Valder is a scout for the Esthshar army in its centuries old war with dark forces of the Northern Empire and, when we are first introduced to our hero, it is clear he isn’t having the best of days.  Having stumbled upon a bold enemy assault force, he is determined to return to his comrades and warn them of an impending surprise attack.  Unfortunately, complicating matters for Valder are three equally determined enemy soldiers, in hot pursuit and closing fast.  The chase ends at the modest home of an elderly wizard who expresses his dismay at getting caught up in the action – right before they are attacked and his house burnt to the ground.  But thankfully, the wizard is as clever as he is outraged, using magical means to convince their attackers that they have been killed.  Safe and sound and presumed dead, Valder and the wizard part company, but not before the magician enchants Valder’s sword with powers he can’t quite fathom – until much later when, out on his own, he draws the sword and finds himself unable to either release it until…it claims the life of an enemy warrior.

It quickly becomes apparent that the magical enchantment placed on the sword was, in fact, a misenchantment.  Every time the blade is drawn, it can only be sheathed once it has killed.  And killing is something it does quite well, imbuing its wielder with remarkable sword skills in addition to bestowing him with immortality so long as the spell lasts.  And, here’s the catch, the spell will last until 100 enemy lives are taken – at which point the sword will turn on its owner and slay him in turn.

What follows is a delightfully atypical fantasy tale in which character and humor trump epic heroic journey.  Our protagonist isn’t interested in saving his lands from the evil enemy.  Rather, first things first, he wants to be rid of the damn sword.  But when that proves impossible (no one else can wield the blade and it will always return to him despite his attempts to “lose” it), he seeks to make the best of things.  But making the best of things run counter to the wishes of his commanding officers who decide to advantage of Valder’s amazing abilities by making him an assassin in their service.  All well and good except for the fact that Valder aint your average hero.  He doesn’t enjoy killing, doesn’t like to risk his life, and wants nothing more than to retire from battle and enjoy a nice, quiet retirement.  His attitude, and his ensuing actions, make for a refreshingly unique take on the genre.  The focus isn’t on the sword slaying (in fact, at one point in the book, we simply skip ahead, time cutting to a tally of the ballooning body count) but on Valder himself, tracing his career as a reluctant assassin to his late-life career as a simple innkeeper.  In the background, meanwhile, the generations-long war reaches an off-stage conclusion when the forces of Esthshar, represented by benign gods, do battle with the demonic champions of the Northern Empire in a grand climactic battle that destroys half the kingdom – and is relayed to Valder in a matter-of-fact “Oh, by the way, you won’t believe happened” manner.  My initial reaction was “Huh?  Really?”   And even though it was an odd and surprisingly underwhelming development, I still loved it for just those very reasons.  It’s as if the author said “THAT isn’t what this story is about anyway.  But if you’re interested…”.

Even though I found the novel wrapped up a little too conveniently, I nevertheless enjoyed the journey.  The Misenchanted Sword was an immensely enjoyable read.

So, those were my initial thoughts.  What did everyone else think?  Weigh in with your thoughts and start submitting your comments for author Lawrence Watt-Evans!

Ah, you’ve heard I see.  Yes, it’s official.  Stargate: Universe has been picked up for a second season.  And do you know what this means?  Yes, that’s right.  I have to finish that script.  My favorite response to the announcement comes from the comments section of Robert Seidman’s TVbytheNumbers’ piece ( where someone called hdtv1 writes: “This crap must be cancelled.  sgu writer’s are idoit.”  Well said, sir.

We were back in the office today where the discussion ranged from Robert Cooper’s finished first draft of Aftermath to my lovely Tokyo dining companions.  Tomorrow, we actually start breaking more stories!

And finally, editor Lou Anders left the following message in yesterday’s comments section with regard to the upcoming With Great Power superhero anthology:

“WITH GREAT POWER is coming out from Pocket Books in July 20, 2010. I’ll be able to announce the cover artist soon, who is someone familiar to readers of Marvel comics. The book is already available for preorders on Amazon, and based on the comparative buys it looks like the Stargate crowd has already found it!


Matt R. writes: “1) Is the Apple Core the official bridge on Destiny or some type of relay station? Will we be seeing the actual bridge some time?

2) In Atlantis many of the scenes shot inside the city were on or around cat walks or just plain hallways. Is that going to change of SGU? Any chance of seeing some “great halls” large finished rooms like we did in “Air”?

