Stargate SG-1

Season 9 Episode 2

Avalon (2)

3
Aired Friday 8:00 PM Jul 22, 2005 on Syfy
8.8
out of 10
User Rating
545 votes
25

EPISODE REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

EDIT
Daniel Jackson and Vala are seemingly transported into the bodies of two people in a distant galaxy on a planet populated by worshippers of a strange authority.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Very well done.

    9.5
    From a dramatic opening to an ending that leaves you hanging, this episode had it all. Once again Daniel Jackson is proved an invaluable member of the SG1 team as he unlocked the secrets of Avalon. The plot twist of taking Jackson and Vala to another world and having them inhabit the bodies of the locals was genius. This episode also continued to show off Col. Mitchell's command style for him to be a "shoot first, ask questions later" type of guy. Teal'c faces tensions in the political frame that have left him with SG1 as his only hope of uniting his peoples. The pivotal end scene with Vala at the alter is easily one of the greatest moments of the episode.moreless
  • This episode clearly and definitively sets the new seasons of SG1 as original and just as or more exciting as previous seasons.

    9.6
    Often a series loses luster for an extended stay, but it is quite apparent Stargate has not and will not for some time.



    In Avalon II, the viewer begins to learn much more about the Ancients than ever before, a development which will continue for the rest of the series.



    The death and subsequent resurrection of Vala is a tearjerker, and adds a new facet to the character which is, a deep and compassionate emotional connection.



    The writers of Stargate certainly know how to write an episode, as this one shows. A must-see.moreless
  • Meh I say meh

    8.1
    This episode was used to help build up the SG 1 team. Personally I found it rather boring. When I find Stargate Atlantis more interesing than SG 1 I think theres a problem. I know they need to do something to build up the new team and make them interesting but I feel like this season is missing something. Maybe I'm just one of those people that won't be satisfied without Jack O'Neil.



    On the plus side Daniel and Vala's trip to Avalon was very interesting. Michael Shanks and Claudia Black play off of each other very well. I really hope they keep her on as a regualar.



    Overall the episode was a necessary boredom to me. Hopefully they move onto something else soon. And please stop with the 'To Be Continueds' its really killing me.moreless
  • Familiar, and yet, that's exactly why I like it!

    8.0
    Picking up where the previous episode left off, this installment has all the hallmarks of being the second part of a trilogy. It resolves the immediate cliffhanger from the premiere and sets up the third and final part of the story. The scope of the season premiere as a whole is now a lot easier to appreciate. I like the fact that three episodes are being used to introduce the basis for the new status quo instead of just one; it gives the writers more time to establish a clear and present danger.



    The resolution to the Ancients’ puzzles is fairly simple. I’m not sure I buy the idea of an Ancient, even Merlin, using Arabic numerals, but conceptually, it works well enough. The swordplay is a bit silly at times, but that’s probably intentional. Again, like the previous episode, Mitchell avoids being a clone of John Crichton, but there’s enough similarly between the two to let Ben Browder shine.



    So the point is this, it seems: a device for long-range communication with other humans related to the Ancients is discovered, and Daniel uncovers the possibility that the Ancients originated from someplace other than Earth. (For some reason, I don’t remember that last bit being much of a question, but I could be mixing up my SF-TV mythologies.) I like the connection to “Citizen Joe” (an underrated commentary on fandom, I thought).



    So the Ancients have a name now…Altera? And it seems that the Ancients that were hanging around the Milky Way/Pegasus galaxy region were more useful when they decided to ascend, because at least they weren’t demanding that their descendents worship them like gods! The suggestion seems to be that the Ori are Ascended who are all too happy to interfere. In other words, I expect them to be like a whole mess of beings like Anubis, but with absolutely no ties to the Goa’uld. Not a good thing!



    I loved the immolation scene, because I never thought it would actually play out. Kudos to the writing team for going the extra mile! Sure, the whole religious extremism angle was covered plenty of times in the past, and there were some very familiar elements, but it was necessary to provide the framework for how the Ori had manipulated the situation. Vala’s resurrection was also important to establishing the Ori as manipulative. (This kind of new direction for the mythology, based in the old but exploring new ground, is exactly what “X-Files” failed to do.)



    Speaking of Vala, she was a lot less annoying this time around. I think it was because the writers didn’t feel the need to smack us over the head with her personality. It’s out there, it’s established…time to move on and just let it happen. Dr. Lam should prove to be an interesting “replacement” for Janet after all this time, and I like the fact that there’s a relationship (father and daughter, I reckon) with Landry. It adds to the potential drama.



    The only thing that doesn’t quite work so far is the ongoing process of isolating Teal’c from the Jaffa High Council. So much is happening off-screen that it’s hard to get a good feel for it. I hope that the next episode culminates in something a bit more definitive than Teal’c deciding, off-screen, to rejoin SG-1. The best way to revitalize the series is to continue focus on the characters and several ongoing, inter-connected plot threads.



