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Quotes / Timey-Wimey Ball

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    Anime and Manga 

That's the problem with time travel. Everything's different when you get back.
Lina Inverse, Slayers Perfect

    Film - Live-Action 

Rhodes: Let me ask you something, if we can do this and go back in time, why don't we just find baby-Thanos and...
Bruce: First of all, that's horrible, and secondly, time doesn't work that way. Changing the past doesn't change the future!
Scott: Look, we go back, get the stones before Thanos gets them, Thanos doesn't have the stones, problem solved.
Nebula: That's not how it works.
Hawkeye: Well that's what I heard.
Bruce: By who? Who told you that?
Rhodes: Star Trek, Terminator, Time-Cop, Time after Time, Quantum Leap, Wrinkle in Time, Somewhere in Time, Hot-Tub Time Machine, Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. Basically any movie that deals with time travel, this is known.
Bruce: I don't know why everyone believes that but that isn't true. Think about it, if you travel to the past, that past becomes your future, and your former present becomes the past, which can't now be changed by your new future!
Scott: So Back to the Future is a bunch of bullshit?

Doc: Well, good luck for both our sakes. See you in the future.
Marty: mean the past?
Doc: Exactly!

Colossus: Let us go talk to the Professor.
Deadpool: McAvoy or Stewart? These timelines are so confusing.

Dr. Tanga: We don't travel through time, but around it. Do you understand?
Private Penn: I don't, but maybe he does. (pointing to Pvt. Philbrick) He has a warped mind.
Invasion of the Star Creatures (1962)

I don't want to talk about time travel shit. Because if we talk about time travel shit then we're gonna be here all day, drawing diagrams with straws.
Old Joe, Looper



When a Tralfamadorian sees a corpse, all he thinks is that the dead person is in bad condition in the particular moment, but that the same person is just fine in plenty of other moments. Now, when I myself hear that somebody is dead, I simply shrug and say what the Tralfamadorians say about dead people, which is "So it goes."
Billy Pilgrim, Slaughterhouse-Five

Time is not a single river in which we all float toward one end. It flows in many streams. Some flow fast, some slow. If you stand within your own stream you see only your own time, but within the warp, you can move between them. A ship may enter the warp and return before it left, or emerge after centuries that the crew have experienced as hours. Such things have happened. Within the Eye, the streams of time are broken and tangled: moments of futures and pasts crammed together in an unravelling knot.
Ahzek Ahriman, Ahriman: Exile

Menkaura: You have been here before. We have met already, but while that meeting is in the past for you, it is in the future for me. That explains much. How many times have you come here?
Ahriman: Twice.
Menkaura: Such is time. Mortals think it is a river, but it is not. It is an ocean. An ocean twisted by storms and churned by whirlpools. We meet in the future, but in the past that has already happened. Perhaps you are even here now because of what I said, but have not yet said. I see futures. I see them stretch into the dark, their golden threads ever thinning, ever tangling, and ever breaking. But if I watch them from the past, then what do I see? Past? Future? Neither?

    Live-Action TV 

The Flash: I watched you die!
Reverse-Flash: Or did you? Time travel, Barry - so very confusing. I always seem to be saying that to you, don't I?

People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually, from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint, it's more like a big ball of wibbly-wobbly... timey-wimey... stuff.
The Tenth Doctor, Doctor Who, "Blink"

Okay, kid. This is is where it gets complicated.
Amy Pond to her younger alternate-universe self, in the midst of one of the most convoluted time-SNAFUs imaginable, Doctor Who

Time and space are never ever going to make any kind of sense. Now you received the past possible advice on how to deal with this so I suggest you go and give it. note 
The Doctor explaining the confusion inherent with Ripple-Proof Memory in Doctor Who

Time isn't a straight line, it's all... bumpy-wumpy. there's loads of boring stuff, like Sundays and Tuesdays and Thursday afternoons.
The Doctor, Doctor Who

See, that's the thing about time travel, Barry. The more you do it, the less the rules apply to you!
Savitar, The Flash (2014)