3) Who is responsiable for the Kino shorts? “

Answers: 1) The Apple Core will be the “substitute” bridge until a time when the actual bridge is discovered – whenever that may be.  Stay tuned.

2) Very possibly.  Again, stay tuned.

3) The kino segments were written by the writing staff and directed by Ivon. R Bartok.

Wade writes: “But in SG-1, I was sure there was an episode or two where someone entered a closing wormhole and didn’t make it.”

Answer: The scene that comes to mind is Teal’c’s tug-o-war with the replicator in SG-1’s Gemini.  In that instant, the replicator “gave up” its arm and the puddle shut down.

Major D. Davis writes: “When will Major Davis be in SGU?”

Answer: No plans to see him on the show as of yet.

David writes: “I also was not sure how to address questions to the mailbag and I’m not sure if this was brought up before but I wanted to your attention and error regarding the rank of Ronald Greer.”

Answer: Thanks, David.  I’ll pass this along.

ilikecakes writes: “also, looking for a vancouver restaurant with good non-chocolate desserts (though i know you hate fruit); any recommendations?”

Answer: I had a pretty darn good pear pie with sour cream ice cream at Re-Fuel last night (no kidding).  Also, Cin Cin on Robson has always had pretty good desserts.

Michael writes: “How did the idea of stranding Rush on the planet at the end of “Justice” come about in the writer’s room or was it a single writer’s pitch to the group?”

Answer: The idea was pitched in the writers’ room by either Brad or Robert (I can’t remember which).

Kevin L. writes: “Why were some of the names changed?”

Answer: Usually because there is actually someone out there with that same name.

Shaggygirl writes: “So just how much weight did you gain in Japan? Back on the diet?”

Answer: I actually lost three pounds and shaved off 1% off my total body weight.  And, yes, I’m back on the regimen.

Simon writes: “2) Is it true the second half of season 1 will have less focus on the stones?

3) Speaking of the second half of season 1, I know you probably won’t know the answer to this. Are channles like Sky1 in the UK and Space over in Canada getting the second half before SyFy?”

Answers: 2) Not so much less focus as a “re” focus.

3) No, the back half of the season will premiere on SyFy first.

GrapesofWraith writes: “Have you had any cravings for cod sperm since you’ve been back?”

Answer: Believe it or not – no.

MaggieW writes: “Is there still no news about the Stargate Extinction? “

Answer: Alas, still no news.  But to those wondering how the heck the authorities can manage to keep the city hidden away in San Francisco Bay – the movie will reveal that Atlantis has been conveniently “relocated”.

Tanie writes: “do your fur kids ever go into work with you?”

Answer: Rarely.  They’re a bit of a distraction.

56 thoughts on “December 14, 2009: The Misenchanted Sword, by Lawrence Watt-Evans. And, oh yeah, we were picked up for a second season. Also, some mailbag.

  1. Just a quickie!

    1. Congrats on the renew! Now – toss out those stones, get rid of the Peytoncrap stuff, and do whatever was done so right in Light, Time and Justice (especially those three).

    2. Yes, I said Peytoncrap. Very mature of me. 😀

    3. @ Lou Anders – Hmmmm…Patrick Zircher? David Mack? Simone Bianchi? Quesada himself?

    4. Saw Invictus tonight – very nice movie. Surprisingly understated, but a true feel-good flick. I really enjoyed it.

    5. Mr. Das doesn’t need hand surgery – not unless that tendon snaps. So he just has to be careful for the next 4 weeks, and all should be fine.

    6. Joe – did you ever find that outline??

    Have a good evening, sir! Nites!


  2. Personally I wouldn’t take the TVbythenumbers comments section seriously. It seems to be a mixed group of people some who like SGU, some who are debating the ratings, some debating aspects of the show and some general complainers. I noticed some users hating on the show posting multiple times with their lack of love for the show, if people feel like posting long winded walls of text hating on something they should perhaps find something better to do with their time.

    That being said pretty much every show on Syfy has some hardcore haters, I think the fact that SGU has mostly suceeded and can draw a large number of viewers for a channel that it’s on is a testiment to the quality of the show.

    Here’s hoping SGU lasts many many many years.

  3. Hooray and congratulations to all on Season 2! Now if I can just be patient and wait for the second half of season 1 after that cliffhanger… argh.
    – KB

  4. About The Misenchanted Sword:

    I now know what book Rush was finishing while waiting for Destiny to enter the star.

