Quantum Leap: what if it had been made 20 years earlier?

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Aquehonga, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. Aquehonga

    Aquehonga Fleet Captain

    Had QL came on in March 1969 & went off in May 1973.

    Who would the cast of this Quantum Leap have been?

    Robert Culp, William Windom, Dean Spockwell, Michael Douglas or, someone else not suggested here, as Dr. Sam Beckett. Beckett's bio is basically the same except either WWII or Korea are the war which affected his family directly. Instead of Vietnam.

    Martin Balsam, Abe Vigoda, Jackie Gleason, Jonathan Harris, or, someone else not suggested here, as Al. Al in this is either a WWII or Korean War vet. Instead of Nam.

    The role(s) of Deborah Pratt on QL, both onscreen & off, could've been provided by Majel Barrett in this imaginary 1969-1973 QL. Unless you can think of someone else.

    What do you imagine this Quantum Leap would've been like?
     
  2. The Laughing Vulcan

    The Laughing Vulcan Admiral Admiral

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  3. Aquehonga

    Aquehonga Fleet Captain

    I've seen Irwin Allen's The TIME TUNNEL:D

    Caught it on AmericanLifeTV Network last year.

    Still comes on there Thursday nights at 9: pm.

    Dean Spockwell may've been on TTT in a guest-role. Maybe:confused:

    TJ Hooker would've made a good Sam on an early 70's QL also.
     
  4. Mistral

    Mistral Vice Admiral Admiral

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    It would have been cheesy(er) as network TV was mostly unsophisticated at that time, with MASH and All In The Family yet to arrive on the scene...
     
  5. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The history, the controversial subjects wouldn't be touched on or have as big as an impact.

    It might be like the Twilight Zone or campy like Star Trek. Sam would probably be able to go home every week in his hi-tech time chamber.

    Robbie the robot would be his A.L.(artificial lifeform)
     
  6. diankra

    diankra Commodore Commodore

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    In the very best possible version that could have been made then... the 'kisses with history' would have the central aspect of the series's format. Every leap would have had to have had an easily explained impact on keeping history 'on track' - if Sam jumped into a local doctor, he'd deliver Mrs Truman's baby Harry; if he was a sailor on a World War 2 patrol boat, he'd be instrumental in his skipper JFK's survival after its sinking... etc.
     
  7. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Uhh... it's Dean Stockwell, not Spockwell. He doesn't have pointed ears.

    And in 1969, William Windom would've been 46, closer to Al's age than Sam's. And he was definitely more the grizzled sidekick type than the leading man type.

    And they did make QL 20 years earlier, and called it The Time Tunnel. Honestly, they have exactly the same setup. The main difference is that TTT was about travelling between different important historical events that could be represented by stock footage from old movies, while QL was an anthology disguised as an ongoing series, dropping its lead character into different dramatic situations at various points in recent history but shying away from big events.

    If QL had been made in 1969, it probably would've been less like QL and more like TTT. Part of the reason for QL's format was that it was a reaction to decades of time-travel stories that focused on big historical events. To some degree, it was specifically trying to be different from TTT and other shows and films that used that cliche. 20 years earlier, it wouldn't have been seen as such a cliche, and television and popular culture in general wouldn't have been at a point where they sought to deconstruct previous pop-culture cliches.

    On the other hand, QL's pseudo-anthology drama approach is very '60s in its way, reminiscent of shows like The Fugitive. So maybe a show using its format, taking a more grounded, dramatic approach and keeping the sci-fi elements (and associated expense) to a minimum, could've come along in the '60s, if it had occurred to someone to try it. Maybe Rod Serling could've pulled it off. It would've been seen as a very innovative approach to genre TV, bringing a new maturity to it, but that very maturity would've made it much harder to sell the idea to executives with preconceptions about what sci-fi was like. On the other hand, the pseudo-anthology format could've helped sell it, since it's a format the execs were already familiar with.
     
  8. Aquehonga

    Aquehonga Fleet Captain

    Thank you for your feedback Christopher:techman:

    I didn't realize William Windom was 46 in 1969:o

    William Windom is tad older than I thought. Windom played the U.S. President in "Escape from the Planet of the Apes" didn't he?

