Tag: Mary McDonnell (Page 2 of 2)

Battlestar Galactica: No Exit

Wowsers. With Sam doing his little I’ve-got-a-lot-to-tell-you bit, this had to be one of the most informative episodes of the entire series. Let me run down what I think we know at this point…

– Those that are still holding out hope that Ellen wasn’t the fifth Cylon can stop – she is. She was resurrected 18 months ago and is considered to be the “mother” of all the skinjobs. The Ones (or one one in particular) seem to have a major problem with the fact that she made them (somewhat) human. By the end of the episode, the Ones were ready to open up her brain to find the secret of resurrection, but Boomer snuck her off to parts unknown. I’m not clear on when this escape coincides with current events, so if anyone has a clue, be sure to comment.

– Ellen still likes to drink, even after resurrection.

– The final five were living on Earth and they reinvented resurrection. Tyrol was credited for having done a ton of work towards this end, but Ellen was the one that made the final leap to make resurrection possible again. For whatever reason, they had a ship in orbit, waiting for Earth to be destroyed. (And, as far as I know, we still don’t know why Earth was destroyed.) The Cylons living on Earth were able to procreate, which is why they did away with resurrection in the first place. I believe that the implication is that all Earthlings are actually Cylons. That’s good to know.

– Once Earth was destroyed, the final five started off to the 12 colonies to warn them about creating Cylons (and/or treating them badly). They were not able to make jumps, so the travel was very slow, which is what accounts for the 2,000-year difference between Earth’s destruction and when the fleet fled the colonies.

– The final five found that the centurions had a belief in one true God, and that they were experimenting with making hybrids, but nothing would live yet. The cylons were at war with the colonies, so the final five made a deal with them that if they ended the war, they would show them how to make skinjobs. This is why the Cylons went away for a while.

– They made eight models, but the Sevens (Daniel) were apparently killed by the Ones, due to jealousy over Ellen’s favoritism towards the Sevens. Cavil was also the one that took Tigh’s eye.

– Cavil also banished the final five, stripping them of their memories and sending them off to live with the humans not knowing that they were in fact Cylons until a certain point in time. (We do not know why he did this. It would seem to work against his goals to place the five within the human fleet where they could eventually help the humans find a new home.)

A few other notes about this episode…

– The ship is falling apart and Bill had to make the tough decision to use Cylon technology to fix the hidden fractures throughout the ship. Between this and the Cylon FTL upgrades, if the fleet does in fact find a new home, they’ll have the Cylons to thank.

– Tigh had a great line – “Yeah, you point a finger back far enough and some germ gets blamed for splitting in two. No!”

– Cavil said to Ellen, “They destroyed the hub but they don’t know about the colony.” He’s referring to Earth, right? For that to be the case, this conversation had to take place after the hub was destroyed but before the fleet found Earth.

– Roslin passed the torch to Lee. Now he could become the “dying leader” that takes the fleet to find a new home.

– He did a great job as the “brain guy,” but it was a little distracting to see The Daily Show’s John Hodgman (a.k.a. “PC” from the Mac commercials). That guy is soooooooo funny.

– Even though the operation was a success, Sam is apparently brain dead. Hey, if he stays that way, at least he went out with a bang.

Awesome episode.

Battlestar Galactica: Blood on the Scales

Well, with only seven episodes left, we knew that the Gaeta/Zarek coup couldn’t last too long. By the end of the episode, it looks like this storyline is wrapped up nice and neat with a little bow. The Gaeta/Zarek alliance started to splinter when the latter made the executive decision to murder the entire quorum. At that point, Gaeta realized that Zarek was a power-hungry psychopath that did not have the best interests of the fleet at heart. By the time that the Admiral was rescued and on his way to the CIC, Gaeta had already seen the writing on the wall. The coup was over. (Presumably, Gaeta and/or Zarek gave the Admiral the coordinates for the 25 ships that jumped away so that they could re-join the fleet. That’s going to make for some awkward moments in the halls!)

Romo Lampkin made a surprise appearance as the Admiral’s counsel. I’ve always thought there is more to him that meets the eye, and when he used a pen to kill his captor, it was clear that he’s no stranger to physical confrontation. Once the soldier was down, Lampkin searched his pockets for his sunglasses. Classic.

I don’t think that we saw Lampkin after he grudgingly agreed to help Starbuck get Anders to sick bay. His decision to help might have saved Sam’s life and in turn may change the fate of the fleet. Another minor character, Aaron, was instrumental in the coup’s failure. First, he let Tyrol escape (which eventually led to Tyrol disabling the FTL drives) and he told Starbuck and Lee that they were about to execute the Admiral. Without Aaron’s crisis of conscience, the coup might have succeeded.

