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  1. #41
    Chief Master Sergeant PsychoPenguin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Someone up thread said something about still reeling from the end of BSG. I have to say I'm right with you. The show has really grabbed me lately by having so much going on in every ep, something always ends up blindsiding you.

    And in a way, this relates to SGA, or specifically SGA episodes written by Martin Gero. I've said it before, and I'll said it again: what I like about his episodes is that he doesn't take one or two characters and shut them off in a vacuum. We get to see the other characters trying to help, trying to be sympathetic, or even just standing around and waiting to hear news. He takes the time to craft small bits, like the idea of Sheppard running regular races with Ronon and Weir playing solitaire at her desk. He also always has something running in the background: Shep recruiting Ronon in "Duet" and Weir/Caldwell command tensions here. In other words, he never forgets that these stories take place in a world of characters, and he makes better use of that world than any other writer I've seen yet in this particular franchise.

    As for the story itself, I really enjoyed it, but not for the plot so much as seeing how all of this affected and deepened the characters. I've found some posts on LJ over the last few weeks, written by new SGA fans trying to figure out why they like this show, and I have to say a couple of them really nailed it for me. Atlantis, as they pointed out, is much like its parent show, SG1,--*not* the place you go for kick-ass plots or long-term arcs. They understand that in a bid to keep their shows accessible to the casual viewer, TPTB at Stargate will most always give us plots that easily wrap up week to week and don't add all that much to the ongoing storyline. They also realize that the episodes of season two have pretty well kept to that pattern, so these LJ writers were asking themselves, "What keeps me turning in every week?"

    The answer, according to them? Namely the fact that there may not be much of a plot arc, but that there are actually character arcs. And that's why they keep coming back. Because they want to see how character X acts after the events of episode 3, and even if there isn't as much impact as they'd like to see (Say after the events of "Trinity"), there's typically enough good stuff and enjoyable character moments, that they're willing to come back for more.

    So they've basically determined what I've always suspected, the reason why non-SG1 fans are attracted to SGA. We're not engaged with the characters of SG1; we are engaged with the characters of SGA.

    And from that standpoint, I'd have to say MG didn't let us down here. Also, neither did the actors. JF did extremely well with the whole "I'm turning into a monster/maniac" bit, far better than I've seen other actors do on other shows. (*Cough* James Marsters, if you're feeling a prickly feeling between your shoulder blades--Yeah, I'm looking at *you*, bub.) He didn't go overboard with it, but you still got a real sense of menace rolling off of him. The other actors did their own variations of "concerned" quite nicely, with Rachel Luttrell and Jason Momoa impressing me far more than usual. (Yes, I'm adding my vote to those who say the addition of Dex has done wonders for Teyla. I'm enjoying her much more this season, especially the little "You're a bad, bad boy" look she threw him at one point after he teased McKay.) Mitch Pileggi, meanwhile, managed to convince me that while he's coming on sort of strong, he really is just trying to do what he sees as best, not grasping for personal power. And while I think Weir does go a little overboard on him, I can see where after all this time alone, she'd have a sense of "These are *my* people; don't screw with them" and I'm willing to give her a pass on that.

    As a result of all this, I enjoyed this epsiode very much, and once again, I feel that Martin Gero should do all of the writing for Atlantis. He's far and away the most talented writer I've seen in this franchise in a very long time.
    Last edited by PsychoPenguin; September 9th, 2005 at 10:08 PM.
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  2. #42

    Chevron Re: Conversion (208)

    I thought this episode hit on all cylinders. It was a team bonding ep. The entire Atlantis team.
    They seem to not like the outsiders too well though. The Weir/Caldwell scenes were a little too antagonistic but golly they did almost everything else right. I liked how we experienced Sheppard's transformation and then the reactions of those around him to the transformation. They cemented the Atlantis as family angle.
    They did wrap it up too easily, though.
    It is my favorite episode of this year.

  3. #43
    Legend's "Tea" Server Kliggins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    I am sorry, but I have to post this frivilous comment in a serious discussion thread. I cracked up when I saw Joe's convention outfit appearing at the end of the episode; light blue shirt and tan pants. Anybody who was in Vancouver or Burbank knows what I mean.

