SGU Stargate Universe: Water   Rewatch 
May 10, 2016 1:15 PM - Season 1, Episode 6 - Subscribe

Severe rationing can't save the Destiny's dwindling water supply, forcing Colonel Young and Lieutenant Scott to seek out drinkable water on a deadly ice planet.

* Transcript
* Watch on YouTube and Hulu (latter requires subscription)

Trivia (from here and here)
* First stand-alone episode of the series
* First episode to show the wormhole travel effect
* First and only episode of the series in which Dr. Brody does not appear.
* The EVA suits from the Destiny that appear in this episode don't just look similar to the battle suits worn by the Asgard in Atlantis's "First Contact" and "The Lost Tribe." They're a deliberate reuse of the same costumes. Reviewers noticed. When asked about this, consulting producer Joseph Mallozzi commented: "Well, hey, now that you mention it -- yeah, they do look remarkably similar. In fact, if I was a betting man, I'd wager that the Dark Asgard suits are a modified version of the Ancient space suit. Wonder what's going on there."
* Filming inside the space suits for three days "was a living hell," Louis Ferreira said. "I remember the first scene we did we came through a gate and we had helmets on and the scene was 60 seconds. This was the first time we had used the space suits. We're doing one scene at the end of a day. And so we knew that after this particular moment we were going to now be in the space suits for three days. We came through the gate, did a scene for 60 seconds, put our hands up saying help, take these fricking helmets off, take these helmets off. They took them off, we're gasping for air going there is absolutely no way we can endure three days in this space suits. But what they realized is that they hadn't vented the helmets correctly so they actually ended up putting little fans because or we would have died. I came out, I was completely drenched, I felt like I was going to pass out, and I was terrified that we were going to have to spend three days in these suits. But they made it a lot better and at the end of the day it ended up being one of those things like we did it, we climbed the mountain together."

Eli: "Woah! Looks like we entered the Hoth system!" (Young and others frown, not understanding.)
Eli: "'Empire Strikes Back.' The second 'Star Wars' movie. OK, I refuse to call it Episode Five."

(Greer and Eli are pushing what can only be described as a hover board: a large flat platform with over a dozen Kinos attached to its underside so that it floats in midair.)
Eli: "It's impossible to steer by remote."
Rush: "It's fantastic, Eli. What made you come up with that?"
Eli: [embarrassed]: "Actually it represents my most recent attempt to fly ... but it should carry a ton of ice."
(He and Greer steer the hover board towards the Gate. T.J. tries to keep the giggle out of her voice as she reports to Young.)
TJ: [into radio]: "Colonel, we're sending through Eli's latest invention."
(On the other side of the Gate, Young laughs in delight as the hover board comes through. He lifts a boot and places it against the front edge to stop its forward momentum.)
Young: "I love it! The man gets a gold star!"

Eli: "Everyone is lying."
Rush: "Yeah. The grown-ups do that sometimes."

Rush: "Look, Colonel, I understand your desire to rescue Lieutenant Scott, of course. But only you can decide how much time you have left. But, Lieutenant, if Colonel Young remains there trying to free you, to pull you up by himself, there's a chance he might not make it back."
Scott: "He's right."
Young: "Just keep the Gate active. We're gonna make it back in time with your damned ice, which is all you really care about."
Rush: "Colonel..."
Young: "Young out!" (He deactivates his radio and sighs.)
Young: "Damn! He's a lotta work."

Scott: "Come on, sir. We both know you've done this before, too."
Young: "I've done what?"
Scott: "Lost people."
Young: "Too many times. I'm not... I'm not doing it again."
Scott: "I can't let you do it."
Young: "You don't have a choice."
Scott: "Not that I'm counting, but this is the third time in almost as many weeks that you've been willing to kill yourself and there's ... there's a pretty good chance at this point I won't be around to talk you out of it again."
Young: "You're a fine young officer. You've got a heart as big as a house. I'm not here 'cause I wanna die. I'm here because I haven't given up on saving your ass, so just shut up and think."
posted by zarq (3 comments total)
Liked this one.

* More dismal treatment of James, but she takes the high road. (I don't really blame Chloe for not being better here - Scott kept everything with James on the down low. He continues to come across worse for me on review.)

* Greer was pretty great. "I can invent things too!"

* At the time, I figured the Dark Asgard just modified or stole the suit tech directly. Not only did the Asgard and Ancients have an alliance before the Ancients Ascended, (presumably encompassing some non-military tech transfer), but the Dark Asgard were clearly scavenging Lantean tech after the fact - their ship had the tech to fly right through Atlantis' shield, they knew about Janos' lab. Small leap to them modifying Ancient space suits. (Plus, the Asgard version were heavily upgraded.)

* The bugs didn't seem to have enough mass to account for all the missing water, but yeah, TV SF.

* Like Eli, I refuse to believe none of them knew what he was talking about when he mentioned Hoth. Headcanon? I think they just didn't want to encourage him.

* This was another example of 'really alien aliens,' and I did appreciate that. I like that there's never any resolution about why they made an attempt to communicate with Scott. Just letting it go was pretty un-Stargate in the best way.
posted by mordax at 3:53 PM on May 10, 2016

Just letting it go was pretty un-Stargate in the best way.

One of the best things about the series was that it was content to let plot threads hang without tying a bow on them. There were many points throughout the series where we get few to no answers to raised questions. It was a refreshing change that set it apart from many other scifi series. The ship and its passengers are transients, and so are is the perspective they provide.

So in this episode we have (as you mention) truly alien aliens. The crew can't communicate with them. Their attempts to communicate are a mystery. And that's it. We don't ever learn anything more. I love that.

I know from Joseph Mallozzi's blog that at least one of those loose plot threads (not this one) was supposed to be addressed in Season 3....
posted by zarq at 7:50 AM on May 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

Eli's maturation throughout the series was well handled and a wonder to behold. Seeing the later episodes it's hard to remember that he came into the pilot as a video game addicted loser who never did anything but play video games. It's just that this one game he totally owned turned out to be based on the tech needed to solve the puzzle, and by extension the rest of Destiny's tech, and that stuff he'd owned in the game turned out to be real.
posted by Bringer Tom at 6:31 PM on May 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

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