Stargate Atlantis

Season 2 Episode 13

Critical Mass

Aired Friday 10:00 PM Jan 20, 2006 on Syfy

Episode Fan Reviews (24)

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out of 10
489 votes
  • The Trust have planted a bomb somewhere on atlantis!

    Enjoyable cross over episode with some (minor) characters from Stargate SG-1 appearing. The epsiode is let down in my opinion by the Teyla sub- plot, but the reveal of Caldwell as a Goa'uld is a masterstroke. If Caldwell is a Goa'uld and Trust member, then it raises the possibility that anyone on Atlantis could also be compromised. This adds an additional danger into the mix for the team. Solid acting from all involved and my favourite scene had to be Dr. Lee explaining to Landry and the others the 101 Dalmatins reference! Great stuff.

    The show is starting to find its feet somewhat at this point of the second season. Good episode overall.
  • See Summary

    This episode was a pleasant surprise. Atlantis was due to check in with Earth, a regular occurance made possible by the ZPM, but luckily Earth was able to relay Atlantis a message through Daedelus to not Dial Earths stargate or a catastrophic explosion would occur. Apparently the Trust on Earth which is now run by the Goa'uld had an operative that reached Atlantis and they want to destroy the city before the Wraith can make it to the Milky Way Galaxy. It was cool to see the Goa'uld in the Pegasus Galaxy, perhaps we will again. I couldn't believe who the Goa'uld was, it makes me wonder when it happened, and also in relation to Caldwell's relationship with Weir. The day was saved, enemy neutralized, over all a great entertaining episode!!!!
  • This might have made a good season finale! The Central Command realizes that a Gou'ald agent has setup some kind of bomb so when Atlantis contacts Earth the city explodes. They must figure out a way to contact Atlantis and stop this from happening.

    Excellent episode with some good action and plot twists. I don't buy the final one but sometimes that's the way it goes.

    Using another stargate and the fact that the Daedalus is halfway back to Earth, Central Command can send a signal letting Atlantis know they should not send anything thru the Stargate to Earth. Unfortunately the problem is not only tied to the Stargate and eventually a rescue signal is sent out alerting two Wraith Cruisers to the planet. Jaime Rae Newman is back as Captain Cadman (she got a promotion at the beginning but I noticed they made the mistake of calling her Lieutenant later) and one of her areas of expertise is bombs and incendiary devices. So she is asked to work with Dr. McKay who still is not over their little run in a few episodes before. I really like her on Eureka and now she will star in her own series Eastwick this fall.

    We get to see Teyla saying goodbye to her one and only personal relative in the ring ceremony which occurs during the crucial moments on Atlantis. Rachel Luttrell has a beautiful voice. From personal experience it takes hours of practice to maintain an instrument like that. I have a degree in voice and teach it as well. She must have some experience otherwise in her career. It would have been nice if they integrated that into her character before we had the big performance in this episode. I suspected Dr. Kavanagh myself right from the beginning. The only reason not too is the person would have to been exposed to the Gou'ald at one point and I believe Kavanagh has really not been away from working that much. I do admit that Colonel Caldwell being the traitor was a bit of a stretch and I didn't buy it at all but it was necessary to move the story forward and it is what it is. Still a great episode with a good idea and execution of the storyline. Very nicely done! Thanks for reading...
  • The Trust is bent on destroying Atlantis

    Absolutely love this episode it combines elements from both Stargate series (Atlantis and SG-1). We have the Gou'ald, NID Agent Barett, General Landry, Dr. Lee and more. This episode gets better as it goes on. It is discovered that The Trust plans to destroy Atlantis by overloading their zero-point module, to make matters worse the Wraith have ships in the Lantean system.

    Dr. McKay and Lt. Cadman work furiously to stop the destruction of Atlantis, identify the saboteur and obtain the code to prevent the overload. I don't want to spoil the ending you'll have to watch it for yourself.

