If there was ever a series today more appropriately titled to convey its value, it’s Timeless because that’s what this show has been from its very first episode, which is a rare treat in and of itself. I expected to like Timeless sure, but sixteen episodes later I didn’t expect to call it the best thing on network television. I didn’t expect to rally everyone I know to watch it because it’s that great and worthy of such praise. But here I am, I’ve done my part to tell everyone I know in person, and I’m now here to convince you, internet. Also, I can vouch not every TV show I watch, no matter how great is for everyone, but sometimes, just sometimes, if you could find at least three reasons to cling onto something then who knows what it could do for you. So without further ado, here are 10 reasons why Timeless is the show we should all be watching.
History may not be everyone’s favorite subject to dive into, but it’s of such monumental importance that the knowledge of it, even in its most simple form is absolutely necessary. And Timeless gives us history in a way that’s easy to remember, in a way that’s fun, and if I were still studying, I’d be so much more eager to continue learning about the time period we travel to. While history is altered to meet the premise of the series, where legitimate facts are considered, it remains untouched, and to determine which is true or false is always a fun little aspect within the series — at least for me it is. Who doesn’t love research? (No, I’m not being sarcastic.)
Is there anything more important than friendships? No, no there isn’t. And for those who aren’t new here, you already know how much they mean to me, for those who don’t, it’s a lot. We are who we are because of the people we love, the people we’ll ceaselessly fight to protect, and the people we’ll follow to the ends of the earth — The Time Team is the best team. I will praise any friendship that’s built on honesty and adoration, but I will also praise any friendship that’s constantly growing, and where the Time Team is concerned, this is just the beginning of the solidifying the inimitable bond between them. Within 16 episodes they’ve already showcased the great lengths they’re willing to go for one another, and they’ve taken the time to get to know each other to the core, validating the fact that in a dark world, this team is forever. This team is a family.
3. Unapologetically Honest
This is it, folks — my absolute favorite thing about this show. History was ugly. History was dark. Our world is dark. Our world is ugly. Our world is racist. History was ridiculously racist. History wasn’t kind or accepting of women. Our world isn’t always kind and accepting of equality for women. And Timeless tells it how it is. It reminds us of the just how dark the world was and how easily it’s erased people of color from our history in the media. Fun fact, The Lone Ranger was black! A fact we came to learn in an episode of Timeless that refused to erase the truth. The monumental changes in our world will come from the moments in media where we acknowledge the truth, and a series like Timeless is easily a step in the right direction. In the first episode alone, there’s a remarkable monologue from Malcolm Barrett’s character Rufus that will absolutely floor you. I can promise this.
4. Character Driven
I am the first to admit that I have dropped shows that weren’t driven by the characters because the stories flopped as a result. They aren’t easy to watch — it feels as though the episode is never-ending and not in a good way. But where Timeless is concerned, its stories are told through the characters. The characters are the very heart of the series allowing their circumstances to pave the road towards an intriguing plot that’s flowing gracefully without a ridiculous attempt to “shock” the audience. Because when Timeless wants to give us something to come back to, a cliffhanger or a plot twist, they’ve done so in a way that’s felt incredibly organic as opposed to a plot device that needlessly wants to pull its characters through the ringer solely for the purpose of appearing “unique” or “dark and gritty”. Eric Kripke and Shawn Ryan care more intently for the intricate stories their characters are telling as opposed to utilizing plot devices that don’t often work for the benefit of the series in the long run.
5. The Performances
I’ve always been a fan of Abigail Spencer’s work, but apart from her, I had no idea what else would be in store on Timeless. And each performer, Spencer included, has easily made me feel so deeply, it’s been captivating to watch. Malcolm Barrett has made me cry more times than I can recall. Matt Lanter can speak so well with his expressions it’s left me in awe. Goran Višnjić has made Garcia Flynn the most enamoring, multifaceted TV villain I’ve seen in years. Timeless is filled with performance so riveting that when reviewing, I’ve had to make sure I single someone out during each episode because they’re constantly deserving of the praise. And while the core cast is a gifted group of individuals, the guest stars often portraying historical figures have effortlessly managed to layer their characters in a matter so fantastic, you won’t want to see them go.
