Saving Stargate: One page at a time

Before reading my story, please take a moment to check out this great kickstarter from folks that are working super hard to keep Stargate Atlantis and Stargate Universe alive. It’s a group of extremely talented writers and artists…and they need your help!

Disclaimer: I’m not directly involved with this project, other than working with some of these great folks on my comic book ‘Equilibrium: (De) Construction‘, so this isn’t for my personal benefit!

A Brief history of the Universe

It was the spring of 2009. As Microsoft’s Evangelist for Silverlight and other Rich Web technologies, part of my job was to come up with innovative scenarios to show off our tech. I met with a colleague who told me about a new Sci Fi TV show that was being produced in Canada called ‘Stargate Universe’. I had watched SG-1 and Atlantis and had enjoyed them. Not being beholden to TV schedules, I usually waited, bought the box set, and binged. So of course I was excited at the prospect.

The producers were really proud of the sets they had built. They thought they were the best that had ever been made for a TV show, and were wondering if there was something that could be done to market the show around them.

I showed them worked I had done for NASA in a technology called PhotoSynth (now defunct, alas), and pondered building a full, 3D, walkaround of ‘Destiny’, the ship at the heart of the show.

They loved the idea, and within a week I was walking around the sets of Destiny and Atlantis, photographer in tow, marveling at the quality of the production. This wasn’t cheap plywood and paint by a long shot. You can learn more about that project, including seeing me on the Destiny set here.

Photo From Eli’s Chambers (c) Laurence Moroney 2009

Unfortunately the show only lasted two seasons, and left us on a killer cliffhanger. The cost of production was too great for the viewership on it’s primary network partner, the SyFy channel, and despite MGM’s best intents to find another partner, the viewership just wasn’t there. There were plenty of people watching, of course, as well documented in Blake Wilfong’s book, but with the economics of TV, not enough were watching on the partner that paid almost 50% of the show’s costs. SGU left the air in 2011. Indeed a terrific open letter to the fans from Craig Engler from the SyFy channel explained why the show died.

Photo from Gateroom (c) Laurence Moroney 2009

Since it’s cancellation, lots of fan communities have rallied to try to bring it back, with Facebook communities in the hundreds of thousands, petitions to revive the show on sites like NetFlix. But all came to naught.

Until now.

It’s not a TV show. It’s a comic book. But it is the officially licensed continuation to SGU from American Mythology.

It tells story of what happened to Eli in the time after the rest of the crew went into suspended animation. And it begins to delve into the existential mysteries that the show began to tease.

I’ve heard from many fans that were disappointed — they really wanted a TV show. As did I. But, at this moment in time that simply isn’t going to happen. But what is happening is that an enormously talented team of writers and artists are putting together the continuation that we all wanted to see. They’re saving Stargate one page at a time.

And you can help.

Buy the comic! Stargate Universe // Stargate Atlantis and remember to please support the great kickstarter that’s coming July 5, which will see the first stories from Stargate Atlantis collected into graphic novel format!

 

Another photo showing the great detail the producers went to in producing the show. Even the rations (in this case a bag of peanuts) were logo’d and branded with Icarus base!

Photo from Eli’s Quarters / Kino Room (c) Laurence Moroney 2009