Stargate Atlantis

Tao of Rodney

Season 3, Ep 14, Aired 5/4/07
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  • Episode Description
  • While shutting down unnecessary systems in Atlantis, McKay is zapped by a strange Ancient machine. He begins to have superpowers, but things are never as they seem, and Rodney and the team must race against his mutations to save his life.

  • Cast & Crew
  • Joe Flanigan

    Major / Lt. Colonel John Sheppard

  • Rachel Luttrell

    Teyla Emmagan

  • Damian Kindler

  • Martin Wood

  • Chuck Campbell


  • Fan Reviews (22)
  • Inner space instead of outer space

    By BevinChu, Aug 29, 2012

  • Sometimes there needs to be an '11' score to select.

    By Data-Dox, Jun 02, 2007

  • See Summary

    By TrueTvWatcher, Oct 01, 2010

  • My Favorite Episode of Stargate: Atlantis to date.

    By Mystic369, Oct 27, 2008

  • Even more brilliant McKay...

    By Parricida, Feb 07, 2008

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (17)

    • (during the meditation exercise) Sheppard: Just...relax, alright? I'm gonna try to remember what the woman taught me. (Rodney sighs in frustration.) McKay: Alright. (He lies down again.) Sheppard: Now -- there's a dark storm swirling around your head. McKay (frowning): How is that comforting? Sheppard: I'm getting there. (Sheppard opens his mouth to continue but Rodney suddenly lifts his head up again.) McKay: I just thought of a brilliant adjunct to the Chaos Theory. Look, I should write this down... Sheppard: McKay. (Rodney looks at him, then groans and lies down again.) McKay: Letting it go. Letting it go.

    • (Sheppard is about to help Rodney meditate) Sheppard: Find a position that works. McKay: Right. Ok. (He promptly lies down flat on his back, clasps his hands together and closes his eyes.) Sheppard: Fine. Now, I want you to become aware of your breaths, going in and out of your body. McKay (softly): In ... and out. Sheppard: Do it without talking. (Rodney opens his eyes and looks up at him.) McKay: Oh…right. (He closes his eyes and settles down again.) Sheppard: Now, I want you to think about the things that you worry about the most. McKay (opening his eyes again): You mean, like death? Sheppard: There's no talking. Think of anything that makes you anxious. McKay: Oh, God, there's so many things. (He props himself up onto his elbows and looks up at John.) Not talking happens to be one of them, by the way. Sheppard (sternly): Deal with it.

    • Sheppard: I don't think this is gonna work with you hooked up to the machine. McKay: How else am I gonna know if it's working at all? Look, you're teaching me how to meditate. Not exactly good odds there to start with. Sheppard: I realize that. (pause) Truth is, I was never really very good at this myself. McKay: So why am I here? Sheppard: Elizabeth made me. McKay: Oh. Yeah. Me too.

    • McKay: (levitating Beckett) Believe me, I find this as disturbing as you do. Beckett: Like bloody hell you do!

    • McKay: It worked. Beckett: Did it? McKay: Well I'm alive aren't I?

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    Notes (5)

    • The "new math" that McKay writes on the whiteboards are actual equations that were written by a physicist the crew brought in to add authenticity to the episode.

    • Martin Wood explains on the DVD commentary for this episode that they had McKay heal Ronon's scars so they could easily show off more of his back in future episodes.

    • Even though it aired before, this episode was actually filmed after the episode "Sunday", making this Paul McGillion's next to last episode to film for this season. The last episode he filmed was "The Ark".

    • Carson's donut is from "Tim Horton's", a Canadian coffee shop chain, originally founded by NHL player Tim Horton, before his death in a car crash.

    • International Air Dates: -This episode aired in Canada on December 11, 2006 on Movie Central and January 30, 2007 on The Movie Network. -This episode aired in the UK on January 31, 2007 on Sky One. -Syndication Premiere: February 9-10, 2008. -This episode aired in Australia on May 29, 2008 on Channel 7. -This episode aired in the Czech Republic on June 3, 2009 on AXN Sci-fi.

    Trivia (13)

    • When Rodney is talking to Elizabeth while creating the "new math", we can see a package with Japanese writing and a picture of a lemon next to one of the computers he is using. However, Rodney has repeatedly stated that he's deathly allergic to citrus.

    • Weir: Well, unfortunately, there's a whole lot more to Ascension than just being physically evolved. Sheppard: Believe me, after spending six months with a bunch of pansy wannabes, I know. In the second season episode "Epiphany," John Sheppard was trapped in a time dilation field with descendants of the Ancients who were attempting to Ascend.

    • McKay: I mean who knows what kind of long term effects I may be in for?! I mean there's gross mutation, giantism, invisibility.... Sheppard: That'd be cool, I mean I turned into a bug. This is a reference to the Season 2 episode "Conversion" in which Sheppard mutates into a form of the Iratus bug. Rodney's reference to being invisible could be tied in to the "unaired" episode/mission in which O'Neill was invisible that was mentioned on the Stargate SG-1 episode "200."

    • In this episode Zelenka speaks Czech: "Já s ním nebudu dělat. Já se už na to můžu vysrat." which translates to "I will not work with him." and "That's it. Já ho zabiju. To je magor, naprostej idiot." which translates to "That's it. I'll kill him. He is a moron, total idiot."

    • Goof: In this episode Weir and Sheppard both comment on how he helped Ancients ascend in the episode "Epiphany". The people he helped were human not Ancients.

    Show More Trivia

    Allusions (4)

    • McKay: He tries to hide it, but deep down I'm the wind beneath his wings. McKay references the song The Wind Beneath My Wings, written by Larry Henley and Jeff Sibar. It was first released in 1982, but the most famous version was sung by Bette Midler for her movie Beaches.

    • Flowers For Rodney? The plot of this episode parallels the story line of Flowers For Algernon by Daniel Keyes, about Charly Gordon, a severely retarded man who undergoes experimental surgery which makes him super-intelligent. Eventually, the effects of the operation gradually reverse themselves, leaving him unable to understand the studies and discoveries he made while enhanced. Similarly, Rodney ends up unable to comprehend all the discoveries he made while partially ascended. Flowers For Algernon was published as a novella in 1959 and won a Hugo Award for best short fiction. Six years later, it was expanded into a novel and won the Nebula Award for best novel. It was also adapted for the screen twice: for television in 1961 on the The United States Steel Hour starring Cliff Robertson as Charlie, and in 1968 as the movie Charly, again starring Robertson with Claire Bloom, winning the best actor Oscar for Robertson.

    • McKay: Yeah, it'll be like Batman and Ronon. Has a nice ring to it. McKay refers to the DC superhero when he tells Ronon that he could be his sidekick like in Batman and Ronon (referring to Batman and Robin).

    • Sheppard: With great potential comes great responsibility. This could well be a reference to the Spiderman quote, "With great power comes great responsibility". This reference is fitting since Spiderman is a superhero, which of course is what Rodney believes he is turning into.

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