Stargate SG-1

Season 1 Episode 20

There But for the Grace of God

Aired Friday 8:00 PM Feb 20, 1998 on Syfy
out of 10
User Rating
388 votes

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Episode Summary

While investigating P3R-233, Daniel stumbles across a device that projects him into a parallel dimension. In this universe, Carter and O'Neill are engaged, and Teal'c is still First Prime of Apophis. Using the knowledge "our" Daniel has, the SGA launches a nuclear attack on Chulak through the Stargate. This results in a counter-attack as the Goa'uld send a horde of Pyramid Ships to destroy the parallel Earth, and Teal'c refuses to be swayed by those who wiped out his family. The parallel SGC (known as the SGA) must somehow dial out of their Stargate and get Daniel back to the planet so he can return to "his" universe.moreless

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  • A better version of Sliders

    The whole alternate universe story certainly had an ominous feel which could have been fleshed out a little more. But still a great preview of what it's like when the motherships darken the sky.
  • the things they do lose value.

    im sorry, but i dont like it. i think that now when we know this about alternate universes, everything that is done in the show means less! i mean, Sg1, the earth, and all the good guys are losing in another reality, and they mean as much as ours. for all we know, the reality the show is about could be one of the few ones that are doing good, and most of the others could be screwed.. ---

    also, in a later alternate universe episode we learn that "our" version are one of the handful ones who hasnt fallen to the gould. And as they say in the same episode, "how do we know which is the real universe?" ---

    no, i want the things that Sg1 does to be "saving the universe stuff", not just one of the infinite versions of the universes! its no like in some other plotlines, where they go back and prevent something from happening, this do happen, and it happens to pretty much "us". it is very hard to explain how i think. only if you consider "our" more important that other realities, we can say that they save the universe. this takes away all the good things Sg1 does!moreless

    There But For the Grace of God has a very dark feel to it. We see an alternate reality of SG-1 in a parallel universe. An alien artifact transports Daniel to an alternate reality, where he is not a part of the Stargate program and the Goa'uld -- led by Teal'c -- are invading Earth. This episode almost has a little bit of a James Bond feel to it. In that everything is at stake. We have to fight to save the future for Earth. I Tracey K. Nameth call this a do or die episode. Like Alice in wonderland. Except in this SG-1 episode it's Dr. Daniel Jackson through the looking glass.moreless
  • Daniel learns how well Earth would fair against a Goa'uld invasion first hand...

    The first of many alternate reality episodes is definitely a good one. Daniel learns of the information that could save Earth in our reality. Truthfully this episode should be part of the 3-parter that spans the end of season 1 to the beginning of season 2. For some reason I always like the episodes where we see fighting and combat within the hallways of the SGC, and this one is no exception. It was, however, a little disjointing to see Carter and Jack not working with Daniel as part of SG-1. The episode really does a good job of making Daniel appear to be completely alone amongst the stranger of this alternate reality. However, I was happy that in the end Jack, Sam, and Catherine work to help get Daniel back to his reality.moreless
  • Dr. Jackson travels to an alternate reality.

    This was one of the best episodes from the first season, and a great lead up to the season finale. Daniel finds a strange mirror on SG-1's visit to P3R-233. Daniel somehow activates it and it send him to an parallel universe. Its interesting to see that in this universe O'neill is a Major General and Hammond is a Colonel, Carter and O'neill are engaged, Teal'c is still First Prime of Apophis, and his counter-part...well that reality's Dr.Jackson is dead. This is a real informative and interesting episode that shows what would have happened had Apophis invaded Earth. Daniel somehow convinces that universes O'neill to believe him and that he needs to get back to his world to avoid the same from happening. Very good episode, great acting by Micheal Shanks. I thinks its one of the most memorable from seaon 1.

    Overall, great.moreless
Richard Dean Anderson

Richard Dean Anderson

Colonel/Brigadier General Jonathan J. "Jack" O'Neill

Christopher Judge

Christopher Judge


Amanda Tapping

Amanda Tapping

Captain/Major/ Lt. Colonel Samantha Carter

Don S. Davis

Don S. Davis

Major General George S. Hammond

Michael Shanks

Michael Shanks

Dr. Daniel Jackson

Elizabeth Hoffman

Elizabeth Hoffman

Catherine Langford

Guest Star

Stuart O'Connell

Stuart O'Connell


Guest Star

Michael Kopsa

Michael Kopsa

News Anchor

Guest Star

Gary Jones

Gary Jones

Technician/Sergeant Walter Davis

Recurring Role

Laara Sadiq

Laara Sadiq


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (15)

    • Trivia: The people of P3R-233 may have not invented the quantum mirror because the remote for it was tagged as well as the other artifacts from other planets. P3R-233 was destroyed by the Goa'uld and left "Korush-nai" which is a warning meaning "Turn back", in other words it means that the planet was left radioactive.

