Lawren walks into the writer’s room carrying an enormous book and sporting an equally enormous grin. Everyone’s eyes light up. They know it’s a package for me. And they know exactly what it contains. I dive into the sea of packing peanuts, tossing aside the ice packs, and fish out the prize – or prizes in this case: a truffle and toffee bonanza. Since Brad Wright and Will Warring, were unable to attend my chocolate party (and, really, more because the Bananas Foster truffles went so quickly I barely got the chance to enjoy them), I put in a special order from my buddy Chef Will Poole over at Wen Chocolates in Colorado. They arrived fast, fresh, and utterly delicious. Praise for the chocolates ranges from Alan’s enthusiastic “Chef Poole is a fucking genius!” to Carl’s somewhat less inspired “We’ll all remember Wen”. Martin, meanwhile, suggests adding Chef Poole to the main cast – maybe as the Atlantis CCO (Chief Culinary Officer) – and thereby score some behind-the-scenes treats. For my part, I think I may just adopt the guy. I can’t imagine his upkeep costing much more than a fourth pug. I bring the truffles in for the This Mortal Coil read-through and they are much-appreciated. Jewel ends up eating seven! Well, she actually eats two, then packs five away, claming they are for her brother Lamont. I later learn she doesn‘t have a brother named Lamont.

Two of the best books I’ve read as part of my scifi online book club were character-driven novels that featured strong female protagonists (Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower, and Karen Traviss’s City of Pearl), so I’ve decided to go with Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale (although I’ll have to read Nine Princes in Amber and Peter Watts’s Blindsight over the course of this month as they are book club selections). The Handmaid’s Tale has sat unread on my bookshelf for quite some time because, being Canadian, I had my share of Canadian lit shoved down my throat in school and, well, didn’t really develop a taste for it. In fact, I would argue that it actually went a long way toward developing my gag reflex. I find it kind of sad that Canadians are so insecure in their national identity that they feel the need to make this country’s cultural offerings a compulsory part of everything from the t.v. we watch to the literature we study.

On to a more palatable subject: food, what else? Bob Picardo is in town, reprising his role as Richard Woolsey in season four’s The Seer. And, as is customary when he comes to town, we head out for a meal. Last night, we hit C Restaurant and enjoyed an excellent dinner that included crispy rainbow trout, stellar foie gras, and a red currant gelee that was so tart I almost swallowed my cheeks (review to come).

The previous night, Paul and I hit Quattro’s on 4th for an equally memorable meal, this time with some old friends from our Student Bodies days. Jamie Elman was in from L.A. bearing gifts (the entire 65 episode run of the series). He just did an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm, is in Vancouver for some meetings, and will be heading off to France where the movie he filmed last year (California Dreaming) is in official competition at Cannes. Ross Hull is also in town, shifting his Weather Network anchor duties to the west coast for the year. And Vancouver native Sarah Edmonson (who eagle-eyed Stargate fans will recognize from season 6’s Prophecy) was also on hand to steal my leftovers and generally slap some sense into the boys (again, review to come).

Mailbag –

Alipeeps writes: “Have you had chance to see Spiderman 3 yet?”

Answer: Nope. Loved the first one (minus the mechanical Green Goblin), and didn’t love the second one. I’ve heard mixed reviews about the third one. Think I’ll wait until it comes out on the dish.

Bugguy writes: “Is there any release window for “The Ark of Truth”. I don’t mean a date, but is it this fall, winter, next spring?”

Answer: Sorry, Bugguy. No idea on this one.

Anonymous #1 writes: “When something is pretty much panned wouldn’t it be in the best interest of the show to try and temper the negativity and decline by trying to bring the show back to its equilibrium point?”

Answer: Sure. If there’s some consensus or clear majority, then we would take another look. But, as always, I have to point out that the prevailing opinion of a faction of fans does not a consensus or clear majority make.

Anonymous #1 also writes: “the command issue (newbie who never saw the Stargate versus 8 year veteran who spent 7 years as 2IC and 1 year as leader of SG-1); Vala’s childish, immature innuendo; the Landry/Lam soap-opera that begs the regs question; etc., were inappropriate and illogical within the Stargate history — the CANON of the show..”

Answer: The command issue obviously did not sit well with you, but it made sense within the narrative framework: Mitchell is charged with the task of putting together a new SG-1 team after the original members have gone their separate ways. Given my time online, I have to conclude that your dislike of the Vala character is an opinion not shared by the majority of fans. As for the “Landry/Lam soap opera” begging the regs – the situation was unique but not unprecedented. As for any of these creative decisions being inappropriate or illogical within the Stargate history and canon of the show – we establish show canon so, at the end of the day and despite your feelings otherwise, they are appropriate and perfectly logical.

Anonymous #1 also writes: “When you have a group of people […] start to criticize how the changes were handled while at the same exact time the ratings begin, and continue, to decline […] why would the people in charge not even consider that those things that the hard-core fans have pointed out and were wary of right from the get go be at least partially to blame for the problems and the decline of ratings??”

Answer: While you’re arguing that there’s a direct correlation between your opinion and the ratings, I would argue that there are many, many other variables that can be weighed. To offer an extreme example: I was writing on a tiny Sony Vaio in season 9 then, in season 10, switched to a larger Sony Vaio. Coincidentally or not, the ratings for season 10 were not as high as season 9.

