WARNING: Stargate SG-1 spoilers follow
Jonas Quinn is a character from the television program, Stargate SG-1. He was played by Corin Nemec, most remembered (by me at least) as the title character from Parker Lewis Can't Lose. Jonas Quinn appeared in these episodes:
- Season 5
- Season 6
- Redemption (Part 1)
- Redemption (Part 2)
- Shadow Play
- The Other Guys
- Unnatural Selection
- Sight Unseen
- Smoke & Mirrors
- Paradise Lost
- The Changeling
- Full Circle
- Season 7
Jonas Quinn is a native of the planet Langara, where SG-1 first encountered naquadria. Before meeting SG-1, Jonas worked as a Special Advisor to the High Minister of Kelowna, his home and one of the three major powers of the planet. When Daniel Jackson risked his life to save the Kelownan people from a naquadria-enhanced weapon of their own making, he and the rest of SG-1 were no longer welcome. Jonas eventually realized that his people's behavior was wrong and he championed Daniel's cause and the cessation of the naquadria project. Because of his change of heart, the Kelownan government branded Jonas a traitor, and he emigrated to Earth and sought asylum at Stargate Command (SGC).
Three months later (due to season break), Jonas is still living at the SGC, and he's been busily poring over Dr. Jackson's notes. While this allows him to fill Daniel's role more easily, it robs us of being introduced to Jonas more as an individual than as a Daniel replacement. Because of Jack's friendship with Daniel, his and Jonas's relationship is still in a rocky preliminary stage. Even though Jonas inspires Major Carter to airlift the stargate out of Cheyenne Mountain and save Earth, it takes the threat of a Russian member of SG-1 for Jack to offer Jonas a spot on the team. When Jonas, along with Teal'c, saves Jack and Carter from drowning in a downed mothership, Jack begins to develop trust for him.
Frozen marks the first episode where Jonas is blatantly written as a replacement for Dr. Jackson. Although nobody in Antarctica is more qualified to try to communicate with an Ancient, having Jonas do it feels forced. Despite this weak story, in Nightwalkers we see a side of Jonas's character that we needed to see more of, his unfamiliarity with Earth, its cultures, and customs.
In Shadow Play, we are exposed to elements of Jonas's former life on Kelowna. We meet his mentor, Dr. Kieren, and we are shown just how important Jonas's people are to him, even though they have branded him a traitor.
It is not until Metamorphosis that we learn more about Jonas. Nirrti is experimenting on people that SG-1 happens across, and her experiments manage to capture them. She places Sam and Jonas in her DNA rearrangement machine, and she discovers that despite possessing technology on par with 1940s Earth, the Langarans are genetically superior to the Tauri (humans). She could bestow more power upon him than any of the others, and she offers to do just that. Being one of the good guys he, of course, rejects her offer, but it gives Jonas a chance to show off that he has a good moral compass.
Prophecy shows us just how much SG-1 means to Jonas. He is still out to prove himself, even after an entire year at the SGC, and his need to be useful and accepted causes him to put himself in jeopardy by holding onto his prophetic visions until the last minute when Dr. Frasier is forced to operate. The team means enough to Jonas that he puts his own life on the line for them. By following his intuition and doing his best to be useful, Jack finally really accepts Jonas as a member of SG-1 and a friend.
Season 7's Fallen and Homecoming deal with the return of Daniel Jackson and the loss of Jonas Quinn. How convenient that these two events would occur simultaneously. Homecoming concerns Langara and Anubis's desire to gather its naquadria. Jonas is invited back to unite his planet as the Kelownan representative in a council that will stand together against whatever challenges face Langara. One such threat is the Goa'uld and planetary obliteration in Fallout. Jonas is easily allowed to expand as a character because he is no longer being molded in Daniel Jackson's image. He even has a love interest in this episode. We get to see a boyish, vulnerable side, and it's a welcome addition to the character.
The character of Jonas Quinn was met with mixed reviews. He was interesting, but he was written too much as a replacement for Dr. Jackson. This severely limited the possibilities for his character development. Being a quick study also served more as a plot device and catalyst of generic Stargate-SG1 problem solving than as an actual characteristic. The character was well-written in Meridian, Shadow Play, Metamorphosis, Prophecy, Homecoming, and Fallout. It is in these episodes that he was allowed to develop outside of Daniel Jackson's shadow.