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cor
September 16th, 2008, 05:36 PM
Just finished watching this episode and you have no idea how much it made me miss The Next Generation... do you remember when leaders in sci-fi shows were driven by morality? I know Atlantis is based more in the 'today' version of humans and that moral standards these days have gone slightly out of fashion, but even in the original Stargate we always had Daniel and sometimes Sam arguing the moral high ground. Atlantis looks more and more like a sci-fi version of GITMO... to me anyway.

I've never thought the Stargate / Atlantis story was particularly well written, many times the characters had to look like fools just to maintain the storyline, but I suspend disbelief because it was entertaining and inventive..

Ghost in the machine however has left me with a serious dislike to all the main characters, I sincerely hope the next episode will show it was all in a VR and weir just proved herself.. cause I can't see myself continuing to watch this series as its always relied on the viewer caring what happens to the main characters.. I mean where is the suspense if I am actually hoping Shep gets the life drained out of him? Anyway I'm done ranting, for now.

PG15
September 16th, 2008, 10:43 PM
Just finished watching this episode and you have no idea how much it made me miss The Next Generation... do you remember when leaders in sci-fi shows were driven by morality?

I do, and I thought it was boring as heck. TNG remains my 2nd least favorite Trek series just because of how high-and-mighty everyone were. It hasn't aged well, theme-wise.

Obviously our opinions differ on what constitutes good morality and the actions that issue from that, so I'll just say that I loved the moral ambiguity in this episode, along with many others.

cor
September 17th, 2008, 02:26 AM
Well, maybe I'm just showing my age, but if I wanted to see leaders give-in to hysteria and throw personal principle out the window every time they become afraid... well, I'd flick to the parliament channel.

Also 'moral ambiguity' is fine if its a true representation of the human condition, like in BSG, where both sides of the debate are shown. But when dressed up in PG terms with a simplified 'they're different so they die' message tacked on there to evoke the mildly bigoted insecurities from the viewer.. It just feels wrong.

SGA have never tried to be a fully adult show, catering more to a family audience, which is fine and good light viewing, but then tries to address capital punishment, execution of POWs and sentient mechanics.. Then wraps it all up in one episode with a vague 'if your not like us you should be killed' theme.. It just annoys me. Like dumbed down morality in bite-sized portions for the masses.

Mike1989
September 17th, 2008, 06:20 AM
At the end of the day they are not human, they are replicators. The same replicators that tried to destroy Atlantis, has tried to kill the team, and they still now possess a viable threat to Atlantis. They proved that they could not be trusted when one escaped and tried to kill people. You can try and argue the moral high ground like Carter and Daniel tried to do with certain situations, but in a situation like this taking the moral high ground would have been the wrong route.

Whose to say they wouldn't have tried to escape again, to have tried to rebuild their ships and become a threat once again to Atlantis? Whose to say they wouldn't reveal the planets location?

The list of possible threats go on. And sure it can be seen as simple as, they are not like us so they must die, but that simply is not the case here. They are replicators, not human, replicators. Machines. They have tried to kill people, they have killed people and they would still be a threat whether that replicator was or was not Weir.

You can't say well lets trust them, because they could easily stab you in the back without a seconds consideration. So yeah, they could have trusted them to behave and do what they said they wanted. But they are replicators, machines and cannot be trusted. Was their decision moral? Was it right or wrong? For me, it was the right decision as there are many more potential threats from letting them leave and live, than putting them into space.

cor
September 17th, 2008, 07:44 AM
Mike1989, I think you miss my point, if you are happy that they are only machines with no consciousness, that they are not in anyway 'alive' by our definition then that is fine I suppose, no moral dilemma there. Means that Weir was dead the moment her human body was dead..

But I don't think that's what the Stargate world implies. e.g. Sam herself had her consciousness uploaded into a machine back at the SGC, if you are right then she was just a lifeless 'copy' for a half dozen SG1 seasons and an SGA season.. the entire asgard race were actually dead the first time they cloned themselves.. I just don't buy it.

Also the threat was minimal, even from the one who tried to escape.. the show did not give us any evidence that he would have done anything but study ascension.. and the rest of them cooperated fully..

maybe I'm picking up on the 'pre-emptive' aspect of it, but it seems (if we accept that they were sentient) to be justification to murder anyone BEFORE anyone become a threat.. which I would have expected from the Goa'uld...

Mike1989
September 17th, 2008, 09:27 AM
If they had let them go and they had rebuilt the replicator home world, they rebuilt the replicator armada of ships and sent them to Atlantis, what would happen to the moral dilemma then?

