Pointless Nonsense

Posted in tv by Bill on August 24, 2011

They rarely use the first person shot of traveling inside the wormhole anymore. I’m wondering if it’s because 4 years of technology have made that effect look dated and they don’t have the budget to make a new one.

Episode 1:

  • A random other alien ship arrived to engage Apophis in combat before he could destroy the ship where Carter, her father, O’Neill, and Jackson are stranded.
  • The hyperdrive is broken, and the ship runs on crystals. Which is hilarious. Because crystals!
  • Teal’c is alive, so that’s not surprising. He is evil now, though, so there’s that.
  • The replicators show back up, and are taking over the ship that, through random plot bullshit, is now controlled by Apophis with the good guys in prison.
  • There are supposed to be these moments of high tension in the episode, but the Jaffa look so goofy in their outfits, the SG-1 people put on racquetball safety glasses for no apparent reason, and the replicators still look like they’re made out of legos, so the whole thing is just kinda ridiculous.

Episode 2:

  • Teal’c is still evil, and to cure him they remove his symbiote in the hopes that he’ll almost die, have his life flash before his eyes, and hope that he will remember why he rejected Apophis in the first place. This is a moronic plan, but it will obviously work, because Teal’c enjoys the protection of plot armor. The life flashing before his eyes thing means we get an episode full of flashbacks to life before Teal’c rebelled against Apophis.
  • In the first episode of this season, I thougt they’d used a different arrangement of the theme song, but in this one it seems to be back to normal. Maybe I was just going nuts.

Episode 3:

  • Carter gets zapped by some alien device on another planet, and she’s ordered to take it easy for a while. At home, she sees a previously invisible alien (played by Sean Patrick Flanery, in an unsettling performance) who can walk through solid objects and says he’s in love with her. So this is set up for an episode where she looks insane but is seeing a real alien.
  • Interestingly, Sean Patrick Flanery’s character mentions that he was banished from his people for violating their rule which is basically the prime directive, and John de Lancie (the guy who played Q) guest stars as a pentagon douche.
  • There’s a whole thing about an advanced weapon that the pentagon wants to test, but if they do, SPF’s people will come and annihilate Earth for misusing advanced technology they’re not ready for, but whatever, it’s pretty boring.

Episode 4:

  • SG-1 is retreating through the gate, but some new guy gets stuck behind enemy lines, so O’Neill stays behind to protect him while the other 3 go get reinforcements from Earth. When they get there, the General has never heard of this other guy and sends them to the infirmary. They think they might be in a parallel universe where this Tyler guy doesn’t exist, but it’s clearly that an alien that has inserted the memory of Tyler into SG-1 and taken on the role of Tyler to learn from the inside whether humans are a threat. So blah, blah, blah, the guy decides humanity is trustworthy.
  • John de Lancie is apparently taking on a recurring role as the pentagon douche.

Episode 5:

  • They arrive on a planet that worships one of the other Asgardian gods besides Thor. They look like puritans except the guys wear cowboy hats. It’s weird. But they think people coming through the gate will either bring good or bad luck, and something goes wrong right after the show up, so they get totally freaked out.
  • It turns out the makeshift dialing system on Earth skips some safety protocols and they fucked up this planets sun by gating in. They have a way to communicate with their god, so we meet our first Asgardians who are not Thor. They do in fact look and sound exactly like him. The Asgard don’t want to interfere, even though screwing up the sun and everyone on this planet will die.
  • SG-1 comes up with a solution of building a rocket to throw some stuff into their sun, but local religious zealots suicide bomb the rockets. Then there’s a deus ex machina ending, which kinda has me puzzled at what the whole point of the episode was.

Episode 6:

  • Cassandra, the girl Carter bonded with a long time ago and has forgotten about except for 1 or 2 episodes since, returns again, except now she’s a rebellious teenager who will hopefully grow into her nose. Then when she kisses her boyfriend, a light blows up and she passes out, triggering a medical alien intrigue episode.
  • Technically, we’ve already seen her adult self in a time traveling episode, so we can safely assume that she comes out of this ok.
  • They talk around it for a while, but she’s basically a mutant, Marvel-style. She can control electric fields and things. But then they cure her by making a deal with a secret hidden Goa’uld, so she loses her powers and will live, and mutants rights activists would be pissed if they existed.

Episode 7:

  • This episode suggests that slavery might be morally wrong. So that’s something to think about.
  • They find some slaves and free them and then the episode is over. So I think what they’re saying is, freedom good, slavery bad.

