Stargate is a military science fiction franchise, initially conceived by Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin. The film that began the franchise was simply titled Stargate. Theatrically released on October 28, 1994 by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Carolco, it became a worldwide hit, grossing nearly $200 million (USD) worldwide. Three years later, Canadian Brad Wright and Jonathan Glassner created a television series entitled Stargate SG-1 as a sequel for the film. Stargate SG-1 briefly held the record for the longest-running North American science fiction show in history with a total of ten seasons and 214 episodes. This series would set the scene for Stargate's ongoing legacy.
In 2002, the franchise's first animated series, Stargate Infinity, was released as an introduction to the Expanded Universe. It concluded after one season. In 2004, Stargate SG-1's first spin-off series, entitled Stargate: Atlantis, was released. Stargate: Atlantis concluded January 9, 2009 after five seasons and 100 episodes. A second Stargate SG-1 spin-off series, entitled Stargate Universe, began airing on October 2, 2009 and concluded after 2 seasons. The series finale of Stargate Universe on May 9, 2011 left the Stargate franchise with a total of 354 canon episodes.
In addition to film and television, the Stargate franchise has expanded into other media, including books, video games, and comic books. These supplements to the film and television series have resulted in significant development of the show's fictional universe and mythology. In 2008, the films Stargate: The Ark of Truth and Stargate: Continuum were released direct-to-DVD, which in total grossed over 21 million dollars in the United States. On May 29, 2014, Warner Brothers and MGM announced plans to reboot the Stargate franchise in the form of a new feature film trilogy. Roland Emmerich, who directed and co-wrote the original film with Dean Devlin, was planned to direct with Devlin planning to produce. However, the status of this project is currently unknown.
On July 20, 2017, MGM announced a fourth live-action series, Stargate Origins, which started airing on February 14, 2018. This series consists of 10, 10 minute-long episodes which will premiere exclusively on MGM's new digital platform, "Stargate Command".
The Stargate franchise takes place in the present day. As a result, when Stargate SG-1 began in 1997, only technology that existed at the time in "real life" on Earth was employed by the series' protagonists - humans from Earth who are known throughout the galaxy as the Tau'ri. In the preceding movie, Stargate, it was shown that in 1928 in Giza, Egypt, a mysterious ring was uncovered — buried in the sand long ago. However, it wasn't until 1995 that Earth discovered the device's true purpose (interplanetary transportation) and was able to begin utilizing it for exploration.
Ever since their first mission through the Stargate to a planet known as Abydos, Earth has continued using the Stargate for both exploration and the defense of humanity from races elsewhere in the universe; For the first eight seasons of Stargate SG-1, a formidable parasitic enemy race known as the Goa'uld served as the main antagonist. To this end, the Stargate Program (which continues to be a secret to the general public) was created with a mandate of acquiring knowledge, allies, and technology for the defense of the planet. However, Stargate Command (the base in which the program is located) has also focused on such efforts as trading and forming diplomatic relations with the rest of the galaxy. It was through this program (the main focus of Stargate SG-1) that Earth was able to acquire, over time, such necessities.
In the first ten years of Earth's utilization of the Stargate (spanning from the Stargate's reactivation in 1997 to the series finale of Stargate SG-1) the people of Earth have become a technologically advanced race capable of rivaling most others. In order to keep the origins of their newly developed technology secret, and as to not reveal the Stargate's existence or the existence of alien life to the general public, most of this technology is only used in secret by the military. Other such technology is gradually introduced into Earth's culture at a reasonable rate as to not draw suspicion. (SG1: "Covenant", "Bounty")
Several million years ago, an ancient race of advanced humanoid beings, now known as the Ancients, created a device capable of near-instantaneous transportation across the universe by means of a subspace wormhole. This device, which has been used by countless races since its creation, has more commonly become known as a "Stargate"— a name, discovered by Dr. Daniel Jackson, from hieroglyphs written by humans on Earth thousands of years ago. While various cultures have created their own name for the device, Stargate is among the most common used.