Anonymous #1 writes: “…actually I have more respect for those who are able and willing to admit mistakes and at least try to rectify them as opposed to continuing down the same path that contributed to the decline while using everything else as an excuse but never even deigning to admit that the changes played some role.”

Answer: In other words, you have more respect for people who agree with everything you say. That‘s very big of you.

SMB Book writes: “Do you like Spawn figures?”

Answer: I never got into Spawn.

Allison writes: “I’m going to take on one of your recommendations after I finish up a book that was gifted to me yesterday, ‘A Cantice For Leibowitz’.”

Answer: Great book!

Dee writes: “Does this mean that you’ve slotted 16 episodes and are about to slot the 17th? In your rundown, you didn’t mention Carson’s 3rd episode (that you announced on the 12th).”

Answer: Alas, the Beckett episode count is presently at 2 because the planned third episode was temporarily shelved.

PanGater writes: “…as a kid, did you invision being a filmmaker?”

Answer: Nope. I wanted to be writer. Or a detective.

Anonymous #2 writes: “Please givesus a hint as to who is the daddy of Teyla’s baby’s and have you ever been to London?”

Answer: I’m going to have to go with “no on both counts”.

Lady Dulcinea writes: “Do you read Harry Potter?”

Answer: Yup. I am patiently awaiting the last installment.

Edward4th writes: “Ben might try holding the lid on the ketchup before he shakes it next time.”

Answer: You win the “Caption This” contest.

Tammy writes: “It seems like all of the spoilers and pictures show Sam on Atlantis, not in the big movies.”

Answer: That’s because I’ve been providing the lion’s share of spoilers/pics and I’m the Atlantis show runner.

58 thoughts on “May 10, 2007

  1. Anonymous said…

    I’m a little worried that Ark of Truth is going to turn into a Mitchell/Vala fest. I think that skewed focus is what got the show in trouble in the first place, so can you promise us fans that the movie won’t be another Fargate rehash (like most of season nine).

    Here we go again..

    Seems you were not watching… The first part of S9 was a Daniel/Vala fest.

    The M/V complaints started when Sam came back and reported to Mitchell. Then a select group of her fans started to “bad mouth the whole show (including M & V) because they felt “their” character had lost her “rightful” position.

    Speaking of “rightful” position:

    tammy said…
    I’m really worried we won’t get much Carter in the movies because of Atlantis. It seems like all of the spoilers and pictures show Sam on Atlantis, not in the big movies. Would you say Sam will have a bigger role in Continuum than she will in AoT? Or will it be small in both movies because of Atlantis?

    I just hope that “The Ark of Truth” and “Continuum” turn out to be great movies that everyone will enjoy (except perhaps those fans that sit through them with a stopwatch to make sure “their” character has been given their “rightful” share).

    If you want the Stargate episodes to be only about the original team, watch the DVD’s.

    For those who say “it just isn’t the same ” .. It isn’t.

    Live with it and quit complaining or you will ruin it for the rest of us.

  2. Joe-

    How do you feel about Warner Bros. declaring Canada a piracy haven and banning previews? I have to admit, Canada does not come to mind when speaking of China, Korea, Russia, etc. Personally, and this comes from the mouth of a former Copyright Specialist at the US Copyright Office, I prefer Canadian copyright laws. I think you have it figured out and balanced better than most countries.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/entertainmentNews/idUSN0842386220070508

  3. Wow–what a way to celebrate a read-through! Nice!

    So, if you did the read-through for This Mortal Coil today, when will start filming it? Also, how many season 4 episodes have you guys filmed so far? And… do you go in order??

  4. You never got into Spawn?! I’m surprised, Joe, given your passion for the world of comic superheroes and villains. Spawn is pretty high up on my list of favourite villains and kick-ass anti-heroes.

    1. Darth Vader
    2. Spawn
    3. Venom
    4. Blade

    I was thrilled when, years ago, I took on a new client who was the creator/showrunner of the Spawn animated series on HBO. I have the complete series on DVD. Great stuff!

  5. Quote:”Answer: In other words, you have more respect for people who agree with everything you say. That‘s very big of you.”

    Quite the contrary, Joe but nice try. I didn’t watch Alias or DH every season or every episode, it was in fact rather hit or miss when I would catch episodes. My knowledge of what Abrams and Cherry said and did came directly from their own admissions, admissions that actually surprised and intrigued me since I had little detailed knowledge of how the shows played out – based on those facts, as opposed to any feelings or opinions you inacurately assume I had with regard to either show, I respect them for their integrity and honesty especially when dealing with mainstream, top-rated network shows. I also have more respect
    for people who make the hard choices and admit when they don’t go the way they expect – whether I agree with them or not. It’s bad form to make assumptions as you do Joe – not everyone is like you.

    As to your other replies . . .

  6. A fair evening to you, sir.

    I have recently begun writing some Science Fiction of my own. One thing that I consistently have problems with is coming up with names for Characters, places, objects, ships, etc. Any tips on how to come up with good, effective names?

    Thanks for all the great work you do! Keep it up!

  7. concerning Spiderman 3, I saw it and I really thought it was great!!! I won’t spoil you about it but really… Go see it!!! I Don’t think you’ll regret it!

  8. I have a theory about Teyla’s baby. I thought I saw a glimpse of attraction on Rodney’s part for Teyla at the end of Irresistible. Anyhow, in Tao of Rodney, he thinks he’s going to shuffle off very soon and wants to leave part of himself behind, so (insert magic wiggling of fingers here) he made Teyla pregnant. Please! Think Immaculate Conception! Nothing lascivious involved! He just wanted his very superior DNA to live on.

