So, I’m prepping for Comic Con, selecting giveaway items for the fans who will visit my booth – accidentally assuming it’s a Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along-related signing only to discover the truth to late!  The gate will be shut and locked behind them for the duration of my hour long meandering reminiscences of all the places we used to order lunch from while I was on Stargate.  In addition, I’ll be signing copies of my comic series, Dark Matter.  And, like I said, giving some stuff away: maybe a two dollar Canadian coin, maybe a lucky button, maybe a signed script – like the one pictured above.  I thought that, rather than just signing the title page, I would further devalue the script with the addition of sarcastic commentary interspersed throughout.  It’ll make for an entertaining read.  Provided you can read my handwriting.  Which is unlikely.

Speaking of Stargate, I ran into a couple of familiar faces from my SG-1 days this afternoon while taking the dogs for a walk on the beach. First up – Beefcake Alert! –

It’s Sgt. Siler (a.k.a. Dan Shea, former Stargate: SG-1 Stunt Coordinator).

Dan is hard at work on Psych’s seventh season – and, of course, working on his tan.  I recall that he and Martin Wood wore shorts ALL YEAR ROUND and were always the first ones in t-shirts at the first signs of winter’s end, even if it was only slightly above freezing. Eternal optimists.  And probably really cold most of the time as well.

Then, further along the path, I ended up running into one of my favorite System Lords –

Heru’ur, played by Douglas H. Arthurs. Last seen in SG-1 Serpent’s Venom when he was double-crossed by Apophis.

We chatted Stargate, how much quieter the industry is here in Vancouver compared to Toronto, and conventions.  Very nice guy.

This wraps up a week-long Stargate reunion that kicked off Tuesday night when I met up with some of my former colleagues for drinks and churros…

Writer/Director/Master Spinner/Executive Producer Robert C. Cooper and Associate Producer Jennifer Johnson.
Script Coordinator Lawren Bancroft- Wilson and Special Features Producer Ivon Bartok.
Part-time Blogger Joseph Mallozzi and Post-Production Coordinator Kerry McDowall.

From SG-1 to Atlantis, let’s continue to reflect back on SGA’s second season.  Up for discussion today…


It’s funny.  Working on the show, we’d take in so many versions of an episode (from spinning the story to breaking it to commenting on the outline to reading the various drafts to watching the dailies and director’s cut and producer’s cuts and various mixes) that, by the time a completed version was available, time constraints would already have us moving on to the next episode.  I mean, sure, by the time we got to that Day 2 mix, the episode would be all but done – minus a few finished visual effects that would be approved as shots or sequences at a later date – but it was rare we would sit down to watch a finished episode for pleasure.  I remember thinking Coup D’Etat a good episode back in the day, but I didn’t realize quite how good until I reviewed it for this trip down memory lane.  I likes me some political intrigue and this episode had it in spades, with some surprising little twists and turns.  I mean, sure, we all knew Major Lorne wasn’t really dead, but did you see the Cowan double-cross coming?  How about the Ladon triple-cross?

Another solid episode made all that much better by some fantastic guest stars.  The story was originally conceived with the character of Kolya pulling the strings but, with Robert Davi unavailable, it was rewritten for the character of Ladon.  Ryan Robbins was terrific and Colm Meaney equally great in his final appearance as Cowan.

My only bump in this episode was seeing McKay on point when they storm the facility.  I mean, sure, it makes sense for him to be on the op since they’re looking to retrieve a ZPM, but it doesn’t make sense for him to be leading the attack.

In retrospect, one of my favorite episodes of Atlantis’s second season.

19 thoughts on “July 7, 2012: 7 Days to Comic Con! A Stargate Reunion – of sorts! Days of Stargate: Atlantis Past! Coup D’Etat!

  1. I sure wish I could be at Comic Con, but supposedly my brother is going to come to your table and get an autograph for me. If he shows, tell him I said hi.

    I liked Coup D’etat for all the reasons you mentioned especially Colm Meaney’s performance.

    Hope you have a great night!!!!!
    Lisa R.

    Oh, hope you like the picture of the real me. Making some adjustments on my blog including adding in my real picture.

