The Caliph of Corridor Scenes
The Caliph of Corridor Scenes





November 4th may have been a momentous day in the history of the America, but so far as my dogs are concerned, yesterday, November 7th, was the day that will live in their hearts forever. It started with Fondy noticing a puddle of water at the base of our refrigerator. Assuming it was the ice dispenser acting up, we cleaned up the mess and set a glass in place to capture any run-off. About an hour later, I walked into the kitchen and noticed another pool of water amassing at the foot of the refrigerator. And the glass I’d set beneath the ice dispenser was empty. Puzzled, I opened the freezer and discovered the source of the problem: the compartment was a comfy room temperature. The meats had thawed out, the leftovers were defrosting, and the various ice creams had been reduced to a collection of milkshake. I salvaged what I could, moving it into the freezer in the garage, then shifted focus to the refrigerator proper. Like the freezer section, it had, as my father was fond of saying, “given up the ghost”. I packed up whatever items I thought could best weather a Vancouver winter and set them out on the back porch, gambling that the raccoons would be thrown off by a box marked Diamond Comic Distributors (“I know it smells like food, Sid, but it says comics right on the box.”). As for the rest, what was a write-off we wrote off and what was still edible – well, we fed to the dogs. So, in a spectacular canine culinary extravaganza, Jelly and co. chowed down on: ground beef, ground bison, ground veal, chicken, steak, and steamed rice.

As for us, it looks like Fondy and I will be going out to eat for the foreseeable future. In other words: business as usual.

Hey, I’m pleased to see many of you enjoyed The Prodigal. Carl Binder – the Sultan of Scripts, the Duke of Dialogue, the Baron of Bottle Shows – works his magic once again, weaving a tale fraught with action, suspense, humor, and a spectacular climactic visual effects sequence that made co-show runner Paul Mullie, as my father was fond of saying “bats in the belfry”. A few of notes of interest concerning this episode:

1. When first outlined, this story was a cross between Carl’s earlier Red Shirt Diaries pitch and the finished product you saw. In this early version, we follow a team of unsung characters as they mount a resistance to Michael and ultimately help our team save the city. However, after some discussion, it was decided that the significance of the story demanded that our team be front and center.

2. After much back and forth, it was decided that this episode would mark Atlantis’s final confrontation with Michael. His ultimate power play was undermined in Kindred I and II (last season) and he’s been on the run ever since. His forces compromised, his resources dwindling, he stages one last desperate gamble to turn the tables and regain the upper hand.

3. It can be argued (as Michael so succinctly does in this episode) that Michael has every right to be angry and seek revenge on Atlantis for having created him in the first place – but it shouldn’t be forgotten that, originally, Michael was a wraith and, thus, their enemy. Sure, from a big picture standpoint you can draw parallels between their feeding on humans and our feeding on animals but, when it comes right down to it, if some thing is about to devour you or your loved ones, you will fight back – and you’ll do everything within your power to ensure they never threaten them again. Which brings us to…

4. Teyla’s delivering the coup de grace at episode’s end. Now some have complained that this was pretty ruthless of her and my response to that would be – yep, it was. But why so surprised? We’ve seen this side of Teyla before, most notably in Missing where her warrior side took over in cruel yet effective fashion. Add to that the fact that she now has a child to protect, a son who has been threatened Michael on two separate occasions. Rather than risk a third attempt, she ended the threat.

5. I was down on set talking to actress Sharon Taylor while this episode was being written, and she mentioned that she was a kickboxing instructor. Intrigued, I mentioned it to Carl who happily incorporated these ass-kicking abilities into the second draft of the script. Sharon’s performance garnered accolades from all around, but especially from stunt coordinator James Bamford and fellow actor Jason Momoa.

6. Running gag #1: Whenever we screened this episode in the writers’ room and we got to the scene where Michael gets on the P.A. and promises to turn off the self-destruct and save the city in exchange for her son, one of us would pipe up: “Teyla, it’s Chuck! Give him the baby!”

7. Running gag #2: Whenever Michael would drop off the ledge and plummet down into the darkness, we would imagine Chuck stepping out onto one of the lower balconies for a smoke – only to get creamed by Michael who, fall broken, would hop up none the worse for wear and make good his escape.

8. While they were shooting the climactic tower fight sequence, there was one take in which Connor flipped the Sheppard stunt actor who was supposed to roll and save himself by grabbing hold of a part of the structure – only the stuntman missed and went right over, landing amidst the safety mats below. Connor immediately threw his arms up in triumph and shouted: “I WIN!!!”, much to the crew’s delight.

It’s episodes like this that really make me sad the show has ended.  Only six original episodes left.  As my father was fond of saying: “Wouldn’t that jar your preserves.”

108 thoughts on “November 8, 2008: Doggy Delight and Some Prodigal Notes

  1. I agree about Teyla taking out Michael, its the mom factor, and with her history, who wouldnt do the same? Oh, and the Michael winning the fight thing, that should be on the dvd, lol.

  2. Having Teyla be the one to kill Michael at the end wasn’t a shock for me. I know that a mother will do anything to protect her child. I was left wondering, “Alright Michael how are you going to get out of this one?” I am a little sad to see Michael gone, but I know scifi has a way around the death of a character. I have to admit though, and this is nothing against Connor as an actor, but I’ve liked Todd better than Michael. I think Todd can bring more to the future movie storylines than Michael could. While I think most of us would like to think of Todd as an ally, we have to remember that he’s still a Wraith. Whereas Michael was an enemy right from the get go. And I think I’ll stop there because I can go on and on comparing the two.

    I’m also counting how many episodes we have left and I’m sad but I keep reminding myself that we have movies coming next year.

  3. Joe, Prodigal was great. As a mother of 3 I thought Teyla was right on. One question though, do you think John or Teyla’s “mission report” would say that , In the ensuing fight, Michael accidently fell to his death, or I kicked his ass and gave him what he deserved”. Thanks for your time.

  4. Great episode last night. I’m glad that there was finality in the death of Michael. Not that I didn’t enjoy the character, but I did feel that the story had come to a fitting conclusion, and it should also stop incesant asking if Michael will be in one of the upcoming movies. Sometimes people really do die, even in Scifi.

    I was wondering about the kickboxing gate tech. It was a nice addition to the episode. Kudos to Carl for including the sequence. Ronon’s surprise to her fighting ability was, I’m sure, felt by many fans. However, when Teyla then later hands off her baby to the same ass-kicking character, I felt a bit disappointed. I was hoping to see her involved one more time. Seeing how it ended with Teyla striking the final blows against Michael, I can see that Ms. Taylor’s character would have been merely a bystander to the final action.

    I look forward to the remaining episodes with anticipation, while at the same time not really wanting the final new SGA to air.

  5. Hi Joe,

    Please extend my immense gratitude to Carl Binder for such an awesome show! I was wondering, in Prodigal, whose baby was that? Was it Rachel’s real Baby? I could not see the credits as SCIFI…”Skiffy” always makes the credits to small to read on the TV…. So please tell us, whose baby is that in real life?

    I too am very sad that there are only 6 more first run show to go! It will be a bittersweet day in January! Please give Carl a big bear hug from the fans. He out did himself in the Prodigal!

    Thanks so much!
    Patricia Lee

  6. I haven’t seen Prodigal yet, thanks to getting the new TV set up, but I did check to make sure it was recorded by the DVR. It all seems to be there, although in about three segments. I can deal with that. We are still stuck with 3 remotes to operate everything, but we’ll let GeekBoy work on that later.

  7. At first, Teyla kicking Michael off was a bit, well, unsettling. But the final scene with her holding her son & smiling justified it.

    And did you have to say, “6 more episodes”? I was in the “ignorance is bliss” mode & not aware of how few there were 🙁

    Just don’t add a widget to the top of the blog !!

  8. I thought the whole episode flowed beautifully. I caught myself yelling “F— you, Michael, you’re gonna die!” more than once. My poor husband (who is more into SG-1) had no idea what was going on. I think the choice to have Teyla kill Michael was right on. I’ll bet dollars to donuts that most mothers would not think twice if her children were threatened by this creep.

    Don’t your dogs get diarrea from eating all that?

  9. Thanks for the pics.

    I adored The Prodigal. In my opinion, the best Atlantis episode this season since “Search & Rescue”. Both S& R and The Prodigal are among my top favorite episodes ever.

  10. Prodigal was GREAT!!! Thanks for sharing the notes.

    But I kind of wish the episode had ended like this: Micheal is standing by the ledge about to kick Sheppard off. McKay grabs his remote control car; drives it towards Michael; Michael is startled, slips on the car and falls to his death.

  11. I, too, thought that Teyla was being a bit ruthless, but I do understand that she did it for her son. One thing that I still don’t understand, though, is why Teyla seemed so afraid in front of Michael. Every time she said something and he answered, she would take a step back and hold Torren harder. Also, I was wondering where Chuck was while all of this was going on. Was he on leave on Earth?

    The writing was amazing, and I loved all the little things, like Teyla scared but still smiling at Torren while she was hiding to keep him calm, and Zelenka trying to use the headset before remembering to use the handheld radio when he got excited. More reasons why I love the acting, and I’m incredibly upset at Atlantis’ cancellation.

    As for the fanfiction, I understand why you wouldn’t want to read more things about Atlantis. I probably wouldn’t either. There are some fanfics, though, that I think deserve recognition from the writers as something that could have been an episode. They’re the fans trying to explore things that never happened on the show itself, and they were especially helpful to me after SG-1 was cancelled, because it’s like going back in time and seeing what happened that was never aired.

    Those category names were hilarious. I tend not to read the romantic fanfics, but I definitely want to find those. Also, I want to say that I think that a crossover between either SG-1 or Atlantis and NCIS would be perfect, because NCIS deals with naval crimes, and there are lots of Marines that die on Stargate. There have already been a lot of them written, and I’m sure that there will be a lot more, especially after “Vegas” airs.

    About the e-mails that you got- have you responded to any of them with your alter-egos?

  12. Joe,

    I’m with you, buddy. It’s episodes like this that make me sad that the show will be over soon. Thank Carl for us.



    PS. Next week, Remnants! \o/

  13. lmao.. “The Caliph of Corridor Scenes”

    Yup.. Just about sums Carl’s little team moments up. Loooved the episode. Have just finished watching it again. And again. And again..

