Well, Happy Valentines Day. And, coincidentally, Happy Ferris Wheel Day. While I won’t be riding any Ferris wheels today (or any other day for that matter), I will be celebrating Valentines with dinner at one of Vancouver’s finest French restaurants: Le Crocodile. Fondy loves their skate wing with beurre noisette but, since the special Valentines menu is in effect, I very much doubt they’ll be offering it tonight. Also, as much as we love skate – usually pan-fried then finished in the oven with caper butter – it isn’t exactly a popular fish. When I swung by the local fish market to pick some up last week, I was informed that they rarely carried it. According to the frowning woman behind the counter: “it’s one of those fish you end up accidentally catching when you’re out fishing for something else”. So, any skate wing enthusiasts out there?

Well, busy, busy, busy day today. My biggest accomplishment was, of course, finalizing the menu for the Atlantis season four cast dinner. I made a special request for the squash-stuffed agnolotti with black truffle butter. Antipasto, starters, four mains to choose from including a filet of beef cordon rouge, and two desserts: the pear beignet for the fruit-inclined, and the tiramisu. John N. Smith presided over the wine selection which is pretty much anyone else‘s area of expertise but mine. I‘m more of a grape soda guy.

Fondy picked up a steamer about a month ago and, last night, it went from expensive stove top decorative piece to actual kitchen implement. Fondy made a delicious steamed sea bass with soy, ginger, garlic, and green onions. We also made our own version of sunchoke (Jerusalem artichoke) soup which we finished with a little cream and some white truffle oil. I had three bowls. And, yes, felt sick afterwards.

Speaking of which…

Anonymous #1 writes: “How do you people not weight 500 pounds each with all the food you seem to eat?”

Answer: Modest portions, cardio, weights – and our script supervisor Alex’s home lipo kit.

Desiree writes: “If you were told you could change ANYTHING in the SG1 universe OR the Atlantis ‘verse what would it be? And if you could cross over SG1 and/or Atlantis with ANY SHOW, what would it be and why?”

Answer: Well, it’s no secret I’ve never been a fan of metaphysical “developments” (read: hoo ha) and omnipotent beings. In my best Homer Simpson: “Oma Dessala, you’re cut. Ancients, you’re cut. Everybody else made the team!” Beat. “Except you, you, and you. You’re cut.” As for a possible crossover – the Atlantis team joins forces with the Doctor to battle a wraith-cyber men alliance.

SGEureka: “In “Bounty”, was Mitchell’s falling off the chair an accident, or were Ben Browder and the others just that great actors?”

Answer: That was great acting. Ben did various versions on the day, literally falling all over himself.

SpArky writes: “Oh have you seen the Belgian dvd boxes of Stargate sg1/atlantis?”

Answer: They’re the nicest looking box sets I’ve seen.

Anonymous #2 writes: “Is there any chance of Amanda Tapping ending up on the new third Stargate series?”

Answer: Whoa, whoa, whoa. We’re getting way ahead of ourselves. That said, I’m sure it’s possible for any member of SG-1 or the Atlantis expedition to put in an appearance in the third series – whenever that happens.

Nyktelios writes: “Is there any chance for season 4 of Atlantis to be more character driven?”

Answer: Yes. We’ve made it a point to give each of our main players their own character-centered episode along with a number of team-centered stories in the first ten.

Mirjam writes: “Regarding season 4 of SGA, will we get more of Sheppard’s backstory?”

Answer: This is something we want to do and are trying to come up with a story that will focus on Sheppard’s life prior to his joining the Atlantis expedition. A number of ideas floating around but nothing has really gelled yet.

G writes: “I’ve also been wondering whether any of the hints you incorporated into that rhyme you posted in your blog last year relate to what happens to Weir during S4?”

Answer: The rhyme alludes to each of the episodes in the back half of season 3 and many of the episodes we have in store for season 4. Once new episodes finally begin airing on SciFi, I’ll reveal the meaning behind the various clues. By process of elimination, you should be able to figure out more of the hints as season 3 progresses.

Anonymous #3 writes: “So have we found any storylines for Ronan this season? Has he got one episode maybe so that Jason can show off them acting skills like he did in Sateda?”

Answer: Yup, just finished one.

Carolina writes: “Joe, I have to ask this… Are you always so well dressed?”

Answer: Since no one else dresses up around here, I make it a point to do so. Just in case company drops by. Suits, dress shoes, ties. I’m partial to French cuffs.

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Anonymous
Anonymous

Joe, having the inside scoop, which movie are you looking forward to more? Continuum or Ark of Truth?

Arctic Goddess
Arctic Goddess

Joe, I’ve tried many kinds of fish. I must admit to being partial to Pacific Salmon. I’ve never had skate, however. The Prairies are not the hotbed of fine Seafood you might expect. Prairie Oysters notwithstanding. We do, however do a good Buffalo Steak. Have you ever had Buffalo? What is your favourite exotic meat?

