SCIFI Make it Official: Carson is back!

carsonNBC/Universal/The SCIFI Channel, made Paul McGillion’s return to the Atlantis for a 2-epsiode arc guest appearance official last night, with a press release to the media:

Reports of Dr. Carson Beckett’s untimely demise last season on SCIFI’s Stargate Atlantis have been greatly exaggerated — or have they? Paul McGillion will reprise his role as everyone’s favorite Scottish physician in a two-episode arc during the series’ fourth season!

They went on to acknowledge the fan cry heard ’round the Pegasus Galaxy and campaigning efforts

which were the motivation to bring back Paul’s beloved character, Carson Beckett. It wasn’t long before the media responded with an ever increasing deluge of articles showing their support. Mary McNamara of MultiChannel News was one of the first to spread the word saying,

“McGillion was a critical favourite too. I thought he added great warmth to the ensemble cast. Chicago Tribune’s Maureen Ryan called the move to kill off his character “boneheaded”.”

Ms McNamara was also present during our Comic Con antics, were supporters handed out hundreds of SCB flags and “See You Jimmy” hats. Campaign leader Michelle handed the very last flag to Ms McNamara who enthusiastically added:

“The “SaveCarson” flag is now hanging on my office wall. So, a shout-out to SCI FI and MGM and show runner Joe Mallozzi: I’m with the fans. Bring back Paul. Even if the writing has been uneven at times, the Atlantis ensemble cast is neat and Paul synced nicely, infusing the ensemble with a shimmer of warmth.”

SCB would just like to offer Ms McNamara our sincere thanks for your continued and much appreciated support!

SCIFI Wire followed hot on the heels with a brand new interview, calling Paul McGillion on set yesterday to find out how the actor felt about his return. He told SCIFI Wire:

“Honestly, it feels like coming home,” McGillion said in an interview on the phone from the set in Vancouver, B.C. “And everyone’s been so terrific to me. The crew gave me a little round of applause when I came back on the set. And that was really sweet. That felt really nice. And everyone’s been really gracious towards me and it’s just been really nice. I love the character, and the chance to reprise Beckett is my pleasure.”

(Read the complete interview at SCIFI Wire)

Dozens more articles followed with word spreading across the web (the current list with links can be found below). It may not be the permanent reinstatement we’ve been campaigning for but its a big step in the right direction. Carson is back alive and kicking officially.

This goes to show how important our efforts have been both as a campaign and as individual fans. Each and every persons support, be it as simple as one letter or email has been absolutely essential to our success and the SCB crew would just like to take a moment to say CONGRATULATIONS and thank everyone for their terrific support, enthusiasm and of course, for helping to maintain our excellent reputation! We have been told time and again that our “pleasant, fun and light-hearted” campaign ethos has been instrumental in endearing us to both the media and TPTB. It goes to prove how much maintaining a sense of humour, “having a laugh”and not taking ourselves too seriously can achieve! Let’s keep up the pressure (with a smile!) and keep fighting to get Paul & Carson back PERMANENTLY for season 5! Well Done everyone, we’re half way there already!

Media List:

The story is also now being listed on a series of syndicated news sites which link to articles on larger sites (such as ComingSoon or TVSquad) for the full story.

28 thoughts on “SCIFI Make it Official: Carson is back!”

  1. Brilliant news and did you spot the pic of Paul on Joe Mallozzi’s blogspot 8th August, presumably taken at Bridge Studies – great to see him on the set again. I’ll keep on supporting the campaign and won’t stop until Paul is back permanently. Thanks to you guys for leading the way – wouldn’t have had a clue what to do otherwise.

  2. It is nice to, finally, be getting all this publicity – after all the letter writing and emails.

    Even negative publicity is publicity!

  3. Please keep an eye on out this blog entry, we are constantly getting more press coverage and will be adding to this a lot over the next few days! Way to go guys! We CAN get him back full time in S5!!!!

  4. Once again this is all down to the hard work and dedication of SCB, you guys are amazing. You have set the benchmark for all future fan campaigns!

    Am I the only person who thinks that all this sudden action from Skiffy is groundwork? Seems a little odd to produce a song and dance number like that press release, build the level of expectation, then not follow through. Or is that just me wishful thinking again?

  5. Woohoo! This is bliss if you haven’t noticed! Woohoo!

    All those publications are fantastic! If TPTB are in their right mind, with all the attention, there is no way they can let him go again.

    You guys rock beyond this galaxy! Thank you so much for organizing all the stuff and keeping us letter writers right on track! We’re so in your debt.

  6. Hooray for Carson! =D =D =D This is a *huge* acheivment! Good going everyone. =D

  7. It’s my birthday today and I’m happy to see all the Carson press…it’s a nice gift. A better gift would be Carson back to Atlantis fulltime.

