The Iron Hunt discussion:
ponytail writes: “I’ve always thought I did not like zombies, but after reading this book and a couple other choices from your book of the month club (like Boneshaker), I have come to realize I have always liked zombies.”
Answer: In all fairness, the zombies in this book are very different from the zombies of Boneshaker which are, in turn, different (but still closer to) the more traditional zombies like those found in The Walking Dead. They’re not of the mindless variety.
terryb writes: “I adore that the main character is a strong, capable woman from a line of strong capable women who have to make hard decisions but, at least in the case of Maxine, never entirely lose the softer side.”
Answer: Yes, that’s one of the things I really liked about the book as well. Marjorie has a knack for crafting well-rounded, charismatic, kick-ass characters. You should check out her heroine in “Call Her Savage”, one of the stories in the Masked anthology of superhero fiction edited by Lou Anders. Great stuff.
Sparrow_hawk writes: “The thing that didn’t ring true for me is Maxine’s romance with Grant. Okay, he’s hot and well worth a fling , but he does so many things that are counter to Maxine’s upbringing and mission that I have a hard time seeing why they are still together.”
Answer: Well, opposites do attract and there has been many a case in real life when I’ve wondered “What the hell is he/she doing with her/him?”. In this case, however, I wonder if we would have benefited from reading the prequel story, “Hunter Kiss”, that appeared in the Wild Thing anthology.
Sparrow_hawk also writes: “And Maxine’s mission is to destroy everything that Grant is trying to save.”
Answer: Which was a facet of the story that I really loved, those contradictory M.O.’s that end up leaving our protagonist deeply conflicted. Applied to my life, it was like Grant’s willingness to rehabilitate the demons and give them a chance was akin to Fondy’s love for Grey’s Anatomy. In the end and all things considered, I hope it works out better for Maxine.
antisocialbutterflie writes: “I did wish that a little more time was spent on some of the lesser characters, particularly Jack, Sarai, and Tracker. There seemed to be a lot of potential there that was skimmed over to maintain the pacing.”
Answer: What was revealed about these characters kept me engaged and, like you, left me wanting more. I have a feeling we’ll delve more into their respective backgrounds in the next couple of books in the series.
Michael Simpson of Cinema Spy dropped me an email to tell me about his fundraising efforts for the Make A Wish Foundation. “I am trying to turn my
campaigning for SGU into something that doesn’t just serve my wishes to see the show return but benefits other too.” You can check it out here: http://www.justgiving.com/awishforstargate
TheDudeDean writes: “Hey Joseph, is this your twitter account?
Answer: Apparently so. Exciting, no?
Raine writes: “Do the dogs do any tricks? ”
Answer: Yes. They eat on command. And not on command.
dioxholster writes: “Joe, if SGU ever gets a third season on a different network, what will be the compromises we will have to live with if there will be any?”
Answer: A third season would be ideal, but the longest of longshots. Any consideration of possible compromises would be meaningless conjecture at this point and serve no purpose.
dioxholster also writes: “Back then the plan was five seasons, but in all honesty were you guys ever willing to stretch it a bit for another extra season or two?”
Answer: Again, no point in considering far-fetched scenarios. I will say that, at the time we were in production, we were always focused on the season at hand, comfortable in the knowledge that we did have an ending for the series in mind.
dioxholster also writes: “And during the brainstorm phases, was there any talks of a spin-off in the future had SGU been successful or was SGU planned to be the final stargate show?”
Answer: There was never any talk of another spin-off.
Bryan writes: “Joe, I know you have a more refined pallet.. but I have a simple “recipe” for delicious tomato pasta.”
Answer: Hey, Brian – thanks for this.
kadaju writes: “Mr. Mallozzi, please help some nerds out. We crave the dimensions of Destiny.”
Answer: The next time I see James Robbins, our Production Designer, I’ll see if he has schematics or, at the very least, a ballpark of the ship’s scale. I just have to remember… Or, if VFX Supervisor Mark Savela happens by, he could probably answer the question.
Tenacious D writes: “So, why do the Wraith use organic material in their hives when it’s obviously way less efficient and they had ten thousand years Ancient-free to upgrade their ships?”
Answer: The short answer is I don’t know. I would imagine it has to do with the fact that their architecture has always either been organic in nature or, at the very least, had an organic feel. The reason could lie in the possibility/advantages of a ship with an inherent limited intelligence, especially when one considers the Queen’s limited telepathic abilities.
dasNdanger writes: “Where can we send you fun stuff now?? Still the studio??”
Answer: Still the studio for now but, really, your presence here is all I need so no sense in sending me presents.
Escyos writes: “Say one were to dial all the gates in a galaxy at once and step through, what would happen? Would the matter simply be too degraded and simply fall apart? Would you exit at the nearest gate? Or one at random?”