    I did like the episode though, although it did remind somewhat of Bane. Thanks.
    Last edited by Kliggins; September 9th, 2005 at 10:55 PM.

  4. #44

    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Kinda lame rehashed storyline, too Broca Divide/Bane like for my taste. Writers should have mountains of material to use for this new spinoff, why are they recycling so much?

    Actually liked Ronon for the first time this episode and last. Riddle me this though... why exactly did McKay and Beckett go to retreive the bug juice? What benefit/dynamic could they possibly bring to the "away team" in this episode? Becket said to fill up the jar, and McKay whined. Getting a little old, either McKay needs to grow a pair, or become the "science engineer" and stay home for non science missions.

    I like Atlantis, I really really do... I just think hey, they're in their own environment (galaxy, ancient city, different threat, etc) They should have their own stories and stop trying to tie the 2 franchises together so much. Now that Atlantis has a ZPM, resupplied, recrewwed, not to mention having the Deadalus, where is the Ancient Tech?
    We've seen/heard more of the Ancient Technology in SG1 this season than Atlantis so far.

    The city is the size of Manhattan and it seems this season they just stopped exploring the city and the Ancient DB. Why are they not finding things left and right this season? Last season we had the personal shield McKay found, PJs, transporters, sensors, and a lot more discoveries that escape me at the moment. Where are the discoveries this season? An ancient outpost/weapon that no longer exists and that's the extent of it.

    And isn't it just a little too convenient that the Wraith have not come to Atlantis to try to salvage any tech from the explosion? They were so enamoured last season with it being their gateway to a new feeding ground, I can't believe they would not search for wreckage after their long ordeal with the Ancients and the short fight with the Milky Way squatters.

    I'm convinced the reasoning is that salt water, or water in general is the Wraith's weakness. This is the only explanation why Atlantis has not been set upon by a few hive ships trying to find anything to get to the Milky Way. This is going to ruin Atlantis for me if it turns out to be the case. How do you make a show titled "Atlantis" and have the main arch-nemesis' weakness WATER is what I'll be screaming.

    Thanks for giving me an outlet to voice my opinion!

  5. #45
    Captain Atlantis1's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    I haven't had an SGA up to this point that I could say was a favorite. I loved them all equally. That is until this episode. It was awesome. Joe Flanigan did a fantastic job in the role and I loved the rest of the cast as well.

    It was great to get to see more of the bugs and how they live. It would be interesting to see the creatures Ronan referred to as the enemy of the bugs. They must be something pretty intense.
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  6. #46

    Heart Re: Conversion (208)

    Quote Originally Posted by RexxRacerX
    McKay whined. Getting a little old, either McKay needs to grow a pair, or become the "science engineer" and stay home for non science missions.

    Awww, I thought he was being brave, really, and wanting to be a part of the team for Sheppard's sake. A few anxious but muted Rodney-gripes is true to braver guy Rodney has become and it would have seemed odd if he hadn't made a few remarks along the way. I'm used to him echoing all the anxieties I would have felt myself in the same situation. He's the most realistic and human character to me because of that.
    I also liked the way Ronon seemed to get a little kick out of teasing Rodney. That was cute.

  7. #47
    Chief Master Sergeant Daniel's Sister's Avatar
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    Chevron Re: Conversion (208)

    I loved that episode! The week has kinda dragged by while waiting for it. The only problem was that I couldn't say anything to DT, because he was helping my dad do something, so he missed part of it. Other than that, no problems what~so~ever.( He got to see all of it at midnight)
    I told my mom when John kissed Teyla, "No,no,no! He's supposed to do that with Weir! No Teyla! And then he goes and yells at Weir. The one that he likes!"
    And the part where John says that he's been "sitting around on My...mutating hands", I didn't know whether to laugh 'cause that was kinda funny, or to be serious.
    It had the right amount of funnys, like when Rodney said " Maybe we should stay out here." (someone says something) " Ohhh...I'll go in the middle".
    All in all, that was a totally awsome ep!
    (And I still want Ronons coat!)
    *Rachel Luttrel* "Where are the bathrooms on Atlantis?" Now what the heck kinda question is that?
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  8. #48
    Major General greytop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel's Sister
    (And I still want Ronons coat!)
    You have stand behind me and FP for it first.

