Gallery Episode Transcript

"The Greater Good" is the seventh episode in the second season of Stargate Universe.


Dr. Nicholas Rush and Colonel Everett Young investigate an abandoned alien craft which is just outside the Destiny. When the craft begins to drift away from Destiny, stranding them aboard, Rush must find a way to get Destiny to catch up to them without revealing his secret.


A group of people are forced to evacuate to Destiny after an attack on Icarus Base by the Lucian Alliance, and are now trapped there. During the time on Destiny, tensions rise between Dr. Nicholas Rush and Colonel Everett Young, eventually causing a mutiny between the civilians and military. After a Nakai attack, the two groups must work together to prepare themselves for the next attack, for the crew's sake. After Colonel David Telford's brainwashing is broken, he reveals that the Lucian Alliance are coming to take Destiny. After a group of Alliance soldiers led by Commander Kiva and Telford gate to Destiny, they take several sections of the ship. After Kiva is killed and Ginn returns control to Rush the surviving Alliance members are locked up. Dr. Amanda Perry is brought on board to help fix the Faster-Than-Light engine. Ginn begins working with Eli Wallace to find a way to dial Earth inside a Star. Simeon has had several confrontations with the crew. Rush breaks the master code and discovers the Bridge.


Colonel Everett Young is lying awake in his bed when he is called by Camile Wray over the radio, who informs him that he's late for the morning briefing. Lt. Matthew Scott, Lt. Tamara Johansen, and Wray are present. As Young eats his breakfast, Wray explains that Ginn has been very cooperative and Homeworld Command would like to talk to her. It is believed that the Lucian Alliance faction planning the attack on Earth is from her homeworld, and she may know their base of operations. Young, still eating, takes a moment to notice that Wray is waiting for his approval. He agrees to let her use the Long-range communication device. All three notice that he's distracted, but say nothing.

Wray visits Ginn's quarters and knocks on the door. Ginn doesn't answer. She asks Airman Dunning, the guard, if she's inside; Dunning confirms that she is, but believes that Wray shouldn't disturb her. Before he can explain further, Ginn opens the door, visibly flustered. Wray tells her that Homeworld Command would like to talk to her, to which Ginn is quick to agree, as if trying to end the conversation. Wray asks if she interrupted something, but Ginn just claims to have been sleeping. Moving on, Wray says that the meeting is scheduled for the afternoon, and she'll be by later to explain the procedure. Wray starts to leave, but pauses when she notices Eli Wallace's shirt on the bed. Ginn just smiles awkwardly. Wray doesn't say anything, likewise smiling before leaving.

Destiny drops out of FTL. In the Control interface room, Dr. Adam Brody explains to Young that the jump countdown is set to 12 hours, but there's nothing but empty space around them. Dr. Nicholas Rush can't be reached, as usual. Young calls him to no effect. Dr. Lisa Park detects an object in Destiny's path. From the Observation deck, Scott, TJ, Dr. Dale Volker, and MSgt. Ronald Greer can see a ship ahead of Destiny. Scott notes that it isn't a Seed ship, and TJ adds that it isn't of any familiar design. Volker sarcastically gives a cheer for their "new friends". TJ notes that it seems to have battle damage; Greer assumes it was on the losing side.

On the bridge, Rush brings Destiny to a stop near the ship. A Kino is sent over to the ship, which appears to be empty. Rush comes in and is immediately met by Young, who wants to know what Rush was doing. Unwilling to answer, Rush insists on getting to the matter at hand. Brody reiterates that the ship looks abandoned. Eli believes that they abandoned the ship due to battle damage. Rush suggests that a boarding party should be sent over. Brody points out that they have no shuttle, but Park notes that they still have the environmental suits. Volker is incredulous at the idea of jumping to the other ship, but Rush insists that Destiny stopped for a reason, and that there may be valuable information or technology to salvage from the ship. Rush volunteers to go, much to Eli's surprise given the risk. Rush rationalizes that he is the most qualified to investigate.

