|Reviews for A Square Peg in a Round Hole|
| Akashic Silhouette chapter 13 . 7/6/2022
This goes unbelievably hard, especially chapter 12.
| Anyankaholic chapter 12 . 6/30/2021
I have definitely left my kudos here before, but seeing as I keep coming back and rereading this story, it only seems fair to review again.
This story is phenomenal. The characterizations are perfect. Methos is such a difficult character to write and you nail it with every line. The way you look at things and have the characters look at them is so interesting and so compelling.
I truly cannot adequately express how much I love this story. It is so well written and well considered. This is absolutely amazing. Bravo!
| wsbenge chapter 13 . 2/17/2021
It would be interesting to see how it turned out. :)
| Guest chapter 3 . 9/6/2020
Doctor Nicholas Rush: Grieving widower who presents a facade of Insufferable Genius because he feels he needs to suffer, and is consumed with his genius and research so much that he can no longer comprehend social behavior? Or arrogant asshat who with one act of arrogance marooned over eighty people on the other side of the universe with a barely functioning ship facing constant danger?
Colonel Young: Is he The Hero, an Anti-Hero, or just another damned Cowboy Cop?
Wray: Obstructive bureaucrat with a hidden agenda or concerned administrator trying to keep everyone out of the way of the politicking of the heads of the military and the heads of the scientists?
The Nakai. Considering how obsessed they are with capturing Destiny, it's possible that their extreme malice towards Humans is because they see the crew as "stealing" the vessel away from them. Since they did not know of it being constructed by the Ancients (or its true mission), after finding out the former information from Chloe and Rush via their mind-probe, they may see their human's claim of inheritance as less valid than their long-standing claim of salvage.
In "Gauntlet", was Eli's claim that he could fix the pod genuine or was he willingly choosing to sacrifice himself to save all of his friends? Alternately, given that he repeatedly reassures everyone that he will be on the other side, was he planning on using the Control Chair to upload himself into Destiny and simply psyching himself to let his physical body die in the process?
Telford's rant makes some sense, at least on the surface, if we consider him a Straw Traitor. It falls apart when you actually take a good look at the people he's arguing on behalf of.
One could argue that Rush was entirely right that Young isn't fit for command. Yes, framing the man for murder was a dick move of epic proportions, but Rush is still their most valuable asset in terms of keeping Destiny functioning and the crew alive. Beating the shit out of him and leaving him for dead was serious Disproportionate Retribution and incredibly irresponsible.
Rush, Wray and half of the civilian crew enacting a coup in "Divided", claiming that they are essentially under a military dictatorship and subject to martial law. When we see that the marines (even Greer) fully prepared to shoot the civilians trapped on the wrong side of the line just for talking back to them, it's hard to deny that Rush and Wray are right. Especially considering that Wray and (begrudgingly) Rush are trying to prevent deaths throughout the entire ordeal.
| Guest chapter 2 . 9/6/2020
The main cast: big damn heroes adventuring and exploring new worlds while trying to make it in the Pegasus galaxy, malicious idiots that leave a trail of death, destruction and imminent doom everywhere they go or humanity's ruthless defense against a new intergalactic, genocidal threat? Or a combination of all 3?
Dr. Kavanaugh: Jerkass Has a Point or The Complainer Is Always Wrong?
