And now we’re really getting into the cast shake ups. Richard Dean Anderson has mostly moved on and the powers that be have finally realized the team needs a new lead: So we get Ben Browder as Lt. Colonel Cameron Mitchell. I wouldn’t have minded Carter keeping the reigns and Browder certainly isn’t Anderson, but unlike the whole Jonas mess, he doesn’t try to be. He’s still a fairly straight laced military leader, but he’s his own kind and I really like it. It works out pretty well.
We also get Claudi Black back as Vala for an increasingly big role as the season goes on, which I also appreciate. It’s a bit weird having both Browder and Black after Fargate (on which they both starred), but it works. As I mentioned before, Black has wonderful chemistry with just about everyone, in particular Michael Shanks and is a fun addition to the team.
On top of all that, we of course have to have a new big bad: the Ori. We had a few mentions of them before, but now they’re back in force and really causing trouble. They’re… a little too faceless and all powerful to be as good a villains as the goa’uld, but I think (just like a lot of changes for this season) they work in their own way.
There are a few great episodes in this season. In particular: The Ties That Bind/The Powers That Be with Vala and Jackson synergy, Beachhead showing off the Ori, Ripple Effect (Parallel realities! So many Carters!), and Arthur’s Mantle (another parallel dimension story1).
Unfortunately there are also more than a few weird/weak episodes, such as Babylon/Stronghold (Jaffa) and Collateral Damage (it just seems out of place in this episode).
I must admit, I’m not a huge fan of how hard they leaned on the Authurian myths for a lot of the anti-Ori plots. It makes some sense as a parallel to the goa’uld/impersonating gods thing, but it’s just a lot weaker. Especially with the ancients having been gone for so very much longer from our Galaxy, it just doesn’t work.
So it goes.
Still a great season and now only one to go before Atlantis! And a few movies. :) Man there’s a lot of Stargate; isn’t it wonderful?
A wonderful exchange:
Mitchell: Out of phase? What does that mean?
Carter: It means we may have shifted to an alternate dimension.
Mitchell: And there are an infinite number of alternate dimensions.
Carter: No no no. That’s alternate realities.
Mitchell: So when the other SG-1 showed up?
Carter: Completely different problem.