I was looking forward to this all week – dinner at Fuel with Carl, Marty G. and Marty G. senior (a.k.a. John). We enjoyed the chef’s six course dinner, a fantastic meal with some truly stand-out dishes. Half the table started with an hearty pork terrine with shaved truffles while the other half had the roasted beet and pig’s ear salad with perigod truffle vinaigrette. I offered my neighbor Carl half of my terrine in exchange for half of his salad. Carl, to no one’s surprise, elected to show great generosity by giving me the entire portion. Well, while the thought of eating pig’s ear may have made Carl leery, I had no such qualms and greatly enjoyed the texture and taste of the thinly sliced pork and beet accompaniment. One of my favorite dishes of the evening – among many. Next up – the soups. A Polderside Duck consommé for half the table, and an out-of-this-world crab bisque for the other. I’ve had the consommé before and enjoyed it, but the bisque was unbeatable. Carl kept stealing spoonfuls from my serving whenever I let my guard down. On his fourth attempt, I actually caught him with a stinging rap of my spoon against his third knuckle. That kept him on his side of the table – for a while anyway. We followed with the seafood course – an ahi tuna dish for half the table, the chilled Dungeness crab with tangerine, red chili, and peppercress for the other. The tuna was very good but, this time, Carl’s dish got the nod and it was my turn to pinch a couple of forkfuls from his plate (“Hey, Carl, is that guy out there keying your car? You’d better go check to make sure.”). Next up was the foie gras course for all except Carl. Martin had the torchon, I had the foie gras and duck confit terrrine, while John had his foie just the way he enjoys it – pan-fried. A bite of my wonderful melt-in-your-mouth terrine was wasted on Carl who almost gagged (Heathen!) and redirected his attention to his Jeruselam Artichoke risotto (which he liked a lot) and house-smoked Polderside duck (that he adored). This was followed by what I at the time considered the dish of the night: truffled pork sausage and seared scallop served atop a bed of atypically tasty lentils. The sausage was nothing short of unbelievable. Carl, wide-eyed and too busy chewing, nodded emphatically in agreement. The sausage was going to be damn hard to beat. But Chef Belcham did it by bringing out the big gun: the whole deep-fried duck. Although I’d enjoyed this particular dish with mom, sis, and Fondy over the Christmas holidays (I believe I crowned it be best duck dish ever), it was a first time for everyone else. And, not surprisingly, they were all blown away. John, who’d declared himself stuffed prior to having the dish set down in front of him took one bite and informed us “It’ll take a while, but I’m finishing the whole thing.” And it did take a while. And he did. A mix-up in the four different desserts thankfully landed me the incredibly rich Manjari chocolate terrine. John had the fresh green apple tart, Martin the crispy ginger pudding, and Carl the roasted dulce de leche pound cake with pumpkin confit – but it was my terrine they were eyeing. All-around class act Marty G. used his magician training to pick up the bill without Carl or I even noticing. Just for that: no notes on his next script!
According to Tom, the restaurant looks like it’s going to be busy both April 1st and 3rd. I’m also considering hosting my annual chocolate party at Fuel, following a blow-the-doors-off dinner with a take-no-prisoners assortment of the world’s finest exotic chocolates. I’ve already started working on the guest list. If you want to check out pics of last year’s chocolate soirée, click on the link:
Another episode aired, another line from the teaser poem revealed. The reference to Midway = “Two warriors head off an incursion on Earth.” Simple, no?
Today’s entry is dedicated to LLB’s sister Barb.
Ascended Tauri writes: “Based on your posted picture, is ‘The Daedalus Variations’ slated to air as No.4 in Season 5?”
Answer: At present, yes it is.
Allie writes: “You mentioned at one point that Midway was scraped because it was going to be too expensive. How did you manage to scale the episode down and allow it to be resurrected?”
Answer: It was never scrapped, merely reconsidered at the idea stage. The actual entry/exit chamber was the big concern because building it would have pretty much crippled our budget. So we found a way to compromise, have the VFX crew work their magic in one of our standing sets (The SGC gate room) and play most of the action in the adjoining corridors.
Wraithfodder writes: “MIDWAY was great, but the very tail end- as in next week’s episode – sucked, only because there’s SciFi saying “You’ll never guess what happens in the last five minutes” and then they SHOW the viewer. Do you have any input with these people??”
Answer: Trust me. We’ve made suggestions, special requests, bitched and complained. But, in the end, there’s not much we can do. It’s their network and their promos.
Lea writes: “And I don’t think that’s the placenta he’s holding there!”
Answer: Damnit! We ordered a baby, a placenta, two orders of fries, and an apple turnover, but received a baby, an umbilical cord, two orders of fries, and a raspberry pop tart instead. We’re looking into the mix-up.
Lea also writes: “ Any chance that there will also be some serious Rodney McKay whump in season 5, apart from such silly “I have a splinter” stuff?”
Answer: Yes, very possible.
