Star-Crossed is the third episode in Season 1 of Quantum Leap, also the third overall series episode. Written by Deborah Pratt, the episode, which was directed by Mark Sobel, originally aired on NBC-TV on March 31, 1989.
Sam leaps into Dr. Gerald Bryant, an English teacher who is having a fling with a student named Jamie. Sam also meets the woman who stood him up at the altar in his own life - Donna Eleese (Teri Hatcher) - but she has not yet met him in the future. Despite threats to his job, Al gives Sam the information he needs to reunite his star-crossed lover with her father and, maybe, give himself a second shot at marriage.
June 15, 1972: Sam leaps into Gerald Bryant, a sleazy English college professor who is having an affair with one of his own students. Sam's mission is to end the affair and get the young woman interested in a wrestler from Ohio State her own age. However, when Sam realizes that Donna Eleese - the woman he once loved and who left him at the altar - is attending school there, Sam forgets about his mission and tries to make sure that Donna doesn't break his heart in the future.
Sam leaps into a college professor, Dr. Gerald Bryant, (leapee played by John Tayloe) while standing before an English literature class and having his all-girl audience staring at him admiringly. Sam struggles through the material before being saved by the bell, which ends the class. Outside the building, one of his students, a passionate and poetic red-head named Jamie Lee (Leslie S. Sachs), flirts with him. Sam attempts to rebuff her advances until he is suddenly distracted by another girl, Donna Eleese (Teri Hatcher), the woman Sam will love in the 1980s. Jamie Lee yanks him away and accompanies him back to his residence. Sam continues to try to steer Jamie Lee away, eventually telling her to delay their romantic affair for another day.
Al arrives to tell him that his mission is to prevent Bryant and Jamie Lee from marrying (shotgun wedding) and ruining their lives. Sam disputes this, stating that he has seen Donna Eleese, and believes his true mission is to get them a second chance in the future. Sam only vaguely remembers the details of the relationship. He knows that they met in the early 1980s and were engaged to be married, but that the wedding never took place. Al fills in the gaps by explaining that Donna didn't show up at the altar. Sam believes she was afraid to commit because of something that happened with her father. He asks Al to help but Al is defiant. He tells Sam that affecting one's personal future is a violation of the project's rules and that if Sam attempts to do so, the committee controlling the project will cut off funding.
Sam goes to the diner where Donna works. He orders lunch and tries to convince her that he is not the man he appears to be. Donna becomes startled and asks him not to speak with her again. Moments later, Sam is confronted by a big, hulking wrestler named Oscar (Michael McGrady). Oscar warns Sam to stay away from his girlfriend, Jamie Lee. Sam contests that Jamie Lee is simply trying to make him jealous and recommends that Oscar appeal to Jamie Lee's poetic instincts by writing her poetry. Oscar accepts the advice, though promises he will return to "break his face" if it doesn't work.
Back at his residence, Jamie Lee shows up once again to resume their love affair. Sam tells her they are not right for each other and she should give Oscar another chance. Disappointed, Jamie Lee leaves, but is unconvinced that she will stop loving him.
Sam tells Al he knows how to fix his own circumstances with Donna. Ever since her father left her as a child, Donna has been unable to commit to a man. Sam theorizes that if he can reunite the two, Donna may abandon her commitment problems and marry Sam in the future. Sam asks Al to locate her father. Al refuses, reiterating that the committee is already accusing Al of violating project rules by giving Sam personal information and will remove him from the project if he does so again.
Sam goes to the science building where he finds Donna trying to solve a complex mathematical equation. Sam solves it for her and begins to share his views on science and time travel. The two begin to bond and Donna discloses that, if she could travel in time, she would go back to her childhood when she was most happiest. Sam asks if this was before her father left, and Donna becomes rattled, disturbed that he knew such personal information. Sam tells her he guessed the information because Donna didn't list a father on her school records. Donna accepts Sam's explanation and the two continue to bond while Sam explains his time travel theories.