    Also Rachel Luttrell sings at then end and her voice is amazing.
  • Wow!

    I just finished watching this episode on the DVD & this could quite possibly be my most favorite episode of Stargate Atlantis. It kept me guessing at every turn. The highligh? Teyla's song that she sang at the Ring ceremony for her friend. It was beautiful & amazed to find out (thanks to this site & this site alone) that Rachel Luttrel actually sang not dubbed. I am quite impressed. I rewatched that part again to listen to it with the words popping up in the screen so that I could know what she was saying. It was very moving & having it being sung over the mass panic by the other characters was fitting.

    Atlantis rocks! Which I already knew.
  • This was lovely...

    To be honest, I did not expected it to be so good. First, the Goa'uld threat and the crossover with SG-1, then storyline itself. Very surprising ending.

    I specially loved the Teyla and Beckett storyline - and she sining - wow this was really impressive and moving. I love that kind of - switching multiply storylines, having such a wonderful song loudly over everything else and those motions.. I have seen it done on sci-fi series before and it has always impressed me.

    And the excitement of the bomb, the way they, again, on the last minute get saved. More than once in this episode, even.

    Wonderful episode.
  • boring...

    The Trust ... again ... whoopie ... I'm being sarcastic if you didn't notice. I'm tried of the trust. They're always trying to do something wrong...ya! This time they apparently planted a bomb in Atlantis and everyone is trying to figure out who did it. Everyone looks to Kavanah (I know I spelled his name wrong) and he turns out not to have done it. Overall, I really didn't like this episode. The story was boring and unorigonal. A traitor among our midst...that's original. A bomc threat...very original. Anyways, it was a boring episode, in my opinion. Oh, the only reason I kind of like this episode is because Kavanah (spelled wrong...I know) leaves.
  • Kind of a generic crisis at the beginning. Gets progressively better, with great ending.

    This was a really good episode. There is a cool, celtic-sounding song sun at one point, for instance.

    Initially, the Atlantis base is threatened with a major crisis that could destroy it. The inhabitants have no idea who caused it or why.

    There McKay struggles in vain to solve the problem. It turns out to be beyond him. Someone has tricked up something they all depend on, making it turn deadly instead of useful.

    Then begins a cat-and-mouse game to figure out who dunnit and why, and try to reverse the damage before it is too late.

    If the beginning of the show does not grab you, stick around. It has a great ending and lots of suspense in between.
  • Gouold (SP) are back and the Trust was a surprise revisit. I thought we handled these guys.

    I liked this episode for several reasons: We got a clearer look at Teyla's character, her family and I was pleasantly surprised that Rachel actually did her own singing, not a lipsynch. The ending was special too. Let's not get all hopeful that the Wraith are in-fighting when we have in-fighting of our own. The music, the singing, I was afraid was not going to dovetail well into the overall plot, but it worked well for me. The fight scene was a bit sloppy though. The Trust are a pretty evil organization. How will they work in the overall storylines? I have not been watching Season 3 yet, so I can't wait for more great years of episodes. Sorry about SG 1 leaving. One more year would be excellent.....
  • Atlantis continues to amaze.

    Just when you think the show can’t get any better, they pull this out of their hats. I would have never expected them to bring the Goa'uld to Pegasus. It was an amazing episode. It was intriguing, exciting, informative, and emotional. Everything was just perfect. Weir was wonderful in this episode. Regardless of any military opinion, she is a very strong leader. Kavanagh is a jerk anyway so I don’t feel sorry for him. It was funny how he pasted out. Ronon reminded me so much of how in one episode of SG-1, Teal’c just walked in, sat down, and stared at the guy and he confessed everything. I also loved Teyla’s song; it fit well in the episode. Although the episode was tense, and the song in no way was, it still seemed to fit because both generated strong emotion. Such a satisfying episode. One of my favourite Atlantis to-date.
  • Wow, can this series get any better?..

