Whoa.  Didn’t see that coming.  Well, I kind of did given that I correctly predicted a Seahawks victory (see last blog entry), but I was far too generous in my estimation of the Broncos’ offence (and clearly underestimated the Seattle defense).  It wasn’t a great game (unless you’re a Seahawks fan) and those much-ballyhooed Superbowl commercials weren’t all that special either.  Alas, being in Canada, we are stuck watching our super-lame Canadian commercials – roughly the same half-dozen replayed ad nauseum – so we didn’t get to see those multi-million dollar ads.  Until much later when I hopped online and checked them out.  For the most part, highly forgettable.  But there were a few winners.  The following were my favorites…

NEWCASTLE BROWN ALE

CARMAX

DORITOS

Agree?  Disagree?  What were your favorites?  If they include cloying kids (ie. that Cheerios commercial), then I’m afraid you’re automatically disqualified.

Continuing our Stargate: Atlantis rewatch.  Last night, Akemi and I (and, I assume, many of you who are rewatching along with us) checked out the show’s third episode, Hide and Seek.  So,what did Akemi think?

1Surprisingly, she liked it quite a bit.  I say “surprisingly” because, well, compared to the thrilling opening two-parter (Rising I and II), episode #3 was comparatively sedate.  Also, the fact that she almost dozed off during the search for Jinto suggested otherwise – but she quickly perked up once the shadow creature appeared.  Overall, a mixed bag for her – but one predominantly filled with hazelnuts (her favorites) over pecans (her least favorites): “I liked this episode.  Very interesting concept.”

Some of you asked why we’re watching the shows in reverse order.  Wouldn’t it make more sense to start with SG-1?  Well, yes, but if we started with SG-1, we probably wouldn’t have gotten through the first episode of the franchise.  Akemi is highly sensitive to a show’s dated aspects.  If it looks old, she just won’t watch it.  And that’s why we started with SGU, the last iteration of the franchise that boasted the very best visual effects.  Akemi greatly appreciates “computer graphics” and, as we started SGA, I wasn’t sure how the VFX would hold up after so many years.  The answer?  Judging from Akemi’s reaction, pretty damn fine.  She thinks highly enough of SGA’s visual effects in general but has particular praise for the establishing shots of Atlantis on the water: “I love this shot.  Beautiful.”

Her lowlight of the episode was (ah, a girl after my own heart) the “stupid kids”, especially the wandering/random-button-pushing Jinto.  She couldn’t believe kids that age would be so clueless: “How old are they?  They look quite old.  Middle high school.”  And when I suggested they were just mischievous children playing hide-and-seek: “Did you play this kind of thing in middle high school?”  No.  I played Dungeons & Dragons.  For her part, Akemi played mishievous-less trouble-free dodgeball.

And later, when Jinto visits Ford in the infirmary to apologize, she was positively incensed: “I don’t know why he didn’t angry at that kid.  I’d be so angry at the kid.”

While she didn’t like the stupid kid, she DID like McKay – and her appreciation for his character continues to grow.  A little humor goes a long way.

As for the other characters…

Beckett: “I find he has charming eyes.”

Sheppard: “I getting to like him.”  Sort of like smoked paprika, a spice she was only introduced to when she moved to Canada but enjoys just fine now.

Weir: “Still old-fashioned.”

Teyla: “I think she’s nice.  She has nice hair.”  Wig!

 Overall: “I liked this one better.  I find more interesting and also very funny.  And getting to know the characters.”

Whoops!  Almost forgot.  I did do a little write-up on this episode way back when:

June 8, 2012: Dim Sum and Donuts and more Stargate: Atlantis memories!

So, what did you all think of Hide and Seek?

Mailbag:

Carol writes: “If she thinks Atlantis is old fashioned then she’s going to struggle if she ever gets round to SG1…”

Answer: True.  If she enjoys Atlantis and wants to check out SG-1, I’ll probably start with season 9.

