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Battlestar Galactica: A Disquiet Follows My Soul

by Brad Trechak, posted Jan 24th 2009 10:00AM
Battlestar Galactica(S04E12) "There are days when I really hate this job." - Admiral Adama

Ron Moore's directorial debut! It was a good one (although not as good as last week). It probably helped that he also wrote the episode.

A long-nagging question of mine was answered in tonight's episode: if Cylons can't procreate and Tyrol was a Cylon, then how could he have a kid with Cally? The answer was that the kid wasn't his. It does leave the question of Tigh and Six's baby. Can the Final Five procreate with other Cylons? And who is that guy that is the father of Cally's son? I didn't recognize him. Has he appeared previously? This plot point seemed out of the blue. Also, they seem certain that Tigh is the father, but could it possibly be Baltar instead?

I just realized that another one of my nagging questions was answered in the last episode during the revelation about Earth. I was wondering how humans that evolved elsewhere in the universe developed such parallel concepts as ties and toothbrushes. Obviously, they were thought up on their ancestral home of Earth.

This episode was more political than action and pretty much focused on Adama's attempts to keep humanity together after the disappointment of Earth. At first, President Roslin seemed to be on a similar train of thought as Dualla was last episode, but it ended more happily. She had someone with whom she could confide and trust.

Gaeta's mental health has always been in question (he was willing to side with the Cylons on New Caprica), and he's been in decline since he lost his leg, so his alliance with Tom Zarek is no surprise. Why was Gaeta even allowed in that meeting with the Cylons? It looks like he's going to lead a riotous mutiny, and that cannot possibly end well.

Why did Baltar sit still while Tyrol was kicking the crap out of Cally's baby-daddy? Did he not want to get his hands dirty? Is his entire "man of peace" visage a sham? Did he not like the man? At first, I thought it would be revealed that Baltar was the father (sleeping around is keeping in character with him), but it didn't quite add up since he was President at the time of conception.

Ron Moore has always been good at examining multiple points of view in his stories. Zarek started off as a criminal and is now Vice-President. Is he grabbing for power or does he legitimately want to eliminate Cylon interference in the fleet? Possibly both. This all seems a set-up to have Lee Adama obtain the V.P. position and eventually become President when the cancer takes Roslin.

It does make sense that Cylons have superior technology since they are a machine race. It's a wonder humanity has lasted this long. Where is the pursuing Cylon fleet?

One of the beautiful aspects of this the final episodes is that anything can truly happen. Ron Moore has dropped various tips that it's likely characters we've grown to know and love are going to bite it. The only two questions are who and when.

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Lol, that's Hot Dog!

March 13 2009 at 5:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tim McCleese

(LOL) That's hilarious Tom. Well, we have been around since the very beginning of BSG, and I guess I feel like we have a kind of....seniority, I suppose. But hey! You have been around too, so make the most of these final episodes. When BSG is over, I'm going to miss reading the posts of my friends and all the commenters as much as I will miss the show itself. Always thought BSG brought out the best in the commenter's posts.

January 29 2009 at 4:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

You guys should really get a (chat) room...

January 29 2009 at 2:54 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tim McCleese

I think I always knew that Dorv. If you were ever to stop razzing me, I'd think you were mad at me! That is what adds the element of fun to posting! Thank you my friend.

January 28 2009 at 7:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tim McCleese

Bsgfan....thank you. You are thoughtful as usual. Patcharin had her baby shower Sunday. You should have seen her....a glowing happy mother-to-be. I wish it were possible to invite all my online friends to our house to celebrate with me. I would even buy Dorv a drink and give him a cigar! (lol). (due date is Feb.25!!!!!)

You know bsgfan, since I am writing, I've been thinking about the discussion about Cally and Tyrol's situation with the child. You and Dorv are both right. Each of them would have been better served by fessing up their secrets. I understand though, the underlying fear of consequences both of them must have felt, and the repercussions thereof. But I think their marriage would have survived, because Cally, afterall, did not cheat on him. And if Tyrol would have been on the level with Cally, she might not have been killed.

January 27 2009 at 8:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Tim McCleese's comment

hey!! I didn't know you and yours were expecting! That's great news!! Congrats!

I hope you know that I just like giving you a hard time about your Boomer obsession. I like to poke fun at my friends :)

January 28 2009 at 12:02 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tim McCleese

To all the BSG fans out there, the Feb. issue of sci-fi magazine has an excellent feature about discussion of the final ten episodes and the movie (that will be out after the end of the season). Most of you will probably get all this information somewhere online though, but I always enjoy having the old-fashioned book or magazine. I'm not as high-tech as my pals, like, for example say Dorv or Akbar, but either way, any source of reading about our favorite show is just capital!

January 27 2009 at 3:55 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Tim McCleese's comment

I like having the magazine too! It works better in the bath than the computer.

Your baby should be along soon right? I hope all is going well! Remember it's all about your wife right now! :)

January 27 2009 at 7:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"A moment from now, I die, and my consciousness is transferred into a new body, and I wake up a day from now in a hospital bed, with full memories of every moment until that in which I ceased to exist. Is the person typing these words the same person who wakes up a day later in that bed? Or is this person still dead?"

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Seems like someone's been reading some P. K. Dick - not that I disagree with any of your analysis though. My guess is you're likely not very far off from what we'll eventually find out. Too bad the end is coming faster than any of us really want it to...

January 26 2009 at 11:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Michael's comment

Actually, Dick's work is only the most well-known of the sci fi that asked this sort of question. There is a lot more, especially in the short story format (my favorite).

January 30 2009 at 3:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Not that its a bad idea, its just that speculation that Adama and not Laura Roslin was the dying leader is not a new idea. Its been speculated on this blog in particular for at least a couple years. It is interesting to see the slow signs of Adama's demise, however.

