The Best and Worst of Stargate SG-1: Season 7


For previous installments:


Season 7 brought back Dr. Daniel Jackson from his ascension, as well as progressed the story for Anubis, with a new creation of soldier, the Kull Warrior. This was also the final season to have a 22 episode run, as all seasons continuing would only have 20 episodes.

The Best:

Fallen, Homecoming, Evolution, Grace, Fallout, Chimera, Death Knell, Inauguration, and Lost City


In brief bits:

  • Fallen and Homecoming specifically deals with the return of Dr. Daniel Jackson, on a planet that will hold no relevance in the future, and simultaneously ensures that Jonas Quinn returns to his people via Anubis attacking his home planet;
  • Evolution introduces the Goa’uld supersoldier (Kull Warrior), which is pretty awesome, but by next season, is not much of a threat;
  • Grace is one of my favorite episodes of the season, will Carter stranded on the Prometheus in outer space, with an unknown spaceship just a stones throw away;
  • Fallout is the last episode to feature Jonas Quinn, which also has a Goa’uld twist;
  • Chimera finally closes out the story of Sarah Gardner and Osiris, and also introduces Pete Shanahan;
  • Death Knell is certainly a great episode in it’s own right, but to be sure, Carter serves as a Damsel in Distress (see Feminist Frequency‘s Damsel in Distress series) to be saved by Colonel O’Neill;
  • Inauguration is the second episode to feature NID Agent Richard Woolsey, after Heroes , Part 2, and the first to feature President Henry Hayes; and,
  • Lost City is the superbly fantastic finale of the season, which at least severely cripples Anubis. It also introduces to us to Dr. Elizabeth Weir (played by the blonde Jessica Steen), and features President Henry Hayes, a rare episode to feature a politician in positive light. Additionally, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. John Jumper appears in this episode.

According to the GateWorld review of Fallen:

After a long wait, the curtain rises on Stargate SG-1‘s seventh season. Enter new characters stage left, traipsing through ruins. There’s a blinding flash. The camera zooms in from above on a naked body curled foetus-like in a field. For those of the audience who somehow managed to miss the pre-show and the blast of advertising that accompanied the show’s return, both in the U.S. and the U.K., the next shot — of Daniel Jackson’s confused and frightened face — was a huge surprise. For many of us, however, the return of the absent archaeologist was well worth the wait.

On a rather shallow note, hearts beat faster in homes from London to L.A. at the sight of, er, well … an indubitably fine example of the male form.

In fact, “Fallen” is a visual feast from the very beginning. From the details of the ruins where Daniel is found, through the colourful costuming, to the space battles, and the luscious lighting on the mothership, the attention to detail is pure bliss. Each year the production quality of the show manages to improve, despite the heights attained the previous year.

So, Daniel is back, and all is well? Of course not. This being Stargate, events cannot run smoothly. The angst-factor of Daniel’s lost memory is balanced beautifully. Sam’s dismay as she reaches for Daniel and is rebuffed is palpable. The earnest and passionate way in which both she and Jack try to convince Daniel to come home is just the kind of caring that is a welcome return to the good old days of SG-1.

The most poignant moment, however, was Daniel’s talk with Teal’c. Daniel’s impatience to find whichever of his friends are around to share the great news that he remembers something — a name — is tempered by audience knowledge. We know more than he does; we know about Sha’re. As Daniel realises the truth, there’s a perceptible change in his attitude: he’s no longer afraid to learn, nor is he willing to let the memories come on their own. Feisty Dr. Jackson is back.

Despite the character depth and strength of the first half of “Fallen,” Jack wavers between being a competent leader, a caring friend, and a joke. His response to a question about Teal’c being a Jaffa being that “he plays one on TV” shredded my suspension of disbelief. With a show based on travel to other planets via a stable wormhole, that suspension is a delicate thing that should only be toyed with in rare circumstances. In addition, the disrespect Jack shows for his second-in-command in the group briefing was a bit of a shock. If, as Sam said, Jack already knew the details of the trench run plan, then he would also have already brought up his arguments. Why air those views again, if not to have fun at Sam’s expense? The change from caring to thoughtless in such a short space of time is jarring.

The episode, rather like soccer, is a game of two halves. The transition in Teal’c’s quarters marks not just a change in Daniel, but a change in focus of the episode. Daniel has returned to the fold, and while some allowances are made for his lack of memory, he’s a vital member of the team once again. Cue Stargate‘s version of the Great Star Wars Trench Run. Yes, another homage. Yes, it’s well done. But is it so hard to be a little more original?

Another of my quibbles was the choice of sending Jonas and Daniel to the mothership alone. Daniel doesn’t remember much of anything and Jonas isn’t exactly the leader he’d need to be in that instance. I think an explanation was needed for this to be believable.

In general, the threads of the plot weave together well. The idea that the enemy of my enemy is my friend isn’t quite the road taken here, but in the Yu subplot the enemy of my enemy can apparently be my temporary ally. Teal’c goes alone on this important mission, which is a good choice. I’m in two minds about Yu’s fallibility. It’s interesting to see that even the sarcophagus can’t cure everything, but the loss of yet another complex bad guy isn’t something I’m all that fond of, especially when we’re being left with Anubis, who even Jack doesn’t take seriously.

Once the pace begins to build, the drama intensifies rapidly. The build-up is tightly plotted, easily enough to hold the audience’s attention several times over. Yes, there are unanswered questions: we don’t actually know what happened between last season’s “Full Circle” and Daniel’s descension. How much time passed between Jonas’ idea and realising the new plan? Has anyone told Daniel about what happened to his family and the rest of the Abydonians? But these just add to the anticipation for part two, “Homecoming.”

At the end of the episode, yet again one line manages to take my suspension of disbelief and drop it off the nearest cliff. “I won’t tell you anything,” a captured yet defiant Jonas says to Anubis. “Oh yes, you will.” Oh yes, he will? Oh no, he won’t. Oh yes, he … okay, perhaps pantomimes aren’t quite as prevalent in the U.S. or Canada as they are here in the U.K. Even so, at times I just wish the wardrobe department would issue Anubis with a moustache he can twirl — why try to hide such clichés?

Cringe-worthy as it may have been, that final line accompanied a great threat. Anubis can access all the knowledge in Jonas’s head with his spiky little brain-ball. One can only hope that the S.G.C. never told Jonas anything really important.

Overall, this was a cracking start to the new season.

