For the season finale, it’s back to Abydos to prevent Anubis’ latest scheme.
Last time on Stargate SG-1: Jonas briefly had precognitive abilities.
An Old Friend
Skaara goes amongst some tents, heading into one where there are other villagers. They are worried about Anubis’ impending arrival as he’s seeking something on Abydos. The young man is understandably worried but one hooded figure turns around to reveal himself to be Daniel, there to help out.
After the credits, Jack is walking down a hallway while amused music plays. Swiping his ID card, Jack gets into an elevator after the previous occupant gets off. Hitting a button, he has to swipe the card again. As the elevator goes down, Michael Shanks’ special credit is seen. The elevator’s light flashes and Jack tries to phone somebody to no avail.
From behind Jack, Daniel has to say his name twice before Jack turns around. The commentary explains that Michael was next to the camera, which was how he got into the seemingly empty elevator. Daniel goes, “Hi, Jack,” and delves into the exposition. Anubis is seeking the Eye of Ra, briefly showing Jack the replica Catherine gave him (it must be a metaphysical construct or something, because how else would he have it on him?). There are six eyes in total, including ones named for Tiamat, Anubis, and Osiris. That first one was the MacGuffin for “The Tomb”.
I wonder what remaining pair of Goa’uld formerly had ‘Eyes’ and why those six got/created them. As a set, they would have greatly magnified power. All Anubis has to do is get the Eye of Ra and he will have that set. And he’s searched everywhere else Ra hung out- Abydos is where it must be.
Jack is bemused and annoyed so Daniel starts to beg. The older man just gets snarky. Turning around all the way, Daniel tries to play along with having a ‘normal chat’ but Jack is very snarky about Daniel (supposedly a powerful being now) showing up to ask for his help, particularly given how rarely Daniel visits at all.
Daniel reminds him that he can’t do anything as there are rules against intervention. He hasn’t met these others as Oma and her followers are outcasts for helping mortals Ascend. It’s pointed out that Ascension is “only the beginning of the journey”. Oma would stop Daniel herself if he tried to do anything as it’d bring down the others’ wrath on her and him.
The show cuts to Jack having told Hammond and the rest of SG-1 what Daniel told him in the briefing room. When the general asks how Jack got this data, Jack awkwardly admits, “Daniel told me.”
Then he’s upset that everybody just accepts this as true, even after he admits it wasn’t the first time. Teal’c admits that he’s seen Daniel before. It turns out neither Jack nor Teal’c was entirely sure what was going on the first times they saw the brunet. Jack is still a bit grumpy with the younger man.
There’s a shot of the pyramid. SG-1 has gone through the Gate are greeted by Skaara, who gets a hug from Jack. Jonas introduces himself and he shakes hands with Skaara. Teal’c leaves to set up a perimeter with the other defenders. Skaara leads the others down a hallway away from the Gate chamber to a much more worn area. A lineless Abydonian guy with a torch has accompanied them as well.
Skaara has a torch too; it’s explained that the catacombs end here. Back in the day, he and Daniel explored them. The hieroglyphs do mention the Eye of Ra. Jack semi-worriedly stresses that it’s a jewel, not a literal eye. The item has not been found.
The Attack Begins
A massive ship emerges from hyperspace.
Outside the pyramid, Teal’c and the Abydonians are preparing for the upcoming battle.
Jonas is translating. It turns out that Skaara is betrothed. I’m genre savvy enough to know that as soon as this was mentioned, it was code for ‘will not survive the episode’. It’s a bit upsetting that this fiancée doesn’t even get a name, let alone getting to show up on camera. I get wanting to keep the plot moving and limiting the cast, but still. It’s not unexpected, but always annoying.
Jack gives congratulations and gets invited to the wedding ceremony to stand with Skaara. Jack gets Sam to be invited as well, particularly after the blonde clarifies that they’d be going together as friends. Jack is awkward to Skaara’s amusement (clearly their efforts weren’t enough). Sam is a mix between the two emotions.
