An actual original episode of a network series I watch in late December? Is that allowed? I guess it is if the show's been canceled. Spoilers for the penultimate episode of "Journeyman" coming up just as soon as I throw out all my red turtlenecks...
I have to assume that this was shot after the strike began, because "The Hanged Man" felt like a first or second draft. The idea of Dan accidentally making significant changes to both the world at large and his own family was a very cool one -- about time Dan experienced the butterfly effect -- and I loved Kevin McKidd and Gretchen Egolf's performances in the Dan/Katie emotional tug of war about their child of variable gender, but too much of the episode needed polishing.
Almost all of the dialogue from Dan's trips to the past seemed like placeholders -- "I saved your life," "Thank you for saving my life!" "Son, it's the man who saved our life!" "Oh, thanks for saving our life" -- waiting for someone to take another pass through the script. Really, the entire mission was just an excuse to make Dan deal with the Zach/Caroline issue; in later drafts, I imagine it either would have been punched up or those scenes would have been cut even shorter to focus on the real heart of the episode.
As for that heart, Zach vs. Caroline is one of those time-travel dilemmas that's more than theoretical. Dan's got a living, breathing, very sweet little girl staring him in the face, but he's also the only one who remembers the living, breathing, very sweet little boy who's supposed to be there. He knows Katie's never going to remember this daughter -- not that this is any consolation to Nanotech Katie -- but he's still making a choice to erase this girl from existence. (There are also countless other changes in the Nanotech timeline he's erasing, but this show has been at its best when it focuses on personal matters directly affecting the Vasser family.) That's a hard choice -- even if it's one Dan knew he had to make, if only to appease The Powers That Be who sent him to save that kid's life in the first place -- and McKidd did his best work of the series in playing those scenes.
Jack investigating the late FBI agent was interesting, but what do you suppose was up with Dr. Langley? Did Dan inadvertently change something else about the timeline by letting the corporate espionage lady get killed, or was Langley simply pretending not to recognize him because the security guy was there? (Their previous encounters have either been one-on-one or in places away from where Langley works.) One episode to go, and I'm hoping we at least get an answer to how Langley was able to call Jack while he was in the past.
What did everybody else think?