Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Some less long-winded thoughts on part 2 of the Battlestar Galactica mini-series (or BSG2K3, as they're calling it on the 'Net). Major spoilers below, so don't read if you haven't seen it yet and don't want to know!

I liked part 2. There was nothing to convince me that this wouldn't make a good series if they go in that direction. And, most importantly, there was no casino planet! :-)

The fact that Boxey showed up made me a little nervous (with the same haircut, no less!), but the fact that Muffit was nowhere to be seen was a good thing.

The battle sequence and escape from the Cylons was nicely done. I liked the hyperlight jump effect, as opposed to the warp speed/hyperspace type of FTL travel we've gotten used to from other series. It was never really clear on the original Galactica how far/fast the fleet was going. The new show gives you a better handle on it.

The voices screaming at Apollo when the non-FTL capable ships were left behind to the Cylons was effective, but I thought the cuts to the little girl were over the top. The audience understood the stakes here - we really didn't need to have the point pounded home with a child.

In fact, between the little girl on the agro-ship and the baby that Six killed in part one, BSG was pretty tough on kids. Both instances seemed gratutitous to me - we could have figured out that the Cylons were evil without killing the baby (not withstanding the fact that the baby would have been nuked anyways a few hours later.)

The new Starbuck/Apollo relationship is starting to grow on me. It'll be interesting to see where it goes in a series. The fact that Starbuck is a woman obviously opens up a whole new dynamic.

Of course, the one problem with Starbuck's stunt to rescue Apollo at the end of the battle with the Cylons is that I never believed for one second that both of them wouldn't walk away from that. It might have had a little more tension if it had been Starbuck and Ensign Redshirt instead - at least his survival wouldn't have been assured.

As far as the two big revelations at the end, I have a problem with one and I'm looking forward to seeing how the other works out. Adama's revelation to the president that his story about Earth is a pile of hooey worries me. The original Galactica held out the hope of "a shining planet known as Earth". In the face of a holocaust, there was the promise that the colonists would eventually find what was hopefully a technically advanced Earth that could strike back at the Cylons (forget Galactica 1980, OK? I could never buy Mr. Brady as a top scientist). Now we, as the viewers, know that there is no hope. The only thing I can see is that a series would plant clues that there really IS an Earth out there and the Galactica and the fleet follow that trail.

Boomer as a "sleeper" Cylon? I like the thought that one of your main characters is a traitor and doesn't even know it. If the series becomes a reality, I'll be interested to see how it plays out.

Finally, there's Baltar. He is such a downgrade from the pure evil of the original that I'm not sure what to make of him. He's gone from evil to morally ambivalent, and that's not nearly as much fun. And how does Six keep appearing? Is there some kind of implant in his brain, or is he really just hallucinating?

Summing up, if I was to grade the show, I'd give it a solid B. It introduced the characters, set up the basic premise and had a decent amount of action. We'll just wait to see if Sci-Fi goes ahead with a series.


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