‘Timeless’: Victory or Death

Timeless
“The Alamo”
October 31, 2016

March 5, 1836

Fellow citizens & compatriots –
I am besieged, by a thousand or more of the Mexicans under Santa Anna—I have sustained a continual Bombardment & cannonade for 24 hours & have not lost a man—I shall never surrender or retreat. Then, I call on you in the name of Liberty, of patriotism & everything dear to the American character, to come to our aid, with all dispatch—The enemy is receiving reinforcements daily & will no doubt increase to three or four thousand in four or five days. If this call is neglected, I am determined to sustain myself as long as possible & die like a soldier who never forgets what is due to his own honor & that of his country—Victory or Death.
Lt. Col. William Barret Travis
The Alamo

NOW

Ask Rufus why he’s late to work. Because he doesn’t have a car. Ask why he doesn’t have a car. Because he’s afraid to get into it AFTER RITTENHOUSE HACKED IT. That’s what comes of driving a Prius. Maybe Rufus should consider a classic non-hackable muscle car instead.

spn_pilot_car-on-bridge

Okay, mostly not hackable.

Holy Wayne is all sorry not sorry. He’s more upset that Rufus would think he would sell him out. Holy Wayne insists Rufus is like a son to him. Well, terrible fathers are a Kripke hallmark, so take that for what it’s worth. He’s just glad that Rufus knows now what Rittenhouse is capable of.

“You have to cooperate. We both do.”

Wyatt meets with Agent Christopher. She’s joined by Deputy Director Patrick Ramsey. Her boss. He says it’s an honor. He calls Wyatt a hero. Wyatt is all, is this the part where you tell me to clean out my desk and turn in my badge at security?

“A guy like you doesn’t show up unless it’s to get rid of a guy like me. Sir.”

Ramsey simply says Wyatt hasn’t gotten the job done. Maybe the next guy – Dave Baumgartner – will. A smile tugs at Wyatt’s mouth. He served with Baumgartner in Kandahar. He says he’ll do a good job. He also calls him, “Bam Bam.” No. No thank you. I already hate him.

A hubbub erupts outside of the briefing room. Luka is on the move to March 2, 1836, San Antonio, Texas. Wyatt immediately places him days before Battle of the Alamo.

“I’m from Texas. We all know that one.”

Lucy gets the call and gets into an argument with her mother about her new super secret all hours job. Carol worries that her daughter is throwing away everything she’s ever worked for. And for what? The Lucy she raised uses her head and has her whole life planned out. Lucy snaps that maybe she’s not that person anymore.

And while they’re on the subject of keeping secrets, can they talk about Lucy’s father? Carol won’t even tell her his name. Lucy says she just wants to know who he is.

Y’all, if Luka isn’t somehow Lucy’s father, then Rittenhouse totally is.

On board the Omni, Rufus asks Wyatt to say something strong and reassuring. Between his brush with Rittenhouse and imminent arrival at a place “synonymous with gory and inescapable death” Rufus is in need of it. Just got fired guy is at a bit of a loss. Lucy and Rufus are both stunned. Rufus wonders how he can get fired.

Wyatt says he’s fine with it. He knows the guy they’re bringing in. He tells Lucy she’ll like him better. Case in point – Bam Bam probably won’t worry her by bringing grenades on board the Omni. Wyatt just gets excitable as to choice. He likes to have his options open.

“And what are they going to do? Fire me?”

Luka is led into Santa Anna’s tent while the General is at supper. He wonders how it is that Luka is still alive after infiltrating the camp. A great big sack of money is the answer. A soldier hefts a leather satchel full of gold bullion onto the table. Luka says it’s compliments of Queen Isabella II.

The way that Goran Visnjic rolls his R when he says reina is honestly a panty dropper. And a fine opportunity for a kudos to the actor for his consistent mastery of languages and accents. Bueno played.

Luka says the queen offers the gold and his assistance not to meddle, but as a gift. He’s going to help the general crush the Texian Rebellion once and for all.

Rufus asks if they’re walking into a war as they trudge through the creosote. Lucy tells him they’re four days early for the battle where 4,000 troops kill 180 men in less than an hour. The Time Trio pause to consider what Luka’s end game is. Lucy thinks maybe he wants to make it worse?

“How do you make the Alamo worse?”

Getting into the Alamo isn’t a problem. They just walk through the front door. All hands are needed and welcome at this point. Wyatt expected more soldiers, but Lucy says it’s mostly local ranchers and farmers and their families. Rufus notes a small group of Freemen. Lucy tells him slavery is outlawed in Mexico. She doesn’t note that tensions between the Mexican central government and newly arrived English-speaking settlers over slavery were a contributing factor in the Texas Revolution because that would be awkward.

Oh, look! Shiny thing! Famous historical person!

