It's come to my attention that there is a small band of unhappy Stargate Atlantis fans that are ripping apart my favorite SGA scientist, Rodney McKay and accusing him of being a whining, arrogant jerk. They're missing the point: the whining and arrogance are the main reasons I love that character! In a gateworld where too many members of the crew have one personality trait that they cling to for a whole series (inertly good, angry, or hates authority) McKay is veritable wellspring of emotion. He's the spice that makes this scifi show interesting, plus he adds a bit of reality. He's the show's everyman, plus he keeps Carter in check while everyone else showers her with love. But click through for the real reasons I love McKay.
Who could forget the first time McKay raised a finger to precious Carter? Classic. But even though they fight, you know they love each other, and I love the back and forth banter. Here's why I enjoy his little character nuances.
He's The Most Annoying When He's Nervous, And That's Endearing:
Season 5 episode 1 of Stargate Atlantis shoved McKay into a tight spot when he's forced to deliver Teyla's baby. He immediately starts yammering and comparing her birth to a kidney stone - oh McKay, you idiot. But he figures it out and gets all little-kid excited because he caught the baby in the end. Cute - not hilarious, but kind of stupidly endearing. He cares, and he makes up stupid examples when he's nervous.
He's The Everyman Stuck In A World Of Warriors:
McKay isn't the leader Sheppard, or the muscle by any means. What he's got is his wit and brains (which often fail to be useful as well, because Carter is perfect). When bad things happen to McKay, we see what would happen to an actual person with flaws. Not everyone can get impaled by debris and skip surgery to go save their girlfriends - some of us need a little rest. Oh yeah and he makes fun of Sheppard's hair, which is hilarious.
We Weren't Supposed To Like Him In SG-1:
McKay is like a fine wine, he gets better with age. When he was brought on SG-1, he was supposed to be a thorn in everyones side. But look how much he's grown. In the beginning, he told everyone they were wrong, and now he takes a back seat and helps out. That's growth, people - real-life character development.
Plus it was about time somebody gave Carter a little bit of grief, everything was always too easy for her. McKay was an important antagonist that needed to be added.
He's Us If We Lived In The Pegasus Galaxy, Both Good And Bad:
Take it for what he is, the man's got flaws but it's what makes him believable. Almost everything he does is on par with how my friends and I would act if we discovered a way to make a personal force field. We'd shoot at each other and joke about being indestructible.
Surely if we have room in our hearts for by-the-book Richard Woolsey we have room for a slowly-growing-into-maturity McKay.