SGU 1.17 "Pain" Episode Guide

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When the crew suffers from vivid hallucinations that tap into their personal fears, Tamara Johansen isolates the affected from the rest and then tries to seek out the cause of the affliction as it spreads and becomes life-threatening.

Guide | Transcript

MGM/ Official Summary

A steamy scene between James and Scott unfolds, but ends abruptly, and Scott tries to leave. Throwing herself between him and the door, James demands he choose: Her, or Chloe. He tries to push past her, but she blocks him, until finally the struggle gets so intense that she brings a lantern crashing down on his head. He drops to the floor, bleeding.

On another part of the ship, Dr. Volker's door refuses to open. Riley happens by and checks the problem, but the door works fine for him. And Greer, patrolling the halls, notices Wray in the gate room. She tells him that she's updating personnel files, and when Greer remains suspicious, she tells him to talk to Young about it—he can answer any questions. But when he does, Wray denies ever having been in the gate room that day.

Volker finds himself trapped again, and this time Scott—in full health—is near. At the sound of Scott's voice, Volker realizes that something was off and goes to lie down, leaving Scott with the image of his own young son.

Perturbed by James's absence, Young sends a team to her room and finds her huddled and crying. They bring her to the infirmary and learn that she thought she murdered Scott. Scott enters, and confesses to his hallucinations of his son, and when an airman is brought in for wounds inflicted while trying to rip a snake out of his own arm, TJ and Young piece together that the most recent away team must have contracted something on the alien planet. They go to find the rest of the away team, including Volker, and bring them to the infirmary. After some detecting, TJ finds a tick-like creature buried in the nape of each patient's neck, but as she attempts to remove it from Scott, he loses consciousness. Chloe is there out of concern for Scott and panics, but TJ and Young manage to revive him. They realize they're going to have to find another way to remove the ticks.

Greer, meanwhile, continues to survey Wray—or at least, what he thinks is Wray—who is acting suspiciously. And Chloe, while heading back to her quarters, discovers her father in an abandoned shuttle, and tearfully embraces him. Before long, Eli overhears her talking to herself, and urges her to see TJ. She tells him she knows that she's bearing a tick, but refuses to go because she wants to spend more time with the vision of her father. She begs him to give her more time, and he hesitatingly agrees. But the medical team soon suspect that the tick jumped from Scott to Chloe, and Scott finds her and carries her to the infirmary.

Soon it's Rush's turn, and he believes his alien abductors are on the ship, pursuing him. As his hallucination intensifies, so does Greer's, and as Rush thinks he's fleeing his tormentors, it's actually Greer, who thinks he's pursuing a mutinous Rush and Wray, and imagines that Young has authorized him to interrogate the two, then use deadly force. Scott goes after him, but Greer has locked himself in the bay with his quarry. Rush, believing that Wray is an alien, stabs her, then knocks Greer down just as Young blows the door open with C4. Rush and Greer are quickly detained, but all are haunted by their fears.


Opening Credits:

Guest Starring:

Closing Credits:


