This article is about the episode. For the species, see Spirit.

"Spirits" is the thirteenth episode of the second season of Stargate SG-1.


The Tau'ri have discovered Trinium, a superlight yet superstrong element, that could prove useful. However, SG-11 is MIA on the planet on which Trinium is found and are captured by the planet's "Spirits". When the Spirits attack Stargate Command, it now falls to Dr. Daniel Jackson to try and defuse the situation or risk the Spirits destroying Earth.


SG-1 is briefed about SG-11 finding Trinium, a rare and very strong metallic element on PXY-887, and that SG-11, who were sent to mine more Trinium, are 48 hours overdue with no contact. SG-1 is supposed to find them. While they are in the briefing, the Stargate starts dialing and SG-11's G.D.O. code is transmitted, but instead of SG-11, an arrow comes through the gate, smashing a window in the Briefing Room but without destroying it. As everyone struggles to get to their feet, General Hammond wonders if they're all alright.

Spirits 1

Jack's right arm with an arrow sticking through it

Colonel Jack O'Neill sits up before collapsing into Dr. Daniel Jackson's arms, where it's revealed that the arrow has gone straight through the glass and into Jack's right arm, staining the right sleeve of Jack's base uniform with blood.


The Salish village

With Jack grounded for some days due to his injury, Captain Samantha Carter gets command of SG-1 for this mission. On PXY-887, SG-1 discovers the mining site, but SG-11 seems to have just disappeared. While investigating a Salish Indian Clan Crest, SG-1 is taken down by tranquilizer arrows. After waking up, they find themselves in an Indian settlement, "couple of days' walk" away from the mining site. SG-1 meets Tonane, the apparent leader of the settlement, who suggests they ask the Spirits where SG-11 is.

Tonane takes them to the forest, where he points out a wolf and says it is T'akaya, one of the Spirits. Carter is not convinced that speaking to a wolf will help them. A raven appears, which is supposed to be Xe'ls, and Daniel asks Xe'ls to release SG-11. Xe'ls squawks, and Daniel is sure Xe'ls said that he would release them, while Tonane thinks he said he would think about it. They continue to look around, but shortly afterwards, Xe'ls catches up to them, and SG-11 walks out of some mist.

After having found SG-11, they meet with the Elders of the settlement, hoping to negotiate a mining treaty. The Elders send Tonane with SG-1 and SG-11 back to Earth, where he can determine whether the Tau'ris mining methods are acceptable. Back in Stargate Command, Tonane is shown some videos from mining operations, but he refuses to let this happen to their mountain, as the methods are too "wasteful and destructive". While Daniel shows him around SGC, Major General George S. Hammond informs SG-1 and SG-11 that he has been ordered to send a mining expedition, regardless of Tonane's decision.


The Spirits heal Xe'ls.

SG-11 turns out to be the Spirits, and they start to make everyone in the SGC disappear. Jack, Carter,and Teal'c are the only ones left after a Code 9 alert. Daniel hides with Tonane in a storage room. Jack, Carter, and Teal'c incapacitate Xe'ls and take him to the infirmary, where Daniel and Tonane catch up with them. Teal'c and Daniel go to the Stargate Operations room in order to gate to PXY-887 and appeal to the Elders. In the Gateroom, Daniel meets with T'akaya, tries to explain, and asks that the Spirits listen to him in exchange for Xe'ls.

After the Spirits have healed Xe'ls, they immediately are transported to the Gateroom. Xe'ls wants to destroy the SGC, but after talking with Daniel and Jack, they agree to leave them, return everyone, and bury the Gate on the other side. They also come to an agreement with Tonane to show themselves in their real form rather than in the form of animals.


Appearances for Spirits





Sentient Species





Notable quotes[]

Carter: You gonna be okay?
O'Neill: I'm not dead, Captain. I'm just grounded for a few weeks.
Carter: If the bulletproof glass hadn't slowed it down...
O'Neill: Oh please. Aliens are always poking me full of holes.