Episode 8:

  • At a ziggurat (awesome word), when Jackson is trying to figure out how to translate symbols on it, Carter finds a pack of Russian cigarettes. So bring on some cold war style intrigue!
  • Or not really, the Russians decide to cooperate. The Russian version of SG-1 shows up, and every fictional Russian military unit has to have a kinda hot but also kinda mannish super serious chick, so naturally they cast Seelix from BSG. I was hoping to get to mock her accent, but it’s actually not that bad. Not great, but subdued enough to not be comical.
  • The plot ends up being a whole “there’s a Goa’uld in one of us, but who?” thing, which I’m getting tired of.

Episode 9:

  • We return to the people with super advanced technology who are allies yet douches, and the one guy with the creepy crush on Carter. The douchiest of them has died , and after the funeral the head lady requests a meeting and implies that they’d be willing to trade technolgy with earth, a sudden total reversal of their previous policy. Creepy guy slips Carter a holographic message saying that Earth is in danger. As with all other fictional characters ever, forearmed with the knowledge that it’s a trap, they go in anyway with no plan of any kind.
  • The guy with the crush on Carter has her voice programmed as the voice of the computer in his house. Which is like Smithers’ computer on The Simpsons.
  • There is some kinda conspiracy within the government, and it turns out that guy from Highlander is pulling the strings. The Goa’uld develped a shield that is impervious to the only weapon these people have.
  • And SG-1 works to let the guy with the crush on Carter sabotage his people and most likely trigger a war that destroys them all. Though technically it saved Earth, aiding someone in starting a war his people will lose seems kind of dickish.
  • Highlander guy hints at a mystery man who he works for. At least as a marathoning viewer, it feels like the show would be better with more focus on a single adversary rather than changing from Apophis to Horus back to Apophis to lego spiders back to Apophis again and then whoever this mystery guy is. On one level I like the idea of a power struggle within the alien race, but they don’t have different characteristics. All the Goa’uld, from the show’s perspective, are just evil guys that would like to enslave the Earth. They can pretend this is big drama, but all they’re basically doing is changing the name and the actor.

Episode 10:

  • The people who made all of Earth infertile in an alternate future a while back make contact with SG-1 on a planet other than their own (which has been locked out of the SGC computer).
  • They even bring back the wife’s boss from Breaking Bad from that episode. Eventually, they of course have to figure out what’s up, or else the entire Earth will become sterile. So they do that. It’s actually a decent episode, even though it’s predictable.

Episode 11:

  • A van hurriedly pulls up alongside Carter, and there’s only way that ever goes in TV and movies: masked men hop out and kidnap her. Is that a real thing? Or is it a convention of entertainment like a handkerchief full of chloroform? Being a “strong woman” character, Carter gets in a few good shots first.
  • The hunt for Carter goes through that one guy who used to run the department of evil and straight to John “Q” de Lancie, whose character name I will probably never learn.
  • It turns out this kinda hot girl who looks awful in her imdb pictures is planning to implant a Goa’uld symbiote in a dying billionaire and hope to learn from Carter how they might attempt to remove it after it heals the guy. And shocker of all shockers, this ill-conceived plan goes awry. SG-1 is left clueless as to what happened except that they’re pretty sure a Goa’uld is loose, and Q appears to have struck a bargain with it.

Episode 12:

  • Willie Garson from a few episodes back returns, having created a TV show that is just like SG-1. Conveniently, this is just when SG-1 discovers they need him to figure out why a ship from his planet is headed towards Earth.
  • The crappy production values, poor acting, and plot holes of the SG-1-like show serve as some kind of meta-commentary, which odd. Bravo for recognizing the parts of the show that are crappy, but you’d think if you were aware of it, you’d actually try to fix it instead of just pointing it out.

Episode 13:

  • This episode, my first after a lengthy break for Fallout and Luther and some other stuff, seems to be about training recruits for new SG teams.
  • They bring back the smart/bitchy girl from I don’t know how far back. Joining her are some people I don’t remember seeing before, including Grace Park. I don’t know if it’s makeup, hair, losing weight, or maybe even surgery, but she wasn’t as hot pre-BSG as he is now. Still easy on the eyes, so I have no problem at all with her in this episode.
  • The episode opened with Goa’uld possessed Jackson that turned out to be a training exercise, so when things turn dramatic for our trainees and O’Neill leads them on a real mission against possible infiltrators or something saying “this is not an exercise!” I get the distinct impression that this is an exercise. Especially when the trainee leader starts barking out orders and O’Neill isn’t all “did we jump to a world where Lieutenant outranks Colonel?” This fact becomes increasingly more and more obvious, but I have no idea at what point they’re intending for the audience to be in on it. Or, for that matter, the trainees, because it’s really been getting ridiculous.
  • There’s an exchange: “Same wager as last time?” “…that hardly seems fair.” “I’ll give you double or nothing.” “Then how can I refuse?” I guess the General may be a piece of shit who’s racked up multiple debts without paying them back, but I think the more likely scenario is that the writers don’t understand what “double or nothing” means.
  • It seems incredibly reckless to not tell people they’re in a training scenario in a secret military base full of live weapons, alien technology, and a gate to other worlds. The odds of one of the trainees grabbing a live weapon and killing someone, or making the strategically sound choice to destroy valuable (or irreplaceable) equipment rather than let it fall in enemy hands is non-zero.