Would they remember the people of Atlantis allowing them to leave without being hurt, or would their replicator instincts takeover their emotions. As there was no real proof that it was Weir, or that these replicators were not using Weir to get bodies so they could rebuild their world. Sure there maybe no potential threat now, but what about in a year, two years, they could have rebuilt by then and become a threat once again. Not every replicator was good or bad, and as such you cannot justify letting someone go on the basis that they could become a potential ally, or another good guy. Because all it takes is one glitch in the programming, one person to question the so called Weir's leadership and then you have a problem. You have a threat.

I can see the point that do we class Weir as dead from the point her human body died, likewise the Asgard. But that is a different thing, the Asgard were not hell bent on taking over the galaxy. The Asgard did not go along killing people on worlds to make sure the Wraith's food stocks went down. The Asgard did not come along and attack Atlantis. Weir did not sanction attacks on good people, on innocent people. The replicators did, now these six or seven replicators may not have been a direct threat. But you cannot deny that they are replicators that were part of those who were hell bent on killing and hurting people.

Its not so much kill them before they become a threat, aka like the Goa'uld did, far from it. It would be like saying well we will let this Goa'uld leave peacefully, eg Baal, at the moment he has no ship, no army, no threat to us so we will let him leave. But the fact is Baal has killed people, he has raised armies before and he has tried to takeover the universe and he will do it again and again. That is natural to him, and as such if the opportunity came about to kill him then they would have done that. Not because of kill him before he becomes a threat, but because he is the kind of person who has hurt millions, who will hurt millions if he gets the chance.

As I said, these replicators may not be like that. They may never hurt anyone and may only chase accession. But by that same notion, they could go off and raise armies, they could go off and hurt people. There is no guarantee that they are good, nor bad. There is no guarantee that they won't become a threat to Atlantis or release its location to the Wraith or any other potential enemy. You've got to remember what the so called Weir said, they had inhabited other races systems, both new and old, what if one of these races is a threat to Atlantis and if they released the address or location they could come and kill them. Its not just they are different, it is the fact that their race has killed millions and tried to take over the universe/galaxy. The same goes for the Goa'uld, the Ori, and the Wraith. The Asgard have protected people, the Tauri have protected people...and maybe they have no right to say who lives and who dies, but there was a greater risk letting them live then there was letting them "die".

As they are not really dead, just frozen and could easily have their consciousnesses transfered.

cor
September 17th, 2008, 10:28 AM
letting Baal live is not a good comparison to letting Weir and the Replicators live, more like letting the Tok'ra live or the Jaffa.. or killing them because they 'could' go off and rebuild the Goa'uld empire...

in fact those replicators are kind of like the Tok'ra, they are the same species as the enemy with the same potential for destruction, but have fought their brethren... so its kind like Hammond wiping out the Tok'ra and feeling bad for Sam's father at the same time.. I know there would have been differences but you can see the moral similarities surly?

Mike1989
September 18th, 2008, 01:43 AM
I can just about see the comparison and the morality in comparing the two. But the difference with the tok'ra is that they are good fighting the bad, they are not programmed as their symbiotes are good. They won't turn on you, they won't turn into bad people. Admitted they will do whatever it takes to get rid of the Goa'uld. But at least you could trust them somewhat.

Whereas the replicators they are programmed, and programming can be changed or have errors when they update. All it takes is one glitch that wasn't seen by Rodney or the others, and bang you have your problem. These may have tried to hide, they may have tried to fight them. But the reality here is, they could easily turn the other way. They are machines, and what if the Wraith captured them and wanted to turn the replicators back on Atlantis?

They could reprogram them and turn them on Atlantis. Or even worse, if any other reminants of the replicators survived, the bad kind. Which there is no ruling out, as this is stargate after all, then what if they found them and made them their own. What if one of them wasn't as loyal as they were making out, eg. Weir lying by bringing them to Atlantis and not them finding her?

There are slight differences. Admitted you can say they are generally what ifs and not certaintities, and as such it is a moral decision whether you let them go or send them to their deaths. But at least with the tok'ra, their single aim was to eliminate the Goa'uld's grasp on the galaxy and stop them forcing humans and jaffa into being slaves. They didn't have an ambition to takeover the galaxy, they didn't have the numbers nor the will to do that. They always had good intentions, the same can't be said about the replicators.

As for the Jaffa its not the same. They are forced to carry symbiotes, they are forced to serve their masters at the time which were the Goa'uld. So its slightly different in that case, its like a soldier being ordered to shoot the enemy which they have no problem with. It is morally wrong to kill another human being, but that is what they are ordered to do and they have to do it. So its slightly different.

