I have to say that I agree with most of your summary. Before the episode started I breathed a sigh of relief that the annoying SKY ONE woman would have no reason to say Teal'c because all episode descriptions for this episode focused on Daniel with a little bit of Sam and Jack. Though we knew the Jaffa rebels (or 'Free Jaffa Nation' as they are now called) would feature in the episode, I never thought she'd have the op to say Te'alc (i write it this way as this is how I perceive she reads it on her piece of paper) but she did and we all had to suffer. With the end of this rant before I start talking about the episode I would say that we should encourage her to actually watch an episode - if she had she'd know how to pronounce it.Originally Posted by Albion
After the previous few episodes that have only gotten better and better, culminating in 'Reckoning Pt 2' last week, I will admit I probably had obscenely high expectations for this episode. For the most part they were fufilled, some aspects however were not.
I will admit that I am not a fan of the rebel jaffa storyline, though Teal'c's struggle to become other than a lowly shol'va and show all other jaffa what they could become is a worthy storyline. When all of the jaffa bestowed their highest honour upon Teal'c and Bra'tac I found myself getting strangely teary eyed. Why I do not know, but it was nice for these two men that have been outcasts for so long to be acknowledged for what we've seen them try to do for 8 years. Though why Teal'c was called Teal'c of the Tau'ri I am still unsure.
* The story for the Jaffa plodded along in this episode, but ultimately provided a reason for the Jaffa struggle to remain part of the Stargate Universe in season 9, i.e. as Bra'tac pointed out, they may have turned the tide in the Jaffa rebellion, but they spent so much time planning on how to get their brothers to listen, they did not plan sufficiently for what would happen when they did. This is a valid point, and I would have been very irritated if they suddenly became a cohesive unit so quickly. Uniting them may have been achieved, keeping them so will be more difficult. My biggest issue with this storyline however, was the trap Anubis set for the Jaffa that they easily fell into. Teal'c and Bra'tac in particular are seasoned warriors and I find it difficult to believe they would accept any intel about Anubis at face value. They lost many Jaffa, and although Anubis ultimately didn't succeed, their efforts showed their weakness and that they are nowhere near the formidable enemy they need to be to defeat all the Goa'uld.
* Ah Sam and Jack. For so many years we have looked towards some kind of resolution towards this storyline and my interest was certainly peaked when the 'Previously on Stargate...' revealed a hell of a lot of clips about their past relationship (esp the scene from upgrades where they're on Apophis' ship either side of the forceshield). Pete anoys me, always has, and I will do little to conceal this fact. His full clearance provided him the opportunity to meet Jacob and make an ass of himself. His attempts to ring her when she was at work was unprofessional and indicated where their future could be heading (and I'll be honest,it reminded me of many fanfics I've read where Sam finally got rid of Pete because of his possessiveness). It served the purpose, and I'm glad. As with many others I liked Kerry. She was honest, perceptive, intelligent and if I'd been that kind of person, the kind of woman you could see Jack with. We finally had another woman in the Stargate Universe who looked capable and wasn't presented with any of the Novak-like flaws. Its probable she knew for a while that something was holding Jack back, but it wasn't until she saw Sam and Jack's evident discomfort and unwillingness to admit their relationship. When she spoke to him at the end of the episode, two things came to my mind - she was presenting us with a reason he wouldn't be present in season 9, and also the possibility of her return. she implied her assignment was far from over, and I personally would like to see her again.
* Now to dear Daniel and Oma. The diner was unusal choice for the setup, but she said it was conjured from Daniel's mind so hey ho. To have her not talking in riddles was nice, though it only took once such riddle to provide enough proof to Daniel that she was real. She was offering the chance to ascend again, which was all well and good, but did she not realise that the choice previously made would repeat itself? She said Daniel's choice was ascension or death, but the decision was made difficult for him because he knew what Anubis was about to do and he could either die along with everyone else or accept ascension and watch as everyone was killed. How did she think this was a choice he would accept? evidently she had not learnt much from Daniel's previous ascension. She admitted she had not erased his memory as she was supposed to and I would suggest this was the reason the elders would not stop her trying to offer him ascension again.
As for Anubis/Jim I will willingly admit that I didn't think about who he really was, but his mention that they had come across each other before again lends itself to an answer to the quesiton of why Daniel chose to retake human form. If he had met Anubis before, if he recognised who he was during Full Circle and this was why Oma stopped him from doing anything makes a little more sense, but this was supposed to be the much hyped resolution to Daniel's fight with Anubis. Did he fight him? No. He may have helped Oma to reaslise her decision to help people ascend was meaningless if she didn't stop Anubis from killing everyone, so she did something, finally. Daniel found out why Anubis what he was, but it certailny wouldn't make me want to know the Ancients anymore!
* And alas poor Jacob. I realised when he said he was dying that he'd made up what Selmak had thought of Pete (we know he'd been in a coma since Dakara so there wasn't likely to be an opinion). Although I don't think the killing of Jacob was necessary, the fact that he chose to die with Selamk was fitting, as these two seemed to have the 'true symbiotic relationship' the Tok'ra often bleated on about. (QUESTION: was there some kind of weird ass time warp, as Sam and Jacob both said that he should have been dead 4 years ago. Quite strange really as it was season 2 he was about to die and became a Tok'ra. Someone's adding up ain't right as to me that's 6 years - ohh aren't I getting picky!) Jacob's death and Sam's reactionwere correct in my opinion - she realised she should have lost a dad she barely knew a long time ago. She was given a second chance with him and for that she was gratefull rather than sad. We realised we needed Selmak for the translation and weapon in Reckoning, but he could have stayed useful. Yet, with Tok'ra relationships as they were, what would have been the future for Jacob? I'm unsure the Tok'ra would have welcomed him back with open arms, but I doubt he would have been willing to stay on earth indefinitely.
His death reminded me of the speech Sam imagined him making in 'Grace'. He wants her to be happy and he knew the military was in some way hindering that. Whilst Kerry was telling Jack to retire, Jacob suggests that she doesn't have everything she wants, but could have. I'll add in at this point how much Sam and jack together touched me, and how tightly you could see her holding onto his hand. I got a little shiver.
And finally we reached the end. I'm assuming it was Oma who stopped the self destruct as she stopped Anubis. It actually grated on me a little that Teal'c and Bra'tac were at the SGC, as you would think if they thought the world was going to end that they would want to be with their brothers. They could have communicated anything they wanted to say via radio but they chose to be with the one group of people who could have plausibly found a way to protect themselves aginst the weapon. Just a little niggle, but hey.
as for the return of Daniel, it was funny, charming and make me smile - a lot. Though the smile of Bra'tac's face totally creeped me out!
all in all this was a good episode, and I wonder how they would have fitted it into 42 mins - the extra 20 were definitely needed IMHO. Though there was little action, when you sit it in between Reckoning and a season finale it does its job, and gives us an insight into the more human side of the characters. Jack and Sam, Daniel and his struggles with ascension, and Teal'c and his continuing battle for the Jaffa.
The fishing was perfect. I think it was important that all of the team was there, though the initial image of Sam and Jack will stay in my mind for a very long time. The way Daniel came up behind them at the end reminded me of a little kid with his parents, but this may just be me! Amanda Tapping always said the end would come if Sam actually went fishing, well she did and she was right, they should have done it years ago.