TV Review: Journeyman

Topping off the hero sandwich that makes up just about the most perfect night of television is Journeyman on NBC, Mondays at 10:00 (PST). At first, one might think that this is a re-imagining of the NBC show from years back, Quantum Leap. I’ll admit, it has it’s similarities, but the major and most important difference is that our hero Dan Vassar, played by Kevin McKidd, is attempting to have a normal life with a wife and kid as he uncontrollably jumps away on time-traveling trips.

It’s the uncontrollable nature of his traveling that makes for some of the most interesting drama on the show. In the first episode he was able to provide some proof to his wife Katie, played by Gretchen Egolf, that his time-traveling tales are true, but that still doesn’t make it easy when he jumps away on one of his trips in the middle of an airplane ride, or on the way to one of his wife’s black tie functions.

The more Dan travels back into the past, the more determined he’s becoming to try to help people. As we saw in last night’s episode, “Emily,” he was feeling committed to helping the title character, but he also felt a need to see some justice done to one of her tormenters. As he did so, his ex-fiancee/co-time-traveler, Livia, played by Moon Bloodgood, warns him not to stray too far off track, because sometimes that can lead to disaster.

(SPOILER) Dan feels vindicated when he learns that his actions had brought justice to the man who had abused, but then he quickly realizes that by making sure the bad guy got caught, he had changed the timeline and in doing so took away an event that was helping his disbelieving brother believe Dan’s time-traveling stories.

From the previews of next week’s episode, “Blowback,” we also see that the man that Dan was instrumental in locking up in prison is out and has tracked down Dan and his family. It looks to be an exciting installment in this show that keeps getting better every week.

My only complaint about Journeyman is the fact that it was relatively easy for him to prove to his wife that his time-traveling problem was real, but he rarely, if ever makes any attempt to prove what he’s saying is true to his brother, Jack, played by Reed Diamond. While it makes for an interesting plot device to have this conflict between the two brothers, sometimes it seems a bit too obvious that if he just made a little effort, he could have his brother on his side, which would provide a valuable asset.

All in all, in this age of excellent television, Journeyman ranks up there with the best of the new shows this season and is definitely worth checking out!

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