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'Quantum Leap' team teases season finale and beyond at WonderCon 2023
At WonderCon 2023, SYFY WIRE caught up with Raymond Lee and the team about future leaping.
As we careen through time and space, we’re inching ever closer to the season finale of NBC’s hit revival of Quantum Leap. With just two episodes left (the penultimate episode airs this Monday at 10 p.m. ET), there's plenty more of Season 1 to look forward to, particularly after the surprising reveals in the latest episode.
So of course we asked about what's still to come in Season 1 while interviewing stars Raymond Lee (Ben Song), Caitlin Bassett (Addison Augustine), Ernie Hudson (Herbert "Magic" Williams), Mason Alexander Park (Ian Wright), and Nanrisa Lee (Jenn Chou), as well as executive producers Dean Georgaris and Deborah Pratt, with the series out in full force at WonderCon 2023 this weekend. But SYFY WIRE (along with select other outlets) also leaped at the chance to ask about the officially renewed Season 2 as well. And from the sounds of it, fans of the original series should have lots to look forward to.
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As we head into the finale and into the next season, how will the show continue to honor the original series while also paving its way forward?
Dean Georgaris: Deborah [Pratt, executive producer, head writer, and voice of Ziggy on the original series] is part of the family, she talks to the writers, she’s on the set all the time, and she’s always there to remind us of the core of the original Quantum Leap: the hope, the history, the heart, and the humanity. And that will never change. As we move forward, and as we put one chapter of the present day story to bed, what we get to do in Season 2 is decide what do we want the present day chapter to be, and maybe there’s a way the present day chapter might feel more organic to fans of the original show, maybe there are things we can explore.
That’s what we’re talking about as a room now. The leap will always be the leap, it’s the gold of the show … the present day is really the fun for us, because I think there’s so many questions you can ask, and there’s so many ways to play a Quantum Leap show; it doesn’t have to be a thriller, it can be a romance, it can be a drama, it can be a comedy.
Raymond Lee: That’s one of my favorite things about the show too, it’s a different genre every episode, and we’re always paying homage to something that came before us. And I love that we get to use these reference points to get an idea of what we’re trying to create, just the tone that we’re all trying to achieve, and it’s just endless amounts of fun knowing there are shows within shows, and I love that. I feel like that’s our own little mark.
DG: Look, the further you go telling Quantum Leap stories, they naturally start to drift more towards one another, like we start to feel more like the original show. You’ll see more of us in that show. I think that’s just what happens because that’s what’s so great about what Deborah and [creator] Don [Bellisario] originally created: a very basic set of rules. Yes we can go off and be improvisational for a while, but we’re eventually going to come back around and you’re gonna be like, “Oh, so that’s how that ties in.”
RL: It surprises me each time too. Like when we start an episode, what’s on the page doesn’t exactly end up being what’s being done in the scenes … The first time I heard the word “romp” was Episode 4, and [Caitlin] was like, ‘This is a romp.’ And I’m like, ‘I don’t know what that means, we’re just doing the scene.’ And then I watched the episode, and I’m like, ‘That’s a romp.’ So it’s fun to be able to figure out what it is on the days too, because your guest actors play such a big part in each episode, they get huge arcs, and they really inform the tone of the piece too. It’s fun for us to just keep all our senses attuned to what’s happening.
What can fans look forward to as far as the season finale goes?
Deborah Pratt: Oh my god, it’s so good, you have to watch it! Need I say more? [Laughs] I think if you’ve been following the show, the setups are all paid off. Let me put it that way.
Ernie Hudson: Yeah, the reasons how we got to here, that’s sort of clarified. But in that clarification, other complications and other reasons for moving forward become very exciting. I think the season finale really kicks in the next evolution, but it also clarifies some of the mystery that we’ve been playing with.
DP: Once you mess with time, stuff happens ... Time messes with you back.
Can you tease what fans can expect for the rest of the season from your characters?
Nanrisa Lee: Well, without giving away too much, I think we still have some loose ends going on that we’ve been struggling with over the course of the season, our recent collaboration with Janice being one of them, and also trying to stay one step ahead of Martinez, aka Leaper X, aka maybe Evil Leaper (some people may refer to him as) … and those things kind of come to a head definitely in our season finale. That being said, there’s a big struggle with trying to keep the program afloat and then as a result, new conflicts arise in the season finale… it’s pretty exciting.
Mason Alexander Park: I guess specifically for Ian, the main thing that they’re dealing with is all Ziggy related. There’s a lot of identity linked to Ziggy. Any creator, any creative, you hold a lot of ownership over your most prized possession, and Ziggy is Ian’s crowning achievement, so towards the end of the season we start to see Ziggy get questioned quite a bit, and that definitely reflects on Ian’s own questioning of themselves, and them leaping from the future, and all those other things that were revealed … starting around “Let Them Play.” So I am slowly unraveling in a very fun way.
New episodes of Quantum Leap air Mondays at 10 p.m. ET, and stream next-day on Peacock.