|Out of universe information|
Acastus Kolya was a Commander in the Genii military and an enemy of the Atlantis expedition, particularly the First Atlantis Reconnaissance Team with Kolya being a personal enemy of both Dr. Meredith Rodney McKay and Major/Lieutenant Colonel John Sheppard up until his death at the hands of Sheppard in 2006.
During the storm season on Lantea, Chief Cowen ordered Kolya to raid Atlantis for their supplies of C-4. Kolya advised against it, citing that his team was not ready for such a mission, but Cowen insisted that this was their only chance. He carried out Cowen's orders and took control of Atlantis, killing two soldiers over the objections of Sora Tyrus. Upon learning of the plan to save the city, he decided to enact a more ambitious plan of taking the entire city. Sora protested that they did not have the resources to conduct such a mission, but he insisted. This proved to be his downfall, as Major John Sheppard was able to thwart his efforts, systematically killing Kolya's strike force and taking out an entire company of reinforcements by activating the Stargate shield. When it appeared as if the plan to save Atlantis would fail, Kolya decided to withdraw, planning to take Dr. Elizabeth Weir and Dr. Rodney McKay with them. Sheppard and Lt. Aiden Ford mounted a rescue, and Kolya was shot in the shoulder by Sheppard while trying to use Weir as a human shield. Although injured, he was able to escape through the Stargate. (SGA: "The Storm", "The Eye")
The failure of the Atlantis raid forced Kolya from Cowen's inner circle. Upon hearing that Major John Sheppard's team was close to recovering a Zero Point Module, but unable to get authorization to stop them, he organized a small team to steal the ZPM from them, both because he thought the Genii had a better use for it and to deny them the ability to use it. Though he was able to trap them in an underground chamber, he failed to completely disarm them and Ford still carried stun grenades. After retrieving the ZPM, Ford set off the grenades and as Teyla and Ford engaged his men, Sheppard engaged Kolya. Sheppard quickly overpowered Kolya and recovered his P90 from him, leaving Kolya on the floor stunned. Sheppard decided to let him live, despite Kolya recommending that killing him would be better. Sheppard told Kolya that he wanted points for sparing him, but promised Kolya that if he crossed with him and his team again, he would kill him. (SGA: "The Brotherhood")
Because of Cowen's growing ambitions, Kolya began plotting a coup. He took Ladon Radim, Cowen's chief scientist and a member of Kolya's raiding party on Atlantis, into his confidence. Ladon instead betrayed Kolya, forcing him to go underground. Following Radim's rise to power, Kolya captured Lt. Colonel John Sheppard, attempting to ransom his life for Radim's. He periodically allowed a captive Wraith to feed on Sheppard as a deadline. Sheppard and the Wraith were able to escape, but Kolya was able to flee as well. Sheppard bluntly informed him over the Genii communicator that he would kill Kolya if they ever met again. (SGA: "Common Ground")
Kolya later encountered Lt. Colonel John Sheppard and his team when a group of mercenaries called for Kolya's help, having grown sick of Lucius Lavin. Kolya captured the entire team, except for Sheppard who escaped with the help of Lucius. He demanded that Atlantis supply him with guns for a coup, reasoning that Dr. Elizabeth Weir would be more charitable if he kept his demands small. He threatened the life of the team if Sheppard didn't surrender. Sheppard eventually surrendered and Kolya ordered him shot to death but Sheppard survived due to Lucius' Personal shield emitter, which he had hidden under his vest. Unfortunately, it was depleted from the gunfire; however, Kolya's men were surrounded by the villagers and captured. Sheppard offered Kolya the chance to surrender but Kolya just chuckled. The two went for their guns in an impromptu duel but Sheppard was a faster shot. He shot Kolya in the chest, killing him, and his death was confirmed by Dr. Carson Beckett. (SGA: "Irresponsible")
Seeing Sheppard as a possible threat to its mission, the Sekkari seed carrier's AI sought to distract Sheppard and took on the form of Kolya for this purpose. As Kolya, the AI claimed "he" had survived using Ancient technology. The AI maintains the illusion that Kolya and his men are chasing and torturing Sheppard until Sheppard's life is genuinely in danger and stops. Afterwards, the Sekkari AI uses Kolya's form to communicate with Sheppard directly and explain its purpose. The AI tells Sheppard that the illusion with Kolya was based off of Sheppard's own mind and thoughts and indicates that in a way, it was Sheppard torturing himself. (SGA: "Remnants")
Kolya was dedicated to the betterment and survival of the Genii, to the point that he was willing to do anything to achieve it. Kolya had no compunctions against torture and murder, even being willing to kill unnecessarily such as murdering the two Atlantis guards when his strike force could've easily overpowered them. However, Kolya was not completely cold-hearted and was visibly distressed by the deaths of Pranos and his friend Athor's son Idos as well as over 60 Genii soldiers. He was also distressed by McKay's implication that he was responsible for Pranos' death with his impatience, particularly as Pranos was his friend. Kolya was also greedy to the point of it being a weakness. His greed to take Atlantis whole rather than just raiding it for what the Genii needed and then to hold it even after the deaths of his men, led to his ultimate downfall in the Genii invasion of Atlantis. If Kolya hadn't insisted on attempting to maintain control over Atlantis, despite heavy casualties, he would've been able to at least accomplish the Genii's original goal. Similarly, his use of Todd torturing Sheppard to get Elizabeth Weir to hand over Ladon Radim was greedy and overly ambitious. Kolya himself later recognized this and set his sights lower when he next encountered the Atlantis expedition, aiming for a more reasonable demand. Kolya has also shown an unwillingness to give up even when beaten as best demonstrated by his refusal to surrender moments before his death despite being heavily outnumbered and alone.
Due to the events of the Genii invasion of Atlantis, Kolya held a mutual hatred for John Sheppard, particularly given how many of his men Sheppard had killed during the invasion and how many defeats Sheppard had dealt him. Sheppard noted at one point that Kolya would kill Weir and McKay simply to hurt Sheppard. Kolya also got great enjoyment from using Todd to drain Sheppard's life a little at a time as a form of torture.
- GateWorld's article on