She won our hearts with the surprisingly compelling role of Fran (the “Friendly Replicator Android”) in Season Four’s “Be All My Sins Remember’d,” and now actress Michelle Morgan is set to return to the city of Atlantis in the next all-new episode.
It’s a surprise return not only for Fran, but for the character who is embodied within the Replicator body. In next Friday’s “Ghost In the Machine,” Morgan plays a sort of reincarnation of Elizabeth Weir, the former leader of the Atlantis expedition.
In the episode, Weir must wrestle with a complex character issue: she has become her own worst enemy.
“I am Elizabeth Weir, but I’m also a Replicator,” the actress told GateWorld. “I am a Replicator now, and that is what Weir is dealing with in this episode. She thinks in her head, ‘I’m just Elizabeth Weir. I’m not a threat to these people.’ But she turns out to be a threat to them because she is a Replicator. And she has to realize that — ‘Now I’m a Replicator, and I have to think of myself as a Replicator. How can I protect [my people]?'”
“Is she a human, or is she a Replicator? She’s both, and that’s what is interesting about this episode.”
To play a long-established, favorite character on Stargate Atlantis, Morgan did a great deal of research into the character, the show’s mythology, and the performances of actress Torri Higginson.
Elizabeth’s loyalties are tested when she leads a group of rebel Replicators to Atlantis. From “Ghost In the Machine”
“I definitely went back and watched Weir,” Morgan said. “I watched episodes with her, and studied the way that she was and the way that she spoke. But mostly I focused on the way that she thought, and the way that she approaches situations. Because she’s all about diplomacy. She’s very intelligent. She’s not a wimp in any way. So I really tried to grasp the way that she approached situations, and the way that she would talk to people in these high-stakes situations.”
Her role on Atlantis has also given Morgan a chance to explore the Replicators as a species, and she was particularly intrigued by the desire of a small group of Replicators to ascend.
“They’re complex, they’re self-aware, they are trying to ascend,” she said. “They are a race. So to wipe them out — there are definitely ethical questions there. But, at the same time, they are an enemy and a threat, so you have to look out for your own, as well — which is exactly what this episode is about.”
As challenging as it was to play Elizabeth Weir in the episode, Morgan also said that she would love to play the original Fran again. Since Atlantis has the technology to create Replicators and her template on file, the possibilities for her return are endless.
Stay tuned for GateWorld’s complete interview with Michelle Morgan next week! “Ghost In the Machine” premieres Friday, August 15 on SCI FI Channel in the United States, and Tuesday, September 16 on Sky One in the U.K.