Review: Stargate Universe - Life
by Mike Moody, posted Nov 21st 2009 12:01PM
(S01E09) There was a lot going on in this episode, as the folks aboard Destiny started to adjust to their new lives away from Earth. The adjustment, of course, is easier for some than it is for others.
Chloe has made new friends like Eli and has found a partner in Scott, who comforts her and makes her feel less lonely. So she's content to pass the time doing yoga on the observation deck. People like Young, Rush and Eli are busy exploring the ship and trying to unlock its hidden wonders. That at least keeps them occupied and somewhat hopeful.
But things aren't nearly as happy-go-lucky for people like Spencer (aka "Baldy"). He's running out of his medication (my guess is that he's taking anti-psychotics, or is that too obvious?) and it seems like only a matter of time before he kills someone, or kills himself.
There was a lot of drama on the ship this week, but there was even more of it waiting for Wray, Scott and Young back on Earth. Actually, Wray experienced a tender reunion with her partner Sharon (Reiko Aylesworth), who is probably one of the most stable and supportive characters I've seen on TV in a long time.
It's worth noting that these two have been together for twelve years. It's gotta be tough for Wray to be away from Sharon and even tougher for her to realize that she's forgetting things about their life together (like the rowboat in the painting). She might not have the best relationship with her parents, but Wray definitely has a strong reason to want to get back home. I wonder if she'll take the IOA rep's advice and make a power play on Destiny.
You gotta feel for Scott. He's been suffering for years thinking that his teenage girlfriend had an abortion, and now he learns that he has a son. Brian J. Smith did a fine job portraying Scott's quiet shock and sadness in this ep. It looks like Scott now has a strong personal reason for wanting to 'gate back to Earth ASAP, since Annie (Sarah Smyth) refuses to accept his financial help and quit her job as a "dancer."
Thinking about his 8-year-old at home alone every night is going to make life even tougher for Scott. I wonder how all this will affect his relationship with Chloe. She didn't seem too comfortable with the idea of him having a family back home.
So we learned that Col. Telford was not impersonating Young in an effort to seduce Emily. But he's still a loathsome, spineless little weasel! I nearly screamed at my TV when Telford had Young's stone disconnected seconds before things came to blows. Luckily, Young got sneaky by impersonating another crewmember and finally gave Telford what's been coming to him since the beginning of the season. (I don't usually condone violence, but my grin grew larger as Telford's face got bloodier. That guy's a jerk.)
Still, I can't help but think that Telford will use the beatdown as leverage against Young. He might even make a play to permanently switch bodies with him and take command of Destiny. And the strangest thing about this whole subplot? Scott dreaming about Telford's memories. I wonder if something like that will happen again.
Back on the ship, Rush claimed to find a stable planet with a Stargate that could possibly get everyone back to Earth. There were two big problems with this discovery: First, the planet is a year away. Second, the planet doesn't frakkin' exist! Eli used his Mathboy skills to deduce that Rush made it all up, but Rush said he had noble intentions. He wanted to give the crew hope and to motivate them into working hard.
Only Eli, Young, Scott and Wray know that Rush's discovery is a lie. It'll be interesting to see if they can keep his secret from the crew. It'll be even more interesting to see what happens once the crew learns the truth.
And what about that chair Rush found? I was hoping to see someone take the bullet and try it out. Anyone care to guess what will happen once somebody takes a seat? And do you think Rush will eventually will risk it himself?
This was one of the most compelling episodes of the season. Finally, the show moved away from the "peril of the week" formula to give us something resembling real human drama. It was a little rambling, but that's forgivable.
Next week: Murder on the Destiny Express!
- The entire episode, especially the opening and closing sequences, was beautifully shot. Here's hoping the show keeps director Alex Chappel around for a while.
- The opening and closing song was an inspired pick.
- Loved watching Johansen do her psych evals. I hope to learn more about Greer's relationship with his father.
- So the ship has a slut?! Maybe Eli will get lucky!
- Speaking of Eli, watching him avoid the workouts was good for a laugh. So was watching him doing yoga with Chloe.
- It's good to see that Rush still needs Eli's help every now and then. I'd like to see these two work side by side on a big project again soon.
- I could've sworn I heard Rush say "Asgard!" halfway through this episode. No such luck I guess.