A Stargate itself is a device made out of a volatile mineral known as Naquadah. It is between two Stargates that travel is possible. A stable wormhole in a Stargate is achieved by dialing the correct address into a mechanism known as a Dial Home Device. In a DHD, an address of six symbols (each of which represent constellations as seen from Earth for the Milky Way galaxy-style of gate) is imputed, plus a point of origin symbol (a symbol unique to a particular Stargate that identifies the location a person is dialing from). This brings the total up to seven symbols needed for an in-galaxy address. Eight symbols are required to establish a lock with a Stargate in another galaxy (such as the Pegasus galaxy). Nine symbols are required to dial Stargates that reside far across the universe. Thus far, the only known Stargate dialed with a nine-chevron address is that aboard the Ancient spaceship Destiny - a ship designed with the purpose of exploring deep into the universe.
The Stargate contains nine chevrons spaced equally around its circumference. With each symbol that is dialed, a different chevron is 'locked', making nine symbols the maximum number of symbols (or glyphs) that can be input. The design of the Stargates themselves tend to vary between galaxies. Three distinct designs are known: Stargates in the Milky Way galaxy, Pegasus galaxy, and that which resides on Destiny and are constructed by its ancillary Seed ships. The varying designs of Stargates are largely the result of technological advancement; Destiny-style gates (the most primitive in design and function) were constructed first, followed by Milky-Way model gates, and lastly Pegasus-style gates.
Stargates play an extremely important role in each of the Stargate series. It is through these devices that races, mostly consisting of humanoid-like beings (particularly humans themselves), trade and explore. However, several races (such as the Goa'uld) often utilize the Stargate network as a platform through which to launch military campaigns.
The Tau'ri are the main protagonists in the Stargate series. "Tau'ri" is the term used by the inhabitants of the Milky Way to refer to human beings from Earth. The word means "first ones" or "those from the first world", in the Goa'uld language, in the sense that human life in the Milky Way began on Earth. While the term "Tau'ri" originally applied to all human beings in the galaxy, it has come to apply specifically to those who currently live on Earth as the Stargate Program proceeded to explore the galaxy.
In the Stargate universe, the Tau'ri are the predominant protagonists in the fight against galactic oppressors, fighting a multi-front war against several other major races. During the first six years of the series, the Tau'ri were largely limited to what they could achieve in the way of repelling enemy forces due to the "primitiveness" of the technology in their possession, as compared to that of the hostile races they faced - notably the Goa'uld. It wasn't until season six and beyond that the Tau'ri were truly beginning to emerge as a powerful force in the galaxy. (SG1: "Children of the Gods", "Thor's Hammer", "Red Sky", "Unending")
Around Stargate SG-1's sixth season, as a result of six years of exploration and discovery, the Tau'ri became knowledgeable enough to construct their first battlecruiser, the Prometheus. Despite being rather primitive in comparison to the spaceships of most other races, this ship represented a massive step in the Tau'ri's development. However, as the Tau'ri became more advanced towards the eighth season of Stargate SG-1, a new class of ship was designed - the BC-304, also known as the Daedalus-class. Since their development, numerous 304s have been constructed. These ships rival the spaceships of most races in the Stargate universe and have helped establish the Tau'ri as a major military power in both the Milky Way and Pegasus galaxies. However, spaceships in the Stargate series largely only serve as plot devices to facilitate the progression of an episode, and very few episodes have taken place solely aboard spaceships, with the exception of Stargate Universe.
The Tau'ri became even more technologically advanced in Stargate SG-1's series finale "Unending" after the self-inflicted demise of the Asgard — an extremely advanced race of humanoid-beings and a close ally of Earth. In order to carry on their legacy after their subsequent demise, the Asgard gifted to the Tau'ri their complete history and the entirety of their knowledge in an advanced computer core, which has continued to allow the Tau'ri to make great technological strides.
Stargate and SG-1
The whole premise of the Stargate franchise began with the feature film Stargate, released theatrically in 1994 by MGM. It was directed by Roland Emmerich, written by Emmerich and Dean Devlin and starred Kurt Russell, James Spader and Jaye Davidson. The film served to introduce the Goa'uld as the main antagonists and introduced the Stargate itself. However, several aspects of the film differ from the series (see Stargate canon).