    Well, because Rodney becomes a daddy while in his highly evolved state, the baby, being all innocent and pure and without baggage, will ascend at birth!

    Am I close?

  9. To the first anonymous:

    I’m sure that’s it. I’m sure all those mean nasty fans who stopped watching and got the show cancelled are out to “ruin it” for the likes of you. Your “not the same” is a swell euphemism for “not as good.” At the rate Stargate is losing fans, if you keep using it just a little longer, just a little bit, it’s bound to stick. Then you can all be shiny, happy people together in Stargate harmony.

  10. Dear Lord, the chocolates are hard core! You must be on practically every serious chocolatier’s mailing list.

    And I imagine, you must be a popular guys with all the choccies!

    I’m envious. I prefer dark chocolates and mostly Australian since I live here. Mind you I’m not against sampling chocs from anywhere else in the world…

  11. Ok, so I thought of a question. Since it looks like Atlantis might not go to a season five, and almost certainly won’t go to six, how do you think the show should end. Do you think that Earth should keep a presence in the Pegasus Galaxy into the future or do you think that the city should be shut down, destroyed, or abandoned? Which way do you think is most fitting to end the show? Thanks.

    Thomas Sharpe

  12. I just have read Cheeky Lil Devil’s poem, and had to comment.

    A work of genius, and I really hope her quest succeeds! I was laughing so much when I read it, I swear I pulled a muscle!

    Good luck, Cheeky. With your determination, sense of humor, and er, cheekiness, how can you fail? 😉

  13. This may seem like a mundane question, but: do you own any Stargate stuff?”

  14. I always hated “The Handmaid’s Tale”, finding it utterly unconvincing and exasperating. I’ll be interested to see what you think!

    One book I will recommend is Sheri Tepper’s “Raising the Stones” which is one of my favourite sci fi novels of all time.

    Of course you and I might have completely different tastes…

  15. Bob Picardo does wonderful song parodies. Since he’s a recurring character on SG1/SGA, maybe you can ask him to do one for Stargate. You can say it’s a fan request. If he does it in rap, then he and David Hewlett can have a rap-off!

    Looking forward to the review of your meal with Bob. Crispy rainbow trout, yum!

  16. Its great that you share these snippets with us but do you HAVE to torment us with CHOCOLATE? I’m going into hyperglycaemic meltdown just looking at the pictures never mind reading how wonderful they taste, sometimes a vivid imagination just puts pounds on!

  17. What makes anyone think that most of season nine was a Cam/Vala fest…I agree with the other who said is was Daniel/Vala fest.

    And I hope we see the coninuation of the Cam/Vala friendship that began to get deeper in the second half of this season. And yeah, farscape fans like me like to see little hints here and there, but I don’t see John and Aeryn when I am watching Cam and Vala. Though, I’m sure any huge farscape fan feels the same. The characters are completely different.

    And the reason I want to see more of the Cam/Vala friendship is because Ben and Claud have such fantastic chemistry on screen. Personally, I think they are the best duo on screen besides David Boreneaz and Emily Decheanel on Bones.

    I think the Cam/Vala haters need to calm down…They are equal in the spotlight just like everyone else.

    And I have to agree with the ketchup comment…a fantastic caption for those pics of Ben. The makeup department always makes everyone look so great.

    And I am assuming the epi ou believe is going to be the fan fav is the Carson epi…And I like the title.

  18. Joe, I appreciate that nothing is ever clear cut in terms of correlation between ratings decline versus creative decisions; that some fans will inevitably love the changes and for others it will mean switching off…it’s like one of those impenetrable history questsions; ‘Why did Stargate SG1’s ratings decline. Discuss.’

    On SG1, my own experience is this: I loved the show from the very first episode and have watched every year since. At the end of S8, I believed it was time for the show to end – 8 great years but time for Atlantis to carry the flag especially as it was well known that Rick was leaving. Suddenly, the show got picked up for S9 and I was sceptical.

    When Ben was announced as joining, I was very happy being a fan; I was a little worried at the news Claudia was covering Amanda’s maternity leave, not because I didn’t like Vala but because of the Farscape comparisons. Still, I tuned into Avalon and was impressed. Loved Mitchell; Vala was sparky and annoying enough to provide entertainment as a recurring character. I would have preferred Origin with Daniel/Mitchell but loved the fact that through the three episodes we got little cameos of Sam and Jack. I was enthused.

    Then, over the following couple of episodes I was disappointed. Vala was central not Mitchell which seemed a bit of an oddity as, as far as I knew as a fan, she was only there as a recurring. I waited for Beachhead hoping Sam’s rejoining would create a better balance. Only her return (which was temporary in the Beachhead story to help with the bomb) was mixed with Vala’s exit, and when EDM started she was suddenly back at the SGC and apparently happy to resume being 2IC to an inexperienced leader without any explanation, character reaction, nothing. That she wasn’t put back in charge of the team threw me. My reaction was huh? But at least as a Sam/Jack shipper, the ‘not exactly’ picked me up. Then the entire building got beamed off the planet and it was exactly at that point that I lost interest in S9.

    For the rest of the season, I didn’t watch the first runs. I caught bits of some episodes on repeat and found myself still unimpressed. I did tune in for Ripple Effect, only as a Sam/Jack shipper to be incredibly annoyed at the almost kiss between Martouf and Sam. If the intended inference from Threads/Moebius for the shippers was that Sam and Jack going fishing meant they were together, this was a kick in the teeth to that idea and the supposed ambiguity we’d been told the producers were going for.

