Timeless is a new science fiction series from Supernatural creator Eric Kripke. When a group of criminals steal a time machine and start going through history wreaking havoc, a history professor is recruited to a small team to stop them and save history. Professor Lucy Preston is joined by a soldier named Wyatt and by Rufus, a scientist working for Mason Industries. The pilot episode features the story of the Hindenburg disaster in 1937.
As a fan of Doctor Who episodes where The Doctor meets historical figures such as Shakespeare, Van Gogh, or Queen Elizabeth, I was very excited by the premise of Timeless; however, I was a little let down by what I watched. While the Hindenburg crash is a well known historical event, the people involved in it are not. Our heroes encounter a journalist who was killed during the Hindenburg crash, and she helps them find Garcia Flynn (ER's Goran Visnjic), the criminal mastermind who plans to alter history. This journalist could very well be historically accurate, but she is not a recognizable character. If I had the chance to meet great figures from throughout history, she would not come to mind (I can't even remember her name).
The other issue I had with Timeless was that the scientists explain how one cannot travel to time periods they have existed in, so when they go back to 1937 to prevent Flynn from changing the events of the Hindenburg crash, they have one shot and all mistakes cannot be corrected. In the pilot episode, however, there is a revelation that indicates that Professor Preston may already have been to all the time periods they are visiting. How this is possible is rather confusing.
There are plenty of episodes left to explain this, so I'm not ready to write off Timeless completely. I'm still holding out hope that it will be a great series; with the second episode covering the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, it very well could be. In addition, the series' other characters present other mysteries yet to be unfolded. While Rufus appears to be on the team purely for comic relief (a black character traveling to periods when he would face discrimination), he was handpicked for the team by Mason Industries' founder, Connor Mason. He told Rufus, "you and I both know why it needs to be you." Mason Industries is withholding information from our heroes, and Rufus may be in on whatever they are planning.
Timeless has potential, but I'm not fully invested in the series yet. With other science fiction series like Travelers also premiering this fall, I can get my time travel fix elsewhere. Don't let my opinion sway you though; watch Timeless and decide for yourself.
The pilot episode airs on NBC on October 3rd, 2016.