Oooh, only two days to Cos & Effect, the big cosplay con going on at UBC this weekend.  It’s not just another anime con, promising a wide array of costumes – and plenty of blog fodder.  Check out the details here: http://www.coseffect.com/

Akemi is raring to go, Oppan Gangnam Style!

Our trip down SGA memory lane continues with…

SUBMERSION (318)

I always loved episodes possessed of horror elements: our heroes, trapped somewhere, being hunted by some otherworldly creature.  In this case, they’re stranded aboard a wraith ship on the ocean’s floor, being stalked by a mightily pissed off wraith queen.  This is one of those rare opportunities in which Weir gets in on the action as well, joining the deep sea exploration of the presumably derelict ship.  It’s also great to see Teyla kick ass – even if it is Ronon’s ass she’s kicking.

The one behind-the-scenes incident that I recall involved those unwieldy underwater suits McKay and Sheppard wear to access the neighboring ship.  Because of the mechanics, it was always a big song and dance getting the actors in and out of the things.  The suit would be prepped, they would crawl in, then the suits would be locked, effectively sealing the actors inside.  It was an equally big song and dance to unlock the suits and open them again so, once locked, there was nowhere to go but forward – onto set and shooting.  Well, it just so happened that Joe’s suit experienced some sort of malfunction.  The resident suit expert hopped inside and made the necessary adjustments.  The director was losing time and was eager to start shooting so, the second the guy had finished fixing the suit, he jumped out, Joe jumped back in, and the suit was sealed.  Unfortunately, also sealed inside the suit with Joe was a wicked bout of gas the fixer had released.  My fellow producer, John Smith, relayed the story over lunch, describing Joe’s muted, wild-eyed reaction after which John, in all seriousness, solemnly assured us: “But it wasn’t malicious.”  The very notion that anyone assumed malice on the part of the farter made it even funnier.

Mailbag:

anneteldy writes: “Yesterday, I reported to the nursing home facility that while I was in the hospital, someone helped themselves to the cash I had on hand in my room. $132 gone.”

Answer: Well that truly sucks.  And doubly so for the fact that the nursing home made you feel as though you’d been in the wrong. Hoping things pick up for you this week.

Ponytail writes: “The most emotionally devastating moment in Stargate history for me was the cancellation of Stargate Atlantis. Second was Ronon’s wig in season 5.”

Answer: Ah, the wig.  Years of sporting the dreads began to take their toll on poor Jason, so the decision was made to cut his hair.  We ended up working the haircut into the show (the head shaving sequence in Broken Ties) but since the first episode of season 5 picked up on events from the season 4 finale, we had no choice but to wig.  On the bright side, at least we used his real hair.

Patricia Stewart-Bernard writes: “When Atlantis was not renewed, I had a thought that the same thing might have happened – that certain well known actors were negotiating their contracts a lot higher than the franchise could afford. After all, it is not unheard of for actors who attend conventions, and who are told over and over by fans about how awesome they are, to get swelled heads.  Opinion Mr. Mallozzi?”

Answer: The Atlantis cast already had deals in place for season 6 so the cancellation had nothing to do with contractual issues.

Ivon Bartok writes: ” ‘Sharks Fin Soup’ though, should be banned. It’s tasteless, and offers nothing but a dish eaten for “cultural” reasons. People used to “head hunt” for cultural reasons, but they saw the light. Yes… I just compared shark fin soup to head hunting.”

and

dasndanger writes: “Joe, while I agree with most of your ‘unapproved reply’, I have to disagree with you 110% (if not more) on shark fin soup.”

Answer: If you’ll re-read my comment, you’ll see it is not a defense of the right to eat shark fin soup.  Rather, I am pointing out that most people eat it for cultural and textural reasons rather than simply for show’s sake.  And, for what it’s worth, I no longer eat it.

Jason writes: “Any word on more Stargate Soundtracks…?”

Answer: Sorry, I haven’t heard anything.

Jason also writes: “Oh and I had heard that David Hewlett had bought a good chunck of the SGU sets. Is there some truth to this? ”

Answer: That would be a question for David.  It’s news to me.

