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Matt Roush article from TV Guide.com

http://community.tvguide.com/forum.jspa?forumID=700000048

This is a sympathetic but level-headed pondering of SG-1's cancellation. Roush likes SG-1 well enough (he appeared on the "Inside" special to say nice things about it), but folks may remember him as a passionate "Farscape" fan. So he's got that perspective on this.


The thing is, I agree with him, in a lot of ways. As I remarked yesterday, the *timing* of this announcement is what really stunned me; not the substance of it. I was already thinking that if SG-1 got an 11th season, it would be very lucky. I was indeed half-expecting to hear that it was being cancelled. For me, it was impossible to watch the build-up of signals that SciFi was sending with their various shenanigans, and not get that feeling.

And I have often had the thoughts that Roush airs. 10 years is nothing to sneeze at. I would rather a show go out at some kind of high point than linger on until it hits a really embarassing place. (The discussion/debate over whether SG-1 had reached that, or had not reached it yet, is a separate issue, I think. Feel what you will about the last two seasons or the last four seasons, or whatever. I personally wasn't loving the show as much in S9/S10 as previously, but I have my own personal barometer for these things -- called "Buffy" season 6/7 -- and from my viewpoint, at least, SG-1 was diminished but not at the "take it behind the barn and shoot it" stage yet.)

So I'm in two minds about all of the "save the show" sentiment floating around, and at the rumored efforts being made by Bridge and MGM.

Because the thing is -- in some ways, this is the 10th season of a show that I don't want to see become a shambling zombie. In other ways, it has to be acknowledged that it is the 2nd season of what the people *making* the show always sort of intended to be a sequel show anyway -- "Stargate Command", which is what they would have called it if the SciFi Channel hadn't vetoed the idea. And I feel badly for the folks who have honestly been trying to *make* that sequel show work. I also feel badly for the folks who have been loving watching it as much as ever, or more so. While I think that SG-1 maybe has reached the end of its natural lifespan... I feel that the whole concept of "SGC" as a show maybe hasn't.

So I'm not quite sure what I'm hoping will happen to "SGC", as such. (I am sure of this: the more I think of it, the more I think migrating some of the characters over to SGA is a poor idea... for SGA itself.) For "SG-1", there's a few things I'd like to see happen.

As Roush says: the end of S10 treated with dignity. (But hey, it's the SciFi Channel, so good luck!) As I was remarking yesterday -- as shitty as the timing of this announcement is, there may be a bright side to it. And that bright side is that eps 19 and 20 weren't written yet. Bridge has lots of warning now to figure out how to end the series. We will not be trapped by their having made a HUGE CLIFFHANGER because they were, for once, banking on the idea of S11.

I do not think there is any way they can wrap up the Orii plotline in that time. But the thing is, we've been dealing with this since S6 -- at which point we all knew the show might end with the long-running Goa'uld plotline unresolved. *shrug* We knew then they were hoping to make a movie to give the show's overall storyline closure. (They wanted it to be a feature film, like "Serenity"; I myself was always placing money on tv-movie or mini-series, even then.) So I don't see how the situation right now is *that* different from what it was. The same options appear to be on the table.

I personally lean towards the tv-movie/mini-series option. I think reaching towards a feature film is a bad idea (for a franchise that is so heavily dependent on its backstory). I think that a tv-movie or series of movies, or a mini or two, could probably be enough to give closure, and/or to tell some nice one-shot stories, and it's a way of concentrating effort and budget to produce something good. And it would keep canon open, to an extent, or at least make that a possibility -- without necessarily confronting us with the agonizing over the show's inevitable cancellation *again*. (Because even if it gets picked up for a S11... then you continue to have the anxiety over its ratings performance, and how much longer it can go on, etc.)

But that's just my personal preference, and I respect the folks who honestly feel there is a case to be made for giving what is essentially the 2-year-old "Stargate Command" some more time. Even if I'm not as hopeful that it'll actually happen.

However, I see nothing wrong with the idea of asking for a *lot* (S11) and settling for a bit less (movies, etc.). It may be a good negotiating tactic.

I will say this, though -- I think a good bit of my very emotional reaction yesterday was all tied up in how this affects the community/fandom, and the way that is important to me *apart from* the way my enjoyment of the show is important to me. And the outpourings of fannish reaction around LJ, that I have seen at least, have soothed some of my distress over that.

Comments

( 38 comments — Leave a comment )
katie_m
Aug. 22nd, 2006 05:39 pm (UTC)
I am sure of this: the more I think of it, the more I think migrating some of the characters over to SGA is a poor idea... for SGA itself.