So, no to hiring me, huh? Okay, but wait until I’m rich and famous like you. Then, when I invite you to my house for a fancy dinner, I’ll do the old switcheroo and you’ll get Pizza Hut Pizza instead.

Lynne
Lynne

Hi Joe!
Yes, another Skate fan here. It’s my favourite fish. Here in the UK it’s not that easy to get either, but it’s certainly possible in the summer months. The saying goes, never buy it in any month which has an ‘R’ in it. I love it pan fried. Just really simply cooked. It’s always been available in fish and chip shops, deep fried in batter, but I think that’s a terrible way to cook such a delicate and subtly tasting fish.
I was pleased to see that you’re trying to give us some Sheppard backstory. It has been sorely missing from the series so far. As a massive, okay, obsessive, Sheppard fan, I’m desperate for Joe to get his acting teeth into something with a little more substance in season 4. I also want to learn something more about this intriguing character. Oh, while we’re at it, having met Joe last October in the UK, (what a lovely guy he is!), I mentioned about Sheppard’s lack of dog tags in the series to him, other than in 38 Minutes, of course. I know it’s REALLY trivial, but it really bugs me, (no Sheppard pun intended), that Sheppard doesn’t wear any. Joe was at a loss to explain as to why Shep doesn’t wear them. He said ‘Probably because the prop guy forgot!’, and then commented, ‘You’re right. What if he were to die?’ So, can Sheppard please wear dog tags in season 4? Oh, and don’t put him in them and then kill him off!!!That wouldn’t make me a happy Shep fan!! LOL!

Angela L.
Angela L.

Joe, why there aren’t Italian members in the Atlantis Expedition? Italy is a free country (I hope so!!!) with a lot of good scientists too.

FlatlandDan
FlatlandDan

We do skate wing at work sometimes as a weekend special. It always seems to fly out so I’ve only ever tried small pieces. I seem to recall doing it with a butternut puree and lemon sauce. Fish is not my thing (I have a shellfish allergy and the taste is often to close for comfort for me) but I try and taste a little bit every week if we have a new fish on. So far, monkfish is the clear winner of the fish I’d eat if stuck on an island with only one fish. Skate wing ranked quite high as well.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Sounds like you love french food. Have you ever been to France? And possibly in a very french restaurant?

Lolly
Lolly

hi Joe!
I see you like chocolate! hhm yes it is awsome.
So have you ever tried Belgian Chocolate?
If I remember correct, the most expensive and best belgium chocolate sweets are from Pierre Marcolini.
It’s just heaven!!!

Stillhere
Stillhere

Fondy’s steamed sea bass looks wonderful. Just take out the garlic and I’ll have some of it:)

It’s nice that you are having a dinner for the cast and producers of SGA. Is this a regular thing or just something you and Paul are doing to let everyone get to know the new show runners?

Will there be any introduction to more of the possible life forms living around the city of atlantis? Nem and his people seem like they might have come from somewhere like this so it seems possible to me that there might be some life forms living in a places under the sea there.

Marla

Sheppard's Delight
Sheppard's Delight

On the subject of Shep whump (OMG I hear you groan not that subject again!) we (the Shep whumpers from the Shep whump thread on Gateworld) are totally squeeing about the fact that there will be some good Shep whump in S4!!! Just hoping that there might also be a nice infirmary scene too we do crave some comfort as well as the hurt part – any chance of this happening??? Maybe ? Please?

Klenotka
Klenotka

Joe, many people think you can´t write female characters. Is there any chance that you will take some woman between you writers so there would be “more feeling” for female characters?

brenda
brenda

The GW forum seems to be a place where you and the other PTB go to gauge fan opinion. Yet it is amazing how widely different that opinion is. How much consideration do you give to the numbers of fans who belong to each fan group when deciding how events will play out on Atlantis? Or do you go with what you feel is right without considering what the fans want to see?

Anonymous
Anonymous

You just made my heart skip a beat with your Sheppard and Ronon comments. Also, I love the team eps. Season 3 SGA was the best becuse of the lovely team vibe. I also love the way Sheppard and Teyla’s relationship has developed over the last three seasons.

Onto the food…I love seafood. Salmon and flounder are probably my fave fish. I live on the Gulf Coast so there’s plenty of seafood here.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Hi Joe!
What do you think about the Stargate : Worlds game? Do writers speak with them about common storylines in Atlantis season 4, 5 and the third SG series?

Jennifer
Jennifer

Hey Joe! Sometime looker, and long-time fancier here! Desiree brought to my attention that you’re a Whovian! grin I think bringing the Doctor to the Pegasus galaxy would be fabulous! (Not to mention because I have this twisted theory that somehow the Alterans are a splinter race off the Gallifreyans. Not as out there as the Shep!Elf theory–speaking of which, what is with the weird correlation between the Tenth Doctor’s and Shep’s hair? My nutty friend likes making fun of it. ) One particularly interesting coicidence is how Hewlett and Tennant share a birthday, though Tennant is three years younger.