Tam Dixon writes: ” Did Paul M. decide to end his role or was it a plot twist decided by the writers?”

Answer: It was a creative decision by the writing staff.

Tam Dixon also writes: “I noticed that Teyla was talking about approaching a “love interest”. Was Rachel Luttrell pregnant or considering a pregnancy at that time?”

Answer: I can’t answer for Rachel.  Paul and I only learned of the pregnancy after assuming the show running reins for the show’s fourth season.

sylvia writes: “@Joe – have you had, do you like – moon pies or whoopie pies?”

Answer: Yes and yes and yes and yes!

LJ writes: “How are things looking on the L.A. front? Are you moving to the U.S. soon? And what about the Dark Matter project? Speaking of which, when do you anticipate another DM comic coming out (please say soon!)?”

Answer: Paul and I are pitching ideas and developing some projects. Next week, Paul will swing by my place with his white board and we will start to break some of the pilot ideas we have before sitting down to write them.  Any decision on L.A. won’t be made until 2013.  2012 is dedicated to writing, developing, and taking it a little easier.  I was on a Dark Matter-related conference call only a few hours ago.  Fingers crossed.  As for new issues of DM – well, the trade paperback collecting the first four issues will be released in October.  Depending on how it sells…

bailey writes: “OK, question: How long do you usually hold a grudge? Because you seem very, very good at it! :P

Answer: Ah, it really depends on the situation.  If it’s a disagreement that stems from a mistake or misunderstanding, not long at all.  If the other person is being a jerk, then a  really long time.  Reeeaaaallly long time.  Why?  Have you done something to get on my bad side?

gforce writes: “… if you had to give up one of your favourite foods, and I mean NEVER have it again, what would it be?”

Answer: Hmmm.  I could probably go without pizza.  Maybe.

Deni writes: “How’s Jelly doing these days? :) Lulu? Bubba?”

Answer: The gang is great – and full of energy, even Jelly (the old lady).

Anonymous J writes: “ell, I think I agree with the main point of the Time article, although I think he made it very poorly. Let’s face it, most of us *can’t* tell the difference between high quality and just ok – and I’ll maintain that whether it’s food we’re talking about, or writing or music or the color on a new tv. A lot of us overpay for a difference we can’t detect.”

Answer: Okay, but the title of the article implies that Luxury Foods Aren’t Worth It not Luxury Foods Aren’t Worth It to many people.  I, for one, can’t tell the difference between a very good wine and a great wine, but I can tell the difference between a fantastic North American steak and a comparable wagyu, or great North American sushi and the sushi I eat in Japan.  The article read like a bait and switch.

Anonyous J also writes: “But two people died (Carson and the standing-much-closer-to-the-bomb soldier) where one had been in danger (tumor guy), and only one of them got this great big over the top send off (they lose people every week, but I guess they only pull out the stops for those whose names are in the credits – yeah, yeah, redshirts) that glossed over his role in his own death and that negated his actual show history.”

Answer: I expect they held funerals for every member of the Atlantis expedition that died in service but we – the viewer – only saw Carson’s funeral because we were more emotionally invested in his character.

Anonymous J also writes: “Nobody ever complained about him – really? Never? Nobody thought the retrovirus was a bad idea? He was head of a department and never pissed anyone off? Oy.”

Answer: It’s not as if Carson went rogue, developing the retrovirus on his own.  It was a project sanctioned by the Atlantis command.  Also, there’s a difference between disagreeing with someone and complaining about them.  The latter goes to character and is far more personal.  He probably did piss some people off over the course of his time on Atlantis, but clearly not to the point where someone would raise the point at his funeral (“Yeah, he was brilliant and all but that time he cut in front of me in the mess line…what an asshole.”)

Anonymous J also writes: “And I still have no idea what the point of that last scene with McKay was. I’m not even sure the writer had a point in mind.”

Answer: I believe it afforded McKay (and, by extension, the audience) the opportunity to say goodbye.

Misty: “…was there ever any question raised in the writer’s room about how Lucius treated people, specifically, his ‘wives’?”