According to the GateWorld review of Homecoming:

Part two of the season opener is a reliable enough episode, if not a stand-out. The action, when it happens, is dramatic, the story is interesting, and the obstacles that stand in the way of SG-1’s victory range from the usual well-armed Jaffa (via the usual well-armed Goa’uld) to the very people who asked for the S.G.C.’s help in the first place.

“Homecoming” continues the Star Wars theme that was unmissable in “Fallen.” But instead of Princess Leia being brought back home in the Death Star, we have Jonas Quinn on Anubis’ mothership, locked in a cell. Sadly, Han Solo and Luke Skywalker aren’t about to come to the rescue, but SG-1 and Daniel Jackson are excellent substitutes.

However, it’s a good thing the threat to Kelowna is seen from Jonas’ extremely concerned perspective, because the others from his planet are so unsympathetic that Anubis threatening to destroy them would otherwise not be high on the list of things to be worried about. Their constant sniping and bickering is only topped in its irritant factor by the female ambassador slapping the male — more reminiscent of thirties’ Hollywood melodrama than a professional politician. But Jonas’ guilt at being the reason his planet has come to the attention of Anubis is just enough to make the viewers care whether the final victor is these unlikeable people, or the uber-villain.

Once again, though, Anubis’ speech and mannerisms are peculiarly at odds with the threat we know he represents. On the other side of the coin, Yu’s mental breakdown turns a once-powerful enemy into a weak, confused and sick individual. It’s beginning to stretch the boundaries of belief that the System Lords could have held so many in fear for so long that the Tok’ra couldn’t defeat them, yet one team from the S.G.C. has managed to thin their ranks so considerably. But despite Anubis’ defeat by Baal, in the long run he’s going to be a little harder to destroy than your average snake.

There were some gems woven into the threads of “Homecoming.” Teal’c is becoming a master at manipulating the System Lords, and it’s a joy to watch. And I have to say, I really like Anubis’ own First Prime. He’s got an air of menace, of confidence, of knowing that he’s very much the alpha male despite his short stature, that adds that necessary little something to the atmosphere. Daniel’s slowly-returning memory was dealt with in a delightfully subtle manner. And it’s reassuring to know that Jack’s distrust of the Goa’uld is something that never changes.

It was also very interesting to see the Jonas-Daniel dynamic, especially with such a history between them. It brings home the difference between the two characters. The depth of characterisation just isn’t there in Jonas in the way it is in the other main characters, but he certainly shone a little brighter in this two-episode arc. It’s a shame that the personality that we knew had to be lurking somewhere under the “up” exterior only came to the fore with Daniel. Perhaps we’ll see more of it if Jonas returns — the potential for discovering more about what makes this man tick is limitless.

Since this was mainly an action-focused episode, the running about in corridors from Daniel and Jonas degraded the tension that could otherwise have been kept high due to the very real danger they were in. And the scene where Jonas saves Daniel from a staff weapon blast needed to be a little more quick-fire to be convincing — perhaps the directing fell down here, perhaps the editing. But it was a really nice gesture to mirror Daniel’s saving of Jonas’ life in “Meridian,” and it demonstrated that Jonas has learned a lot from his year with SG-1.

There are plenty of unanswered questions. Did Anubis escape with any naquadria? Does Jonas, one man, really have a chance at bringing peace to his planet, considering the people he has to contend with? After several comments about Jonas’ special physiology, will we learn whether it’s a trait all his people possess, or will that information be left for the audience members’ imaginations to play with?

And exactly what did Jack mean when he told Jonas, “You earned it?” Who knows. Perhaps a scene was cut. Perhaps it was simply one of those things that was deliberately meant to be open-ended.

Farewell, Jonas Quinn. He’s returned to his planet a stronger, hopefully wiser man. It’s a planet ravaged by war, with a population shocked by the revelation that they are not alone in the universe. Jonas has big tasks ahead of him.

And welcome back, Daniel Jackson. He’s back with his team, his memories slowly returning, and his passion intact. The final scene with Jack and Daniel was just the right balance of nonchalant affection from Jack and wonder from Daniel at the way his life has come full circle.

According to the GateWorld review of Evolution, Part 1:

“Evolution, Part 1” marks the midpoint of the season, the time when American viewers settle in for the long wait until January. While entertaining and generally a good show, the episode is not completely effective as a “remember us in four months!” cliffhanger.

The episode focuses on the emergence of a new type of enemy — which Sam calls a “super-soldier” — and how to fight it and defeat it. The super-soldiers are apparently somewhat choosey about who they assassinate, as two pass by Bra’tac instead of killing him, and coincidently prefer to fire at non-recurring characters. These selective soldiers, with their loudly-crunching shoes and perpetual slow-motion stride, come close to being banal, or at least the brunt of a few well-placed Darth Vader jokes.

However, their impervious technology and their appearance save them from total corniness. The slimy-gooey makeup and translucent eyes are just gross enough to be interesting … and a little intimidating.

Jack’s participation — or lack of same — in the first 20 minutes of the episode merits note, as it is never mentioned and completely unexplained. The show would likely benefit by having a real clarification for why the commanding officer of the flagship team is constantly missing important briefings these days … and even better if it was an explanation that could span several episodes or the better part of the season. If nothing else, this would spare the writers from the task of finding somewhere to stash the character every episode.

Jack’s scenes with the Goa’uld Ramius and his Jaffa were amusing, and in themselves almost made up for his mysterious absence. However, it did seem a little forced, as though both Richard Dean Anderson and writer Damian Kindler were trying to cram as much “Jackness” as humanly possible into three or four minutes of screen time. That said, it’s very nice to see our favorite colonel back in action — leading his team, planning an ambush, working in the field and being concerned about his buddies, instead of standing around slinging off one-liners.

The discovery of the super-soldiers — and Jacob’s theory about their origins — leads Daniel and Dr. Lee to play Indiana Jones and Marion Ravenwood (you decide which is which) in Honduras, searching for the alien device behind the myth of the Fountain of Youth. Oddly enough, Hammond doesn’t send any military backup (plain-clothed or otherwise) with them, and poor Dr. Lee even has to pay for gas out of his own pocket. It’s hard being an S.G.C. scientist.

Daniel and Lee did have their moments. It’s pretty darn funny seeing Daniel, of all people, warning someone else against touching and accidentally activating something. I guess it’s safe to assume that most if not all of his memories have returned.

Unfortunately, the episode’s “To Be Continued” moment doesn’t have a lot of punch to it. After being captured on other worlds by alien beings for who-knows-what sinister purpose, a kidnapping by Latin American guerillas — while still risky business — seems rather mundane by comparison. And the final scene, where SG-1 learns of Daniel and Lee’s abduction to parts unknown, lacks any real drama because it is something that the audience already knows.

