the entire series was all in some writer's imagination!
Brad reveals the final episode twist: the entire series was all in some writer
Rob plots the episode's third act.  Oh, and murder.
Rob plots the episode's third act. Oh, and murder.
Alan finds the idea intriguing...
Alan finds the idea intriguing...
Carl...not so much.
Carl...not so much.
Marty G. considers the Act IV twist...and his lunch options!
Marty G. considers the Act IV twist...and his lunch options!
Ah, the satisfaction of another day's work well done.
Paul experiences the satisfaction of another day's work well done.
lots of you.
Who wants to go back to fifteen minutes before you started reading this blog entry? My guess = lots of you.

T (for Tokyo) minus three days and counting. With my list of intended targets completed and arranged into wards, I’ve started using the wonderfully handy Google Maps to pinpoint the key areas so that I’ll be able to cover as much ground as possible when the time comes (How many pastry shops can I visit in one afternoon.  Thanks to Google Maps = enough to make me violently ill!). I’m loving the feature and am about halfway through cataloguing all of my destinations, but am running into trouble on a couple of fronts. First, all of those little blue pointers show up onscreen, but there’s no lettering or numbering system to tell them apart. Short of clicking on the desires location in the lefthand sidebar, there seems to be no proper way to identify the locations. Second – nearly all of the streets are in, uh, not English. Third – My handy blackberry seems to be completely useless in allowing me to use Google MyMaps. It lets me download the Google Map application (or mapplication if you prefer) but can’t access the maps I’ve created for my trip. Marty G. insists his iPhone can and thereby points out yet one more reason that his phone is superior to mine. I mean, sure his phone has a far superior web-browsing capabilities, allows him to search the internet via voice recall, offers a screen twice as large as mine, has a much better camera, among many, many other functions, but my phone sounds cooler.  BLACKberry.  As opposed to iPhone.  Also, the blackberry has the brickbreaker game.  Any blackberry users out there care to rejoin? Anyone? The Google MyMaps functions works wonderfully when I’m on my laptop but I have a feeling this may prove somewhat challenging to pull off when I’m on, say, a Shinjuku walkabout.  So I’ve contacted the concierge crew at the Peninsula Hotel and asked them to look into some cool portable gadget I could rent during my stay in Tokyo, one with a wireless function and GPS that will allow me to roam the city while accessing the Google MyMaps function. I’m not entirely sure if such a device exists but feel reasonably confident that if I can imagine it, then the Japanese have already invented it.

Back on the office today for another day of SGU spinning. We skipped episode 9 (While I like the general premise and think it could be a lot of fun and, really, at the end of the day who doesn’t like fun?, I feel that, unlike the other stories we’ve discussed so far, this one is far more nebulous. Fearing we might well spend our final three days trying to spin a story out of this kernel of an idea, I suggested we move on to #10 and #11 which, at the very least, are somewhat more substantial in comparison) and moved on to the two-parter. I hesitate to call it a two-parter because, the way these episodes have developed so far, there are a threads that run through all the stories, in essence making this season one big 20-parter. Now given that some of you have started comparing SGU to existing shows on the basis of what little information has been released thus far, I thought it might be a good idea to help paint a clearer picture of the show.  And so, to those of you looking for standing comparisons, I’d say more Lost than Battlestar, more Dr. Who than Heroes, more The Office than My Name Is Earl.

Check out today’s pics for an inside peek at the exhilarating highs and dispiriting lows of the writers’ room. And also our new refrigerator. It makes ice, has an alarm function, and can send you back approximately fifteen minutes in time provided you can fit inside the freezer tray.

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Rose
Rose

Joe,

I refuse to give up my Blackberry in favor of an iPhone. I just refuse to be that trendy. You stand tough, buddy.

Have a great trip,

Rose

crazymom1

An alarm function? Do you usually sleep in front of your refrigerator?