Rush and Young are suited up to go to the alien ship. Park explains that they have just over six hours of air, assuming they can't get the ship's life support online. Scott suggests that he go instead, which Young points out is a little late since he's already got the suit on. He tells Scott that he wants to keep an eye on Rush, and assures him that he won't leave Rush behind.

Eli visits Chloe Armstrong in her quarters to explain the situation. He notices the equations Rush left for her to work on. Flipping through them, he asks if she understands what they mean; Chloe just shrugs. He apologizes for not having come to see her more often. Chloe accepts, having heard from Scott that he's been working closely with Ginn. Eli tries to explain how they became close, unable to put it into words. Chloe keeps him from saying more, understanding his meaning, and says she's happy for him.

In an airlock, Young ties a line to the ladder. Rush hands him a Kino. Young has Brody open the airlock, then is carried to the alien ship by the Kino. On the way up, he notes that the bridge is destroyed. Young is brought inside through a breach in the hull, where he secures the line so Rush can follow.

On the ship, Young unpacks a weapon while Rush stores the Kino for later use. They begin their exploration. The corridors have low ceilings, barely big enough for a human to fit, causing Young to bump his head. Rush manages to activate a door behind them, sealing off the breached section. The ship has no life support but artificial gravity is active. As Young documents their exploration, he pauses. Brody calls to make sure he's ok. Rush and Young are still there, having been momentarily spooked by the presence of numerous open pods, the same kind that housed the alien race found on the seed ship. Brody and Volker suggest retreating, as there could be more pods which have aliens in them, but Rush assures him that the first Kino they sent would have registered something if the ship could support life. Coming upon a control panel, Rush begins the process of restoring power. He gets the console online, then sets up the Kino as a stationary communication link. He deduces that the panel is an engineering console. Though it only has limited control, he is able to seal off their section and restore life support, in addition to turning on the lights. Using the first Kino, Park confirms that other parts of the ship are starting to come to life. Rush brings the communication array online so they don't have to rely on the suits. All of a sudden, the engines fire. Sparks fly as Young demands Rush turn the engines off, which he cannot do. After a few seconds, they shut off on their own. Power is nearly drained. However, the damage is done. The ship is now on a course away from Destiny, and they can't turn it around.

The crew discusses options to get Rush and Young back. They only have emergency power, the ship having taken too much damage. They have no means of controlling the ship. Likewise, with no way to control Destiny, the crew can't catch up to retrieve Rush and Young. Park thinks that Destiny might do it of its own accord, but Young notes they can't rely on that. Young looks to Rush, suspecting that he may have a solution. Rush claims to have developed a way to override Destiny's autopilot and fire the engines manually, which takes the rest of the crew by surprise. When Brody asks why he did not tell them about this, Rush claims not to have been successful as of yet. Eli offers his help, but Rush states that the equations are beyond them, recommending that Dr. Amanda Perry be brought in since she has the necessary expertise. Brody suggests removing the environmental suits in the meantime, as they consume power while active.

Simeon goes to Ginn's quarters, commenting that they're bigger than his. He expresses his concerns about her getting close to members of the crew, which might cause her to reveal something she shouldn't. He asks if she's said anything, but Wray comes in to retrieve Ginn before she can answer. Simeon wonders what they're doing, but Wray bluntly tells Simeon that it doesn't concern him. She is brought to the communication device to switch places with Perry. Eli is there to make sure she'll be OK. Wray tells Eli that Ginn has already given her consent and knows the procedure, and Ginn assures Eli that she'll be fine. Eli promises to see her soon, and she activates the device, switching places with Perry. Perry has been briefed on the situation, and greets Eli and Wray.

In the control room, Rush has doled out some basic equations to Brody and Volker. He has sent Park to the engine control room to run some tests, though Park didn't seem optimistic. Brody informs him that Eli is getting Perry as they speak. Rush looks back at Young carefully, then announces that he has pressurized another section of the ship. He suggests that it might hold a way to escape. Young goes to investigate, asking to be kept informed of Rush's progress.

