"The Leap Home, Part II: Vietnam"

Leap Date:

April 7, 1970

Episode Adopted by: Eleiece <aka> Sherdran
Additional info provided by: Brian Greene


In part two of "The Leap Home", Sam ends up in Vietnam with his brother, Tom, and gets a second chance to save him from being killed. Ziggy is having a hard time interfacing with the pentagon computers to find out exactly how Tom was killed. Will Sam be able to save his brother?


Audio from this episode


TV Guide Synopsis
Leap Date

Name of the Person Leaped Into

Project Trivia
Sam Trivia
Al Trivia

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

Miscellaneous Trivia
Kiss with History

Broadcast Date
Guest Stars
Guest Cast Notes
Guests who appeared in other Quantum Leap episodes
Personal Review
Best Lines
Best Scenes
Say What?
Quotable Quotes



Production # 66402

TV Guide Synopsis:
Sam, as a Navy SEAL in 1970 Vietnam, leaps at the chance to save the life of one of his comrades---his own brother (David Newsom). Andrea Thompson. Col. Deke: Ernie Lively. Sam: Scott Bakula.


Vietnam, on the banks of the Mekong River (5 miles from the coast).

Leap Date:
April 7, 1970

Name of the Person Leaped Into:
Herbert "Magic" Williams

Broadcast Date:
October 5, 1990 - Friday

"Wild Thing" by the Troggs
"Raindrops" by Dee Clark
"Psychedelic Shack" by The Temptations
"Someday We'll Be Together" by Diana Ross the Supremes
"I Wish It Would Rain" by the Temptations

Project Trivia:
Ziggy had problems interfacing with an old Pentagon computer while searching for information on "Operation Lazarus".

Herbert "Magic" Williams (the leapee) leads Project Quantum Leap 30 years after the original series ended!

Sam Trivia:
This is the second time Sam has leapt into someone nicknamed "Magic." The first was Charlie "Black Magic" Walters in the episode "Pool Hall Blues."

Sam's Outfits:
Camouflage fatigues, sleeveless camouflage tee shirt, head rag, camouflage face paint , dark socks and heavy shoes, and dog tags; and

Khaki shorts (sans underwear and the top button not buttoned), khaki-colored tee shirt, sneakers (sans socks), black wrist watch and dog tags; and

Dark fatigue pants, sleeveless dark tee shirt and, probably, tennis shoes.

Al Trivia:
In the bunker he knew that the frequency on the radio didn't seem right, and he remembered the correct frequency for Sam to contact to secure from battle stations.

Al was a POW in Vietnam. At the end of the episode, Al reveals a change in time due to Sam's actions to save his brother: he’s now repatriated in five years (1975) instead of 1973, which he had previously stated in "M.I.A."

Al's Women:
Al is obsessed with Maggie throughout the episode. He states she has the "biggest, roundest..." something in Vietnam.

Al's Outfits:
Al wears his full dress white Naval officer uniform throughout the episode. 

Miscellaneous Trivia:
This episode was shot on location about 50 miles outside of Los Angeles in Corona, CA. It took 8 days to shoot this episode. The location was Raahauge’s shooting range.

Diamond Farnsworth performed the water skiing behind the helicopter. The water was only about three feet deep, so they couldn't use a boat. 

The mini-gun Sam was supposed to fire was capable of shooting 6,000 rounds a minute.

Rich Whiteside (Doc) was a Navy SEAL.

David Newsom was given real SEAL training to prep for this episode. 

The camera Maggie used was a Nikon.

The photo of a younger POW Al was created using airbrushing.

According to Sam in "Shock Theater", Herbert "Magic" Williams serial number is D195686.

This episode has a sequel story in the Quantum Leap Novel, "Pulitzer."

Kiss With History:
This episode takes place during the Vietnam War.


Writer: Donald P. Bellisario

Director: Michael Zinberg


Harker Wade & Robert Wolterstorff

Paul Brown & Jeff Gourson

Deborah Pratt & Michael Zinberg

PRODUCER: Chris Ruppenthal

Regular Cast:
Scott Bakula as Sam Beckett
Dean Stockwell as Al Calavicci

Guest Stars:
David Newsom as Lt. Tom Beckett
Thompson as Maggie Dawson
Ernie Lively as Col. Deke
David Hayward as Dempsey
Tia Carrere as Chu-Hoi

Adam Nelson as Preacher
Patrick Warburton as Blaster
Ryan Reid
as Shamo
Rich Whiteside as Doc
Rodney Kageyama as Choo Choo
Christopher Kirby as Herbert “Magic” Williams (Mirror image)
Chi Muoi Lo as Vin

Guest Cast Notes:

Andrea Thompson was born in Ohio but was raised in Australia.

Andrea was the victim of a stalker, Italian designer, Gianluigi Assenato, in December, 1998.

