The question at hand is whether or not Stargate Universe, the latest show in the Stargate arsenal, is worth watching.
I love the Stargate Program, primarily as seen in the first eight seasons of Stargate SG-1. I’m a big fan of Richard Dean Anderson’s and have been from the beginning of his career, and Michael Shanks is now my #2 all time favorite actor, so my ties to SG-1 are strong. I have a strong dislike of Stargate Atlantis in large part because of how its existence negatively impacted SG-1. Since I have pretty much no respect for the current set of powers that be in the Stargate universe, there really isn’t anything to draw me to Stargate Universe.
However, both RDA and Shanks had cameos in the opener so I had to watch. Actually, RDA is in several of the shows, small bits that could have been written for any general and not our beloved General Jack O’Neill. He clearly feels like a guest on the set and not part of the family. This is evident from an interview that Shanks did not long ago. Shanks is in two as yet unaired episodes, one of which includes Anderson. They actually have a scene together and they naturally fell into their own comedic and banterish style during rehearsal. However, they both agreed to play the scene more straight because this wasn’t their show and they didn’t feel they had a right to make these parts truly their own. How awful is that. The powers that be should be encouraging these guys to bring their uniqueness to the plate. Clearly, that hasn’t happened.
Watching the first two episodes was a big chore. I didn’t like much of anything. The show was way too dark and full on unlikable characters. The only semi decent spot was the introduction of a nerdy type named Eli, though it is a direct rip off of The Last Starfighter movie. Brad Wright and Robert C. Cooper, the powers in charge, like to call those moments homages rather than admit that neither of them can think of original material.
Early on, the audience was subjected to a way-too-graphic sex scene. It was ridiculous and I was offended by its presence. There’s no place for this in the Stargate universe. If this is Wright’s and Cooper’s idea of dealing more with the characters, they are truly warped, which I think they are anyway.
The only other part I think I liked, besides RDA and Shanks, was seeing the USS George Hammond, the latest ship in Earth’s fleet and named as a tribute to the late Don S. Davis who played that role so very well in SG-1. I met him so that touched me.
I don’t like the characters, especially the Daniel wannabe, Dr. Rush, who is of questionable character at best. The heart and soul of SG-1 has always been Daniel Jackson. What they’ve done here is turn Daniel into a lying, untrustworthy, diabolical, deceiving, and very possibly suicidal being. I’m not interested in seeing this kind of character.
I’ve tried to watch other episodes, but again, I was bored and completely disinterested. There’s too much sex and no warmth among the characters that are there. I had hoped that Lou Diamond Philips would add some zing to the cast, but even he has fizzled. There’s just nothing there I care about, and frankly, I’m hoping Stargate Universe will just not be around much any longer. I’d much rather see the SG-1 movie that’s on hold, probably to pay for this ridiculous TV show.