Stargate Atlantis

Season 5 Episode 4

The Daedalus Variations

Aired Friday 10:00 PM Aug 01, 2008 on Syfy

Episode Fan Reviews (14)

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out of 10
325 votes
  • A brilliantly crafted episode balancing character moments and visual effects action. It will leave you wanting more!

    When I first saw this episode, I was excited from start to finish. It may be a bottle show but it's one that combines excellent writing, directing and visual effects which, in my opinion, makes it one of the best of season five. Plus, it's always great to see more of the Daedalus so this episode instantly won me over.

    So, from the get go we realise that something is wrong when a deserted ship appears out of nowhere and it becomes apparant fairly early on that this isn't "our" Daedalus. I like how the bridge set was subtly redressed with different plexiglass screens, consoles and lighting effects giving that hint that it is indeed a different ship, and the female commander was a nice touch too.

    It was refreshing to have an episode where the Wraith didn't play a prominent role and we could see the team deal with an unexpected and unknown situation akin to some of those classic SG-1 episodes.

    The acting and story throughout was great as usual and the visual effects are second to none (though there were a few sneaky re-uses in there!). I especially liked the unknown alien ship and it's fighters. Though it may have been slightly contrived it they appeared again in our universe, I couldn't help wanting to know more about them - who they were? Where they came from? Were they the equivalent of the Wraith in the alternate reality? So many questions, but who knows?!

    There are some minor criticisms of the this episode, however, most notably the lack of Robert Picardo (Richard Woolsey). Though Kavan Smith (Maj. Lorne) did an excellent job in the few scenes he had, it still felt like the leader of the base should have been present, at the very least toward the end of the episode. Furthermore, McKay's "Deus Ex Machina" way of getting out of impossible situations is getting a little tiresome though it doesn't bring the story down too much.

    Overall, a very well written and directed episode with some great character moments aswell. In my opinion, this definately deserves 9/10. One of the best this season.
  • See Summary

    The Daedalus Variations was a good episode of Stargate Atalantis. This episode was primarily based on the exploits of Dr. McKay as Sheppards Team discovered a Daedalus Ship orbiting the planet Atlantis is based on. Upon furthur analysis it is determined that this ship is from an alternate universe and that the crew is missing. It is fun to watch the episode unravel and see what is happening. The characters in the episode are very good in their respecitive roles. I don't believe this episode was vital to the continuitity of the Atlantis story line but it was good none the less.
  • Not bad...

    I went into this episode thinking that this was just going to be another alternate reality episode but that wasn't the case. Don't get me wrong I find the alternate reality episodes to be really enjoyable, at times. It's fun to see what the differences are between one reality from the other. This episode was unique in that it didn't really ow alot of other people other than Sheppard, Ronon, Teyla, and McKay. They are basically stuck on the ship the entire episode, but it was good for a change. I thought that alien species was very cool. I hope we get to see them again, they look like an actual enemy that could be scary and a challenge, that would also be a nice change. I don't know about anyone else but for me the Wraith stopped being scary a couple of years ago.
  • A little tired of all these mutiple/alternate realties- I guess it was a bit disappointing after having just watched Stargate SG1 Continunun

    Too many similar plots are beginning to creep in - how many alternate realities are we going to have to see. There needs to be something new - more in depth character development wouldn't go astray, as well as extending plot development - they are in a brand new universe after all with countless worlds to explore and amazing discoveries to be made (maybe a visit by archaeologist Daniel Jackson to spurn a new story lineand even a new character). With wraith and replicators on the back burner a new direction, discoveries or enemies is needed or the show has a much shorter life than SG1.
  • At long last, an episode that uses something imaginative as a plot mechanism instead of a rip-off from every other Sci-Fi show in the last 30 years.

    From time to time, Stargate has dabbled in alternate worlds. The Ancients left the occasional machine around that would cause alternate worlds to be contacted, and we'd often get a glimpse into the future of "our" world through the alternate worlds. We got an early warning about Apophis' invasion of Earth at one point, and at another the Ori were foreshadowed.

