[[quoteright:360:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/time-tunnel_3226.jpg]]

->''"Two American scientists are lost in the swirling maze of past and future ages during the first experiments on America's greatest and most secret project, the Time Tunnel. Tony Newman and Doug Phillips now tumble helplessly toward a new fantastic adventure somewhere along the infinite corridors of time."''
-->-- OpeningNarration

Creator/IrwinAllen, the man behind ''Series/LostInSpace'' and ''Series/VoyageToTheBottomOfTheSea'', also gave us this SciFi series. The premise? Two [[TheSixties Sixties]] guys, who don't care beans about temporal causality, [[TimeTravel travel through time]], encountering a lot of StockFootage and never quite grasping that YouCantFightFate. MeanwhileInTheFuture, their contemporaries watch and try to decide when things are going badly enough for our heroes that it wouldn't hurt to just send them off to yet another random date.

This was Allen's favorite of his series, but lasted only one season.

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!!Tropes:

* AdventureTowns
* BookEnds: They start on the ''Titanic'', they end on the ''Titanic''... but see GroundhogDayLoop below.
* CassandraTruth: Time-Traveler's Tip #47: Don't tell anyone you meet in the past that you're from the future. C'mon, do you ''really'' expect them to believe you?
** Nicely played with in "The Day the Sky Fell In" when Doug and Tony succumbing to truth serum lead their captors to believe they must be professional spies who have been conditioned to spout nonsense when drugged.
* ChangedMyJumper: Happens quite a few times, though Doug was able to avoid it in the pilot.
* TheChase: In "Chase Through Time," Doug and Tony travel from 1547 to 1,000,000 A.D. to 1,000,000 B.C. in pursuit of a spy.
* {{Chronoscope}}: One of the Tunnel's functions.
* {{Cliffhanger}}
* CliffhangerCopout: Sometimes the context in which a cliffhanger took place would change details at the beginning of the next episode. For example, you find that the heroes weren't in as much danger as you thought they were, or, at least, that it was a different kind of danger than you thought.
* TheCretaceousIsAlwaysDoomed: Or pretty much anything else they stumbled upon.
* CometOfDoom: The episode "End of the World" centers on the then most recent appearance of Halley's Comet in 1910 and the resulting panic. Huge, huge liberties are taken with what actually happened. In the episode, the source of the trouble is a fictional scientist who has predicted that the comet will hit the Earth, but Doug disproves this using some HollywoodScience nonsense.
* CompilationMovie: Five, believe it or not.
* CoolGate: The Time Tunnel itself.
* CutShort: Canceled after one season; the stranded time-travelers never made it home.
* DemonicPossession: The title character possesses Tony and UsefulNotes/BenitoMussolini in "The Ghost of Nero."
* DullSurprise: Doug Phillips. Robert Colbert seems to have made a career of playing unemotional characters.
* ElaborateUndergroundBase: The base for Project Tic-Toc (the government organization that created and operated the Time Tunnel) was hidden beneath the Arizona desert.
* EternalEnglish: Ever person in every time period speaks perfect 20th Century English, no matter how far into the past or future the travelers go or what country they are visiting. Sometimes foreign characters will have [[JustAStupidAccent stupid accents]] when the travelers end up in a place like France or Germany, but that's as far as it goes. The 2002 revival pilot solved this problem by giving its cast {{Universal Translator}}s.
* FailureIsTheOnlyOption: Sure, maybe the Tic Toc team was able to transfer Doug and Tony to yet ''another'' location that they'll need to get out of sooner or later, but they never actually get them home.
* FishOutOfTemporalWater: A major part of the premise.
* FlorenceNightingaleEffect: In "Attack of the Barbarians", Tony falls in love with Sarit while she's administering medical care to him after being tortured on the rack.
* GenreBlindness: Doug and Tony's continual failure to grasp the fact that YouCantFightFate.
* GoOnWithoutMe: Tony in "Kill Two By Two". Doug, obviously, does not comply.
* GrandfatherParadox: In "The Day the Sky Fell In," Tony tries (sort of) to save his father from the attack on Pearl Harbor. Initially he sets out to only find out what really happened to him, but in another example of YouCantFightFate he soon tries to warn his father about the impending bombing. There is also some hand-wringing by the Project team about what happens if Tony's seven-year-old self is killed by his adult self changing history.
* GroundhogDayLoop: In theory the entire series, since the last episode ends with Doug and Tony onboard the ''Titanic''... exactly where they started out. The same footage is played and Senator Clark is back in the control room. However, this is an unintentional example: Martin Grams' book ''The Time Tunnel: A History of the Television Series'' states that it was done so that the last episode would lead into the summer reruns.
* HistoricalDomainCharacter: Doug and Tony met plenty of them.
* TheHomewardJourney
* HotScientist: Dr. Ann [=MacGregor=].
* HuntingTheMostDangerousGame: Nakamura hunts Tony and Doug in "Kill Two by Two."
* IdenticalGrandson: "Reign of Terror" features Whit Bissel playing one of Robespierre's men as well as his regular role of General Kirk. Kirk is quite confused as his family is from Scotland rather than France, but discovers that this man is from an obscure branch of it that left for mainland Europe.
