So what scares you?

I asked this question about a year ago after reading two Dan Simmons books: The Song of Kali, and The Terror. One is grounded in the real world and deals with a menace firmly rooted in the every day. The other is more fantastical, focusing on a villain supernatural in nature. Although my wife is more apt to be creeped out by the latter, I’ve always found the former far more frightening. To me, the more outlandish or removed from this reality the threat, the easier it is to dismiss it as mere fanciful entertainment when you set that book aside or turn off that dvd player. But the more grounded in reality the threat, the harder it is to dismiss that nagging undercurrent of dread when you reach that last page or the credits start to roll. There’s something about the possible that adds to the sense of unease. Is your creepy neighbor an alien from another planet come to feast on human life forms? Of course not. Is your creepy neighbor a serial killer who picks up transients, slaughter them in his basement, and buries the bodies in his backyard? Probably not. But then again, you never know…

When it comes to the visuals of horror, I tend to think along the same lines. Even the best of monster movies with their big budget computer generated images and geysers of blood fall far shorter on the terror scale than the chilling subtlety of a victim’s horrified reaction. Yes, I’ve seen the Nightmare on Elm Street movies and, while one can argue their entertainment value, it’s tough to argue their shock value. These movies, with their over-unearthly antagonist exacting gruesome acts of terror feel closer to cartoons than entries in the horror genre. On the other hand, take a movie like Takashi Miike’s Audition. It tells a fairly simple tale, progressing at a leisurely pace until its third act when the audience is sucker-punched by one of the most horrifying sequences ever committed to film. What makes this shocking sequence so terrifying is the set-up, a narrative slow burn that lulls the audience into a false sense of comfort before springing it’s nasty turn. It’s like having someone sing you a lullaby and then, just as you’re about to doze off, step in an slap you awake. Repeatedly.

The “unseen” is far more frightening than the “revealed” because Hollywood’s best visceral creations have got nothing on what the imagination can conjure up. And, when it comes to the revealed (because, let’s face it, there’s nothing more dissatisfying than being teased and not rewarded by even the briefest of glimpses behind the dark curtain) the familiar is scarier than the unfamiliar. But I’d argue that what is far more horrifying than either is the…not-quite familiar…

Which brings us to Whispers…

Today’s blog entry is dedicated to birthday girl Erika.

Mailbag:

IamJohn writes: “Was economics part of the decision not to have Sam on for the next season, or was it purely because of her new show?”

 

Answer: We had every intention of bringing Amanda back for the show’s fifth season but, with Sanctuary going, she couldn’t commit to both and ultimately decided to work on the latter. So, no, economics were not part of the decision.

Cat4444 writes: “Which resurrects my question to you of March 12, 2008, regarding the paradox that was created when Sheppard returned to Atlantis 12 days after he disappeared, despite having been sent 48,000 years into the future.

Did he return to the Atlantis he left?”

Answer: I (and I’m sure I speak for the rest of the writers) would like to think of it as a closed loop in which past and future are part of the same continuum. However, given the theories we discussed and the undeniable presence of paradoxes in each circumstance, it would seem that Stargate’s treatment of time travel would fall within the multiverse school of thought.

Kdvb1 writes: “Why is it more expensive the longer a show runs? I thought the initial set up of a show would be the most expensive. And, then once you had your main sets built, actors hired, etc(I know there’s a lot in that etc)and got the show running smoothly, the costs would start to go down.”

Answer: Except salaries. And then there’s the drastic fall of the American dollar.

C. writes: “Regarding the time travel theories, Theory 1 reminds me a lot of The Time Traveler’s Wife.”

Answer: Yes, one could make that assumption based on the fact that there really is no grounding point in time for the time-hopping. Events seem to play out as they would have because we are viewing them as a large tableau comprised of past, present, and future, rather than setting off from a point in the present to glimpse an unknown future or shape an established past. One could also argue that The Time Traveler’s Wife adheres to Theory #2, the Inifinite Loop theory, in that there is no impetus for the time-jumping (which always creates a paradox – ie. If we travel to the past to change a problem and succeed in changing the problem then there would be no problem in the present and we would have no need to travel back to the past).

C. also writes: “Oh, and as a Jayhawk (well, technically former as of May 2007) can I just say ROCK CHALK JAYHAWKS!”

Answer: In my multiverse reality, Memphis won.

Tiger’s Eye writes: “The impression I got from the book and the afterword (IIRC re. the afterword) was that altering the past didn’t create a separate and distinct timeline, but created a blank slate in place of everything that happened after JFK died.”

Answer: Possibly, but the fact that the timeline is clearly changed and yet we are offered a glimpse at how the grim future plays out suggests two different timelines.

Chevron7 writes: “I’ve just finished Cormac McCarthy’s The Road. Have you read that?”

Answer: I have and, while I did like it, I found it far too reminiscent of Octavia E. Butler’s Parable of the Talents and Parable of the Sower which are two of my favorite works of dystopian fiction.

Chev writes: “Suggestion – add the titles for the current BOTM to the sidebar.”

Answer: I tried but, for some reason, my neat, single line entries become a jumbled paragraph when published.

Blin writes: “Will there be a Woolsey-centric episode?”

Answer: Possibly.

Ytimyona writes: “In fact, any time you are moving, (like in a car, bus, train, walking, airplane, etc…) you are technically traveling through time (albeit in infinitesimally small, unnoticeable amounts) because time passes more slowly for you when you are in motion. This becomes much more noticeable when you get closer to the speed of light…”

Answer: Which is what happened to the crew of the Aurora! Joe Haldeman offers up a wonderful treatment of this idea in The Forever War.

RisenValkyrie writes: “If Marty does succeed in putting an Irish person put on the Atlantis team, can you promise me you will do everything in your power to not let him make it as painful to watch as ‘Heroes’ was when they had so-called “Irish” characters in it?”

Answer: Fear not. Martin has already created the character – a frolicsome leprechaun named Paddy O’Shamrock.

Jon K. writes: “ Additionally, in creating an alternate universe Benford took away the need to send the smaller less informative messages.”

Answer: True. Although, at the time they were sending the messages back, they had no way of knowing they would be creating a separate timeline.

Teknikal writes: “at the end on the Continum screening did you get to nab some of the fans that were lucky enough to see it?? what did they think??”

Answer: I don’t know. Any thoughts from the lucky fans?

Shirt ‘n Tie writes: “Off to Don Francesco’s tonight, my last night here.”

Answer: Did you try the lamb popsicles at Vij’s? By the way, it was a pleasure meeting you. Safe journey back and hopefully our paths will cross again in the not too distant future.

McWraith writes: “Are you a fan of the Shaun and Hot Fuzz movies?”

Answer: I enjoyed Shaun of the Dead up until its sudden serious turn late in the movie.

Thornyrose writes: “Still trying to work out the f/x for Whispers?”

Answer: Yep. We’re looking at creative alternatives to smoking up an entire stage.

Shawna writes: “Just because God (someone who can see the whole of time) knows what choices we’re going to make, that doesn’t mean we don’t have the free will to make them.”

Answer: Yes, there is the notion that if you can see “out of time”, the two can co-exist. But what happens if you use your knowledge of the future to change it? Or are we saying that being “out of time” puts you in the position of observer which necessarily precludes your ability to change events?

Anna writes: “How many dogs do you have and what are their names? And are they siblings? Did you adopt them from a shelter?”

Answer: Jelly, fawn pug, is the 9 year old bossy one. Maximus, black pug, is the 8 year old easy-going one. Bubba, fawn pug, is the 6 year old attention-seeker. Lulu, black French bulldog, is the 9 month old troublemaker. None are related. And they weren’t adopted.

Jean writes: “Just wondering what prompted you taking C restaurant off your recommended list?”

Answer: Two of my last three visits proved unremarkable. The third was downright disappointing.

Kieran writes: “Is there I can sent you a private comment?”

Answer: moorsyum@yahoo.com

Watcher652 writes: “Do you eat the type of food found in such restaurants like seitan?

Answer: Never tried it.

Dreams-of-Skies writes: “I know I have been absent from bugging you for a while now – “

Answer: Yeah. What gives?!

Dreams-of-Skies also writes: “What would YOU have recommended?”

Answer: The deep-fried crispy duck. I’m going to put it on the menu for the chocolate party.

Chev writes: “How did Teal’c know which direction/path to travel to Celestus? Did he know beforehand or was “you know who” guiding him?”

Answer: That’s a great question for writer/director/producer Robert Cooper when he does his Ark of Truth guest blog here.

Babancat writes: “So, mention of pink pages made me wonder, do you have an all time favourite episode that you have written of SG1 and/or SGA or is your most recent creative masterpiece always your favourite?”

Answer: Speaking of multiverses – I love Ripple Effect

Teyla Roxs writes: “Is there any titbits you can divulge about Teyla?”

Answer: That would be highly inappropriate.

Narelle from Aus writes: “It may have been answered before, but what was involved in getting Dan Castellaneta on the show?”

Answer: Besides providing the voice of Homer, Dan Castellaneta is a pretty accomplished actor. When we were casting Citizen Joe, we watched his reel and thought he’d be perfect. We made the offer, he accepted, came over and did the show, and struck up a friendship with Richard Dean Anderson. Some time later, Dan co-wrote an episode of The Simpsons with plenty of shout-outs to Stargate – and a special guest star appearance for Rick.

Keller’s Patient writes: “What’s Jason on about a Ronon/Keller/Mckay scramble? Is this just an episode or a season long plotline, Joe??”

Answer: Tracker.

167 thoughts on “April 9, 2008: What Scares You?

  1. I’m more of the same opinion you are, as to what scares me. It’s the stuff you can’t just shake off and be all like “Yeah, whatever, that can’t happen” that really gets to me. Because it’s always there, able to happen. That’s why stuff like Disturbia is much scarier than like, Invasion (of the Body Snatchers). Cause when you turn the lights out, there’s none of the “that couldn’t possibly happen to me” stuff that comforts you in the dark. Cause it’s real- really scary!
    And just wondering: how long do people have to read the books of the month? I’ve never done it before, but I’ve gone back and read a couple of the past ones (Like Smoke & Mirrors and some other stuff by Neil Gaiman), and it they’re pretty good, so it’d be cool to get into it also.

  2. Joe:

    I was one of the very fortunate 20 people who had the great honour to watch the pre-screening of Continuum. I must say that I throughly enjoyed it. I have a soft spot in my heart for the acting talents of Cliff Simon who plays Ba’al, and I would have to say that Cliff outdid himself in his portrayal of the last system lord. It was also quite surreal to be able to sit three seats down from Michael Shanks and watch him react to his own performance in the movie that he also was watching for the first time. I can’t give details about the plot, since I signed a waver, but, fans of Stargate, and even people who have never watched the show will very much enjoy Continuum. I believe that it will do even better in sales than The Ark of Truth.

    Just a minor suggestion for an Irish character on Atlantis, Joe. I think Shirt & Tie would be wonderful as an Irish character. Because he really is, well, a character! And he is one of the most charming and funny men I have ever met.

    Patricia (AG)

  3. “The “unseen” is far more frightening than the “revealed”…”

    The same can be said about sex.

    Oh wait. Did I leave in “frightening” instead of “arousing”?

  4. Quote: “If we travel to the past to change a problem and succeed in changing the problem then there would be no problem in the present and we would have no need to travel back to the past”

    ———-

    You’re still thinking three-dimensional Joe, I don’t understand why nobody has thought of this yet:

    Let’s say we travel back in time and for instance kill off Hitler, By doing so we will create an alternate timeline. We go forward in time to the date we came from only to find out everything has changed, But… What you fail to see is the truth… Nothing has changed except for us (the people who went back in time and changed stuff) for we are the anomaly in the newly created alternate timeline and not our surroundings… Capiche?

  5. Are you guys planning on having Vala make a guest appearance on Atlantis? It would be quite funny to see what kind of trouble she could cause!

  6. What is the most awesome-tastic part of your job?

    Care to share any favorite memorable moments from your years with Stargate?

    Is it odd to run a show you didn’t create? Do you ever feel the need to do as the creaters would have done if they were the show runners instead of what you would like to do?

  7. Boy, a loaded question – what scares you? Then seeing the pix of I don’t know what that was creepy so was the doll yesterday; the discussion of fantasy vs unseen unknown but grounded in the real world thus a higher potential to happen. So the answer is: all of the above. And, then the tease – “…which brings us to Whispers.”

    Sounds like Whispers will be a 3 dog night for protection.

    From yesterday, had to add a comment to the free will and choice discussion. With knowlede/information choices can be made. But without knowledge, then one may be destined to stay the course placed before one. Which made me think about the Polygamy Sect and the abuses being discovered. The majority of the women and children knew no other life or that there were options, choices, other paths, etc. So as it unfolds through the interviews and debriefings – it is likely that individuals may take years to adjust to the what might seem like an alternate reality or alternate universe. They who knew nothing other the simple domestic life discover big surprise. You know it is almost like the movie you described where you are lulled into almost a slumber then are jolted awake repeatedly. Probably thinking this is a nightmare. That is so bizzare to be happening in this century; it boggles the mind.

    ok…nuff soap box
    Need chocolate

  8. **YES** finally I hear an “industry” person agree with us that using the suggestion of horror/terror is far scarier than just showing it!! most of our fave horror movies are from the 70’s backwards, notably ones like Burnt Offerings etc (also Dan Curtis and the Hammer studio films) So thanks for the tip, we will look for Takashi Miike’s Audition. Hollywood can keep the slash and gore crap.

    Now why does that tree-thing suddenly remind me of the Wizard of Oz…? does that count as not-quite familiar? its weird but not scary. Maybe if it talked… the physical that scares me is something like HAL the computer, a real life usually safe kind of thing that can suddenly go very wrong. Like collapsing bridges. Twilight Zone & Outer Limits did a pretty good job of scaring me as a kid.
    DD

  9. Oh man! THANK YOU!!!

    I have ALWAYS argued that the unseen is far more terrifying than the revealed!

    There was one prank show that got the victims in a house that turned out to be the home of a serial killer, and he came home!! The friend of the victim was taken from the room and you could hear the methods of torture and likely death, but the poor victim is stuck in the room only hearing. Although NOTHING was happening to their friends really – these victims were TERRIFIED! I didn’t see much humour in the prank, I found it sickening as I believe as you do, the unseen is far scarier.

