Hey! Look who it is! Why, it’s 20-year film and television veteran Andy Mikita, director of such episodes as Heroes I and II, Before I Sleep, Be All My Sins Remember’d and, more recently, Search and Rescue, The Daedalus Variations, The Shrine, First Contact, and The Lost Tribe. Andy, who is presently prepping the series finale, Enemy at the Gate, joins us today to answer your questions, dish some behind-the-scenes dirt, and plug his new signature sandalwood-scented men’s cologne. (Ha ha. Just kidding about the behind-the-scenes dirt.).

Before turning things over to Andy, I’d like to remind readers that they have one more day to post questions for the show’s physics consultant, Mika McKinnon. How did she land this gig? What’s her take on the science of Stargate? Which producer writes the most scientifically inept scripts? Ask her.

In the days to come, I’ll be shifting to Whispers mode. Expect more behind-the-scenes pics in the next few days, and a big, BIG episode breakdown once the episode has aired. I have a lot to say about this one so I may have to make it a two-parter.

Finally, scroll down to the bottom of this entry for The Weird Food Purchase of the Day video. Today’s installment = Frog Legs!

And, over to you, Andy…

Wolfenm writes: “What can you tell us about the cut Zelenka scene? I mean, what happened during it? (Please tell me it will be on the DVD!)”

I was sad to see the Zelenka scene cut. It was a funny moment between he & Rodney where Rodney was unusually friendly and complimentary to Zelenka. As the 2 of them walked out of the room, the camera panned onto Keller, who was recalling the “new and improved Rodney” to Jeannie. It was a stylistic transition from one scene to another and was quite effective. But obviously not effective enough to make the cut! I hope it makes it to the DVD as a deleted scene.

“Were there any other deleted scenes?”

There was another brief Zelenka scene that was also cut. All he ended up with was a walk-by as the team was enroute to the Jumper. Believe me, it wasn’t by design. We love David Nykl, but unfortunately we have a specific cut time to meet and some precious frames had to be sacrificed.

“There was a lot of physical contact between John and Rodney, a lot more than usual (which I *adored*), in particular the shoudler-grabbing in John’s room and in the cave (twice!) — were those scripted, or were they your idea, or the actors’ …? How much direction — or leeway — do you typically get from a script, and how much do you, in turn, leave up to the actors?”

Some of those moments are ‘stage directions’ that are scripted and others are discovered during the blocking/rehearsal process. I think in those cases Brad (who was on set most of the time) and I agreed the physicality was important for those scenes. Joe and David were in agreement as it seemed a very natural and instinctive thing to do. Generally speaking, the script provides stage directions for key story moments, and we try to execute those as faithfully as possible on set. Having said that, we are certainly afforded the freedom to make adjustments if things aren’t working out. And when I say ‘we’, I mean the director and the actors.

“Also, I just want to say how heartbreakingly beautiful the scenes in John’s room and, especially, on the pier were. I used to spend a lot of time at the North Avenue and Oak Street beaches and Navy Pier (all in Chicago) after sunset, and the pier scene in “The Shrine” made me so homesick it hurt — but it was soo worth it! The camera angles, the guy’s performances, the lighting — just brilliant. (Yes, I know, the city was fake, but you still had input, yes?)”

Absolutely. We work in a highly collaborative environment, so we collectively discuss all those elements in advance – where possible. I didn’t, however, have much to do with the CG city. That was Mark Savela and the amazing VFX team. Thanks for the kind words! It’s my favorite scene in the episode.

Chelle DeBoer writes: “For Andy: What’s your favourite episode and why?”

That’s a tough one. Of the one’s I’ve directed – Before I Sleep, because it was my first Atlantis. Plus Midway & BAMSR because they were so much fun to do and I thought they turned out quite well. Overall, I’d have to say Poisoning the Well, McKay & Mrs. Miller, Common Ground & Tabula Rasa were amongst my favourite all time Atlantis episodes.

Namiko writes: “My question for Andy Mikita: You’ve been a part of the production since Children of the Gods — amazing! What’s the one thing that has surprised you most about the franchise?”

It’s longevity, obviously. But also, the amount of people who have never seen or even heard of the show. How is that possible??

The SkyPig writes: “Questions for Andy: What will your role be (if any) in upcoming SG-1 or SGA movies? Will you be directing episodes of the new series? And, last, what Stargate episode has given you the most satisfaction to direct and why?”

It would be very presumptuous of me to assume anything at this point, but I am hoping to direct the SGA movie and episodes of Universe. Hopefully it’ll work out.

The most satisfying SG1 was Heroes because it really resonated with people and it evolved from being a small 2nd unit episode, to a pretty significant 2 parter with a lot of great performances. The script was amazing. 2010 was also a favorite.

Squeaikiep writes: “First, thanks very much for the multiple hours of wonderfully executed scripts. I very much enjoy your style of story telling. How do you keep the production on time and on point throughout the 5-7 day shoot? There’s a lot of cats to heard!! Thanks in advance.”

Thanks for the kind words! We have such a crackerjack crew that everything happens in a sort of shorthand. They are the ones who make it happen and deserve the credit for making the show look so good and to do it on time. For the director, it’s all about having a plan, and then being able to throw the plan away so you can go faster.

Portlandbound writes: “What episode did you like the best to direct from Atlantis or SG1? If you could pick any of the Executive Producers of Atlantis you found gave you the most trouble when directing? Was their a script you felt was hard to direct and what was it? Thanks for your time!”

For my favorite ep’s – see above.

And really, none of the Executive Producers give me much trouble because they all know I can beat them up.

The hardest scripts to direct were Vengeance (making one hall look like many, and trying to make the creature attacks scary) and Infection (6 days in the Hive set – a fate worse than death).

Thornyrose writes: “ First, favorite episode to direct/produce in the Stargate franchise. What one work would you like to have the chance to do over? Is there any one “dream” project, in film or tv that you would like to do in the future? And finally, what is the hardest aspect of directing and/or producing a show like SGA, or even a non-sci fi genre show? Thank you very much for your participation and time, and many thanks to Mr. M. for all the work put in to make that possible.”

Thanks so much! I appreciate it! See above for fave ep’s. If I had the chance, I’d redo parts of every episode I’ve ever done. I go crazy watching mistakes I’ve made.

Ultimate dream project? Sitting down & finishing a home video of my kids that I can send to my parents on the east coast. They’ve been bugging me for it for years.

And honestly, the hardest aspect of directing the show is to maintain the standards that have already been set. That, and working with Carl Binder.

Norriski writes: “Question/Statement for Andy M.  What has been your most challenging episode for the Stargate franchise and why?”

See above. Oh, and I didn’t mention it before, but Foothold is particularly memorable for me because it was my first ever episode of Stargate SG1. And also, Adrift & Lifeline – which were Martin Wood episodes, but I shot 6 days for him while he was in the Arctic for Continuum. That was tough because he prepped them & I shot them.

“On those same lines what was the easiest episode and why?”

First Contact and Lost Tribe (mid season 2 parter) because Martin Gero shot a bunch of it for me.

“Have you ever ended the day wanting to pummel one of the cast members, or a guest actor (I’m guessing you won’t tell us who but I have to ask)”

Yes. Yes I have. And no I won’t, but nice try.

“Lastly THANK YOU for taking the time to do the commentaries on the DVD’s. I’m one that buys DVD more for the commentaries than anything else!”

That’s awesome! Thank YOU!

Shirt ‘n Tie writes: “Thank you for all your wonderful direction over the years. I particularly liked Outcast last year.”

Thanks so much – I liked Outcast too. Earth based ep’s are fun.
“Questions: (i) Is there any specific difficulty that you continually encounter in the Sci Fi genre as against more mainstream direction that impeeds your vision for a shot?”

No, not really. The only restrictions we encounter are when there is a visual effect involved in the shot and the vfx guys ask us to lock the camera. But even that doesn’t happen much anymore. The size and scope of a set can dictate shot limitations. Some have no ceiling (which = no low angles). But if anything, I would argue that sci-fi offers more opportunites for creativity than any other genre.

(ii) In the directorial rotation, is there/have there been, any particular episodes that you’ve passed on/or not directed where you wish you could have been involved?

Yeah, that happens all the time. This season for instance Will got all the scripts with exterior locations. Those are the most sought after because we don’t do it very often anymore.

(iii) In reading a script do you have an entire vision at outset? and (if the occasion has arisen) would you suggest a linking scene including dialogue if you felt it was necessary?

Good question. Sometimes it comes very clearly and other times not. I used to vividly play the movie in my mind as I was reading a script only to find out the sets I will end up using don’t look anything like what was in my head, so now I try to find out which sets I’ll be using before reading. That way I can envision the action in the proper context.

And yeah, sure, I’ll suggest something to the guys if a transition feels bumpy. Then they’ll tell me to get lost.

(iv) Also, do you say “SWEET!” or “GREAT!” a la Mr Wood, after a great take? If not, are there any Andy Mikita-isms after shooting a difficult scene?

Nope, I just say cut. Call me old-fashioned.

“Also, may I just add, that I really enjoy your commentaries…I always get the sense that you are seeing the episode for the first time, and your recall for events at that time is great, even though it’s months later….”

Thanks! Many times I am watching the episode finished for the first time during the commentary. Typically I hand in the Director’s Cut & that’s it. Then I wait till it’s done (FX, music, etc)

Kerry: “Hi Andy. Have you ever had problems with a guest star who seemed great when you hired him but then turned out to be a real pain or crazy? Without naming names (unless you want to or you can just hint) want happened and how did you handle it?”

Hi Kerry. That’s a good question. Yes, I’ve had issues for sure. Some actors have been very over-enthusiastic about their character and consequently go way over the top in performance. That’s when you have to jump in & tell them to dial it back. Remind them of the context. Others just try to create something they’re not and it becomes forced. Sometimes it’s fixable and sometimes it’s not. And occasionally you get a full-blown nut bar. I handle those individuals by doing nothing & blaming whoever hired them.

Perragrin wites: “Q: If you were to step through the Stargate and join the Atlantis Expedition, which one, personal item would you choose to take with you?  And no cheating.. Personal Slave, carrying everything you own, does *not* cut it “

My drumset.

Astrumporta writes: “For Andy Mikita: I loved The Shrine and really enjoyed your interview about making it, at stargate.mgm.com. There you predicted mixed reviews for the episode due to the lack of action, but in fact, it seems it might be one of the most universally loved episodes of Atlantis ever! Are you surprised to see a character piece be so well received? Gratified?

Hey thanks – I’m happy you liked it! I honestly felt there would be more of a divided camp, but am obviously elated with the universally positive response. I remember when the script first came out and everybody was, “wow – this is incredible.” Including myself. I was blown away. It’s an episode everyone is very proud of. But I didn’t think it was for everyone…

“How did you approach directing the scenes that started in Sheppard’s quarters and moved to the pier, in terms of discussing with Joe Flanigan and David Hewlett how the scenes would evolve? They were played so beautifully. Was Joe wearing his own clothes, for real?”

First of all, I must mention that Brad Wright played the primary role in the execution of The Shrine. Beyond writing the script, he was heavily involved in every aspect of it’s making and spent the majority of the shooting schedule on set with me. It was awesome. We were able to talk about every shot and every take. It was a luxury that Joe & Paul & Martin & Carl can’t afford because they’re always writing or in prep or post. Brad was able to stay with it from beginning to end.

Most of the early discussions were primarily with David, since the story revolved around him. The Shep Quarter’s & Pier scenes were approached differently from a mechanical point of view. The former being approached like any other scene, with numerous rehearsals and adjustments. The Pier was predetermined because of it taking place in a virtual environment. We knew the shots in advance. David and Joe were amazing and it was a blast to shoot. They have a very natural friendship chemistry.

No they weren’t Joe’s clothes. I don’t think…

“Also in The Shrine, how do you make it appear the camera is so far away from the subjects, both on the pier and on top of the submerged Stargate? How do you keep the movement realistic as the camera appears to pull back so far?”

On the Pier set, we used a crane to pull back and away from the actors. At the submerged Stargate, we shot a locked off wide angle and the VFX guys created that amazing pull back & reveal of the setting. The shot becomes the central live action element.

“Looking back at your time on Atlantis, what are some of your favorite memories, and some of your most traumatic or difficult?”

I really enjoyed working with David Ogden Stiers. He would provide a continuous onslaught of hilarious jokes and stories. A prince of a man and a total pro. Also, shooting Before I Sleep was special ‘cause it was my first Atlantis.

I think the day Joe lost his dad was the hardest. I felt terrible and he insisted in carrying on. Every time I watch Search & Rescue and see him trapped under the rubble it reminds me of that day. That’s what we were shooting when he got the news.

“Have there been times you just couldn’t make a scene work and had to go to a “Plan B”?”