Answer: No matter how precisely you time it, there will be some difference in timing. Those who connect first will interrupt the dialing process and establish a stable wormhole while others will be unable to establish a connection because, for lack of a better way of putting it, “the line is busy” with a pre-established connection.
mrmichaelt writes: “On 1/17/11′s mailbag, you answered 80% of Destiny is left to be explored. On the series finale of Stargate Atlantis, how much of Atlantis was explored by the expedition?”
Answer: My guess? 60%.
mrmichaelt also writes: “Mortal Kombat just got greenlit for a 10 episode Internet-based webi-series. Are webi-series a possibility for SGU’s future (i.e. posting new episodes on MGM’s SGU website like how they currently do with full episodes of season 2, featurettes, the Kino webisodes, blogs, fan question submissions)?”
Answer: A webseries is not an option.
Casey Clubb writes: “I’m curious about Colonel Young’s use of reading glasses which started toward the end of the first season, was there any particular significance to that?”
Answer: Not that I can recall. I believe it was something Louis wanted to add to the character.
paloosa writes: “Will the ratings on the second half of SGU have any effect on whatever decisions are being made now for SGU? And if David Hewlett’s episode “Seizure” significantly increases the ratings, would that have any impact in reviving an SGA movie?”
Answer: Unfortunately, no to both.
paloosa also writes: “Can you still have Q&A’s with folks we’ve come to know, even if it’s on other projects they’re doing?”
Answer: Sure. If they’re willing to take the time, I’d love to have ’em.
Zenophite writes: “I’m not sure if anyone has asked this yet but regarding Dr. Caine… He lived long enough to see the aliens arrival so did he in fact die the moment they got there (or soon thereafter) or is there something else going on?”
Answer: He was at the brink of death when they showed up – too late to save him.
Chris writes: “Are we allowed to create SGU fan videos using video and audio from SGU and upload it to YouTube?”
Answer: All photos and clips are the property of MGM Television. What they will and won’t allow is up to them. I know of certain shows that have clamped down on fan videos. To date, Stargate has not been one of them.
Josh writes: “Hey Joe, I was just wondering if any of the cast from SG-1 or SGA are going to be in any of the episodes of the back half of season 2?”
Answer: No. Only Seizure.
Laurence Stachow writes: “I heared someone talking about buying the DVD’s and Downloads from like ITUNES but will this really help?”
Answer: It certainly helps to keep the franchise viable and informs the studio that Stargate remains a sound investment.
MNP writes: “But in SGU there seemed to be a very… spiritual… tone to the characters. The whole attitude to the universe itself seemed different, more I guess mystical and willing to see things as simply beyond comprehension. Was this due to the situation? Was it just these particular characters? Was this a conscious decision for the show or did it just develop organically?”
Answer: I’d say all of the above. SG-1 and Atlantis were more high adventure shows where the humor took precedence over moments of introspection. That’s not to say the shows weren’t serious (the stakes were always big and both series dealt with their fair share of tragedy), only that they were more fun and lighter in tone. Universe was darker and, as a result, offered more opportunity to explore more solemn aspects of our characters.
Jayenkai writes: “While we’re mentioning David Hewlett, any idea what’s going on with Starcrossed, lately?”
Answer: No idea. You should swing by David’s twitter account for the update.
pjt writes: “What do you think about the tone of the show in retrospect? To me it looks like it was a great idea, back then when you started, to have a grittier, more realistic and dark Stargate show, but the then global crisis hit, people lost their jobs or had them in jeopardy, had to cut corners, and just couldn’t find the strength to get involved with the problems of TV characters on a weekly basis. They instead looked for easy entertainment like Eureka and Warehouse 13, even Sanctuary for their hour of escapism.”
Answer: I enjoyed the show’s darker tone. At the end of the day, you can spend fruitless hours second-guessing yourself but the truth is that if studios and networks knew for sure what audiences wanted, the prime time television schedule would be stacked with nothing but hit shows.
Lyle writes: “1) If a new SG series ever comes into play waaay down the road, do you have any ideas as to what you would use as the look-and-feel, storyline, and setting? Have you even thought about it?”
Answer: No idea. Haven’t thought about it and don’t believe I ever will.
“2) When will we know about the fate of SGU (or the Stargate series itself)? You’ve been teasing it for several weeks now! Any time-line?”
Answer: No timeline. Sooner is always better of course.
“3) Is there any chance we will see Joe Flanigan in Stargate again if no SGA movie is made? I miss that guy.”
Answer: No idea at this point.
“4) How’s Richard Dean Anderson doing? Is he willing to come back for a movie? Is he in the 2nd half of this season of SGU?”
Answer: From what I hear, Rick is doing great and still occasionally working in Vancouver. No appearances planned for O’Neill in the back half of season 2. As for possible movie appearances – no idea at this point.
Joa writes: “Will we be seing the SGC in season 2 ? Does Louis Ferreira speaks Portuguese?”