Speaking of Tyrol, he saw some black marks in the engine room. I’m not sure what it was all about, but don’t be surprised if it comes up again in a future episode.

The last thing I want to discuss relates to the “scenes from next week,” which CONTAIN MAJOR SPOILERS for those still wondering about the true identity of the final Cylon. So stop reading if you don’t want to spoil the surprise.

Are they gone? Good.

Well, if we’re to believe the scenes from next week, Ellen is indeed the final Cylon. They refer to her as the final Cylon, show her coming back to life (I thought the hub was destroyed?) and they say that she “knows everything.” I’m still bummed that she’s the final Cylon — I always found the character annoying as hell, but hey, it is what it is, right?

Also, I wanted to share this excerpt from an interview with Aaron Douglas (who plays Tyrol) from last October:

“The four that were revealed at the end of season 3 are what they are, but they’re one-offs,” he points out. “They’re the original Cylons. Hundreds of thousands of years ago, when there were 13 colonies on Kobol, 12 went that way and one went that way to find Earth – or create an Earth – and that colony was actually Cylons. They’re individuals, there’s no multiple models. The seven that we know are a different kind of Cylon that came much later. They’re probably ten, 20 years old, born out of the metal machines that fought back 40 years ago in the Cylon wars of the 12 colonies. So they’re essentially like the gods. And we were on the new Earth, and destroyed that and came back to the 12 colonies to rejoin humanity to find out the cycle of time.”

We knew that the bones on Earth were 100% Cylon, but Douglas is confirming that there were never any humans there to begin with. The 13th colony was Cylon and presumably, the other 12 colonies knew that when they parted ways.

Or did they?

Hmm.

Battlestar Galactica: The Oath

Man, after three and a half seasons of following this ragtag fleet around space, it’s sure hard to watch them tear themselves apart. Like most mutinies, this episode was brutal. The survival of the human race is already teetering on the edge of the abyss, but now there’s a civil war brewing and things are getting ugly.

At the center of the coup is Gaeta, and Alessandro Juliani really shined in this episode. It was fun to watch him orchestrate the uprising from the CIC, throwing a little comment in here and there in order to get the Admiral to do what he wanted. It wasn’t until Bill sent the private down to take a look that Gaeta had to make his move and overtake the command center. It was a brilliant (if devious) plan.

This episode felt like one from the first couple of seasons where the show would get bogged down in minutiae, but given the limited number of episodes remaining (7), there’s no guarantee that Bill and Roslin will emerge unscathed as the leadership of the fleet. In fact, both of their lives are in danger — Bill has to survive a grenade blast and Roslin has a viper on her tail. This brings me to one of my problems with this episode: I don’t like unnecessary sacrifice. Never have. There was no reason for Bill and Tigh to stay on Galactica other than to show how big their balls are. They didn’t do anything to delay the troops from entering the hanger and the raptor would have gotten away with or without Butch and Sundance on board. Now, it may work out in the end — i.e. Bill does something on Galactica to save Roslin’s life on the raptor — but it still doesn’t make Bill’s decision to stay the right one.

The other problem with this episode was Gaeta’s failure to account for the President. Lee and Starbuck were able to walk right up to her door — no marines — and take her to safety. Didn’t Gaeta have a plan to capture Roslin? Didn’t he and Zarek want to tie up that loose end so that she wouldn’t…um…I don’t know…escape and find a way to broadcast a speech to the entire fleet? You could see Gaeta’s frustration as he finally isolated her wireless signal and ended her speech. Given how smoothly his plan was executed, the failure to deal with Roslin feels more like a plot hole than a misstep by Felix.

Otherwise, the episode moved the plot forward quickly and was suspenseful throughout. It’s tough to watch members of the fleet kill each other off, but it makes sense that there’s a sub-section that is still harboring distrust and resentment towards the Cylons. After all, it wasn’t long ago that these same Cylons killed billions of humans back on Caprica and the other colonies.

Battlestar Galactica 4.14: A Disquiet That Follows My Soul

Politics has always played a major role in this series, but lately it has taken a back seat to the more spiritual storylines as the fleet sought out Earth. But as is often the case, when there’s a spiritual crisis, there are people who would seek to capitalize and attempt to seize power, and that’s just what Tom Zarek tried to do this week.

