The following contains MAJOR SPOILERS for “Perfidia,” the last episode of NBC’s “Journeyman.”
“Katie, the more I find out about this, the more I realize its not a curse: its a calling.” – Dan
Wow, I cant believe this is the end. The final episode of “Journeyman”: probably (more on that below).
We start off with Dan (Kevin McKidd), with a fresh cut on his head, zapping into a mental hospital. Dan is confused because the year is 2007 and he doesnt know why he is here. But then he runs into a patient, Evan Patterson (Don McManus), who insists that he is a time traveler too, and Dan is here to help him.
Dan isnt sure if he believes Evan, but does help him escape. After various zapping back and forth Dan learns that Evan is telling the truth. He decides, with Livias (Moon Bloodgood) help, to aid Evan in his foolhardy quest to remind Evans wife of another lifetime about how they once loved each other.
You see, Evan made an enemy in his time traveling (Sound familiar?) and said enemy killed his wife. Out of pain Evan changed his own timeline by making it so they had never met, so that she would never die.
But now all he wants is to have her remember their love just one more time.
Evan actually manages that when dancing with his former wife to the song “Perfidia.” But afterwards dies suddenly, just moments later Dan (from the very first episode) does his first “journey.” Did Evan have to die for Dan to gain his powers?
Meanwhile, Katies sister stuck around from the last episode and is trying to convince Katie to leave Dan. Also, Jack (Reed Diamond) very publicly calls out Dr. Elliot Langely (Tom Everett) on his knowledge of time travel, forcing Langely to pay Dan a visit in the end. Oh, and did I mention Livia is about to get married.
At the very end, Katie is excited to learn that Dan can use tranquilizers to stop his powers, but Dan has realized that he must use his powers to help people. You can tell that Katie is conflicted, but she asks Dan if he will keep his promise from the first episode (nice way to complete the story arc) to always come home. Dan says yes, and Katie says that she will always keep the light on for him.
This was a fantastic episode for wrapping up the character arc of Dan gaining his powers and then finally accepting them. At least we got to see that important storyline completed. Dan no longer sees his powers as a curse, Katie has accepted their new fate (although Im betting if the series continued, there would be more drama in that area), Jack has turned from an “enemy” to Dans greatest ally, and Livia is moving on by getting married.
Many of the mysteries were revealed, at least partially.
Evan mentioned that they “bump everything back online.” He also gave a cautionary tale of what can happen when you mess with your own timeline and also that having your past self see your future leads to very bad things.
Dr. Langley said that the “system” is “broke,” and that Dan is the last of the time travelers (sort of). I still feel that Langley knows more than he is admitting to.
If memory serves (and Im sure someone will tell me if Im wrong) in the episode “The Year of the Rabbit,” Dr. Langley actually calls Dan back on his cell phone: in the past. Yeah, I still think there is more to reveal there.
Langley also speaks of groups that are watching him and want to control people like Dan. Langley says there are no Powers That Be, but there is obviously some kind of intelligence behind each of Dans jumps. I wonder what the endgame is? To bad we may never know. If the show doesnt get picked up, then perhaps the DVD set will have some commentaries to reveal what the bigger picture was.
What Didnt Work
What didnt work, the series ending just when I got hooked.
When the series started it out, it was crippled by predictable time travel stories and a complicated love “rectangle” between Dan, Katie, Jack and Livia. But after a few episodes, the time travel stories became far less predictable and more intertwined with the storylines in the present. And the “rectangle” finally got a little less awkward after Jack stopped being Dans enemy and Katie started dealing with Dans “journeys.”
I did feel that Dr. Langely popping up in the ending seemed a little forced, but it was necessary to illuminate us on the bigger picture. Too bad we wont ever learn more about how the “system” is broke or why Dan appears to be the last one (except for Livia).
Evans comment about Livias shoes being a giveaway to her being from another time was both funny and also pointed one other nitpick of mine. How come, if she is from the past, she always pops in with modern looking clothing and hairstyles?
I honestly could have done without another episode of Katies sister. She didnt really add much to the episode except fill in Jacks previous role as crappy interfering sibling. But I do appreciate how the writers used her to vocalize the inner conflict that Katie was having and add tension to the possibility that she would actually leave Dan.
Well, thats all she wrote, folks … that is, unless a Christmas miracle happens, and the network changes their minds.
If you dont want to see the show go, there are fans trying their best to get it returned. You can join in by heading over to Save Journeyman!, contacting NBC, and posting on the “Journeyman’s” board on the NBC website.
It is unlikely the series can be continued, but hey, it happens so Im not going to knock fans if they want to try. Just ask “Star Trek,” “Farscape,” “Firefly,” and “Jericho” fans.
I started out watching this show out of curiosity and honestly wasnt at first that thrilled by it. But I stuck with it because: well, because it was my job to write reviews for it.
But you know what? After a few episodes I actually became hooked on it. “Journeyman” has grown into one of the smartest and best-written science fiction shows in recent memory. Im going to miss my weekly journeys with “Journeyman.”
Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due
“Perfidia” was written by Matt McGuinness & Aeden Babish and directed by Alex Graves (“The West Wing”).