    And, Joe… !!

    What have you done to Shep??!!

    *has just watched the scifi trailer for ‘Remnants’ and doesn’t know whether to scream or bounce with a mad squee*

    This is gonna be such a loooooong, long week >.>

  14. Hiya Joe, just checking out what’s going on in your life. Your refrigerator meltdown sounds amazingly familiar, but sadly, you missed out on the unsurpassable sensory experience of discovering the appliance failure after a looooong vacation at the height of summer. The then-boyfriend and I consumed much whiskey in order (paradoxically enough) to stay conscious while disposing of rotten meat and dairy products, cleaning well-aged chicken blood out of every crook and nanny in the freezer (okay, yeah, I got that from CSI: Miami [not] ), and all the miscellany (like the refrigerator-roll package, which, its yeast activated by warmth, was looking to turn into the giant Pillsbury Doughboy from Ghostbusters.) I’m wondering if I can modify the story and sell it to Eureka, and then play opposite the studly Niall Matter as Zane Donovan’s new main squeeze. “As much chance as the Pats have of winning the Super Bowl,” as my father was fond of saying once upon a time.

    “Prodigal” made for excellent watching, and, as you said, triggers sadness — as do many, many other episodes — over the show’s impending demise. You guys have overseen the making of one of the best TV shows it’s been my good fortune to watch. Kudos and best of luck to the entire cast and crew.

    Amelia T., happily kickboxing Atlantis’s enemies in the padded cell of her little mind

  15. I’m glad Teyla kicked Michael off the edge, but I admit I was hoping for some stomp and grind action (stomp on his hand, grind the heel of her boot). Kicking his fingers was a nice touch, though. The fight scene on the ledge was really cool, especially when the camera pulled away and you could see where they were.

    So sad there are only 6 episodes left. =( At least we have SGU to look forward to! Will that be starting up next year (so that we don’t have to go a season without Stargate)?

  16. Joe,
    I loved Prodigal; it’s what I enjoy so much about Stargate: great action, some humor, and a lot of fun.
    My only suggestion would be to add in a Wiley Coyote style dust ‘poof’, when Michael hits bottom.

    I’m sad to see this show going away, but optimistic for the future with movies and Universe.

  17. Mr Mallozzi, please, if you can manage it: I urgently need a few more ‘Vegas’ spoilers or I will die a cruel and painful death. 😥

  18. Yes, it does jar my preserves.

    As far as Teyla goes, it made for a great shocking moment. In real life, I would never of done that, but since it is a show and, well, Michael was once a Wraith and would of probably have been killed if they didn’t try the experiment, then he was expendable for the safety of Torren John.

    Don’t you get tired of eating out all the time? I love it, but I find when I am on vacation and eating out 3 meals a day, I kind of get tired of eating after the 3rd day. So, I don’t know if I could do that every night of the week or close to it. I should try it just to see.

  19. Ha, this is fun! I watched the episode and uhm
    1. I really loved the kickbox scene as her attack looked really, really good (hire professional fighters more often!)
    2. During the final confrontation, I was thinking about Joe Flanigan’s comment in some interview about greenscreen filming and how to save costs they’d try to keep the actor’s movements in front of a real set and greenscreen the rest. Thanks for showing the real set with pics! (And wow, that DVD special about lighting being one of the most important things on set wasn’t exaggerating!)
    3. Michael nearly killed her, kidnapped her son, tried to kill Sheppard and Ronon (who are both very important to her) and *everybody* on Atlantis… Teyla had every reason to kick Michael off the cliff. The thing that worries me is that she seemed to take a sadist pleasure crushing first one hand, then the other – the outfit seemed to confirm this, too. This isn’t the direction you’re taking her the rest of the season is it?
    4. Overall this episode had that true stargate feel to it again, and the team felt whole (despite lacking keller, carson and weir). Niiiice!
    5. LOVED Rodney/Shep suicide mission interaction! (and the cars thing too actually. I was already wondering when we’d see somebody rollerskating down those hallways – those atlantis floors look perfect for roller figure skating! – but this is fun too!)

    6. Why didn’t Michael anticipate that somebody of the stunned personnel might know how to open a locked door? He’s opened locked Atlantis doors himself, he knows it’s not difficult!
    7. Last season, stuck with Keller and Sam in a cave episode, we saw Rodney actually had acquired good stamina over the years. Why’s it out the window all of a sudden now? You’d think he’d be training MORE to impress his sweetheart Keller now, not less?
    8. Ronon supposedly “hiding” behind the gateroom christmaslights stairs. From that angle, had the guard looked even the slightest bit to the right he’d have seen him. Very unprofessional for a Runner.

    Things I wonder:
    9. After the inertiadampenersless puddlejumper incident, is Woolsey gonna make safety belts and airbags mandatory on all jumpers now?
    10. How come Zelenka hasn’t started breeding pigeons on Atlantis yet? Plenty of space and they could be used for suicide bombing missions when they run out of drones, Worms World Party style!.. >:) (you know how in Worms you dig in 1 or 2 of your worms and they survive and then the computer does the same thing and you end up trying to blast each other with homing missiles and flying sheep and pigeons? that’s what this episode kinda felt like, so…)

    Uhmmm end rant. (sorry ’bout spamming your blog full lately, Joe).

  20. @ scary & Joe – Defending yourself when under attack is one thing, but hunting, capturing and experimenting on someone against their will (Steve and Michael) is morally abhorrent, especially when you condemn others for doing the same (*think US government condoning the torture of Iraqi prisoners…until they got caught… while condemning other governments for doing the same). That the Lanteans have never really taken responsibility and admitted they were wrong for what they did to both Michael and Steve, but instead have justified it at every turn, is what I have a major problem with (I have not had a chance to watch the ep yet, so I don’t know if they acknowledge their reprehensible acts, or not – I’m basing my comments on the previous episodes). There is just no justification for what they did to the Wraith called Michael, none at all. They destroyed a life in the most immoral of ways, forced him to become something that he was not, then whined about it when he went rogue, as if he was solely responsible for what he became. Now…well…they can rest easy because they’ve gotten rid of their mistake. How convenient for them…no more unpleasant reminders of how wrong they have been.

    Jinx said: “At first, Teyla kicking Michael off was a bit, well, unsettling. But the final scene with her holding her son & smiling justified it.”

    Again – this disturbs me. A cop shoots a bank robber, and the cop has to take time off to make sure he’s not psychologically affected by the shooting. Soldiers coming home from war are often so traumatized by the lives they’ve taken that they can no longer function in normal society (family experience). And yet the Lanteans kill, kill, kill…and still go about their happy, well-adjusted way as if they’ve never shed a drop of blood.

    It doesn’t happen like that in real life unless you have no heart. I dunno, I guess I’m just not cut out for the mentality of this show. I hoped for something different when I first started watching – and I was encouraged by the events in S4. But lately things are just going in the opposite direction – the Lanteans will always be right, the Wraith will always be wrong, and that’s that. I really believed the show itself was progressing towards a ‘common ground’ between foes, but I have little hope now of seeing that happen. NOT because of Michael, but because of…well, honestly, the writers’ attitude towards the Wraith in general. There is just no progression of ideas regarding Wraith/human relations, with the exception of Todd, and…yeah. I have no hope left for him, either.


  21. Why start storylines only to never finish them or ignore them completley.
    Why tease fans with various relationships when you never intend to do anything with them.
    Why ignore certain characters and focus on the same few over and over.
    Why throw a bone to a certain fandom then almost on a whim pull it away.
    Why hint at certain pairings and then deny anything was ever between them.

    This has been my biggest complaint on SGA. I understand the writers have to write their own vision but I have never seen writers who deliberately mess with fans. You contradict yourselves when it comes to shipping and seem to flit from one pairing to another with no real substance for any of them. Why build up relationships for years and then kill them overnight. How can this fanbase ever grow if the PTB constantly swap one fanbase for another. Dump characters and ongoing relationships for new and shiny characters and sudden new relationships.

    It’s a shame that the PTB don’t seem to have any loyalty or resepct for fans who have watched SGA since the beginning and got pulled into storylines and relationships that were just dumped or ignored for no apparant reason. That seems to have been a theme on SGA to start something and never finish it, or just pretend it never existed.

  22. “I WIN!” …love it. 😀 Cheers to Connor for an awesome bad guy, he will be missed. If you happen to see him, ask him what he’s up to next for us.

    And yeah, I’m right there with you. Somebody needs to take this episode to the Powers that Be, show it to them, and then shake them violently. “Look at this. What were you THINKING canceling this? Are you insane??”

  23. Hey Joe,

    It’s been a while (again) since I’ve dropped by to comment, but like always I’ve been reading it almost daily.

    Apparently finishing off a university degree is more time consuming than I first thought, but since I’ll be done in a week I’m sure I’ll be here more regularly. I’m really looking forward to getting back into the BOTMC books actually – I’ve missed leisurely reading.

    Lucky dogs! But it sounds like there was a lot of food that ended up spoiled. Do you think your fridge is gone for good?

    But, seeing as you now have to eat out, can we look forward to some more restaurant reviews?


  24. Can I just say I love Carl Binder? He’s a genius. From the remote control races and the Speed racer line to the balcony fight scene – wow!

    I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the Michael arc. All of the shades of grey made our heroes more real. Connor has portrayed him brilliantly. Michael’s my fave wraith.

    With regard to the fanfic post the other day, I was watching Angel the other night and thought of a slash pairing – Lorne/Lorne – Lorne from Atlantis with Lorne from Angel. Perhaps it could be Lorne Green 😉 Kavan would be shaking his head – he already thinks I’m crazy. I’m going to check in a few days for a Sheppard/potted plant fic. I’m sure someone will write one.

    Speaking of Green, is there a toe update?