    One of the best so far this season, IMO.

  9. #49
    Lieutenant Colonel Bama's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Really enjoyed this ep and being a staunch shep/weir shipper, I wasn't sure about it initially.

    Agree with much that's been said here. The storyline itself was somewhat interesting especially as it relates to the whole 'ford gone wraithcrazy' plot but the plot took a backseat imo to the characterizations in this one. That is something I love about SGA. They're not afraid to put a character out there and show you strengths and flaws. This was definitely a John/Elizabeth centric ep and man, did they both deliver!

    Joe was awesome as he slowly turned into someone he didn't like nor recognize. That kiss that was so weird with Tey at the beginning was a good plot device to show the beginning of his more aggressive and angry tendencies. Rachel played her fear very well. I loved the scene where he hit the glass frustrated and then the bedroom quarter scenes when he put Weir against the wall. I was a little scared for her. Man, that natural rapport and chemistry he and Torri have just bleeds thru in every scene whether the characters are arguing or joking around or discussing something. Fantastic stuff.

    And my woman, Weir! Where do I begin? Every interaction with John or Caldwell was just fabulous and played imo to a 'T' by Higginson. She just gets better and better with every ep. She hates Caldwell's everlivin guts and wouldn't spit on him if he were on fire. He made all nice offering and odd flirtiness (ewww) and friendship to her and then did that 'over her head' thing that put her right back on the defensive. And wow, did she ever play those scenes with wraithjohn great! Those facial ticks are awesome. You can see every emotion. She was hurting in this one and I thought really, really gave away her true feelings for John to the audience as well as caldwell but stayed true to her character beautifully and did what she knew she should and what she knew the real john would want her too. Brave woman. Lovin her!

    Mitch, my man, you are still the best spy in the biz. I never knew what he was up to in the xfiles and I don't here. He is after something though and it looks to be power. And if he got a piece of Eliz. in the process, I think he'd be happy. The answer there is 'no' pal. Mitch plays caldwell with a slight edge and oddness and creepiness that is just right. Great addition this year as a recurring guy!

    Loved Dex. The dude is just full of fire and passion! I liked how he wanted to go after a cure. Volunteered. He respects john already and I think that bodes great for some storylines down the road.

    Rachel did a great job in limited time. Her reaction to wraithjohn was good and her hesitance to shoot him was in character. She's a tough woman though and I think she'd have shot him if she'd had to.

    carson was fabulous. he's really gotten better stories this year and he's making the most of them. He got on my nerves at times last year as did teyla but now, I'm diggin them both more.

    And rodney...oh my man...you so deserved a break and you got a bit of one. Loved you eating cherrios and worrying though. David showed on his face his concern and care for john plainly. Hugs to him as always!

    Great ep guys! keep em up. Quality this year has been great!
    Last edited by Bama; September 10th, 2005 at 01:30 AM.

  10. #50
    First Lieutenant Calicto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Pretty interesting episode though the plot was planned out in the spoilers. It was common sense to assume that the following would happen:

    "Shepperd starts turning Wraith-ish, They find retrovirus cure, Shepperd starts turning back to human".

    It was just how well they protrayed it. And they did well. I liked Spider-Shep.

    There was a lot of ship teasing around. It seems that there was some Teyla/Dex (Teyla smiled a lot at Dex's glances) and some anti-Teyla/Shep (she seemed disturbed by it) and some Caldwell/Weir.

  11. #51
    Data ShadowMaat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Regarding the make-up of the retrieval team, I assumed that Lorne and his guys were "bumped up" to babysit AR-1 (did we ever figure out what non-joke name to call them) because of the known danger the bugs represented and for any possible OTHER encounters that might interfere (the predators mentioned).

    As for why McKay, Teyla, and Ronon were there when none of them had a remotely good reason to be involved, well, I'm assuming it's because Shep is part of THEIR TEAM and they want to help out. Weir couldn't in good conscience let Shep go, but she could allow his teammates to feel as if they were doing SOMETHING to help.