What’s good about this episode: It sets up a lot of good stories for the future. With these bad-ass super-soldiers wandering around, taking out Goa’uld left and right, how long will it be until SG teams start running up against them? Might Anubis use them to strike at Earth? Are they really as dumb as they seem? And what about this planet the captured soldier is supposedly from? It’s also nice to see an on-world and off-world adventure balanced against each other, especially considering all the new information and exposition contained in the story.

What’s not so good: At the midpoint of the season, Stargate could really have used an episode that excited, that electrified, that energized people for the rest of the year. “Evolution,” while solid and at times downright funny, was not that episode.

According to the GateWorld review of Evolution, Part 2:

Stargate SG-1 kicks off the second half of the season with “Evolution, Part 2,” the continuation of the “mid-season finale cliffhanger that wasn’t.” We jump right back into the action: Daniel Jackson and Dr. Lee are missing and presumed abducted in the forests of Central America — not Vancouver! — and the S.G.C. has had a nasty run-in with some black-armored, gooey-faced, uncommunicative snakeheads designated as super-soldiers.

All caught up? Good.

Part of “Evolution, Part 2” deals with Jack’s foray into Honduras to find Daniel and Lee with the assistance of his previously-unmentioned old buddy Burke. Burke, like most of Jack’s acquaintances from times gone by, has serious issues. He was involved in a friendly-fire incident and he’s a little peeved that Jack didn’t stick up for him during the investigation … not that that should stop Jack from going out into the middle of nowhere with the guy. Burke is a colorful character. He chews gum, laughs a lot, and talks loudly — to the point where your humble reviewer feels compelled to ask: are you supposed to be tracking the bad guys, or letting them know exactly where you are?

Nevertheless, Jack and Burke use the majority of their trek to work out what really led to their friend’s death, and while few Stargate fans will say no to learning more about any character’s past, one has to wonder if all this back story was really … necessary.

Meanwhile, Daniel and Lee are being tortured by the terrorists, who want to know more about the mysterious Mayan artifact. That is, Daniel and Lee are being kept in a shack, out of the sun and with a mat to separate them from the hard ground, and are being taunted with fruit. Oh, the humanity.

At the same time, Sam, Jacob, Bra’tac and Teal’c have arrived at one of Anubis’ bases to find out more about these freaky new bad guys, and herein is the meat of the plot. What they find out is that Anubis has a whole lot more of them than anyone previously expected. Also, they have a very limited vocabulary.

What was actually a strength of “Evolution, Part 1” actually becomes a weakness in the conclusion: the constant shifting from Honduras to Anubis’ base disrupts the flow and tension of both storylines. True, Stargate does like to split up the team and send them in different directions every now and then, but the goals of the two groups are so different, and the dichotomy of hot, humid Honduras and a cold, inhospitable space fortress is somewhat disconcerting.

After waiting long enough to be weakened by torture — and having told the terrorists everything they wanted to know about the “fountain of youth” machine — Daniel and Lee escape from the love shack and make a break for it. They run for the woods just in time to see that a previously deceased terrorist, in the immortal words of Monty Python, “isn’t quite dead yet.”

Perhaps it sounds as though I’m being overly critical. If that’s so, chalk it up to the months I just spent in rerun hell, with only the familiar embrace of syndicated Season Six episodes to comfort me.

What was good about this episode: It did lay down some important plot points. Anubis has been using “mentally challenged” Goa’uld to make up his army of super-soldiers, and the artifact that is thought to be some kind of weapon against them is a sort of portable sarcophagus. I’m sure that will all be revisited at later times. Strange though it may sound, the thing that really caught my attention was the music during the Honduras sections of the episode. It was twangy. It was different. It was cool.

Another plus — “Evolution, Part 2” actually has an epilogue scene, the kind of reunion-wrap-up that is sorely missing from too many Stargateepisodes. The team gets back together, compares notes, shares injuries, and there are smiles all around. And who could have a problem with any episode that ends with lunch?

What wasn’t so good: Quite a lot of the episode was devoted to a new character we’ve never heard of and a past situation that has little bearing on the circumstances at hand. Was the saga of Burke, Woods and O’Neill really necessary to the plot? Also, the mashing of two such disparate storylines gave the episode a choppy feel.

According to the GateWorld review of Grace:

Twinkle, twinkle little star, how I wonder what you are …

For the purposes of “Grace,” Sam Carter is that star, and the episode is all about what she’s made of. Alone on board the Earth ship Prometheus after the rest of the crew is kidnapped, suffering a head injury, and visited by hallucinations — some familiar, some not — Sam does a lot more than figure out a technical problem. She also takes a very personal journey and perhaps comes to some conclusions about the direction of her life.

Although short on action, “Grace” still comes across as an intense episode: deep, thought-provoking, and multi-layered. Sam’s conversations with her “inner voices” make up the meat of the episode, and the audience is left to decide for themselves just what each hallucination represented. What do your humble reviewers think?

Teal’c seemed to symbolize Sam’s suspicion and fear, her warrior mentality. Early on he warns her against falling asleep because of her head injury. Later he hypothesizes that Sam’s entire experience on the Prometheus, post-attack, is actually the result of the aliens probing her mind for information about Earth. His presence came across as almost threatening, definitely creepy, but it seems to be the biggest aspect that Sam and Teal’c have in common.

Similarly, Daniel seems to embody her scientific spirit and driving curiosity; he encourages her to stop searching for a way out of the quasi-nebula and study it, and he also comes up with the out-of-the-box theory that the nebula is a living being and the young girl is some kind of manifestation of its consciousness. Sam and Daniel are both scientists, and both have shown the willingness to put everything else aside to devote themselves to that calling. For Daniel it was “The Torment of Tantalus,” for Sam “A Matter of Time.”

If Teal’c and Daniel represented the more pragmatic side of Sam, the side we’re most used to seeing, the visitations by Jacob and Jack ventured into the nearly-uncharted territory of Sam’s emotions. This part of the episode began to delve deeper into the character, asking the all-consuming question: Is she happy with her life? Part of Sam says yes … and part of her, symbolized by her father, doubts that. Perhaps Sam suspects that her somewhat solitary life has saddened Jacob and makes him feel that she’s somehow failed him. Perhaps she genuinely wants someone else in her life and has been afraid to focus on that part of her life. The interpretations and possible implications are endless.