    Cheers, Chev

  25. So, are you there yet? have you cleared security yet? You DO have round trip tickets do you not? I’d hate to believe the super secret project involves you taking up residence in Japan and producing their next generation of anime…
    Thanks for the peaks behind Prodigal. Rewatching the episode has only added to my pleasure and enjoyment of it. And I’ve never been a big Michael fan, despite the quality of writing in episodes he’s appeared in. So it was doubly fun watching Teyla deal him his final blow. Now, icing on the cake would be a line or two in the remaining episodes with Ronon whining about Teyla robbing Ronon of the pleasure of finishing off Michael.
    Running gag number 7. I don’t suppose you actually filmed such a scene, maybe as an easter egg for the season five dvds? Perhaps the animation department could cobble something together? Sympathies on the dead fridge. Had that misfortune, and with no doggies to dispose of the ruined food. Glad to see you have a back up freezer at least. Thanks as always for the chuckles, and the pics.

  26. Joe,

    I agree with the decision to have Teyla be the one to end the threat of Michael going after her son again. That was one of those moments that I was just stunned that it was actually in the! Gutsy call.

    Only 6 espisodes left!!! Oh how I hate to think of no more Atlantis on Friday nights!! The last epsiode will indeed be a bittersweet one to watch 🙁

    Getting all despressed again!

  27. “…but it shouldn’t be forgotten that, originally, Michael was a wraith and, thus, their enemy.”

    By this logic, then the Wraith should be equally justified for everything they do to their enemy, the Lanteans…correct?


  28. I hate it when freezers thaw. Ours did while we were on vacation over the summer. Came back and everything was all melty and gross.

    I love bison! I thought I was about the only person who knew how delicious ground bison was, but apparently not! Never had veal though..

  29. Hey Joe,
    I did get to see The Prodigal and I liked it. I was really hoping to LOVE it it..but it was just like for me..I did Love some things.

    Loved..Ronon and Woosley
    Loved Banks kicking ass! I was blown away..loved the knee to the chest kicks if thats what they are called. Wish we could have seen more of her.
    Loved McKay, Sheppard, Zelenka, and Lorne 🙂

    I didn’t like that Teyla just ran and hid. Looking at the big picture I understand but I was really hoping for a fight fest between her and Michael.

    I didn’t like that Ronon fell over and almost died..with all this talk about a significant death I really thought he was a goner..especially when Michael wanted a trophy.. <–looking back I wonder why I was so scared since I know he is in the next couple of epi..but anyhoo..for a second I was don’t ever do that again!

    Did Keller’s scenes get cut? Of course I don’t know for sure if she was to be in this epi but awhile back you mentioned she was in 15 of the 20 (you could have just been messing with the person who asked) But I was just wondering, since she wasn’t in this one her count is down to 14…..

  30. Joe,

    Prodigal was a great episode, not a la Search and Rescue or The Queen for me, but very good.

    If this had been before Missing, I would have been surprised at Teyla’s cold reaction towards Michael, but like you wrote, we’ve seen this dark side of Teyla. She’s ruthless and capable of anything when it comes to the ones she loves. Ronon was out to kill him, John was out to kill him, who better than Teyla to want to do the same after everything he’s done to her and knowing that as long as he’s alive, her son, her friends, her life, the entire Pegasus, would be in danger. I agree completely that she was the best choice to execute his verdict.

    I only have one observation overall based on your statement on denied relationships like Sheppard and Teyla on TV. I realized that the decision was made and whatnot, but I had hoped that after seeing Search and Rescue and hearing comments from the Comic Con that the relationship between John and Teyla would be touched upon one way or another before the end of the series. It seems like it’s not going to happen, at least not how I hoped.

    The only thing I can share is that I didn’t imagine the sexual tension, connection and feelings for these two over the past 5 years and it’s a shame that as writers that deliberately pulled this relationship forward to the audience, now it will not follow through. Five years of development and hoping, even if it’s at the end of the series, gone! Five years wasted on a pairing when I could have easily just have been a good viewer, not a faithful, hopeful and devoted John and Teyla shipper fan.


  31. Hey Joe,

    The Prodigal – AWESOME episode. In fact, I didn’t even realize it was a “bottle episode” until I read your comments tonight – just shows how a great story trumps all…


  32. I enjoyed most of “Prodigal” but the scene of Teyla stepping on Michael’s hands to make him fall just made me feel … sad and disappointed. The writers could have accomplished the same end by having Teyla step into the battle and push Michael off the roof. The way the scene played out, Teyla didn’t seem warrior-like and decisive or even like a mama bear defending her cub; to me she just seemed cold and cruel. But maybe I’m just too sentimental.

    “I win!” I hope the cameras were rolling and we get to see Connor triumphant in the out-takes when the DVDs come out.

  33. That rooftop fight was epic. Shep and Teyla rocked, and even though Michael deserves it I still felt bad for the poor guy when his crush gave him the boot. Michael is such a fun villain, he’s tortured and soulful yet he also thoroughly enjoys torturing souls. He’s the James Dean of the Pegasus galaxy.

    The best part was it didn’t feel like a bottle show because it was jampacked with action. It was great to see every place on the city used, from pier to the underground shuttle bay to the rooftops and even that little utility closet Teyla found.

    And how about that baby, the cutest ever!

  34. Joe, do you have any idea when we’ll get some “Enemy and the Gate” spoilers?

  35. Such a great ep, go Carl! ^^
    Only 6 left nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!
    But there so good!!

  36. Damn, you killed off Michael. While I’m not surprised it is still a disappointment. Connor is the reason that I started to watch Atlantis. When I heard that he was going to appear on Atlantis and, being a cheap Canadian who does not get The Movie Network, I started to watch Atlantis from the beginning on Space when they started televising season 1. Before even knowing that Atlantis existed, I had tried to watch SG1 and did not like it so I was very much surprised to like Atlantis when Space started with Season 1. Space has only shown up to the end of Season 3 so after the cancelation of Atlantis I consider myself to be lucky to still have 2 seasons worth to watch but it is still a bit of a downer to know that your favourite character will bite the dust. I guess that is my fault for reading spoilers. Oh well, it is only a tv show. I’m looking forward to seeing season 4 hopefully soon on Space.

  37. Oh Canadian winters, where back porches double as freezers. It’s nice too when you have a party and the drinks/food doesn’t fit in the fridge.

    I think that Prodigal is easily in my top 5 of season 5 episodes. I loved that Amelia Banks kicked ass and the Michael/Sheppard fight scene was great. I would’ve done the same thing as Teyla, I don’t think that was out of character. Did we ever find out what Michael’s exact plans were, why he needed Torren so badly? That baby was very cute btw, was it a crew member’s baby or a very young actor?

  38. Sorry to hear about your refrigerator, but as you pointed out, it’s a marvelous excuse to eat out… for as long as you procrastinate on buying a new one!!!

    Thanks for the notes =)

    Sharon Taylor is AWESOME. If you happen to see her around at all in the future, tell her that we’re all incredibly awed by her amazingness in Prodigal.

    You didn’t answer my question, though: who exactly is the prodigal in the story???

  39. Hi, Joe.

    Thank you for the notes and the behind-the-scenes photos from ‘The Prodigal.’ A terrific episode, very entertaining. Hasta la vista, Michael! Sharon Taylor was awesome, and James Bamford coordinated some fascinating, brutal, visceral (and entertaining) fight sequences. And Joel Goldsmith’s marvelous music (with the Taiko drums) during that last fight with Shep and Michael and Michael and Teyla was … fantastic!

    Kudos to everyone for all their hard work.

    Gosh — only six more episodes to go! WAH! I’m going to miss SGA — looking forward to the movie(s)!


  40. Teyla (like the rest) are heroes, being a hero does not equal being a saint. Michael was their fault in a way, him dying was the best, however evil that seems.

    There’s an old saying (where does this originate from anyway?) “To defeat evil, you have to become evil”.

    Didn’t anyone else notice that Teyla paused before kicking the other hand, as if waiting to hear Sheppard say “Teyla, don’t!”
    But he didn’t. and you can also see it in their shared glance that they silently kinda acknowledge to each other that. “It was probably for the best!”

    I doubt even Woolsie has an issue with what happened!
    If they had tried to pull him up from the ledge he’d have tried to kick/pull Shepard and Teyla over the edge anyway.
    It had to end somewhere, before more suffered.

    What Teyla did (and Shephard agreed to by not stopping her) was neither a right thing to no a wrong thing to do, it just had to happen.

    Which reflect the Atlantis team very well (in contrast to SG-1), the Atlantis team are faced with much more grey areas and even dark decisions that most other people would not be prepared to deal with. And don’t forget that they are soldiers as well, fighting for a greater good, for better or worse. Ideology does not always walk hand in hand with compassion. Atlantis is darker and more introspective than SG-1.

    I guess in some respects, certain members of the Atlantis crew would be described as a “Dark Hero” and I have no problem with that!

  41. Wait, didn’t Michael’s eyes used to be blue?

    When & why are they yellow with slitty pupils now? (well, before Teyla finished him off, of course)

    Is it because yellow could symbolize desperation?

  42. Will we get a behind the scenes segment of (Sharon Taylor) Gate Tech Gal Banks’s fight sequence in the DVD box set? Which bring us to the question of her character’s rank in the show. Is she military or civilian? Does she acts like the senior NCO for gate operations? Hope Mr M can enlighten us, as there isn’t many more shows to aired out the secondary show characters background.

  43. I second what Gen said; gonna miss Connor playing Michael was hopeing he would be in the movie; ah well. Michael was a great character sorry to see his demise

  44. A creepy (but oh so cool thought) came to me just now.
    McCay is as we know a well meaning brilliant but somewhat cowardly hero. Imagine if he become a “Dark Hero” then started to slip towards an evil genius in the process.

    McCay being well meaning as always might have some idea to end a huge threat. And although the team thinks that idea itself is not bad in itself, they try to stop McCay as he’d end up loosing him self (what we all know and love him for as a person) in the process. a morality story of “is it really worth throwing away your own soul?” question.

    I’d love to see something like that in a future movie, a really dark, confident and detrimined (and brilliant as always) McCay.
    It wold be scary and cool at the same time, a Dark McCay would even have scared Michael himself I’m sure.

  45. Joe please!!! Joe please, please, please hit the delete button on some of the comments you get on your blog! Some comments (complaints) are better suited directed to management or the creators at

    I really enjoy reading all the great comments and imaginative “suggestions”, but there is about less than 1% of your readers who cross the line. They leave a very bitter taste.

