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Stargate, science

Atlantis vs. SG-1

Posted on 2009.07.13 at 03:00
Current Location: 75070
Current Music: Snow - Millennium (Disc 2)

I really, really hate Stargate: SG-1. Especially given how much I enjoyed Stargate: Atlantis.

We bought the first two seasons of SG-1 and I now realize why I hated every "crossover" episode on SG:A. I dislike the actors and the characters. I have trouble resolving Richard Dean Anderson's 'tough as nails' persona with the inane quips he makes as an aside when he first comes across something new. I suppose he's both protagonist AND comic relief since they have no one to fill that role. I mean, I'm the first to admit that I shun sitcoms mostly because of the plucky sidekick who helps facilitate jokes (that and laugh-tracks, GOD I HATE LAUGH TRACKS) but Colonel O'Neil is really beginning to come off as a multiple-personality what with all this back and forth he has with himself. Reminds me of Arnold from the Scholastic books, "The Magic School Bus." Every time something extraordinary happens, Arnold says something dumb.

Perhaps I just need to give it more time.

Maybe SG:A was the success it was because after 10-full seasons of SG-1 they finally found something which worked? The cast of SG:A seemed to really enjoy their roles, and the stories were fascinating comparatively. Everyone on SG-1 appears to be acting on a bet - as if the entire series were a joke. Before we began Season One I reminded my wife that the special effects were 10-years old, and we might find them horrific. But that wasn't the case at all. The acting did that before anything else could.

Now, I will admit I enjoyed the pilot episode. Very cool. Very Stargate like. And Goldsmith borrowed heavily from Arnold on the score - thrilling! But after the initial episode, it just turned campy. Something I didn't get from SG:A. But we're only through the first season, and we bought two. So even though I don't get giddy thinking about settling down for hours of adventure with the Atlantis crew, I'll likely suffer through the next season as well hoping it gets even incrementally better.

I beseech you - if you never watched Stargate: Atlantis because you hated SG-1... You may want to give it a try. Its not just different - its good.


catttitude at 2009-07-13 13:31 (UTC) (Link)
We should skip to the 9th season and see if the attitudes are the same as the 1st season. I think that at the time the 1st season came out the countries attitude was more easy going with other nations and more liberal. Now, the US has less tolerance for others. Just that growing up it both times this is why I think we are not enjoying the SG1 so much. I think the 1st season isn't very military like and they are supposed to be military.
ehowton at 2009-07-13 14:48 (UTC) (Link)
That sounds like a fair assessment. And thanks for telling me how liberal RDA is - I didn't know. That has to play a part in the apparent bemusement of his role.

How about skipping to Season 7 - when Atlantis was spun-off?
irulan_amy at 2009-07-14 02:10 (UTC) (Link)
Not a bad idea actually. Seasons 7-last are the best IMO.
ehowton at 2009-07-18 03:38 (UTC) (Link)
OK - we picked up seasons 3 & 4 today.
Melancthe the Woe, So-Called
melancthe at 2009-07-13 14:35 (UTC) (Link)
I have this friend who loves SG-1 and SG:A, and shares her love for them frequently. In excruciating detail. On the oddest occasions. This is why I can never bring myself to really watch either of these.

She also tidies fridges. Can I ship her over to Texas?
ehowton at 2009-07-13 14:52 (UTC) (Link)
Well, that answers one question - One can enjoy both. I'm sorry she's ruined SG:A for you. I'm pleased she's ruined SG-1 for you.

I don't know what I'd do with her. My fridge is pretty tidy.
wardlejew at 2009-07-13 15:20 (UTC) (Link)
Many shows struggle their first season because of the acting. ST:TNG season 1 is completely different from season 6&7. However, you can usually tell if the series has hope by the storyline. I have only seen a couple bits of both shows. Honestly, from what I saw SG1 looked better than SGA. Someday I will try them both out. Thanks for the report. I guess from what you have said, you definately do not need to see SG1 to watch SGA.

I'm in the middle of Heroes 3 right now (watching on Hulu.com). Never ending conclusions with cliffhangers on every episode is a cause for little sleep. I end up watching 3 shows when I intended to watch one. Are the StarGates this way too?
ehowton at 2009-07-13 15:40 (UTC) (Link)
Many shows struggle their first season because of the acting.
My wife reminded me of this prior to watching the show. I guess I've just gotten used to excellence. I've really been blown away by season one series recently where the strength of the show *is* the first season.

Never ending conclusions with cliffhangers on every episode...
Fun for awhile, but I grow weary of it. I've never watched a J.J. Abrams television show.

Are the StarGates this way too?
SG:A was a joy to watch, and we often missed our curfew. We're both struggling through SG-1 though.
David Alexander McDonald (Steven E. McDonald)
wyldemusick at 2009-07-13 15:38 (UTC) (Link)
See, now I go the opposite direction -- I really didn't think much of SG-A, but have all ten seasons of SG-1 and the two movies. I found Sg-A to be on the campy side, and was as often annoyed at McKay as anything.