Sam’s hallucination of Jack serves an important function. In both matters of the heart and in terms of her mission, he seems to serve as her confidence, her safety net. He appears — the only figment besides the young girl not in some type of uniform — and acts as Sam’s motivation, if not the inspiration, to continue trying to save herself. Later, when the manifestations of Teal’c and Daniel express doubt that she can rescue the rest of the Prometheus’ crew, Jack is the one to come to her defense and express his assurance in her abilities.

And as for the ever-contentious feelings between the characters, Sam seems to believe that she has been using her feelings for Jack — someone she can’t, because of regulations, pursue a relationship with — as a reason not to pursue a relationship with anyone else. The hallucination seems to assert that he is, if nothing else, a safety net for her to fall back on. Is she right? Only time, and further episodes, will tell. But it does seem to your humble reviewers that after more than six years in the single life, Sam at least needs to explore her other options before she can decide, one way or the other, if Jack is truly the man for her.

Finally, who is Grace? A physical manifestation of an alien organism? A memory of Sam’s own younger, more fun-loving self? Merely the nonsensical result of a bad knock to the head? We’d like to go with what’s behind door number two, and hope that the experience has helped Sam rediscover that light-hearted, optimistic part of her personality.

What’s good about this episode: Stylistically, this episode is solid. While it gets off to a slow start, the second half is chock-full of enough questions to fill megabytes of forum discussions. Writer Damian Kindler flirted with such miserably Trek-like notions as “sentient space anomaly” and “alien mind trick,” then veers back into an original and satisfying story. The lack of music at specific points in the episode gives an appropriately eerie ambiance, and the recitation of “Twinkle, twinkle” is stunningly appropriate for Sam Carter.

The episode was “Jack-light,” but because of the plot his absence made sense. And the final scene between Sam and Jack was a nice, rare bit of comfort to cap off a rather traumatic experience.

Finally, Amanda Tapping inarguably carried the weight of this episode, and she was brilliant. In a fair world, “Grace” would not be ignored by various awards committees, as too many fine Stargate episodes are annually.

What’s not so good: As previously stated, the episode started off a little slow, and Sam’s voice-over logs brought back memories of Dana Scully’s X-Files reports … which could or could not be a bad thing, depending on your taste. There is of course the fact that the episode focuses almost exclusively on Sam; critics may be dismayed at the lack of other characters. Then again, those who enjoy the character will no doubt keep a special place in their hearts for “Grace.”

According to the GateWorld review of Fallout:

Although “Evolution, Part 2” and “Grace” were both fine episodes, “Fallout” is especially refreshing and fun, a nice mixture of action, intrigue and humor that reminds us what a versatile show Stargatereally is.

“Fallout” marks Jonas Quinn’s return to Earth with a rather serious problem: the naquadah in his planet’s crust is somehow transforming into naquadria, an extremely unstable element that, with enough heat and pressure, could have devastating consequences. With the help of Sam, Jonas and his “assistant,” Kianna, deduce that this process was tripped off by Kelowna’s testing of the naquadria bomb. Therein, of course, is the irony: the weapon that was meant to save Kelowna from its enemies — and indirectly lead to a cessation of hostilities — now threatens the future of that entire world. Whoops.

In a way, the entire theme of this episode is knowing when to ask for — or at least accept — help from others. In order to have any chance of saving the planet, Sam, Teal’c and Jonas must accept the Goa’uld’s offer of help, to look past their mistrust … not because they want to, but because they have no other choice. Meanwhile, on the home front, Daniel Jackson has finally run into a diplomatic quandary that he can’t quite negotiate around, leading Jack to deal with the problem is his own particular style. More on that later.

While not action-packed, some of the most sparkling scenes were those held around the briefing room table. Your humble reviewer really does enjoy learning more about cultures and worlds that the team has already encountered, especially one — such as Langara — in which the S.G.C. has a rather vested interest. The simple dialogue between the Andari and Tiranian councilors, as well as the new Kelownan minister, filled in the back-story of those nations’ conflict very nicely. Perhaps it even led some viewers to draw parallels between Langara’s situation and some of the international disputes faced here on Earth.

It was also interesting to see how technology has progressed in Kelowna in recent years (although their fashion has progressed … not so much). They seem to have taken some significant steps since we last saw them, perhaps because of the knowledge Jonas brought back, or perhaps because they’ve been trading naquadria to Earth in return for technology. One can only speculate. The dichotomy of computer screens and typewriter-like keys — not to mention the integration of Tok’ra crystals into the mix — gives a gritty distinctiveness to Kelownan science.

Since it seems one can hardly discuss a new episode without mentioning how prominently (or not) Jack O’Neill is featured, let’s return a minute to our favorite colonel. Although his presence wasn’t large, his screen time was put to good use. Certainly the phrase “dicking around” will stay in fan’s minds for some time. And Jack’s take-charge attitude (and Hammond’s deference to him) near the end of the episode could be compared to the way that Sam has been taking on increasing leadership responsibility of SG-1.

What was great about this episode: Naturally, it was wonderful to see Jonas again, even with his new hairstyle. And although it might not have come as a complete shock that Kianna was more than what she seemed, she does stand as a somewhat unique example of a Goa’uld. Although her motivation seemed at least partly based in greed and desire for power, she did opt to save her host in the end. And although she still regarded humans as technologically inferior, she seemed to move past the typical Goa’uld viewpoint of seeing their hosts as nothing more than cattle.

What wasn’t so great: Like almost all episodes, “Fallout” is open to nitpicking. Yes, the idea of drilling down to plant a bomb is a little reminiscent of films like “Armageddon.” Yes, it’s a little peculiar that the Goa’uld in Kianna knew to take precautions against being sniffed out by someone like Sam, unless Baal had specific information about Langara-Earth relations. But put up against the bigger picture, these are small things that don’t detract from one’s overall enjoyment of the story.

According to the GateWorld review of Chimera:

In mythology, the Chimera was a deadly, fire-breathing hybrid of many creatures: the head of a lion, torso of a goat, dragon or snake’s rear, or some other combination of nasty beasts. “Chimera” the episode, meanwhile, was a hybrid of two storylines with a similar theme, and one gets the feeling that the individual viewer will either love it … or want to breathe fire.

To be fair, your humble reviewer harbors ever-so-slight tendencies to admire Sam and Jack — together — to the exclusion of most other relationships. Despite whatever noble intentions your humble reviewer had going into this episode, a certain bias was bound to exist towards Pete — aye, even the idea of Pete.

