"The Other Side"
Episode Rating: Fair
Peter DeLuise -- Director
James Tichenor -- Visual Effects Supervisor
Peter DeLuise’s commentary is sprinkled with a fair amount of humor, and lots of interesting information. James Tichenor also provides interesting information. Individually, DeLuise and Tichenor are both excellent commentators. Together, they seem just slightly out of sync with each other. The two men come across as liking, and respecting each other, so do not start rumors. The best way I can describe it is that there is no chemistry between their commentary styles. The commentary itself stays on point with what is on screen. Also, there is the opportunity to hear Peter DeLuise sing lyrics to the opening sequence music as the view pans over the giant pharaoh’s head, with its seemingly crossed eyes.
SGC is contacted, via the stargate. by an off world, human society that is more technologically advanced than any society on Earth. The people, who call themselves Eurondans, are at war with other humans on their planet. The Eurondans want, and need, supplies from Earth. Alar, the Eurondan leader, is willing to trade some of their advanced tech for supplies. Military leaders, and politicians aware of the stargate program, are thrilled to finally encounter a technologically advanced society that is willing to share its knowledge.
SGC, and SG-1, are all about supporting Alar, and his people, against the Eurondan’s enemies. Except Daniel. Daniel wants to know more about the conflict in general, and the Eurondan enemy, in particular. Alar is slow to provide specific details to Daniel, but great at delivering very grand, very vague, monologues about himself. O’Neill does not want to spoil the trade deal with Alar, and tells Daniel to stifle himself. Earth is so anxious to get access to advanced technology that many questions are not being answered about the people providing the advanced tech.
The acting is well done. Rene Auberjonois portrays Alar, and it is delightful to see him on the show. Mr. Auberjonois’ performance is very good, more nuanced than overt. The episode’s premises are thought provoking. I rated this episode “Fair” because once the final premise is uncovered, the story delivery becomes heavy-handed. The mode switches from encouraging the viewer to think, to smacking the viewer upside the head with a moral lesson.
O’Neill takes sides with the Eurondans, without questioning much of anything. I can buy the Pentagon not asking probing questions about the Eurondans, but O’Neill’s behavior seems out of character. Especially when he tries to shutdown Daniel’s questioning of the Eurondans. Except for near the end of the episode, much of O'Neill's behavior does not ring true.