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  1. #1
    Site Admin GateWorld's Avatar
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    Apr 2004

    Post FAN REVIEWS: 'The Hunt' (216)

    Visit the Episode GuideUNIVERSE SEASON TWO

    The crew organize a desperate rescue mission after a predatory creature attacks an offworld team and takes two people captive.



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  2. #2
    Lieutenant Colonel xxxevilgrinxxx's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2009
    Vancouver, Canada

    Default Re: FAN REVIEWS: 'The Hunt' (216)

    The Hunt [SGU 216]

    “The Deerhunter.”

    There's a lot going on in this episode but one element that stood out starkly was Greer's story line. Or, to put it simply: The Deerhunter. Just as “Deliverance” has made a mark on those of my generation, the same can be said of “Deerhunter”.

    During this whole adventure, Greer's place has been as an element that secured the success of all other attempts. He has been, for the most part, a positive force. In his own words, he moves things ever forward. No matter what has occurred, Greer has moved forward, never looking backward, and from what we've seen of his history, it's not hard to understand why he would be so driven – to move forward, to keep going, to never stay still long enough to process all that has happened as a whole.

    Whether we want it or not, what's happened affects who we are and Greer is no different. All of the things he's done, all of the things he's seen and experienced, have caught up with him. Many things could have taken him to this place but it's the latest, facing death when he donated a kidney, has him come face to face not only with his own mortality but with the knowledge that other creatures have that same sense of mortality. That they could also strive not to die. In this, he also comes face to face with what makes him human, with what makes him alive.

    In many ways Greer had some of the deepest emotional moments among the crew, deep in that they are something he keeps to himself and perhaps even from himself, but it changes when he looks at the creatures as something not so different from himself. While survival has him view them as food, he also sees them as alive, possibly in the way that he is alive. Park's disgust at the killing of the creatures serves as a vocal cue, but Greer's inability to shoot them speaks louder. What is more interesting is that they do, in the end, kill one of the creatures, but it is the predator that Greer resonates with, and when he asks Varro whether he has killed any of the predators, there's an air of challenge in it. If Varro had managed to kill any of the predators, would Greer have vouched for him to Young?

    Park's reaction has already been mentioned and her revulsion comes from a dietary/possibly spiritual standing, in that she sees the creatures as sentient and so it's 'not cool' to kill and eat them. For Young, the issue is not about the creatures but purely a matter at how the creatures have clearly affected his crew. A temporary faltering by Greer is understandable, something that can be gotten past, but it must be gotten past, or understood. Like Greer, Young also insists upon moving forward. James allows Greer to speak about the deeper feelings and Scott allows him to expose the human need for food, for survival. The injured soldier embodies the human fear of predators, of being eaten.

    As someone who has hunted all of his life, Varro and the others are indeed adept at hunting and killing for food, of tracking, and their insights prove accurate in understanding how to hunt the animals, and how the animals are hunting them. But the LA are wrong about the animals in assuming that fear and hunger are all that they know. This is sure to be a point of contention at some point between TJ and Varro, because TJ won't kill unnecessarily. In fact, Varro is alive because of this very point and in this, TJ is far closer to Young, who also won't kill where he doesn't have to.

    Both TJ and Greer realize that the predators embody far more than such simple drives and in doing so, expose something of their own inner makeup. It is in choosing not to kill that the comparison to the Deerhunter comes in. Greer has killed a great deal in the past, as an expedient method of moving forward without looking too closely, of getting things done that needed done, but in making the conscious choice not to kill, something in Greer has changed. Or perhaps only revealed itself.

    It is a great shame that TJ's extra backstory was cut in that it embodies the second 'hunt' of this episode. Involving TJ's relationship with her father, it would have given more depth to her relationship – both the one that's ending and the one that's newly beginning – with Young, someone that to some extent has been a sort of a father-figure for her. If this had come out in the episode, I believe it would have put the TJ/Young relationship in a new light. As TJ grows more secure in herself she would need her father figure less and in turn this would make the switch to Varro less a matter of being vulnerable after the loss of a child and more a matter of moving on to a healthier relationship.