But Pete wasn’t a bad guy. A little mushy, perhaps, but not bad. And all but the most battle-scarred and hardened Sam/Jack fan will concede that, after existing so long with only a trail of corpses in her wake, Sam deserved a little fun with a normal human guy who wasn’t marked for death from the word go.

But it was the execution of this particular plot that made it go sour near the end. Perhaps doing a background check on and following a potential partner around town comes off as cute and concerned to some. But to others, it possibly harkens back to Sam’s propensity to attract guys with stalker tendencies (think Narim in “Between Two Fires” and Orlin in “Ascension”).

Sam’s decision to let Pete in on the existence of the Stargate (otherwise known as the Worst Kept Secret in the World) also raises a few eyebrows. True, he was possibly blasted by an otherworldly weapon and saw things most people don’t typically see. But now he knows things about the Stargate program that (supposedly) very few people know about. One of the last guys to have that much unauthorized information got run over by a car with Washington, D.C. tags.

And the lingering questions: Will Pete come back? Was Sam’s last conversation with him a goodbye, or not? Will he believe what she has to say? Can he “handle it?” Is he making any trips to D.C. in the near future?

The meat of the episode was devoted to the former lovebirds, Daniel and Sarah. Only it wasn’t Sarah — it was Osiris, up to her old kinky tricks. One of the best things about the episode was quite possibly seeing a bit of the past between the two characters, even though it was alien technology-influenced and therefore somewhat unreliable. In the end, it comes as somewhat of a surprise that Sarah makes it through in one piece, although it remains to be seen if this storyline will continue during Season Eight. Will Sarah have knowledge that could be of use? Will Daniel — who could well compete with Sam in the Dead Love Interest Olympics — find happiness at last?

The possible comparisons between Sha’re and Sarah’s situations are also interesting. Although Sha’re couldn’t be saved, Sarah was. Should Daniel have had either lingering guilt or anger about his late wife’s fate, perhaps the salvation of another old flame will help in the healing.

What’s good about this episode: Teal’c! Teal’c is very good, finally getting the opportunity to show some humor and extracurricular interests other than boxing. And after the last two weeks, it was nice to see the team moderately focused on the same issues and goals. It gave the opportunity for many of the nice character moments that tend to be all-too-rare in an action-oriented show.

What wasn’t so good: At times it seemed as though the episode was built around an agenda, making the subplot the main plot, and vice versa. Although “Chimera” had its moments, could it be that it was more concerned with “getting Sam a guy who doesn’t die” than writing a single, solid story?

According to the GateWorld review of Death Knell:

After last week’s soap-operatic attempt to turn your humble review into a repentant diabetic, what I really needed was a good, solid, meat-and-taters episode, something with some intrigue and excitement and the smacking around of characters worth caring about. And — halleluiah! — Peter DeLuise and company did indeed deliver with “Death Knell.”

“Death Knell” had two facets, each potent in their own special way. When the (new) Alpha Site is attacked by Anubis’ drones, the story branches in two directions: Jack and Teal’c try to find an injured Sam before the drone does, and Hammond and Jacob try to find out who brought the baddies there in the first place. Meanwhile, Daniel … uh … hmm. Let me get back to you on that.

With dozens of his people missing or dead, Hammond finds himself in the unenviable position of discovering how Anubis discovered the location of the supposedly top-secret base. The officers stationed there are unsure. The Jaffa say it was the fault of the Tok’ra, and the Tok’ra say the same about the Jaffa — making it obvious that few of them have truly taken Bra’tac’s words in “Allegiance” to heart.

The alliance between the Tau’ri, Tok’ra and Jaffa is on shaky ground, and as the episode progresses the foundation crumbles further. Some of the high-ranking Tok’ra, we discover, no longer trust Selmak and Jacob, assuming the former has been corrupted by the dirty human emotions of the latter. The Jaffa are chaffing under the hand of their “new masters.” It seems that the death knell is indeed ringing for the partnership between these three peoples.

Of course, things aren’t looking too good for Sam either, pursued as she is by one of Anubis’ drones. The lack of dialogue during these segments (as in parts of “Grace”) was very effective, and Sam’s isolation serves to finally make one of these drones appear scary … although the hand-through-the-rock bit was a teeny bit over the top. Sam’s leg injury also seemed to bother her more at some times than others, but we can be kind and attribute that to adrenaline and the all-important survival instinct.

Jack and Teal’c spend most of their time running through the trees, tracking Sam and the drone. It would have been nice to see a little more of them, but they fulfilled their role as the cavalry quite well. And in the end, we get a rare scene of one character comforting another after a harrowing experience. Who doesn’t love that?

Another strength of the episode was the wonderful minor characters that were brought in: the young airmen, Delek the snooty Tok’ra, the proud Jaffa. Their interactions with Jacob, Hammond and the rest leant color and texture to the story and reminded us that although the name of the show is Stargate SG-1, it’s not just all about them.

What was great about the episode: There was a terrific balance in this story between political intrigue and action. It wasn’t bogged down in briefing table discussions, but at the same time it did take some very significant plot-steps forward.

In many ways the focus of “Death Knell” was Jacob. Carmen Argenziano was certainly the star of the show. If his prediction holds true and he won’t be around for a while — well, Sam won’t be the only one to miss him.

What wasn’t so great: Speaking of missing, where was Janet in this episode? With so many injuries following the Alpha Site attack, it was strange not seeing her or even hearing a passing mention of what she’s been up to. Even my mother — a casual viewer if there ever was one — asked if the Doc had dropped off the face of the planet.

All in all, a very enjoyable episode, with suspense, drama, and cuteness. And you can’t ask for much more than that.

According to the GateWorld review of Lost City, Part 1:

It’s fairly common knowledge that “Lost City” parts one and two were initially meant to serve as the Stargate SG-1 movie — either on the big screen or the small — should an eighth season not have been granted by Sci-Fi. Because of this, both parts of the episode invite us to look at the Stargate universe through the eyes of someone less familiar with the program. Had this script (or some variation of it) made it to movie-hood where the uninitiated would have been a target audience, what would it tell them about our favorite show?

In terms of plot, part one is written to include those viewers who might not have been with the show since “The Fifth Race,” the plot of which is summarized through several references. The gravity of the situation is also impressed upon the viewer — intelligence strongly suggests that Anubis has finished entertaining himself with any potentially threatening Goa’uld and is plotting a course for Earth.

