5x04 "Killin' Time"

Leap Date:

June 18, 1958

Episode Adopted by: MikeKraken
Additional info provided by: Brian Greene


Sam leaps into a killer on the run in 1958. The house is surrounded and he is holding hostage a mother and her young daughter. But back in the future, the real killer, Leon, has escaped from the waiting room and Al searches to find him. If Al can't bring Leon back, Sam can't leap...and will be killed when the sheriff raids the house.


Audio from this episode

TV Guide Synopsis
Leap Date

Project Date
Name of the Person Leaped Into
Broadcast Date
Synopsis & Review
Project Trivia
Sam Trivia
Al Trivia

Al's Women
Al's Outfits Worn in the Episode

Miscellaneous Trivia
Guest Stars
Guest Cast Notes
Guests who appeared in other Quantum Leap episodes
Say What?
Quotable Quotes


Production Credits


Production # : 68106

TV Guide Synopsis:
Sam leaps into a killer holding a mother and daughter hostage, but he's trapped as well when the man escapes from the waiting room back in the future. Carol: Connie Ray. Leon: Cameron Dye. Sheriff Hoyt: Jim Haynie.


Pine County, Oklahoma (Sam leaps into Styles here)

Stallion's Gate, New Mexico, USA (Project Quantum Leap)

A city near PQL (where Al chases down Styles)

Leap Date:
June 18, 1958

Project Date:

Name of the Person Leaped Into:

Leon Randolph Styles

Broadcast Date:

October 20, 1992 - Tuesday

Synopsis & Review:

Sam leaps into a killer on the run in 1958. A deadly leap into Leon Stiles, a mass murderer who has taken a woman and her daughter hostage has Sam confessing the Quantum Leap Project to the frightened victims, while Al chases down the real killer who has escaped from the Waiting Room.

As the house is surrounded by police, Sam, as Leon is holding the mother and her young daughter. But back in the future, in 1999, the real killer, Leon, has escaped from the waiting room and Al desperately tries to find him. If Al can't bring Leon back, Sam can't leap...and will be killed when the sheriff raids the house.

More synopsis coming soon!

Personal Review by MikeKraken:

What happens when Sam leaps into a cold-blooded murder? It seems like a simple leap after Sam achieves his first goal, yet he can't leap, simply because the visitor has escaped from the Project Quantum Leap complex and now Al is going after him. That means that Sheriff Hoyt, whose daughter Debbie Collins died as a result of Leon Styles's shooting her, is out for revenge, and Sam is his target.

What can I say? This is the episode summary that I must have spent the most time on (over three hours). I watched it twice, as usual, but had to rewind quite a few times to get some of the quotes. This is one of my favourite episodes, because of two main things: we get to see Project Quantum Leap and the future, and we get to see lots of Gooshie. On top of that, it's a great story for the leap, and the entire episode in general is expertly written, acted, directed, and, well, everything!

If Sam hadn't exposed his true self to Carol, he probably would have died in Leon's place. This episode is full of action, drama, and comedy, and it almost seems like a full-length movie to me sometimes, which is why it's in my top five. I love how Sam reacts to Gooshie being in charge while Al was about to go chasing after Leon. The scene in the prostitute's room is tense, especially if you haven't seen the episode before! Carol's convincing the sheriff is quite touching.

Project Trivia:
Handlink: Gummy Bear style

The Waiting Room has a blue hue, and there is a ramp leading from the door up about waist-high to the "stage" of the Waiting Room. There is a space betwen the stage and the perimeter wall of the room, wide enough for people to walk double-file.

From what we've seen in this episode and "The Leap Back", the entrances to Imaging Chamber and Quantum Leap Accelerator are both located in the Control Room, but the Waiting Room is in a corridor outside of any of these rooms. There is an elevator right near the entrance to the Waiting Room (where the corporal comes out).

Ziggy is refered to as female in this episode.

Gooshie is absent minded in this episode, calling Leon "Dr. Beckett" twice, and suggesting calling the police.

Project Quantum Leap is a Code One clearance, and they can not involve other agencies (such as the police).

The Waiting Room is on the tenth level down, which leads to reason that so are the other four important rooms. The employees park their right out in front of the complex.

Gooshie had his car stolen "last year" (1998), and took Al's advice to have a location tracking device placed in his new one (which is "the blue one").

Sam can't leap if the visitor is not in the Waiting Room, and is stuck permanently if the leapee is dead.