Episode 14

  • SG-1 flees from a battle through the gate, but for some reason Teal’c doesn’t arrive. They think it’s because the gate on the other side broke, so they have to figure out a way to materialize his pattern from the transporter buffer. Or whatever the Stargate equivalent is.
  • They bring back John de Lancie and the now former head of his department for some intrigue, plus negotiations with Russia over use of their gate, and they introduce some new douchey scientist who’s sure to be a recurring character.

Episode 15:

  • My now-frequent breaks between episodes combined with my apathy about the series leaves me fairly clueless about a lot of things. This is another episode with Keamey from Lost, and he’s talking to some kinda hot blonde woman I don’t remember at the beginning. And the pre-credits scene reveals that the new Big Bad is apparently Anubis.
  • I wonder if anyone ever accused the series (and movie before it) that the Norse (white people) Gods like Thor are good guys and Egyptian, Indian, and Chinese (non-white people) Gods are evil. White supremacists do seem to be fond of the Norse gods, too, so yeah. I guess that would make Teal’c some kinda Uncle Tom. I’m not clued enough into what’s PC and whatever to really have a clue what I’m saying, so probably I just wrote something horribly offensive to just about every race, and also aliens. Probably, they could solve this by having Zeus or Jupiter or someone be a total dick.
  • Watching this on a plane, getting the volume right is nigh impossible. Either the dialog is hard to follow or the action scenes are deafeningly loud. I’m settling on deafening, with the assumption that some awesome new technology will make hearing loss irrelevant by the time I’m old.
  • The plot here involves sending Jackson into a system lord meeting undercover as a Jaffa slave, and then release some kinda poison that kills Goa’uld symbiotes. This is to be done as part of a larger Tok’ra offensive to seriously cripple the Goa’uld forces.
  • The plan’s kinda dickish since the poison will kill the immature symbiotes in the Jaffa as well, which will then kill the Jaffa.
  • O’Neill and that new recruit guy from the last episode are taking a seemingly pointless tour of a Tok’ra facility which will turn out to have a point. Carter, meanwhile, is hanging out with some Tok’ra lady, being kind of a bitch to her.
  • Excitingly, Jackson gets a lesson in pouring tea for system lords.
  • And the innocent tour has turned into a thing where the Tok’ra and SG people are trapped with an incoming wormhole and Goa’uld ships en route.
  • I bet actors feel goofy when they lower their chin to transition from Tok’ra symbiote speaking to Tok’ra host speaking.
  • Jackson-as-a-slave brings his guy, a Chinese somethingorother, to the meeting, which has these people. I’m hoping the blonde on the right will be someone, cause she’s hot. But speaking to my earlier comment, at least a few of these people seem to be white.
  • Too far into the episode with no resolution in sight, so this appears to be part one of two. We leave off with the kinda hot blonde from the beginning (who is Osiris and that chick who Jackson maybe used to date or something) recognizing Jackson (but not saying anything for some reason), and everyone dead but the main characters (and the newbie from last episode) in the Tok’ra tunnels with Joffa on the way..