Maggiemayday writes: “I still have lingering remnants of the flu, so I just slept through a Shrek marathon rather than watch the game.”

Answer: And still clearly feverish.  That wasn’t Shrek.  That was a homeless man rooting through your backyard.

arcticgoddess writes: “One of the best things about the very first episode that continued later on in the series was the bro-mance between McKay and Beckett. The two of them were awesome together. Many of the best lines were between the two of them. Who made the decision that McKay and Beckett would become friends? It was brilliant.”

Answer: Brad Wright and Robert Cooper established the McKay-Beckett friendship in those early episodes and developed it over the course of the season, writing to the obvious onscreen chemistry between the two Hewlett and McGillion.

Mike from Canada writes: “Does each major character has a bible? How much does it change through out the series?”

Answer: Brad and Robert provided the cast with character breakdowns as well as one on one conversations on where their characters were headed in the show’s first season.  Adjustments were made as things progressed of course as Brad and Robert wrote to the show’s (and cast’s) strengths.

Jenny Horn writes: “My favorite line in both episodes is when the bespectacled science guy is in the puddle jumper bay with science guy #2 and says, “Spaceships!”, with an excited demeanor. Very endearing.”

Answer: Yeah.  Whatever happened to those nerds?

Jenny Horn also writes: “Now for the music….I’m a musician, a brass player, so I love it when composers use French horns and bass trombones, and all other brass, in their works. I’m sure a lot of the music was electronically produced, but do you know if the theme was performed by a live orchestra?”

Answer: Yes, this was composer Joel Goldsmith at his very best.  He was so good at what he did because he truly loved what he did.  And, yes, the theme was performed by a live orchestra (in Seattle, if I remember correctly).

Bailey writes: “I don’t quite get comparing Sheppard to Eli though, wasn’t Eli the McKay like character in SGU?”

Answer: It can certainly be argued that all three Stargates were “team” shows.  Still, it’s pretty clear that the story is mainly seen through the eyes of a singular main character, one who is a little more grounded than the rest and offers viewers at home the opportunity to live vicariously through this “average Joe’s” experience.  Again, one can debate how “average” these protagonists were, but there’s no denying the fact that THEY were the ones audience members connected with most.  In SG-1, it was Jack.  On Atlantis, it was Sheppard.  And, on Atlantis, it was Eli.  All three were, to a certain extent, fish out of water amidst the Stargate experts.

33 thoughts on “February 3, 2014: The Superbowl wrap-up! Our Stargate Atlantis rewatch continues with Hide and Seek!

  1. We’re commenting on Hide and Seek, correct?? I am a little puzzled by the “force field” that McKay wears. He can pick up,physically wrap his hands around the the coffee mug, but he can not drink from it. How is that? Well, Akemi will appreciate Atlantis’s digital stargate more than the analog one at SG1 is she is more drawn to the “newer” technology.

  2. Answer: True. If she enjoys Atlantis and wants to check out SG-1, I’ll probably start with season 9.

    you’ve got to be kidding. to me, that’s the *worst* season of the entire sg1 run! come on, joe, let her see the golden and BEST of this series!

    if you really have her start with season 9, we’re getting a writer/fan divorce. maybe i should tell your mother!? 😮

    ps- you could make a poll to see which of the best sg1 eps you could show her. clearly WE should be picking the episodes, joseph!

    😀

  3. Woohoo Seahawks! But seriously, I could of never dreamed of the score being that wild and to think that the seahawks completely let off the gas for most of the 4th quarter. They were at Denvers 25/30 yard line at least twice and just went for it on 4th down without conversion. Hell you could argue all but the first 12 seconds of the second half was “garbage time” with the ultimate insult of Seattle even putting in the backup QB…

    As for the commercials, I liked the Coca-Cola ad singing America the beautiful in different languages. Which for some reason spawned a huge controversy at least in some media circles. The Doritos one was pretty cool too with the kid riding the dog.

