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Approaching the Possible: The World of Stargate Sg-1 (Large Print 16pt), Volume 2 Paperback – Large Print, 27 Dec 2012

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Product details

  • Paperback: 488 pages
  • Publisher: ReadHowYouWant; large type edition edition (27 Dec. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1459654684
  • ISBN-13: 978-1459654686
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 2.5 x 25.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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First Sentence
Speculative fiction has roots that reach way back, but until recently it was loosely designated under the heading "fanciful." Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By "zeb21" on 10 Feb. 2006
Format: Paperback
I found this guide to the first eight seasons of Stargate SG1 to be wonderfully informative and great fun to read to boot.
The book includes sections on the cast, many photos liberally scattered throughout the book, a list of websites to visit, and most importantly, a fantastic episode guide.
What makes it so special is that the guide doesn't just summarize the episode, it explains the myths behind the stories, expands a bit on the scientific/technical details and helps keep the monsters straight in "Gods and scientists". On a less serious note, the author has chosen a funny quote from each episode ("Parlez-vous Gate?"), as well as mentioning an aspect that was particularly enjoyable - "Why we're space monkeys"... The author's enthusiasm for her subject comes through loud and clear, and it's a real pleasure to share in it.
There's even a great section on the fans of SG1!
It's a wonderful book, and I love leafing through it to remind myself of favourite parts, of both the guide and the series that inspired it. I can only hope there'll be a follow-on for the next season(s)!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Shana Morris on 18 May 2006
Format: Paperback
I found the book to very informative and well written. The book for the most part stuck to the facts about the episodes and some interesting facts about the actors, set locations, and mythologys. The only time I didn't enjoy the book was when the author subjected her own opinion and biased the outline on the episodes accordingly. Such as her rant about the characters not being gay. However the book was well done and I would definitely recommend it to any stargate fan.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Anny Théberge on 11 Jan. 2007
Format: Paperback
I bought this, started reading it and got fed up quite quickly with it.

At first, the way of presenting the info ("Why we're Space Monkeys", "Parlez-vous Gate?") was entertaining but I got tired of the contents after reading about a few episodes. The personal comments about the show had my eyebrow going up, Teal'c-like, quite often. As were the Jackson-centered synopses. They are obviously written by a fan, but they don't have to be "fannish".

And, pray tell, what was that big color picture of that unknown woman doing in there??! I assume it was Black/Vala (no, I didn't watch season 9: what little I've seen I didn't like). If it is, in my humble opinion, it had no place being in a book about the first 8 seasons and it was taking up the space of a perfectly good photo of some other important character like Jacob's (Argenziano) or Bratak's (Amendola).

Speaking of those pictures: they are simply gorgeous! There were many that I had never seen before. For me, they are the saving grace of this book.

I don't know if I'll pick it again someday and finish it, though...
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 17 reviews
34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
THE Stargate Guide 8 Feb. 2006
By J. Bassett - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Having patiently waited for the release of "Approaching the Possible," I was pleased to see it waiting for me upon my return from vacation. After ripping open the box I settled into my favorite chair and opened the book. I was not disappointed.

I scanned the Table of Contents for a moment, and then said to heck with it. I went for the color pictures, which are a nice addition to the book. After thumbing through them (several times... wonderful Michael Shanks photos), I moved on to the episode guide, which is for Seasons 1 through 8.

Each episode contains a one to two line blurb describing the episode, and then continues with a discussion regarding a particular scene in the movie, select story lines, and sometimes the philosophy of the episode. Following the discussion is "Gods & Scientists," "Interesting Fact", "Why We're Space Monkeys," and "Parlez-vous Gate?" All of this wonderful information is packed into 2 to 2.5 pages, a few just a little longer.

Starting with Season 1, I found I could not just read the book through in order; there was too much information for one sitting (not that I'm complaining). I started with the "Parlez-vous Gate?" section, reveling in some of my favorite lines from the show. The author did a great job picking specific lines to represent the episode. I have no idea how she managed, considering how many zingers appear within just one episode.

Once finished with "Parlez-vous Gate?" I then flipped back and forth through the seasons, reading the "Gods & Scientists" and "Interesting Fact" sections, both of which imparted the myths behind the series as well as facts regarding the filming of the shows or of the characters/actors themselves.

The "Why We're Space Monkeys" section contains interesting tidbits of information about the specific episode, which could be about the cast, characters, crew and so on. The author even adds a few quips on occasion, noting where SG-1 may have messed up or even caused a mess beyond their control.

Beside the episode guide, where I seem to lose myself every time I sit down with it, you will also find wonderful articles that include:

- Approaching the Possible: The World of Stargate SG-1

- Making Myth: The Story of Stargate SG-1

- The Cast of Stargate SG-1

- Everybody CanCon

- Coding the Wormhole

- Out of the Blue

... and my favorite...

- No Red Shirts

Within the resources section you will find addresses to Stargate related websites, several of which I've already visited and enjoyed.

Although the book does lack an index, I find it to be a minor inconvenience; after all, I don't mind thumbing through the book to look for a given piece of information. I tend to run across other interesting pieces of trivia that I've missed through prior viewings.

This is, by far, the best book on the market and I look forward to any additional Stargate books published by the author.

Hey Jo! Hint, hint!
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
An insightful, comprehensive, and attractive book on SG-1 20 Sept. 2006
By DP - Published on
Format: Paperback
I bought this book because it's the most comprehensive one of its kind on the SG-1 market, and it's worth every cent (it's over 500 pages, too - although Amazon has it at 300). Not only does it include a fascinating entry into the show (how it developed from the movie, the main differences in terms of atmosphere, characters, plots, mythologies), but I also discovered a lot of information about the actors, the fandom, the online scene, and how the series fits into the CanCon tradition. Really interesting surrounding material that adds many layers when you're looking at the episode themselves. Great selection of quotes from the cast, crew, and fans, too!

