Stargate SG-1 is now streaming on Netflix in the United States … but you may need to wait until the kids are asleep, if Netflix is to be believed.
The streaming giant has listed not only the original pilot episode, but in fact all 10 seasons and 214 episodes of the hit sci-fi series, erroneously as rated “TV-MA.” Stargate is flagged for mature audiences due to nudity, a fact that appears in the corner ratings indicator at the beginning of every single episode — from “Urgo” to “Window of Opportunity” to “Heroes” to “Unending.”
It seems like a bit of a silly oversight … until you realize that the rating will discourage many subscribers from discovering the show for the first time. For those with parental controls enabled, currently no episode of the series can be viewed without entering a pass code.
In truth the only nudity in the show appears in the pilot episode, “Children of the Gods.” Premium cable home Showtime insisted upon the more mature content in 1997 (over producers’ objections). After the first week it was dropped entirely.
Netflix did not respond to inquiries posted to social media about the error.
Stargate has historically been a family show (once you get past that pilot — something that prompted co-creator Brad Wright to cut out the nudity in 2009’s Children of the Gods: Final Cut). Parents and children enjoyed the show together. Young girls were inspired to go into S.T.E.M. fields. And today an entirely new generation of kids is growing up with Jack, Daniel, Sam, and Teal’c in their family room.
Notably, Netflix and distributor MGM have options for the pilot episode. Three different versions exist, and the other two are already streaming on other services. Children of the Gods: Final Cut already appears on Amazon Prime Video in place of the original episode.
In addition to Wright’s revised edit of the pilot, a syndicated version of the original also exists without the nudity. This copy is streaming on Hulu (where it’s accurately rated TV-14).
The television ratings system assigns ratings not to an entire series, but to individual broadcast episodes. Most episodes of SG-1 are rated TV-14, for fantasy violence.
Until Netflix corrects the error, some families will doubtless keep Stargate on the shelf.