    Anne Teldy

  5. Woah. Woah. Woah.

    Aftermath? Holy crap, we’re barely halfway through the 1st season, and we’re already getting titles for the 2nd! Awesome! 😀

    But what the heck, it’s not 2 words long? That’s not cool. Why not just call it “The Aftermath”? That’ll be easy, and it’d fit the season number = number of words in the title convention that we’ve all lobbied for. 😉

  6. I just wanted to say thanks for the SGA movie update and hints. I really am anxious to see it especially since you helped write it!

    Congrats on the renewal! 😀

  7. Hey Joe

    Great blog entry, as usual. Hey Joe I was kind of curious if you could tell us the story about how you met your wife? Lol I know its sort of random question, and it would probably have made more sense to have asked on your Valentines day entry, but i’ve just sort of gotten curious and I couldn’t find a past blog entry were you mentioned the topic 😛

    On a totally separate note, my dad’s a big chocolate lover and I was thinking about getting him some for christmas. My families originally from the country of Ecuador and my dad’s still very much interested in it and I was wondering if you had any recommendations for chocolates from the area? or maybe from just South America in general?

    thanks for your time Joe!

    P.S. Any chance you have a facebook Joe? is it as big of a phenomena in Canada as it is in America?

  8. I just saw Beau Bridges on The Closer. WOW! Fantastic performance and a real departure from General Landry. Love him. I was wondering how David Hewlett would have been in Beau’s role on The closer insead of the role David did as an FBI agent. Hmmmm. That thought just brings a smile to my face.

  9. @UCSDTriton: I can attest to the Facebook thing. Everybody and their moms has a Facebook up here. Don’t have much in the way of actual numbers though.

    I’ve got some books I still have to read from the library. I’m rather a fan of Dean Koontz’ stuff. Also reading Patient Zero by Jonathan Maberry. I haven’t done much fantasy reading. They all seem like 50 book series, and I never know where to start.

  10. Awesome job on the renewal!!!!

    Relocated? By any chance did they take it back to its true home in antarctica?

    So you say syfy will get the second half first, does that mean you know when they will get it?


  11. The Misenchanted Sword

    I like fantasy stories. So this was the right book for me. It was a fast and entertaining read. Well written. A good story and a refreshing idea. Just not more. For example, not once did I think about things like how it would (should) influence Valder to have to murder people. I didn’t look for a deeper meaning. Yes, the book showed some real stuff. For example that there had been a war for so many years that nobody even knew the reasons why it had started. It showed in a believable way how people would react after the end of such a longtime war. The lies from people in positions of power. How life would go on and develop. But still, those things were just told, not really the focus of the book.

    I thought in the middle of the book the moral side would be shown clearer. Would become something like a main topic. But no, it was still just an entertaining story for me. Valder’s storyline was often told very detailed. The other things were told more like a summary.

    I don’t know why I had this feeling. Whether this was the author’s intention or not. Maybe it’s because the story isn’t really about good versus evil (or like you, Joe, said, the typical hero). Of course, I could discuss some things. Their meaning. And maybe I will, after reading the thoughts from others. I just didn’t feel the need while I was reading the book.

    However, this is not a negative criticism. Surely, this book isn’t on the same level as ‘Lord of the Rings’. And I didn’t expect that. I’m o.k. with reading something just for purposes of entertainment. I don’t have to discuss and question everything. I don’t need drama and stories with moral background all the time.

    So, yes, I liked the book. 🙂

  12. Wade wrote:

    I haven’t done much fantasy reading. They all seem like 50 book series, and I never know where to start.

    The website Fantastic Fiction (found here) lists series in order. They cover all types of novels.

    Anne Teldy

  13. Okay, I have a few questions

    1)In the pilot of SGU, the Hammond was against three Ha’taks. My question is how in the hell did the Ha’taks stand again Asgard beams weapon?

    2)What will happen when a Goauld or a Tokra use the communication stone? Which consciousness will be transferred?

    3)I’m shooting blindly here but tell me if I’m right.
    Will the next episode space have this plot line:
    Rush will either get that alien shuttle working or rescued by the aliens and go after Destiny? if not, will the episode show us colonel young having hallucination about Rush?

    4)And the last question, how slow is the FTL drive compared to Asgard’s hyperdrive?