    Our imagination is the most powerful tool in fear. Would people have fears if it wasn’t for their imaginations? Think about it! Heck I don’t have a specific fear but I tell you my imagination can run wild! I know this is an debateable example for some but ‘The Blair Witch’ project scared the hell outta me because I imagined what this witch was like in MY head. I imagined how the kids were killed in MY head. The film fueled my fears and allowed me to fill in the blanks, and that made it scarier than any Hollywood effects could have conjured up.

    The unseen is another reason I often enjoy books over films. With a book, the author lays out the scene and yes, a lot of elements are described, but you make it how you make it. Was anyone elses view of Hogwarts EXACTLY like what we saw in the Harry Potter movie? (Trying to use a generic example)

    People always laugh when I say I’m not going to show the monster/bad guy/serial killer or whatever in my movies, thinking it’s for budgetary reasons. I laugh back because when I was merely 12 years old I wrote and directed a short that scared one of the audience into a asthma attack based on the unseen ;-). Nothing like being scary enough to cause medical harm, hehe – yup, I’m sick aren’t I?..sorry *embarrassed*.

    I’m so glad there is someone out there who agrees with me!!! So happy!! I am SO acrediting your blog to everyone who doubts me. Email forwarding here I come :-P.

  10. So what scares you?

    IRS audit! 😉 The best horror flicks don’t show the monster/villain till the end. PSYCHO, the original TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE, both used camerawork and the viewer’s imagination to freak out the audience. JAWS did that too, but then subsquent JAWS flicks you saw the shark right off the bat so you sat there and went ‘ooh, he’ll die, oh, and him, and of course that couple.’

    Meanwhile, any opinion on the Stargate slot machines??

    http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/atronic-to-create-and-distribute,346302.shtml

  11. Hi Joe!

    What scares me? Well, I have to shut my eyes when characters are put in the dark and the menacing music starts. I HATE it when creatures/baddies jump out of the dark! Even when I know it’s coming, it still scares the liver out of me 🙂

    I saw in an earlier blog that you read “The Sparrow”. What did you think of it? Did you read the sequel “Children of God”?

  12. The most terrifying thing I have ever seen would have to be the taunts of psycho bushman Mick from Wolf Creek.

    The thing that makes it so utterly disturbing for me is that I was used to seeing the actor John Jarratt in nice roles and as a family man while hosting “Better Homes and Gardens”.

    So I suppose it’s the combo of a nice person turning out to be complete sick nutter and the fact that some of the story was based on real backpacker murders.

    I’ll admit I didn’t get too far through the movie and that night I lay in bed clutching a maglite with half the contents of the cutlery drawer under my pillow as backup.

  13. Hi again Mr M.,

    Greetings once more from YVR, awaiting the flight.

    With regard to Teknikal’s question on Continuum and your search for a response from the lucky fans…. One word OUTSTANDING… Great action, great story, wonderful cinematography with true genius score…”An SG1 Two parter on steroids”…… is how I would describe it…As we all signed NDAs I can’t say anymore, but I shall be purchasing the DVD as soon as it becomes available.

    S’n’T”

  14. Hey there Joe.

    How you doing tonight? I hope you and your family (including the wonderful children/dogs) are amazing.

    Let’s see, although I’m not sure you actually asked for answers, the two movies that have scared me the most would have to be M. Night Shyamalan’s “Signs” and “The 6th Sense.” I know they are not always highly thought of, but I have never been one for just plain evil stuff for the heck of it. I guess I like more intellectual stories and I think the best way to scare an audience is to get in their head. And the best way to do that and exactly what you were saying… make them imagine, as it is worse that what the tv can project and so on. Basically, both of those movies scared me, but also did what few other ‘scary’ movies are able to do, and that’s give me some sense of closure and hope. I guess not everyone wants that, but I really do.

    As far as Stargate goes… I’ve had some pretty horrible last few weeks. Definitely not as bad as a bunch of other people, but if you can manage anything Shep-related, particularly whumpy, that would be amazing. If not, it’s all good. Instead, you should randomly put the word “MAGIC” in your next post. Like, be talkikg like this MAGIC and then do that 🙂

    I’m just joking, of course. You do what you wish, as I’m sure you would do without my permission even though I’m the dictator of the world, and go on with your bad self.

    (Yes, I am sleep-deprived. And yes, I’m still typing the comment when I could be sleeping.)

    Please excuse my numerous typos and you have an amazing rest of the week!
    -Loren

  15. I don’t know if you’ve answered this before, but why were the names Teyla and Ronan chosen? I’ve never heard them before and wondered what drew you to the names (if they’re actual names) or why drew you to deciding to create them (if you/the writing team created them)

  16. Are there any other works of dystopian fiction you would recommend? I’m just getting into the genre and would love some direction!

  17. What scares me? That…thing in the pictures. It looks like it’s going to jump out of the computer screen and harass my face, scarily.

    Honestly, I fear a lot of things. I fear the dark, sudden movements/appearences/sounds, like someone shouting BOO at me. I get startled really easily, and due to my poor eyesight and my fear of the dark, any movements in a dark room can basically send my heartbeat up a few orders of magnitude. This is why I can’t watch any horror movies, especially those with soooo many of those “Shock!” moments. Heck, I had to mute that part of Vengeance when I KNEW something was going to jump out at any moment…and it did.

    And then there’s the normal stuff: change, disease, family member dying, an intruder in the house, Stargate getting cancelled, etc. etc. The funny thing is, I’d actually welcome a natural disaster, just because I think it’ll be exciting and I like geology.

    Yes, I’m weird that way.

    I think Whispers is going to make me wet my pants. Seriously. But, it’s good to know that you are going the route of “fear by imagination” rather than “fear by gruesomeness” (that’s what I assume, anyway). As I said many moons ago, I really really don’t like gore, and for all intents and purposes, I don’t think Whispers will have that much of it.

    Though I would welcome a correction if I’m wrong and there IS a lot of gore…

    Oh, and the time dilation thing happened to the Tria (where is it, by the way? Hehe…), not the Aurora.

  18. We’re looking at creative alternatives to smoking up an entire stage.

    Just do what they did in the 30ies, put a fishtank in front of the lens with smoke in it 😉

  19. I read your post for yesturday, and have been wondering….. How does one “run out of time?” Is there a actual way of doing that? As in, going fully out of time itself? (Time travel thinking here, maybe not.) So my question is, Is there another Teyla centreic eppy to look forwards to? Like say…. Missing?

    Second question is, Have YOU yourself been given a scene in which to be in? If you do get those, why turn them down?

    Third and last question: how expesnive is a single Atlantis episode when fully done?

  20. What scares me? I’d go with the supernatural. As unsettling as the idea of having a sado-sexual killer with his own sound proofed dungeon living next door is, I can at least cope with such a person. I can (almost) understand such a person. Predict his/her reactions, find a way of dealing with such a situation. But with a supernatural threat, one is on unknown ground. The mass murderer will go down with enough .45 rounds in their torso. That person is subject to the physical laws of moving about, of gathering information. Not so the supernatural threat.Even if the supernatural is bounded by rules, they are not rules we’re used to using every day. We may not even know of them. All making the supernatural menace more imposing, seemingly unbeatable. I do agree wholeheartedly with the understated is better approach. Anticipation and dread building up over time provides a much higher “payback” when the threat if finally seen. Which brings me to your picture for the day. That’s the second unsettling/creepy pic you’ve given us. How many more will there be? You are doing a fine job of building up suspence for an episode that’s not even started filming yet…I do look forward to seeing the final product. (and here’s hoping the f/x folks find something that wows even you with how it looks). Thanks for the nice heavy mailbag too. Finally, any word on Anne Teldy, both the character and the person? Anyone?

  21. So what scares you?

    For me, it’s all in the expression, both figurative and literal. As a big sci-fi fan, I get to see a lot of different types. It’s not so much how fantastical or how realistic the monster is, but how they come across. For example, I don’t find every serial killer scary. And I certainly don’t go around suspecting all my neighbors. If I did, I’d be paranoid beyond belief and probably have to be put in an institution–I think anyone would. That being said, it is the more realistic threats that scare me. I think communication is key for me. I get more creeped out at the thought of the aliens in War of the Worlds than the Wraith. Not because the idea of the Wraith isn’t frightening, but on some level, the very fact that they can talk gives them some humanity. Todd is a perfect example. Compare that to machines who don’t care and you can’t reason with? No fun.

    Take a list of TV shows and books (I haven’t watched any movies with this theme) that focus on cannibalism or at least the idea of it. Lord of the Flies: not only written well, but because it’s so simple, just a return to our basic instincts, it’s creepy and though-provoking. Not really scary, though. Hungry, a X-Files episode: while the episode was more gross those anything, the script tried to base it in too realistic of a setting where the only thing that satisfied the person’s hunger was human flesh, it became almost absurd. Countrycide, a Torchwood episode: interestingly, it was scary until it revealed it was only people. The actors and their reasonings weren’t convincingly done to make it believable. Not scary. The Benders, a Supernatural episode: This episode was terrifying. A family who kidnapped and hunted people, just how twisted it was, how the characters felt it was their *right*, how they treated these other humans as nothing more than game was downright wrong. To know they dehumanized others so easily and that nothing would stop them was very effective. And perhaps the best work, The Most Dangerous Game where the man simply gets bored with hunting tigers and lions and so moves onto the more “challenging” prey: humans. His calm disassociation is more frightening than any backwater hick or genetically-altered humanoid.

    One of my favorite “scary” monsters of all times is a liver-eating mutant. Which, not all that realistic (though maybe more so than aliens invading). And it’s not the fact that he kills people for their liver. Instead, it’s the actor’s brilliant portrayal. Everything about the character was eerily calm, deceitful, and malicious. His expression was vacant, creating an aura of unreasonableness. If there’s no chance of reasoning with the “monster”, thats what makes it truly scary.

    Loving the tree-man doll thing.

  22. Hey Joe, so ‘Whispers’ will deal with realistic horror? Will this reality be influenced by manifestations from the characters minds?

  23. Probably ‘Teyla Roxs’ should reread her post. I got a chuckle from her question and your response.

  24. …the familiar is scarier than the unfamiliar…

    Ever since a particularly bad Stephen King experience in college, I refuse to walk over sewer grates or subway grates. Or any grate for that matter. It’s not that I’m REALLY expecting anything horriffic to come flying out and slaughter everyone, but well… the whole thought that er… maybe, just maybe… something creepy really DOES live down there, and maybe that comething creepy really IS looking to attack, well it’s just stuck in the back of my mind and I can’t shake it. So I take the long way around.

    Which of course leads to the question – do you or any of the writers have any bizarre quirks or monsters under the bed which may have appeared or will be appearing?

    Nika

  25. Thanks for answering my question. Your dogs are very cute. And they have awesome names! Not a weird as my late Labrador Retriever though – she was named Frisbee.

  26. It’s been a while…Well a week or something, but it feels like a while. Sounds like all is going relatively well for you Joe, so I’ll jump right in with some thoughts on “Timescape”.

    I’ll confess at first I didn’t notice that the future of the book was 1998. It could easily have been an alternate reality of where we are in terms of the environmental issues raised. The diatom bloom was particularly interesting to me because in our reality we risk destroying all the diatoms if the temperature increases, and most of the earth’s oxygen comes from their photosynthesis (yep, no planting trees for me, I just encourage diatoms).

    Benford gave a lot of science, but like you said, I wouldn’t call it a hard scifi. There was a very nice balance between the science and the characters, less so in the back half of the book, but still there. And as I said last time, one of the things I really like about science fiction is what it can tell us about human nature.

    In particular I found the parallels between the different characters interesting. Gordon and Renfrew, for example, are both good at what they do to the point of almost intuitive science (particularly in Gordon’s case). But they both seem a little less adept when it comes to socialising and their home lives. And Lakin and Peterson have similarities in how they socialise and, to an extent, what they represent in the narrative/s.

    As Fsmn36 said, Peterson’s not so much a villain as a roadblock, particularly as he learns more about the science behind Renfrew’s experiment. Lakin, on the other hand, doesn’t want to learn more about Gordon’s experiment because if they leave it as is he’s likely to get something out of it. They’re both roadblocks, but the difference is that Peterson has a greater reason to support Renfrew than Lakin does Gordon – the world is at stake for Peterson.

    Overall I found “Timescape” really enjoyable and food for thought. Particularly considering when it was written and published, and what was going on in science at the time. There’s a bit of foresight in this, even now.

    Moving on (for the moment at least, because I no doubt could say more)…

    Have you had a chance to watch The Mist? I’d like to know what you think of it.

    And on the topic of Stephen King, have you read or seen (or both) 1408?

    Amz/Amy

  27. Concerning the Rodney/Keller/Ronon scramble, please tell me this is a joke. And if I can politely ask, why the sudden desperate need to pair up our characters in romantic situations?

  28. A Ronon-Keller-McKay triangle episode? This is a joke, yes? I’d rather see Ronon/McKay “ship”. Keller isn’t worth wasting the time with. Just my opinion.

  29. Paddy O’Shamrock. you kill me. XD
    Gah, Whispers sounds so frickin’ fantastic!!! It’s so sad that we all have to wait so long to see it *weeps*.
    Quick q, have you ever thought about doing a physical walk-on instead of just references from zelenka or the odd latin language book? *ha ha*

  30. Hi Joe!

    Eeep! You’re still scaring me – and creeping me out to no end! What scares me? Besides the usual – war, work, traffic accidents – I’d have to say any living thing with more than four legs, Bad!Bigfoot, Kaltiki the Immortal Monster, the Blair Witch, serial killers, megalomaniacs, Carrot Top, Dick Cheney, the end of Stargate…and John Tesh.

    The picture of the Evil Wood Beastie at the top of this blog entry is pretty darn scary too!

    Chev writes: “Suggestion – add the titles for the current BOTM to the sidebar.”

    Answer: I tried but, for some reason, my neat, single line entries become a jumbled paragraph when published.

    Did you try adding some line breaks? That has helped me in the past.