    Beckett is the doctor in charge and the one who knows the specifics of what's needed. Technically, he should have gone with Lorne's team and let that be it, but this is television, so we have to help the main cast earn their paychecks.

    I wouldn't call this the best ep ever, I'm not sure I'd even call it one of my favorites, despite Martin's involvement. I'm willing to blame most of my problems/lack of interest in the ep on Cooper's influence (or interference), but it doesn't change the fact that I didn't find it as completely wonderful as most people seem to have.

    Personally, I don't like their sudden dependency on miracle retroviruses and whatnot. It works too fast and too easily and two eps in a row about it is a little too much for me.

  12. #52
    First Lieutenant macktheknife's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    I got a very "Splinter Cell" vibe from the first cave entrance.

    This was a decent episode, although the solution was telegraphed by miles.
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  13. #53
    Lieutenant General prion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Interesting ep. Plot-wise, some good stuff, although I'd like to know where the hazmat suits were when they were in the cave. McKay of all people should have wanted full body protection. And how about a sprayer for the tank of water??

    Well, you can't run in Hazmat suits, can't see. Speaking from the experience of dressing up in a garbage costume with eye holes (long story- back to the days of War of the Worlds - but we did win the 'best cheap' costume competition). Ifyou're in an outfit like that, you turn your head, you're looking at the inside of your suit. They'd never be able to see if anything was going to attack them, and the bugs, well, I don't think a hazmat suit would stop them. AFter all, Ford shot one 9 times and the little bugger was coming back to life in "38 Minutes." Plus let's remember McKay's cooking in the suit in "Runner."

    I choose to blame the Shep/Teyla stuff on Cooper's influence. Good on Rachel for making Teyla look terrified. And then putting on a bright, smiley face at the end but going "whew!" as she left.

    I think she's got some feelings for him, and him for her, but it's far, far back, something neither wishes to act on, at least not now. And yes, she should definitely have looked disturbed after he pins her to the wall and then kisses her rather aggressively. She definitely knew something was wrong with him but didn't know what. And at the end, I think fans are going to see what they want in that, but I see her being relieved that they're back to the status quo of friends.

    McKay managed to get in some nice, angsty moments, worrying about Shep. He didn't have to SAY much, it was all in the eyes. Good on Hewlett for that.

    Yup, did notice a dearth of McKay but then he's had the forefront for several episodes. Think his best bit was when Weir says if the team wants to say their private goodbyes, and just the tone of his voice of "we're there already" (or words to that effect).

    Yay for the references to Ford. Some nice parallels on a very different track.

    Gone but not forgotten. I could see some very good fanfic coming out of that.

    Weir... I get the whole empathy thing, but let's not go overboard, OK? It felt like she was coming on a little too strong in that department. The others all managed to show their concern without making it seem as if they were on the verge of tears. Well, maybe Rodney was, but really... Small doses, folks, small doses.

    I was okay with her empathy; she's become friends with Sheppard, though not romantically, and knows that what he's going through has got to be his worst nightmare (he's definitely made it clear he despises the iratus bugs).

    Caldwell. I don't like the guy, but I guess he serves his purpose. His need to jump in and take control of Atlantis's military comes across as a little petulant, though. Guess we'll have to see how it plays out. It could get old, fast. It could work to drive in a wedge and build tensions. Depends on who does the writing, I guess.

    I like/don't like him? I can see his perspective on cleaning things up, but Weir was correct in that his instantly assuming command and sending out memos was sending a message that Sheppard might not be back. But, if you noticed, the soldiers obeyed Weir's orders when they were told to go hunt down SHeppard, who'd gone, a bit, well, buggy

    All in all, I enjoyed the episode. Had some gripes on continuity:

    1) Sheppard is called to the infirmary, but in between leaving the exercise room and arriving there, he takes time to change clothes? Okay, maybe he decided, oh heck, hot and sweaty after that exercise with Teyla, so took a shower (cold one!)