Yep, that’s happened lots of times. Sometimes B doesn’t work either and you move to C. Plans are switched during blocking rehearsals, or once you’ve arrived at the set to see all the trucks parked in the middle of your set (not that that happens!). Usually once you’ve rehearsed, lit, and started shooting a scene – there’s no turning back. I remember once shooting take 1 of a master and then turning to DP/Director Brenton Spencer in a panic, and saying, “This isn’t working – I have to start over.” He was so cool about it. He simply said, “No problem, lets fix it!” We did, and less than 5 minutes later we were back at it. It was something else. Situations like that can kill your day, but Brenton didn’t let that happen.

“How much do you “direct” guest stars versus the regulars, in terms of influencing their performances?”

Lots. But it’s more guidance and context. Guest stars have the disadvantage of not speaking the franchise language. It’s too much to expect a guest to understand everything that’s happened over the course of a shows history, so jumping in can be a little overwhelming. Our regular cast are great and supportive too. We all try to make a guest as comfortable as possible.

“Would you like to work on Stargate Universe?”

Heck yeah.

“Thanks for the great work, Andy!”

Hey, thank you & thanks for all the great questions!

Syble writes: “First off I want to say that I loved Search and Rescue. The look of that episode was spectacular. It looked and felt like a high budget big screen movie.”

Awesome! Thank you! It was crazy fun.

“1) During the filming of S&R, was the dust from the collapsed building scenes falling on the actors, or was that a camera trick?”

Some of it was, yes. Most of it we tried to place in front and behind them, but it needed to fall on them too. It was pretty uncomfortable for the actors. Joe was literally wedged in his spot (we designed the pieces to shift so he could get in & out, but…) and Jason had to negotiate lots of nooks and crannies & was hunched over awkwardly. May I please take this moment to express kudos to our amazing Art, Construction, Paint and Set Decoration departments who all did an incredible job building that set. It looked amazing and was by far my favorite of all time.

“2) Who’s idea was it to have Shepard’s shirt still on in the infirmary scenes. As Keller lifted it and then let it fall back down, all I could think about was what kind of doctor kept cleaning and then redepositing the dirt on a wound?”

Let’s not go there, ok? And btw, I agree completely.

“3) What has been your favorite episode so far??”

Please see above.

Jean writes: “ When you get a script, do you end up making any changes to the way that scenes are set up or to the transitions from one scene to another? Is this something that is worked out first with all the writers/producers before you get to the shooting stage, or do some things (that don’t work well) only become apparent once you are shooting (or both)?”

Hi Jean. Again, excellent questions. The answer is both. If we are able to identify a modification in advance, we discuss it in prep and work it out before shooting. Sometimes situations present themselves in context on the set and have to be addressed at that time. Transitions are best thought out in advance but often are created in editing. The rule is, to have a plan and then divert from it as necessary. Obvious things like if the actors walk out of a scene from left to right, they should enter the next shot the same way. It can be visually more jarring if they suddenly appeared from the opposite direction. But, having said that, all rules are meant to be broken and that jarring transition may be the desired effect!

“Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions!”

My pleasure! Thank you.

Airelle writes: “Mr Mikita ?- Do you have plans after SGA? I think your work is great.

Thanks Airelle, I hope to continue working on Stargate Universe.

“Can you pick the episodes you want to direct?”

No. We direct the scripts that fall into our rotation on the season schedule.

“Do you have the ancient gene?”

Of course.

Flygirl writes: “A lot of prep and planning goes into an episode. Is there an episode that stands out where you thought you had all of your “bases covered” and then everything just went sideways?”

To be honest, not really. The machine here runs pretty smoothly, so train wrecks are rare. That’s not to say we don’t have hiccups because we certainly do. It’s usually a collection of lots of little things adding up. Here’s one, a couple of days ago we were shooting a fight scene between Ronan and Wraith drones. When I called for Jason’s stunt dbl, he hobbled in with a cast on his leg and couldn’t walk by himself – he had 2 human crutches helping him. I could only laugh.

Chevron7 writes: “Questions for Andy: How do you decide how you are going to shoot a scene – what’s the process you go through?”

Usually I’ll read the script once or twice without considering how I’m going to shoot it. However, I like to know what the sets and locations are going to be so I can imagine the scenes in the correct environment when I start re-reading the script for planning purposes. Early on I try to find a visual theme to use throughout in order to give it some distinction, however subtle it may be. That could manifest itself in many different ways, from how it’s going to be shot (lots of hand held, or low angles, etc) Then I start imagining the scenes from different perspectives to decide what the main point of view should be. Then I make a blocking plan and a shooting plan – both of which often get used only as a starting point. It’s important to be flexible.

“What is tougher to direct: A complicated action scene, a highly emotional scene or a scene with the Asgard?”

Oddly enough, it’s the static scenes with lots of people that are the toughest to make interesting. Action scenes are tricky too, but they are always time consuming. Emotional scenes can be the easiest from a shooting standpoint because you want to keep the setups straightforward and you don’t want to do a lot of them. Let the actors do their thing. Asguard scenes are simpler too because there’s only so much of the puppet that can be photographed, so you work within those physical limitations.

“If you could trade jobs for a day with anyone on the production, who would it be?”

Brad Wright on pay day.

“What are your hopes for Stargate? Do you know if you have a role yet in the future?”

Like everyone, I hope it continues to evolve and live a long & prosperous life.

I don’t know if I will be part of the next chapter, but I am hopeful that I will be.

Today’s mailbag:

Evolution Anyone writes: “You all have no shame…again Atlantis is going to copy, scene for scene, an SG-1 episode? I let out a gasp when I saw the “alien autopsy” pics from First Contact/Lost Tribe.”

Answer: Oh, I hear ya. Another alien autopsy! It’s like we do one of those every second episode. And, wait, it gets worse! If you can believe it, there’s also a scene where the team exchanges weaponsfire with some aliens (shades of SG-1!) and even a scene in which two characters talk as they walk around (freakin’ ripped off from Louis Le Prince’s 1888 Roundhay Garden Scene).  Gasp!

Kath writes: “Its a shame that this has turned into a sniping match now and because some fans dared to voice their opinions that a lot of focus seemed to be going to a new addition of the cast then automatically we are deemed haters.”

Answer: You know, it never ceases to amaze me how certain fans can be so free and vocal with their own criticisms and yet so incredibly thin-skinned when someone criticizes their infantile behavior. Rather than simply “daring to voice their opinion”, some fans, who clearly lack the capacity to express their thoughts in any sort of intelligent manner, choose to be insulting or launch personal attacks. Of course, on the rare occasions when they are called on it, they seek to defend themselves under the guise that they are protecting their right to free speech. I’m afraid I’m going to have to call bullshit on that. If you don’t like a character or the writing then, sure, feel free to post your opinion. But if you’re so childish and devoid of any intellect that the only way you can get your point across is by being disparaging people, then expect to be on the receiving end of a firm smackdown. FYI, this all started two days ago because some fan, clearly upset by the fact that Jewel had received a Gemini-nomination, intimated that the only possible way she could have received said nomination was by facing no competition from her fellow cast members. This fan wondered whether Jewel was the only one submitted for nomination. I sarcastically responded that, in fact, she was. And when the rest of the anti-Keller crew started their foot stomping, I responded in an equally sarcastic manner. For the record, other cast members were submitted for consideration but only Jewel ended up with a nomination. If you’ve got a problem with that and suspect the Gemini selection committee of “being in love with Jewel” or playing favorites, then I suggest you take it up with them.

Laura writes: “Do you still have standing sets in 2 Vancouver locations (can’t remember what the 2nd one was called) or is everything at Bridge Studios now?”

Answer: As of this year, all of our standing sets are on The Bridge Studios lot.

Trish writes: “Do you think Annabelle misses Sebastian? Have you ever experienced a pet acting out after another pet passed away?”

Answer: Hi, Trish. Sorry to hear about Sebastian. It does sound like Annabelle is reacting to the loss. Like some have already suggested, paying some extra attention to Annabelle will certainly help. Socializing her with other dogs might be another idea if you can afford it. An occasional visit to a doggy daycare may help (which, I see, is something you’re already exploring).

A Honshuu writes: “And BLACK COMPANY… is that just one story or the whole Chronicles? The book I got from the library is MASSIVE!”

Answer: I got the same massive tome. But, for the purposes of this month’s book club, we’ll only be reading the first book in the series.

Chevron7 writes: “Ever considered writing some short stories yourself, perhaps with a horror theme?”

Answer: If I can get my act together, a short story will certainly be in the works.

Dyginc writes: “Thirdly, my cat Gus has been on the treatment given to us by the cardiologist…”

Answer: All the best to Gus. Hope he’s on his way to a full and speedy recovery.

Astrumporta writes: “High-larious. What’s really funny is people still believe your first statement that you could only afford to put one actor into the nomination process. Obviously you were kidding. Weren’t you?”

Answer: Yes, I was kidding.

Asturmporta also writes: “In fact, I seem to remember Stargate was boycotting the Geminis due to BC anti-scifi snobbery or politics or whatnot, no?”

Answer: I’m saving that rant for a future blog entry.

Monica writes: “Question…the village or “outdoor” set, is that also at the Bridge Studios? Will you and Carl give a tour of that as well?”

Answer: It is and we will.


150 thoughts on “September 3, 2008: Director Andy Mikita Calls the Shots, and The Weird Food Purchase of the Day

  1. Why does everyone hate the hive set so much?

    As much as I’m not particularly keen on the Keller character (I don’t outright hate her, but she sure ain’t my favorite), congrats to Jewel and her Gemini nomination!

  2. Andy Mikita said:

    “I think the day Joe lost his dad was the hardest. I felt terrible and he insisted in carrying on. Every time I watch Search & Rescue and see him trapped under the rubble it reminds me of that day. That’s what we were shooting when he got the news.”


    Firstly, I didn’t know that’s what Joe meant when he mentioned a personal tragedy at comic.com. So sorry to hear that and my heart, prayers and thoughts are with Joe and his family.



    That is one *hell* of an awesome actor. I’ve always admired Joe for everything he puts into the characters he portrays.. He’s an outstanding guy and I have yet to see a performance of his, that I haven’t been able to empathise with.. but to do such a stellar job and under those kinda conditions..

    I take my hat off to him. Absolutely incredible. Am gobsmacked.

  3. Hi Joe

    I only really started reading this after the SGA news (sorry btw, i’m still reeling from it) but it’s great to read all the interviews and weird food purchases (something i’d be way too chicken to do) glad i came upon your blog.

    What was the weird food purchase today? or do you not do it everyday.

    Jess from not so sunny england

  4. Um-m, er, I can’t find the frog legs video clip on today’s post. Were you teasing again?

    I once ate them at my Aunt Violet’s house in South Carolina. I remember that I wondered why all the fried chicken looked the same, no breasts or thighs, just wingette-like pieces. After the meal, and I ate a lot of them, I was asked how I liked the frog legs.

    I have never run to the bathroom so fast! But, alas, they stayed with me. So I suppose they are edible and darn if they didn’t taste like fried chicken wings. But I haven’t gone down that road since.

    Cheers! And thank you Mr. Mikita for a great visit! Good stuff!

    Carol Z

  5. Aha! I now see the vid!

    Thanks! I always enjoy watching your reactions Joe, so honest and revealing, so intensely satisfying, so… oh forget it.

    Carol Z

  6. Joe,

    Interesting how you described it as Alligator when many might say it’s like chicken. I agree it’s more like Alligator, if you’ve had Alligator though so I had a nice laugh at that.

    You an I both share a desire to try most anything out there in the world at least once, or regularly eat it already.

    You gotta try to Philippino food 😀 Balute, or even Garlic fried pork intestine. Super good! Er.. if you can get past the sight of the balute.

  7. Andy Mikita’s answers were very entertaining. Great guest spot! If I’d had my brain set to ‘on’ I would have asked him if he’s related to hockey great Stan Mikita. Yeah, that’s the best I could come up with.

    “For the record, other cast members were submitted for consideration but only Jewel ended up with a nomination.”

    Clearly a case of needing all the information before jumping to stupid conclusions. Apologies for my part in the mess. I still hope Jewel wins. 🙂 Hey, maybe you could use smileys and winking emoticons for those of us who are humour impaired? Or honking big neon signs with lots of arrows? *g* Looking forward to this week’s ep. Must stay positive from now on. I love our crazy show! And I appreciate everyone’s efforts to make it so crazy and fun and dramatic. Thank you for giving us some insight into how so many people make a good tv series even better. Yay SGA! Wooo Woo! *shakes pom poms*

  8. Any chance of us seeing a long over due promotion for Major Davis in the next SG1 movie (or even Enemy at the Gate)?


  9. G’day Joe
    How anybody can eat a cute little frog is beyond me.
    BTW, your dimples are cute.


  10. Janet said:

    “How anybody can eat a cute little frog is beyond me.”


    You’ve obviously not met the French.

