The second episode of Timeless, titled “The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln,” takes us back to April 14, 1865. Flynn travels back to the time of President Lincoln’s infamous assassination to work alongside actor and murderer John Wilkes Booth, and our trio of heroes must hurry after him to stop any changes he’ll make to history. But Lucy, Rufus and Wyatt find their roles to preserve history more difficult than they imagined, as they realize the full impact the assassination will have on post-Civil War America.
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Coping with a New History
When Lucy returns to Mason Industries, she confronts those in charge about her sister’s disappearance. She grabs at her locket and opens it to show them a photo of her sister, Amy. Mason is fascinated with the necklace and claims that Lucy must have taken it from another timeline.
While helping Lucy get dressed in the styles of 1865, Jiya, a Mason Industries employee and Rufus’ potential love interest, offers to help piece together Lucy’s new timeline in order to help her find her sister. Lucy accepts her help graciously.
While the others get ready, Mason speaks to Rufus and hands him a recorder. Rufus brings up “Rittenhouse,” but Mason quickly orders him to never speak of that name.
Visiting the Ford’s Theatre and the Herndon House
Lucy, Wyatt and Rufus travel back in time to 1865 in search of Flynn. As they step out of the time machine, they witness fireworks light up the night sky. Lucy informs her colleagues that people are celebrating; the Civil War has just ended.
While Lucy and Wyatt search Ford’s Theatre for traces of Booth, Rufus remains outside. A group of black soldiers approach, and one introduces himself to Rufus as Nicholas Biddle and soon asks him to write notices of missing family members for him, as he’s unable to do so himself. Unfortunately, the soldier realizes that Rufus is not a real soldier but instead a man in a costume, and Rufus runs away.
Lucy, meanwhile, finds Booth’s mail at the theatre, where he’s forwarded his letters. President Lincoln’s son, Robert Todd Lincoln, approaches and greets her; after glancing at a conveniently placed poster for Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, she nervously introduces herself as actress Juliet Shakesmen. He is there to return tickets, as he and General Grant won’t be able to make the play that night. Booth enters the theatre room, and Lincoln is pleased to see him, to Lucy’s surprise. He recounts a time when Booth’s older brother, a popular actor, saved him from a train, and he tells him that the Lincolns owe the Booths a “great debt.”
Lucy, Wyatt and Rufus meet up again outside and head to Booth’s residence, the Herndon house, where he often met with conspirators. Rufus admits that he wants to stop Lincoln’s assassination, as he knows what terrible effects the event will have on African Americans, but Lucy reminds him that they can’t change history.
Flynn spots the trio from inside the house and opens fire at them. Wyatt shoots back but is shot in the abdomen. They retreat to a hotel, where Wyatt makes Rufus remove the bullet from his side and stitch him up. There, Lucy theorizes that Flynn will attempt to alter the timeline by assisting Booth and his conspirators in the murder of not only President Lincoln but also General Grant, Vice President Andrew Johnson and Secretary of State William H. Seward, which could have potentially devastating consequences on their present-day America.
Foiling Flynn’s Plans
Lucy races to the train, where General Grant and Robert Todd Lincoln plan to board. She finds the train motionless, with men working on repairs. The young Lincoln approaches her and informs her that he and Grant will now be seeing the play at Ford’s Theatre after all. He invites Lucy to come along with him, and she accepts, telling him where he can pick her up.
As she leaves the station, Flynn sneaks up behind her. They argue about his interference with history, and she reminds him of how he murdered his own family. He angrily replies that he didn’t murder his family; Rittenhouse did. He reveals that Rittenhouse isn’t a single man but rather a group, and he tells Lucy that he’s trying to save America from destruction.
Lucy arrives back at the hotel with a new dress and a supply of guns. She tells Wyatt and Rufus that they must save Grant, Seward and Johnson. They make plans to each stop a murder and save the most important men in America.
Lucy attends the play with young Lincoln, anxiously awaiting his father’s arrival and plotting a way to force Grant to exit the balcony. She feigns a cough, pours herself a glass of water and then spills it on Grant. He leaves to dry himself, out of the way of Booth’s murder for now.
Meanwhile, Wyatt finds a large man outside of Seward’s home and attempts to stop him, but the man overpowers him and they fight inside the Secretary of State’s house, waking Seward and his daughter. Eventually, Wyatt grabs a gun and shoots the man, stopping his attempted murder, before hurrying off.
At a hotel, Rufus spots Johnson’s would-be murderer across the lobby and prepares to confront him, trying to calm his nerves. But before he can shoot the man, Biddle and his fellow soldiers approach him and soon find a gun in Rufus’ coat. Rufus pleads with the soldiers, explaining that he’s there to protect the Vice President. Johnson walks into the lobby and the man with the gun takes aim. Rufus pushes past the soldiers and rams into the man’s arm, effectively disrupting his aim at Johnson. The soldiers quickly draw their guns on the man, and Biddle remarks that Rufus is a real soldier in his eyes.
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On the street, Flynn confronts Booth and aggressively urges him to take more bullets so he can kill the other men. Booth refuses, claiming that he’s planned this night and wants to do it his way. Enraged, Flynn knocks him unconscious and walks toward the theatre in his place.
On the theatre’s balcony, Lucy sits amongst Abraham Lincoln, Mary Todd and their son, as well as Grant, who’s since returned to his seat, and his wife. Flynn barges through the balcony door and looks surprised to see Lucy. She shouts out a warning to Lincoln, against her own decision to not interfere with history, but Flynn shoots him twice in the back of the head. He then takes aim at Grant, but Lucy wrestles with him for the gun, and after losing control, Flynn flees the theatre.
Back to Present Day
Seeing his injuries, Agent Christopher calls a doctor to tend to Wyatt’s wounds. Lucy asks the team who killed Lincoln. She’s told that an unknown gunman assassinated him but that Booth had been conspiring to murder him and was hunted down and killed. Lucy’s upset that history’s been changed, but Agent Christopher tells her to “take the win,” since America and the world are still intact.
Lucy sits with Jiya, who presents her with an updated family tree and explains how the Hindenberg disaster altered her life. Apparently, one of her relatives married someone who was supposed to die on the Hindenberg, which resulted in Lucy’s parents never meeting. Since they never met, they never had children, which is why Lucy’s sister has disappeared. But Lucy wonders how she still exists, only to realize that the man she thought was her father was never her biological parent.
Lucy returns home to an engagement party. She asks her mother to talk about her father, but her mom is angry that she’d bring him up and quickly leaves to grab a drink. From behind, Lucy’s fiance approaches. She turns and greets him, a man she’s never met before in her life.
What did you think of this episode? Was it enough to get you hooked on Timeless?
Timeless season 1 airs Monday nights at 10/9c on NBC. Want more news? Like our Facebook page.
(Image courtesy of NBC)