    Now for Atlantis, I watched the show through the eyes of McKay – perfect fit for me being a computer/science geek and all 🙂

  4. Thanks for your reply about the viewpoint character. Makes sense. (still don’t see the McKay/Beckett though. :P)

  5. PS – my favorite ad was the Budweiser Puppy one and also liked America the Beautiful sung in different languages.

  6. this episode rose above the material. The energy monster was meh, though the way the heroes resolved it was sensible. Loved that Teyla saw what the others took a long time to grasp. Loved the comedy in the episode, especially Sheppard’s evil delight in having shot at McKay. Loved McKay’s growth, in stepping out to be the hero, even knowing the high probability of death. Handled less adroitly, this whole episode would have reeked. But cast and production managed to put together something that was worth watching, and even rewatching.

  7. The most memorable scene of Hide and Seek was when Sheppard pushed McKay off the balcony in front of Weir. Weir’s horror and the boyish gleam in Sheppard’s and McKay’s eyes is priceless.

    I also love the moment when it looks like McKay is going to have to step up and trap the darkness monster in the Ancient vessel and the shield device promptly switches itself off and drops from his chest. Classic!

    I think Jinto just needs a mother. What happened to Jinto’s mum? What, for that matter, happened to Jinto’s dad’s leg that required him to hop around on crutches? Was that originally in the script or did Christopher Heyerdahl hurt himself and it had to be written into the story?

    Well, my chilli con carne has just finished simmering so it’s time to head off to bed and let the flavour mature overnight!

  8. Okay, I’m back home! I clearly have some catching up to do – way behind already!

    First, re the commercials, what did you think of the Maserati (“Strike”) and Chrysler (Bob Dylan) ones? I’m a Chrysler fan, and lately they’ve had some pretty striking Superbowl ads.

    From what I remember of “Hide and Seek”, I didn’t particularly care for it but on rewatch (again) I may think differently.

    I agree that SGA’s VFX were excellent from the get go and only got better. Wait until she sees that extended sequence in S3’s “First Strike”!

    Anyway, got get stuff straightened away here. I’m a bit concerned about my budgie, Brio. I left him with my nephew and his family while I was away, and on my return he doesn’t seem well. They said he was active and playful up until today. He also lost a lot of weight, so I’m wondering if he just decided not to eat while I was away. He’s been eating since I got home (in between sleeping) so here’s hoping he recovers okay.

  9. Hey Joe, your Seahawk score was closer than mine…congratulations on your prediction. You were the closest of anyone, and no one that I knew was expecting a blowout. It was all a bit boring though; no real fun in watching a team get relentlessly dragged up and down the field by a superior opponent. I watched it to the end, but I wasn’t all that engaged in the last quarter.

    It didn’t help that the commercials weren’t very memorable. I didn’t even remember seeing the Coke commercial. I didn’t find any all that funny, but the Doritos Time Machine was probably the most humorous one, if a but too predictable.

    SGA Re-watch:

    For me, Hide and Seek was the first real appearance of the “funny McKay”, which in the end was what had won me over to the character. It took me a while though, as I wasn’t convinced the “obnoxious McKay” would be redeemable.

    McKay’s transformation into a “reluctant hero” also helped endear him to me. His reluctant potentially self-sacrificial gesture by using the shield device to grab the Naquadah generator and throw it through the gate was the start of this transformation. I could see that thread running through most of the first and second seasons and beyond.

  10. Last comment from me, sorry. The thing I remember most about this episode is what others have commented on, Sheppard shooting McKay and throwing him off the balcony. They were like kids in a candy shop and Weir was the disapproving mother. This characterization kind of stuck with me throughout.

  11. Too many car commercials, I got bored..same with the half time show..bored..now I have never watched a Superbowl game, but I ended up watching most of this one..it was like a car wreck…and if I followed football..it probably would have been the Seahawks…

    Hide and Seek…McKay’s reluctant hero comes forefront….and I love Beckett….and I loved that Weir knew why the device wouldn’t come off of Rodney…not my favorite episode, but a good setup for some of the other issues that are hidden in Atlantis…

  12. I think the visuals of Atlantis on the surface of the ocean are breathtaking. And I love the architecture. The “VFX” have held up quite well, Joe.