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Production Notes

  • "Brad then [pitched] out [his revised] notion for an [idea] he’s been [batting] around for a [while] now. A great [premise with] an [intriguing] mystery at [its] core, a wonderful [opportunity] for one of our characters, all wrapped up in an [ultimately touching] theme." — Joseph Mallozzi (March 16, 2009)
  • "I eventually made my way back up to the offices and where I chatted with Brad about episodes 18, 19, and 20. He and Rob have some fantastic notions for the stretch run that promise to cap off SGU’s first season with a bang! And plenty of surprises." — Joseph Mallozzi (May 22, 2009)
  • "Carl will move from Faith to that story Brad pitched out..." — Joseph Mallozzi (May 31, 2009)
  • "Carl steps into the #18 slot with the story we just discussed today. This one looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun and Carl is looking forward to it." — Joseph Mallozzi (June 3, 2009)
  • "Good luck to the gang at Comic Con today. I'll be at home, continuing to slog my way through episode 18." — Carl Binder, Twitter (July 24, 2009)
  • "Carl is close on his, Episode #18. He was last sighted wading his way into Act V." — Joseph Mallozzi (July 29, 2009)
  • "So, now I have two rough drafts. Tonight, I shift gears to reading two first drafts Lawren sent my way – Marty’s G.‘s Lost, and Carl’s latest oeuvre, Pain." — Joseph Mallozzi (August 4, 2009)
  • "Was in the office today. Gave Carl notes on his first draft of Pain. Doesn’t look like he’ll need to do much in the way of a rewrite." — Joseph Mallozzi (August 6, 2009)
  • "The final half-dozen scripts are in play and we’ve been busy writing, revising, reading, and critiquing. Once again, Carl wrote an incredibly tight script. Looks like Pain will require minimal changes." — Joseph Mallozzi (August 17, 2009)
  • "I could say more in a blog than Twitter. Like how great 500 Days of Summer was. And how thrilling it was to read the #SGU episode 'Pain.'" — Patrick Gilmore, Twitter (August 19, 2009)
  • "First day of Pain prep: Concept meeting, art dept, costume, stunts, special effects. Today playback and viz effects with @marksavela." — Carl Binder, Twitter (August 21, 2009)
  • Concerning the moving of "Pain" from #18 to #17: AMZ writes: "I am wondering though – does this mean the finale will be twice as long? Or does it mean we’ll get a JM Cliffhanger special, and have to wait until season two for the second part?" Answer: "It means episode 19 will become episode 18, episode 18 will become episode 17, the story schedule to be episode 17 will disappear, and the two scripts I’m working on will become episodes 19 and 20." — Joseph Mallozzi (August 1, 2009) "Hey, finally received notes on both scripts today. Thankfully (and most importantly) everyone agrees that it’s a two-episode story." — Joseph Mallozzi (August 21, 2009)
  • Major D. Davis writes: "Which episode are you currently shooting? I remember Pain was in prep almost directly after Human finished shooting, so is Lost or Sabotage waiting to film after Pain is shot, or is my math and logic all off and you are shooting both Lost and Sabotage before Pain?" Answer: "We wrapped Sabotage yesterday and have moved on to Pain." — Joseph Mallozzi (August 28, 2009)
  • Iamza also writes: "When you say Sabotage has just wrapped, was that the script, or the actual episode shoot? Because if the latter, wow! Things move fast!" Answer: "Things DO move fast. We wrapped the episode and Pain started shooting on Friday." — Joseph Mallozzi (August 30, 2009)
  • "Carl was in and out of the office all day. He claims he was on set to oversee production of his episode, Pain, but I suspect he was really off trying to catch a glimpse of Zac Efron who was rumored to have stopped by the lot. That guy is such a fanboy." — Joseph Mallozzi (September 1, 2009)
  • Major D. Davis writes: "So have you shot lost yet, or are you waiting to shoot it after you finish pain?" Answer: "We’re shooting out of sequence. We’re shooting Pain and prepping Lost." — Joseph Mallozzi (September 1, 2009)
  • Major D. Davis writes: "Is Andy Mikita directing Pain?" Answer: "Will Waring is directing Pain." — Joseph Mallozzi (September 1, 2009)
  • "Speaking of our impressive cast, I want to make mention of yet another recurring player who has really stepped up over the course of this first season. Julia Benson (formerly Julia Anderson – She claims the name change was the result of her recent marriage but I suspect it has more to do with that whole fugitive from justice thing. But I digress.) plays the role of Second Lieutenant Vanessa James and, like much of our supporting cast, impressed early and continues to do so with performances that have won her the respect and confidence of the entire writing-producing team. I mention Julia because we were watching the director’s cut of Pain the other day, an episode in which she delivers one stunner of a scene. I’m also looking forward to her nice, meaty moments in an upcoming episode." — Joseph Mallozzi (September 5, 2009)
  • "Back in the office today after the Labor Day long weekend. Another three full days of production on Pain and prep on Lost before we head off for yet another long weekend." — Joseph Mallozzi (September 8, 2009)
  • "Gold star for @PatrickGilmore today. Great, creepy, unsettling work." — Carl Binder, Twitter (September 10, 2009)
  • "Thanks to @cpbinder for the 'Pain' & the gold star. Crazy last day of the episode. Bruised forehead & an exciting #SGU episode to prove it." — Patrick Gilmore, Twitter (September 10, 2009)
  • "Today, Visual Effects Supervisor Mark Savela was in to show us temp shots for Pain, Incursion I, and Incursion II. Let’s just say that those of you yearning for space-faring action are in for a treat." — Joseph Mallozzi (December 16, 2009)
  • "To mark our last day in the office, we watched not one but TWO mixes – a Day 2 mix of Pain, and a Day 1 mix of Subversion. You know what I really love? The cute [sic] that plays over the previously on segment. Love. It. Joel Goldsmith did his usual spectacular job and I was particularly impressed with the moody and unsettling score for Pain. It really ratchets up the tension. And, speaking of tension, what happens to Volker…it’s enough to give me nightmares. Actor Patrick Gilmore’s performance was terrific – in a creepy, frisson-inducing way. Also – it’s the little things. While you’re watching Pain, make a point of noting Wray’s wardrobe." — Joseph Mallozzi (December 18, 2009)
  • Thornyrose writes: “And Pain sounds deliciosuly grusome.” Answer: "Oh a couple of scenes come to mind." — Joseph Mallozzi (December 20, 2009)
  • E writes: "I thought that’s going to happen in “Sabotage”, but it didn’t… Can we still expect clawing-eyes-out-worthy sex scenes in 1.5?" Answer: "Enjoy the teaser of Pain." — Joseph Mallozzi (May 9, 2010)
  • "Tonight on SyFy – Stargate: Universe, episode #17, Pain. The one where everyone freakin’ loses it!" — Joseph Mallozzi (May 14, 2010)

Further Reading

--DeeKayP 15:07, 10 August 2009 (UTC)