Today, we started production on our final episode of the season: Gauntlet.  There is one scene still outstanding, however, and it looks like I may be the one to write it – right after I finish my producer’s edit of The Hunt tomorrow.  We’ve finally got all the scenes from the new set (where, not so coincidentally, we were shooting today) and, once I’ve seen them in the cut, I’ll have to decide what stays and what goes.  Unless, of course, the network wants to run a very special extra three minute long episode.

At some point, I have to shift focus to generating a restaurant list for my upcoming Tokyo trip.  Unlike previous years, all my lunches and dinners will not be Michelin star-studded affairs.  I’ll be traveling with Ivon, so we’ll play it by ear most lunches.  Still, it would be nice to book the odd high-end blow-out.  I was thinking heading back to Ishikawa or Sawada or Kanesaka.  Anyway, I usually stay at The Peninsula in Ginza but, this time out, I’ll be staying at The Imperial Hotel.  And am already regretting it. Apparently, the hotel doesn’t have an email account for guest services.  Instead, I’ll have to fax over my restaurant request.  I suppose it could be worse.  We could be communicating by carrier pigeon.  Strike One.

Here are a few production pics for you to guess at/marvel over.  What IS that last thing?

And a few links to check out…

The Driscoll Middle School football team pulls off an amazing trick play:

Like the above link, this one comes compliments of Carl Binder who scours the internet so I don’t have to.  Spot the phony smiles.  I scored 15/20:

Nutrition Professor loses 27 pounds on the Twinkie and Dorito Diet:

A reminder that episode #207, The Greater Good, airs tomorrow night (Tuesday at 9:00 p.m. on SyFy).  It’s an episode Joseph Dilworth Jr. calls a game changer:

48 thoughts on “November 8, 2010: Pics and links!

  1. Looks like the spaceship and stunner weapons that belong to those dozen aliens aboard the Seed Ship.

    The last pic looks like something with a Goa’uld design. Something from the archives?

  2. Oooh, Evil Care Bear Tech. I love it. They even caught a belly badge in an Evil Care Bear Tech box.

    I’m going to do the smile thing tomorrow when I’ve had enough sleep. Does it mean spontaneous smile as the definition of real? I’m not sure what a fake smile is. Lips curl up –that’s a smile, right?

  3. OMG!!!

    I totally know what that last picture is!!!!

    It’s a transdimensional container wherein a man named Desmond is in a room at the bottom of it pushing a button that resets all those SGU haters every 108 minutes!!

  4. The smile thing was interesting. I got 16/20 – missed with an equal 2 fake, 2 genuine. I really thought I would do a lot worse.


    So…that was fun. Now what??! Entertain me some MORE!!!!


    Thank you.


  5. helloooo…

    Bloodsucking Fiends: A Love Story, by Christopher Moore Discussion the week of November 8th with author Christopher Moore

    …did you forget?

    You forgot, didn’t you.

    (That last picture is obviously an Ancient Xerox machine)

  6. I just wanted to throw a piece of advice out there to people who are DVRing SGU. Back when I was DVRing SGA, and even now when I DVR SGU – I turn the TV on in my basement and even though I’m not there to watch the show in person, it appears as if I am – that way, you hopefully get the credit for it, even though I’m DVRing it. Make sense? I hope so, because I just read it and now I realize I sound like a completel nut job!

    And, by the way, just re-watched the last episode AGAIN! Dude, seriously, I wish you all could get credit for the number of times an overly analytical fan such as myself watches and rewatches a show to pick up all the tiny nuances to figure out what is going on, exactly! It’s such a cool mystery to be solved this season. I’m still trying to figure out if Chloe is really controlling the ship, if Rush is making it look like the Ship is testing Young … or if the Ship is truly as sensient as it appears.

  7. You should all go and leave nice comments on Joe’s article, too, at the link above. The comments being left irritated me to no end.

    I know what the last picture might be: Alien Xerox or where you’ve been hiding the golden boy, Martin Gero. He definitely would get golden with all that light in the box. You only open it when he gets “Bored to Death.”

  8. Joe

    I am glad you are doing your final production on Gauntlet. I wish SGU good luck. Like I said I may give it another chance, I do not know yet.

