In the Line of Duty

Summary | Analysis | Notes | Characters | Questions

Carter is possessed by a Goa'uld who claims to be an enemy of the System Lords -- Jolinar of Malkshur, who is being hunted by an assassin that has followed her to Earth.

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EPISODE #202
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: 07.03.98
SYNDICATION AIR DATE: 09.20.99
DVD DISC: Season 2, Disc 1
WRITTEN BY: Robert C. Cooper
DIRECTED BY: Martin Wood
GUEST STARS:

Teryl Rothery (Dr. Janet Fraiser), Peter Lacroix (Ashrak), Katie Stuart (Cassandra), Laara Sadiq (Technician #1), Tracy Westerholm (Technician #2), Judy Norton (Talia), Joe Pascual (Medical Technician), Nicole Rudell (Nurse), Benz Antoine (Driver), Woody Jeffreys (SF Guard #1)

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As SG-1 helps a group of people on the planet Nassya flee through the Stargate from a Goa’uld attack on their world, Captain Carter stops to give CPR to a fallen villager. He suddenly grabs her head, a something enters her. Blood on her lip, Carter’s eyes glow. She has been possessed by a Goa’uld symbiote.

Carter returns through the gate and tries to act as normal as possible, though through the mission debriefing her comrades notice something is different about her. Finally, she goes to visit Cassandra (“Singularity”), and the young girl senses that Carter has been taken by a Goa’uld. She locks herself into Dr. Fraiser’s office and demands to see Colonel O’Neill.

Meanwhile, one of the badly burned refugees assaults his doctor, and emerges from his bandages fully recovered. He is an Ashrak, a Goa’uld-hired assassin.

Cassandra convinces O’Neill that Carter was infected, and he takes action. Carter is apprehended and put behind bars at the S.G.C. The Goa’uld reveals itself to be Jolinar of Malkshur, and demands release. The parasite even promises to return Carter to them, fully restored to who she was. O’Neill does not budge.

Finally, Jolinar reveals that she is a member of the Tok’ra, a group of rebel Goa’uld who oppose the System Lords and seek power for good. Teal’c, at least, is convinced.

When the Ashrak finally locates his victim, Jolinar, Carter suffers torture and almost death at his hands. The hunter is found, and Teal’c finally puts him down with two shots from a zat gun.

Meanwhile, Carter is fighting for life in the infirmary. When she recovers, she tells O’Neill that Jolinar has given its life to save hers.

ANALYSIS

  • The Goa’uld attack on the planet was likely for the sole purpose of eliminating Jolinar. The team reported that the attack ship came without warning, and that the planet rarely has any trouble from the Goa’uld.
  • A Goa’uld can control the host without making its presence known. Carter was obviously under Jolinar’s influence throughout the episode, though her eyes glowed and her voice changed only after she was found out. This will make it even more difficult to determine when someone has been infected with a Goa’uld parasite.
  • Cassandra has the ability to detect the presence of a Goa’uld, just like other Goa’uld can do. The team speculates that it may be because of the traces of naquadah that remain in her system.
  • Jolinar may have entered her last host, the Nassyan man, months ago. The man’s wife reported that he had had a scar on his neck several months earlier, but it had gone away. She also said that he had not been acting particularly strange. Jolinar seems to have hidden out within the man for several months, and was forced to emerge only when the Goa’uld arrived and the host was mortally wounded.
  • Daniel was not rendered unconscious by the zat blast, probably because the energy was absorbed by two people.

NOTES

  • Teams SG-10, SG-11, and SG-12 have been added to the Stargate Command base.
  • According to Teal’c, arrogance is the Goa’uld’s greatest weakness.
  • The Goa’uld can enter a host through the mouth rather than the back of the neck, leaving no visible trace of infection.
  • It is possible for a Goa’uld to leave a body without killing the host, at great risk to its own life.
  • There are a group of Goa’uld called the Tok’ra, who seek power for good and oppose the System Lords and their ways. They are legendary among Jaffa, who are forbidden to speak of them. The Tok’ra do not take hosts against their will, but choose hosts who are about to die and choose to be joined with them.
  • A Goa’uld assassin is called an “Ashrak” (meaning “hunter”).
  • Jolinar of Malkshur once tried to overthrow a System Lord and was defeated when Apophis joined the battle.

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT

  • Samantha CarterSamantha Carter – Sam has experienced melding with a Goa’uld — but not just any Goa’uld, a member of the rebel Tok’ra, who gave its life to save hers. She must come to terms with the experience, including the way she treated her friends and loved ones (such as threatening to kill Cassandra).
  • Janet FraiserJanet Fraiser – In addition to being chief medical officer at the S.G.C., Doctor Frasier has an office at the United States Air Force Academy Hospital nearby.

UNANSWERED QUESTIONS

  • Can Cassandra detect the presence of Goa’uld because of the left over naquadah in her system, or for some other reason? This is an ability shown only by other Goa’uld. Could she be infected herself, or have some undiagnosed extrasensory perception?
  • Why had Jolinar been hiding out on Nassya for so long? Did she have a mission there? Why would she not return to the Tok’ra?
  • Why did the assassin need a device to detect Jolinar? As a Goa’uld himself, he should be able to sense the presence of another Goa’uld.
  • Did Jolinar really know where Sha’re is? How did he come upon this knowledge?
  • Will Carter suffer any after-effects, positive or negative, of being joined with Jolinar?