Home > Episode Recaps, Opinions (TV), TV > TV: Stargate Universe – Water (S01E06)

TV: Stargate Universe – Water (S01E06)


Episode Quote: "Two guys in million-year-old spacesuits walking around on an ice planet." (Everett Young)

Year of Broadcast: 2009

Starring: Robert Carlyle, Louis Ferreira, David Blue, Brian J. Smith, Jamil Walker Smith, Elyse Levesque, Alaina Huffman, Ming-Na

*Spoilers Follow*

Summary: The Destiny’s water supplies are mysteriously dwindling at a rapid rate; Young and Scott visit an icy planet to try and find water; A stowaway is discovered on board the Destiny.

Thoughts: The people on the Destiny don’t have much luck.  This week it’s discovered that their water supplies are decreasing much more rapidly than they should be, with large drops that they can’t explain.  The sand creature from the third part of the opening Air story is also shown on board the ship.  It was obvious from the start that the sand creature was going to be the source of the problem, and how they solved those two issues (finding more water and dealing with the alien) make up the episode.

The water storyline had its good and bad points.  Naturally, the ice immediately outside the gate was no good, with the toxin readings being ‘off the charts’.  That’s not a phrase I’m keen on because it’s generally used in such a lazy fashion to explain that levels are high without going into details.  Most of the time, if readings are off the charts then you should have better charts.  The episode also put Scott in peril again, having him fall into a crevasse where he was trapped and slowly being crushed by plate shifts.  Scott’s life was threatened last week too when he was on the shuttle, and if they keep putting him in danger but always have him pull through (as he did again this week) then it’s going to rob that of any drama.

Eli’s invention was pretty neat though, a platform supported by lots of the little floating kino cameras, which they could use to transport much more ice than they would have been able to carry alone.  Eli had a couple of good moments this episode that both play up his intelligence (and usefulness to the team) and his geekiness (with him making both Star Wars and Alien references).

Johansen got a lot of screen time with the alien storyline.  She was the first to see it and immediately went to tell Eli and Rush.  Quite often in this the kind of situation the one witness would babble and fail to properly explain it, being dismissed as crazy/mistaken until something bigger happens. Johansen explained herself calmly and sensibly though, and Eli and Rush believed her and they connected it to the creature Scott saw on the desert planet.  So that was another good job from the writing team there.

The soldier attacking the alien was a bit silly, trying to use his gun to shoot a floating cloud of ‘sand’, and he paid the price for it, suffering injury (and then death) by sandblasting.  Ultimately they solved the problem with Greer’s improvised flamethrower (quipping to Eli that he “can invent things too”) and Johansen’s planning, trapping the aliens in a water barrel and taking it out through the gate (taking quite a few risks considering she’s the chief medical officer).

By the end of it Scott was rescued and brought back to the Destiny on the kino platform (with Rush clearly unhappy that Young abandoned the ice), and the alien was on the ice planet.  We also learned a few new facts from Rush.  Apparently the stargate can only remain open for 38 minutes at a time (I don’t know if that’s specific to the Destiny or a general fact from earlier Stargates), and there are no functional airlocks in the habitable areas of the ship.  I would have thought the part of the ship where the damaged shuttle had been would have qualified, but I’m not an expert on alien spaceships like Rush.

Another good episode then.  The Destiny had their first verified alien encounter and it wasn’t even remotely humanoid (a definite plus), and Scott was in danger again but survived, again (more of a minus).  Lots of Young, lots of Johansen (who hasn’t had that much time so far), and good support from Eli, Greer and Scott.   Roll on, next week!

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