    As you & The Laughing Vulcan pointed out, Irwin Allen's "The Time Tunnel" was essentially a 60's QL. TTT reruns air Thursday nights on AmericanLifeTV at 9: pm.

    I saw TTT for the first time last year on that cable/satellite network. IMO, TTT is a great idea, but disappointing in it's execution. Some episodes had me thinking :censored: & saying :wtf::confused: to myself.

    As you suggested, Rod Serling could've made a quality '69-'73 QL. If Mr. Serling were unavailable, John Newland, Joseph Stefano or Ben Brady would have made good choices as executive producer for a '69-'73 QL series.

    Christopher, are you related to Tony?
     
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    ^Tony Bennett's real name is Anthony Benedetto. We're not related.
     
  10. Captaindemotion

    Captaindemotion Vice Admiral Admiral

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    They did do the JFK assassination, though, didn't they? IIRC, they took a position very contrary to that then popular in the media (Stone's JFK, Ruby, etc) by having Oswald as the assassin.
     
  11. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Commodore Commodore

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    Since I first saw this thread I have been trying to think of who would have been an appropriate actor to cast as Sam Beckett back in 69.

    I was completely stumped until I just had this idea -

    Bill Bixby

    I am partially basing this on the fact that he also starred in a pseudo-anthology drama The Incredible Hulk. Bixby had a similar likable "Every Man" quality which kept viewers interested in mostly new characters and situations each week.

    But also he would have been the perfect age in this period. While his role as David Banner was nearly a decade away in 1969 Bill Bixby was still only 36.

    He was primarily know at that time for starring in a Sitcom. Which would have been approprate. While QL tended to be drama the role of Sam Beckett often required comedic reactions to the situations he found himself in.
     
  12. Aquehonga

    Aquehonga Fleet Captain

    I knew Tony Bennett's real moniker.

    I was just being silly:D

    My bad:o

    I would've added more Bennetts to my goofy question, but none came to mind:brickwall:
     
  13. Captaindemotion

    Captaindemotion Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^Not even Harve, of TWOK fame? Tut, tut!
     
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Yes, but that was a major exception to the show's usual rule, which is why it's so well-remembered. And Bellisario made that exception largely in response to Oliver Stone's JFK, which had come out the previous year; Bellisario had actually been slightly acquainted with Oswald in the '50s (I believe their meeting is dramatized in the episode), was convinced he acted alone, and wanted to counter the conspiracy-theory rubbish in Stone's film.


    As it happens, Harve Bennett has a son who shares my first name and my year of birth. That's part of the reason I use my middle initial in my professional byline -- so Trek fans won't think I'm that Christopher Bennett. (And Harve Bennett's real name is Harve Bennett Fischman.)
     
  15. Aquehonga

    Aquehonga Fleet Captain

    How fallible of me:brickwall:

    Man, what a dumb oversight:o

    Yup, Harve Bennett, who played a SF Admiral in STV:TFF yes?
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Yeah, as well as producing and co-writing ST II through V.
     
  17. Aquehonga

    Aquehonga Fleet Captain

    Was Harve Bennett involved, production-wise, with TNG, DS9 &/or V'GER?

    Or just ST II-V?

    Do you think Harve Bennett would've been a good executive producer for Quantum Leap had Donald Bellisario not been available & Harve Bennett was offered & accepted the position?
     
  18. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Commodore Commodore

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    Donald Bellisario created Quantum Leap. It was his baby. He never would have given it up for someone else to produce.

    I actually think they reverse would have been true. Donald Bellisario could have produced Star Trek at some point. He would be ideally suited.
     
  19. Aquehonga

    Aquehonga Fleet Captain

    Thanks Mr. Draper:techman:

    I didn't realize Don Bellisario is to QL what Gene Roddenberry is to ST:o

    I agree with you re:Bellisario making Trek. In fact I was just thinking, wondering about that very thing earlier today.

    I like your suggestion of Bill Bixby as Sam in the what if? '69-'73 QL. Who would you cast as Al in that QL?
     
  20. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Perhaps Dean Stockwell could have played Sam if the show had been made that early?