  14. Add my voice to the congratulations on the renewal. I’m pleased to find myself pleased to hear of it. I had feared my attitude was going to be “meh”, but the last couple of episodes has invigorated my interest in this incarnation of the franchise. I can see some seriously good things(for us the viewers, not for the characters of the show) happening in the back half of the season. Never mind it’s fun easedropping in on the creative process.
    Due to the late hour for me, I’ll post my views on Misenchanted Sword later. Glad you enjoyed the book, though I had ever confidence in Mr. Watt-Evan’s writing to win you over.

  15. Congrats on the Renewal!!… I’m really exciting from the next 10 eps of Season 1. I currently in the process on re-watching the first 10 and I must say that the show ROCKS (acting, writing, etc). A question I do have is who chooses the music for each episode? Is it something the music director does or a group effort from the writers/producers/music director? Because i must say that its EXETREMLY well done and please pass on my kudos to them. The songs/music chosen really sets the tone of each episode and just fits perfectly (probably the best I have seen in a series).

  16. hdtv1 writes not unlike the commentors in the various political blogs I read. Ouch, is all I have to say.

    I’m very excited about the renew! Are people advocating for more of a certain ‘ship, yet?lol

    What is the chance a tourist (and avid Joe Mallozzi fan, of course) to the lovely city of Vancouver would be able to tour Bridge Studios? I’m planning spring break and I gotta say, it’s very tempting…

  17. Coucou Joseph!

    ça va bien? J’ai appris pour la saison 2 de sgu, c’est une bonne nouvelle 🙂 J’espere que cette prochaine saison va un peu revenir dans le chemin de sg1 et sga.

    Aglaglagla… fait tellement froid ici, il doit faire 0° je pense O_O …en plus c’est un froid humide, snif encore s’il neigerait ça serai bien 🙂

    Bonne journée!
    Gros bisou.

  18. Thanks for answering, Joe!

    1) Are the romours about new on the SG-1/SGA movies news coming in January true?

    2) Can ya give us some more S02 episode titles?

    3) When will we expect to see more of Lou Diamond?

  19. Gateworld had a podcast recently about sex and sexuality on SGU and i wanted to highlight a topic with you (and maybe hear your thoughts on it!):

    There was an american TV show from a couple years ago called noah’s arc which is notable for being still the only major american tv show which portrayed black gay relationships. Naturally this is an even more taboo topic than “just” gay relationships as black culture is embedded with insane amounts of homophobia which prevents its discussion and anything of that nature coming up.

    Except if its lesbian stuffs… That is somehow easier.

    While SGU only has two black characters (Greer and Becker), and its unlikely that anything will happen with either of those i still believe that TV (stargate included) needs to be bolder and take the “less easy routes” of these topics and portray a wider variety of subjects that otherwise wouldn’t hit the mainstream.

  20. Hey there!

    Congrats on Season 2 pickup. I believe I called this a long time ago. Woo hoo!

    The numbers are in for the free to air premiere in Australia – 744,000 people watched last night. That’s pretty good, ‘cos the highest ratings for the night were 1,244,000. Well done.

    I’m wondering if they’ve relocated Atlantis to the end of my street. There’s an awful lot of fencing there and lots of space. That would be a cool script.

    Cheers, Chev

  21. Tammy Dixon said yesterday:

    Chevron7: I’ve heard of a new type of Calici virus. Is that what got your sister’s pets? It is very contagious and deadly. It’s wiped out whole catteries in, at least, one shelter!
    So sorry for your loss. Pets become like children to me. It’s hard to explain the loss to kids, also.
    There is a vaccine for this new Calici. Has your sister’s vet talked to her about this?

    Thanks Tammy. I’m not sure if it was a new type. The older rabbits had 1 vaccination and the babies weren’t old enough. They said the virus was airborne and created to control wild rabbits, also as you said was incredibly contagious & deadly.


  22. Holy effing commercialism batman! Talk about ads on channel ten Perth’s premiere of SGU!!! There were HEAPS!

    Now I know why I prefer to watch it at my friend’s house which is conveniently blessed with cable.

    I watched it anyway.. and want to ask;

    Those aliens which/who attacked Icarus base.. are we going to find out who/what they were? Is this to be revealed in the second half ? Or is that a case of ‘I could tell you but then you’d become Wraith fodder for old time’s sake” ?

    Sour cream icecream – oh yum (that’s not sarcasm).

