Asta 2


Since the next couple days will most likely be all about BSG - fitting in the podcast will now be more troublesome than usual - I figured I'd get caught up on the Gates.

The Light - This is another ep in which I don't have much to say. The light acting as a drug and the withdrawal making you suicidal - I can't even say it worked as a heavy-handed message. Only two things stood out for me. First, I had another Jack/Daniel moment when Jack throws Daniel over his shoulder and rushes through the gate to save him, then seemed a little too much in his personal space. ;) The other thing was Jack blowing up at Loran. Jack shouting at a kid (OK, I thought he seemed a little old to be classified as a kid, but they were referring to him as such so...) is not something I've really seen him do. I always believed because he was a father himself and because he lost his child that he was more tolerant of and caring towards children. But Jack has seemed to lose his temper more quickly in this season as well as being more rash in his decision making. Perhaps a sign that the his job, what he has seen and been forced to do and what he hasn't been able to do, is taking a toll on him.

Prodigy - Was this the first appearance of Dr. Lee? I don't recall seeing him before, but then I wasn't paying as close attention. I know all the science talk was relevant to the story, but, OMG did I want to make Sam and Jennifer shut up. Especially Jennifer. I really thought that after Sam did this HUGE thing for her by taking her through the gate and showing her, literally, there were other worlds out there that she'd realize she still had a lot to learn. But, no, she has to argue with Sam about who is right in their theories on the planet. And while she may have been right, Jack could not wait around and risk all their lives to find out.

Entity - Some interesting ideas were presented here. The biggest of which is that the team is forced to confront what kind of damage they are capable of doing. In fairness, it's hard to imagine that radio waves from that little vehicle could potentially wipe out a race, then again, when you are encountering new life forms practically every week, how do you know what is safe and what isn't? And the energy being wasn't all that different from them. It was exploring, trying to discover our intent, and, ultimately, looking to preserve itself and protect it's people. It's really hard to argue that it was doing anything wrong, even in taking over Sam. And jack's 'We'll wipe out your civilization if you don't leave her' made me empathize with it rather than them. Actually, it was better than us - it preserved Sam's essence and sacrificed itself to protect it's civilization.

Overall, this was a enjoyable and, dare I say, touching episode. I still question killing Carson off largely because, right now, I feel the show has no idea where it is going next season. However, he did get a good death and send off. I just wish the writers could have come up with a better lethal device than "exploding tumor". I wonder how many takes DH needed before he could get that out without laughing uncontrollably?

It was interesting to see them all on their day off. I'm assuming Teyla was talking about John when discussing this guy she's interested in. Not just because I've seen hints of something between them in the past, but because, later, Ronon tells John he always assumed John would have something going with Teyla. And John seemed awfully concerned about her when he saw her injured.

I've seen from my Flist that there was shock to discover John had been married before. I guess I just never thought about it and why not have an ex?

Gosh, Rodney was actually likable in this ep. He was very cute in his interactions with Katie, especially his trying to figure out why she likes him. Well, my guess is he doesn't seem to be overbearing with her. And while he was desperate to not have to go fishing, the fact that he was willing to sit there with her and watch ferns and not try to persuade her to do something he wanted to do was refreshing. I also liked that he brought up his sister and her family twice during the ep establishing that he's not just in contact, but seems to be working on building close ties. I especially loved his remark to the two who screwed up with the Ancient device that his four year old niece would know enough to turn off a device if she detected radiation coming from it. Hee!

I didn't quite get the Weir storyline. I was also incredibly distracted by the doctor looking like Noah Wylie. I could accept her reasoning for choosing not to date in that it would split her focus and take away from her work. That comment seemed very in character to me. But when she said she didn't think she could be friends with a guy? Huh? She doesn't count John or Rodney or Carson as friends? Maybe her eulogy was suppose to emphasize she really hasn't gotten close to anyone. She seemed to be struggling with things to say about Carson. "He was a healer." Really? I would have preferred a personal story conveying what kind of man he was and how much he'll be missed.

Poor Rodney. I've seen him so often not accept blame for things when they are his fault and here he's blaming himself for Carson's death when it was beyond his control. I thought about what if Rodney hadn't backed out of the fishing trip, but it occurred to me that Carson would have ended up right where he was. Would he have allowed anyone else to do that dangerous surgery? Or carry the tumor? No. He would have headed right back from the trip and put himself in the middle of everything.

Neither show has every transported a body through the gate as they did here, have they? It was a very moving image.

Wow. This episode was surprisingly engrossing and had layers! If BSG is choosing to use the current world political climate and, specifically, the war(s) in the Middle East for material then SG-1 seems to be looking closer to home and mining the Christian Fundamentalism movement and doing so more successfully and with more finesse than I would have given them credit for. I've always argued that the Bible is open to interpretation and, unfortunately, many choose to twist it's meaning in service to their own beliefs and needs. Perhaps the Ori at one point in time did have good intentions and did wish to bring people into the fold through benign means. Power can and, in their case, has corrupted and now they use fear and death to force people to bow down before them. Tomin had chosen to believe that they are punishing non-believers, those that did not accept the word of the gods and, as he had seen it, their quest to bring peace and enlightenment. But when the prior announced that they were to slaughter people that had apparently accepted the Ori, Tomin hears how the words he believes have been reinterpreted to suit the prior's cause and he has a moment of, if not clarity, doubt as to what he is fighting for.

I still fear that the writers wanted us to see the good in Tomin at the end when he risked his life to save Vala's, but this is also a guy that had recently ordered a mass murder. And how many thousands has he killed prior to that? I don't think he can ever be redeemed in my eyes, but I would be interested if we discover later on that he survived and has begun to work from within to change others points of view. When he stated that he still believed in the Ori and their words it rang very true to me. How many people have lost faith in the church but have not lost faith in God or what he represents? And since he seems genuinely concerned about the fate of his soul, he may recommit himself to what he believes in rather than the men supposedly prophesizing it.

Um, are they pushing the Sam/Cam a bit? He baked for her. They do have a lovely dynamic, but their chemistry seems more of the friendship variety than romantic for me. And her password is fishing which means Jack is never far from her mind.

During Sam's death bed scenes, I was actually more focused on Cam, his fear and sadness, and how he worked so damn hard to get the team back together and was watching it slowly fall apart through failure. Failure I think he shoulders most of the blame for as their leader and the guy who ultimately makes the tough calls. Unfortunately, couldn't really focus on Sam's impending death because, well, I knew she wasn't going to die and because her hair and makeup were fricken perfect. This is one area I'll give props to BSG, when there characters are dying, they look like hell.

I wish we had a little bit more on Daniel. I know they are unaware of what his fate might be, but until Cam brought him up with that sad look in his eyes it was almost as if he was off on another mission somewhere and not in the hands of the Ori.

The leader of the village rocked. She conveyed such grace and strength throughout all of this. I loved her little speech to the moron at the end that sold them all out. If they were going to die, they were going to do so in peace and not turning on each other.

Oh, and could Chris Judge get more to do than shoot at stuff and get tortured? Please writers?
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i really like your take on the tomlin/ori/religion thing. i was thinking along the same lines while watching the episode, although for me it said something about all religions, not just christianity. i can't say i care for the ori much, but it's interesting to see SG1 trying to actually say something relevant to the world we live in for a change, as oposed to constantly have the characters save the day. and, for what it's worth, i'm of the variety that has no use for religion, but believes in god. :)

we didn't get to know more about daniel because this wasn't really ep 12. it was 16, but they switched them. i have no clue why, but they did. i'm assuming once we get to see the real ep 12, we'll find out more.
This actually was the real ep 12. The original Gateworld and SkyOne broadcasting lists were in filming order, not the order in which they were intended to air; I think there was some out-of-order filming to accommodate Michael Shanks' paternity leave.
There was a lot of confusion when the original SkyOne broadcast list went up, and this was what emerged when the dust settled. :)
I think my take can apply to other religions as well. I was just focusing on Christianity since it's the religion that makes the news in this country. I think they all have their faults. ;)

And as villians I'm rather bored with the Ori, they actually make me long for the Goa'uld. I'll take bad fashion over bad pancake makeup any day! But with the Goa'uld they were established from the start as false gods and whatever they said was not to be believed. With the Ori we discover that in their scripture there are some words of wisdom and it's easier to believe people getting sucked in by the promise of a better life than being kept in line strictly through fear. And, yeah, I appreciate seeing the team get it's collective asses kicked once in a while.
oh they do. and i think the worst thing about all of them is how they manage to twist perfectly sensible things into horrible horrible stuff.

you know, i think the one and only reason the ori aren't as sucky in my eyes as they appear to be is exactly what you said: their book does have valid points, and wisdom. i think that's the problem with most religions: they start out good, but go downhill pretty fast because ppl LOVE to complicate things. the basics are amazing, but people come and twist the words to suit their own needs. i can't help thinking of how simple and beautiful the new testment is, for example. until you go to church that is. and another scary thing is to see just how gullible and spinless ppl are, willing to give up their soul to attain something they don't even fully understand. it's truly amazing.
I also thought Jennifer Haley was really annoying, and the little green glowing things reminded me of a Willow spell. But I see you've picked up on Jack's growing impatience and willingness to make harsh tradeoffs to protect what he sees as his responsibility. They don't really go anywhere specific with that, but it is a noticeable trend in the character, and I think it makes sense under the circumstances.

I still fear that the writers wanted us to see the good in Tomin at the end when he risked his life to save Vala's, but this is also a guy that had recently ordered a mass murder.

I had the same issue. I do think they're poking at some interesting ideas about faith and free will and act versus intention. This being Stargate, I don't think they'll really bring them to the front, but it's interesting to see them come up. I wasn't too surprised that Daniel didn't come up, because that's very much the MO of the show; I at first expected Vala to use the opportunity of being on an Ori ship to find out what happened, but then I realized that her only contact with Tomin, and she couldn't exactly ask Tomin about Daniel if she wanted Tomin to listen to anything else she had to say.

I think Cam has really come into his own as a character, and has been so much fun to watch this season. Which is why, of course, SciFi cancelled the show. *sigh*
When Sam said she saw herself if Jennifer (or something like that) I found it hard to believe that Sam was ever that big of a bitch. :p Honestly, I don't know how Jennifer was ever going to be a member of the Gate program because her belief that she is smarter than everyone else would eventually get her killed.

Not knowing this was one of the eps that Daniel was going to be MIA, i thought we were going to have Vala stumble across him. Had that been the case not having Daniel discussed would have made more sense because we would have seen for ourselves what was going on with him. It's funny, I was watching 'Double Jeopardy' this evening and Fake Daniel gets killed early on and Real Daniel is "on a mission" and, man, Shanks gets quite a bit of time off. No wonder he dies so much on the show. ;)

Not only has Cam come into his own as a fully developed character (at least by SG1 standards), he's no longer Chrichton 2.0. Sci-Fi bastards. :(
You actually end up seeing Jennifer in training (with Grace Park), and her attitude has improved considerably.

Also, I can't remember if this was the end of the season where Shanks had appendicitis. There was one season finale or penultimate episode where the team drops by to see Daniel in the infirmary where he's recovering from appendicitis and I was like, "Wait--WHAT?!?" but it turned out Shanks had had surgery and couldn't film much.

Once you hit Season 8 and RDA starts emailing his performances in from another continent, you may up appreciating that Shanks just asked for time off. I'm just saying.