Stargate SG-1 is a television spin-off of Roland Emmerich's 1994 film Stargate. The series was developed for television by Brad Wright and Jonathan Glassner, who together wrote the two-hour pilot episode "Children of the Gods", which was set to take place roughly one year after the events of the movie. "Children of the Gods" originally aired on July 27, 1997 and "Unending," the final episode of the series, aired in the United Kingdom on March 13, 2007 and in the United States of America on June 22, 2007.
Although an overall story arc was present from the start, the episodes of the first few seasons of Stargate SG-1 were mostly episodic, depicting the SG-1 team traveling to a different planet in each episode. Gradually, the show became less episodic and more serialized. Over its ten-year run, the show built up a complex mythology involving the history of the galaxy and introduced many new alien races, such as the Ancients and the Asgard, whereas the only true alien to appear in the original film was Ra.
Originally, a race of beings known as the Goa'uld (namely the Goa'uld Apophis) served as the principal villains of the series. However, at the end of season three, a new threat was introduced - the Replicators. Although they appeared in multiple episodes over the next five seasons, they were never as widely depicted as the Goa'uld were. In "Enemies," the opening episode of season five, Apophis was finally defeated and Anubis replaced him as the main villain for the next three seasons. Anubis and the Replicators were defeated in one blow at the end of season eight. Even though the Goa'uld were not completely destroyed, a new race called the Ori became the principal villains for the show's final two seasons.
The tone of the show also changed considerably over the course of its run. Much like the original film, the earlier episodes were mostly serious in character with an underlying comic tone. Later, the show became much lighter and occasionally even verged on borderline self-parody. The introduction of the Ori in season nine and the additions of Claudia Black and Ben Browder continued the show in its comedic and light hearted aspects.
The Goa'uld are a race of sentient. parasitic beings that served as the main antagonist for the first eight seasons of Stargate SG-1, until they were largely defeated in the episode "Reckoning, Part 2". The Goa'uld were largely the driving force for Stargate SG-1 in its early seasons — It was the constant Goa'uld threat that resulted in Stargate Command's mandate to acquire technology and allies capable of defending the planet from them.
The Goa'uld themselves are small snake-like Symbiotes that require a host body. Once burrowed into a body (which can be accomplished by piercing the skin in the neck) the parasite begins to wrap itself around the Human spine. The symbiote then weaves itself around the nervous system where thin filaments are extended that go up into the brain itself. (SG1: "Children of the Gods", "The Enemy Within")
Within a host, a Goa'uld parasite has complete control of the host's body. A Goa'uld also gives its host near perfect health, increased strength, and increased intelligence.
The highest authority among the Goa'uld race included the System Lords, who fielded vast armies and fleets of ships under their command as well as warred with one another for dominance of the galaxy. They are also extremely ego-maniacal due to their genetic memory and the Sarcophagus technology. Races that refused to serve them would be completely destroyed without compromise. (SG1: "Children of the Gods", "Thor's Hammer", "The First Ones")
The strength of the Goa'uld's power was the millions of Jaffa they kept subservient to them by assuming the persona of their "gods". These Jaffa were eventually the Goa'uld's undoing. When the numbers of Rebel Jaffa grew, they were eventually (with massive help from the Tau'ri) able to overthrow their Goa'uld masters and establish a Free Jaffa Nation. Because of this, the Jaffa nation has become a powerful force with a fleet of former Goa'uld ships in their possession. They are sporadic allies of the Tau'ri due to rising political turmoil.
The Ori were a race of ascended beings who used their knowledge and power as justification to demand the worship of mortal beings. Millions of years ago, the Ori lived together with the Ancients as a single, united society in a distant galaxy as the Alterans. At some point in their history, a split occurred among the Alterans: The Ancients began to devote themselves to science, while the Ori became more and more religious. This division eventually became so great that the Ori attempted to destroy the Ancients. To avoid a war, which was contradictory to their beliefs, the Ancients departed their home galaxy for the Milky Way.
