Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Stargate Atlantis - The Complete Fourth Season|
Actors: Joe Flanigan, David Hewlett, Jason Momoa, Torri Higginson, Amanda Tapping
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Television
Studio: Tcfhe/mgm Release Date: 01/13/2009 Run time: 900 minutes Rating: Nr
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Atlantis, Still Fun And Entertaining, But Where's It All Hea
Hectic | AL, USA | 04/27/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Although the actual DVD set isn't out as of the time I write this, the 4th season finished airing months ago and now since they have the page for pre-order up, I've been kinda itching to write a review.
Well as this season starts off from the 3rd season cliffhanger, it is definately off to an awesome start. Atlantis lost, adrift in space and running out of power. To conserve energy, they shrink the shield down to a small section of the city and then what happens?...Atlantis runs into an asteroid belt! Then to get more power, they actually raid the Asuran homeworld for ZPM's using Dr. Weir! A very entertaining beginning.
While the majority of episodes are hits, such as the episode where a disease causes everyone to lose their memories(Tabula Rasa) or the one where Teal'c comes for a visit(Midway); there are some that fall short of their potential for giving more or are just plain boring! For example: the end-season cliffhanger! This is the first time I've ever been disappointed with an Atlantis cliffhanger, not leaving me anxiously curious to see how they get out of that situation, waiting for the next season. It ends with Sheppard and his team searching a building for Teyla, but it self-destructs and collapses in on them. (Zzzzzz...you know they survive it) A better way to end the season would have been to leave Sheppard stranded 48,000 years in the future, revealing more about what happened in the galaxy in all that time and trying to figure out a way to get back home with the McKay hologram's original plan failing to work! Now that sounds like one hell of a cliffhanger!
I reviewed season 3 as well, saying it gives potential for an awesome season 4. Does it live up to that potential? It comes close, but unfortunately no it doesn't. Why? It just seems like the shows creators/writers aren't willing to go all the way in some of the episode's stories. For that matter, I can't figure out what direction the show is headed in anymore; can you? (I assume the show IS going in some direction)
At least this time around they gave more attention to the Wraith and to Teyla. The whole story arc with the Athosian people being kidnapped and Teyla's search for them, both expanded, and renewed some interest, in her character. In my season 3 review I also stated my favorite character is McKay, but even I am starting to get tired of seeing him so much in every episode.
Dr. Weir was officially lost this season, then killed, then...kinda came back? But fortunately we regained some old faces. Dr. Beckett (or at least a clone) came back at an end of the season episode. And while I liked having Samantha Carter as the Atlantis commander, just like Dr. Weir in season 3, they didn't utilize her character enough!
Which leads us to season 5. SPOILERS AHEAD! I've read various sources about what season 5 of Atlantis will have instore for us fans & veiwers, and most have been confirmed. The biggy for me being that Samantha Carter (Amanda Tapping) will NOT be back as Atlantis' commander. (Due to the fact she'll be staring in her own show, "Sanctuary".) But she will come back for some guest appearances. Who's replacing her? Richard Woolsey (Robert Picardo)! I have completely mixed feelings about his character, but he definately doesn't have what it takes to command Atlantis! So unless he grows a pair and proves himself as something other than a cowering beaurocrat, this alone makes me uncertain about season 5 as well as the future of the show. Dr. Beckett and Dr. Daniel Jackson will guest star in some episodes, as well as 2 new characters and an entirely new race being introduced.
Don't get me wrong, I still really like Atlantis and am going to get the season 4 DVD once it's released, but I must say this is the first time I am uncertain about how the next season will take shape, or if it will even be any good? Let's just hope season 5 will prove me wrong!
The season 4 DVD set itself will have the usual: commentaries, deleted scenes, etc. However, this will be the first Atlantis season DVD that will have a bloopers reel.
**UPDATE: Well, Season 4 came out today, I've got it and am watching it right now. Physical DVD-wise, the video and sound is still great like seasons 2 & 3. Packaging is the same as well. The menus are different from seasons 2 & 3 DVD's, but are still cool-looking and are easy to navigate. (You don't have to go through a lot of submenus to get what you are looking for.) Hope this latest info helps anyone!
Stargate Atlantis Rocks
S. Ross | Johnson City, TN USA | 05/18/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I think that Stargate Atlantis Season 4 is well worth watching. I would agree with other reviewers that Carter should have been in more episodes (it was fun to see how she and McKay got along). I also agree that I continually expected to see something else on Weir and the Replicators, but it never happened. However, I think overall this season was great. I can't wait to own it on DVD this summer or for the next season. I hope it lasts as long as SG-1, or even longer!"
The usual high quality
Mary Oh | 09/16/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"All SGA seasons have great packaging and tons of nifty features. The highlight of the S4 set is the addition of Amanda Tapping, who gets her own featurette and has commentaries on Lifeline, Tabula Rasa, and Trio. There's also the Stargate Atlantis Bloopers on disc 2."