    Wishing you happy dreams and creepy SGA eps!

    eddy

  31. Eeek! Creepy ‘doll’ in the pic….
    Speaking of which is that Shep ?! The top of the head looks like his self-described ‘womb hair’…..

  32. Of being scared – I thought Doppelganger was very scary. Maybe it’s the pointed ears, but Joe pulls off scary very well.

  33. Hi Joe;
    Would you throw me a bone and tell me what you have in mind for Sheppard in season 5, meaning have any outlines or plots for stories that you might share? You mentioned there might be some scenes with the ex-wife, do you have a Sheppard centric episode planned to give us more of his back story? Also is there anything you would suggest for fans to do to help ensure a season 6? I loved SG-1 but I’m really excited about Atlantis and am scared that another spin off show will kill my favorite show. It would be very upsetting if it was canceled, there are so few good non-reality shows left on TV and I look forward to every new episode not to mention re-watching the old ones. Is there an address or email or something for fans to let MGM and SciFi know how much we love the show, to show our support? Also since I’m rambling, I always thought that by turning the show on while it airs live ratings were acquired, but now I’m wondering if that is true. How do you get your rating numbers? Is it through Nielsen scores, from signals, or??? Thanks bunches, the never ending question asker, Nicole.

  34. The “I thought it was familiar” is certainly the most terrifying. Underestimating your fears – quite possibly one of the biggest mistakes you can ever make.

  35. Wow. Funny you should ask about what scares me AND answer a question about Shaun of the Dead/Hot Fuzz (two of my favorite movies, btw) in the same entry. I’m currently watching Dawn of the Dead for the first time right now. Fast zombies = scary as shit.

    28 days and 28 weeks later were pretty awesome as well.

  36. “So what scares you? … One is grounded in the real world and deals with a menace firmly rooted in the every day. The other is more fantastical, focusing on a villain supernatural in nature. Although my wife is more apt to be creeped out by the latter, I’ve always found the former far more frightening.

    While I agree that the real can be scarier than the unreal, I can’t agree that it is always scarier. Reason: We know how to deal with the real. But the unreal/supernatural/alien is a threat we don’t know how to deal with.
    For example; the Flood in Halo is much scarier than your average run-of-the-mill psychopath. They may not be real … but then again. You never know… There might be something out there similar or worse, and then what do you do?

    Of all your ‘research materials’ the only one I’ve seen is I Am Legend. I liked it, but the jump moments were predictable.
    If you’re looking for more, I’d recommend the Doctor Who episode ‘Blink’. I didn’t sleep after watching it. Even my mom was a bit jumpy that night.

    Anyway, can’t wait for season 5…I’m in withdrawal already. The set tour just had me even more exited.

  37. Possibly, but the fact that the timeline is clearly changed and yet we are offered a glimpse at how the grim future plays out suggests two different timelines.

    Yes – and, in fact, I later posted a tearful, abject retraction of my first comment about the timeline. 😉 Although if you’ve been following the presidential campaign quite a bit, I’m sure my own retraction would have been easy to forget, given all the sound bites and images we’ve had recently of candidates, their spokespeople, and their third cousins once removed saying, “I misspoke,” “I was in error,” “I regret my statement,” “I humbly offer to kiss Joe Malozzi’s big toenail” – you know, all the standard sentiments expressed when people are overwrought and are intent on never, ever making a mistake of the same sort again.

    (BTW, before I book my flight to Vancouver, please let me know if your feet have scales, or feathers, or anything that makes them not-quite-familiar – as you’ve said, possibly the most terrifying of all horrific scenarios. And your accumulated teasers with pics are not only intriguing, but are starting to disturb my imagination as well. – Geez, you’re good.)

    Off-topic – or not: I’m awaiting delivery of a Dolfin Szechuan-Pepper chocolate bar and, actually, am looking forward to the eating experience. I’m just hoping that “spontaneous human combustion” is another modern myth. . .

  38. so i might be able to answer my first question… was you around during the 4th season of SG-1? secondly, If you was would you be able to tell me what happened to the original SG-6 in the Ep. Foothold? thanks for listening!!!

  39. Joe said: Answer: In my multiverse reality, Memphis won.

    God Bless you my child.

  40. When you ask “what scares you,” you do mean a “being” right, and not like “I’m afraid of flunking out of University” type thing right? I gotta say, out of all the Hollywood monsters, the Asian ghosts from movies like Ringu and that new one, Shutter or something, scare the crap out of me. There’s just something creepy about the way they look, move, and sound.

    Answer: I tried but, for some reason, my neat, single line entries become a jumbled paragraph when published.

    You’ll probably get a bunch of msgs like these, but try adding html to it. Like…

    title
    title

    but without the stars.

  41. Hm. Just randomly wondering, how do you come up with all the names? Is it like hurricanes where you have a list, etc.?

  42. Damnit, they didn’t show. Um… let me try again:

    title (br)
    title (br)

    but with these brackets > and <

  43. You are a tease. I am intrigued by “Whispers.”

    You ask what scares? The more grounded in reality, the more scary. This sense of the familiar is as important in the build-up as it can be in the reveal. I love when a slow reveal is done well.

    I grew up watching “Creature Features” with my mom. One of my favorites was “Them.” It exemplifies what does and does not work in horror for me. The build-up scared me. I loved it and still do. When all you see is the result of the attacks (nothing gory) and you hear the sound in the desert of something unknown, the movie is at its best. The familiar mingled with the unseen but lurking and heard unfamiliar still gives me chills.

    Once the source of the attacks is revealed, the tension in the movie completely drains away and it shifts from horror classic to cheesy 50s SF. The “villain” was a huge disappointment. If I watch it now, I watch up to the moment when the bugs appear on stage.

    Sometimes never seeing the horror works, or at least never seeing clearly, offers better payoff. “Alien” comes to mind

    I prefer the subtle. In something like “The Keep,” which you’ll be discussing later this month, I found the description of gore distracting and I almost stopped reading. I kept reading, though, and started to enjoy the mystery of what was afoot. Then the villain was revealed and, just as happened with “Them,” I was disappointed.

    Don’t you find that not many movies or books can pull off the tight build up and the big payoff that you seem to enjoy?

  44. What scares me? Producers. 😀

    The “unseen” is far more frightening than the “revealed” because Hollywood’s best visceral creations have got nothing on what the imagination can conjure up. And, when it comes to the revealed (because, let’s face it, there’s nothing more dissatisfying than being teased and not rewarded by even the briefest of glimpses behind the dark curtain) the familiar is scarier than the unfamiliar. But I’d argue that what is far more horrifying than either is the…not-quite familiar…

    Which brings us to Whispers

    You’ve got me totally excited about Whispers now! Does it have a Hitchcockian feel to it?? It’s the thing I loved about Hitch, he left much of the ‘horror’ up to our own imaginations, and nothing scares us more than the things we ourselves can think up. I mean, just look how one vague Wraith ‘teaser’ from you makes me freak out… 😛

    I’d also like to express my concerns about SGA’s fate. Since I am just getting into the show, it is all rather new to me and I would hate to see it end anytime soon. I understand the money issues and the fact that nothing lasts forever, but doesn’t Sci-Fi bear some responsibility as well? Over on Jinxworld (writer Brian Michael Bendis’ forum), several people voiced their unhappiness with the Sci Fi Channel, especially when it comes to churning out bad movies in favor of promoting their first-run sci fi shows.

    http://www.606studios.com/bendisboard/showthread.php?t=146508

    Just wondering if you have any opinions on this, and does the focus on the other programming on Sci-Fi truly affect shows like SGA, or is it more about ratings and advertising dollars?

    das

  45. Teyla Roxs writes: “Is there any titbits you can divulge about Teyla?”

    Answer: That would be highly inappropriate.

    Seriously though, Joe. Is there anything you can tell us about Teyla in S5 beside her one character-centric episode? You seem to have been rather silent about her lately. I’d like to know what I can expect from my favorite character in S5 please! 😀

  46. “Ytimyona writes: ‘In fact, any time you are moving, (like in a car, bus, train, walking, airplane, etc…) you are technically traveling through time (albeit in infinitesimally small, unnoticeable amounts) because time passes more slowly for you when you are in motion. This becomes much more noticeable when you get closer to the speed of light…’

    Answer: Which is what happened to the crew of the Aurora! Joe Haldeman offers up a wonderful treatment of this idea in The Forever War.”

    I believe this happened to the crew of the Tria, not the Aurora. Weren’t they the ones frozen with the hot Wraith of a first officer?

  47. Okay, Joe…I have to say, I’m genuinely getting creeped out by Whispers. Between that doll yesterday and this thing today…. *shivers*

  48. To begin to understand fear, we take a look back in time. Fear is considered to be an evolutionary leftover, stemming from the early days when our ancestors needed a speedy alert system to help escape threatening situations.

    If a predator comes after you, you need to be fearful in order to mobilize your resources to get you out of there. Instead of simply learning how to escape attacks, humans developed more sophisticated ways to avoid threatening situations.

    Over time, our nervous system learned to anticipate danger based upon previous experiences. While our daily activities no longer typically include fleeing from predators, fear continues to help us keep our distance from things that might hurt us.

    Writers and film makers have learned how to tap into these primal fears and in doing so have desensitised us to some extent to things that should scare us in order to keep us safe.

    So what scares me?

    That dark cupboard under the stairs, the weird cat woman across the street and the serial killer who lives at number 22!

    Pauline

  49. I whole heartedly agree with you that what’s scariest in horror isn’t necesarily what’s the grossest or most visually shocking.

    Once I got over the blood and guts of the Nightmare films, they were funny. I like the more visceral what-you-can’t-see-is-worse-than-what-you-can films. Of course, I have to watch them 1)at home, 2) alone and 3) in the daytime. 1) Because my noises, groans and outbursts will get me tossed from the theater. 2) Because reason #1 is far too entertaining for other folks to watch– unless the cheese from the nachos I tossed winds up in someone else’s hair. 3) I have the heebee jeebee’s so bad, I can’t handle windows with open curtains, and Lord help anyone in trouble outside ’cause you’re on your own! I’ll call 911 and pray you’re still alive when the ambulance arrives.

    For me, all the shocking special effects take away from the story. As an avid reader since very early in years, my mind fills in the details much more satifactorily to me than do most books-to-movies. The movies aren’t as visually creative as what’s inside my head, but then I don’t have a budget to deal with in there!

    My Mother once told me the most horrifying movie she ever saw as in black and white with only a moment of color. The murder took place off-screen, and all the audience got was a splash of red blood on the wall and the sound of the killing as the screen then went black.

    In the end, though, what scares me worse than any horror or suspense film is the reality of just what kind of real horrors my neighbors may be. There are almost 100 sexual offenders, most of them child molesters, in my zip code. Of course, I do have a jail, a prison and a work release camp just down the road from me. Bleh! I can’t afford a higher rent.

    All I can say is, if they try me, the recidivism rate will go down by one.

  50. I grew up before cable, although I was lucky enough to live close enough to NYC that we had *three* whole non-major-network TV stations to watch old/bad/filler movies on on boring rainy Sundays. My mom, who instilled upon me my love of bad, bad SF and/or Horror movies, would rage against any movie that “showed the monster too soon.” “They ruined the suspense!” she’d yell at the TV (another bad habit I got from her). “Not knowing is so much better than knowing!”

    Some people hate Stephen King for one reason or another. With the exception of one or two things he’s written, I find his stuff awesome, because a) he’s great with characterizations and b) he’s great at telling you just enough … for your imagination to hang itself. Classic (to me) example: The novella, “The Mist” All those little hints dropped about the nearby base? The soldier that kills himself? *shudder* It’s not the monsters in the mist that are the scary part, it’s the whole “something got out of hand” that still gives me the chills. Another: “The Boogeyman”, a short story. I first read it in my early teens, I think. A tale of a man who loses three toddlers in a row, and the stress of it drives him to a psychiatrist. It was at least a year before I could sleep with a door partly open — they all had to be completely open or shut. And, hell, I still can’t walk past a sewer opening in a sidewalk edge without thinking, “We all float down here.”

    For me, at least, it’s a lot harder to be scared by something visual, such as film or tv. I think that in part comes from all the old movies, good and bad. It’s a lot easier to read and let your imagination do all the dirty work. Then again, I can think of a few visual things that have scared me, to some degree. “Alien”, the original movie, scared me. There’s a lot of “just what is really going on here?” that’s a good key to my being scared. (It certainly didn’t hurt that the spfx are so awesome, and much holds up even today. The “alien pilot”, the eggs, even Ash. Sheesh. Another example, for me, is the Torchwood first episode, “Countrycide.” Again, it’s not about the violence or even the suspense, it’s all the “Just what is really going *on*?” Despite the almost deus-ex-machina end, the whole thing creeped me out.

    Sorry this has turned out long. I can get to babbling. In conclusion I will just state: “The Forever War” is one of the most depressing books I love.

  51. So what scares you?

    I also find the not-quite-familiar scarier than anything else. There are so many real-life monsters in the world, the fake ones don’t make much of an impression any more. Which is why I find replicators scarier than wraith, and the Genii scarier than replicators.

  52. What scares me?

    Usually dolls with faces that look sweet and innocent, yet.. when you look a little harder, the face just turns darn evil.

    Did you see the first Poltergeist movie Joe? Remember the clown doll? Now that’s darn scary!! Did it scare you?

  53. couldn’t all this time travel stuff be thought of as erasing/going over one outcome with another? are we thinking this through too much?

    joe, are you going to guest star on amanda’s show ‘sanctuary’ as a mutant wanna-be super hero that we find out actually does have super hero powers? if so, what powers and what would your name be?

    sally =)

  54. hey Joe,

    I was just thinking about Whispers LOL. it’s definitely in my top 3 eps of season five right now (the other being S&R and The Daedalus Variations), and of course the ep(s?) with Sam in the second half 😀

    there’s a Continuum trailer on youtube. you were so right. I mean I pretty much expected something big but finally seeing it is just…WOW! is it july yet?

    anyway I was wondering if Todd will be in the season premiere, S&R? thanks 🙂

  55. Not sure I’m up for a “Ronon/Keller/McKay” scramble, but still looking forward to “Tracker” as the Ronon-McKay scenes almost always make for great fun. Assumably, a whole episode will multiply, not detract from the fun.