Andrea was a reporter for CBS affiliate KRQE News 13 in Albuquerque, New Mexico for a year before landing a short (only 7 months) controversial stint (2001-2002) as an anchorwoman for CNN's Headline News.

At present Andrea hosts the Saturday night lineup on Court TV.

David Newsom another photographer (Karen Izenberg) recently had an exhibit titled "Works" on display at the Detroit Street Gallery.

Ernie Lively appeared in the 1995 film "leaphome2 Familia" ("My Family") along with Scott Bakula.

Tia Carrere was born in Hawaii and her given name (on her birth certificate) is Althea Rae Duhinio Janairo.

In 1998 Rich had a book published, The Screenwriting Life: The Dream, the Job, and the Reality.

"The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam" was Rich Whiteside's first acting job in Hollywood.

Rich Whiteside not only acted in this episode, he also served as technical director for this episode, his qualifications being that he served several years in Vietnam.

DAVID NEWSOM (Tom Beckett):
Talk to Me (2000)
House Rules (1998)
Boys (1996)
New Nightmare... aka A Nightmare On Elm Street 7 (1994)
Homefront (1991-1992) (TV)
Judging Amy (1999)
Will & Grace (1999)
Suddenly Susan (1998)
Touched by an Angel (1996)
Chicago Hope (1994)
China Beach (1989& 1990)

ANDREA THOMPSON (Maggie Dawson):
Psychic Detectives (2003) Documentary - Host
Headline News (2001-2002) Anchor
Rocket's Red Glare (2000)
Sweetheart Swindlers (2000) (TV)
Encounter in the Third Dimension (1999) (voice)
Lost Valley (1998)
A Gun, a Car, a Blonde (1997)
Delirious (1991)
Doin' Time on Planet Earth (1988)
Hot Splash (1988)
Wall Street (1987)
Manhattan Gigolo (1986)
Nightmare Weekend (1986)
NYPD Blue (1996-2000)
Captain Sileaphome2n & The Space Monkeys (1996) (voice)
JAG (1995-1998)
Babylon 5 (1994-1995)
Falcon Crest (1989-1990)
"Baywatch" (1991)
"Spenser: For Hire" (1988)

ERNIE LIVELY (Col. Deke Grimwald):
"American Pie 2 ' (2001)
"Goodbye Lover ' (1999)
"The Legend of Cryin' Ryan: (1998)
"Fire Down Below" (1997)
"A Stranger to Love" (1996) (TV)
"My Family", a/k/a "Mi Familia" (1995)
"The Beverly Hillbillies" (1993)
"Passenger 57" (1992)
"Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot" (1992)
"Showdown in Little Tokyo" (1991)
"Voices Within: The Lives of Truddi Chase" (1990) (TV)
"Hard to Kill" (1990)
"Turner & Hooch" (1989)
"Scandal in a Small Town" (1988) (TV)
"Badge of the Assassin" (1985) (TV)
Sandman (1998) - Director
"The West Wing" (2000)
"JAG" (1999)
"Just Shoot Me!" (1997)
"Renegade" (1996)
"The X Files" (1995)
"Hangin' with Mr. Cooper" (1994)
"Civil Wars" (1993)
"Baywatch" (1992)
"Hill Street Blues" (1987)
"Scarecrow and Mrs. King" (1985)
"Dukes of Hazzard, The" (1984)

Accidental Meeting (1993)
A Case for Murder (1993)
For the Very First Time (1991)
1,000 Pieces of Gold (1991)
Eve of Destruction (1990)
Northstar (1986)
Fallen Angel (1981)
Who'll Save Our Children (1978)
Flying High (1978)
Wait Till Your Father Gets Home (1972)
ER (1997 & 2002)
JAG (2000)
Beverly Hills, 90210 (1994 - 1995)
Family Matters (1990-1991)
Matlock (1990)
Knots Landing (1989)

Quantum Leap (The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam) (Technical Advisor)
Quantum Leap - (1992)
Quantum Leap - (1990)
JAG - (1995-1996)

TIA CARRERE (Ti Ti , the chu hoi):
20 Dates (1998) - Executive Producer
If... Dog... Rabbit... (1999) - Co-Executive Producer
The Immortals (1995) - Associate Producer
Stitch! - The TV Series (2003)
Relic Hunter (1999)
Hollywood Squares (1998)
General Hospital (1985-1987)
The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn (2002)
Disney's Hercules (1998) (voice of Marigold)
Veronica's Closet (1998)
Murder One (1995-1996)
Late Show with David Letterman (1994)
Tales from the Crypt (1992)
Friday the 13th: The Series (1990)
MacGyver (1988)
Tour of Duty (1987)
MacGyver (1986)
Airwolf (1985)
Lilo & Stitch (2002) (voice)
2001 ALMA Awards (2001) (TV)
Operation Delta Force 3: Clear Target (1998)
Hollow Point (1995)
True Lies (1994)
Wayne's World (1992 & 1993)
Rising Sun (1993)
1992 MTV Movie Awards (1992)
Showdown in Little Tokyo (1991)
Fatal Mission (1990)