Teal’c has a rocket launcher (or something similar). The native is curious about what Daniel is now. Getting in an indeed, Teal’c stresses that Daniel is not a god but admits he doesn’t know definitely how powerful Daniel is. It turns out that Skaara believes Daniel will protect their hidden families.
Ha’taks and gliders appear on the horizon, heading towards the pyramid to attack.
Jonas is still translating when Jack finds him, as the younger man is struggling to figure things out.
The ships start to blast at the defenders, who fire back. One big ship lands. Teal’c starts to use his massive weapon against the foes. He radios Jack on the circumstances.
Jonas is getting stressed as he’s not making progress. Certain that Daniel is present in some way, Jack calls out for him. Daniel does show up to reassure the group, greeting Sam and Jonas. Jack is still annoyed and quickly persuades Daniel to cross that “fine line”. I am aware that the above screen-cap only has Sam’s head, but it also has both Daniel and Skaara in the shot.
Daniel exposits on where he used to think the secret chamber was. Teal’c radios Jack again, the colonel telling him to fall back. Jack and Skaara leave to help out the defenders.
Teal’c and the Abydonians are falling back. When Teal’c fires, the two parts of a death glider crash into the sands and hurt some of the defenders. That’s not good, but neither would have letting the death glider continue attacking.
Daniel and Jonas are trying to find the secret mechanism to open the door. Jonas gets out his flashlight to use on a red jewel, as there’s a mention of Ra getting his powers from sunlight but there are no window in the chamber so maybe any light would work. Sam suggests focusing the light.
When Jonas gets out a magnifying glass, Daniel is briefly taken aback by Jonas using his stuff. Jonas counters, “You weren’t using it anymore,” to which Daniel has no argument.
The defenders have retreated into the pyramid. An annoyed Jack updates Sam via radio. Jonas and Daniel are concerned while Sam watches on. Daniel realizes that the rays on the fresco are painted red. Sam uses the red guide light on her gun on the jewel, causing the door to slide sideways so they can get in.
“Sweet,” goes Jonas. He and Sam enter first, followed by Daniel and the quiet Abydonian. The room looks to be a treasure room of some kind.
The Crystal Chamber
There’s a firefight between the heroic defenders and Anubis’ Jaffa. Transport rings are used to have more Jaffa arrive in the Gate room, upping the ante. Jack moves around the room’s edge to get to the felled Skaara.
Daniel has gotten distracted by a stone tablet to Sam’s confusion. The brunet has realized that the other Ascended beings must be Ancients based off of this translation. Huh. I did not realize this was a Big Reveal here; I started this blog knowing that most of the Ascended were Ancients. They were an ancient type of humanity who either Ascended or got wiped out by a plague. There’s the first mention of a very valuable lost city. Yes, very valuable- it’ll cause much more Rodney goodness. Before teleporting away, Daniel warns them to not lose the tablet.
Sam and Jonas keep searching the room, failing to find the Eye of Ra. The blonde suggests that there could be a secret compartment. Tapping on spots with an item, Jonas quickly finds a hollow-sounding spot. Swiping the stuff below to the ground, Jonas tries to find a way in. Sam tells him to stand back and he goes to behind her. She gets on clear goggles and fires repeatedly at the spot, opening up holes in the wall.
Approaching, Jonas reaches into the space to grab the Eye of Ra, which is a jewel-like item on a palm-sized platter of some kind. He tucks it into his uniform and grabs the tablet as well. As they head out of the secret chamber, Sam radios Jack.
He, Teal’c, and the heavily wounded Skaara arrive as the Jaffa have the Abydonians trapped. Jack decides they might as well blow up the Eye of Ra to keep it out of Anubis’ hands. Jaffa guards head down the stairs as Jack straps C4 on the eye of Ra. The heroes have holed up in the treasure chamber.