    I was fairly happy with my decision not to watch S9 and when I discovered online fandom soon after wasn’t unsurprised to see that many of the fans online had similar experiences to my own (although I acknowledge that there are also fans who loved S9 completely – presumably the ones still watching). Then, the DVDs came out and as I have S1-S8, I didn’t want to mess up the completeness (yes, I am that control freak). So I bought them, was bored one day and started to rewatch. The beginning of S9, after Avalon/Origin, was as unbalanced as I remembered. But then surprisingly, as I began to watch the second half of the season, suddenly things perked up. Some of the episodes were very good. There was more of a character balance, better use of canon (and in this fan’s opinion no misuse of canon by tweaking it a little to suit the purposes of the new plot). I was actually impressed enough to tune in for S10 which has proven so far to be very solid (continued tweaking of canon notwithstanding), the toned down Vala has fitted in well (even though like McKay she’s stealing pretty much every storyline even when its not focused on her), and there’s more of a sense of them being a team – I’ve loved The Quest II in particular. I was extremely disapponted at the news of the cancellation.

    My own experience is that you would have lost me as a viewer from mid S9 because of character imbalance towards Vala at the beginning of S9 and what I saw, as a long term fan of the show, misuse of canon and a sudden shift into not keeping it real especially in beaming the building, the entire Earth plague plot, an inexperienced gate traveller being handed command. However, I came back because of my DVD control freakiness. While my experience is only my experience, I do wonder how many other fans had similar experiences and left because of these reasons either mid S9 or just didn’t bother with S10 after S9.

    And on the evidence of S10 where there has clearly been notes in the stories designed to address some of the issues created in S9 (the leadership one in particular)presumably you guys did notice what had gone wrong – unsurprisingly as creative people tend to be their own worst critics even if they are inclined to defend their work in public. However, as the British PM has realised, a little humility goes a long way in admitting that not every decision they made worked even if they felt they were doing the right thing at the time.

  19. Dear Joe,
    thanks for giving us a great show like Atlantis, but we would know what could we make to save Torri Higginson’S character??
    We needed doctor Weir in Atlantis as main character please tell us!!
    Nick a desperate fan

  20. Anonymous: “For those who say “it just isn’t the same ” .. It isn’t.

    Live with it and quit complaining or you will ruin it for the rest of us.”

    So now there’s a real ‘us and them’ mentality. I can’t believe the number of people who’ve accused those who aren’t happy with changes, be it Mitchell and Vala on SG1 or Weir and Beckett leaving SGA of ruining the show for them.

    If the show is so good, why are you worried? If you don’t believe that people are annoyed enough to stop watching, why do you care what they think?

    The “You’re ruining it for the rest of us” just screams insecurity. It’s like you can see the writing on the wall, but you just don’t want to read it!

  21. Hi Joe

    Was Richard Anderson fired from SG1 ? No of course not … then he left the show for his own reasons, correct? That being the case ,what do the writers and the producers do with the show? Cancel it ? No.. there are too many fans out there who want it to continue and the ratings are still strong. So the wise and brillant people at SG1 (I’m serious) bring in Ben Browder. It had to be a daunting task to take on this role knowing the history .. I personally think he did such an excellent job in helping keep the SG1 alive for two more seasons. With the really great Ori story line (I love the combination of mystical, medieval and sci-Fi) it should have continued for more seasons, but the great brains at the SCi-FI Channel know best(not true)..
    We should be showing our appreciation not constantly complaining about the characters.

    Question 1: Does Col. Mitchell survive the movies being filmed now? (He looked really banged up.. but still cool)
    Question 2: Did you read Lord of the Rings? Probably a silly question, who hasn’t.. but how does it rate with you?

    Have a great weekend. Take Care

    Dori

  22. Can you give us a hint about “Be All My Sins Remember’d”? Is it just about one member of the team or all of them? Thanks

  23. I love Fridays! There are all the usual reasons, and then there’s the TV for the evening. SG-1, Atlantis, and then Numb3rs. Can’t get into Painkiller Jane, and besides, GeekBoy likes shows where there are people like him (Larry, actually, more than Charlie). He’s looking forward to a video game themed episode of Atlantis tonight! Tonight’s Gates dinner is mahi mahi on the grill. I’m going to finish off that last bottle of wine, and then Saturday I get to dive into that 35-page job application. I’m going to be needing that wine, I think. Perhaps I’ll tape the Gates, too, as a reward for Saturday night.

  24. In a recent interview with Ron Moore of Battlestar Galactica, mentioned that Flash Gordon, which I believe he is working on as Executive Producer, is going to be a very fun show, much like Stargate. He mentioned Stargate in a very good way, as if he himself is a fan, are you guys friends or know each other in any way? And does anyone at the studio watch BSG?

  25. Sorry Joe but I guess I haven’t had enough coffee this morning to put up with the first anonymous post on your blog this morning. However in my response I will try to be as nice as possible.

    To anonymous #1 – Although I am not the same anonymous poster that you are responding to I would like to give my opinion on what you have said. To say that the reason that Sam fans didn’t like Mitchell was just because of the command issue is almost laughable. The biggest problem with Mitchell in season 9 was from “Babylon” on. Longtime fans had already lost Rick and now they are watching Sam,Daniel and Teal’c wallpapered.
    Mitchell not only took the leadership away from Sam but he took the fighting away from Teal’c. Teal’c turned into the damsel in distress so that he could be rescued by Mitchell. But lets not stop there because we wouldn’t want to leave out Daniel so now Mitchell can speak a foreign language in “The Scourge.”

