In case it's not abundantly clear by now, I've little to no life, and, as such, I've finished the first season of Stargate: Atlantis already. And, let me say one thing off the top my head: holy how.
Firstly, it's about 80x better than the first two seasons of SG1, so obviously someone somewhere must have learned something. There's aren't too many of the SyFy gimmicks, even if "Childhood's End" is basically Farscape's "Taking the Stone" SG style, and a dozen other SyFy episodes that I could think of if, well, I could remember their names right now. (Which isn't to say I didn't love the episode - I did - but that doesn't stop it from being cliched.)
And, granted, I like the idea of the Genii storyline, even if it's followthrough gets a tad tiresome, and thought "The Storm" and "The Eye" would probably have worked better as one episode, rather than two. But other than that, my only other complaint is "Letters from Pegasus," as it's a clip episodes. And writers of clip episodes should be ashamed to to even exist, and those who think them good ideas should be, well, use your imaginations.
That being said, I have generally 4 star feelings for this season. It rather amazes me that charectors I hated violently at first glance (Weir, McKay) I've actually come to like, even if I'm more than a little ambivolent on Ford and Teyla (who is so obviously the sexy alient in a unitard, without the unitard, that it would be riddiculous if she wasn't actually a compitent charector). Considering I wanted to strangle McKay when he first appeared in SG1, he's my favourite charector of the series so far, with Shepherd a close second. I love their banter, but mostly I love how neither of them are perfect people. In SG1, you get so much... well, perfection would be redunant, but it's true. With McKay and Shepherd, at least, you get two highly flawed people - I mean, McKay is so litterally an antihero it's almost funny, and Shepherd is, oh, what's the word?
I'm not sure, but with Shepherd you get what SG1 failed to get with Mitchell. See, Mitchel was far too much like a younger version of O'Neill to be a successful charector - far too much like Criton on Farscape. Particularly after Vala arrived. But Shepherd gives you the humour and laid-back attitude O'Neill had while also being a darker, more mistake-prone, and, yes, Kirk-like person. And, other than his liason with the Ancient in "Sanctuary," I like it. Though, god, at times I can see the whole McKay/Shepherd thing - which I blame partially on reena_jenkins and reading the summaries of her podfic. Particularly that scene at the end of "The Siege, part 2" when McKay comes into the controll room after Shepherd's taken off and says to Weir, "You let him go?"
God, I'm going to have to write some massive SG crossover magnum opus now aren't I?
What else? Oh, "The Rising" was beautiful, as was "The Siege" - I mean, have you seen the special effects? "Thirty-Eight Minutes" was a beautiful choice for an early episode, what with the team building it, er, built early on before massive wraith issues started coming about. "Posioning the Well" was a wonderfully dark episode that leaves even little-old-opinionated me in a moral quandry. "The Defiant One" gives us that wonderful McKay-growing-as-a-person moment right before Gaul offs himself -- "You do. I can tell. You've changed. You really wanna get out there." -- though let me just say Gaul's last words -- "Go. Rodney, just go. Save the day." -- are two majorly brilliant thumbs up. I almost want to use them someday. Almost. And, well, the end of "The Siege, Part 2" I almost skipped writing this to watch part 3.
The only thing that could have made this season better would be a) more of SG1 - particularly Carter and O'Neill - and, b) the arrival of the SG teams from Earth seeming a little less deus ex machina. Though, on that note, I hate Dillinger almost as much as I hated Wier when she first showed up in SG1. So how's that for irony?
Anyway, I want to get in another episode or two before bed, so...