    Late getting a copy of “Timescape”, and haven’t quite finished, but its great stuff so far. Of the suggestions you’ve given that I’ve bothered to follow up on, its easily the best. And that despite the fact that I really enjoyed Anders’ anthology. On the topic of loops and paradoxes, have you ever read Stanislaw Lem’s “The Star Diaries”? The Seventh and Twentieth Voyages might just provide the funniest timeloop scenarios this side of “Window of Opportunity”, IMHO.

    As for your theory on what makes something scary, would you agree then that “Alien” is a great deal scarier than “Aliens”? My friends think the later has the edge due to the added element of terror that arises in the viewer when they realize that not only do these creatures take down the occasional foolish miner, but they also have highly trained and (usually) effective Marines for breakfast. But I still think the thought of having some as yet unidentified creature running around your airducts combined with a suspiciously behaving science officer takes the cake.

  56. Hey Joe,
    I agree with you on the scariness factor goes higher when you don’t see the thing. As long as it’s done right…and not Cloverfield style.

    Hope it’s not too late to throw in my BOTM comments –
    Plot wise, I enjoyed the parallism between 1998 and 1963, comparing and contrasting both the work lives and family lives of the scientists in their respective years. During the beginning, I found the 1998 storyline capturing my interest more than the 1963 until the messages are being sent. About halfway through, I found my attention focused more on the 1963 story than the 1998 story. For me, the ending felt somewhat anticlimatic – I was expecting some big timeline change or message from further up. Maybe I’ve been watching too many post-apocalyptic movies lately too. Though seeing Markham at the end was one of those shiver moments, making me wonder if he was there in the “old timeline.” What I liked about the book was the idea of it questioning our own beliefs (and I guess you could say misconceptions) on what time really is, and what the past/present/future really are. Also the idea of having no “observer point’ in the universe is an intriguing idea. Though I’m no physics expert, the explanation (though somewhat confusing for me) sounded like something that could possibly happen. It also raises the question about free will and predestination – how much of the future is there already, what can we change? What happens in the future if we change something now? What happens now if something is changing in the past now? Paradoxes or no paradoxes? Are the 1998 characters in an alternate timeline, or did they get erased from….time? Are there 2 Markhams at the same time – one in 1998 and 1963, if time doesnt work the way we think? I’ll admit its confusing me, even now, so on to characters…
    I did enjoy the character of Petersen – not exactly good, not exactly bad. I like characters who aren’t straightout enemies, but not exactly allies either. (Kinda like the travelers!?) I kind of drew parallisms between Lakin and Petersen, because they’re both in a management position looking at scientists with unconventional claims. Though I thought it was an interesting contrast with Lakin rejecting the idea of messages, though Petersen seemed more forthcoming. However, it’s balanced out if you look in Petersen’s personal life as a womanizer, and Lakin seems more straightforward in his personal life, though his character is not built upon much more than what we see in the labs.
    The environmental crises shown in 1998 seems far fetched now, but thinking about it, it doesn’t seemed to far fetched to think there could be large environmental crises here in 50 years. So it sounds like a good time for me to wrap up and go off to stock up on bottled water and canned beans.
    ~Rich

  57. I think horror based on the familiar is more chilling, which is why I find the Japanese film “Kairo” so creepy and why the premise for the movie “I am Legend” still disturbs me. And I enjoy books and films that leave a few unanswered questions for me to think about long after the tale has ended. “Whispers” sounds more intriguing all the time. But you already knew that.

    BOMC: I didn’t get a chance to read Timescape, but I view the world more as a tapestry than a tableau. Each person and event has its own thread. Some are shorter and less colorful than others, but all form part of the overall pattern and all are interconnected. In changing the past, we pull a thread from the tapestry. Most of the time removing a thread doesn’t mean the whole thing unravels. The death of a poor beggar in a third-world country or changing what the Prime Minister of England ate for breakfast a week ago would not have much impact.
    The other threads shift a bit to fill in the empty space, but the overall pattern is unchanged.

    But some changes COULD make a huge difference. I know it has become a cliche, but what happens if you kill Adolf Hitler? Instead of removing one thread from the tapestry, it would be more like removing threads of the warp and woof that support that section, causing it to completely unravel. And since the tapestry beyond that point was also based on those threads, everything from that point would have to be rewoven. The future would have to change. From that point, I chose to think that time would branch and the “alternate universe” theory would come into play. Two tapestries would exist. Just my thoughts on the subject.

    I read “The Keep” and am part way through “The Blade Itself” so I will join you for those discussions.

  58. What scares me? The old Planet of the Apes movie, with the late Charleston Heston. That movie gave me nightmares for weeks. Part of that may have been the fact that I was about 10 years old when I watched it, and admittedly, the flying monkeys on Wizard of Oz also freaked me out. The part of Planet of the Apes that gave me the nightmares though was the reveal at the end where Heston is riding along the beach and suddenly finds part of the statue of Liberty, and you learn that the Planet is actually Earth and not some distant alien galaxy.

    In fact, the only reccurring nightmare I have ever had has actually been a reccurring theme. Different dreams, but always about the same thing…World War 3, Earth blowing itself up with nukes, apes…

  59. Masterchief Said:
    there’s a Continuum trailer on youtube. you were so right. I mean I pretty much expected something big but finally seeing it is just…WOW! is it july yet?

    Indeed! I believe the first words that came out of my mouth after I watched it was OH. MY. F**K.

    No joke.

    And here’s the link to that (hopefully it’s not illegal):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=II52g4ulAmk

    LOVE IT.

  60. I just found a listing of who does which commentaries on the SGA Season 4 DVDs. First of all, I *love* the commentaries. They are always fun and very interesting. A question, though…who decided who does the commentaries on what episodes? Is it just a question of availability? And when they do the commentary, do they sort of have a list of things that they want/should mention or do they just say whatever comes to mind? Are there rehearsals? Do they do multiple takes? Is it fun to do?

  61. I’m with AG… I vote for Shirt’n’Tie (a.k.a. Paul) to play the Irish guy on SGA. He is so funny and very animated.

    By the way Joe, when will we here who won the GET IN the GATE contest? Can you tell us if the winner has been notified? I know I did not win, but it would be cool to know who won! Thanks

    Patricia

  62. Hi Joe,

    Tonight I tried duck for the first time ever. I was really nervous, I don’t know why even, but I really enjoyed it and now want to get my own duck dish next time. I really wished I had my camera with me to take a picture of my dinner out like you do yours! But reading all of your food write-ups has inspired me to be more adventurous, so thanks.

  63. What scares me the most (aside from the picture of the wooden doll) are the things that are grounded in reality. There is a short scene from a psychological thriller I saw 12 or 13 years ago that will haunt me for the rest of my life. I cannot remember what it was called. I’ll try to explain.

    The heroine had found the lair of the evil doctor who was kidnapping children, using an ice cream truck, cutting off their hands and transplanting them onto his daughter’s arms, she was born without for some reason. As the daughter grew, the ‘new’ hands did not so the doctor had to keep kidnapping more children. As the heroine was searching said lair she heard the daughter playing the piano badly as her hands didn’t work right. The stairs creaked; the doctor was coming! The heroine hid in a smaller room leaving the door open a crack so she could peek. A noise made by the newest victim distracted her from the door and when she returned to look out the crack the doctor was right there, at the door waiting for her, his face framed in the crack. She screamed … so did all of us watching the movie!

    My heart is racing just typing about it…

    On a more positive note;

    I have lurked here reading for a few months now and wanted to say thank-you for sharing all the pictures and bits from Atlantis and your dogs and the food…… I also appreciate how you ‘handle’ those who would presume they know you and your job better than you do. Always entertaining:)

  64. Who do I need to contact in your publicity department to arrange an interview with a member of cast or crew? Do you have a specific person who handles those requests in-house or do you use Sc-Fi/MGM to handle publicity for interviews?

    Thank you in advance for any answers you can provide!

  65. If this has been asked and answered already I apologize. But I have to ask. In “Last Man”, Old Rodney, did the real Rodney die on Atlantis or did he go back to Earth after setting up the hologram?

    And secondly and mush less seriously, were you at all inspired by the UK comedy series Red Dwarf for the idea?

  66. What’s Jason on about a Ronon/Keller/Mckay scramble?

    As long as it doesn’t end up “Stargate: Friends”. Will Ross, I mean Ronon, end up with Keller? Will Keller end up with McKay? Will McKay end up with Ronon causing conservative religious groups to fling holy water at their tv’s? Will Keller wander off bored and hook up with Chuck?

    What scares me? Snakes dressed as clowns. Especially if they all pour out of a tiny car.

  67. Joe, May I recommend never trying to write a message with numb fingers…

    I loved that simpsons episode btw. My Favourite line was: “everyone! There a GIRL in the Building!” LOL

    I have always thought of time travel as a way to see things that you have always wanted to see in History. Like the first EVER screening of Starwars, where you can find out if Han really shot first!

    Jackie

    NZJ

  68. I’m definitely find things based in the real world possibilities – or at least things I think are possibilities – to be more frightening. As a kid, “The Exorcist” terrified me (I couldn’t even stand to hear the theme music) because at the time I believed that being possessed by the Devil was possible. “The Silence of the Lambs” was frightening because the character Hannibal Lecter was supposed to be a compilation of real world psychopaths. And what I found scariest about Nightmare on Elm Street was not Freddie Kruger as much as just the idea that you might die in your nightmares. – Hmm, that might make a good SGA episode… 🙂

    But I also agree that the unseen is more frightening than the seen. The great thing about “Alien” was that you couldn’t quite catch a clear view of the monster, so it raised your anxiety level. There’s one scene in the book “The Haunting of Hill House” that freaks me out to this day: a scene where one of the characters is hiding in pitch dark room as something horrible (but unseen) is pounding on the door trying to get in. The character reaches out and grabs the hand of her friend who she thinks is right next to her in the dark. But then she hears her friend calling out to her – from another room. So who or what is holding her hand?

    Too often when the monster is revealed in the movies I’m disappointed – and a little miffed because I think, “Okay, you built up all of this suspense and dread over THAT?” “Mist”, for instance, was a big letdown for me in that regard. To me, the mist itself was actually scarier and more interesting than what was in the mist.

  69. oh and Have you read Steven King’s book ‘Cell’ freaked the crap out of me. I didn’t use my cellphone for a week…He is a great writer that man is!!

    Jackie

  70. What scares me? Even today, the laugh of the wicked witch in “The Wizard of Oz” — no matter how mature I get.

  71. Hello JM!

    Hummm, creepy….well, I’ll say the sight unseen, reaction shown, based in reality is far creepier than the severe blood and guts or the highly unlikely.

    What I really want, is what you thought of I Am Legend. Did you prefer the ending they put on it or the alternate ending. My husband said he would have liked it alot more with the alternate ending. I however, liked the ending they chose. I don’t want to mess it up if you’ve not seen it by ‘splaining why…

    S

  72. Hi Joe!

    I’m way behind on the BOTM having just received Fast Forward for my birthday and enjoying it very much.

    Re: having a list of BOTM titles in your sidebar, a quick search of the blog reveals that you’ve never mentioned Library Thing (http://www.librarything.com/). It’s a pretty neat website for the booklover, and has a handy little blog widget that you can use to display book covers.

    Judy in SATX

  73. What scares me? Reality based things mostly. I love horror movies. The scariest movie I have ever seen what a thriller called Visiting Hours. I was young and remember leaving Eagle Rock Plaza late at night with my mom. We were both looking around with keys in between our fingers. Movies and books like that stick with you, and make you change the way you do things. I read a book called Red Dragon. It made me think about the locks in my own house and how easy it would be to get in. I read that book probably 10 years ago, and still think about it when locking my doors (especially my sliding glass door). Jami

  74. Rebecca H Said: …Which is why I find replicators scarier than wraith, and the Genii scarier than replicators.

    I about agree with you here. The Wraith were spine-chilling in The Rising, and (imho) still would be if they remained silent and eerie and mysterious – and above all – invincible. The lyrics of a new Raconteurs song reminds me of what the Wraith could have been (sorry for the pic, it’s just easier then retyping the lyrics): http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v54/dasNdanger/keeper1b.jpg

    But somewhere along the line their threatening edge was lost (I have just watched the first three seasons in full for the first time, so it’s all pretty fresh in my mind). The thing that neutered them the most was how easily they were killed by a handful of newcomers into the galaxy, and how each time you saw one on the screen, you knew it would be dead by the end of the episode (like a Star Trek red shirt). That just wussified them too much – even the Genii aren’t that easy to kill!!

    Thank god for Todd – he saved the Wraith by making them cool again, as well as moving them beyond the disposable enemies they had become. Between him and (early) Michael, they’ve added depth and dimension to the characters, which makes up for the edge they lost by being so bloody easy to defeat. But in doing so, it’s also made them more sympathetic characters (fine by me!), which has me rooting for them instead of fearing them. Again, imho, it’s time they step up to the next level. We had a little of that in the Lantean alliance with Todd in S4, but I’d still like to see more.

    For me, the Replicators were just irritating – but at the same time, extremely threatening because they seemed unstoppable, and unstoppable is always scary. The Genii…they’re just too ‘normal’, which makes it easier to let your guard down around them, unaware of the danger until they strike. Yeah, you can never trust ‘normal’, especially when it comes to sci fi. 😉

    But right now, Michael and his hybrids are the scariest of all, mainly because he’s NOT some unfeeling machine, but a deeply wounded being so full of hate that no mercy is left inside of him. He scares the crap out of me because he has real reason to be the way he is, and yet at the same time could CHOOSE not to do the things he is doing. That means he can justify his actions to himself, despite the fact that he’s no longer guided by Wraith instinct, but now making decisions based on the human free will to choose. Self-justified choice – a very dangerous mindset to defeat.

    das

  75. I agree; possible things are much more frightening than things you know would never happen. I’m intensely curious about Whispers now.

    Answer: Yes, there is the notion that if you can see “out of time”, the two can co-exist. But what happens if you use your knowledge of the future to change it? Or are we saying that being “out of time” puts you in the position of observer which necessarily precludes your ability to change events?