  2. Sent Doug Arthurs the link via Facebook message. He looks great, dare I say younger-looking than his FB photo?

  3. It’s fun seeing the faces made familiar from your posts in the past, and that everyone is doing well. As an army brtat, I have grown too accustomed to losing track of those from my past. course, I also don’t have your people skills.
    Coup d’etat was a great episode. Not only Genii politics, but Pegasus politics, as the Atlantis/Genii relationship shifts ever so slightly back towards friends. Our heroes are done in by their own complacency, failing to look past the obvious, just as Radan planned. And yes, the triple cross and Cowan’s fate were definitely unexpected. And scary, that but for Radan’s sister, our heroes would have enjoyed the same fate. Great acting, solid story, perfect execution. As for as McKay’s leading the stick, well, it’s not like their entry was textbook anyways. Maybe they expected a trap Rodney would spot. Or Sheppard was especially annoyed at McKay, and wanted him to trip a trap. Also enjoyed Lorne’s dry humor at being “rescued”.
    So when do you fly down to the Con? I’d say leave the double loonies at home. It’s going to be viscious enough with the fans fighting for that script. Very nice prize. Hope the winner will consider sharing some of your snark with the rest of us. And hope you have a great time there. Thanks as always for the daily post.

  4. That annotated script is almost enough to make me consider a last-minute trip to San Diego. 😀

  5. oh hey! If you’re giving out TOONIES, make sure it’s those new “HMS SHANNON” ones!! — You know, just a little “*WE* won that whole 1812 Thingy”… 😀

  6. Not much into politics, but Coup D’etat did have it’s moments.
    Like this exchange between Radan? and Sheppard:

    Radan, “I’m just not interested in talking to the errand boy.”

    Sheppard. “That’s Lieutenant Colonel errand boy to you.”

    And watching Martin Gero’s infamous infirmary cameo as
    Danger Beckett, Carson’s younger (and more handsome)
    brother. He was fantastic! Double fantastic! He stole the scene,
    heck, he stole the show! Hope he didn’t get a big head after that!

  7. I remember Coup D’Etat was one of the first SGA episodes I watched, and it was one of the ones that made SGA my favorite show.. Good memories…

    Wish I could make it to SDCC. Been wanting to go for years. I’m closer than I’ve ever been, but I can’t really catch any free time from school right now.

    Hope you have a great time there!

    Major D….

    P.S. The first entry from my column at Airlock Alpha is up… let me know what you guys think.

  8. @Major davis. Very nice post. Of course now I and many others are expecting you to produce us Stargate quality shows. We will give you a few years to prepare, of course…

  9. @ Major D – Good introduction, easy to read. You’ve grown up alot from that kid in the homemade movies shooting at your friends. (Those short videos were good too.) Good luck. You could be working with Joe one day…

  10. Oooh….dangle the shiny things in front of the fans to see who bites at Comic-Con (waves hand frantically–planning to pop by, lines permitting)…..

    Might want to warn folks thinking about coming to San Diego–if they don’t already have passes for Comic-Con, there are none to be had, and passes are not transferrable, so using someone else’s is not an option (and they WILL be checking IDs against badges this year). There’s plenty happening in the general area that’s open to the public (nice compilation at, but as for Comic-Con itself, if you aren’t already in, sorry. you won’t be. Not trying to be a total buzzkill, but it seems a lot of folks aren’t aware of what a complicated mess attending Comic-Con has become.

  11. How is the evil Ashleigh doing? How is progress on Akemi’s ability to stay in Canada for like forever going? How is Fondy and the dogs? How is your mom?

    I am about ready to start rewatching Stargate from the beginning, once I get the daughter home from France and safely tucked back into her college. Been long enough that I have forgotten enough for it to be fun.

  12. “Coup d’état” is one of my favorite episodes, for all the reasons listed above and also for the delightfully deadpan Major Lorne: “So… You here to rescue us?”
    Thanks for arranging the nice weather in Vancouver these past few days as I come to the end of my vacation. It definitely made outdoor fun a bit more comfortable. On Friday I went kayaking in North Vancouver and ran into a couple out kayaking with their pug — really sweet little guy named Levi. I’d never thought of pugs as water dogs before but Levi seemed to be enjoying himself, all the more so once we’d beaches our kayaks and he came running over for back scratches. And don’t worry — Levi was wearing his life jacket (Pug Flotation Device?) for safety.
    So… If you get bored with the walks through the neighborhood, you and Akemi could always take the dogs out on the water. 🙂
    – KB

  13. Coup D’etat, I remember this episode being a good one for twists and turns, you never truely know Radims true intentions until the end, and why he’s doing what he’s doing.