I can see your argument of whether its moral or not to let them live or send them to their deaths. But they could have turned, and they coudl easily have been the others as well. As lets face it, we have no proof, nor did Atlantis, that they weren't the bad kind of replicators. We have no proof that they weren't going to try and takeover, as lets face it, when we saw Weir in that ship she looked like them, she looked to have intentions that were not good. They did the right thing, it was a hard choice, but ultimately it is the right one for me.

cor
September 18th, 2008, 10:06 AM
well, it was the wrong one for me. much of what you say about the Tok'ra and Jaffa I see mirrored in the Replicators group that only wanted ascension (if they only had a name that put them apart from other Replicators).. but you have made an interesting point, what about the being 're-set' like in the first encounter with them in SGA (can't remember his name but they left him floating in space too) .. why couldn't other Replicators just 're-set' them, for that matter why couldn't they 're-set' Fran before she sucked them all up..? (cause that would have applied to Weir) never thought about that.

I just like my "hero's" to kill when necessary and can't just ignore them when I see them executing prisoners, I also can't think about the Replicators (especially Weir) as just complicated personal computers... which leaves me with the dilemma of having to accept that the leaders and main characters of the SGA are people I would despise and fight against in real life.. which is not I think what the script writers intended.

The Prophet
September 18th, 2008, 10:19 AM
Even if it was Weir (which I believe it was), it would still be too dangerous to allow her & the other Asurans to continue living; they could easily fashion a bomb or something similar, the risks outway the reward of bringing Weir back to being human.

cor
September 18th, 2008, 05:18 PM
oh, risk to reward ratio, well, I was talking about morality.. but ok, lets think about this like accountants for a minute, in fact, lets think about it like a Replicator would...

benefits: unlimited ZPMs, all ancient knowledge, powerful ally, space ships (++1),

Risks: they could 'go evil' and would be difficult to kill, they could trick us and kill lots of people before escaping,

this is also a paradoxical situation, if they are 'evil' and had full access to Atlantis systems, surly they would have installed a safeguard that would e.g. destroy the city at a later date to give them leverage if threatened... meaning the reason for killing them was also a reason for keeping them alive..

one more thing, killing someone who has not harmed anyone just because they have the potential to cause great harm is evil... as I said before its something the Goa'uld practiced, the Replicators that went through the gate gave us NO reason to believe they would betray us. so they were powerful? so they were the same species as our enemy? .. so were the Tok'ra and Jaffa, but we didn't execute them wherever we found them.

Mike1989
September 19th, 2008, 10:09 AM
oh, risk to reward ratio, well, I was talking about morality.. but ok, lets think about this like accountants for a minute, in fact, lets think about it like a Replicator would...

benefits: unlimited ZPMs, all ancient knowledge, powerful ally, space ships (++1),

Risks: they could 'go evil' and would be difficult to kill, they could trick us and kill lots of people before escaping.

I suppose they could teach us how to build ZPMs, but what incentive do they have to do this?

None, they would only reveal such things in exchange for what they want. And there is no way they would build ZPMs or show them how, because we could easily flick the switch or shove them out of the gate at any moment after they become useless. And by that same notion, they could easily power Atlantis up, get everything tip top, get what they want and then turn.

So there are potential benefits, but the risks are higher in keeping them alive. As lets face it, remove the so called Weir, they are six replicators who managed to become "good". But they were part of the replicators who caused harm.


this is also a paradoxical situation, if they are 'evil' and had full access to Atlantis systems, surly they would have installed a safeguard that would e.g. destroy the city at a later date to give them leverage if threatened... meaning the reason for killing them was also a reason for keeping them alive..

I suppose that could have happened, put a fail safe in place to make sure they don't get killed. But why would they need to do that when they know they have a chance of gaining the upper hand?

If they can take down the power of Atlantis, black it out, like that one replicator did. Atlantis can't initiate the fail safe and thus, they could take over the city that way. As they are near to impossible to kill with bullets, they can be stunned, but they need the fail safe to kill them. Unless I missed something, but nevertheless, they could have done it with or without a fail safe. All they needed was the chance, so maybe they were genuine and had good intentions. But there is no proof that they didn't have plans to either; A - rebuild their world, and B - take down Atlantis when the moment is right.

Example - Genii. Everyone thought on Atlantis that they were going to be an ally against the wraith, then when the moment suited they attacked and tried to take over the base. If not for the stargate way of them always coming out on top, they could easily have taken the city. So there's also the case of timing, was it the right time to take down Atlantis at that moment, or would it be best suited to monitor the situation, play out the alliance till it suits them. Again its "if" but there is a potential risk.


one more thing, killing someone who has not harmed anyone just because they have the potential to cause great harm is evil... as I said before its something the Goa'uld practiced, the Replicators that went through the gate gave us NO reason to believe they would betray us. so they were powerful? so they were the same species as our enemy? .. so were the Tok'ra and Jaffa, but we didn't execute them wherever we found them.

Although they gave us no reason that they would betray us, there is always that potential risk that they could do that. After all, were has the technology to create more replicators?

