BOOK
Beyond the Gate
Unofficial guide to Stargate SG-1

Author: Keith Topping
Telos Publishing
www.telos.co.uk
RRP 9.99
ISBN 1 903889 50 2
Available now


Described as the best science fiction TV show of the last decade, Stargate SG-1 has matured over its current six year run, morphing from a basic spin-off into a confident and articulate series. And one that included, within its impressive arsenal of strengths, a sly and laconic humour - heavily influenced by the personality of its leading man and executive producer, Richard Dean Anderson. Now, for the first time, a guide to the first six seasons, and the movie, is available to fans of the show...

Beyond the Gate, the unofficial and unauthorised Stargate SG-1 companion fills a void that has been begging to be filled for some time. There is an official and authorised range of books already on the market, but each volume only covers two seasons and they have been releasing them very slowly - the second volume, comprising seasons three and four, was only released once season five had started to be released on DVD in the UK. Strange that the unofficial and unauthorised guide should be more up-to-date and more comprehensive than the official product, but it is.

Keith Topping has obviously spent a great deal of time deciding on the best route to follow for the construction of this guide. In navigation it is not unlike Phil Farrand's Nitpicker's Guide range of books which were popular a few years back.

Each episode has a brief synopsis, US and UK transmission dates and a cast and crew list. This is followed by any number of different sections, depending on whether the episode warrants them. These include notable quotes, Jack's wit, plot holes and a biography of guest stars (so no longer will you have to wonder where you have seen an actor/actress before). There are some nice additions including a look at Sam Carter's terrible love life as it progresses (or doesn't) across the show and popular cultural references as they pop up from episode to episode.

Another excellent addition, which doesn't sound important until you are trying to find a certain listing, is the inclusion of page markings on the edge of the pages for each season. This means that it is easy to find the correct season you are looking for as soon as you pick up the book - nice touch.

For serious SG-1 fans this is the only Stargate guide book you need (although once the seventh series is completed you may find yourself having to buy Telos's follow up guide).

Producers and script writers of the series should be given a copy of this work to prepare for season seven. Without a doubt, this is the Stargate Bible.

Darren Rea

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£9.99 (Amazon.co.uk)

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