Answer: The consensus in the writers’ room was that Lucius was a creep, taking advantage of anyone he could to further his own ends.

JeffW writes: “As for a mailbag question, I did comment awhile ago about whether there was any discussion about keeping one of the Ancients around as an arc or recurring character (instead of having them all killed by the replicators).”

Answer: No, no serious discussion was ever given to having an actual Ancient reside on Atlantis.  If it had come up, I probably would have argued vehemently against it.  I was never a huge fan.

Airelle writes: “Joe I have a friend from Taiwan who just lost her mother, do you know what would be the proper way to express condolences, I know the customs are different and I would not want to offend.”

Answer: Hi, Airelle.  Unfortunately, I can’t help you here.  I’m unfamiliar with Taiwanese customs.

32 thoughts on “August 22, 2012: Cos & Effect! Days of Stargate Atlantis Past! Submersion! Mailbag!

  1. Hi Joe – just filing the info away for future reference in addition to kind of answering a question I was going to ask but now won’t. And I will attempt not to be too jerky. (jerkish?) 😛
    PS – David H does have some of the SGU sets, this was a recent tweet from him:
    ““@MattGrotke: Is it true that u bought the SGU sets from MGM?” Yes, I’ve got the Shuttle set & some odds & ends in storage. #EvilPlans ”
    ………..
    also, I believe Brad Wright has a small part of the set that he and his wife are incorporating into their new house.

  2. Thanks for the sympathy! Losing the money hurt but the loss of trust between me and management is worse.

    Today was a sleepy day and, as I’m still healing, I didn’t fight it. I just napped ‘most all day. 🙂

    I had therapy today and I’m making progress. Yeah!

    Awaiting blood test results.

    Anne Teldy

  3. @Akemi – woo hoo, dance away the night!

    @JeffW – The Red Velvet whoopie Pie may be the one for you. Has “white” filling and of course the “bun” part is red velvet cake. I will ask them about ingredients to be sure. Sure hope they don’t think I’m crazy – well, crazier than normal. Will let you know. We may have to have some at our next foodie adventure…for the gang to take home.

  4. Oh, yeah. “Submersion”. Good episode. I liked it a lot. I liked when Ronan ran into the invisible wall. Very well done.

    Anne Teldy

  5. @Joe:

    Answer: No, no serious discussion was ever given to having an actual Ancient reside on Atlantis. If it had come up, I probably would have argued vehemently against it. I was never a huge fan.

    Thanks for the answer! I don’t know (from your answer) your reasons for not being a fan, but for my part having an ancient around removes some of the mystery. I wondered more because it seemed convenient that all the ancients died while O’Neill and Woolsey survived.

    @Ponytail or Tam Dixon (I can’t remember who warned me that appliance failures come in threes):

    I think the refrigerator is the third failure (now fixed), since I forgot about my electric smoker dying (water heater before that). I was reminded by our BBQ Omelette discussion. I took the smoker apart over lunch today and found that the whole thing will probably need to be rewired (corroded wires and connectors). Looks like I’ll be switching back to the charcoal smoker for awhile…at least until I get some spare time to rewire it.

    Wasn’t someone wondering about my time management skills? Well the skill is in ignoring everything else (including smoker repairs) until the project is done 😉

  6. Hope the anime con goes well. Haven’t been able to ‘get into” anime myself, though mostly its a matter of taking the time go do a decent sampling of the genre. Not enough time as it is to read and watch all the things I want to, much less engage in a productive lifestyle. I do ask one favor though. I noticed at the last con I was at steampunk has gotten Very big. Will you let us know if that is somehow creeping I to the anime scene as well? Talk avout mind boggling…
    Probably my biggest gripe with submersion was the idea the queen could last so long underwater, or that she could do all she did on her enforced starvation diet. I know we have seen at least one example before, but that wraith had a full food larder as well as his crew to ration out. Still, reasonably fun episode, and it definitely helps set up for Teyla embracing her Wraith side later on. And the story of the fart left me gasping for breath after laughing. And why couldn’t the act have been a malicious, or at least mischievous one? An uni tended slight by Joe F., a fixer reading too many Klingon jokes involving air locks, and you have a not so accidental release of haz mat. Though it was unfortunate at the gas had to be such a stinker. Still, I will chuckle a lot more, and never again be able to watch those scenes without snickering.
    Thanks for sharing, and hope the co ing weekend is a fun one.

