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'Quantum Leap': Our biggest questions & everything we learned from first trailer for NBC sci-fi series

Quantum Leap premieres on NBC Sep. 19.

By Josh Weiss & Trent Moore
Quantum Leap Season 1 Trailer

NBC's still preoccupied with 1985 in the official trailer for the upcoming television revival of Quantum Leap. The footage wastes no time in putting the pedal to the metal as Dr. Ben Song (Raymond Lee) finds himself in the body of a getaway driver. Beyond that, we also see him inhabiting the lives of an astronaut, a soldier, and a prizefighter.

Following in the footsteps of Scott Bakula's Dr. Sam Beckett, he must travel through time, jumping from body to body and helping others — all while hoping that his next leap will take him back home to the year 2022. Fortunately, he's got someone at his side: the hologram of his colleague Addison Augustine (Caitlin Bassett, serving in the same type of hologram role played by Dean Stockwell in the original). Back in the present day, Ben's fellow scientists at the Quantum Leap installation do their best to offer help and keep the government from asking too many questions. 

Head below for our breakdown of the biggest moments from the new trailer, how it connects to the original series and what we can glean about this next set of adventures.

The Project Accelerator & Imaging Chamber get some upgrades

Quantum Leap Season 1 Trailer

Two of the classic pieces of sci-fi tech from the original Quantum Leap series make a return in the revival, though they’ve gotten some high-tech upgrades in the 30 years since Sam Beckett took his first leap all those years ago. We get to see glimpses of the Project Accelerator, where Ben makes his first leap. We also get some peeks at the cavernous Imaging Chamber, where Addison goes to project her hologram into the past to communicate with Ben.

The ‘Swiss cheese effect’ persists

Quantum Leap Season 1 Trailer

Much like Sam during his early jumps in the original series, we get to see Ben a bit confused when he opens his eyes in the body of another person — while also trying to figure out where the heck he’s landed on the timeline. In the original series, they dubbed this the “Swiss cheese effect,” where pieces of the leaper’s memory would be missing, not unlike the holes in Swiss cheese. We see Ben is equally confused during his leap, and doesn’t seem to recognize Addison at all when her hologram shows up. Sam went through a similar experience on his first few jumps, as Al had to explain the set-up to him a few times.

Is Addison more than just a hologram?

Quantum Leap Season 1 Trailer

Speaking of Addison, the brief flashback to a kiss between the two seems to imply she’s more than just Ben’s colleague at Project Quantum Leap. Are they dating? Or even married? A long-running storyline in the original series found Sam’s holographic advisor Al keeping Sam’s marital status a secret (even though Sam didn’t remember it anyway), partially because it would make it harder for him to accomplish his missions, since romance often played a role in Sam’s leaps. It seems Ben will be in the same boat, though we can’t imagine it’ll be easy for Addison to advise him on those missions without telling him they’re actually together (or so it seems, at least).

The rules stay the same

Quantum Leap Season 1 Trailer

One of the key moments in pretty much every episode of the original Quantum Leap was Sam finding a mirror early in the episode to get a look at whoever’s life he’d be inhabiting, and we get some looks at the same type of beats in the new series here. The mystery and reveal of the mirror trick remains intact. We also get confirmation that, just like in the original run of the series, if Ben dies while inside a person in the past he dies in real-life. Gulp. Even Sam’s signature “Oh, boy!” line looks to get a new spin, with Ben being cut off with an “Oh, shi—“ after his leaps.

Peeks at future leaps

Quantum Leap Season 1 Trailer

The brunt of the trailer focuses on what looks to be Ben’s first leap, where he jumps back to 1985 and lands as the getaway driver right in the middle of a bank heist. Addison has to walk him through how to drive a car, but he seems to get the basics pretty quickly. Along with the 1980s heist, we also glimpse Ben leaping into an astronaut on a space shuttle mission, an Army soldier making a jump out of a plane, a handsome dude in a suit with some real 007 vibes, and (in another nod to some of Sam’s old jumps) into the gloves of a boxer in the ring, moments before he gets his clock cleaned.

Showrunner Martin Gero (Blindspot) is an executive producer with Steven Lilien and Bryan Wynbrandt (co-creators of God Friended Me and current producers on La Brea) are executive producers alongside Donald P. Bellisario (creator of the original iteration of Quantum Leap) and Deborah Pratt (writer, producer, and narrator for the original series).

Quantum Leap premieres on NBC Monday, Sep. 19 at 10 p.m. EST. New episodes will be available to stream on Peacock the day after they air.

All five seasons of the original Quantum Leap are currently streaming on Peacock.