Atlantis.

Were has the technology to build the human bodies quickly and full stop?

Atlantis.

Were is the best place for them to gain ascension or rebuild?

Atlantis.

In reality you could go on, as I said above, it is a question of would they strike when the moment is right for them. When Atlantis is not as heavily guarded, or when they have built up their trust enough to be allowed into Atlantis and they could hatch their plan. As I said before, it is a question of it, and they did give us no reason to believe they would betray us. But there are potential risks.

Also you need to consider that Weir was the only replicator never to have been involved with the replicators who caused massive harm to the human worlds in the pegasus galaxy. The others were part and parcel of the replicators who did that. Admitted they are the so called good replicators, but as it has been shown in SG1 and Atlantis. The so called good replicators can easily turn. They couldn't take the risk, you can call it evil for getting rid of someone who hasn't yet given you reason to believe they will hurt you. But what if they did, what if they took over Atlantis, what if they rebuilt their strength and it led to the massacre of millions of humans, to the defeat of the human race and they take over the universe?

As lets face it, the replicators would hold all the advantages. They can build ships quicker than us, they had more ships than us, we get shot once in the chest and 9 times out of 10 your dead, you shoot them once in the chest and they live. If they managed somehow to replicate, or turn against the humans, then they could easily do what the replicators on two occasions have nearly completed. In one case defeating the milky way galaxy, and the other, nearly taking the pegasus galaxy.

XFire
September 19th, 2008, 10:31 AM
To go back to a previous statement, that they are machines, we are too machines, just not in the same sense as they are, furthermore, you cannot apply that they are a threat to our survival so they needed to be killed, as you can say that about every human, everyone has the capability of killing many people, yet many don't, but you wouldn't have mass executions of humans, but you see sentient humanoids as being something different?

I was horrified what they allowed to happen, for a group that states we never leave a man behind, as soon as that 'man' is a woman and doesn't take the same form they are not regarded in the same way. For that matter, if you mike1989 fell into a coma due to irreparable damage to your body and the technology was available to transfer your mind into a machine, would you take it? But, by your standards, you should be executed because you are no longer organic by design and pose a threat.

Other than that guy who went a-wol who it would appear that his only intention was to research Ascension on his own accord not under the Atlantis team's dictation, the group co-operated to the team's terms. They had also been painted guilty until proven innocent, which goes against the Western worlds basic legal principal, that you are innocent until proven guilty.

All that the Atlantis team has shown, is that they are only capable of applying morales if it fits into their agenda, and should anyone do anything that goes against their agenda, then they get onto their false morally superior horses and go under the fašade that they give a damn. Personally, they have shown that the Expedition is only a load of gun tooting Americans with morales as solid as Jelly (or Jello if you are in the states).

Mike1989
September 19th, 2008, 10:48 AM
To go back to a previous statement, that they are machines, we are too machines, just not in the same sense as they are, furthermore, you cannot apply that they are a threat to our survival so they needed to be killed, as you can say that about every human, everyone has the capability of killing many people, yet many don't, but you wouldn't have mass executions of humans, but you see sentient humanoids as being something different?

That's kinda taken to the extreme, every human is a threat. What I said was they are replicators, machines, and their programming could easily be turned the other way. They could easily become bad, and there is no guarantee there are no more bad replicators out there rebuilding. There is no guarantee that one of them is not just playing along until the time is right.

So there is a difference between for example the Genii under a new leadership and the replicators with Weir. As replicators can have their programming turned, they could become a major threat. The Genii not so much. And as for the humans being a threat, its different. As we didn't wipe out the Germans because of the evils they committed. I can see were you are coming from, but you have to remember they are replicators.


I was horrified what they allowed to happen, for a group that states we never leave a man behind, as soon as that 'man' is a woman and doesn't take the same form they are not regarded in the same way. For that matter, if you mike1989 fell into a coma due to irreparable damage to your body and the technology was available to transfer your mind into a machine, would you take it? But, by your standards, you should be executed because you are no longer organic by design and pose a threat.

I have never fully said that because they are machines they are bad. Instead what I did say, was that they are replicators which have murdered millions of humans and have tried to takeover not one, but two galaxies. So there would be a distinct difference between transferring a humans mind to a robots mind. As that robot would not have been formed from a replicators, unless you meant replicators building a body. But if I was ever in such a situation, I wouldn't be making the decision would I like it wasn't Weir's decision.


Other than that guy who went a-wol who it would appear that his only intention was to research Ascension on his own accord not under the Atlantis team's dictation, the group co-operated to the team's terms. They had also been painted guilty until proven innocent, which goes against the Western worlds basic legal principal, that you are innocent until proven guilty.

