Sunday, June 3, 2012

Classics: SG1 7:10 - Birthright

Overall Rating: 4.5

This feels like a Gene Roddenbury script.  That's NOT a compliment, Mr. Judge!

Plot Synopsis:

The Stargate Wiki has the hot Jaffa action...if you're into that sort of thing. (eyes sideways)

The Skinny:

This script is not incompetently written, which is a good sign for Chris Judge's skills as a writer going forward.  But this definitely feels like the rough draft of a college playwright's first attempt at a one-act play.  Or a Gene Roddenbury Trek episode, they both have the same approximate level of hackery and annoying violent sexual tropes that fill this episode.  I love ya, Chris...but you so obviously wrote this script to get Teal'c a hot sexy kiss with Jeri Ryan (or someone like her...LOL), not to make a larger point for your character or the show at large. All of the standard "warrior sex" cliches are applied.  Guy swaggers into girl's matriarchy thinking he's hot shit.  Girl demonstrates that she is a great fighter too.  Guy finds this hot.  Girl resists until guy bends girl over his knee (metaphorically) in combat.  Girl is then putty in guy's hands.  Oh...and some other plot involving combat is in there as an excuse.


It just feels so...juvenile.  Your character has more to offer than you gave him here, Chris!  You're hilarious in should have tried a comedy script for your first effort.  It would probably have been more natural.  And Teal'c makes a great straight man, as you know.  *sigh*  Oh well...they can't all be Peter Allan Fields or Renee Echevarria.  There's some great material in the rest of seventh season, especially toward the end of the year, so this one gets a mulligan.

Writing: 4.0

Sophomoric and cliched, Judge's first writing effort falls flat for me, despite the relatively competent mastery of language and dialogue he displays.

Acting: 5.0

I'm not so sure Jeri Ryan - as hot as she is on Voyager (yes...I'm one of THOSE guys...sorry ladies!) - was a great casting choice here.  They have no real chemistry (she and Judge) and Ryan appears to think the whole script is beneath her, because she looks awkward and uncomfortable the whole time.  This could be a direction problem...Woeste might have told her to play up her own superiority to even out the power balance between them.  But overall, it just doesn't feel like a typically well-executed Stargate episode.

Message: 4.5

Minor ding for the show glorifying lust and violence as a part of courtship and another minor ding for the faint whiff of Roddenbury style lipstick feminism (read all about that movement in "Female Chauvinist Pigs").

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