Sam created Project Quantum Leap in 1995. The current year is 1999, probably March or April, given the position of the episode following "Lee Harvey Oswald" (February 1999).

When Sam leaps, it's his body that trades places with the visitor.

Gooshie is able to tune his brainwaves into both Al and Sam and be heard by both.

The city where Al and Leon are in Sex World has a designated lane for electro-magnetic vehicles only (the right lane), as seen by a sign and heard by the vocal announcement (which reads in English and Spanish).

Prostitutes in 1999 can afford voice-activated rooms.

Sam Trivia:
Sam reveals his true identity in this episode to Carol and Becky.

Al Trivia:
Al's car (the "experimental model" from "Genesis") is a convertible.

Al's Women:
Al thinks the prostitute is "tempting."

Al's Outfits Worn in the Episode:

First outfit: Golden shirt with matching shoes; black string tie with gold and black pin; goldish-yellow suit coat with matching pants; cigar; handlink; watch with a black band and a gold face.

Second outfit: black leather jacket; back-up handlink; black belt with silver buckle; black pants; black shoes.

Miscellaneous Trivia:
The day of the week is Thursday, according to a day-calendar that Sam sees upon leaping in. However, it was actually a Wednesday.

The profile disc that Gooshie made up for Al is a regular-sized compact disc in a jewel case.

In the second draft script, dated August 14th 1992, there is an extension to the sequence after Sam arrives in which Al and a marine visit Styles in the Waiting Room, and Styles is able to overpower the marine and steal his gun (this scene was filmed, but Bellisario felt it was “kinda hokey, it didn’t look real” so he requested it be cut). Source


These were shown at a convention. This is a recording of a screen, so the quality is poor. A crew member makes a funny clock chime sound and Dean Stockwell pretends to wreck the car!

Regular Cast:

Scott Bakula as Sam Beckett
Dean Stockwell as Al Calavicci

Guest Stars:

Connie Ray as Carol Pruitt
Cameron Dye
as Leon Styles
Jim Haynie
as Sheriff John Hoyt
Joseph Malone
as Deputy Grimes
Dennis Wolfberg
as Gooshie
Carolyn Lowery as Hooker
Beverley Mitchell as Becky Pruitt
Lewis Dauber as Reporter
actor as Corporal McLaughlin

Guest Cast Notes:

Connie Ray as Carol Pruitt: Studied dance at East Carolina University. She earned an MFA in acting from Ohio University. Known for her screen and stage work, she is also a writer. She presently splits her time between Los Angeles and New York. Her film and television highlights include The Torkelsons (1991), Hope Floats (1998), Idle Hands (1999), Stuart Little (1999), About Schmidt (2002), Ice Princess (2005), Thank You for Smoking (2005), The Big C (2010), and Grey's Anatomy (2005). As a playwright, she penned the "Smoke on the Mountain" trilogy - numbering among the most produced musicals in America for the last twenty five years.

Cameron Dye as Leon Styles: Born in New Orleans, but criss-crossed the U.S. while growing up, as his family never stayed in one place for longer than four years. His high-school years were divided between Ohio and Northern California. He applied and was accepted into the theater arts department of UCLA, where he met Tim Robbins, at the time also a novice actor. In between acting jobs, Cameron writes and performs his own music. His songs can be heard on the soundtracks to his films 'Scenes From The Goldmine' and 'The Apocalypse.'

Jim Haynie as Sheriff John Hoyt: Born on February 6, 1940 in Falls Church, Virginia, USA. He was an actor, known for The Peacemaker (1997), The Fog (1980) and The Bridges of Madison County (1995). He was previously married to Maggie Causey and Janice A McKelheer. He died on April 3, 2021 in Langley, Washington, USA.

Joseph Malone as Deputy Grimes: Known for The Tracey Ullman Show (1987), Hocus Pocus (1993) and Ally McBeal (1997).

Dennis Wolfberg as Gooshie: see our dedicated page here.

Carolyn Lowery as Hooker: Carolyn Lowery is known for Candyman (1992) and Octopus (2000).

