"Fair Game" is the third episode of the third season of Stargate SG-1.


Just after Samantha Carter receives a promotion to Major, Colonel Jack O'Neill is beamed out of the middle of the ceremony and aboard a ship belonging to Thor of the Asgard. Thor tells him that he will host a negotiation between the Tau'ri and System Lords Cronus, Nirrti and Yu. However, one of them does not wish to negotiate.


Fair Game 1

The ceremony.

At Stargate Command, the U.S. Secretary of Defense, Arthur Simms, visits and gives a speech during a gathering in the gate room.

After Simms has finished his speech, Major General George S. Hammond tells all the military personnel to come to attention which they do before announcing that Captain Samantha Carter has been promoted to the rank of Major much to Sam's own surprise.

As Sam steps forward, Hammond and Sam's commanding officer, Colonel Jack O'Neill removes her Captain insignia, replacing them with those of a Major before both men salute Sam.

Hammond then announces that Jack is to speak but when Jack starts his speech, he is suddenly transported away, much to everyone's shock with Hammond announcing that the situation is a Code Nine.

Jack finds himself aboard an Asgard ship where he is greeted by Thor. Thor wastes no time in telling him that the Goa'uld System Lords plan an attack on Earth due to the killing of Hathor even though she tried to overthrow the System Lords. The System Lords will send a fleet far more powerful than the one SG-1 faced at the hands of Apophis. The majority of the Asgard fleet is busy. However, Thor offers Earth a membership in the Asgard's Protected Planets Treaty as an alternative to destruction.

Back at SGC, SG-1 talks with Hammond about the offer, when Thor appears and says that the System Lords will appear soon to negotiate, arriving via the SGC's Stargate and that O'Neill will represent Earth.

Fair Game

The briefing into the three Goa'uld who will be attending the negotiations.

A while later, during a briefing, Dr. Daniel Jackson informs the people at SGC about the three System Lords who will be appearing on behalf of the System Lords: Cronus, Yu, and Nirrti. Cronus was the Goa'uld who banished Sokar. Yu was based on one of China's greatest emperors. Yu is most willing for Earth to join the Protected Planets, because his territories are located on the far side of the Goa'uld Empire and thus Earth's survival would destabilize his enemies with little adverse effect on himself. Nirrti was an Indian god of destruction and death and also the Goa'uld who destroyed Cassandra Fraiser's planet Hanka. The SGC takes immediate actions to follow the rules of the meeting as given them by the Asgard, which includes the removal of every weapon from the premises. During the removal, a soldier questions Carter about why they are not taking the Goa'uld healing device and she explains that it is not a weapon.

Finally, the Goa'uld arrive and are quickly ushered away as Cronus seems to resentfully regard Teal'c. Daniel learns from Teal'c that his father, Ronac, was Cronus' First Prime and Cronus his executioner. Cronus sent his father to fight against a System Lord much more powerful than himself and when his father came back defeated, Cronus killed him, and Teal'c and his mother fled to Chulak. Teal'c then vowed to become Apophis' First Prime seeing as Apophis and Cronus were mortal enemies. The negotiations soon begin but O'Neill offends the visitors before the meeting even starts by talking without recognition, effectively ending it. Thor explains that he spoke out of turn and the System Lords don't like each other, which is the reason they didn't help Apophis. Jack and Daniel later talk with Thor, asking him why the Asgard haven't taken the Goa'uld out. Thor tells them that the Asgard are not proud of the situation but reveals to them that the Asgard have to constantly bluff their power with the Goa'uld because a much greater threat is at the forefront of their own galaxy. Banished System Lords like Sokar would be thrown back by the System Lords if he were to attack Earth.

O'Neill informs SG-1 of the situation and negotiations continue, after an apology is sent for any previous "misdemeanors." Finally, the Goa'uld agree to the Asgard offer, yet demand a high price from Earth: immediate and unconditional surrender of the two Earth Stargates, which would end the SGC and destroy any potential for future acquisition of advanced alien technology. Therefore, the Tau'ri would cease to be a threat to the Goa'uld. After talking it over with SG-1 and Hammond, O'Neill asks Thor for his advice, but he is unable to help him. Regretfully, the United States Secretary of Defense informs them that Earth agrees to the demands of the Goa'uld arguing that the Stargates would be of no use if Earth was gone. Daniel goes to relay this to the System Lords when he hears an alarm and discovers both Cronus and Teal'c badly wounded. Upon the sight, Teal'c is considered the main suspect for attack due to his family's unfriendly connection with Cronus.

Dr. Janet Fraiser diagnoses that Cronus is mortally wounded and as Jack, Sam, Daniel, Hammond and Fraiser discuss the case, Daniel reveals that Teal'c's resentment towards Cronus is due to the fact that Cronus killed Teal'c's father, which has Jack completely stunned and wondering why Teal'c didn't tell them. Daniel defends him, stating that Teal'c confided in Daniel.

SG-1 enlists the aid of Nirrti to use the Goa'uld healing device on Cronus, but she says he is damaged beyond her help. Thor tells O'Neill he must depart from Earth due to an emergency, leaving the negotiations in the hands of the Tau'ri.

Teal'c later wakes up and recalls that he and Cronus were attacked by an invisible force, however, it was not Reetou, which is the first suspect. Putting that aside, Sam herself is able to use the healing device on Cronus again and heals his abrasions, which suddenly causes a guilty Nirrti to be revealed. They accuse her of lying and developing cloaking technology that throws Yu into a rage, accusing her of threatening their relationship with the Asgard and coveting Cronus's territory. He attacks her but she easily cloaks herself, procures a weapon and flees, intending to head for the Stargate.

