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Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

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Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby Qray » Sat Dec 20, 2008 8:23 pm

Stargate Universe Revealed!

by Darren Sumner & David Read

After much waiting, fans finally have the first solid info on just what Stargate Universe is all about! The third live-action television series in the Stargate franchise has been in the concept stage for more than a year now, and is being conceived by Stargate Atlantis co-creators Brad Wright and Robert C. Cooper.

"The idea of Stargate Universe is that it is set on a ship that was part of an Ancient experiment that was set in motion probably millions of years ago -- one that they never saw to fruition, but that we can," Wright told GateWorld exclusively. "They got busy with the whole ascension thing."

The experiment is "to send a ship across the universe, and to send one ahead of it to seed the galaxies with Stargates, and that they would one day use the ninth chevron to get there [to the ship]. And that's what Stargate Universe is."

Millions of years ago (before their conflict with the Wraith and possibly even before they moved Atlantis to the Pegasus Galaxy), the show would reveal, the Ancients sent out two ships: an automated vessel to place Stargates throughout multiple galaxies in our universe, and a second ship to follow up and explore.

A standard, 7-symbol gate address allows for travel within the same galaxy. Use of the Stargate's eighth chevron allows for travel to a different galaxy. And the ninth chevron will allow the team to reach this second, still unmanned Ancient ship.

The series was pitched to SCI FI Channel last fall, just before the writer's strike -- which put a hold on the project. "The pitch was received very well," Wright said. "[But] we pitched an expensive series -- the idea we have is not cheap. I think we've proven ourselves, so ... 'Can we please have enough money to do it right this time?' And, if not, then honestly I don't want to do it. Why do it wrong?"

The third Stargate series won't be set on Earth, or on a remote base, but on a ship that travels from galaxy to galaxy.

The strike and the potential cost of Stargate Universe are not the only reasons the show is not yet moving forward.

"Part of the reason it's taking a while is that Atlantis is currently on-going, and because we didn't want to go into development with anything during the writer's strike -- because it seemed inappropriate. Even though we're Canadian, we recognized it is for the American marketplace."

"Internally, Robert and I are a little bit torn, because we had such a great time making The Ark of Truth and Stargate: Continuum. Making one or two of those a year would be a damn fine thing to do! Honestly, it takes up a big chunk of time writing it, a big chunk of time making it, and then the post on a movie is more than twice as complicated as post on the biggest episodes. So it's not like you can just knock one off while you're making a television show. It's just too much."

Wright said that he is not anxious to return to a schedule that requires the Vancouver team to produce 40 hours of television each year, indicating that Stargate Universe may wait until Atlantis has concluded its run.

When the show does begin, Wright believes that it has to both move the franchise forward to attract new viewers, and remain true to the established formula. "It has to feel like Stargate, and it has to feel new. That's the tight rope, that's the balance you have to maintain, and that's the challenge.

"To put it in its simplest terms, if we had ever just done SG-2as a series it would never have worked. It's not the C.S.I. model."
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby Qray » Mon Mar 23, 2009 2:20 pm

A 30 second spot for the new Stargate Universe aired during the last two hour series finale of BSG. It looked really good, but also very unSG-like. It looks to be a darker and grittier version of Stargate.

[BBvideo 425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xXM30U_UxKY[/BBvideo]
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby The Master » Mon Mar 23, 2009 8:31 pm

Anyone noticed that all the Stargate series have had similar general set ups to the sequence of Star Trek shows?

SG1 seeks out new civilizations. (TOS/TNG)

Atlantis features a distant station and a wormhole. (DS9)

Universe features a crew trying to find their way home from a distant, unexplored region. (Voyager)
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby Qray » Tue Mar 24, 2009 12:01 am

Following that formula, the next series will feature the Ancients before they ascended (Enterprise.)

It'll be interesting to see if they break from the previous SG mold of blindly stumbling upon a more advanced race that now aware of humanity, attempts to enslave/destroy it.
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby Talon Sinnah » Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:12 am

Yeah but I doubt that one.
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby The Master » Mon Oct 05, 2009 7:21 pm

So 10 months later and the show has premiered. Time for a review!

If you missed it, the premiere can be viewed on Hulu.

At the outset I have to say that I dislike reviewing premiere episodes of new series. Even with the background of this series there are situation set ups, character introductions, etc. to accomplish. Later episodes often have a different tone, and its clear from this premiere that, like SG1, SGU will focus a great deal on events that happen on "through the gate" worlds. Thus, I feel that a more fair review of this series can be made after a few regular episodes have aired. Its also noteworthy that this is really a three hour premiere, with the third hour coming next Friday.

