Timeless recap: Season 1, Episode 9
Move over, Bonnie and Clyde. There’s a new bank-robbing, gun-toting pair in town.
Our time-traveling trio is headed back to the 1930s, chasing Flynn to dusty Depression-era Arkansas. On one hand, this is an episode that’s all shoot-‘em-up action, a sharp plot with a simple mission for our heroes: Get the Rittenhouse key from around Bonnie Parker’s neck. This is also an episode that’s basically an hour of simmering sexual tension. Inspired by two of the most notorious lovebirds in American history, “Last Ride of Bonnie & Clyde” is all about couples, from Rufus and Jiya’s burgeoning relationship to Wyatt’s grief over losing his wife…culminating with a big moment where Lucy and Wyatt finally — finally! — kiss.
Lucy kicks things off with an extremely awkward date, temporarily reuniting with her mysterious fiancé. We still don’t know anything about him except that his name is Noah and he’s really ridiculously good-looking. Lucy is still pretty weirded out by the whole “suddenly having a fiancé” thing, but she figures hey, if this is the guy she picked in an alternate timeline, he can’t be all bad, right? (Once again: He’s very attractive.) So, they sit down for a date — her first date with him, his 400th with her. It’s pretty awkward.
It’s made even more awkward by Wyatt interrogating Lucy about why she’s wearing her engagement ring once they get to work. But Lucy doesn’t have time to have an extended conversation with her coworkers about her romantic relationships: Flynn has taken the Mothership back to May 1934.
As for Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus, they don’t have to search for very long for the Rittenhouse key: It’s only a few minutes before Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow waltz into the bank they’re investigating and rob the place, all while Bonnie is wearing the key around her neck. After Flynn shows up with the cops in tow, Wyatt and Lucy are separated from Rufus, and soon find themselves face-to-face with two of the most glamorous and notorious bank robbers of all time.
So, Lucy and Wyatt try to earn Bonnie and Clyde’s trust — by also posing as lovers-slash-bank-robbers. Despite Bonnie and Clyde’s suspicion (and the fact Wyatt keeps almost blowing their cover by saying stupid things, like how he and Lucy spent $25,000 on “hooch”), Lucy and Wyatt manage to win them over with believable chemistry. There are some things you just can’t fake.
NEXT: Kiss the girl
Before long, each couple is trying to one-up the other by telling the most romantic story they can think of. Bonnie and Clyde recount the story of their marriage proposal, recalling how Clyde sent a letter to Henry Ford congratulating him on his “dandy cars.” The letter was real, but in the Timeless version of events, Clyde then proceeded to rob Ford of a mysterious golden key, which he then gave to his new fiancée.
Lucy struggles to come up with a story as impressive as robbing Henry Ford, which is when Wyatt busts out a romantic tale to end all romantic tales, recounting how he proposed to his wife on a hill in Texas and got so nervous he dropped the ring in the dirt. It’s a sweet, honest moment, and it’s one of the most emotionally affecting bits we’ve seen on Timeless so far. I haven’t always felt that emotionally connected to Wyatt’s stories about his wife in the past, but here, it’s a truly believable moment that not only illustrates why Wyatt is so hung up about his wife’s death, but also who he is as a person.
And then, just to sell their so-called romance even further, Wyatt reaches over and kisses Lucy — impressing Bonnie and Clyde, shocking Lucy, and from the looks of it, even surprising Wyatt a little bit himself. Matt Lanter and Abigail Spencer have had chemistry since the moment he called her “ma’am” in the first episode, and this was one hell of a kiss. It may have all been for show, and Lucy and Wyatt may still be hung up on their mystery fiancés and dead wives, respectively, but you don’t exactly kiss someone like that and not mean it.
While Bonnie and Clyde are still dazzled by Wyatt’s story and that kiss, Lucy takes the opportunity to examine the key around Bonnie’s neck, where she sees a phrase engraved in Latin. It says the key is to “the beginning of all time and the end of all time,” which, you know, isn’t ominous at all. But finally, we have a little bit more of a clue as to Rittenhouse’s role in all of this. We know it’s a mysterious organization that’s stretched through the centuries, but here, we get our first real confirmation that Rittenhouse has a direct interest in the concept of time. Whether that involves time travel remains to be seen.
Sadly, our heroes don’t get a chance to investigate the key for themselves. Bonnie and Clyde’s cohort Henry Methvin sells them out, and as the cops descend on the cabin, Lucy and Wyatt barely get away with their lives as Bonnie and Clyde are gunned down. In the scuffle, Flynn escapes with the key, and in the present, we see him tracking down and opening a mysterious and intricate box. Inside is an even more mysterious scroll of paper. Whatever it is, it can’t be good.
In the end, the mission to 1934 is, like most missions, a bit of a wash. Flynn gets away as always, and Lucy, Wyatt, and Rufus are no closer to figuring out a way to stop him. But after a few so-so episodes where Flynn’s motivation seemed unclear, “Bonnie & Clyde” felt like a return to form, outlining a clear, logical plot with a little bit of romance and a lot of epic gunfights. With the fall finale on the horizon — and with Agent Christopher closing in on Connor Mason’s ties to Rittenhouse — it seems like we finally might be getting some answers.
Modern pop-culture references: Rufus’s ID card says his name is Wesley Snipes.
Episode grade: A-