Narelle from Aus

Oooo, so your fridge is like Homer’s toaster… coool.
Can I try the freezer tray? I’ve hid under the front passenger seat of a car before, this should be a breeze …

I refer back to a previous statement of mine about having the Answer and Reject buttons on the opposite side on an iPhone as a big reason to not have one.

Have you found yet that when people talk to you about places to go you just nod your head because frankly it’s all another language? Then when you get back and you’ve actually been there you end up one of those people that rattles off all of these great places to go and the recipient of the information just nods blankly.
It’s the circle of travel life.

Enjoy counting down another sleep. I’m a counting down the days person personally, but I hear counting sleeps is a big thing amongst the majority of the population.

Shawna
Shawna

Have you tried simply printing out the desired maps and keeping them in whatever bag/pocket is handy? I know, not as spiffy, but it may work as a last resort.

I’d say more Lost than Battlestar, more Dr. Who than Heroes, more The Office than My Name Is Earl.

So SGU is about an eclectic group of time lords whose giant communal TARDIS has lost its time-travel capability (making it, I suppose, just a RDIS) and they go about their days bugging the crap out of each other while trying to sell paper to the mysterious unseen monsters of whatever planets they happen across? Sounds awesome.

heartsmeneko
heartsmeneko

It has an…alarm?

EdwardGreene
EdwardGreene

More Dr. Who than Heroes? Seeing as Dr. Who is my favorite sci-fi show without the word Stargate in it, I’m highly intrigued by this comparison. Does this mean that there’s going to be an over-arching key-word, ala ‘Torchwood’ in Season 2, or plot that will vaguely be hinted at in each episode and then have a big reveal in the two-parter? Or am I totally off-base with this? You have def piqued my interest more in this show though.

pg15

“Brad reveals the final episode twist: the entire series was all in some writer” What? What does that mean? Is Stargate Universe going to take place in the body of a writer? Like Fantastic Voyages or something? That’s be AWESOME. I can just imagine the episode where the Destiny is slowly being digested by lysosomes and the crew must find the Ancient super hormone to make it cease and desist. Oh, and the episode where the Destiny is thrown forward in “time” by accidentally destroying a few Telomeres, thereby aging the “universe” (aka. the writer), and they must correct their mistake before the “universe” dies of old age! They can also bring onboard a talking white blood cell as their resident “alien” and “muscle”…or, they can just bring onboard a real muscle. No wait, I got it. They should have an E. Coli bacteria as the alien! The series’s arc will be devoted to fighting off bad E. Coli bacteria (as opposed to the ones that are good for us) that the writer habitually contracts due to poor hygene (and living in Vancouver East Side. Sorry, had to be said). And then: virses! reproducing faster than ever, they cannot be killed because scientists aren’t sure whether they’re actually alive or not! Then, in a twist near the end of the series, they make an evolutionary jump and become bacteria! Even more insidious, they quickly reproduce into the billions, destroying the “universe” along the way (and obliterating the bad E. Coli population); they will suceed in their conquest to convert all of the “universe” into raw material to create more of themselves, if the Destiny crew doesn’t make the writer take the medicine in time by taking control of the writer, through his brain. In the climax of the series, the Destiny crew finally arrives at the Brain. However, they must figure out HOW to control him. As the clock ticks down to irreversible “universe” damage, the crew connects random nerves together in hopes of giving the writer enough strength to call the hospital to fetch him (for he has collapsed at his home, where he lives alone; medicines are now too feeble a defense); but, it’s a struggle as the seconds tick away! Then, just as all hope is lost, someone figures out another plan: forget the hospital, how about just wiping out the virus here and now with the writer’s own defenses? Yes! Brilliant idea! The crew gets to work, and at the last moment, before the death of the “universe”, they make the correct connection! Suddenly, the Brain kicks into gear creating a massive amount of a special SuperHormone (like a scaled up version of the lysosome-fending hormone) that sweeps out of the brain, flows across the entire “universe”, reducing the bacteria to mere disconnected, harmless, organic molecules. The only effect on the writer, besides the fact that he’s cured, is a sudden sneezing attack! The Destiny is sneezed out, and returned to its normal size after it… Read more »