Episode 16

  • Jackson was ok with killing a bunch of innocent slaves, but now that his former lady friend or whatever is around, he doesn’t want to poison a giant group of super evil superbeings bent on enslaving humanity. Which is kinda ridiculous. But whatever.
  • This episode involves a lot of Carter moving around “heavy” crystals that are probably painted styrofoam in the Tok’ra base wreckage. I’m amused both by the acting that goes into pretending they’re heavy and that she’s just moving them in a pile on the ground rather than anything actually obstructing her path.
  • The system lord meeting starts to get weird where they all eat Goa’uld symbiotes for some reason. Maybe to gain their strength, or they’re Tok’ra? I’m not sure. But they just bite into those suckers like they’re some sorta delicious food.
  • So O’Neill, Carter, Jackson, and Teal’c are trying to help the injured rookie around. I get non-sexism or whatever, and really it’s probably practical because she’s the least effective in combat, but it’s still weird that Carter’s the one carrying the rookie around.
  • Jackson comes up with a dumbass plan that manages to not kill his lady friend, but also I think manages to not release that poison at all. Then he takes the poison to the Tok’ra planet where Keamey is actively searching for said poison. For some reason, Carter’s father isn’t concerned with Jackson’s failure to poison all those Goa’uld leaders. And then they get shot down while attempting to rescue SG-1. I don’t even want to know what kinda bullshit will be involved in them getting out of this particular pickle (ooh, I was supposed to get pickles).
  • The bullshit is that they’re going to give the poison to the dying rookie, have him get captured, and set off the poison when they bring him tot he gate. The assumption is they won’t outright kill him if he says he knows the formula to the poison, they won’t search him for the poison, and unmentioned in their plan is the assumption that he won’t die or won’t lack the strength to press the button to activate it.
  • And they don’t even show it happen, I think the ending just leaves us to assume they get off.

Episode 17

  • An amateur astronomer spots something the SGC takes an interest in. He says it’s near CASS-ee-OH-pee-yah, which I’ve always pronounced CASS-ee-oh-PEE-yah. So now all that I once believed has been thrown into questions and I don’t know who to trust.
  • Anyway, it’s an Armageddon/Deep Impact kinda thing where there’s an asteroid headed for Earth and they have to land on it and drop some nukes on it.
  • They have the bomb planted and ready to go only halfway through the episode, so something horrible has to happen. And it does.
  • There’s a subplot about evacuating humanity in the event of the world’s destruction and who should go, but the whole story is ultimately pointless. Unless the episode ends with the world being destroyed, which would kick ass. Best episode ever, if they did that for real. But of course they won’t.
  • No dice, they avoid it through some bullshit, and then a Tok’ra Deus Ex Machina resolves the last lingering problem.

Episode 18

  • This episode opens with the Cylon who monkeyed around with Starbuck’s reproductive parts giving a speech in a strange accent that sounds half like MLK and half like someone doing Shakespeare. When not giving speeches, he talks normally, though. He’s leading a group of free Jaffa, rebelling against the system lords. There are some hot-looking Jaffa women in the background who I’m hoping will turn out to be prominent characters in this episode.
  • SG-1 brings supplies and weapons to the rebels, even though there’s no reason to believe they’re not riddled with spies. Or technically Cylon guy could be a spy, too.
  • Stupidly, they not only hand over a bunch of automatic weapons, but show off the capabilities and will probably offer instruction in using them and all that.
  • Cylon guy walks through a battlefield and gets the bad guys to surrender their weapons, which probably is more likely to mean that he’s a plant by the system lords, who arranged for their lackeys to not shoot him and surrender. But oh well.
  • Strangely, the Cylon guy, who (in addition to Dark Angel and Eyes) I largely know from a show that showed suicide bombing from the bomber’s perspective, sends his own suicide bombers. BSG offered a nuanced look at the complicated forces that would compel one to suicide bombing, but SG-1 just takes the daring stance that suicide bombing is bad.
  • Sadly, as I expected, the rebel leader turned out to be a bad guy. And more sadly, none of the hot-looking women were anything but extras.

Episode 19

  • SG-1 finds what looks like a well-preserved corpse of a kinda hot woman but seems to be an android.
  • More importantly, I think their product placement deal with NEC expired, because the SGC computer monitors are now HPs.
  • In an unexpected twist, they figure out how to activate the android. An actual surprise, the android girl has a super annoying child-like voice (since I declared her kinda hot, hopefully she isn’t actually 12… but I’m on a plane again and don’t want to pay the however much to get net access. Late edit: she was 29-ish when they filmed this, so I’m safe). And she has no idea she’s a robot.
  • They tell her she’s a robot, and she does not take it well.
  • The robot girl’s home planet was apparently destroyed by those replicator things. And it looks like they may have created them, since the girl uses the nanobots that repair her body to make something that resembles a replicator. Or, it turns out, she made them all herself. And watched them kill everyone on her planet.
  • Conveniently, no one is able to contact the Asgards, who could probably figure this whole thing out and resolve the replicator problem once and for all.
  • The whole time, I’ve been thinking they should get some sort of child psychologist involved, but they keep just having her talk with Daniel, who is in no way qualified for any of this.
  • Obviously, she ends up getting pissed off and making a bunch of replicators that go nuts in the SGC. So everyone puts on racquetball goggles (including the General), because that is the official attire of replicator fighting.
  • In the end, O’Neill shoots her, which they tell us kills her, which seems like bullshit sine early on they talked about her self-repair mechanisms, but whatever. So there goes a really good shot at solving the whole replicator situation.

