The 200th episode of STARGATE SG-1, the little Sci Fi Channel show that could (it debuted in 1997!) is a must-see for any sci fi fan.
Regular viewers of the show will no doubt pick up on a zillion in-jokes that I missed, but there's plenty to go around as the SG writers and actors tweak their own noses when the characters "help" a screenwriter (Willie Garson, as Hollywood shnook nonpareil) with a screenplay based on his TV show based on their exploits: WORMHOLE X-TREME! Exclamation point theirs.
Everything's fair game in the TV and movie development world, from the title sequence to act outs to swapping lead actors mid-series to having your funding slashed over a text message, but the real heart of the ep is the sci fi parodies of the show.
We see the Stargate posse as angsty O.C. punks, Classic Trek, in a galaxy far, far away, as Thunderbirds-style puppets (!!)... My favorite bit is when alien Vala tries to get her own storyline added, but only offers glosses on other, very familiar movie and TV tales. "If you're going to rip off someone," the writer admonishes, "You're going to have to pick something a little more obscure."
Cut to a pitch-perfect parody of a late, lamented sci fi show dear to my heart, one where Claudia Black (Vala) and Ben Browder clearly feel right at home.
"That's better," says the writer. "I have no idea what that is."
"200" rebroadcasts on Sci Fi on 8/25, I think, or track it down digitally. Find it. Watch it. Love it.