ADAM NELSON (Preacher):
Mancuso, FBI (1989) 
CSI (2002)
ER (1997)
Diagnosis Murder (1994)
Booker (1990)
Mancuso, FBI (1989)
JAG (2003)
The X-Files (2002)
O Pioneers
The Abyss
The Pledge

Salsa (1988) - Associate Producer
Game Over (2003)
These Guys (2003)
The Venture Brothers (2003)
Kim Possible (2002)
The Tick (2001)
Buzz Lightyear of Star Command (2000)
Maggie Winters (1998)
Dave's World (1994-1997)
8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter (2002-2003)
Malcolm in the Middle (1999-2002)
Family Guy (2001-2002)
Buzz Lightyear of Star Command (2000)
NewsRadio (1998-1999)
Seinfeld (1995, 1997-1998)
Ellen (1995)
Mad About You (1993)
Designing Women (1993)
Murphy Brown (1992)
Men in Black II (2002)
Dirt (2001)
Scream 3 (2000)
Angels in the Infield (2000) (TV)
Emperor's New Groove (2000)
American Strays (1999)
Camouflage (1999)

RYAN REID (Shamoo):
Star Trek: The Next Generation (1992)

Stanley's Gig (2000)
Next Karate Kid (1994)
Showdown in Little Tokyo (1991)
Hiroshima: Out of the Ashes (1990)
Pretty Woman (1990)
Let It Ride (1989)
Vibes (1988)
Lucky Stiff (1988)
Teen Wolf (1985)
Girls of the White Orchid (1983)
Best Friends (1982)
Gung Ho (1986)
Brotherly Love (1997)
Home Improvement Chicago Hope (1995)
Empty Nest (1994)
Murder, She Wrote (1992)
Baby Talk - (1991) (Voice of Baby Robert)
Designing Women (1989)
Charles in Charge (1985)
Riptide (1984)
Tales of the Gold Monkey (1983)
Quincy, M.E. (1982)
The Jeffersons (1981)
Arli$$ (2002)
Little House on the Prairie (1982)

CHRISPTOPER KIRBY (Herbert "Magic" Williams / mirror):
Queen of the Damned (2002)
Ocean Girl (1994)
The Burning Zone (1996)
The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air (1996)
Space: Above and Beyond - Technician (1996)
Flipper (1995)

Guests Who Appeared In Other Quantum Leap Episodes:

David Newsom (Tom Beckett) also appeared (as Tom Beckett) in "The Leap Home, Part 1."

Rodney Kageyama (Choo Choo) also appeared in "Lee Harvey Oswald" (as Joda).

Rich Whiteside (Doc) also appeared in "A Leap For Lisa" (as a Marine guard)

Personal Review:

"The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam" is one of my two favorite 'Al' episodes, tying for first place with 'M.I.A." Dean Stockwell was nominated for an Emmy for this episode, and in this fan's opinion I think he should have won. But that's another discussion for another time.

In watching this episode again as preparation to writing this synopsis, something occurred to me. Perhaps GTFW leaped Sam into Tom's squad, not just to perhaps save his brother's life, but also to learn a hard lesson. A lesson about selfishness, about the too often unexpected price that life exacts for allowing selfishness to get you what you want. That's what Maggie's death did for Sam.

In this respect, how much like Sam are we?

But "The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam" also taught Sam another lesson, gave him an example in selfless sacrifice.

Al could very easily have told Sam that he was one of those POWs being led along that trail 'right over there'. And, knowing Sam as he does, Al knew he had a darned good chance that he could get himself rescued if he'd just opened his mouth and said so. He had a chance to change his own history. But he didn't. Instead he chose to help Sam save Tom's life. What's more, he didn't allow Sam to feel guilty about it later in the bar.

A verse from the Bible says it best: "Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his life for a friend." John 15:13.

That's what Al did. He sacrificed himself, his chance for freedom, to help his best friend. Ultimately, Sam was able to repay his best friend's unselfish act later when he gave Beth the hope she needed to hang on and wait for Al to come home. How many of us, with only a few minutes notice, be willing to give up something we want more than anything in the world in order to let someone else get what they want or perhaps, even more, need?

In this respect, how much like Al are we?

Best Line:
Al to Sam: "I was free. Up here
(taps his temple) ...I was always free."

Best Scenes:

The Second 'best' scene : The river scene:
(Sam and Doc are hiding in the reeds along the river. Al suddenly pops in.)

