Today is, apparently, the 22nd of Stargate: SG-1.  Hard to believe – 22 years since the show premiered, and about 19 years since my then writing partner and I were offered the opportunity to pitch for the series as the production was looking to expand its writers’ room for the show’s fourth season.  At the time, we were still smarting from two failed attempts to land writing gigs on a couple of other shows (Lexx and The Outer Limits to be precise) but put our best foot forward with five story ideas, two of which ended up being produced.

We got on the phone with the series showrunners, Brad Wright and Robert C. Cooper, and, after hammering out an outline, we were given the green light to go to script.  After approximately 3 weeks (2 weeks of writing and 1 week of agonizing over what we’d written) we sent the script off.  And waited.

From what I heard, Brad and Robert were traveling on a golf trip at the time and only had one script between them.  Brad handed the script to Robert and suggested he read it first because he (Brad) didn’t want to risk being disappointed and having the experience sour the trip.  Apparently, Rob read the script, set it aside, and informed Brad he could enjoy his trip.

And THAT is how we landed a staff gig on Stargate: SG-1’s fourth season – with the understanding that the series probably wrap production after season 5.  And, well, we all know how that went.

So, we packed up and moved cross-country – which was not without its complications.  And yet, looking back, they were a small price to pay for one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

I recall settling into my office, setting up my laptop while attempting to corral my two pugs, Jelly and Maximus, who I’d had to bring in for the day.  Suddenly, there was a knock on the door and there was Richard Dean Anderson, aka Jack O’Neill, aka MacGyver, standing there.  He introduced himself as “Rick” and welcomed me to the show.  I thanked him, shook his hand, and then turned to deal with a laptop issue.  But when I turned around, he was gone.  Or so I’d assumed in that split second – until I looked down and saw him down on the floor, playing with my dogs.  Over my time on Stargate, I’d come to understand Rick’s two greatest loves: dogs and The Simpsons.

Some of my favorite episodes I’ve ever written were scripted for the show’s fourth season: Point of No Return, The Curse, Chain Reaction, Exodus, and, of course, Window of Opportunity.  And as that fourth season wrapped up, I also remember sitting in my office with my writing partner, Paul, wondering how the hell we would come up with story ideas for the show’s fifth season.  At the time, it seemed an impossible task.

And yet, 11 years and 60+ episodes later when the franchise run finally ended, we still had stories to tell!

12 thoughts on “July 27, 2019: Landing on Stargate!

  1. All I have to say is…Yipppeee! And…I am so glad you both were on the Stargate SG 1 team, bringing us an incredible bounty of adventure and fun over the years! More stories to tell, eh? I have my fingers crossed.

  2. We want more ! We want more ! waves cardboard sign What ? I’m practicing for the Great Stargate Riot of 2020. Is that a thing ? Well, unless MGM announces a fourth show before then, it WILL be ! ominously sharpens pitchfork

  3. What incredible memories you have to treasure. Of course, we fans also have memories and no doubt they are connected in some way. Everything that went into making SG-1 such a rewarding experience for you is mirrored in our appreciation for how it all came together on the screen. How can so many moving parts contribute to such an amazing whole? I’m not sure how that mysterious alchemy works but I’m glad it did!

  4. Scorched Earth was one of my favorite episodes. I always wished you guys had circled back to revisit the Gadmeer and how they were doing with the rebuilding of their civilization

  5. Thanks for showering us with so many years of great story telling and entertainment. I want more! XD
    I just started watching another new sci-fi show on Netflix … Have to keep myself occupied while we wait for your projects to hit the screen.

  6. Great story. Congratulations on this special day. So glad you got the job! Well done!

  7. I still miss Stargate on tv, but thankfully I have all seasons on dvd. I think it may also be available on Amazon Prime.
    Do you think you’ll ever partner with Paul Mullie again? You both created Stargate magic!
    And it’s amazing that 22 yrs. have passed since all that wonderfulness began.
    2 😺😺

  8. You and Paul were established writers on the show when I discovered Stargate during it’s 7th season mid-season hiatus. But with SciFi airing the show seven days a week (I believe) I was able to catch up fast. And that’s when I was still using a vcr to record everything! Thanks for the great memories Joe.

  9. Do you ever stop and consider how much you have given so many? What your work and dedication has sparked love of StarGate on others? That is pretty darn awesome. Literally, creates and is full of, awe. Bravo.

  10. Hi, i´m a great german fan of Stargate and i´d like to see more…
    I liked SG and SG atlantis. SG Universe was.a Flop.
    I think, the Secret of SG and Atlantis was a cool Team and a new Enemy.

    Please do this again

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