  7. Put this down to being sleepy: I forgot to say I love Akemi’s dress.

    Bedtime for me.

    Anne Teldy

  8. Very tired, but two things before I fall into bed…

    1. I think I love Ivon. 🙂

    2. Joey, you’re growing on me, too. 😉 *pulls sticky pin out of Voodoo Mallozzi dolly’s butt* There. A donut pillow and a dab of Preparation H and you should be ALL better by morning! 😀

    Nites!

    das

  9. @The consensus in the writers’ room was that Lucius was a creep, taking advantage of anyone he could to further his own ends.

    He never got a third episode either. He vanished after his second apperance. That makes me sad lol

    Him being ridiculus was the most funny part if anything. His reactions when being threatened by the Geniii were hilarious.

    I wanted a Lucius meets the Wraith episode.

  10. I really enjoyed Submission! Overall good story with some memorable moments like the Jumper ride down was funny with all the “kids” bickering, Teyla beating up Ronon (sorry to say, but that was funny!), the spooky Queen Wraith slowing rising up out of the water like a slimey swamp thing, and her swimming under water was spooky too. Looked like she took the time to take her clothes off. Joe was she swimming in the nude or was that a writer/director’s optical illusion? And I really liked those bunk beds!

    Poor Joe Flannigan and the fart incident. How can that be an accident? And how did Joe F. not smell it before getting into the suit? Well, maybe it is a little funny… Or a lot. 😆

    Agreeing, Akemi’s dress is real pretty!

    @ das – 😆 😆

    @ JeffW – I think Tam Dixon said that about “3’s”, but she is right, and I have said it here before too. It’s not so bad with you though, because you can fix everything – you MacGyver you.

  11. Ooooops! Did I say Submission?? I meant SUBMERSION! Hopefully all your brains out there corrected it, and didn’t even notice, until I had to go and point it out. 🙂

  12. “Submersion” was never one of my favorites, but the fart story story was hilarious. I can relate, as I’m getting older I find *sneeze*, oh dang, *oops*, never mind.

    I do have a few gripes about “Sunday” though. The whole concept of the story seemed like it was a last minute decision to knock off Beckett. I mean, seriously, an exploding tumor? That’s a lame device to kill off a main character with even for a scifi show. After three years everyone on staff had to know how popular Beckett was. It makes no sense to me unless there was pressure to get a ratings bump, or another actor was waiting in the wings.

    @Deni: I’m so sorry to hear about your pup. I can’t imagine how hard this year has been for you and your family. Sending healing thoughts.

    @anneteldy: It’s horrible that you can’t trust people these days. I hope it gets sorted out soon.

  13. It’s also great to see Teyla kick ass – especially if it is Ronon’s ass she’s kicking.

    There, I fixed it for you. 🙂

  14. I guess the biggest question about this episode — How long can that many people fit into a Jumper for that length of time under “pressure” and not have to “spring a Leak”?!!

    BTW, did anyone do a “head-count” of the EXTRAS? Because there was one Young Lady with much hair in the Background always walking around that I don’t recall ever seeing in the Jumper.

  15. @DP on non-chocolate moon pies:

    I only ever seem to find the chocolate ones, but I’m probably not looking hard enough.

    @Ponytail on fixing everything:

    Thanks, but it’s probably a little obsessive-compulsive on my part. I thought about buying a new smoker (~$200), but then when I looked at the problem (corroded wires), I realized that the same would probably happen with the replacement in a couple of years (the design lets moisture in the back of the unit and the wires aren’t sealed). So by fixing it, I can use sealed wires and connectors and have a unit that’ll last longer than buying a new one.