Eli brings Perry to the control room. Rush sends Eli off to join Park, insisting that Park will need his help more than Perry. He shows her an equation which he's jotted down, one of several he claims will allow control of Destiny's engines. Brody hands her several more, sarcastically quipping that she must have thought it wasn't going to be any fun. Rush is quick to dismiss the joke since they are on the clock. Perry begins copying his notes. Young radios in to inform Rush that he hasn't found anything, and will be back after checking a few more compartments.

After going over the equations, Perry brings up a schematic of Destiny, highlighting the bridge, which she quickly shuts off. She confirms with Rush that he wants her to go there, not giving the location aloud. She leaves the room, telling Brody that she'll be back shortly. She is met in the hall by Simeon, who is still under the impression that she is Ginn. He claims they need to talk, so Perry quickly explains the situation. She tries to pass, but Simeon blocks her, saying they're not done. Greer shows up, asking if there's a problem. Perry explains herself again; Greer has already been informed of the switch, and welcomes her aboard. He allows Perry to go on her way, then sends Simeon in the opposite direction.

Perry reaches the bridge and enters the code to unlock it, then tells Rush that she has arrived. Rush deactivates the Kino feed, claiming to Brody that they must be out of range. He advises them to keep working. Brody just shakes his head. Rush opens a private channel to the bridge, explaining to Perry that no one else can hear. Perry is confused by Rush's deception. Rush admits that he's gained complete control of the ship and hasn't told anyone because he doesn't think he can trust them. He promises to explain in full later, but for now needs her to bring Destiny within range of the alien ship so he and Young can get back. She agrees to help.

In the control room, Eli comes in, having noticed the loss of the Kino feed. Volker explains that they're out of range. Noticing Perry's absence, he asks where she is. Brody thought she was headed for Eli's lab. Eli radios her, but Rush advises her to ignore him. She engages the ship's engines, setting an intercept course. Brody notices this from his console. When Perry asks how she is supposed to explain herself, Rush tells her to claim that she fired the engines from the engine control room. She is still confused by his need to keep the bridge secret, but Rush insists that he has a good reason.

Eli calls Perry over the radio again, more insistently this time. Forced to answer, Perry assures them she's fine and she gives the excuse Rush concocted to explain the ship's movement; though they clearly don't believe her, they play along. Once they break contact, Eli asks what she was doing before she left. Brody tells Eli that she was working on the equations Rush gave her, which she took with her. Though annoyed by the dead end, Eli quickly remembers his Kino logs and begins to review what Rush showed her. On the alien ship, Young returns while Rush is talking with Perry. He stops just outside the corridor, listening in without betraying his presence. Perry says that they'll rendezvous within the hour. Rush is glad to have brought her on board. Eli deduces the meaning of Rush's equations, clearly angered by the result. He, Brody, and Volker confront Perry on the bridge. Perry is speechless, while Eli can only say "What the hell?" Hearing this over the private channel, Rush asks who else is with Perry. In doing so, he betrays his knowledge of the bridge. Eli is furious that Rush has had control of the ship the whole time, unwilling to give Rush the chance to explain.

Eli's shouts are broadcast over the private channel, so Rush kills the link. Young enters the room. Knowing Young has overheard, Rush tries to explain himself. Rush is forced to admit that he gained control shortly after the Alliance attack. Young sets his gun down and attacks Rush in a rage, claiming he should have killed Rush when he had the chance. He blames Rush for Sgt. Hunter Riley's death. Rush tries to fight back, pushing Young off then hitting him with the Kino. Young recovers and tackles him, sending the Kino rolling down the hall. Rush gives Young a headbutt and tries to escape, but Young quickly recovers and puts Rush in a choke-hold. He releases it once Rush falls unconscious. He picks up his gun and waits for Rush to regain consciousness.