Your right, they were treated as guilty until proven innocent. But once again they are replicators, like wraith are wraith. Its like Todd being held in Atlantis, he is always held in a cell and under armed guard. Why?

Because he is a threat. Likewise these replicators are a threat. So on that merit, they were right to treat them as guilty or treat them as prisoners because they have previously committed atrocities and have previous tried to kill them. Thus, being treated as guilty until they can prove whether they were good or bad.


All that the Atlantis team has shown, is that they are only capable of applying morales if it fits into their agenda, and should anyone do anything that goes against their agenda, then they get onto their false morally superior horses and go under the fašade that they give a damn. Personally, they have shown that the Expedition is only a load of gun tooting Americans with morales as solid as Jelly (or Jello if you are in the states).

Rodney's Canadian, Sheppard American, Ronon is an alien, Teyla alien, Woosley is American I think. The rest of the team is not purely American, go back and watch the first episode of Atlantis and you will see the different nationalities.

Furthermore they are replicators not humans. If a human version of Weir walked through that Gate even if she had the replicator nanities running through her she would have been saved. But because she was a replicator, or supposedly a replicator, she was a threat to them because heck it took her best part of a few seconds to kill that guy. How long would it take for her to kill Sheppard, for her to kill any of Atlantis' crew?

Not long. We can sit here and argue the morals of their decision, like we can argue the Rodney do you save the baby or ten people on the other track senario. But they all come down to the same thing, personal opinion and having to make a decision there and then. They could have tried to trust them and let them leave, but what if they turned, what if they rebuilt their empire. They coudl take down Atlantis easily. They nearly did.

And once again I will point out, they are not dead, simply frozen. Like that guy whose name I can't remember from SG1, he was frozen in space but still lived. So they aren't exactly dead dead, they are frozen.

cor
September 28th, 2008, 05:22 AM
well Mike1989, I can see how you justify their actions, but I (and others) can not. maybe its because we saw other options available or maybe its because we held the characters in a higher regard than you did.. I don't know.

but I do think it was a very poorly written episode which did a lot of damage to the main character development, maybe not for you, but for some of us it did.

nx01a
September 28th, 2008, 10:01 AM
(if they only had a name that put them apart from other Replicators)Asurans? :(

cor
September 28th, 2008, 03:00 PM
no that's the name of their race (puts them apart from the milky way Replicators) I meant a name for the goodie Asurans to put them apart from the regular Asurans.. like what Tok'ra are to the Goa'uld.


Asurans? :(

nx01a
September 30th, 2008, 03:22 PM
I mean that we don't even hear the other Replicators refer to themselves as Asurans for some odd reason, so the renegades could.

cor
October 1st, 2008, 07:59 PM
well, I guess, but we would also need a name for the bad Replicators so the good ones could be offended when they are 'mistaken' for them.. like the Tok'ra were when anyone called them Goa'uld... its actually all fairly petty when thought about like that, but that is how its written;


I mean that we don't even hear the other Replicators refer to themselves as Asurans for some odd reason, so the renegades could.

Ltcolshepjumper
October 2nd, 2008, 01:55 PM
That's kinda taken to the extreme, every human is a threat. What I said was they are replicators, machines, and their programming could easily be turned the other way. They could easily become bad, and there is no guarantee there are no more bad replicators out there rebuilding. There is no guarantee that one of them is not just playing along until the time is right.

So there is a difference between for example the Genii under a new leadership and the replicators with Weir. As replicators can have their programming turned, they could become a major threat. The Genii not so much. And as for the humans being a threat, its different. As we didn't wipe out the Germans because of the evils they committed. I can see were you are coming from, but you have to remember they are replicators.



I have never fully said that because they are machines they are bad. Instead what I did say, was that they are replicators which have murdered millions of humans and have tried to takeover not one, but two galaxies. So there would be a distinct difference between transferring a humans mind to a robots mind. As that robot would not have been formed from a replicators, unless you meant replicators building a body. But if I was ever in such a situation, I wouldn't be making the decision would I like it wasn't Weir's decision.



Your right, they were treated as guilty until proven innocent. But once again they are replicators, like wraith are wraith. Its like Todd being held in Atlantis, he is always held in a cell and under armed guard. Why?

Because he is a threat. Likewise these replicators are a threat. So on that merit, they were right to treat them as guilty or treat them as prisoners because they have previously committed atrocities and have previous tried to kill them. Thus, being treated as guilty until they can prove whether they were good or bad.



Rodney's Canadian, Sheppard American, Ronon is an alien, Teyla alien, Woosley is American I think. The rest of the team is not purely American, go back and watch the first episode of Atlantis and you will see the different nationalities.

