The Time Traveler’s Wife
Love is eternal in the romance fantasy from writer Steven Moffat, but is it enough to hold your interest?
Would you cross time and space for your one true love?
Or better yet, would you wait for an eternity for them to return to you?
These are the grand questions of The Time Traveler’s Wife, a new miniseries by Steven Moffat (Doctor Who, Sherlock), adapted from the novel of the same name by Audrey Niffenegger.
Two British actors, in the form of Rose Leslie (Vigil, Game of Thrones) and Theo James (Divergent, Golden Boy), are cast as American lovers Clare and Henry.
Henry has a habit of vanishing on the spot, ripped from Clare’s life, and landing inexplicably in another time and place.
“It’s happened again. He’s just a pile of clothes,” Clare reveals. “And then it starts. The waiting.”
Speaking of his spontaneous combustion, Henry admits, “It’s not a super power. It’s a disability.”
Invariably he lands naked in his new world, which lends itself to glistening shots of James’ toned body and backside, as Henry adapts quickly with heavy helpings of “running, fighting and stealing.”
How we land into the story is also complex.
Clare meets adult Henry in a library, having already met him when she was a child, 14 years earlier. It’s not every day that someone tells you they are your future wife, but for Henry his secret brings all manner of surprises.
The remainder of the opening chapter I will endeavour not to spoil, suffice to say it involves the two of them getting it on, a flashback to both as children -and breaking the Back to the Future rule of old Marty McFly never being allowed to sight young Marty McFly, if you know what I mean….
Sure, Theo James is easy on the eye, if not terribly interesting as our leading man, and Rose Leslie may well have had more sparks flying with Suranne Jones in Vigil. Romantic scenes are long and laborious and director David Nutter has plenty of exposition to deal with -it’s more effective when depicted as action rather than dialogue.
Overall this feels like network television, not as premium drama.
With such a big canvas as its storyline, it might have benefited from a cinematic look. And when there are searing romantic dramas such as Outlander -with electricity on screen between the stars- The Time Traveler’s Wife is a little too pedestrian.
The Time Traveler’s Wife screens 8:30pm Monday on FOX Showcase and Binge.