The episode is also peppered with scenes that define the characters, specifically Jack: his determination to finish the crossword and win a bet with Sam, his cell phone antics, his reaction when Daniel tries to rush the Ancient device, the team gathering at his house and his goodbye to Teal’c. At the close of another Jack-light season, it’s refreshing to see him at his best (even if he does shave way too quickly). We as fans don’t need these moments as much as unfamiliar viewers would, but that doesn’t mean we don’t appreciate them.

While SG-1 and their cohorts scramble to defend the world yet again, political contortions continue in Washington as the President gives in to Kinsey’s insistence for regime change at the S.G.C. — to a degree. Dr. Elizabeth Weir is a civilian, is anti-military (or at the very least not pro), and the Vice President would very much like her in his back pocket. However, his failure to convince Woolsey to remain loyal (“Inauguration”) is compounded here; Weir is suspicious of his motives from the beginning and pushes back when she feels as though she’s being used. All we can say of Weir at this point is that she’s an interesting character, not two-dimensional in the least, and worthy of our time — even if she can only speak five languages.

Part one of “Lost City” is slow, an obvious set-up for more excitement to come in part two, and primarily concerned with establishing characters — new and old. We find that President Henry Hayes has settled into his new role with a comfortable air. We learn that Jack’s interest in The Simpsons is something he shares more with Siler than any member of his team. And — if we didn’t already know — we learn that there is a certain something between Sam and Jack that’s cause for awkwardness, even after all these years. The fanon (“fan canon”) assertion that Daniel is a cheap date appears to be confirmed, and Teal’c is, quite simply, deep.

Perhaps the most shocking thing in this episode is the fact that Hammond is replaced, and that he goes down without any perceivable righteous anger at the fact. The change is foreshadowed — even stated outright — from the very beginning, but still it’s difficult to imagine an S.G.C. without George Hammond at the helm. It was nice of Bra’tac to notice and be concerned.

It’s always difficult to judge the first half of a two-part episode on its merits alone, especially when the two halves are so obviously a duo (not, for example, like Season Six’s “Prometheus” and “Unnatural Selection,” which had such disparate stories that they were a two-part episode in name only). But “Lost City, Part 1” serves its purpose famously. It hooks our interest, sets up a life-threatening conflict, and further endears our heroes to the audience.

According to the GateWorld review of Lost City, Part 2:

“Lost City, Part 2” marks a milestone for Stargate SG-1 and, if rumors about next season are to be believed, even a departure from the norm. With a plot elegant in its simplicity, movie-quality special effects, and an ending that leaves every fan designing a time machine to July, this episode is no doubt one of Stargate‘s finest hours.

Before I get gushy, let’s get the not-great stuff out of the way first. The healing abilities that Jack used to heal Bra’tac were quite convenient — one might even say contrived. The saving grace that rescues it from the depths of contrivance is the Season Six episode “Frozen,” where we first saw the Ancients’ healing ability. Still, it would be nice to get an explanation — or even a theory — why Jack’s symptoms here are so different from those he exhibited in “The Fifth Race.”.

If I were to continue being picky, I could add that the threat posed to Earth by Anubis’ fleet could have been more impressively depicted. We know that there is a fleet hanging just beyond orbit prepared to wipe out every living thing on the planet, and that a Naval carrier group was taken out. However, the menace just doesn’t feel menacing.

Now that that’s out of the way, on to the good parts.

The visual effects in this episode deserve mention right up front — and I’m not easily impressed by shiny lights and things blowing up. Exploding spaceships are generally about as appealing to me as The Sci-Fi Channel’s myriad promo bumpers. Here, I found myself leaning towards the television screen during the battle scene, trying to watch every pair of dog-fighting gliders and Al’kesh. The mysterious Ancient weapon was also stupendously neat, more imaginative than a single laser shot into the heavens and, well, pretty. The moment of Anubis’ defeat was triumphant, epic, and filled with warm fuzzies.

Of course, I’ll believe that Anubis is actually out the picture about the same time I believe that Furlings look like Ewoks.

Part two marks an interesting contrast to part one in terms of Jack’s presence. In part one, the focus of the story is very much on him — the beer-adoring martyr we’ve come to know and love. In part two, the lights are on but it’s not a given that someone’s home, as Richard Dean Anderson reprises his MacGyver role in fine idiot-savant style. Still, he’s with-it enough to share a touching moment with Teal’c that no doubt made some fans’ season.

Part two also continues this season’s theme of Sam in a leadership role, a mantel she carries very gracefully. It’s obvious she’s been waiting for years just for the excuse to give Jack an order.

Dr. Weir’s backbone grows more solid in this episode, setting her up for a potentially likeable character in Stargate Atlantis, her anti-military tendencies aside. She has a sense of humor, and in a universe where the bad guys rarely crack a smile that makes her a character that we can admire.

Han Solo jokes aside, the cliffhanger ending was unexpected, yet somehow not surprising. For one, there simply wasn’t time to deal with Jack’s malady after Anubis’ defeat without it being too much of an anti-climax; a timely appearance by Thor would have set millions of pairs of eyes in an exasperatedly-rolling motion. And in a story full of uncertainty and questions unanswered, it’s fitting. It’s also emotional: Amanda Tapping’s performance in the final scene was particularly heart-rending, poignant to say the least.

With fine performances by the entire regular cast, plus guest stars William Devane, Tony Amendola, and even General Jumper, “Lost City, Part 2” is an edgy, stirring ending to a season with several ups and downs. Thankfully, there were more of the former than the latter, with plenty of pizzazz to keep us wringing our hands until the July premiere.

Fine work.

The Worst:

Orpheus, Revisions, Lifeboat and Avenger 2.0



  • Orpheus is another Teal’c-centric episode I was not fond of;
  • Revisions though interesting in nature, lacked some real danger;
  • Lifeboat was very similar to Star Trek: Voyager‘s “Infinite Regress” overall; and,
  • Avenger 2.0 was a sequel to last season’s The Other Guys featuring Dr. Jay Felger, which I wasn’t wild about either.

According to the GateWorld review of Orpheus:

In Greek myth, Orpheus was the son of the god Apollo and the muse Calliope. His greatest talent was the lyre, and it was said that neither man nor beast nor inanimate object could resist his music. Orpheus’ love was named Eurydice, but their marriage was short-lived; Eurydice was bitten by a snake and died.

Orpheus made his way to the regions of the dead and begged the inhabitants there to let him reclaim his beloved, charming them with the music from his lyre. Moved, they agreed, but set one condition: that Orpheus could not look at Eurydice until they reached the surface. The two made the climb, Eurydice
following Orpheus, but he looked back too soon and she was taken away again. No matter how much Orpheus pleaded, the denizens of the underworld would not give him another chance.

