Three Recent Time Loop Episodes That Are Instant Classics

Hi—my name is Alasdair, and I love time loop episodes. When done right, they’re a brilliantly efficient piece of storytelling, using the repetition of events and the accretion of knowledge to not only show us more about the characters but often give the writers a chance to have a little fun (and maybe let the production office save a little money). For years, my platonic ideals of this story have been “Cause and Effect” from Star Trek: The Next Generation and “Window of Opportunity” from Stargate SG-1. The former has the best pre-credit sequence ever (Ship explodes! Everyone dies! Cue the music!). The latter has O’Neill and Teal’c trapped in a loop which leads to wormhole golf, a magnificently terrible yellow sweatshirt, and a moment that made fans of a certain ship gleefully punch the air.

Both are immensely fun hours of TV, and recently they’ve been joined among ...