Thursday, June 19, 2008

We Live On a Radioactive Ball Of Mud

At least, that's the impression I had when I saw last week's mid-season cliffhanger on Battlestar Galactica. I spent some of my free time over the weekend digesting what various blogs had to say about the shock ending. As painful as it is, knowing that I will have to wait another half-year for the final half-season, I am impressed with the way so many things were wrapped up...while many other things were left open to question. Everyone knows who the secret four Cylons are. D'Anna's faction has made peace with the humans. Bill and Laura are in love (awwww). Lee Adama finally found his calling. And the fleet finally reached the end of its journey and found the home of the long-lost thirteenth colony: Earth.

Or did it?

The 'net is rife with arguments over whether the irradiated wasteland is actually our Earth, and if it is, whether the final scene takes place in New York City. The best suggestion that I have read thus far is that the Colonial-Cylon landing party has set foot on Ellis Island. Perfect! Illegal immigrants from space, and no one to stop them from entering the country. I can't wait until next week to find out what's going to happen.

Too bad "next week" is over six months away. I hope the creators can keep up the pace that was set in the last two episodes. The show, while rightly acknowledged by critics and fans as one of the best ever, has been predictably inconsistent in each season thus far. It starts off strong...then gets better. Around mid-season (or mid-half-season) things slow to a near stop with one or two episodes that are thoroughly boring and do nothing to advance any story arcs. Then it picks up again, and ends on a cliffhanger that has viewers talking for months afterwards.

The show's biggest other problem is one that it shares with the original 1978 series: The more we see of the Cylons, the better. The show's premise was that a group of human refugees are fleeing from the Cylon Empire. When Count Iblis showed up, "delivered" Baltar to the Galactica, and got the Cylon's off of the fleet's tail, the old show went downhill. It lost its purpose, and by the time the Cylons re-appeared, the show had already been canceled. The new show has not made the same mistake, mainly because most story arcs are tied up in the Cylon-Human conflict at some level, but there have been shows that took place almost exclusively in the fleet. Zzzzzzzz.
Things happened when we saw the Cylons on Caprica during the first and second seasons. Scenes that took place on base ships moved the story along. The Year Without Cylons on New Caprica was passed over in about two minutes. Each clash between Cylon and Human, whether with weapons or with words, brought progress. The factions have united and discovered what is presumably Earth. There's no way that they can screw this up now.

Further observations:

  • The radioactive wasteland, I suspect, is somehow going to be explained through the prism of creator Ron Moore's leftist politics views. My least favorite moments in the series were all tied up in Moore's injections of current American politics into the story. Most of the time, it was irrelevant to the ongoing story; he did it just for the sake of doing it.
  • On the other hand, it would have been interesting if the fleet had discovered planet Earth in the year 2008. The show has a fairly diverse cast. From what I can recall, there has been no prejudice based on skin color; all human bigotry on the show is based on colony of origin, and there does not seem to be any colony that is all one color. If they had landed on today's Earth, people would have picked the Colonials apart by race. So maybe it's a good thing that we're all dead when Galactica comes home.
  • Speaking of skin color, it seems like the "less white" the Cylon babe is, the hotter she is. Number Six is okay for a one-night stand, but I can't see getting into a long-term relationship with her. D'Anna Biers is nice if you have a thing for a Dominatrix MILF type. She'd keep you coming back for more. Sharon Valerii is cute and sexy, a great combination that makes her a prospect for a long-term relationship. Then we come to the hidden models. When Tory discovered her true self, she officially became the hottest Cylon babe. I was starting to have a crush on her not long after she because Roslin's aide. When she defected to the base ship, I was ready to pack my bags and join her. Following my system of "darker=hotter" Cylon babe rating, it follows that Anastasia ("Dee") must be the final Cylon. I hope. They'll probably ruin my ratings system by making it Elosha. That would not be cool. Or hot.
  • Anyway, I have a feeling that Romo Lampkin is the final Cylon. Lampkin was a protege of Bill Adama's father, Joseph Adama. According to spoilers for the upcoming BSG prequel Caprica, Joseph Adama was around -- and possibly involved in -- the creation of the first Cylons. That's a thing that makes you go "hmmm".
  • The Lampkin candidacy assumes that the final is still alive. I suspect that he/she/it might already be dead, as much as that would suck. We have plenty of dead characters to choose from.
  • Baltar must be impotent; otherwise, he would have impregnated Caprica Six or D'Anna long ago. (Or any of the other 500 or so women he's bedded during the show's run.) Tigh did it in just a few conjugal visits to the brig.
  • How is babby formed? How Six get pragnent? I thought Cylons couldn't breed with one another. Is there something special about the final five that makes them run more like humans?
  • What am I going to do for the next six months? This might be a good window of opportunity to rent or borrow the first three seasons on DVD so I can revisit the shows that I haven't seen in years. It should be interesting watching the older episodes now that I know Tigh and Tyrol are Cylons.
And season four of Doctor Who ends in a few weeks. Darn it.

No comments: