Although the Project Quantum Leap isn't ready yet, Sam Beckett doesn't listen to supercomputer Ziggy, hops into the Accelerator and leaps. As Tom Stratton, an Air Force test pilot about to attempt a dangerous flight. Sam finds his memory Swiss cheesed, with only enough left to know that he is not where or when he belongs. According to Sam's friend and partner Al, who appears to him as a hologram nobody else can see, Al explains that the Project has gone awry and in order to leap out of the pilot's body, Sam must successfully fly the X-2 to Mach 3, which according to historical records, ended in a fatal crash.
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Did You Know?
Early on, Al is seen by Sam in the back of the cargo plane with his clothing flapping in the wind. Though, to Al, his surroundings are nothing but a hologram, and thus, nothing around him should have any physical effect on him - including wind. See more
You're part of a time travel experiment that went a little... ka-ka.
On September 13, 1989, NBC reran the movie pilot but only as a 90-minute episode. (It was the only first-season episode rerun during the first season. The other first-season episodes were rerun during the second season.) The movie credits were replaced with standard "guest star" credits; it was the first time the title "Genesis" was shown, as the original movie pilot had simply been called "Quantum Leap." It eliminated most of the opening scene where Al encountered the woman on the side of the road. It only showed his car driving fast and a close-up of him conversing with Gooshie that Sam was leaping. The scene of the camera flying through the clouds to Tom Stratton's house and the digital clock ticking backward was replaced with the blue effect of Sam leaping into Tom in the bed. The scene continued until Sam walked outside the house saying that this was a nightmare, and sooner or later "there's gonna be a boogeyman." They then cut to the opening theme (which was actually the theme prepared for the second season - featuring a couple of scenes from second-season episodes, and saying "Starring Dean Stockwell" instead of "and Dean Stockwell".)
From there on, bits and pieces of the story were cut - most significantly the subplot about Sam taking a memory test and responding with answers from his real life in the future. When he was arguing with Dr. Berger late in the story, they dubbed over the line, "It's not a sham. Those answers were true." and replaced it with "It's not a sham. What I'm saying will work." When the Tom Stratton story was completed, rather than showing Tom's son tossing a ball and cutting over to Sam catching a ball as minor league ball player Fox, they used the blue leaping effect to show him leaping out after kissing Tom's wife on the forehead and leaping directly into the standing ball player. The second story with him playing the minor league ball player and making a phone call to his Dad was left pretty much intact - except that at the end when he slides into home plate, they started the blue leaping effect but freeze-framed it there without showing the leap-in to the next episode. (During the commercial break, they did run a preview for the second season premiere episode "Honeymoon Express.") In the closing credits, the credit for "Barbara Horan as Tina" (the woman on the side of the road) was removed. See more
Referenced in Donnie Darko
Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be)
Music by Jay Livingston
Lyrics by Ray Evans
Performed by Doris Day See more