So who is your favorite Doctor and what is your favorite episode of the old and new series? grin

vaberella
vaberella

Hiya, first time here.

Your food pictures are mouth-watering. Have you tried ‘raw’ gourmet? It is fantastic cuisine.

Onto SGA topics: Is there any possiblity of the SATEDA fanatics getting a special release addition with commentary from the cast/director and writer during film and scenes that may have been cut out due to the time factor? I would pay extra for it. grin

Michelle
Michelle

I have to say I love the Ascended arc, especially in the earlier years when ascending meant a truly evolved state rather than getting there via technology. The Ascended Beings have added a wonderful mythic layer to the show, especially for Daniel Jackson’s “journey”, IMO.

Don’t you think the show would have stagnated after 10 years without touching on higher states of being in some way? What don’t you like about the all-knowing allies/villains? Is it the whole set of rules that had to be derived to enable some realistic conflict?

I’m off to Vegas for the weekend. What’s your fav restaurant there that won’t break the bank (say, $100 or less per person)?

Anonymous
Anonymous

Joe,

When do you think we might hear about Richard Dean Anderson being in the movies?

Anonymous
Anonymous

Ok, this is getting ridiculous. The last episode of Galactica got a 1.17 household rating as per Futon Critic. That’s an ungodly poor number for a show that gets so much advertising and network support. How can Scifi justify not renewing SG-1 while giving Galactica the go ahead for 13 episodes? Are they nuts?

Cameron Beckman

Anonymous
Anonymous

Just wanted to stop by and say how much I appreciated “Bad Guys”. It’s a really cool episode, a bit like that “Night at the museum” movie. I loved it !

Jason
Jason

Hey you’re an action figure fan.

I saw this and wondered why Sheppard was smirking?
http://74.52.193.82/events/main.php?g2_itemId=1474

And then I saw this:
http://74.52.193.82/events/main.php?g2_itemId=1488

*L*
Reminds me of the line from Gemini.
Replicarter: There are two of us
O’Neill: If only
*L*

Anonymous
Anonymous

Hi Joe
Now I don’t really mind if you post this comment or not but I need to get this off my chest. By now you know that the vast majority of fans seem to hate the cutting of the Beckett character. And the anger fans feel seems to be getting worse if the number of letters etc appearing are anything to go by (By the way Gateworld must be….interesting reading these days for the SGA creative team). You have said that you are not going to discuss why certain decisions are taken. Ha! That just sounds like a child saying it’s my ball and your not getting to play – it doesn’t reflect well on you. If you or one of the other producers were to actually explain to fans why you’ve made the changes the you never know, they may even understand.
I don’t want to start the whole ill-informed thing again but guess what, when something happens that people don’t like and they don’t have the facts, they speculate. It’s called human nature and it’s not going to stop. It is also the nature of the beast of entertainment, people feel they have ownership of the show, whether it’s true or not.
I don’t think that you are arrogant or uncaring of fan opinion but that is certainly the way you are starting to look. Even if the fans don’t like the answers you give them they will respect and trust you much more if you do the same for them, they are after all the ones in the end who keep you in gainful employment.
Anyway rant over, on a different note, what kind of a chef are you, I’m surprised that someone with as wide an appreciation of food as you doesn’t wish to spend more time creating masterpieces of his own!

Farscapefan
Farscapefan

Is there a chance for at least ONE season 10 episode commentary by Claudia Black and Ben Browder? TOGETHER!!! If you’re familiar with their Farscape commentaries, you know very well how great they are at commentaries and it will be a CRIME not to get them for SG-1 commentaries.

Jenny Robin
Jenny Robin

I’m posting a comment just to say that I have nothing even remotely creative or quirky for you today. Sorry, Joe…I’ll try harder next time.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Well, I just thought I’d stop by and say that I didn’t really appreciate Bad Guys. I just don’t get what’s up with the yo-yo quality of episodes anymore. Maybe you guys should rewatch some past “filler” episodes and see why those had such a broader appeal to fans. Stuff like Legacy or Fail Safe or Good TO Be King weren’t big arc stuff, but they all added something to the show. The past couple of episodes, Bounty and Bad Guys, just seem to be marking time with really, really cliched writing. Sorry to be so down, but I love SG-1. I hate seeing it so weakened.

Terisias

Klenotka
Klenotka

Hey, Joe, will we see any more team mixing in season 4? Little interaction between Teyla and Rodney or more Rodney and Ronon would be great. I think Ronon with Rodney had few great scenes together in S3. And, on contrary, will we see some good, friendship episode for Rodney and Sheppard?