Jack Logan -
Claire Hemmings -
Eugene Matuzek -
Dale Easter -
OTHER TIME TRAVEL SHOWS
Life on Mars
Ashes to Ashes
In 2007 time travel has become a fact of life (ha!) and of course some people see that as an opportunity to make money or change their circumstances. As a result, an elite police corps has been created to keep history intact. This is their story.
You know you're in trouble when the opening titles have to explain the meaning of the word Timecop. It's a fairly straightforward word you would have thought. Self-explanatory really. Unfortunately, the makers of this series seem to think that their audience are incapable of working this out for themselves. That principle they then extend to the plotlines that are both basic and so obvious in their supposed twists that they can be pretty much be guessed in the first ten minutes and then the next forty minutes are pretty painful as it all plays out exactly as you thought it would.
The characters are also two dimensional in the extreme from the main , not-by-the-book hero right through the attractive, but geeky love interest, the eccentric egghead and the angry, shouty boss who is really a good man. This could be laid at the feet of a cast of indeterminate talent, but the scripts don't give them anything to work with, so the jury will have to stay out on that.
TIMECOP lasted only 9 episodes and the reason for that is, quite simply, that it wasn't very good.Top
A Rip In Time
Timecop Jack Logan is sent back in time to London in 1888 to take on a time jumper who has killed Jack the Ripper and taken on his identity in order to create himself as the greatest mass murderer of all time. Jack has to bring him down despite his opponent having access to a whole raft of advanced weaponry, whilst not disturbing the flow of history.
Based on the principle of the Jean-Claude Van Damme movie, this show has not a single original idea in its head. Virtually everything that is seen here has been seen before somewhere else and done better. Even the joke of meeting the inspector who just happens to be HG Wells's uncle is utterly predictable. The plot plays out in truly mechanical fashion and isn't the first episode a little early to be introducing a QUANTUM LEAP style evil leaper nemesis?
Whilst we're picking fault, having not much else to do, what sort of an enforcement agency sends out an agent with a history of 19th century printing techniques in his head, but doesn't think to give him a map of the city he's in?Top
A recently paroled thief goes back in time to pick up some diamonds that he got half way through stealing in 1977. Logan follows him, taking along the cop that apprehended him in the past. Unfortunately, the cop of the future is nothing like his 1977 self and has a lot of issues to work out, issues that could cost Logan his life and the future.
It's a straightforward enough story, enlivened barely at all by being set in the heart of the disco era and the Big Apple, but helped by William Devane who doesn't know how to give a truly bad performance. Having his son play his younger self at least ensures that they end up looking like each other.Top
1956 Hollywood and an actress destined to become the mother of the 44th President of the USA is threatened by a stalker, one from her own time and one from the future. Can Logan save the day.
It is alarming how uninteresting this episode was in every way. The plot was thin and often ridiculous. The ripper from A Rip In Time is back again already, establishing a nemesis before they even establish a format. Unfortunately, he's not all that threatening, his motivations don't hold water at all and at one point he even threatens to kill the actress with a safe hanging over her head. I mean that only works if you're the Hooded Claw or out to kill Roger Rabbit.
Hemmings is sent back to help Logan, but does nothing except reveal a little cleavage and empty a gun. Logan himself does very little except get fooled too often and too easily. If this show is to have any chance of continuing then it needs to get a hell of a lot better in a hell of a hurry.Top
Ian Pascoe escapes from prison and takes Claire hostage, He arranges to meet Logan in 20's Chicago where he expects to get his pocket watch back in exchange for Claire. It turns out that Pascoe has been creating legendary mobster Al Capone, so it comes as no surprise when Logan falls in with Elliot Ness.
The most dangerous time criminal of all time and the agency manages not only to let him walk out of a maximum security prison where security seems to be just one guard, but they then allow him to freely pass back in time just to save one member of their team. Somehow, this strikes me as being not very likely. I mean with the whole population of time at risk does the life of one person mean a thing?
The rest of the plot is by the numbers and sticks to the template of bad guy and good guy battling it out amongst famous people from history. It's already getting a bit stale. Well, very stale actually. It certainly doesn't help when the show is concentrating on a duel with just one bad guy all the time. A bit more variation would be nice.Top
A future criminal takes a laptop full of advanced technical knowledge back to Nazi Germany. His plan is to alter who wins the war and make a ton of money as a result. To prove his faith, he plans to arm the first V2 rocket with a nuclear warhead. Can Logan stop him when he doesn't speak a word of German?
Altering the course of World War 2 was an inevitable story to appear in this show. It wasn't a matter of if, but when. Sadly, the quality of the story was not so inevitable. Nazi Germany took over the whole of continental Europe and a good part of Africa and beyond before they were stopped. Showing the nazis as being a bunch of incompetents doesn't really ring true. Here, they open fire with automatic weapons in a crowded public area and kill the man who might very possibly be their best chance of winning the war? I don't think so. It's poor plotting and sloppy direction. Only the trip back to a future under Nazi rule shows any interest.
Limited resources is not something that should stifle ambition in a show, but there is also something called knowing your limits. To date, the production has steered clear of big historic moments and told intimate stories that required little in the way of period setting to establish time and place. Wandering around the Third Reich means a lot of scenery and it goes OK until they try to create a V2 launching site with a couple of computer banks and a tin rocket in a field. It's pitiful and it looks it, undermining any efforts that had gone before.Top
A time ripple is detected in Logan's home town when he was just a kid. A one time friend has gone back in order to change Logan's past, turning him into a notorious criminal hunted by the people he once called friends. Now he has to find a way to convince them that he is telling the truth in order to save their lives and his future.
Alternate worlds are the bread and butter of science fiction shows. Set up a format and establish the characters and then turn them all into someone else. It's usually fun, but only works if you are invested in the characters and the world that they inhabit. TIMECOP hasn't managed that level of investment yet, so this just doesn't quite make it happen.Top
On the eve of war in 1939, time criminals hijack a ship carrying refugees escaping Europe for America. Aboard is a fortune in gold, far too much to be brought back through the time stream, so the question is how are the criminals planning to profit from their crime. Logan and Claire go back to find out, meeting Claire's grandmother along the way.
This episode shows everything that is wrong with this series. It starts off with lengthy exposition about what is going on so that Logan is fully briefed and the audience is already bored. The personal involvement is introduced and turns out to be cringemakingly sappy all the way through. The crime shows some evidence of ingenuity, but the fact that it is being carried out by only three people beggars belief. Then there is the fact that Logan could have sorted the whole thing out in five minutes if he had bothered to tie up the first criminal that he knocked unconscious, a failure that the team goes on to repeat at least one more time.
The level of ineptitude in the writing is impossible to forgive and the actors aren't doing enough with their limited charisma to overcome such major problems.Top
Matuzek and Logan are murdered, but Hemmings and Easter refuse to leave it at that. Hemmings goes back in time and warns Logan, giving him 10 hours in which to solve his own murder before it happens.
At last, an episode that is even half interesting. The idea of trying to prevent a murder that hasn't happened is actually interesting. It does descend into bog standard police procedural and there is some very painful emotional cliche moments along the way, but it at least shows some promise. Not much, but some.Top
The Future, Jack, The Future
Logan and his partner save the American Civil War only to find that their equipment is faulty, risking their lives. Another ripple appears in the team headquarters in the year 1990 takes them back to an abandoned time sled. Logan's partner takes an unscheduled trip and suddenly the technology suppliers to the agency are having major problems with their finances.
Bruce Campbell of EVIL DEAD fame makes a guest appearance as Logan's partner and it immediately signals exactly where this plot is going and there are no surprises from there on in.Top
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