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Stargate Universe or: How I can't let a good franchisee die with grace and instead milk it out for all that it's worth.
Product Placement at 6:45PM, Nov. 2, 2009
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Once upon a time there was a movie called Stargate. Turned out that it wasn't the mind blowing experience that they promised it would be although I loved the starcrossing rollercoaster ride part.

Few years later we witness the dawn of the Stargate SG1 series.
I'll be frank. First season was shit. I checked it out, got bored and stopped following it.
Couple of years later I got a glimpse of the 3rd season and noticed that it had gotten a whole lot better.
I started watching it again.
I became hooked.
I became one of those obnoxious bastardized nerdboy fans that knew everything that was (and wasn't) worth knowing about Stargate.
My friends remember that part very well. ^^'
The joke was on them though because few years later, I had managed to turn them all over to the dark side.

Good times…

Anyways, why did I start this topic again?

Oh right!

As I mentioned. I used to love Stargate SG1. The highlight of the experience came at some point around the end of the seventh season when they promised an event that would end it all. True enough, the shit did hit the fan, all the chips were put on the table, there was a big climax and all the enemies were gone, leaving the heroes free to walk into the sunset.

The End.

“FUCK THAT!” said the Sci-fy channel (who oddly enough wished to call themselves cyfy now since they don't trust their followers to spell something more complex then that) “We want to make more money”.

So what did we get? Three more years of SG1 where they introduced a new enemy from a galaxy far, far away who ironically enough sported super mind powers. Actually, they weren't like the Jedy at all. My impression of them was more like an army of evil Moses wannabees, spreading plagues around with their shining staffs.


3 years later:
cyfy: “We're not making enough money out of you guys. Stop your silly show now.”
creators: “but we haven't concluded the story ark yet…”
cyfy: “no buts! Just do it.”

What did we get? Slapped together tv movies that haphazardly try to explain what happens to all the new bad guys.

Right, so SG1 was dead to me now but coincidentally, there was this new show called Stargate Atlantis. I decided to check it out and found it entertaining enough to watch. However as it progressed, it started to fall out of favor for me. I still watched it though because it was Stargate. Then came the ending.
Wow. What a load. That's what counts as a good ending for a series nowadays?

Oh, but we're not done yet! Enter Stargate Universe (you know, the show I originally intended to talk about).

I've had the “luxury” of seeing the first 6 episodes now and I must voice my opinion about it now.

Wow. What a marvelous thrill ride of twists and turns and endless excitement. You'll never know what's gonna happen next.

Well, the premise of the show is decent enough (on paper). People leave the Milky way through the stargate only to find that they're permanently stuck on the other side and have to figure out how to rectify the situation.
Wait? Didn't they already do this with Atlantis?

Oh well, let's check out that first episode, shall we?

Oh no! This will contain spoilers!

A large expedition is experimenting on some unique 9 digit gate that's located on some old planet that has a power plant rigged into its core. Let's recap. 7 digits (actually called chevrons but I'm keeping it simple) are required to call up another gate. The 8th digit calls gates in different galaxies so naturally a 9 symbol address is bound to be something good. Since they can't seem to figure out how to get the damn thing to work, they decide to encode the problems into an MMO and hope that some kid with no live can figure it out (seriously, that's what they do). Since there was no chance in hell that such a stupid idea was ever gonna work, they instead try to… wait… what? It worked? Well I'll be.

Naturally the military kidnaps the kid by beaming him into one of their super advanced space ships (yeah, the US military has space ships now. The older series cover that part). Well, turns out that his brilliant idea didn't work out after all, or so it seems so the kid gets to spend few days on the gate planet with the military, trying to figure things out. Suddenly the planet is under attack! Oh no! It's a space crime syndicate that's behind the dastardly deed! While trying to evacuate, the core of the planet starts to overload for no apparent reason.

That's right! The entire planet is set to explode! Apparently it's allergic to orbital space battles. What makes this even more stupid is that few years ago, SG1 made a spoof episode where they were essentially making fun of themselves. Basically a film director was making suggestions for a movie based on the Stargate program. His ideas covered outrageous plots like planets blowing up were the CAST OF THE SHOW criticized the idea. Who would have guessed that they would stoop to that very same plot gimmick few years later?

