Stargate Universe episode 11 review

Stargate Universe returns after a long absence with a game changing episode. Carl has had a look at Space...

This review contains spoilers if you haven’t seen the episode yet.

11. Space

At the end of the tenth episode, we were left with an incredible cliffhanger that would have been good if the next episode was a week later. However, we had to wait almost five months for a resolution, which just made it all the more brilliant. Now, we get to see whether it was worth the wait.

We start right from where we left off, with Lt Johansen (Alaina Huffman) pointing out in the first few minutes, “Emotionally, a lot has been left unresolved.” The crew of the Destiny are still at each other’s throats for various reasons and certain people still blame themselves for the events of episode ten.

Ad – content continues below

For those of you who’ve just tuned in, in episode ten, Sgt Spencer (Josh Blacker) died and the crew then spent most of the episode blaming each other before going, “Oh, he committed suicide!” That left Col Young (Louis Ferreira) thinking that it was his fault for not seeing the signs beforehand.

So, with a lot on his mind, he decided that the best way to get over the grief was to have a long needed fight with Dr Young (Robert Carlyle) and leave him wounded on an alien planet. It helps that he told everyone it was a rockslide that killed him, though, thus resoling himself to feeling even guiltier.

So, we start with Col Young wallowing in a secret self-pity, before heading off to use the ancient communication stones to contact Earth. However, he doesn’t exactly get what he wished for, as the stones swap his body for that of an alien.

To dive right into a story like this is pretty bold, considering they’ve avoided full-bodied aliens so far. It’s just a glimpse at first, however, as the stone is pulled out of its dock as the alien on the good ship Destiny gets a little hands on. Its interest in the humans is quickly evident, though, as when the Destiny drops out of FTL, an alien ship appears and offers the simple response to Eli’s simple ‘hello’ as ‘Surrender.’

When it seems clear that there’s no room for negotiation, the alien ship launches fighters and the Destiny responds with the only small ship it has on offer. When Col Young uses the stones to do a little bit more re-con on the aliens, he finds out that Dr Rush is aboard and being held captive too.

With space battles and aliens already in the mix, it’s clear within the first twenty minutes that the rules of Stargate Universe have changed, and dramatically.

Ad – content continues below

With one of the crew taken hostage, the story takes on an altogether different vibe. It’s time to figure out whether the aliens are evil or just misunderstood. So far, they seem entirely bent on being a complete nuisance to the humans already in a pretty annoying situation. Humans themselves, can be pretty good nuisances too. It’s really just a matter of who can be better at it.

While some things resolve themselves towards the end of the episode, the ship and its crew are left in a bit of a sorry state, physically and emotionally. With a fair few cast members in the sickbay, and emotions running high, the end of the episode is a bit of a downer.

However, what we start to see in this episode that we have seen little of in previous episodes is the coming together of the whole team. Not just in teamwork to help fight the aliens, but also just in the little things, like getting along with one another.

In particular, Dr Caine (Tygh Runyan) steps up to the foreground a little and becomes just that little bit more interesting as a result. He becomes friendly with Lt Johansen (Alaina Huffman) in a lovely little scene toward the end of the episode and gets more involved with the team when he is asked to fill in for the injured Sgt Riley (Haig Sutherland) when the ancient communication stones are used. He proves himself to be a very capable actor and I’m hoping that they will start to use him more often in the future.

Of course, the family is all here and doing well at the moment. Eli Wallace (David Blue) is overworked but still enjoyable to watch. Lt Scott (Brian Smith) and Sgt Greer (Jamil Smith) get a few good scenes together in this one, but nothing overly focused on them. Chloe Armstrong (Elyse Levesque) gets a little more attention in this one and shows that she’s good at what she does.

However, it’s Col Young and Dr Rush that have the focus directly on them, as it should be, and they come out on top as usual. Their relationship is very fraught with rivalry and contention, and it’s this that fuels their conversations to be the most interesting here.

Ad – content continues below

There is something alluded to have sparked up again in the last few moments of the show, which is the resurgence of the intended coup by a sect of crew members, this time led by an unlikely partnership.

Overall, this episode is interesting, but not outstanding. While the characters get a little left behind, the story ramps up and feels a little overwhelming. A two-parter here could have served the show better, as the situation feels a little crammed into its 40 minute run.

There isn’t much chance for peril either, as most situations resolve themselves pretty quickly, and while the ship is in a bit of a state at the end, it’s arguable that it was in a state to begin with.

Those gripes aside, however, the story definitely gets very interesting here and for anyone who felt left behind by the perhaps overly dramatic first half of season one, now is the time to come back to Destiny.

With aliens, space battles and threats far beyond their own crew, it’s fair to say nothings ever going to be the same and that leads us into very interesting territory in episode twelve.

Check out our review of episode 10 here.

Ad – content continues below

Stargate Universe is showing in the UK on Sky1 and Sky1 HD every Tuesday.