01/07/2009. Contributed by Geoff Willmetts
pub: BearManor Media. 246 page illustrated enlarged paperback. Price: $29.95 (US), £15.00 (UK) but you really have to look around for it to get a decent price. ISBN: 159393-119-0.
check out website: www.bearmanormedia.com
You know how it is. You want to do some research and rather than re-read one book on the subject, you see what else is out there. Such is the case I had with 'Quantum Leap'. Rather interestingly, only three books about the series out there and all out of print. Saying that, when I got this one, 'Another Time, Another Place - Quantum Leap', I discovered that it was a second printing. Rather rare amongst books about SF TV series but also demonstrates the fan support 'Quantum Leap' has had over the years. Part of the reason I'm reviewing it here is just in case any of you are fans out there didn't know about it and if you can't locate a copy at a reasonable price, it might be worth approaching publisher BearManor Media and see if they will go to a third reprint.
There's a lot of information packed into this book and like a lot of unusual successful SF TV series had a hard time getting off the ground so to speak. Considering that its show-runner/creator was Don Bellisario, whose previous credits include successful shows like 'Magnum P.I.' and 'Airwolf', you would have thought that this would have been a foregone conclusion. The real stumbling block was getting the studios to understand the premise.
For those not in the know or can't remember, 'Project Quantum Leap' allowed the projection of one man, Doctor Samuel Beckett (actor Scott Bakula), to time travel in the space of his own life-time, transposing and replacing people and sorting out their problems before jumping again. Only he's kinda stuck with little chance of returning to his own time. He's aided from the future by a hologram projection of Admiral Albert Calavicci (actor Dean Stockwell) who fills him in on the stuff he didn't retain during the jump. In many respects, the time jumps themselves are the Science Fiction aspect of the shows, the rest is more a sort of human interest anthology series. To keep going for five years despite being moved to tough viewer spots on American television speaks more for its fan devotion who kept it going before the dreaded axe.
This book interviews creators Don Bellisario and Deborah Pratt as well as actors Scott Bakula and Dean Stockwell, plus an episode guide. The synopsises might be small but they are complete and come with all the relevant info to look out for if you're re-watching the series on DVD. A couple of the appendixes feel more like padding than not but the number of Emmy nominations and awards is quite impressive for a SF series. As I understand it, some of the music tracks had to be replaced for the DVD release and it's a shame information about this wasn't covered.
Has the book helped my research. Yep! Expect me to get it completed in the next couple months, especially as I have a line in explanation as how the series wasn't 'jumping the shark'. Oh boy!
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