fsmn36
fsmn36

Your fridge is a baby TARDIS! LOL

I love that brickbreaker game. I’ve never been addicted to a game before but I sit there at work in my downtime, totally obsessed. And yeah, I find the GPS lacking. I still haven’t figured out how to get it to work. Instead, I just use mapquest–but on the phone, its transportable, so its works.

Best of lucks with the map planning!

dasNdanger
dasNdanger

“…more Lost than Battlestar…” Great. I hate both. razz

(But Lost is a bit better because it has Desmond! grin )

das

Narelle from Aus

Has anyone heard from Anne Teldy of late?

Thornyrose
Thornyrose

Alas, I cannot add to the Blackberry vs. iPhones debate. I’ve barely crawled into the 21st century with text messaging on my cell phone, and i’ve resisted taking internet options out on it. I’m willing to bet a fiver that your Japanese hosts will indeed come up with a device with the capabilities you’ve listed. Fortunately for you English is a common enough second language in Japan. Alas, the average Japanese pronunciation of English words may provide you an interesting challenge. The best of luck on that.
Looking back on Remnants, I feel the need to make a request. Please address at least some of Sheppard’s fear of failure issues in the movie. I don’t want it to be the main theme of the movie, but I would dearly like to see some more of his history to come to the fore. Seems only fair after five seasons of avoiding the topic. And I know, you’ve already started work on the movie, and my request is meaningless. But as a person who is not primarily a Sheppard fan, I think it would be nice to see Sheppard’s character face whatever it is he’s been running from for all these years. Thanks for the pics, and enjoy the rest of your countdown.

pg15

Ok, now that I’ve read the entire entry as opposed to just the captions of the first photo…

Universe is sounding…AWESOME. I’ve been waiting for a Stargate show that is essentially “a 20 parter” per season!

I’ve been following Heroes lately and, though I know you said it’s more like Dr. Who than it (which I also like a lot, though I haven’t seen it in a while), I’m finding myself absolutely rivetted and on the edge of my seat every episode, just dying to find out what happens next! That doesn’t happen as much with Stargate, unfortunately, though it does make up for it in other departments (namely the smaller cast of familiar characters, and the humor, and the better dialogue…and the VFX). But anyway, if Universe can do something like this, with continuing story threads that makes you really want to find out what’s going to happen next week, as opposed to leaving you hanging for a while on a story before it being picked back up in the finale, then it’ll be great.

The closest that Stargate has come to this kind of storytelling, IMHO, is Atlantis Season 1. Almost every episode tied into a general thread in some way, and they were all leading to an inevitable Wraith attack at the end of the season, with the feeling of loneliness and desperation that came with it. I think in terms of a “one big story” type of thing, Atlantis Season 1 was the best at it out of the entire franchise so far. Season 4 is up there as well, though that “big story” feeling kind of broke down with the stand-alone episodes in the backhalf, which, though entertaining, didn’t really add much, IMHO, to the arc of the series.

Questions: In your opinion, is Universe looking more arc-based than Atlantis Season 1? Also, do you share the feeling that Atlantis Season 1 is the most arc-based Stargate season? If not, which season do you think was the most arc-based?

Thanks for reading my ramblings, Joe.

Karen MT
Karen MT

I’m curious, now that you’re spinning new stories for a completely new show, and new characters. Has there ever been a time a character has been created with some sort of flaw/backstory/quirk/characteristic that has caused issues later on that you wish wasn’t there? If so, how did you work around it/get out of it?