    Well, I think it depends on who it is we’re talking about. It seems to me that humans are by nature temporal beings, so everything we do is part of what makes up the timeline. Even if somehow a human were able to travel in time, I think that their actions, even actions to attempt to change the past or future, would be accounted for and absorbed into the timeline. Unless, of course, it was impossible to change anything, in which case anyone who did travel through time (at least to the past) might immediately die. I believe CS Lewis wrote, in the forward to The Great Divorce, about a sci-fi story he once read (it’s been a few years since I read that book, so my memory may be off) where the author postulated such a scenario, where a time-traveler would be unable to change even the placement of grass or where rain fell, so every raindrop was like a bullet and every blade of grass like a knife, unmovable by him. But it seems like it would be even worse a situation than that, because if a time-traveler in such a scenario couldn’t move anything at all, then he shouldn’t be able to move the dust particles and molecules in the air, so he would hardly be able to breathe or even occupy any space at all (because if the past is unchangeable, that should be true for the physical world as well as for human actions and decisions).

    As for what would happen if a human knew the future…well, I do believe in true prophecies existing, though they’re not terribly common. Prophecies are more or less inside information from and “outside of time” source. So, can true prophecies be avoided? I don’t think so. I think that if one tries to, one creates a self-fulfilling prophecy (again, human action being within the scope of time). Or else one fails to change things even when one tires. Of course, the only way to know if a prophecy is a true prophecy is if it comes true. If it doesn’t, we regard it as just a guess or an attempt to deceive or some kind of mad raving. So we can’t know for sure that no true prophecy has been avoided, because we’d never know that the future was changed.

    But if there was some other sort of being, someone who existed outside of time, who wasn’t tied to it the same way we are, they would require both the power and the will to interfere for such a change to happen. Theoretically there could be a life form outside of time capable of observing the timeline, but who lacked the level of consciousness that even humans have and so might not have the mental capacity to willingly change something (some sort of non-corporeal animal or somesuch). Or there could be a being capable of observing, but not physically (or whatever passes for ‘physical’ in its realm) capable of interfering. Or perhaps a being both capable and willing, but who would be prevented from interfering by a being even more powerful than itself. So, in order for an outside, non-human being to interfere in the timeline, they would have to be not only powerful enough to do so, but more powerful than any other force which may wish to prevent them. Of course, if that happened, we’d never know unless we were capable of looking into alternate timelines.

    Which is another interesting place to go. As far as what I believe in reality, I tend not go to in for the multiple timelines/universes theory. This is mainly because of my view of souls, which is a whole other topic, but as briefly as I can…my feeling is that if every person has one distinct, individual soul, then something important would be lost if it turned out that countless versions of that soul existed (especially if different versions of the same person were vastly different from one another). Besides that, the afterlife would be very confusing if there were more than one of a single person, and the idea of an afterlife existing for each of those universes puts the spiritual realm on a plain equal to (or even below) the physical, which somewhat diminishes it, I think. And if a single soul is shared between all versions of a person, then what would it even mean to have a soul?

    So, clearly, my view of such issues in the real world is colored by my own views on spirituality, religion, etc., but I’m more than willing to accept alternate interpretations discard such deep and controversial issues when it comes to fiction. Even though I may not find such things likely in the real world (although I’d be very curious should someone prove otherwise), I heartily enjoy the possibilities presented by them in fiction. So, AU and timetravel remain some of my very favorite stories and themes in sci-fi. Because if it were possible, then that opens all sorts of avenues of exploration.

    Though I think possibly the most valuable use for time travel, were it possible in any form, would be for documentation, to get the true record of the past rather than relying on sources passed through the ages. Which brings up a question: If you could travel to any place in any point in time and stay there for ten minutes, but were unable to change anything (in the larger sense of changing someone’s mind, killing someone, affecting a historical event, etc.), and could bring one recording object with you (trusting that whatever was recorded was not erased upon return to the present), where would you go, what would you do, what would you bring, and why?

  76. Hey Joe! First off, thanks for the birthday wishes last week, it really made my day! As for what scares me, I’m the last person to ask. I despise horror movies. I just do not like being freaked out and try to stay away. I’ll be fine during the actual movie, but then as soon as the credits roll I turn incredibly paranoid. It’s hard to say what I think is scary though. I agree wholeheartedly that the fact that something could possibly happen (however unlikely it may be) is a great deal more terrifying than the supernatural. I’m going to have a lot more fear over a serial killer than an alien. But we also have a chance at fighting against a serial killer–there are things we could do to get away and combat it, whereas if its an alien attacking us, we might have no idea how to contend with it. Both have their valid points, but I’m not sure I could firmly say if one was scarier than the other.

    Course, for me, the scariest movie ever was Jaws. Honestly. I watched most of it when I was five or something, and have been traumatized ever since. I refuse to watch that movie to this day and get highly annoyed when my Dad does the “dun dun dun” bit (which he does frequently to annoy me). My parents tried to take me on the Jaws ride when I was seven at Disneyworld and I screamed the entire time. So clearly, I’m not the person to give an opinion on what is scary or not, hehe.

    Also, that drawing is very creepy. But as someone else said, it reminds me of the Wizard of Oz for some reason… it’s not going to throw apples is it? Death by fruit… that could be scary.

  77. I’m with Ronon — I frequently have nightmares about being alone and being chased. I also have a paralysing fear of arachnids, especially centipedes. And a weird dread of things that are moving that shouldn’t be, like a rocking chair rocking on it’s own, objects that are in one place one time you look at them, and in another the next time you look, but there’s been no one about to move them …. Oh, and talking dolls. And that doll from yesterday was effing scary. On that note …

    wams352 Said:
    WolfenM (I think) – I bet you could craft one of those dolls out of a raggedy ann and something?! A strawberry shortcake? Just seems like it, judging from the crafts talent (I think it’s you?) has in making Todd objects.

    Thank-you for the compliment — yes, that was me that did the Todd Doll, and the Todd pony, too — but HELL, NO!! I am not making that doll! XD

    @ das ~ Once again, I like how you think. Todd in the cafeteria would be great fun! I imagine Todd would be quite disgusted by Ronon’s (lack of) table manners ….

    Keller’s Patient writes: “What’s Jason on about a Ronon/Keller/Mckay scramble? Is this just an episode or a season long plotline, Joe??”

    Ooh, so the whole Keller/Ronon thing hasn’t been abandoned. Yay! 🙂 I’m sure it’s just a triangle, not a three-way, though. *pout* And I’m certain it’s too much to hope that we’d see Rodney turning to John after having Keller dump him for Ronon, too. *sigh* Thank Gaia for fanfiction. And thank Gaia for Captian Jack Harkness, too, so we bi-poly people get some representation! (Why is it, even with how preogressive TV has been in recent years, characters in American and Canadian shows are still almost always either straight or gay, I wonder? I actually know quite a few other bi-polys ….)

  78. “Dead End” with Rise Wise was a great little film that showed all you need to make a really creepy movie is a car, an empty road at night in the woods and just a few wonderful actors. It also had a wicked sense of humor, which I loved along with a hilarious performance by Lin Shaye.

    Wood people look pretty creepy too – interesting picture.

  79. Hello! As a fan who saw Continuum, I would like to put my opinion into the pot as well. I agree that the movie was FABULOUS and DYNOMITE (yes, I know I spelled that wrong)! It was well written and well executed. Well done. I would also like to say that it was an honor to meet you and you are just as funny in person as you are here on the blog! Stay cool and keep up the fabulous work up there!

    Rachel 🙂

  80. TV show that freaked me out the most was a Twilight Zone Episode when I was a kid (back in the 3-channel, black-n-white days) where a little girl ‘imagined’ (or so her mom thought) her playdoll being alive and a playmate… in the end the girl and doll ‘switched places’… that’s why that doll creeps me out. Given my earlier comparison to JF’s womb hair… the team/certain members of team – is/are somehow transformed into creepy wooden looking voodoo dolls and McKay has 20 minutes to get them changed back so they can save his butt from the wraith.

  81. Hey Joe,

    Thanks for the info on Citizen Joe. I was sure I had seen every Simpsons episode at least 8252 times, so how on Earth have I missed the one with Stargate references?!

    What scares me? Well for a start, will you quit it with these photos! You’re really starting to freak me out.

    Ok, so what really scares me; reality.

    I can watch people get fed on, staked, eaten by giant snakes in Sci Fi and not flinch (in fact you may find me having a quiet chuckle to myself as I quietly say, “Take that Principal Schneider”, but put me in front of a war movie and I turn into a trembling mess.

    My Grandfather was in World War II. He wrote journals of his experiences as he went. He never spoke of the war, his journals made sure we never forgot. When I saw Saving Private Ryan I was almost in tears, but was definitely trembling as I heard those tanks coming for them again. This really happened. Kids went to war and died in the most horrific of ways. They had no idea what they were signing up for. That scares me.

    The second scariest film for me; On the Beach.
    It can happen so easily and it is a mistake you can’t undo. It doesn’t take much for nuclear war to start. To see the way the parents had to euthanise their own kids (I was thinking “but what about my dogs?!” and just the waiting game to die like that. It still gives me the heebeegeebees.

    I held the hand and looked into the eyes of a person I loved a lot while they fought for their last breaths. It was a losing battle and she knew it. After experiencing this (and seeing the look in her eyes), I no longer subject myself to horror or war films. I’ve seen the ultimate in horror in real life. No movie comes close.

    So while as a kid I didn’t like to look in mirrors in case a vampire was behind me and I couldn’t see them and I ran to wherever I had to go if there was a full moon (pesky werewolves), I now watch shows about these things to escape the really scary thing – life!

    Gets off soapbox.

  82. I totally agree with you about what’s scarier. Nothing’s more frightening than something can actually happen, when you least expect it. And, for me at least, the less you see on the screen, the more frightening. The imagination is much more powerful than anything.

    Oh, as an aside, I want to thank you for turning me on to the word “dystopia”. 50 years old and I’d never heard before reading your blog. And now it’s my new favorite word!

  83. Hi Joe,

    I’ve just seen “Continuum” trailer at YouTube and I’m totally disgusted and angry with MGM/Fox for not including you know who in it. Is she in the movie at all? Try to convince me to waste my money on the crap where my favourite actress/character has probably a few seconds screen time. I suppose you’re smart enough to know who I’m talking about.

  84. Hey Joe, I have been absent from your blog for a bit but i have the following question; Where do you see stargate: atlantis, going?(Hopefully, not right in to the ground. BECAUSE I HAVE HATE MAIL READY JUST INCASE!!) lol.

    This comment isn’t supposed to be confrontational. lol.

  85. Hey Joe,
    So returning from the Vancouver con and having eaten at several locations I don’t think I’ll ever find anything as great tasting as Fuel.

    While watching some older episodes of Stargate, and listening to old school commentaries I came across the singing of the theme and never realised that you were one of the ones who sang it, wow that was funny. 🙂

    If you could only eat one food item for the rest of your life, what would it be?

    -JJ

  86. Hi Joe,

    I am looking forward to the Continuum movie but I wondered about something after watching the trailer and seeing Daniel and Vala were not in it (please don’t automatically dismiss me.) Is the amount of publicity the charcter has anything to do with the actors contract?

    Thanks

    Ohulan

  87. well at the moment what scares me is the thought of the dodgy food i ate last night and am still suffering the consequences of. won’t be going THERE again! yup right now the prospect of hurling fills me with dread.

    Seriously though, when I was a kid I would have the most terrifying nightmares of being chased by something unseen usually right up until the point where I could build up enough momentum and fly but then I would have real problems gaining altitude.
    One of the scariest movies I saw was the original “The Haunting” with Richard Johnson and Claire Bloom, all weird camera angles and music, that freaked me right out when I first saw it because the suspense was built up in such a way that you never really knew whether it was real or imagined since at least two of the characters were flaky to say the least. Other than that its been a while since I was genuinely spooked by a movie BUT I’m on the phone right now to my son to borrow his DVD of Audition to remedy that.

  88. Ah, that would be Ray Wise in “Dead End”, not Rise Wise. And I’m beginning to get creeped out when my own brain turns against me. I proof read that comment three times.

    Also, many others have asked, and I’m wondering too, how is Anne Teldy doing? Any news?

  89. I’m curious about what is causing the much discussed re-write of the scene in Broken Ties. Did it not come across as planned – or did it come across wrong? I’m all for more McKay and Sheppard interaction, and I hope its not to adjust this out.

    I also hope you keep Ronon flirting with Keller. Rodney’s got so much on his plate, and really, you do a lot with him already. Putting Ronon paying attention to Keller gives both of them something to do in the background and gives a reason for one to mention the other. Ronon needs more friends in Atlantis besides his team. Give him more connections.

  90. I’ve always been of the opinion that the ruin of any horror movie is when you get to see the antagonist. I much prefer the Hitchcock style of limited reveal. Suspense is the key I think.
    I loved the way you portrayed the creatures in ‘Vengeance’. That was masterfully done, just glimpses of the horror were enough to instil a great sense of suspense.
    I’m really looking forward to ‘whispers’, these kind of episode have often been among my favourites 😉

  91. Joe wrote: I (and I’m sure I speak for the rest of the writers) would like to think of it as a closed loop in which past and future are part of the same continuum. However, given the theories we discussed and the undeniable presence of paradoxes in each circumstance, it would seem that Stargate’s treatment of time travel would fall within the multiverse school of thought.

    In a way, though, aren’t you (generic) writing in a closed loop continuum? Just, it’s not a specific timeline/universe, but rather the character(s) who remains constant through the time-travelling adventures. I mean, Sheppard may have returned to a new multiverse-version of Atlantis, but Sheppard is still Sheppard, and the Atlantis he returns to is still his Atlantis; it’s just not the only ‘copy’ of his Atlantis anymore…

  92. Joe,
    I agree with you on the familiar but not quite. Something that has a parallel in the everyday can become a lot more frightening than a 6 headed homicidal cow from Gamma Pyxis VII. And yes suspense is key. Don’t show the monster because nine time out of ten our imagination will create something that is much scarier (to the person imagining it) than someone else can. For instance, in the movie Signs, until we actually see the alien its creepy but then meh… seeing the ‘monster’ takes all of the fear and dread out of the equation.

