One of my Slice of SciFi editorial contributions: Time Travel

I done messed up; I accidentally erased the original of this post, and I am having to recreate it.  The impetus for this post, and more to follow, is that I do not have the time required for me to generate new stuff every day.

Why every day?  Because apparently that is how you generate traffic to your blog.  The alternative would be to be a very good writer and present quality stuff.  That’s right, I am settling for quantity.  But, as I said, I am lacking in output capacity at the moment.  

In comes my large body of work predating the formation of this blog, part of which were contributions to Slice of SciFi.  

The originals should still be there, but burried under their prodigious amount of content.  These pieces will be seen less here, but will be showcased a little better than at SoSciFi.  

Up first is a piece written while Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles (TTSCC) was still on the air.   This one is about Time Travel (can you tell from the title?)

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Time Travel

I had a hard time writing this, so I took (meaning in the past) a small trip to the future, logged on (meaning in the future) to Slice of SciFi, printed this piece out (in the future), came back (in the past), and here it is. Nice writing, if I will say so myself . . . er . . . do say so myself. By the way, there was a news item on the Slice of SciFi site (in the future) regarding the SciFi Channel switching to 24-hours wrestling format. Apparently in the future no one notices the change, having long since given up on the channel.

But I digress. Time Travel. I had a hard time writing thi . . . wait . . . ah, here we go. 

One of my favorite current TV shows is Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. The stories are good, the characters are good, the action is good . . . I just have to ignore the whole time travel stuff. For one thing, we don’t have a language for it. Tenses in particular are a bit difficult (hence the annotation in the first sentence). For those interested, there are many places on the net exploring the implications, possibility, mechanics, consequences, and even grammar of time travel. Really, most of it is pretty good, and all of it will give you a headache.

My opinion is the time travel plot line in Star Trek: Enterprise is what ultimately caused that show to fail (it did fail, right? Or was that on another timeline? Dang! . . . I should keep track).

While time travel is part of the general TTSCC background story, it’s not shoved down our throat as it has been in some recent movies. It is not in itself the vehicle for moving the story along. Remove the whole time travel idea, and it’s about a group of people who know “smart” machines are plotting to take over the world. Think about it . . . the machines are already there. The characters are fighting a real and present danger. The show tapped into the Terminator franchise, but really the premise could work with “regular” super-robots, without them having to come from the future.

For there is no question Judgment Day will come.

It has to, or the “bad” terminators, the ones who wear pants instead of the occasional miniskirt, would not be here. (Side note: a good sign of impending action scenes is when Summer Glau is wearing pants.) Why, even if they can keep the actual judgment day from occurring, they still have all these Terminators running around. Likely, Judgment Day would just be postponed.

Or is it that once Judgment Day is averted, all these present-day Terminators will cease to exist? In that case, John would cease to exist as well, for Kyle Reese would never have come back to father him. How would that work? Would time “step back” to before the first Terminator movie timeline? Would Arnold suddenly be fit again?

You see, the machines have to strike, or John would not be alive. His existence is immutable proof that it will happen. And that leads to some implications. What follows are spoilers.

. . . well, not really. I don’t know for a fact what I am about to reveal is true or not. It should be, but the writers could pull some sleight of hands, and make it all work out some other way. It would be wrong, but they could do it. Anyway, here it is.

Summer Glau’s character, and Reese (the current one), and all the Terminators, and all associated time travelers from the future, they all have to die or be destroyed before arriving back at their own time. That would close the loop, as it did in the first two movies. My prediction, if the series continues, is that it will end on Judgment Day. Big explosions, smoke, noise, and cool looking Transformer-like machines involved in drastic population control.

All the backward time travelers need to be disposed of, or you end up with two Summer Glau Terminators, and they would be the same one. While some may say that is not a bad thing, it becomes a repeating loop. In fact, if she makes it to the time when she gets sent back, you’d instantly have an infinite number of copies hanging around. In short, the world would be ass-deep in Summer Glau copies. Sort of like a geek’s idea of heaven.