Ganymede
Ganymede

What!? You guys couldn’t spring for the fridge with the built-in computer screen…? That keeps track of what you have to restock on, your daily to-do list, recipes, screen saves the kids’ school art, stores those middle of the night horror movie pitch ideas [no wait.. that’s the ‘lab experiment’ hiding under the box of baking soda!]… The only downside, I think those cutesy fridge magnets might wipe the hard drive…

AV eddy

Ooooh, you got the 15-min-back freezer tray option! Niiiiice! I’ve put mine to good use. Oh…yes I have!

I’ve been concerned about Episode 9. Such a squishy, nebulous thing. Still, what else you gonna put between 8 and 10?

I like all of the comparison shows you’ve mentioned, but prefer (in no particular order) LOST, Dr. Who, and The Office to Battlestar, Heroes, and My Name is Earl. Sounds good to me!

Have a great night!

eddy

Waiting (Im)Patiently
Waiting (Im)Patiently

Brad’s Q&A?? Before you guys break? PLEASE!!

B Angel
B Angel

Why don’t you have a massage chair in the writer’s room?
It would stimulate you guys.
I wish your time machine refrigerator would take us back to before SGA got canceled and we could figure out a way to change the timeline.
You need to hire a “native guide” while you are in Japan and just forget finding your own way around.

Belouchi
Belouchi

Dear Joe,
Please give me the honor of answering these questions, consider them as a big early christmas gift from you to me.

1. How many Wraith Hives can we assume were destroyed due to the brief moment the Attero device was on?

2. Will the Destiny Space craft be comparable to Atlantis city ship or an Aurora class ship?

3. Was Remnants the “a very special stargate episode” you were alluding to in the beginning of season 5?

Safe trip to Tokyo

Ponytail
Ponytail

Joe you are a handsome man. Even prettier than Alan McCullough – in a mafia sort of way.

Have a safe trip. Enjoy.

Amyfo
Amyfo

Brickbreaker is one of the many reasons why I love my Blackberry. Although I have to say between the browser on my Blackberry vs. my LG Dare vs. my iPod Touch… the iPod Touch wins hands down and it’s not even a phone.

Georgia
Georgia

What is the alarm for?

Funcokler Xerow
Funcokler Xerow

…more Lost than Battlestar, more Dr. Who than Heroes, more The Office than My Name Is Earl.

All shows I don’t watch. Not exactly inspiring confidence. razz

General Yogi Bear

I think I speak for many fans when I say that I have faith in you guys. You’ve brought us 15 seasons of excellent television and movies and that I and many people are looking forward to SGU. And I’ve been watching since 1997!

PS- When you guys hire a new writer do they have to take a drug test? That Carl Binder guy seems kind of strange to me. One minute he’s running around with Jaffa staff weapons taking people’s wallets and the next he’s making funny faces at the conference table. You might want to test that guy.

Jenny Robin

Is there cannibalism in the first episode of SGU? Man, I’m always up for some tasty toasted cannibalism in any pilot. It sort of sets the tone for the rest of the season, don’t you think?

mazeykins
mazeykins

Oh – those alarms on these new fridges are so annoying. They are supposed to be part of energy saving…to let you know that you had the door open for more than 10 seconds…but at least you can set it or turn it off. Seriously, its a feature that just screams…”I’m so lazy that I need an alarm to tell me to close the fridge door!”

Ok here’s a challenge for you all – work that into either a SGU ep or Atlantis movie would ya…I’d so laugh my arse off.

Sheppard stepping out of the jumper – “McKay, what is that beeping?”

McKay – “Oh, you’ll love it I installed an energy saving device…to let you know that you should shut down ____ (insert device) before….”

Sheppard – “What you need to install is one of those fridges…to tell you to shut the door.” (pokes in stomach)

McKay – “Hey, I’ll remind you that I have to eat regularly….etc.etc.”

HAHAHAHA

Ok – so I’m up at 2 am and not sure why I posted it…but anywho…good night or good morning…and have fun in Tokyo! Safe Travels!