The Ori conceived the Origin faith, one that puts them in the center of creation, and wrote down their word in the Book of Origin to be administered to followers through Priors, missionaries and teachers of Origin. The Ori use the Doci, the chief Prior, as their "mouthpiece" for communicating with lesser beings. They are able to possess his body to spread their demands and will. (SG1: "Avalon, Part 2", "Origin")
The Ori serve as the main antagonists for Stargate SG-1 in seasons 9 and 10. After being discovered by Dr. Daniel Jackson and Vala Mal Doran, the Ori were subsequently alerted to the presence of humans in the Milky Way galaxy, and began a religious crusade in an effort to convert the galaxy's population to Origin. In season 10, the Ori manage to send a fleet of warships to the Milky Way, capable of rivaling even the most advanced spaceships. However, in the SG-1 series finale, the Tau'ri were gifted with the Asgard's most advanced shield and weapon technology, enabling them to successfully combat Ori ships.
Several attempts to destroy the Ori and their followers have taken shape, such as by searching for and using Ancient technology including the Sangraal and the Ark of Truth. The Sangraal (which SG-1 searched for through the last half of season nine and the first half of season ten) is an Ancient device that is capable of, and was used to, destroy the Ascended Ori. However, despite the Ori themselves dying in Season 10's "The Shroud", their followers were still very much a threat and were still carrying on their crusade (oblivious to the fact that their "gods" were dead). The Ori story arc came to a conclusion in the Direct-to-DVD movie Stargate: The Ark of Truth, in which SG-1 travels to the Ori's galaxy of origin (via the Odyssey) and finds an ancient device known as the Ark of Truth. This device, when found, was used to show the followers of Origin the faults of the religion, thus ending the Ori campaign and story arc.
Stargate Infinity was an animated spin-off of Stargate SG-1 that lasted one season, from 2002 to 2003. Brad Wright has stated that although he doesn't have a problem with the show, it should not be considered part of the SG-1/Atlantis/Universe canon.
Stargate Infinity is set 30 years after the feature film in which the Tau'ri first used the Stargate and traveled to Abydos. According to the show, 30 years later the Stargate had become public knowledge and some aliens had become citizens of Earth (or of countries on Earth). The show's storyline followed a veteran member of Stargate Command, Major Gus Bonner, who leads a team of young recruits through the gate after being framed by an alien infiltrator of the hostile Tlak'kahn race (the Goa'uld having long since been defeated; this was written years before their defeat was even conceived on SG-1). The team must travel from world to world until they find the evidence to clear their names while learning about the unique cultures in the galaxy, alongside learning about themselves in the process. This plot was never resolved.
Stargate: Atlantis is a television series spin-off from Stargate SG-1, which began airing in 2004, and concluded after five seasons. "Enemy at the Gate", the final episode of the series, aired on January 9, 2009. A follow-up film, titled Stargate: Extinction, was originally intended to continue the show's plot after cancellation. However, it has since been shelved along with any subsequent movies that were to follow. Atlantis is followed by a third series, Stargate Universe.
Stargate: Atlantis, which aired July 16, 2004, is the first spin-off series of Stargate SG-1. The show takes place after the finale of Stargate SG-1's seventh season, in which SG-1 discovers an advanced outpost under the ice of Antarctica built by the Ancients. In the premiere episode of Stargate: Atlantis, entitled "Rising" (which takes place after SG1's episode "New Order, Part 2"), an eight symbol gate address is found in the Antarctic outpost that leads to the long sought after Lost City of the Ancients — known as Atlantis. The search for this city had been an ongoing theme since the sixth season of Stargate SG-1.
An international expedition is sent through the Stargate to the far off Pegasus galaxy where the Ancient City-ship of Atlantis resides. However, soon after the discovery of this incredibly advanced city, the Atlantis expedition encounters a terrible enemy known as the Wraith. Throughout the series, the Wraith serve as the main antagonists, with the Atlantis expedition being the protagonists. The ultimate driving force of the series is the protection of Atlantis and the discovery of advanced Ancient technology, continuing the SGC's original mandate.