    At some point I should think the time invested is not worth it, but I always seem to talk myself into these product improvement “fix it” projects. Must be the engineer in me 😉

  16. Can I try again? Sorry, didn’t mean for this to sound snarky. 😐

    Mailbag Question:

    Atlantis was strong going into Season 3, and built momentum as the team camaraderie and episodes grew stronger. Why stall the momentum by eliminating two key characters, Dr. Beckett and Elizabeth Weir?

  17. Mr. M.: Thank you for answering my two questions. I’ll keep re-watching the series. When I saw Teyla talk about a relationship, I thought for sure you guys were writing her pregnancy in. Did you see that Rachel Luttrell is having another baby? I’m glad life is treating her well.

    for the love of Beckett: I should have thought of you for Carson history question 😉 . I never like to see a main character killed off but that kind of uncertainty is the business that they are in. I could NEVER work at a career so ..feast or famine. Paul McGillion seems to make a living at it and more power to him! He and his wife just welcomed a baby too.

    Submersion: Teyla had some great moves in that fight scene. Watching that scene reminds me to work more elbow strikes in when I’m hitting the bag. They look very effective! Did Bam-bam choreograph all the moves? He or whoever did a great job!
    Thanks for the fart story…Boys will be boys! 😉 This was another episode that McKay completely disregarded someone else’s opinion. My hubby does that and it drives me crazy (er).

    JeffW: I haven’t memorized Loveless’s menu like some of my friends have but….if someone asked me to make a BBQ pork omelet I would probably: Chop some onions/green peppers in a skillet and sauté them. Then I’d add chopped pulled pork and heat that up. Then I’d use that in an omelet (BBQ sauce on the side) but you’ll find out next month. That sounds way too rich for me! My dad used to stop at Loveless on the way to the VA hospital and get fresh biscuits with homemade jam. I hope you enjoy!
    Oh I have another website story: My hubby is used to building websites for these big companies (lots of servers/tools). So he spends all week writing this report function (in his free time) for the band website and it looks good! When he goes to publish it to the site, the hosting company won’t support all that fancy stuff. Back to the drawing board and not in a good mood. I’m keeping my distance 😉 .

    Anneteldy: Did they dust for prints? I’m sure that you aren’t the only patient this as happened to. 🙁

    P.S. Akemi’s a cutie!

  18. Ah, looking at the mailbag questions. It’s been a while since a conspiracy theory as to why Atlantis was cancelled was asked lol

    Cast wanting too much money, Ratings being enough for renewal, Cancelled for SGU, there’s a ton more flying around.

    Think you’d agree that the circumstances surrounding Stargate Atlantis not getting a Season 6 has nothing to do with the general public or the fanbase and should purely be a private matter.

    In other words if people can’t accept what you or Brad, Robert etc has to say on the issue Joe, they should simply move on and stop living in the past.

    Because really, I think most people here know you’d jump at a chance to do a Season 6 had you got the greenlight to do so, granted it would of taken you and Paul away from SGU but you loved the show so yeah.

  19. Hey Joe! 🙂 Can’t wait to see pics of the cosplay costumes! Hey…Joe…if you went to a cosplay event…what you would dress up as? 😉 Akemi is adorable as always.

    Loved Submersion! Such a dark and creepy episode. 🙂 Love all the twists. 🙂

  20. @Tam Dixon The only reason I reported it was my belief that other people might be victims too and I should advocate for them. I just knew the red tape and questioning would be bad.

    Anne Teldy

  21. @Tam Dixon:

    I feel sorry for your hubby…I had to rewrite a ton of java script shopping cart code (for club shirts no less) because of paypal/webserver limitations. That would make even Ghandi cranky.

    Buy him his favorite beverage…on me if I can leave a tab in his name at the Loveless Cafe next month.

  22. I thought it interesting using stingray leather for Andee’s costume. It really has a different look and texture. I loved the unvarnished honesty of McKay, “I hired the wrong guy.” He always new what to say at the right moments. Coming so close after the Game Joe’s eyes were shooting darts at McKay for his dissing Tayla’s sensation and not checking for other life forms. I guess he was still hurting from when she called shotgun.

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