    I skipped the superbowl and watched Downton Abbey instead. And did some reading. And had a migraine. Good times.

  13. Lab puppy and Clydesdales commercial. Just cute enough without being cloying,

    Of course, I saw that one as an online preview so I have no idea what other commercials were on.

    But I liked that one a lot.

  14. LOL I thought the cheerio bargaining kid was great. BAD idea, but great negotiation!

    I hated the boring carmax.

    I loved the Kia and Volkswagon one, and the Bud puppy was cute. Not a spectacular commercial year but good.

    Though the Van Damme split commercial (NOT superbowl but should have been!) was my fave commercial of the last year… and then the hysterical Chuck Norris take on it.

  15. G’day again

    I was going for the Seahawks.
    Only cause I despise the Broncos here in Australia in the NRL.Cannot barrack for any team named Broncos. Sorry to any Denver fans.

  16. I liked Volkswagen, Bud Clydesdale/puppy, Radio Shack commercial with all those 80’s characters and the British Villians Jaguar commercial.

    The game was boring because it was such a blow out. The halftime show didn’t impress me at all. I did all the stuff I would have been doing commercials, but I had to watch the commercials this time. :p

  17. Well Janet… Don’t like McKay? 😆

    You can’t start SG1 at season 9 with Akemi. Agreeing with Majorsal, but not that season 9 was the worst, but just that you don’t start in the middle of nothing. Do you start a book on page 200? Open a bottle of wine and dump half of it out before drinking? Wait till your favorite program has been on 30 minutes before tuning in? No, no, no. You have to start in the beginning. With SG1 it would be the beginning of a great franchise. It would be what started it all. Show some Brady Bunch to Akemi and maybe she will develope an appreciation for classic television. Or maybe not…

  18. I guess I need to google some commercials. I know they ran a local one depicting a dead kid in a car seat, struck byhjis unbuckled projectile parents, which is raising a huge stink here. The morning news did a story on it, effectively running the commercial every 15 minutes. I think they did that on purpose.

    Not Shrek? Er, have you hacked into my live backyard feed? either way, uh-oh.

  19. Hey now…I didn’t get Anna’s commercial! That’s cute. I have to argue my favorites were the classic Budweiser (puppy and horse? I didn’t cry, but I did melt), the Jaguar (I mean, they really played to an audience there, A+), and the yogurt commercial (I don’t normally care about yogurt/Stamos commercials, but suddenly getting the whole cast of Full House men? I LOLed). And the Coke commercial, of course.

    Hide and Seek: I’ve always found the kid parts a tad tedious as well, but I suppose necessary. This was actually the 5th episode I ever watched of SGA (saw two randoms, then went back to the pilot) and the first time I truly appreciated McKay (though he had made me laugh and was what caused me to actually watch the series (and thus SG1, too)). You talk about Sheppard as the relatable character, but it’s always been McKay for me. McKay is terrified here (as I suspect most of us viewers would be in the same situation), to the point where his terror overrides his casual affectations (normal hunger). But when push comes to shove, he’s suddenly barging his way in there, a true hero who does something even when he’s scared to death. Stubborn as a mule and snarky to hell and back. And the whole epic “I shot him. In the leg!” exchange is, to this day, one of my favorite Sheppard-McKay moments (up there with The Shrine pier scene) and the start of an epic friendship and partnership.

  20. Jaguar Superbowl ad hands down…British villains at their best AND the new shiny red Routemaster London Bus…winner winner chicken dinner all the way!!..

