SGU, SG Me, What’s the Rush? Part 1
Updated: Nov 13, 2019
Post by B. Hope
“I lived for art, I lived for love, never did I harm a living creature!
Whatever misfortune I encountered, I sought with a secret hand to succor!
Ever in pure faith my prayers rose in the holy chapels.
Ever in pure faith, I brought flowers to the altars.
In this hour of pain, why, why, O Lord, why do You repay me thus?
Jewels I brought for the Madonna’s mantle,
And songs for the stars in heaven, so that they shone forth with greater radiance.
In this hour of distress, why, why, O Lord, why am I rewarded thus?
-Vissi D’Arte, from Puccini’s Tosca
This aria is Dr. Nicholas Rush’s introduction. I am a fan of all things Stargate, as well as all things opera. I have to agree with Rush, there really is “nothing like a little theater” (especially when a few blinking lights can help get rid of some annoying Earth scientists who almost blew up your ship). I was so excited when the writers of SGU combined my two odd obsessions in the pilot episode, when Dr. Rush is taking a well-deserved break by listening to a little opera. I was so captivated by the plot of SGU that it was some weeks before I looked up what song he was listening to. By that point, the much-maligned Dr. Rush had become a personal favorite of mine. I was shocked at what an excellent introduction this popular aria was to Dr. Rush.
Puccini’s Tosca is not my favorite opera, as it is very sad, and pretty much everyone dies, excepting the villain. The defining theme of Tosca, though, is the same for Dr. Rush, and that is this: what do you do when no one is watching and you have nothing to gain and everything to lose?
Some of my favorite examples of this include the time Dr. Rush gave up his seat on a “lifeboat” headed for a planet when Destiny was on an unalterable course towards the heart of a star. Fortunately, for everyone, the crew onboard Destiny as well as the lifeboat survived – whoever would’ve thought that a star would be the Ancient’s idea of a gas station?
Or the time when Eli decided that creating an Earth-bound wormhole inside of said star was a fool-proof ticket home (despite Rush’s comments to the contrary) and instead sent everyone 6,000 years back in time and blew up the ship, Rush stayed behind so everyone else could gate off of Destiny. Thanks to time travel and Rush’s advice, however, once again, everyone survived. And yet, at the end of both of these adventures, they blame Rush!
Throughout the sadly-too-short series, everyone repeatedly claims that Rush is a coward. I never quite got this one, as Rush often displayed great courage under unusual fire. He was the only character in all of Stargate to single-handedly escape from an alien ship, rescue a crew member, and steal a shuttle, armed only with a small section of pipe and Scottish determination.
For another thing, he was the only character who went by himself on an undercover mission to infiltrate the Trust . . . without any backup. Even the Trust’s leader was shocked at his fortitude. And after the Trust took control of Destiny, Rush managed to get the ship back (in this case, he had some help).
So, no, I don’t think Rush was a coward. He had a quiet kind of courage that you could overlook . . . if you tried hard enough.
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