    Soo.. just an idle thought before I turn into a pumpkin and crawl off to bed, but is it likely that MGM will take much notice of the poll results on their homepage? I think they just about sum this whole sorry affair up.

    On a side note: Andy Mikita on drums?


    And what, with Joe F and Jason on guitar, Rachel singing and David H on the trombone (considering all that hot air Mckay spouts forth).. we could have you guys set up a band once Atlantis seals it’s final episode. Just think, you, Martin, Allen, Carl.. all writing the lyrics, whilst Joel does the music. Hey, you could even tour..

    Okaay.. i’m gonna go now before I get zapped. Night from Yorkshire ; )

  11. Thanks for answering my question. Can’t wait until Monday!!!! (PVR already set)

  12. To any Sheppard/Ronon shippers here: Have you seen the banner at Sci Fi Channel with Woolsey front and center? Behind him, near the gate, it looks like Sheppard and Ronon are holding hands. If you follow this link, you’ll see it. If it isn’t the Woolsey one, try re-loading. They have different banners, one featuring each character, so you may have to go through a few.

    Anne Teldy (reposting in case this was missed)

  13. Joe M says:

    Hey, Joe – could I please have one of those T-shirts? And if it isn’t too much trouble, could you also print “FAMOUS LAST WORDS” on the back? O : – D

  14. hiya joe ,

    i read your blog regually but dont normally comment and ask questions bt after what i have read about Jewel Staite from a small selection of so called “atlantis fans” i was really pissed off so felt i had to vent my anger to you.

    WTF right do these people have to question why jewel was nomanated . she is a brilliant actriss and a worthy sucsessor to Paul Mcgillion. Most people could not act half as good as what she can , i no i certianly cant act at all.

    All these people are doing is damaging the franchise that most of us have loved for nearly 12 years now . i hope to god jewel doesnt read your blog beacuse some of the comments that these so called “fans” leave might make her think about leaving.

    Please tell jewel that there are fans out there who luv her and want to c her in atlantis and al the future movies , she was great in firefly and was such the right choice for dr keller. lets all hope now she wins the award so she can shuve it in everyones faces .

    she bloody deserves it .

    anyway im sure ur bord with this now so rant over hehe !!!

    good luck with the nxt movie .. and if u need someone to stand and make the tea all day for you guys im there hehe 😛


    craig keith
    Ringwood , UK

  15. Andy Mikita! Drat. I wanted to ask him how it is to work with Gemini-nominated actress Jewel Staite!

    Answer: As of this year, all of our standing sets are on The Bridge Studios lot.

    Do you have any fallen sets? (That wouldn’t be Kellers bedroom would it?)

  16. Hey Joe

    Yep still lurking around.. I dunno if your still in contact with him or not (Or can get in contact with him.) I’d love to have a guest blog done by the Air Force Liason with SG-1. I have one specific question for him, and a couple others about his feeling on a few things..



    PS Are you going to be doing another dinner at Fuel during the April Convention? I may not join for the full dinner (to fancy for me) But I would love to do desert.

  17. Many thanks to Mr. Mikita for dropping in. A man of great sense, as indicated by his wanting to be Brad Wright on payday. (they actually pay you guys?). I’m hoping to see you doing work on SGU. The more names I recognise over there, the easier it will be to work up some feeling for the show. At the moment my interest in it is about zilch. I really enjoy the look behind the curtains all the guest bloggers here provide. For me it enhances the magic you create.
    Mr. M. , are you indicating we won’t be able to bribe the judges in the Gemini? Not that you should need to, but the fact that Atlantis doesn’t have all the nominees in all the catagories is proof positive the system is rigged. I’m still ready to scrape up my stray canadian change (and other assorted currency) and send it in to help the cause, as i am sure others are ready to do.
    I don’t know that frog legs can be construed as weird foods, being where I live, but I weird is subjective I suppose. Glad to see you got a decent batch though. Some things just aren’t the same outside the south, from sweetened iced tea to grits.
    Just a few questions for Ms. McKinnon. Actually, you’ve already asked three of them for me/us. How did you land a job as consultant on Atlantis, and which of the writers/producers are the most and least grounded in the science behind the fiction? Also, how much time do you spend researching or studying something to decide on its plausibility, or how to suggest how to tweak it to fit the story’s need? Besides physics, what related disciplines are you called upon to evaluate in the job? How big a part of your daily life is working on Stargate? Do you maintain another full or part time career? Ok, so not a few questions. But I think you have one of the coolest jobs on the show, and I appreciate all the work you put in trying to keep the show as scientific as is possible and still provide entertainment. Mr. M. as usual, thanks for bringins us such a great collection of guest bloggers.

  18. Great Q and A from Mr. Mikita. So thats what Joe F. meant at comic-con.We were wondering about that.- Not that it was any of our business, but we-the fans- were concerned-really, i’m not kidding!My thoughts are with him, been there with my mom-years ago- ,it’s NEVER easy, he has a wonderful 2nd family around him. Joe M. if you could let him know the fans are thinking of him, Thanks. And SEAN, we are still waiting to hear from you , that you and your family are alright. Stay safe, sheryl.

  19. Um, seriously, I knew you were joking with your answers yesterday. It was kind of funny too.

    Frog legs, yuck. I guess I would only try them if found in a dire situation and by that I mean with no other options other than death itself.

    Andy thanks for your candid answers.

  20. Hey Joe!

    Brilliant Q&A, as usual. Makes for a good read after a day of school. 🙂

    In regards to your Weird Food Purchase of the Day, how about doing a Chinese Buffet special where you fill your plate with odds and ends? 😉

    Thanks as always!

    – Enzo Aquarius

  21. Still a little groggy from working those long hours at the polls (drat! still have school work to do), but at least the primary gave me a chance to train all my newbies for the November election.

    I really like frog legs and escargot and warm bacon spinach salads and I managed to eat a pickled pigs’ foot just to please my 103 year old Granny, who knows maybe they contributed to her longevity.

    Thank you again Joe for the Weird Food videos, and thank Mr. Mikita for the great job as guest blogger.

  22. Kudos for not saying it tasted like chicken!!

    (I reeeeeeeeally need to stop staying up JUST to watch Weird food purchase).


  23. Thanks to Mr. Mikita for the Q & A. His favorites appear to be mine too, so I’d say he has very good taste…
    For Mika, do you have a formal education in physics or is it mostly a fascinating hobby for you? Do you like dealing with and thinking of ideas that have no current basis in reality but that might someday come true?
    Also, was the character Miko (Letters from Pegasus) named after you in some fashion?
    To Joe, still loving the Food Vids, you are right about things tasting good when they are buttered and fried, but what would you think of buttered and fried durian fruit?

  24. I got a big laugh from your post yesterday and I’m not a big fan of the Keller character. Though I have to say, I did like her in “The Shrine.” New characters can be tough, as I’m sure you know. Fans like me can be quite skeptical. And yet…I started to love Ronon toward the end of Season 2–it took a while. I never had a problem with Carter. Woolsey? I was the most skeptical of him and now I want to smoosh him tight. The writers did a great job easing him into the role and Robert Picardo strikes the right tone. I’m still sad we only get one season wih him. It’s taken a bit longer with Keller for a variety of reasons, but Season 5 looks to be the one for me where she hits her stride. I never thought I’d say it, but I, for one, look forward to seeing her with McKay on Earth.

    I didn’t realize Stargate has a physics consultant. Really? Okay, questions for Mika McKinnon. What led you to become a consultant on a tv show? Do the scientific inaccuracies ever drive you crazy? Do you give the writers new ideas on things to write about? Do you consult for other productions? Have you ever wanted to have a walk-on roll on Stargate?

  25. Hey Joe,

    Please thank Mr. Mikita again for taking the time to answer our many questions!

    A question for Ms. McKinnon:

    Which to you find yourself doing more often as a physics consultant for Stargate: “Dumbing down” the dialogue so that a lay audience can understand the concepts being discussed, or inserting more scientific terms to make the dialogue sound more technical? I guess it has to be a balance of the two, so that any discussion sounds realistic and plausible yet at the same time is understandable to a non-scientific audience. What percentage of the show’s physics is actually grounded in real science (if any)?

    You must be the envy of your peers – are many of them sci-fi geeks (fans)? Are you sworn to secrecy re spoilers for the show? Have you ever been on set to watch an episode being shot?



  26. I have to correct this otherwise it’ll drive me crazy. A question I just posted for Mika McKinnon asks “Have you ever wanted to have a walk-on roll on Stargate?” It should be “walk-on role.” I really should learn to re-read my posts before clicking “Submit.” A walk-on roll would be weird.

    Also, do you watch the completed episodes of the show? Have you ever met a scientist as arrogant as McKay is portrayed?

  27. Oh yeah I forgot I have a Question For Mika:

    Which Sci Fi show do you think has the most likely scientific definition of how a Wormhole functions?


  28. I didn’t know you were joking, so sorry for misunderstanding.
    Must have gotten lost in the humor/snark processing part of my brain somewhere. I hope I didn’t offend with my comments, I have never wanted to say anything bad about Jewel at all. I just don’t like the character she plays.

  29. Hey Joe

    Here’s a suggestion for your Weird Food Purchase of the Day: Try a thousand-year-old egg, one of my favourite ingredients in congee.

    Looking forward to Whispers, and especially your post-episode breakdown!


  30. Hey Joe,
    I haven’t checked out your blog in a while, so pardon if this question has been repeated. Are we going to get an update on how far Shep is into War and Peace? (Which, as I’m writing this, I feel like I have the title wrong, but I’m pretty sure that’s it).

    Sorry to hear the series got cancelled, but thanks for the stories so far. I’m one of those individuals who has no problems watching the same episodes over and over again. As much as I love to watch new episodes, I find comfort and enjoyment in reliving my favorite moments and episodes through repeat viewings. So, as sad as I am to hear there will be no more SGA episodes, thank you for the ones I’ll be watching for quite some time! Oh, and Keller rocks.

  31. As much as I regret you having to deal with slightly childish fans I do enjoy your coping techniques. Sarcasm is always a dish best served…with more sarcasm. McKay would be proud! (And perhaps a little jealous.)

    Genuine question coming in!

    Question for the Mailbag(tm):

    disclaimer: It is completely likely that this question has been asked before. If this is the case, please disregard question. Please do not throw question in a trash can. Question is completely recyclable. Help our social environment by recycling question in blue bins located next to trash can. Please sort question by content. Remember the three R’s. Read, reuse, recycle.

    The following question is brought to you, in part, by answerers like you.

    Any typos are completely intentional.

    Made in America.

    I was thinking back on “The Shrine of Talus” the other day and happened to think of Dr. Beckett at the same time. First of all, I absolutely loved “The Shrine” and couldn’t think of anything I would have loved to have seen or could have done without in the episode. But I was wondering why someone wouldn’t have contacted Beckett (as, clone or not, he was one of Rodney’s close friends) when it was evident that Rodney was basically on his “deathbed,” so to say.

    Now obviously as an episode it might have disrupted the story to have Dr. Beckett and Dr. Keller there as it would have undoubtedly taken the focus off of where the episode was. But would there have otherwise been any reason not to inform Beckett? Or, perhaps, there is an assumption that Beckett was informed but, for some reason or another, wasn’t able to be in Atlantis or was told that his presence wasn’t required?

    Thank you for taking time to read and answer my question! I’ll try not to do this again in the future ;).

  32. I obviously haven’t read your blog for a couple days (I blame the start of the semester) but come on, there is an anti-Keller movement? It’s one thing to not like a character on the show, but it’s sad that people think they are better in nominating an actor that the Gemini Awards people. I say, congrats to Jewel Staite and to the anti-Keller movement, please do something more positive with your time.

  33. @ Joe – You said that if you get your act together, you’d consider writing a short story. Have you ever wanted to write a comic book/graphic novel? Or would you rather have a chance to fully describe the scenes yourself for a change, instead of relying on someone else to show the audience what’s happening?

    Will have to wait til tomorrow to watch the vid…BUT, my dsl stuff just came in the mail today, so hopefully over the weekend I’ll have high speed at home! WOOT!

    To those following my spider story…

    Today I stopped for gas. In Jersey, you’re not allowed to pump your own gas, and so we have attendants. I know this one guy from going to this station a lot – he’s a comic book reader, like me. While my tank was filling, we were talking about the comic-related movies that were out this summer and – as I was talking – I lowered my car visor and…
    a big hairy-looking thing fell onto me!! I screamed, and jumped out of the car, doing my heebie jeebie dance again. I asked the guy if he saw where it went, and he said he thought it fell on the floor – but I didn’t see it on the floor, and thought maybe it went down my shirt. So, I started freaking out and looking down my top – I almost pulled it off – and the poor guy is saying, “No! You don’t have to do that, really! I’m SURE it fell on the floor!”

    Well, I wasn’t getting back in the car until I found that freakin’ spider…so we look for it – and…I found it…in the well under my emergency brake lever….

