“Quantum Leap” has gotten its episode order increased at NBC. TV Line reports that the show has had its first season episode order increased from 12 to a full season of 18 episodes.
While normally a full season order at NBC would be about 20+ episodes, due to the special visual effects required for a show such as “Quantum Leap,” the series doesn’t lend itself to a normal full season order. So, it comes out to 18 episodes, similar to the NBC series, “La Brea.”
‘Quantum Leap’ Gets A Full Season Order At NBC
The show debuted on the network last month. It tied with “East New York” on CBS as the highest-rated fall series launch. The show debuted with 3.4 million viewers and a 0.50 key demo rating.
The show is a continuation of the world of the original “Quantum Leap,” picking up thirty years after the original series ended. The original followed Sam Beckett, a scientist who jumped into the Quantum Leap accelerator, jumping into the bodies of various people across history.
In the world of the show, Beckett disappeared after jumping into the Quantum Leap accelerator. However, the series ended in 1993 with the devastating, heartbreaking, and cliffhanger caption, “Dr. Sam Beckett never returned home.” In the new series, there is a new Quantum Leap team led by Ben Song (portrayed by Raymond Lee of “Kevin Can F**k Himself”) who restart Dr. Sam Beckett’s project. After Ben makes a leap into the past, the team now has to uncover the mystery of why it happened. Meanwhile, Ben has to continue making leaps, similar to Dr. Beckett, in order to find his way back to the present day.
The cast also includes “Ghostbusters” star Ernie Hudson as Herbert “Magic” Williams, a military man who Sam Beckett leaped into in the original series, Caitlin Bassett as Addison, Mason Alexander Park (“Cowboy Bebop”) as Ian Wright, and Nanrisa Lee (“Bosch”) as Jenn Chou.
The new series is created by Steven Lilien and Bryan Wynbrandt, with Martin Gero serving as executive producer and showrunner. The original series was created by Don Bellisario, who also has an executive producer credit. Deborah Pratt, who was also an executive producer on the original, voices Ziggy in both the original series and the revival. Other executive producers on the show are Dean Georgaris and Chris Grismer.
Unfortunately, original star Sam Bakula, who portrayed Dr. Sam Beckett, opted not to be involved with the revival or appear once again as Beckett. He announced the news in a post on his Instagram account last month, writing, “I have no connection with the new show, either in front of the camera or behind it.”
Bakula indicated the script for the pilot was sent to him after it was sold earlier this year and that Beckett was a part of it. He continued on his decision to pass on the revival, “It was a very difficult decision to pass on the project, a decision that has upset and confused so many fans of the original series.”
However, Bakula did appear supportive of the new series and its cast and crew, writing, “I am crossing my fingers that this new cast and crew are lucky enough to tap into the magic that propelled the original Quantum Leap into the hearts and minds of generations past and present.”
View this post on Instagram
What Happened To Sam Beckett?
The original “Quantum Leap” television series ran from 1989 to 1993 for five seasons and 97 episodes. Unfortunately, the show was canceled after the final episode aired, and it left audiences on a cliffhanger and the caption, “Dr. Sam Beckett never returned home.”
However, some rough, alternate-ending footage does exist showing an epilogue that would’ve set up a sixth season. It depicted project observer Al Calavicci (Dean Stockwell) living happily with his wife Beth, preparing to launch a rescue mission to find Sam Beckett.
Speaking on the previously lost footage of the alternate ending, Bakula said to The Blast in 2019, “I’m glad the fans get to see what might have been…or could be. I keep telling people, Sam’s still out there.”
New episodes of “Quantum Leap” air Monday nights on NBC.