Stargate SG-1

Season 2 Episode 4

The Gamekeeper

Aired Friday 8:00 PM Jul 17, 1998 on Syfy

Episode Fan Reviews (10)

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out of 10
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  • Horrid Mess

    This is a rather annoying episode. The team become trapped in a virtual reality game that shares their strongest memories with an alien races entertainment. The "Gamekeeper" is an annoying, whiney character and really ruins the episode.

    SG-1 is imprisoned in a virtual reality realm and forced to relive the worst moments of their lives over and over. To talk about the portals of Stargate and now an episode of virtual reality mixed in is so intertwined. They take us to our past so we can think about our lives. They take us into new modes of understanding and being. They're also portals to the afterlife and the afterworld. Of course at another level it's a science fiction story telling problem solved more easily when you have portals. Because you can't travel very easily around the stars at the speed of light! Get a portal that will work.
  • Trapped in memories...

    It was, not so original and I did not liked it - first it might have looked exciting but on one point, when it was understandable what is going on, it lost all it's beauty. Not that it was very similar to "Tin man" and they did not offered nothing new - quite filler episode.

    Only thing I liked was the end - the garden was so beautiful and the Keeper, so worried that everything will be ruined. And the idea of showing some events from the past - and show that whatever they would have done, they would not succeed. But it was not enough to make this episode feel better.
  • SG1 get trapped in a virtual reality. Will the gamekeeper ever let them out? This one was far below my expectations.

    Usually I commend the stars of the show for their acting abilities. However, in this episode nothing is worth commending. While in a beautiful garden planet, SG1 come across a greenhouse with stasis chambers. They get trapped inside the chambers and are plugged into a virtual reality network with the local residents. The "gamekeeper" forces them to experience their worst experiences (death/trauma) to provide entertainment to the other residents. They residents themselves entered the stasis chambers after the planet had become inhabitable. It is not until SG1 tells them that their planet has become beautiful that they realize that the gamekeeper had been lying to them for years. Aside from a good story, there was nothing else in this episode that is note-worthy. For the most part the acting is fair, with the exception of Michael Shanks who provides such a poor performance while he re-lives the experience of his parents death. The only scene in the episode that was done terribly was the scene of the death of Jackson's parents. The set, acting, and entire premise of the scene were unconvincing and - even by scifi standards - unrealistic. There is no plot development in this episode, so this is definitely one episode that can be skipped.
  • SG-1 gets trapped in their own memories for the amusement of a civilization in stasis.

    I loved this episode. It does a good job of fleshing out the past of Daniel and Jack. The concept is not particularly new, but it is executed in an interesting, new way. The episode also had a good amount of action which I always enjoy. Jack's performance was especially compelling, and basically takes command of the episode( as you might expect), and leads the team in uncovering the deception of the Keeper. The Keeper was also a funny character in a strange sort of way. It was a very intriguing episode overall and always managed to keep my interest.
  • SG-1 travel to P7J-989, where they discover a dome full of strange metallic chambers. As SG-1 inspects the chambers, they are trapped and knocked unconscious.

    Very cool episode. I immediately knew this one was going to be good when Kowalsky appeared! SG-1 is forced to live out the most painful moments of their lives over and over again as their minds are controled by the "Gamekeeper". It was a clever idea and a great way to dig in deeper into O'Neill's and Daniel's past. The way the episode ended was a little cheesy but whatever. A great O'Niell moment here too after they supposedly got back to the SGC and duringh debrief, Hammond orders them to go back:

    Jack: General, without meaning, this time, to sound like a smartass, are you cracked?

    Classic. Overall, great episode.
  • Not bad but not great

    This is one of those classic SciFi stories that allows us to see into the characters past and get some much needed backstory and character development. I can't imagine having to go through what Jack and Daniel did in the "game". Having to see your parents death over and over or a mission gone terribly bad is just plain old turture. As for the game it was a very cool piece of technology that will come into play years later. Overall a mediocore episode that had some good development.
  • SG-1 is transported into an artificial reality.

    After coming to a planet teaming with an abundance of plant life, SG-1 comes across people hooked up to some sort of device and they are sucked in as well.

    Daniel finds himself reliving his biological parents death from when he was a small boy and O'Neill is reliving a mission from his past that went bad.

    I can understand how Daniel would be reliving his parents death, because it would make sense that he would want to change those events. But I was confused about why Col. O'Neill was reliving this mission. It would have made more sense that he would want to try and stop his son from killing himself and you would think that it would be that event that he would be reliving over and over again.

    Well, I still thought this was a good episode even if some things didn't make sense. Although I thought that if Teal'c and O'Neill thought they were in the past they should of sat back and did nothing, because who knows how the future would have changed if they had accomplished their mission.
  • A flawed episode, but it has its good points.

    Well, this episode is sort of a dream terms of science fiction anyway. The idea of an artificial reality world isn't by any means new (although it's interesting to note that this episode was written and filmed before The Matrix came out), but the idea of using it to play out events from your past you wished you could change is interesting.

    Although Daniel's past experience seems a little silly, I can sort of relate to it after losing my father at a young age. O'Neill's past experience is executed better, but the whole friend-dying-in-your-arms thing has been done to death (no pun intended).

    Arguably these past sequences serve as character development, but personally I don't think it adds much; they're fine without them. Still, there are some neat little pieces of humour thrown in (Teal'c with hair is classic), as well as a hilariously enjoyable over-the-top performance by Dwight Schultz as the Gamekeeper, who makes the episode so much more enjoyable than it could've been.

    So, in summary, although not being a terrible episode, I wouldn't recommend showing it to a soon-to-be SG1 fan the first time around (i.e. going through the series in order). It may put them off, and it doesn't add anything more to the characters or mythology.
  • Jack and Daniel relive the worst memory from their past; Teal'c and Samantha are along for the ride.

    With an episode named "The Gamekeeper", you know it will be good. It is a very exciting and very well written episode. Can we change our past if we wanted to? That's what this episode addresses. One of my favorite plots of any series are the ones that deal with time travel, and that is what this one is. Jack and Teal'C relive Jack's memory of a mission he did in the 1980's when it didn't go well. Daniel and Sam live Daniel's memory of when his parents died. We definitely learn more about Jack and Daniel in "The Gamekeeper". Dwight Schultz (Reg Barclay from the Star Trek series) does a very good job as the Keeper, he is a very talented actor as he portrays this man with a very good British accent. There is a funny part in this episode about Jack and Teal'C as well, but I don't want to spoil it for you. This is a very good episode that is one of my favorites of this season.
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