It has been a big year for Stargate. It’s probably safe to say that 2018 was the biggest year for the sci-fi franchise since Stargate Universe went off the air in 2011. More than six quiet years followed, as Stargate went on furlough and MGM entered a period of post-bankruptcy rebuilding.
So why was 2018 the year of Stargate’s return … and what might be ahead that is even bigger?
Here we’ll wrap up the year by looking back at the fun of the past 12 months — from Stargate Origins to new books and comics, conventions, and more. If you haven’t been keeping with with all the weekly news at GateWorld this year, here’s your recap!
Fans of the Stargate franchise welcomed in the new year awaiting eagerly for the first live-action production since SGU wrapped its (too short) broadcast run. The 10-episode Web series filmed the previous fall, and now was in post-production.
Stargate Origins premiered online (exclusively at Stargate Command) on February 14, with the first three 10-minute episodes dropping all at once. They were available to the general public worldwide … giving a teaser for the entire story, which would be an All-Access subscriber exclusive. (You can still find the first three installments there with a free account.)
The rest of Origins rolled out over the course of the next two weeks, as we got to know younger versions of Catherine Langford (Ellie Gall) and Kasuf (Daniel Rashid), alongside newcomers James Beal (Philip Alexander) and Wasif (Shvan Aladdin). Origins also brought a group of fantastic villains, from the Nazi scientist Wilhelm Brücke (Aylam Orian) to the stylish Goa’uld Aset (Salome Azizi) and her right-hand warrior, Serqet (Michelle Jubilee Gonzalez).
Production sources told GateWorld that they regard Origins as part of the canon of the Stargate storyline. The team worked hard to keep the story in continuity with both the 1994 movie and the television universe, sewing in references to the larger world — one that most of the characters are not aware of (such as the forbidden Harcesis child).
Of course, many fans pointed to the elephant in the story room: Before “The Torment of Tantalus” Catherine Langford never went through the Stargate … or so we thought. Seeing just how Stargate Origins deals with this point, and fits in with canon, requires watching it all the way to the end.
If you haven’t seen Origins yet we recommend that you sit down with the feature cut — now available at digital retail outlets under the title Stargate Origins: Catherine. It has all 10 short webisodes cut together as a seamless whole, and the story really works better in this format.
DIALING HOME: BEHIND THE SCENES
The other big show on Stargate Command (MGM’s official platform) is “Dialing Home,” a behind-the-scenes Web series dedicated to celebrating the history of the franchise we love so much. It’s co-hosted by Christopher Judge (“Teal’c”) and former GateWorld editor David Read, who spent a year getting together with former SG-1, Atlantis, and SGU cast and crew members to reminisce and share stories.
Folks on the couch have included everyone from Cliff Simon (“Baal”), Alexis Cruz (“Skaara”), and Jay Acovone (“Charles Kawalsky”) to David Nykl (“Radek Zelenka”), Ben Browder (“Cameron Mitchell”) and Beau Bridges (“Hank Landry”), Gary Jones (“Walter Harriman”), and tons more.
When we had David back to mark the 150th episode of the GateWorld Podcast he told us that his personal highlight of the year was a reunion of Stargate’s doctors: Teryl Rothery, Paul McGillion, Jewel Staite, and Alaina Huffman all together at one table!
These interviews do a wonderful job documenting Stargate’s history behind the scenes, and inviting viewers in as part of the family. Some are stories you might have heard before, at a convention or in an interview. But a whole lot of it is brand new, as Chris and David get their friends and former cast mates riffing on the years they spent on the Stargate set.
Season Two of “Dialing Home” starts in January with the likes of Robert Picardo, Torri Higginson, David DeLuise, Tom McBeath, and executive producer Brad Wright.
The full series is available to All-Access subscribers at Stargate Command. Do check it out.
Stargate Origins isn’t the only place to find new, original Stargate stories this year. Though things have been quiet on the television front the franchise is still rolling in its licensed tie-ins — especially novels and comic books.
Fandemonium has published Stargate novels and short story anthologies since 2004. This year brought Amy Griswold’s short novella From the Depths, in which the Atlantis team encounters a remarkable lifeform on its newly adopted home planet.
Atlantis fans also got a brand new Legacy novel in August: Pride of the Genii introduces an Ancient warship, which has been discovered by the (usually untrustworthy) Genii. Melissa Scott wrote the novel, which also brings back Genii leader Ladon Radim.
And in November Fandeomonium published Stargate SG-1: Female of the Species, the second full-length Stargate novel from Geonn Cannon. This one is available digitally right now, and tells a story that reunites SG-1 and Vala Mal Doran with Tanis Reynard — the unscrupulous female thief we met in the Season Six episode “Forsaken.”
