• Various/Onna Carr

My Top 10 Favorite Stargate Episodes Part 1

Updated: Apr 8, 2019

Post by Joseph Mallozzi

Note from Joseph Mallozzi: And when I say “MY” Top 10, I am strictly referring to episodes I am credited on otherwise the list would be comprised solely of episodes scripted by the likes of Cooper (Time), Wright (2010), Binder (Life), and Gero (Duet). And of the episodes I’ve been credited on, I’m not counting those scripted solely by my writing partner Paul (ie. Subversion). I also eliminated those that, for whatever reason, whether better or worse, ended up a far different animal than I originally envisioned in that first draft (ie. Prodigy, Prophecy), those that proved a real [trials] to script (ie. This Mortal Coil), and those that I was never enamored with (ie. Shadow Play). Of the ones I was left with, I chose my top ten favorites. Actually, I ended up with a list of fifteen that I considered, reconsidered, and re-reconsidered before I eventually pared them down to that final ten. The five episodes that were close but didn’t make the cut: Whispers (Loved the guest cast and really enjoyed my time on set with director Will Waring and co. Lots of great memories on this one.), Point of No Return (The first episode Paul and I wrote that turned out almost exactly as we’d envisioned it. Also the first appearance of the lovable Martin Lloyd.), Incursion I (There were a lot of balls in the air here with multiple storylines in play, but the cast and director Andy Mikita pulled it off in grand style.), Nightwalkers (A small town alien invasion one-off – the best of both worlds.), and Reunion (Jason Momoa was terrific in an episode that allowed me to cast a little light on Ronon’s pre-Atlantis days. Ultimately, I didn’t feel so bad about not including this one since the sequel, Broken Ties, made the list.).

My Top 10 Favorites

10) Revisions (Stargate: SG-1, Season 7)

I remember then VFX Supervisor James Tichenor telling me how much he enjoyed this episode because, in his mind, it was one of those pure SF off-world adventures: no mythology, no ties to previous episodes, simply a cool, SF-themed stand-alone. To be honest, the original pitch was very different but, over a lunch of dry ribs and spicy maki, Exec. Producer Robert Cooper steered us in the direction of what became the eventual story: SG-1 stumbles upon a society living within a hermetically sealed bubble. Members of their community begin to disappear, but no one seems to notice because their memories are mysteriously altered. This was one of those rare scripts where I knew exactly where I wanted to end up: with a final moment in which one of the characters asks Carter to tell him about the wife he no longer remembers.

9) The Ties That Bind (Stargate: SG-1, Season )

One of the main reasons I so enjoyed working on those last two seasons of SG-1 was the cast, and a character by the name of Vala Mal Doran. This episode was an opportunity to examine a little of her (un)professional backstory with a tour de force of the unsavory sorts she did business with over the course of her checkered mercenary past. Claudia had a knack for always delivering a line exactly the way you’d imagined it. Throws in impeccable comic timing, a great onscreen presence and – voila! What more could you ask for? She was surrounded by some equally great talent and, in this episode, a wonderful guest cast as well. Vala, Daniel, and Mitchell set out on a scavenger hunt unlike any other…

8) The Curse (Stargate: SG-1, Season 4)

After some 3+ seasons, we’d figured the backstories of our team had no doubt been good and mined – which is why it was a delight to come up with a story that explored aspects of Daniel Jackson’s life prior to his joining the Stargate Program. It’s a fun little mystery (spoiled by the network promo) with a healthy dose of Egyptian mythology, exploration and discovery, and one megalomaniacal surprise villain.

7) Broken Ties (Stargate: Atlantis, Season 5)

In the sequel to Season 4’s "The Reunion," Ronon crosses paths with fellow Satedan Tyre and, in a reversal of roles, falls under the sway of the wraith, leaving his old friend to lead the rescue effort. It’s a story about redemption and friendship that showcases one of Jason Momoa’s greatest performances.

6) Family Ties (Stargate: SG-1, Season 10)

What’s better than a fast-talking, disorderly hustler? How about two fast-talking, disorderly hustlers? Especially if the second is played by the hilarious Fred Willard. We get Vala backstory, off-world adventure, some not-so-subtle digs at the show’s cancellation, and one of the most memorable endings in Stargate history.

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