Brief synopsis of the plot if you want to read it:
[spoil]While trying to activate a gate with a mysterious 9th chevron that they found on another planet, the SG station comes under attack. Naturally, this is the exact moment when they finally manage to open the gate to its unknown destination and, with no time to redial earth, a large number of SG crew run through to escape certain doom. They now find themselves on a ship made by The Ancients millions of lightyears away and must try to find their way back home. For some reason not very clearly explained the gate on the ship can dial other gates near them but not earth nor any other planet they already know. Thus, they must now use the gate to both find food and supplies for the falling apart ship, and to try and find another way home. Of course, it is the other side of the gate where we will spend most of our time, and the team going through their first gate is the sort-of cliffhanger set up for next week's installment.[/spoil]

Being the geek that I am I have to say that the basic premise of the show is indeed lifted from Star Trek: Voyager with a bit of a post-Lost attitude, but the tone and aspiration seems to be more Babylon 5 meets Battlestar Galactica. I think they accomplished the general introduction of the show in a way that will be accessible to non SG fans, but I'm not sure many were looking forward to this all that much. My own first impression is one of mild disappointment tempered by strong promise. Again, all the set up work has to be done and that often drags so I temper my opinion with that in mind. I personally disliked the alternating "flashback" back and forth of the story, but I rarely like that approach so that might now mean much.

Several characters strike me as cliche, or at least like recycles of past characters from the SG series. Dr. Nicholas Rush as a reckless scientist disregarding safety and keeping secrets (hello...can you say Baltar?). The geek genius civilian "outsider" that becomes part of the team (after figuring out how to activate the gate in an online video game no less...groan). The too-full-of-anger renegade soldier who's every reaction seems to end with some variation of "...or I'll kill you". You get the idea. Its all a little heavy handed, with a clear intent to make the viewers like and dislike certain characters immediately. I'm hopeful that we see some more subtle character development as the show progresses.

I felt that the plot unfolded in a fairly predictable manner. There were few surprises along the way, and I have to admit that a cameo by General Jack O'Neal was probably the biggest shock to me. The tone is definitely darker and more serious than the prior series, at least it seems to be lacking the playful barbs and snide asides that were common in both SG1 and SGA that added a levity to those shows. Of course, that can quickly change.

Despite its faults I really like that SGU has the opportunity to break us away from well established, singular enemies. I also like that they are very distant from the human populated part of the Universe so there is a good chance of truly alien species and societies (although I feel budget will probably mean lots of latex on humans substituting for aliens). I also like the idea of a general struggle to survive being mixed into the exploration. This crew doesn't have the luxury of going to their own home once the job is done, or the relative safely and luxury of Atlantis to cradle them. They have a rust bucket ship with holes in it, bad air scrubbers, no food, and no idea what might be on the other side of the gates they must now pass through.

Its the latter, that element of the unknown, that holds out the most promise. I plan on tuning in long enough to see if they exploit it well.

Rating: 3.25 stars
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby Golden Knight » Sun May 02, 2010 3:51 pm

It is coming to NZ, not sure if I will watch it, give up on SGA early on, how do you rate it now that it has been on a while in the US?
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby The Master » Sun May 02, 2010 6:11 pm

I have to say that its fairly uneven. Having talky "filler" episodes in your first season is a bad sign. The last few have seen a shift to more action, which rumor has it will be the direction of the show going forward in hopes of stopping the constant decline in ratings. I think that it has greatly suffered by being too different from the successful Stargate formula: What's the point of a Stargate show if they don't go through a Stargate every week? My suggestion is to try and ignore the SG tie in as much as possible and watch the show for what it is.

As a series I would downgrade my rating to 2.75 stars, with some episodes being very good but sadly out numbered by the so-so ones. Its already been renewed for a second season, so it will have a chance to refocus and rebuild on its own merits. For comparison, the last I heard Caprica, with similarly low but creeping higher instead of falling ratings, has not yet been green-lighted.
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby ScottSF » Fri May 21, 2010 6:16 pm

I am loving SGU. It's the sci-fi I have been waiting for probably since B5. I think most of the episodes are B+ to A+ with just 2 and a half out of 17 that didn't match the quality of the rest. IMO SG-1,SGA, SGU go from Good-Better-Best. Loving the realism, great acting, dialog, sense of wonder and suspense in the show. I've always appreciated stargate but this is the first one that I just can't wait to see. One for the Win column for Syfy :)
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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby Golden Knight » Sat May 22, 2010 4:41 pm

For me SG-1 was a lot better than SGA, so I don't know what that means for SGU, which you say is the best, have to wait and see.

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Re: Stargate Universe. The new SG series.

Postby Golden Knight » Thu Jul 08, 2010 8:15 pm

Well after watch a few eps I have give up on it, the characters are not interesting, the story lines are not interesting either, and the aliens where not much.
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