** Another has Carrol O'Connor as a British general in the WarOf1812, and his descendant in the present day.
* IdentityAmnesia: In "The Death Merchant," Tony is shell-shocked and ends up fighting with the Confederates in the Battle of Gettysburg. He attacks Doug, who is fighting on the Union side. A punch (TapOnTheHead) restores his memories to normal.
* InThePastEveryoneWillBeFamous
* InstrumentalThemeTune
* InterruptedSuicide: Tony intervenes [[JustInTime just in time]] to save Althea Hall from letting herself go down with the Titanic.
* LivingProp: Those scientists standing in the background at Tic Toc checking readings and turning knobs.
* MaybeMagicMaybeMundane: In "The Walls of Jericho," Ann and Ray respectively argue whether the fall of Jericho was caused by a naturally-occurring tornado or the power of God.
* MeanwhileInTheFuture
* MisappliedPhlebotinum
* MistakenForSpies[=/=]TimeTravelersAreSpies
* NapoleonBonaparte: Doug and Tony met him in "Reign of Terror."
* NewspaperDating
* NextSundayAD: The show was produced in 1966-67, but used 1968 as the present year.
* NoOneGetsLeftBehind: Doug refused to leave Tony behind in "Kill Two By Two", even though [[TwistedAnkle his ankle was sprained]].
* ObstructiveBureaucrat: Somewhat undermined in the pilot. Senator Leroy Clark is legitimately concerned that the billions they are spending is a waste of time. And his threats to shut down the project precipitate Tony making an unauthorized time transfer. But he does pitch in, and at the end he pledges his support to keep the project going until they bring Tony and Doug back.
* OpeningNarration: See the top of this page.
* OverTheShoulderCarry: Doug carried Tony like this in "Attack of the Barbarians" because he was unconcious after his experience on the rack.
* PenalColony ("Devil's Island")
* ProfessorGuineaPig: Dr. Tony Newman.
* PunishmentBox ("Devil's Island")
* RandomTransportation: The series has its heroes being randomly transported to various points in the past and, on occasion, the future.
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Lt. Gen. Heywood Kirk.
* ReignOfTerror: The title of an episode about TheFrenchRevolution.
* {{Revival}}: A pilot for a reimagined ''Time Tunnel'', complete with Tony Newman [[GenderFlip recast as a woman]] named ''Toni'' Newman, was made in 2002 but never broadcast; it's available as a DVD extra. The SciFiChannel announced another revival attempt a few years later, but it never got out of DevelopmentHell.
* SanDimasTime
* ScreenShake: What Irwin Allen production would be complete without it?
* {{Seppuku}}: Undermined in "Kill Two by Two." Nakamura plays HuntingTheMostDangerousGame because he can't bring himself to commit seppuku and hopes that his victims will kill him.
* ShoutOut: Part of the unsold {{revival}} pilot takes places in UsefulNotes/NaziGermany. Two of the heroes masquerade as German soldiers named [[Series/HogansHeroes Colonel Klink and Sergeant Schultz]].
* TheSmurfettePrinciple: Ann is the only female regular on the series. Kirk and Ray often disregard her suggestions and, if anyone is going to be kidnapped or held hostage, it will be Ann.
* SnapBack: Tony and Doug inexplicably always end up back in the same physical state they were in when they first went into the tunnel: wardrobe changes, dirt, ClothingDamage, and in one episode even ''injuries'' disappear.
* StableTimeLoop: In "The Day the Sky Fell In," Young Tony would have died if Tony hadn't gone back in time and made sure Young Tony left Pearl Harbor before the 1941 bombing.
* StockFootage: About 30% of the show was stock footage from various Creator/TwentiethCenturyFox films. Naturally leading to...
** StockFootageFailure: Most egregiously, a rocket takes off in Mercury-Atlas stock footage and lands with ''Film/DestinationMoon'' stock footage. Do [[http://www.universetoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Mercury-Atlas.jpg this]] and [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Destination-moon-luna_8877.jpg this]] look like the same rocketship to you?
* TickTockTune: Music/JohnWilliams' theme music.
* TalkingDownTheSuicidal: Tony does this to Althea Hall to a certain extent in the series pilot. Althea's initial intent isn't to commit suicide; however, when the Titanic is sinking, she decides to take advantage of the opportunity because, due to a brain tumor, she's going to die soon anyway and she doesn't feel she's worthy to take a place on one of the lifeboats. Tony is luckily able to talk her out of it.
* TimeTravel
* TrappedInAnotherWorld: The past, most of the time, with the future occasionally.
* TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture: You all remember that manned mission to Mars in 1978, right?
* TwistedAnkle: Tony sprained his ankle in "Kill Two By Two" and has to lean on Doug for almost the entire rest of the episode, inevitably leading to him telling Doug to [[GoOnWithoutMe go ahead without him]]. Doug replies with an [[NoOneGetsLeftBehind "Are you kidding?"]] and pulls him along anyway.
* UncannyFamilyResemblance: See IdenticalGrandson above.
* WhatYearIsThis
* UsefulNotes/WorldWarII: In both the original series and the {{revival}}.
* YouCantFightFate
* YouHaveToBelieveMe
* YoungFutureFamousPeople: Doug and Tony encounter Lieutenant NapoleonBonaparte in the French Revolution episode.
** And RudyardKipling in "Night of the Long Knives".
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