  9. I got 17 out of 20 for the smile distinguisher, but I had a bit of an advantage since my background is in psychology.
    I think the last photo is of an Ancient device belonging to a ship. It also appears damaged, so, likely the last remaining functional part of an Ancient ship.

    What do I win? 🙂

    I’m in San Diego right now. The weather is great and the sun is shining.

    Barry Campbell, the guy in the coning tower of the Nuclear sub in the Arctic during the movie Continuum, says “hi” to everyone.


  10. Cool set pics and that prop object thingy in the last pic, looks like an old beat up Goa’uld something-or-other. hmmmm.

    The nutrition thing – I went to a nutrition specialist and she said basically the same thing, that the #1 factor in weight control is calories. It’s nothing new but, still, it’s a fascinating idea, when there are so many “diets” that focus so much on lots of nit-picky details. Of course, the concern with the other ingredients in food, for health’s sake, is when very large (or hardly any) quantities are consumed, i.e., sodium.

    I had a really handy regime for getting “fit” again, a weekly thing, gradually adding 1 thing for each week:

    Week 1: stick within the appropriate calories per day (no more than 200 under or 200 over)

    Week 2: Wk1 + drink at least 2 liters of water per day

    Week 3: Wks1,2 + increase fiber

    Week 4: Wks1,2,3 + reduce sodium

    There were a few more but those steps, alone, allow for a huge improvement.

    That “popculturezoo” article is a good read. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    Sean D.

  11. Got back today from the Los Angeles Stargate/Farscape Convention. Had a blast!
    Friday was a bit slow. Saw Andee Frizzell(Wraith Queen). She had a couple of extremely non-Stargate funny stories. Before she came out they had a music video of Atlantis set to the A-Team music. It was fall-out of your seat funny. “If you are in trouble, and no one else can help, and you can find them, then you can hire the SGA-Team.” They had John(aka Kirk), Ronan(aka Chewie or Conan), Teyla(aka Xena) and Rodney(aka Merideth). Then Steve Bacic was on. He was good as well. I had to leave after that(my beloved Pittsburgh Penguins hockey team was in town to play the Anaheim Ducks) so I unfortunately had to miss Christopher Heyerdahl’s panel(don’t flame me Das!). I was very disappointed, especially since the Pens lost the game.
    Saturday was much better. Saw Dan Shea again, he is always good for a laugh, although don’t leave the room when he is onstage, he will mock you all the way out the door! Then Joe Flanigan was on. I saw him last year and he was just as good this year. He was very candid about the disappointment that everyone felt about the cancellation of Atlantis. The strange thing is that someone asked him a question about why you, Mr. M, hate him. I have been a long time viewer of your blog and I have never seen anything to indicate that, except for the fact that you haven’t posted many pics of him and perhaps some people took that to mean that you didn’t like him as much as the other actors. I don’t want to get into any of that, but I was surprised by the question. I had a Farscape ticket that day so then I went to see Raelee Hill, who I hadn’t seen before. She was great, extremely funny, and with that lovely accent. I got a picture with her which was great as well. And then Michael Shanks was on, and he was his usual engaging, funny self. And the coolest thing was, as I was leaving the hotel to get a cab, who was standing there waiting for one as well….Brian Smith and Elyse Levesque!!! She is even more stunning in person than she is on TV. I guess they were going to dinner. They were commenting on whether or not they had to go all the way down to where the cabs were. I told Brian that there is usually a consierge who would hail the cab for him, but I didn’t see him out right now. So Brian went to the window and finally someone came out and got them a cab. I waited until they left to have him get me one. I didn’t want to be intrusive or bother them, but I was wearing a Farscape jacket and Atlantis hat so they had to know I was a fan. Kind of a cool close encounter!
    Sunday was great. Elyse was on first, and she was great. She had some funny stories, a lot of them involving L. Ferreira and farting. She talked about the water tank stunt and how she loved doing it. I got my picture taken with her after that, which was really awesome! Then Dan Shea was on again(he was there all 3 days) and then Brian was up. He was also very candid. He spoke of the hatred that some fans on the internet had, and how it was fracturing the Stargate franchise. Someone asked him about how the military wouldn’t do the things that the characters have done on SGU and he gave a great answer with I can’t completely remember and don’t want to butcher. He said how the actors really appreciate the support of all the fans and how things like this convention were how they can really see how they are doing, since they get no feedback during and after filming. I got both their autographs, Brian liked the SGU had I bought at the Con(it is more like a military cap that a ball cap) and Elyse wrote that she liked my SGU shirt. The guy in front of me said that at his photo op he had a Keno and Brian threw it in the air as the picture was taken, so it looked like it was floating between them. I think that was the most creative idea for a photo op I have seen.
    Sorry to go on so long, but I had such a great time and loved seeing Brian and Eylse for the first time. I hope that everything goes well with the show getting renewed so that they will be back with more great stories to tell. Can’t wait until The Greater Good tomorrow!!!

