Friday, April 19, 2013

A-Z Challenge: Q is for Quantum Leap

By: William G. Muir
I think it is safe to say I am a geek. I love Science Fiction, or Sci-fi if you will. (But not the Sy-Fy channel. I don't like them, they turned their backs on the concept of sci-fi and sci-fi fans many years ago.) One of my favorite aspects of Sci-fi is the notion of time traveling. Whether it is Doctor Who, the ultimate in time traveling adventure, to the silliness of Bill And Ted's Excellent Adventures. I cannot get enough of these stories. Probably has something to do with the romantic notion of going to an earlier time and sharing all our knowledge of today with those in the past.

But comedian Dara O'Briain is probably closer to the mark.

One of my favorite time traveling shows (and I say one of my favorites and not my favorite cause anyone who knows me, knows that go to Doctor Who.) is Quantum Leap. I have to say that I really do like the premiss behind this show. Dr. Sam Beckett (Scott Bakula) theorized that one could time travel, but only within their own lifetime. The government, who is funding procect Quantum Leap, tell the teams senior officer, Rear. Amiral Al Calavicci (Dean Stockwell), if they do not see results soon they will have no other choice but to cut off funding. In order to avoid this from happening Sam steps into the time accelartor and vanishes.

Sam comes to in 1956 as a test pilot. The leap caused Sam to suffer from amnesia so he has no clue of who or where he is. This is often referred to by Al as swish-cheese memory. Oh and how does Al know about this, easy, he appears to Sam in the form of a hologram. Since he is tuned into Sam's brainwaves, Sam is the only one to see or hear Al, which leads to many comedic moments during the shows five year run.

Whenever Sam would jump around in time he would always land in the body of a person from that time period. What you basically had was Sam's body back in his present time, and his mind would transfer into a person's body and with the person's mind traveling to Sam's body. This let to some humorous moments when Sam would find out that he had jumped into a woman's body.

Throughout the show's run Sam wanted to find his way home. To accomplish this he must leap from person to person until hopeful one of those leaps would be the one that got him home. The only way  that he could leave a person's body once he entered it was to put right some wrong that took place in their lives. There was one time that Sam did make it home. But that involved Sam having been give electric shock treatment at the moment he was leaping out of the body. This caused him and Al to trade places. Al became the one trapped in his own past and Sam was back home in the future. 

But by the end of the episode Sam decided to save Al he would leap so that they could trade places
once again.

Quantum Leap was one of the shows that both me and my father enjoyed. Since my father was in the Army when I was younger; and gone across the seas for most of my younger years, we really didn't bond all that much when I was younger. But shows like Quantum Leap helped bridge the gap. And now that he is gone these shows serve as a way to remember the times we spent together. 

I think tonight I will be checking out Quantum Leap on Netflix

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