Hmmm, you know I wonder how exactly time travel works in Futurama.
There are two main theories (I think) on how time travel works and people's personal opinions.
1. You can change time
- you create kind of a parallel universe when you go back and change it.
Let's use the example of going back in time to ..i dunno... suppose you went back in time and where able to convince the captain of the Titanic to slow down before he hit the ice field and ended up saving the ship from sinking. Then there would be two parallel universes:
A - where the Titanic does sink
B - where it doesn't
Make sense? This is the more commonly believed theory. It's what we see all the time in media and such. It makes for an interesting story (back to the future anyone?) and it's easier to contemplate.
A problem arises in this however. Being able to change time also means being able to create a paradox, which will destroy the universe.
If time travel really was possible, would the universe let itself be destroyed like that? Or does it have a better construction of time. Which brings me to the second theory:
2. You can't change time.
- The universe already has everything planned out, your destiny is already set before you yourself go through it to the end.
- the universe has only one timeline, and only will have one timeline.
Which means, that if you were to go back in time, then you've already done it, without actually doing it yet.
Kind of confusing? Okay... I'll use the best example I can think of at the moment.
Suppose one day you were going for a stroll in the woods below a cliff and you suddenly get hit in the head with a rock that fell from above.
One week later, you miraculously discover how to time travel and go back one week - to the day you got hit by the rock.
You go to the same wood as you were in when it happened, but this time you're walking up on the cliff, above your other self. While walking you end up kicking a rock over the edge - the rock that will hit your other self.
The example from Futurama would be this:
The aliens crashing in Roswell was a well known story before Fry was born, before any of the PE crew were born. And finally, in the year 3000 (or 3001, 3002, whatever) they go back and fulfil that destiny. They go back and become that alien ship. Not changing time, just going through something they have already been through, just not through their own timeline. Through the universes timeline.
This theory gets rid of the possibility of a paradox, because it rids you the chance of changing time.
Now someone asks, what if you went back in time and killed yourself.
Well, the universe wouldn’t let you. Something would happen to prevent this that is out of your hands. The you that did the time traveling would be stopped somehow. A boulder might fall on you before you have the chance to meet your other self.
Because of the “Why of Fry,” I see the Futurama writers have gone with the changing time theory and you really can’t argue much about that.
But I really want to hear other people’s opinions on time travel in the real world. Which theory do you believe in. Did I make myself clear enough which the second one? Or is it still confusing?
I tried explaining it to some friends and they misunderstood it completely. Being firm believers of the changing time theory, they didn’t want to understand it anyway.
I believe the not being able to change time theory makes more sense and I’m a firm believer of it, but I want to hear what everyone thinks!
Err...sorry for the long post, hope someone actually bothers reading it...