Doesn’t it just kill you when you know what a show is going to do, but really really hope, by some miracle, that the writers don’t, only to see you were right the whole time? That is pretty much how I felt in the closing moments of last night’s Timeless episode. From the recap in the beginning, when Wyatt talks about his dead wife, and the first time we saw him and Lucy kiss, I knew Jessica would come back into the picture. The writers just can’t resist that little bit of melodrama. While I’m not surprised I’m only slightly disappointed, since this is a time travel show and, because of that, we don’t really know who Jessica is yet or what her relationship with Wyatt is like. All I know is that that wasn’t the warmest greeting I’ve seen.
But let’s go back to the beginning, shall we? The episode begins with a man and his teenaged son in Hollywoodland, the sign itself giving us an idea of the time period. Dad tells his kid that he’s been trained and it’s time to play his part, so clearly this kid is a sleeper agent.
In the present, Jiya is having more seizures and hallucinations about Rufus, but this time Agent Christopher saw it, and the cat’s out of the bag. Christopher is understandably upset, and tells Jiya that she has to see a doctor. Jiya angry-laughs, telling her that there isn’t anything a doctor can do to help her with “Time Travel Induced Premonitions and Migraines” and before they can get too deep into it, the Mothership alarm goes off. Looks like there was a trip made to January 2, 1941, a date that means literally nothing to Lucy, but hey maybe Flynn knows! I think I prefer this structure more than last season, with Lucy acting more as a historical guide, rather than the Encyclopedic knowledge she seemed to have for all history, no matter that it wasn’t her specialty. Since Rittenhouse isn’t going for the big events in the obvious ways, Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus are on more equal footing, collaborating rather than depending so much on one person. Lucy and Christopher make a trip to see a freshly stabbed Flynn, who reminds them that, like a dealer, only the first taste is free, and he wants out of prison this time, before Rittenhouse succeeds in killing him. Lucy agrees because what else is she going to do, and Flynn draws them a picture.
Next thing we know, the team is on the move, shoplifting and scamming their way onto Paramount Pictures. They’re stopped by a guard, but Rufus tells him that he’s Langston Hughes, and that he’s got a pitch for the studio president, Barney Balaban.
They make it past the guard easier than Balaban’s secretary, who is unimpressed with “Hughes’” musical adaptation of “The Ways of White Folks.” Lucky for them Balaban pops in and excitedly invites the famous “writer” and his singing duo friends in for a meeting. While Balaban is in the middle of shutting down both Hamilton (thank God), and the super clever “Rittenhouse:The Movie” pitch, the one and only Hedy Lamarr walks in. Lucy geeks out, and when she tells the star how glamorous she is, Hedy responds with a well-known quote:
“Any girl can be glamorous. All you have to do is stand still and look stupid.”
While Lucy is losing her shit, a call comes in and Balaban freaks out. RKO281 has been stolen. Once they leave his office, Lucy tells Wyatt and Rufus that RKO281 is actually Citizen Kane, considered to be the greatest film ever made (I disagree, but that is a whole other post).
After chiding Wyatt for not having watched it and telling them that the first person that comes to mind who would want to steal Orson Welles’s masterpiece is William Randolph Hearst, the three decide that the best way to figure out who the sleeper agent is to crash Hearst’s party that night. They steal some nicer clothes, and Lucy tells Rufus and Wyatt about Hedy. Far more than a mere starlet, the most beautiful woman in the world was also a scientist and inventor, who invented the technology used for modern Wi-Fi, but unfortunately she let her patent expire too soon, and never saw a penny for her invention.
