Monday, September 8, 2008

The Daedalus Variations & Ghost in the Machine

Still catching up on Atlantis Season 5. The Crystaline Entity has already written an overview of the first few episodes, and since I mostly agree with it--which is a pity as it isn't really a glowing assessment--I won't do too much more commenting here. will also go ahead and rant because what else does one do when a show one loves stumbles so badly?

So, my mini-reviews:

The Daedalus Variations: In which our intrepid crew gets lost in space and meets the Borg. At least Teyla actually kept her uniform top zipped this time.

Sheppard's conversation with himself was, I suppose, meant to be funny, but struck me as more gag-inducing than anything else, and really (fortunately) OOC. Rodney might have such a talk. Sheppard? And why bother meeting a really powerful, nasty enemy if we don't learn who they are and no on even stops to say "Hey, wonder if these folk are in our reality, too?" Sloppy, sloppy dialog ("I feel like someone's just walked over my grave" says Teyla, viewing her own dead body. No, really?) And that is far more analysis than this total stinker deserves.

Ghost in the Machine. A great improvement, but not great enough. For starters, I watched it and The Daedelus Variations on the same night so the bad taste lingered. On the plus side, it was good to see Weir again, it is nice to know she's not forgotten, and sort of good to have a followup on that final scene.

The problems arise after viewing (well, one or two arose during, but I sat on them): Why *can't* Replicators ascend? It's all about the mind/spirit and leaving the material and mortal world behind. That they are machines seems an odd reason, especially since they are machines that move back and forth across the borderline between nanobot-based bodies and regular-old-meat bodies.

A bigger problem is that the plot as a whole didn't really do anything for the Weir-Replicator storyline that hadn't already been done--in fact, I think that it was actually step backward: Weir's last sacrifice was noble & necessary. This one--I'm not as convinced about, and isn't one Noble Last Stand enough? Also, in going for the shock value of that final scene, the writers/directors/producers/whoever made the decision did the story & the audience a huge disservice: The scene is only shocking once. The discussion leading up to that decision could have given us some good character moments and shown Woolsey actually facing this very nasty situation and thus making a definite command decision, something he has yet to do.

That and the float in space solution is really a cop out: Replicators can come back from being left out in space, even after a very, very long time. All Atlantis has done is put them into suspended animation until some poor soul stumbles across one or the other of them, and brings it back to life--and anger, and a desire for revenge etc etc etc. If they're going to kill the Replicators, they need to completely destroy them. If not, then sticking them on an isolated planet and letting them create human bodies is probably the best option available. Postponing the decision indefinitely makes for a pretty cool camera shot and a very bad plan.

*sigh. I miss adoring Atlantis, I really do. Maybe the next ep?

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