Beverley Mitchell as Becky Pruitt: Rising to fan-magazine fame through her stint as Lucy Camden on 7th Heaven (1996), Beverley was born in Arcadia, California. Before her most famous role, Beverley started her career off with a well-known temper tantrum, alongside her mother, in the middle of a shopping mall. A talent agent heard the noise and quickly rushed over. The rest is history. Television and modeling gigs quickly followed and her debut TV role was in the series Big Brother Jake (1990). Her first large film role came in The Crow: City of Angels (1996). Shortly after, she was on the WB as one of the fresh faces of the hit 7th Heaven (1996). While busy with the show, Beverley graduated from high school in 1999 and has attended Loyola Maramount University and studied film. She also actively participates in RADD Kids and K-Mart Kids Race Against Drugs charities, among others. While active on her show, she also starred in the independent short film, Mean People Suck (2001). In 2011, Beverley joined the cast of The Secret Life of the American Teenager (2008), as the new school guidance counselor.

Lewis Dauber as Reporter: Born on April 27, 1949 in New York City, New York, USA. He was an actor and producer, known for The Island (2005), Something's Gotta Give (2003) and Jingle All the Way (1996). He was previously married to Paulette Levin. He died on October 3, 2019 in Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles, California, USA.

Guest Stars who appeared in other episodes:

Dennis Wolfberg played Gooshie in "Genesis", "The Leap Back", "Lee Harvey Oswald", and "Mirror Image".

Say What?

"Where'd you get that gun?" Al asks. Explanation: that scene was left on the cutting-room floor. A scene which was filmed but dropped shows Al, Gooshie, and a Marine Guard enter the Waiting Room with Styles. Styles overpowers the guard and takes his gun. If you look closely in the background, you can see the Marine lying on the floor by the table.

When Al is explaining to Styles that he can't leave the Waiting Room, we see an image of the door used from "The Leap Back" which lead into the Imaging Chamber. However, when the we see Al, Gooshie, and Styles in the corridor outside, it's a large, octagonal door that takes up the entire doorway (almost the width and height of the cylindrical corridors) and slides either into the wall or the ceiling (we don't see it open). In addition, we don't see the glowing blue lights from outside. [Explanation: they simply re-used older footage.]

We learned in "Roberto!" that the staff uses implants to open the doors at the Project. How did Styles exit the building? Perhaps another guard let him out.

The diary shows the date to be Thursday. June 18th, 1958 was a Wednesday.

Why does Gooshie think Styles is really Sam? He's been working at the project for years and should know how it works by now.

Al's car has roof open when he drives away from the Project. Interior shots show the roof closed.

Quotable Quotes:

Sam (narrative): "I've always made it a rule never to judge people on first impressions. Of course, rules were made to be broken."

Leon: "What the Hell is all this?"
Al (slightly paraphrased): "What is all this? What is all... well, it's sort of an underground top-secret research laboratory style... type of thing." (Gooshie approaches.) "Oh boy."

Gooshie: "Who's going after him?"
Al: "I am."
Gooshie: "_You_?" (gets a look from Al.) "W-wouldn't be my first choice."

Deputy Grimes: "You think he give himself up?"
Sheriff Hoyt: "I don't know. Why don't you ask him?"

Al: "He got away from us."
Sam: "He got away from you? What do you mean he got away from you?"
Al: "He escaped."
Sam: "He escaped? How could that happen, 'He escaped.'? Al, you didn't open the Waiting Room door, did you? Oh, please tell me you didn't opened the Waiting Room door. You did, you did, I can't believe this!"
Al: "Well, I couldn't help it, he took us by surprise! Somehow, he got ahold of a gun, and he held the gun straight at me like that, and what could I do?! I couldn't do anything!"
Sam: "Okay, okay, okay. He got out of the Waiting Room, okay, but at least he's still in the complex. Right? I can't believe this is happening, Al! You've got to get him back!"
Al: "Oh, I will!"
Sam: "What do you mean you will?"
Al: "I will!"
Sam: "What do you mean, you will? You're not thinking about going after him yourself, are ya?"
Al: "Why not?"
Sam: "Why not? Because he's a cold-blooded killer, that's why not! I need you here with me..."
Al: "Sam, this guy's gotta be taken alive. Don't forget: if he dies, you're finished. And and an' don't worry. Don't worry because I'm gonna leave Gooshie in charge."
Sam: "Gooshie. Well, that's just perfect."
Al: "Yeah, and if anything happens, he'll be in touch with you. Ziggy is synching up his brain with your brain so that you can see him."
Sam: "Me - me and Gooshie."
Al: "Yeah."

Al: "I'd kiss you if you didn't have bad breath."
Gooshie (with a handlink and an orange clipboard): "I'm touched. Admiral, are you sure this what you want to do?"
Al: "For five years, I've been watching Sam Beckett risk his life for total strangers. Think about it."