Grieving, obsessed with his mistake, Orpheus pulled away from all women … a fatal mistake, as it turned out, for the Thracian maidens killed him for rebuffing their advances and threw his dismembered body — and his lyre — into the river Hebrus. The Muses were able to collect the pieces of his body, which they buried, and his lyre, which they placed in the stars. Orpheus’ soul, meanwhile, was able to pass into the underworld and find Eurydice, where they were finally happy together.

Which Stargate character corresponds to each mythological role is, of course, a matter of interpretation. But it seems altogether possible that Teal’c fulfills the role of Orpheus, both Rya’c and Bra’tac are in Eurydice’s shoes, and the death camp Erebus — itself a name for one of the levels of Hell in Greek mythology — is the underworld in which Orpheus sought his beloved.

The episode “Orpheus” deals primarily with Teal’c’s adjustment to life without Junior (his larval Goa’uld symbiote), which — as we learn — he has been struggling with for some time. Although tretonin keeps him alive, it leaves him with a feeling of weakness … perhaps not providing the same pep that a symbiote would. Raised in a culture where weakness is synonymous with death, this is a major stumbling block for Teal’c and severely impacts his self-confidence.

Also struggling with his own issues is Daniel, who is still foggy about exactly what he was up to while ascended. But while in meditation he recalls a foggy memory of Rya’c and Bra’tac trapped on Erebus, where rebel Jaffa are literally worked to death.

SG-1, including the dispirited Teal’c, travel with Rak’nor to Erebus. They locate Rya’c and Bra’tac but are captured as well. Finally, in the face of his son’s faith, relied upon by the other captured Jaffa and aided by the rest of the team, Teal’c manages to fight back against his captors, regain his dignity, and bond with Daniel.

“Orpheus” is probably the most Jack-light episode of the season thus far, and Sam’s role was minimal as well. But this can be forgiven in the light that it was primarily a Teal’c-and-Daniel episode. And even if you’re not particularly enthralled by those two characters, there was plenty else to keep you interested: the classic Peter DeLuise explosions and fight scenes, further references to Jell-O (green this time), and the sly joke referencing Mel Gibson’s “Signs.”

Perhaps the most novel thing about the entire episode is the period, in the beginning, where we witness Teal’c’s recovery from his injury. It’s rare that we see the recuperation period for any member of the team, but for Teal’c — who, prior to “The Changeling,” was about as close to invincible as a mortal can be — it was especially uncommon. The bed rest, the pep talks, the physical therapy sessions and the all-around angst were almost reminiscent of hurt/comfort fan fiction. The very novelty of this is in fact exactly what drives home to the audience what is so obvious to Teal’c: were he is old self, this would not be happening.

Although Orpheus never made it out of the land of the dead, both he and Teal’c have a happy ending in that they are reunited with those they love.

What’s great about this episode: Christopher Judge’s acting. The man can do so much with a few lines and an eyebrow raise that sometimes, when an entire episode is devoted to him, it can be a little overwhelming. But in “Orpheus,” we see such a different side of Teal’c that the extra focus is exactly what’s needed. The opening scene: when we see General Hammond sitting behind a table so much of the time, it’s refreshing and fun to see him barking orders (“Watch your
friendlies, safeties off, clean target, clean background!”), not to mention that it’s about time those gate room guards had something to shoot at.

The teaser is exciting, suspenseful, and the opening credits roll on a definite cliffhanger. Jack in command: in “Orpheus,” Jack has to make some tough choices — first letting Teal’c decide when he’s ready to go back to work, and later deciding not to go in immediately after Teal’c and Rak’nor are captured. He didn’t have a large role in this episode, but when he was there it was at least thought-provoking. Daniel, a changed man: there is already a very obvious difference between the character in Season Five and the character in Season Seven. It seems that the year off was good for him.

What’s not so great: Daniel reveals at the end of the episode that he never felt that he belonged. While it’s true that he did leave SG-1 in “Meridian” for what he then thought were greener pastures, it seems unrealistic that never in five years did he feel he had a metaphorical “soft place to fall.” And if he had felt such isolation, is it feasible that simply Teal’c and Bra’tac’s thanks would remedy all that?

According to the GateWorld review of Revisions:

“Revisions” has many of the elements of a great episode: a neat setting, pleasant minor characters, an intriguing twist on a familiar idea … even a cute kid. However, it remains to be seen how memorable this episode will prove to be in the long run. Although it is a solid story, it lacks a certain, nearly indefinable spark that denotes a truly great episode.

SG-1 encounters another domed city, although this dome isn’t keeping out ice and snow (see “Beneath the Surface”) … it’s keeping out a toxic environment. Within the dome is what appears to be a prosperous civilization, the last remaining on this world, who are all connected — via a Borgish temple-piece — to a computer network they call the Link. It allows them to bring up information almost instantly and has relegated books to musty archives. While Sam and Daniel salivate — Sam over the computer system, Daniel over mustiness — Jack finds that he’s still the Pied Piper of cute little native kids; one follows him around, idolizes him, and even wears his decontamination suit (although, considering the monochromic wardrobe on this planet, maybe that one isn’t so hard to explain). Teal’c looks on, bemused.

The more SG-1 deals with the people on this planet, however, the weirder things get. Two women vanish, and no one else seems to miss them … or even remember that they existed in the first place. Although the possibility exists that the natives are simply trying to gaslight them, suspicions quickly turn to the little metal doo-dads on their heads. Sam quickly theorizes that the Link is somehow affecting their minds and their memories. The real danger, however, doesn’t emerge until later, when she discovers that the protective dome is losing power … and getting smaller.

Daniel does a little timely translating to discover that the population used to be much larger; over the years, hundreds or even thousands of people have, directed by the Link, walked out of the dome to their death in order to maintain a livable environment for those remaining. The computer would then update the Link — and all of the minds attached to it — in order to maintain the illusion that nothing was wrong.

Some people have mentioned ‘big brother’. In our culture of incessant reality shows, however, the ‘big brother’ this review was reminded of was the television show — only on this planet, if you get voted out, there’s no reunion show.

In the end, Sam, Daniel and an unlinked friend figure out how to control the Link and the people attached on it, who were most interested in bringing Jack and Teal’c into the collective. The truth is revealed, although the natives’ memories are still lost, and relocation begins. An open-and-shut case, as it were. A perfectly palatable dish of an episode.