I agree, and more than that, I really don't want to see that happen to the SG-1 characters. (This is, of course, independent of my feelings about the actors; hey, if they want the gig, I'm all for them going for it.) I just can't imagine how they'd fit, you know? They're the stars of their show. You send them to SGA, they aren't anymore, and that would be painful for me--with Sam and Daniel and Teal'c, at least. Cameron or Vala, okay, but... I don't know. I don't want even them to be reduced to scraps on someone else's show, ridiculous as that sounds.

I kind of... if it's going to end, I want it to end. Maybe a TV movie to wrap a story up that they wanted to tell, I'm on board with that, but otherwise... it would be, in a weird way, kind of a relief to have the characters home and safe, you know? Closed canon, where they can't be damaged anymore.
green_grrl
Aug. 22nd, 2006 08:02 pm (UTC)
it would be, in a weird way, kind of a relief to have the characters home and safe, you know? Closed canon, where they can't be damaged anymore.

Word. I know the shippers are lobbying hard to have a real S/J hookup to close out the series, but please no. Everybody nicely in character and open-ended would suit me just fine.
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - green_grrl - Aug. 23rd, 2006 06:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 24th, 2006 03:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - green_grrl - Aug. 24th, 2006 05:41 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - katie_m - Aug. 24th, 2006 04:02 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 24th, 2006 03:19 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - katie_m - Aug. 26th, 2006 03:51 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 30th, 2006 12:40 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - rednikki - Aug. 22nd, 2006 10:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - katie_m - Aug. 24th, 2006 04:03 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - katie_m - Aug. 25th, 2006 04:23 am (UTC) - Expand
moonshayde
Aug. 22nd, 2006 05:41 pm (UTC)
I've been wanting movies (Tv, DVD, or theaterical, though I think the last option would be a mistake) or a miniseries since the end of S8 ;)

I'm taking a wait and see approach. I want to hear what else is going on.
eregyrn
Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:44 pm (UTC)
Yeah. Suddenly it all feels kind of up in the air again. Which kind of makes me feel worse. I mean, I was upset over the cancellation, but I could wrap my brain around that, mourn, and look forward to closure. Right now, I'm really not sure *what* to feel.

I think I'd just kind of prefer a sort of combination. Some real closure. But with a modicum of hope for... something else.
karendreamer
Aug. 22nd, 2006 06:05 pm (UTC)
You've said a lot of what I've been thinking, but my thoughts are still too scattered to say.

I'm of mixed feelings also about saving the show. I think SG1 going on means a lot more to some people. I also don't want to see it do a Buffy.

I have more thinking to do, and posts like this are really helping me deal with it all.
eregyrn
Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:46 pm (UTC)
Thanks. I think a lot of us are at that stage, huh? Some folks have figured out pretty quickly what it is that will make them feel better (and if campaigning for it to be saved, or to go on somehow, is what does that, I'm sure not going to say they shouldn't). Others are still processing.
advection
Aug. 22nd, 2006 06:33 pm (UTC)
::vigorous nodding:: to everything you say here.
eregyrn
Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:46 pm (UTC)
*hugs*
green_grrl
Aug. 22nd, 2006 08:00 pm (UTC)
Word. My pain had a lot to do with the story breaking while i was still high on 200.

I definitely don't want Stargate to hit bottom before bowing out, and I think TV movies or mini-series would be a great way to carry the story forward, with greater time and creative energy available to put into them. I don't want to see any of the characters become regular cast on Atlantis (further diluting everyone in that big ensemble and blowing SG:A's budget), though I do hope to see lots of guest appearances.

If there was to be another spin-off, I'd love to see the Alternate Universe SG-15 with Col. Dixon, Martouf, John and Rodney, but that's not going to happen. ;-) An AU would be an interesting idea, though, springboarding off Ripple Effect or another AU event. Janet and Kawalsky and Ferretti heading a show?
eregyrn
Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:47 pm (UTC)
Hah! It'd be pretty funny if they did indeed go the AU route. And really, why the hell not?
keiko_kirin
Aug. 22nd, 2006 09:20 pm (UTC)
You've summed up my reaction fairly well. I'm actually content with the 200 episodes they've given us so far, though, so I'm okay if after S10, that's it. That must place me in a very tiny minority of SG-1 fans, I know, but I'm a kook. Most of all, I just don't want them to ruin the series finale. Please, let it end well.
wadjet_theperv
Aug. 22nd, 2006 09:24 pm (UTC)
Most of all, I just don't want them to ruin the series finale. Please, let it end well.***

Dear God, yes. I couldn't bear going out with a sour taste in my mouth.
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 23rd, 2006 04:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
wadjet_theperv
Aug. 22nd, 2006 09:23 pm (UTC)
Buffy 6/7. Hmm. Word on that one.