As Rush crawls to a nearby wall, Young asks if he was just trying to see how long he could keep the bridge secret. Rush insists that he had no choice, since he couldn't trust Young with the knowledge, and knows some of the crew feel the same way. Young expresses his displeasure with Rush's fixation on control and power, to which Rush responds that someone has to lead the crew. Young points out that no one is likely to trust Rush after this, but Rush has no intention of leading himself, as long as Young isn't in charge, either. He notes that Young can barely get out of bed in the morning, let alone make command decisions, and believes Young is as much aware of this as he is. He defends keeping the bridge secret as a necessity, since the amount of information is so expansive that he couldn't trust anyone else to handle the systems properly before he deciphered them. Young brings up Riley's death as an example of improper handling. Rush admits he has made mistakes. After a short pause, Young asks if the simulation Destiny put him through was Rush's doing. Rush confirms that the ship did it of its own accord, but admits that he overrode the program. He says that with everything that's happened, specifically noting the loss of TJ's baby, Young is no longer fit to lead. He couldn't trust Young with the code, since Young can't even trust himself.

On the bridge, Eli calls for Rush to no avail. Brody speculates that they're out of range, but Eli believes he just shut off the radio. Volker asks Perry why she didn't tell them. She apologizes, having wanted to tell them, and relates how Rush told her he had a good reason. Brody notes that at least they're catching up, though Eli cynically quips that Rush might not be alive by the time they do.

Rush asks Young what comes next. Young intends to get back to the ship first, then have Rush explain everything he has found, calling Rush's actions a game. Rush is annoyed by the comparison, claiming that it's about Destiny's mission, which he doesn't believe the crew is ready to commit to. Young doesn't see any mission other than getting home, but Rush insists that it's never been about getting home, only reaching their destination. He asserts that the mission is more important than they ever thought, so Young asks for an explanation. Rush reveals that the Ancients discovered a pattern buried deep in the Cosmic microwave background radiation, one that could not have been natural in origin. This defies the logic of their current understanding of physics. The Ancients didn't know exactly what the pattern is or what might have created it, which is why Destiny was built. The pattern is scattered across the entire universe, so the Ancients sent Destiny to collect the fragments. There are thousands of pages on the subject in Destiny's archives, which he promises to show Young as proof. Since they are now the ship's crew, he believes they might as well be the ones to see the mission through. He tells Young to embrace the mission, rather than fixating on going home. Young's primary concern remains getting home, but Rush suggests that completing the mission may be the only way to do that. The further they travel and the more of the pattern they uncover, the greater their understanding of the universe will be. That will give them the power to control everything around them; "power to change things, control our fate, right the wrongs," as Rush puts it. Young sees this as playing God, but Rush denies that logic, claiming that it is about understanding. He wants Young to work with him on this for the benefit of everyone. Young notes that such a thing would be easier if Rush stopped keeping secrets, so Rush promises that he won't anymore. Young laughs, calling Rush "a lot of work."

Destiny makes its approach to the alien ship. Rush restores communications to contact Perry. Both he and Young report that they are still alive to Eli and the others. Rush tells Perry that she has brought the ship in at the wrong angle and speed, asking her to circle back and align the airlock as close to the ship as possible. Eli, Brody, and Volker attempt to micromanage her, much to her annoyance. As she closes in, Scott and Wray barge in, also being quick to start asking questions. Eli quiets them down.

On the alien ship, Rush finds that their Kino has been damaged, rendering it incapable of flying them back to Destiny. Young notes that there's another on the ship in search mode, though Rush isn't sure they'll be able to find it in time. As they pack, Destiny comes back into range, but this time Perry's angle of approach is too close. Destiny's shields scrape the alien ship, causing it to begin rolling. Scott offers to take over, but Brody stops him, since they have already matched the alien ship's speed.

