I never know what to expect from Galactica, I think that’s a big reason I tune in. Never in a million years did I figure on a finale containing ⅓rd slow-burn flashback. The device isn’t new to Galactica, but its rare and it was hard not to feel like I was watching a Lost episode. After getting into it, I came to enjoy the chance to look back at who these characters were; how far they’ve come; how they’ve changed; how recognizably us they all were. These were just some people who happened to be on this ship this one time when the apocalypse happened. If God or fate pre-ordained any of it there were no indications. Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore has said he feels it’s important to the show to continually re-establish those connections to their old lives. After four years of television watching it’s easy to forget these people haven’t always lived like this. They were irrevocably altered that way. And it turns out their lives were a bit fraked up before any of this happened too. Oh Galactica, you’re going to give me some respite aren’t you? Some kind of faint light at the end of this very dark path you’ve led me down?
I’ll be retroactively hating on a lot of this season if the finale fails to deliver. The many slow building plots can be frustrating. I liken it to the suspenseful build-up in a horror movie where the longer you watch the heroine bumbling around the more you dread when the killer’s knife will plunge in a swift downward stroke. It makes things suspenseful and keeps you on the edge of your seat and Galactica has us all on the edge of our seats, waiting to throw our popcorn up in the air. We’re all waiting to discover how Moore will finish his tale and its a rare delight to see a showrunner get to finish something so wholly original on his own terms. The differences between season four, this last half especially, and earlier seasons of Galactica are sometimes pronounced. It’s changed and grown and wants to challenge some our expectations about how it should entertain us. Importantly, it has remained compelling watchable drama throughout its transformation. No matter how much I might desire a space battle, that’s not what happened on Ron Moore’s show. And it is his show, we’re all just watching it.
|on the phrase Harbinger of Death|
|a conversation with FoW reader Brain|
|So you think the death refers just the 13, not to Humanity?||Legion|
|Brian||It could have been refering to her being part of the destruction of the resurection ship. I think that we’re led to believe that Starbuck is supposed to set humanity up for doom but I think it’s a metaphor for bringing the fight to its end|
|Hmm.. good point about the destruction of the resurrection ship||Legion|
|Brian||But then Anders-Hybrid repeated “Harbinger of Death” so it must still have significance? You never know... I can’t wait for the moment when we all go.. OH.... ~that’s~ what they meant|
|I’ve often wondered if it meant something other than literal death of people/cylons. like it meant “the death of humanity/cylons because they are merged into a new race”||Legion|
|Brian||[“Harbinger of Death” is] such a striking statement|
The scene where Papadama goes all Moses-like and parts the Galactica crew like the Red Sea was very telling in how few people were shown on that hanger deck. The crew has shrunk and much of it happened off screen. I won’t gripe much, but I wish they had telegraphed the decline from post-Pegasus to today a little better. The crew atrophication, the ship breakdowns, I wish they had built up over a longer period of time. It feels slightly abrupt. Still, they have given it a lot of play during these last ten episodes and it’s a welcome response to what Moore felt were missed opportunities at Star Trek Voyager. (A show he spent a very brief time at before leaving)
The show Battlestar Galactica has allowed Moore to very creatively air his grievances with all the things he wasn’t allowed to do during his Star Trek days (and to continuing building on the things that worked). His crusade against techno-babble and in-humanly perfect characters; story arcs that actually changed who characters were; story developments with long term consequences (i.e. no reset-buttons). We’re seeing that the ship is grounded in practical realities (like the Chief telling Adama corners were cut during Galactica’s assembly), things break down and spare parts are hard to come by — in fact, let’s use the Galactica for spare parts! Moore’s lived up to his early promise not to deliver a planet-of-the-week style drama.
For character change and development, I don’t think anyone has changed more than Gaius Baltar. He’s been languishing on the margins of the show for too long. Seeing him go toe-to-to with Lee Adama was a riveting affair. Who doesn’t completely understand why Lee mistrusts Gaius and his request for a seat at the Quorum. The fun part is that Gaius, at least, seems to believe himself. He’s not the same man that Tigh dismissed as a twitchy sonofabitch near the series start. He was recognizably humbled when he wanted to step over that line, on the hanger deck of Galactica. Perhaps he wants to be a better man than he is, he wants to accomplish something good for the people who have turned to him. But he’s afraid, so he doesn’t make that step. HeadSix has assured him (and us) that he will play an important role in these final events, so I look forward to whatever he does next.
“I’ve been dating this woman for two years and I don’t even know her name?”
~ James Callis
I really love that bit about Baltar not knowing CapricaSix’s name. It comes from a real life anecdote you can hear on the Battlestar roundtable discussions. While filming the pilot Callis asked what CapricaSix’s name was. They phoned Ron Moore, who responded:
Oh! And Tahmoh Penikett is just nailing it week after week; his portrayal of Helo’s drive and commitment to his child is fiercely believable. I’m quite certain we’ll see Hera intact again, but will Helo? Athena seems resigned to an ugly fate and we may yet see some of these characters meet ignominious ends.
Will Anders play along with their request to jump? What role will the good ship Battlestar