    …it was a dead bee. 😛



  34. Hi Joe,
    Thanks for turning your blog over to Andy Mikita for Q&A. I always enjoy them and find them very entertaining and informative. Looking forward to your breakdown on “Whispers” episode. I love your “dvd commentaries” they add so much more, to me it is similar to watching a movie and then reading the book, I love doing that.


  35. It looks like the new routine is reading the blog here at work, and then watching the video at home in the morning…I’ve been assigned to the night shift for the next couple of months! I’m off Fridays, though, so I still get to have my Stargate Fridays for a while. It would be nice if the videos weren’t blocked here, but that’s probably for the best!

  36. As far as I know, Sheppard’s wristband has never been explained. When rewatching Phantoms the other day, I noticed in Sheppard’s flashbacks to Afghanistan and the helicopter crash, he is conspicuously not wearing it. While of course, the wristband would be against regulations to wear with his flightsuit, Sheppard doesn’t seemed too concerned about grooming and uniform regs. Is the wristband then a memento/belonging from/of one of his fallen friends/passengers from Afghanistan? And if not, will it ever be explained? It’s the little stuff like this that drives me crazy with curiosity. Also, why does Sheppard wear black BDUs when Lorne wears the old Season 1 and 2 uniform and the Marines wear a bizarre mix of different urban camo BDUs? Is there any rhyme or reason to the uniforming of the military installment or is it just what uniforms the costumers have that fit the recurrings/extras and whatever Joe wants to wear? This is more curiosity, not criticism of the costumers. I’d love resolution of these long-standing mysteries now that the show is over.

    One last question, is it true that the Air Force doesn’t and has never acted as technical advisers on SGA the way they did on SG-1?

  37. Hi Joe

    First off my daughters at the time ages 10 and 7 tired frog legs at Disney World epcot. Then of course my hubby told them that there would be 3 legged frogs jumping around.
    I didn’t try them-yeah I am chicken.

    My question:

    Do you guys intend to promote Shep any time soon. He seemed to be a few years behind Carter and at least for me at the same rate as Mitchell. I think Mitchell just got promoted to a full bird.


  38. “Before turning things over to Andy, I’d like to remind readers that they have one more day to post questions for the show’s physics consultant, Mika McKinnon. How did she land this gig? What’s her take on the science of Stargate? Which producer writes the most scientifically inept scripts? Ask her.”

    i thought it said ‘psychic’ consultant. i thought you were joking, but then went ahead with the suggestive questions. :p

    sally =D

  39. Fantastic Q&A… I dunno, though, one might think you’re doing all these Q&As to avoid giving us lengthy updates on your days! Kidding, naturally; I can only imagine collating all those questions and sending them off is a pain in the neck as well as a time killer. So can I, at the least, say a heartfelt thank you for all the effort you put into offering our questions up and relaying them back to us?

    “Trish writes: “Do you think Annabelle misses Sebastian? Have you ever experienced a pet acting out after another pet passed away?”

    Answer: Hi, Trish. Sorry to hear about Sebastian. It does sound like Annabelle is reacting to the loss. Like some have already suggested, paying some extra attention to Annabelle will certainly help. Socializing her with other dogs might be another idea if you can afford it. An occasional visit to a doggy daycare may help (which, I see, is something you’re already exploring).”

    Speaking from experience, Trish, dogs (pets in general, I assume, but I’ve only ever had dogs) feel death just as much as we do. For several years, my family had two dogs, until about one year ago when the older one passed. The second one, my own baby, became quite depressed for some time and very, very attached to all his humans. I’m very sorry for you, I know you must be hurting quite badly… Annabelle is definitely hurting as well. The suggestions everyone’s been giving you are all very good, though. Like with humans… just being there for her, giving her extra love and attention, it helps. I wish you the best and hope things get better than they are.

    And one last one for Joe: I don’t know if you follow the Twilight series— I don’t, personally, but apparently the author (Stephenie Meyer) has put the fifth and final book on indefinite hold after part of one of her early drafts was leaked online, and the situation’s resonated with me. (“I feel too sad about what has happened to continue working on “Midnight Sun,” and so it is on hold indefinitely,” to quote her directly.)

    Not being a published author (yet, hopefully) or some other kind of artistic professional, I have no expertise on this subject, so I’m trying to remember that and apologize in advance if I overstep my bounds. However, personally, I can’t help but feel that’s a somewhat selfish thing of Ms. Meyer to do— she’s penalizing those people who remain loyal to her and are waiting for the final book in the series. Now, I can understand that she’d be upset— and clearly, she has every right to be, as her copyrights as well as her trust were completely violated. I also understand the desire to hold off working on the book for a time, and believe she’s more than entitled to it. But from the sound of it, she’s considering not even finishing the book (and consequently the sries) at all. Why, though? At this point, it seems to only be harmful: to the fans, to herself, to the franchise. And, maybe this is a little too unfeeling, but as far as I understand, it was only a partial and early draft. It’s really not the end of the world— or, at least, not as bad as it could have been. The finished product would cover much more of the story and would be far more polished— even for those people unscrupulous enough to want the early, rough version, they’d more than likely be forced to get the final book anyways if they wanted to know the whole thing and how it ended. Unfortunately, there’s no way to undo this whole disaster, but cutting the series short just seems like an inappropriate way to deal with the problem.

    I know this sort of thing has happened multiple times with Stargate— unfinished episodes or plot twists being leaked online. I also realize that these are two entirely different media, so I can’t say if one should really be compared to the other. All the same, being a writer, and having had material leaked before, I was wondering what your take on this was? Am I underestimating the impact of what’s been done here?

  40. Hello,

    My first time trying this. hope it works. I know I’m going back a couple of years, but I recently watched ‘Irresponsible’ from Season 3 and I was wondering. How did Kolya light that bomb under Lucius’ chair? Was it automated? Because I don’t see how anyone got down there to light it before walking out and Sheppard coming in. Thanks

    BTW, I love Stargate! I remember when Atlantis first started and I was a little sceptic about it. Until I’d watched a few episodes that is. Just had to get used to the new characters. Now I love both Stargates and I am willing to give Universe a fair chance at my love too 🙂

  41. Hi Joe,

    Again, thanks for yesterday’s blog; it did provide the much needed ‘relaxed’ approach needed for my mini exam that I had to sit yesterday. Surprisingly, the exam wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be.

    As for “Missing”; it was on here in NZ recently, and I am quiate glad that Jewel did receive a nomination for this.

    Firstly, as noted by PG15 yesterday, it did make sense as a nomination as the episode offered a near-complete and “isolated” character arc for Keller.

    But I also found this episode quite revealing on a more personal note. In 1980, I joined the military of my country, and my intake of females was only the second to undergo the longer and more ‘improved’ basic training for women. In 1977, it was decided by TPTB, that the women’s military services would be amalgamated into the male dominated services. Whereas, previously, the training for women was only 6 weeks, in the ‘new’ combined service, the women had to do exactly the same training as men, which lasted for 3 months.

    Of the 28 women who joined, 27 made it to the end of the training, and I can tell you that each and everyone of us acted EXACTLY like Keller during the epi “Missing”, but none of us would have missed the opportunity to do that. And as for Keller’s epression when Teyla tried to get her to eat that ‘creature’, I can only imagine that it resembled my expression when I tried to eat the reconstituted US Army ration pack ham & eggs. Cooking it was a nightmare as every mosquito in the district invited themselves for dinner – eating it was worse, but at least it was hot.

    While “Missing” would not make it to the top of my fav SGA epis (that is for Epiphany – and NO not because JoeF co-wrote, there is another reason, but I would need to be seriously inebriated to tell that), it was great to realise how much the military training changed me.

  42. Hi Joe –

    I just wanted to send you a belated (very belated) note of thanks to the Producers for allowing visitors on the set of Atlantis.

    In 2006 I won a charity bid to visit the set and I managed to get to Vancouver in May of 2007. At the time I was debating about whether I should actually do the tour because I was flying from New Zealand. That meant the trip to the set became a tortured epic that involved the international dateline, two hemispheres and Customs at Los Angeles. (Their motto: If you don’t speak with an American accent, you’re up to no good.)

    Having departed New Zealand at 11.00pm, I traveled for 16 hours and arrived in Vancouver two hours before I left NZ. (This is the cool aspect of the international dateline.)

    Anyway, I had a great time on the set, although to this day I regret not asking to visit the production offices. I breifly met you (I gave you the chilli chocolates) and I got to talk to the camera operators (impressive work), the director, and some of the SFX guys, as well as Joe Flannigan, Jason Momoa, and David Hewlett. I also asked lots of annoying technical questions which everyone seemed happy to answer. (Is that a vectorscope? Is that monitor showing the temperature on the lights?)

    Other memories of Vancouver:

    Actually walking up the Grouse Grind. Yeah, I did it. My knees regretted it the next morning but I walked up the side of a mountain. Added bonus – I walked off all the donuts I had consumed from Tom Hortons.

    Temporarily getting lost on a trail in Whistler. For three hours. (I can see woods. I can see mountains. I cannot see people. Are there bears around here?)

    Walking around Lynn Canyon Park the day after walking the Grouse Grind and realizing there were stairs to climb at one end of the trail.

    Temporarily getting lost in Lynn Canyon Park and being rescued by a nice elderly Canadian couple who gave me a ride back to the ferry terminal. (I think a theme is emerging from my trip to Vancouver.)

    Anyway, just wanted to say thanks to everyone. I sort of vaguely harbored a hope of one day winning another bid, just to get back and visit the set again but cancellation has dashed that particular hope.

    It was a unique opportunity that wasn’t (and still isn’t) offered by other shows and being able to see how a TV series was shot and put together was fantastic. The trip to Vancouver wasn’t too bad either.

    Thanks again.

  43. Excellent Q&A with Andy Mikita!

    For Mika McKinnon:

    Joe told us that you’re the show’s “physics consultant,” and while that seems fairly self-explanatory, will you explain what kind of things you do? When in the script process do the producers consult you?


  44. Joke or not, you’ve built Keller up so much that those who couldn’t stand her dislike her even more, and those who were on the fence have jumped onto the anti side.

    Putting Jewel in Keller-mode all over your blog isn’t going to make people like her any more, either.

    The character is badly cast, badly written, and the curse of Firefly has hit because of her.

  45. Weird food purchase of the day: actually wasn’t so weird. I LOVE frog legs, and have eaten them since childhood (my father used to go “frog giggin'”, as a matter of fact, and bring home a bagful of them.

    The Andy Mikita interview was great, too.

  46. Final result on MGM’s poll re SGU –

    Are you excited about “Stargate Universe”?

    YES! – 13% – 1543
    No. – 85% – 10004
    What’s Stargate Universe? – 2% – 210

    Well, wouldya lookee here, next there’s a poll re SGA –

    Are you enjoying this season of Stargate Atlantis?

    Yes! – 95%
    No. – 4%
    Undecided. – 1%

    This tells me that TPTB in MGM are muttering darkly like a huddle of Skeksis in their sordid ivory tower, and actually WANT TO KNOW what we think.

    Now, reading between the lines, Joe M, re the ‘soon, soon’ re disclosure of season 6 scripts – there’s a chance that SGA will be –
    *drum roll*
    – UN-cancelled?

  47. Haven’t had a chance to read the Q&A or watch strange food purchase today. Looking forward to reading it when I get home.

    To Mika McKinnon.
    I hope these questions are ok.

    1. Which writer comes to you most with a script that makes you say “Are you kidding me?”

    2. Have you ever read a script that had a plausible application in real world and thought “Hey, I could get rich off this?”. If so, which episode and what was it? And do you need a business partner?

    3. What research do you need to do to stay up to date with scientific theories?


  48. Hey Joe!

    Awesome Q/A by Andy Mikita! And that’s very sad news about Joe F. while shooting S&R.

    For Mika McKinnon:

    (i) Consulting on Atlantis seems like a fabulous job to have! But it must not take up all your time. 🙂 Do you teach anywhere else or consult on other projects?

    (ii) What is one of the weirdest requests you’ve had from the writer’s team?

    – Nika

  49. Let’s see now, how did Andy Mikita close out a difficult or any scene?

    The topic of Keller.

    CUT! Followed by drums.

    We need more Durian!

  50. Hi Joe!

    Thanks for posting the Andy M Q&A – it was lovely to read. I haven’t been browsing your blog in a while so I didn’t know that he was doing a Q&A.

    His answers are delightful to read!

    RE: the Jewel affair, again, not having read your blog in a long while, I had no idea that there was a lot of anti-Jewel sentiment or anti-Keller sentiment!

    I read your response above in relation to childish and inmature behaviour and it saddens me that some people would make unwarranted assumptions.

    Not that it matters, but I love Keller and I love Jewel. I understand that some people (and I have friends that feel this way) do not like the direction of the Rodney-Keller relationship either because they don’t like shipping or they think Rodney belongs with John. I adore Keller on SGA and I like her as a doctor. It does not diminish my love for Carson or respect for Paul M.

