, speechless. It’s not often that we see an Indian woman in charge of a prodigious operation, and it’s even rarer when they’re a part of LGBTQ+ community, which is where Timeless excels at giving us diversity at its supreme.

This is a show that chooses to tell the stories that aren’t often told because there’s a great understanding of diversity, the celebration of all sorts of human beings and its importance for future generations. “The Day Reagan Was Shot” had very little to do with President Reagan himself but everything to do with our Time Team and the choices they’ve made to be where they are today. And it’s the choices they’ve made to engage in honest conversations that has led to impeccably life altering moments, all while saving their lives.

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Timeless 2×07 “Mrs. Sherlock Holmes” Review

Spoilers Ahead

Be loud. Be proud. “It was we the people, not we the white male citizens, but we the whole who formed this Union.”

Episode Summary | Time in History: 1919, New York City and a lot’s at stake for women when Suffragette Alice Paul is arrested then killed by a sleeper agent before she makes her noteworthy speech meant for President Woodrow Wilson. The team, now accompanied by fourth member, Flynn attempt to save the day by seeking the help of detective Grace Humiston, our very own Mrs. Sherlock Holmes. A surprising ally however manages to help the team save women’s rights as we know it and while rummaging through the products they’ve collected from the Rittenhouse raid, Mason and Agent Christopher make a discovery about one of their bunker mates.

I keep thinking that perhaps Timeless is done surprising us, but the reality is each episode will probably feel like a punch in the guts when we look back at how far we’ve come and how far we could still go. And as a woman writing this, “Mrs. Sherlock Holmes” was as evocative as an hour of television can be, managing to stun me so often that live-tweeting became challenging. (Sorry, show, but you’re just too good.) There was a great deal to appreciate about this episode and there’s a great deal to discuss, but the choice to remind us of the fact that our voices matter was bravery at its finest. Credit where it’s due is always something that I’m a fan of, which is why it’s so important to acknowledge that Timeless show runners are men because so often, writing of this caliber is done by women, and it’s amazing to see that on this show, it’s men, showcasing as proof of the fact that we can be equal in gender stereotypes without the hidden misogyny that’s unfortunately present in fiction when men attempt to tell stories through the eyes of women. So, hats off, gentlemen – this show’s certainly a special one. And hats off to episode writer David Hoffman for the astounding screenplay.

“Mrs. Sherlock Holmes” gave us a glimpse into a darkness that isn’t often revealed and it did so by reminding us of the fact that our characters are all so multifaceted, so exceptionally complex it’s the ultimate treat to have the thematic elements of the show be brought to life through their eyes.

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Timeless 2×06 “The King of the Delta Blues” Review

Spoilers Ahead

Justin Timberlake, Taylor Swift, and Lando Calrissian walk into a bar. . .

Episode Summary | Time in History: Over the hills and far away some life changing deals are made. Music is saved and all is well with Robert Johnson’s musical career with the help of Lando Calrissian, in our world known as Connor Mason who’s finally been given the terrifying opportunity to travel in his own time machine. That’s right, the fourth seat is now available and Connor gets to accompany Rufus, Lucy, and Flynn to 1936 San Antonio.

“The King of the Delta Blues” was the kind of episode that effortlessly served as proof of the fact that the relationships we have with others are ridiculously important and potent to our growth. And it also served as an acute reminder of the fact that this show’s impeccable with developing its dynamics. They’re all so easy to love, it almost seems surreal. In the case of ensemble casts such as this one, each character deserves the opportunity to shine on their own and through the relationships they’re in. And finally giving Connor Mason that moment in an episode that emphasized the importance of being someone’s fan was an excellent choice. (Kudos to Timeless for the fact that they’ve not had a filler episode so far.) This week, we’re diving into a time period that would impact music hugely and that’s easily appreciated here because not only are we massive music fans, but we’re excited to explore history apart from politics, too.

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Timeless 2×05 “The Kennedy Curse” Review

Spoilers Ahead

Choices. They matter. And I suppose, beer does, too.

Episode Summary | Time in History: A long time ago in a … just kidding, we didn’t actually time travel this week, well we did, but not in the traditional sense. We actually just brought young John F. Kennedy to the present with us — all the way from 1934! Yikes. But it’s still an adventure when Kennedy escapes from the bunkers, finds himself partying, and the Time Team needs to make sure they find him before Rittenhouse does. Flynn’s left behind to take care of the sleeper agent in 1934, and Jessica accompanies Wyatt and Lucy on their mission. Agent Christopher deals with her own little adventure in the hands of Carol Preston, and Rufus and Jiya coordinate things from the bunker.

“The Kennedy Curse” was yet another solid episode authenticating the fact that where there’s good company, hardships are bearable. It’s not only vital to confide in people, but it’s absolutely necessary to speak up about the things that are within us because there’s nothing more therapeutic than conversation. There’s nothing that strengthens people the way that honesty and vulnerability does — they’re traits of great importance that ultimately make for exceptional television, and thankfully, Timeless has got it covered. I know that perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised at how great this season is so far, but I’m a big believer in TV’s terrible two — so kudos to Timeless writers for somehow making this season as great as the first, a genuine rarity in this verse. “The Kennedy Curse” took each of our characters on emotionally moving journeys allowing for their circumstances to be changed based off the choices they made in order to make things better and worthwhile. And all while trying to preserve history, because if Kennedy never became President, who knows what could’ve happened to America.

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