    A Sam fan came up with the term The Big Three because of the wallpapering of the 3 original characters in season 9. You know the ones along with Rick that have been there since the pilot episode.
    Joe and the rest of tptb are aware of why fans were upset with Mithell in season 9. Obviously you didn’t pay close attention to the episode “200” and Daniel’s comment after the zombie bit.

    As a Sam fan I will have to say that I am very thankful that Daniel got a few episodes at the begining of season 9. It was hard enough not having Rick and Amanda but to have Mitchell shoved down my throat while Amanda was gone would have been too much. Michael did an excellent job and when Amanda returned he was able to take his rightful place as wallpaper so that Cambo could save the day.

  26. I find it kind of sad that Canadians are so insecure in their national identity that they feel the need to make this country’s cultural offerings a compulsory part of everything from the t.v. we watch to the literature we study.

    As a US citizen living in Detroit I’ve seen from an outsiders perspective how the Canadian Content Rules work. I’ve enjoyed over the years peering in on our neighbors to the South (Yep, Detroit is the Only US city in the contiguous 48 where you travel south to get to Canada)through the Windsor channel 9 CBC station, and back in the day when we used antennas and the conditions were right a station in Kitchner.

    While having regulations requiring a set percentage of airtime being given to “homegrown” product or artists is a little funny, how else would this American even have known who Bruno Gerussi was? lol

    Some of the highlights of Canadian television from my vantage point were:

    Hockey Night in Canada, especially Coaches Corner and Don Cherry.

    Watching Kids in the Hall in its heyday. One of the funniest shows ever. If you’ve only seen the edited versions on Comedy Central in the US you are missing out.

    SCTV Another sketch comedy gem. Candy,Flaherty,Moranis,Thomas,Levy,Martin,…. “Wayne’s World” and Wayne and Garth (SNL) have nothig on Doug and Bob and the Great White North.

    This Hour has 22 Minutes News satire at its best.

    Mr. Dressup and the Friendly Giant Both morning staples when I was a kid.

    The most memorable though was watching the 1980 US hockey team beat the Russians in the Olympics when it actually happened, not having to wait until prime time when ABC decided it was better to show the tape delayed version. Canadian Olympic coverage is second to none.

    People in most of the United States have no idea what I was just talking aboot, eh?

  27. Hi Joe!

    2 questions: Firstly, does each character have their own arc this year, and secondly, what are the overall themes for each character arc in s4?

    Thank you for your time 🙂

  28. So, Joe, after reading the comments I can see so far on your latest blog entry I find myself wondering…when are you planing to have another big dinner? I’m thinking a cook out since several people keep bringing you dead horses all the time. BBQ styled would be good I think – but you are far more the food expert than I am. Oh, and may I and a few other readers come and join in on the dinner?

    I understand all the concerns people have been having regarding how different characters and situations have been/are appearing to be going. I, myself, am not happy about some of the changes that have happened, and – in all honesty – would have prefered to see the season 3 cast of Atlantis remain intact and go into season 4 for a while before changes were made. I won’t deny any of that. However, as a ‘hard-core’ fan, I will not stop watching the show unless it becomes “Battlestar Galactica”. (Yes, I know many people love it, but I can’t stand the new show – although I enjoy several of the actors)

    I am not trying to downplay or minimize the concerns that some of the fans have, but I am asking that they not speak as if they are speaking for everyone. The ratings have dropped mostly (in my view) due to terrible decisions made by Sci-Fi. Th episodes form seasons 10 and 3 have been wonderful! Not all are ‘hits’ – show me any series that ever had every episode of a season be ‘hits’ with the audience – but ths has been one of the besrt season for SG-1 and the best (so far) for Atlantis.

  29. Anonymous said…

    My knowledge of what Abrams and Cherry said and did came directly from their own admissions, admissions that actually surprised and intrigued me since I had little detailed knowledge of how the shows played out

    Cherry and Abrams were showrunners responsable for making all those decisions while Joe was just a part of a team and not in charge. If you took over as boss would you go around criticizing all of the last boss’s decisions in public?

  30. Quote: Cherry and Abrams were showrunners responsable for making all those decisions while Joe was just a part of a team and not in charge. If you took over as boss would you go around criticizing all of the last boss’s decisions in public?

    If those decisions had effected the show (or the business) negatively and led to low ratings and cancellations you bet your bippy I would, and then I would change them (and have in my own career, which is moving along just fine in the uptick department) – criticism is an important fact of life, it needs to be used and used effectively – everything is not always honey and roses despite ones best efforts to make it so and despite a fear of “hurting” someone else’s feelings or reputation by criticising.

    A reputation is built on more than platitudes of “oh you are so wonderful and all-powerful and everythig you do is perfect and those who don’t like it or don’t agree are just wrong” — a reputation is also built based on integrity, honesty with self and others and the ability to admit mistakes and missteps.

  31. Hello! I really enjoy reading about what you are reading! “The Handmaid’s Tale” is also on my ‘to-read’ list, or rather, a re-read. It is very intense and I think you might enjoy it.

    And a question for the magic 8-ball! Do you think we will ever see Sheppard skateboarding through the halls of Atlantis?