    Oh please don’t forget to show Akemi 1969 – old fashioned or not, it’s probably the most fun episode, most heartwarming and will confuse the hell out of her with “style” challenges…

    The early stuff has some awesome acting….visual effects are all very well, but for me, what brought me to Stargate and kept me there was 4 very different actors, playing 4 amazing characters, gelling together in a wonderful way that, for me, has never been replicated quite as well in any another Sci-Fi series…although I give big props to “Continuum” which is storming it’s way up to be my 2nd favourite ever Sci-Fi series after SG1….

    I’m on Enemy Within tonight on my TV rewatch – I wish Kawalsky had remained with the cast a lot longer than he did…:( 🙁

  21. Oh we’re on Hide and Seek aren’t we? Okay

    Realistically do you think the Athosians could have settled on Atlantis over the long term? Naturally as the expedition was relatively new to the city, do you think there was some concern that they may press something/do something that may cause trouble(Even accidently), that could have made the team think that perhaps while they get to grips with the city and its functions that the Athosians would be better off elsewhere?

  22. No remark seems to have been made on McKay’s aversion to lemon chicken and lemons in general that began in SG-1 and continued in Rising part 2. Then, lasted throughout the Atlantis series. My comment is that I loved that idea, as did many fans. David Hewlett used to regularly receive lemons from fans at conventions. To me, it added to the unique character of McKay. I also loved McKay’s general hypochondria with fears that he was dying from all sorts of innocuous issues. Who came up with these very interesting personality quirks? Do writers add that to the script, then it is approved or not approved by the producer?

  23. Oh, Joe, you might not know, but the Cheerios commercial was a sequel. The first one was so cloying even you would have melted so it’s like catching up on what the darling, tiny family is up to – growing, apparently. And I live in a house where mom and dad aren’t in unity over getting a dog and only talk about it when the kids can’t hear. The final, parental eye contact is going to be more meaningful to me.

  24. I didn’t really watch the game (though invited to a Stupid Bowl party), so I had to catch the commercials on youtube.

    I really liked the Puppy Bud commercial and the Brit villains (Loki!!! Woo!), but I LOVED the Radio Shack commercial! It really drove home the point that the store is changing, and the bonus commercials for it on youtube (Jason making a 3-D key! 😆 ) make it even better. I think it was the best of the bunch for actually selling what it set out to sell (i.e. I remember – in a positive way – both the product and the message).

    Just got TofE yesterday (thanks, Sparrow!), but Mr. Das commandeered it already. 😛 He’s a fast reader, so not too worried about getting it read in time.

    das

  25. why not start Akemi on SG1 when you joined the production? Gives her a chance to get the feel of the series, then point out when SG1 an Atlantis were running concurrently.

  26. Oh, wow – just saw the new Cheerios commercial – 😆 ! LOVE it! Love her ‘you are gonna get me a dog, or else’ look. 😀 NOT cloying, at all.

    Okay…a couple Atlantis thoughts:

    The Rising 1 & 2 – I really liked this introduction to the show. My only complaint is that the Wraith lost their foreboding edge too quickly. If they had stayed as enigmatic and powerful as they were in The Rising throughout the entire series, I think they would have been a far stronger adversary (both in the show and in viewers’ minds).

    Hide and Seek – I liked this one, even the kids. Obviously you two should never be parents. 😉

    das

  27. the over-all quality of the superbowl commercials have gone down in the past few years. like my brother says; the spend $3 million to buy the air time & have nothing left to put into the commercial.
    having said that, i kind of liked the budwiser dog & horse. and the goldieblox one.

  28. I giggled at the “old things.” I won’t watch anything made prior to 1970 anymore. It is just too laughable. I may be revising that to 1980 or maybe even 1990.

    Hide and Seek: I didn’t particularly care for this episode. I could go watch and give specifics, but I’ll never catch up to your second to most current blog and I have to leave soon.

  29. Oh, and I liked the Budweiser Clydesdale commercials, both the puppy one and the hero welcome home one. I hadn’t seen the Doritos one (above). I love it because it has two of my favorite things — golden retrievers and time machines. All it needs is a hot tub.

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