As a thriving, spoiled Generation Y member, spending a few days with my parents in Connecticut over the holidays meant leaving my Wii and my DVR behind in Boston. That left me one night to … gasp … watch live television.
Flipping through the channels, I came to the Sci-Fi Channel, which I respect as a geek but never get to squeeze in between Wii Sports and re-runs of “House.” They were running a “Stargate SG-1” marathon.
My only previous knowledge of Stargate came from knowing that “Stargate: Atlantis” is on Fox around 3 a.m. Sunday mornings right after M*A*S*H, and I might catch it between Chinese takeout and passing out after a long night.
Well I watched Stargate, and one episode turned into seven, and soon enough it was 2 a.m . and I has just watched most of what I later learned was Season 9 of one of the most popular science fiction television shows ever. It’s based on a realistic fiction take on what they play off as the government-held secret of inter-planetary space travel.
Somehow I had missed this for the last decade or so.
What really took me for a ride was the fact that while the show was wrapped around such complex sci-fi topics as hyperspace and energy weapons, the show was very much about people. And it went into unbelievable character building detail, interpersonal conflict and topics like war, disease, and the misuse of technology.
A little Wikipedia research (which, of course, I verified from a reputable, journalisticly citeable source) revealed that SG-1 was on television for ten years before being sadly clipped, while its spinoff, Stargate Atlantis, was producing its own fifth season. This all came from a 1994 Roland Emmerich film starring Kurt Russell. (Now, two more direct-to-DVD movies are being released to tie up the SG-1 saga, which was canceled right in the middle of a major conflict with an evil alien religion.)
With one of my giftcards (Christmas has been boiled down to giftcards…) I set out to Best Buy to find this film. The “Ultimate Edition” extended cut with all the bells and whistles was a whopping $6.99.
If you want a little bit of history spinning, sci-fi and just damn good writing, check this out.