  12. I’m a fan of all 3 Stargate series, I think SG1 & Atlantis both had a slightly more casual relationship with viewer disbelief, quite a few episodes were about mcguffins and SG1 especially became slightly too knowing in it’s last seasons and the films.

    SGU makes you work very hard for genuine plot/character advancement, but it’s all the sweeter when you get there and doesn’t leave stories feeling hollow with deus ex machina endings.

    Having said that, we still want lots of Stargate alumni guest appearances! 😉

  13. Got 16/20. Split the wrong ones: 2 fake that were real and vice versa.

    And the last pic is an ancient version of a steamer trunk. The glow is obviously the “steamer” part of the trunk.

  14. that last picture? it’s a photocopier of course! …sure the drawing we got from the art department said otherwise, but it’s so obvious. …getting toner cartridges that fit might be tough though….

  15. Hey Joe

    That 3rd pic is clearly an ‘old style’, floor model, oven. Somebody left the light on!


  16. Are you going to Toronto as part of the SGU delegation at the Geminis? Lots of restaurants there if you need a motive.

  17. I got a 16 out of 20 in distinguishing fake smiles. I might have a new career on hand.
    Have you read anything by Tananarive Due?

  18. I did horrible on the smile test. I figured the fakers would be holding the smile longer and there’d be this little twitch at the end as they reminded themselves to stop smiling now. I was way off. I should’ve looked at the eyes.


  19. Stuff like this smile test is where my joke about aspiring to be an actor if it weren’t for my complete lack of acting talent comes from. I’m fascinated by the technicalities of it, but, when it comes down to it, I can’t even do a convincing me.

  20. Haha my 1st impression was “Ancient photocopier” too. But I like Medusan Ambassador better!

    Guess I’m one of them because its always been my impression, since the beginning of this blog, that Mr. M has not been fond of Mr. F. And I have poked at it, fondly of course.

  21. Hey Joe,
    Hypothetical question. All production related issues aside. If you had the chance to do an episode featuring only one character out of the entire franchise, which would you chose, and why?

  22. Hey Joe, any plans on a online streaming of SGU?

    I’ve been a fan Stargate since the original movie, I got the soundtrack CD from back then too still.

    I watched SG-1 on Sci-Fi Channel. (US rebroadcast, the cool stuff aired during the night here in Norway, aka evening your time I guess)
    Then Sci-Fi Europe when the cable co. started broadcasting from the UK Sci-Fi channel branch.
    Then Sci-Fi channel stopped broadcasting/working with the cable co’s in scandinavia.
    I think that was around 5th season of SG-1.

    I lost touch with the series for a year or so then.
    Then I began to dig a little deeper on the net for work reasons, but I also discovered tv recordings.
    And since then I haven’t missed a single Stargate episode,
    the day after it’s aired in the US or Canada I can watch it at my leissure on my screen.
    No worries about a local tc company or cable co. dropping a series halfway through, or out of order airing etc.

    But here’s the thing. If I could watch this streaming or in some similar way, from “you guys” with an ad now and again (to cover the costs) and let you gather metric data on my viewing (does this viewer always take a bathroom break when a soda ad is shown?)

