NINE: Nine Time Travels (2013) was a Korean time-travel drama I really liked. The protagonist, Park Sun Woo (Lee Jin Wook) is a terminally ill news reporter who proposes marriage to colleague Min Young (Jo Yoon Hee) for the short time he has left to live (she knows it’s a limited-time offer). Then Sun Woo’s brother Jung Woo (Jun Noh Min, right, all rights to image with current holder) dies retrieving some incense sticks from a monastery in Nepal. It turns out whoever lights the sticks instantly goes back 20 years until the incense burns out (a half-hour). Using the incense, Sun Woo hopes to avert his death and also his father’s tragic death in a fire. But events in the past are not what he thinks, and the changes he brings about are not always what he wants … This frequently went in directions I didn’t expect, and always entertained, though the very last scene confused me and plenty of others (I’m guessing it was set up for Season Two). ABC’s been talking about a remake, but no sign of anything happening yet (but the original streams on Hulu). “In twenty years I will look in the mirror and see you—and you will see me.”
HINDSIGHT (2015) was a VH1 series in which a woman preparing for her second marriage passes out and wakes up on the morning of her first wedding… which she now knows to avoid. She also ditches the job she’d otherwise have held and hated for the next 20 years… but then realizes that knowing what to avoid doesn’t give her a plan for what she should be doing. Which is a nice touch, but the more this goes on, the closer it gets to a standard New Adult TV series (Friends or Melrose Place, say). Still, no shortage of 1990s nostalgia if that appeals to you. “Monica and Chandler start dating? You’re the worst time-traveler ever!”
Happily ZENTRIX (2004) is a Hong Kong series so I don’t have to do more than note it in the appendix. A dreary story of a young princess going back in time to prevent her father’s robot aide from taking over the world—though in fairness, as it appears to be written for pre-teens, I guess it’s not surprising I don’t cotton to it.
PHIL OF THE FUTURE (2004) was one of Disney Channel’s less successful sitcoms (apparently it’s only DVD in the form I got it, with a few episodes) and I can see why. Despite the premise (time traveling family from the next century crash on vacation and get stranded in the present) it’s much more mundane than what I’ve seen of Wizards of Waverly Place or Thundermans, to the point you could erase the future tech from some episodes and not change the plot any. However it definitely qualifies. “I’m afraid of my fears—that’s why they’re called fears!”
TRIANGLE (2005) is a better-than-average Bermuda Triangle story (there are enough out there I’m wondering if I should have a separate section on those) done as a Sci-Fi miniseries in which Eric Stoltz and Catherine Bell are among the special investigative team trying to solve the Triangle mystery for shipping tycoon Sam Neill, who’s rather puzzled how one of his vessels just got attacked by the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria. This starts off more entertaining than most Triangle films (though a poor second to the 2009 Triangle), but rapidly devolves into cliches such as the secret technology of the Philadelphia Experiment and the Triangle wormhole expanding to swallow everything OMG (much like SyFy’s later Termination Point). So a regretful thumb down. “Since that day, my entire career has focused on one goal—closing Pandora’s box.”