    I’m still trying to figure out how the whole Merlin/Avalon thing led into the Altera/Ori thing, but it feels like the kind of unexpected direction that the plot would have taken in earlier seasons. Then again, if the writers were looking to smooth over the obvious goal of introducing the Ori, this is about as organic a way of doing as I can think of. The writers had to sell a lot to the fans, and while I’m sure it didn’t work for everyone, it’s a strong case for a renewed sense of purpose.

    moreless
  • The second installment of Season 9 could not of been better. The series has risen to the next level with the genre. Although the cliffhanger was a bit annoying, the story, characters, and overall episode were all on point.moreless

    10
    Storyline

    The episode continues from Avalon pt. 1 where the team is in dire need of solving ancient puzzles before they are killed... So the story starts off with a lot of action. Once, that settles and the story progresses you begin to look into the characters of the newest additions of the cast and really see some of their predevelopment.



    Characters

    With this episode you were really able to look into the characters of the show. For those who are new to the Star Gate series, you were able to get a grasp on the characters within the show, without needing to see the original episodes. With the newer characters, their personalities provided a nice contrast, no matter what the situation was.



    Emotional Appeal

    Many would agree that this episode had one of the most intense scenes of the entire series. Without giving too much away, there was a scene towards the end that left the seasoned Star Gate fan speechless.



    Overall

    So far, so good.. The season is going along strong and hopefully we can see a lot more of this intill the end. If this indeed the last season of Star Gate, lets have the series go out with an incredible bang, and not a sad whimper..



    -Jagomoreless
Christopher Judge

Christopher Judge

Teal'c

Ben Browder

Ben Browder

Lieutenant Colonel Cameron Mitchell

Beau Bridges

Beau Bridges

General Henry "Hank" Landry

Michael Shanks

Michael Shanks

Dr. Daniel Jackson

April Telek

April Telek

Sallis

Guest Star

Steve Park

Steve Park

Harrid

Guest Star

Larry Cedar

Larry Cedar

Ori Prior

Guest Star

Claudia Black

Claudia Black

Vala

Recurring Role

Lexa Doig

Lexa Doig

Dr. Carolyn Lam

Recurring Role

Bill Dow

Bill Dow

Dr. Lee

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (2)

    • The puzzle Mitchell solves contains a text in the language and alphabet of the Ancients, but modern (Arabic or Western) numbers. These numerals didn't get their present form until the thirteenth century, when they were introduced in Europe (which is a long time after the puzzle would have been made).

    • The height of the flames vary between the close up and the wide view. This is because it is done in two shots. The first is a close up on Claudia Black with the flames at a safe distance. It is done with a camera trick that makes it look that she is about to burn up. The second is of her stunt double being set ablaze.

  • QUOTES (9)

    • Prior: Fear not, for the Ori see all; outside and within. If your heart is pure, and your devotion unwavering, they will protect you. They'll cleanse your being, and you'll be taken to be with them forever. If not, may the fire burn you down to the ground and lay you in the dust.

    • Landry: Always do everything you ask of those you command.
      Mitchell: Patton.
      Landry: Very good.
      Mitchell: Good movie.

    • Daniel: (quoting) 'The universe is infinite.'
      Vala: No doubt it's deliberately ironic that we're in an ever decreasing space.

    • Vala: ...and then I told her to go procreate...with herself.

    • (after hearing the ceiling stop)
      Daniel: Teal'c!
      Vala: Look, I didn't hear any screaming or squishing sounds, so...

    • Daniel: Isn't that why we're doing this, all of this? The Stargate program, the budget is so we can meet new races, gather advanced technology – possibly learn about ourselves in the process?
      Vala: Oh come on – you do it to meet women.

    • Mitchell: (Landry) has no idea what (Daniel) just said.
      Landry: (stepping out) Someone want to tell me why (Vala) is still on my base? And . . . yes I did.

    • Dr. Lee: Actually, we have done a fair bit of research on this device, and I can say with absolute... (Daniel glares) ...relative... (Daniel glares again) ...certainty, oh, look, we have studied devices like this for years and at some point ultimately you just have to turn it on.

    • Mitchell: A room full of gold and jewels and Dr. Daniel Jackson finds the one book.

  • NOTES (9)

  • ALLUSIONS (3)

    • King Arthur's Sword:
      The hologram of the sword in the stone is clearly meant to relate to the tale of King Arthur pulling the sword from the stone that Merlin (Meirdin) had placed there for him.

    • Mitchell: Whoa, we've always presumed that the Ancients were the first evolution of humans in this galaxy, but this is the first evidence suggesting that they came here "long ago from far, far away".
      Referencing the opening sequence of the Star Wars movies.

    • Mitchell: One of these things is not like the other
      This is a take on the Sesame Street children's song "One of these things is not like the other."

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