Stargate: Universe was the third entry into the now-venerable franchise, continuing over a decades worth of universe-building. The series was based around a group of soldiers, scientists and general civilians trapped on a millenia-old ship, billions of light years from Earth, with limited supplies but no shortage of problems. The 'lost in space' premise is an easy one to get wrong, whether you simply ignore the premise, a la Star Trek: Voyager, or whether you let it get subsumed by dysfunctional family drama and unsatisfying pseudo-religious elements, as Battlestar Galactica did. But, and this is only my opinion of course, SG:U manages to rise to the challenge, presenting a story that is about personal conflict without becoming overly personal, and which never forgets its premise, even while it seems willing to break away from it for episodes at a time.
Or, sadly, I suppose I should say it did manage it. Because, as comes as no surprise given the opening to this post, SG:U has been officially canceled after just two seasons.
So why am I talking about it, then? Well, because I think it was some of the best science-fiction television to air in quite some time. And because I think it would be worth the time for any fan of science-fiction television, Stargate fan or not, to sit down and watch this program. It's a frankly brilliant story, and despite having been canceled out from under the writing staff it even manages to present a relatively satisfying finale, closing off one chapter of the crew's story without shutting down the potential of the universe itself. Funny, exciting, clever, and yes, sometimes sexy, SG:U was a much darker and more contiguous series than its predecessors, something I think helped to catapult it into the position it holds as a prime example of science-fiction television done right. I wasn't much a fan of Stargate:SG-1 or Stargate: Atlantis, but I can honestly say I'm a fan of Stargate: Universe.
And no, even though it's canceled, I won't put that in the past tense.
Watch the trailer, decide for yourself. You won't be disappointed if you give this show a chance.