Furthermore they are replicators not humans. If a human version of Weir walked through that Gate even if she had the replicator nanities running through her she would have been saved. But because she was a replicator, or supposedly a replicator, she was a threat to them because heck it took her best part of a few seconds to kill that guy. How long would it take for her to kill Sheppard, for her to kill any of Atlantis' crew?

Not long. We can sit here and argue the morals of their decision, like we can argue the Rodney do you save the baby or ten people on the other track senario. But they all come down to the same thing, personal opinion and having to make a decision there and then. They could have tried to trust them and let them leave, but what if they turned, what if they rebuilt their empire. They coudl take down Atlantis easily. They nearly did.

And once again I will point out, they are not dead, simply frozen. Like that guy whose name I can't remember from SG1, he was frozen in space but still lived. So they aren't exactly dead dead, they are frozen.

Todd was treated with more respect than them, and he actively feed off humans. And keep this in mind- they wanted to ascend. They knew the only way to do that would be to gain human bodies. they were no more of a threat than the Wraith are, and the expedition was willing to ally with the Wraith on more than one occasion. They didn't have to leave. In fact, they (Weir) never intended to leave to another planet. The machine was in Atlantis, no where else. In the very least Weir should have been saved. And that guy was another replicator. All it took for her to do was command his nanites to disrupt. Just because someone is more powerful than you doesn't give you the right to casually throw him or her away. Most carnivores have the ability to mutilate humans. Doesn't mean we should kill them. Wraith are no different. Oh, and let's make this point too- they agreed to create human bodies, eliminating the aforementioned threat. So, were was the morality? Once again, the writers wanted an easy way to end the situation and close the plot, without considering anything else.

Mister Oragahn
October 15th, 2008, 08:11 PM
Just finished watching this episode and you have no idea how much it made me miss The Next Generation... do you remember when leaders in sci-fi shows were driven by morality? I know Atlantis is based more in the 'today' version of humans and that moral standards these days have gone slightly out of fashion, but even in the original Stargate we always had Daniel and sometimes Sam arguing the moral high ground. Atlantis looks more and more like a sci-fi version of GITMO... to me anyway.

I've never thought the Stargate / Atlantis story was particularly well written, many times the characters had to look like fools just to maintain the storyline, but I suspend disbelief because it was entertaining and inventive..

Ghost in the machine however has left me with a serious dislike to all the main characters, I sincerely hope the next episode will show it was all in a VR and weir just proved herself.. cause I can't see myself continuing to watch this series as its always relied on the viewer caring what happens to the main characters.. I mean where is the suspense if I am actually hoping Shep gets the life drained out of him? Anyway I'm done ranting, for now.

This episode was indeed painful to watch, and the Tau'ri in charge of it should be under severe trial and put into jail. I'm sure they're all clearly checking each other's six to be sure the IOA never learns about how totally friendly robots were about to give them the tech to cure any illness and regrow any limb, plus a million other wonders, and instead decided to punish them to a cold, straight and merciless death because just one of them acted harshly as he was afraid of being betrayed... and could we blame him, the Tau'ri in Atlantis have a track record of ****ing up pretty much anyone and anything.

Seriously, a ****ty episode on the ethical point and script writing bravery.

Sometimes, you really wonder why the writers even bother or how they manage coming with such atrociously sadistic and immature plots.

Yes, despite all of its flaws, at least Star Trek was constructive and seemed to do things right.

There in SGA they keep showing glimpses of super tech, but pull it away like a vicious boy would tease and piss off his little bro, in order to reset the level of technology and to maintain this absurd statu-quo.

Vis Uban
October 18th, 2008, 08:15 PM
From my past observations of people in this very episode's general discussion thread, combined with the posts in this thread, I'd have to say that the most often repeated line of those that favor the elimination of the Asuran rebels is "They're Replicators." As in, "we can't trust them because <insert here>" or "while it might be underhanded, we have to remember <insert here>" I'd just like to mention that perhaps because they are Replicators is not sufficient reason to destroy them, any more than any sane person would say, "We have to destroy them because they're human." You cannot blame the rebels, who I might add never participated in the attempted genocide of humanity in the PG, for the actions of Oberoth's faction. In fact, it should be remembered that these rebels argued against the execution of the team back in "Progeny," even helping the team escape at the cost of one of their number, and they also gave us the ability to track Oberoth's Aurora class warships, which incidentally allowed us win the war with his faction. :cool: For not being friendly on some level, they seem to aid us on more than one occasion. Then we repayed them by spacing the seven of them who came to us for help, because one of them proved to be dangerous, while the others followed our rules to the letter.

It's a pretty common theme in Stargate that AIs aren't actually alive or sentient. I suppose it's different for me, characters that I loved, like Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation in my very early years and Rommie from Andromeda in my mid teen years, convinced me that AIs were different yes, but were certainly thinking, self-aware beings. Many others don't see it this way, but I, for one, don't really see any difference in status between a sentient AI and a human being.I don't see that one is more valuable than the other or more expendable.