    But you shouldn’t discount the tried and true primal fears. Spider, snakes, rats, what have you. Personally I’m completely and irrationally terrified of spiders. The tinniest most harmless and I’m on the nearest table, bed, dresser, etc. and screaming. Yeah with a sufficiently large book I can kill one but given the option I’d rather be having a freak-out in the next room.

    Also interestingly you mentioned my newest irrational nemesis in your blog yesterday, 28 Weeks Later and let us not forget its brother 28 Days Later. I’m not a big ‘scary’ movie person normally they don’t do much for me but I’d heard some really good things about these movies and when I had knee surgery a few months ago they were added to the list of over 40 movies and 2 season of TV I watched in my 5 weeks of not being able to move much. Yeah… So I’m still having nightmares… terrifying wake in a cold sweat must run and hide and stockpile for the apocalypse type. This could just be from the fact that I was effectively immobile for over a month so no running away from any possible rage zombies for me. But even now that I could run away I’m still petrified. And interestingly I was scared after the first one but did that stop me from watching 28 Weeks Later? No, of course not it was a terrifying double feature for me. Yes, I’m an idiot.

    So I think its important to remember that as scary as the unknown and almost-familiar are never underestimate those good old fashioned creepies be they real or imagined.

    Even knowing it’ll be a scary episode I’m looking forward to Whispers and kinda hoping it won’t keep me up for 3 months!

    ~NovaLuna

  93. Did you tell Fondy you loved her and give her a kiss this morning?? If not, no biggy!
    Just make the effort after work, somewhere between “Honey, I’m home.” and “I am going to turn in sweetie.”

  94. I just felt to add my twocents in before Joe does on this: “dignan50yp Said:
    Concerning the Rodney/Keller/Ronon scramble, please tell me this is a joke. And if I can politely ask, why the sudden desperate need to pair up our characters in romantic situations?”If you noticed, both times Keller ended up with someone, it’s because she was either stuck with them alone (Ronon), or because their the only ones left, which is like being stuck with them, but more mental. (Mckay)
    I didn’t hear many complaints about the Daniel/Vala and possible Sam/Teal’c pairings in the last episode of SG-1, but that’s because you have take it with the situation, and that in the situation is completely understandable. Just like the Keller instances.
    So if you match pairing to circumstance, it’s understandable, and I wouldn’t assume that either of those ships are going to continue prominently through season 5 unless someone confirms it.

    By the way, Joe: It seems you have an unfair advantage over the other SGA writers, because now the episode I (And I’m sure alot of other people) am looking forward to most in season five so far is… Whispers!

  95. (Sorry for posting so much and being such a pain)
    But on the time-travel affecting stuff front: Sparrow_hawk Said: “The death of a poor beggar in a third-world country or changing what the Prime Minister of England ate for breakfast a week ago would not have much impact.”
    Has anyone else read “A Sound of Thunder” by Ray Bradbury? I’m not sure how plausible that is, but it emphasizes that you affect the future by going into the past when you’re just changing the ‘little’ things that ‘don’t matter’. Because when everything is a weave, every ‘little’ thing is connected to every single other ‘little’ thing, and changing one just leads to a domino effect.

  96. “I enjoyed Shaun of the Dead up until its sudden serious turn late in the movie.”

    I agree! It seemed like they had their scripts changed on them half way through ^^

  97. What scares me? Well I have to say spiders… yes you heard me right, they scare the crap outta me. It is called an irrational fear!!! Anyway I love scary movies, my favourites have to be the first three SAW movies *I haven’t seen the fourth yet) and both of the GRUDGE movies. I was just wondering what your absolute favourite genre of books are?? Mine is mainly fantasy but I like some Bryce Courtenay, especially ‘The Power of One’ and ‘Tandia’ have you read them?

  98. Dovil Said:

    As long as it doesn’t end up “Stargate: Friends”. Will Ross, I mean Ronon, end up with Keller? Will Keller end up with McKay? Will McKay end up with Ronon causing conservative religious groups to fling holy water at their tv’s? Will Keller wander off bored and hook up with Chuck?

    Cue the theme from Soap

    Cheers, Chev

  99. Stargate Atlantis just started to stand on it’s own. You are writing fast moving, rolling with the punches awesome television. Better Atlantis than ever before. Don’t throw it away for SG:U.

    Can’t there be some SGA gets produced in autumn, run in winter, while SGU gets produced in summer and run in spring and run in summer?? I don’t think an alternating run is out of the question. Seems very do able. JoePaul focus on SGA, BradRob focus on SGU.

  100. i sound like a pathetic guy trying to save a struggling marriage donr i joe?? PLease dont GO!!

    SG:A is a series with so much depth right now. So many avenues. Don’t, I beg you, stop making it.
    Brad and Rob should find a way to produce it. Not wait. Because there will always be a lingering urgence, LIke when; ur busting to go toilet and there’s a big guy with “the runs.” and there’s no other toilets. ANd waiting feels like an eternity.(i like spelling BAD, MR. ENLISH MAJOR)

  101. Go work on Starcrossed with DH, and SG:Um and read, and holiday if SG;A goes under*touch wood*

  102. What scares me?

    When I was a kid it wasn’t as much “the dark” but what could be in the dark. My mind would conjure up things from the shapes of the furniture in my room.

    I used to like to stay up late and watch The Night Stalker. I was pretty young. Anyhoo, I remember one episode scaring me and it was about a headless motorcycle rider with a jousting stick. Years later my friend found the episode and we watched it and laughed until we cried. The stunt guy just had his clothes pulled up over his head. It wasn’t scary at all anymore.

    TV, films or books that gave me chills include:

    Buffy The Vampire Slayer episode Hush featuring The Gentlemen
    The X-Files episode Home with the inbred brothers
    Stephen King’s It – clowns man
    28 Days (I watched it alone – yikes)
    Crime documentary on Australian serial killer Ivan Milat (that guy is mega creepy)
    Mulligrubs face (Aussie children’s tv show with a character that would appear with just eyes, nostrils and mouth on the screen, nothing else of the face)

    Well that’s been therapeutic. Thanks Joe! Do you charge by the hour?

    Cheers, Chev

  103. Answer from Joe re McCarthy’s The Road: I have and, while I did like it, I found it far too reminiscent of Octavia E. Butler’s Parable of the Talents and Parable of the Sower which are two of my favorite works of dystopian fiction.

    I’ve just placed a hold on Parable of the Talents at the library (only copy in the region). Hopefully I’ll review soon.

    Answer from Joe re BOTM titles in the sidebar: I tried but, for some reason, my neat, single line entries become a jumbled paragraph when published.

    Leave it with me Joe, it’s what I do :-D. I’ll test it out on my wordpress blog and email Baron some instructions. I’ll also send Baron some details regarding Library Thing. It’s really cool and is an easy way to display titles without constantly mucking with your sidebar.

    Oh and thanks for suggesting Rob for the Teal’c question. Great idea. I just watched AoT with my Mum. She agreed with me. Either it was too subtle for us or we missed a scene etc.

    Thanks for all of the responses. Feeling a little guilty tonight for monopolising the mailbag.

    Cheers, Chev

  104. Jami Said:

    Movies and books like that stick with you, and make you change the way you do things. I read a book called Red Dragon. It made me think about the locks in my own house and how easy it would be to get in. I read that book probably 10 years ago, and still think about it when locking my doors (especially my sliding glass door).

    Oh yeah and the film adaptation of it – Manhunter. Tom Noonan is seriously creepy in this. Deep breath and think of William Peterson. Ah, all better now.

    Cheers, Chev

  105. Hi. “Long time reader, first time poster” as the cliché goes. I read Timescape a few years ago and don’t have my copy to hand, so may be misremembering how things went, but I have one question about your analysis: If sending the messages back creates a new timeline and the existing timeline is left unchanged, how do you explain the safety deposit box?

  106. Keller/Ronon/McKay romo. Ahhh, I see a title change to “As the Stargate Turns”. Seriously, are you trying to get this show cancelled? Worst idea ever. I’d love to feed Keller to Todd, now THAT I would pay to see!

  107. Hey Joe!

    What scares me? I’m personally not a fan of horror movies, but it has to be something totally out of the blue and with no warning (ie – no tense music which makes you know something is going to happen). Blood boiling screams also work (though they can’t be corny 😛 ), if this were to occur on Atlantis, it would most likely have to occur with one of the guest stars or background characters. 😉

    These are just my opinions, but I know Whispers will be fantastic!

    – Enzo Aquarius

  108. I would definitely agree with you in regards to horror – when I’m watching a film that is super gory or fantastical in its scariness, my reaction is usually to laugh (to the bemusement of my friends who are hiding behind their hands). One of the scariest films I ever saw was ‘The Hand that Rocks the Cradle’, about a nanny out for revenge. No zombies or monsters, just human hatred. It’s terrifying.

    Saying that though, I still really enjoy movies with more fantastical elements of horror to them, so whichever camp Whispers is in by the end of shooting, I’m really looking forward to seeing it!

    Ruby

  109. Does Baron Destructo have anything to do with the blizzard slamming the state of South Dakota? If he does, I would like to congratulate him on his genius!

  110. So, you see, there I was in the cinema watching ‘Jurassic Park’ – and it scared me half to death (yes, I’m a wimp, so?!) until the point where I slipped out to go to the toilet and when I came back it wasn’t scary anymore. I watched the sequel on TV and I don’t know it the film was less scary, but I certainly didn’t find it as frightening. I’m fairly sure that if I’d watched the first one on TV it wouldn’t have hit me as much as it did in the cinema – there’s a lot to be said for Dolby Surround Sound, darkness and atmosphere!

    However, it wasn’t a lasting fear as there’s no velociraptors etc around here!

    As I don’t watch or read horror these days, I can only go on the sort of films mentioned above or the couple of films and James Herbert books from my teenage years – before I realised they were giving me nightmares and maybe I should, you know, stop with the horror stuff so that I could sleep at night!

    From what I remember, I found supernatural stuff downright frightening, even though I tried to rationalise it away. I know that I watched the beginning of ‘An American Werewolf in London’ and after that I was scared of dark open places (the scene on the open moors was too much for me) – I can’t remember if we see the werewolf when it attacks on the moors, but it was the not knowing where it was, what it looked like etc that got me so badly. So I’m guessing it’s the unseen threat that was so frightening.

    Serial killers – maybe I haven’t watched the right movies – but they don’t scare me that much. I’m not thinking that there’s a serial killer next door or anything. Probably suffering from the ‘won’t happen to me’ syndrome. Why I can’t employ that for supernatural stuff I really don’t know!!

    I don’t like gore – but this is the person who watched both ‘Kill Bill’ movies without a problem, though it could be argued that Tarrantino made the gore less gory with the various techniques he used to show it. Still, as a general rule, lots of gore is bad, though a little gore, like in say the TV show ‘Bones'(some would say that was a lot of gore in some scenes – decaying bodies are not nice!), is okay.

    Different things scare different people. I stay away from the more scary stuff because I don’t want to get nightmares again. I’m hoping that ‘Whispers’ won’t set them off… It helps that I’m older and wiser now, so maybe I’ll be okay. I hope. Fingers crossed, ‘Cos I’m so watching it – it’s got Carson in it, not to mention Major Anne Teldy!

    Leesa Perrie

  111. Just trying to play a little catch up and probably add another two cents worth into the mix now I’ve had more of a chance to think on it.

    or not!

  112. On April 9, 2008 at 9:03 pm wolfenm Said: Ooh, so the whole Keller/Ronon thing hasn’t been abandoned. Yay!

    😛 I love the fact that this is still a crazy discussion thread! Bring on the ratings – this episode’s gonna kick ass just from the rumours it’s causing.

    Gee… if I squint really hard and pretend I know what I’m talking about… that might actually be the point of it all? 🙂

    Nika

  113. wolfenm Said: @ das ~ Once again, I like how you think. Todd in the cafeteria would be great fun! I imagine Todd would be quite disgusted by Ronon’s (lack of) table manners ….

    Thing is, Todd doesn’t have the best ‘table manners’ either. He eats with his hands, too 😉 …AND he most passionately vocalizes his enjoyment… “AAaahhhhhAAAAhhhhh!” I mean…what if he does find a way to eat normal food, and STILL does that??! 😕 Shep: ‘Yo, buddy – why don’t you take your meatloaf and get a room already?!’

    I’ve been thinking about movies that ‘scare’ me, and I’d have to say that there have been two that – viewing after viewing – have given me chills. First and foremost is Blind Terror/See No Evil (1971) with Mia Farrow as a blind woman who stumbles across a murder, and the murderer. It’s so realistic that every time I watch it, my heart is in my throat, imagining myself in her position.

    Another one that always freaks me out is Mother Lode (1982) with Charlton Heston as a Scottish gold miner up in BC, and the two folks who stumble across him…just really creepy stuff, without going over the top.

    das

  114. April 9, 2008: What Scares You?

    That Sheppard isn’t actually in season 5. That he’ll get no dedicated episode and be just used as pretty wallpaper, with no ‘tour de force’ episode for Joe F? Or that you’ll never answer any questions about his role in season 5, if he actually has one? 😆

    Seriously, I’m scared by anything suspenseful really. So things jumping out on screen after we’ve had quiet, eerily creepy music and then sudden loud noise or music. That really makes me jump out of my skin more than anything else.

    Anything to do with the supernatural, even though I don’t believe in any of it. Vampires, ghosts, demonic creatures, scarecrows coming to life, dolls suddenly opening their eyes, CLOWNS!!!!… I’ve scared myself now!

    So basically I’m pretty much scared by anything. 😳

  115. The drawing reminded me of the legend of the ‘Green Man’.
    Found in many cultures around the world, the Green Man is often related to natural vegetative deities springing up in different cultures throughout the ages.

    Or it could be a child’s Wraith doll, can’t you just see them lined up in Toys R Us?
    Barbie…Bratz…Wraith… Dora the Explorer.

    Wraith doll 12” of fun comes, complete with working accessories. Extra sucking hand sold separately.

    Amaze your friends with the ability to take years off their lives. No more need for fake ID look older than you are in seconds.

    Pauline

  116. In the episode “The Last Man” why didnt Sheppard take the McKay hologram back with him as it would have made explaining what had happened to him alot simpler and it would mean that something would have survived from the alternate timeline.