    In previous episodes, Young has shown that he has been willing to do the unconventional if it provides results and ensures the safety of those under him. But in allowing the LA, specifically Varro, to go down to the planet to hunt down the creatures and especially rescue TJ, he is letting another man, a rival, rescue her. This had to be difficult and the fact that Young made an uncharacteristic trip planetside only strengthens how hard a decision it must have been to make.

    To TJ's great credit, she didn't need “rescuing” and in fact handled the situation well. When the “rescue” came, it came from Greer, not Varro, so that she will hopefully not look to Varro as her rescuer and avoid the “damsel” label. The moment when TJ, Varro and Young were all in the same room and Young turned, closed his eyes and resigned, it was a painful reminder that Young didn't just lose the 'hunt' but lost a love. Further, he set up the loss himself, if only to ensure she came back. It showed a great deal of maturity on his part, something that is necessary if everyone is to move on.

    The hunt for love is not only in the TJ/Varro/Young triangle, but also in the Park/Greer/Volker one and it too, sadly, ends in the loss of that love. Greer's affection for Park has largely been private, although it has been seeded throughout SGU's first season. Volker's affection on the other hand has been notably public, with Volker facing off against Simeon of all people, to defend her honour. While Greer and Volker are not related, not brothers, their most recent experiences have changed that dynamic. They now share blood, share cells and DNA, share kidneys, share sacrifice and now, share love, making this love story verge on classic themes.

    In love, there are hunts gone past and having what it takes to pursue doesn’t change even when love has gone. Rush is likely aware of the Park/Greer relationship, as there isn't much he isn't aware of, and yet he presses Volker to pursue what he wants. It could simple be a matter of Rush being a mature man who has the experience of pursuing a wife and later, a lover, but I think that in telling Volker to go after Park, he is making up for his inability to declare his feelings to his wife while she was alive. Most importantly, the act shows that Rush cares. Like Young has done, Rush is now taking his people under his wing, where he had previously pushed people away.

    The closest of these relationships has been with Eli and, while this isn't a blatant hunt, the hunt for a true son in Eli is clear in Rush's treatment. When Eli lies, defies, and gets around Rush, there is a moment of pure pride in Rush's expression, as though he has waited all this time for Eli to do just that very thing. To defy the rules set upon him, to do what he believed was right, to fix it when it went wrong, and to, in essence, get away with it. This is something Rush has been doing all along, perhaps all of his life, and seeing that Eli is taking up that action must have been very pleasing.

    And there were stasis pods! Did I mention the stasis pods? In the past two episodes, we've seen consciousness uploaded without a body and the dangers of consciousness being downloaded back into a body via the interface chair. Neither of these has been particularly safe but with Brody's body able to safely enter and exit the stasis pods, is there a method whereby a person's body could be stored, without ageing, without damage, and also exist within the Destiny's database?

    It's a terrible shame that we aren't likely to see this thread play out in what's left of the season.

    Rating: 8/10


  3. #3
    Mistress Organizer Rachel500's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2006

    Default Re: FAN REVIEWS: 'The Hunt' (216)

    So, I loved this.

    I guess that’s not too surprising since “The Hunt” has my two favorite characters front and center: Greer and TJ. Add to that fantastic special effects, kick-ass women all through the episode and nicely played, light-hearted sub-plots with the science team, and this was made of win.

    Ah, Greer. How I love thee, let me count the ways. Jamil Walker Smith just rocks his character so much and has from the very beginning. He plays an uncertain Greer, a Greer having a crisis of faith, brilliantly. The conversations with Young, James and Varro are all great. If there was one question though, it was why it was James who Greer opened up to of all people. There’s been nothing in their relationship shown to date -- correction -- nothing of their relationship shown to date to suggest that he would open to her. But ignoring this, it’s still a great storyline for the character as he loses his mojo and gets it back in a showdown with a very big beast.

