How was the episode?

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    What an amazing pilot to introduce us to the series! The first two minutes showcases the Hindenburg, foreshadowing the team’s first destination in history. Time travel is always a complex issue that brings along it’s own set of paradoxical dilemmas. Establishing how time travel does and doesn’t work in this universe clues us in as to what’s possible. It’s addressed fairly early on when the team arrives in 1937.

    Wyatt: “Okay, just one thing that I don’t get. Apparently, this time machine works. So why don’t we just go back five minutes before Flynn stormed in and then shoot him in the face?”

    Rufus: “You can’t go back to any time where you already exist, where you might meet a double of yourself. It is bad for the fabric of reality.”

    This is re-emphasized towards the end of the episode.

    Connor: “Rufus, where’s Flynn now?”

    Rufus: “Uh, the ‘Lifeboat’s’ CPU says that he’s back in present day, but who knows where.”

    Wyatt: “And so we can’t go back to ’37? Give it another shot?”

    Rufus: “No. Remember, we can’t double-back to any place where we meet ourselves. There are no do-overs.”

    The characters are fleshed out pretty decently and we even witness some character growth. We can deduce that Lucy ideally wants to preserve history as is, avoiding the butterfly effect and such. Whereas Wyatt contrasts her with a more realist view; that sometimes things don’t always go the way you plan and you have to make the best of the circumstances.

    Lucy: “You shouldn’t have brought that gun.”

    Wyatt: “Oh, the one I saved your ass with?”

    Lucy: “We are surrounded by Nazis. What if one of them takes your future gun to Berlin?”

    Wyatt: “Sometimes things get messy.”

    Lucy: “It is my job to make sure there is no mess.”

    Wyatt: “There’s always a mess. That’s the deal. So now we make it up as we go. And I take out Flynn. Which, by the way, might require the use of a damn gun.”

    Once aboard the Hindenburg, we start to see Lucy come around as she realizes the gravity of the situation; that there’s no keeping history intact as it was.

    Wyatt: “Hey, I need you to ground the ship and get the people off.”

    Rufus: “How do we do that?”

    Lucy: “We make it up as we go.”

    The highlight of the episode is honestly Rufus’ powerful speech against racism when the team finds themselves in jail.

    Rufus: “Uh…ahem. Excuse me, can I get a glass of water, please, sir?”

    Officer: “Swallow your spit, boy.”

    Rufus: “I’m not a boy, actually.”

    Officer: “Excuse me?”

    Rufus: “You have eyes, right? You can tell I’m not a child, and I am definitely not your son, so don’t call me “boy.”

    Officer: “I’m not sure you realize where you are, boy.”

    Rufus: “Actually, I do. I’m in the damn Stone Age, but, man, I hope you live a long, long life. Long enough to see Michael Jordan dunk, Michael Jackson dance, Mike Tyson punch, really, just any black guy named Michael. OJ? Yeah, he gets off. He did it, but we don’t care. And Obama, he’s the president. 2008. That’s gonna suck for you! I hope you see it all. Because the future is not on your side, boy.”

    Although it was meant to show that segregation and blatant racism was no longer an issue, there was also a subtext about the racism in America today (and 2016), albeit, not as apparent. That’s what makes this pilot so good. The message resonates with the viewers.

    Overall, Hindenburg as an episode, especially the pilot was a great choice. Over the short allotment of time, it was able to establish the rules of time travel, give insight into the main characters, show some character growth, teach a bit of detailed history that people otherwise don’t know about beyond the fact that it happened, and balanced out the seriousness with some comedic remarks. Glad to see that Rufus had some character development himself and asked Jiya out to dinner. All it took was having a time machine hijacked, their lives in danger, and having to go back in time dealing with Nazis. Good job Rufus!

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