Michael: Things in the afterlife don't happen while things are happening here, because while time on Earth moves in a straight line, one thing happens, then the next, then the next, time in the afterlife moves in a "Jeremy Bearimy."
Eleanor: ...what?
Michael: (drawing on a board) In the afterlife, time doubles back and loops around and ends up looking something like... "Jeremy Bearimy." (finishes writing) This is the timeline in the afterlife. Happens to kind of look like the name "Jeremy Bearimy" in cursive English, so that's what we call it.
Eleanor: Sorry. I'm - my brain is melting. How can events happen before the ones that happened... before?
Michael: It's just the way it works. It's - it's Jeremy Bearimy. I don't know what to tell you. That's the easiest way to describe it.
Chidi: Okay, but, um what the hell is this? The dot over the i. What the hell is that?
Michael: Okay, um, how do I explain this concisely? This is Tuesdays. ...and also July.
Janet: And sometimes it's never!
Michael: That's true. Occasionally that moment on the Bearimy timeline is the time-moment when nothing, never occurs. So... [chuckles] you get it.
Chidi: This broke me! The dot, over the i, that broke me. I'm - I'm done.
The Good Place, "Jeremy Bearimy"

I hate temporal mechanics!
Future!O'Brien and Present!O'Brien (or would that be Present!O'Brien and Past!O'Brien?), Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, "Visionary"

Time travel. Ever since my first day in the job as a Starfleet captain I swore I'd never let myself get caught in one of these godforsaken paradoxes. The future is the past, the past is the future. It all gives me a headache.
Captain Janeway, Star Trek: Voyager, "Future's End"

    Video Games 

Most people think that time is like a river, that flows swift and sure in one direction... but I have seen the face of time, and I can tell you; they are wrong. Time is an ocean in a storm.

Time is a tangled web. Try not to dwell on all the loose ends.
Nozdormu, Dragon Aspect of Time, World of Warcraft

    Web Comics 

I hate time travel.

GA: Why Is It That When The Subject Of Temporal Mechanics Is Broached Your Sparing Human Intellects Instantly Assume The Most Ingratiating Posture Of Surrender Imaginable
Kanaya Maryam after a conversation with John, Homestuck

TG: the thing with time travel is
TG: you cant overthink it
TG: just roll with it and see what happens
TG: and above all try not to do anything retarded
Dave Strider, Homestuck, explaining his theory on temporal mechanics

Hearts Boxcars' stance on temporal mechanics, Homestuck

    Web Original 

By the way, this won't change history at all. Let's go around blowing people up. Let's kill some ancestors. That's real great. As long as it doesn't affect the Wyld Stallyns concert! When they come back to the present, it's gonna be some kind of Planet of the Apes shit! They're going to be playing to an audience of intelligent sloths!

Time isn't a straight line. It's more like a David Lynch movie. It's this wandering, meandering thing that just goes in all directions and if you're very lucky, by the end you'll see some boobies, and maybe some little people.

Time is like a deluxe-model sexbot. It exists only to be screwed in every possible way.
SF Debris on Star Trek Voyager, "Relativity"

[Asagi Whisperwynds] said time's flexibles. Long as y'don' try tah break it completelys with time paradocs an' misplacin' important peoples, it'll mend itself. Soooooooooo jus' go fer it.
Nozumi Whisperwynds, We Are Our Avatars

When you're dealing with time travel it's important to establish whose rules are in play. Is this 12 Monkeys rules where you can't change shit? Or Back to the Future rules where you can change shit but the time line is kind of easygoing about it? Or Terminator rules where you can change shit, but then maybe you can't change shit, and then you make a God-awful TV series and Christian Bale yells at someone?
Yahtzee, reviewing Darkest of Days


    Western Animation 

Time travel, man! Why ya' gotta be so complicated?!
Mabel Pines, Gravity Falls, "Blendin's Game"

Time travel: It's a cornucopia of disturbing concepts.
Ron Stoppable, Kim Possible: A Sitch in Time

Shake: Hello, Frylick.
Frylock: Wait a minute, I just locked you outside!
Shake: Did you? You messed with the rift from the passage of time, thus changing it forever.... cause you did it the other way. There's a smarter way of saying that but I didn't like it in the script.
Frylock: This doesn't make any sense! This is the past, how are there two of you?
Shake: I don't care. I'm the president of the United States!
Frylock: Wait a minute, you're the what?!
Aqua Teen Hunger Force, "The Granite Family"

Cecil: Wait, don't you have to bring me back in time in order for this to work?
Bugs: Eh, yes, normally. But for a bunch of time travel reasons you wouldn't understand, uh, we're gonna do it this way.


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