    This campaign is inspiring and I’m proud to be even a small part of it.

  8. The Pegasus galaxy is a very big place. There is lots of
    room for two doctors. Room for Paul and Jewel. A
    wider variety of stories can be told. Greater potential
    for the writers and producers and much larger growth
    for all the characters on Stargate:Atlantis. Everyday
    in every way better and better. To all who helped
    bring about this homecoming for Paul (Carson) you
    all did very well indeed. Bravo!

  9. Ah yes, and that solves Mr Coopers excuse about there being no one to ‘patch up the doc’ if they get mortally wounded. So Carson (or Keller) get to go off world and theres always someone to fix’em if they get broken! Perfect!

  10. I think the actions of TPTB would argue against there being room. What do we have for S4? Carter comes over and Weir goes from main cast to recurring character and we get Keller in recurring role and Carson out the door, except for fan efforts bringing him back as a guest star.

    I would be more than happy with Carson back full-time and Keller recurring, but would they? Can they utilize two doctors in storylines for the show, especially when they tend to focus on Sheppard and McKay?
    If I have to make a choice, for me it can only be for Paul/Carson.

  11. The sad fact for TPTB is the fans decide which characters they love. They tell us that Jewel is a fantastic actress and that Keller will be adored. We’ll see, but whether the Keller character is liked or dislliked is completely irrelevant actually.

    Everyone remember the film Jerry Maguire? And the line You had me at hello? Well, I think in Carson’s case, for a LOT of SGA fans it was a case of ‘You had me had it might be lunch related. ‘

    You cannot predict or force a reaction to a character, and I think they would do well to respect that.

  12. In most circumstances I would give any new character a chance, but I loved ‘Carson’ too much to be fickle about such a poorly handled departure. I cant do the HOW DARE TH…ooww I kinda like her. Its nothing against Jewel, she rocks! But the ONLY reason she’s there is to replace Paul, whether she likes it or not. The show needs a ‘doctor’ character, Beckett was killed off and Keller brought into replace him, simple as that. Its nothing against Jewel and I wish her the very best! It’s not even a case of giving Keller or the show a chance , I already did that with the final three episodes of s3 which just couldn’t hold my interest. Frankly the bored me, the spark was gone and I was upset over the complete lack of follow-up…they screwed the pooch royally on that base.

    I’m in the ‘young working professional’ with very little spare time catagory. I could TiVo it but thats not going to aide the ratings of the show. I made an effort to watch it live to that end originally but have no intentions of doing so anymore as my free time is so limited and precious and there are plenty of other shows to watch. They didn’t reward my loyalty by keeping a proven fan favourite or even giving the character more then a half-baked send off and proving they didn’t care by hanving no follow up. I dont see why I should give that loyalty any more if its not returned. If they DO bring him back permanently then I will do my damnedest to prove how valuable that is and promote, shout about, nag my friends to watch and give back…AND encourage all SCB members to do the same. Until then they can bugger off!

  13. Annie–You are right. You cannot force a reaction to a character, especially a reaction like the one I had to Carson, who, frankly, has owned me from the moment I saw him onscreen.

    TJ–I feel the same way you do. Atlantis without Carson is lacking and I am furious with how little impact the death of a character I adored had on the other characters. I really feel they came off quite poorly for that.
    And yes, Jewel only came on with Paul going off. One doctor for another. I’ve tried to be diplomatic about it, but I am not willing to accept her instead of him. I want Paul full-time.
    Until and unless they show appreciation for me as a current fan rather than hoping to ensnare some phantasmal future fan, I am right there with you.
    I, too, will do my best for the show if they bring him back

  14. TJ – I’m with you. I’m an “much older (but young at heart)” working professional with huge family commitments too. Your feelings sum my thoughts up exactly. Time is my most precious commodity – I gave mine up to SGA because of the Carson character – if they are not willing to reciprocate and reward my loyalty they can indeed get lost. I will be using my precious time elsewhere.

  15. went through a part of the list today leaving comments….and noticed that i was the first one to comment on many off the pages…
    come on people…get the word out….we DO want him back permanently! we can do it, but we have to be VOCAL about it! so go and flood those sites with comments please!!!!

  16. Great to see the news is out there and official at last. Some of the sites I’ve tried to post a comment on and although it says they have been posted, they have failed to materialise.

    Quote Post 13 Annie: “Well, I think in Carson’s case, for a LOT of SGA fans it was a case of ‘You had me at ‘might be lunch related’. ” 🙂

    hehehe – that’s perfect Annie, and so true!

  17. For those of you who don’t know, David Hewlett goes out of his way to make himself open to the fans. One way he dose this is thru the Web site ( His most recent entry read very simply

    “We’ve got an old friend on set this week! Won’t you be Mchappy ;-)”

    Thank you David for the heads up!!!!!

