‘Universe’ will suit new, old ‘Stargate’ fans

Posted Oct. 01, 2009, at 6:44 p.m.

Syfy viewers have been visiting the worlds of “Stargate” for many years.

First came “Stargate SG-1” for 10 years, then “Stargate Atlantis” for five years. Now comes the debut of “Stargate Universe” at 9 tonight.

The big brains in “Stargate Universe” are seeking to solve the mystery of where the ninth chevron on the Stargate will take them.

As the two-hour premiere unfolds, it becomes clear that one of those big brains, Dr. Nicholas Rush (Robert Carlyle), has gotten a large group of people, both military and civilian, into a big mess. That’s because when a Stargate base comes under attack, Rush herds all the people into the Stargate, off to … who knows where.

These survivors find themselves with few supplies on an ancient ship that’s malfunctioning (shades of “Battlestar Galactica”). Although few trust him, all are dependent on Rush, and his assistant Eli (David Blue), to come up with some kind of solution.

“Stargate Universe” is supposed to be a new part of the franchise that will attract younger viewers who don’t want to get bogged down in the mythology surrounding “Stargate.” There’s even a surrogate for such viewers in the person of Eli, a video-game fanatic who sees this as one big adventure.

“Stargate Universe” is a little grim, but could well soon find a lighter groove, as it has the same behind-the-scenes personnel as the earlier series. It’s a great stepping-on point for new viewers, as it’s a tale of discovery that anyone could get into.

So Syfy viewers old and new should dial in for this latest “Stargate.”

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