SGA 4.15 "Outcast" Episode Guide

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Sheppard returns to Earth for his father’s funeral and is enlisted to track down a human form Replicator created in an Earth lab.

Guide | Transcript

MGM/ Official Summary

When John Sheppard's father Patrick dies, Sheppard and Ronon visit Earth for the funeral. Sheppard's feelings are more complicated than simple grief. Over the years, his difficult relationship with his wealthy, domineering father weakened all his family ties. His older brother, Dave, greets him coolly, and when Sheppard's ex-wife, Nancy, who always liked Patrick, stops by the wake, she and Sheppard barely know what to say to each other.

Then a mysterious young woman named Ava Dixon accosts Sheppard and Ronon with news that forces them to leave the wake immediately. Ava knows all about a recent top-secret incident in which Sheppard's team shut down Devlin Medical Technologies, a corporation doing dangerous research with nanites derived from Replicators. She claims that her boss, Dr. Richard Poole, who studied nanites for a division of Devlin, has secretly built an illegal, human-form Replicator. Three weeks ago, the Replicator escaped from Poole's lab, killing two guards. Though Poole has been trying to track it down privately, Ava has decided that she must come forward and seek help before more lives are lost.

Sheppard and Ronon arrest Poole and persuade him to accompany them and a team of Marines to a waterfront industrial park, where scans indicate that the Replicator is hiding.

Poole escapes from the group and confronts the Replicator on his own, convinced that he can talk it into surrendering. The Replicator kills him, and a massive chase ensues. The hunt ends when the Replicator, who has been shot, leaps off a crane into the water and vanishes. Divers can't find its body, and it no longer appears on any scanners. It has escaped.

With help from the SGC's Dr. Bill Lee and, surprisingly, from Nancy (who works for the Department of Homeland Security), Sheppard and Ronon search government records and Poole's encrypted files for clues that will help them find the Replicator. Dr. Lee makes a breakthrough when he discovers that the real Ava Dixon, whom Poole cared for deeply, died more than a year earlier. The Ava they've met is a Replicator programmed with the necessary social skills, ethics and emotions to be her replacement. Sheppard and Ronon hurry to confront her, but she has run away. Now two Replicators are on the loose.

Nancy gives Sheppard information about a warehouse that stores neutronium, an element that the injured Replicator will need to heal himself. Sheppard and Ronon plan a risky trap at the storage site and settle in to wait for the Replicator to take the bait. But even if it does, Ava's still missing. And Sheppard still has to answer to his brother for his abrupt departure from the wake. As Ronon points out with his trademark gift for understatement, Sheppard's having one hell of a week.


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Production Notes

  • "We start the spinning. There’s the other Earth-based episode Joe F. pitched out. The return-of-that-character two-parter with its Fargo-esque first part, the big team-up eppy, and the puzzle piece." (Joseph Mallozzi's June 1 blog)
  • "Then comes Joe F.’s story, still in play, and Paul’s season finale. Send in the Clones is toast." (Joseph Mallozzi's June 8 blog)
  • "Today, we gave Alan notes on his outline, discussed Midway, and had a very brief discussion of Martin’s next episode which we should start breaking tomorrow. That will leave three scripts to be written when we get back: the Joe F. story, Paul’s season finale idea, and the empty slot." (Joseph Mallozzi' June 18 blog)
  • "No new details until Monday [July 23] when we’re scheduled to start breaking it." (Joseph Mallozzi's July 19 blog)
  • "We spent the better part of the morning spinning Joe F.’s notion into the actual beginnings of a story. Due to a schedule sleight-of-hand, Marty G. will be taking a break from that troubled trio script to tackle this one. We discussed the basic premise, the type of story to tell, and also started hashing out some of the Sheppard backstory. What brings Sheppard back to Earth? Who goes with him? Which individuals from his past will put in an appearance? What’s at issue? How will the action progress? Although we didn’t get around to actually breaking the story, we’re all pretty happy with the direction we’ve taken." (Joseph Mallozzi's July 21 blog)
  • "Finally, we will get around to breaking that Sheppard on Earth story next week along with what we hope will be the season finale." (Joseph Mallozzi's August 2 blog)
  • "We started spinning the story but took a break to work on Harmony, then will switch gears again to work on the Sheppard on Earth story next week. Martin was writing the Sheppard on Earth story but, having finished Trio (formerly Three’s Company), he will start on Harmony while Alan McCullough assumes writing duties on the JF-inspired eppy." (Joseph Mallozzi's August 3 blog)
  • "Back in the office today and we broke the JF story today. More on it, some snaps from Kindred II, and the mailbag tomorrow." (Joseph Mallozzi's August 7 blog)
  • "Still looking for a title for the Sheppard on Earth story we finished breaking yesterday. To those of you who are using the bio on the Sci Fi website as a guide, stand advised - the reference to his father being a Cold War Colonel is not canon. I’m not even sure where it came from. So, expect some insight into Shep’s past relationships late in season four. [...] Delving into Sheppard’s backstory was one of the things on our To-Do list at the beginning of the season, and Joe’s idea gives us the perfect scenario in which to do it." (Joseph Mallozzi's August 8 blog)
  • Part of Sheppard's backstory is his ex-wife who "will be making an appearance" in this episode. (Joseph Mallozzi's August 9 blog)
  • "Marty G. pitched out a special guest star for Outcast, a character we haven’t seen since his debilitating injury in season one. Won’t the fans be surprised. Well, probably not as I’m sure you’ve figured it out." (Joseph Mallozzi's August 15 blog)
  • "Outcast is being re-written as we speak and there’s a first draft out of the season finale, The Last Man. We are partway through filming Harmony and will be moving on to Trio next. Outcast will follow Trio and then we’ll be finishing up with season finale." (Joseph Mallozzi's September 2 blog)
  • "Kari Wuhrer, who does a wonderful job as Sheppard’s ex-wife, Nancy, is an incredibly sweet person. She chatted with us between set-ups, was very complimentary about the script, the show, and her character, and I even overheard her offering to go down and grab some coffee for the gals in the make-up department." Pictures of the park bench scene with Joe Flanigan are also included. (Joseph Mallozzi's September 21 blog)
  • Emma Lahana was cast as Ava and pictures and a video of her with Joe Flanigan rehearsing are included in Joseph Mallozzi's 21 blog.
  • More images for the episode are included in Joseph Mallozzi's September 22 and 23 blogs.

Further Reading

--DeeKayP 19:39, 13 August 2007 (PDT)