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Stargate Atlantis: The Ghost in the Machine, Review

So by now of course you know that this is the last season of Stargate Atlantis. Hopefully they plan to go out with a bang. The Ghost in the Machine starts off in very familiar territory with our in the puddle jumper and doing what they do best (squabbling).

Incidentally is the puddle jumper the least impressive looking spaceship is scifi history?

From there things go bad with some weird systems failures. Back at Atlantis an analysis shows that nothing is wrong. But then systems start failing all over the base. Once again Woolsey gives us a good comedic scene and proves what a good idea it was to add him to the regular cast. Nice to have him referencing having to walk across half the city. It’s a pet irritation of mine that Atlantis is a city but we rarely ever get a sense of the scale of it.

As the systems failures get worse, power goes out except for one computer and it starts to broadcast text messages from Dr. Weir asking for help! Once again Atlantis makes good use of its own history for some additional emotional resonance.

This does lead to a rather talky segment where we get an explanation of what has happened since we last saw the Replicator Dr. Weir. Don’t get your hopes up for an appearance from Torri Higginson either. The actress turned down the role and instead the replicator Weir is played by Michelle Morgan (who does a good job of capturing Weirs mannerisms).

When she builds herself a new replicator body lots of questions are raised. Is this really Elizabeth Weir? If she’s a replicator, is she safe? What does her former team owe her? Before any of these questions can be answered, other disembodied replicators arrive. When Atlantis refuses to give them bodies like Weir, they start sinking the city.

Woolsey shows there’s more to his character than comedic relief with some hard nosed negotiating and Robert Picardo again shows what a fine actor he is as we see Woolsey’s nervousness when he bluffs the replicators.

I think this may be my favorite episode of the season so far. Plenty of action, great use of the series history and some real emotional turmoil. Interesting ending though. We’ve already seen that replicators can survive in space.

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Eoghann Irving is amongst other things the creator and Editor of Solar Flare. He has a life long interest in all forms of science fiction and fantasy and a pressing need to share this interest with anyone who will listen. Find out more at his personal website eoghann.com..

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