Elizabeth Weir: a gifted negotiator who fights hard for her people's freedom in the face of nigh insurmountable odds or a Manipulative Bitch who bullies and threatens other cultures and people for the survival of her own, judging them by a morality that is convenient to her in order to justify her actions? Keeping in mind the number of times she's used ultimatums as a negotiating strategy
John Sheppard: Heroic, selfless badass ready to risk everything to save Atlantis and those he cares about? Or ruthless sociopath willing to commit any number of murders under the justification of "protecting his people"? He could be quite coldly manipulative at times. A noteworthy example was in "Miller's Crossing" when someone had to sacrifice themselves to a Wraith in order to save McKay's sister. McKay volunteered but Shepherd refused to let him. Instead, without even blinking, he recruited the grieving father who'd injected her with the nanites (having done so in order to motivate McKay to save his daughter's life), and talked him into sacrificing himself
There is a trend for the characters to fit both their standard interpretation and their Alternate interpretation concurrently, usually changing it up between episodes. This tends to be because the episodes are inconsistently written such that some are very intelligent and sensitive to the issues surrounding sentient life equivalency and the progression of humanity, and some are... not
Although our heroes are in general good guys who try to do the right thing, there are quite a few times where what they do is at the least soaked in Moral Dissonance and at the most downright evil - sometimes contradicting previous characterization to do so. When written at their worst they have a very human-centric perspective about sentient life such that only human and human-like beings matter, and are disturbingly willing to exploit, manipulate, experiment on, mass murder (as in killing huge numbers in cold blood) and double-cross anyone or anything that poses a threat or can be labelled an enemy species (even taking into account the requirement to act cautiously and even proactively against threats when they present themselves), even treating one of their own expedition similarly when they come back as a Replicator
In "Infection" where Sheppard comes across Todd's completely defenceless diseased Wraith hive ship where his entire crew - now having undergone a gene therapy where they can no longer feed - are in stasis pods. Originally the plan was to just leave them or blow up the ship, However, because of the ship's malfunctions there is an off-chance that they might break free from the pods. Sheppard's solution? Suffocate the hundreds of Wraith in their pods and use C4 to blow up any pods that are unresponsive to the "suffocate their occupants" command. The Team decided that if the gene therapy really was effective at killing Wraith, they should try to disseminate it to as many Wraith as possible for use as a biological weapon
On the other hand, when the non-human beings in the galaxy are mostly composed of psychic vampires who eat humans (only humans) and enjoy it, and the Pegasus version of the Replicators, who have repeatedly almost devoured and destroyed two entire galaxies - and in the case of the Pegasus versions, have at the very least shown an inclination towards Mind Rape (on good days) and omnicide (on bad ones) when dealing with humans, you can kind of see why they might be willing to cross some lines
Bates, Kavanaugh and Ellis tend to end up in this role. They usually have legitimate concerns or complaints, but because these are expressed, usually against the main characters, in a way that is distinctly in favour of their own self-interest and usually to the detriment of others that they are willing to sacrifice, the characters are presented as reactionary jerkasses. Bates seeing Teyla as a security risk and willing to essentially exile her people, hence putting them in great danger in order to protect the expedition members; Kavanaugh complaining to Weir about Weir being somewhat rude to him in front of his team when he prioritises and focuses on a course of action that puts the safety of Atlantis first no matter the risk assessment or loss of life (although what is more the issue is that in an emergency when time is crucial and lives are depending on him and his team, he takes time out to go and complain to Weir about her behaviour and how it bruised his ego, dismissing and mocking her authority in the process); Ellis undercutting Weir's authority behind her back because she challenges his opinion and his own authority, and wanting McKay to cut the exposition and get to the point in a way that pointedly bullies and demeans him). There is also a trend of portraying Kavanaugh, in his few appearances, as a coward even though every time he is up against a situation in which his fear is perfectly understandable, although he does consistently advocate a course of action that will save himself and whoever is with him while sacrificing other people, sometimes even when the risk to himself is minimal
Ellis isn't so much a Designated Villain as a Jerkass who likes to bully and harass those who make him feel inferior. He's a good man, a competent officer (as befitting his rank), and takes pride in making the right call, but doesn't like it when people who are smarter than him have an idea or explanation that he finds difficult to grasp. Both times he doesn't tell McKay to cut the exposition and get to the point, he insults and harasses him for giving a long explanation, often one that is necessary to understand what he's trying to tell him. The first time, he cut him off and then McKay had to go back and explain the entire thing all over again because he didn't understand. The second time he outright bullies and degrades Rodney in a meeting so severely that Samantha Carter has to tell him that if he ever talks like that to someone again she'll have him forced off Atlantis. And that's really saying something; Sam wouldn't defend Rodney like that unless what Ellis was saying was absolutely unacceptable, particularly considering that he and she are of equal rank
