Episode Title: "Deliverance"
Writers: Joseph Mallozzi & Paul Mullie
Director: Peter DeLuise
Previously on "Stargate Universe":
While scavenging for parts in a starship graveyard, the Destiny was attacked by automated drones and badly damaged. The ship was only saved by the unexpected arrival of Colonel Telford (Lou Diamond Phillips) and the Stargate seed ship, which was flown by the aliens known as the Ursini. When he reunited with Colonel Everett Young (Louis Ferreira), Telford explained that the Ursini needed their help to take out the control ship that guided the drones.
Dr. Rush (Robert Carlyle) advocated betraying the Ursini and jumping out of danger as soon as possible. But the Ursini beat them to it and left Destiny largely helpless against an army of drones. Although her mind and body were ravaged by alien pathogen, Chloe (Elyse Levesque) insisted that she could help and assaulted the man assigned to guard her. Her lover, Lt. Matthew Scott (Brian J. Smith) managed to locate her, but only after she sent a signal to the aliens who had changed her.
Moments later, Chloe insists to Scott that she is still herself, but his friend Sgt. Ronald Greer (Jamil Walker Smith) is ready to blow her away. Scott manages to dissuade him from firing and the aliens who changed Chloe arrive on the battlefield… inadvertently drawing the fire away from the Destiny. Eli (David Blue) and Rush come up with a way to briefly disrupt the control ship’s signals and the crew takes it out. But the ship’s shields are completely down and the FTL drive isn’t working either. Telford contacts the Ursini, who admit that they expected betrayal. The Ursini also tell them that another control ship with drones is on its way towards them.
Eli comes up with the idea to use the shuttle to bring a dormant drone on board the ship. But when Scott and Greer enact the plan, the aliens who changed Chloe confront them with a simple message: "No escape." For aliens, they’re a bunch of dicks. However, Rush successfully gets the crew to negotiate with the aliens. In return for a temporary alliance, they agree to hand over Chloe and the aliens agree to cure her from the pathogen. Scott volunteers to bring her over in a shuttle and he refuses to leave their ship without her.
On the alien ship, Scott seems to suffer from a slight mental breakdown while waiting for Chloe. Meanwhile, the aliens test and probe her in seemingly painful ways. Eventually, the aliens return her unharmed. Unfortunately, the second wave of drones attacks before they can return to the Destiny. Eli and Rush hit upon the idea of using the captured drone to convince the other drones to attack each other. Around the same time, the Ursini apologize for drawing the Destiny into this battle and go on a suicide run. It doesn’t work, but it does buy the crew some extra time to activate Eli’s plan.
Despite barely functional shields, the Destiny escapes the battlefield by jumping into FTL after Scott and Chloe make it back on board. Later, the senior crew members gather at Chloe’s bedside and marvel at her recovery. After they leave, Rush visits her alone and they learn that she has retained her high intelligence for radical equations. They also have a revealing conversation which seems to indicate that Dr. Rush has become more of a man of faith than before and they bond over their shared experiences.
I’m sure you’ve heard by now that Syfy canceled "Stargate Universe" and these last ten episodes will be the extremely premature end of the series. That was really brought home for me a few days ago when Robert Carlyle signed on to star in an ABC fantasy pilot as Rumpelstiltskin. When the lead of your show already has his next role, that’s never a good sign for any potential revival.
And that is truly a shame, because "Stargate Universe" is one of the best sci-fi shows to come along in far too long. Even this episode — which is not great when compared to other episodes within the series — is still head and shoulders above fare like "The Event" and "V." These characters are actually well-rounded and entertaining to watch. I particularly like the burgeoning humanity coming from Dr. Rush. He actually seems to care about people other than himself now, especially Chloe. Their conversation at the end of the episode also seemed to indicate that Rush is adapting his philosophy with a sense of spirituality.
Of course, there’s also some deliciously hilarious scenes of Rush being a complete ass. Such as his outwardly friendly comments to his colleagues before he sends them on another assignment and then tells Eli that he did it to get them out of his way. That’s the Rush we know and love. He’s kind of like the Dr. House of space.
In terms of villains, it’s almost refreshing that the series doesn’t have any adversaries who are so over-the-top evil that it seems like a cartoon. The Ursini betrayed the crew because they knew the crew would have betrayed them. As for the other aliens, I love that they’re huge a**holes every time they show up. They know English, so they make a point out of threatening the crew in a language that they understand without speaking it. But what really works about them is how alien they feel. Their sole motivation is to steal the Destiny for their own purposes, but it doesn’t come off as bad as it could. They don’t seem evil in the way that the Wraith or the Goa’uld did.
The only real knock against this episode is that it gets very slow in the middle of it. Also, the death of the Ursini was only depicted as a dot on the screen instead of giving us a lush visual of the seed ship being destroyed. There was also a really interesting sequence in which Scott seemed to be losing his mind on the alien ship, but it wasn’t really dealt with beyond that point. Personally, I suspect that Chloe is still a sleeper for the aliens, they’ve just done a better job of hiding it. And maybe Scott going out of his head was a sign they’ve got their hooks in him too. Remember, he was briefly infected by Chloe’s blood too.
Enjoy "Stargate Universe" while you can. I’m really going to miss this show when it’s gone.
Crave Online Rating: 8 out of 10.