After reruns – made difficult because episodes are only purchasable or at Peacock’s “Premium” tier – original 1989 pilot episode Quantum Leap is an impressive thing.
Thanks in no small part to this being a two-episode premiere, creator Donald P. Bellisario could almost make the first 1956 in minutes with almost no instructions. Sam Beckett of Scott Bakula in A pilot who wakes up in a test with no memory and has to figure out his situation and why he keeps talking to someone no one else can see (Dean Stockwell’s Al). Of course, eventually things will be explained, but for a long time this episode just left the viewers figuring out things or struggling. No 2022 pilots, especially no broadcast pilots, would exhibit a fair degree of confidence.
Bottom line Too much talking, not enough jumping.
Sadly, this is evident in NBC’s new sequel/reboot. The pilot of this new Quantum Leap is -ish minutes Nearly non-stop exhibitions and hand-holding ensure new audiences understand every aspect of the premise, and returning fans understand how this update connects to the original — no matter how irrelevant it ends up being.
In the Quantum Leap pilot, we were so desperate for an explanation that there was simply no time for an ounce of fun with the premise , it doesn’t make any sense at all if you can’t have immediate fun on that premise. Due to the tight production schedule of the radio show, I’ve unfortunately only seen the pilot episode, so maybe the second episode marks the beginning of the series developers Steven Lillian and Brian Weinbrandt (NBC still will Bellisario called the “creator”) to start having fun? I’m not ready to take that step.
New Quantum Leap Begins
Years after the original series ended. Under the friendly watch of the U.S. military, the Quantum Leap program is being restarted, complete with supercomputer Ziggy. The team is led by Herbert “Magic” Williams (Ernie Hudson), a huge fan and absolutely no one else will remember the third season of “The Leap House (Part 2) – Vietnam “.
The team includes physicist Dr. Ben Song (Raymond Lee) and his fiancée, veteran Addison (Caitlin Bassett), and tech whiz Ian (Mason Alexander Park) and security Principal Jenn (Nanrisa Lee). The program wasn’t ready for human testing, but when Ben received a mysterious text message, he pulled out of his engagement party. Next thing you know, Ben finds himself in 45 Philadelphia and he has to be there to prevent things like explosions or robberies and basically correct what went wrong Where the hope is that his next leap will be the leap home. It’s a good theory, except that Sam Beckett never actually came home. Would Ben be luckier?
As the original Quantum Leap pilot proved, viewers are smart enough to follow the franchise’s Plot because it’s easy to use and powerful. Playboy travels into different people’s bodies to fix things in their lives. Add in a half-sentence of “quantum entanglement” nonsense, and nothing else, because nothing else makes sense anyway.
The new Quantum Leap keeps people chattering about new software and has Addison in the past as a useful hologram of Ben room and the level of military jurisdiction and a dozen other questions that I would describe as “Episode 7 Questions”. That was before it started having characters reminding each other of Sam and Al, showing viewers pictures of Scott Bakula and Dean Stockwell, and sowing all sorts of connections between the show.
QUESTION: Bakula has been making social media posts and stuff like that about why he decided not to be on the new show. This is either general misdirection or a negotiating tactic. If it’s the latter, allow me to do my part to help negotiate Bakula: The way this new show is structured, Sam Beckett’s on-screen presence isn’t optional. It’s necessary for Sam to make a brief appearance in the first half of the season, appear longer in the first season finale, and then become a recurring character for at least the second season. Otherwise, a double-show pilot is meaningless.
The pilot could have ended with an Easter egg confirmation of the original series, a photo of Sam on a computer monitor, or something that would have appeased veteran fans. The gratuitous call-back chatter is to give Ben and his new team extra personality traits for the time it takes.
Or maybe it’s time to pull away from the pilot’s plot, for what’s special about the Quantum Leap brand Weak. I’m happy to start my gripe with Philly’s hilarious geographic doubling, or for some viewers of a certain age, “Philly+ 1985 + Bombing” will automatically trigger a link to the infamous police bombing MOVE, which the creators don’t seem to notice here.
But no, mostly the first episode was bad because it totally didn’t exploit the premise’s possibility of being trapped in another body and reduced the “make right” The premise part of things that “go wrong”, the “bad guys do bad things for sentimental reasons, so they’re not actually bad” clichés. The original series made good use of baby boomer nostalgia—if not time-travelling Gundam, who is Sam Beckett? – The time stamp of the pilot episode here does not indicate that the new version will be exploited, if at all.
All of this will be in the future is resolved in episodes of and will there be more emotional value and entertainment from the premise of being trapped in another body? Probably! But you either do your best in the pilot or you don’t Quantum Leap ends up being a Quantum Leap not like previous NBC wanted, despite its franchise-specific advantages Different pilots like the show eternal or short-lived walkers , huge quantum Leap Reboot if they just called it Quantum Leap.
For Lee, if other creative elements come together, this Quantum Leap seems to have a solid core. He has a nice mix of nerdy uncertainty and cocky stubbornness, Easily flustered confusion and suave charm. I can’t judge Bassett yet, but I love the new jumper/guide dynamic that brings all the subtext Sam/Al hiss to the surface.
Hudson, Park and Lee have very little to play, I’m repeatedly struck by the fact that the original series kept Sam’s team to a minimum, which is the more complex or simple you expand on the current part of the show , the less time there is for creative episodic stories that are integral to the brand.
We’ll see, but not entirely without hope, the pilot, NBC’s new Quantum Leap Finally solved the problem. We’ll see how long Scott Bakula is “shockingly”.