What if you time traveled on the same spot several times. And interacted with yourself repeatedly. And maybe caused a paradox or two.
Live from Master Closet Studios, you’re listening to the only podcast on the internet hosted by three versions of the same person: Noobs and the Whovian!
This is the podcast that introduces a whole new generation to Doctor Who by watching an episode each week and discussing it from the perspective of a dad who’s seen it before, and two sons who haven’t. Except, this week, we aren’t!
Welcome to episode 69, our Timey Wimey #9 covering Robert Heinlein’s By His Bootstraps.
This is the one where a guy sends himself to watch himself beat himself up so he can send himself to get stuff for himself in order to become king before himself.
- Bob Wilson – Richard Dreyfuss
- Joe/Bob Wilson – Richard Dreyfuss
- Third Guy/Bob Wilson – Richard Dreyfuss
- Prank Caller/Bob Wilson – Richard Dreyfuss
- Internal Monologue/Bob Wilson – Richard Dreyfuss
- Diktor/Bob Wilson – Richard Dreyfuss
Time travel details:
- The Time Gate – a portal that allows travel through time and space, apparently created by aliens called The Grand Ones that will one day rule over the earth.
Where was the time travel type introduced?
- Right off the bat!
- Whatever happened, happened. You can’t change the past
- Causal loops
Random stuff we noticed
- It’s interesting that Bob starts out writing a Ph.D. thesis about how ludicrous the idea of time travel is
- “Nobody here but me!” He was more right than he knew!
- Listen toadstool, if you want a good chuckle go set fire to your shorts, but leave me out of it!
- Even funnier the second time! And the third!
- He snapped in his mind while talking to himself.
- It’s really interesting how they shifted perspective in the audio medium.
- Internal monologue shifts
- Even the location in your headphones shifts!
- In the book, when he glimpsed the Great Ones, he fled the Hall of the Gate in madness and went crazy for a few months.
Things they got Wrong
Did they follow their own rules?
- I don’t get why Bob 1 didn’t recognize that Bob 2 & 3 were exactly the same. There were just a few minutes apart.
- It makes sense that he didn’t recognize 2 because you normally see yourself in reverse. He also had a black eye.
- The Time Gate wasn’t still in the alley where he left it.
- Why is that? We didn’t see anyone move it later, did we?
- Does this mean there can only be one iteration of the Time Gate at any given moment?
- The Time Gate is a bit wibbly-wobbly anyway
- Apparently, what appeared to be the same iteration of the Gate was different iterations of it from moment to moment.
- When Bob 1 fell through the Gate, it was Diktor looking around for Bob 1.
- So Gate 1 appeared in after Bobs 2 & 3 had already come back through other iterations.
Things they got Right
- Most of it
- The nickname “Joe”
- The notebook with the language in it
- This wasn’t in the radio drama version
- Causal loops – Diktor sent Bob through so that he could send himself through!
Can We Talk About The Nature of the Self?
- A running debate throughout the story is “Who is Bob?” When there’s more than one iteration of him present, which one is really him?
- The answer seems to be, the one experiencing it. If you feel like you, you’re you!
- From our perspective, there real Bob is the one narrating at even given moment.
- Julian Smith’s You in Five Minutes
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Classic Who Connection
- Jared chimes in to tell us about a bootstrap paradox from Classic Who!
Was it good?
Was it a good story?
- Tripp – thumbs up
- Corbin – thumbs up
- Austin – thumbs up
Was it a good time travel story?
- Tripp – thumbs up, mostly
- Corbin – thumbs up
- Austin – thumbs way up!
- Does the idea of causal loops nullify the possibility of time travel?
The Game Plan
- Next week, we’re straight back into Series 5 with Vampires of Venice.
- There is a minisode that precedes this one called Meanwhile in the TARDIS part 2.
Noobs and the Whovian is a production of Master Closet Studios, where it’s always smaller on the inside. Your Senior Producer is Austin Reason. Our Audio Engineer is Tripp Reason. Corbin Reason is our Production Editor. Special thanks to tardis.wikia.com for the trivia, Jared for the Classic Who Connection. Shout outs to Victor and Jared for their Patreon support.
You can find us at facebook.com/noobsandthewhovian and email us at [email protected]. Consider supporting us at https://www.patreon.com/noobsandthewhovian. Please subscribe and leave a rating wherever you found us, and share us with a friend not because we’re a great show but because we watch one.