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Character Analysis

Stargate | We Put Atlantis Through the Myers-Briggs Personality Test

Discover the MBTI profiles of your favorite Stargate Atlantis characters, from lemon-loving Rodney McKay to midnight runner Ronon Dex.

The MBTI, aka the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, famously organizes people into one of 16 personalities or types based on four categories of traits. This is great and all, if you fancy figuring out more about yourself and your communication style, relationship preferences, and ideal career path… but it’s even better if you want to get to know your favorite TV characters better than ever before!

Now, Stargate fans will undoubtedly already be aware of the fact that we here at The Companion airways ran your favorite SG-1 characters – that’s Jack O’Neill (Richard Dean Anderson), Teal’c (Christopher Judge), Major Samantha Carter (Amanda Tapping), Daniel Jackson (Michael Shanks) and co – through the MBTI machine already. We know which of them is a Commander, an Idealist, a Debater, and so on. And we now know, perhaps most importantly of all, which Stargate SG-1 character we are the most like on a deeper, more meaningful level.

Naturally, it was an article that sparked more questions than answers for some. And perhaps the most resounding question of all was this: but what about Atlantis?!

Set within the ruins of the legendary city of Atlantis, and following on from the events of Stargate SG-1’s seventh season, the spinoff series, Stargate Atlantis, saw a new team of explorers access a secret Ancient (with a capital ‘A’) base and travel to the distant galaxy where Atlantis is located. There, they work together to help a primitive human civilization threatened by a sinister enemy – and, naturally, they flex an abundance of new MBTI types in the process.

With that in mind, then, we heeded the cries of the masses and analyzed the dramatic personalities of Stargate Atlantis. Read on to find out where each of the show’s characters fit on the Myers-Briggs scale of personality types…

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John Sheppard (ENFP)

“Without inertial dampening, we’d be hit by so many Gs, our eyes would pop, our skin would pull away from our faces, our brains would squish up to the back our skulls, and our internal organs would be crushed into these chairs. What about that sandwich?”

John Sheppard, Stargate Atlantis – ‘Suspicion’ (S1, Ep5)

On the surface, John Sheppard (Joe Flanigan) – natural, effortless, and brimming with charisma – looks like he ought to be classed as “the Entertainer” of the group. When you dig right down to the core of it all, though, you quickly realize that our beloved lieutenant colonel is actually an ENFP MBTI type, aka “the Campaigner”. 

Major John Sheppard speaks on the radio.
Major John Sheppard (Joe Flanigan) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘The Eye’ (S1, Ep11). Upbeat, energetic, and adaptable, Sheppard fits with the ENFP type on the Myers-Briggs scale. | MGM, 2004.

Energetic, warm, and brimming with infectious enthusiasm, the John Sheppards that walk among us are both future-focused and people-centered. And, while they sometimes have difficulty following orders and staying on task, they adhere to a strict moral code all of their own. And they’re great at DMCs (that’s Deep Meaningful Conversations to you), too, as they are adept at creating extremely solid and deep relationships with the people that they love.

Win!

Dr. Elizabeth Weir (ESFJ)

“One of the biggest things that holds people back is that somewhere deep down they believe they’re not deserving. You have to… release your burden.”

Dr. Elizabeth Weir, Stargate Atlantis – ‘The Tao of Rodney’ (S3, Ep14)

As passionate and empathetic as she is brilliant, Elizabeth Weir (Tori Higginson) was certainly a force to be reckoned with during her tenure as the commander of Stargate Atlantis. Indeed, some people on Reddit have referred to her as the “soccer mom” of the franchise – and, while we’re not the biggest fans of reductive terminology like this… well, the soccer boot fits. It fits like a glove. Because, as an ESFJ, Elizabeth Weir is 100% “the Caregiver” that everyone around her needs in their lives.

Dr. Elizabeth Weir looks resolved. She is wearing her red zip-up jumper.
Dr. Elizabeth Weir (Tori Higginson) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘Home’ (S1, Ep9). A very different commander from the military leaders found in SG-1, Weir is an ESFJ on the Myers-Briggs scale – a decent, principled, pillar of her community. | MGM, 2004.

Think about it: Elizabeth is loyal, driven by a sense of duty, and excellent at connecting with others – she’s a diplomat through and through! She’s also an excellent manager, helping people to achieve their daily tasks and keeping them following at least some sort of routine. 

Above all else, though, Elizabeth is sharp; she sees things that others don’t and welcomes new ideas – even if she’s more traditional in other ways. And it’s all of this which makes her such an invaluable asset to the Atlantis team.

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Aiden Ford (ESFP)

“Woohoo!”

Aiden Ford, Stargate Atlantis – ‘Rising’ (S1, Ep1)

Perhaps the most misunderstood character of Stargate Atlantis, Lt. Aiden Ford (Rainbow Sun Francks) serves up boyish good looks and cheerful enthusiasm for his first few seasons in the show. Indeed, he’s even described as a good man in a tight spot – the kind of man that keeps a cool head and a finger on his trigger. The ultimate soldier.