Episode 20

  • The previouslies are entirely concerned with that time O’Neill fake retired and joined the department of evil. Didn’t seem to be many loose threads with that one, so I’m not sure where this will go.
  • Apparently the evil guys went to a planet with a kickass defense system intending to steal it, but may have only succeeded in disabling it, leaving the planet vulnerable to Goa’uld. So SG-1 does the old prison interrogation thing for intel, planning to head there to restore it.
  • Actually kinda cool: they send out a UAV to survey the area, then launch missles through the gate at targets they find. Though it’s totally something we’d do, I suspect they won’t use this very much, since it’s kinda boring from a TV viewer’s perspective.
  • The little old guy who often plays creepy cult leaders is the head of this planet, which is basically a giant hippie commune that’s relied on the now-broken defensive thingy for generations. So they’re totally defenseless to any attack.
  • During a battle, Jaffa for some reason blows what I’m pretty sure is a Shofar. That’s just a weird thing.
  • And then they get it working just in time to avoid certain death for all.

Episode 21:

  • SG-1 hops through the gate with what they think is a lethal dose of radiation. Tense music plays while the camera slowly zooms in on characters reacting to that grim news.
  • Master thespian Corin Nemec guest stars in this episode, as the guy on the planet where this radiation thing happened.
  • Jackson says they could use carbon dating to do archaeological stuff on this planet, which is not at all true. Carbon dating relies on the consistent level of the unstable isotope of carbon in the atmosphere, so that living things have a predictable amount in their bodies. Once dead, they start to decay at an again predictable rate. On another planet, without years of study, how would we know what normal carbon levels would be?
  • Some BS about politics on Parker Lewis’ planet is accompanied by Jackson having a near death experience (possibly helped along by Carter trying to use the fancy Goa’uld hand healing device).
  • And, uh, I think Jackson just did a Wesley Crusher and became a fancy science fiction ghost type guy. I sorta wasn’t paying attention. Hopefully next episode’s previouslies will clear things up for me.

Episode 22:

  • This episode opens in orbit around Bajor, or at least that’s what it looks like with the angular ship and the other one exiting FTL effect that looks like the wormhole. Osiris provokes battle with Thor’s ship and their shields are able to easily withstand everything thrown at them. So this would be a major shift in the balance of power.
  • Despite what I’d hoped, the previouslies left Jackson’s fate pretty vague. But it seems like the characters are just as clueless as I was, so I think the lack of clarity was intentional.
  • SG-1 goes on a rescue mission for the Asgard, hoping to rescue a scientist at the planet where Thor lost the battle. They meet a few new Asgardians, including Heimdall, who is not as badass as Idris Elba. Looks just like all the other Grays, but it sounds like a woman. Initially, the Asgard thought Thor was dead, but Heimdall has evidence that he’s been captured and being tortured for information.
  • Thor doesn’t want to be rescued because Heimdall’s research is key to the survival of the Asgardians. They aren’t able to reproduce anymore, they just clone themselves and transfer their consciousnesses, but Heimdall is trying to restore their ability to reproduce.
  • Anubis, the still I think yet-to-be-seen new Big Bad, is due to arrive to torture Thor personally, but they keep stretching out his (her?) appearance. In fact, he strolls through the halls of the Goa’uld ship in an Emperor Palpatine cloak, hiding his (her?) face. The effort to not reveal Anubis’ face is so blatant that it almost certainly has to be someone we’ve seen before (the only other possibility is a famous actor, but I doubt that).
  • Because of Thor’s wishes, SG-1 decides to take off with the valuable research, allowing their friend to remain captured and die for the greater good. Except the opposite, because adventure story protagonists have to take ridiculously impractical risks.
  • And I was totally wrong about Anubis, he appears to be something non-human non-Goa’uld with a face that kinda looks like a black and gray version of Rorschach’s mask. This is kind of a fuck up, not unlike B5’s with the Vorlons. It’s hard to make someone look cheap and/or goofy when they’re wearing masks/makeup that cover their eyes and mouth. It can be overcome, sometimes really successfully, but it usually requires money. And serious attention paid to the sound. SG-1 doesn’t have that kinda money.
  • They end up rescuing Thor and the possible key to saving the Asgardian genes, but Thor’s in a coma. Also, at the end of the episode, we get the impression that Jackson is now a magical ghost thing. Which is a fittingly idiotic end to this season.

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