    Thank you for posting all the lovely photos! 🙂

    BTW, Jimmy Choos would be ultra fab if indeed you get them for Jewel! 😀

  51. The Q&A from Andy Mikita was great.

    He directed some of my favorite episodes over the years, and reading his responses here was like getting an extra DVD commentary.

  52. Thanks for the awesome interview, Mr. Mikita.

    Question for you, Joe – Some of us (my friends and I) have noticed Woosley has a story for *everything*! Is this being done on purpose for plot reasons or is Woosley that worldly?

  53. Question(s) for Mika:

    Do you work on other sci-fi shows too? Did you know this was what you wanted to do while you were in school? How did you get this awesome job? The Physics Department here at UBC sometimes mention jobs like yours when explaining “what you can do with a Physics degree” but they never tell us how to do it!

    Thanks for your time =D

  54. Mika:

    What a fantastic job to have, first of all.

    As a physics consultant what all do you look at? Do you only deal with the science of the stories or have you been asked to look at the logic of certain stunts or fights that are on Stargate Atlantis?

    How much of what science is covered in an episode is true and how much is, though based in science, nearly improbable or unconceivable at this time?

    I don’t exactly know what your job is, whether it’s to look at the scripts or be given situations or scenarios and asked your opinion them. But regardless I’m sure you’ve heard some pretty wild ideas from the SGA writers and minds. Is there any scientific notion that sticks out in your mind as something that you just couldn’t figure out how to prove or wasn’t at all possible?

    What are your feelings on time travel?

    If Rodney McKay and John Sheppard were dropped from a sky scrapper at the same starting height, northerly wind of 2mph, considering the collection of each individual’s fanbase, which character would be caught by the mass of fans waiting below first?

    Is there any one episode of Stargate that’s science inspires past our current level of understanding physics? If multiple episodes, which one stands out in your mind?

    Character you most relate to on SGA?

    What currently new science theory have you paid the most attention to or are you most excited about to this date?

    Okay, the end. Did I get it in on time?

  55. Its really sad that you felt your had to explain your self after being berated so badly over Keller. I though your response was right on the mark. We the majority so it seemed loved your last mail bag. Boo on those who think they can say any thing they want and retort.I am sorry you ended up in such a mess. As if you are the one and only who can make such choices for the cast, crew and awards.

    Thats like blaming a president who could not get tax cuts because congress vetoed it. Ho sorry we do that don’t we. ooooppps my bad.

  56. Thank you Mr. Mikita for that AWESOME guest blog!
    So glad to read that Joe and David had a good time filming
    “The Shrine”—-and my two favorite scenes in particular—the pier scene and the scene in John’s room—I agree that their friendship chemistry shines through in both of those scenes……heck, it comes through in ALL of their scenes together.

  57. Another great guest blog, please pass on our thanks to Andy & Evil Kenny – very interesting reading.

    For Mika – Joe, can I steal your question, because I’d really like to know: “Which producer writes the most scientifically inept scripts?”

    Heh. While you guys aren’t expected to be scientific geniuses, I’m sure Mika’s never had to say the words: “Let me tell you about a little thing called ‘The Law of Gravity'”… right?

  58. 3 things
    1. questions for Ms. Mika McKinnon
    What is your background in science? Have you ever been contacted by someone high up in the food chain of science and physics, NASA or the US National Science Foundation or Canadian equivalent, who pointed out some mistakes, big or small?

    2. frog legs taste like alligator? you are such a big tease. if i havent had frog legs, you have to know that the chances of me having eaten alligator are much smaller.

    3. there are some weird foods i have seen and wondered what they tasted like. if i buy them and send them to you, will you try them? be our “Mikey!, He hates everything” kid who then eats everything. They will be fully packaged and unadulterated, unpoisoned, and to my way of thinking, probably unedible, too. But, Hey, if your game…

  59. I hope no one is offended by this but why are we still going on and on about not liking or liking Keller/Jewel? Don’t get me wrong I like the actress and character. In fact have since the beginning. but there is so much more to talk about. We only have a few more months left of SGA to talk about. Why not enjoy it while we can without being offensive to others opinions, which I’m sure is one of the reasons for this blog.

    Many of you talk about shipping rather it be Rodney-Keller or Teyla-Sheppard. To me what I look forward in a story is when it is a team driven story such as The Deadleuas Variations or The Shrine where everyone is affected by whatever is happening in the story line. In these type of stories you see a lot of character developement. Do we have any more team episodes to look forward to in the future?

    Joe, have you and Paul M considered creating your own series once you are done with SGA? I know you would have a lot of people watching including me.

  60. Thanks so much to Andy for his wonderfully long and insightful answers. So sad about Joe’s dad, although I figured that’s what he meant at Comic Con, when he said the set was where he wanted to be.

    And now we “know” it was Joe F and his no-skin clause that caused Keller to keep putting dirt in Sheppard’s wound. 🙂 I think we need a new campaign: ShowSheppardsNipples.com

    And to Joe for answering my questions too. I look forward to the Gemini rant. I’m always up for a rant.

    — Michelle (aka astrumporta)

  61. Questions for Mika McKinnon:

    1. What aspect of the science in the Stargate universe do you think is closest to reality, ie. wormholes, phase-shifting, hyperspace generators, and which is the furthest?

    2. Since both their characters play astrophysicists, Amanda Tapping and David Hewlett carry the bulk of the physics technobabble on Stargate. Did you ever help them with their lines and do you feel they did a good job portraying physicists?

    3. How long have you been a physics consultant for Stargate and do you also act as a consultant for any other TV series or movies?

    4. If the Stargate really did work, would you go through it?

    Thanks Joe for the opportunity to ask these questions!

  62. Hello Joe,

    Just FYI, I stayed in New Orleans for Gustav and made it OK. Lots of high wind gusts but the rain waited till yesterday. No power for approximately 46 hrs. but no real damage on my house. My garden was not so lucky. I hope that Sean posts soon as I’d like to hear how they made out in the storm.

    BTW we eat alot of alligator and frog legs here in the south so not so weird for us but very enjoyable in general. I love watching your vids! they are so much fun!

    Question for Mika McKinnon: As a geologist, myself and a bunch of other geo-scientists watched “the Core” and
    made fun of the obvious mistakes or fanciful “science”. I wanted to tell you that I have found very little (geologically speaking) to be able to make fun of Atlantis. I don’t have much physics experience but do you consult with other scientists when the show delves into different sciences. And, how did you get your job?



  63. It tastes like alligator? Huh. Not the comment I was expecting. Frog legs is probably the most odd thing I’ve ever tried (well, and snails and calamari. And caviar. EW.) I actually really enjoyed them. Only, instead of finding them to taste like alligator (though I’ve never had it so who knows), I found they tasted just like chicken. Like, I’d always heard that phrase, but never believed it. Not until I ate frog legs.

    Thanks to you both for the Q&A!!!

  64. (gah – in my spider post above 😮 was supposed to be 😳 – otherwise, it just looks stupid)

    @ Cate – I respectfully disagree.

    From what I see here, at least, it’s the fans making an issue of it – bringing up Keller/Jewel all the time – and not Joe shoving her down everyone’s throat. For the most part, I’ve only seen him mention her when fans start badgering, and then he steps in to defend/explain their choice – which he really doesn’t have to do.

    Here’s how I see it – Keller is the newest character, one we don’t know yet. It makes sense that some episodes feature her – she’s like a fresh canvas, yet to be turned into a work of art. The other characters – Shep, Rodney, Teyla and Ronon – have had 2-3+ years (before S4) to be developed…2-3 years for us to get to know them. Keller’s the new kid on the block and the only way we’ll get to know her – the only way she’ll really feel like a part of the Atlantis family to us – is if some extra focus falls on her. And since we know so little about her, it’s probably fun for the writers to explain her to us – more so than a character who is already developed. There’s just more freedom when you’re starting from scratch.

    And I don’t see where it’s done any harm. Keller has not taken anything away from the other characters, despite having a bit more attention at times. The others have continued to grow since Keller’s introduction, none have suffered for it.

    Ronon, for instance, has proven himself the ever faithful, stand-by-your-side friend over the course of the last season or so, especially with Sheppard in episodes like Outcast and Search and Rescue; but also with Teyla, most notably in that tender ‘Ronon – good name, boy or girl’ moment from BAMSR. You can even take this a step further, and say that he showed undying loyalty to his Wraith master in Broken Ties. Sure, he was addicted to the enzyme, but a man not prone to loyalty would make an unreliable worshipper, addicted or not. Yes, it could be said that it was his loyal nature that made Ronon’s devotion so intense – and here we saw how such loyalty could even be used against him.

    Teyla, Rodney and Sheppard all showed growth over the course of the past season, and into the new – with the biggest jump (IMHO) when Sheppard acknowledged Todd’s nature and needs, and found a way to feed him. This is probably the biggest character arc in the entire show – and yet, people complain that Sheppard is under-developed. Geez…he went from killing – without question – every Wraith he saw, to actually feeding one of them. Think how far the character had to come to get to that point! It would have taken humility, empathy (for his friend, Rodney and his enemy, Todd), and the sacrifice of his own convictions for – hopefully – the greater good. Yeah…and that while Keller was hovering somewhere in the background.

    Keller doesn’t steal from anyone on the show. Instead – as with everyone else – she compliments the others. They all play off of one another, as characters should, helping to bring out the good (and sometimes the bad) in their fellow teammates. Hey, if there’s anyone who’s outshined the team it’s Todd…but let’s face it, there’s really no one who can even begin to compete with that. 😉

    And finally, regarding Jewel herself…How can you not love an actor who can deliver – with the greatest of ease – such a brilliant line as, “Goin’ on a year now I ain’t had nothin’ twixt my nethers weren’t run on batteries!” 😆

    Yeah – she seems like a good kid, and worthy of her nomination. I wish her the best.


  65. Hey Joe…gonna miss your blog for a couple of weeks cos I’m gonna be on a major powder mission in Aotearoa…(don’t do anything crazy now, y’hear?)

    Keep the snark warm for me, OK??

    Luff and Schmackos,


  66. Cate said: “And the curse of Firefly has hit because of her.”

    Correlation does not mean causation. 🙂

  67. Questions for Mika:

    1. Have you been the physics consultant with SGA since the beginnning, or did you come on board later?

    2. Did you consult on any of the SG-1 episodes also?

    3. How do you become a physics consultant for a TV show, anyway? Did you put up your hand and say, “Hey, guys, over here! Your physics are flawed, and I can fix them for you!” Did the producers come to you looking perplexed and asking if something they wanted to do was feasible? Or did they make you take the ignominious step of having to fill out an application form, do the interview bit, then wait to hear whether you’d gotten the job?

    4. Did you have to stomp on any colleagues to get the job as physics consultant? 😉

    5. I don’t know if you can answer this one, but I asked Joe M. this question some time ago, and he graciously ignored it by not answering, so, as the physics expert, I’m going to ask you: In the first SG-1 episode, Apophis came through the Gate at the SGC with some of his Jaffa, grabbed a Sergeant, then he and the Jaffa turned around and walked back through the Gate without it ever having shut down. In later episodes it was established that Gate travel is one-way only, so . . . how did Apophis do that? I don’t recall there ever having been an explanation of why he was able to travel both ways, and subsequently Gate travel became a one-way street. Would the change likely have been suggested as a way to prevent the discombobulated atoms of those passing through the wormhole in one direction from hitting the discombobulated atoms of those going in the other direction and causing a serious “wormhole accident” that would give the forensics people nightmares trying to sort out which atoms belonged to whom and the lawyers of the people “injured” in the accident major contingency fees from the settlements? Did Apophis just have some special kind of wormhole/Gate that allowed him to travel both ways, and he lost it when SG-1 blew up the ship/base/whatever that housed it? SGA has established that there are “special” Gates, such as the Earth Gate that is the only one in the Milky Way that can direct dial the Atlantis Gate, so maybe I just answered my own question. *pant, gasp, that was long-winded*

    Anyway, thanks for taking the time to answer everyone’s questions.

  68. I am always amazed at the people who complain about what you say in your Blog. Seriously. It’s YOUR Blog. You get to say anything you want.

    If they have something else they want said, shouldn’t they get their OWN Blog?

  69. Ya know, that’s exactly what I was thinking the last time I saw the characters walking and talking at the same time –
    What a rip off of Roundhay!