All of that changes, though, when Aiden becomes addicted to the Wraith enzyme. No, it’s not his fault – but that doesn’t make him any less of a violent and paranoid traitor. Fact.

Lt. Aiden Ford grins reassuringly at John Sheppard as he stands in front of the gate.
Lt. Aiden Ford (Rainbow Sun Francks) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘Rising’ (S1, Ep1). As an ESFP (Extraverted, Observant, Feeling, and Prospecting) on the Myers-Briggs scale, Ford thrives in the heart of the action which presumably stood him well in his US Marine Corps career. Woohoo? Oorah. | MGM, 2004.

It’s for this reason that we’re filing him under “the Entertainer” banner. Like his fellow ESFPs, he’s spontaneous and unpredictable – and this shows up in both positive and negative ways. On the plus side, he’s hella observant, talkative, practical, witty, and more than willing to step out of his comfort zone; no wonder he’s the kind of person that people love to be around.

On the negative side, though, he’s prone to addictive behaviours, self-indulgence, and taking extreme risks. Perhaps worst of all though, is his response when he finds himself backed into a corner; think less flight, more fight – this strongly emotional character is more than willing to lash out when he feels vulnerable. Which explains his ultimate betrayal, we guess…

Richard Woolsey (ISFJ)

“I was Harvard Law Review. I was chief counsel of the US Army Corps of Engineers. Prior to that, I was an appellate advocate for Hartshorne & Slaughter, one of the most prestigious litigation boutiques in all New York City. Believe me, I can handle three tribal elders with a stack of papyrus.”

Richard Woolsey, Stargate Atlantis – ‘Inquisition’ (S5, Ep13)

Originally dispatched to Atlantis to evaluate Elizabeth Weir’s ability to command, the ever-pragmatic Richard Woolsey (Robert Picardo) doesn’t exactly make the best of first impressions on anyone, really. And yet… 

Richard Woolsey (Robert Picardo) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘Ghost in the Machine’ (S5, Ep5).
Richard Woolsey (Robert Picardo) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘Ghost in the Machine’ (S5, Ep5). ISFJ (Introverted, Observant, Feeling, and Judging)s like Woolsey are hard working and rules-orientated, with an eye for detail, but often struggle outside of their comfort zone. | MGM, 2008.

Well, he might be driven by rules and beholden to the IOA – and he might be a staunch realist in a sci-fi setting, but Richard is the sort of guy who’s willing to admit when he’s wrong. He listens, he learns, he adapts. He treats people with the utmost respect (when they deserve it). He pours his heart and soul into everything he does. And, over time, he more than proves his mettle – and winds up taking command of Atlantis! 

So what is this low-key legend’s personality type? Why, he’s a kind-hearted, hardworking and reliable “Defender”, obviously! Like so many other ISFJs, his reserved style and introverted nature mask a wealth of warmth and wit that lurks just beneath the surface. No wonder so many Atlantis fans rate this legend so highly, eh?

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Teyla Emmagan (ENFJ)

“Leaving my fellow Athosians for a home here in Atlantis was a very difficult decision. I was their leader – for some, the only leader they’d ever known. And despite the fact that I was as close as a trip through the Stargate, there were moments when I felt I’d betrayed them. I sometimes still second-guess my decision. But then I remember that I can do more here to help my people and the rest of the humans in this galaxy than I ever could on my homeworld.”

Richard Woolsey, Stargate Atlantis – ‘Reunion’ (S4, Ep3)

Teyla Emmagan (Rachel Luttrell) is your classic hero. She’s a born leader, for starters, and practically reeks of nobility and higher purpose. She’s telepathic, too, and a skilled warrior – which means she’s both emotionally and physically engaged with the world around her. 

Teyla Emmagan (Rachel Luttrell) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘Hide and Seek’ (S1, Ep2).
Teyla Emmagan (Rachel Luttrell) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘Hide and Seek’ (S1, Ep2). As an ENFJ (Extraverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Judging) in the Myers-Briggs criteria, Teyla is a natural leader and a moral driver for the SGA crew, who takes great pleasure in being able to serve others. | MGM, 2004.

All of this means that – you guessed it – she’s “the Protagonist” of our motley crew. Essentially, she’s persuasive, gracious, empathic, inspiring, and born to help those around her. She thrives on harmony, and she’s good at conflict resolution. She’s a hero, through and through.

Rodney McKay (ENTP)

“Let’s not be too quick to exclude the possibility that the woman might be, uh… what is the clinical term? ‘Nuts’?”

Rodney McKay, Stargate Atlantis – ‘Before I Sleep’ (S1, Ep14)

Always walking a fine tightrope between being thoroughly irritating and outright hilarious, Rodney McKay (David Hewlett) is the quick-witted character that everyone loves to hate – and hates to love. And that’s largely because he’s 100 per cent right when he tells everyone he’s the smartest person in the room; he is. He really, really is. But he’s usually also (sorry, not sorry) the most selfish, too.