Wyatt guesses that the guy with the giant honking hunting knife must be Jim Bowie. Lucy takes the lead and quickly get in the weeds with their cover story. Wyatt cuts to the chase and warns the colonel to be on the look out for Luka. He tells Lucy they don’t have time to play cowboy.

Rufus joins a group of men being regaled by Davy, Davy Crockett, king of the wild frontier. Rufus is delighted. He’s got the hat and everything! Lucy joins him and is equally starstruck. Wyatt poops on their fun, reminding them they’re not tourists and to stay on task. Well, someone’s firing has lit a fire under him!

That night Colonel Travis sits at his desk composing the letter that will rally support to the Texian cause. Luka comes into his office. He says he admires what Travis is trying to do. He calls him a revolutionary walking the lonely road for freedom against a corrupt power. And then Luka shoots him.

Wyatt searches the mission for Luka. He climbs up to the top of one of the walls. That’s when he sees the fires of the Mexican army, 4,000 strong and 4 days early. A rider waves the red flag.

No quarter. No prisoners. No surrender.

Wyatt flirts with a ‘game over, man‘ collapse while Lucy pleads with him to focus. They need him. He takes a deep breath and pushes through. Wyatt calmly tells Rufus to find a way out. Make a way if he has to, but they have to get the women and children out, along with the letter. He tells Lucy to finish the draft that Travis started.

Wyatt talks to Bowie but HELP ISN’T COMING YOU’RE ALL GOING TO DIE isn’t as inspiring as one might think.

Luka is also concerned for the civilians. He tries to convince Santa Anna to let them go. The general reminds him that this was his plan. Luka said the letter couldn’t get out, so. No one leaves the Alamo alive. Santa Anna throws Luka’s words back at him, the same ones he said to Max Headroom in the Nevada desert.

“This is war. There are sacrifices.”

Morning. The sound of a bugle rings through the air. Rufus climbs up onto one of the walls. He asks Davy Crockett what’s up with the music. Crockett says it’s meant to keep them up at night. He doesn’t mind it.

“When the music stops … that’s when you gotta worry.”

Rufus asks if Crockett knows a way out. Sure. “Main gate. 3,000 man welcome committee.” Crockett passes Rufus his water skin. Rufus does his best not to choke on it. Crockett chuckles and says there’s more whisky than water in the mission now that Santa Anna blocked the aqueduct.

Aqueduct you say? Huzzah! A way out of the mission! The women and children are saved! The only flaw in the plan is that access is through a softball sized hole in the chapel.

firefly-serenity-grenades

Things are going equally well with the letter. Lucy is stymied by the pressure of getting every single word right.  Wyatt rubs his eyes and wearily says it’s just a letter. He snaps at her to get out of her head and just write something. Say whatever she wants. Write from the heart and stop pretending. Wyatt shouts that the dress up and grade school drama is keeping him from doing his job!  But maybe he’s not the guy for the job anymore.

Wyatt’s crisis of confidence is interrupted by a cannon blast. There’s a flurry of activity in the courtyard as men hurriedly take defensive positions. Cannonballs fall and explode around them. One goes whizzing past Wyatt’s head. He barely notices it.

He runs into the open to pull a boy from under a pile of rubble. But as he clears the debris all he sees is one of his men from Afghanistan. All he hears is the pounding of his own heart.  Another explosion brings him back and he carries the boy to safety.

Rufus is in the chapel trying to pick axe his way through three feet of stone. Davy Crockett comes in with the good news that 1,000 men have joined Santa Anna’s force. Rufus ask how he does it. How is he not screaming in terror? Crockett points out that Rufus isn’t screaming.

cersei-screaming-internally

“On the outside.”

Davy lets him in on a secret. That whole bear wrestling story he was telling earlier? Never happened. Oh, there was a bear and Crockett pissed himself when she charged him. He shot wild and fell into a creek, scared out of his mind. Then he went back to camp and told his men he wrestled a bear. One handed.

“Because sometimes, folks need a leader who can wrestle a bear.”

Bowie thanks Wyatt for pulling young John from under the collapsed wall and saving his life. Also, reinforcements aren’t coming and Santa Anna’s forces are growing. “It won’t be long now.”

Wyatt says Rufus will find a way to get the women and children out, but they have to buy him the time. He suggests pulling men off the north wall to bottleneck the incoming forces at that one point, rather than trying to defend all four walls. It won’t stop them, but it will slow them down.

Bowie realizes Wyatt has done this before. Wyatt says his battle was nowhere near Texas, but it was similar. They were pinned down, out manned, and out gunned. He was the only one who made it out. He doesn’t know how long his men lasted. He left them behind. He says there was a piece of important intelligence that had to get out.  He and his buddy Zachary were the only two not wounded, so they flipped a coin.

He says Zach told him he was meant to survive. “Like it was fate. As if that’s a thing.” Six men held off 100 fighters so Wyatt could escape.