Carol: "Oh, that's right, I forgot. You're stuck here until your friend from the future gets back."

Sam: "When was the last time you met an illiterate speed-reader?"

Sam: "Gooshie?"
Carol: "What?"
Sam: "He's not a what, he's a who."
Carol: "Your friend from the future?"
Sam: "One of them."
Carol: "Oh great, now there're two of 'em?"

Gooshie: "Time and space can be a bitch."

Gooshie: "I'm right in front of you! Can't you see me?"
Al: "If I could see you, would I be talking to the sidewalk?!"
Gooshie: "I guess Ziggy didn't do a very good job of synching our brainwaves."
Al: "I'll take that as a complement."

Leon: "... 'cause you're gonna send me back where I came from, right?"
Gooshie: "I can't do that."
Leon: "I think you're lying to me."
Gooshie: "Don't get me wrong. I mean, I'd love to accomodate you, but it doesn't work that way. We don't have any control over it."
Leon: "Well, who does?!"
Gooshie: "Well, that kind of depends on your point of view. Call yourself a religious man?" (looks Leon up and down.) "Probably not."

Best Lines:
Al: "For five years, I've been watching Sam Beckett risk his life for total strangers. Think about it."

Gooshie: "I guess Ziggy didn't do a very good job of synching our brainwaves."
Al: "I'll take that as a compliment."


Michael Watkins nominated for Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography in a Regular Series in 1993 by the
American Society of Cinematographers.

Production Credits:

Theme by: Mike Post
Musical Score By: Velton Ray Bunch
Co-Executive Producer: Deborah Pratt
Co-Executive Producer: Chas. Floyd Johnson
Supervising Producers: 
Richard C. Okie, Harker Wade
Supervising Producer: Tommy Thompson
Producer: Robin Jill Bernheim
Created by: Donald P. Bellisario
Written by: Tommy Thompson
Directed by: Michael Watkins

Executive Producer: Donald P. Bellisario
Associate Producers: 
Julie Bellisario, Scott Ejercito
Coordinating Producer: David Bellisario
Director of Photography: Michael Watkins A.S.C.
Production Designer: Cameron Birnie
Edited by: Michael S. Stern
Unit Production Manager: Ron Grow
First Assistant Director: R. John Slosser
Second Assistant Director: Brian Faul
Casting by: Ellen Lubin Sanitsky, C.S.A.
Set Director: Robert L. Zilliox
Costume Designer: Jean-Pierre Dorleac
Costume Supervisors: David Rawley, Katina Kerr
Art Director: Ellen Dambros-Williams
Sound Mixer: Barry D. Thomas
Stunt Coordinator: Diamond Farnsworth
Make-up: Jeremy Swan
Hairstylist: Andrea Mizushima
Fashion Concepts: Jean-Pierre Dorleac
Sound Editor: Greg Schorer
Music Editor: Bruce Frazier
Special Visual Effects: Roger Dorney, Denny Kelly

Panaflex   Camera and Lenses by: Panavision

This motion picture is protected under laws of the United States and other countries. Unauthorized duplication, distribution or exhibition may result in civil liability and criminal prosecution.

Copyright 1992 by Universal City Studios Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Some of the characters portrayed in this motion picture are based upon actual persons. Although some of those events have been fictionalized for dramatic purposes, otherwise the characters and events depicted in this photoplay are fictitious. Any similarity to actual persons living or dead is purely coincidental.

Bellisarius Productions and Universal Television, an MCA Company


Bone up on your hand anatomy, because it’s Killin’ Time!

Join hosts Allison Pregler, Matt Dale and Christopher DeFilippis to discuss Sam’s Leap into a brutal killer in a deadly siege with police — while Al hunts for the real killer, who has escaped from the Waiting Room in 1999.

Listen to The Quantum Leap Podcast on this episode here:

It’s a whirlwind of Sci-Fi action, confusing guns and revealing truths about Fermi Suits. Did we mention Sex World?

Also, Matt tells his car-park story, and there’s a dark(winged) post-credits bonus!

Let us know what you think… Leave us a voicemail by calling (707)847-6682.

Send in your thoughts, theories and feedback, Send MP3s & Email to quantumleappodcast@gmail.com.

Also join us on Facebook.com/QuantumLeapPodcast and Twitter.com/QuantumLeapPod

Back to top