David Telford

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Col. David Telford


The following article contains SPOILERS. Proceed at your own risk.


From MGM: A high ranking Colonel in the Stargate program, Telford was chosen to lead the Icarus team through the ninth chevron Stargate address. He is a career Air Force man with strong values, proudly in command of his superior’s respect and attention. He is the best man for the mission and no one is more aware of that than himself. He and Colonel Young have a rocky past, and while stationed on Icarus together tried to stay out of each other’s way.

Personal Data

  • Birthday:
  • Birthplace:
  • Marital Status:
  • Children:
  • Parents:
  • Siblings:
  • Stargate Program Rank: United States Air Force Colonel
  • Stargate Program Position: Commander of the Stargate Team that was to take the first trip through the Stargate with a nine-chevron address

Before Joining the Stargate Program

Stargate Command

Col. Telford is an accomplished pilot and was trained to fly the space-worthy F-302 interceptor. He was given command of the team that was to step through the Stargate to the nine-chevron destination dialed from the newly-established Icarus Base after Col. Everett Young turned down the position. (Stargate Universe: 1.01 "Air Part 1", 1.07 "Earth")

Icarus Base and Destiny

Telford has a strong sense of duty and was given the command of the team that was to go through the Stargate to the mysterious nine-chevron destination. His tendency to be very strict, however, caused him to have very few admirers, including one Marine Master Sergeant Ronald Greer, who had anger-management issues himself. Finally, Greer couldn't hold back his anger any longer and "put down" Telford, an act that resulted in Greer's being charged and detained in a cell on the base to await court martial. (Stargate Universe: 1.01 "Air Part 1", 1.05 "Light")

Six months into Telford's assignment to the Icarus Project, the Icarus Base was attacked. Telford immediately led an F-302 squadron in the Base's defense, but they were sorely outnumbered and the Base was ordered to evacuate to Earth. After having invested several years into the Icarus Project, Dr. Nicholas Rush, the Project's lead scientist, made the fateful decision to dial the nine-chevron destination rather than Earth, so all of the evacuees ended up on the Ancients' long-abandoned exploration vessel called Destiny. Telford was left behind as he was still in his F-302 and was recalled to the U.S.S. George Hammond before the entire planet blew apart. (Stargate Universe: 1.01 "Air Part 1")

During the attack, Col. Everett Young, Icarus Base's commander, released Greer from detention and dropped the charges against him. Greer followed Young's orders without question and became one of Young's most loyal enforcers. (Stargate Universe: "Air Part 1", among several others)

Telford and Johansen

Upon his return to Earth, Telford immediately reported to Homeworld Command in the Pentagon and as the only one left from the Icarus Project, considered himself responsible for the stranded crew, who had no immediate means of returning to Earth because of the great distance that separated them. He regularly reported to the room where the Ancient long-range communications devices were kept, taking every opportunity to be body-swapped with someone on the Destiny. In the first two body-swapping events, Telford visited the Destiny through Col. Young. He pushed Young's injured body so far during his first visit that Lt. Tamara Johansen, the Destiny's only medic, gave him a powerful sedative instead of the pain killer he thought he was getting just so that he wouldn't harm Young any further. During his second visit, Telford was so shocked by how quickly things appeared to be falling apart that he wanted Young to be replaced as the Destiny's commander. (Stargate Universe: 1.03 "Air Part 3", 1.04 "Darkness")

While Telford was challenging Young's decisions aboard the Destiny on his second visit, Young got the chance to tell his wife Emily about his situation. She didn't want Everett to touch her while he was in Telford's body, but did voice her concern that he remain safe. (Stargate Universe: 1.04 "Darkness")

After it was discovered that the Destiny recharged its energy reserves by flying through a star, the scientists back home began to work on a procedure to channel the star's energy through the ship and into the Stargate during a refueling. This procedure, if successful, would enable them to dial the Destiny's Stargate to connect with Earth, something that couldn't be done during normal Stargate operations due to the lack of power. Telford was ordered by Gen. O'Neill to take command of the Destiny in Col. Young's body while the scientists Drs. McCormack and Williams set up and executed their plan. (Stargate Universe: 1.07 "Earth")

O'Neill gives Telford command of Destiny while in Young's body

Once aboard, Telford immediately placed Greer back into confinement and assigned guards on the room where the communication stones were kept so that no one could interrupt the links. Feeling that the scientists were wrong about the Destiny's chances of coming through this "experiment" intact, Dr. Rush devised a plan to make it appear that the Stargate was about to explode due to an uncontainable overload. Telford, Williams, and McCormack made a hasty retreat to the communication stones and severed their links, placing Young, Eli Wallace, and Chloe Armstrong back into their own bodies in a ship that they thought was certainly about to explode. If they had stayed in swapped bodies and died, all six individuals connected in the links would have died. (Stargate Universe: 1.07 "Earth")

Rush's drama played out just as he predicted it would, and Young reported back to Homeworld Command that they managed to stop the overload, much to the scientists' disbelief. He requested that the people aboard the Destiny continue to have unconditional access to the stones, and O'Neill readily agreed, but there was some resistance from IOA representative Dale Strom, who wished to place a condition on their use (most probably he was about to ask that Camile Wray be given command of the Destiny on the IOA's behalf, but O'Neill interrupted him before he could finish his sentence). (Stargate Universe: 1.07 "Earth")

While Telford was swapped with Young, Young had the chance to visit his wife once again. She was more receptive to his visit this time. As a matter of fact, she was so receptive that she willingly participated in sexual intercourse while her husband was in another man's body. A few glitches during the act gave Telford awareness of his delicate situation, and soon after the link was terminated, Telford returned to Emily's house. (Stargate Universe: 1.07 "Earth")

Hobbies and Other Interests

Injuries, Illnesses/Sicknesses, Deaths



Related Characters

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Further Reading

  • "Right now what we know of him is that he is this military man and that he's very much 'toe the line', 'authority of the chain of command'. And he is thwarted at every turn, it seems, because he had a mission in the beginning. He's supposed to lead the away team through the Stargate into an address that is unknown. So he's very intrepid; he's a brave guy; he's a courageous guy, and because of that, maybe he's a little full of himself, you know, or maybe it's just the tight-fitting uniform." (Lou Diamond Phillips, MGM Q&A with Lou Diamond Phillips video)
  • "Telford is an Air Force pilot, a Colonel. He's the intrepid leader of this team that's going to go where no man has gone before, so to speak. Unfortunately, everything goes terribly awry, and a number of these scientists, civilians, and some of the military personnel find themselves stranded universes away from Earth, and unfortunately, Telford is separated from this group. A very stalwart individual, he's very much a military man who had a mission and now is denied that mission. This was his be-all and end-all and [he] so very, very much wants to help rescue these people, wants to bring them to safety, to get them home." (Lou Diamond Phillips, MGM Character Profile video)
  • "I have to say, I'm also involved in one of the most interesting sex scenes ever to grace sci-fi later on in the first season. It's humourous but also mind-boggling. 'Shock factor' may be a bit of an overstatement, but I think people will be surprised at how far the creators are willing to go in this series. It's in the episode called 'Earth'. I exchange consciousness with another character, and let's just say I pop up in a very inopportune moment." (Lou Diamond Phillips, AOL Inside TV: "Q&A: Lou Diamond Phillips Talks 'Stargate: Universe'", October 1, 2009)


--DeeKayP 16:26, 23 July 2009 (UTC)