    We have a cheesecake icecream here and it’s diiiiiiiiviiiiiiiiiine.

  23. So Joe I don’t know if you’re able to answer this but is the split between the crew that Rob alluded military vs civilian or a mix? My theory WAS that Sgt Spencer would lead a mutiny on the Destiny.

    Cheers, Chev

  24. Hahaha hdtv1

    That’s pretty random.

    Yesssssssssssssssssssss 2nd season

    2010 will be a Stargate year. Now where are the frackin movies.

    Thanks so much,
    Major D. Davis

  25. Joe,

    Big congrats on the renewal. What a a great Christmas gift for everyone involved with the Stargate franchise.

    But like many others, I wonder why such a long hiatus on SyFy from now until April. That type of program strategy can’t help to sustain audience numbers over time.

    So in the meantime, I am imaging Rush stuck on that planet over Christmas and New Year – happy as a clam to miss all the obligatory social festivities. And, I’ll wonder in future whether Young and Rush remain silent about their mutual treacherous acts (blackmail stand-off) or if the shit hits the fan right away when Rush shows up again. Hmmm…

    I bought the Misenchanted Sword and will be reading it at some point soon. Sorry to miss this BOTMC but it’s just been a busy time for me with little opportunity for reading.

    Also, looking forward to the Lou Anders anthology when it comes out.


  26. Das: great news about your hubby not needing surgery!

    I saw Paul McGillion in a Lifetime movie. I usually avoid that station like the plague (my mom watches it all the time) but I had to see P. M. He looked great!

    Mr. M, I still can’t believe your mom didn’t like the TV! As long as my mom can find the Lifetime station, she is happy. It’s the DVR that has her stymied.

    I noticed how you worked in your weight loss stats “again” in the Q & A today 😀 . We got it, you look great! It was probably the most expensive diet but the most fun one., too.

    For Lawrence Watt-Evans: I enjoyed “The Misenchanted Sword”. It was a fun read and I eagerly awaited reading about the “clause” for the old wizard’s spell.
    My two questions for you are: Did you have any fencing experience when you wrote Valder’s fight scenes?
    Can you clarify the differences between Sorcery, Witchcraft and Wizardry in your book? I understand that Sorcerers, in this story, were associated with demons but I’m unclear on Witchcraft/Wizardry because they didn’t seem so benign either.
    Thank you, for participating in this Q & A!

  27. Oh. my.

    Yesterday I stopped by a British shop. It used to be a favorite haunt of mine, but it had relocated and it’s been a quite while since I’ve been able to get there. The store has expanded to include cheeses, and a little cafe. I’m glad I finally stopped by. Besides stocking up on the ‘staples’ (ya know – spotted dick and Bird’s custard…but I passed on the Horlick’s… 😉 ), I happened to spy a tin of chestnut spread:

    I wondered if this is the same sort of thing you raved about in Tokyo, Joe…so – despite the price – I bought it.

    Well, it is DELISH!! If this is the same flavor you’ve experienced overseas, I certainly understand the appeal! It reminds me a bit of pumpkin, for some reason…not as nutty as I thought it would be. Very good, indeed. 🙂


  28. Congrats on the second season. We knew the show would be picked up. It’s really good.

    A question on the stones: This has probably been asked, but there must be a problem with using them after a while. Scott’s comments have even foreshadowed that. Any shows in the second half dealing with that?

    Secondly, everyone was all up in arms about Camille and her relationship with her significant other. That storyline was very tastefully done, thank you very much. I’m not sure why people were upset with it. It’s interesting that I haven’t seen much about how Telford and Young are using the stones though.

    I hope there’s more TJ in the second half of the season. She’s quickly becoming one of my favorites, as is Eli. Can’t wait for more.

  29. Answer: Rarely. They’re a bit of a distraction.

    I strongly disagree, after reading your blog for the last two years or so. I would have to say the dogs would probably be complaining that you guys are distracting them!

  30. I’m gonna jump in here again about the stones.

    I’ve brought this up before, but will do so again. My major problem with anyone having sexual relations (or even kissing) with a different body – even though that body contains the consciousness of someone they love – is hard to believe.