    Fresh beyond comparison. Now, I’m well aware of that I’m making myself out to be a total trekkie due to my sci-fi friendly inclination, but really, what’s not to like?
    One’s got to like the episodes where they meld the characters from two distinct shows, because that adds greatly to the illusion of scale; that the events actually are taking place in numerous places in a vast galaxy where there’s little else than mystery and new horizons. This is one of the phenomenon that the legacy of Gene Roddenberry created but unfortunately isn’t represented other than by re-runs or on dvd right now.
    What I really liked about this episode was the incorporation of song. Not to say they should sing more on shows, but it worked wonders in this episode. One could almost hear the toll of the church tower, ringing out in warning.
    Seldom has a series managed to incorporate characters from different walks of life; soldiers, teachers, scientists and even so called peasants as well as they do in the case of Stargate, and moreover Atlantis. There’s this mutual respect for each other and life at large that’s absolutely brilliant, but which makes one’s stomach turn in comparing it to the scheme of things in real life.
    Ok, so the ambience is awesome, there’s a song of mourning carrying and invigorating the efforts of the collective to overcome and wade through the tides, and anyone can be the enemy, evidently… Makes for a suspenseful story right there. What’s up with that though, is Mitch Pileggi being written out due to some career move or are they aiming for to get his face more airtime as an enemy? Time will tell.
    One thing: don’t bring the Goa'uld back. Parasites are real, point made. They’ve had their seasons and one of the best things of the eighth season of SG-1 was the fact that they managed to tie off the links to the past to allow for new trials and fresh storylines.
  • Very clever episode, many twists and turns, bring back the Gou'ld!

    A very clever episode, incorperating both atlantis and SCG and featuring a very memorable appearence by true strgate fans favorite enemy. Hopefully more episodes will be up to spects like this, and if Atlantis and even sg-1 could try to bring gou'ld back will make to show much better. Bring them back
  • It was different... but in a good way!!

    Here's a sort of crossover between SG1 and Atlantis since the Trust in the form of a Goa'uld get to Atlantis... the big surprise for me was WHO was the Goa'uld, I didn't see it coming...
    I absolutely loved the end of the episode, the song is great and the enfolding of the events with the music is well done, McKay didn't save the day, proving once again that he is NOT superman...
    One thing though : Tazer gun??? Aren't they in the city of the Ancients with cool technology? Even a zat would have been better than a Tazer gun!!
  • The Goul'd on Atlantis.

    The Atlantis not only has to worry about the Wraith in that system, but now the Goul'd have come to Atlantis. And to tell you the truth I was a little shocked to see who the Goul'd host was. Dr. Weir did what she had to do as far as interigating the crew members. Rodney does his usual fine job as does the rest of the major players.
  • I really can't stand the Trust, but there were still things to love about this episode

    This is a very odd episode for a number of reasons, and I’m not really sure what to make of it. I find it hard to believe that Caldwell’s character was always meant to have this kind of encounter or that the whole Trust debacle was meant to have an impact on “Atlantis”. Perhaps it was just the manner in which the crossover took place. There were a lot of things to like about the episode, especially in the final act, but there were also elements that left me wondering how quickly the script was cobbled together.

    Let’s cover the bad things first. I’ve never liked the idea of the Trust, since it’s never been well-defined and it seems like a needless way to insert conspiracy into the series after the NID plot threads have been played out to death. Of course, now the Trust is a gateway for the Goa’uld plot to take control of Earth, presumably led by Baal and his many, many clones. That’s all an issue for inferior “SG-1” episodes, however, so I wasn’t particularly thrilled at the idea that the mess had spilled over into this series.

    It has, however, and the implication is worse for the overall “Stargate Universe” than perhaps even the writers might suspect. If the Trust can infiltrate the SGC so completely that the commander of the Daedalus is infested with a symbiote without anyone noticing, that’s a serious breach of security. Essentially, the entire operation could be crippled with no possibility of a counter-offensive.