    The beast is awesome creation. I want to adopt a baby one. OK, maybe not. But the intelligent animal in the face down with Greer is stunningly done by the CGI team. It is flawless and doesn’t look pasted in or crappy. I think back to the dragon in SG-1’s “The Quest” (10-10/11) and this is so much better that it’s light years away from that monstrosity. Blue Bambi is less effective in close-up at the end and was better when viewed at a distance through the rifle sight but still much, much better than afore mentioned dragon.

    I love the storyline that questions whether the beast is intelligent or not. Is it just a predator or is it capable of thinking? Is it smart? All the way through, the episode challenges the thinking around animal rights from Park’s conversation that she’s a vegetarian to Greer’s sarcasm that if the deer can give him a reason not to eat them then he’ll consider it to the end where he believes TJ that the beast is intelligent and doesn’t kill it.

    Speaking of TJ, Alaina Huffman delivers another great performance. This episode really allows for TJ’s military side to be shown. She gets to be the one that builds the fire, fixes the radio and stays calm under pressure while the young Corporal with her is the one injured and scared. I love the scene where she basically tells him to get his act together or live with the shame that she would rescue his butt.

    And this was a great episode for showing kick-ass women. From James (Julia Benson) who got to participate fully in the rescue, to Park (Jennifer Spence) who was doing math in her sickbed because she was bored, to Tasia (Kyra Zagorsky), the Lucien Alliance woman who led the hunt for the beast and was at least as good a tracker as Ronon ever was, to TJ who did everything right to ensure her own rescue, to Chloe (Elyse Levesque) who handled the infirmary and handled Eli’s panicking -- all the women on display were strong-willed, opinionated and competent. That was good to see.

    Also good to see was the continuing humor in the show thanks to the sub-plots involving the science team. What is hilarious is the Eli (David Blue) and Brody (Peter Kelamis) double act as Brody gets frozen in a stasis chamber. This sub-plot involving Eli and Brody chafing against Rush as lead scientist and Rush teaching them both a lesson is fabulous. Carlyle’s acting is so subtle in the scenes; just miniscule twitches of his mouth and eyes to convey amusement and satisfaction. The other sub-plot of Volker’s (Patrick Gilmore) interest in Park was well judged; amusing but not overdone and ultimately bittersweet as Rush’s (Robert Carlyle) observation of Volker’s status as best friend is shown as the truth when she’s with Greer at the end.

    The triangle is not the only one on show -- the TJ/Varro/Young triangle also continues. I’m not a big fan of triangles. I think they tend to be cliché and simply frustrate viewers. However, I do think the TJ/Varro/Young triangle is an unusual one. This isn’t the cliché ‘geek versus football captain for gorgeous cheerleader’ triangle that Eli/Scott/Chloe inhabit or indeed Volker/Greer/Park. This is two men who are both Alphas with issues in their own way pursuing the same woman. It’s interesting to see where they’re going with it and how Huffman, Mike Dopud and Louis Ferriera are playing it.

    In reviewing, the thing that strikes me most about this episode is that there is a LOT going on. A lot of character development and focus but placed within the context of the wider story of the rescue on the planet. Kudos to the writer for a great balancing job throughout.

    This is a great episode on all levels. Maybe the story is not epic enough for “The Hunt” to make it into the top ten Stargate episodes of all time but it certainly gets into my top ten Stargate Universe episodes and places highly on my list of the most enjoyable Stargate episodes ever. I’m hoping for more of the same for the rest of the series.

    Originally posted at GeekSpeak Magazine

  4. #4
    Captain ZRFTS's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2012
    Inland Empire, California

    Default Re: FAN REVIEWS: 'The Hunt' (216)

    The Hunt

    Ah the hunt, one of the most exciting things in history; who knows what will happen on a hunt or how it will go down. Somehow, this episode manages to take the most exciting thing in history and turn it into a slow boring drawl.