The show itself has the same feel as the later seasons of Stargate SG-1 in that the overall atmosphere is light, with the exception of more serious moments.
The Ancients, also known as the "Gate Builders", are one of the most advanced races known to have existed, having evolved for millions of years prior to the present day and reaching their level of technology long before humanity evolved on Earth. They are best known as the builders of the Stargates and Atlantis. As of 10,000 years ago, most of them have either died out or have shed their humanoid form and now reside on a higher plane of existence with near infinite knowledge and power. While not directly involved in the show, the Ancients set the stage for the entire Stargate universe by creating the Stargate, Atlantis, and Destiny.
Several million years ago, the Ancients were once part of a race of beings known as the Alterans. However, due to contradicting ideologies, a great schism occurred. In its wake, two distinct cultures emerged: the Ori and the Ancients. These Ancients then abandoned their home galaxy for the Milky Way. Upon their arrival, they settled on Earth, from which they created a vast empire that spanned the entire galaxy and endured for millions of years. However, only a few million years ago, a great plague swept through the galaxy, decimating its population. In its wake, the Ancients enacted measures to reseed the Milky Way of life, before ultimately setting off for the Pegasus galaxy in the City ship Atlantis. There, they established a new Stargate network (as they had done in the Milky Way galaxy) and settled on a planet named Lantea.
The Ancients lived in peacefully and prosperously in Pegasus for several million years, once again creating a vast empire that spanned the entire galaxy. However, with the emergence of the Wraith, which they themselves played a role in creating, this empire would soon change forever. These Wraith grew in number and technological power, capable of inflicting serious damage to the Ancients. When war between the two races broke out, the Ancient's technological advancement was able to keep the Wraith at bay and enable them to win almost any battle against them. However, as the Wraith grew in number, the Ancients shrank and, after over a hundred years of fighting, Atlantis was the last city in the Ancient's domain in a galaxy conquered by the Wraith. Seeing no way they could win, 10,000 years ago, the Ancients enacted measures to protect their city and evacuated through the Stargate to Earth, hoping that they would, one day, be able to return. Stargate: Atlantis picks up 10,000 years later, when the Tau'ri find the Pegasus galaxy in much the same state it was in when the Ancients left— controlled by Wraith.
Atlantis, also called the "Lost City of the Ancients", the "City of the Ancestors" or "Atlantus" in Ancient, is a City-ship built by the Ancients several million years ago, and has approximately the same internal space as found in Manhattan. The Ancients left the Milky Way galaxy several million years ago for the Pegasus galaxy, taking Atlantis with them, and settled on a planet they named Lantea. Millions of years later, after the Lanteans—the name the Ancients came to be known by—submerged the city to protect it from their enemies, the Wraith, and returned to Earth through the Stargate. Their story, over time, inspired the Tau'ri myth of Atlantis.
Atlantis was the capital of the Ancient domain and is one of the Ancient's last surviving City-ships in existence. Atlantis is the primary setting for Stargate: Atlantis and is perhaps the Tau'ri's most advanced asset.
The Wraith are a vampiric, hive-based species that harvest the 'life-force' of other humanoid beings for nourishment through sucker organs on their palms. They are also the main antagonists of Stargate: Atlantis. Countless worlds in the Pegasus galaxy live in constant fear of the Wraith, who return periodically to cull their human herds. The Ancients (also called Lanteans) first encountered the Wraith many thousands of years ago. After arriving in the lifeless Pegasus galaxy with Atlantis, the Ancients seeded several planets with humans and Stargates. One of the planets held a creature called the Iratus bug, which began feeding from the humans. Eventually, they began to take on advantageous human characteristics, such as larger brain mass, bipedal locomotion, and opposable digits. Once awoken, the Wraith went to war with the Lanteans and fed upon the humans of the Pegasus Galaxy. (SGA: "The Gift")
The Wraith continued their feeding pattern where they would abduct humans and take their life force after which they entered into hibernation; allowing the human herds to grow while they slumbered. While this happened, they left a few caretakers to watch over them until the time was right to awaken. This cycle continued for 10,000 years until the Atlantis expedition arrived in the Pegasus galaxy and occupied the Ancient city of Atlantis. The Wraith first encountered the humans of Earth in Stargate: Atlantis' premier episode "Rising". In time, however, with the lack of food and the natural territorial instincts of the Wraith, they entered into a civil war. Stronger Wraith Hive ships began to attack weaker ones for control over the feeding grounds of the galaxy. The Atlantis expedition has relied on this civil war to keep the Wraith in a state of disarray and successfully strike against them in this disunited state. (SGA: "Allies")
The Wraith are focused around a hive-based society similar to some species of insects, but are not a collective mind despite their telepathy. Their society and culture was very different when compared to that of humanity. (SGA: "The Queen") The leaders of a hive typically consisted of female Hive Queens who are in command of a Hive ship. Hive ships are the main component of the Wraith fleet, and the centerpiece of their entire society. Hive ships function in a role very similar to the City-ships of the Ancients.
