Commentary 21: Now We Are Twenty-One

Flashback to the future where everything started with the old man in this mythology heavy chapter. I really like the concept of the evolution of time travel covered here.  And crazy as it sounds, part of me actually believes in the underlying “constant, subconscious messages from your future self” phenomenon that powers the time travel we see in the book.

Other tidbits:

  • The Oasis concert with the shoe throwing really happened, though the origins are fictionalized.  I was there, but I didn’t throw the shoe.  The most amusing part of that real life incident was after they refused to play anymore, Liam Gallagher came out and read the remaining songs on the setlist to the crowd so we would all know what we could have heard if not for one bad apple.
  • We learned previously that the Nelson/Sister meeting was the fault of the narrator, but here we learn just how much of his fault it really was.  This was planned from the get go, and I have a ridiculously overcomplicated spreadsheet plotting out the different timelines it took to get here.
  • Since the old man’s divorce from the redheaded girl “indirectly forced him to sell his body to this experiment,” it seems he didn’t really have a lot of time leftover to have a second wife.  Why does he call her his “first” wife then? Hmmm…
  • We reveal that the strange scene outside the bar at the end of Chapter 11 happened because the older mind was in possession of the younger body.
  • There used to be a quick allusion to the fact that Donald P. Bellasario was a subject in this experiment and that’s where he got the idea for Quantum Leap, but based on the year of the experiment and his age it didn’t make a lot of sense.  Thought about having it be his son who joined the experiment, but since nobody knew about the father clause I decided not to.  Looking back, now I sort of wish I had.
  • A larger subplot involving the doctor interacting with his older self was dropped due to complexity, but it is still hinted at here and there and set up in this chapter.
  • The time travel theory on how one can more easily ride a memory back in time based on how many people share that memory was loosely modeled after the BitTorrent file sharing protocol.
  • There are 32 known musical references in this chapter.

Read Chapter Twenty-One Online

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