    One of the main problems is that almost nothing is happening; there is something which they try to do with Greer and put him in a position of natural fear, where he has to face himself in order to regain what he has lost; it's definitely understandable, a person without fear faced with fear himself and it's something that should grow his character. Just think, Greer hesitating to do almost the most instinctual things, thinking he can still do it, somewhat like an new perspective on life; and the LA guy should help with his expertise on hunting these things and the drive that he has but it doesn't seem to get properly exploited. Not many situations exist to show that uncertain fear and the range of emotion that his actor is capable of; we're assuming that he's desiring to get a shot off that monster to show that he can do it but an assumption can only go so far and we're seeing the same common emotion for much of the episode. Not adding matters much is the fact that they have to drive the point in constantly for Greer providing explanations and shouting speeches; this proves that there's not much in the situation or the plot that allows his character to expand and for a character expansion to work, no one character has to be told constantly to do X in relation to the plot Y. Greer's speech about the darkness made it all worthwhile, really reflected the sense of fear and grasp on newfound life that he gained especially with the type of vocal infliction that he utilized; showcased the type of depth and the point of view that his character is known for and the LA guy got to show some newfound edge, some aggression that made him stand out. I could truly see the inspiration in him, this is a part of a character which we don't usually see, the aggressive commander and that should definitely play out in the future.

    TJ and Renolds fair decently with both being put in a position that is also beneficial but ending up wallowing in unrealized potential too. TJ seems like she's trying to be aggressive and in charge and there are time where she stands up to Renolds to give him a pep talk but she doesn't seem able to bring the emotion and character to make this thing work; when you're trapped in a cave, you have to make your character seem that they're trying to put it together, that they're trying to sympathize with the character to keep them calm. TJ should be that character but everything she does is robotic; she's constantly trying to connect with people, form relationships and feel something for death and devastation alone but it's as if the feeling is not coming to her, even though she knows exactly what she wants to do; this is evident here and without some of that emotion the entire thing feels lifeless. Renolds does give off a better performance actually seeming in pain, the stuff that he shouts show signs of a character that though minor could actually be something blas, he can't help but to fall victim to the boring situation. The titular (cute) creature itself is decent; he's mighty powerful, in numbers and with tactics such as misrepresentation and it supports many things, the need to find TJ and the natural fear of the situation itself. They're a decent foe for our heroes but I can't help feeling like they forced the moral aspect of the creatures; how we perceive things as a threat has dawned back to the beginning of time, we see something that attacks us as a threat and they see something that attacks them as a threat but they don't bother to explore that, instead they seem to school us that these creatures have intelligence, can realize intelligence and we should treat them better; that dilutes the serious sci-fi mood and confuses Greer's plot, was he supposed to face his fears or was he supposed to stop and think about his life?

    There is something that happens on the Destiny and oddly enough both are the most silliest plots the show has to offer. First up is Eli/scientist guy, they make a decent discovery (this being the stasis chambers) and it does suggest a couple of things; first are the two's near distrust/jealousy of Rush taking control of everything, second is the role reversal with them rushing in to analyze it. This seems to be the first time in Universe that it has tackled a plot that'd be more suited to SGA or SG1 which is to take responsibility for your actions and to follow rules and I could not the plot seriously within the definition of Universe; you could think that Rush is trying to control them but in actuality Rush is the father figure who knows best while the two mentioned are their children who don't know any better. Throughout his ordeal I was expecting Rush to say "We should of told dad" (During his years on the Destiny we have not seen him do hesitant stuff but here he experiments without proper precaution?) and then Rush having a chat with him afterwards saying "And you'll come straight to me in the future." but luckily it didn't happen the exact way and it's also short. Still, it's questionable. There's also a sideplot featuring Brodie forming a love relationship with Dr. Park, I can understand the progression of the character and the opportunity to show a bit of nervousness and it's nice to see such a minor character get the spotlight but they don't do much with it, instead going the route of "will you tell her or will you won't", we don't get much of Brodie's character during these scenes, sure he shows that he's in love but the only thing he shows us throughout the plot is that he's unwilling to express her true feelings.

    So apparently an episode with big intentions ends up being another day on Destiny and a boring insubstantial one at that. Almost no progress is made with the characters, Greer was supposed to face himself but ended up coming empty, TJ looked hard but didn't push herself further and Eli dragged himself down with the childish plot; the only thing of note that's introduced here is the statis pods but did we really need an episode just for that?

    Back from the grave.

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