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In Stargate Universe, season 1 episode 5 - Light:

Destiny is heading towards a star and the crew believe that it is going to be destroyed. They send out a shuttle with 17 people on board, 15 of which are chosen by a lottery. Dr Rush opts out of the lottery. At the end of the episode when Colonel Young is rewarding Rush for opting out, he states, "Unless you knew the ship was going to survive". Rush leaves without responding to the allegation.

My question is: Is there anything, either in or out of universe, to confirm whether Rush did or didn't know Destiny's plan?

Eli thinks, based on Rush's reaction, that he didn't know. This could be an act by Rush, but as a viewer we see his reaction when he is alone, and it appears to be genuine surprise (however out of universe this could just be to build up suspense). But Rush certainly does have more of an understanding of Destiny than anyone else on board.

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We don't know. We're not supposed to know.

Leaving it ambiguous as to whether Rush knew all along is a deliberate part of the story. The character is supposed to have unclear motivations, intentions and limits. You are supposed to make up your own mind. That's what makes the character so rich and interesting. Indeed, it's what made this entire show so fantastically rich and interesting.

This pattern is employed throughout the series's run; for example, in the second season episode Twin Destinies, Rush feels the need to question himself over suspicions that he'd engineered a time travel episode (and killed or marooned one incarnation of the entire crew) in order to obtain some spare parts … and even he doesn't seem to get the answer he expected.

That being said, I've always believed he was as surprised as everyone else. (Poor bloke, always been accused of stuff.) He appeared genuinely surprised to see Eli and Chloe on the observation deck, moments after appearing genuinely elated that death was not coming. I find it hard to believe that he'd have had such a strong reaction to the realisation that Destiny was to survive its encounter with the star, given that he thought he was alone at the time, if he already had a fair inkling that it were possible.

  • To answer your inevitable follow-up question, no I can't "prove" this with "official" declarations. But it seems pretty obvious to me and, although that would not normally be a sufficient justification for a scientific argument, this is not a scientific argument. If nothing else, I can't prove a negative. – Lightness Races in Orbit Nov 4 '15 at 3:12
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    Upvoted. I'll leave it for a while in case anybody is able to find some evidence from somewhere. If not then I'll accept this. – Moogle Nov 4 '15 at 10:19

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