As to the question of whether the Asurans were actually sentient or not, I'd like to offer the following modified former post of mine. For example, we know they can feel anger and hostility; they were programmed to. In the old days, Niam wanted to alter their base code so that they could eliminate this and become more peaceful. Now this is only an impression, but that particular Replicator seemed more well rounded emotionally than the many of the others, at least to me. They're apparently self-aware, as they have a sense of their own identity, with motivations and desires, including many which they had not been programmed to pursue. They're intelligent, i.e. capable of making choices for themselves. I think Niam, a machine, wanting to alter its own programming to fulfill a purpose it was never designed for, and ironically Oberoth prove this as well. I say Oberoth because he was programmed to attack the Wraith, but since he hated humans, he reinterpreted the attack command to annihilate the humans. And the big question that'd be hard to prove is if they have a form of consciousness. However, I'd like to point out that the Asurans are machines, and a machine's software must have hardware in order to operate. The fact that the Asurans continued to operate in subspace, without their hardware, indicates that they're ultimately more than just ones and zeros, more than just programmed machines. The major thing in my book that points to sentience is the fact that at least a faction of a race of weapons attempted to become pacifists. Now I don't agree with that philosophy, but it is a rather radical departure from their programmed purpose.

Just because something is different in origin and built from different material, doesn't mean it's not alive. If something is self-aware, possesses intelligence, makes its own decisions, decides for itself what it wants, and perhaps even possesses some form of consciousness, then I don't see how we can comfortably say that it's not alive. Basically, especially in the case of the Asurans, we're more alike than different. And even if you don't think AIs are alive, perhaps it's better to assume that something is alive and be wrong, than to assume it's not and "sow the wind and reap the whirlwind." If a truly sentient AI was treated like an inanimate object or a slave, then I don't think many could blame it for being justifiably furious.The Cylons are good examples of this, and even Terminators to some extent. To put it in context, humans don't appreciate being treated as second class citizens, so why would they?

Cor, you're points on the morality of of the Expedition's choices very closely mirror my own, so I won't say more than, great posts and I'm right behind you. :)

sent2null
August 18th, 2009, 01:03 AM
Cor, I just finished watching this episode and thought to myself "that is that, this show is being hypocritical" and came into gateworld to see if anyone felt the way I did. I first looked at the main thread and it annoyed me with all the simplistic reviews of the episode but no one seeming to care that the Atlantis team yet again chose their hide over preservation of SENTIENT life. I then tried to comment but could not since I was not a member, so I joined Gateworld just to respond on this point.

It doesn't matter if the replicators have caused issues in the past, we knew who these Asurans were, they were the faction of replicators that went to war with their *own kind* just to ASCEND. To join their makers in the higher plane, and this started the first gripe I had with the show when they started indicating that they would not let the 'machines' ascend? Why is that?

We know through mathematics that no formal system of axioms can be complete by Godel, thus computers by being created from formal systems of axioms ultimately have classes of problems that are in computable. However, Godel's proof was far grander than just restricting computers, it restricts us. If our brain is constructed from a system of axioms (physics on mathematics) then we are limited, we already know that our logic is limited and the only way that we can jump from this limitation is to create new arbitrary systems with non over lapping regions of solution but there is no way for us to know which regions over lap. My point is, that whatever it is about our biology that endows us with consciousness, the replicators had it...sure theirs was expressed through the intricacies of nanite interactions but they were self aware and sentient beings. The idea that they couldn't ascend because they didn't have a "soul" (which was implied in one of the episodes that I forgot) I took as an assault to my intelligence.

To add insult to injury, already having arbitrarily banned replicators from ascension thanks to mumbo jumbo reasons , they went on to deny them any rights at all as living beings by treating them as if they were non emotive robots always on the virge of going nuts. The story lines never probed the desires of the Asurans despite giving the indication that they had individuality (they had different faces and "races") why would a "machine" choose to be an individual if it didn't have a sense of self separate from the collective??? Again, the writers teased us with their humanity and then presented contrived situations to let the Atlantis team act as if that humanity didn't exist, it was gut wrenching and I think ultimately reflected bad on the Atlantis team in exactly the way you mention in your original post.

I agree that the subject poster that responded to your comment doesn't get your original point. It is a more subtle moral high ground that was lacking consistently in the Atlantis team choices, the analogy you made to "gitmo" was spot on...it was exactly what cold and calculating military folks would do in those situations.

