With Lucy stuck with Flynn, Wyatt and Rufus set out to find her in “The World’s Columbian Exposition.” They end up tracking them to the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, but when America’s first documented serial killer and Houdini are involved, things get even more interesting.

Wyatt and Rufus are worried

When the episode kicks off, Wyatt and Rufus are fresh off losing Lucy to Flynn’s clutches, and they aren’t taking it well. Rufus has a little more composure than Wyatt, but it’s clear that there’s a lot of guilt and fear to go around. Both actors do a great job at showcasing the concern for Lucy being stuck with Flynn.

The duo are able to look up the date they’re traveling to and know what historical figures might be there, but that’s the extent of their knowledge. Without Lucy, they might as well be flying blind.

H.H. Holmes and the Murder Castle

There’s pretty much nothing the writers could have put in the Murder Castle that would have been inaccurate. H.H. Holmes was America’s first documented serial killer and his hotel had all kinds of booby traps as well as a basement full of devices to torture people. He was a very disturbed individual.

The soundproof hotel rooms whose doors seal, the gas through the air vents, the kiln that burns bodies, and more were all actually in the Murder Castle. This is definitely one of those times that Lucy’s vast knowledge would have come in handy.

Luckily, Wyatt and Rufus do end up trapped with an architect, and in a twist, Holmes himself.

Lucy is a big Houdini fan

After the fact, we know that some of it is probably an act, but Lucy’s excitement over seeing Houdini in action makes me smile. I love that despite dire situations, she can still get excited about history. Admittedly, the show fudges the timeline a bit here as Houdini was mainly doing card tricks at this point in his career, but he and Lucy together are so fun!

One of the best moments of the episode has got to be Lucy being able to convince Houdini, without making anyone aware of what she’s talking about, to pick Flynn’s pockets and get them out of immediate danger. Lucy also gets to save Rufus and Wyatt, which is a great turn from what everyone is expecting heading into the story.

Fear is the theme of the night

Given that we get an episode where an escape artist and a serial killer are the biggest attention getters of the night, fear theming the episode doesn’t seem like a stretch. Rufus has been living in a near constant state of fear and the Murder Castle only intensifies it. We see how small spaces affect Lucy and the idea of never knowing what happens to someone affects Wyatt.

Everyone’s fears are different, and sure, everyone has different reactions to them, but this episode explored the idea of those fears masterfully.

That tag

Flynn reveals the name of Wyatt’s wife’s killer to him in the final moments of the episode. What is he going to do? Will he kill the guy as a child? Will he kill the guy’s parents? We know he’ll be tempted, right?

The verdict

Horror can be hit or miss for me, but this episode, at least the half in the Murder Castle, felt like it belonged in a horror movie, and it was fantastic. I loved the exploration of everyone’s fears and the way the writers wove the two story halves together. I would have loved to see a multiple episode arc for this one.

5 out of 5 stars

What’s next

Timeless” will eventually bring on Misha Collins as Untouchable Elliot Ness, but next week, we’ll see “The Murder of Jesse James.”

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