Going Back in Time with Outright Classic Geek Picks
Next week is what many of us have been waiting for- New Comics! So, to close our (hopefully) last weekly edition of Outright Classic Geek Picks, we’ve decided to go back in time. If our amazing staff had anything they’d like to go back a couple of months and keep this pandemic from ever happening. Since we haven’t figured out quantum mechanics just yet, we’ll just have to pick our favorite things that involve time travel. It could be from TV, movies, books or anything in between.
Let’s get started with Angel first…
Angel: Doctor Who
There’s so much to enjoy about Doctor Who for me: adventures, time travel, science fiction, heartwarming stories, and so much more. I introduced my mom and my nieces to it, so now it’s a thing we all share a love for. It can seem like a daunting show to dive into, but there are plenty of jumping on points with different Doctors. Once you get into the groove, you grasp the concept and can explore from there. My first and favorite episode has to be Vincent and the Doctor, about the Doctor and his companion befriending Vincent van Gogh. I caught the end of the episode before leaving for my Art History class one morning and loved it so much I cried. I’ve been a fan ever since.
Jan: My Doctor!
I love the Matt Smith Doctor. My first ever Doctor Who episode was The Eleventh Hour. It not only introduced the Eleventh Doctor but Amy Pond too! Karen Gillian and Smith have such a great chemistry. I could watch that episode over and over! It’s that good!
John: Keep Your Eyes Open!
The Time of Angles and Flesh & Stone the two episodes of Doctor Who which won me over to being a Whovian. The Weeping Angles, a start ship crash, a trap & aA forest in a bottle on a spaceship in a maze. River Song, Amy & the 11th Doctor very early into Matt Smith’s run & it’s just the best thing ever! Even if you’re not a Doctor Who fan, the ending will have you rewinding the whole episodes & rewatching both.
William: My Doctor!
Dr. Who the Tom Baker years is still my favorite after all these years and of course Quantum Leap!
Kevin: Mortal Kombat 11
Two Johnnys, ’nuff said.
Raven: Back to the Future
88 MPH, Baby!
Tarah: Life is Strange
My pick this week is the video game Life is Strange. In the first Life is Strange there is a really impactful time travel sequence in episode 3 where Max uses her powers to go back to a pivotal moment in her best friend Chloe’s life. Basically, Chloe’s Dad dies via a car accident and Max seeing how much Chloe misses her Dad and their life with him in it decides to change that. It of course sets of the butterfly effect changing the future for both Max and Chloe. When Max returns from changing that one moment it effectively ruins Chloe’s life. She now is the one who ends up in a car accident wheelchair bound and on a breathing machine. While Chloe may have her Dad her life is not really any better and Max is horrified.
An unorthodox choice, my pick is Slaughterhouse-5. Essentially an anti-war novel masquerading as a Sci-Fi story, Slaughterhouse-5 is not only my favorite Kurt Vonnegut book, but one of my favorite books of all time. Unlike most stories of this genre, which use time travel to accomplish something within the story, Vonnegut uses it to examine the life of his main character and to reflect on his own war time experiences. Billy Pilgrim has become unstuck in time. Everything in Slaughterhouse-5 happened, more or less.
David: Godzilla Vs. King Ghidorah (1991)
One of the more interesting entries from the Heisei Era, this movie was was made partially to capitalize on the popularity of the Back to the Future sequels. A Japanese author discovers reports from WW2 that suggest that a proto-Godzilla dinosaur attacked American troops in 1944, while time travelers arrive with the desire to save Japan from Godzilla’s destruction. The time travelers go to the 1944 and remove the dinosaur from the island, which would be nuked in 1954. They secretly leave behind three little creatures in the dinosaur’s place. Jump back to 1991, those creatures have mutated into King Ghidorah, and our time travelers are using it to subjugate Japan. Japan’s only option is to recreate Godzilla, luckily there’s a nuclear sub nearby, and BAM new Godzilla. Fights ensue, buildings are smash, more time travel, BAM Mecha-King Ghidorah and more fighting. The consequences of this movie will be felt in the later Heisei entries, but as Godzilla movies go, continuity be damned.
I’m, of course, picking a comic, and my fave time-traveling comics (outside of the X-Men, but who has time to write about that?) is Mark Millar and Sean Murphy’s good-timing buddy scientist time-traveling comedy/adventure Chrononauts. Two super smart science pals break the laws of physics, travel through time, and have some crazy adventurous times through the timestream as they struggle with making sure time itself isn’t destroyed and having the most fun possible. It’s a tricky line to walk. A special shoutout to the followup series Chrononauts: Futureshock with artist Eric Canete; same time-travling shenanigans with some real-world meta fun going on along with everything. Don’t let this one pass you by.
Eli: Time Bandits
Monty Python’s wacky tale follows a little boy who goes on a time traveling adventure with a gang of dwarf thieves. They encounter various periods in history while battling mythical beasts, monsters, giants, and even the Ultimate Evil. The movie is also a deep philosophical exploration of human nature. In one scene, young Kevin asks the Supreme Being why evil exists, who simply replies; “it has something to do with Free Will”. That line always stuck with me. Funny and highly imaginative, this movie is a childhood favorite. I even had the comic book adaptation as a kid.
Tell Us How You Really Feel, Leroy
Endgame. Because Back to the Future was bullshit.
Don: Planet of the Apes
I went back in time to choose the movie:
Planet of the Apes (1968). It stars Charlton Heston, Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, and Maurice Evans, among others. While most people may not connect time travel to this movie, or perhaps forgot about that part of the movie, it is a key element. Four astronauts leave Earth in 1972 and end up crash landing on a planet in the year 3978, over two thousands years into the future. What they find there is shocking! On this planet, the apes are the dominant species. They speak and act like human beings, and the actual human beings are their slaves who are all mute. While only one of the astronauts survive (Charlton Heston), what he discovers at the end of the movie was even more shocking! If you haven’t seen it, put this on your watch list. It’s a jaw dropper! This sci-fi classic is based on the book by Pierre Boulle, who also wrote the novel, The Bridge Over the River Kwai. The screenplay was written by Michael Wilson and Rod Serling, known for his The Twilight Zone television series. And the ending sure does feel like you’re in the Twilight Zone! Brilliant!
Sean: The Best and The Worst
The best time travel stories are the ones that understand you CANNOT change the past: 12 Monkeys (the original movie, not the bs TV show) and furthermore you actually don’t WANT to change anything as the consequences can be completely unpredictable and radical: A Sound of Thunder (Ray Bradbury prose).
WORST time travel film.. Endgame..(just to rile up some people).. But seriously, I don’t like using Time Travel as a tool to REVERSE things.. again.. you can’t change the past.
Zack’s Literary Pick
The original time travel epic The Time Machine by H.G. Wells. It’s well written, it’s a relatively quick read, and it has very little faith in humanity.
Here’s Sean Again
Here’s a CURVEBALL nomination, for Time Travel (kind of).. more like preominition of the future and trying to change the results (with again.. HEAVY CONSEQUENCES for doing so): Final Destination (ps I miss Devon Sawa.. Stan, Idle Hands, SLC Punk! Casper, etc ).
Tony: A Legendary Pick
Of all the Arrowverse shows, I love DC’s Legends of Tomorrow best. A consistent time travel series that is completely unpredictable as it doesn’t follow any established comic book series. I do hate that most of the costumed heroes have been replaced by your average Joe in a tee-shirt and cargos. But the writing, acting and creativity of this show has not diminished one bit!