NBC’s Quantum Leap relaunch has finally confirmed there is indeed yet another leaper in the timeline – and his identity is a surprising twist.
This article contains spoilers for Quantum Leap episode 12.
Quantum Leap episode 12 finally confirms Raymond Lee’s Ben Song was indeed contacted by a secret leaper – and reveals his identity. NBC’s Quantum Leap relaunch is a bold and culturally relevant reinvention of the classic series, adapting the traditional episodic approach and adding a compelling overarching narrative. This is essentially something of a mystery story, as the Quantum Leap team try to understand why Raymond Lee’s Ben Song stepped into the Quantum Leap accelerator in the first place.
Quantum Leap season 1’s midseason finale revealed Ben is actually attempting to change the future, rather than the past. He has somehow learned of an impending tragedy involving his fiancée, Addison Augustin (played by Caitlin Bassett), and Ben has learned how to time travel to the future to save her life. It’s always seemed likely this knowledge of future events came from an interaction with a leaper from the future, although the identity of this mystery leaper has remained unknown. Quantum Leap episode 12 finally confirms this theory is correct, and even reveals the identity of the leaper.
Quantum Leap’s Mystery Leaper Is A Member Of The Project Team
Quantum Leap episode 12 sees the project boss, Ernie Hudson’s Herbert “Magic” Williams, successfully track down the woman who told Ben he had to begin leaping through time, Dottie (Shakina Nayfack). It doesn’t take Magic long to figure out Dottie had been leaped into – it’s an experience he shared himself, given his own life was saved years ago by Sam Beckett. Careful questioning prompts the host to reveal sketches she’s drawn of the face of the “driver,” the person who inhabited her body during the blackout. It is another member of the current Quantum Leap project team – Mason Alexander Park’s Ian Wright.
The reveal makes perfect sense. Ian is the Quantum Leap project’s lead programmer, so presumably he is destined to figure out how to travel to a precise point in spacetime. He must have passed this knowledge on to Ben during their encounter, explaining why Ben’s own programming had come on in leaps and bounds, allowing him to program a specific journey and even break the rules of time travel as the team knew them. What’s more, Ian is one of Addison’s good friends, and it makes sense that he would want to save her life.
What Happened To Addison & Ian In The Original Quantum Leap Timeline?
Quantum Leap‘s midseason finale raised disturbing questions about the project’s future – particularly given Ben’s decision not to tell his friends about the mission. Georgina Reilly has suggested this is because Ben knows enough not to trust the project, and episode 11 hinted Quantum Leap is destined to go bad, meaning any formal records left behind will risk compromising Ben’s mission. It’s reasonable to assume the impending disaster involving Addison is the trigger for this dangerous timeline, and Ian must have decided to avert it. It is odd, though, that Ian didn’t simply head to that point in the timeline directly. His strategy is much more cautious, much more circumspect, hinting he is acting without proper authorization.
There is another mystery leaper in Quantum Leap season 1, and his presence in the timeline raises even more questions about what’s going on. Richard Martinez (Walter Perez) is working for the U.S. military, and it’s possible he stepped into the Quantum Leap accelerator to try to catch up with Ian – and to keep this dark timeline in place. Hopefully more explanations will soon be forthcoming in Quantum Leap season 1.
Episodes of Quantum Leap release on NBC on Mondays at 10 PM ET. Episodes are available for exclusive streaming on Peacock the next day.