The following contains MAJOR SPOILERS for “Quarantine,” the latest episode of the SciFi Channel series, “Stargate: Atlantis.”
But wait, werent there other numbers? – Teyla
42 – Sheppard
And what is that? – Teyla
Its the ultimate answer to the great question of life, the universe and everything. – Sheppard
Its a snapshot of a typical day in the life of the city of Atlantis. McKay is visiting Katie Brown (Brenda James) to ask her hand in marriage. A much more noticeably pregnant Teyla visits Sheppard in McKays lab. Carter and Zelenka take the transporter together. And Ronon has another one of his sparring accidents that sends him to the infirmary for patching up by Dr. Keller (Jewel Staite).
Of course things go wrong. The city suddenly goes into “category 5 contagion” quarantine, and everyone gets locked up into different sections of the city. Oh, and communications are blocked, too. Darn McKay and his upgrades. Ah, too quick to judge because it ends up being a system malfunction caused by a weather anomaly.
Luckily, Sheppard knows McKays password. Unluckily, it appears the city is sending out a beacon to anyone listening in space and the only way to stop it requires being in the control room.
So, Sheppard does his best Batman impersonation and scales the tower. After a few window breaks and a few near falls, Sheppard turns off the beacon. Surprise — now the self-destruct kicks in. Not good.
With the help of some of the staff, Sheppard manages to free Carter and Zelenka. After running out of C4 to blow up doors, the only way to the power room requires squeezing through the vents. Zelenka volunteers and is the hero of the day by restoring the system back to normal.
While this has been going on, we have McKay freaking out and accidentally revealing his proposal plans. Needless to say, the relationship ends (or at least takes a big step backwards) after Katie sees McKay in full freak-out mode. Ronon and Keller get closer : if you know what I mean. Okay, get your mind out of the gutter. But they did almost kiss. Looks like a new ‘ship has begun.
Overall, it is not a bad episode for mostly talking. Obviously it is one of those episodes where they are trying to stick to existing sets and minimizing CGI to make up budget wise for the expensive last few episodes.
What Worked A lot worked for this episode. I loved Sheppard scaling the tower. He probably should have been a little more hesitant, but otherwise my heart still quickened although I knew he wouldnt fall. It was very well done.
I liked seeing scientist Carter start to kick in again. To bad she failed, although it was partially Zelenkas fault. Which leads me to mention how cool it was that we saw a little more about Zelenka and he ended up saving the day. For once I would like Carter to actually pull off one of her Carter miracles. I know they dont want her to steal the spotlight, but come on. If she is going to be on the show, then have her do something.
I liked the talk that Sheppard and Teyla had about her pregnancy. They have surprised me by how well they are handling the pregnancy on the show. Also, Katie describing to McKay how the plant named after him keeps getting bigger and bigger. Plus, the interesting new relationship developing between Ronon and Keller is not only a good subplot, but we learned more about Keller with some background on her life.
What Didnt Work
The main thing that didnt work for me was how the lockdown felt sort of done before. But since it was just an excuse to get these characters trapped together for some interesting character development, Ill ignore that problem.
Busting the windows opened seemed a little too easy. You would think the Ancients would have made the windows a little stronger.
I thought McKays behavior was a little overboard, especially considering how much he has grown over the years. It seems like the relationship is over, but it was always kind of an odd relationship.
Im nervous about this new relationship they are trying to start with Ronon and Keller. “Stargate” hasnt really handled relationships any better than Star Trek used to. Perhaps Im a little sour with the Carter and ONeill relationship that is in limbo or how Ronon and Teyla used to have a thing that seemed to disappear almost as quick as the “almost” relationship that Sheppard and Teyla had in the very beginning of the series. I suppose we will just have to wait and see where things go from here.
Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due
“Quarantine” was written by Carl Binder and directed by Martin Wood. “Stargate: Atlantis” airs Friday nights at 10 p.m. on the SciFi Channel. The show stars Amanda Tapping, Joe Flanigan, David Hewlett, Rachel Luttrell and Jason Momoa.
Marx Pyle is a staff writer for Airlock Alpha, writing out of Vancouver, B.C. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.