  117. I agree w/ DD…something real that can go terribly wrong. HAL is a great example. Or anything that is almost familiar, but just not quite right. And you can’t put your finger on what the “wrongness” about it is. Or things that are just outside your awareness…stuck in a dark room and you can’t see a thing, but you just KNOW you’re not alone. *shivvers*

  118. Tango wrote: “If sending the messages back creates a new timeline and the existing timeline is left unchanged, how do you explain the safety deposit box?

    Oh, now that’s a very good point.

  119. Many year ago I once convinced my friends at school that I was really afraid of Rabbits. No idea why they believed me, poor gullible sods. Personally I’m afraid being in open water mainly as, at the age of 20, I can’t swim due to some odd psychological problem.

    With films it tends to be things which can be attributed to real life events and could have actually happened. My housemates and I are planning to sit down to watch Wolf Creek tonight. A ‘gore-fest’ based on a true story. While I’m not really much of a fan of these types of films, it’s the based on a true story that has intrigued me.

    I also find that films where the main antagonist/villain is never really revealed. The air of mystery and the unknown always adds to the tension as I feel that the viewers imagination will most likely create something more horrifying than you could on the screen. What they think of will be tailor made to their own fears thus making it that much more scary.

  120. What scares me? To be honest, when I was checking out the Gateworld news page and read that the Stargate pilot episode, “Children of the Gods”, was being re-done that scared me. To lose seven minutes of canon from a classic episode that began a series that ran for ten years…..why? Everything that is in the episode is already canon now so why go back and remove it? To make it better? What one person or a group of people think is better is subjective. While some (including Brad) may have a problem with a nude scene (which I have absolutely no problem with) that scene is only seconds long. So what else is going to be cut out, Joe? Seven minutes is alot!! I already don’t watch the episode on Scifi because they took out the scene with Jack and Daniel at Jack’s house. Will you guys cut that out of the new version too?

    Sorry, Joe, but IMO sometimes things are BETTER when they’re left alone.

    ((Hugs)) for letting me rant a little.

    danielfanforever

  121. I’d have to agree with you. The more realistic the scarier.

    I don’t tend to get “scared” watching movies except if they incorporate my actual real life fear. Micheal Shanks played in a movie think it’s called The Swarm and delt with a whole lot of bees. I enjoy Micheal’s acting but I can NOT watch that movie withour hyper ventilating. Bees are my ABSOLUTE fear it’s totally not justified. I have been stung it doesn’t really hurt by yet still get short of breath and run away like an idiot any time I see one. Which provides entertainment for those around me.

    Cheers
    Penny

  122. Hey Wolfenm, does this mean you’d rather not hear one of my many Tales from Japan … like sleeping on my futon, when my cat woke me up pouncing on my feet … only to jump straight up out of bed screaming because he’d chased a four-inch centipede up my inner thigh?

  123. What scares me?

    I remember being scared by the episode of the X-files with Eugene Toombs, the mutant cannibal human. He was stalking Scully in her flat. She knew he was coming for her liver. With all the usual precautions,locking all the windows and doors, she even has a gun, you just know he is going to get in. Its dark and she is scared.You see the screws of the small vent slowly undo as he squeezes his body through the very small space. I can’t remember how much we saw of him but I still remember the creeped out feelings for days after.

  124. I know I’ve already posted on this entry, but please excuse the following ramble. I had to add my own two-cents-worth in on some of the things mentioned.

    dignan50yp Said: Concerning the Rodney/Keller/Ronon scramble, please tell me this is a joke. And if I can politely ask, why the sudden desperate need to pair up our characters in romantic situations?
    Personally I think it’s only natural. These people spend so much time together in an often stressful environment; it’s natural for them to grow closer and find people they are attracted to or love. It happens in the real world all the time, so why not on TV.
    Further on that note:
    wolfenm Said: And I’m certain it’s too much to hope that we’d see Rodney turning to John after having Keller dump him for Ronon, too. *sigh*
    Rodney turn to John … Yes, please!!!

    fsmn36 Said: I get more creeped out at the thought of the aliens in War of the Worlds than the Wraith. Not because the idea of the Wraith isn’t frightening, but on some level, the very fact that they can talk gives them some humanity… Compare that to machines who don’t care and you can’t reason with?
    Definitely agree. If you can’t reason with something then it is infinitely scarier. To bring back my earlier example, The Flood in Halo are scarier than things like the Wraith or the Covenant because the Flood can’t be reasoned with. They are parasites whose only concern is feeding and spreading. They’re not sentient, they act on animal instinct, and are so virulent that trying to wipe them out is next to impossible.
    Terry Said: Sometimes never seeing the horror works, or at least never seeing clearly, offers better payoff.
    Most of the time, I’d agree with this, but the Flood is a great example of how something can still be damn scary when you can see them clearly. But to concede, the game was spookier when you didn’t know what you were going to face, and they would most certainly be scarier if they were real.

    And, on a final note:
    MizMoose Said: Some people hate Stephen King for one reason or another. With the exception of one or two things he’s written, I find his stuff awesome, … Classic (to me) example: The novella, “The Mist”
    I personally found ‘The Road Virus Heads North’ one of the scariest things I’ve read. The movie version was pretty lame though.

  125. 28 Days Later – watched it while out of the country alone, it was the only thing on tv in English. Bad idea! Years later and the memories can still make me want to hide with the lights off.

    I hear 28 Weeks Later was pretty forgettable.

    Which brings up a question: You’re joking about the research movies, right? Because all four of those got pretty crummy reviews (ok, The Mist had some ok ones). Seriously, is there a point to looking at bad movies for ideas, other than of what not to do?

    What doesn’t scare me: OTT stuff like all of Scotland turning into cannibals within 20 years and roasting people alive. Sure…

  126. *waves*

    What scares me?

    Hmmmm not a lot really. I’ve worked in a war zone, had an AK-47 shoved in my face, been next door to a building that got blown up by a rocket grenade, seen first hand the effects of genocide. Seen death up close and personal! So when it comes to being scared there’s only three things in the world that really scares the crap out of me. The thought of someone standing over my bed watching me *shivers* (think Halloween). Clowns!! I’m with Shep on this, because let’s face it, they really are creepy, and peanut butter. *shivers* Just the mere talk of them gives me the collywobbles.

    So Mr M, i’m having a rough few weeks and need some cheering up! Any juicy TIDBITS 😉 you can share to make me squee again? Go on you know you want to. Cheeky being miserable and depressed is never a good thing! Think of the anarchy I could spread, being in a bad mood! 😛

    *hugs*

  127. Oh dear Joe, the whole Keller/Ronan/McKay thing, just oh dear. (However you could save the situation by having Ronan and McKay realise what a horrid little twit she is and have them BOTH dump her – right off a cliff)

    In all seriousness you actually think people want to see that?

  128. I saw this article and thought of Stargate: http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2008/fsb/0803/gallery.moonlight.fsb/5.html but I don’t really think the art dept needs more ideas, I love seeing what they come up with already 🙂 I can’t wait to see what’s new with the set/design/costume/etc artwork this next season 😀 Speaking of which, my sister would like to know what she has to do join your computer graphics team?? (The girl who did the flames for Adria in Ark is her hero.)

  129. LOL at “Paddy O’Shamrock”! So Marty really has put an Irish character in it? Excellent!!Tell him thanks!!! But yeah please please make sure we aint sterotyped with a horrible accent and cliches, Heroes and Angel made a shambles of our reputation 🙂 🙂

    Any idea how long European fans will have to wait for S4 dvd?I guess its up to MGM but it was ages before we got S3(January 2008) so it would be nice to get it sooner this year 🙂

    Saw Ark of Truth the other day by the way and it was awesome!Even though I adore SGA-1 it was so so nice seeing the SG-1 team back!I can’t wait for the return of Jack in continuum.

  130. Oh also regarding things that scare me? Not so much the typical “scary monsters”, I always found psychological scaryness to be the worst and things I “can’t see” rather than cliches. Any sort of satanic thing or psycho killers terrify me..like the film “In Dreams” freaked the hell out of me.

    As for your research 28 days later is an awesome movie … totally totally brilliant, not so much scary – a bit tense in your seat I guess, although I found the military guys at the end and what they had planned alot more freakier than the zombie type things. 28 weeks later I hated it was no way scary and so under par with the last. I am Legend not scary AT all. Its a little freky when he goes in the tunnel thing but thats it 🙂 sorry for all the long commenting! lots to say today 🙂

  131. Up until I read about the Rodney/Keller/Ronon scramble what scared me most was the Edgar Allan Poe classic and horrifying Vincent Price movie, The Oblong Box. Oh the nightmares I can still vividly recall having as a child and still occasionally revisit.

    Thanks to Atlantis I’m guessing I’ll get a whole bunch of new terrors after Tracker airs and my favorite Sci-Fi show is turned into a soap opera!

    One person commented earlier that this type of “close quarters romance” happens all the time in real life. Well maybe it does, but this is TV, and I honestly don’t want to see it.

    Thanks.

  132. 1)Will there be any lingering mysteries over the course of Season Five?

    2)Will Rodney’s insecurities play a large part in some of next years episodes?

  133. [QUOTE][I]Teyla Roxs writes: “Is there any titbits you can divulge about Teyla?”

    Answer: That would be highly inappropriate.[/I][/QUOTE]

    hehe

    Ok let me rephrase 😉 Is there any [B]TIDBITS[/B] you can divulge about Teyla in S5?

    Will we learn anymore about Teyla’s Wraith ability,will it evolve?

    Is there any more heavy Teyla eps?

    And you are one hilarious guy JM…..I like the sarcastic sense of humour 😉 It’s probably one of the reasons why i like Jack O’Neill so much!!!

  134. There isn’t gonna be a love triangle between Ronon/Rodney/Keller is there….I hate the whole love triangle thing…

    Will Teyla be doing any sparring next season?

    I like seeing her beat up…I mean spar with the guys on Atlantis 😉

  135. why do people keep going on about the Ronan/Keller/Rodney scramble? Honestly I don’t see the big deal!I quite like Keller and think it could be interesting/funny. Besides I hate character bashing and Keller seems to be under an aweful lot of rap this year.

  136. Ooo, thanks for answering my question! I’m fairly boring/predictable as my favourite episode is ‘Window of Opportunity’, I just love the comedy!

    So, what scares me. I’m fairly freaked out by things that should be normal but which aren’t because of some supernatural something or other. Either that or animal/monster type things. Most recently I was scared witless by a Doctor Who episode ‘Blink’ that involves some not-so-usual angel statues… I have to say I don’t go looking for horror type movies though, I like to sleep without having nightmares.

  137. 1 – Any future chance of bring General Jack O’Neill in for an episode, whether it be this season, or long term plans?

    2 – In your mind, are Sam and Jack officially together?

  138. Joe, I’m totally on board with the real scary things rather than alien scary. What gets me is killers that aren’t all there. You know, all the bulbs on there Christmas tree don’t light up, or rather they do light up, but in a way that is very, very wrong.

  139. [QUOTE]Dreams-of-Skies writes: “I know I have been absent from bugging you for a while now – “

    Answer: Yeah. What gives?![/QUOTE]

    Oh darling Joe…do not toy with me. Whilst I love your wondrous sarcastic, droll and caustic ways to bits, please do not tease me into believing that you missed me. You’ll just break my heart and we both know where that will lead – back to my nearest Hotel Chocolat, a large hole in my bank balance and a new larger sized wardrobe! *chuckle*

    Seriously, life has been an absolute drag the past few months and I really didn’t want to bring my O’Neillish grouching (for yes, I am known amongst fellow Gaters as a bit of a Jack) onto your blog. So, I admired from afar. However, after having had a WONDROUS week in Vancouver, I’m all recharged and ready to begin the bugging all over again.

    So in the words of Vala, and with the same huge grin, I ask: Did you miss me? LOL

    [QUOTE]Dreams-of-Skies also writes: “What would YOU have recommended?”

    Answer: The deep-fried crispy duck. I’m going to put it on the menu for the chocolate party.[/QUOTE]

    Dang. I knew I should have starved myself that day. Sometimes it is quite annoying to not have the appetite of a Jaffa.

    As for your question about what scares me…a lot of things. But mostly, it’s the idea that you are always alone. Whatever comes, however dark, however noisy or creepy or spooky it gets, you are on your own. So I love the sort of things where the protagonist is left to fend for themselves in a situation where there are no guarantees of help coming or of being able to survive long enough to call for help/escape. On the flip side, there was a great episode of the BBC’s “Torchwood” last year that was completely twisted on its head – you thought you knew what was happening then you really didn’t. That look into the darkness in human nature both scares and fascinates me. I’ll try to dig up the name of it.

    Artic Goddess – great to hear you enjoyed your weekend – I’m so envious of you! And nice one with BamBam on Thursday – always great to watch the guys get a little caught out!

    That reminds me! Joe! If you ever hear of anything on the set regarding a red or a green bingo dabber pen called Little Pecker and involving either Kavan or David H or Jason, could you please let me know? I have a vested interest *grin*

    Dreams

  140. Oh lanteangal,i like Keller too,i think she’s great…..I just never liked the whole love triangle thing…With anybody!

  141. G’day Joe

    What scares me horror movies I scare easily, sometimes. Doppleganger did not. Mainly because I knew no one wes going to get killed.

    Would love to see Keller get it on with Ronon. A big NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO for Keller and Rodney.

    Say g’day to Fondy and the puppies.

    Janet.

  142. On April 10, 2008 at 1:52 pm Teyla Roxs Said:

    Oh lanteangal,i like Keller too,i think she’s great…..I just never liked the whole love triangle thing…With anybody!

    Well yeah I totally get what you mean about love triangles being blah.. but I dunno Ronan and Rodney vying for the same girl (if that even is what happens) could be kind of amusing me thinks.

