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Timeless - The War to End All Wars - Review

Timeless returned for its second season, thanks to its passionate fanbase, with “The War to End All Wars” written by the team of Arika Lisanne Mittman and Tom Smuts and directed by Greg Beeman. The episode begins with the core team broken up – but I’m glad they didn’t drag that out – and also manage to bring Flynn (Goran Visnjic) on board by the end of the episode. I wish that the episode had had a bit more time for history, but we had a lot of story to cover – and the season is off to a great start!

We jump right in to the action in WWI. We follow a dog fight down to wounded – and mostly dead soldiers. Captain Albright (Matthew Atherton) is found by one of his men – and turns over a dead man to pick up the packet that fell out of the Albright’s pocket – which contains a cell phone, so he’s clearly a time traveler – and must be Rittenhouse.

In the present, Rufus (Malcolm Barrett) and Wyatt (Matt Lanter) are preparing the Lifeboat for a jump, but Lucy (Abigail Spencer) is nowhere to be found. Clearly, Wyatt is not being reassigned. They know that she went to her mother’s house, but she’s not answering her phone… cut to Carol’s (Susanna Thompson) house which is trashed, and Lucy’s phone abandoned on the floor.

Rufus and Curtis look like they may be dressed to go back to the sixties or seventies, but as Wyatt calls, he notices a blinking light on a tank and warns Rufus just before there’s a huge explosion – and we jump six weeks.

The team has a new hideout because Rittenhouse blew up Mason Industries. We find an injured Wyatt taking a shower – he clearly took the brunt of the explosion on his back. He’s angry – and not because Jiya (Claudia Doumit) walks in on him. It’s no surprise that Wyatt isn’t playing by the “rules.”

Rufus also survived the bomb and is working to repair the lifeboat. Wyatt is angry because Lucy is still missing and Denise (Sakina Jaffrey) won’t let Wyatt leave to help with the search – she’s on it, but no luck. Denise is fooling around. She has armed guards stationed to keep the bad guys out – and Wyatt in.

Rufus is ready to run a test – which doesn’t go well. I ADORED that Rufus cursing included “CLOCKBLOCKERS!” If you aren’t in the know, Clockblockers is the name of the Timeless fandom – the fandom that sent the studio executives back in time to reconsider their decision to cancel this terrific show! It won’t be that easy to get to a third season (really? That was easy?) – and creator Eric Kripke has sent out a plea to fans to watch the show live or within 3 days so the ratings stay high – and hopefully grow. Live tweet with the cast to show your presence and convince anyone not watching, to start!

Rufus is worried about Jiya, who has been continuing to have headaches – and is clearly not sharing her visions with him. The two seem to definitely still be an item! And they definitely have great chemistry. Mason (Paterson Joseph) is also part of the good guy team now – though it doesn’t seem that Rufus has forgiven him. Wyatt is also confused as to how Mason even became a billionaire because he doesn’t seem to be able to do anything – from weld to cook. Denise tries to point out that Mason is also grieving because he’s lost his entire life – his company and fortune – and his employees. Wyatt denies he’s grieving because Lucy isn’t dead – Rittenhouse has her. Wyatt is clearly right that Lucy’s father was trying to recruit her, not kill her, and I’m betting Carol was on the same page.

We finally catch up with Lucy, who is, indeed fine. She’s smiling as she dresses. She is dressed for the early 1900s and is soon joined by Carol who appears to be her new partner. Carol remarks on how far Lucy has come and that she’s proud of her, but you have to know it’s an act.

Not surprisingly, the Mothership lands on the battlefield of the first scene. Carol is thrilled to be there with Lucy – and disturbingly thrilled to be watching the destruction and devastation of the battle going on. Emma (Annie Wersching) is with them – as well as some red suits. Carol asks if Lucy is ready, and her tone clearly indicates her lack of enthusiasm to go and change history.

It becomes rather obvious that Carol may have been grooming Lucy for time travel from an early age, encouraging her study of history. Emma is impatient to see some action. They are waiting for Nicholas Keynes (Michael Rady) – and that’s all that Carol will tell Lucy. There is clearly no love lost between Lucy and Emma. Lucy detests Emma because she’s turned on everyone she’s every worked with, and Emma resents Lucy for being a “princess” – and not having to work her way up the ranks. Carol tells Lucy to be patient – this trip is her chance to prove her loyalty and then all of her questions will be answered – she’s clearly playing along to gather intel! Two soldiers show up at the cabin they are hiding out in, and one is seriously injured. Carol tells Lucy that that’s why they’re there – to save his life.