Protected Planets Treaty Summit 3

Sam with her TER pointed at Nirrti.

However, Sam and an SGC soldier arrive with the two of them now wielding a Transphase Eradication Rod that is aimed directly at Nirrti. Sam asks Nirrti if the Goa'uld has ever seen a TER work because right now, Sam would love to demonstrate. This ultimately forces Nirrti to surrender.

Under the circumstances, both Yu and Cronus agree to the treaty without Earth giving up use of the Stargate. Before the Goa'uld leave (with Nirrti now a prisoner of Cronus), Cronus informs SGC that he will show no mercy to captured personnel in the future nor will any other System Lord. The episode ends with Thor's ship leaving Earth.


Appearances for Fair Game





Sentient Species




Notable quotes[]

Hammond: Before we finish today, I have one other small bit of business. Please come to attention. "From the Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force. In recognition of Captain Samantha Carter's outstanding work I hereby authorize her immediate promotion to the rank of Major."

Thor: Three representatives from the System Lords will arrive by Stargate. You must be prepared to speak on behalf of all the inhabitants of Earth.
O'Neill: Well. Maybe not me, personally.
Thor: We have chosen you, O'Neill, to represent your planet at the proceedings.
O'Neill: Alright, now, see that could be a mistake.

Jackson: And the third representative we're expecting is Yu.
O'Neill: Me?
Jackson: Yu is the name of the Goa'uld.
O'Neill: Ah. Sorry.

Teal'c: I have given my allegiance to you, to the SGC and to the people of this world freely. I will however not see to the petty needs of these Goa'uld.
Jackson: I'll... see to the petty needs of the Goa'uld, sir.

O'Neill: Hello, Nirrti. Hello, Cronus. Hello... Yu.

Daniel: Excuse me, sorry for interrupting. What just happened?
O'Neill: Well, apparently we said hello, insulted each other, and broke for recess.

Thor: I have explained our position. To borrow from a human euphemism, it is not a perfect galaxy.
O'Neill: I'm sorry, I get a little testy when faced with the total annihilation of our little corner of it.

Jackson: Boy, is she gonna get it.
O'Neill: My heart bleeds.


Main Characters

Guest Stars


  • Cronus, Nirrti and Yu make their first appearances. Nirrti was first mentioned in Season One episode "Singularity", in which Teal'c referred to her as "he." This is perhaps probably because Goa'uld have no gender, rather they 'identify' as male or female based on their host. The Goa'uld could have occupied a male host when Teal'c last saw Nirrti.
  • The Replicators are first mentioned (though not by name) in this episode by the Asgard as "an enemy far worse than the Goa'uld." They later appear in the season finale "Nemesis".
  • Yu was identified with Yu the Great in this episode, who founded the Xia Dynasty in 2205 BCE. Yet in "Summit", he is identified with the Jade Emperor, a figure in traditional Chinese mythology. It is never revealed which is correct; however, due to Yu's age and Goa'uld technology, it is possible that he was, in fact, both at different points in history.
  • When Colonel Jack O'Neill is speaking to Secretary of Defense Arthur Simms after the Goa'uld delegates storm out of the conference, he angrily removes his tie. It's a clip-on. The fact that it's a clip-on can be seen during his initial conversation with Thor.
  • Earth's inclusion into the Protected Planets Treaty is brought up several times in later episodes especially as the System Lords grow more and more frustrated with being unable to attack Earth which becomes a very great threat to them to the point that they allow Anubis to become a System Lord once again just because he promises to destroy Earth. Even Anubis fears the Asgard at first, but loses this later as he gains Asgard technology and outright attacks Earth in the end but is defeated by the Ancient drone weapons. Afterwards, the treaty falls by the wayside as Earth is able to defend itself. However the System Lord Ba'al is mentioned considering adding the other planets to his empire. Considering that the protected planet Galar was never attacked by Ba'al, it can be safely assumed that Ba'al did not challenge the treaty.
  • Despite the treaty, the Goa'uld try more subtle ways of destroying Earth over the years including Anubis' various attempts, an attempt by Lord Mot and the Full Alert Incident where the Goa'uld try to get the nations of Earth to destroy each other.
  • As Cronus promises, in "Double Jeopardy" when he captures the robot SG-1, he gives them no mercy specifically referencing what he told the real SG-1 here. However, this leads to his death at the hands of the robot Teal'c when Cronus attempts to kill the original Jaffa version of Teal'c.


  • When the base is being emptied of weapons for the arrival of the System Lords, the two M2 Brownings on either side of the ramp in the Embarkation room are left in place, albeit unmanned. Then in the very next shot, as SG-1 is coming through the door, the .50 cals have disappeared.
  • When the System Lords dial to Earth, the inner ring of the gate is seen spinning as if the gate was dialing out. The Earth point of origin is even seen being 'locked' in.
  • When the System Lords dial to Earth, the SF Guards are seen as running into the room armed despite the previous scene being about disarming the base.

Other languages[]

  • French: Diplomatie (Diplomacy)
  • Italian: Bersaglio Facile (Easy Target)
  • Spanish: La Cumbre (The Summit)
  • Czech: Mírová konference (Peace Conference)
  • Hungarian: Tiszta játék (Fair Game)
  • German: Die Saat des Verrats (The seeds of betrayal)

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