Stargate Universe is the title of the third and final science fiction television series in the Stargate franchise. Produced by MGM, the show entered production in early 2009, and premiered on October 2, 2009 on Syfy and on October 6, 2009 on Sky1 in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Stargate Universe was filmed and produced in Vancouver, Canada, as with the preceding series. The series was cancelled after only two seasons (40 episodes) due in part to a decrease in viewership. The final episode of Stargate Universe aired on May 9, 2011 in North America.
After unlocking the mystery of the Stargate's ninth chevron, a team of explorers from Earth's Icarus base become stranded on an unmanned spaceship called Destiny - launched by the Ancients at the height of their civilization millions of years ago as part of a grand experiment to explore the universe, set in motion but never completed. The crew of the ship thus travels through the far reaches of the universe, connecting with each of the previously launched Stargates, in the hope of finding a way home.
Stargate Universe, while still having occasional comedic moments, has a darker undertone compared to the other Stargate series. SGU is much more character driven and puts more emphasis on internal conflicts rather than external (the series largely lacked a persistent external antagonist). The most prominent antagonists in Stargate Universe included the Lucian Alliance, Nakai, and Berzerker drones. However, unlike as in Stargate SG-1 and Atlantis, these races did not drive the overall series, and instead served as minor plot arcs. SGU is instead more focused on the journey home and exploration.
Additionally, at the beginning of season two, a new plot element was introduced. After unlocking full control of Destiny in the episode "Aftermath", the crew discovered the underlying reason for Destiny's construction. In addition to exploring the universe, the ship was also intended to collect information and piece together fragments of a complex message that the Ancients had found embedded in the fabric of the universe itself. Recognizing that the pattern could not have been natural in origin, the Ancients concluded that its presence suggested an order to the universe never thought possible. The result of this insight by the crew was the fact that Destiny actually has a mission so important that it overshadows the desire for them to get home, and that by pursuing onwards toward the ship's ultimate destination, it may in fact allow them to get home.
SGU is a much more stand-alone series than previous Stargate spin-offs. Whereas Stargate Atlantis contained several episodes that were directly intertwined with Stargate SG-1 (and vice versa), on only a few occasions have the affairs of the Milky Way and Earth been directly involved in the plot of an episode. This serves to further echo the aspect that Destiny's crew is on the far side of the universe where they have to fend for themselves.
Destiny is a ship in the Ancient fleet, constructed and launched over fifty million years ago from Earth. The Ancients launched several automated ships prior to Destiny, each with the purpose of constructing and seeding Stargates throughout the numerous galaxies they crossed, with Destiny itself following in their path to explore those planets. After beginning this process, the Ancients initially planned to wait until the ship reached a sufficient distance from Earth to board it. However, because of other endeavors, such as ascension, they never followed through on the plan. As a result, Destiny has continued its pre-programmed path on throughout the stars, alone, for millions of years. With the arrival of a Tau'ri expedition in 2009, Destiny finally has a new crew.
