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Sunday, March 11, 2018

Timeless 2.1: "Like Mein Kampf, by Philip K. Dick"

Tonight Timeless roared back from the jaws of oblivion - aka cancellation by the mothership, its network NBC - with a new episode that was far better than anything we saw the first season.  And it did most of this in its final few minutes.

And, indeed, there was one line which really struck me, which shows the high-intellect octane of time travel Timeless can achieve - it's when Rufus, looking at the megalomaniac writings on the smartphone crafted by their new worst arch-enemy, characterizes it as "like Mein Kampf, by Philip K. Dick".

Now I know he could have been speaking figuratively, or loosely, or just mistakenly, but the set-up in this new episode of Timeless and therefore the rest of the series is that history has already undergone changes that our heroes in 2018 don't know about.  Or, even more fun, maybe they do know about it, and it's we the audience on the other side of the screen who don't know about it, because we have a different history.

In our off-screen history, it's of course Adolf Hitler who wrote Mein Kampf.  Philip K. Dick does have some connection to this, because he wrote the alternate history The Man in the High Castle novel turned into an outstanding Amazon Prime series in which Hitler and Nazi Germany won the Second World War.  So what was Barrett referring to?

In the new history on Timeless, unknown to us but not its characters, was Philip K. Dick a Nazi monster who earlier wrote Mein Kampf?  Or was Dick maybe an American biographer of Hitler who titled his rambling bio Mein Kampf?

The possibilities are legion and intriguing.  Time travel and alternate history have always been closely related - I've always thought that behind every alternate history is an implied time travel, as the agent that brought the alternate history into being.   This first episode of the second season of Timeless, in that one statement about Philip K. Dick, promises all kinds of mind-boggling and intellect-puzzling adventures - or exactly what you'd want, or at very least I want, in a time travel story.

And see also Timeless 1.1: Threading the Needle ... Timeless 1.2: Small Change, Big Payoffs ... Timeless 1.3: Judith Campbell ... Timeless 1.4: Skyfall and Weapon of Choice ... Timeless 1.5: and Quantum Leap ... Timeless 1.6: Watergate and Rittenhouse ... Timeless 1.7: Stranded! ... Timeless 1.8: Time and Space ... Timeless 1.9: The Kiss and The Key ... Timeless 1.10: The End in the Middle ... Timeless 1.11: Edison, Ford, Morgan, Houdini, and Holmes (No, Not Sherlock)! ... Timeless 1.12: Incandescent West ... Timeless 1.13: Meeting, Mating, and Predictability ... Timeless 1.14: Paris in the 20s ... Timeless 1.15: Touched! .... Timeless 1.16: A Real Grandfather Paradox Story

-> and see also (evidence of original reality):  Time After Time, Timeless, and Frequency Now in the Dustbin of History (and the altered reality): NBC Reverses Decision and Renews Timeless: Lessons for Time Travel

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