    Then that is fine, I don’t mind some ads and viewer tracking if I can watch for free.
    That IS basically what all the regular TV viewers do anyway.
    And you would benefit not just from ads sold but metrics and stats numbers to show to the execs.

    Right now a whole bunch of international stats is lost down the drain, because only “US – Nielsen family” boxes are used for the stats or similar crap.

    Stargate is a global franchise easily as big as Startrek (oh shush you Trekkers, admit Stargate is a nice Trek substitute *wink*)

    So why isn’t there a or similar service?
    With nation/region targeted ads (usually the same ads as regional tv etc.), lots of cool metrics collected, and some real viewing statistics?
    Eps. could air the day after the “mother network” airs the ep. for example.

    It’s amazing a sci-fi show on a modern technological tv network, is still so tied to the old tube box way of viewing.

  23. I just read your recent post about ratings and got a little depressed. It’s funny, but it seems like the roles of TV and movies have switched. These days, TV has the more serious, intelligent stories, whereas movies are all whiz-bang action and very little plot or characterization! The stories on Universe are very satisfying from a science-fiction point of view. I especially like how mysteries percolate over time, questions aren’t always answered, and we viewers don’t really know any more than the Destiny crew. I’ve heard some complaints that there is no ‘sense of wonder’ in Universe, but I believe the opposite is true. The crew barely understands the craft they’re forced to inhabit, and the area of space they are exploring is far from anything they’ve know before. But where Universe really excels is in its characters. They are more like people and less like ‘characters’ than most shows on TV, and frankly, any science-fiction show I’ve seen. The characters have their personal motivations and ambitions, they aren’t easily classified as ‘good’ or ‘bad’, and they must confront internal conflict as well as external. The writing is very mature and sophisticated. That is why it is so frustrating to see such low ratings. I would bet that there are many people who would enjoy Universe but have never seen it because they erroneously believe all science-fiction is mindless action/adventure.

    But now to my point. It doesn’t seem like SyFY has an accurate picture of how many people are really watching their show. I get together every week with two of my friends to watch Universe, but none of us has a Neilsen box, so who would ever know? I actually just went over to the SyFy webpage and wrote a letter to their feedback address telling them how much I and my friends) love the show. It might not help, but it couldn’t hurt, right? Is there anything else I can do? Would buying the DVD sets have any bearing on a decision for a 3rd season pickup?

  24. @ Bailey – Chris H. is a very naughty boy. 😉 What I love about him is that he gets right in there with the fans and plays with the characters. He knows how to make the fangirls squeee! The Todd/Sheppard ship is just about the only one I can stand – I’m not a shipper sort. Of course, I don’t think of Todd/Shep in a ‘sexual’ way, though eroticism certainly comes into play. I mean, once you’ve ‘had’ Sheppard… 😉

    And since Todd is a predator by nature, even if something sexual were to come into play, at least we know who the girl would be! 😀


  25. whats that picture!? see I would have thought is was a destiny battery…or a dyson sphere, or quite possibly a fancy seat warmed chair. But I was wrong, its a microwave oven

  26. Thanks for the phony smile link, Joe! I enjoyed that and was happy to see I got most of them: 18/20 🙂

    On another note, SGU season 2 has certainly grabbed me – I thought ‘Cloverdale’ was really good… great character moments. I must admit I’m a ‘tape it and watch later’ person: I get rid of the ads that way. I guess it doesn’t matter for ratings since I’m (behind) in the UK (or am I wrong?).

    And finally, will we see a return to ‘Weird Food Purchase of the Day’ … perhaps on your upcoming travels?

  27. I’m looking forward to “The Greater Good” – I love Rush and his nefarious ways.

    I got 15/20 on the smiles. Missed 2 genuine and 3 fakes. It’s all in the eyes. It would have been easier if I could have taken a second look at a couple of them.

    About the idiotic Twinkie and junk-food diet. If you take in less calories than you expend you will lose weight. Duh.