There’s something for all and if you’re the kind person who longs for some fascinating action sequences in a series, Timeless has got you covered on that ground, too. I mean, we have a soldier as our leader so, we were bound to get action, and the series handles it so well. Timeless makes action fun, much like a lot of superhero movies it doesn’t get too gritty or reach a point where it’s uncomfortable to watch for the faint at heart. And personally, I’ll always take that over the darker action sequences.
7. Light | Balance
Timeless is hysterical. There’s not been a single episode that hasn’t made me laugh at least once or twice in the midst of all the chaos the characters are living through. And while humor brings light, so does heart — the exploration of real human emotions, insecurities, relationships, and realizations easily plays a role in reminding viewers of the little things we must look towards in life. There’s light in the character interactions. There’s light in the moments of pure bliss that comes from meeting historical figures the time team has always admired. There’s light in making significant changes. There’s light in the stories our characters tell in their quest towards righting wrongs and making the world they live in a better place. There’s light in the Star Wars references. There’s light in honesty. And Timeless creatures have made sure to balance this aspect of the series within the already intense storyline perfectly.
8. Love Story
For all my hopeless romantics out there that need great “ships” to ship, Timeless has us covered in that area, too. The gorgeously established relationship between Rufus and Jiya is just about the sweetest thing you’ll ever see. The blossoming romance between Lucy and Wyatt is everything I didn’t know I needed. It involves undercover lovers, friends — best trope ever, am I right or am I right? Then there’s Garcia Flynn’s quest to avenge his wife and daughter that’ll break your heart more times than it’ll make you angry.
9. Lucy Preston
Each and every character on this show is incredible, so effortlessly lovable, but I personally need to single out Lucy for how well she’s written. Lucy isn’t fearless. She isn’t a superhero. She isn’t perfect. But she’s so remarkably realistic and it leaves me consistently inspired because of how easily she’s relatable to a number of women. She’s afraid of things. She’s a giant nerd. She’s unapologetically excited about what she cares for. And she’s so emphatic it breaks me. TV series are doing a great job of putting women front and center of their stories, and I for one am always so captivated by how multifaceted they each can be. In writing real, relatable women, we’re bringing light into a world that refuses to acknowledge worth and value. And Lucy Preston is a woman with so many enthralling stories to tell.
Oh my goodness, the costumes! This is probably the funnest part of time travel because the wardrobe is so fascinating to explore. And it’s a crucial part of the series because as a historian, Lucy is always adamant on them getting everything right, but also, sometimes Wyatt pitches in, too adding on the series’ light wonderfully. (I also want the entire wardrobe so there’s that.)
Have I convinced you yet? Timeless has something for everyone. There are very few series out there with as much as heart as this show, and for those who love This is Us, Timeless has just as many emotions to offer. It succeeds in intricate, detailed story telling without ever losing sight of the characters that drive the show. It battles with human emotions in a way that’s so organic, so raw, you don’t want to miss it. It deals with significant issues that our world faces daily in a way that’s bound to profoundly inspire because it glosses over nothing. The truth is laid bare and the series is as compelling as one can be. The exploration of fate vs. free will leave you thinking for hours on end. Timeless does it all, beautifully and meticulously — it’s a show with profoundly moving, potently great stories to tell.
For more on Timeless, check out our reviews here. We’ve also got to separate articles on Rufus Carlin and Wyatt Logan for our #100DaysofFanFavorites project. Lucy Preston’s will be coming soon to a computer screen near you.
P.S. all 16 episodes are now on Hulu and season two will premiere Sunday March 11 on NBC — get to watching, my darlings.