The leader tells the group “Surrender or die” twice, recognizing O’Neill. Jack vaguely remembers him and there’s a narrow miss from a staff weapon. He is Herak, previously seen in “The Other Guys”. Well, his name was spelled Her’ak then, but the end credits here use Herak.
Jack makes his demand, seemingly willing to blow himself up with the Eye of Ra as well as being his usual snarky self. Herak retreats.
Jonas asks, “Is it really necessary to further antagonize him?”
After a moment, Jack replies, “Yes.”
“Would you really do it?” Sam inquires.
“Sure. Why not?” is his response.
Teal’c alerts Jack that Skaara needs medical attention. Skaara thinks he’s failed Jack, leading the older man to go, “Aw, stop it.”
On the spaceship’s bridge, Herak kneels before Anubis to give his report. Anubis is willing to destroy Abydos if the Eye of Ra isn’t given to him. Daniel shows up to confront Anubis. For symbolism, it’s interesting to note that both guys are wearing hoods- Daniel’s brown one that frames his face and Anubis’ black one while he seemingly lacks a face.
Anubis has his ‘face’ start glowing white and a skull emerges in the black ‘stuff’ where it should be. The commentary reveals that the look was inspired by the Ringwraiths.
Herak returns to the space to make his demands of Jack. Remarkably blasé, Jack thinks that Anubis is bluffing or will just destroy Abydos either way.
Speaking in his native tongue, it’s apparent that Skaara is dying. Teal’c is translating, which causes Jack to worry more. Skaara’s eyes close, saddening SG-1. Suddenly Skaara Ascends, shocking everybody- including the Jaffa guards. Jack is clearly bittersweet about this turn of events.
Anubis wants to attack Abydos and dares Daniel to take action. A cluster of motherships emerges from hyperspace. Yu shows up on the screen to challenge Anubis. After the image fades away, Daniel makes a deal with Anubis- the Eye of Ra in exchange for leaving Abydos alone. He’s clearly a sweetie who doesn’t understand evil.
The quartet is still cornered when Daniel shows up. Jack thanks Daniel, but it turns out that Daniel wasn’t involved in Ascending Skaara. He realizes that Oma is here. He tells the others that Anubis is partially Ascended- the others tried to undo the Ascension, but got him stuck between Ascension and mortality. It’s clarified again that the ‘others’ are the Ancients, the Stargate’s creators.
More Jaffa are showing up. Daniel reveals about the motherships and his deal with Anubis. Jack is not okay with this. “The lost city of the Ancients” is brought up as them needing to find it and its weaponry before Anubis does. There’s a bit of lamp-shading that Sam didn’t catch Jack up off-screen. Daniel is willing to help them find it. The stone tablet matters more than the Eye of Ra.
Jack and Daniel talk a bit more, as neither wants anything bad to happen to the people of Abydos. Exiting the secret chamber, Jack very begrudgingly hands over the C4-ed Eye of Ra to Harek (as in, Harek has to ultimately yank it out of Jack’s hands). Jack is wary. Harek is willing to not kill them despite his desire to. Jack is very much not okay with this situation.
“Jaffa, Kree”, goes Harek. He and the Jaffa follow exit the space. The quartet leaves the space, confused. Jack is eager to leave.
There’s a teleportation to the mothership. Harek goes to the bridge with the Eye of Ra (C4 removed), giving it to Anubis. Getting up from his throne, Anubis takes it from its platter. The massive ship starts to modify itself (I’m not quite sure what’s going on). The ship’s weapons get fully powered.
Yu is ready to attack Anubis and a firefight takes place between the system lords. I’m not terribly invested as I know both villains survive.
It looks like the other dying Abydonians were Ascended as well when the quartet reaches the Gate chamber.
The other system lords are retreating so Anubis wants to destroy Abydos.
SG-1 activates the wormhole for Earth.
Daniel shows up to confront Anubis. Harek kneels down. Daniel’s hands start to glow but he gets teleported away. The commentary reveals that it was Oma who did that. Harek gives credit to Anubis, which he declines but states that what is about to occur will be his doing. It’s odd, given how keen system lords are to be seen as gods. Anubis emits a blast at the pyramid, which starts to explode.