As other people have mentioned, the episode guide in and of itself is wonderful. Unlike other books out there, it doesn't just give a summary of the episode, it delves into each one, looking at various aspects of the show including science, underlying mythologies and philosophies, character arcs, and large thematic issues. Funny (or sometimes achingly hard) quotes from each episode bring out the flavour of the show, which is one of the reasons I watch it.

My favourite part of the episode guide is definitely the `gods and scientists' - it gave additional insight into episodes and characters, giving a textured and layered look at the show. I found out a lot about the different mythologies, scientific theories, theologies, and philosophies behind each episode - the author clearly did a lot of research, and didn't restrict herself to one mythological or religious influence.

This book is worth getting for the sheer volume of information alone - not to mention that it's well written, and has a ton of photographic material (I'd never seen quite a few of the beautiful colour inserts before). The author obviously loves SG-1, and it shows; the book isn't doting, but it reads like a critical analysis of, and homage to, Stargate.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Tops for space monkeys 23 Jan. 2007
By Ruth Delaney - Published on
Format: Paperback
While there's an attempt to include other material (brief bios of the lead actors, chapters on Stargate's fan following, etc), essentially this is an episode guide covering seasons 1 to 8 of Stargate SG1.

The unauthorised nature of the book is evidenced by the lack of any photos other than publicity stills of the main actors and candid shots taken at conventions. As a result, the illustrations are not a strong point. The text, however, is extensive and rather meatier than is the case in many "episode guide" publications. First and foremost, each episode receives a short critical essay, almost all of which are interesting, germane and erudite. As well as teasing out the themes, the author critiques whatever features of that particular episode have caught her eye; be it the acting, the scriptwriting, the direction, character development, the sociology, the contribution to the Stargate mythology, pop culture references, or even the actors' appearance (hairstyles get a consistent mention!). She's not afraid to slam weaknesses, or to give praise when it's warranted - and she's not above letting her tongue hang out over any notable eye-candy! I didn't always agree with her opinions, but she certainly prompted me to think again about some episodes, plot points and characters that I'd previously taken at face value.

In addition to the essay, each entry includes notes on any myths that inform the episode; interesting facts; the absolute pick of that episode's dialogue; and comment on what marks each episode out from `run of the mill' science fiction television. Although the original US airdate and writing and directing credits are given for each episode, this book doesn't try to give all the `vital statistics' that many other episode guides thrive on. For the most part this doesn't detract, though the extreme brevity of the plot summaries (one or two sentences at most) is not always helpful.

One major niggle; the lack of an index. Storm frequently references other episodes in her critical essays, but only by title. Readers without an absolutely encyclopaedic knowledge of every Stargate episode are going to want to flip back and check out "exactly what episode is that one she's referring to here", but the lack of an index (or even just the inclusion of an episode number with such references) makes this an exercise in extreme frustration.

All in all though, this is a satisfying and entertaining read (though perhaps for dipping into as you watch and rewatch episodes, rather than for reading cover to cover). The author has clearly put considerable thought into her analysis, and the breadth of her research is impressive, yet the style remains accessible.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Not exactly a "must have" 10 Nov. 2006
By Victrola - Published on
Format: Paperback
"Approaching the Possible" is a nice enough episode guide with some detailed, thoughtfully written extra features on the actors, the mythology and the fandom of Stargate. Yet I found myself in constant disagreement with the author's opinions. Episodes that seem to be generally well-received by the fans (such as season three's "Legacy"), she pans, yet episodes that even the most diehard fans scorned (such as season five's "The Tomb"), she praises. The author also makes some unusual selections when picking memorable quotes from each episode, often snubbing funnier, deeper or just plain more familiar lines for less interesting ones. While all the actors are praised at different times, Ms. Storm seems to have a particular fondness for Amanda Tapping; it seems that hardly a review goes by without Storm gushing over a line delivery or facial expression of Ms. Tapping's. The Sam worship gets a little nauseating in its excessiveness. Finally, while the candid color photos in the center of the book are lovely, the small black and white ones scattered throughout the book, almost exclusively taken at conventions, are a bit boring and repetitious.

Knowing now that this will be the last season of Stargate, I'm wishing I'd waited a year or more and purchased an episode guide featuring all ten seasons of Stargate.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Long-winded, but a few good ideas 29 Jan. 2007
By readergal - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book was written by an academic, and it shows. It's about as much fun reading as a college textbook. Even the title's pretentious. Most of the book is composed of short essays on each episode through season 8. I agreed with only half of the author's opinions. She was particularly harsh with "Birthright" and "Sacrifices" because they didn't sufficiently promote a feminist agenda. The denseness of some of the essays is just exhausting. After criticizing most aspects of a particular episode, the author concludes: "A Hundred Days is built on moments; like a string of pearls, each follows another, each with a different sheen but forming a whole. Ellipsis is a huge factor in the episode--not only in time, but in what remains unsaid. Each moment has significance, and it's on these increments that a story is constructed." Well, OK, then. The author also snarked on Keith Topping's fun "Beyond the Gate" (another unofficial SG-1 episode guide), which was unnecessary. There's an inadequate table of contents and no index, so it's difficult look up a specific episode. After slogging through descriptions rife with terms like "binary opposition," "tropes," "didactic," and "metonymy," I felt the same frustration Jack does when Sam starts to explain her science--just get to the point already.
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