    • Trivia: The estimated death toll to Earth was 1.5 billion.

    • Trivia: A wormhole can only be maintained for 38 minutes.

    • Trivia: The deep space transmission three months earlier from P3R-233 used a derivation of ancient Egyptian for the message: "Beware the destroyers. They come from 3, 32, 16, 8, 10, 12."

    • Trivia: Refugees from the Genesis list including world leaders, scientists and doctors, were sent to the Beta Site.

    • Trivia: In the alternate reality, the conference room wall with the Stargate logo reads "SGA", instead of "SGC" (Stargate Command).

    • When the alternate SGC starts dialling the gate after Daniel translates the transmitted message, the Earth point-of-origin chevron (the seventh and last) is encoded but Walter says "Chevron 2 encoded".

    • Trivia: One blast from a Ha'tak is equal to a 200 megaton nuclear warhead.

    • One of the symbols on P3R-233's gate is Earth's point of origin.

    • Why did the Goa'uld take so long redialing Earth? They have a DHD, so it should only have taken seconds.

    • When they first try dialing the Beta site, Walter (the technician) is heard clearly stating that chevron five is encoded, but a few seconds later they show the dialing screen and we see chevron five just being encoded when the gate activates from offworld. In which case shouldn't he have said chevron four encoded?

    • In the alternate reality when dialing up Chulak, it shows the Sgt. typing away at the computers. We hear him say "Chevron 3 encoded" but he clearly isn't saying anything as his mouth was shut.

    • Instead of using their one window of opportunity to dial P3R-233 for Daniel, why not just take Daniel with them to the Beta site and have him dial P3R-233 from there?

    • If only 50% of the Genesis list was through the gate, where are the rest of the world leaders when the Jaffa break through? Shouldn't the complex be knee deep in diplomats, scientists, and world leaders?

    • Let's pull some facts together here. Teal'c describes the signs of weapons fire as quite old, the civilization destroyed on P3R-233 apparently sent out some kind of signal to warn the alternate earth, and the system the invasion is launched from is described in the next episode as more than 10 light years from Earth (1 year traveling at 10x light speed). Okay, there are some problems here. First, why would these aliens send a message to Earth BEFORE the stargate was being used again (unless Catherine managed to start the program years early)? Secondly, how do these aliens know where Apophis' ships will be stationed (possibly this could be because the world is some kind of staging area - but wouldn't there be a stargate on such a depot world that would be more likely to pick up an incoming traveler?) Third, why didn't the MALP pick up radiation signals if the world was left Korush-Nai? Would General Hammond have sent SG-1 through to a death trap? [Editor's note: Teal'c said that the surface was radioactive, the gate was within a complex like the SGC so it's possible that there wasn't an amount worth worrying about in the room.

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Sam: I surrender! I have information that can help Apophis! There is technology he will want to know about! This is a remote control to an interdimensional portal. I can tell Apophis how to find it!
      Jaffa: Hashak Kreyak!
      Sam: (pulling out a grenade) Thank you. Oh yeah. I also wish to blow us all to hell.

    • (waking up to find his teammates gone)
      Daniel: Jack! Sam! Teal'c! Oh, I really hate when this happens.

    • Sam: What makes you think the Goa'uld are even going to attack your earth?
      Daniel: Oh, I'd say we've pissed them off at least as much as you have.

    • Daniel: Well, it sounds like I theoretically, possibly, actually found one!
      Catherine: One what?
      Daniel: One of those things Sam was talking about, an alternate reality!

  • NOTES (2)

    • This episode foreshadows two important changes that occur at the beginning of Season Eight: Jack O'Neill is a Brigadier General and the commander of the SGC (although in the alternate reality it was called the SGA) and Teal'c has hair.

    • Syndication air date: May 3, 1999.


    • Episode Title
      English Protestant Reformer John Bradford whilst imprisoned in the Tower of London uttered the words "There but for the grace of God go I" when he saw a criminal going to execution for his crimes.

    • The Genesis List
      The "Genesis list" is a reference to the first book of the Bible, Genesis, where the story of mankind's beginning is told. The folks on the list would represent a new beginning for mankind.