Voyagers: Chapter 5 Analysis (Sadness!)
(Poor little Jeffy...didn't he seem so tiny in the pilot but then grew up so fast by Titanic? That's puberty for you!)
There's really nothing in this chapter that I haven't already blogged about in my character study called, 'The Bogg & Jeff Dynamic.' In fact, that one is pretty in-depth in regards to the scene. So, this is a short blog post. The differences between what's in the novel and the episode are sparse, so I'll focus on those.
"Can it! You're stuck with me until you put me back in my room where you found me...besides, you don't know anything about history. Without me, you'd mess the whole thing up!"
The author decides to give us a sweet little insight into Bogg's reaction. As I've stated in a previous blog, we all know that Bogg was already somewhat attached to Jeffrey, he just had a funny way of showing it...well, rather a cranky way, especially at this scene.
'Bogg looked down at him, with a curious gleam in his eye. The anger was gone. He seemed amused, probably more at himself than anything else. Jeff was relieved that Bogg didn't even try to deny what he just said.
That tiny bonding moment is shattered when Bogg makes the accusation that Jeffrey did his own father in, then you have the dramatic chase on the beach with Bogg cradling Jeffrey in his arm sincerely apologetic over the incident.
The series took a nice approach by showing the boys resting on seaside rocks with the gorgeous scenery. The book has them continuing their walk along the beach with Jeffrey telling him about the tragic accident, then Jeffrey decides to plop down in the sand.
So, Phineas tells him gently, "And you've been blaming yourself?...You couldn't have done a thing kid, not a thing."
The novel gives Phineas a chance to relate one of his own stories, about Napoleon (No wonder he wears the shabby coat!)
"You want to talk about blame,...I'll tell you about me and Waterloo. See, Napoleon was never supposed to be there. The guidebook had a plan for the General. This doctor in Paris was supposed to put him in the hospital for his ulcer. The trouble as, I couldn't find the hospital, and..."
This really caught my interest. According to this line, the Guidebook/Headquarters makes its own history and what we know as the correct one, was really wrong? (Okay, did that make sense?) But, now I wonder, if it was such an historical error for Napoleon to be at Waterloo, why didn't they send another Voyager as backup, or go back and try again to fix it? That's a pretty big historical foul up to let slide. Phineas must have charmed his way out of trouble for that one! Interesting. If I'm not mistaken, I remember reading or someone telling me that Guidebook rewrites itself. After thinking it over now, that's possible. I mean, everytime you make a change in history, something in the future is going to change, that means the information would automatically be updated. Cool.
The idea employed here reminds me of Quantum Leap, and a very powerful two-part episode called 'Lee Harvey Oswald.' Sam Leaps into the body of Oswald twice at different times during the man's life. At the pivotal moment where he's supposed to pull the trigger to kill President Kennedy, he leaps. The big struggle there was that Sam's swiss-cheese memory caused his mind to merge with Oswald, taking on his rough and mean characteristics from time to time, right down to that final moment. (Hence you see Al having a panic attack and trying to bring Sam back to his senses!)
Sam's next leap is into the bodyguard behind the motorcade. The shots are fired and he races to the car to save Jackie Kennedy. Al, his observer, later tells him that by doing that he changed history...in the real history, Jackie was supposed to die too! Thus Sam's intervention created the time line of history that we all know...that's so fascinating.
Back to Voyagers...so as every kid would naturally do, Phineas barely gets to the heart of his Waterloo story when Jeffrey is in a tear-stained sleep on the sand. Why are adults so boring? hehehe..Phineas could talk to me for hours..but wait, I'm an adult..
So, he puts his coat over him, checks the blinking red omni and says,
"Dayton, Ohio, where we will visit the bicycle shop of the Wright brothers."
Just putting this in because I love this image on the rocks, this is a wallpaper I made not too long ago.