a love story almost impossible to root

First, there was Audrey Nivenger’s 2003 novel The time traveler’s wife. Then there was the 2009 film with Rachel McAdams and Eric Bana. right now, Doctor from And Sherlock Showrunner Stephen Moffat brought the Niffenegger story to HBO, starring Rose Leslie and Teo James in the lead roles of Claire Abshire and Henry D. Temple.

Claire and Henry fall in love, but their relationship is complicated by the very small problem that Henry is a time traveler. He will unintentionally vanish into the past, or sometimes even into the future, where he will appear naked and alone. Due to some time tricks, Claire meets an older version of Henry when he is 6 and in the following years she discovers she is his future wife. She spends her life waiting to meet him, but when she does, she’s not a version of herself that she fell in love with in her teens.

In theory, the television adaptation is of The time traveler’s wife Does this make sense. Niffenegger’s story has more breathing room than the movie, and Moffat may even expand some scenes from the book. However, the six-episode series has a hard time calculating the thorny complications of this romance, and its tendency to lean too much into melodrama is barely mitigated by Leslie and James’ committed performances.

The time traveler’s wife It’s a love story that hasn’t aged well

It’s strange!
Credit: Macall Polay / HBO

I really like Niveniger’s novel, but even in written form, the age gap between Claire and Henry is a difficult obstacle to overcome. Again, Claire was six when she first met Henry. Meanwhile, he is 36 years old and in the future he is already married to her. There is a huge imbalance of power and an unpleasant tinge to their first encounters, no matter how hard Henry tries to keep the future a secret. This discomfort is accentuated in a visual medium like television, where he sees James, 37, with the cast playing the young Claire (Everly McDonnell and Caitlin Shorey).

Moffat tries to deal with the power imbalance as best he can – Claire even says, “Nobody should meet their boyfriend when they’re 6” – but he’s still embarrassed. At first, Henry wins when little Claire says she is “taking care” of her toy horse. In retrospect, he was quite worried that he was teaching Claire, to which she replied, “I have arranged for you,” which… that’s not quite how it works.

Even in writing, the age difference between Claire and Henry is a difficult obstacle to overcome.

The time traveler’s wife He claims that Claire and Henry are stuck in a situation they have little control over, raising the age-old question of fate versus free will. However, when they seem involved in a relationship, no matter what they do, it’s hard to see their story as a love story.

Even when Claire and Henry meet in “The Present” (don’t think twice about time travel unless you want a headache), their relationship is hard to buy. Not because of age, but because they fight almost constantly. Moffat puts Claire and Henry down their throats at first, far more so than Nyfinger does in the book. Claire constantly calls Henry an idiot, and for good reason; Henry, 28, is definitely an asshole, to the point where you wonder if you should even be rooting for these two to be together. The only reason you want me to train is because of Leslie and James.

Rose Leslie and Theo James The time traveler’s wifesaving grace

A man and woman in luxurious clothes walking down a street at night.

Rose Leslie and Theo James are offset points in “The Time Traveler’s Wife”.
Credit: McCool Polay

The time traveler’s wife It depends on the performance of Leslie and James, and luckily, they perform. They have strong chemistry and manage to make Moffat’s ridiculous dialogue look like a human being.

Leslie brings a much-needed sense of energy and vitality to the character of Claire, who otherwise risks falling into the archetype of a supportive wife as she longs for her husband to come home. as much as The time traveler’s wife Leslie tends to completely confine and define Claire from her relationship, and Leslie breaks free and works to give Claire an identity that transcends Henry. Unfortunately, we rarely see enough of it on our own to really experience it.

The offer can be called The time traveler’s wife, but ends up spending more time with the time traveler as he bounces back and forth. James bravely plays Henry at various stages in his life, although some coarse makeup and wig choices threaten any credibility about his age. He embodies Henry’s charm and cruel sides. His arrival of him is blocked at a time when he is not the middle of him he has become really good at stealing and fighting, so we can sense his weariness of him every time he travels and has to face him dangers of him. After a while, this fatigue results in a visual experience, and The time traveler’s wife Moves to the stretching area.

The time traveler’s wife Suffers from strange choices in storytelling

During its six episodes, The time traveler’s wife He makes some really baffling choices. There is a framing device involving Henry and Claire talking directly to the camera, as if they are being recorded, but we haven’t found out why. People who have read the book can guess who they are talking to, but other than that, it’s not clear. Elsewhere, a pivotal scene from Henry’s childhood has been revisited so many times that persistent flashbacks become darkly comical. The show also makes a fatal move in handling a storyline that includes sexual assaults. It’s dangerous, too bad, not to mention completely useless.

Choices like this add up The time traveler’s wife It loses some of the magic it was supposed to start with. Leslie and James do their best to keep the chain afloat, but it wobbles around them, slowly but surely.

The time traveler’s wife It will premiere May 15 at 9 p.m. ET on HBO, with new episodes every week.

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About David Martin

David Martin is the lead editor for Spark Chronicles. David has been working as a freelance journalist.

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