So I came across this article the other day…

10 Most Underrated Stargate Episodes

It’s a lot of fun, but I do question some of the episodes included in this list, not because I don’t believe they’re deserving, but due to the fact I don’t consider them underrated.  Maybe by critics or the greater audience at large, but that would apply to the entirety of the franchise’s 300+ episode run.  There are a few notable exceptions, but I would argue that episodes like Crystal Skull, Time, and Vegas tend to place high on most fandom lists.

So, if I was asked to come up with what I deemed the 10 most underrated episodes of the franchise’s run, I’d have to go with – in order of airing….


#10. Learning Curve (Stargate: SG-1, Season 3)

My first exposure to Stargate was an episode called Emancipation.  It was so bad that it almost ensured I would never watch another episode of the show.  Until, that is, our agent got us a shot to pitch.  I was even reluctant to try – until I read the scripts the production had forwarded us.  They were all terrific and I remember really being impressed with this one in particular.


#9. Upgrades (Stargate: SG-1, Season 4)

I’m a sucker for the funny episodes.  Super powers are just the cherry on top.  But the small moments stand out for me in this episode, like the steakhouse scene.  It’s nice to see the gang enjoying a night out.


#8. 2010 (Stargate: SG-1, Season 4)

Next to the funny episodes, there’s nothing I love more than a good AU story and this is a great one, exploring what might have ben.  The climax that sees our beloved SG-1 fall in a last-ditch attempt to right the timeline gets me every time.


#7. Revisions (Stargate: SG-1, season 7)

I’m casting humility aside to include one of mine in the mix, this pure sci-fi story reminiscent of the science fiction stories I used to love as a kid.  A stand-alone episode involving a strange alien civilization, a perplexing mysterious, and cool technology – with a melancholy conclusion.


#6. Collateral Damage (Stargate: SG-1, Season 9)

Even though I shared the writing credit, this one was all my former writing partner – another terrific standalone story involving a strange alien civilization, a perplexing mystery, and cool technology.


#5. Poisoning the Well (Stargate: Atlantis, Season 1)

One of my favorite episodes from Atlantis’s inaugural season was this moving episode, my favorite Carson Beckett story.


#4. Harmony (Stargate: Atlantis, Season 4)

I had a lot of fun breaking this story in the room with writer Martin Gero, and his script is executed to perfection, thanks in no small part to our terrific pint-sized guest star, Jodelle Ferland, in the titular role.  Loved the twist at episode’s end that sees McKay and Sheppard’s roles reversed – a rare occurrence.


#3. Remnants (Stargate: Atlantis, Season 5)

Okay, sorry.  I’m going to have to offer up one more of mine.  Three seemingly disparate stories that dovetail nicely in the episode’s conclusion, capped off with a nice little Zelenka twist.


#2. The Greater Good (Stargate: Universe, Season 2)

Carl Binder excels at quiet, character-focused stories and this is a great one, pitting Young again Rush on an abandoned alien vessel.  Secrets are revealed – and they don’t go over well.


#1. Stargate: Universe (Season 2, Malice)

As far as SGU episodes go, this one is pretty epic, a space-western showdown on a desertic alien world.

And you?  What are your favorite underrated Stargate episodes?

A reminder that we’re kicking off our Dark Matter rewatch.  I’ll be joining the gang at Orville Nation for a livestream post-Episode 1 discussion this Monday, October 5th at 5:30 p.m ET –

Come join us.  And tell your friends!

6 thoughts on “10 Most Underrated Stargate Episodes

  1. Malice is a great one. It stood out to me on my rewatch earlier this year. Very good. Harmony, that painting at the end, it’s just too good. I love a good mystery like in Collateral Damage, Upgrades is lots of fun. But I do feel that one gets mentioned a lot due to the Jack/Sam moment. And Learning Curve, an emotional story and the questions it raises are great. I think to a certain extent the SG1 characters weren’t empathetic enough, but perhaps in just a 45-min episode, not enough time to really delve into that. But it’s a great episode, the kid characters are great, and it’s the origin of the naquedah reactor! Which is just sorta there for the rest of time, just an accepted part of the universe lol.

    Thanks for the list, love it!

  2. Man, those are all great episodes. It’s really hard to pick my favourites because there are so many that are for different reasons. One SGU episode that really stands out for me is “Time” though I think it’s pretty highly regarded, not underrated.

    Luckily, “Emancipation” was not my introduction to SG, because… yeah. I actually started watching the show just as Atlantis was starting too, and wound up going back by DVD to watch all the earlier SG1 seasons. I wound up watching all the episodes for all 10 years AND all the episode commentaries, LOL. A big investment in time!

  3. I have such a bad memory for episodes I wouldn’t even know where to begin with a top 10 of my favourites let alone a top 10 underrated! Top 10s are so subjective anyway and throw in a fluffy word like “underrated” and I just collapse into a quivering pile of indecisive jelly.

    Will be watching DM-S1E1 tonight!

  4. Hmmm… okay I’m going by IMDB ratings and some of the episodes I would rate higher:

    SG1 – Message in a Bottle, Learning Curve, Citizen Joe
    SGA – The Lost Boys, Harmony, Trio, Vegas
    SGU – Air Pt 1, 2, 3, Darkness, Time

    There’s probably a bunch more, but that will do for now. It’s actually inspired me to go through and rate all of the episodes of Stargate on IMDB. Need to rewatch too.

    Also, how’s Ivon? I wish him well. Please say hi from me….oh and watch “My Octopus Teacher” 🙂

    Cheers, Maryanne

  5. Yeah, I agree with this list more than the other one. I’d also like to add in really any episode Ronin dealt with his old squadmates. I remember when Jason was announced as aquaman, he was getting a lot of slack, because his last role was a silent brute on GoT. Those episodes show that Jason is more than a seven foot slab of meat, he’s a great actor.

  6. Yeah, really enjoyed Harmony. I am so glad to have seen Jodelle for 3 seasons on DM.

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