When last we saw Dr. Ben Soong, he had just remembered the reason he stepped into the accelerator and began traveling through time – it was to save his fiancee, Addison.
Now, as we pick up the story, the fallout from that revelation is hitting everyone – and causing a bit of a rift between Ben and Addison. Addison is upset that Ben kept this from her and that he can’t remember why he did.
These feelings parallel his current leap where Ben is a bodyguard protecting a young singer from a threat to her life. Addison’s dialogue about Ben keeping secrets and not helping things takes on a huge double meaning, as do several of Ben’s conversations with the singer that could be directed at the singer and Addison. It’s not exactly subtle, but it is fairly effective, especially Ben’s promise that he and Addison are a team and moving forward he will keep her in the loop.
It echoes a bit of what we heard before the break when Addison confesses to Magic that Ben is different in the past, with parts of his memory wiped away. I do wonder if this is setting up some kind of conflict down the road between these two as Ben remembers why he didn’t or couldn’t tell Addison.
Meanwhile, Jenn catches up to Janice and brings her into the project for questioning. I can’t help but feel that somehow Janice is playing the crew yet again and that she wanted to get caught. Is this part of the plan she and Ben hatched? Also, will we get Addison to talk to Janice to try and discern why Ben started leaping and what will the consequences of that be?
Honestly, this is one of the first times since the episode Magic revealed that he knew Sam replaced him that I was as invested in the timeline of the current events as I was in the leap for Ben.
Ben’s leap is a fairly standard one – save someone from getting killed. It feels like this was a go-to for the original and it works well here. What made the originals work is what works here – an interesting mystery full of red herrings and the show giving us characters we can invest in. Yes, it’s fairly cliched that you’ve got a successful singer who is killed by one of three people who can benefit from her being gone. And maybe it’s because Debra Ann Woll is well-known enough in genre roles that I’m conditioned to root for her. Whatever it was, it worked.
I do wonder if and how the news that the series is picked up for season two will play into the long-term arc. Will we now have to wait until the season finale for Ben to recall why he started leaping as a cliffhanger for next season? Or will they follow the map for season one and worry about season two later?