05.08 Episode 96 (#4954)
Airdate: August 17, 2001
On P2X-338, SG-1 finds an ancient Babylonian ziggurat dedicated to the god Marduk. The planet appears to have been deserted for millennia until evidence points to a recent visit to the planet by the Russians. Using the Siberian stargate before their program had been shut down, a Russian team had been searching for the Eye of Tiamat, a jeweled artifact believed to have endowed Marduk with great magical abilities. The team has been missing for months, however, and so a joint US-Russian rescue mission is launched under the command of Colonel O'Neill and his Russian counterpart, Colonel Zukhov.
The team enters the ziggurat, however a booby trap soon seals them inside, and the mystery of the Russian team's fate begins to unfold. An ancient sarcophagus contains a skeleton, and the writings reveal that Marduk had been such an evil tyrant that he had been sealed in the sarcophagus with an alien creature that had repeatedly eaten him alive. Marduk's symbiote had entered the creature and escaped, and now it is missing. However, when the creature is found and killed, and the body contains no symbiote, it is clear that one of the team has now been taken as a host.
As suspicion spreads, Marduk reveals himself within the body of Russian Major Vallarin, and demands the return of the Eye of Tiamat. Zukhov refuses to turn over the artifact, and uses a grenade, dying in the collapse of the passageway. The remaining members of the team use explosives to destroy Marduk within his temple, and are barely able to make their escape through long-hidden transporter rings as the ancient structure crumbles. Marduk is presumed dead, but the valuable artifact is gone, and the loss of the Russian team members leaves US-Russian relations on shaky ground, despite expectations of future cooperation.
Written by: Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie
Directed by: Peter DeLuise
Guest Starring: Earl Pastko as Colonel Zukhov, Alexander Kalugin as Major Vallarin, Jennifer Halley as Lieutenant Tolinev, Vitaliy Kravchenko as Lieutenant Marchenko, Garry Chalk as Russian Colonel
Reference: Alexander Britski, Colonel Chekov, Eye of Tiamat, Valentine Kirensky, Lieutenant Marchenko, Marduk, P2X-338, Russians, Russian Officers, Russian Stargate, Sarcophagus, Lieutenant Tolinev, Major Vallarin, Vern, Colonel Zukhov
DESTINATIONS & INHABITANTS
NOTES OF INTEREST
- P2X-338 is an arid, deserted planet. The average temperature is 135 degrees in the shade. The ziggurat is over 4000 years old. The inscriptions were written in Babylonian cuneiform.
- Daniel reads and speaks ancient Babylonian cuneiform, and Russian.
- "Babylon" means "Gate of the Gods."
- Major Valentine Kirensky was serving under Colonel Sakolov in Siberia and taking secret orders from certain hard-line elements in Russian Army Intelligence. He disappeared six days before the SGC was called in to deactivate the Russian gate, nearly ten months ago. He was presumed to be offworld with two other officers and Alexander Britski, an archaeologist and expert on ancient Mesopotamia.
- Kirensky was killed by the creature in the tomb, the two other officers were killed in the collapse of a passageway, and Britski killed himself with a cyanide pill.
- Two years ago Dr. Alexander Britski began an excavation near Rafha in southern Iraq. He found several stone tablets engraved with Babylonian cuneiform, and one with a set of gate symbols he didn't recognize - the coordinates for P2X-338. The results of the dig became classified when the Russians connected the symbols to the DHD discovered by the Germans in 1906 and taken by the Red Army at the end of World War II. The coordinates for P2X-338 were added to the addresses supplied by Colonel Maybourne when the Russian stargate program began.
- The Russian stargate program was up for 37 days before being shut down. P2X-338 was not listed in its logs. The Russians have been pushing for more direct involvement in the American stargate program as part of their agreement to share information.
- The Babylonian tablet from Iraq included a reference to the Eye of Tiamat, a large jewel which supposedly endowed Marduk with great magical abilities.
- The temple was dedicated to the Babylonian god Marduk. The entrance code is a retelling of the Babylonian creation myth. Marduk slays the winged serpent Tiamat. He cuts her in two and uses half of her to create the sky and the other half to create the Earth. The story is told out of order, providing the key to unlock the code.
- Marduk was such an evil tyrant that his own priests rebelled against him, and sealed him in the sarcophagus with a creature that has no translated name. The sarcophagus would try to continually keep him alive, so the creature eating him alive would have taken awhile.
- Marduk used to emerge from his temple and appear amongst his people riding a beam of white light - a ring transporter - to another temple a few miles away.
- When the Goa'uld Marduk entered Major Vallarin, he retained the knowledge of the host, and was aware of Zukhov's secret orders to obtain alien technology.
- Teal'c's body is incapable of sustaining a symbiote as long as he carries a larval Goa'uld. He has the ability to sense the presence of a Goa'uld in others.
- The P-90 uses a 50-round horizontal clip, firing 900 armor-piercing rounds per minute.
- The Russians expect future participation with the SGC.
- You know, I'm a big fan of the Russians, and international relations are a bit of a hobby of mine, however, I do believe that SG-1 should handle this one... alone. [O'Neill]
- You go through that gate, you've got to know your team is watching your six. [O'Neill]
Actually, in Russian they'd be watching your "shest." Which, I suppose, is neither here nor there. [Daniel]
- Look, if you want to give this a try, be my guest. [Daniel]
Carter, break out the C4. [O'Neill]
Wait wait wait wait wait wait wait wait!! [Daniel]
- Whatever killed the Russian soldier killed the Goa'uld as well. [Carter]
How'd it get in there? [O'Neill]
A better question is, where is it now? [Daniel]
- Sir, we've got a problem. [Carter]
We've got a lot of problems, Carter. Can you be a little more specific? [O'Neill]
- Okay, that's officially the worst way to go. [O'Neill]
- Yes, you go down the dark hallway alone, and I'll wait here in the dark room alone... [Daniel]
- We take risks, but we don't hand out cyanide pills, and we don't leave our people behind. [O'Neill]
- Hey guys, I just finished translating a sec-- whoaaa!? ...Hey, what's up?[Daniel]
- I do not sense the presence of a Goa'uld. [Teal'c]
Well, good, and I'm fine, by the way, thanks. [O'Neill]
FOR THE RECORD
- For crying out loud: 1
- Peter DeLuise cameo: photo in one of the dossiers of the lost Russian team
- O'Neill: knocked out by a ribbon device
- Popular Culture References:
- The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming
- The Russians are coming...
- The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming