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Monday, April 9, 2012

On Stargate by Peter DeLuise... (TV series, 1997 - 2007) from the "Farscape" time

Transported by a portal to other worlds in the known universe, a diverse crew of intergalactic investigators helps to bring peace and hope to strange and new civilizations. In Season 9, a new commanding officer is assigned to Stargate Command. A new member also joins the team and a deadly enemy threatens Earth. The long-running sci-fi hit kicks off its 10th season with Vala Mal Doran (Claudia Black) giving birth to Adria (Morena Baccarin), the rapidly aging leader of the Ori forces, prompting Landry (Beau Bridges) to question whether Vala can still be trusted at Stargate Command. The season also includes an exciting midseason two-parter called "The Quest," in which Stargate Command meets an old nemesis while pursuing an ancient device known as the Holy Grail.

Teal'c (Christopher Judge), Vala Mal Doran (Claudia Black), Dr. Daniel Jackson
(Michael Shanks), Col. Cameron Mitchell (Ben Browder), Major Samantha Carter
(Amanda Tapping) and Major General Hank Landry (Beau Bridges)

2005-2007 (Season 9-10): Stargate SG-1 team changes. No more O'Neal, instead comes Col. Cameron Mitchell (Ben Browder) and Vala Mal Doran (Claudia Black), the Farscape main cast, funnily. Not that I was big on Stargate the movie (1994, I was a little bit). Or that I actually watched all the seasons (211 episodes!). But I was willing to give it a try, just for the sake of being a fan of Farscape. Followed of course by "Stargate: The Ark of Truth" and "Stargate: Continuum".

Major Samantha Carter (Amanda Tapping) and Vala Mal Doran(Claudia Black)

So, what to say about Stargate. It has an interesting conception of the universe, god(s), mythology and Celtic legend, and at that time, no much longer a reminder of Egypt land, since they already explored it over and over in the previous seasons and movie. The story is realistically coherent with our own history, there are two big enemies they have to fight against, missions to accomplish. It is like a video game that you cannot play. The suspense is good in between episodes, but the journey within each episode can be a stretch. The emotions are limited to the minimum (I guess they settled that this was not the point of the series, period.), the attachment to the characters therefor minimal. I was surprised tho that for no reason, you could potentially be attached to Lt. Col. Samantha Carter (Amanda Tapping), I think it is more because of her acting than because her character is necessarily more developed emotionally than the others. They are trying to show weaknesses in Mitchell, but it is not in his acting. And Vala Mal Doran is a clown. Even in the last episode of the season, "Unending" where they are trying to build a late relationship Between Vala and Dr. Daniel Jackson (Michael Shanks), everything sounds fake.

Vala Mal Doran (Claudia Black)

Anyway, I was told from day one that Stargate wouldn't reach the level of Farscape and BattleStar Galactica. That was right... But one mention to a sort of geeky sense of humor: "200", where they parody all the best SciFi Series, and literally trash in one second Farscape, it was funny, I admit.

Teal'c as Ka D'Argo and Samantha Carter as Chiana in the parody of Farscape


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