I'm surprised no one has suggested that, based on the obvious ties to the original series for countless inspirations, there was in fact a planet (Terra or Paradeen) that the Galactica discovered, yet it had been wiped out by neutron bombs. Terra was another word for earth in the Galactica lexicon. I don't care how many times RDM has said they found earth, I will remain open to the possiblility that these storylines have yet to be played out completely. And that means I'm still looking for a Ship of Lights explanation for Starbuck (in the original series it was Apollo, but I think the personal gravitas of Katie Sackhoff as an actress, coupled with the fact that Jamie Bamber is a little girlie man who can't act, explains why that change was made). I'm thinking there may be a dramatic revelation that this is NOT in fact Earth (even though it is clearly a place that the cylons had originated from previously).

Also, I would again state my theory that the final five cylons are just genetically and technologically enhanced humans that were sent into space (same as in the original series "Greetings From Earth"), that Cylons experimented and developed the others in the twelve models from these originals, and the originals were released back into society over time. Tigh and Ellen were the parents, they were the first to be experimented on (Leoben and Six anyone?), and the first released. The others were the kids, and they were released later. I think its the only thing that makes sense in the way that they have memories from 2000 ago (unless you want to unleash genetic memory onto the series, and I don't think you do).

What I want answered more than anything else is, Who or What is Kara Thrace? Does anyone really give a hoot whether Adama amounts to anything at this point?

January 26 2009 at 5:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tim McCleese

Poor Tyrol. We all know he has been through hell since he lost Boomer. Many, many commenters have made intelligent and reasonable observations on the plight of Tyrols life.... his character mood swings, his revelation of being a cylon, etc. But there is one constant theme with Tyrol that has been a subtle, yet at the same time glaring fact since the first season.

Consider for a moment that you were in a relationship with Boomer. And Boomer loved you back. Tyrol must have pinched himself everyday just to make sure he was not dreaming. I mean, here is Boomer, worthy of no less than a Caeser, or an Olympic God....and she picks Tyrol?? (No offence to Tyrol, most men are not in her league). Tyrol lost the most desirable woman in the twelve planets. How can any man fully recover from that? That would devastate any man, because once you have been loved by Boomer, nothing will ever be as sweet. Tyrol went from caviar to crackers (once again, no offence to Cally), and this is the underlying reason for the troubling countenance of Tyrol.

January 26 2009 at 4:55 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Tim McCleese's comment

I'd take it to guess that you've theorized on this imagined relationship with Boomer before?

January 27 2009 at 2:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Let's not be too harsh with Brad about not recognizing Hot Dog. It was only when I read his call sign here that it all came back to me. Frankly, the shots of his face in the episodes from earlier seasons were much clearer, and I think he's changed quite a bit since then. He looked younger and more "dorky" back then, and less fit as well. Funny, since the real changes mirror what you would expect to happen to a rookie after some time as a fighter pilot - training, lack of sleep and staying in peak shape will harden and mature a man.

Regarding Final Five cylons versus Regular Flavor cylons:

I think the greatest spoiler for this is the trailer for the new show, Caprica. I speculate the difference is that the Regular cylons are actually AIs, copies of real people that were scanned into a computer, but not an actual transfer of consciousness, which means the original person being scanned does not experience this as a continuation of their life. It's not like you'll get killed in your original human body in a car accident and wake up from your copy in a new body remembering the accident. The copies, however, are continuations of life. They transfer out on impact, so to speak, and wake up in new bodies, with all memories including their latest death intact.

The Final Five are original humans who transferred into a manufactured body. They are not digital copies, nor are they AIs. They actually gave up their original bodies to move into manufactured versions that are tougher, stronger, and last longer (not nuke-hardened, alas). These can be built to age and even die. The person can be stored and resurrected in a new body, just like the Regulars. They can reproduce.

Such a facility (a resurrection machine for the Final Five) existed somewhere in the Twelve Colonies, probably being managed by AIs with the orders to revive based on some trigger related to creation of AI life.

At least one such machine exists on Earth, and is still functioning - either being run by AI or survivors. Thus: Starbuck Reborn (and Viper, flight suit, etc. as well - this resurrection tech is much more advanced than that of the Regular Cylons, IMO).

The nuking of Earth - one of the great themes of BSG has been religious zealotry. it looks to be a major theme in Caprica as well. The conflict back on Earth was between the progressive folks who embraced artificial bodies and the traditionalists who saw leaving behind the original body as morally wrong. This is not a simple moral or religious issue: one of the questions we will never be able to answer is whether the person dying is the same person who wakes up in the new body. I see myself looking at this monitor, typing these words. A moment from now, I die, and my consciousness is transferred into a new body, and I wake up a day from now in a hospital bed, with full memories of every moment until that in which I ceased to exist. Is the person typing these words the same person who wakes up a day later in that bed? Or is this person still dead? Does the lack of conscious thought or existence for any period of time create separate lifeforms, pre- and post-death?

And if so, then what about sleep? Are we not, to a certain extent, resurrected every morning? Who is to say the person waking up in the morning is not a well-defragmented copy of the person who fell asleep the night before?

And the big question Caprica is probably going to ask: Does it really matter?

So the original anti-cylon zealots were humans who were against transferring into bodies, and they were probably a minority who became disenfranchised - possibly got handed crappy backward Moon and Mars colonies to live while the majority Final Five cylons kept Earth - armed up and nuked the crap out of the cylon humans. They then took off for greener pastures - and founded the Twelve Colonies.

And to that I say: Payback's a bitch. A beautiful, slinky, blonde bitch.

January 26 2009 at 1:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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