    2) Spidey Shep jumps down from ceiling and if you slo-mo the scene, you see him coming down back toward camera, yet when he lands a second later, he's facing the camera

    3) In the cave... okay, I can maybe see him wearing the vest, but he's got the gun holster??? Couldn't see if he had a gun, but it was out of place. Of course, could rationalize it that he just automatically put on his uniform (which hey, he really didn't need, could have gone in what he'd been wearing before)

    But otherwise, had fun with the episode. I definitely wanted more at the ending, but at least they did tell us he didn't get well overnight.

    And how does one get back to normal? I mean, does Shep just shed off the Wraith bug skin or what?

  14. #54
    Lieutenant General prion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Quote Originally Posted by Kliggins
    I am sorry, but I have to post this frivilous comment in a serious discussion thread. I cracked up when I saw Joe's convention outfit appearing at the end of the episode; light blue shirt and tan pants. Anybody who was in Vancouver or Burbank knows what I mean.

    I did like the episode though, although it did remind somewhat of Bane. Thanks.

    Ah hah, yes, thought it looked familiar. Haven't been to a con but did see photos and went, hey, that outfit looks awfully familiar.....

  15. #55
    Captain Traveler Enroute1's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: Conversion (208)

    FoolishPleasure - I found this to be a very good episode.
    The kiss? Well, that was a bit of a violation, and Teyla was quite frightened (though it was obvious she knew something was "off" before it happened).
    Bama - Joe was awesome as he slowly turned into someone he didn't like nor recognize. That kiss that was so weird with Tey at the beginning was a good plot device to show the beginning of his more aggressive and angry tendencies.
    Yes, Teyla's awareness that something was not quite right with John had been growing. He was getting better at her training, but not THAT much better so quickly. The Kiss was an offshoot of his behavior that did not bode well and that Look he gave her after; he was on the edge of more violence. As someone mentioned above, even I got nervous here! I wouldn't want any possible ship do develop out of this display. Excellent performances by both.

    Just sayin'.
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  16. #56
    Colonel knocknashee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    I really enjoys this episode, JF fangirl tendancies aside, I think there were some great character pieces.

    Joe was fabulous at portraying the battle within between John's more human side and that which was being taken over by the Iratus bug's more instinctual and animal nature. That performance would definitely rank with me as one worthy of award nomination, as Paul McGillion's did for 'Poisoning The Well'. I could genuinely feel the same fear for him that was so apparent with everyone else.

    I think Torri and Rachel also put in brilliant performances. Very emotional - I think you saw a lot of relationship pieces in this episode, esp how close Elizabeth and everyone on Team Sheppard are. Not only that, I think it was great to see the whole Sheppard/Dex friendship elaborated on. It's good to see that they are tight already, and that Ronon really has got John's back. He was willing to rush off and do anything possible for someone not long ago that he thought of as nothing more than another human inhabiting Pegasus. There definitely seems to be a lot of respect and even proper friendship brewing there.

    As to Rodney, I loved the way they kept him snarky as ever, until the end when he realised John really could be gone. He looked so crestfallen that his best friend might not actually come out of it, then when he was hanging around at the end.

    Back to Weir, I really liked the interaction with Caldwell. It was nice to see his softer side, but how quickly it disappeared once he took temporary command of the military contingent. Saying that, I don't think he came off as too much of an a$$hole, just a little overzealous. It was apparent that he was revelling the opportunity to get his hands on the job that he'd always wanted. Another thing I liked was how she stood her ground, with Caldwell and with Sheppard. John gave her so many opportunities to cave, like smashing the glass in her office (that'll be fixed miraculously by next episode, you can bet your life) and holding her up against the wall in his quarters, and other people probably would have.

    I think this was a great character development episode, and definitely my favourite this season so far...
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  17. #57
    First Lieutenant puddlejumper747's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Quote Originally Posted by ShadowMaat
    although I'd like to know where the hazmat suits were when they were in the cave. McKay of all people should have wanted full body protection.
    I was thinking the exact same thing.
    "You don't need Sheppard to do it....just put on some freaking hazmat suits and get more salt water!"