Back at the diner where Donna works, Sam waits while Donna finishes her shift. Al appears, flanked by two committee members, who remain invisible to Sam. They are monitoring Al's conversation, to ensure that he does not give Sam personal information. Al, however, attempts to circumvent them by communicating with Sam covertly through an Egyptian sash he is wearing. Sam, fluent in ancient Egyptian language, is able to read the inscriptions, which spell out symbols meaning "capital" and "army". Sam deduces that Donna's father must be in Washington and working at the Pentagon. Sam, however, needs his name to find him. Al is accused of communicating with Sam through coded language. The invisible members proceed to drag Al away. Al yells out the name "Wojohowitz", Donna's father's surname, before disappearing.
Donna returns to the room after Al leaves, and Sam asks her to take a trip with him to Washington. Donna is reluctant, so he promises to bring a chaperon. Back at home, Sam organizes the meeting by calling Donna's father (played by Michael Gregory), who is an Army Colonel. Sam tells Wojohowitz that his departure has affected Donna emotionally and she needs to see him again. The Colonel says he is shipping out to Vietnam the next day and does not want to reopen old emotional wounds before leaving. He hangs up the phone.
A knock sounds at Sam's door. It is Oscar, who angrily punches Sam in the face. Sam retaliates with his own punch before the two settle down. Sam asks Oscar what went wrong. Oscar describes the poem he wrote, which was filled with perverse and unromantic dialogue. Sam asks Oscar if he and Jamie Lee will accompany him and Donna on a trip to Washington. Oscar agrees, and the four of them set off that night.
While pulling over at a gas station along the way, Al reappears. Sam is overjoyed, having worried he might never see him again. Al explains that he set up his girlfriend, Tina, with Whitesman, one of the committee members, and threatened to blackmail him to his wife unless Whitesman allowed Al to return to the project. Al is now able to access information about Donna. However, he tells Sam that, prior to meeting him, Donna was engaged to another man. If Sam is able to reunite Donna with her father and re-establish her ability to commit, he may end up ensuring that she marries the other guy instead.
While they resume their trip, Donna asks Sam why he is taking them to Washington. Sam explains that he is taking her to see her father. He says that he once had a fiancé, who was afraid to commit, and left him at the altar. He hopes Donna will not do the same when her chance for happiness comes.
They arrive at Wojohowitz's hotel late in the night. Sam and Donna are told at the reception that Wojohowitz does not want visitors, and since Donna cannot prove that she is his daughter, the two are refused entry. Sam decides not to give up, and takes Donna to a back entrance, which is unlocked.
The two security guards at the reception are suspicious of Sam. One of them goes out into the parking lot and finds his car, which has Ohio license plates. Jamie Lee and Oscar hide away, and Oscar's ability to offer her protection rekindles her romantic interest in him. The guard, meanwhile, investigates the perimeter and finds that the back entrance to the hotel has had its lock mechanism taped over, allowing anyone to enter. He alerts the other guard at reception, who phones the police and informs them of a break-in.
Sam and Donna arrive at Colonel Wojohowitz's door, and Donna has a tearful reunion with her father. Her father says he regrets waiting so long to see her. Sam begins to leave the room, when Donna goes after him, saying that if she were a little older, they might be able to have a relationship. Sam nods and tells her she will be older one day.
Sam merrily exits the hotel while Al informs him that he is in the Watergate hotel at the time of the famous break-in that led to Nixon's resignation. Sam doesn't remember the event, but is convinced that he has cured Donna's commitment issues so that she will no longer jilt him at the altar in the future. Al reminds him about the man who came before him. Sam is unworried. He is convinced that fate will allow them to be together. Meanwhile, Jamie Lee and Oscar finally rekindle a romance and kiss - prompting Sam to leap...
Kiss With History
Sam inadvertently helps military officials discover the Watergate break-in.
Though it seems to be purely coincidental, June 15 is also Al's birthday, as revealed in The Leap Back.
- In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida (performed by Iron Butterfly)
- American Pie (performed by Don McLean)
- Betcha By Golly Wow (performed by The Stylistics)
|Quantum Leap Season One|
|● Genesis: Part I ● Genesis: Part II ● Star-Crossed ● The Right Hand of God ● How The Tess Was Won ● Double Identity ● The Color of Truth ● Camikazi Kid ● Play It Again, Seymour ●.|