    I know we are all hoping he means McGillion McHappy!!!

  18. I read that post at his site and I was McHappy! My birthday is this Tuesday the 21st by the way, to the person who said they were posting on their birthday! Fellow Leos love Carson!

  19. Oh, joy. Too little too late. Shouldn’t have offed him in the first place.

  20. Awesome! I can’t wait to read the article stating Paul & Carson are back full time! Hopefully it wont be too long now!

  21. How good is that what great news fair cheered us up here in sqf my son and i cant wait to see the new season and wait to hear BECKETTS BACK FUR GUID !

  22. It’s encouraging that the two episodes occur immediately prior to the finale. If they came earlier in the season with no other appearances scheduled that would make it seem like they aren’t going to bring him back full time. However, the two episodes taking place just before the finale make it very possible for him to return full time in S5, since there could be reasonable circumstances under which he wouldn’t appear in the finale after those two episodes (not every character is in every episode etc).

  23. I stated on the SGA forum the night I saw it air and realized Carson wouldn’t be back, I would no longer be watching the show. Carson was, IMO, like Mr. Scott on the original Star Trek. A supporting character that became a star role through the length of the series. He just grew on you. His character was the type whose kindness and warmth tempered the harsh reality & violence that surrounded the team. Not just a Doctor, but a friend whose shoulder all could lean on. Yes, this was a definate mess up by the writers. I might return as a viewer if they quit messing with the cast and get on with the story line. They should know by now, most viewers watch to escape this kind of day to day emotional trauma. There is enough in real life. We all look for a feel good story with characters we can get to know and depend on to take us away from our life for that magic hour each week. Change it too often or too drasticaly and you will loose us as viewers. Give us back our Feel Good Carson and keep us. Don’t and loose us. It’s that simple.
    Gary Kersey – CEO/President Forest Pro Services

  24. I agree. I hope that Paul’s coming back for a couple of episodes will somehow lead to his return as the fine doctor on a permanent basis. He should not have been killed off. It seems that since SciFi took over the Stargate franchise, they have had the tendency to kill off or “transfer or promote” other characters too easily. As was mentioned previously by another blogger, this is escapism. SG-1 started a slow decline when they sucker puched us with—you guessed it—killing off the docter (the Daniel ascending then coming back affair wasn’t the best either). Then General Hammond gets removed (didn’t help us like Dr Weir, either-Torri helped us get over that). And the extremely pained punch was the loss of Jack. I know RDA wanted some down time to be with his family, but without the Gekko (Anderson/Greenburg) humor, it started to get stale. We all hoped that Cam would be a bit more like John (Farscape…Don’t get me started on how they messed that one up-cancelling and then trying to cover a whole season in a 4 hour movie-and D’Argo dead? No way!), but I guess they were trying not to make him too much like John. Lastly, Adding a new villian (The Ori) too soon when they could have been more into new/old team and the Jafar working their new freedom out before new enemies added. Why not check up on some of the peoples met in earlier episodes. Then SG-1 gets cancelled before any real conclusion to the storyline. I hoped since RDA/Jack was making more appearances, that he was going to be a bit more involved with the story and bring some of his kind of humor back to the show.
    As far as SGA goes…bring back Carson…and Dr Weir! They kill off Carson and just a few espisodes later, Weir is fatally injured, revived by Replicator techology (could have done better without Replicator help if Carson was there…he’s pulled out some “can’t be healed” cures before) and now possibly dead by the hands of the replicators.
    And Sam being the new boss with new uniforms (does show her shape better). How can that be? Since our last site of her, she was fighting the Ori with SG-1. Haven’t seen the movie(s) that shows SG-1 and SGC winning that battle yet. Or did the Pegasus galaxy get suspended in time while the Ori were getting blasted By SGC?
    Last thing—what’s with the shorter seasons and why is Sci Fi getting to less “Sci Fi” and more wrestling, mind games, seaching for ghosts, and creature of the week(Saturday) and less Sci Fi? Is it slowing being changed to “The Creature Feature Channel”? Gee, I’m already getting Dr Who withdrawal systems.
    Okay, really, this is the last item. Oddessy 5 looks to be interesting, so keep it coming, but it looks like a show oginally designed for, say, Showtime, with the gaps in the dialog for words that can’t be said on an “extended basic cable” program. You would have thought that by now we have the tecnology to “fill in” those gaps with cleaner words that could result in tha same, general meaning intended.
    Sorry if this was long winded, but I had a lot on my mind. (Bionic Woman-possible good show, but get out of the screwed up production habits that has left he wishing for the 1970’s version of Battle Star Galactica, as campy as it was.)
    Save Carson, Dr Weir and hope O Neill is more involved in the SG-1 movie(s)!!!!!!

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