  143. I agree that some realism is key to actually being even able to disturb/scare me. I like Descent for the fact that it plays to the fear of the dark, confined spaces, trust, and hopelessness. (though i think the wrong one got away or did she?) I just saw the Ruins and have to laugh that now my sister is terrified of the “bad guys”. What made it a horror film is that utter desperation to survive. I have to admit that I thought the premise of Saw was brillant and then they had to go and make more…dumbarses! I am going to see if I can put the Audition on my que.
    I think the Keep if done RIGHT would be a great horror movie. I also wanted to let you know that I showed my sister the pic at the top of this blog and I can tell you now that she may not watch this episode…at least not right away…she will wait until daylight and then complain about how she will have nightmares. She is the one who watched Event Horizon and pushed furniture up against all the doors and slept with a knife…to me that movie isn’t scary but somewhat gorry (spelling?) but I am not even allowed to mention the movie by name because she goes crazy.
    Can’t wait to talk about the Keep…three days and counting…or is it four…i am alittle of on my days here.

  144. “Fear not. Martin has already created the character – a frolicsome leprechaun named Paddy O’Shamrock.”

    Excellent! Thank you Joe, I knew my trust in you was not misplaced. Just ensure ol’ Paddy is also kitted out in patriotic green with a cap on his head and a pint of Guinness in his hand at all times. If you could happen to have him somehow start a brawl in an off-world tavern with Ronan… well, all the better! 😀 Just as long as that accent is gone, I am content.

    I feel I should also stand up for the Ronan/Keller/Rodney triangle here. I like the thought of Ronan with Keller but after Last Man I can’t help but find Keller and Rodney kind of, well, cute as a couple too (and much more suited than Katie and Rodney seemed to be in any case). I also fail to understand all the Keller bashing that seems to be going on over this. 🙁
    Personally, I’m eager to see how it all plays out.

  145. It’s amazing how the women hate Keller – perhaps they should have gotten an old and ugly woman to fill the position.

    And forget about getting Beckett back, i suspect the Ori that be didn’t like him (that would be the ones above the powers that be 😉 )

  146. Paddy O’Shamrock?????????? phoooey

    Let’s have a sharp shooter called Rick O’Shea

    Sniggeroo!……….. Izzy 🙂

    BTW…. terrified of balloons here….. argghhhh

  147. What scares me?

    No Torri Higginson on Stargate Atlantis.

    You guys should never have tried to get rid of her at the end of Season 3.

  148. Wow, that’s quite a jump saying how only women dislike Keller and forgive me if I’ve interpreted you incorrectly. The reason I’m not fond of the character is not because she’s an attractive women…if that were the case I’d dislike Teyla too! And I’m not a Beckett fan. Honestly I didn’t miss him and I was willing to give Keller a chance even with all her whining during Missing.

    It’s just that in my opinion the show doesn’t need this type of romantic meanderings between main characters. It divides fans for one. And for three and a half seasons romance didn’t exist on Atlantis except in fan’s imaginations where it belongs. Then Keller joined the show as a recurring character and in her first season she’s being hooked up with two of the main leads! I’m sorry but that made me feel like I was being manipulated into liking her and now, sorry, but it’s turned me cold on the character.

    I don’t want to offend anyone, I’m not sure if this even makes sense, but I think Keller should have had the opportunity to grow as a character before she became an object of romance. Teyla was never developed along those lines thank god, but hey, maybe she should have been, then she’d have more of Keller’s screentime!

    Honestly I hope this triangle turns out to be much ado about nothing. 🙂

  149. Shadow Step Said: It’s amazing how the women hate Keller – perhaps they should have gotten an old and ugly woman to fill the position.

    Well, it’s true, a women’s worth is measured solely in her appearance, and god knows she devalues even more quickly once she starts getting older! If SGA managed to cast only older homely women they would save a fortune on salaries and would get tax cuts from government for their charity work.

    Plus I’m glad to see that you managed to uncover the conspiracy surrounding why some people dislike Keller – it is indeed made up of women who are insanely jealous of both her beauty and youth – I mean my goodness, what other reason could there be? Geesh, the ladies, they’re such an emotional and catty lot!

    My sarcasm can currently be viewed from space.

  150. Narelle from Aus Said:

    I held the hand and looked into the eyes of a person I loved a lot while they fought for their last breaths. It was a losing battle and she knew it. After experiencing this (and seeing the look in her eyes), I no longer subject myself to horror or war films. I’ve seen the ultimate in horror in real life. No movie comes close.

    Narelle is right on the button. Several years ago I saw a film “Wit”, starring Emma Thompson. Her character had terminal ovarian cancer. It was very stark, powerful, and also very frightening. Six months later I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I had to force myself not to think about that movie. Now I’m five years out and cancer free. It’s definitely the “real world” that can horrify you the most.

  151. what scares me?

    i LOVE scifi, horror, and fantasy films, and i’m easily frightened. but there’s certain movies and certain scenes that have stayed with me all these years. certain scenes in ‘the exorcist’, and not the usual ones. the entire 1963 movie ‘the haunting’. it was black and white and you never actually saw a ghost. but sometimes it’s just scenes that you remember more than the sum of the movie. ‘fire in the sky’ had some memorable alien-abducts-a-human scenes. ‘five million years to earth’ had great atmosphere. ‘alien’ for sure. ‘poltergeist’. i could go on but the list would be too long.

    one thing for me, someone going through a situation alone makes it more scary for me.

    on another topic: seeing some voice their opinions on the keller/mckay/ronon thinger… i like keller with mckay more. prob because *i’m* more attracted to mckay. 😛

    sally =)

  152. I have to admit I wasn’t entirely paying attention to the blog when I read McKay/Ronan/Keller Scramble and thought that Tracker was going to be some god-awful body switch episode. I think I prefer the love triangle as a plot device, though Jason playing the character of McKay does make me chuckle a bit inside.

    I think your way is best.

  153. I thought I’d chime in here, even though it’s late in the day.

    I generally find “real” things far more frightening than “alien” or “make-believe” things. For instance, the show Criminal Minds. It’s one of my favorite shows, but I’m often scared out of my mind by the end of an episode. These are things that -demented and infrequent, sure – could actually happen. The Wraith are scary, but I’ll never run into one. I could, however, run into a serial killer.

    (Or a snake. I am more afraid of snakes than anything else.)

    (Also major character death. That scares me.)

    I watched a television series all about fighting aliens on Earth. Often the aliens were creepy, disturbed things, but I thought the most horrifying episode of the season was the one where the threat ended up not being alien at all. Cannibals. Regular old humans, who happened to eat people. The episode was so cleverly put together that it was far scarier than any of the others that season.

    (Also, this Ronon/Keller/Rodney business. Even though I love Rodney more than almost anyone else on the show, I’d really rather not see him with Keller. It worked in The Last Man, because I felt the came together because no one else was left, but I don’t feel it would work right any other time. Just my personal opinion, for what it’s worth. Which is probably nothing.)

  154. I read alot of scary books and watch even more scary movies (sadly, so many are meant to be scary but precious few truly are) but I have to tell you – the expression on John/Joe’s face when he’s shovelling that dirt onto Ronon…was seriously one of the scariest things I’ve ever seen on television or in a movie for that matter. That scene still totally creeps me out.

    And as for the un-seen? I honestly cannot remember how I stumbled upon SGA since I never really watched SG-1 but “the scary un-seen” thing is probably what first kept me watching. It was those kids running around the forest in the wraith-masks. I needed to find out what the heck those things were. And then I fell in love with all of it – but yeah, it was those freaky masks and what they possibly entailed that were one of the things that first sucked me in.

    So what really scares me?

    The hidden, unseen things crouching in the cave, watching from your closet, lurking at the bottom of a well, waiting behind the door to room 217 (My copy of The Shining stays in storage, I get creeped out just looking at it). Tell me that there’s “something” in the darkness and my overactive imagination is going to make dust running away from it.

    And the trusted turning twisted – cheery neighbours burying bodies in the basement, familiar hallways turning into unfamiliar rooms (see House of Leaves), a strange noise in my underground parking lot, your pet staring at the front door when nobody’s there and John Sheppard acting like a sociopath!

    ps The thought of Rodney becoming evil makes me woozy – imagine that big brain turned to madness…

  155. Scary things?

    You’ve mentioned some but Poltergeist had its moments, and I agree there is something about The Exorcist, the film leaves you with a serious feeling of unease. The Thing was a great horror film, Salems Lot (yep the David Soul film) who can forget the vampire boy scratching at the window! The Omen, you gotta love those religious overtones.

    However I think as you get older you become impervious to it and in reality the truly scarey happens when you are a kid. Think of the child catcher in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, the electric monster in Forbidden Planet, Jaws, Cybermen from Doctor Who and so on.

    I have to agree with some posters regarding the “ship” content of Season 4. It did seem that the relationship stuff was the driving force in certain episodes rather than the story happening and the relationship stuff coming from that.

    I don’t mind some relationship stuff but the context is important and I think that the balance was off in the writing of it this season in several episodes. If you compare the writing of say SG1 Divide and Conquer with SGA Quarantine to me the difference is apparent. Quarantine lacked subtlety comparatively (well, it was sledgehammer ship episode) and it seemed like I was watching a soap with some scifi in it rather than a scifi show where you gradually learn about the people on it and their interactions.

    Just my opinion of course before I rattle any cages !

    I do have to say there were some great episodes also, Adrift, Lifeline, Midway, Kindred and Last Man stood out.

    Although in Last Man fact we never see Sheppard coming out of stasis was really jarring – did that scene end up on the cutting room floor? Seemed to rush at the end towards the building collapse bit.

    Anyway enough, keep up the blogging and all that 🙂

  156. freidag Said:

    Wow, that’s quite a jump saying how only women dislike Keller and forgive me if I’ve interpreted you incorrectly.

    Weeelll, it has seemed to me only women have been complaining on the boards i have been browsing – but clearly not a scientific study *g*

    The reason I’m not fond of the character is not because she’s an attractive women…if that were the case I’d dislike Teyla too!

    Hm.. they are so different I doubt anyone would find both attractive 🙂

    And I’m not a Beckett fan. Honestly I didn’t miss him and I was willing to give Keller a chance even with all her whining during Missing.

    See, that’s why I am not able to take it serious. When people say “whining” – I don’t see that as a valid factual criticism, more some emotional rant (of either gender). She didn’t “whine” she was nervous and afraid and did what she could to get through it. Normal human reaction, and how most of the viewers would probably react if their lives were in danger in a similar situation – and once. It’s not like she sits around each episode going “we are alllllllllllll going to diiiiiiiiieeeeeeeee” (also she knew she wasn’t a regular at that point and might actually die 😉 )

    As for ‘whining’ that’s something i’d actually use on Beckett (I never really took to him perhaps the actor is too(!) good), always wanted to save everybody to the point of boredom. I’d have liked to have seen him shoot someone in the face, just once because it was necessary. (Much like Whedon has Book the holy man shoot someone in the kneecaps because the bible is a bit fuzzy on that, and besides it was necessary )

    It’s just that in my opinion the show doesn’t need this type of romantic meanderings between main characters. It divides fans for one.

    I guess I can understand you not wanting this, but i find it hard to believe that that many people would really care that much. But I’d say better some romance than them killing of characters.

    And for three and a half seasons romance didn’t exist on Atlantis except in fan’s imaginations where it belongs. Then Keller joined the show as a recurring character and in her first season she’s being hooked up with two of the main leads! I’m sorry but that made me feel like I was being manipulated into liking her and now, sorry, but it’s turned me cold on the character.

    See, to me that’s your fan imagination – what romance? Did you see a season i didn’t? She was stuck with Ronon for a while and apparently found a certain animalistic attraction to him (we may die! might as well! *paw* *paw* *paw* ) – apparently some women find him attractive. But hardly ‘romance’ – not even for Standards and Practices. And the ‘do you wanna have a beer’ exchange with McKay seemed more like a collegues ‘you wanna hang out for a while’ exchange more than ‘i loooooove you’ – of course ‘The last man’ suddenly added a new suggestion to the mix – but its a future timeline which may not be the one they follow. And as we know, in the multiverse all things that can happen do happen (in one of them Ronon has moved to Cardiff married Captain Harkness and is raising mutant chickens 😉 ).

    Of course it did seem to me that they were testing Sheppard and that traveler lady for pheromonic compatibility, and that did annoy me because I thought she was annoying (and the actress showed limited range), Sheppard was written as an unmanly emasculated wimp (not good since I don’t see Flanigan as that macho to begin with) and they had zero ‘chemistry’ (of course someone told me “she’s really hot” – so perhaps she is good for ratings 😉 )

    I don’t want to offend anyone,

    Oh go on, have a try 😉

    I’m not sure if this even makes sense, but I think Keller should have had the opportunity to grow as a character before she became an object of romance.

    Indeed for overall viewer credibility, but hey – its not that kind of show 😉 You may need to settle for a quick chick cliche: Ronon, he’s strong he can protect her against dangers and keep her safe. McKay, he is not afraid of her superior intellect and can relate to her on an equal intellectual basis. Tayla, she lost her baby, her husband, she’s all alone, nobody can understand her like another woman… hang on… wrong channel … sorry about that.

    “Teyla was never developed along those lines thank god, but hey, maybe she should have been, then she’d have more of Keller’s screentime!”

    I think they tested Teyla and Sheppard as a couple in the early episodes of season 1, and then it was dropped (perhaps because Flanigan and Luttrell decided on their own to steer the vibes in different directions and then the writers gave up 🙂 )

    Honestly I hope this triangle turns out to be much ado about nothing. 🙂

    Indeed – why did some people freak this much out? Looking back i see it
    started with someone asking “What’s Jason on about” – and joe just essentially saying ‘check out this episode’ – But, what WAS Jason on about? I haven’t seen or heard the context or what he said. Or was it a joke? Like when Jewel Staite joked in her blog that she didn’t know if she would be having babies with McKay or Ronon and 50 fans fainted (sounds almost like that episode of DeLuises which was never green lit: “50 fans farted” )

    Can’t say its a big worry of mine for the next season, just idly pondering if they are going to resort to the old cliche of having Taylas baby turbo grow up or if some of McKays supposed friends are going to sneer yet again “Rodney!”

    Dovil said:

    My sarcasm can currently be viewed from space.

    Your immature ranting however can’t be heard there since there is no sound in space.

  157. To Shadow Step: Of course I can find both Teyla and Keller attractive, they are both very beautiful women! I just happen to like the character of Teyla and dislike Keller.

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