In Review: Quantum Leap (S1 – EP5) Salvation or Bust

Ben Leaps to 1879, and finds himself taking on a band of outlaws, even though he's a pacifist.

Synopsis: In Salvation or Bust, Ben Leaps to 1879, and finds himself taking on a band of outlaws, even though he’s a pacifist.


The Story

Ben Leaps back in time to 1879 where he finds himself in the body of aging gunfighter Diego De La Cruz who has been called upon by his granddaughter Valentina de la Cruz to save the town of Salvation. In order to do this. Ben has to take on Josiah McDonough a wicked Gunfighter who has been hired by the unscrupulous Railroad company to force the town into submission. The trouble is Diego is a very old man and his gun-fighting days are well and truly behind him. Added to this is the fact that Ben does not like guns and is a pacifist. 

Meanwhile, at Quantum Leap headquarters the team has to pretend that Ben has not leaped in order to try and trick a curious Congresswoman Kavita Adani who has taken a special interest in the project. 


The Acting

We get some solid performances this week from the guest cast members with a stirring performance from Natalia del Riego as Valentina de la Cruz whose father founded the town of Salvation. So she would do anything to save it. The actor put in a very believable performance in that I myself wanted to save the town because I quite enjoyed how she sold the idealized vision of the town, which seemed to be built on equality. In contrast to that William Mark McCullough chews up the scenery as the greasy villain Josiah McDonough who very much fits the criminal gunslinger stereotype. 



This latest episode sees Ben Leap over 100 years into the past, which is something that has never been done in the series. Although, it did get established that Ben was able to leap outside of his own timeline, which is something that predecessor Sam Beckett couldn’t do. I never really expected to see the show take it this far.

Of course, all is well that ends well in the end. As Ben manages to fix what once went wrong. But we do get thrown another plot twist in which another Leaper manages to speak with Ben and warns him to stop following him. Now we know that there was more than one Leaper out there from the original series. As it was established in both the Evil Leaper trilogy and the original series finale that Sam was not the only person leaping back and forth through time. So the question is. Who could this be? And why is Ben following them?

Overall. This was a fun western-based story that I never thought we’d get to see on Quantum Leap.

Quantum Leap (S1 - EP5) Salvation or Bust
  • Story
  • Acting
  • CGI & Stunts
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at:
2 Comments on this post.
  • Matt Brewler
    21 October 2022 at 3:34 pm -

    Original Series, S5.E20 The Leap Between the States – September 20, 1862

    • Ian Cullen
      21 October 2022 at 8:37 pm -

      Indeed, thanks for reminding me about that.