Finally, at the very end after the leader attempted to escape and then remaining re-embodied Asurans surrendered the option to continue building their biological bodies was denied by the Wier character. Why???? Sure she didn't want to take a chance of any more problems occurring but she killed the only person that felt that way in the group and even he only wanted to escape so he could continue to figure out how to ASCEND. It reminded me of the torturous pathos that weaved through out the movie AI. Why the writers didn't just let them create the biological bodies, download their consciousness into them and then finally ascend is beyond me. It would have harmed the story line in no way...but instead they chose to keep the same predictable pattern they had going through out the Asuran /replicator story line of two series. It just pissed me off. Anyway I've said my peace and I 100% agree with you.

mariep
January 26th, 2010, 05:15 PM
I'll just say that I loved the moral ambiguity in this episode, along with many others.

yes, perfect is too bored! sorry my english

asdf1239
April 4th, 2010, 02:25 PM
im glad people agree with me on the general treatment of the asurans at the hands of the arsehole lanteans and evil atlantis team.
mike1989 if the ends justify the means and any threat should be eliminated, they might as well find a way to destroy the entire pegasus galaxy and everyone living in it to stop the threat of the wraith. much like the jaffa were enslaved by the goa'uld, the asurans were forced to be subservient to the cowardly lanteans.

albatross
April 26th, 2010, 11:12 AM
For me I thought the dubious morality in this episode was pretty much the only thing going for it. You can champion Star Trek all you like, but at the end of the day it just isn't realistic. People aren't wired that way. Besides, the guys in Atlantis have trusted "bad guys" over and over again, and it always comes back to bite them in the end: all this episode shows is that they are finally learning to be less gullible.

On top of that, they gave the replicators a chance to prove themselves trustworthy, and they took massive risks giving them bodies and a lab to work in - and the replicators proved they couldn't be trusted. If they had stuck to the deal, no-one would have died.

I'd say the Stargate universe does class AI as sentient - see "Urgo". But sentience isn't really the issue here. The Goa'uld are sentient, but SG-1 still killed a load of them. Because they were an uncontainable threat. Some posters in this thread have likened the demise of the replicators to the killing of prisoners of war. But this isn't a fair comparison. If Atlantis had a fool-proof way of containing the replicators and keeping them alive as prisoners, don't you think they would have done so? They only chose this path as a last resort because they had no way of safely imprisoning the replicators because their programming is way more advanced than even McKay could figure out (until it's too late...), and I don't believe the replicators would ever have agreed to being kept in VR.

Also, in the end, this was Weir's call. She chose her own fate, and the fate of her fellow replicators. Atlantis just helped her make it happen.

asdf1239
April 26th, 2010, 02:42 PM
, they gave the replicators a chance to prove themselves trustworthy, and they took massive risks giving them bodies and a lab to work in - and the replicators proved they couldn't be trusted. If they had stuck to the deal, no-one would have died.
it was only koracen who tried to betray them, if the other asurans had the same intentions why didnt they kill their three guards and everyone else in the city.


The Goa'uld are sentient, but SG-1 still killed a load of them. Because they were an uncontainable threat.
Some posters in this thread have likened the demise of the replicators to the killing of prisoners of war. But this isn't a fair comparison. If Atlantis had a fool-proof way of containing the replicators and keeping them alive as prisoners, don't you think they would have done so?
that's exactly the point, the other asurans had the ability to break out easily but they didn't, they stuck to their end of the deal. also koracen appeared to be distrusted to an extent even by them since they seemed a bit suspicious about the digital ascension process and probably got pissed off when it didnt work well.



Also, in the end, this was Weir's call. She chose her own fate, and the fate of her fellow replicators. Atlantis just helped her make it happen.
they were collaborating with that decision though so they're also responsible. weir proved to be far less trustworthy than the asurans since she betrayed them. they were fools to trust her in the first place.

Mirelinde
September 25th, 2011, 08:36 AM
I was really terrible watching this episode... Seppard with a face as like nazi offeres to shoot defenceless asurans (and there are some womens between them! Never warrior respecting himself kill women!) Elizabeth kills Koracen... terrible scen... generally I can't understand why did she hate them? They've admited her, trust her, protect of Oberoth, take her when they escape Asuras - and after these all she could hate them? And generally - it's any absurd: to kill unprotected creatures crying for helpness - and to cry "they're dangerous"! I don't know what moral is it...

Mirelinde
September 25th, 2011, 01:42 PM
it was only koracen who tried to betray them,

I'm not sure that it's possible to name it "betrayal"... Koracen's action hadn't mean: really if would he can leave Atlantis - were'll he go? especially along... I seem his nrvouse gave out, he rashed about without mean... I seem Koracen is very impulsive and vulnerable person, and unpractical in everyday affairs - like all geniuses (As like "Rodny McKey in replicatorian variant... maybe they even could work well together). And to kill such creature... I seem - it's like to kill a child!