Amanda writes: “I was just wondering if there is any possibility to bring the season run up to 22 episodes again. I’m guessing they were dropped down to 20 per season due to the need for 40 scripts per year for both shows.. but now that it’s only SGA, is there any possibility of getting those extra 2 back?”
Answer: That was a network decision.
NovaLuna writes: “were the sets for the Midway station the same as those used for the Daedalus or Odyssey?”
Answer: Good eye. Yes, they were.
Kyle of California writes: “I also see more MGM movies on BluRay wich leads me to believe that SG episodes will release on BluRay in the HD format.. But who know’s SciFi has a say in things… I don’t know… It’s only a speculation. Perhaps Mr. Mallozzi knows? But I would chose to believe that if he did he would be kind enough to inform us avid and loving readers of his blog.”
Answer: Hey, Kyle, thanks for the very informative post. Re: MGM. I’m not sure (and not sure why the dvd’s have yet to be be released in either format) but will look into it this week.
Deena writes: “Any juicy Ba’al/Qetesh scenes in Continuum?”
Answer: Possibly, yes.
Yazid writes: “ Who take the photo near Jack’s home?”
Answer: Daniel’s picture could have been taken at one of many formal events. As for the Jack/San pic, that was taken by Teal’c while he was parasailing on the lake with Daniel.
Maren Siever writes: “ Are deleted scenes on the season 3 box and if so only only certain boxes?”
Answer: I don’t believe there are.
Ben writes: “And also is there any word about a third SG1 movie? Or SGU?”
Answer: Nothing on the former.
Shawna writes: “Food, water, medical supplies…and no way to relieve themselves. What, did they use bottles or something?”
Answer: Nope. As with most long jumper flights, they go right in the back, then have everyone either pile into the cockpit area and seal it off, or hold on tight at which point the ramp is lowered and rapid decompression takes place, effectively clearing out any unwanted material. It’s a bit of a pain, but very effective.
Shiran writes: “Please tell me you’re going to hire a real one at some point!”
Answer: Actually, we’re just going to use a lot of forced perspective like they did in LOTR and have Marty G. play the baby. He’s off getting his scalp waxed as we speak.
Carol Z writes: “Thanks for the pics Joe, but, um-m… the link with Daniel & Cassie photos seems to not work.”
Answer: It’s working now.
Jack Baker writes: “I was wondering if you were involved in any way with the ill-fated game Stargate SG1: The Alliance. If you were, I don’t suppose you could give us a little bit more information about the new villains, the Haaken, especially since the game is dead and buried.”
Answer: Sorry, Jack. I had nothing to do with SG-1: The Alliance game and don’t know anything about the Haaken.
LLB writes: “How cool is it that people send you chocolate? I sometimes wonder how famous people handle getting stuff like that. Any fear that someone is trying to poison you?”
Answer: I make it a point to walk around the production offices first, offering them to my co-workers. I will then wait half an hour and do the rounds again. If everyone seems okay, THEN I’ll try the chocolates myself.
LLB also writes: “Next up, White Queen (assuming you mean Emma Frost and not some other comic character I don’t recognize) isn’t evil anymore; does she really belong in your gallery of villains? Though I guess the evil-ness of Catwoman could be debated, too…”
Answer: Yes, I was going to bring up Catwoman – and, frankly, Deadpool as well. Criminal pasts count. And a super villain does not necessarily have to be evil. Although it certainly helps.
C writes: “Are you offering gentle nudges in one direction or the other regarding the dreads, or are you just sitting back for a wait-and-see?”
Answer: I’m not doing any nudging. I told Jason that the decision is his.
Gate Geek writes: “That baby just scares me.”
Answer: Really? As far as babies go, I thought this one was about par for the course.
Jonno writes: “Love the blog – entertaining and witty. But I’ll have to take you up on the public slap you gave GateWorld, and ask – what was the point?”
Answer: I have always been a supporter of Gateworld and consider it the premiere site for Stargate fans online. In fact, I was the one who suggested to MGM Marketing several years back, that they look toward establishing some sort of working relationship with Darren and Gateworld. As I explained to Darren in a recent email – My comment in yesterday’s blog entry was not intended as a blast at Gateworld, but as an example of how fan expectations can be raised or unintentionally misguided by a misinterpretation of the source. Gateworld’s attributing of the non-existent quote was simply another link in a developing chain. While I could have contacted them about the article in question, at that point it was already too late. It had been published and my apparent words officially reinforced. The point of my commentary was not to critique Gateworld but to go on record now, before the episode airs, and make it clear that I had been misquoted. Asking for a quiet retraction would not have solved the problem.
Crazymom writes: “ During our family discussion following the episode, we agreed that while Todd might have led a strike force using information he got while on Atlantis, he wouldn’t have given the information to someone else, at least not voluntarily. He is intent on gathering a power base of his own, and we couldn’t see him letting someone else take that credit.”
Answer: Interesting theory. Let’s see how that plays out the next time they cross paths with Todd. Next episode.