Hello and welcome to what might be the last Recap I do here because an egotistical Brit had to go and out a bunch of people and release a sex tape while victim-blaming, causing this website to be put up for sale. By Wednesday we could all lose our home away from home io9 and Observation Deck as a result of it.
The Serpent’s Lair
We immediately pick up from the season 1 conclusion. The team, feeling there’s no chance of escape prepare to blow up Klorel’s ship and stop the attack but notice that Apophis’s ship is approaching. While debating what to do Jaffa break through the door and subdue the team with the Goa’uld equivalent of a flashbang grenade. They wake up blinded in a cell, with Carter biting O’Neill’s hand when he wakes her.
Back in the control room we see a familiar sounding Jaffa kill one of his fellows for failure after placing Klorel back in the sarcophagus. This Jaffa then goes to Apophis’ ship via transport rings who commands him to execute SG-1 but will hold off on th main attack until Klorel rises again. The Jaffa heads to SG-1 and reveals himself to be Bra’tac and punching O’Neill for their stupidity who responds by stating that it’s their planet. Bra’tac reveals his plan was to command a group of gliders in an attack on Apophis’ ship, hoping to create a conflict between the two.
At the SGC we see that Hammond and the Pentagon representative are fighting over their defence plan, with the Pentagon deciding to keep mobilisation to a minimum and instead relying on experimental stealth Naquadah-enhanced missiles to defeat the Goa’uld ships. They however do detect the flashbang blast from satellites, with Hammond thinking it might be SG-1 but the Pentagon rep sees this as impossible. While disagreeing they continue with the plan to send people off-world to the Alpha Site, an off-world base designed as a fallback in case Earth is attacked.
The missiles are launched as planned but are finally detected by the two ships (by looking out the window to see two giant missile trails) and activate shields, with Klorel almost not doing so, negating the missiles. In fact the only effect they do have is to hinder Earth’s satellite grid, preventing general evacuation and also military communications. The Pentagon rep tries to get his way onto an evac team but Hammond prevents him, calling him a coward in the process.
Feeling the explosion SG-1 and Bra’tac’s group continue advancing through the ship, with O’Neill and Bra’tac competing over which tactics are best. The team fight their way into Klorel’s chamber, once again taking him hostage, but Bra’tac’s Jaffa are killed and Daniel is hit by a staff blast while defending the door. He tells the team to continue without him and manages to crawl to the sarcophagus when they ring to Apophis’s ship.
After arriving on the ship Bra’tac manages to destroy the control console before they retreat out of the room, revealing that Klorel’s ship is on a course to destroy both ships when they explode. After destroying Apophis’s shield generator with grenades the team head to the glider bay to get off-ship, with Bra’tac once again using a Goa’uld flashbang to clear the room and they steal two gliders. Apophis finally notices the other ship getting close and abandons ship with Klorel when he can’t raise the shields.
Back on Klorel’s ship Daniel emerges from the sarcophagus to find that he only has one minute left till it blows, barely dialling the Gate on the ship to escape before it blows and almost immediately returns to the SGC from off-world. In the two gliders however the craft have been damaged badly and they resign themselves to their fate, admiring the view of the Earth. Miraculously however the Shuttle Endeavour shows up to rescue them.
The four return to the SGC and are congratulated by Hammond and the rest of the SGC before Bra’tac says goodbye as he has to return to Chulak before word of his treachery arrives while the others are reunited with Daniel.
A nice conclusion to the first part I thought that is entirely focused on resolving the situation of the Goa’uld attack and not introducing new elements. The decision to bring back Bra’tac was a good one as he routinely acts as a foil to O’Neill’s bravado and jokey style of leadership with a more results focused and serious element which much of the episode resolves around with the two butting heads over how to do things, such as whose technology is better.
The relationship between Apophis and Klorel is already being reduced in this episode compared to the first part, with them less being seen as father-son already and more as two different Goa’uld, with the initial plan being to cause war between the two. This element of rivalry will become the core of the show’s Goa’uld plotlines from here on.
In typical SG-1 fashion a lot of what happens in the episode is resolved purely by luck and good timing, which as usual is referenced by the characters, this time it being an Space Shuttle that just so happened to be ready to launch that very moment. It’s a shame however they don’t see any effects from the damage to the satellite grid beyond this episode as that could’ve been an interesting consequence.
Overall good episode that resolves the cliffhangers from season 1 and doesn’t stretch itself by introducing new stuff for season 2 right away.
· You can easily see the improvement in visual effects they’ve had since the first season, with the ships now looking less like a toblerone and more ship like.
· Bra’tac really isn’t that good at getting Jaffa is he seeing as they die almost immediately.