As for Kavanaugh, while he does come up with semi-decent ideas, he is also: spectacularly irritating; of the belief that he's much smarter and more important than he is - while he's smart, he's not McKay/Carter smart, as he seems to believe, nor is he an especially important member of the science team, let alone the expedition at large; prone to putting his ego before everything else, even in a crisis. His complaint to Weir in his first appearance isn't about his idea not being taken seriously, it's about his ego being bruised. He also claims, when the discussion is very much over, that it isn't, assuming that he can dictate to Weir, completely disregarding her authority
Kavanagh in 38 Minutes. His concern about the danger of the Jumper fragments killing people may well have been reasonable. Weir had no basis for thinking it wasn't other than the fact that the other scientists regarded it as a remote possibility. Yet, when he responded by acknowledging that he at least had to point it out (and without him having pushed the issue any further than that), it was actually Weir who wasted the time of the team by taking the time out of her schedule to undercut and humiliate him in front of his people. In fact, there was no indication that if Weir has simply treated his opinion like a valid scientific consideration rather than the ravings of a coward that he'd have had a problem with it. He was wrong to waste the time calling her out for her behaviour when he did, but her behaviour was also wrong. Yet the fact that he's a jerk meant that his point about her behaviour was treated as automatically wrong, rather that simply his timing in reacting to her behaviour
Except that she didn't humiliate - at worst, she was brusque, and he then went on to whine about how she'd bruised his ego, trying a power play when the clock was ticking
Michael points out the considering the Atlantis expedition's treatment of not only him but anything that isn't human or is a threat, they are incredibly similar to the Wraith. The fact is, he's right. If the Atlantis expedition had been the bad guys, their behaviour would have put them beyond the Moral Event Horizon
However, John's 'alliance' with Todd went a long way to helping to get back to moral ground, showing that yes, Michael was right, but being incredibly similar to the Wraith isn't always a bad thing. Remember, the only thing the Wraith can feed on is humans. They aren't the Goa'uld
Furthermore, as several Wraith characters point out, it's not as if they have a choice in feeding. While they do possess a digestive tract and are capable of eating regular food, they lose the ability to gain any nutrients or sustenance from it during adolescence, when their need to feed on humans first manifests. Ultimately, the Wraith are just as much victims of their own biology, as the humans they prey upon, although their culture which celebrates the feeding process is something we could have definitely gone without
At some point in the series they have a Wraith describe what it's like to go without feeding for any extended period of time (getting less "food" than they need). Once they hit their equivalent of puberty, their digestive system shuts down, and feeding on humans is the only way they can survive. It's described as a burning hunger that makes them feel like they're on fire inside. It *literally* hurts like hell, and eventually drives them crazy, shortly before they die of starvation
It would also have helped their case a bit if they'd been shown to make more of an effort to find some substitute for feeding on humans. They'd been technologically advanced enough to fight the Ancients a very long time ago; they should have been able to come up with some form of "I Can't Believe It's Not Human" by now. Potentially they could even have genetically engineered some non-intelligent humanoid life form capable of sustaining them and lived in peace with the humans
| Guest chapter 1 . 9/6/2020
Is alternate!President Hank Landry a straight up President Evil or a President Iron with a hefty dose of I Did What I Had to Do? One hand, he's all but eradicated free speech through state controlled news sources, uses F-302s against anyone on Earth that's deemed a threat, and attempts to imprison Prime! Sam Carter. On the other hand, the universe he inhabits is far worse off than Sam's, something General Hammond is quick to point out. Plus, Sam had accidentally killed her alternate counterpart, depriving Landry of one of his best scientific minds in their war against the Ori.
The NID, idiots who nearly get the Earth into a war with numerous alien races by stealing their technology or Pragmatic Heroes who are the only ones actually accomplishing the goal of acquiring technology capable of defending Earth from a Goa'uld attack? Likewise, Stargate Command's efforts to bring them down, an admirable effort to preserve Earth's alliances or just another time and money wasting venture that gets Earth no better relations then they already had with the Asgard and Tollan?
In "Prometheus", the SGC and the Pentagon commit some extremely unethical and even illegal actions to kill Julia Donovan's story about the titular ship. They spy on her, something that is expressly illegal for the U.S. military to do. They then plan on double crossing Donovan by destroying the tapes containing the footage shot during the tour. While they're Just Following Orders that probably came from the President, it's still extremely creepy with how blase everyone is about the whole affair.
For that matter, it's creepy how the entire cast is okay with keeping the secret. It was one thing when it was just the Air Force experimenting with an alien portal device, but by the end of the series Earth has a fleet of battleships and off-world bases, as a result of having been secretly at war with aliens for ten or fifteen years.
The arms dealer in "Talion" raises a valid point when he talks about how, under the reign of the System Lords, the Jaffa were revered and privileged while ordinary Humans were slaves. When Teal'c confronts him about the attack at the Jaffa summit, he gives him a brief "Reason You Suck" Speech and finishes with a raised glass and an ironic toast: "I rejoice, rejoice, at seeing you kill each other."
