The producers of Time After Time are Wells aware that when the ABC drama makes its debut, it will be (conservatively speaking) TV’s sixth current series with a time travel element.
That, however, makes things a bit easier, says executive producer Kevin Williamson (The Following), seeing as viewers are just a bit more likely to be familiar with “time ripples,” the Butterfly Effect and such.
“Every time travel show sets their own rules and loopholes, their little Wiggums,” Williamson says. “But I feel like we’ve covered our rules for our show, and we don’t really break them our Season 1. And moving forward, we have a plan for Season 2 that would spin it in a new direction.”
Based on the Karl Alexander novel (and 1979 movie of the same name) and premiering Sunday, March 5 at 9/8c, Time After Time promises “a fantastical cat and mouse adventure through time” when famed science-fiction writer H.G. Wells (played by UnREAL‘s Freddie Stroma) is transported to modern-day Manhattan in pursuit of Jack the Ripper (Revenge‘s Josh Bowman). Once H.G. arrives in New York City, he finds a world he never thought possible… and a young woman, museum curator Jane (Genesis Rodriguez), who captivates him.
As such, Williamson contends that Time After Time — which will travel through time on just four occasions in Season 1 — is “not really a time travel show; we’re more the story of a young H.G. Wells and his adventures in modern-day New York, and how they inspire him to go back and write The Time Machine, The Invisible Man, The Island of Dr. Moreau” — by planting Easter eggs for those novels, as well as War of the Worlds, throughout the first, 12-episode season.
All told — and despite the dark nature of Jack the Ripper’s leanings — “It gets a little wacky,” Williamson says of the series’ tone. “It’s science fiction, a fun, fun show.”
Watch a trailer for ABC’s Time After Time: