Review of Quantum Leap Ep 18 “Judgment Day,” the Season Finale


Scene from the Quantum Leap episode “Judgment Day.”

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As I write this (Tuesday evening, April 4th), I just finished watching Quantum Leap S1 E18 Judgment Day and yes there were “Terminator” references.

I was impressed. The writers pulled out all the stops, and while the episode wasn’t perfect, it was very good, very dramatic, and totally action packed. It was also not what I expected.

As always, Spoiler Alert!

As we saw from last week, Ben first leaps into the future, 2051 to be exact, to the Quantum Leap project which has been destroyed. An aging Ian is alone, waiting for Ben and the snowfall is caused by nuclear winter, suggesting a worldwide nuclear war (so why isn’t the Los Angeles area completely destroyed as in the 1991 film Terminator 2: Judgment Day since it would be a primary target?).

L.A. nuked

Scene from the 1991 film Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Ian said there are very few people left. They are the only survivor of the project, and they were barely able to find someone for Ben to leap into. Question, unless Ian knew exactly when Ben would arrive, how would they know when to have someone stand by? It didn’t sound like they could have known, but they instantly recognized Ben in whoever he leapt into.

In the present, Ian keeps picking up a kind of ghost signature of Ben and keeps losing it. Janice suddenly appears again (as if by magic since the plot once again requires her…otherwise she’s presumably kept in a maintenance closet powered down until needed). Ian says it’s like the accelerator is “confused” and Janice (or Janis) says it’s because it wasn’t designed to send anyone into the future. Also, there’s no visual because “the future.”

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Review of Quantum Leap Ep 16 “Ben, Interrupted”


QUANTUM LEAP — “Ben Interrupted” Episode 116 — Pictured: Raymond Lee as Dr. Ben Song — (Photo by: Ron Batzdorff/NBC)

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Every single time the Quantum Leap people say “this is the episode that’s the best” and so forth, why, oh why do I find that they aren’t quite right?

The Quantum Leap season 1, episode 16 show Ben, Interrupted aired on Monday, March 20th.

Of course, the title is no mystery, it recalls Girl, Interrupted (1999)

Based on writer Susanna Kaysen’s account of her 18-month stay at a mental hospital in the late 1960s.

It also recalls the original series episode Shock Theater. Ben leaps into private detective Liam O’Connell who deliberately has himself committed into a 1954 mental hospital to free a woman named Judith who was committed by her husband for “hysteria,” possibly because she kept miscarrying when they tried to have children (I’d love to have seen that cretin come to justice).

The obvious source I certainly hope everyone who wrote this episode read was Ken Kesey’s 1962 novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Next. I probably read the book before any of them were ever born.

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