  32. Joe,

    Just watched AOTS last night. You didn’t tell us YOU would be on with Zach. The SGA episode looks pretty interesting. Did you get the chance to see the Rap-off between Zach and David? nothing like seeing my 2 favorite shows interacting.

  33. lol another chocolate party!
    How do you do to remain so thin?
    Claudia Black is also known to be a veritable Chocoholic person!
    Any chocolate party with her?

  34. little raven-hawk said:

    What makes anyone think that most of season nine was a Cam/Vala fest…I agree with the other who said it was Daniel/Vala fest.

    You do realize that Vala wasn’t in MOST of season 9 so how can you have a ______/Vala fest when she wasn’t there? If you read alot of the posts on G.W. and other forums back during season 9 you will find that those that were upset with the show was mainly because of Mitchell being shoved down their throats and superhero Cambo to the rescue with his sidekick Teal’c (When Cambo wasn’t rescuing Teal’c all by himself while Sam and Daniel watched – “Stronghold” comes to mind).

    It’s obvious to me after reading your post that you are a Farscape fan and love Ben and Claudia. That’s fine except this is Stargate not Farscape. If as you say you would like to see Mitchell and Vala together more on Stargate because you loved John and Aeryn then may I remind you again that this is Stargate not Farscape. I think your post says it all.

    And as far as the Cam/Vala haters needing to calm down I really hope that you are kidding. I have seen Farscape fans bash Jack,Sam and Daniel like you wouldn’t believe. They have also bashed Rick,Amanda and Michael. I guess Teal’c/Chris is the lucky one because they don’t consider him a threat. How can you be a threat when you are a sidekick. They don’t want Jack back because he might overshadow Cam. They don’t like Sam because they want Mitchell to be the only one in charge. They don’t like Daniel because he is in the way of having John/Aeryn again. How about the comments that Stargate was an awful show until it was saved by Ben and Claudia or better yet some Farscape fans laughing because Ben and Claudia were nominated for saturn awards for season 9 and Michael and Amanda weren’t.

    Me bitter? Not at all!

  35. Anonmyous said…

    *If you took over as boss would you go around criticizing all of the last boss’s decisions in public?

    If those decisions had effected the show (or the business) negatively and led to low ratings and cancellations you bet your bippy I would, and then I would change them*

    Then you’d be disrespectful and opportunitistic and will do well in the backstabbing corporate world. And how is Joe supposed to change the decisions that were already made that you complained about? Those decisions have already been made.

  36. You read Octavia Butler and Margaret Atwood? I am late to Butler, but read The Handmaid’s Tale ages ago. As far as alternate universes go, Atwood and Butler’s are quite interesting. I am a big fan of AU but oddly picky about the way they are built and presented. Butler and Atwood have a gift for prose and the characters are compelling. My last Butler read was a few months ago: Adulthood Rites. Zelazny’s Amber is another old favorite. I’m trying to remember what hooked me in Amber and can’t. No fault of Zelazny’s. It’s been a bit. I recently picked up Chronicles of Amber, along with some old Walter Jon Williams’ sci-fi. Saving them for a rainy day. I hope you like the reads.

    The chocolate pics have driven me to shop. I fought it, but, well, life is short.

    To cheeky:
    But give up I won’t, I’ll try my very best,
    To one day get a peek, of John Sheppard’s chest :p

    Lol. (Sorry, Joe)

    To caveman:
    I have recently begun writing some Science Fiction of my own. One thing that I consistently have problems with is coming up with names for Characters, places, objects, ships, etc.

    I like to use this. It’s called the Character Naming Sourcebook. I love it.

    To whoever wrote: The “You’re ruining it for the rest of us” just screams insecurity. It’s like you can see the writing on the wall, but you just don’t want to read it!

    Here’s the thing. Some fans are just trying to find a sane place to discuss Stargate without having the air sucked out of the convo by a war drum. Please forgive the oversimplification. You may have noticed some of the big forums are divided pro-, anti- and discussion for just this reason. It’s useless for me to worry what another fan gets out of the show, but based on your comment, I feel comfortable in my belief that your walls and my walls aren’t printed with the same message. I haven’t a clue what’s up with fandom right now outside of two facts: (1) fandom is like this everywhere (anywhere), and (2) I wish it was not.

    EC

  37. Quote: Then you’d be disrespectful and opportunitistic and will do well in the backstabbing corporate world. And how is Joe supposed to change the decisions that were already made that you complained about? Those decisions have already been made.

    May 11, 2007 9:12:00 AM PDT

    Please grow up and enter the real world would you. Life is hard – it is full of hard choices and even harder decisions. People with self- respect and integrity do not need to be disrespectful, opportunistic or backstabbers. Sure there are people like that in the corpoarte world however those with self-respect and integrity are the ones who generally are willing to admit mistakes and rectify them regardless of whether they, or their predecessor, or someone else made them. People who can do it garner respect – people who can’t garner shallow accolades from the “yes” men they choose to surround themselves with. I’ve seen plenty of them in my career and there is marked difference and each is very easy to identify.

    BTW – no where in any post did I see myself asking Joe to “change” the decisions that were made – obviously the show is kaput, over, dead, cancelled from the small screen and your post begs the question as to whether you understand the conversation or not. A lesson to be learned if you ever do find yourself out in the real world – you don’t enter a room and plop yourself down in between people having a discussion to ingest your opinion into it if you don’t understand, or haven’t heard, the topic and the previous portions of the discussion because when you do that you tend to sound silly and ill-equipped.

