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BSG podcast recap: Episodes 408, 411 & 412 commentary

by Keith McDuffee, posted Jun 29th 2008 10:19AM
bsgNow that the show is over (for the time being), Ronald D. Moore got back with releasing podcasts this week. However, he seems to have skipped a couple in the middle.

As I've done in the past, I'll just summarize some of what I thought were the more interesting parts of the podcasts. If you're interested in learning more about Moore's insights and details about each episode, you really should take the time to listen to the podcasts yourself. Now if only someone could sync up these podcasts with the Hulu videos, that would be awesome.

Here are the highlights ...

#408 ('Faith')

  • The audio quality in this podcast is awful. He really needs to consider re-recording it for the DVDs, though in the next two podcasts he remarks how badly it was recorded and moves to doing them elsewhere.
  • One of Moore's favorites of the season.
  • Originally Kara and Athena had guns drawn on each other during their confrontation.
  • There was discussion about how bad Gaeta's leg would be, which seems to me to say that it's not entirely significant, leg or no leg.
  • Mary spent three hours in a makeup chair for the bald cap.
  • This episode marked the first time we saw a jump while looking out the window.
  • Originally this episode had Baltar in it, spouting off politically. Instead they went with the radio.
  • Moore considered the scene of the Six's death a tribute of sorts to Lawrence of Arabia. If you know the movie you know what he's talking about.
  • Moore had a lot of good things to say about the hybrid actress, how she was able to stay immersed in that tub for hours on end without a complaint and memorize those complicated lines with ease.
  • The network wanted the episode to end with the hybrid getting unplugged, before the patient dies.
  • Moore goes on about Mary's performance, not getting the Emmy, calling it a "fucking crime" that she hasn't gotten a nod for her role yet.
  • He remarks that the scene on the boat was clearly a dream, not a vision or from the afterlife.

#410 (
'The Hub')

  • Much better recording, as he did it in the show's editing room. This time he had writer Jane Espenson with him, along with editors Michael O'Hallorann and Andrew Seklir.
  • Here's a really interesting tidbit that might further put Billy out of the running as the fifth Cylon (as if there needed to be more reason). Billy was originally going to be in this episode as Roslin's guide instead of Elosha but there was a scheduling conflict with Paul Campbell.
  • Something like 20 minutes were cut. A scene in the opera house was cut, for one.
  • Lucy Lawless had a caveat that she would come back "wicked" and not nice -- unaffected now that she has seen the final five.
  • Moore pointed out that this was the first time Cylon flight suits were shown.
  • Lots of good production talk that's better to hear for yourself.
  • Baltar's wound was not meant to be "Christlike," as many people seem to have commented.
  • Moore hated that Sci Fi put D'Anna's "you're a Cylon" comment to Roslin in the previous week's teaser.
  • Elosha won't be "head Elosha," as Ron put it.

#411 (

  • This time Ron was joined by writers David Weddle and Bradley Thompson, and editor Julius Ramsay.
  • This podcast was recorded the day after the early premiere shown to a crowd on the Wednesday before it aired, in L.A.
  • They remarked how it was convenient that they were allowed for Athena to "slip out" of jail, due to the circumstances.
  • People in the audience (of the premiere) cheered when Tigh said he wanted to go out the airlock, which Moore said he thought was great.
  • There was a much longer scene with Adama going bonkers over the news of Tigh being a Cylon; puking in a toilet, Lee pulling him off it, and him saying he "knew for months."
  • Kara was originally going to kiss Sam at one moment but they cut it out, during the moment of her finding out he was a Cylon -- not putting a bullet in his head. The actors didn't feel it felt right.
  • Moore remarked how he and the other writers have a talent for painting themselves in corners and getting out of them. I can think of a few instances they're surely talking about ("they have a plan" anyone?)
  • Ron defended Starbuck not picking up a phone and instead running to stop the final four Cylons from being jettisoned. It was just more dramatic and felt right for the moment.
  • First draft of the script had raptors going down to investigate the planet, to do recon, before sending down everyone else. Moore just wanted viewers to get that "boom" from hopeful to distraught -- no time to wonder, just time to cheer and have the rug pulled out from under you.
  • The music the final four Cylons heard was the rhythm to 'All Along the Watchtower.'
  • Ron said this should play like it's the final episode; yank the run out from under the audience and leave you hanging, but without that hopeful "to be continued" at the end (which he was adamant to Sci Fi not to include).
  • Stole some scenes from 'Dirty Hands' in the celebrating.
  • The final scene originally had very definite looking skyscrapers still standing, much more "Manhattan looking." More of the bridge showing, even. He made no mention of it definitely being Earth or it being purposely vague. It just wasn't a subject he entertained in the podcast other than the mention of the original cut.

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"#408 ('Faith')" The sound quality is seriously crappy for this episode.

