Saturday, January 21, 2012

Stargate SG-1, Season 5, Episode 22

images used above are courtesy of Gateworld and MGM

Overall Rating:  Very Good

Commentary by:
Martin Wood -- Director
James Tichenor -- Visual Effects Producer
Joseph Mallozzi -- co-Writer
Paul Mullie -- co-Writer

The commentary is very informative, and interesting.  Lots of behind the scene information.  The commentary stays on point with what is on screen.

Daniel ascended in "Meridian," with the help of Oma Desala, leaving SG-1 to deal with the grief of losing their teammate, and friend.  Since Daniel ascended, rather than dying a true death, no one knows if they will ever have contact with him again.  Everyone is stoic, dealing with their feelings privately.  Except Carter, who is grief-stricken, and having a difficult time working through the conflict of hope because Daniel is not actually dead, and mourning Daniel's absence.

Freyr, an Asgard (“Red Sky”), arrives at SGC via the stargate with news.  Thor (“Small Victories”) is dead, his ship destroyed in a one-on-one confrontation with a Goa’uld mothership.  That Goa’uld (Osiris, although only the viewing audience knows this) used technology that rivals the Asgards’, and far exceeds the level of sophistication previously known to be in the possession of the Goa’uld.  The threat of facing the Asgards’ superior weaponry kept the Goa’uld in check, and made the Protected Planets treaty viable.  One Asgard space ship could take out numerous Goa’uld vessels.  Now, the Goa’uld have little reason to fear the Asgard, leaving all of the planets under the protection of the Asgard vulnerable to Goa’uld attack, including Earth.

The destruction of Thor’s ship occurred above a planet where the Asgard built a secret laboratory.  An Asgard scientist named Heimdall is still on the planet, and the Goa’uld vessel is in orbit above, searching for the lab.  The Asgard fleet is tied up in battles with the Replicators.  So, Freyr asks SGC to use the Goa’uld shuttle they have (“Fail Safe”) to go and rescue Heimdall.  Carter is still in grief mode, and does not consider SG-1 ready to take on new assignments.  O’Neill thinks the sooner the team goes out on missions, the better.  The now three-member team of SG-1 will try to rescue Heimdall.

Arriving at the planet where Heimdall, and the lab, are secreted, SG-1 learns the mission is more than a simple in-and-out rescue.  The team finds out why the Asgard kept a research facility in such an isolated location.  They also learn that a friend who is believed gone, is not, and attempt to help them return.  The simple retrieval of a stranded Asgard transforms into a mission pitting SG-1 against an overwhelming Jaffa force, and an insidious, very dangerous Goa’uld.

A well-written story that acknowledges the grief felt by SG-1 at the loss of Daniel, without getting mired in the team’s emotions.  I like that O’Neill, Teal’c, and Carter have very different ways of dealing with their feelings about Daniel, rather than everyone evincing the same behavior.  There is not one standout performance, however the separate portrayals mesh, demonstrating how the team members differences work together to make them stronger as a unit.  The effects are very well done.


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