Rachael (woodpijn) wrote,
Rachael
woodpijn

Travellers (TV review)

Episodes 1-5 were OK, a bit meh, didn't really grab me in the same way as Timeless or Manifest, but I was enjoying it enough to keep watching.
Episode 6 just degenerated into a massive pile of incoherence.

Spoilers

So the travellers are not allowed to shoot to kill, which puts them at a massive disadvantage and gets them massacred in a firefight. But why can't they use non-lethal weapons to incapacitate, like tranquilliser darts? We saw them using those earlier in the very same episode - have the writers forgotten already, or did they just decide the firefight would look more exciting without them, and to hell with consistency?

And they're not allowed to shoot to kill, but they are allowed to cause a huge explosion that will kill everyone in a mile radius, and they are allowed to live-transfer into Gleason and his men, which is killing them?

And the final scene where Gleason's men kill Blue so she can't turn the key, and then they themselves get live-transferred into one by one - again, that's all very well for dramatic tension, but doesn't make much sense. The Director doesn't have a live camera watching events unfold in the 21st century, so they can't react in real time to each setback one at a time like that. At best, they could be like "the mission failed, something must have gone wrong" and have to guess what it was and how to fix it. The real-time precision response of transferring travellers into each successive soldier as the previous one gets killed just doesn't make sense with the way the premise has been set up in the previous episodes. (It's also less effective than just transferring people into all of them at once.)

And if the Director *is* able and willing to have travellers live-transfer into Gleason and his men and have them turn the key, why bother with... any of the entire plot so far? Why bother carefully choosing hosts that were about to die, sending sleeper agents into them to wait months or years, and carefully coordinating missions leading up to this big mission to deflect the asteroid, when you could just live-transfer on the day into whoever happened to be there on site and have them do it?

And why (other than the Doylist reason that they need to survive for future episodes) did the five main characters all drive away rather than staying to guard Blue and help make sure she succeeds in turning the key? Even if Blue reckoned they ought to save Delaney (which itself is a bit dubious and arbitrary - I thought they weren't meant to interfere with anything not directly relevant to the mission or change history more than necessary), Delaney is perfectly capable of driving herself away from the blast zone. She doesn't need an escort of five people. They would be much better deployed in backing up Blue, rather than leaving the all-important final step of the mission, which dozens of travellers have sacrificed their lives for, in the hands of one (elderly, terminally ill, slightly stoned) traveller, with no backup, no contingency plan for if she gets killed or incapacitated. Talk about a weak link in the chain.

And finally, the main characters seem awfully shocked by the prospect that they might change history enough to prevent their own births, even though they're highly trained time travellers, even though their whole purpose is to drastically change history, and even though they were seen reciting a pledge committing to exactly that.

I am not normally a big nitpicker of fiction. I'm fairly happy to suspend disbelief and just enjoy the show. But there's a limit to how much sense and consistency can be sacrificed for the sake of dramatic tension, and this episode went way past that limit. I don't think I'll bother watching the rest of this series.
Tags: reviews, tv
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