Rufus and Jiya manage to fix the Lifeboat and locate the Mothership. Wyatt is impatient to get going because he knows that they are in the middle of a huge battle – which he describes as a bloodbath. Wyatt won’t even stop to get the proper clothes! He also won’t let Denise come with them – his entire focus is on bringing Lucy home.

Emma works to save Keynes with Carol assisting. He’s clearly in a bad way. Lucy is sent to take the other soldier away while they work – and presumably avoid having a delirious Keynes spill anything about Rittenhouse. When the soldier freaks out and tries to interfere with them trying to save Keynes, Emma deliberately shoots him just to wound. Carol isn’t pleased. But Emma insists that Lucy prove herself by killing him – which she does!

Spencer is terrific in this episode as we see that Lucy is devastated by what she is forced to do – but it’s for the greater good. The many that she can save by proving herself. Emma can’t remove all the shrapnel in Keynes without an x-ray, and Lucy suggests that they go and get one. Carol tells Lucy that Emma still believes that Lucy is working for the other side – but Lucy points out that there is no other side anymore – Rittenhouse has killed them all. I did love Carol and Lucy telling their red shirt why they knew they could find a portable x-ray machine in unison: “We’re historians!”

Carol continues to be entranced by being back in time – you can’t smell history in books – and Lucy points out that you wouldn’t want to! Who enjoys being in the middle of a war zone? I have to say, I was impressed all over again by the costumes and set dressing accuracy. It makes me want to be a history teacher to use this show for lessons!

I love it when Lucy geeks out over meeting her historical heros. In this case, it’s Irene Curie (Melissa Farman). I also love that Lucy tells her that her English is excellent and Curie replies that Lucy’s French is terrible! Irene is happy to bring the machine to the farmhouse – and goes to get her mother! Lucy is completely unwilling to endanger Marie Curie (Kim Bubbs). Carol assures her that they’ll get her back safely – but Lucy knows that there are no guarantees, especially with a psycho like Emma in the picture.

Lucy makes an excuse about needing water and dodges away from Carol, telling her that she has to trust her at some point – but Lucy has a plan. She makes her way to a munitions tent and steals a couple grenades… before she is grabbed… by Wyatt!! She is clearly very happy to see him – and they’re both happy that they are each alive – and we get a great hug before they are interrupted by Rufus. Who also gets a happy hug from Lucy. Lucy tells them they have to leave and that her mother is Rittenhouse! She’s about to run off when Wyatt grabs her again.

Lucy suddenly realizes that she can get Wyatt and Rufus to blow up the Mothership with the grenades while she goes back to kill Keynes. Wyatt and Rufus are both impressed and shocked – how was she planning to get home? Lucy confesses that she wasn’t planning to get back – she thought they were dead.

Rufus says to Wyatt that he must be glad Lucy is alive – clearly, he knows that they are in love. But Wyatt brushes him off, saying, yeah. We need our historian! However, Wyatt is uncharacteristically optimistic while Rufus is still not happy about chasing Rittenhouse through history – and getting blisters from his boots. The two try to liberate a truck to use, but they’re stopped by the Albright from the first scene. He takes them to his tent where Carol’s red shirt is also waiting. Rufus remembers him from seeing him with Carol and Lucy and shouts a warning to Wyatt. Wyatt takes care of both of them and finds the cell phone.

Back at the base, Mason is torturing himself by watching footage of his company blowing up. Jiya asks for his help with some schematics, and Mason admits that they’re all right – he is useless. At least becoming rich seems to have made him so. And really, this doesn’t make sense. You don’t simply cease to be a brilliant engineer. Jiya has a seizure while they’re talking, and Mason says it’s the second one today! Jiya refuses to take a break and clearly hasn’t told anyone about her visions.

Irene shows Lucy how the machine works – and how to fix it and tells her about her mother. She is a tough boss. It’s a nice parallel to Lucy and Carol. Lucy tells Irene that she’d stay up late doing her homework only to come down in the morning to find that Carol had deleted it – erased it! – because it wasn’t good enough. Lucy asks Irene if she ever wishes that Marie hadn’t dragged her to the battlefield, but Irene tells her that the war would still be there and she can’t imagine not trying to be of service.

The images from the x-ray are blurry – no doubt because of interference from the Mothership. Emma declares that they are good enough, and Lucy tries to hurry the Curies on their way and out of harm’s way.