    That said, Radim being a Genii leader was a better alternative. Despite his questionable motives.

    And speaking of Heru’ur, a truely realistic end for him. The system lords don’t trust one another and their meetings are just a farce as no one really wants to fight each other but will do if attacked. Him and Apophis meeting to form an alliance and basically having a ship battle thanks to SG1, just drives home that point. Even under an alliance they’d find someway to kill each other regardless.

    Much like how Ba’al was never really into being a pawn of Anubis, he was never truely afraid of him, and just wanted him dead if anything. Proven by how quickly he assumed control of his fleet.

  14. Awww…Lawren and Ivon make such a cute couple!


    Also, tell Dan Shea the next time you see him to keep up the good work on Psych! It’s my favorite show on tv right now! I’ll have to keep an eye out for his handywork. Can’t wait for the new season! Last season will be incredibly hard to beat.


  15. What @SCREWBALL said!!

    Unless you’re buying a “booth/table” or happen to be a “Celeb”, FORGET IT!! — I’ve heard that WEEKEND passes are now SOLD OUT by Saturday Morning AT the PREVIOUS Convention!! So, unless you’ve been going and buying ahead for the last 3 years..?

    Not to mention, unless you know someone who lives in SD within the City Limits, OR, are willing to pay $500.+per, forget about staying overnight too! Highway traffic is a parking lot, actually, the ONLY parking Lot! Attendance is 90K-plus. Forever-Lines. Hardly ANY good “freebie” STUFF any more. Did I mention the CROWDS? A bit more seismicly-active. oh, and if you have “plans” to FLY OUT on the MONDAY, CHANGE them! Cause it WON’T be happening!

  16. I thought the story line very intriguing. To quote another show “I do admire your compartmentalization of duplicity” as it showed Landon as a more complex character than was seen in the Eye. I was listening to Martin Gero’s commentary and how this episode morphed from the original concept to its final form. You hit on some fine point as were mentioned in the commentaries. I also had an “oh, Ya” moment when they talked about the dead pan sarcastic lines of Maj. Larone talking to Sheppard in the cell. One thing I did not know was the reaction to the gun shots by McKay during the escape were a unrehearsed reaction to getting hit by a shell casing. One of odd tangental scenes was watching Cowan eating a plate of cold cuts in front of his guards (all that was missing was perhaps a dog at his feet). Part of the signs of success for this show has been its long list of stellar supporting actors who you were able to bring to the show. I can’t recall if was this or the succeeding episode where Matin calls Paul the “Logic God” for helping to put story lines together. It is just another example of how you and Paul have complemented each other to bring stories that are just great to watch and enjoy.

    That was Dan Shae? My first impression of the picture was perhaps it was Richard Dean Anderson attempting to punch a signature seeking wayward fan who woke him from a street side slumber. After all what has RDA been doing since his stardom of Stargate? (joking of course)

  17. @Joe:

    It’ll make for an entertaining read. Provided you can read my handwriting. Which is unlikely.

    I don’t know…looks pretty legible to me. You wrote “Everyone was always running diagnostics and bypassing systems, it’s what science teams do.”

    It looks like “engineering scrawl” to me (mine looks similar)…maybe you missed your second calling? Between us though, I think you made the right career choice! And given the quality shows you’ve provided, I’m glad you did.

    Somewhat off topic…why does Dan have his fist closed and appear to be in the process of punching the camera? Did he mistake you for a Paparazzi at first?

    On Coup d’etat, I did enjoy the twist at the end (I didn’t see it coming), and Ladon’s fickleness (only saving the Atlantis team because of his sister) fit so well with the Genii character.

    @Das on JeffW “pulling a Das” yesterday:

    I was typing on my iPhone, which I hate because I have big hands and the screen keys are too small. Anyway, I missed my closing ‘/’ characters so everything got bolded.

    Could have been worse I guess. I’m finding that the iPhone auto-correct/auto-complete functions have a lot of unintended consequences…

  18. Another great episode – Ronon’s really showing his stuff here, and the series continued to improve with each new episode.

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