    On the other hand, there’s a certain logic to what the Goa’uld were trying to accomplish. If the Wraith do take control of Atlantis, they have the power and the will to invade Earth and begin an incursion of the home turf. This is as big an issue for the human population as it is with the beleaguered Goa’uld. Though even they didn’t consider the more subtle and logical approach: use the Humans as the first line of defense, but then set things up so if Atlantis is breached, the gate will switch to an address in the part of space currently held by the Priors! Deal with both problems at once!

    Now, the good. As much as Teyla’s “B” plot was pleasant, for lack of a better term, the music in the final act was quite effective. I could tell that she was actually singing (though it was, of course, dubbed in), and that helped a bit. I’m still not pleased by the fact that other chanting voices joined her, since none of the extras in the scene were singing, but that wasn’t the point. It was a well-orchestrated sequence.

    Also, I loved the return of Lt. Cadman to the series. I mentioned back in my review for “Duet” that it was a shame how little she was on screen. It actually looks like she’ll be a recurring character, a possible bone of contention between McKay and Beckett, and I couldn’t be happier. Yay for hot redheads! And between her and Cavanaugh, that gave the whole “traitor” plot thread something to work with.
  • Spoiler:Enya directed this episode. Okay, not really, but she could have.

    This episode was just average for me.

    If you want somone to sing, break out Jaime Ray Newman's character and have her sing a jazz song from her band. Heck, bring the band too, they could have worn tradional outfits and you wouldn't have blinked an eye. Her charecter is wasted on this show since the "In Rodney's brain" episode.

    Maybe Enya's Orinoco Flow when the people eater's ship departed.

  • Ah, something original in sci-fi ... wait a darn minute

    So, you know when a stage actor does series work and around the third season gets really antsy so the producers find a reason for her to sing? Yeah, that\'s what we got here. Take it Seven of Nine ... I mean Tayla. Way, way, way out of character.

    And in the Whatever Happened To category:

    1. The crush Cadman had on the doctor. Are we just forgetting about it because it\'s inconvenient to the plot?

    2. Medical ethics. Beckett flipped out at the idea of, um, following his patient\'s wishes?

    3. Passwords with more than six characters.

    But at least that guy from The Fabulous Baker Boys got a couple more points added to his pension account. How does that work, anyway?
  • And once again it is, wait WHO to the rescue?

    All I have to say is this was a well written episode, that gave us a look into the hearts and minds of the entire crew.

    And for once it was not Rodney saving the day. Seen once before in the episode "Duet" it was Lt. Cadman saving the day. It was really nice to see a "guest" character show that they are not just window dressing to the prime team. Stargate SG-1 had a number of these episodes, and it was about time that Atlantis had one.

    We also got to see a little more into the culture of Teyla's people. And the song she sang was a wonderful counterpoint for the Climax of the episode. I just hope to see more scenes like this in the future
  • Golly-Gee-Wiz-Willickers (how do you spell willickers?), got to love those people who go to leave feedback and ruin it for the rest of us by plastering unwarned spoilers everywhere. Get a clue, warn us. The show rocked btw.

    This episode was great as it usually is, to boot it also had the hick-up girl (I can never remember her name) and other than Rodney she really adds to the shows humor and personalization. MORE HICK-UP GIRL and alien, please. Rodney was great in this episode, course he usually is. It was a full cast episode, had many side characters, and extras, good depth in the episode, can’t wait till next week.
  • Atlantis, Weir, Teyla are all pushed out of their cozy nests. A fine example of Atlantis, with action, humor and major revelations-- and of course song!