    I had one question I couldn't figure out, though.
    I thought they said that Sheppard had less than 24 hours before he was beyond hope of recovery (or something like that)....and that even if they got the aratis bug eggs, it would likely take several days just to get a viable stem cell treatment ready. So what happened? Did Beckett get an antidote working in less than 12 hours? Did they just put Sheppard back into a medically induced coma for a few days? Or did I miss something?
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  18. #58
    Data ShadowMaat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Or what about a MALP? They have those little extend-o arms, right? Send the MALP in, run over any bugs that get in your way, extend the arm (with jar attached) into the egg sac, then bring the MALP back out.

    Much, MUCH less dramatic, but quite a bit safer.

  19. #59
    Lieutenant Colonel AGateFan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Malp
    Transporters
    Lots more saltwater with super soakers.
    Hazmat suits

    There was a lot they could have done. And yeah I was thinking if he only has 24 hours then what good are the stem cells going to do because surely it would take longer then that to prep the treatment and its not even tested.... But I guess they could have (and again why didnt they sooner) put him in one of those nifty Anceint Stasis chambers.

    I really liked this ep though. Often TV in general is just better if you dont think too much about it.
    Joseph Mallozzi -"In the meantime, I'm into season 5 of OZ (where the show takes an unfortunate hairpin turn into "the not so wonderful world of fantasy")"

    ^^^ Kinda sounds like seasons 9 and 10 of SG-1 to me. Thor, ya got Aspirin?

    AGateFan has officially Gone Fishin (with Jack, Sam, Daniel, Teal'c) and is hoping Atlantis does not take that same hairpin turn.

  20. #60
    Colonel FoolishPleasure's Avatar
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    Default Re: Conversion (208)

    Some more thoughts, now that I'm not so tired.

    I found the banter between Shep and Beckett to be interesting. Shep now knows what Ford went through. .and felt like. Shep liked the feeling too. Its going to be interesting to see the future interaction between Shep and Ford later in the season.

    So glad to see Beckett getting some good air time. I really like the character. Such a sweetheart!

    The Caldwell issue. Ooooh, that man is vile! But in a GOOD way. I think it is obvious that he really does want Weir's job. . not Sheppard's. He wants all the marbles. That's why he was making changes behind Weir's back. He figured Shep was dead, and he was going to make changes to show how incompetent Weir was as well. Face to face, he plays up to her, but he has a sharp knife ready to stab her in the back. Mitch is wonderful. . .this character is wonderful. We have no idea where the cards are going to fall with this guy. Do we like him? Do we hate him? Dang this is fun!

    When Teyla was shooting at Shep's feet as he came down the stairs - did anyone else wonder just WHAT he would have done if he had caught her? That's a very SCARY thought. Which brings me back to the whole Shep/Teyla dynamic.

    If I had a friend I respected, and maybe liked a bit, and one day he showed up under the influence of drugs/whatever and shoved me around, made odd remarks, and kissed me, but then apologized days later. Would I EVER want to attempt a relationship with this man again? The answer to that is. . NO. I may remain a friend. I may even respect him to a point. But there would never be a romantic involvement after that. Teyla's look of "Whew" told me all I needed to know about THAT "ship". But if TPTB do intend to use this as a recognition of "love" between those two, well. . .that would just be an indication of how little they understand, or even respect women. And what would that say to men? Its okay to push a lady around, kiss her violently, apologize, then later say, "I love you"? That is okay? I'm probably WAY over-analyzing this, but it did bother me that Gero said earlier this year that Shep and Teyla's relationship would "blossom" in this episode. I wouldn't call it "blossoming" by any stretch of my imagination. That wasn't deep-seated caring/romance, it was violence. But kudos to Rachel and Joe, who both played their parts very well.

    As for greytop's comment about Ronon's coat. Yes, the two of us noticed it long ago in the promo pics. Eventually we will have an all out slug-fest for it, and hopefully Ronon comes with the coat.

    I can't think of anything I didn't like in this episode. It was a combo of "Bane" and "Broca Divide", but it was better than both those old SG1 episodes. Now that we've seen Joe Flanigan get nasty, anyone else want to see him in a film playing a real evil bad-ass?

    http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y65/joesmom1/Kitty.bmp

    When all else fails, change channels.

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