What I really want is quality rather than quantity, and unfortunately, for me at least, the quality was suffering. I hardly saw any of S9, partly, I think, because no matter whom you excise from the original SG1 and for whatever reason, it just doesn't work for me. I adore Vala, lovelovelove Ben and Claudia, but it was almost like watching a Farscape AU at times. Changing things so fundamentally, which began in S6 when MS took his leave of absence, then continuing with the death of Janet Frasier, General Hammond leaving and Jack bowing out of 'gate travel - I suppose I should have seen these things as natural growth, but sadly I saw them as a slow chipping away at what made the show really grip me. Without the Jack/Daniel dynamic, love affair, relationship, friendship, call it what you will, it's much easier for me to let it go. I'd like to see movies, but that core of four would have to be SG-1, otherwise I'd probably give it a miss.

As far as the community si concerned, I think there's little to worry about. Plenty of fandoms happily survive the demise of their show. We'll be just fine.
charmedstrange1
Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:35 am (UTC)
As far as the community si concerned, I think there's little to worry about. Plenty of fandoms happily survive the demise of their show. We'll be just fine.

Thank you for this. Of all the things I'm feeling right now and having difficulty articulating, this is at the heart of it.

I really love the show, but I had been expecting it to end after another season or two, (with some warning, thank you very much!) But frankly, while I enjoyed having fresh material on the characters each week, I had begun to look at the show as almost more of a primer for the pump of fandom, and to feel much more compelled by this, here, this community and this fic and these people and ideas. That's what I was fearful of having threatened. Aside from, of course, my genuine affection and concern for the characters and the actors of the show.

Of all the frustration and sadness and anger I've felt, because of the *ungodly* *TIMING* of this thing, and all the things I've read, your "We'll be just fine" is the first time I've actually gotten teary.

Thank you for knowing the right thing to say.
(no subject) - wadjet_theperv - Aug. 23rd, 2006 08:22 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 23rd, 2006 04:04 pm (UTC) - Expand
jenlev
Aug. 22nd, 2006 10:39 pm (UTC)
although i can't get the article to load, i'm appreciating your thoughts and the issues you've articulated. i agree that a mini-series would work better than a big screen rendition.

{{{more big hugs}}}
eregyrn
Aug. 23rd, 2006 03:48 pm (UTC)
I'll send you a copy of the article in email. It's a nice read.

I just... while it'd be kinda cool to see this show get the Serenity treatment, on the other hand, I have simply never been able to imagine it on the big screen. On the big screen, and pulling in movie-theatre level audiences.
(no subject) - jenlev - Aug. 23rd, 2006 09:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - eregyrn - Aug. 24th, 2006 03:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
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starglyph
Aug. 23rd, 2006 06:37 pm (UTC)
I read the article earlier and agree with a lot of it and with what you say. I decided to get an lj in part to help myself cope with it all. I feel like I got a love letter from sg1 on one night and a 'Dear John' letter then next day.

I'm thinking they'll try and leave things pretty open ended, heading through the gate on some unknown adventure. I don't think anyone these days, makes a movie or ends a TV show without leaving wiggle room for a sequel, especially with advance warning.

Just as log as Jack is involved somehow, I'll take sg1 any way I can get it. Malibu, DC, PXX-WTF, fan fic will carry us into 'infinity and beyond'... Yeah, okay, wrong show, but still ;-)
eregyrn
Aug. 24th, 2006 03:40 pm (UTC)
Hey! Hi! Welcome! For me, the LJ community is providing a very good way of coping. I used to do my fannish interaction through mailing lists, but a couple of years ago I basically switched completely to LJ, and haven't regretted it.

I think you're right about the economics of things, too. MGM and Bridge keep emphasizing that they are thinking in terms these days of "Stargate the Franchise", not Stargate-any-particular-show, necessarily. To me, that implies that they want flexibility in how they can use it for the future.

They got a pretty good amount of warning on this. As awful as the timing was (couldn't they have waited a week? just a week, and that would have helped), I have this feeling that the Bridge folks may be saying to themselves, "well, based on the network's track record and the way it treated Farscape, we are damned lucky that we heard about it now, while we still have yet to write those last few eps -- instead of sometime during the hiatus, when everything was wrapped and left on a giant cliffhanger".

Here's hoping they USE the opportunity they've been given, and use it well!

*hug*
( 38 comments — Leave a comment )