Destiny itself is relatively flat and triangular in shape. The left and right sides are markedly concave, while the aft portion of the ship is convexly rounded. The ship is very long and becomes more narrow towards the bow. Destiny's exterior surface is covered with layers of textural elements, including a large number of double-barreled weapon turrets. The ship also contains much advanced technology, but it surpassed by more "recent" constructions, such as Atlantis.
The overall theme of struggling for survival in Stargate Universe is further perpetuated through the condition of Destiny itself. Over the course of its long journey, Destiny has sustained significant damage. Some of this is simply the result of neglect due to the ship being left unmanned for far longer than originally intended. However, battle damage is also evident, as shown by numerous hull breaches. This has caused great strain on the crew as many systems aren't functioning at their full capacity or are simply inoperable. Additionally, Destiny can only reach approximately 40% of its originally-designed power capacity. Such power issues have limited the ship's defensive capabilities as well as hindered the crew's ability to dial the nine-chevron address back to Earth. As a result, several episodes have focused solely on replenishing the ship's power reserves, acquiring basic supplies, and on struggling to repair damaged systems (such as life support) before time runs out, further adding to the drama of the series.
The technology in the Stargate series ranges from extremely advanced to basic medieval technology. Several advanced cultures, such as the Goa'uld, Ancients, Asgard, and more recently the Tau'ri, utilize such technologies as plasma weaponry and crystals for memory storage. Holographic displays and devices capable of producing 3-dimensional images have also been featured, as have invisibility cloaks and energy shields. However, this more advanced technology has only been utilized by a mere few of the races featured in Stargate.
Most of the human cultures featured in Stargate are typical pre-industrial. Planets once under the control of the Goa'uld were purposely kept from advancing so as to not pose a threat. Other cultures that were able to develop independently of Goa'uld control are typically more advanced, ranging from a 1940s level of development (such as the planet Langara) to equaling or surpassing that of modern-day Earth.
Races and Cultures
In both the Milky Way and Pegasus galaxies, humans (or humanoid-like beings) account for the majority of the sentient population. In the Milky Way, all human life began on Earth, after having been seeded there by the Ancients millions of years ago. Only a few thousand years ago, the Goa'uld Ra discovered Earth, took some of these humans, and distributed them to planets across the galaxy to serve him. Whilst on these separate planets, numerous human populations were able to develop and flourish (some more than others) across the galaxy.
Many races in the Stargate series have a relation to those of ancient Earth culture. For example, thousands of years ago, the Goa'uld Ra controlled Earth and heavily influenced Egyptian culture. In this respect, the pyramids were created to serve as landing pads of Goa'uld ships. Hieroglyphs actually compose the Goa'uld language, and many architectural/design elements in Egyptian society originate from the Goa'uld. Other such races are the Asgard, which inspired Nordic legends on Earth, and the Ancients, which influenced medieval culture.
In the Pegasus galaxy, human life was seeded millions of years ago by the Ancients (long after they originally settled in the Milky Way). With the exception of wraith, humans account for the majority of the galaxy's population as well.
Very seldom have races that are truly "alien" in appearance been featured in the Stargate series - most appear either to be very humanoid or entirely human. Furthermore, only a handful of the countless races featured have not spoken English. This is likely the case in order to allow for the faster progression of each episode's plot. However, many races do have their own language and style of writing, but they are mostly shown speaking in English. Stargate Universe is the only series to break this trend. As the Destiny resides on the far side of the universe, none of the alien races encountered have appeared human or spoken a language understandable to the expedition. However, alien encounters occur far less often in SGU as opposed to the other series in the franchise, and therefore this trend has not significantly hindered the progression of an episode.
In addition to the Stargate DVDs released (which include entire season releases and special collections of episodes), several direct-to-DVD Stargate movies have been released.
Stargate: The Ark of Truth
Stargate: The Ark of Truth is a direct-to-DVD movie written and directed by Robert C. Cooper. The film is the conclusion of Stargate SG-1's Ori arc, and picks up after the SG-1 series finale, but takes place before the fourth season of Stargate: Atlantis. The movie's plot centered around SG-1 taking the Odyssey to the Ori's home galaxy in search of the Ark of Truth— an Ancient device capable of showing the followers of Origin their religion's faults. The Ark of Truth was released as a Region 1 DVD on March 11, 2008. British Sky One broadcasted the film on March 24, 2008, followed by the Region 2 DVD release on April 14, 2008 with the Region 4 DVD release on April 9, 2008.