    I am soooo sick of reading the whinning, bitching, moaning and groaning of those who no longer like SGA for whatever reason. Don’t like it?? Don’t watch it!!!! And get the hell off Joe’s personal blog!!! That is just rude!!

    I for one am in it till the very end. And I will be the first to buy that 5th and final DVD collection. Thank you Joe and company for an awesome 5th year. I have added several episodes from this season to my favorites list.

    And by the way. If I’m constantly living in fear of someone kidnapping my baby boy, given the chance, you can bet I’d kick their sorry ass off a balcony too!

  46. Hope you’re doing well. Sorry ’bout your fridge. I miss Vancouver. I wish I were there, RIGHT NOW!! I dislike all the condominiums erected in the last five years and I hated all the construction this summer because of the Olympics, but I will ALWAYS love Vancouver. I’ve travelled many places in the North American and Europe and lived extensively in Europe, but to this day Vancouver has been the prettiest city I’ve ever come across.

    My husband may get stationed in Belgium or St. Louise next year. The problem is I won’t have a work visa, so unless I can get one, I won’t be working while we live abroad. I hope this doesn’t happen. I really do not like the idea of one spouse supporting the other who is perfectly able bodied. Other than having a kid, I really believe people should carry their own financial weight. (of course this is my opinion) Nonetheless, this may be a reality. I wish he would get stationed in Vancouver, but his company does not have a subsidiary there–oh well *sigh*.

    To put my two cents in regarding Prodigal, I have to say over all I would give it a six out of ten, maybe even a six point five. To have such a quick demise to a villain who has terrorized Atlantis for as long as Michael has, for me was too “neat”, too convenient. The fact that he barely hesitated over Tayla’s offer of “good-will” was a quick fix tidy to Atlantis’s “black hat”.

    Up to this point, Michael had been written as a tragic figure. Someone who had been burned, not once but twice–pillaged, perhaps would be a better word. Yes, as Shepard has stated “We are at war”, and this phrase, this “philosophy” has justified many a torture to-do list for countless modern armies, yet it doesn’t make it okay, or at the very least morally ambiguous. It’s just evil. I wish this had been explored.
    I wish Michael had actually turned off the self destruct button in one last glimmer of sanity. Then, because of some unforeseen blip to his last leap of faith, which is essentially what drives all men batty, his hopelessness is triggered once again. This didn’t really happen.

    The Prodigal merely depicted THIS Michael as an overly chatty imploring bad guy. This isn’t interesting. This isn’t the image of a torn CRAZY
    driven to whatever acts of darkness by the “morally superior”.

    And this reminds me of my next gripe: there was also no self reflection on the part of the Lantians. No guilt, or prick of conscience over what they had made, or even the discussion of it. It is all chalked up to: Michael’s a baddie, the wraith are baddies and we’re at war. Ba bump bump (roll of drums)

    I will agree, that if anyone had the right to end Michael, it would largely have been Tayla. But again, I would have like to have seen her “willingness”, to sacrifice herself and her baby for all the lives of the Lantians. I didn’t see this willingness, because we didn’t see Michael’s. (willingness to meet her half way by turning off the self destruct button).

    I did like the fight at the end, where Shepard looks at Tayla like he understands the levity of the choice she is faced with Michael hanging over the edge of the building. Here Shepard does hold back.

    I dunno, it was a little disappointing. However, I did like the car scenes at the beginning and at the end. I liked Rodney’s comparison of Michael to a cockroach, because that’s how the Lantians see all non-humans–very protectionist, quite self-righteous. Does this remind you of another modern hegemony?

    I have to admit, I haven’t read many of the fan reviews of it, but it does seem that you have and so far it’s been positive. But as you know, what the throng of fans find entertaining, often doesn’t coincide with what the critics believe should be entertaining.


  47. Only six more. Sigh.

    There is Stargate: Universe, the likes of which the universe has never seen before.

    Um. Er. Squirm.

    “Space Cases was a science fiction television series that aired on Nickelodeon for two seasons. Its premise revolves around a group of misfit students and two adults who get themselves stuck within a strange alien ship that undergoes accidental deep space travel, stranding them in a region of space far from home. Their attempts at journeying back sees many dangerous adventures and controversies, with some occasionally more mature themes.”

    Oh well.

  48. Thank you for the photos and comments on Prodigal. And give Carl Binder a big kiss for me if you see him. He wrote an awesome episode.

    Yes indeed, knowing there are only six episodes left does jar my preserves. I wish I could say at least i look forward to seeing SGU, but I’d be lying. I’ll miss *these* characters and *this* show.

    Sigh. At least there’s the movie. How goes the progress on writing that puppy?

    Quite the raccoons you have over there in Vancouver–smart enough to read but not smart enough to know food when they see it. Maybe the dogs can explain it to them.

  49. @K-man…I was thinking the very same thing, only I was expecting an anvil to follow Michael over the edge. I must have watched too many cartoons, I guess.

  50. It’s episodes like this that really make me sad the show has ended. Only six original episodes left. As my father was fond of saying: “Wouldn’t that jar your preserves.”

    You and me both Joe, this was one of my favorites for the season, but I’m holding out for next weeks episode. I love love love the Shep whump so I’m totally excited.

    That being said; that is what really irks me about this whole stupid, ass nine oh let’s Cancel the Best show we have on Scifi Channel and get more lame made for TV movies to replace it even though there’s millions of fans, the shows far from at the end of it’s road and just recently won the peoples choice award because we’re lazy, fat, buricratic idiots who wouldn’t know a good thing if it bit them in there expensive suited asses. Oh yes and we have a new toy show to play with so why bother with something that’s already good.

    Ok, ok I’m done, but I agree with your statement. Now I can’t look forward to anymore episodes of Shep hump or Sheppard back story or anything like the shrine, because you can’t focus on one character in a movie.

    Thanks as always, and remember you said I could rant 🙂 but I promise i’ll say something positive next post. 🙂
    have a good night, Nicole.

  51. The Prodigal was definitely one of the best episodes ever. I loved it. The story…the action…the musical score….it was all perfect.

    Was Amelia Banks meant to be Ronon’s new love interest?

  52. In honor of my new favorite het ship, Ronon and Amelia, how bout this for a name:
    S(heppard) + Ban(ks) + Dex = Sbandex
    OK that’s lame.
    Still loving Prodigal as much as I did yesterday!

  53. The mishaps of Cap’n Mallozzi… If it isn’t a pitfall-laden trip to Hollyweird, it’s the fridge going on the fritz, and eventually going to the dogs. My snow dog wasn’t so lucky when the fridge died here only a week and a half ago. Baby got nuttin.’ Her furry fanny is too much trouble to clean up should the leftovers, uh, go south. My condolences especially on the lost bison, venison, and all the flavors of ice cream.

    I agree with Morjana. Joel Goldsmith’s musical score to this battle-heavy episode was awesome! It heightened the tension and the suspense of each scene. Before his appearance on the blog I just would have thought, “Oh, cool.” Since then I’ve found myself paying more attention, and it does give the episodes more of a big-theater feel. (Did the network ever get the letter begging for the return of Joel’s main title score, Cap’n M?)

    And what a team epic The Prodigal was. (GO TEAM!) Every character was given action that played to his or her strengths. Finally we got to see the Ronan and Teyla of old. Ronan did some thorough thrashing, and survived a fall that probably no one else could have. He showed obvious appreciation of Bank’s fighting ability, which pleased her. That is what mutual attraction looks like.

    I was afraid motherhood had softened Teyla. As a wraith Queen, she had the license to behave just like one of the Furies themselves, but instead appeared fearful and tentative. In this episode, the warrior princess came back in the end. Poetically, since Michael had betrayed her the most of all, she was the one to dispatch him, but she took no pleasure in doing it.

    All the other character moments have been noted, but boy were they loved. They made this episode. Well, literally, the making of it began with Carl Binder. * * Let’s hear some applause for Mr. Binder! * * Thank you for giving us a strong, classic action story that also played to the character’s defining qualities. It can be done; Mr. B just proved it. (Laurels also to Alan McCullough and our own Cap’n M for their work this season.) If the story’s not there, the fans won’t be either.

    And as long as Carl will be involved in the creation of SGUniverse (cue music), I’m sure that it will be worth a look-see. Many others from our favorite band of rascals will collaborate, too. Just as the writing in Atlantis is greatly improved since SG1 (sorry!), it will become even better.

    Yep, this was a terrific episode and a hard one. Ironically, didja see the “Possible related posts (automatically generated)” link above our comments today? It was for “September 19, 2008: Last Call.”

    Cap’n M said, “It’s episodes like this that make me really sad that the show has ended. Only six original episodes left. As my father was fond of saying, ‘Wouldn’t that jar your preserves.’ “

    Huh…also ironic, and what an apt comparison. My parents canned 14 quart-sized jars of pears in the pressure cooker today. Preserving good things, and watching good things end, is hard…hard…hard.

    Steady as she goes, Cap’n M. We’re all still here for ya.

  54. Joe, re: running gag #2…that’s so mean. I’m laughing, but still, so mean to Chuck. 🙂

    das said: “By this logic, then the Wraith should be equally justified for everything they do to their enemy, the Lanteans…correct?”

    Absolutely. In the end, it all comes down to what side you’re standing on.

    das said: “That the Lanteans have never really taken responsibility and admitted they were wrong for what they did to both Michael and Steve…”

    I agree. But Michael never took any responsibility for his actions, either. He blamed everything he did, his thirst for revenge, on the Lanteans. Now, he had every right to be angry, there’s absolutely no doubt in that. He had every right to hate the Lanteans, no question. But his actions are his own. He had a choice and he choose to reduce himself to the level of the very people he despised, using them as a scapegoat.

    Not everyone who comes from a dysfunctional home becomes a serial killer; it may be a contributing factor, but it’s not the cause.

    To be honest, in my own warped viewpoint, the Wraith seem to be much better at accepting responsibility for their actions, and do so unapologetically. There’s not a whole lot of justifying and blame gaming going on in that camp. At least not that I’ve noticed.

