Monday, December 10, 2007

Journeyman Continues: 11: Livia's Beau//Save the Paper Save the World!// Contest Winner!

And we have a new winner for tonight's contest - like last week, I was emailed the correct answer for Dan's last word in tonight's superb episode within seconds after it was said. Look for the name of the winner, and some consolation prizes, at the end of this review...

And what a wonderful holiday episode it was. Tonight's Episode 11 of Journeyman was about family, and deepened and developed the relationships of all the major characters.

The chapter began and ended with Livia in 1948. She's proposed to, and accepts. Now she and Dan are equal. Both are married, both are caught up in the time travel and the feelings they have for each other. (Livia has a picture of Dan and her on her table.) At this point, Katie knows much more than Livia's fiance, and it would be nice to see how he plays out in the late 1940s and after.

Jack and Theresa (played by beautiful Lisa Sheridan) are getting much closer, too. Theresa tells him she's pregnant with their child...

And Dan's assignment this week concerns family, too. The Scrooge owner of the paper intends to fire a big portion of the staff, on Christmas eve, no less. Dan goes back to the late 1970s and finds the owner's father. Turns out he suffered a coronary, and the son took a little too long to call for medical help ... One other person knows what really happened - a young woman who would do anything to become a reporter back in 1979, and has been a fixture with the paper ever since. Dan convinces her to speak to the son, turned Scrooge, in 2007 - and, much as in the Charles Dickens classic, he relents with the firing.

And just to turn this time-traveling Christmas Carol one more twist, Dan also has a talk with his father, back in that 1979 Christmas party at the office. To convince his father not to leave his family would have bent the time line far too much ... but Dan does get his father to at least tell his younger self and brother Jack the night before he left, which has the good effect of keeping the boys from wondering all of their lives if their father's leaving was their fault.

Back in 2007, Jack of course now has always known this - and I can't help feeling that maybe Dan's good deed in time will make Jack a happier, better person. That's one of the nice dividends of time-travel stories.

Dan tells Jack he doesn't remember what their father said that night. If he truly doesn't, this means that Dan, at least as far as his own life is concerned, is one of those time travelers who doesn't remember original realities he changes in the past. (I always have my time travelers remember - since they're traveling in time, their minds are stacked with memories of all alternate realities.) But I have feeling that Dan told his brother he doesn't recall just to keep it less complicated. In previous episodes, Dan seemed thoroughly aware of all sets of realities in which he was involved.

And so Journeyman continues to strengthen its family roots and thereby the possibilities for future story lines. The show belongs here...

"Here" - which was also Dan's last word tonight - when he says "I belong here" ... which brings us to the contest winner...

Who is ... John Muth of Pittsburgh!

An autographed copy of The Plot to Save Socrates will be in the mail to John tomorrow! Congratulations, John!

For everyone else: If you've already answered the question correctly - but got it in after John - I'll be happy to send you, via e-mail, a copy of my 1997 award-nominated time travel novella, Loose Ends (first published in Analog Science Fiction and Fact Magazine, and widely reprinted, including on

And, further, for anyone who answered tonight's question correctly, I'll be happy to autograph and return to you at my expense any copies of The Plot to Save Socrates that you send to me between now and the end of this year.

My email is

But John gets the free copy for tonight's episode.

And the contest will continue for the next two episodes of Journeyman. I'll give a free, autographed copy of The Plot to Save Socrates to first person, after each show, who e-mails Dan's last word on the show to me! See Extending The Plot to Save Socrates - Journeyman Contest for details.

Note, by the way, that the contest calls for Dan's last word spoken on each episode - not the last word spoken by someone else, if that last word is the last word on the show. Livia had the last word tonight, when she said "Yes" to that proposal. But the last word I was looking for is Dan's....

My reviews of other Journeyman episodes ... 1: NBC Quantum Leaps Into Journeyman ...2 ... 3 ... 4 ... 5 ... 6... 7 ... 8. Livia's Story ... 9. Dan Unravels His Present ... 10. Jack's In! ... 12. The Perfect Time Travel Story ... Lucky 13

The Plot to Save Socrates

"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

"Sierra Waters is sexy as hell" - curled up with a good book

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