Anyways, back to the planet blowing up.
“Quick! We need to activate the Stargate and return to Earth!” said someone.“
”Oh, SNAP! I just realized what we were doing wrong so we can try and activate the 9th digit on the stargate“ said the kid then.
”Hey! Good idea! Let's do that instead of going to a place that we know for a fact is secure.“

I really wish I was joking.

So there we are. They manage to activate the 9 symbol gate and evacuate. The planet blows up in all it's CG glory and the military and the science crew that was on the planet get transported to Battlestar Gallactica.

Turns out that the gate was linked up to an ancient colony ship or something similar that's designed to cruise through the galaxies. Since it's been flying at million times the speed of light for the past 50 thousand years or so, they're quite far away from home at the moment. The other side of the entire universe far away.

Ooh. That actually sounds exiting. Surely this is bound to be good, right?
I really wished it was. So far it's been rather boring experience. I kinda get the feeling that the show creators are recreating the Atlantis experience except that this time they decided to make the group that gets stranded behind consist of personnel, who weren't trained for this situation, aren't well equipped and is faced with issues like ”How are we gonna cover essentials like food, water and air“. So how will the good folks on Destiny (that's the name of the ship) solve their problems? Well… turns out that they suck at solving problems and instead, the ship that's fully automatic starts to come up with deus ex machina solutions for them instead (naturally at the last possible minute). The two parter called Darkness and light (episode 4 and 5) managed to grind my gears quite allot. Basically, Darkness sets up a problem that the crew was faced with and they can't do anything about it. After wandering aimlessly around for an entire episode, the ship finds itself in a horrible situation with no hope of escaping from. To be continued! Oh no!

Bah. I saw through the plot twist in ten seconds flat and managed to figure out what the entire second part was gonna be about. For those who don't care to be spoiled or have already watched these episodes, read on.

Basically the ship ran out of power and dropped out of FTL (faster then light) outside a solar system. At first the crew pondered if the ship was taking them to a livable planet since it was unable to travel any further (a logical thing to think since the ship had the tendency of solving all of their problems anyways). To their horror, they realize that the ship is actually heading towards the sun! Dun Dun Dun!

Ok. Why would a fully automated ship that seems to have a pretty advanced AI do that? Obviously to collect power. Yeah, it's so advanced that it can siphon plasma from stars. I predicted that the entire episode would involve the people on board panicking like headless chicken, creating video blogs about how they were going to die (which had been an ongoing theme in the show at that point), have a beautiful ”we welcome death" moment and then gasp in amazement when the ship would save the day again.

Needless to say, I was right on the money.


Another thing that I've noticed is that the premise denies the chance of establishing an outside villain. Who cares if the heroes manage to piss of XZGARGLARK the terrible since the ship is never gonna stay in his territory long enough for him to say anything about it? With no antagonists, the show is obviously gonna focus on internal conflict.

This is the only thing that they've been doing decently up until now. They do a good job showing you how the crew is getting more fed up about the situation. About 80 people managed to escape to the ship before the planet blew to kingdom come. There's an obvious power struggle between the main scientist (who's trying to fix the ship by staring at it) and the main military commander. The crew is siding with the commander for the time being though since everyone hate the scientist at the moment since he got slapped with the blame of getting them stuck there in the first place. I currently don't know how the power struggle is gonna evolve but I'm expecting some sort of mutiny in the end. Who it is that's going to be leading it and why, remains to be seen. At the moment the head scientist is being painted with the image of being devious and secretive and I think that's supposed to be misleading. I believe that we're supposed to think that he's up to something so that the shock will be more when it turns out to be someone else (think Snape in the first Harry Potter film). Although maybe I'm giving the show to much credit and he turns out to be the main villain.

So there. I just made a long winded and incredibly boring rant that's sure to cause many of you to say tl.dr. The main reason behind this was simply to get this damn thing off my chest. Now that it's done, I'm feeling so much better now.
Those were my two cents.
If you have any other questions, please deposit a quarter.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
Hakoshen at 9:27AM, Nov. 3, 2009
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I watched the first movie centuries ago and should probably watch it again. I watched the first episode of the newest season. Needless to say I'm not quite qualified to engage you on your post, which I did read 70% of. All I know is the new season was awfully Battlestar Galactica like, which, after watching The Plan, I now find to my liking.

A buddy of mine, the same one who has tried to get me to watch Dr. Who, Red Dwarf, Andromeda, about 20 other shows I can't remember and damn near 200 import Asian movies, has every box set but wont let me borrow any of them. He says just watch it and figure it out, since as you said there are more than a couple of seasons including the first that ought to be skipped.

