ORIGINAL AIR DATE: 06.01.07
SYNDICATION AIR DATE: 04.21.08
DVD DISC: Season 10, Disc 5
WRITTEN BY: Damian Kindler
DIRECTED BY: Andy Mikita
Tony Amendola (Bra’tac), Craig Fairbrass (Arkad), Eric Breker (Colonel Reynolds), Peter Kent (Bak’al), Gary Jones (Walter Harriman), Lexa Doig (Carolyn Lam), John Tench (Lizan), Megan Elizabeth (Jaffa Girl), Aaron Brooks (Nisal)
Representatives of the Jaffa, including Teal’c and Bra’tac, meet in a rare summit on Dar Eshkalon to determine the future of their people in the face of the Ori threat. But their enemies are many, and a terrorist attack on the summit leaves many dead, including women and children.
Bra’tac is seriously injured and taken to Stargate Command, where Dr. Carolyn Lam cares for him. Teal’c ignores his team’s entreaties and departs on a one-man quest for revenge, having reason to believe that the man responsible for the cowardly bombing is one of his own former pupils, a ferocious and extremely capable warrior named Arkad. He is a charismatic leader opposed the summit, and wishes to lead the Jaffa people himself — and he is a follower of Origin.
Teal’c’s search leads him to an alien bar, where the sympathetic owner points him to a customer named Lizan. A human, Lizan’s people was once enslaved at the hands of the Jaffa and doesn’t mind seeing them now killing one another. But Teal’c will do whatever it takes to find a lead on Arkad.
The enraged Teal’c’s is taking no prisoners, and his hunt leads him to Ba’Kal, a Jaffa terrorist working for Arkad. Ba’Kal does not fear death, because he believes the Ori will ascend him. But Teal’c is not here to argue religion or to watch Ba’Kal endure torture: he wants answers, and he has removed Ba’Kal’s symbiote and replaced it with a bomb.
But, of course, all is never as it seems. As Teal’c leaves behind a trail of bodies in his search for Arkad, Stargate Command receives an incoming wormhole and a message from Arkad himself. He claims that he is not responsible for the bombing, and offers his sincere help in stopping the impending attack on Earth …
- The episode’s title is taken from the Latin lex taliionis, meaning “law of retribution,” a punishment that is equal to the offense — derived from Genesis 9:6 (“Whoever sheds a man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed”) and the ancient law of “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.”
- “Ah, Damian and his affinity for cryptic titles (see ‘Chimera’ and ‘Ethon’). For almost the entire duration of the production and post, I kept hearing ‘Italian’ when someone said ‘Talion.’ Anyway, bizarre title aside, I thought this was pretty strong episode, a dark examination of the Teal’c character and one of those of those instances where the show was fairly on point in exploring a contemporary and controversial subject matter in a sci-fi context.
“The final showdown between Teal’c and Arkad is mighty gruesome — but nowhere near as gruesome as the director’s cut that was so gory it had us wondering whether we’d been overworking director Andy Mikita.” (Executive producer Joseph Mallozzi, in a post at his blog)