    For instance – if my husband’s consciousness was in the body of someone I did not find physically attractive, I could not have sex with him. Love is about the whole package – you fall in love with the personality, their appearance, their voice, their scent – everything. Some friends and I were talking about this just this weekend, and none of us could imagine having sex with a body we didn’t love, even if the person inside that body was someone we did love. So using the stones in that way just seems totally unbelievable. And even if it was my husband in that body, it would still feel like cheating to me…in fact, I think he’d question whether I was doing it to be with him – or to fulfill some fantasy about being with another man. I don’t think we’d either ever fully trust each other after something like that.

    In fact, the only two ‘stone’ moments that have worked for me are Eli’s visit to his mom (that was about the most believable), and when Young took a body to take down Telford. Both of those moments I could buy into, but it’s really hard for me to believe that people will just cuddle up with, snog and sleep with a body they are not in love with.

    Unless, of course, your name is Tiger. 😉


  31. Joe, did we ever discover if Rush was telling the truth that General O’Neill had placed him in charge?, if he was telling the truth why isn’t he in charge? if he wasn’t telling the truth why wasn’t more been made of it by Camille and the military?

  32. Congrats on Renewal. Hey, that’s make a good episode title…

    I did read The Misenchanted Sword. I hate to sound like a scrooge, but I did not enjoy it. I generally like fantasy, but this one did not catch my imagination. I just didn’t care much about Valder and his world; it all fell quite flat. There was no sauce for the meat as it were. I was intrigued my the hermit, but he never reappeared. The concept was interesting, but Valder dithered over this and that so much I wanted to smack him. I kept thinking, “Get a clue, dude!” Far too much internal dialog for me, and internal dialog that was irritating at that. This is a perfectly good book, I just didn’t get into it at all. I had to force myself to read it, and then… Bam! it ended. Meh. If anyone wants my copy, I’d be happy to let it go.

  33. I was a little apprehensive about the ‘new direction’ Universe would take. I’ve long been a StarGate fan and the often humorous tone of SG-1 and Atlantis was a big reason why. Of course, as usual, fan hysteria on the web was a little overblown. The grimmer tone (not to mention the acknowledgement that sex exists) has been handled in an intelligent and compelling manner. Universe has become one off my favorite shows.

    One thing I especially appreciate is the serialized progression of the story. It makes me wonder, though, how far ahead you actually plan when considering story arcs? Did you expect to have a second season when you were starting out? Without giving too much away, do you already have a resolution to their situation (lost light years from home, etc.) figured out? Or do you expect the resolution to grow out of future events?

    As much as I love Universe, today’s TV climate does not seem very hospitable to scripted shows, especially science-fiction shows that by their nature depend heavily on props, effects, and costumes. Do you expect Universe to last 4 or 5 seasons, or do you approach each season thinking it might be the last?


  34. rofl Das, maybe Tiger is secretly involved in the Icarus Project? so totally not his fault!

  35. Hey Joe,

    First of all, congratulations on the renewal. A great way to finish the year for the cast and crew.

    The Misenchanted Sword
    Despite the final few pages of the Misenchanted Sword I found the general story line incredibly difficult to predict. That was an unexpected pleasure. Thinking back it may have been because this character was not your usual “Go Forth and Conquer!” soldier whose selfish motivations would have been much easier to predict. I enjoyed reading about a character who, despite given the means, decided to remain true to their morals.

    My question for Lawrence Watt-Evans. You made reference to dates such as the year 5000, so I was wondering whether this was a world completely apart from our reality or was it set in a more dystopian future of this reality?

  36. After the first season of SGA, the producers/writers decided to rid themselves of a character who wasn’t working out. Do you plan to do the same on SGU. . .killing off a character (or two)? *crossing fingers that Chloe or Scott (or both) has a freak, lethal accident*

  37. Hey Joe, could you wish Michael Shanks a happy birthday for me? Ahh, my Daniel…

    Congrats on Season 2!

    Have a good night!

  38. Any chance we’ll see the Destiny Expedition find some version of an Ancient “armory” on the ship?

    It is one thing I’ve always been vexed by..after seeing humans explore Atlantis and various Aurora class ships.

    We know the Ancients had a type of handheld weapon after seeing them and the Asurans using it. The Ancients did leave behind a bunch of drones that were far more powerful, so its kinda hard to believe that they didn’t leave any other weapons behind for ‘safety reasons’.

    Except for Zats and Wraith Stunners, we haven’t seen humans using non-Earth weapons very much.

    They could certainly use some more weapons considering the limited amount they have of weapons and ammunition. And I just think it’d be cool to see them using a weapon that is more advanced then their current weapons..but less advanced then what we’ve seen the Ancients use already …an in between weapon so to speak.