Just thought I'd chime in there with what little I have to contribute.
God needed the Devil, the Beatles needed the Rolling Stones, Hakoshen needs me.
I'm the enemy he requires to define him.
Soon or later, he'll bring me back to life again for another epic encounter of shouting about power levels and grimacing.
-Harkovast
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:41PM
7384395948urhfdjfrueruieieueue at 7:06PM, Nov. 3, 2009
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I could watch the entire Stargate series in the time it would take to read that post.
i will also like to know you the more
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:08AM
therealtj at 8:09PM, Nov. 3, 2009
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You forgot about Stargate Infinity…

“The only moral it is possible to draw from this story is that one should never throw the letter Q into a privet bush, but unfortunately there are times when it is unavoidable.”
-Douglas Adams, The Restaurant At the End of the Universe
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:28PM
mlai at 8:17PM, Nov. 3, 2009
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The movie was mediocre, and depended on 1 plot gimmick to carry itself through the 1st half of it. Why does anyone care about the rest of the “franchise”?????

What I really want to know is…
tl.dr.
What does this mean? I see it alot.

FIGHT current chapter: Filling In The Gaps
FIGHT_2 current chapter: Light Years of Gold
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:06PM
Mr Lostman at 8:34PM, Nov. 3, 2009
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teal deer.

An incredibly NSFW place to find out stuff like this.
Blood Martian Flowers. Occasionally updates.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:07PM
Product Placement at 9:54PM, Nov. 3, 2009
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tl.dr.
It means “too long, didn't read”.

It's a quicker way of saying this:
Atom Apple
I could watch the entire Stargate series in the time it would take to read that post.
Those were my two cents.
If you have any other questions, please deposit a quarter.
This space for rent.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
ozoneocean at 11:48PM, Nov. 3, 2009
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“tl.dr” = “I am something that starts with C and rhymes with Blunt” :)

————–

I read through the whole of the post. That new series sounds much like the old one to me. -the early ones. The whole thing was always a bit thin, but the later episodes I saw before I stopped watching TV seemed a lot better written and actually pretty decent. It was never A class SciFi though, it was more like the B+ sort of Scifi you got with the X-files; always just a little too thin, like skim milk, even though they're very well down shows… They just try and be too many things to too many people and end up a little scattered in their mythos. The universe the writers create for them (as with any show, scifi or not), was not very cogent or well defined in my opinion.

Or, more simply, the Scifi magical future stuff didn't mix all that well with the mundane reality stuff. Not an any concrete sense.
Reminds me a little of The later series of the original Battlestar Galactica show when they came to earth.

————–

The original movie was a little weak, as Mlai said. But it was interesting at the time because cinema just wasn't doing epic adventure Scifi things then. I remember they made a point of that in the film's promotion. It wasn't that amazing but the plot device of magical transportation to strange and amazing unexplored planets and civilisations was a good idea worth further exploitation.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
Product Placement at 4:31AM, Nov. 4, 2009
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ozoneocean
The original movie was a little weak, as Mlai said. But it was interesting at the time because cinema just wasn't doing epic adventure Scifi things then. I remember they made a point of that in the film's promotion. It wasn't that amazing but the plot device of magical transportation to strange and amazing unexplored planets and civilisations was a good idea worth further exploitation.
I suppose that must have been what made the show so popular to begin with. I always figured that there would be sequels or something like that because they made the effort to point out that the gate had all these different symbols when it only needed 7 of them to connect to the planet in the movie. Since that was the case, it wasn't that big of a stretch to argue that the remaining symbols were for different gate addresses.

The problem with SGU (Stargate Universe) is that the gate is no longer the focus point like it used to be. All the attention seems to be diverted towards the ship that they're in. The cast is most often depicted as incompetent and whenever they're faced with a problem, they just whine about it until the ship fixes it for them. When the ship is not around to wipe their bottoms (the few times they do use the gate to go to different planets) all issues and troubles that they encounter are deus exed away.

I hate the fact that it's called Stargate to begin with. By now I would have lost all interest in this show, stamped it with “lame knock off of Battlestar” and be done with it. However the nerdboy in me that used to worship the original show keeps demanding that I check it out in the wain hope that it might improve.

