The Department of Time: Tiempo de venganza (Time of Revenge)   First Watch 
May 11, 2018 2:09 PM - Season 1, Episode 7 - Subscribe

In 1843, Isabella II of Spain became Queen at the age of 13 (with her mother Maria Christina assuming regency). A year later, she demanded to visit the Ministry of Time. Former Ministry agent Armando Leiva, who recruited Irene back in 1960, has escaped from a Ministry prison in the Middle Ages and plans to kill the Queen during her visit. With the very existence of the Ministry at stake, Ernesto, Amelia and Alonso are sent to foil Leiva's plans.

* We learn Armando Leiva's and Irene's backstories in this episode.
* Leiva was a Carlist War hero who was recruited by the 20th Century Ministry and rose through the ranks, eventually becoming Operations Chief (the position Ernesto now occupies).
* In 2005, Leiva begs Salvador for permission to bring his son to the present, so he can be treated for Leukemia. Leiva also wanted the Ministry to use their knowledge of modern medicine to save lives in the past. Salvador denied both requests, pointing out that changing the past is a very risky affair, and that using the time doors for personal gain is forbidden.
* Leiva led a revolt in response. The Ministry workers who followed him went on strike and then attempted a coup. However, someone betrayed them, the takeover was foiled and Leiva was imprisoned while his son died.
* In 1960, Irene worked in the Ministry of Information in ultra-Catholic Francoist Spain, where she could not openly be a lesbian. She was in an unhappy marriage. The episode opens to her standing on a rooftop ledge, clearly intending to jump and commit suicide. She was saved by Armando Leiva, who offered her a job in the Ministry of Time.
* Julián uses the time doors for his own personal gain in this episode.
* Irene's association with the Ministry and the doors of time have apparently saved her life and also destroyed it.
posted by zarq (9 comments total)
I liked the use of split screens in the episode. And I was legitimately worried for Alonso's life after the shooting.

I am confused about Irene's timeline. If she was born in 1930 and recruited from 1960 to join the Ministry, but clearly not 85 years old in 2015, which decades did she skip? I guess Leiva came from the 2005-ish Ministry to get her from the rooftop, and it was ok for her to start living in that 'present' era when off-duty because she was officially dead? (But Alonso is still supposed to go home to his original era when off-mission?)
posted by oh yeah! at 7:57 PM on May 11, 2018 [1 favorite]

Also, zarq, thank you for continuing to post these threads, and I hope you post episode 8 soon because I watched it last night and am desperate to discuss it before I let myself move on to S2 ep 1.
posted by oh yeah! at 8:39 AM on May 13, 2018 [1 favorite]

You're welcome!!

Episode 8 has been posted!

I'm trying to post three times a week, on weekdays.
posted by zarq at 6:42 AM on May 14, 2018

I like how they used the scenes on the roof as bookends. But it's interesting how Leiva thinks he has ruined Irene's life. He doesn't see the difference between the two of them, which is that he loved his son more than the Ministry. Irene loves Nuria, but it's clear the Ministry is her life. To ruin her life Leiva would need to take the Ministry from her, not Nuria.

One thing that's interesting to me is you would think the Ministry would be more likely to recruit people without families or children as they would be more loyal to the Ministry.
posted by miss-lapin at 10:01 AM on May 22, 2018 [2 favorites]

This was a pretty good episode, really fleshing out Irene, and I'm so glad Nuria didn't die.

That said, I really dislike Julián here. His behavior around Maite feels super, super gross - in previous episodes, he was calling her constantly, taking covert photos of her, spying on intimate moments between her and his past self - and now he's graduated to lying to her for sex. And nobody calls him on it, except when stalking his ex-wife affects his job performance!
posted by Berreggnog at 1:40 PM on June 25, 2018 [2 favorites]

Julian's behavior bugs me, too, and I think the only way he's getting away with it is that only Irene and Amelia know about it, and both of them have reasons for not reporting him.

My theory: Irene is keeping quiet because Julian knows about her affairs (though that's less leverage now that Nuria has left her), and she knows that the Ministry can and has killed people for this kind of time-meddling, and she doesn't want to see Julian get killed. Amelia is keeping quiet because she's from an era where it would be even more difficult for a woman to report a man than it is today (and it is *very* hard today), combined with her really strong team loyalty.
posted by Mogur at 1:41 PM on August 14, 2018 [1 favorite]

Anyway, watching the two Ministries (three, if you count thenone in 2004 or whenever it was) interact with each other, I have to ask - what's so special about the 2015 Ministry that it can order all the other ones around? Especially if the show gets picked up for more seasons, because then in theory we could have Julian from 2018 (or whenever) go back and see Julian in 2015.

Like, when the Ministry was first built in 1595 or whenever, on day 1 did they install the first door and Ernesto pops through it to say "Well done. Now I have some orders for you."? Is rthere a real Now, and how does it interact with timelines? Is it possible for someone from the Ministry in 2050 to suddenly appear? Why not? Eventually Julian will age to that era (if he survives). What's to stop him from going through a door to 2015 and overriding all the orders there? We know damn well he's capable of it.

ie was there ver a time when the 1844 Ministry was the Now, and nothing came after it, and that twit was running all of Spanish history? And then the Ministerial staff aged forward enough that 1865 was the Now, and someone popped back to tell him to smarten up? Preferably on his first day so he would never actually try to run all of Spanish history?

posted by Mogur at 3:25 PM on August 14, 2018

Is it possible for someone from the Ministry in 2050 to suddenly appear? Why not?

In the first episode, Julián asks Salvador if there are doors to the future and Salvador says no, that "El tiempo es el que es."/ (Time is what it is.). So, what makes the 2015 Ministry so special is just that it is, from all the characters' perspectives, at the furthest point in history. And since the ostensible purpose of the Ministry is the preservation of Spanish history, they should have the clearest view of what events occurred and their relative importance.
posted by oh yeah! at 4:38 PM on August 14, 2018 [1 favorite]

I am a little tiny bit suspicious of the official story -- it feels like 2015's primacy is more engineered than real (they do, after all, have all the machineguns) -- so I'm looking forward to more reveals of how time works in future seasons.
posted by Mogur at 4:23 PM on August 16, 2018

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