July 05 2008 at 4:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Possible SPOILER Re: Fifth Cylon -

So I listened to the podcast for the final episode, and about 20 mins in to it, Ron and the writers of the episode were talking how it's sometimes so amazing how they're able to write themselves out of tough corners in the plot...and they went through a couple of examples, including one that I thought was telling about the final cylon...Basically, one writer or editor cited the whole Starbuck "Barbinger of death to her people" deal...and how it works out because her ultimately leading the colonials to destroying the Cylon Hub in affect brought the concept of "death" to the Cylon race...Then it got akwardly silent for a split second because normally Ron and the other guy would have added to that, but they seemed to leave him hangin...but all in all, I think Ron probably thought that the comment was too slight to bother to have removed, and besides it's appearently terribly difficult for Ron to put out a single podcast... So there you go, Starbuck is the final cylon despite the fact that she's in that final supper pic...tying up the harbinger of death deal, to me is probably more important than Ron's interview in some magazine...

Of course, I could be completely wrong. :)

July 02 2008 at 12:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Ro's comment

I went and listened to the portion you're talking about (it starts around 27:43 on the last podcast). I don't think it was ever said anywhere that the hybrid said she'd bring death "to her people," just death. However, if I'm wrong and she did say "to her people," then yeah, he sounded awfully awkward in the podcast when stating that part, and I'd say that's pretty telling.

Can anyone point out a specific spot where they said she'd bring death to her people and not just death?

July 02 2008 at 12:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I re-read what the hybrid originally said. Says nothing about humans or "her kind," just "them":

"A dying leader will know the truth of the opera house. This missing three will give you the five, who have come from the home of the thirteenth. You are the harbinger of death, Kara Thrace. You will lead them all to their end. End of line."

Still, he sounds awfully awkward in the podcast, like he was catching himself.

July 02 2008 at 12:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I thought it was pretty interesting about how in The Hub's podcast, that they were definitive about Boomer escaping the Hub before it blew...makes me think that she's going to reunite with Tyrol down the road...since they are both cylons and Cali is history...

July 01 2008 at 11:40 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm not interested enough to listen, but did he address the last scene in the mid-season finale? Any hint as to whether they were actually on Earth (in NYC) or Terra?

June 30 2008 at 12:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Franklin's comment

Whoops. Sorry. I failed to scroll down after the jump.

My feeling is that it could go either way (them being on Earth or Terra). But it could very well be Earth, and the Galacticans and Cylons will then find clues on Earth that will lead them to Terra.

This would be an inversion on the original series, where the Galacticans found Terra first and then eventually Earth. Remember that Ron Moore took the original series' Pegasus and Cain storyline and turned it on its head (by turning Cain into a woman who was a cowardly asshole).

June 30 2008 at 12:34 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Sigh. Billy was supposed to be Roslin's guide? :-(

Sad it didn't work out. That would've been PERFECT.

June 29 2008 at 8:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

WTF Ending?

Wasteland? I was *soooo* hoping for BSG 2008 :)


Stringing along for another "will be revealed...." arrghh!!! Can't take it, put me out of the airlock.

Did anyone catch how much of Earth Kara saw? Obviously she didn't land. So is it gonna be a Bugs Bunny deal? "I *knew* I shoulda taken a left turn at Albuquerque"?

June 29 2008 at 7:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I started to worry about the ending of BSG when there was an outcry about what Helo did in "A Measure of Salvation" - I remember reading that RDM's response to the outcry was something like - you're mad at Helo, just wait now I'm gonna give him a medal. Then hearing that he actually liked the Soprano's ending. Couple those things with some of the actors reactions to the ending - yes, I'm a little worried. Hopeful but worried.

June 29 2008 at 3:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Actually in one interview Moore came off as the biggest asshole I have ever "heard". He's like "We did this and this just to fuck with the fans and piss them off", what I nice guy.

June 29 2008 at 1:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Oreo's comment

And thanks for the penetrating observation there, sunshine.

Guess it takes one to know one?

(Moore is one of the more sarcastic people I've listened to... I'm sure many that listen to his podcasts would agree. Perhaps he was being so in the interview you heard? Just, you know, maybe?)

June 29 2008 at 2:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Thank the gods, finally more BSG talk. :) I was suffering withdrawl.

Does it seem to anyone that Moore and company enjoys frakking with the fans as much as they do creating a remarkable show?

June 29 2008 at 12:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Keith: Moore's said on several occasions that you can blame the "They Have a Plan" was the fault of the Sci-Fi network... Did he go back on this?

I've gotten lazy... I haven't listened to any of the podcasts since you've been doing these recaps :)

June 29 2008 at 10:32 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Dorv's comment

No, he didn't go back on that -- I forgot he blamed that on Sci Fi.

@Alex99 -- Yes, Moore *loves* to frak with viewers. Case in point, he thought the Sopranos finale was brilliant. I think his vocal enjoyment of pulling shite with viewers has fans very nervous for what he'll do on the series finale.

June 29 2008 at 1:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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