    We've seen the alternate realities played with a bit in Atlantis, too, when an alternate team's energy source endangered "our" universe, as some alternate realities learned to tap into others for energy. That was a natural consequence of a previous episode, and this episode was a logical consequence of that one - that a drive would be invented allowing the travel between alternate realities.

    This kind of thing is why I still watch Stargate - they can occasionally use a good hardcore Science Fiction concept and explore it intelligently instead of falling back on lazy clichéd plots. It doesn't happen nearly enough, these days, but when it does it's a joy.
  • Enjoying action and things going on...

    I think this really was enjoyable episode - maybe not super original storyline but very well done in the way of using it. I think the name of this episodes gives it all - variations. And that is right. This episode goes from action space battle to some deeper and more emotional scenes and ofcourse Teyla and her baby and McKay adds even more to that. I most say I specially loved the way they solved this episode and step by step going back from where they came was quite genial idea. So, to sum up, I think this was good episode.
  • good episode...

    I've always loved alternate reality episodes and this is one of them. The Deadelis (spelling?) shows up in orbit of Atlantis and the team go to check it out. It turns out that a McKay from an alternate reality created it and it traveled to other dimensions. The team gets trapped there and goes through several realities. It seemed like "life-threatening situations" on drugs because this episode constantly had different about-to-die situations. Anyways, McKay getting shot was funny, but they rushed it too much because it could have been a lot more funny. I liked when they went to the reality where Sheppard saved them...I think it would have been funnier if the Sheppards met up in person though. Anyways, the story was interesting and actually different, however, the episode felt rushed.
  • another fine installment!

    This episode is just chocked full of possibilities ! ! ! Another set of Hard to Kill Aliens!
    even Ronon was hard pressed to Kill!
    ah . . if only Teal'c was there . . . it would have been so much fun! ! !

    If they can only get to keep the ship too.
    or maybe raid other Alternate Realities so they can have more ships?
    or raid alternate realities to get better weapons?
    i know old ideas... but still good possibilities!

    Yesterday was the Milky way Galaxy . . . Today the Pegasus Galaxy . . . Tommorow . . . who knows?

    Thanks Stargate!
  • wow what a show

    By far the best in the season i loved it. The new bad guys they have to come into it although i think its a bit star trek! but good all the same i hope they do bring them cyborgs in they look like they would bring a more sense of fear than the writh! plus the ones on the ship took some hit with there weapons. Wonder if there will be anything coming back on the other team that was dead on the ship? something to think about there! so far this season is already better than season 4.
  • Interesting episode huh?...

    A very interesting episode indeed.

    I felt it left the viewer with a lot of unanswered questions, there so many there that its pretty hard to point out any in particular. I'll focus on a couple.

    Those new aliens give the future episodes of Stargate Atlantis a bit of a boost. They seem very much like the Borg in a lot of ways, but their tactical measures are unique, and very kamakazee. I had to watch this part several times to try and sync it all into the brain.

    I noticed that each segment from the time they boarded the Daedalus went in a sort of orderly fashion. First there was no Atlantis on the planet, then Atlantis was there, then the Sun expanded and then suddenly the Solar System was destroyed. Personally, I would have love to see them have more interaction with the other reality peoples, but overall I loved this episode, And I'll be keeping my eye out for similarities in episodes yet to come.
  • A slightly too self-contained episode

    After a couple of character-driven episodes, the writers toss out an episode that does little more than tell a simple stand-contained story with (presumably) little or no lasting effect. Sheppard, McKay, Ronon, and Teyla (pretty much the standard action team) end up running an alternate universe gauntlet when a version of the Daedalus appears in orbit and they investigate.

    That's more or less the extent of the story, which means there's not a lot to discuss. The Daedalus jumps around from universe to universe, McKay figures out how to pull off the impossible, and they retrace their steps. It's fun to watch the characters overcome the challenges, especially when they eventually realize that they're going to have to encounter the same challenges a second time.

    It's fun to see Sheppard interact with his counterpart, and McKay is certainly in his comfort zone (so to speak) when deciphering "his own" notes and creations, but the episode feels relatively empty. If it wasn't for the impressive effects on display, I would be tempted to call this a mediocre "bottle show". We don't learn much about the characters that we didn't already know from the past four seasons.