Al: "Sam! I found the POWs! The VC are leading the down a trail right over there."

Sam: "Al, look at this."

Al: "Sam, there's only two guards. You and Doc can free 'em."

Sam: "This radio is tuned to 47.30. That's the same frequency the radio was tuned to in the bunker
last night. We took the radio off the sappers. 47.30 is the frequency they were using."

Al: "The chu hoi. She must have radioed them right after Maggie left the bunker."

Sam: "She's leading them straight into an ambush." (Doc crosses to Sam.) "I gotta go warn Tom."

Al: "You'll never catch him in time!"

(Doc grabs Sam by the arm)

Doc: "You flip, Magic, I'm gonna sedate you."

Sam: "Al, help me!"

Al looks behind Doc; he knows how close rescue was for him as a POW/leaphome2. He makes his own tough choice.

The Best Scene:

The last bar room scene after the squad gets back to camp.

(Blaster's doing pushups on the bar with a bargirl sitting on his back, the other guys are counting off each pushup, music is playing ("I Wish That It Would Rain"). Sam and Tom are sitting at a table drinking beer and talking.)

Tom: "You didn't kill her, Magic."

Sam: "Well she sure as hell didn't die the first time April 8, 1970 rolled around."

Tom: "What are you talking about?"

Al: "No, but Tom did."

Sam: "Well there it is. I traded a life for a life."

Tom: "You are one weird dude, Magic." (He leaves the table and goes to the bar.)

Al: "I was the one that led you back to save your brother. So if anyone's responsible, it's me."

(Colonel Griswold enters, carrying a large manila envelope; he crosses to the bar. Blaster completes the 50 pushups then does one more)

Blaster: "51. That one's for you, Maggie."

Col. Grimwald: "Can a solider get a drink around here?"

(He hands the envelope to Tom)

"Maggie's last photographs. Choo Choo, give me a beer."

(He's handed a beer)

(Tom takes the photographs from the envelope and looks through them, impressed.)

Tom: "She was one helluva photographer."

Col. Grimwald: "She was one helluva a woman."

Sam: "And I killed her."

Col. Grimwald: "No. I did."

Tom: "Oh stop it, both of you."

Al: "What did she say to you that time in the bunker?"

Sam: "She said she'd sell her soul for a Pulitzer."

Col. Grimwald: "Not just her soul."

Tom: "Yeah, well I wish she'd have got it."

Al: "She did."

Sam: "What?"

Tom: "The Pulitzer. I wish she'd have won the Pulitzer prize."

Al: She did. For her last photograph."

(Sam looks up at Al's words then jumps up and goes to Tom and grabs the pictures from Tom's hands. He turns back to the table and spreads the pictures out, looking for Maggie's last photograph. He finds it. For a moment all he can do is stare at it before he slowly straightens up, meeting Al's gaze.)

Al: "What the hell? I get repatriated in five years."

Sam: "You could've been free."

Al: "I was free." (He gently taps his right temple) "Up here...I was always free."

Tom: "Hey! Hey, it's midnight. It's April 9th and I'm still alive."

(He turns to Sam with a grin and puts his arm around Sam's shoulders.)

"Thanks to you, little brother."

Sam leaps.

Say What?
The Supremes "Someday We’ll Be Together" wasn't released until November 1970.

The camera click when Maggie takes the photo of the photo (later revealed to be Al) doesn't match the position Al faces as he is being brought through the jungle.

Why is Sam wearing blue jeans in the jungle when the rest of the platoon is wearing camoflage?

Quotable Quotes:
Al to Sam: "I was free. Up here...(taps his temple) ...I was always free."

Sam/Al: "What do I say when I get them?" .... "Help!"

Al: "Ziggy's having trouble interfacing with it (an old Pentagon computer). It's like trying to get two members of the U.N. to talk without a translator."

Al: "Sam, I'm the one that thinks with his glands, not you."

Al: "Tough choice, kid."

Al: "Oh shoot! ... She put her jammies on."

Al: "Just remember...you've got an ace in the hole. Me."

You know she's got the biggest, roundest...
Camera lens in Vietnam, I know.
Oh yeah, that... the lens too.
-- Al and Sam, "The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam"

Thanks to you, little brother.
-- Tom Beckett, "The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam"

Where do I bunk?
My place?
-- Maggie Dawson and Al, "The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam"

Magic's got a sixth sense.
Yeah, you could call me that.
-- Tom and Al, "The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam"

Ah, woman, you're picking the wrong man.
-- Al to Maggie Dawson, "The Leap Home, Part 2 - Vietnam"

Co-Executive Producer, Michael Zinberg won the Director's Guild Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in a Dramatic Series for this episode.

Michael Watkins won a 1991 Emmy
for Outstanding Cinematography for a

Dean Stockwell received a 1991 Emmy nomination 
for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series.

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