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Old 09-06-2013, 10:46 PM   #107
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Originally Posted by imonrey
The other big problem I have is how Sam remembers being married to Donna. In the original timeline she left him at the altar. I know he changed history in Star Crossed, but he shouldn't remember the altered history, otherwise his memory would have changed at the end of Star Crossed. Maybe he only "remembers" once he's back in 1999, the revised version, which is why he forgets again when he leaps back, but it's a real stretch.
Actually this makes perfect sense to me. The altered timeline did not exist for Sam until he existed within it. Let me see, how do I explain this? In Star Crossed Al wouldn't realize that Sam had succeeded until he stepped out of the imagining chamber and saw Donna standing there. He even demonstrates this by challenging Sam's actions with "What if she marries the first guy?" (recall Donna was engaged before Sam). This is a concept that is often explored in the novels, I think most so in Random Measures.
It's also supported that his strongest memories while leaping is that of previous leaps when he narrates that the swiss-cheese effect has reversed while back at the project. In fact the novel Mirror's Edge explores how his memories of the project are very basic and are limited to the names of staff members that have an immediate role in navigating his leaps; a computer that is supposed to know what he needs to change in the past, a programmer who keeps that computer functioning named Gooshi, and a psychiatrist named Verbeena Beeks who tends to the people he's switched places with for a few examples. For all we know these aren't even memories, they are just knowledge he got from Al. The novel also acknowledges how his memories of "home" are mostly targeted to Elk Ridge. We get a slight hint of this in One Strobe Over the Line when he watches Edie walk out his door and tells Al longingly "She's going home." which happens to be a neighboring city in Indiana. Sam really connects with Edie based on their having a farm upbringing in common.
In conclusion after Sam leaped out of the college professor he probably got wiped of his memory of Donna including that she stood him up at the alter since his memory partially resets with each leap so he can't regain a memory that he never had and no longer exists. Whereas Al can immediately step into the new present with untampered memory of the previous. The new timeline however is suggested to gradually override the previous in his immediate memory.
Did I make any sense at all? I did the best I could. My best friend had a really easy way of putting this when we discussed this not too long ago but it's escaped me. XP

Originally Posted by imonrey
I think the main problem is that it should have been a two-part story because there is too much going on for just a one hour episode and the whole thing ends up feeling very rushed.
My best friend and I were recently discussing this actually and we would have much preferred a Trilogy of this storyline to Abigail. I completely agree that an hour was not enough time to explore this angle. Thus causing the unsettling re-parting of Sam and Donna which Blue Enigma expresses.

Originally Posted by blue enigma
I have all kinds of problems with the Donna storyline in general. I don't dislike the character as I know some fans do, just the story arc, and I definitely pick up the same vibe of Sam brushing Donna aside when he's about to step into the accelerator again. It's part of the reason I don't buy her as the love of Sam's life, as is suggested in this episode and 'Star Crossed' [and I really dislike 'Star Crossed' - I have several issues with it, but that's a separate topic]. The rushedness of the episode is a big part of that. I also personally don't find there to be enough chemistry between the two actors, even though Scott Bakula and Mimi Kuzyk are both good actors.
I however would like to remind you Blue Enigma that when Sam saw how much pain the thought of losing him again caused Donna he re-thought it and very well may not have gone if she hadn't suddenly felt a pang of guilt for Al's life and insisted he go. It clearly wasn't an easy decision but come on, we're talking about Sam Beckett here. This would have been the ultimate selfishness for him to let even a stranger let alone his best friend die for the sake of his love life. And Donna knows that, she understands what she married into that's why she's his soul mate as Beth was Al's ("Flying was his first love, the Navy was his second and I guess I was his third, but I knew that when I married him"). At least that is the impression Scott has which is supported by the end scene of the episode. My favorite thing about the novel Mirror's Edge is it's portrayal of Donna in this way.

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