Once they get to the party, Hedy commandeers “Langston,” and the team gets in without issue. Lucy and Wyatt are on their own to mingle, while Hedy asks Rufus to recite a verse or two from his newest book of poetry. Rufus, ever resourceful, starts reciting The Fresh Prince. Hedy can’t contain herself anymore, and tells him she knows he’s not Langston Hughes, partly because he looks nothing like his picture, and party because Rufus is just not a great liar. I love him. They catch up to Lucy and Wyatt and tell them that Hedy knows they’re there to get the film back. After spotting Hearst talking to someone, they ask Hedy who the stranger is, she tells them that he’s a handsy producer who is working on a new film called Jurassic Park. Obviously this is Mr. Rittenhouse. Before they can follow them to eavesdrop, Balaban snags Lucy and Wyatt, the new singing duo and asks them to sing for the guests. Wyatt can’t carry a tune in a bucket, so it’s up to Lucy to keep their cover. She sings You Made Me Love You basically to Wyatt alone, and it’s sweet and a little sad. I’m a sucker for serenades.
While Lucy is singing her heart out, Hedy and Rufus are listening in on Hearst and Calhoun, the Rittenhouse Man set up the exchange for the film canisters. Turns out Rittenhouse wants Hearst to print a weekly column in his paper, which Rittenhouse will provide. This can only end horribly, Lucy later tells them as they leave the party, since Hearst isn’t exactly a beacon of journalistic integrity as it is. While they’re walking to who-knows-where, Hedy’s car stops and she invites them to stay with her.
Once in her house, she and her co-inventor, George, show Rufus their works, while Wyatt and Lucy awkwardly flirt by the pool. It gets less awkward while they talk about how much they mean to each other, and that when she thought Wyatt was dead, Lucy didn’t care if she lived anymore. Things move to the bedroom and the two kiss… and then some! Before we know it, it’s morning and while the lovers talk about keeping their new thing quiet, Rufus of course barges in. He was looking for them both and “HEY LOOK, THERE YOU BOTH ARE!”
Later, while staking the studio out, Rufus can’t help but tease Wyatt a little, but before he has time to do much, Lucy (in a new dress, because it’s Lucy’s favorite era, fashion-wise) shows up, and so does Calhoun. They follow him, and security follows them into a soundstage. Needless to say there is a lot of shooting, and both the guard and Calhoun end up dead, but the film is safe. The team runs off to avoid jail time and Rufus gives Hedy both the film canisters and a tip to renew her patent.
They then hop into and hotwire a car to drive to the as yet uninhabited Oakland prison to hide something in the walls. Hmmm… I wonder who that could be for? The team gets back to the present, where Jiya has reluctantly seen a doctor at the insistence of Agent Christopher. But, unlike what she and Mason were both expecting (Jiya’s dad died shortly after seeing a doc, so Jiya didn’t want to worry if there was nothing to do, and Mason saw what had happened to other travellers who overbooked the Lifeboat), Jiya is completely fine. Every test came back normal and as a bonus, the heart murmur she’s had all her life is gone. I don’t think this bodes well.
Oh, and Flynn is there! Turns out the package they hid in the wall was in his cell, and included a mask, a key card, and actual key. These went well with the map Christopher slipped him earlier (since she can’t just release a terrorist), and when the prison is gassed, Flynn does his best Bane impression and walks out. Yay the team’s all together now! Except, ya know, everyone hates Flynn but hey, at least Wyatt and Lucy have each other!! That is, until Wyatt gets a text on his phone and breaks out of the bunker.
He ends up in a bar… and there is Jessica. Alive and well and not exactly happy to see her hubby.
Okay, so I was not happy when I first saw this “twist,” but the more I think on it, the less annoyed I am. Mostly because, as I said earlier, this is not the Jessica that Wyatt knew before. There is a lot of time between when she was supposed to die and when she came back. Time that Wyatt has no idea about, since he was in the Lifeboat. It will be interesting to see their dynamic, and I’m not putting my Wyatt eggs in the Jessica basket just yet. I really liked so much about this episode, mostly because “old Hollywood” is something that has always interested me, and watching Rufus and Hedy interact was just plain fun. Oh, and Lucy and Wyatt did it.