Hammond: Your secondary objective is to negotiate a mining treaty with these people. Obviously, we've started our relations on the wrong foot.
O'Neill: But that's so rare, sir.

Hammond: Captain, as you are taking over command of SG-1 on this mission, my superiors have ordered me to remind you to be diplomatic.
Carter: Yes, sir.
O'Neill: Just as I would be.

Jackson: Wait. You're not going to perform a ceremonial dance or something?
Tonane: Our great great grandfathers used to call the spirits that way, but one day Xe'ls just said, "Call my name." So that's what we do.

(When flattering T'akaya in her form of wolf)
Tonane: T'akaya, my friend! My! Your coat shines beautifully today.
Carter: My! What big eyes you have!

Jackson: Jack?
O'Neill: Daniel?
Jackson: Are you you?
O'Neill: Yeah. You?
Jackson: What?
O'Neill: Never mind.

Xe'ls: Tekaya, destroy this place!
Jackson: Wait! You promised to listen.
Xe'ls: What they don't know won't hurt them. Isn't that what your leaders said? Their word means nothing!
Tekaya: As would mine! I gave my word to this one [indicates Jackson] so we could save your life.
Xe'ls: Very well. I am listening, but nothing might sway me from punishing you.
O'Neill: For what? Showing Tonane who you really are? You've been posing as their gods for crying out loud.
Tekaya: Is that truly what you believe we do? When we drove away the Goa'uld a hundred years ago; we posed as their Spirits to guide and protect them without interfering. And now...
Xe'ls: You have disrupted the harmony between us. In time, they will learn to fear us, take the key, and forge weapons against us.
Jackson: No. Tonane's people are from this world. Even now, they value the natural world above technology.
O'Neill: Trust them. You shouldn't be posing as their gods. Trust them.
Xe'ls: That still doesn't erase the second transgression.
O'Neill: Fine. I give you my word. We will not try to mine the metal.
Tekaya: Even if we could take your word, your superiors will not be swayed by your oath.
O'Neill: Then don't take my word for it. Shut down your Stargate. That way, no one can come to your world unless you allow it.
Tekaya: (Looking at Xe'ls) Star travel is useless to us. Let's shut down the gate. Our friend Tonane is wise, as is our friend Jack.
Xe'ls: And so he is.

Xe'ls: You view us now in our true form, but this is only one of many forms we can take. Our friends of this world call us aliens. You call us spirits. From now on, Tonane, you and your people can view us in whatever form pleases you best.
Tonane: You have always been kind to my people. So whatever makes you happy.
T'akaya: I think this form makes us happy.


Main Characters

Guest Stars


  • O'Neill remarks that "Aliens are always poking me full of holes." This is a reference to the Season 2 episode "Message in a Bottle".
  • The Ancient Salish are indigenous to the Pacific Northwest and western Canada, the same region where the show is filmed.
  • This is the first time when an SG team is shown with more than four members. SG-11 has eight members overall here. However, only six have been replaced.


  • When T'akaya is searching for Tonane in her wolf form, she makes four soldiers disappear, and the hand of the wolf's handler appears on the left hand side of the screen. [mark 34:05, DVD release]
  • On the Totem pole, there is a depiction of Jaffa wearing Apophis' mark which has a dot over the horns and the stamp mark is oval shaped, but his mark doesn't have a dot on above the horns and the stamp mark is shaped like a circle. However, this could simply be meant to signify another Goa'uld with a similar mark.
  • The Briefing Room looks down into the Embarkation room; the top of the Stargate is behind Colonel Jack O'Neill in the first scene whilst he is sat at the conference table. However, when the arrow exits the Stargate, penetrating the bulletproof glass and into O'Neill's arm, the Stargate is suddenly on the same level as the Briefing Room.

Other languages[]

  • French: Les Esprits (Spirits)
  • German: Geister (Ghosts)
  • Italian: Il Pianeta degli Spiriti (The Spirits' Planet)
  • Spanish: Espíritus (Spirit)
  • Czech: Duchové (Spirits)
  • Hungarian: Szellemek (Ghosts)
  • Polish: Duchy (Ghosts)

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