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I was a huge fan of Quantum Leap. I'm sure you were too. But was it ever established who or what was leaping Sam around in time? I saw the last episode and remember him talking to a fat man at the bar. Was he God? Did the show ever spin off novels or comics after the series ended that explained more?

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As the Wikipedia article on Quantum Leap says, it was basically Sam who was in control of his leaping all along. While he may not have picked where each leap would go, he did build the device to "set right what once was wrong," and Sam had this need or drive to "do good."

This is illustrated at the end, when he sees he can physically go home, but is unable to because there is still more that he has to set right. Sam turns down the chance to go home and be with his wife and friends because of his need and drive to help everyone else.

The bartender at the end (who was in his first leap, too) seems to be God or to represent God, but even in the conversations with him, throughout that episode, it becomes clear that it's Sam and, perhaps, a sense of guilt or need to do good, that is driving Sam.

While Sam, earlier, believes it is God, ultimately it is Sam that is choosing to continue to leap each time.

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    The novelizations expand on it a bit; in general, time travel being what it is, direct action tends to not work; things don't follow the course you expect. Indirect action is needed from multiple points to 'nudge' the right thing the right way. Sam had a goal when this all started (rescuing his brother, as I recall), and his leaps have all been indirectly related. At the final leap (in the series), he's accomplished it, but seen much more of what time needs, and is given the choice to continue (somewhat disconnected from causality, like the characters in the episode) or go home.
    – K-H-W
    Dec 29, 2011 at 3:28
  • But the final episode tried so hard to be "enigmatic" that it confused things. Sam's final leap on screen showed him, as himself, leaping in to Al's house and explaining to Beth that Al was alive and coming home. Then he leaped out again and all we saw was the text on the screen saying that Al never remarried, followed by the announcement that Sam never returned home. I interpreted that not to mean that Sam was still putting right what once went wrong, but that Al's history having been changed, the QL project never happened, and Sam, all his leaps now in a "dead" timeline, disappeared forever.
    – Wallnut
    Jan 10, 2017 at 12:33

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