Rodney McKay (David Hewlett) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘The Return: Part 2’ (S3, Ep11)
Rodney McKay (David Hewlett) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘The Return: Part 2’ (S3, Ep11). A textbook ENTP (Extraverted, Intuitive, Thinking, and Prospecting) on the Myers-Briggs scale, McKay frequently comes across as abrasive or even obnoxious, but it’s part of his process of testing ideas and ENTPs are suited to careers in the sciences. | MGM, 2007.

A classic “Debater”, Rodney is a true visionary – but he absolutely *loves* to engage in any and all verbal sparring sessions; in fact, disagreements positively energize him! And it’s for this reason that he’s never afraid to a) disagree with the status quo, b) rethink the things that everyone else takes for granted, and c) push everyone in clever new directions.

Sure, he can be a little opportunistic. Sure, he knows how to push people’s buttons. And sure, he doesn’t exactly like to leap in and help with the grunt work… but there’s no denying that Rodney is a vital – albeit quarrelsome – cog in the Atlantis machine. 

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Dr. Jennifer Keller (INFJ)

“Well, that’s right, you just have to lie still and, let me play with your insides… sorry!”

Dr. Jennifer Keller, Stargate Atlantis – ‘Search and Rescue’ (S5, Ep1)

Reddit might describe Chief Medical Officer Jennifer Keller (Jewel Staite) as “sweet”, but there’s so much more to her than that. A Tau’ri doctor, she’s naturally humanitarian-oriented and compassionate – not to mention brimming with integrity, to the point that her cup is all but overflowing. 

Dr. Jennifer Keller is looking hopeful.
Dr. Jennifer Keller (Jewel Staite) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘Tabula Rasa’ (S4, Ep6). Perhaps the rarest Myers-Briggs personality type, the INFJ (Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Judging) type is determined to be a force for good and are often drawn to careers in medicine. | MGM, 2007.

Jennifer lives by a strict ethical code because she believes her life’s mission is to help others. Constantly. And, like so many other INFJs (the rarest of all the personality types, if you’re wondering), she can veer between being quiet and withdrawn, to charming and downright hilarious.

Ronon Dex (ESTP)

“They need me. They always have. I’m the one that took care of them, got them home alive whenever we went into battle.”

Ronon Dex, Stargate Atlantis – ‘Reunion’ (S4, Ep3)

If you’re looking for Stargate Atlantis’ resident tough guy, you’ve come to the right place: Ronon Dex (Jason Momoa) is very much a “shoot first, ask questions later” kind of guy. In fact – and I’m sorry to muddle my sci-fi shows here – he boasts a fair few Klingon qualities: he’s rough, he’s reckless. He takes risks. He’s intimidating and insensitive. And, too, he’s intense as all hell. Like, seriously intense. Scarily intense, sometimes.

Ronon Dex points his particle magnum off camera.
Ronon Dex (Jason Momoa) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘The Lost Tribe’ (S5, Ep11). Impatient with the abstract and happiest solving problems in the moment, Dex is a natural fit with the ESTP (Extraverted, Observant, Thinking, and Prospecting) type from the Myers-Briggs scale. | MGM, 2008.

Unlike the Klingons, though, Ronon is driven by his desire to protect and defend those he loves most. And, like his fellow “Entrepreneur” personality types, he’s bold, experimental, direct, and oddly perceptive; indeed, he has an almost philosophical air to him – although he’d never admit it to anyone.

So, yes, he can be defiant and insensitive at times – but he is definitely the kind of person you want to have your back because he’s wicked smart and beyond brave. And you better bloody believe he would die for his friends if it came to it. Because when he loves, he loves hard.

Dr. Carson Beckett (INFP)

“Nobody gets hurt. That’s my vote, and my heartfelt recommendation.”

Dr. Carson Beckett, Stargate Atlantis – ‘Irresponsible’ (S3, Ep13)

Whether it’s OG Beckett, or Clone Beckett (Paul McGillion), Stargate Atlantis’ original Chief Medical Officer is patient, warm, caring, compassionate, and unfailingly devoted to the health and wellbeing of his team. Is it any wonder, then, that he fits perfectly into “the Healer” personality type?

Dr. Carson Beckett is standing looking concerned, his tactical vest splattered with mud.
Dr. Carson Beckett (Paul McGillion) in the Stargate Atlantis episode ‘Duet’ (S2, Ep4). Creative, quiet, compassionate, and often overlooked in a world of noise, Beckett is a textbook INFP (Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Prospecting) Myers-Briggs type, who are naturally drawn to careers in healthcare or education. | MGM, 2005.

Friendly, sensitive, and idealistic, INFPs want nothing more than to help the people around them become the very best that they can be. They love, too, deep and meaningful conversations – and they really do listen to what everyone has to say, too. It’s for this reason that “Healers” tend to enjoy strong, positive relationships with mostly everyone they meet – something which Beckett does without fail. Until, y’know, he explodes. 

Sad times.

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Kayleigh Dray has somehow managed to balance her severe sci-fi addiction with a pretty full-on career as a working writer for going on 10 years now. During the week, you can find her hunched over her laptop and tapping away furiously. On a weekend, though, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of hot chocolate, rewatching Stargate for the millionth time, and/or playing Dungeons & Dragons with her friends.

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