Stargate Atlantis

Season 4 Episode 18

The Kindred (1)

Aired Friday 10:00 PM Feb 22, 2008 on Syfy

Episode Fan Reviews (12)

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  • A good start to the end-of-season event

    This is the classic example of how a network promo can completely undermine the intentions of a writing staff. A number of plot threads were finally coming together, and the time had come to trigger the return of a beloved cast member. Even with all the press releases months ago, I had managed to forget about Dr. Beckett's apparent return. It would have been a pleasant surprise, as intended by the writers.

    Instead, Sci-Fi Network felt the need to reveal, in the promos for the episode, Beckett's return. Not only did this ruin the end of the episode, but it put far more emphasis on the rest of the episode to make up for the lack of dramatic tension. Thankfully, there was more to the story than the discovery of Beckett's apparent survival. (And the current promo, discussing the possibility that Beckett is a Replicator like those found in the mid-season cliffhanger, doesn't spoil much, since it's the obvious conclusion.)

    In an unexpected turn of events, Teyla's search for her people comes to an end when she is drawn to their location by a series of psychic visions of her child's father. This is ultimately a trap set by Michael, who has been out of the picture for far too long. As it turns out, Michael's previous plans were never abandoned so much as refined, and Teyla's people were at the heart of his scheme to create a new human/Wraith super-species.

    It's nothing new to take a real-life pregnancy and turn it into a plot to use said child for some nefarious purpose. It's probably the cliché with the greatest chance of success. If Michael were to steal Teyla's child for his experiments, it would propel the character into a more substantial future arc. Such a search would also be a cliché, but it could be handled well enough, especially if Michael's new species becomes a new threat to Team Atlantis.

    Michael is also the cause of a plague running through the galaxy, touching on previous continuity, which makes the act of feeding fatal to the Wraith. Unfortunately, it also has a casualty rate similar to the recent Asuran campaign. From the Wraith perspective, this is a very bad thing. Team Atlantis is hardly thrilled about it either, especially when it's clear that the source is Michael, making them indirectly responsible. This brings Todd back into the equation, which is always fun. (Who else thinks a Michael/Todd showdown would be a great idea?)

    Michael's plan could lead to some interesting changes in the Stargate universe, should it come to pass. Will Team Atlantis try to stop Michael from creating his new species, or will they be forced only to mitigate the human cost of the anti-feeding virus? Whatever happens, the impact on the Pegasus Galaxy will be substantial, and if there's the slightest negative result to the SG mission objective, it could be another excuse for the IOA to meddle in the command structure. The writers do well when such stakes are in play, so I have high hopes for the resolution of this season arc.