Stargate: Continuum was the second Stargate film to be released on DVD following the end of Stargate SG-1. It is written by Brad Wright and directed by Martin Wood and stars Richard Dean Anderson, Ben Browder, Michael Shanks, Amanda Tapping, Christopher Judge and Claudia Black. The film was released on July 29, 2008. The movie's plot revolved around time travel. After the Goa'uld Ba'al went back in time and prevented the Stargate Program from ever existing, a new timeline was created— a timeline in which the Goa'uld still ruled the galaxy. During the film, SG-1 worked to correct the timeline and stop a subsequent Goa'uld attack on Earth.
Three more direct-to-DVD Stargate movies were planned for production including Stargate: Extinction and Stargate: Revolution. Extinction was planned to continue the story line of Stargate: Atlantis, and would take place shortly after the events of its series finale, "Enemy at the Gate". Revolution was planned to be a stand-alone Stargate SG-1 movie revolving around the character Lt. General Jack O'Neill. A possible third movie was also planned in order to conclude the canceled Stargate Universe story line. However, on April 17, 2011, Stargate writer and executive producer Brad Wright announced that the Stargate Universe movie is not going to happen. He also confirmed that the proposed Stargate SG-1 and Atlantis movies have been permanently shelved, along with another movie idea he had been trying to get a greenlight on, which would have combined and involved cast members of all three series.
On May 29, 2014, Warner Brothers and MGM announced plans to reboot the Stargate franchise in the form in a new feature film trilogy. It was to be directed by Roland Emmerich and produced by Dean Devlin, though the status of this project is currently unknown.
There are three series of novels based on the Stargate franchise: one based on the original Stargate film and one based on Stargate SG-1 and Stargate: Atlantis, respectively. A series of books written by Bill McCay was published from 1995 to 1999 that served as unofficial sequels to the feature film. These were produced by consulting the original notes made by Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich, in an attempt to envision where the film "would have gone". Neither party has commented on whether McCay's interpretation was correct. Despite the fact that he attempted to remain close to the original vision, the subsequent television series Stargate SG-1 (which began under an entirely independent development) developed the story along different lines, making no attempt to reconcile the plot lines of the books. This marked the first major branching of the franchise.
Later, from 1999 to 2001, Roc Books published four novels based in Stargate SG-1 written by Ashley McConnell. In 2004, UK-based Fandemonium started a new series of licensed tie-in novels based on Stargate SG-1. Due to the conflict with ROC's license, these books were available in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa and the United Kingdom, but not in the US. Fandemonium books became available in the US in 2006. The official Stargate Magazine (Magazines), produced by Titan Publishing, began publishing short stories written by Fandemonium authors in their 8th issue. The stories alternate between both SG-1 and Atlantis.
A series of comic books, based on Stargate SG-1 and Stargate: Atlantis, began to be published by Avatar Press in 2003. Five have been published to date, with stories by James Anthony and artwork by Jorge Correa. In February 2008, it was announced that Big Finish Productions would be releasing officially-licensed audiobooks featuring members of the cast reading new stories. The first two stories, available on CD and digital download, are Gift of the Gods read by Michael Shanks and A Necessary Evil read by Torri Higginson.
Several Games relating to the Stargate series have been released. These range from loosely-related board and card games to more recent videos games — the most prominent of which being the MMORPG Stargate Worlds and the 3rd-person shooter Stargate Resistance, the latter of which was released on February 10, 2010. As of January 15, 2011, however, servers for Stargate Resistance have shut down and Stargate Worlds is no longer in development.
The first Stargate mobile app, entitled Teal'c's Revenge, was released on iOS on December 13, 2012. On March 14, 2013, a second mobile app, Stargate SG-1: Unleashed, was released on iOS and Android. Both were developed by Arkalis Interactive.