Stargate: SG-1
Volume 52 (Season 10 - Vol 3)

Starring: Ben Browder, Amanda Tapping, Christopher Judge, Claudia Black, Beau Bridges and Michael Shanks
Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment
RRP: 19.99
Certificate: 12
Available 15 October 2007

The Odyssey disappears while on a mission, and the SGC is convinced that the ship and its crew has been hijacked by the Lucian Alliance. Carter was onboard and so the rest of SG-1 go undercover to track down the Odyssey and save their team-mate...

Company of Thieves sees the return of the Lucian Alliance as well as one half of an alien double act that fans will remember from last season. There is a bit of a shock in this episode for fans of the show, as the Lucian Alliance show from an early point that they are not to be messed with.

The audio commentary by William Waring (director) and Alan McCullough (writer) reveals some interesting nuggets of information. It was a surprise to hear that they were jokingly thinking of calling this Vashin's Bad Day, due to the amount of problems that poor Vashin has to deal with. The commentary also reveals that two extras didn't make the cut because it was their first day on set and they didn't look natural holding the weapons.

SG-1 discover the planet where they believe Merlin's weapon, the Sangraal, is located. Forced to forge temporary alliances with two of their enemies, Adria and Ba’al, they must use many different skills in order to complete their quest and claim the Sangraal...

The Quest - Part I finds our heroes on the right planet, at last, in their long search for Merlin's secret weapon - the Sangraal. However Ba'al is already days ahead of them and looks certain to reach the Sangraal before them. But, once they start on their quest, SG-1 soon realise it's not just going to be a simple case of tracking down the weapon and then heading home - Merlin has put in place a number of puzzles and traps to ensure that only the most honourable, intelligent and worthy explorer will be able to navigate their way to the prize.

This episode seemed to be inspired quite heavily by the ending to Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade - not that that is a bad thing.

Joseph Mallozzi (executive producer) and Andy Mikita (director) provide the audio commentary for this episode. They explain how originally each of the members of SG-1 were going to have to solve one of the puzzles - making it more of a team effort. They also point out that an easier way to negotiate their way through the time dilation maze would have been for Carter to throw sand instead of stones in front of her - that way they would easily be able to see exactly where the field started and stopped. However the CGI effects would have been quite expensive, so that plan was scrapped.

Discovering the frozen body of Merlin, SG-1 works to help him build the Sangraal before Adria and her Ori army can track them down...

The Quest - Part II continues where Part I left off. SG-1 finally come face to face with the real Merlin - not a hologram, as they were expecting, but an Ancient who has been in suspended animation for centuries. However, poor old Merlin is getting on a little bit and is really on his last legs. Can he help SG-1 by giving them the Sangraal before he expires? Yes, it's cliché time, but who cares, this is executed well enough for you to overlook the well used plot devices.

Paul Mullie (executive producer) and Andy Mikita (director) provide arguable the most enjoyable audio commentary on the disc. They joke about the "legendary nose of Bozo". Apparently the reason why the false Sangraal looks so naff (a small red sphere) is because somewhere along the way communication on what was wanted got garbled, and the end result is what the props department presented.

Hoping to use Merlin’s phasing device to hide a village from the Ori army, something goes wrong forcing Mitchell and a critically injured Carter to hide themselves from an occupation of Ori soldiers...

The opening to Line in the Sand is a little confusing as there is no real explanation as to what on earth is going on. SG-1 (minus Daniel, obviously) return to the SGC after being off world. It's not made clear, but it's pretty obvious that SG-1 have been testing the Sangraal on another planet. An emergency means that they are going to have to use it for real in a risky test to help save the occupants of another world.

Alan McCullough (writer) and Amanda Tapping (who plays Carter) provide the audio commentary. McCullough explains about the cut opening scene that was originally written that would have set the episode up a little better. They also discuss the reused stunt (where the stunt man does a fall onto a table) that was originally used (although the stunt was obviously redressed for this episode - it's not the same footage) earlier in the season.

Extras on this disc include the four audio commentaries mentioned previously; SG-1 Directors' Series: Company Of Thieves Featuring William Waring (10 mins look behind that episode. In truth it repeats most of the information already revealed in the audio commentary for that episode);
Setting the Mood with Jim Menard (23 mins look at how Jim Menard manages to make the show look good on camera); Photo Gallery and Production Design Gallery.

Darren Rea

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