The main character is a guy named Phineas Bogg, who (as described via IMDB, since I barely remember this show, having last watched it about 30 years ago) was a pirate but was somehow selected to be a member of this elite history-saving organization. His kid side-kick (this is fantasy TV in the 80s, so there has to be either a kid sidekick or a curvy woman wearing a silver lamé jumpsuit) is Jeffrey Jones, orphaned son of a history professor. They are thrown together through a series of mishaps in which Bogg's omni device malfunctions, depositing him in 1982 with 12 year-old Jones (apparently the device was only supposed to take him as far forward as 1970), Bogg's Voyager Guide Book is taken by Jones' dog, and then Jones falls out of a window, prompting Bogg to jump out the window to grab Jones and then zap to a different point in history to prevent their deaths via the fall. Now they are stuck moving throughout history with no Voyager Guide Book (and apparently no way to contact the Voyager Consortium or Corporation or Confederacy, or whatever the main organization was called that selected a pirate with absolutely no knowledge of history to be one of their guardians), so they have to rely on the superior knowledge of kid genius
So, despite all of my sarcasm above, when I was a kid, I absolutely loved this show, and couldn't wait until it was on every week. As I remember, it was on Sunday Nights about 7pm (6pm Mountain and Central), and therefore it got preempted a lot for baseball and other things. I also could be remembering this incorrectly, but I do believe it ran opposite of the "Muppet Show", and in those olden days without DVRs, you had to choose which one were you going to watch. Being the only person in my family of four who wanted to watch "The Voyagers", I usually lost out.
What made the Voyagers fun was its sense of whimsy - each episode was a free-for-all of "anything can happen", and it usually did. In Episode 2, the two heroes encounter Spartacus and convince him to lead his slave revolt in ancient Rome, and then also encounter Samuel Clemens and then help Harriet Tubman escape. That's just one episode.
I love time-travel type shows because I absolutely love history, as I've mentioned before. And, I also think they're great for stealing ideas for RPGs, because they tend to just focus on the "interesting" parts of the historical events and gloss over all of the "boring" parts that you wouldn't want to include in a game. Also, if the writer has done his research, the alternate history that could have happened is usually plausible enough that it makes an interesting "What If?" scenario. Episodes of the Voyagers sometimes concentrated on certain devices not having been invented, such as the telephone or the electric light, resulting in a very different world. Basically any of the alternate scenarios proposed in the Voyagers could make for some very interesting campaign settings, even if just for a short one-shot night of gaming.
Many people think that the Voyagers sort of paved the way for another more famous time-travel show, "Quantum Leap," with the main difference being that the Voyagers' historical mishaps usually focused around historical figures, whereas Quantum Leap tended to revolve around everyday people. I also remember a 90s time-travel show on Fox called "Sliders" featuring Jerry O'Connell, that bears a passing resemblance to Voyagers.
I noticed that the entire series (it sadly only lasted one season) is available on DVD and can be rented via Netflix. It's unfortunately not available via Netflix streaming, so for some reason I just can't bring myself to watch it now. Casually pulling up an episode to stream on Netflix while my wife is giving my daughter her bath at night after dinner is one thing, but actually going through the effort of putting each of the four disks into my Netflix queue, then getting up off the couch to put the disk into the DVD player after it arrives in the mail... it just seems like such a commitment.
Anyone else have any memories, good or bad, about this show? I'd love to hear them.