On the comic book front, American Mythology finished up both the Stargate Atlantis and Stargate Universe stories that it kicked off in 2016 (SGA) and 2017 (SGU). Written by Mark L. Haynes and J.C. Vaughn, the 12-issue run of Atlantis sees the team bring the Ancient city back to the Pegasus Galaxy, where they find themselves in a struggle against the Ancient scientist Janus and his powerful allies.
These issues are available digitally and at your local comic book store. They have also now been collected in two trade paperback volumes, each with six issues.
Stargate Universe: “Back to Destiny” picked up where the TV show left off (and is also written by Haynes and Vaughn). As the ship’s crew come out of stasis they learn that they are not alone on the vessel. A crew of Ancients has also recently come out of stasis — setting up a tense conflict and a struggle to save the ship before its mission is lost forever.
STARGATE FANDOM LIVES!
This year Stargate has also been making its presence felt on the convention scene. In addition to numerous cast appearances at various events, big and small, all around the world, Stargate fans celebrated two major Stargate-specific events.
Gatecon: The Invasion brought hundreds of Stargate fans and more than 40 Stargate cast and crew to the show’s home city — Vancouver, British Columbia — in September. We were there to cover the convention for you, from the actor panels and the charity auction to the fan costume competition and more. It was so much fun to see old friends and meet fans from all over the world.
Then in November it was the U.K.’s turn. First-time organizers FCD Events brought Cal Mah to Leicester, where fans got to meet the likes of Chris Judge, David Blue, Torri Higginson, Rainbow Sun Francks, Cliff Simon, Gary Jones, Alexis Cruz, and others.
Stargate also had a presence once again at San Diego Comic-Con (and GateWorld was there to cover all the action). First came the Stargate panel event, as hundreds of fans packed out a ballroom to see Chris Judge, Tony Amendola (“Bra’tac”), and a panel of fans talk about the legacy of Stargate storytelling.
Later that day was a party, where members of the Stargate Origins cast showed up to mingle with fans and sign autographs. Then it was off to the deck of the U.S.S. Midway in San Diego Harbor to watch a special premiere screening of the Origins feature cut. (Take a look at our full Comic-Con photo gallery!)
Next year Creation Entertainment will dive back into Stargate conventions, too: “Gateway” will mark Stargate’s 25th anniversary when the event comes to Chicago in June.
ON GATEWORLD …
Here at GateWorld we’ve also had a year of great fun creating stuff for you to enjoy. We kicked off a revitalized YouTube channel with new, original video content. The GateWorld Podcast returned for more conversations, now with our newest editor Adam Barnard in the chair as co-host and producer.
GateWorld’s full coverage of Stargate Origins includes an episode guide with story analysis, plus a complete photo and screencap gallery. We’ve also interviewed a bunch of the cast and crew … and got to hang with them at Comic-Con in San Diego, where the Origins feature cut premiered to an audience of fans on the deck of the U.S.S. Midway.
Adam has also been continuing his popular editorial series “Stargate’s Legacy,” which will wrap up early next year. And we kicked off “My Stargate Story,” a way for ordinary fans to share with the world just how Stargate has impacted their lives.
GateWorld’s most-read headlines of the year include:
- #5 … Stargate SG-1 Season 11 Almost Happened
STARGATE IN 2019
Is Stargate Origins a “one and done” project? Or will it get a second season — another origin story for a favorite character, told as a Web series … or maybe a movie of the week?
That remains to be seen. After Origins‘ spring run we expected MGM to have some sort of public announcement to make about what’s next for the franchise. Spring turned into summer, and San Diego Comic-Con came and went with no major announcement.
Summer gave way to fall, and we hoped for some news about the future when MGM announced an official presence at Gatecon in Vancouver. But September came and went, too, with no news … not just yet. Former Stargate executive producer Brad Wright did take to the stage and at least tell fans that he and the studio are talking again.
It’s a start. As we ring in the new year we don’t know if MGM will pounce on Christopher Judge’s desire to create an Origins story for the Free Jaffa, or maybe explore the background of the Ancients. A miniseries event, or an out-of-the-box format?
Or might the studio be ready to explore a fourth ongoing, live-action TV series?
In 2019, we’re sure to find out.
We do know that it’s a big year ahead for Stargate. The new year will mark the 25th anniversary of the Stargate feature film. 2019 is also the 15-year mark for the debut of Stargate Atlantis — and the tenth anniversary of Stargate Universe!
And it’s GateWorld’s twentieth year. The Web’s “Complete Guide to Stargate” will celebrate a big birthday this October, and we can’t wait for what is to come.
We hope you’ll be along for the ride!