Okay, so assuming you already own the complete first season of Stargate SG-1, would you be willing to fork out your hard earned cash for a fancy new edit of the series' original pilot, 'Children of the Gods'? That’s the choice facing hardcore fans of the durable sci-fi franchise as this new DVD release hits the shelves. But is there more to this release than a simple case of pimp my pilot? Frankly, the answer is a resounding 'hell no'. No matter how the distributor might try to spin it Stargate SG-1: Children of the Gods Final Cut can’t escape the foul stench of shameless cash-in.
This supposed final edit is more a quick paint job than an extensive nip and tuck. Not much has really been changed from the original version; the run time is slightly shorter, Joel Goldsmith has recorded a new score and the special effects have been spruced up with some brand new CGI. The original cliff-hanger ending has also been trimmed to make this feel more like a complete movie rather than a series pilot. Oh, and the full frontal nude scene with Vaitiare Bandera (Daniel Jackson's wife Sha're) has been cut so you don't see any naughty bits (boo!).
Of course this fresh polish can’t change the fact that 'Children of the Gods' is far from one of SG-1’s better efforts. Being early days it’s somewhat understandable that the cast hadn’t quite gelled yet but that doesn’t stop a lot of the acting being on the stiff side of things. The plot is littered with holes and over stuffed with incessant exposition, often at the expense of character and action. Oh, and I’d forgotten how painfully dull Apophis was as a bad guy. Why they stuck with this plank for so long is beyond me.
Although, simply for nostalgia, it is refreshing to look back on a time when Richard Dean Anderson’s dialogue didn’t consist entirely of wisecracks and references to The Simpsons.
Rating: * *