  70. Hi Joe,

    I haven’t felt this way since the series finale of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. It’s really hard after 11 years in the Stargate universe. Sure, the new series is a fact, but it will be different. DS9 had a hell of a writing. It was like the characters could reallly connect with the audience. A lot of shows have come and gone since then, but that feeling of connection, I got only with the two Stargate series. I’m looking forward to the next gigs of all the cast and crew of SGA. Is there a wrap-up party planned and when.. and of course, we expect a lot of pics 🙂

  71. Question for Mika McKinnon:

    Who’s responsible for “A Matter of Time” having so much brilliantly accurate technobabble yet still making the oh-so-common mistake of thinking that the gravity of a black hole is in any way different to the gravity of the star that formed it? (For the non-physicists reading, a black hole is only different because you can get closer to it without actually crashing into it, at the same distance, it’s exactly the same as anything else with that mass.) It’s one of my favourite episodes for clever, realistic science, but that one detail always bugs me.

  72. Really, Bailey? I thought the ‘characters walking and talking at the same time’ thing was more a ripoff of Law and Order, Lenny Briscoe and Ed Green did it all the time.

    Hey, Joe, ever considered trying Vegemite, or any of these *yummy* offerings? http://www.hotlix.com/insect_candy/insect_candy.html

    Ha. Yummy. Yeah, right. Well, I guess the tequila-flavoured worm suckers are alright, they sell those at Casa de Fruta, about an hour away, I used to buy them with my grandpa.

  73. A big thank-you to Andy Mikita for his Q&A and for his awesome job on SGA. He’s my favorite director on the show, not only because of the way he directs but also because of his audio commentaries that are always so interesting!

  74. Questions for Mika –

    1 – So, how jazzed were you to meet Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson?

    2 – Is there any bit of bad science that made it into a finished episode which you find irritating enough to rant about it?

  75. Dear Mr M,
    I really enjoy reading your banter here and am very impressed you have not gone for the more sarcastic approach in response to the anti-Kellerites. I am confused on one point though, the fans who complain about Keller being nervous and scared are they the same fans who complain that in general the characters are unrealistic and all have a superhero complex? I really enjoy the show, partially because of the good mix of characters. Congratulations to everyone for the nominations.

  76. “Keller, Keller, Keller”.

    That should be said to the tune of “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia”.

    She’s bad, Joe. Really bad. If you put her front and center in the movie, the movie will also be bad.

    The bottom line is that Jewel, although talented, has been miscast. She doesn’t look old enough to be on this expedition at all, let alone as the CMO. But oh, I forgot, she’s a child prodigy.

    Bah humbug!

    The people who are accusing Weir fans and Beckett fans of being the only haters also need to do a bit of research. There are plenty of people who don’t feel anything particularly strong for either of those characters, but they can still see a badly designed character when they see one.

  77. Keirberos</b said: However, personally, I can’t help but feel that’s a somewhat selfish thing of Ms. Meyer to do— she’s penalizing those people who remain loyal to her and are waiting for the final book in the series.

    Now, see – that’s an attitude I just don’t understand. It’s similar to people who berate Joe & the other producers for not giving them what they want in an SGA storyline (the “I bought all the DVDs, I watch the show every week – You Owe Me” attitude).

    Would you say a similar thing if your favourite brand of chocolate was discontinued? Would you think that it was selfish of the company’s directors – that they were penalising those loyal people who’d been buying their chocolate bar regularly for the past few years? I don’t think so.

    Artists/musicians/actors/writers/screenwriters/etc don’t owe their audience anything. Yes, you’ve given them your money, but in exchange you got the book/CD/movie/concert/merchandise/etc. End of contract.

    Believe me, I can understand the disappointment and frustration you’d feel at not getting that next instalment (kinda like the disappointment I feel about SGA ending as a weekly series), but I just can’t agree with viewing the author as ‘selfish’, or the idea that buying and enjoying a book entitles the reader to special consideration. Also, please know that I’m not intending to insult you, or make you feel bad, I just want to encourage you to look at the situation differently.

  78. (This is Space Monkey (Rebecca T) by the way, just logged in for once =])

    Your frog’s leg looked like it was trying to escape.

    And, you’ve tried alligator?! Dare I ask what it tasted like?

  79. Hi, Joe.

    Many thanks for the new photos and all your mailbag answers. Also, thank you to Mr. Mikita for a delightful, and informative, blog guest appearance.

    Joe, Canada’s Space Channel new current events series, ‘The Circuit,’ has a segment this Friday (7:30et/4:30pt) on the set of Stargate Atlantis.



    Best wishes, Morjana

  80. I love Jewel, so it’s a good thing I’m not on the selection committee! (Not that I’d think anyone would let me be). Anyway keep up the good work Joe & Co.

  81. My friend Sandi wanted me to pass along her awe at your attempting of and survival with durian. She had been going through a “strange fruit purchase of the month” phase and this one pretty much stopped that dead in its tracks.

    She doesn’t think, though, that you truly captured the full essence of the texture that reminded her of Silly Putty. 🙂

  82. Thanks for having the interview with Andy. It was definitely interesting.

    I’m sorry to hear that someone actually accused the producers for picking Jewel as a favorite. I think Jewel really fits in well with the Atlantis cast. I support all of the actors, which is why I don’t want Atlantis to stop airing seasons. 🙂

    I guess I can say though I don’t really care for Elizabeth as a character anymore…but I think any nomination for any award is definitely totally awesome.

  83. Hey Joe,

    Thanks for the input on Annabelle. Jeremy and I went out to dinner last night and I left the tv on in my bedroom. We came home to a happy pup who hadn’t gotten into any trouble. 😀 SUCCESS! Also, I’m going to borrow my sister’s dog since he’s here with her for the wedding stuff. My mom was going to watch him but her dog is used to being alone.

    OK… Joe has talked me into asking Mika McKinnon a question. Actually, I have a few. So here goes… (sorry if someone else asked them already)

    Mika McKinnon: First, thanks for joining us on Joe’s blog. I’ve actually never taken a course on physics! I bought a highschool set on it (thru saxon) and couldn’t believe how much math was involved. I’m more of the artistic type of person and I also studied psychology in college. I would love to know more about physics and was wondering if there is a good physics book out there for dummies that you would recommend. I want to be able to help my children with their physics homework. 😀 They are NOT getting out of learning this subject.

    Also, do you have a *funniest moment* while being a consultant for Stargate?

    As a physics person, what do you like to do for fun? I’ve seen some of your colleagues at Disney Hollywood Studios in Orlando on the Tower of Terror making things *float* during the ride. It’s very cool to see. And yes, I’m serious! Whole groups of them come to Disney and perform experiments throughout the park.

    Ok! I hope that makes Joe happy. 😀 I, unlike soooome people *cough*Allie*cough*, will actually get involved when asked. ;D


  84. Hi Joe !

    Could you tell me an adress, postal or URL, where it could be possible to buy some costumes or props, no more used, of SGA, now the series is unfortunately near terminated ??

    Thanks a lot by advance.


  85. Green – Sheppard and McKay would fall at the same rate. Duh!
    As for the prospect of them being caught by fans, it would really depend on the ratio of whumpers to thunkers. Whumpers would step aside as the thunkers would rush forward… There would be cries of “Yess, yesss!” amidst cries of “Nooo, nooo!” Plus there might even be murder and mayhem and more cries of “Get off me!” as the whumpers restrain the thunkers from catching either of them. Yet – since most whumpers are also thunkers maybe the thunk side would win out, and Shep and McKay wouldn’t have to spend a day or so between episodes in the infirmary after being scraped up with the collective fan-base spatula.
    ; – D
    Sadly, Shep’s shirt STILL wouldn’t come off. What’s with that?
    % – {

  86. Thanks to Andy Mikita for dropping by! I’ll never forget when I first watched all of Stargate SG-1, by the time I got to Season four I could generally tell the directors without seeing their names at the start. All of them have different styles, and it’s great to hear from Mikita first-hand with questions from people who watch the show/s.

    Hey Joe, I remember a few months back you were trying out crazy blog entry titles to see if it would get you more or less hits on your blog. I’m wondering: has the addition of the “Weird Food Purchase of the Day” made any difference to your blog stats?

  87. @dasNdanger – I agree with everything you said about the Keller debate that seems to keep going on and on.

  88. Thanks Andy and Joe for answering my questions. It may be a weird thing to say but Joe you look kinda hot in today’s weird food vid, and here I thought you weren’t a t-shirt guy.

    Anyhoo, questions for Mika:

    1. Do any of the writers ever challenge you over things you may have questioned?

    2. I like the website “Insultingly Stupid Movie Physics”. What’s the most glaring scientific error you’ve ever seen in a movie?

    3. Apart from your job, how does your Physics knowledge help you in day to day life? e.g. Do you always win at billiards?

    4. Are you interested in writing science fiction at all?

    5. Do you consult on things on Stargate other than scripts? e.g. Proper lab techniques etc.

  89. Really enjoy the interviews with the producers, writers, actors, FX people, all of them, I have a deeper appreciation for all that goes on and into an episode. So thank you,Joe for doing that and please thank all that participate.

    I for some reason am always a day late or behind in getting my questions to you. You do fine in reminding us, it’s me, not taking better note of things.

    Is there anyway Joe F would answer some questions for us a “going away” present for us fans? Pretty please????Please???

  90. Hello Joe,

    Please thanks Mr Mikita for is very interesting Q&A session.


  91. A few questions for Mika McKinnon.

    Did the previous SG-1 episodes and earlier Atlantis episodes have any Physics issues that could be politely called inept today? Is that why your position on Atlantis was created?

    Are there any occasions that you have to remind a writer that Atlantis is a SciFi show instead of a fantasy show?

    Is any of the writers who need very little help on your part in comparison to the rest of the writers?

    Are you responsible for any of the techno-babble on Atlantis? The fans need someone to blame/praise.

    Final off topic question for Mika. Are you related to one Casey McKinnon of the webcast Galacticast fame?

    @ Anne Teldy, hope you get plenty of rest before the Friday’s show before you get immortalize into Scifi lore. We might finally get to see your namesake’s glorious demise. Maybe I guess correctly and Major Teldy transform into the TPTB’s version a rogue Pegasus vampire.


    I mean, fair is fair, innit?


  93. Mornin’, Joe.. Uh, well.. it’s afternoon on my side of the space-time-thingy..

    Nevermind. Having spent all night painting the white cliffs of Dover (don’t.. ask) and then all morning getting wrapped up in a canvas that kinda resembles ‘Picasso met Easter Island’.. i’m taking a coffee break and catching up on the world in general.

    Feeling kinda crappy and suffering caffeine withdrawl >.>

    Hey, did you know that you’ve been refered to as ‘the power hungry Mallozzi’? Doh.. guess the secret’s out, huh? Does that put your idea of world domination out’ve the window for the time being? No massive effigies of Jewel supplanted across the known dominions of this planet? No forced brainwashing to the Kellerite way of thinking?

    No? That just.. sucks. Ah well, on a cheerier note, the dog’s trying to hack up a furball all over the carpet, so i’d best go and ram a finger or three down his throat. I’ll, uh.. catch up again later. Minus doggy vomit and head-to-toe-paint.


  94. Hello Joe,

    I’m in an oddly restless and inquisitive mood, so you’ll have to excuse the absurd length and monotony of this comment.

    Firstly, a really big, warm bear hug to you, mate. If that’s not too… weird, or anything. I’ve been reading your blog for a few weeks now (incognito) and would like to let you know just how damned entertaining it is. Lots of fun, really engaging and always some deliciously obscure cuisine to admire (and back away from). The effort you put into guest blogging is also awesome, so when I run into in Vancouver one day, the lunch is on me.

    Secondly, and I hate to ever get mixed up in any of these kinds of things, but I want to address one comment:

    Cate said: “Joke or not, you’ve built Keller up so much that those who couldn’t stand her dislike her even more, and those who were on the fence have jumped onto the anti side.”

    Where do you get that?

    I’m not a Keller-devotee, and I’m certainly not a Keller-hater, so in a way I guess you could say that I sit on the fence (though I comfortably dangle my legs in the “devotee” side), and there’s not a single thing that anyone’s SAID that’s changed my opinion of her. What changes my opinion of her is HER. Jennifer Keller, as the intelligent, sweet, rational, slightly whimsical Atlantis MD, and Jewel Staite, as a very talented actress, both of whom I see as rather competent in their respective occupations. If anything, the more exposure I have to each of them, the more my fence seems to give way to the loving side of the field. If you’re seriously letting what someone says in a blog about her influence how you perceive the character (and actress), then I think you’ve gotten a little too preoccupied with stirring debate, rather than actually analysing her as a character.

    Next, a few slightly random questions for Mr. Mallozzi.

    1. Have you ever tried / do you like Vegemite? I’ve never met another person outside of Australia who enjoys it, yet you seem to have a weirder/wider pallete than most, and perhaps be a little braver than the average bear.

    2. Did you ever consider following a career path other than one in film and/or television?

    3. What food can you not stand to eat at all?

    4. Are you a beer, wine or spirits guy?

    Um, and just a few quick questions for Ms. McKinnon (sorry if these are ridiculously late and/or accidentally double-up with previous comments):

    Off the mark, thank you so much for making SG1(?) and SGA sci-fi shows that I can actually introduce my fellow science-nerd buddies to!