    On a more serious note, if you are trying to lose weight and REALLY want an easy way to help do a food diary to help keep track of those pesky calories, try the Livestrong website. They have a free diary there called “MyPlate” where you can track what you eat and what you do for exercise. One really nice feature is that put in your height, weight, activity level and whether you want to lose, maintain or gain weight and it calculates how many calories you should consume to meet the goal. I’ve lost 6 pounds in 6 weeks and am on track to lose that last pesky 5 pounds before Christmas. You can put in your bike or walking loops, too. It calculates mileage and speed. Very cool.

  28. the mystery object is the newest japanese toilet, one that no doubt awaits you in tokyo. great links. And just a half hour to A Greater Good.

  29. Excellent episode, re-engaged me for the umpteenth time 🙂 My biggest concern at this point is that if you don’t get picked up for Season 3, you’ll leave it open-ended. I’d rather see it compressed in order to get some closure! Have a good night!

  30. I’m pissed. Syfy just totally spoiled next week’s episode about who dies. Did they not learn after doing that with Carson Beckett?

    Wow, Joe, this was an awesome, awesome episode. I can’t wait to watch it again…like right now.

  31. The last two episodes (“Trial and Error” and “The Greater Good”) have been by far the best two episodes of SGU. Both had a solid self-contained story and moved the overall story along. I have loved the premise of the show from the start and these two episodes have really done a great job of fulfilling the show’s potential. I guess moving to muli-word titles helped some. 😛

    Seriously though, I am excited for what is to come in the next weeks. Next week’s episode especially looks great, although if the trailer is truthful, it will be a shame to lose Eli’s girlfriend.

    Keep up the good work!

  32. Did you guys see what happened on the @SGUAwareness Twitter account? Brian J. Smith was RT’d saying he’d answer ?’s.

    Joe, I tweeted @JellMaxBubLu w/ the hashtags #sgu and #giveSGUseason3. All they gotta’ do is mouse that retweet button. I know what trouble they have with their spelling.

  33. oh, the dogs might not be SGU fans. If they’re bitter about the Caprica cancellation… Sorry, Dogs, I didn’t mean to assume.

  34. G’day Joe

    That last piccy is an old computer game, you know where you sit on those flimsy chairs and challenge your mate to Space Invaders. Yes I am showing my age.

  35. The last episode was entertaining although it reminded me considerably of the Star Trek episode where they keep reliving the same event which ends with the Enterprise being destroyed. Depressurize the cargo hold … or use the tractor beam… remember that one?

    Secondly, doesn’t anyone correlate that when Rush wanders off… the ship suddenly seems to do things ? Guess not.

    What benefit does he gain from not telling anyone about the bridge ? He’s trapped on the ship like everyone else. If the ship blows up so does he. Why is he having visions by annoyingly vague familiars who allude to things he hasn’t uncovered instead of simply saying “IT’S THAT BUTTON STUPID!”

  36. I can’t even express how disappointed I am with this supposed “game changing” episode. Not only is Destiny’s ultimate mission completely stupid, but Rush continues to act completely insane and yet we’re supposed to think it’s reasonable. Sure, let’s trap dozens of unwilling people on this craphole of a ship to satisfy Rush’s irrational need to “understand”. You’d think someone as smart as he is would realize that getting a crew that actually wants to be there, with a way to actually get home, might be better than a few emaciated captives.

    I want this show to succeed, I love Stargate. But these sort of random story shifts and “mysteries” are completely unenjoyable. I mean, this doesn’t even really explain Destiny’s mission. Did the Ancients think they could somehow travel to the CMBR and be able to understand it better? Gah. This is BSG all over again. It’s not going to make any real sense until the last episode, and then the explanation will be rushed because you guys got cancelled before any real setup could be done.

    I don’t know, maybe I’ll have a better view when I can process the episode more. But at this point I really don’t see any redeeming qualities to the show. I’ll continue to DVR it, because I love Stargate and hope the show gets better, but I really can’t recommend my friends watch it.

  37. Oh, and killing Gin sucks completely. That actress is awesome and needs to stick around a show more than a few episodes. Plus it’s really going to suck for her mind to be trapped in such a shitty body.

  38. Oh, and the guy guarding what’s-his-face better be dead. That’s the only way him slipping away could plausibly be explained. But the fact that Gin/Amanda was unguarded, especially after the earlier encounter, is completely unacceptable.

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