  39. Hi Joe!

    Just wanted to say congrats on the Season 2 renewal! I’m delighted that my Friday night entertainment–both SGU and Sanctuary–is assured for at least another year!

    I know it’s probably too early to say, but is there any likelihood that we’ll continue to get glimpses of Homeworld Command and/or The Hammond in the next season?

    Pretty please?

    Thanks…and congratulations again to the whole team!


  40. Answer: Alas, still no news. But to those wondering how the heck the authorities can manage to keep the city hidden away in San Francisco Bay – the movie will reveal that Atlantis has been conveniently “relocated”.

    Like they beamed it to mars?? With MGM selling off a lot of stuff, will this effect the making of the movies??

  41. I’m not watching SGU, but congrats on the renewal anyway, Mr. Mallozzi!

    By the way, I noticed some discussion about Tokyo’s Love Hotels. According to one of my Japan travel books: “Love Hotels are designed especially for dating couples and married partners living in extended families, who may feel that they need some privacy.” It doesn’t sound exactly like someplace to go when you’re traveling alone. Coincidentally, have you ever stayed at a capsule hotel?

    Also, another writing question in case you’re doing a mailbag: do you ever write with pen and paper, or do you use your laptop from beginning to end?

  42. Quick question Joe.

    There’s always comments about how the net makes up a small portion of viewers. What ratio does your office come up with as far as general watchers vs online fans? And how is that number worked out? Just interested.

  43. I have a question – why does the ship only have a handful of stargate addresses ‘in range’ when it drops out of FTL? It’s slower than a regular hyperdrive so it can only be within a galaxy – a stargate can link with any other gate in a galaxy according to canon

  44. “idoit”

    Isn’t that an Eskaleutian word meaning “man who lights pyre in own Igloo” ?


    I think he used to have a facebook entry but closed it (in as much as you can close a facebook entry)

    “That storyline was very tastefully done, thank you very much. I’m not sure why people were upset with it.”

    Because it was there, they wanted to see new vistas in faraway galaxies, not The L Word.

    “It’s interesting that I haven’t seen much about how Telford and Young are using the stones though.”

    Only in as much as it shows you turn blind eyes to certain items (ie, it has been complained about all over as well)

    “…even if it was my husband in that body, it would still feel like cheating to me…”

    Yeah, Das, I agree with that, if people talking about how realistic this is, that’s what you point to; the beloved leader (who’s pining for the medic (and the fjords) has no problem lying to his superiors, beating up people he doesn’t like (or trying to kill them), disobeying orders) has no problem besmirching his wifes body with certain select parts of a man he intensely disliked. As if.

    And even if – why would she be up for it – its not as if they look remotely the same? Unless of course we were meant to infer she is a wanton hussy (same as Wrays partner presumably) – perhaps Eli can go there and has his needs addressed.

  45. I don’t know whether I’m just insane, Joe, but I was rewatching the 3rd episode of SGU and in a brief flash I saw something odd.
    That big grey legged thing looks like a spider. As he dug up the earth, it fell with some of the sand out of the spade. As it fell, its long legs moved as a spider’s would. It’s only on the screen for a brief moment, I’m surprised I noticed it seeing as I was really just listening to Joel’s lovely music. I guess other people have probably already noticed the spider, but I couldn’t find any reference to it with Google.

    Can you confirm or deny? Did the actor mention anything about it? A spider or an odd stone?

  46. @DP
    Yes, Larry Alvarez is a genuine astrophotographer who produces beautiful work, some of it previously published in how-to guides.

    Yes, amateur astronomers can get images that awesome with the right equipment. Yes, it’s entirely possible to DIY telescopes and filters, and it’s a frequent occurrence as the hobby attracts geeks & the specialist equipment on the market is rather limited/expensive. Yes, you can DIY filters for solar work, although extra care should be taken because mistakes can lead to damaged equipment & blindness.

    Without doing the math to check the listed equipment to ensure that it could achieve the magnification in the images (which is possible with high-end amateur equipment on a still night), the photo set seems plausible. You could also pop over to the Bad Astronomer blog on Discovery and ask him to take a look — debunking & space are his two favourite hobbies!

  47. Thanx for the reply Joe, and I’d take my fur kids to uni if I could get away with it!

    So, head back to the grind-stone? A very good thing!!

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