Way back on December 31, 2006, I put together a little spoiler poem that offered hints to upcoming episodes, covering the back half of Atlantis’s third season and into season four. Well, almost all of the hints finally revealed, I thought I would give you a breakdown of the clues in the poem and how they related to the various episodes…
Atlantis assailed by the stuff of nightmares,
(Doppelganger – Robert Cooper walked into the writers‘s room one morning and said “ I want to do the Atlantis version of Dreamscape.”. We stared back at him blankly. Huh? “The Atlantis version of Nightmare on Elm Street,”he tried again. Oooooh! We got it! And fans and Joe [who’d been petitioning] finally got a dark side Sheppard]).
While the team will explore that dark sunken lair.
(Submersion – Director of Photography Brenton Spencer does a very nice job on his first Atlantis directing assignment).
For one player worship, adoration and fame,
As he and his rival find it’s more than a game.
(The Game – This one came in short, so Carl ended up introducing a very entertaining B-story involving Zelenka and Lorne).
Receive a grand gift from an all-seeing shaman.
(The Seer – The Woolsey character’s involvement in the first draft of the script felt a little one note. Then, Robert Cooper suggested putting a little spin on his by-the-book attitude. Instead of weighing in with his opinion, he was going to try very hard to sit on the sidelines and allow us to do our job. Easier said than done of course.).
Find the wraith and our allies have something in common.
(Spoils of War – This one was the biggest stretch – the allies in question being the Asgard. The thing they have in common? Why, cloning technology of course).
A tech-savvy group who progress via pillage.
(Travelers – The Travelers were the first of the technologically advanced races we want to introduce to the Pegasus Galaxy. We’re working on another.)
A wild west High Noon in an inapt Dutch village.
(Irresponsible – We were all set to shoot this in a suitably Western-looking location – until we found out that the location we’d had our hearts set on was not going to work for us. So instead, we elected to shoot at this bizarre-looking location that worked out great for SG-1’s Revisions, but not so hot for this episode. Alas, when it rains it pours. The location snafu was just one of many, many things that went horribly awry).
Too late the value of that friendship he’ll learn.
(Sunday – You know the old saying “You never know what you’ve got until it’s gone”? Saddest SG-1 moment – Meridian: Daniel says goodbye to Jack and steps through the gate. Saddest Atlantis moment: Rodney says goodbye to Carson who quietly fades away.)
A strange disappearance feeds another’s dark turn.
(Missing – The Athosian’s disappearance was intended to kick off a dark turn for Teyla’s character, one that would have run through much of season four. But with Rachel’s pregnancy, that arc changed. Still, we do catch an unsettling glimpse of this potential darkness as Teyla shows the Bola Kai little mercy).
Find survivors concealed in an orbiting rock,
(The Ark – Did anyone notice an out-of-place Snickers bar sitting on a console in one particular scene? No? That’s because we eventually noticed and had visual effects paint it out.)
While the thinker receives an enlightening shock.
(Tao of Rodney – Lots of funny moments in this one but my favorite: Radek’s hard luck story in the opening walk and talk, punctuated by McKay’s cavalier dismissal of the tragedy. Oops.)
(Vengeance – McKay lay on his back, kicking wildly, as the creature scrabbled over him. “What’s it doing?”asked somebody in the room when we were watching the dailies. “I think he’s getting rolled for his wallet.” Sometimes, less is definitely more. The sequence was trimmed and ended up looking great.)
O’Neill is all wet.
(Rick does some underwater filming and shows he’s still got that MacGyver edge).
With a change of location all will forget.
(Tabula Rasa – This episode included guest stints by numerous big market DJ’s. Can you pick them out in the big cafeteria scene?)
Hyperion’s wrath threatens total destruction.
Our hand will be forced by ominous construction.
(Echoes – Hyperion, of course, being the sun god of Greek lore; the ominous construction a reference to the replicator fleet we take out. When we were spinning a solution for First Strike and first came up with the idea of abandoning the planet, Robert Cooper objected to the idea because we had saved the whales in Echoes, only to abandon them. After much consideration, I came up with a solution: As the city takes flight, we all glance back and watch, amazed, as the whales rise up out of the water, sprout wings, and fly away – leading Marty G. to coin the term: Whangels. Alas, the Whangels [and my idea] didn’t fly.)
Carter arrives; a reunion of sorts.
One of our own the enemy courts.
(Reunion – Ever notice how Ronon always gets the third or fourth episode the season? It’s not intentional. Honest.)
Isolation imposed and a grand battle looms,
(Lifelife – Cut off from the Milky Away, albeit temporarily, Atlantis launches a desperate bid to acquire a ZPM – and ends up kicking off the wraith-replicator war.]
While an alien contact this player dooms.
(Doppelganger – It’s hard to keep certain developments under wraps, but with the fans focused on other spoilers, Dr. Heighmeyer’s demise surprised a lot of people).
Self-doubt for one,
(The Seer – Carter is put in the hot seat. Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown].
parenthood for another
(Originally, we were toying with the idea of making Rodney and Katie parents. Of course, we couldn’t make two of our main characters parents. Is uncle-hood in the cards for McKay in season 5?)
And that brilliant young mom may be needing her brother.
(Millers Crossing – Sadly, the scene in which Sheppard comes upon Ronon sitting in the motel room, watching Battlestar Galactica was cut).
From innocents lost he’ll produce strict adherence
(Vengeance – Those unfortunate survivors of Inferno, ending up as test subjects for Michael’s mad experiments. To quote Teyla: “ It is amazing how quickly he has been able to incorporate our science into his”. Truly amazing.)
While the late fallen one makes a surprised reappearance
(The only clue that has yet to be revealed. Could Lucius Lavin be making his long-awaited reappearance? Stay tuned.)
And, oh yeah. To those of you comparing episodes to the hints I provided in my second annual spoiler poem (check out my December 31st, 2007 entry) – now that Harmony has aired, you can tick off the obvious: “Get talked into escorting a precocious young brat.”
Today’s movie – Check below or head on over to photo bucket –
Baal 527 writes: “Whose idea was it for the painting at the end of Harmony?”
Answer: One Martin Gero.
Squeakiep writes: “Harmony” was a blast! And the painting…who’s office is that hanging in???? “
Answer: That painting is HUGE. It’s now hanging in the main corridor, right beside Lawren’s office.
Jenny Robin writes: “I just wanted you to know that I don’t not like your blog.”
Answer: Well I don’t not enjoy hearing from you.
AMZ writes: “What became of the feature you two wrote?”
Answer: It’s an unproduced spec feature that served as a handy writing sample, allowing us to get our foot in the door on various productions (Stargate among them).
Majorsal writes: “in the latest amanda interview (on scifi.com), amanda mentions the cut line in ‘trio’ and makes it sound like it’s still there and not cut. is the not-so-subtle hint still in ‘trio’ or is it truly on the cutting room floor?”
Answer: It is truly on the cutting room floor. I’ll post the unedited exchange after Trio has aired.