    One highlight of the episode is the encounter with the alien soldiers. I'm fairly confident that we haven't seen those aliens before, but they were intriguing enough to make me wonder if this was a "stealth" introduction of a new enemy. If the Team Atlantis of that reality was anything like our Team Atlantis, then they probably stumbled on the aliens and did something incredibly stupid to start a war!

    But I liked the single-minded tactics employed by the aliens, because it's been a long time since Team Atlantis had to deal with an enemy with berserker-esque nature. Sure, enemies have a tendency to come in nameless, relentless droves (especially the Wraith), but the slightest hint of context made this seem a bit different. I would be interested to see more about those aliens in the "real" universe, though I imagine it's just as likely that the aliens were meant as a one-off and will never appear again.

    This is probably best described, in the best possible sense, as a "filler" episode. It doesn't advance anything, it doesn't do anything innovative, but it's the Stargate equivalent of fast food. You enjoy it at the time, but when it's over, it's not particularly filling or memorable.
  • New enemies? A different side of Teyla, and Ronin unsure of himself?

    This was a good episode to bring the focus of the viewer back to the team. There has been quite a bit of focus on Teyla's pregnacy and her role at Atlantis. In this episode we see Tayla as an intgeral part of the team. This is a refreshing change. The team is working together, and each character's role is clear.

    In the last few storylines Teyla's role with the team has been merky. Personally, I found myself becoming less interested in her character. This episode changed that. It was refreshing to see a Teyla that was sure of her role with the team. She has come to terms with her duty as a mother, and has balanced that with her job at Atlantis.

    It was also refreshing to see Ronin in a role where he is not comfotable. When Ronin is needed to work the weapons on the Daedalus he is clearly bothered by the fact that he has never done this before. This also makes for a great line of humor between Sheppard and Ronin.

    This was an even paced episode. The storyline was interesting and easy to follow. We are given a new bad guy. The aliens aren't given a name, but they do look promising. They come from an alternate reality, but it is certainly possible that we will see them again.

    There are some unanswered questions, such as what happened to the alternate Atlantis team that is found dead on the Daedalus. But, these are not burning questions. The big question is who are these new aliens, and where did they come from. I, for one, am looking forward to learning more about them. Oh, and welcome back Teyla!
  • Enjoyable episode.

    I don't know exactly why, but I quite enjoyed this episode! Some parts were obviously predictable, and some parts were rushed (they tried to fit so much into one episode), but there was still suspense there, and as a whole I thought it was a nice episode. Here are some thoughts:

    Where was Woolsey? I know I may be sounding like a broken record (same question about Carter), but where else could Woolsey be but on Atlantis, and he should be there in the main area.

    When they go into an abandoned ship, shouldn't they be suited up in case of germs, life support, and other hazards?

    Why was the dead team just lying in a room? Even if that McKay didn't figure out Rodney's solution, there may have been other options than just giving up like that. Maybe they encountered the planet in peaceful shape in their travels, for example, and could just take the jumper there to live out their lives.

    Ronon talking to Teyla and giving words of wisdom...go Ronon! There were also funny moments, like Sheppard calling Ronon "Chewy", and complimenting "himself", and Rodney holding Teyla's baby.

    Those aliens/robots look like mean, bad dudes! I hope the team collected a few of their cool guns.

    Overall, a nice episode, especially if you just laid back and not think a whole lot about it and watched it!
  • Loads going on, fairly fast-paced, and some nice twists...

    The episode starts out with the earth battleship appearing in orbit of the Atlantis planet. Shepard and team fly up, and eventually end up in an alternate universe.

    The episode is somewhat fast-paced, offers casual humour (Shep calling Ronan Chewie), and a nice new alien race (of which appear to be fairly tough). Overall, the episode was well written I think, and offered a nice insight into the 'what if' category.

    Not the best I've ever seen, and I suppose they could have done a little more for it. Would have been nice if the ship stayed in 'our' universe too, thus gaining another battleship, but it was still a good episode.