However, I will admit that SG-1 did stumble through the first two seasons. It really started picking up in the third season,and barrels along from there through the 7th season. O'Neill stays bizarrely jokey throughout, admittedly, but that's the character, and it really begins to work.

Seasons 8-10 are a bit iffy for some people, because O'Neill starts to be less present (and for some, the end of season 7 was the finale for the series; for others it's the final episodes of season 8, with 9 & 10 being a related but different show -- which at one point would have been called Stargate Command)and as of season 9 is pretty much gone, with Ben Browder & Claudia Black arriving (Black for only part of season 9.)

I can happily rewatch SG-1. SG-A...not really.
ehowton at 2009-07-13 18:42 (UTC) (Link)
When I was deployed to Saudi Arabia we worked alongside contractors - contractors which were required to be outfitted in fatigues. We had two guys assigned to us. One of them wore his blouse open, his boots untied, and a big silver belt-buckle with his. The other was always squared away. I told him once how much I appreciated how he wore my uniform. Told me he had served, and wanted to wear it with respect.

RDA seems to be playing soldier. Joe Flanigan makes me believe he's earned his rank. Lt. Colonel Sheppard is always squared away, but I cringe every time I see Colonel O'Neil with his blouse untucked and his hands in his pockets.

Perhaps it has something to do with our vocational experience as well, because I run into guys who are responsible for everything, all the time like McKay. So I can relate. Annoying? Sure. But I always marvel at their brilliance and tenacity.

I will admit that SG-1 did stumble through the first two seasons.
I shall press on then, to Season three - and who knows, perhaps beyond!
This Is Me, Ten Sticks
lehah at 2009-07-13 16:08 (UTC) (Link)
I'm on the other side. Atlantis did nothing for me because what I saw was basically an even more singular formula: Wraiths show up and people from Earth are stuck on Atlantis and then people from other sci-fi franchise shows make guest appearances.

Not that SG-1 is some brilliant or above-par show but Atlantis doesn't *do* much of anything.
ehowton at 2009-07-13 17:30 (UTC) (Link)
I guess I enjoy the troubleshooting in SG:A. But you're right - not many consider that doing anything.
irulan_amy at 2009-07-13 17:20 (UTC) (Link)
I love SG-1. But the first few seasons are soooo campy. Really. I recommend giving it another season or so.
ehowton at 2009-07-13 19:02 (UTC) (Link)
We bought the first two seasons - will press on and get the third. It sounds like we may actually start to enjoy it.
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2009-07-14 17:20 (UTC) (Link)
I liked both shows. SG-1 is meant to be campy and not take itself to seriously. That in a nutshell is Richard Dean Anderson, anything he does is campy and he makes fun of himself. One of my favorite lines of Carter in season 1 or 2 is when she tells O'Neil she had to McGyver it to get something to work. Keep at it eventually I think you will like it.

Do you want to borrow seasons 3-10 and the movies?
ehowton at 2009-07-14 17:35 (UTC) (Link)
One of my favorite lines of Carter in season 1 or 2 is when she tells O'Neil she had to McGyver it...
Season 1. I caught that. It was funny.

Keep at it eventually I think you will like it.
That seems to be the general consensus.

Do you want to borrow seasons 3-10 and the movies?
Wow dude. Maybe. It would certainly give us an excuse to get together. Maybe load up the hippo and spend a day in Granbury...once its not 100-degrees outside. Thanks!
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2009-07-14 17:52 (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, Amanda Tapping actually ad-libed that line so Richard Dean Anderson was totally surprised by it.

Look forward to seeing you when the oven that is Texas Summer is turned down.
ehowton at 2009-07-14 18:12 (UTC) (Link)
That makes it even funnier. I remember they panned to him after she said it and I was amused by the expression of surprise on his face.

I'm ready for fall.
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2009-07-14 19:25 (UTC) (Link)
Oh, the things you can learn from DVD extras that you don't watch!!!
ehowton at 2009-07-14 19:29 (UTC) (Link)
I actually began watching the DVD extras on the first disc of SG:A but was mortified when I found they were revealing things in later episodes I hadn't seen yet! So I stopped.
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2009-07-14 19:39 (UTC) (Link)
ehowton at 2009-07-18 03:39 (UTC) (Link)
We picked up seasons 3 & 4 today!
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2009-07-18 04:14 (UTC) (Link)
ehowton at 2009-07-18 04:29 (UTC) (Link)
God but I love that avatar!
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2009-07-18 06:40 (UTC) (Link)
Have I convinced you to love Amanda Tapping yet???

You gotta love a girl in uniform!!!
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2009-07-14 19:28 (UTC) (Link)
"I'm ready for fall."

This to shall pass my friend. Remember our Winters or other peoples Summers.
ehowton at 2009-07-14 19:29 (UTC) (Link)
At least its a dry heat.
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2009-07-14 19:40 (UTC) (Link)
Let's hope there are no Aliens causing it.
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