Only the Beginning of the Adventure
The wormhole at SGC acts up but Jack gets through just before the iris closes, his teammates waiting for him at the ramp’s base. Jack alerts them that he felt the blast start up before heading through. Sam wants the Gate checked on as a result, Walter quickly getting the facts. Hammond shows up as they redial Abydos… chevron seven won’t lock.
“Briefing room,” the general orders.
Cutting to after the briefing, Hammond is holding the stone tablet. Everybody is stressed out. Jonas admits it’ll take time, but he’ll translate the stone tablet. Sam knows that Daniel had to be prevented from helping Abydos, so it’s possible something bad happened to him.
Walter is dialing Abydos yet again, and gets told by Sam that they’ll keep dialing until they know that Abydos is gone (possibly by the Tok’ra flying by). However, this time it works and a MALP shows the pyramid being whole.
SG-1 heads through the wormhole and the Gate chamber looks fine as the wormhole closes behind them. They head out of the pyramid and find the village as if Anubis’ attack never happened. As they walk amongst the tents, Jack removes his sunglasses. The villagers seem to be oblivious to the quartet.
Skaara shows up and Jack approaches him first. They say each other’s names and Skaara explains that everybody died in the blast. Jack is very confused, but it seems that they’re all Ascended thanks to Oma. Skaara and Jack say their goodbyes as they won’t be meeting for a while.
Jack momentarily kneels down to pick up a ball but when he gets up, the village is gone. Skaara states that the Gate will remain until they leave. After they look back at it for a moment, they realize Skaara is gone too. They start to walk towards the Stargate, which is now visible as the pyramid is gone.
Things did indeed go ‘full circle’. The original quartet met up again and it was back to Abydos, the first planet visited by the SGC program both in the movie and TV series. This was originally meant to be a series finale with a movie to follow up on the lost city. It was after filming that they got word there’d be a season seven, meaning that the search could be seasonal arc. I think we all know what the lost city turns out to be.
I can see where it could have ended the series, but I am glad that there’ll be four more seasons, not to mention the spin-offs. It is amusing that Catherine got mentioned here, so soon after I learned of her upcoming prequel series. However, I still don’t get why “Prophecy” and this episode were aired together.
Daniel returns once again. Except for the elevator scene where he’s in a nice white V-neck sweater, he’s in Abydonian garb. Similarly, SG-1 spends most of the episode in desert camo. It’s acknowledged that they largely follow the tone set by “Ascension” for Daniel’s appearances this season. Seeing Daniel again was wonderful, as he refuses to merely stand by while others (particularly those he cares for) are in danger despite the rules. The commentary seems to be oblivious to Michael Shanks’ long-term return right now (they might be holding back, though).
It was nice to see Skaara one last time, though I wish Kasuf had been at least mentioned. It’s rather sad that Abydos has been destroyed, along with its inhabitants. It’s definitely worrying that Anubis now can basically pull a Death Star. The commentary admits it’s a bit of stretch that Ascension was suddenly easy enough for the whole village to do so rapidly, but since it means that the Abydonians aren’t entirely gone, I won’t nit-pick.
There was one last directors’ series featurette. They’re adorably happy about Michael’s return. And that in real life, Anubis was a guy with his face painted green with red dots on it. They brought back this actor as he also played Sokar earlier, but they enjoyed his acting (similarly to turning Herak into a reoccurring character). Martin Wood lampshades that this look isn’t scary. There’s also information on how they modeled the pyramid’s explosion. It turns out that a best boy grip is used for the rippling effect for off-screen wormholes (a reflective wiggling screen on a pole that has a light aimed at it for refraction). There’s also information on storyboarding and how it compares to the final product.
There’ll be a season summary before moving onto season seven.
Next time on Stargate SG-1: Daniel is no longer Ascended.