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Recap / Stargate SG 1 S 10 E 18 Family Ties

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Landry: You know this man?
Vala: A little. He's my father.

Vala's estranged father Jacek contacts the SGC claiming to have information about a plot against Earth that he's willing to share in exchange for sanctuary, but Vala insists he's a conman and can't be trusted. Meanwhile, Landry attempts to reach out to his ex-wife, Dr. Lam's mother.

Last appearance of Dr. Bill Lee, Dr. Carolyn Lam, and MSgt. Sylvester Siler.


"Family Ties" provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Brick Joke: Halfway through the episode, Jacek offhandedly offers Teal'c some tickets to a show called the "Virginia Dialogues" after Vala refuses to see it with him. The Stinger shows Teal'c suffering awkwardly through a performance of The Vagina Monologues.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Vala delivers a bitter rant to Jacek about having the nerve to show up in her life again when she goes to see him at his apartment on Earth:
    Vala: How dare you implicate yourself in my life after all these years? You were never there for mother, even though you always expected us to be there for you whenever you needed a place to hide or capital to help set up one of your latest scams. My life has been a constant struggle against the personal issues that you seeded, and now that I am Stargate Command and I am finally happy with who I am, you think you can come along and jeopardize everything that I have worked so hard to achieve. Under no circumstances will I allow you to screw that up for me!
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  • Con Man: Jacek is one, though he's not actually very good at it.
  • Continuity Nod: Jacek claims that Arkad had a contingency plan with which to attack Earth in the event of his death.
  • Daddy's Girl: Vala admits that she was one in her childhood, though she has long since become jaded about her father.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Dr. Lam thaws out some more towards Landry as he attempts to reach out to her mother.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Siler is so distracted by the sight of Carter and Vala wearing flattering street clothes on base at the beginning of the episode that he walks smack into an open door.
  • First-Name Basis: Vala pointedly refers to Jacek by his first name rather than calling him "Dad", to indicate the distance between them.
  • Friendship Moment: Carter drops by Vala's quarters to cheer her up with a girls' night in after Jacek leaves at the end of the episode.
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  • I Gave My Word: Landry insists on honoring his promise to give Jacek sanctuary on Earth after his intel turns out to be somewhat correct, despite Vala's protests.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Carter talks about how the Stargate program isn’t getting as much support as it used to, when Jacek asks why, Dr Lee (trying to find the solution to the topic at hand) exclaims: “Eureka!”
  • List of Transgressions: Referenced when Jacek first contacts the SGC:
    Jacek: I suppose for the benefit of your friends you're gonna want to list all the reasons why I was such a bad father.
    Vala: Oh, I wish I could, but a wormhole can only be maintained for thirty-eight minutes.
  • Out-Gambitted: The team predict that Jacek will try to scam them and counter with a scheme of their own, resulting in him stealing a cargo ship full of lead bars and packing peanuts rather than the weapons-grade naquadah.
  • Stylistic Suck: Jacek's "genuine stardust" commercial.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Several episodes after Colonel Emerson was murdered, Odyssey finally gets a new commander in the person of Colonel Ian Davidson.
  • Tired of Running: Daniel points out that this is at least part of the reason why Vala went to the effort of reforming her ways, and that maybe the same is true for Jacek.
  • When You Coming Home, Dad?: Vala complains that Jacek would disappear for months at a time on his schemes when she was a child, only returning when he needed a place to lie low. Landry tries to draw parallels with his own failings as a father, but Vala insists that it's not the same, since at least Landry had a legitimate career keeping him away from his family.

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