  55. I’ve made clear before that Michael’s one of my favorite characters, so obviously I’m really disappointed that ultimately he turned out to be nothing more than Hans Gruber. Yes, he certainly made for a deliciously evil villain, but whenever I think of him, I just can’t help thinking of the side he showed in “Michael”, even after he remembered he was a wraith and he didn’t want to kill them, he just wanted to be left alone. And even after that, he still tried to be friends, or allies at least. But Atlantis wouldn’t allow that. So I’m sorry, but no matter how evil he got, I could never believe that he was beyond redemption, and you guys, and the heroes, seemed to have completely given up trying.

    Even in this episode, my sympathies still rested more with Michael than with Teyla. Whether that says more about me or about the show, I don’t know. But the fact is that the Atlantis people changed him, violated him, lied to him, betrayed him, and never accepted any responsibility for any of it, nor conceded that every atrocity he committed after they did so could have been avoided if they either hadn’t tried to change him in the first place, or had simply acknowledged their mistake the first time and not betrayed him again. The fact that he dies and the good guys have cheery happy playful time, secure in their own self-righteousness, kinda pisses me off.

    That said, I hold out some vain hope that we may see him again in the future, should any potential movie plot lend itself. While the “he didn’t really die” and “he’d made a clone of himself” theories are certainly plausible (to me at least; this is sci-fi, after all), they’re also a bit done. So my preferred way of seeing Michael again would be to get a glimpse of, as they say, what might have been: In some AU/crossover story, Shep’s team runs into a team from an alternate universe comprised of Lorne, Porter, Dusty, and Michael Kenmore (from a universe where the de-wraithifying serum worked perfectly the first time and Michael never discovered he was really a wraith). For a nice added touch of irony, this Michael could be engaged to Teyla. Alternately, we could see another AU version of him in which they didn’t betray him that second time, instead putting effort into finding something else that might sustain him other than human life (or developing a way, such as he eventually did himself, to remove his need to feed), and he became a functioning, productive member of Atlantis society. Because really, I didn’t want either Michael or the Atlantis team to win. I wanted them both to win, by finding some way for them to get along. But that would have required effort on the Atlantis team’s part, which was apparently something they weren’t willing to give.

  56. Thanks for the insight on Prodigal, Joe, it was an epic episode! Had you been renewed, I would have loved to seen it played out as Red Shirt Diaries, but with the end near, I think it was better to have the team. I loved Joel’s score, and the final tower fight seemed like something from the Empire Strikes Back! Though admittedly, I had no idea that they were running up stairs at the end – I thought it was just another tower. However, I was watching it on a pretty small tv – it probably looks like stairs on a large screen.

    We have a refrigerator in our garage that really works depending on the weather. In the winter, it keeps things cold, but in the summer, the freezer stays moderately cool, and the fridge part is not much better than a cabinet.

    Only six funfilled, exciting original episodes left, I can’t wait, it’s been a wonderful ride. But does that mean we’ll soon be seeing ripped, copied, cliched, commonplace, non-original episodes sometime after January?

  57. Prodigal was indeed awesome. I love Carl Binder. Please give him a hug for a job well done. I wish he could have written more of the episodes. He has a very strong sense of the characters, does excellent team, excellent friendship, intelligent villian chewing scenery, and excells at writing Sheppard and McKay as close friends.

    It was much needed after the shaky morals and disappointing last two episodes. I wanted a little more on Pegasus natives, and backstabbing villagers and kangraroo courts wasn’t it.

    I wasn’t bothered by Teyla’s actions. It needed to be done. Michael had done a lot a damage to her people, and the whole galaxy and needed to be stopped. They couldn’t take the chance again. Of course, it was very disappointing to lose a good villian.

  58. “The Prodigal” was another fantastic episode. It was such a great combination of humor, team interaction, and profound moral dilemma. It was storytelling at its best.

    Umm…I was wondering if you got the box I dropped off a box at the studio gate while I was in Vancouver. I work at Universal Music Group, and in lieu of a decent salary (but grateful for the job), we occasionally get cd’s, which I hope could be shared by you and whoever was still around of the Atlantis crew. I also included some quake prep information that I was sharing in meetings with the Canadian Red Cross.

    I hope you don’t mind me mentioning this, but there’s the Great Southern California Shakeout Drill coming up this week, which the Red Cross thought could be helpful for Canadians (and anyone else who lives in earthquake country) to participate in:

    In support of this event in southern California, I’m giving a “Quake Safe” walk on Saturday, November 15th:

    Anyway, I hope you got the box. And I just can’t say enough about how much I appreciate Atlantis. Although I’m beginning to dread Friday’s, knowing the show is too quickly coming to an end. But please…stop the carnage! Will there be any good bad guys left for the movie?

  59. I thoroughly enjoyed the episode and like others, went “oh!” when I realised it was a bottle episode. I thought it made a virtue of that fact and had all the elements of a very strong episode. Well done to Carl Binder et al!

    I particularly enjoyed the character interactions. Giving the boys *ahem* Sheppard and McKay toys – er, sorry – remote controlled model cars – to play with was a wonderful idea, especially when they went back to playing after telling Teyla they’d finished.

    Connor was once again superb as Michael. I’m with you, Christin, in your reply to Das; yes, the Lanteans did bad things to him (and surely were repentant at the time, particularly Carson, and we did see Teyla sympathising and trying to help). But whatever was done to him, it didn’t justify his actions. He executed dozens in his experiments – his actions were far, far worse than anything done to him, surely? He does not have the right to take whatever he wants in the way of revenge. The Lanteans even held back from killing him, ignoring Ronon in the process.

    Wraith Cake – I read your post with interest but I wonder if a couple of points could be cleared up? First, nitpicky I guess, but they are Sheppard and Teyla. Just character names, I suppose, so I’ll move on. Are you sure you mean “levity” when talking about Teyla’s choice? I was wondering about “hegemony”, too, which has a very specific meaning perhaps slightly removed from the one you needed. Oh dear – this really does sound like nit-picking, but I wanted to be sure I knew what you were saying.

    Now this is probably Sunday morning speaking, but could you clarify that last sentence at all? I’m just walking round it, unsure of your meaning. What lots of fans find entertaining “often doesn’t coincide with what the critics believe should be entertaining.” Are you saying the critics of the show should be in charge of saying what we should or should not find entertaining? That we’re somehow wrong-headed, or morally wrong or something (forgive me – I’m trying to sort out the meaning for myself!) for finding Teyla’s actions at the end of the show “entertaining”. I don’t think that’s a word I would have used. I felt the weight of her decision; I weighed it against Michael’s words, when in the past he would cheerfully have cut Torren from her and left her dead, and since he would also have killed everyone in Atlantis – and her – if she refused to come with him. Is it totally unreasonable to feel a certain degree of sympathy with her action? Be made to think about it, even? Maybe even go, well, that’s not what I might have had the strength to do but Teyla isn’t a leader for no reason.

    Argh – enough of the rambles, Cat, for goodness’ sake! It was a great episode, and I loved the “you’re on another suicide mission, so this time I’ll shake your hand – except answering this message is more important so I’m now going to leave your hand dangling” McKay. So many nice moments between those two in another excellent episode.

  60. Hi Joe,

    I was wondering if you could give some writing tips on the steps you take to bring an idea from your head up to the time its in its final written form?

    I’m aspiring to be a writer but my current script has stalled out at about 30 pages, i think its because I didn’t plan out well enough, or I didn’t develop the characters enough in my head… Anyway I’d love to get an opinion from a professional in the industry as opposed to my writing teacher who is about 100 and already decomposing.


  61. Goodness Mr.Mallozzi, that episode was amazing last night. The end ledge battle was perfectly done and so suspenseful. I only wish we had a 6th Season. BRING IT BACK! This is way too soon! 1 more year wouldn’t hurt. Damn SciFi and damn MGM for this decision.

  62. #7 and #8-too much again. 🙂 Though I could believe that would happen to Chuck (he doesn’t seem like the one who would smoke though). And I definately agree with you on “It’s episodes like this that really make me sad the show has ended.” Definately.

    Oh and pleasently surprised the SciFi promo department didn’t muck the promo for next week’s episode. Guess their regular person was on vacation. 🙂 Can’t wait for it, of course.

    Kudus out to Carl for this one! (okay everyone)

  63. Coucou Joseph!!!
    Sa va bien??
    Oups, je suis désoler pour votre probléme de réfrigérateur!!
    Oui en effet, Prodigal était génial!! Il ne manquer plus qu’un moment sheyla lol!!
    J’espere que vous allez passer une trés bonne journée! Moi je ne sais pas encore ce que je vais faire…

    Bisou Bisou!! A bientot =)

  64. *waves*

    Any chance we can have the connor scene claiming a win as a deleted scene on the DVD’s? You know i’m not beyond begging. 😛

    @ Das I agree with you that as Michael was technically a ‘prisoner of war’ that what the team did to him went beyond the boundaries of the Geneva convention, and is construed as against the Treaty of prisoners during times of war. With that said, would the end justify the means? The purpose of torture is to inflict pain on detainees and suffering as a means to end to ilicit fear, control, and ultimately death, in a lot of cases to gain intelligence. However while I accept the teams role is questionable, their means to an end wasn’t for the purpose of causing this, but instead to provide a solution to ultimately stop killing, which opens up a whole new tier within the legislation of convention. From my perspective the means justified the end.

    As for Teyla’s actions at the end, you have various types of people in times of war: soldiers, civilians and collaborators. Teyla has always been a soldier, and as such her duties are to protect those around you, and by that I mean she will do anything that is necessary to protect her home, her friends and her family. Michael was insidious in his pursuit to get her baby and while there are some mother’s that allow their child to be hurt at the hands of another, The mothering and protection instinct is very strong and most moms’ will do whatever it takes to protect their child, even if it means killing another to save their child. That’s a natural instinct, And it’s one I don’t think Teyla took lightly, but Michael put her in an unattainable spot. What was her choice?

    I think the look at the end of the ep was just pure relief that for now her child wasn’t in danger. Don’t forget this has been going on for several years and when your emotions are heightened at that level for such a long time it becomes unsustainable. So this was her way of taking a brief moment to enjoy her child without feeling that the baby was in imminent mortal danger. I think that’s worth a smile or two. 😛

    Okay i’ve rambled enough 😀

    Looking forward to Remants next week… *please let their be ramifications and team luff, and demons and darkness galore* 😛


  65. Hi Joe,

    Sorry to hear your fridge was playing up! Hope you get it sorted out!

