An old enemy travels back in time to prevent the Stargate on Earth ever being found, thereby leaving Earth defenceless in the present day.
Martin Wood, 2008
Shortly before dying, one of the clones of the Goa’uld Ba’al (Cliff Simon) reveals to the SG-1 team that the original Ba’al has an evil plot in store. Moments later, the team and their surroundings start disappearing. Led by soldier Cameron Mitchell (Ben Browder), the humans in the team – himself, Air Force Colonel Samantha Carter (Amanda Tapping), and archeologist Daniel Jackson (Michael Shanks) return to Earth, only to find that everything has changed. The ship carrying the Stargate from Egypt to America was sunk by Ba’al years earlier, causing humans to never venture out into the universe. While Sam, Daniel and Cameron struggle to adjust to life in the new Earth, Ba’al sets his master plan in motion.
This is a strange one. As an episode of Stargate, although it deals with a lot of typically Stargate-y things (time travel, alternate realities, time travel, evil Goa’uld plots) and does away with the less interesting Ori plot, it isn’t quite as exciting as Ark of Truth, possibly because it’s pretty obvious where the plot is going from very early on. It looks great, though, and works much better as a self-contained movie than Ark of Truth does. Not a great deal of knowledge of the show is necessary, and there’s plenty of exposition for the parts that are. It brings back all the old gang, even fan favourite
MacGyver Jack O’Neill (Richard Dean Anderson), though it really only makes use of the trio and the fantastically charismatic Cliff Simon as Ba’al. Initially a minor baddie, Ba’al proved so popular that he was brought back on numerous occasions, alternating between helping and hindering the SG-1 team. Unfortunately he was significantly defanged thanks to this flip-flopping, leading him to be more of an amusing nuisance than a genuine threat – even in this film it takes a serious plot twist to make the threat seem viable. There’s a criminal underuse of Claudia Black as Vala, the most interesting member of SG-1. Beau Bridges’ Hank Landry was never as good a leader of the Stargate program as the wonderful Hammond or O’Neill in his brief reign, and he never quite seemed to fit with the team no matter how he was shoehorned in; the same holds true here.
The plot is, as I mentioned, painfully predictable, but it is nice to see the team back together. The show was always good at fulfilling the sci-fi edict of speculative fiction – they take the “what if”s to their ends and use them to explore interesting sides of characters we know and love. Unfortunately we don’t get to see any of the main trio’s doubles, which is a crying shame, as Stargate’s best time travel episodes “Moebius 1 & 2” had the most delightful versions of two of those characters imaginable. It’s a fitting end for the team, though, especially the bookend scenes at the separation of Ba’al’s host and the Goa’uld worm inside him (which is a pretty great element of body horror that the series had going for it from the start). Even Daniel isn’t as annoying as he could be, and the reunion seems to be fun for everyone. It would’ve been a lot more fun if there had been more twists and turns, more unpredictability, but it’s solid enough.
Stargate: Continuum on IMDb