One of key-scenes of the episode - Rush saves Young

Young reports in about the damaged Kino. Brody suggests using the other one, but it's lost somewhere on the ship and they don't have the time to find it. Since they're in their environmental suits, Eli tells them that they can use the ship's centripetal force to throw themselves to Destiny. Brody expresses concern at this plan, as the ship is not only spinning but doing so at an odd angle. Each jump will have to be calculated separately to account for every variable. Eli is already working it, confident he will get it right. Rush and Young reach the breach they entered from. Eli tells them to jump exactly when he says. He finishes the calculations for Rush first, so Rush jumps first, landing safely. Young is next, but comes in at the wrong angle. Rush begins to chase after him. Young lands on his back and bounces, heading off into space. Rush manages to catch up and grabs his hand. They nod at each other in lieu of words.

On the bridge, Eli is sitting in the command chair. Brody is manning the far-left console, while Volker is manning the center console with Park looking over his shoulder. Eli is going through the data Rush mentioned to confirm his story, amazed at how extensive it is. Brody has found a group of planets coming up which should have supplies they could use. Young agrees to stop, and Eli brings the ship out of FTL. Simeon looks out the window from his quarters.

Rush brings a bottle of Brody's liquor to Perry. She asks how the crew is doing. Rush notes that they're angry, but things can only improve now that the truth is out. She asks if he trusts Young now, since he didn't before; Rush says he doesn't have a choice. He apologizes for putting her in a position that forced her to lie to the crew, but she is happy that he trusted her above anyone else. Rush tells her that she's the finest person he knows, so of course he would. Rush has been thinking about seeing Perry again, and vice versa. He promises her that this time is different and kisses her. Eli comes in just as this happens, having come to get Rush on Young's behalf, insisting that it's urgent. Rush promises Perry that he'll be back soon. As they leave, Eli reminds Perry that it's easy to forget she's in someone else's body. Once they leave, Simeon, who has somehow reached the area unguarded, enters Perry's quarters and shuts the door behind him.


Appearances for The Greater Good





Sentient Species




Notable quotes

Volker: What it is?
Greer: Some kind of ship.
Scott: Definitely not a seed ship.
TJ: Doesn't look like the aliens we encountered before, either.
Volker: (dryly) New friends. Yay.

Young: You broke the code.
Rush: Yes.
Young: When?
Rush: Does it matter?
Young: When?
Rush: Shortly after the Lucian Alliance attack. I wanted to tell you but I had to make sure I knew everything about this before I let—
Young: I should have killed you when I had the chance. (They begin to fight) Either way, it's your fault we lost the shuttle, that Riley's dead. Your— You murdered that boy! So that's it, huh? That was your plan? Just keep this whole thing a secret, see how long you can get away with it?
Rush: I had no choice.
Young: Yeah, you did! You could have told me, Rush.
Rush: I couldn't trust you. And I'm not the only one who feels this way. Several of the crew have voiced their—
Young: It's all about control with you, right? Power.
Rush: Well, someone's got to lead these people.
Young: Do you think anyone's going to follow you after this?
Rush: No, no, no. Not me. But not you, either. Come on, Colonel, look at yourself. You can hardly get out of bed in the morning, never mind make command decisions.
Young: Well, look at that. You got me all figured out, don't you?
Rush: Well, anyone can see it. You know it's true. Look, when I unlocked the code, the amount of information it revealed was overwhelming. I had to make sure I had a proper handle on this stuff before letting anyone have access to it. If any one of those systems had been improperly handled…
Young: Resulting in the shuttle crashing? One of our best young men dying? You mean something like that?
Rush: Yeah. I know I've made mistakes.
Young: The simulation the ship just put me through. Was that your doing as well?
Rush: No, no, that was—that was the ship. Except the part at the end. I had to override the program to make Destiny jump back into FTL. Look, with all that's happened recently, the Lucian Alliance trying to take the ship, lives lost as a result of that, Lieutenant Johansen's baby… It's a heavy burden to carry, I know, but you have to ask yourself this question: "Am I fit to lead these people?" Well, maybe at one time, yeah, but not now. I couldn't tell you about the code, Colonel. How can I trust you when you don't even trust yourself?

