"You should never have invented such an effective means of torture."

The Rod of Anguish, also known as a pain stick by some, is a torture instrument used by the Goa'uld. Pain sticks have pokers sticking out of them which release some sort of energy into the victim being tortured. The energy courses through the victim, being visible with through the eyes and mouth of the victim. Sokar was fond of the device, and often had a Necropolis Guard on hand to torture any prisoners that might come into his possession. Gerak once used it while trying to search for Ba'al when he was on Earth. (SG1: "Jolinar's Memories", "The Devil You Know", "Ex Deus Machina")

While captured by the Goa'uld System Lord Heru'ur, Teal'c was extensively tortured with the device by the Goa'uld Terok. Teal'c refused to break under the torture, impressing the Jaffa who had captured him, Rak'nor. After Terok tried to kill Teal'c before sending him to Apophis, Rak'nor pressed the Rod against the base of Terok's neck where his symbiote was located, causing Terok great pain and at the very least rendering him unconscious and possibly killing the Goa'uld who was sent to Apophis in Teal'c's place. (SG1: "The Serpent's Venom")

The Lucian Alliance, in addition to using the large stick version, has apparently developed a smaller, handheld version. It has the same tip as the original, but the grip is only about half a foot long and has two yellow lights near the front end. It also discharges red energy instead of yellow, and doesn't make the victim's eyes and mouth glow. It can knock people out instead of just causing pain, and is suggested to have a fatal setting as well. (SGU: "Subversion")

Alternate realities[]

Behind the scenes[]

  • It appears that the head of the rod was reused as part of the Lucian Alliance's torture device. (SGU: "Subversion")
  • The purpose and use of these devices are almost identical to the Klingon painstick in Star Trek. Although they are visually somewhat different.