Monday, January 2, 2012

Classics: SG1 6:21 - Prophecy

Overall Rating: 6.8

Don't do it, Gate writers...don't try to make us care about Jonas's too late!

Plot Synopsis:

The details can be found at the Stargate Wiki.

The Skinny:

By this time, the writers KNEW than Daniel was coming back...KNEW that Jonas was leaving soon...and they still went ahead with an old pitch to give Jonas a potential future as some kind of clairvoyant (aborted with medical intervention in the final script).  They devoted practically ZERO effort to making Jonas a new and unique voice on SG-1...someone the fans would care about...and the result was a fan base that didn't give a damn whether Jonas lived or died.  So no...we're not suddenly going to care that he might have developed a new magical power and might also be near death now that his year on the show was a total failure.  This is a story that works as a filler of average "high concept" value in any season and has no special features that make it worthy of our attention without some character angle...and the fact that they placed the emphasis on Jonas robs it of any character angle.

Which leaves us with...guy has brain tumor, guy starts seeing the future, guy sees horrible SGC-annihilating bomb trap, guy tries to prevent seems like his actions keep leading to the trouble he foretells, guy comes through in the end...but...then guy has brain tumor removed.  Reset button pressed, guy goes back to being a boring piece of crap stand-in for the real brain of the team (Jackson).  The ratigns for the show will reflect that rather tried-and-tested formula for sci-fi goodness on the merits of the plot only.

Writing: 7.0

This is actually a rather well-written version of the standard future fate question episode in sci fi.  It seems, for a while, to be a greek tragedy...but then with a little work, Jonas sees critical details that save the day, meaning Stargate writers are of the belief that the future is not set and that determinism is wrong.  The suspense works pretty well despite us not caring about Jonas one iota.

Acting: 7.0

Nemec and Tapping are the acting leaders this week as they have many scenes together discussing the implications of future-sight.  Fraisier does a fair job as well considering her limited guest role.

Message: 6.5

Tiny bonus for picking the correct side in the battle between determinism and the multiverse to explain future-sight.  Otherwise...meh.

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