However, although palatable, this dish was also somewhat bland. The fact that generations have been forced by the computer to walk to their deaths … that adds a little seasoning, yes. But in the here-and-now of the story, as far as SG-1 is involved, there isn’t much spice.

We don’t learn anything new about the characters; Revisions simply reinforces what we already were aware of: Sam likes computers, Daniel likes translating, kids like Jack, and Teal’c likes trading food with Jack. True, these characters are now six-plus years old — one shouldn’t expect new epiphanies for them every week — but it’s still possible to expand on what has already been created.

The episode also lacked a sense of danger. There is the possibility of the dome collapsing, of course, but the audience knows that’s a remote possibility since it would mean the death of SG-1. Even with the zombie-like townspeople going after Jack and Teal’c, all they’re armed with are connections to the Link. Jack and Teal’c are never in real danger of having their minds tampered with, nor are any of SG-1 fearful of ending up on the other side of the dome without their suits. What this episode needed to make it stand out was a little zing, a little angst, a little excitement … in short, a climax.

According to the GateWorld review of Lifeboat:

Following — quite literally — in the footsteps of “Revisions,” “Lifeboat” relies more on story than special effects to keep the audience entertained. Unlike the previous episode, however, “Lifeboat” had an extra emotional element to lend it appeal.

Although the episode obviously focuses on Daniel Jackson’s “possession” by the consciousness of several individuals from a crashed ship, a great deal of the real emotion is predominantly embodied in the characters of Janet Fraiser and Pharrin. Voices in our heads aside, it is the plight of these characters that we can most relate to: one friend worried about another, and a parent trying desperately to keep a child safe. Both performances were superbly handled by their respective actors; in fact, it was arguably the best episode for actress Teryl Rothery since Season Five’s “Rite of Passage.”

Michael Shanks carried much of the episode in terms of screen time and lines, although the percentage of the episode he spent actually playing Daniel Jackson was minimal. Most of the time he bounced between a handful of personalities, some named and some not, some helpful and some … less so. And the fact that many of these consciousnesses were aware of their situation, the presence of the others, was an eerie touch. Some of the episode’s early split-personalities scenes were a bit overdone, and sometimes even humorous (which was surely unintentional) to the point where it interfered with the telling of the story. However, the actor settled down and regained his footing in the second half as the plot picked up speed and the mystery began to deepen.

“Lifeboat” was another episode where the current lightness of Richard Dean Anderson’s schedule was painfully obvious. While his trademark attitude was present and accounted for in the teaser, Jack spent most of his time unconscious in the infirmary or watching Daniel play Personality Ping-Pong from another room. The saving grace with regards to the character, however, is the final scene in which he pulls Pharrin up by his bootstraps and convinces him to disobey his Sovereign.

One of the most illuminating facets of the episode was the series of flashbacks that showed what had transpired on board the ship before it crash-landed. Being able to put a face to some of the names and personalities — such as Pharrin’s son — gave them more depth and character, and made them easier to “see” when they were being played by someone else. (It might have also been interesting to see, in flashbacks, the way the Sovereign interacted with the other, common crewmembers.) Seeing the vessel staffed and functional gives the setting an especially creepy quality when transposed with the ghost ship that SG-1 discovers.

According to the GateWorld review of Avenger 2.0:

They say that humour is a subjective concept, and this time the mysterious “they” have hit the nail roundly on the head. I’d heard a rumour that this would be the season’s comedy episode, and in the past those episodes have either managed to tickle just the right spot, or have been embarrassing to watch. “Window of Opportunity” is firmly in the former camp for me; “Avenger 2.0” plonks itself down in the latter.

Playing with stereotypes can be hazardous. Each member of SG-1 could have so easily fallen into that trap — the leader, the geek, the babe, the warrior — but instead they’ve been dealt with intelligently and have many-faceted personalities. When Felger was introduced to us in Season Six’s “The Other Guys,” his clichéd behaviour was tempered by the sensible Coombs, and the gentle comedy of that episode was balanced by the presence of the team plot. The elements that made “The Other Guys” a success were missing here, and undiluted Felger The Geek just wasn’t up to the task of providing an entertaining hour of usually intelligent television.

Although this wasn’t a Sam episode, per se, she was the most prominent member of the regular team. Her uneven characterisation was a little confusing at times. Were we seeing the events of “Avenger 2.0” through Felger’s eyes, as indicated by some scenes where Sam was unexpectedly defensive of him? Or was it reality, in which case I’m stymied as to why both Hammond and Sam let Felger get away with not telling them anything about his amazing new project. And why, when Sam was the only person around who knew enough about the virus they’d unleashed on the gate network to make some progress, was she the one sent out to find a Felger who’d abandoned his post?

Despite the inconsistencies, Amanda Tapping pulled off everything that was asked of her with style and verve — even the final scene.

A virus that could screw up the gate system was a great premise, poorly executed. If controlled — and by that I mean if the SG teams had an anti-virus they could use at will — it might have been extremely useful for the S.G.C. The ongoing trade between other planets would have ground to a sudden halt, use of the gate system by the Tok’ra and other allies would have been disrupted, but the self-centered nature of the virus could have been a great set-up for both drama and comedy.

But by rushing this idea through, by not creating an anti-virus before letting the virus loose, by not considering the consequences, all members of the S.G.C. were presented as, frankly, a little bit thick. Perhaps this was simply more evidence for the argument that much of this episode took place in Felger’s head.

It wasn’t all bad news; after all, this is Stargate, a show that rises above the crowd. Don S. Davis was as constant as the sun, forever pouring light on each and every scene in which he appeared. Hammond scowled, worried, flung out orders every which way, and provided stability in a manner only he can. Chloe was a rounded character who demonstrated that not all scientists at the S.G.C. are incompetent, and I would be interested to see her again, if only because she would add to the very few women we see working at the S.G.C.

And speaking of women, is it possible that there’s a single male outside of her own team who can relate to Carter on a purely platonic level? It’s wonderful that the SG-1 team is a friendship-only entity, but honestly, there are far more interesting things to note about Sam than the fact that she’s a woman. Please, can’t we move on from that?

Despite its flaws, this episode might have scored more highly with me if not for the appalling nature of the final scene. Perhaps it was meant to be a comment on degrading male fantasies; I honestly don’t know. But it was a step beyond the daydream scene at the end of “The Other Guys” — a step too far, in my opinion. This scene was a travesty, unrecognisable as Stargate SG-1.

As I said at the start of this review, and it bears repeating, humour is subjective. No matter how much I disliked this episode, I would urge others to watch and decide for themselves.


Next in the best and worst is Season 6.

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