It’s pretty cool how chill this episode is. NOT.
Spoilers below the cut.
As with most episodes, we start when the stargate activates and the incoming signal is from SG-1. But the stargate malfunctions and only two people emerge: Teal’c and Jackson. Jackson is knocked completely unconscious by his landing, which makes sense because he emerges from the top of the stargate. Teal’c is a little better and says that Carter and O’Neill were behind them. But they’re not there. Where are Carter and O’Neill?
Well, they don’t know either. There’s a shot of the stargate they arrived at and there’s a giant hole where something made a carving through the ice, probably one of those energy blasts from the stargate. And then we see Carter and O’Neill. Carter is fine but O’Neill is injured. Both are very cold and very lost and very confused.
Since O’Neill is basically unable to do anything with his broken leg, he’s forced to sit around as Carter sets up camp and explores the area. She finds the Dial Home Device frozen in a block of ice and starts chipping away at it so she can dial home before one or both of them freeze to death. O’Neill helps for a little bit but he later starts to cough up blood from some internal bleeding that went unnoticed. Carter restricts him to his sleeping bag takes full control of the situation.
Meanwhile, back at Stargate Command, the hunt is on for Carter and O’Neill. Since O’Neill was potentially injured before jumping through the gate, it’s most likely that they didn’t stray far from the gate wherever they landed. Jackson theorizes that when the stargate overloaded, it released the excess energy much like a bolt of lightning would. He’s able to narrow down the possibilities of WHERE Carter and O’Neill MIGHT be, so several other stargate teams are sent looking. Teal’c’s contributions are in the field where he joins other teams for missions but comes back empty. Jackson, meanwhile, keeps doing science stuff in hopes of narrowing down the search even more. His biggest worry is that the stargate is for a planet they don’t know.
Finally, Carter de-ices the DHD enough to dial home. She notes that there is a symbol she hasn’t seen before and me the viewer hopes that doesn’t mean something bad. She attempts to dial home only to have the stargate go null. She screams in frustration.
Except the stargate at SGC felt the effects of the second stargate. Jackson was awake when he felt the stargate shake. He then remembered when they first activated the stargate and it shook like hell. At the same time, he realizes that he left out a planet in his calculations: Earth. What if Earth has two stargates? So they look for recent seismic activity on Earth around the time Jackson felt the stargate earthquake and, voila! They have a location!
Since life was slowly losing all hope for Carter and O’Neill, they come up with a game plan. O’Neill doesn’t have much of a chance, but Carter can take the rest of their supplies and try to find a way out of the caverns and onto the surface of whatever planet this is. With O’Neill’s progressively weakened condition and the stargate no longer a viable option, Carter is forced to agree. She does eventually find a way through the caves and discovers that there is nothing but snow on the surface. Snow and sun and more snow. She would have no hope wandering that wasteland.
So she returns to O’Neill and they both snuggle up for The Great Big Sleep. When Carter wakes up, she’s all snug like a bug in a rug in a rescue bed with a rescue team all over the place. O’Neill had been taken first. Carter makes the comment that Hammond went through the gate for them, and Hammond says they didn’t go through the gate.
The second stargate is in Antarctica. Of all places.
This episode was a little intense. But since Carter and O’Neill are trained soldiers, they are trained to navigate out and around situations like these with whatever resources they have. Lesser trained individuals would have died if stuck inside a cavern of ice.Carter, however, sometimes acts as though she’s never been in a situation similar to this before. O’Neill says he has, though. In this episode, he recounted a time a parachuting mission went bad and her fractured his skull somewhere in Iraq and/or Iran. And since it was a special ops mission, there was no rescue team, so he spent nine days rescuing himself. This makes me believe typical military training (from the 1990s) was mostly “Hunker Down and Survive While Rescue Comes” and not “This is How You Would Find Home.”
Carter had discovered some frozen Jaffa warriors as she dug out the DHD. It was worrisome but they must have been a couple thousand years old and well preserved. They were dead anyway so nothing to worry about. Still, begs the question of where they came from. Does it have anything to do with a stargate being underneath a glacier in Antarctica?
We also see the return of Major General Daddy in full force. Though he makes several hard decisions in terms of “We have to stop looking now. I’m sorry guys.” he is always there for his soldiers. My favorite part in this episode is when they determine the location of the second stargate, Jackson and Teal’c both start sentences with “Permission to–” but are interrupted with a very loud “GRANTED.”
Finally, it’s determined that Earth has two stargates. So if Earth has two stargates, does that mean other planets have two or more stargates as well? If a civilization knows they have portals from one side of the planet to another, will they use them for good things like commerce and tourism? Seems doubtful since most of the societies we encounter don’t have much in terms of technology, but still something to ponder. Can a society know what a stargate is but still not make the conclusion that it’s to other planets of the galaxy?
It also opens up who knows what kind of marvelous wonders for Stargate Command. Will they get the funds for a second base elsewhere in the world? Will they start sharing this Universe Exploration mission with other countries? What are the ramifications of a second stargate on the stargate program? I guess I’ll have to watch and find out.
This episode’s adorable mascot is O’Neill’s sidearm, which isn’t an erection I swear.