    I really love Connor Trinnear He is truly a marvelous talented actor. He plays Michael so well! I haven’t seen Prodigal yet! I have only seen up to the episode that you wrote whispers & that was really spooky! I loved that episode!

    I went to a con last weekend & David Hewlett, Andee Frizzell, Gary Jones & Kavan Smith were there. I just want to say that every person that I have met that have worked on Stargate/s in either acting/ stunts/ etc… They have all been so down to earth & really friendly! Just goes to show why this show is loved by millions all over the world!
    You are all truly amazing!

    I hope your trip to Asia is one of most memorable time!

    Take care & happiness always!

  66. Just saw ‘The Prodigal’, wow what an episode. It had everything: humor, character moments for everyone, action, a good plot, and a sad but necessary end for Michael. He died just as how it should’ve been done (in my opinion at least): at the hands (or feet) of Teyla. And he also got a good showdown with Ronon.

    I also feel a bit sorry for Michael. He’s outcasted by both humans and Wraith, seen as a failed experiment, so what’s he gonna do? It’s logical he created more hybrids like him, to company him, and to show that he isn’t a failed experiment after all by taking out the Wraith and humans with the Hoffan virus. Conquering the whole galaxy with his army of bug-people goes a little too far imo, but you can’t blame all he did on Michael himself. Well, at least he achieved his goal in an alternate timeline. That’s good enough for me.

  67. Also, forgot to ask:

    Are we going to find out who the Wraith scientist from ‘The Gift’ was? I always imagined it was Michael before he got captured (it explains his talents with genetical manipulation), but I guess we’d have found out already if it was him, no?

  68. Hi Joe,

    I totally agree with das (22 dasNdanger)!
    If you wanted to kill off Michael in this episode you could have chosen other ways to do it.

    To do that to a human (the way Michael died) on Earth would see Teyla charged with murder, to do it to an animal (like a monkey) would be cruelty to animals and she would still be charged, but to do it to a wraith (whose screwed up because of what they did to him in the first place) is apparently a “good” thing to do!?!?!?!

    I could understand Teyla killing Michael to rescue her child or protect him from harm in battle but the way she did it, when there was no further threat, makes her nothing but a cold-blooded murderer! I’m never going to look at her the same way again.

    I’m still incredibly happy that Todd is in 3 more episodes but am now more worried than ever about what the writers (including yourself) are planning to do to him! I know it’s crazy for me to love a character so much but the episodes with Todd in Season 4 made me this way. There may be other fans out there who feel the same way but about Michael instead, who are now shattered.

    Please don’t treat Todd this way, he has a lot of fans and a lot of people love him dearly (not just wacky me).

  69. Christin wrote:
    To be honest, in my own warped viewpoint, the Wraith seem to be much better at accepting responsibility for their actions, and do so unapologetically. There’s not a whole lot of justifying and blame gaming going on in that camp. At least not that I’ve noticed.

    Not only in yours alone. I wouldn’t like Wraith that are complaining and whining. In my imagination they accept that every being has the right to live and also has the right to fight for its live. And those that die are those that made a mistake – and Mother Nature does not accept mistakes (“No sympathy for the fallen”). I think that their ethic is a much more Darwinistic one than ours; although that does not mean that they have no feelings for one another. It’s more a “cope and accept reality as it is”.

    And the problem with Michael is that neither the Humans nor the Wraith are innocent. If the Humans had not tried to turn Michael into a human being or would have given him the ship and the supplies he had asked for, nothing would have happened; and if the Wraith would have been able to accept Michael after he came back, nothing would have happened, too. And – last not least – if Michael hadn’t been so eager for revenge and so full of hatred he would still be alive.

    So in this case no one is innocent.

  70. Roger,
    you mean kinda like when he blew up a solar system with complete disregard for the scientists under his lead who had died a horrible death?

  71. Brilliant episode – even though Lorne seemed to vanish half way through. It was the type of episode that I really enjoy – lots of action and an easy to understand plot.

    That poor wee bairn – a little boy in a cute little dress ! ? ?

  72. Loved The Prodigal, always loved Connor in Enterprise. I can’t believe there are just six shows left. : (. Teyla killing Michael, it was him or her son, no question. But.. is Michael really dead????

  73. @ kabu – My sympathy for the Lanteans as a whole went straight out the window when I finally watched Poisoning the Well (after seeing parts of S3 and S4). The moral issues of that episode – capturing a being that you KNOW you have no intentions of feeding, keeping him prisoner, knowing that you intend to starve him to death or murder him outright, then using him for your dirty little experiments…well, that was just too much for me, and it tainted my view of the Lanteans forever. (And again, the issue isn’t ‘but the Wraith do the same’…my objection is to the fact that the humans claim to be much different – to be the superior species in their treatment of others – when they continually prove themselves MUCH worse.)

    I have never been able to view them in a good light since. However, I still admired certain characters individually. Well, that’s pretty much gone. I hate Carson now as much as some hate Keller…but not because of his acting or anything, but because the character is pure corruption. He is like every comic book evil villain, totally sold on his own lies, hiding behind a facade of naiveté will concocting evil potions in his dungeon lab. The rest aren’t far behind – with the exception of Keller (who may or may not make my shit list after Infection), and Woolsey (give him time, too).

    @ Christin – You are correct – Michael (the hybrid) has not taken responsibility either. It is a human trait, it seems. When I speak of having sympathy for Michael, I am usually referring to the WRAITH, not the hybrid. The Wraith Michael – the one being forced back and forth between human and Wraith against his will in Michael, No Man’s Land, and Misbegotten – the one who had no control over what happened to him. After Misbegotten, he chose his own corrupt road, although it was an understandable choice, since no one wanted him anymore, especially those who had ‘raped’ him. 🙁

    And you are also correct in saying that …”the Wraith seem to be much better at accepting responsibility for their actions, and do so unapologetically. There’s not a whole lot of justifying and blame gaming going on in that camp. At least not that I’ve noticed.”

    Exactly! That is why I love them, and how they have been portrayed right from the beginning – they are what they are, they have no need to explain themselves or make apologies. You know what you have with the Wraith – they don’t hide behind facades of justice and moral goodness and kindness, while engaging in pure treachery. They are not hypocrites, condemning others for what they themselves do. They feed therefore they kill – what’s so hard to figure out there? They accept what they are without apology or pretenses and, in my opinion, are the better characters for it.

    Some, of course, will disagree with me. What saddens me is that the writers themselves can’t see what they have created in the Wraith – the potential they have beyond a condemnation to death. They are – by far – the more complex characters in the show (when you take time to see them as something more than the ‘bad guys’), and yet…they will never be anything more than creepy albino goths with bigass bullseyes taped to their backs. Shame, really…almost makes me want to read fan fic because – at least – the fans see what the creators are clearly blind to.

    And as far as which side you’re standing on – yes, you are right. But don’t condemn others for doing what you yourself do. I mentioned it before, as Vedder has said in song, “If you hate something, don’t you do it, too.” If the humans can experiment on prisoners, and kill and even murder at will, then they sure as hell better stop bellyaching about the Wraith ‘sucking the life out of innocent (HA!!!!!) humans’!

    They have proven themselves no better than Wraith, so stop pretending to be so goddamn saintly.

    Can you tell I’m not a fan of hypocrites? It’s one reason I love comic book Wolverine – he kills, and then condemns himself for it no matter how justified the kill was – he acknowledges what he is and doesn’t pretend to be without sin. The Lanteans, on the other hand, are… “Not guilty!” Wooo! 🙄 It just makes them look totally self-centered and cold and ridiculous in their inability to acknowledge what they really are. I’m gonna start calling them the Atlantocrites.

    @ Shawna Buchanan – You said, “So I’m sorry, but no matter how evil he got, I could never believe that he was beyond redemption, and you guys, and the heroes, seemed to have completely given up trying.”

    Again, I agree. The answer to everything in this show is ‘death’…no exploration into other possibilities, no originality as far as I am concerned. Some good – even great – stories, but nothing ever really changes. It’s something I’ve been able to overlook, but not anymore, especially without a 6th season in which the writers can redeem themselves. It is very disappointing that everyone has to die as the easy answer for everything, and for this reason I expect the same formula for Todd (*foe-friend-foe again-death*).

    I just hope I’m pleasantly surprised, but not holding my breath.


  74. “I’ve made clear before that Michael’s one of my favorite characters, so obviously I’m really disappointed that ultimately he turned out to be nothing more than Hans Gruber.” (Shawna Buchanan)

    Hans Gruber was a great villain (perfect performance of Mr.Rickman and the only reason I watched the film – haven’t seen any other Die Hard movie).
    But I don’t think Michael was portrayed the same way.
    Gruber was totally selfish and showed no remorse or hesitation without having any kind of backstory with his victims.
    Of course, Michael was selfish, too, but we know his whole backstory (except for his Wraith life) and he had his reasons for becoming what he was like in the end. (I do not intend to glorify Michael, the fact that he had reasons for his actions doesn’t make the actions any better but he didn’t do it because he was bored or had way too high expectations for himself – he started with wanting to have a place to fit in and leading a more or less “normal” life).
    He still offered Teyla to come with him and I really think he meant his offer.
    It wasn’t an offer Teyla would ever have taken but from Michael’s position it was a “big” gesture. He didn’t need Teyla for anything but obviously, he hadn’t forgotten that she was a friend to him in the beginning.
    To say the truth, I didn’t even think Michael came across very evil in this episode, more desperate and lost.
    Okay, he wanted to blow up the city, that’s not very saint-like, but somehow, I don’t see that as an evil action (can’t even explain why, but I just thought it a logical consequence for Michael o.O”).
    So, at first, I was shocked that Teyla killed him but it simply was a logical consequence for her as well.
    With those things happened in the past (both Michael’s and the expedition’s decisions and actions), I don’t see there was any possibility other than finishing the other one off first.
    Still, I see Michael’s fate as tragic.