“I left them there to die … and they gave me a medal for it.”

Matt Lanter crushes this scene.  Kudos.

Lucy has been sitting behind Wyatt tearing sheets up for bandages. She heard the whole conversation. She goes back to Travis’ office and puts pen to paper.

When I was young I read stories about great heroes doing great deeds. The truth is, real heroes don’t look at all like I pictured. They’re far from perfect. Bullheaded. Stubborn. Reckless. And also recklessly brave. They charge in without a thought to themselves. Not without fear or doubt, but in spite of it. We are all scared, but we are going to fight and die anyway to give everyone else a chance at a better future. Because the future matters.
Victory or Death
Signed, the men and women of the Alamo

Rufus stares down at the hole that hasn’t gotten any bigger and finally, FINALLY, has a grenade sized light bulb go off over his head.

And then the music stops.

Shooting shooting shooting when did Wyatt learn how to use a muzzle loader shooting shooting shooting.

Rufus wraps up the grenades and carefully places them under the chapel floor. Then he pulls the pin and drops a final one in. FIRE IN THE HOLE!

He leads the women and children to safety while Lucy goes to collect Wyatt. He’s in the middle of another flashback when she finds him. He looks at the men fighting and dying around him and says he’s not going.

He can’t leave good men like this. Not again.

He tells Lucy that everyone he cares about is gone. He can do one final good thing and buy her the time to get out. Lucy pleads with him. She and Rufus are counting on him. Wyatt says the next guy will handle it. Lucy yells that she doesn’t want anybody else. She grabs his face in both her hands.

“I. Trust. You.”

Rufus needs him. She needs him.

Wyatt looks overwhelmed but decides they’re the ones he can’t leave behind. He tells Lucy to get ready to run. They make it to the chapel along with an injured young John. Wyatt helps Rufus with the evacuation. Lucy realizes that John is Travis’ messenger. She says he has to come with them. He has to deliver the letter to General Houston.

Bowie and Crockett enter the chapel. The mission is overrun. Crocket says to be sure to tell everyone he fought off a thousand of them. One handed.

Lucy enlists Wyatt’s aid in convincing John to leave. She says he’s going to become the first mayor of San Antonio. He has to take the letter. Wyatt tells the boy he understands that he wants to stay and fight and die with the only family he knows.

“Sometimes the hardest thing in the world is to do the job. To be the only one to have to leave.”

Wyatt’s voice shifts to the hard bark of a commanding officer. He tells John that those are the orders. The boy looks to Bowie. The colonel gives him a nod. Those are the orders. John takes the letter and Wyatt helps him to the tunnel.

As Santa Anna’s men pound at the door, Bowie tells Wyatt not to ask him to leave. He can’t leave his people. Wyatt says he can’t leave his. Bowie hands him his big honking knife. “Can’t let them have it, now can I?” Before he leaves, Wyatt promises Bowie that he and his men will not die for nothing.

The promise is confirmed with the Time Trio return to the hangar. Wyatt says Lucy must have written one hell of a letter. As per usual, the celebration of history saved is overshadowed by the whole Luka still being alive thing. Lucy says in their defense that he did have a very large army at his back this time. Ramsey curtly tells Wyatt he’s relieved of duty.

Lucy calls shenanigans. She tells Ramsey that they’re the ones risking their lives. She trusts Wyatt. He makes the right choice every time and she won’t do it without him. Rufus backs his team.

We won’t do it without him.”

Rufus cuts off Holy Wayne’s protest. He says he knows he’s supposed to shut up and cooperate but he can’t. He won’t. Christopher is like, well he’s our only pilot, so.  Ramsey grudgingly folds. He says he can’t imagine what Wyatt has done to deserve such loyalty. Christopher gives the team a tight, ‘well played’ smile.

Lucy trudges into the living room. Carol is waiting for her and is ready to go Round Two. Lucy puts her head in her mother’s lap. She says she doesn’t want to fight anymore. Life is too short.

Without preamble Carol says she was a junior and he was a professor who was handsome, loved to argue, and wanted to go into politics. When Carol told him she was pregnant he said all of the things he was supposed to. “Back then that’s what you did.”

HAH! Back then. The 80’s.

Carol says she didn’t want to marry him. She barely knew him. She hasn’t heard from him since. Carol tells Lucy that she has no regrets. Then she hands her daughter a slip of paper with his name.

Wyatt catches Dave before he leaves. ‘Bam Bam’ says no one will tell him anything, but if Wyatt is a part of it, clearly it is FUBAR. He asks when Wyatt is coming back to base. They’re prepping for an op. All the boys are a part of it. Wyatt says he’ll be in his current assignment for a while. “I got a new team.”

Timeless airs Monday at 9:00 p.m. on NBC.

Whitney is also watching Supernatural and Hawaii Five-0. Follow her on twitter @Watcher_Whitney.

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