How ABC's ambitious new time-travel show 'Time After Time' blows up our idea of technology

Time after time freddie stroma josh bowman abcABC/Sarah ShatzFreddie Stroma as H.G. Wells, left, and Josh Bowman as Jack the Ripper on ‘Time After Time.’

ABC’s new time-travel show, “Time After Time,” which premieres Friday, takes a look at the role of technology in the modern era using two of history’s most prominent figures.

A remake of the 1979 movie of the same name, “Time After Time” mirrors the film’s centuries-spanning chase of the charismatic Dr. John Stevenson, aka Jack the Ripper, by a dashing H.G. Wells. The famous serial killer has stolen the author’s time machine and escapes to modern-day New York City. Wells then ventures after him in order to bring him back to the past.

“I loved the movie so much,” show creator Kevin Williamson (the “Scream” franchise, “The Vampire Diaries”) told Business Insider. “It was one of those iconic movies I saw as a kid and it’s what made me love H.G. Wells and opened the window to him. I started reading all his stuff. It started from that.”

When Williamson realised that Warner Bros., which has a TV production deal with the producer, owned both the movie and book rights for “Time After Time,” he felt the time was ripe to create the series.

“At its core, all of his stories in some way or another deal with the best and worst of humanity, as it relates to technology,” Williamson said. “And I thought that was really relevant. We’re so driven by technology today and I thought we could have some fun with that and tell a nice, escapist story.”

Fredie stroma time after time abcABC/Sarah ShatzFreddie Stroma as H.G. Wells in ABC’s ‘Time After Time.’

How does the show portray Wells’ reaction to today’s tech? He’s actually quite turned off by it.

“Wells is surprised at modern technology, all it’s done is make people more disconnected,” Freddie Stroma, who played the sought-after bachelor on the first season of Lifetime’s “UnReal,” told Business Insider about his new character. “Because to him, obviously he’s waiting for utopia. He’s expecting it. And then he sees all this phenomenal technology. It’s very depressing for him.”

And on the flip side, Jack the Ripper finds an easy relationship with modern tech.

“Suddenly, he was extremely adaptable to this modern world,” Josh Bowman, who previously starred on ABC’s “Revenge,” told us of his Jack. “He was quick. He changed his look, bought a mobile phone, he cashed in his watch for money, and started to learn about his environment.”

“The very first thing Jack does is Google himself. And he doesn’t like what he reads,” showrunner and director Marcos Siega said.

Watch a trailer for “Time After Time” below:

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