    There were some good McShep scenes in the episode (shipper here! xD even though I don’t read fanfics I’m always happy about scenes that show them together especially if it’s spending their freetime 😉 ), Banks was great (I’ve been suspecting her and Ronon to become a possible ship after the EatG-pics and your comment that no one’s been saying Ronon wouldn’t get a girl) and we could see once again that Woolsey has grown quite a bit since his SG-1-days and tries hard not to be a complaining coward and prove himself as a leader. Carl Binder did a great job!

    first, the employees at FootLocker ignore you, now your refrigerator’s rebelling… sounds like a big conspiracy against yourself, better watch out 😉

    only 6 episodes left… >.< I want to know how everything turns out asap but on the other hand, I don’t want to see it end.

  75. Did you have stunt drivers for the episode or did Joe and David volunteer to drive their own little cars?

    I am sure that the cars provided endless entertainment for the cast and crew.

    I must admit that I am sad to see Michael meet his maker – but then nobody really dies in sci-fi.


  76. I just watched The Prodigal and, I have to say, it was a fantastic episode! I wondered which writer and which character were going to be the ones to put an end to Michael, and now I have my answer.

    “Connor immediately threw his arms up in triumph and shouted: “I WIN!!!”, much to the crew’s delight.” Teehee, brilliant! It’s things like that which prove that Stargate Atlantis should have a blooper reel!

  77. I love Atlantis so much. I was running through the channels the other night when I happened on Atlantis – I forget which episode it was, but Carter was getting flack from Woolsey and they had Todd in the brig. Todd offered to help them with the virus – he was shackled and chained with guns on him. Woolsey and Carter agree to let him work in the lab and Todd says something about let’s seal the deal with a handshake and he holds his hand out for Carter to shake – everyone froze – Carter stared and Todd cracks up laughing that it was a little Wraith humor and he chuckles until the end of the scene. I totally cracked up AGAIN.

  78. Hi

    So happy dogs, eh?! Ah well, at least it didn’t do to waste!!

    Thr Prodigal was brilliant! I loved ALL of it! From the ‘I don’t write/talk much’ Ronon to the cars (and Sheppard cheating #1) to the action, the creepiness of Michael, Amelia kickboxing (huh, the look Ronon throws her way…hmm, I smell a new fandom ship approaching!), to Teyla protecting her baby (and soooo not telling Michael Torren’s name!!), and kicking ass at the end and SAVING JOHN!!

    I loved her dark moment and thought it very in character and also, what else was she to do? Let him live so that he could potentially escape and kill thousands more people? And then Ronon’s report – LOL and LOL again – so HIM!!!

    And then back to the cars (and Sheppard cheating #2 – not that I don’t think McKay would cheat if necessary, oh no!). I loved how McKay seems awkward around Teyla and Torren (not quite over the ‘oh crap it’s a baby’ reaction yet it would seem!) and yet John seems so relaxed around the little guy!

    (And oh, the bit about McKay’s mother leaving him to cry from the earlier cars bit…so sad…though was that the advice given at the time? I believe there was a time when tough love was considered the correct approach…though I’m not positive of that!)

    I loved some on the camera angles – the lowdown shots of the cars were great and that shot of Rodney through the stairs is sooo gonna be a screencap of squee for me! (Oh, poor Rodney, having to climb all those stairs. I don’t think I could do that, really!)

    Okay, not sure how coherent that lot is but I’m full of squee and not much else right now!!

    Looking forward to Remnants. Not a big Shep Whump fan, though I don’t mind it! Anyway, it looks good – and I hear theres some McKay and Zelenka scenes, so I’ll be happy – I love my geeks! (Um, okay, they’re not MINE, not really, but a girl can wish…!)


  79. Connor Trineer was also the only reason to watch Enterprise regularly. While other sometimes looked cartoonish, he always found a nuance on his character.

    When they killed him off in that one too (uh-oh… seems to be a trend), I saw no need to watch the reruns.

  80. dananger

    I really believed the show itself was progressing towards a ‘common ground’ between foes,

    I don’t want to debate the morality of either the expedition or the Wraith because boths sides are in no way innocent.

    My question is How can there be common ground between these foes? How do you see this common ground progressing? The Wraith have a biological need to eat humans and Humans don’t want to be eaten. Each side will defend themselves in whatever way possible so How can these two races live in peace?

    Is the human population supposed to just sit back and let themselves be eaten?

    What is your solution to this impass?

  81. Um, Das., I’m going to respectflly disagree with you. No, the Atlantis team is not guilt free, or saintly, but neither are they more hypocritical than your beloved Wraith. Steve was captured because of a desperate need for information. Once captured, there is no indication of physical torture. Apparantly there were attempts to feed him through more…conventional means. Once they realized they could only feed him with humans, they were caught in a conundrum. They couldn’t feed him, they couldn’t let him free. The Hoffans offered an opportunity that was morally grey, but certainly not black. Had the experiment worked as expected, Steve would have been no worse and no better off. Had it failed, Steve would have fed, and they would have had time to decide on his fate. His poisoning was unexpected. Had the team been as evil as you seem to imply, the Atlantis expedition would have rushed to encourage the Hoffans to spread the drug, not withdraw help.
    While their treatment of Michael has been less justifiable, the first thing to remember is that the ONLY reason for such experimentation is to find a way, short of genocide, to deal with the Wraith. That was the driving force behind Carson’s research, not the willful torturing of a sentient being. Michael’s betrayal in their second encounter, when he had demonstrated a williness to ally, was a tragic mistake. Not only morally, as it turns out, but because he was a super-competent Wraith able to advance Carson’s work to the point he began creating hybrids. But as for his death? He’s killed hundreds of thousands of people, enslaved who knows how many by turning them into Hybrids. He took the Athosians and Teyla herself captive, and threatened her child before and after birth. My only suprise was that she took the time to pause before putting him out of their misery.
    As for the Wraith. We know they toy with their food, they hunt their food, they torture their food. They destroy whole societies when those cultures reach a stage that poses the least technological threat. And they do it simply because they don’t consider humans as anything other than thinking talking cattle, to be used as they please. Well, they’ve been given a wakeup call. the cattle turn out to have horns, and know how to use them. With the new realities in Pegasus, the Wraith now have some decisions to make. One of which is whether to risk destruction as a species, or do they change via the new serum Carson modified from Michael’s work. By doing so, they may no longer be the Wraith of the time of the Ancients, but as a species they will continue, and with the technological advantages to ensure they are still a force in the galaxy.
    I’ve never seen the Atlantis expedition claiming sainthood. Even when making decisions like dealing with the Hoffans, or with Michael, there have been comments made to show that both sides of an issue are being looked at. They simply made choices you consider wrong, and which at least with Michael were wrong, based on final outcome. But then, if in the real world you faced having your life sucked out of you, and the human populations devastated by such creatures, you’d probably have to re-evaluate your moral qualms also. I’m sorry that your enjoyment of the show seems to be affected by the depiction of the Wraith, but please understand that there are those of us who see things somewhat differently than you do, and do so without intending to cause offense or insult.

  82. Sorry sorry to hear the fridge bit the dust … farewell bison! I’d run up to Maddox’s for a bite of fresh bison burger in mourning, except they’re closed on Sundays. Looking forward to the Great Fridge Hunt. Or do you have one all picked out already?

    Sharon Taylor ROCKS!

  83. RIGHT ON! Teyla kicks ass! I absolutely agree with her killing the SOB! Michael as a former wraith had a tenuous grasp on his sanity at best, being deemed neither one thing nor the other merely tipped him over that precipice. He’s better off out of his misery.

    Brilliantly played by Connor Trinneer.

    Thumbs up all round!!

  84. Scary wrote:
    My question is How can there be common ground between these foes? How do you see this common ground progressing? The Wraith have a biological need to eat humans and Humans don’t want to be eaten. Each side will defend themselves in whatever way possible so How can these two races live in peace?

    Is the human population supposed to just sit back and let themselves be eaten?

    What is your solution to this impass?

    Well – though I’m not asked I nevertheless feel the need to answer, because in this case the opinions between Wraithfans differ. – For me there is no solution and there will never be one. As I said several months back: There is no peace between hunter and pray. Friendship between individuals – yes; Peace between both races – no.

    If our story played in reality I wouldn’t have the need to fight for the Wraith because they would be able to fight for themselves for they would be and act much more intelligent as in the series and we all and our future would look really bad. And they would not have developed out of a bug that bit a human – they would have evolved by their own in millions of years. Their knowledge about everything would be enormous – not at least because of their age!

    It’s not that we would not be able to fight back but I think we would hardly win a battle, and surely not the war. Their technological superiority would be huge, same their knowledge about humanity and human behaviour. We know the behaviour of our cattle so why shouldn’t the Wraith know about our behaviour? And our weaknesses.

    And that retro virus/protein? With all their knowledge of genetic it would be ridiculous easy for them to find a way to detect it. Hey – they let a hive grow out of one single virus! Have you ever thought about what that means? They’ve found the holy grail of genetic engineering – nothing less.

    But in our series there is a totally different situation. In this series the writers are the gods of their stories, and these gods are totally on the side of the humans. They can change the rules whenever they think it’s necessary and so the Wraith can do whatever they want – they always will be the losers. And that’s why I fight for the right of the Wraith to live and feed. I want no alternative food source. I want no physical change. I want no peace. I want them as they are – only a bit more ‘real’, a bit stronger and a bit more intelligent.
    And I want no genocide. But I swear – I’d rather see them dead than physically and mentally abused as Michael was or Todd could be by accepting this genetic therapy of Dr. Keller. Then my Wraith should better die – proud and free, as they lived, and with their heads high!

  85. Hey Joe!!!
    I have to say that i LOVED ‘prodigal’. It was such a great episode, and it a little bit of everything: major lorne, team stff, teyla kicking ass, and the team acting as a family in the end. The ending scene of this episode is probably one of my favorite scenes of the show: it just made me so happy, and that’s what i’m going to miss when the show’s over.
    And i loved how teyla was the one to kill michael in the end. Although i loved michael as a villain, it was the right thing for her to do, and i thought that it was written well. So thanks for another amazing episode, and i can’t wait to see ‘remnants’ next week!!!


  86. Mondschaf – All I meant by the Hans Gruber comparison was that here you’ve got this really interesting character (as you pointed out) whose story could have gone so many fascinating ways, but in the end he’s just beaten up and thrown off a tall building. That’s the sort of ending for someone who’s one-dimensionally evil, not for a character as rounded as Michael. In my opinion.

