“Approaching the Possible: The World of Stargate SG-1” book review

Released by ECW Press in the far-away year of 2005, “Approaching the Possible: The World of Stargate SG-1” is author Jo Storm’s guide to the journey that is the first eight seasons of Stargate SG-1. For those of you living under a rock for the past decade or so, “Stargate SG-1” was the spin-off television series based on the 1994 film with Kurt Russell. The series started on Showtime and eventually found its home on the Sci-Fi channel (before they started that sy-fy crap), where it enjoyed two spin-off’s of its own as well as a cartoon series.

This book is the companion to the series, and is loaded with information that Stargate fans, or “Gaters” as they call themselves, will surely love to know. However, this is not just an episode-by-episode synopsis, this is a true guide to the series, as well as its origins, and examines things much deeper, such as the production and mythology that the show features. Beyond that, the book even discusses the international aspects of the show, such as filming in Canada and the issues that arose there, discussions of the expansion of the franchise itself, and the “fanchise” of hardcore viewers that have started websites, conventions, and spread their love of SG-1 around the globe.

The book also features exclusive interviews with cast members such as Teryl Rothery, Alex Zahara, and Christopher Judge, as well as writer Joseph Mallozzi and special effects supervisor James Tichenor, to give you the most in-depth and up-close info about what went on behind the scenes as much as what was happening in the continuity of the series.

The bulk of the book is the episode guide, taking up over 400 pages of the 530 page book (yes, it’s that enormous!). The guide is broken down by season, with each episode getting a full synopsis in regards to plot as well as production, and is scrutinized further in a piece-by-iece examination. Each episode gets a sectional treatment, starting with “Gods & Scientists” which looks at the historical or mythological aspects of the episode as well as any legitimate scientific info that was shown or referenced, “Interesting Facts” which is self-explanatory, “Why we’re space monkeys” which is a tidbit of info from behind the scenes, and lastly, “Parlez-Vous Gate?”, which is a fan-favorite quote.

“Approaching the Possible” was truly a labor of love for Jo Storm, and it shows in the content. The author left no stone unturned, speaking with whoever was willing to speak on the subject of SG-1 to create the most meticulous and complete compendium on the show out there. Well-written and easy to read, this book is brimming with knowledge that any Stargate fan needs to make the jump from casual to die-hard, or for the hardcore fans to learn even more than they ever thought they could on the topic. As a casual fan myself, I became more interested in the show as I read on, and even though the series has come to an end now, it’s never too late to jump back in thanks to Netflix and DVD’s, so I just might do that.

You can order “Approaching the Possible: The World of Stargate SG-1” from Amazon for $20, and is definitely worth it if you are a fan of SG-1. Heck, for $20, if you are a serious Gater and do not own this yet, I don’t know what you are waiting for! Great for entry-level fans or the self-proclaimed gater, jump through the stargate and make sure to bring along a copy of this book.

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