Answer: No and yes. Check out the Louis vid in this post: November 3, 2010: Production Update! Stargate Pics! More of that Q&A with Louis Ferreira!
Tammy Dixon writes: “So if you had to choose between Disney and Universal, which would you pick?”
Answer: I vote Universal.
JenniferG writes: “Have you ever read Stephen kKng’s Duma Key?”
Answer: Not yet, but it’s on the list.
ZMo writes: “My question is how do you do it all? So many projects, so much time for the fans, so many hobbies? Do you sleep enough / at all? How do you not burnout?”
Answer: I firmly believe that a writer should write every day. Maintaining a daily blog forces me to form and express semi-coherent thoughts and that, in the end, will hopefully make me a better writer.
Rich A writes: “In SG1′s Prototype, if Khalek had been allowed to ascent, could he have gone and rescued ol’ Dad from the fight with Oma?”
Answer: IF (and it’s a pretty big IF) he had been allowed to ascend then, yes, theoretically he could have tried to help.
Rich A also writes: “Following on from that, must have been a bit lonely at the ascended top there for Adria for a while. Could her and Khalek have, uh, made a go of things?”
Answer: Don’t think he was her type.
Rich A also writes: “I’m a UK fan and it’s a shame that international viewership doesn’t seem to matter one bit as to whether series like these get renewed or not ”
Answer: But international viewers DO matter. They are one important piece of a very big, often complicated puzzle.
LoneThread writes: “How can radio communications work 2-way through a Stargate? Radio is Light (Photons) therefor matter. So the one way restriction should apply here. And also there should be a delay while the matter traverses the wormhole.”
Answer: All good questions that I don’t have an answer for. I’d say 2-way communications work because that’s what was established from the beginning. It’s sort of like wondering why do the inhabitants of every planet SG-1 visited speak English? Again, it was another conceit that was established early on in the series. In my mind, however, I assumed journeying through a wormhole “gifted” travelers with translator nanites that allowed them to understand and, in turn, be understand (in most cases. Goa’uld was a rare exception).
RedFlames writes: “Do you watch any non-US TV shows [anime excluded] and if so what [and if not are there any that have made you think ‘oooh…. i’d watch that if they showed it’]?”
Answer: Spooks, Wire in the Blood and, of course, The Office are three UK productions that come to mind.
levent writes: “1. Aren’t there any ancient medical devices or hand weapons on board Destiny designed by Ancients? TJ should not suffer that much as a medic!”
Answer: Check out the back of season 2.
“2. Will (would ) we see Destiny’s exact location in relation to earth, some number of light years etc? Will we have detailed specs of the ship (speed etc)?”
Answer: Nope. Nothing so specific onscreen.
“3 – This is pretty streching but is there any chance Tauri would ally with Langara for use of their Naquadria to dial Destiny?”
Answer: See Seizure.
“4 – Is it safe to assume Rush and Young will have a more stabilised relationship from now on?”
Answer: It isn’t safe to assume anything when Rush is involved.
Scott_land writes: “I know Destiny is way the heck out in space but is there any chance that we might see something more dealing with the Furling or Ancient people (if there is a third season)? Could a couple from either group have struck out on their own a long time ago that we might see them now?”
Answer: All possibilities.
nate writes: “Good luck with your future endeavors and I”ll still hold out for more Stargate. But no more comments on your blog.”
Answer: You will be missed, my friend.
maggiemayday writes: “Have you read The Shining? Far, far better than any movie incarnation, Jack or not. I do love me some Jack.”
Answer: Haven’t read The Shining, but liked the movie a lot. It’s interesting that, apparently, King wasn’t that big a fan.
Shadow Step writes: “Wow, I hope you are sure that Kat didn’t get an IP from a pool or posted from a place where other people use computers –”
Answer: The timing was way too good.
Jimbo writes: “But I must ask, do you watch Dexter? I am really getting into this show. I ask because I noticed you mentioned that a pilot in waiting is dark and humorous, which is what I would classify Dexter. And that characters are deep and well written. One of the best shows on today, aside from House, SGU, and Castle. Agree?”
Answer: Watched the first season of Dexter and haven’t seen Castle (although I’ve heard good things). I do watch House.
Arctic Goddess writes: “Speaking of which, are you going to bring back The Weird Food Purchase Of The Day”?”
Answer: If I can find something appropriately weird to eat, sure. Maybe I’ll just open up that bottle of clam juice sitting in my fridge.
max writes: “Joe, are you a fan or follower of J. Michael Straczynski by any chance?”
Answer: I really enjoyed what I read of Rising Stars and watched the first 3 seasons of Babylon 5 before getting distracted by life.
John M. Hammer writes: “Fortunately, as fellow Mac users, we have a way around this. Take a look at this bit of software:
DVD Player Patch 20101106 for Mac
If you prefer to watch your DVDs on a screen other than your Mac’s, remember that Macs have video out which can drive even very large 1080p displays.”
Answer: Much obliged, sir.