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Stargate Atlantis/Rodney McKay

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Dr. Meredith Rodney McKay
Stargate Atlantis
Actor David Hewlett
First Appearance Stargate SG-1: 5x12 - 48 Hours
Stargate Atlantis: 1x01/02 - Rising
Last Appearance Stargate Universe: 2x15 - Seizure
Series Billing Stargate SG-1: Recurring
Stargate Atlantis: Billed
Episode Count Stargate SG-1: 7
Stargate Atlantis: 100
Notable Episodes Stargate SG-1 5x14 - 48 Hours
Stargate Atlantis - 2x04 Duet
Stargate Atlantis 2x14 - Grace Under Pressure
Also Appears On Stargate SG-1
Stargate Universe


Basic Information

Dr. Meredith Rodney McKay is a self-proclaimed brilliant astrophysicist who spent several years studying the Stargate and is considered to be the foremost expert on Stargate technology after Lt. Colonel Samantha Carter. Dr. McKay joined the Atlantis expedition in hopes of uncovering the key to more Ancient technology in his ever elusive quest for a Nobel Prize.

McKay has evolved from his first appearance in Stargate SG-1 where he was portrayed as an arrogant if brilliant scientist who clashed repeatedly with then Major Samantha Carter. While he still has a cutting wit and tends to overreact, McKay has proven himself by going above and beyond to ensure the continued survival of the Atlantis expedition.

McKay wanted to be a pianist as a child, but gave it up after his teacher advised him that he lacked passion. McKay has one sister, Jeannie, and a cat that he was forced to leave with a neighbor when he departed for Atlantis.

Although McKay is known as a bit of a hypochondriac, he is deathly allergic to citrus and suffers from hypoglycemia.

Episode Appearances

  1. 5x14 - 48 Hours
  2. 6x01 - Redemption Part 1
  3. 6x02 - Redemption Part 2
  4. 8x19 - Moebius Part 1
  5. 8x20 - Moebius Part 2
  6. 10x03 - The Pegasus Project
  7. 10x13 - The Road Not Taken
  1. 2x15 - Seizure

Character History

Rodney McKay was first called into Stargate Command to help Major Samantha Carter rescue Teal'c who was trapped in the Stargate. When McKay's plan failed he continued to clash with Major Carter until he was sent to Russia to help develop their Stargate program. In later Stargate SG-1 episodes, McKay started to redeem himself while attempting to prevent the destruction of the Earth by Anubis.

McKay was part of the research team at the Ancient outpost discovered in Antarctica prior to the Atlantis expedition. In Atlantis McKay serves as both chief science officer and a member of Lt. Colonel John Sheppard's off world team.

Memorable Moments

  • In "1x03 Hide and Seek" McKay activated a personal shield device after receiving Ancient gene therapy from Dr. Beckett. While the shield device prevented him from any physical harm, it also prevented him from being able to eat or drink. When an energy-sucking entity was accidently released from a laboratory in Atlantis, the shield deactivated giving McKay an excuse to stay out of the entity's path. After an attempt to trap the entity by Sheppard failed, McKay reactivated the shield and led the entity to the Stargate, despite the danger that the entity would kill him.
  • In "2x04 Duet" McKay found himself sharing his body with Lt. Laura Cadman. Lt. Cadman tried to offer McKay advice regarding his date with Katie Brown and managed to kiss her own crush Dr. Carson Beckett while still inhabiting McKay's body.


  • The character of Dr. Rodney McKay was not originally slated to appear on Stargate Atlantis. Production on the two hour pilot episode "Rising" had already begun when the role was rewritten and David Hewlett signed on to reprise the role he played on several episodes of Stargate SG-1.


  • "That's what happens when you back a brilliant scientist into a corner." (2x11 - The Hive)