Netflix's 'Travelers' Is Like 'Back to The Future' Meets 'X-Files'

Tuesday, 20 December 2016 - 2:54PM
Tuesday, 20 December 2016 - 2:54PM
Netflix's 'Travelers' Is Like 'Back to The Future' Meets 'X-Files'
While Hollywood is locked in a continuous cycle of remakes, reboots, and spinoffs, TV has actually seen a burgeoning crop of new, original sci-fi shows, with Netflix leading the pack with shows like 3% and The OA. Now that Netflix's new series Travelers is almost finished wrapping up its first season, it's turned out to be a promising mix of time travel and conspiracy: rather than sending physical bodies back in time in a DeLorean (you know, the conventional way of doing things), the time-travelers in Travelers have their minds teleported directly into the skulls of people in our time. Masquerading as random people, this team of impostors has to prevent the destruction of mankind centuries from now by altering the past (ie, our present). Presumably, a guitar performance of "Johnny B. Goode" will be required.

Still, it's hard for new shows to get exposure when they have to compete with the likes of Westworld and Game of Thrones. Though the show has been out since October, it's mostly been flying under the radar, but it deserves a lot more attention. In case you haven't seen it, here's the trailer:


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One of the things Travelers does well is set up a sci-fi premise that's intuitive and original, then use it as a jumping-off point into even more interesting territory. The characters get caught up in the lives they took over (they're informed by centuries worth of social media info) and end up having to find their places in other people's circles of friends, families, etc, despite being shams. In fact, most of Travelers is pretty frightening when you think about it: a global conspiracy of mind-controlling time travelers is infiltrating everyday life, carrying out secret, commando-style missions, and they look exactly like the people you know and love. This is the kind of thing The X-Files was so perfect at—making a sci-fi show where all the weird stuff is happening just beneath the surface of the ordinary, making you wonder if it could be happening in your life, too. Now that Westworld has blown everyone's mind and won't return 'til 2018, Travelers is the perfect show to fill the hole in your binge-watching schedule.

The new episode of Travelers airs December 26th on Netflix.
Science Fiction
Sci-Fi TV Shows

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