    Anyway, I feel I should point out that, aside from my disappointment with the end of Michael’s storyline, I really did think this was a great episode. All the team stuff was wonderful, and team stuff is usually my favorite. The story was interesting and there were a few moments of concern, as well as humor. The fight scenes were the best parts, though. Seeing a scientist beat up a big ol’ wraith hybrid was pretty rockin’ and that scene at the end with Michael and Sheppard was very Batmanny (especially with the score, and I almost never notice the music while I’m watching an ep). So there. Yeah. I did like it, mostly, and it wasn’t a bad episode at all. It’s just a bit soured for me.

  87. @das…I do think not taking responsibility is a human trait and what’s worse, it appears to be a trait that’s reinforced. We live in a society where violence is blamed on TV shows, music, and video games and obesity is blamed on fast food joints. People are programmed to play the blame game.

    To be fair, I’m hard pressed to hold the Lanteans to a higher standard when the bar is already set too low. Really, they’re just maintaining the status quo.

    It’s infuriating and it’s realistic.

    @noir…I agree. Everyone has blood on their hands to some degree. Everyone had a choice (in some cases more than one) and at some point or another, everyone chose poorly. And those choices had consequences. Plain and simple.

    It’s like life only with space vampires and better looking people. 😉

  88. O.K. I’ll come right out and admit that I’m a noob and parade my ignorance in front of the crowd: What is a “bottle show” ?

    @noir: Very well put. I agree. I’d like to see the Wraith portrayed more as they were at the start of SGA.

    I think there has been some very good discussion here and I’m very glad that Mr. Mallozzi is kind enough to provide us with a forum in which we can present our points of view. I find it interesting to read what everyone has to say, even if I don’t necessarily agree with them.

  89. One reason for the popularity of The Prodigal, in my opinion, was that it didn’t get bogged down in logic. Like, as I’ve read elsewhere, if the comm systems don’t work when the power is shut down, how do they work off-world? Did Michael really learn everything about Atlantis from a puddle jumper, and wouldn’t it be stupid to have that much info on a ship that could be taken? How did Michael get the IDC of the other team — would they not all be changed after the PJ disappeared?

    Those things never occurred to me while watching, and I still don’t care about the answers. It shows if you have a strong, character-oriented plot, great performances, and a spirit of the epic, you don’t need to plug every potential plot hole. IMO, less successful episodes try too hard in that regard.

    I also realized I loved this episode because I didn’t have to endure any Rodney/Keller text, subtext, or otherwise. 🙂

  90. Wow…what an episode. Like many, many others I really enjoyed Friday’s “The Prodigal.” I will miss Michael. Connor Trinneer had such a wonderful “take” on this character. And he played him out to the very end. I loved where he was yelling a Teyla about how life had treated him…trying to justify his actions. Strong work on his part. Caught him on Criminal Minds a few weeks back. It was a small part, but well played as expected. Please tell Carl that yet another fan really loved this episode and all of his hard work in crafting it for us.
    Only 6 to go…how sad. I will really miss new episodes on Friday evenings. And SciFi doesn’t play it during the week anymore so I’m running my DVDs fairly hard, and suspect I will continue to do so for quite awhile. So, get cracking on that film script so that we have a movie by July of next year!That will have been a long enough wait for me! 🙂

  91. Watched Prodigal again….oh, Joe, how could TPTB have decided to cancel SGA!!! Why,why,why!!!
    Have they hear the anguished cry of SGA fans?!

    Seriously Joe, with each passing episode, I really find it hard to believe a really great show like SGA has been canceled. It just breaks the heart 🙁
    *and no, sgu will not mend it*


    A new superhero; with all the intellience the scientific community can gather and all the street-smarts that a hero would need to save the world and conquor the bad guys (and gals).

    Yes, it is the one and only -> McKAY-VER

    Sorry, I’ll be serious now!!


    First Trip then Michael – Connor is not having much luck! Still he is a vastly talented actor who is greatly under-utilised.

    Due to the vagaries of scheduling Sci-fi programs on NZ tv, I never got to see S4 of Enterprise, a fact which gave Connor room to tease me about Trip dying. I hve that ‘joy’ to look forward to this week when I borrow a friend’s dvd collection 🙁

    I am guessing that particular epi will be a “2 boxes of tissues and 1 box of Belgian chocolates” night!!

    Now I have to watch Michael die – although, in the context of the story – not such a bad idea.

  93. OOps, I missed a bit:

    First Trip then Michael – Connor is not having much luck! Still he is a vastly talented actor who is greatly under-utilised. I am sure it wont be long before he is back on our screens.

    Although this does mean I might have to re-jig part of my fan fic :S

  94. Hi Joe,

    Thanks for the little Behind-the-Scenes notes on Prodigal!

    I just wanted to add my voice to all the other people who loved this episode. It was fun, exciting and tense, but more importantly, there was TEAM! And Sheppard and McKay banter! I’ve really missed that this season.

    After Inquisition I was kinda losing my excitement for the show a little bit, but this ep brought it back. It’s one of those eps that make you go, “All right! Now that’s my show!”

    The team is what makes the show for me, so even though I’m a Shep fan, the team eps are usually my favourite episodes.

    Anyway, great job to all of you, and especially to Carl, for writing such an awesome ep! Thank you! 🙂


  95. Well put, Thornyrose. Sympathy for the Wraith to the point of seeing the show through their POV is like feeling sorry for the guy stuck rotting in prison, sending him love letters and fruit baskets and never sparing a thought for the fifty baby nun orphans he bludgeoned to death with a crippled seal cub as the reason as to why he was sent there in the first place.

    There’s consequences for killing people for snacks, as sad and tragic as that might be.

    The Prodigy was a seriously fantastic episode and I’ve practically seen nothing but universal love for it. Props to everyone involved.

  96. I really really really do not understand people who believe that truly evil characters can be redeemed. THEY’RE EVIL, THAT’S THE POINT! Yes fine the people of Atlantis made Micheal into what he is but that doesn’t change the fact that he had gone completely nuts!

    The people of Atlantis made him but they DID NOT cause him to do all the evil things that he did. That was his own damn choice to make all those people into hybrids and kill the ones he didn’t want. It was his choice to clone Carson and then use the clone to make the virus and kill thousands.

    He is NOT redeemable at all. The only way to stop him was to kill him. Even HE asked for death in Misbegotton. Teyla did what she had to do to save them from him and his evil – end of story. There was NO way to stop him, no way to contain him.

    Some characters really aren’t redeemable. Some people really are that evil and killing them is the only option to protect everyone else from them.

  97. Perversely enough, The Prodigal was so good that I almost don’t want to watch the rest of the season. I want to remember Atlantis this way – the Teaminess, the Shep and McKay banter, most of the supporting characters that I love, and none of the ship that I don’t.
    If I wasn’t intrigued by the whump in Remnants, the Shep CSI ep or finding out what happens to the crew in the end in EatG, I’d be really tempted to call it quits while I am ahead.
    I had already planned on not watching BrainStorm, but I guess I’ll slog on and hope we get a few more gems like this before the end of the season!
    Keep up the good work and Congratulations on making one of my all-time favorite episodes ever.

  98. I loved Prodigal. One of the best eps this season for sure. A nicley produced and fitting end to the Michael arc. Glad it was Teyla who finally did him in, and I’m glad all three ‘heroic’ characters got to have their final one-on-one fight with Michael.

    One thing though – does it annoy you, considering what’s happened, that all the Sci-Fi promos say ‘Get into the best season of Atlantis yet’? Seems so two-faced to me.


  99. Please tell me you have ‘Connor’s moment of triumph’ over the Sheppard stunt double on film…and PLEASE say you’ll add that to the Season 5 DVD ‘blooper’ reel!!

    Oh, and if you see David Hewlett, Kavan Smith , Andee Frizzell and Gary Jones any time soon, thank them all from this grateful Aussie gal who got to meet them at Armageddon expo in Melbourne last weekend…THEY ROCKED!

    *squees quietly into hands*

    and if you see Joe Flanigan, tell him to come back for NEXT year’s Armageddon…we loved him so much last year!!!

    *squees even louder into hands*

    Oh and hey Joe – why don’t YOU come out here for Armageddon sometime?

    *squees loud enough to wake the neighbour’s dog*

  100. I enjoyed the episode. I am glad Tayla came out of hiding, handed off the baby and killed the “baddie”. [Sorry a Buffy reference there] Goodbye Michael. I shall miss that character, and Connor, I miss Connor on Star Trek too. 🙁 But all good things must come to an end someday.

    The dogs must have been in heaven with all that yummy food. I hate when my fridge dies, my freezer did a few years ago. UGH What a pain, so much yummy food gone to waste, well I guess not, your dogs seem to have “made out!”. Have a good week Joe.

  101. Hey Joe, just wanted to say that I think I know what’s wrong with your refrigerator! We had the exact same thing happen to us a few months back, floor puddle included. What had happened was that one of us had left the freezer door slightly ajar one evening, and then the other of us had come behind and closed it. While the door was slightly open, water in the freezer had melted and refrozen in the vent between the refrigerator compartment and the freezer, thus blocking the air from getting between the two compartments.

    It was an easy fix. We just removed everything from refrigerator and freezer, put it in the spare freezer in the garage, and let the ice between them melt. Then we put everything back in and it worked perfectly! Just wanted you to know that this doesn’t necessarily spell the purchase of a new appliance, though I’m sure you’re rolling in it enough that it wouldn’t bother you to buy a new one anyway. Not that you need a fridge, as you pointed out…since you are always eating out anyway. Just thought I’d see if I could help, though. 🙂

  102. Loved the ending. Silly wraith-human hybrid, it’s not nice to mess with Mother. Micheal has been a thorn in the Atlantis expedition’s side ever since his creation. Least we forget the destruction of an entire race plus a team of Marines in Vengence, or the abduction and experimentation on the Athosian’s, or the kidnapping of our dear Dr. Beckett, his cloning and imprisonment or the psychological trauma he has put Teyla through. No, not a sad bone in this body to see him plummetting to his death. Very well acted by Connor Trinnear. Great episode, thanks for including everyone, and introducing a kick ass kickboxing Sharon Taylor.

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