Rush: So, what happens now?
Young: Well, Destiny picks us up and then you tell us everything that you've learned since breaking the code. Come on. You had to know that this game wasn't going to last forever.
Rush: It's not a game, Colonel. Destiny's mission requires a level of commitment I doubt anyone in that ship's prepared to make.
Young: What mission? There is no mission other than getting these people home.
Rush: You're wrong. It was never about going home. It's about getting us to where we're going.
Young: What the hell's that supposed to mean?
Rush: In these past few weeks, I've learned so much more about the ship, about its mission. It's far more important than we ever thought.
Young: Okay, let's—let's hear it.
Rush: Are you familiar with the cosmic microwave background radiation?
Young: Noise left over from the Big Bang.
Rush: A long time ago, the Ancients made a discovery. They found evidence of a structure buried deep within the background radiation. They believed that, at one time, this structure had genuine complexity, coherence, therefore could not have occurred naturally.
Young: How is that even possible?
Rush: It's not. At least, not according to our current understanding of physics, nor could we even see this structure with our technology.
Young: Okay, so what are we talking about? Some kind of code, a message?
Rush: A message, perhaps, or a sign of intelligence from the beginning of time.
Young: Sent by?
Rush: Hmph. Well, that's the very question they sought to answer when they launched Destiny. That is the mission. We're talking about a mystery rooted in the foundation of reality. A puzzle with pieces scattered across the length and breadth of the universe itself.
Young: I swear to God, Rush, if this is another one of your hoaxes—
Rush: Once I'd broken the code, I had access to the ship's complete archive. There are thousands of pages devoted to this. Scientific research, philosophical debate—
Young: If we don't have the technology to see this thing, how the hell am I supposed to believe—
Rush: Because Destiny is not our technology, Colonel. The Ancients left us their data as well as the ship.
Young: And you've seen this data?
Rush: I'll show it to you. I don't promise you're going to understand it, but it's there. Someone's got to see this mission through. We're here, why not us? Stop saying we don't belong on that ship. Embrace it, move forward. Stop looking behind us.
Young: I just want to get these people home.
Rush: Well, I'm starting to think that seeing this mission through may be our only chance of ever doing that.
Young: Well, what does that even mean?
Rush: We're talking about a level of order present at the very beginning of space-time that goes beyond anything we ever conceived. I believe that the more we learn, the more pieces Destiny uncovers, then the greater our power to control everything around us will be.


Main Characters

Guest Stars


  • "The Greater Good" was originally slated to be a season one episode, but while writing "Incursion", Joseph Mallozzi began to realize it would have to be longer. There were initial concerns it would be three parts, with the third part airing as the season two premiere, but after various edits, it was tightened to two episodes. "Subversion", originally slated to be the 19th and penultimate episode of season one, became the 18th episode and the previous episode, "Pain" aired as the 17th and the episode that was slated as 17th became "The Greater Good" and aired in season two.


  • Despite having switched bodies with Dr. Amanda Perry, Ginn should have still had a guard on her since as she could have changed back at any time due to interruptions and been a threat to the ship.
  • In the morning briefing scene, Camile Wray says that "Homeworld Security" wants to talk with Ginn, noting how compliant she's been with their requests. Homeworld Security is the former name of Homeworld Command, though it may still be one of its constituent parts.

Other languages

  • Hungarian: Egy fontos cél (An Important Goal)
  • Russian: Благие намерения (Good intention) or Высшее благо (Greatest good)

External links

v  e
Episodes and Seasons
Season 1 12345678910111213141516171819202122
Season 2 12345678910111213141516171819202122
Season 3 12345678910111213141516171819202122
Season 4 12345678910111213141516171819202122
Season 5 12345678910111213141516171819202122
Season 6 12345678910111213141516171819202122
Season 7 12345678910111213141516171819202122
Season 8 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 9 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 10 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 1 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 2 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 3 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 4 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 5 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 1 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 2 1234567891011121314151617181920
Season 1 12345678910