Rufus and Wyatt finally take off in the truck, and Rufus explains why he’s not as happy as Wyatt to have the team back – almost – together. His mother and brother still think he’s dead and he’s worried about Jiya. Rufus tells Wyatt to just admit that he’s in love with Lucy already! He wants him to at least admit that sometimes saving the world sucks!

They wonder why the guy had the cell phone. He can’t call or text on it. And they’ve noticed that all the soldiers knew him and answered to him – like he’d made his way up the ranks. They wonder how long he’s actually been there…

Emma stabilizes Keynes, and she and Carol go outside to discuss next steps. Lucy takes the opportunity to take care of Keynes – and is caught by Carol just before she can. Carol seems to sympathize with Lucy having to kill the soldier in the morning and apologizes for Mason Industry and Lucy’s friends – but she denies that it was her call. She insists that there are people she has to answer to. But Lucy isn’t taking the excuse. Lucy wants to know why Carol brought her if she doesn’t trust her, and Carol says because she wanted to. She wants them to be close again, and Lucy points out that Carol has been lying to her her whole life. Carol insists that everything she’s ever done was for Lucy, but if she ever does anything like that again, Carol won’t be able to protect her. The plan is for Keynes to come back with them.

Wyatt discovers all kinds of documents on the phone – of course, the big question is how did the guy keep it charged… There are letters, manuscripts and documents about what Rittenhouse could do with a time machine to change history and make the present more favorable to them so that they owned the present. And then they run out of gas…

When they get back to the Mothership, they find the Curies there – they were just trying to discover what had disrupted the x-ray machine. Emma is ready to kill them. Carol is ready to go along with it, but Lucy challenges her to prove that she’s not a monster. Marie pleads for Irene’s life and Irene pleads for her mother. When Marie insists that her daughters are her most important work, she convinces Carol to tell Emma to put the gun down.

Emma has her own orders, however, and is ready to shoot Lucy when she jumps in front of the Curies. Emma was instructed to take Lucy out if she disrupted the mission – and she’s found the grenade in Lucy’s bag. Emma points out that anyone who is willing to die to stop them will never fight for them.

Wyatt and Rufus show up in time to spare Carol having to let Emma kill Lucy. Wyatt holds a gun on Keynes and tells Emma that they can both just walk away with the person they came for. Emma lets Lucy go, and Carol is angry that Lucy didn’t tell her that Rufus and Wyatt were alive. Lucy asks Carol to come with them. If she just comes with them, she’ll forgive her for all the horrible things that she’s done. Carol tells Lucy that it’s so much bigger than either of them – she won’t go with them.

Emma taunts Lucy by telling her that she made some trips in the Mothership to insure that Lucy’s sister can never come back. Emma then chillingly adds that she just does what Carol tells her to do! Rufus has to drag Lucy away.

Wyatt checks on Lucy, and she’s still devastated by having killed an innocent man. She tells him that she did it because she thought she was the only one left standing. She would have killed herself and her mother in the Mothership if Wyatt hadn’t shown up. She wonders if she would have stopped them, but Wyatt tells her that Emma would have killed her – and I’m betting he’s right. And Lucy knows that her mother probably wouldn’t have stopped her. Lucy sobs that she’s lost everything – and Wyatt moves to comfort her. He tells her that she’s still got him – and just before they kiss… Jiya interrupts them!

Mason has managed to solve the quantum gravity equation. Mason has discovered that the Mothership made 10 trips in the last 6 weeks – and big surprise Carol hadn’t told Lucy. Rufus has been going through the documents, and unlike Flynn’s chaotic plan, the plan in the documents is precise, attacking “pressure points.” Key moments in history – to make the world somewhere between Hunger Games and The Handmaid’s Tale! LOL! I’ve missed Rufus! Wyatt figures out that they’ve planted sleeper cells. They’ve got agents in history, biding their time, waiting to be activated. Rufus likens the document to Mein Kampf by Philip K Dick!

Nicholas Keynes is the one who wrote the manifesto. Carol briefs Keynes on being in 2018 and that he was right about time travel – and then drops the bomb that she is his granddaughter! So, if Lucy had killed him, she would have flashed herself out of existence!

In the final scene, Denise goes to Flynn to help figure out the manifesto. And of course, he will only talk to Lucy! I hope they aren’t going to drag the Lucy/Wyatt romance out for too long. I’m also anxious for Jiya’s secret to come out sooner rather than later too. I am hoping for a bit more history in upcoming episodes, but I am so happy to have this show back! What did you think of the episode? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

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