    1. I know that on almost every film and television series, particularly on Stargate, the writers see scripting as a continuous process and are constantly updating, editing and changing their stories. My question is, when throughout that process do you start to advise them on the scientific aspects of it? Do the writers begin to ask questions as soon as an idea pops into their heads, or do they wait until, say, a first or second draft to ask you to go over it?

    2. Have there been any scripts (you don’t have to mention any names!) that have come across your desk where the science “fact” has been so totally off the mark that you’ve told the writer to go away and drop the story completely or entirely re-write it? And what were the concepts that they… uh, “got wrong”?

    3. Do you only consult the writers, or have you ever been involved in aiding directors, actors, VFX, SFX, production designers etc. on, for instance, how something would really explode, what that level of energy would, in reality, do to the human body, how to deliver a particular line, or what a prop or set dressing should actually look like?

    4. I don’t know if this is a bit… intrusive, or whatever, but have you ever been frustrated by the lack of scientific knowledge, enthusiasm or recognition by any of the writers? Not in a, “My God, they’re so stupid,” way, but in terms of someone being so attached to, and passionate about a particular story or sequence that they don’t want the science fact to have to hold it back?

    5. How often do you come up against scientific queries or discrepancies that you don’t know how to solve, and have had to go to other specialists to get an answer? Who else do you tend consult, and who do you go to most often?

    6. How much leeway to you tend to “give” the writers with their scripts? Do you draw any “DO NOT CROSS, WILL BE CRUCIFIED BY SCIENTIFIC COMMUNITY” lines, and have there been any broadcast episodes that you’ve been completely “against” because of scientific inaccuracies?

    7. What was the script that gave you the biggest headache – either in terms of how persistent a writer was in including a partcular part, or how complicated a particular physical concept was?

    8. What do you think of characters like Sam, Rodney and Zelenka as representations of people that work in your field (in terms of both personality, intelligence and attitude toward science, as well as their willingness to join top-secret scientific/military contingents on the other side of the universe fighting off seemingly indestructible life-sucking aliens with laser-guns, with unknown funky flashing gadget computers for assistance and the knowledge that they could die at any given moment)?

    9. Lastly (I promise!), is it fun to work on the show? And what is your favourite episode, and why?

    Okay, so maybe not a few. A few, plus a couple. I’m not expecting any, let alone all answered, so… Go nuts if you please. Or stay completely calm. And a huge high-five to all the awesome guest bloggers you manage to haggle into answering them for us, Joe!

    Cheers, finally,


  95. Hi Joe – Thanks again for sharing your blog with the outstanding talents of SGA! Many thanks to Andy for taking the time to answer questions and share his insights into the world of Stargate.

  96. Physics Questions:
    1. What is your process to mix the real and unreal?
    2. What is the latest book you are reading?
    3. Do other people in the physics field write you and comment on the physics in the show?
    4. Do you write the script sections on physics?

    I am always blown away by the scientific discussions on the show – of course, sometimes I am like Jack on SG1 and want to interrrupt to get to the basic of what the others are talking about. Thanks for your work!

  97. hmxb said:
    “Dear Mr M,
    … I am confused on one point though, the fans who complain about Keller being nervous and scared are they the same fans who complain that in general the characters are unrealistic and all have a superhero complex? ”

    I realize this is not directly to your point, but I don’t want to leave the impression that I am anti-Atlanits, or anti super-hero, even.
    I for one, am not. I am a HUGE Atlantis fan, I have all the DVD’s, subscribe to the mag, even have the action figures. In fact, except for a couple of episodes, Season 4 was my favorite season ever, and this year is turning out great too.
    My ONLY beef with this show is the McKay and Keller ship, and it annoys me so much I am moved to post about it.
    If Joe is kind enough to publish my less than loving comments, I don’t see why I wouldn’t continue to voice my opinions. I hope I am not doing it in a crude or hurtful way. I see it more of a critique of a work of art, not person bashing at all.

  98. Thank you, Andy Mikita and thank you, Joe for bringing him to your blog! I have a question for Mika McKinnon if it’s not too late:

    I think someone asked you this before (or a variation of it), but do you wait for the writers to consult you on a script, or do you sometimes brief them with the Coolest New Thing in Science?

    For instance, I know that gate travel and wormholes and even puddlejumpers are awesome technological advances, but I’m kind of surprised that Rodney hasn’t mentioned the Large Hadron Collider at all, even if to brush it off as too “primitive” and therefore not worth his time. 🙂

    I mean, I’m giddy with anticipation at what we could learn from the LHC, and I’m the most amateur of armchair scientists…

  99. Hi Mika,

    It seems like a lot of people have questions about the scientific integrity of science fiction, my question is coming from the other direction – do you think any important scientific discoveries have come from ideas generated from science fiction? And, do you have any guesses as to ones that could come from Stargate? Is there anything about creative and likely non-physics minded folks imagining an alternative reality that frees it from some of the constraints of the scientic method and, occasionally results in something new, amazing and scientifically valid?

  100. A question for Mika (the physics person),

    What do other physicists think of your working on the show? Is it like when musicians write screenplays (and other musicians think they’ve sold out)? Or are people jealous? Do you get other physicists admiring your work? What volume of fan mail do you get?

  101. Question for Mika McKinnon

    1. Were you brought on board because of your physics knowledge or was that a skill that came to use later?

    2. Have you read The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene? It’s a cool book about string theory etc.

    3. As an engineer who has spent several days converting some data from one XML format to a different XML format, I would have to say the engineering aspects of Stargate are (even) less realistic than the science. Have you ever reminded the writers that you can’t build a huge space ship in 2 years, or connect a laptop to an alien computer in 2 minutes? 🙂

  102. Hi again Mr M

    Have just upgraded tower and broadand connectivity…..so it means all my settings were COMPLETELY wiped…Don’t you just hate it when you can’t remember some moronic password that seemed clever at the time, but now is preventing you from accessing email/account?

    Any-hoo, a great THANK YOU to Mr Mikita. A truly generous man to take the time to answer all those questions.

    Question for Dr McKinnon : What did you think of the latest CERN particle-accelerator experiment?

    Thanks again Mr M!


    PS : Meant to ask you….how are those two new fillings doing? and does your dentist know about the WFP of the Day?

  103. Drum rolllll….

    Is everyone ready for Major Anne Teldy arriving on Friday?
    Looking forward to the episode because – a, it is an SG Atlantis Episode; b. OUR Joe has been toiling to make it a great episode, and last BUT NOT least – c. OUR Anne Teldy is virtually featured.
    Is it Friday yet?

  104. I can see the piccies!!! Is that Penny Wraith I spy, looking so content and happy behind Andy? He must have just fed…on a standard-issue Wraith muffin. Penny Wraith and Granny Wig Wraith (sorry, Scott) both died way too easy. *shakes head in dismay*

    Thanks Andy, for all your insights! I wanted to ask a question – but was too lazy to think up one. It would have just been something about directing Wraith actors anyway. 🙄

    Anyhoo…The video wasn’t weird enough for me – it just made me really, really hungry! Garlic and butter! Mmm…mmm…MMM!

    The fruit one yesterday was intriguing…I’ve wanted to try one of those (see them at the Asian market), and now – maybe I will. I mean, I love the smell of gasoline, so surely, I’d like the taste, too…right?

    Or…maybe not.


  105. *waves*

    Das – You think you’ve got Spider problems. This little replispider beast is 50 feet and weighs nearly 40 tonnes. And has invaded my city!!!

    I hear she’s having babies on Sunday to!! 😮


    can’t do the whole link thing. 😆 Joe, thought you might get a kick out of this. 😀 Can you send the team in to rescue me, if it starts climbing my work building. 😆

    Thanks Andy for some great Q&A 😀


  106. If it’s not too late, a question or two for Ms. McKinnon:

    First off, Wow, I admire your job. Lots. I’m an amateur astronomer,work in a planetarium and do as much public outreach in astronomy as possible. It was a comment in a science fiction show many many years ago about plasma physics that got me interested in astronomy and science.

    1. Maybe you might not be able to answer this, but I’d be interested in your opinion….how do you think science fiction shows like Stargate can encourage viewers to take a greater interest in science and astronomy?

    2. Do you keep up with the latest findings in science? And have you ever been so taken with one of those finding that you wanted to work it into a show in some aspect? Or just had to share with anyone in earshot?

    3. How difficult is it to keep in mind ‘artistic liscense’ when it comes to going against what we know about the workings of the universe in a science fiction show?

    4. Who gets to choose those great Hubble images (I assume they’re Hubble) that I occasionally see in an episode?

    Ok…that was actually four.

    Thanks for your time.

  107. Hey Joe,

    Thought I’d give this a shot, since we’re almost through the first half of the season:

    The brilliant one slowly loses his mind, [The Shrine]
    While a group of replacements puts the team in a bind. [The Replacements – shelved – can you give us some tidbits about the story?]

    Wallace’s research a menace let loose. [Outcast]
    The key to success is compress not diffuse. [Be All My Sins Remember’d]

    A relationship blossoms, an engagement is planned. [Quarantine]
    An old enemy sweeps down and gains the upper hand. [Kindred I]

    In an underground chamber the trio is stuck, [Trio]
    While Sheppard battles some really bad luck. [Hexed – see Replacments above for comment]

    A corpse is discovered and John plays detective. [Vegas]
    The city assailed by mutations infective. [The Seed]

    Call the doctor from Earth to help us take action, [Whispers]
    As the death of a loved one spurs McKay into action. [The Last Man]

    Get talked into escorting a precocious young brat. [Harmony]
    The experiment’s minions the team will combat. [Kindred II]

    A battle is waged on the defender’s home field, [Prodigal]
    And the means of production is fully revealed. [Spoils of War]

    Two warriors head off an incursion on Earth. [Midway]
    A mission is snagged by an untimely birth. [Search and Rescue]

    The status quo shifts, a power play made. [Inquisition]
    The arrival of this one leave some feeling dismayed. [Remnants]

    An old friend returns, loyalties are reversed, [Broken Ties]
    And a ghost from the past has us fearing the worst. [Ghost in the Machine]

    Atlantis the target of a mysterious race, [First Contact]
    While myriad permutations are viewed from space. [The Daedalus Variations]

    How’d I do? Not sure about the 3rd last verse, and I seem to remember you saying that there were 2 lines that referred to the mid-season 2-parter…


  108. 1)Will there be harsh words spoken between any of the team members?

    2)Do any of the remaining episodes end on an unhappy note?

  109. In reference to what Andy said about Joe losing his dad, I kinda sensed what Joe said about a personal tragedy at Comic Con – I sensed it was loss, and can totally relate. I understand needing to be around people that mean something to you and wanting to carry on, ” be normal” When I lost my dad and father in law recently I just wanted things to get back to normal, whatever that was – and SGA was part of that “normal” for me and am still in denial of it’s cancellation. It will be like losing someone.

  110. Thanks very much to Mr Mikita for answering our questions! 😀 That was fascinating! 🙂

    Joe, I thought this vid Kimberly(KDVB1) and I put together of fans that were at Dragon*Con this past weekend might brighten your day a little:


    Please share it with the crew and let them know how much the show is loved and appreciated by fans of all ages! And let me add, on a personal note, that I actually *didn’t* much care for SGA when it first aired; I didn’t come around until May of last year, with “Tao of Rodney” — then I went back and saw what I’d missed, in repeats. Kudos to you and the crew (especially DavidH & JoeF) for making me go from indifference/boderline dislike to the far opposite end of the spectrum, full-on adoration! I was a huge fan of Buffy/Angel from the get-go, yet, while I did join their campaigns, I didn’t put even close to the amount of effort into saving them as I have for SG-1, which in turn pales in comparison to my efforts for SGA! That’s how much John, Rodney, and co have come to mean to me.

    Aaanyway … We had a blast at the con this weekend — I didn’t even go to any other fandom programming tracks, just hanging out with other ‘Gaters all weekend. 🙂 We raised $11,000 for the American Heart Association, in honour of Don S Davis — more than alllllll the other fandom tracks COMBINED!! 😀 *HUGS* to all my fellow ‘Gaters! (Oh, and Das? I have a pic or two I think you will enjoy, when I get them all edited. ;))

  111. A question for Ms. Mika Mckinnon:

    Have you found that the scripts that cross your desk need quite a lot of work before they resemble something that could remotely resemble actuality. Also, would you call your job creative science interpreting, or something else?

    Thanks for the great work.

  112. @ Cheeky lil Devil – 😯

    uh – yeah. I’m blaming any nightmares on YOU!



  113. Mr.M,

    This whole anit/pro Keller Gemini ‘thing’ has had me thinking about people miss-interpreting the written word. Some things are better understood, because they are in print, but some things like sarcasm are harder for people to ‘get’ because they are missing the body language of the writer.
    Do you find, when writing scripts, the same can be said… or does this kind of thing get caught when you and the other writers give notes?

