"The Pope I get.
But Gary bleeping Busey?"*
Mike the Bartender
The basic premise: On October 14 (year not given), 2% of the world's population just vanished. Poof. The story then picks up three years later, centered around Mapleton, NY, and focuses on those left behind, the "Remnants." The show will deal mostly with the Garvey family as well as others in the Mapleton area, and how they are coping three years after the "Sudden Departure". (I bet in the immediate aftermath, a lot of people wanted to call it "The Rapture".)
To suddenly lose so many millions of people in the blink of an eye should have an incredible impact on other TV shows sharing that same TV dimension. And even if the Sudden Departure won't happen until this coming October 14th and then leaping forward in the storyline to 2017**, I think we all know we're not going to see any mention of these events by TV characters in the programs that will be on the air afterwards.
Near the end of the "Pilot" episode, a TV in the local bar showed various celebrities who vanished on 10/14:
- Condoleeza Rice
- Salman Rushdie
- Shaquille O'Neal
- Jennifer Lopez
- Anthony Bourdain
- Gary Busey
- Bonnie Raitt
- Pope Benedict XVI
With so many millions gone, O'Bviously celebrities would be included. But their presence or even just a mention on other TV shows still to come will be proof enough that 'The Leftovers' must reside in an alternate dimension.
But which one?
It can't be one of the generic TV dimensions like Evil Toobworld, the foreign language Toobworlds, or even Doofus Toobworld. Sooner or later a show set in those worlds might mention one of those people listed above. And again, the Sudden Departure should eventually be referenced in some way on those programs.
It would have to be a more specific Toobworld and preferably one that is already closed off due to its primary show being cancelled. The TV dimension which houses 'The West Wing', 'Mr. Sterling', and 'Smallville', for example. In fact, most of those TV dimensions which have other occupants in the Oval Office, like 'Prison Break', 'The District'/'The Agency', 'The Unit', and 'Commander-In-Chief' would be viable candidates.
I might have no O'Bjections to 'The Leftovers' being set in the years leading up to the creation of Zombie Toobworld. At least with the Zombie Apocalypse being the focus of their current lives, it would provide a splainin as to why nobody bothers to mention the Sudden Departure. (And then we could say that the video of Hillary Clinton on the bar's TV screen was from back when she was still the Secretary of State.)
But as for the main Toobworld? Not likely.
See you in another life, Bruthah......
* Hey, I run a clean blog here. For the most part....
* I think the producers of this series are hopeful that Hillary Clinton will be the next President of the United States. However the election turns out, that alone might have affected the placement of 'The Leftovers' in the greater TV Universe.
I finally realized in which TV dimension 'The Leftovers' belongs - the world of 'Flash Forward'. I think their similarities and differences complement each other. And the events of 'Flash Forward' could have taken place between October 14th and the resumption of the story three years later. As such, the big blank-out would have pushed the Sudden Departure to the side for a time in people's obsessions, but then was pushed aside itself when there were no new events while the lives of those left behnd dragged on. (I'm good with 'Flash Forward' takng place before October 14th as well. Might even be better as a splainin for why nobody talks about it anymore - worse stuff has happened.....)