  38. I have to agree with you about Spiderman 2. It rivals Napoleon Dynamite as the worst film I’ve ever seen in my entire life. I stopped it half way through to make a cup of tea and didn’t think the second half could live up to the excitement of watching my kettle boil. Some films I like, some I don’t, but this is the only film thats ever made me feel bored.

  39. *Please grow up and enter the real world would you.”

    Says the guy who is throwing a hissy fit over a show he seems to not even like anymore. What are you? 12? And I’ll say it again. Criticizing your past employer makes you an opportunistic jerk.

    * no where in any post did I see myself asking Joe to “change” the decisions that were made*

    Huh? But you did write *then I would change them (and have in my own career, which is moving along just fine in the uptick department)*

    Congratulations on your uptick. Need positive reinforcement much?

  40. 2 questions about food (kind of)

    1. Have you ever tried Duck? If so, what does it taste like, would you recommend it and what is the best meal you have had where it is the main ingredient?

    2. What is the average cost of a meal (2 course) in the restaurants you talk about in your blog?

    A – Less than $50
    B – Between $50-$100
    C – Over $100
    D – What the heck do I care I just
    like the food.

    NB You can think D but please choose an answer A – C.

  41. Hi Joe, since Kavan Smith has been in 5 out of the 8 eps of S4 so far, I was wondering if there’s any chance of a pic…? *looks hopeful* I’m willing to beg/bribe 😀

  42. Joe,

    The chocolates look heavenly! Enjoy the banana ones for me…banana is one of my sensitivities.

    Want to place a chocolate bet on the Spurs/Suns series?

    Gilder

  43. FWIW, I’m WELL over the obsession with the place of my birth that seems to inspire so many of my fellow native Texans, and am now crushing hard on Canada – just because for so long I barely realized it was there. Handmaid’s is not my favorite of Atwood’s books but oh how I’d love to see the women of Atlantis respond to a Pegasus version of Gilead! Considering the population issues… well. Cool. 🙂

    I’ve been sitting here feeling a bit sorry for myself because we don’t live in a universe in which chocolates magically appear in my desk drawer and omg, they DO just appear in your office! I’m deeply impressed. 🙂

  44. As long as Joe is obviously willing to make these comments public and for his obvious continued amusement:

    Quote: “Says the guy who is throwing a hissy fit over a show he seems to not even like anymore. What are you? 12? And I’ll say it again. Criticizing your past employer makes you an opportunistic jerk.”

    Who said anything about a past employer? Have you ever really been out in the real world because your comments seem to indicate you may in fact be 12 years old and still in grammar school, maybe high school, and haven’t yet experienced what it’s like to be an adult?

    Quote: Huh? But you did write *then I would change them (and have in my own career, which is moving along just fine in the uptick department)*

    What does one have to do with the other? I say again, don’t walk into the middle of a conversation if you don’t understand it.

    Quote: Congratulations on your uptick. Need positive reinforcement much?

    Nah – but thanks for the congratulations – its just an example of using life experience to reinforce a point. It may come in useful when you get some real-life experiences of your own.

  45. The guy in the picture from yesterdays post. Am i right in thinking he was in student bodies?? and also in the episode Tabula rasa, is Sheppard going to end up in the infirmary with this strange illness???????

  46. Since the team is looking for the Athosians in “The Seer,” do they disappear in “Missing?”

  47. Joe, I’m extremely jealous of those chocolates. Lucky you guys.

    Anyway, only one question for you today. Will the father of Teyla’s baby be revealed in Season Four or will we have to wait on that?

  48. Joe – I notice you have posted every one of the entires I have sent both before and after the one I sent this morning that replies directly to what you posted on yesterday’s blog in reply to my first post – what’s up with that?? My reply to you not quite as amusing as this silly back and forth with whosit, which based on the fact you keep posting them, seems to be as amusing to you as it is to me. I tell you I am really gettig a kick out of it myself.

  49. *What does one have to do with the other? I say again, don’t walk into the middle of a conversation if you don’t understand it.*

    Are you kidding? You’re the one who doesn’t understand the conversation even though you’re the one doing most of the blabbing. You compare yourself to Joe and claim you would make changes to fix the problem, then turn around and say you never said so. You say you would have no problem backstabbing and criticizing your former boss, showing yourself to be an opportunistic jerk, and then claim its perfectly normal behavior in your real world anyways.

    *It may come in useful when you get some real-life experiences of your own.*

    Like what? Spending hours in front at your computer writing up your super long and involved analysis of a t.v. show? Stargate is fantasty. Watching it doesn’t count for real-life experience.

  50. If the predicted writers strike hits later in the year, will it affect productions in Canada or just the US?

    BTW as a fan who wants good stories, while I will miss the character of Wier and miss Carson, just keep up the good stories and I’ll be happy.

  51. *waves*

    Nice to see everyone playing nicely again. Popcorn, Joe? 😀

    You might want to sit down while I ask this…are you sitting? I don’t want you to fall off your chair in shock, BUT I have a non Shep question. I know i’ve failed at the first hurdle of my quest…sort of ;)I must first therefore apologise to the majority of fans who had faith in me on this quest.

    Sorry.