    Also a question for Mika McKinnon: Are any of the equations we see in the episodes on white boards and such real? or are they gibberish? Who comes up with them?
    Thank-you for taking the time to answer our many questions!

  114. Hey Joe…..I hope you don’t mind but I’m a little confused…You said on an earlier blog a while ago that Teyla fans would enjoy The shrine….I don’t understand why you would have thought that.Teyla was practically invisible in this episode?

    Will Teyla only be prominent in 2 more episodes this season,the queen and prodigal.Does that mean she’ll be in the background for the rest of the season?

  115. I am looking forward to tomorrow night very much. I wrote about my plans on blog yesterday.

    Short version: viewing party here in my cell room at the “Home”.

    💡 Mr. M, if you put it in the mail today, I wouldn’t get it until after the show airs. :mrgreen:

    Anne Teldy

  116. @dasNdanger

    yes its me again. I meant to write this in the early comment to you, but I was in a hurry and was running late for an appointment.

    You probably already know this but did you know that the guy who plays Todd, Chris Heyedrehl (sp) is going to be a regular on Sanctuary with Amanda Tapping. He wont be in Wraith makeup so it wont be the same but I thought you should know in case you didn’t.

    Joe, one more question. When you video tape yourself in restaurants do people look at you strange or are they use it by now?

  117. Bravo Joe, on defending the Keller character. As a fan of the series I enjoy the fact that she is a fish out of water in many of the situations she is thrust into.

    It is very interesting that some are quick to critize a character for behaving in a realistic manner. Case in point is “Missing”. Keller is scared (Heaven forbid, someone actually be terrified of the idea of being pursued by someone who is trying to kill them). Her reactions to the challenges and Teyla’s solutions to them are extremely believable. To expect her behave like a seasoned vetern of the Pegasas Galaxy and just say ‘oh sure, cross a chasm on a flimsy bridge, no big deal!’ when they themselves would throwing a hissy fit and screaming “No friking way am I crossing that” is hypocritical.

    It is irriating that these individuals believe they can comment on how someone should or should not react to situations they themselves have never encountered and do have a inch of experience in.

    As to Jewel Strait…I think she is a fine actress and I have enjoyed her character immensely.

    Her performance in the ‘Shine’ was spot on.

    I am looking forward the rest of the season and to the new series as well.


  118. @ wolfenm – Can’t wait – unless it’s spider pictures! 😉

    @ tamijb – Thanks! I knew Chris was in about 5 episodes of Sanctuary, not sure if he’ll be in more than that. I’m familiar with him from Blade Trinity, Smallville, and a couple other things (inc., of course, his performance as Halling). Personally, I’m a tad partial to Chris when he’s a pallid, eyebrow-challenged life-sucker, but I’ve totally enjoyed his other performances, too. I’m looking forward to finally seeing Sanctuary, though I’m really gonna miss his messy Todd hair and spiffy leather coat. 🙂 Thanks for the reminder, though! Brain like a sieve here, so I tend to forget stuff…even those important ‘hey, that’s the guy who plays Todd!’ sightings.


  119. @ Cheeky Lil Devil: PLEASE videotape it for us, if possible?! I want to see, and since there’s no way in hell I’m going to Liverpool…I’m in the US, and I have no money for a plane ticket. Damn…I can’t, unless someone captures that show on film.

  120. Random food question of the day: Do you ever eat “good old American food” like hot dogs, peanut butter and jelly, pizza, et cetera??? After eating at Fuel and all of your other amazing restaurants normal food must seem pretty bland!!!

    Questions for Mika:
    *What is your degree in???
    *How did you get the job as physics consultant???
    *How much input do you have in the “technobabble” that we hear? Do the scripts say “insert technobabble here” or do the writers have a decent grasp of the majority of the physics concepts in the show?
    *The actors (particularly Amanda Tapping and David Hewlett) always sound like they know what they’re talking about when they spout technobabble. Do you go over the concepts with them before shooting those scenes???

  121. Awwww Das but she’s so sweet, and she’s gonna be a momma. She just needs lots of TLC. I’m sure you’ll like her once you get to know her. 😉 The scientists are with her tonight, then tomorrow she’s going to go for a walk down the street, then she’ll head to the docks where she’s going to be sung to sleep. Then when she wakes up, she’ll have her bath to relax her in time for her to have her babies. I mean what’s not to love about that. And look, she’s smiling. 😉 😛 😀

  122. Thanks to Andy for the guest blog, love him. Also love Martin Wood. Will he be directing any episodes this season or did the timing not work out due to his commitments to Sanctuary? P.S. love you too Joe (didn’t want you to feel left out :))

  123. I haven’t got much of a chance to read comments lately (darn Qualifying Exam), so I apologize in advance for any repeated questions.

    Questions for Mika McKinnon….

    1) How do you stay abreast of the new physics discoveries? Do you have favorite journals to read?

    2) Have you ever had to shoot down an entire script idea because the science is in no way feasible?

    3) I know in science that it is how you say it as much as what you’re saying. Do you have to consult during shooting as well as script writing?

    Thanks for your time!

  124. @ das Here ya go! 😀


    I have a couple other shots, but that one’s the best. I have one of the shorter wraith eating dinner that night, but unfortunately it was far too dark in the sports bar — you can’t really see anything in it. *Sigh*

    You probably would have liked the dinner, Joe — the best ribeye I’ve ever had! *drools at the memory*

    Oh, I almost forgot — @ Joe & especially Mr Mikita: I watched The Shrine in HD over the weekend! I’d thought the episode was amazing enough on my regular old TV, but in HD it was simply stunning!! Even the sound quality seemed better, so I caught more nuances in inflections and expressions! Simply amazing …

  125. @Keirberos: Thanks for the input. 🙂 It was just strange because Annabelle seemed totally fine for the first couple of weeks. I’ve also realized something else that isn’t helping poor Annabelle. Our seven year old daughter, Erin, has been very, VERY clingy with Annabelle. Erin has always loved Annabelle the most and made no bones about it. It didn’t matter what the rest of us said to her. When Sebastian had his stroke and Erin found out that he’d not survive it, she started to panic and said, “We have to spend as much time with him! We haven’t spent ENOUGH time with him!” Of course we all knew she regretted how she’d felt about him. Now she’s determined to spend as much time as possible with Annabelle. Whether Annabelle enjoys it or not. So the rest of us are having to make sure Erin gives Annabelle breaks. Annabelle had never growled before but she’s had to give Erin plenty of warnings. Not real angry growls just those low, “You are in my face and I’m really sick of you so go away” kind of growls.

    Ugh! SORRY this is so long. It helps so much to talk to others who understand and have experience with this. I truly appreciate it.

    Life is complicated.

    @Das: Dead bee… live spider… honestly? Both equally scary for me. This one time at horse camp my friends and I were in our cabin ready for bed and started telling ghost stories. And the girl telling the story didn’t know that a fat, juicy spider was descending on a web right to the top of her head! 👿 NONE of us could speak until it was almost on her head. Then we all screamed and pointed. She finally realized *SOMETHING* was about to land on her head and moved away. Then we all ran around screaming in sheer terror. One of the counselors came in, yelled at us to stop, and had the spider land on her head! When SHE realized this, SHE flipped out. Then apologized for yelling at us. AFTER she’d found the spider and rid her hair of him, of course. 😉

    Good times. Good times.

    On a TOTALLY random note… Did I tell anyone on here that my mom got carded yesterday? 😯 Yes… MY MOM! WHILE she was with my two girls. We are still trying to figure that one out. The waitress was NOT hitting on her. THAT is for sure. My mom wishes someone had video taped it because she said her face must have looked hilarious. Too bad I was making STUPID CHOCOLATES for my sisters wedding! 😛

    Which, BTW, I should go and finish now. Chocolates for 70 people is nearing completion! WOO HOO!!! 😆


  126. Sorry to spam post but I gotta say…

    DUUUUUDE… anyone see the shiny brand new commercial with Jerry Seinfeld and Bill Gates? It’s an actual MICROSOFT commercial. It’s really funny and makes no sense.

  127. Joe to waiter: “Do you have frog legs?”
    Waiter to Joe: “Why yes”
    Joe to Waiter: “Well hop over to the kitchen and get me some food”.

    *hears chirping crickets*

    I guess the ol’ ‘tastes like chicken’ cliche is passe! So it’s “tastes like alligator” now… it’s the new black?

    Oh and does alligator taste like croc??

    I’m curious.. I’m assuming it does.

    What’s the weirdest food your pugkids have eaten? (accidentally or deliberately)

  128. oh and to add to the question : it can be a non food item that’s ingested by your pugkids…

  129. Hey Joe,

    With Atlantis shutting down soon and Universe said to be on it’s way for Summer 2009, What your best guess on when we’ll be hearing more about both the Atlantis movie and casting details, or more developed series plot details on Universe?

    Thank you for your time,

  130. @dasNdanger – I didn’t know that Chris Heydrehl played Halling. I should have known by the voice. Your right he is a good actor. I can’t wait for Sanctuary either, but I can’t wait to see Amanda Tapping again on screen. It will be interesting to see her play something other than Carter. I know she will be good. I figured you would prefer Chris Heydrehl in Wraith makeup.

    Joe sorry to bug you with another question. I saw Ripple Effect again on Sci fi. I know it is an old episode, but it is my favorite SG1 ep. I have a question. What did the first Mitchell mean when told the original Mitchell “when the time comes cut the green one”.


  131. Hi Joe!

    I quoted your “You know, it never ceases to amaze me…” paragraph on my blog – with appropriate linkage and names. I’ve been dealing with a complete and total twit the past two days who has said things about me that aren’t suitable for this blog. (What a jerk!)

    Anyway, reading Andy’s Q&A (sorry I didn’t have time to submit a question!) and the mailbag really perked up my day. Thanks!

    Also, the Weird Food of the Day. Frog legs taste like alligator? OK – chewy fishy chicken. Got it. (Yes, I violated my “no reptiles, no baby animals” food rule this one time – for reasons that are no one’s business.)

    Have a lovely evening!


  132. It’s probably too late, but my boyfriend is on a business trip in Toronto and took awhile to get back to me, but he has some questions for Mika. He’s a mathematician and computer programmer, so his questions are a bit more technical.

    “When something is beamed by an Asgard beaming technology beam – does it maintain its original momentum?

    Stargate explores the idea of a ‘time dilation field’ in which time appears to move more quickly or slowly within the field — Would the velocity of light passing though such a field be affected by this, and if so, would there be refractive and or reflective properties to the boundary of such a field? This seems pretty obvious if the boundary were sharp (pool of water), but if the boundary was a gradual change?”

  133. Question about “Whispers” . . . might that be Christina Cox that we got a little glimpse of in the preview?

    BTW . . . this Nisei Girl will let you keep the Duc Tung . . . she doesn’t want it! ;o)

    Hope you’re doing well!


  134. Here’s a non-SGA-related note for you, primarily because I just noticed the F Paul Wilson site on your blogroll column:

    The website I write for just got a submission-for-review from a fantastic new director named Ian Fischer who has done a short-film adaptation of F Paul Wilson’s story “Foet”…don’t know if you’re familiar with the story, but I highly suggest searching for a copy of the short (that is, if it hasn’t already gotten to you, in which case this whole comment would just be moot). Maybe I could talk him into sending one your way…

    Happy Friday!

  135. While it’s always funny to watch people pitch fits on this blog…

    When someone says they’re exercising their ‘right to free speech’ here, that’s not exactly true… A blog is property of someone… kinda like a house or something… and if you don’t want someone peeing on your lawn, you can tell them so. If you had a raving lunatic spouting crap in your house, they’d be out of place/kicked out/called out. Same goes here I would think. A blog is someone’s personal property… not a public forum. We’re all guests here!

    I believe John Scalzi had an excellent post on this concept awhile ago… but I can’t remember exactly when.

  136. Hey howdy … much catching up to do. Did ya miss me and my self-centered ramblings? I missed rambling fer shure. And weird food and doggums. Lemons? Now I’m craving lemon meringue pie.

    Dust mask? Heeeheee … I could have used that this year. Four major dust storms, apparently big enough to make the news that folks bailed from Burning Man. Not us, we toughed it out. Still, it was a bummer the fire conclave show was canceled. And some idjit put a ciggie out on my hubby’s forehead when asked to stop smoking next to the fuel station. That was fun. Anyway, I survived. I’ll be doing laundry and rinsing off gear for weeks yet. Already planning for next year.

    A few mundane pics on flickr:


    Blog to follow eventually.

    Hey Anne Teldy, ya get mail from Black Rock yet? I sent it, but got delayed on the way to the post office. They like us at the Golden Cafe and we got drunk instead of mailing mail on Friday. Got around to it Saturday morning; the volunteer postal clerks are far less surly if you bribe them with Foster’s oilcans.

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