HBO’s ‘The Time Traveler’s Wife’ Offers a Fresh Take on the Tearjerker
The title might sound familiar to you: The Time Traveler’s Wife. Not only is it a bestselling book from 2003 by Audrey Niffenegger, but you might also recognize it from a previous 2009 movie adaptation starring Rachel McAdams and Eric Bana. But forget what you think you know about the story — this new HBO version (premiering Sunday, May 15, at 9pm ET/PT) promises to deliver a fresh take on this heartbreaking love story.
The six-episode series stars Theo James as Henry DeTamble, a dashing librarian with a genetic disorder that makes him time travel unwillingly, disappearing for chunks of time into his past and future, and Rose Leslie as his wife, Clare Abshire, who at age 6 meets an adult Henry and develops a friendship with this mysterious older man. It’s only when she encounters him in the present day in her 20s — with him completely oblivious to their connection, as their previous encounters were from his future self — that the two are able to meet in the middle and settle down … as much as Henry’s condition will allow, of course.
Despite Henry being the one with the time traveling condition, the story very much revolves around Clare, the title’s namesake. “[Henry]’s always had this pivotal role in her life as a figure of love and hope,” details Leslie. “And then, as she grows up, we see that she is constantly juggling these two scenarios in her life. Who is she when Henry is around? And then, who is she when Henry has disappeared? And I just found that very, very interesting to play.”
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Article originally appeared in the May 2022 edition of OnDISH Magazine.