Following an innovative first season that stood out as a fresh slice of time travel sci-fi, Travelers returns and expands on the solid foundation it built for itself last year with a bigger and more ambitious season of entertainment. With more questions raised and still no clear idea who the Director is, Travelers manages to balance this air of mystery by answering some of the big questions from last year. This balance between raising questions and providing answers is handled perfectly. With recurring themes spilling over from last year and a gripping story mixed with various character-driven subplots, Travelers keeps the momentum going and excels in almost every area from last year.
The second season picks up right where it left off last year. Agent Grant Maclaren (Eric McCormack) and his team have been captured by the FBI and are currently being interrogated following the incident with the quantum frame. Acting as a backdrop to this, is the introduction of mysterious new character Vincent Ingram (Enrico Colantoni). He recounts his arrival as a traveler during the pilot episode and eventually going off mission and into hiding. Throughout the season recurring themes crop up, along with Ingram himself, and its good to see a largely unchanged cast return here. Although the encompassing story is established early on, a second plot involving a rival group called the Faction, whom we see briefly toward the end of last season, gives the plot an interesting dynamic and keeps the action fresh.
There are times this year where the story feels like it might be careering off track; a subplot around a viral outbreak and a protocol-breaking time jumping episode certainly mix things up but also feel like they might disrupt the flow of the season. As the series draws to a close, the focus is drawn back to the main plot around Ingram and its here that Travelers manages to produce another explosive finale that leaves questions around the character’s future and that of the show.
The story is certainly more complicated this year and with so much going on, its pleasing to see the focus yet again on the characters. The welcome return of seeing the characters dealing with their personal issues whilst juggling the missions given to them by the Director is excellent and helps Travelers stand out from other sci-fi shows out there. It’s refreshing to see a show like this manage to spin the time travel trope in new and interesting ways and this year is no exception. With a little more world building and higher stakes for the characters who are pushed to their limits, the second season is as good, if not better than last year.
Its worth mentioning too that the technicality in the cinematography is a step up this season too. There’s an interesting combination of camera angles and scenes stitched together and the more artistic feel in the episodes gives Travelers a much more confident and refined feel compared to last year. The composition, at times, is beautiful and seeing the supporting cast in a much more prominent role this year and included in the central story, rather than separate to it, makes the series feel much more tightly woven than before.
Although there are a few plot inconsistencies and a little bit of filler, these issues are easy to overlook with such a solid season of entertainment. Travelers is a show that understands exactly what it is and who its audience is. With some of the issues from last year addressed, its refreshing to see a show like this only getting better with time. Another cliffhanger ending at the end of the finale is a little disappointing, especially with no confirmation whether there will be a third season. Despite this, the second season of Travelers improves on almost every facet of last year. The plot is stronger, the supporting cast play a more prominent role and the stakes are higher than ever before. Travelers absolutely nails its second season and with the show only growing in confidence, we can only hope that a third season is confirmed sooner rather than later.
Verdict - 8/10