Remembering Stargate

Well, as many of you may know, the Stargate series has been given the proverbial axe as the speculation of a Stargate Atlantis movie has all but officially died due to the confirmed dismantling of the Stargate sets at the Burnaby Bridge Studios, which have stood for the last fourteen years. The certain demise, at least for the foreseeable future, of such a beloved franchise has brought a damper to the avid Stargate community.

That being said, I admittedly have not been such the avid Stargate fan over the years. Having only recently joined the fold of Stargate fanatics, I believe many others may have over-looked a great franchise. And while the choice to watch Stargate may have been an obvious choice for some, it certainly was not for me.

What Kept Me Away

I guess I can say that the greatest thing that kept me from adopting the franchise was Star Trek. For many years, this series tickled my science fiction itch on so many levels and I wasn’t ready or willing to let any other series into the fold of shows that garnered my constant attention. I really got into the Star Trek franchise during Star Trek: Voyager and it was my main science fiction show during my high school, as well as my college years. From Voyager, I went on to Star Trek: Enterprise.

I know what many people are saying, "Those weren’t even the best Star Trek series."

Be that as it may, I loved them and filled in the gaps with the Star Trek movies, as well as powering through the more beloved Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine series. So, as you can see, I had plenty to keep me busy.

Not long after the end of Enterprise and the Star Trek franchise seeing itself in the same situation as we currently see the Stargate franchise in, I was without any sci-fi to watch, then along came Battlestar Galactica. This series proved to be great in its own right, and garnered my attention until 2009 as my series of choice.

From there I wasn’t too sure were to go and was kind of down on the state of sci-fi on television, but was happy to pick on on Caprica, the Battlestar Galactica spin off, however strange it was.

Recommendations Are The Best

I have to honestly say, if not for my brother, I may have never watched a single Stargate episode. He talked on an episode of our podcast about the new series Stargate Universe and how great it was. Ultimately it was his recommendation, along with the notion of an actual spaceship being the main setting in Stargate Universe, that got me on board with the series. From the first episode I was hooked. So ironically, I’m working my way backwards, from Universe.

What Makes It Special

The thing that makes Stargate so great to me aren’t the stargates, although they are great in their own right, it’s the fact that Stargate takes place in our current time. This makes Stargate easier to connect to on a personal level. One of my favorite moments of Stargate Atlantis is when Lt. Colonel John Sheppard is in the infirmary after barely surviving a harsh battle with the wraith, and he’s playing a Nintendo DS. Brilliant. And the references to pop culture don’t stop there. They are vast and brilliantly placed throughout the series. Enough to be special, but not slapping you in the face.

Oh, and about the stargate’s. At first glance, you’d think they are limited as compared to a ship. Well, they are, but they also provide a lot of depth and scenarios that a ship does not provide. The notion of instant travel from one planet to another is not a thing that a science fiction buff can easily turn a blind eye to.

Other than that, like any great series, the real draw is to the strength of the characters. All the main characters are very real and easy to connect to. As you would expect, you have everything from the headstrong military guy to the super smart and witty engineers/scientists that know it all. It’s all there. Not only that, but cameos run all throughout the series. From the one off episodes where a member of another series comes on board, to the arcs that features prominent characters from other popular science fiction series, to characters from either of the aforementioned groups joining on for a permanent spot, it’s all there.

The Franchise As A Whole

I haven’t watched all of SG-1, but  the numerous cameos from various members of SG-1 in Atlantis and Universe are intriguing enough to get me to go back and watch it in its entirety. Not only that, but also to fill in the various gaps and references that are made throughout. Oh, and MacGyver –nuff said.

I have since also gone back and watched the original movie. Really not anything like I initially expected, but I really loved it. It’s a great introduction to the Stargate universe and the staple of the series.

The Rebirth

Obviously everyone in the Stargate community is down about the cancellation of the series, but one thing stands true, Stargate will rise from the ashes. Yep, not long ago, Star Trek was all but dead, and look at it now. Old ideas die, are revised, rebooted, and reborn. It’s only a matter of time before someone realizes what a great franchise it is and look to capitalize on its fan base. We will see Stargate again, mark my words!