Senator Kinsey, in the episode he's introduced in, raises a pretty good point in regards to the Stargate programme being a huge money-sink which introduces far too many risks (attracting the attention of hostile aliens, bringing through elements which could pose a threat to humanity itself, being the only known entry point for the Goa'uld to attack Earth, etc.) with little-to-no returns to speak of. He's eventually proven wrong when the Goa'uld wind up trying to invade earth via a fleet of ships, thus necessitating the Stargate programme as their only way of striking back, but it's hard not to agree with his initial views.
To expand: during the first season, the cast had a bad case of Failure Is the Only Option when it came it acquiring anything useful. Find a device that kills Goa'uld while leaving the host alive? Have to destroy it to save Teal'c. Find an alien database full of useful knowledge? It gets destroyed. Capture a spare Goa'uld human scientists can experiment on? Have to use it to save Teal'c again. Find a handy healing sarcophagus? Yep, destroyed.
Many characters, including Kinsey in his first appearance, point out that the SGC is essentially fighting a secret war without the knowledge or approval of the American public. While the wars with Goa'uld and Ori might be justifiable, the American public still really, really doesn't like the government engaging in secret conflicts. The show never really offers a counter to this, though it's justified that it can't. The main characters are either military officers (who could get in serious trouble for commenting on government policy), civilians (who would lose their positions if they speak out), or aliens (who have no place commenting on it).
The pre-Trust NID has a point that the SGC is essentially wasting Earth's time by not being more aggressive. Like Kinsey, they point out that the SGC has a virtually zero return investment when it comes to acquiring tech capable of defending against Goa'uld motherships. They also point out that the SGC's alien alliances are not worth the effort because when the chips are down, the aliens won't come to Earth's aid in the event of another attack, which is exactly what happens. The Tok'ra and free Jaffa cut and run after the loss of the Alpha Site, the Asgard are no where to be found, and Prometheus is too little, too late against Anubis' fleet. This is however eventually proven wrong by season 10 and by extension season 2 of Atlantis as it is exactly this approach that grants them the legacy of the Asgard, making Earth the most advanced power in the galaxy and a major player in several others.
| NCISFan chapter 13 . 9/4/2020
Good story. Worth reading. Too long in places making it tempting to skip ahead. No clue how it got almost 600 reviews, it's not that good. :)
| ksandra62 chapter 13 . 8/22/2020
Really enjoyed this story...thanks for posting.
| tmthesaurus chapter 8 . 9/10/2019
I really like this story in general but I really appreciate your portrayal of Daniel and Teal'c.
| JoyPod chapter 13 . 11/20/2018
I've actually read this story a few times. I come back to it when I find myself wondering what to read next. It is wonderfully written and very well thought out.
| TOSoldtimer chapter 12 . 8/4/2018
Great story! Very different from the other StarGate/Highlander fics I’ve read. Interesting psychoanalysis of Methos, the nature of evil and the difficulties of a very long life. And I loved Hiko Seijuro the 8th, a predecessor (not dead) of Rurouni Kenshin’s master. Wouldn’t have minded seeing more of him.
I read your mini sequel too. Nice touch to see how much a somewhat benevolent “god” can do to improve life for the peoples on the other side of the StarGate.
Thanks for two excellent reads to brighten a very rainy (2” fell, tornado within 35 miles) day.
| The MaskedKiwi chapter 13 . 4/13/2018
Fantastic story! I only know the basic outline of who Methos from Highlander is, but you wrote it in such a way that I truly enjoyed this. Thank you for posting your story!
| Duchess67 chapter 13 . 2/13/2018
Wow... This was impressive! You even gave hints of what was to come, without having to write it out, letting our imaginations play out the scenarios. Bravo! Well done! :)
Will you ever do any other stories in this universe? One shots? *hopeful look*
| suziq968 chapter 13 . 1/29/2018
This was so much fun to read! Thanks for sharing. It was a really interesting look into Methos and his psyche which has to be somewhat fractured. I think that's how he has survived and not killed himself. This project should keep him busy for at least a century but probably a millennia. So, Jake's gonna be a Tokra, which is really going to miss him off when he realizes that it's his only option unless he has enough naquada from Jack but still it's kinda inevitable if he wants to live long enough to help. Duncan is thinking ambassador but I'm thinking another system lord eventually. Surely, even Methos can't run the whole thing on his own.
| MPPC chapter 12 . 12/11/2017