Timeless Season 2 Episode 1 Review: The War to End All Wars

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Let's just blow it and start over!

That's what literally happened on Timeless Season 2 Episode 1.

And you know what? The series is actually more coherent now.

Back Together - Timeless Season 2 Episode 1

While immensely entertaining, Timeless Season 1 had a distinct pattern to it.

Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus would chase Flynn into the past and keep him from screwing up history too much. Every so often, they'd sprinkle in some Rittenhouse mythology.

If it doesn't make much sense, that was OK, because Rittenhouse is a shadowy organization. No one was supposed to understand what it was up to.

Let's quickly recap Timeless Season 1 Episode 16:

  • The team was getting ready to get Lucy's sister Amy back.
  • Rittenhouse members were getting rounded up thanks to evidence gathered by Lucy's grandfather, Ethan Cahill.
  • Flynn was arrested by Agent Christopher after meeting with Lucy.
  • Rittenhouse's double agent, Emma, took possession of the Mothership.
  • Lucy found out her mother, Carol, is also a Rittenhouse member.
  • Jiya kept having some kind of chronal seizures.

Basically, it started out like a series finale but ended on a cliffhanger. It all worked out in the end after NBC canceled Timeless and then uncancelled it two days later, which has to be a record.

Home Team - Timeless Season 2 Episode 1

I had faith that, given time, Eric Kripke and Shawn Ryan could put TImeless back on a more intelligent narrative track. Now it seems they've found their way.

The new season picked up seemingly minutes after the former. 

Related: Timeless Un-Canceled, Renewed for Season 2!

Rittenhouse, wanting there to be only one-time machine, blew up Mason Industries, and almost everyone present died.

Six weeks later, the dynamic had now shifted.

Wyatt, Rufus, Jiya, Christopher, and Connor were a group of rebels, determined to fight Rittenhouse. But without Connor's millions, they were going to have to fight smarter.

Their only weapon was the Lifeboat. Remember, that poor relic took a beating last season and was already held together essentially by chewing gum and bondo. The bomb did a number on it, and Rufus, Jiya, and Connor were struggling to get it running again.

Wounded Soldier - Timeless Season 2 Episode 1

Connor was a shattered man, haunted by his killed employees. Fortunately, he got his big brain back online by episode's end.

Rufus and Jiya had each other. She had become much more an equal member of the team, although her continuing seizures remained concerning.

Wyatt couldn't admit his feelings for Lucy. He was hellbent on saving Lucy, even if no one knew if she was alive or dead. 

Rittenhouse was out of the shadows. The group overplayed its hand and many were jailed. They remained a potent force, with agents at all levels of business, government and the military.

Lucy had become a double agent embedded inside Rittenhouse. It was amusing to watch Lucy and Emma, in the angel and devil roles, compete for the attention of Lucy's mother Carol.

Emma  Get Your Gun - Timeless Season 2 Episode 1

It was great to see that, despite all that has happened to her recently, Lucy can still go all fangirl over historical figures, in this case, scientist Marie Curie. 

By the end, poor Lucy had now lost her mother and been told that she'll never be able to get Amy back. No wonder she broke down in the end.

But at least she had Wyatt, as they both adjust to their deepening relationship.

This episode featured less of the series' trademark banter, but with all the emotional upheaval, that's not really surprising.

Related: Girl Crush Friday: 17 Women Who Stand Their Ground

Now to the Rittenhouse front. First, why did Carol and Emma bring back Lucy's great-grandfather from World War I? His notes on the cell phone seem to indicate that Nicholas Keynes came up with much of the current Rittenhouse philosophy. So will he be taking over Rittenhouse?

Also, as Wyatt pointed out, it appears that Rittenhouse has been using the Mothership to seed the past with sleeper agents.

So what is the Lifeboat crew going to do to inhibit Rittenhouse? Chase down the sleeper agents? Or use Keynes' notes to decipher where these pressure points are, and intercede there?

And where does Flynn fit into this? Are the former adversaries destined to become allies, as Flynn had been suggesting all along?

I had hoped that Timeless would get shifted to Syfy Network, a more fitting location, or at the very least air during summer when there isn't a dearth of quality programming on broadcast channels and expectations are lower.

Sadly, NBC has set the series up to fail. Do the following qualify as compatible lead-ins for the smart, well-developed Timeless? American Ninja Warror: U.S. Vs. the World on March 11, then the kiddie shows Little Big Shots and Genius Junior for the rest of the season?

The only favor NBC did for TImeless is to schedule it opposite an aging Madam Secretary and the rookie procedural Deception. Coming in second among network series in that time slot shouldn't be much of a challenge. It's not even up against any stellar cable competition. So maybe its ratings will improve.

Timeless has been reset. The Lifeboat team, Flynn and some of the government are on one side vying against Rittenhouse and its many allies on the other.

Is the Lifeboat crew doomed to repeat its cycle of reaction, or is there some way they can get ahead of Rittenhouse? It promises to be an uphill struggle.

To catch up on the Rittenhouse saga, watch Timeless online.

How do you like the show's new direction? What is Rittenhouse up to? How does the Lifeboat crew get ahead? Comment below.

The War to End All Wars Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (53 Votes)

Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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Timeless Season 2 Episode 1 Quotes

Emma: Some of us aren't royalty, princess. Some of us had to work our way up while you were busy running away from having everything handed to you.
Lucy: Working your way up to what? Wicked step-sister?

Lucy: I lost everything.
Wyatt: You haven't lost me.