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Saturday, March 7, 2015

12 Monkeys 1.8: Intelligent Vaccine vs. Time Travel

"Previously, on 12 Monkeys" is the recap of the past that is prelude to every episode.  In 12 Monkeys 1.8, it is literally the story of that fine episode, too.

Jones has to go to Jonathan to get technology to repair then replace the ruined core of her time travel device.  But Jonathan has no confidence in time travel - he prefers the non-paradoxical approach of coming up with a super intelligent vaccine that can outwit the continuing deadly mutations that our plague is spitting up and out into the world.   That's a pretty good science fictional scenario right there, and I might well go for it rather than time travel were this world really stricken by a deadly, mutating plague.  Except - time travel is much more fun - I much prefer 12 Monkeys to Helix - and in the world of 12 Monkeys, you and I as well as Jones knows that time travel is not only possible but real.

But Jonathan doesn't buy it, and when Jones tries to convince him by showing him photographs of his beloved wife, who died from the plague - photographs that were destroyed but which Cole retrieved - Jonathan burns them.  I tell ya, the prejudice against time travel runs strong.   The previous and the past suffer from a powerful inertia and intractability.

Meanwhile, Cassandra is determined to see if Cole survived the blast in Chechnya.  We know that he has - and that the virus indeed was set loose.  It looks as if Cassandra might indeed be able save him, but in a nice twist, it turns out that she finds no trace of him at the blast site, even through we see him with our own eyes being lifted out of the shaft.  How could this be?  Well, that malfunctioning time machine pulled him forward just two years - no longer in 2015, but well before - previous to - 2043.

We also get a nice Ramse story in 1.8, as he meets his former lover and, for the first time, their son.   Happiness is indeed possible even in this plague ridden world - which once again casts us into the central, mind-twisting paradox of this series:  if Cole succeeds in stopping the plague, then not only the bad but the good we've seen in parts of the future will cease to exist.   In a world in which the past isn't safe, nothing in the future is, either.

But I'll see you next week, or when what I've just written is at least a week in the past for me.

See also this Italian review, w/reference to Hawking and my story, "The Chronology Protection Case"

And see also 12 Monkeys series on SyFy: Paradox Prominent and Excellent ...12 Monkeys 1.2: Your Future, His Past ... 12 Monkeys 1.3:  Paradoxes, Lies, and Near Intersections ... 12 Monkeys 1.4: "Uneasy Math" ... 12 Monkeys 1.5: The Heart of the Matter ... 12 Monkeys 1.6: Can I Get a Witness? ... 12 Monkeys 1.7: Snowden, the Virus, and the Irresistible

podcast review of Predestination and 12 Monkeys

 three time travel novels: the Sierra Waters trilogy

 photo LateLessons1_zpsogsvk12k.jpg
What if the Soviet Union survived into the 21st century,
and Eddie and the Cruisers were a real band?

The Chronology Protection Case movie 

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