    This is one of the best episodes of the series. "Coming of Age" is a perfect way to describe what was accomplished. Not only did Elizabeth have to face criticism from
    'Ponytail', but she had to accept the darker responsibilities of her command and order a no holds barred interrogation- this will change her. Teyla had to accept the wishes of her dying grandmother, and let her die, reaffirming her traditions and position among her people. She is no longer a child waiting in the corner. She will lead her people. And to parallel these storylines, when General Landry learns that the Daedalus moved out of range and said that Atlantis is on its own, it reminds everyone that Atlantis, like during the first year, is cut off from any outside support- and must stand independent, alone.
    The tension during the episode was intense. Obviously there were going to be false leads, as in real life. I liked how even when you thought one lead was a red herring, there was still the possibility that it was true (suspicious Ponytail guy).
    The cuts between SGC and Atlantis widened the scope, and really made it an intergalactic team effort. Teyla's song during the climax was excellent. It added a powerful layer to all of the action and was refreshing after 200+ gate outings.
    This is definetely one to see again!
  • Ah, Mitch Pileggi. One of the underused strengths of this show. While I wasn't crazy about the B plotline (Teyla), and the pacing could have been improved, I thought the story had real tension and showed an upswing for Atlantis.

    It seemed a bit silly to have the Zelenka parentheses for the piece.

    The Teyla story line seemed like a set piece. I like seeing Teyla more connected to the Athosians but this was just not quite the episode for her storyline. But, OMG, do I ever see sparks between Carson and Teyla!

    It seems like it's been the All-Sheppard Show lately and I was delighted to have a break from that.

    Someone. Please. Do. Something. About. Torri. Higginson's. Hair. Further, her shade of lipgloss is astoundingly, incredibly, horrifyingly wrong. She's a beautiful woman whose do is a don't and her makeup is making her down. FIX IT!

    Underuse of Ronon. But oh, I like how he kicks butt.

    Kavanagh is a total douche but I was certain it was him - or dear Cadman.

    I'm thrilled Pileggi will be back. Madly love him.
  • Much better than the previous episode.

    When a bomb is set off alerting the Wraith to Atlantis's presence, suspicion is thrown on a newcomer from Earth.

    Compared to the previous unoriginal episode this episode is much better. It feels like Stargate Atlantis should be feeling again. I really liked the Earth-Goauld-Wraith-Atlantis "association". It was exiciting to watch how they in Atlantis managed the problem and the episode still remained funny at some moments. It might be hard to understand at some points (as usual) but not too hard and definitely not so hard so it gets annoying. You will also see some of the minor character's return and that's just make the episode better. A lot of suspicions is going on in Atlantis and everybody has different thoughts.
    I can't say that this episode was perfect but it was a good middle-episode. One of the things that annoyed me was Teylas song, it spoiled the atmosphere.

    A pretty good episode!
  • predictable episode with Teyla as the main reason this episode plunged even lower.

    This episode was not important to the series, it was pretty boring and it actually managed to make me despise Teyla even more.
    What was the point with her thread of the episodes story? who actually cares about their rituals and corny song at the ending, it also felt rushed, and oh my god what blind luck that they good the code in time!

  • Jesus. Here's my quick summary. Gould plant bomb in Atlantis (real orignal), wraith show up to complicate matters, major character becomes a gould (but only temporarily, of course), and Teyla sings a very pretty (and very out of character) song _During_

    As if it weren't painful enough to have a stale plotline like "gould plant bomb in important place," then they insult you with BLATENT false foreshadowing of potential gould agents. Like I can't figure out my OWN suspects, you have to give me uber-hints that turn out to be false ANYWAY.

    The resolution is unexpected and pretty good (nice use of a Tazer, but exactly why did it work?), and that's the only reason that this episode received a score at all.

    By far the worst idea in the *entire* episode is Teyla's ceremony song. Oh. My. God. Don't get me wrong, if that was her singing, she's got a spectacular voice. But *why the hell was she singing?!!?* It completely ruined the mood and made the entire climax VERY uncomfortable.

    Apparently this series is being targetted at Celine Dion fans and those who still enjoy early Cher. Go figure. I mean, who needed the 21-35 year old male population anyway...