Time Warp

Why is it, that many science fiction episodes resort to the ‘obligatory’ time loop episode? The episode where day after day, one of the main characters realizes that their day just keeps repeating. It usually takes them a time or two before they accept that it is not Deja Vu, at which point they begin to try to make others understand what is going on – often to the point of frustration. Of course, eventually they figure out how to break the cycle, often with a lot of hassle involved.

For me, the use of a time loop as a plot device ranks up there with flashback and musical episodes. Frequently, time loop episodes are used for comedic effect. However, all too often they are executed poorly and advance the plot very little, if at all. I understand that other people like them, but they are just not my cup of tea.

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6 thoughts on “Time Warp

  1. The only instance of I know of is the Star Trek TGN episode “Cause and Effect”, and I thought it was pretty original and well done. I can see how it would get annoying to see it over and over again, though.

    1. StarGate SG1 and Supernatural have each done one. (It was the latter that inspired this post) There are bound to be others, including the movie Groundhog Day.

      1. Hm…guess I’m not the sci-fi buff I thought I was! I’ve actually never seen Stargate, Supernatural or (shock) Groundhog Day, though I do want to see the latter. Glad to know Star Trek got there first, then!

  2. Loved Groundhog day and love time loop stories. Loved ‘Cause and Effect.’ I suspect that more people like them than not or they wouldn’t be so popular
    Ditto the same about going back in time and righting a wrong. People like those stories Although not a film, (Harry Harrison’s The Stainless Steel Rat Saves the World comes to mind and Star Trek IV and the voyage home.
    🙂 🙂

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