Who knows. Maybe the writers will manage to improve it. The first season of SG1 was pretty boring and only got better from that point (at least until season 7).
Those were my two cents.
If you have any other questions, please deposit a quarter.
This space for rent.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
ParkerFarker at 2:18AM, Nov. 5, 2009
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yeah, Wormhole X-Treme (the episode that was ripping themselves off) was funny. That's what was so good about SG-1, they didn't take themselves seriously. Universe is just like some stupid hollywood series where everyone looks beautiful and perfect except for the nerdy guy.

“We are in the stickiest situation since Sticky the stick insect got stuck on a sticky bun.” - Blackadder
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:39PM
ozoneocean at 3:08AM, Nov. 5, 2009
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ParkerFarker
except for the nerdy guy.
You mean like in the original series, except that the Nerdy guy looked like a male model with fake glasses on? :)

Seriously, that guy was supposed to be the smarty professor dude man but he was like some himbo who could barely get his lines out.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
ParkerFarker at 3:22AM, Nov. 5, 2009
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You're not talking about Dr. Daniel Jackson are you? But now that you've said that, yeah he was just like that. But still, SG-1 wasn't so serious. It wasn't frakking Battlestar-Gallactica-serious or anything.

“We are in the stickiest situation since Sticky the stick insect got stuck on a sticky bun.” - Blackadder
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:39PM
Product Placement at 6:26PM, Nov. 5, 2009
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ozoneocean
ParkerFarker
except for the nerdy guy.
You mean like in the original series, except that the Nerdy guy looked like a male model with fake glasses on? :)

Seriously, that guy was supposed to be the smarty professor dude man but he was like some himbo who could barely get his lines out.
Heh, the funny thing is that the team had two nerds. Daniel Jackson was the culture nerd that could learn a new language in 10 minutes.

Samantha Carter was the science nerd and I'd argue an even bigger geek than Jackson.
ParkerFarker
yeah, Wormhole X-Treme (the episode that was ripping themselves off) was funny. That's what was so good about SG-1, they didn't take themselves seriously.
I beg to differ. Stargate SG1 was plenty serious.

Just look at this actual clip from their 200th episode.
Those were my two cents.
If you have any other questions, please deposit a quarter.
This space for rent.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
ozoneocean at 9:27PM, Nov. 5, 2009
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Product Placement
Heh, the funny thing is that the team had two nerds. Daniel Jackson was the culture nerd that could learn a new language in 10 minutes.

Samantha Carter was the science nerd and I'd argue an even bigger geek than Jackson
You're right!
She was cleverer and a better actor. She was actually believable as a smartipants. ^_^

Unlike professor Himbo Jackson esquire or the obviously fake spectacles.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:35PM
Heavy Veapons Guy at 7:36AM, Nov. 25, 2009
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To me the series went down the tubes around the beginning of the ninth season.

Didn't mind Atlantis that much though. I got bored of that quickly, however.

The series was just too overdone.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:47PM
lastcall at 4:13AM, Nov. 27, 2009
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SG-1 was the best. Awesome group chemistry with a nice serving of humor. Richard Dean Anderson made that show. SGU sucks ass; it's like a BSG ripoff. I don't feel any group chemistry with the guys in SGU as I did with SG-1. They really should have stopped around the eighth season of SG-1, when Don Davis died and Anderson decided to take time off to be a grandpa.

My favorite episode in SG-1 was “Window of Opportunity,” when O'Neill and Teal'c are stuck in a time loop:

last edited on July 14, 2011 1:28PM
Rich at 5:14PM, Nov. 27, 2009
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Hey, it looks like everyone else is as underwhelmed by Stargate Universe as I am.

Stargate has always been little more than “Hey, there's some aliens over there. Let's go shoot them!”. I enjoy character development and serious drama as much as the next person, but when I am watching Stargate, I don't want that shit. I want people fucking slaughtering aliens and then spouting out pseudoscientific technobabble, not people angsting over their fucking relationships.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:07PM
lastcall at 12:26PM, Nov. 29, 2009
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Rich
I want people fucking slaughtering aliens and then spouting out pseudoscientific technobabble, not people angsting over their fucking relationships.

Amen! :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:28PM
Product Placement at 8:38PM, Dec. 16, 2009
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lastcall
“Window of Opportunity,”
Oh bloody hell! I love that episode!
Those were my two cents.
If you have any other questions, please deposit a quarter.
This space for rent.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM

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