    But just so you know, i’ve only deviated for a brief time to ask this, then I shll be on my merry way once more 😉

    So here’s my very long-winded question 😀 After watching the Atlantis Spacy clip with Rachel and David announcing the winners. Given how they play off each other so well, are we likely to see more of their characters interacting in S4?

    See not a shrtless shep question in sight. But instead I leave you this..

    *cough*

    A snippet I saw from Zak on G4,
    And I loved that we got to see McKay on the floor.
    I hear he’s hot and he’s sweaty, not feeling quite right,
    Was it the lemons that caused him to be whumped in the night?
    Or will the planet they go to,
    be a cause of their ill’s,
    And result in our team to suffer nausea and chills?

    So does this mean Mr M,
    that there might be a chance,
    Of seeing Sheppy all shirtless.. can I do my happy dance?
    Will he be fevered and sick,
    hot and sweaty you might say,
    Or will our wonderful Sheppy once more save the day?

    This would be a good time to see, Shep hot and sweaty once more,
    Or maybe him fainting on the infirmary floor?
    Patiently I wait with a smile on my face,
    As we know Sheppy falls with such dignity and grace.

    I know some people think,
    that we are a little strange,
    At seeing someone hurting,
    they think the whumpers are deranged.
    But it’s about character development, that’s what we love the most,
    And I hope that you see that,
    with each and every post.

    Tabula Rasa looks great,
    from the clips that we’ve seen,
    And we hope that we’ll learn more, before it appears on our screen.
    For it’s the spoilers that keep us, excited you know,
    While we wait without patience at seeing our favourite show.

    Too long we have wondered,
    about what you have in store,
    So please can you enlighten us,
    on the spoilers for season 4?
    We don’t mind if you tease us, we’ll take what we can get,
    And everything is crossed that this will be the best Atlantis year yet. 😀

    Thank you Mr M you’re a very wise man. 😀

  52. To offer an extreme example: I was writing on a tiny Sony Vaio in season 9 then, in season 10, switched to a larger Sony Vaio. Coincidentally or not, the ratings for season 10 were not as high as season 9.

    Joe, if you had written all your shows on a MacBook Pro (PowerBook’s during S8) then the ratings would have been 4+ or higher. Now that I know you use a Vaio it explains everything.
    Can we count on you to buy a MacBook Pro for the 2nd half of S4? Please?

  53. Since you’ve read the Harry Potter books, I’d like to ask what your opinion is on Snape. Interestingly enough, most young people I’ve posed the question to – 12 and under – reply that the believe Snape is evil and working for Voldemort. Most older folks seem to believe he’s loyal to Dumbledore. What’s your stance?

  54. Anonymous said…
    A lesson to be learned if you ever do find yourself out in the real world – you don’t enter a room and plop yourself down in between people having a discussion to ingest your opinion into it if you don’t understand, or haven’t heard, the topic and the previous portions of the discussion because when you do that you tend to sound silly and ill-equipped.

    Not half as silly and ill-equippd as you tend to sound when you completely incorrectly use the word ingest when you mean interject. 😀 😀

    Anonymous said…
    And I’ll say it again. Criticizing your past employer makes you an opportunistic jerk.

    Offering a “professional” opinion, as it were, as someone who works in recruitment, we advice cadidates *never* to bad-mouth their previous employers in an interview… it comes across as unprofessional and gives absolutely the wrong impression.

  55. “Seems you were not watching… The first part of S9 was a Daniel/Vala fest.

    The M/V complaints started when Sam came back and reported to Mitchell. Then a select group of her fans started to “bad mouth the whole show (including M & V) because they felt “their” character had lost her “rightful” position. “

    Yes, we know it was Daniel/Vala. The beginning of the (B)ORIng cycle. I was complaining about Vala ever since she walked thru the gate in the dominatrix get-up and spewing sexual harrassment. She *finally* got better in the later half of S10, afer a time of being dumbed down and made the go-to gal for “humor” and “fun”.

    And Mitchell, well, I thought working him into the backstory the way they did was lame. And not Medal of Honor worthy. At all. Yes, I did have a fit when the gal was essentially demoted because the Lead Male was there full-time. (Go back to the lab, hon. The man can take it from here.) His…inconsistent …characterization didn’t help.

    I miss Rick as part of Gekko more than as an actor. SG-1 went down the tubes in S9. Bummer.

    Suse

  56. “Answer: The command issue obviously did not sit well with you, but it made sense within the narrative framework: Mitchell is charged with the task of putting together a new SG-1 team after the original members have gone their separate ways. Given my time online, I have to conclude that your dislike of the Vala character is an opinion not shared by the majority of fans. … As for any of these creative decisions being inappropriate or illogical within the Stargate history and canon of the show – we establish show canon so, at the end of the day and despite your feelings otherwise, they are appropriate and perfectly logical.

    In other words everything the creative team does is appropriate because you (general) say so. Uh, no. Once canon is established even you can’t rewrite it. Not without braking your own universes riles. As in the writers broke the ‘contract’ that allowed the willing supsension of disbelief. And breaking up the team to shoe-horn the Male Lead into team lead role because he’s there full-time, not because time was taken to develop a realistic lead breaks *my* willing suspension of disbelief.

    You say the hardcore fans are the minority. I agree. Then why do you say downloading is a reason ratings have dropped? Only ardent fans care enough to download after all..

    I *do* understand that many reasons factor into both shows ratings nosedives. I even agree. However your refusal to even entertain the possibility that mistakes in set-up and characterization were made is…shortsighted. And does not bode well for Atlantis.

    suse

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