Quote of the episode: “Okay. Well, I suppose now is the time for me to say something profound… nothing comes to mind. Let’s do it.” -O’Neill
In The Line of Duty
We start with a waterside village under attack from Death Gliders and is being evacuated by multiple SG teams. SG-1 is providing first aid to a number of individuals, one of which convulses during mouth to mouth to which Carter pulls up revealing that she’s been taken over by a symbiote. When Daniel comes to check on her the now Goa’uld Carter claims the man bit his own tongue.
At the debrief the team notices she’s behaving oddly, first insulting Teal’c as “just a Jaffa” and being excited to go to the infirmary when talking to O’Neill. Fraiser, after finding nothing wrong with her invites her to see Cassandra who is currently at the local military hospital which the survivors were sent to. While meeting with her Cassandra reacts badly when she gets close to her and runs off and refuses to talk to anyone. O’Neill arrives and talks to her, to which she identifies Carter as being a Goa’uld.
Back on base Goa’uld Carter continues behaving strangely, with her anxious to get off-world and is told O’Neill will meet them in the gateroom. Goa’uld Carter waits in the gateroom and is greeted by O’Neill who injects her with sedative, which according to Fraiser is enough to take down an elephant, but nothing happens. Knowing the gig is up Goa’uld Carter pulls the pin out of a grenade and threatens to kill them all unless the Gate is opened but is apprehended, allowing O’Neill to repin the grenade. Following this the rest of SG-1 talk with Fraiser and Hammond and agree to keep her locked up until they can help her.
Daniel returns to the hospital to talk with the survivors to see if they can help identify why there was a Goa’uld present but are able to provide no answers. While there however a doctor is assaulted by the heavily burned victim. He pulls away his bandages, which reveal him to be perfectly healed and also a Goa’uld, before throwing up a hand device of some kind. Now dressed as the Doctor he proceeds to check the other refugees for signs of a symbiote with the hand device. Eventually Fraiser discovers that the burned patient has disappeared.
Back at the SGC O’Neill gets ready to interrogate the Goa’uld, with Teal’c trying to offer advice about how to best get information from her, such as insulting its ego. The interview however goes nowhere, with the Goa’uld only demanding to be let free and going so far as to use Carter’s voice to beg for help. Following this the Goa’uld asks to talk to Teal’c, who informs him that they are called Jolinar and is a member of the Tokra, a group of Goa’uld opposed to ruling over humans as gods.
The rest of SG-1 get information from Jolinar and find that the burned man is a Goa’uld assassin sent to kill her for being a Tokra as they’re the resistance against the Goa’uld leadership known as the System Lords. After a further interview with Daniel the team argue about whether they should listen to Jolinar as it appears the Tokra live symbiotically with the host, choosing only volunteers and normally those close to a natural death.
Meanwhile the assassin has arrived on the base, using the hand device to make his way past the guards and disable the cameras in the holding room. The team discover this but arrive too late, with the assassin managing to attack and seemingly kill Jolinar and Carter and make his way to the gateroom, where Daniel is seeing the refugees off-world, taking Daniel hostage but is killed by a Zat from Teal’c.
Carter is taken to the infirmary where it’s found both the symbiote and Carter are still barely alive but Fraiser is unable to do anything for them. However while the symbiote dies Carter manages to pull through, with her revealing that Jolinar gave its life to save her. Carter is clearly effected by what happened, with her not responding when the others on the team visit. However when Cassandra visits she responds to her attempts to talk to her.
This episode finally starts off the main arc for the first half of season 2 which is the search for the Tokra, the Goa’uld faction who oppose the enslavement of humans. This will go on to provide much depth in the show as at the moment there are still only 3 groups; Humans, Jaffa, and Goa’uld. They will also go on to become some of Earth’s strongest allies and provide moral complexities in how they go about their business at the SGC.
Apart from that though this episode doesn’t really do much, with it mainly being setting the scene for said arc and relying instead heavily on an assassination story, which ends in a fairly predictable way (good guys win, everyone goes home) and sees Daniel get shot yet again.
The ending of the episode however is a bit cliché, especially with the return of the terrible soundtrack used in season 1 with its annoyingly happy tone. Overall though it’s an episode that does what it set out t do and that’s that.
· Given how oddly the Tokra acts its surprising no one at the village noticed the odd behaviour when one of their own was taken by Jolinar.
· I might be recalling it wrong but I don’t think we ever see Goa’uld super strength happen ever again. Also why didn’t he just take a key off of the guard?
Quote of the episode: “Are you injured?” “Dumb question. But thank you. I think.” – Teal’c and Daniel after Teal’c zats him.