Hopped up on ginger cookies, I finally get around to having something to say.
I liked a lot of "Duet." Maybe two-thirds.
David Hewlett can alter emotional facets on a dime. He can do shtick and slapstick; he can do angst. I wish they wouldn't write him so broadly, because he can be incredibly, beautifully subtle and hilarious at the same time. But that kind of shticky characterization is a consistent issue I have with both SG shows. It could also be him, at some times, acting up and over the top through sheer enthusiasm--he's probably a great stage actor, very physical. As a medium, TV makes the most of his facial facility though, and that's also a good thing.
Some people have mentioned the exaggerated female impersonation. As miriam_heddy said: "Dear David: I love you, really, but a woman isn't the same thing as a gay man camping it up." I'm trying to fanwank it by telling myself that Cadman wasn't used to running a guy from the inside. It was kind of like a take on "Victor/Victoria"--a woman pretending to be a man but trying to act like a woman. Maybe she kept slipping into theatricality because she was existentially anxious and trying to maintain herself as a distinct person, and not a male one. She keeps wanting to say, "I'm in here!" It was probably eating at her even before she became aware of slipping away. It may also be why she kept acting out obnoxiously. She needed a foothold. She seemed reckless with Rodney, but there might have been underlying desperation we didn't see.
Obviously I'm trying very hard here.
I squirmed through most of the date, though the moment when Rodney trails off and says "I forgot what I was going to say"--that was the best thing ever. So cute.
Someone else commented on how vicious he was at some points during the ep, and I saw that too. It was startling. Cautiously, right now, I like it, but the extremes they are willing to take his character to don't balance out right now. One scene he's a clown, and then he's suddenly like a possessed Jack Torrance from "The Shining." There was a sharp edge of something like misogyny in him at times, which wasn't attractive. It might be explained by insecurity about sexual orientation. I'm not even putting on slash goggles to get that--I think it's a credible read if you're looking for a subtext to explain his extreme reactions. His outburst just prior to his seizure was scary; so were the early scenes when everyone half-suspected he was going mad.
I did like that suspected madness didn't become a huge subplot--you've got a transporter accident and a brilliant scientist known for his reliability. How long are you going to diddle around and doubt him? Not long.
Or Ronan. Googling to determine which is right just leaves me confused. He continues to be hot and I continue to imagine him with Rodney. I'm a disturbed person. His voice is guh-worthy and he is just beautiful. His apparent unfamiliarity with utensils was intensely stupid though. He clearly has a background that's technological and civilized. Even if he's been roughing it for seven years, what are the odds he doesn't recognize cutlery?
Dude. I have never seen such a blatant man-crush. Is Ronon his new Christmas puppy or his new fuckbuddy? It was pretty adorable. And just look at these screencaps from thegrrrl2002. Gay. Gay. Gay. Even if only for thirty seconds while he's checking out Ronon's ass.
That conversation with Ronon was lame. Why did she interrupt his work-out and talk to him in front of military personnel? She should have invited him for coffee. It's probably not that she was short on time, but that the writers were. Even at its best TV is full of absurd plot shortcuts. And yet, how hard would it have been to just put that quick scene in the cafeteria or her office? It could even have been funnier if she'd invited him in and her attempts at conversation had so utterly failed that he left ninety seconds later.
She didn't have a lot to do, and like everyone else I'm all WTF? when it comes to Ronon walking in on her. What if she'd been having some solitary fun? Maybe she just does that in the shower. Maybe given her background, she's used to a more communal environment where people run in and out of each other's space and there are no locked doors. It was interesting that they left the door open and just sat there talking with the guards watching as if her room was a public lounge.
The only way the door opening like that makes sense, though, is if she'd forgotten to set some kind of lock and it was primed to open for visitors, or if Ronon has the ATA gene and it reacted to his will.
ETA: I forgot to add one thing that really bugged me, which was the set for the dinner date. I'm guessing that was supposed to be Katie's quarters. So, aren't they supposed to be in another galaxy, with very limited supplies? Or is that fanon? I need to go back and double-check, but I'm pretty sure that there's, like, a dinner table there, and candles and other furnishings, and she's making salads and stuff. And it worries me, as a trend--it's as if the set designers get bored and are quick to abandon any attempt at realism in favor of bright, comfy, generically pleasing sets. It's a very Trekkish thing to do. Meh.
spikedluv always transcribes great quotes from SG-1 and SGA. Spoilers inherent in that, of course. I haven't seen last night's SG-1 yet, but the quotes tickle me.