My favorite of the first four seasons of ATLANTIS
Robert Moore | Chicago, IL USA | 06/23/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I'm currently engaged in a pretty exhaustive TV viewing project, one that will see me watching just about every major Sci-fi series made in the past few decades. Unfortunately I'm at a bad point in my project. I've already seen almost all of the shows that I've had reason to believe are better than average shows. I'm now left with the dregs.
Now, STARGATE ATLANTIS is hardly a "dreg" show. I watched the first three seasons as they were coming out, until I became disenchanted with the series, in particular with the increasingly reliance on standalone episodes and on poor character development (i.e., lack of character development). I was also concerned about the show because of the elimination from the show of Paul McGillion, who played Dr. Carson Beckett, one of the more interesting characters on the show. Also, Tori Higginson, who had played head of the Atlantis Project Dr. Elizabeth Weir for three years, was planned to depart the show. Despite the addition of Jewel Staite, who I had loved on FIREFLY, I suddenly found myself uninterested in watching the show any longer.
I'm delighted to learn that not only was Season Four not a decline in the quality of STARGATE ATLANTIS, it was actually the most interesting season of the first four of the show. Part of the reason was the replacement of Tori Higginson with Amanda Tapping, who reprised her role from SG-1 of Samantha Carter, sadly available with the ending of that show. I never disliked Higginson, but I never felt that she brought much gravitas to her character (she also bore a disconcerting similarity to an ex-girlfriend of mind, which I personally found oddly distracting). But the main reasons I found myself enjoying Season Four more than the previous seasons were a significant abandonment of the standalone format and the interesting inclusion of a wraith (Todd) as a recurring character. In fact, apart from the third episode of the season, most of the first 13 or 14 episodes of the season were tied to the main overall arc. Only in the final third of the season did a number of standalone episodes creep back into the mix. The overall result was a dramatic improvement in the quality of the show's narrative. Christopher Heyerdahl had played a variety of wraith characters in the first two seasons of ATLANTIS. Then in Season Three came one of the best episodes in the entire series, in which Shepperd is imprisoned with a wraith (whom the Atlanteans later name Todd), who to keep from starving gradually drains Shepperd of life. The two cooperate in escaping from their prison and over the course of the final two seasons Todd would provide an interesting character, often making an odd colleague in advancing causes that were in the interests of both humans and wraiths. In one alternative future, Todd and Ronon even die a heroic death together, teaming up to kill their common enemy. I've always had a love for characters that defy surface expectations. On BUFFY I loved Angelus for being the completely evil doppelganger of the incredibly good Angel, and then later the utterly evil Spike gradually transforming (even before he gains a soul) an increasingly decent character. Almost always Todd's presence in an episode means a good episode.
Also in Season Four there was an increase in the quality of the special effects. I'm not terribly conversant on CGI, but I do know that at about the same time the special effects on just about all CGI-heavy shows dramatically improved, led by BATTLESTAR GALACTICA. I'm assuming that there may only be one CGI software package catering to customers at this level. I imagine that the small handful of F/X companies all get the latest upgrade at about the same time. In the 1990s there was a very small market for CGI and you could tell from the way that it was used on TV that it was very pricey. Because much of it was custom, there was a dramatic difference from the way that it was used on one show and on another. There are still differences. Although they are certainly using the same software programs, on STARGATE ATLANTIS the CGI shots are very clear and crisp, featuring panoramic shots fairly distance from the objects of interest. On BATTLESTAR GALACTICA you get very complex shots. In Season Four of BSG, for instance, you might get a super close up of the Galactica, with a large hunk of the fleet in the background, the whole shot not centered from an ideal observer's point of view, but from what you would see if you were in a spaceship very close to Galactica. In ATLANTIS the visual field is uncluttered, with no cosmic dust or anything else to impair perfect clarity of picture. On BSG there are often vast clouds of cosmic dust that causes a complex diffusion of light from a nearby nebula. Both shows feature photo realistic CGI, but the uncluttered clarity of ATLANTIS shows a different set of priorities with the more complex version of BSG (and for the record, I much prefer the CGI on BSG, which I believe represents the highest achievement so far of what can be achieved with CGI on TV).
All in all, I really enjoyed Season Four. I am only now getting around to watching Season Five (the DVDs come out later this month, but friends showed me some sites that stream the individual episodes) so I don't know how it will compare with Season Four, but I definitely prefer Season Four more than any of the first three. I now definitely regret that I stopped watching ATLANTIS. Now that I'm watching many shows that I have little confidence in to be any good (I just recently managed to grit my way through ANDROMEDA and fairly soon need to force myself to watch all of LEXX, concerning which I still haven't heard anything to make me at all optimistic), discovering how good ATLANTIS was in the season after I gave up on it has been a very pleasant surprise.