The disagreement revolved around an FTL upgrade that would require Cylons to board all of the ships in the fleet. The upgrade would (at least) triple the chances of the fleet finding a suitable planet to colonize, but the Cylons want full citizenship in return. Zarek and his supporters don’t want the any part of a permanent alliance with the Cylons.

Strictly speaking, this felt like a setup episode, and was a bit tedious at times. However, there were a couple of major plot points. First, we learned that Tyrol is not Nicholas’ father. I thought for a moment that the father would turn out to be another major (or minor) character, but it turned out to be some dude we’ve never seen before a very minor character, Hot Dog, so it was kind of a letdown. I wonder if this was the plan all along with Nicholas or if it was a last-minute decision by the creators to wrap up his storyline.

The other major revelation was Gaeta’s decision to align himself with Zarek. After Bill nimbly tricked Zarek into giving up the position of the fuel ship, I thought the politicking might be over for a while, but it looks as if Gaeta intends to lead some sort of an uprising. It’s kind of surprising, really – Felix has never been all that popular with the crew, but now he’s going to rally the troops? It just seems odd is all.

Meanwhile, it appears that Roslin has checked out. Given the show’s penchant for twists and turns, it has always been in the back of my mind that she was in fact not the “dying leader” that found a home for the fleet. It will be interesting to see how this storyline shakes out, because more and more it looks as if Bill is taking over control of the fleet’s direction.

Two more things about this episode…

– I loved Baltar’s line at the beginning of his speech: “Are you all just children? Well, obviously, you’re a child.”

– Something is going on with the nurse in the infirmary. When Tigh and Six were looking at the ultrasound and talking about the “future of the Cylon race,” the nurse was looking awfully suspicious. It’s possible that her reaction was meant to characterize the uncertainty of the fleet about its association with the enemy, but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if she tries to do something to Six’s baby.

It wasn’t a bad episode; it was just kind of slow and lacking drama. Based on the scenes from next week, it looks like things will pick up very soon.

Battlestar Galactica 4.13: “Sometimes a Great Notion”

This should go without saying, but do NOT read further if you haven’t yet seen the premiere of the second half of the fourth season. There are MAJOR spoilers ahead.

To prepare for last night’s premiere, I re-watched “The Hub” and “Revelations” just to get back in the “Battlestar Galactica” groove. When the fleet finally jumped to Earth, and started to celebrate, an old hip-hop song from the ’80s — “Joy & Pain” by Rob Base and DJ EZ Rock — popped into my head. (By the way, I guarantee you that this is the only “BG” blog that is going to reference a Rob Base song.) I was sad for the fleet knowing what was in store for them on Earth. I still feel like the final trip to Earth was rushed, but the creators wanted to get that plot point in before the first half finale, and I don’t blame them.

So where do we go from here?

First off, I was conflicted when I saw that Dualla played such a prominent role in the “previously on” scenes before the start of the premiere. Once it started, and she was getting major screen time after being largely ignored for most of the fourth season, I figured either she was going to be revealed as the 5th Cylon or that she was going to die…soon. Dualla has always been one of my favorite characters on the show. She’s so damn sweet and cute, and she was always loyal to the man she loved. In many ways, she represented human innocence and optimism, and the fact that she blew her brains out after looking at her childhood picture (and babysitting for Hera — don’t forget that) speaks volumes about the state of the human fleet right now. They put all of their eggs in one basket — Earth — but those eggs have the avian bird flu. R.I.P. Dualla…you will be missed. (By the way, that was a great piece of acting by Kandyse McClure.)

Some time passes and researchers on Earth determine that the planet went through a nuclear holocaust 2,000 years ago. They also dig up Cylon components (unlike any they have seen before) and bones that turn out to be 100% Cylon. Tyrol has a flashback of his life on Earth when the nuclear strike hits. Apparently, he, Anders, Tory and Tigh all have memories of living on Earth two milennia ago. Anders remembers playing “All Along the Watchtower” for a girl, so since that’s a contemporary song, it would seem to imply that this version of “Battlestar Galactica” takes place 2,000 years in our future. If that’s the case, if 100% of the bones are Cylon, then I’m inferring that we are Cylon.

There are load of religious implications to this — are the creators saying that we are reborn somewhere else when we die in the same way that Cylon skinjobs do? Is that our heaven/afterlife? Were all the Cylons on Earth capable of being reborn or just the final five?

This brings me to the giant elephant sitting in the room — and to be honest, I don’t really want to think about it…Ellen is (apparently) the final Cylon. Ellen Tigh. Saul’s drunk whore of a wife. Ellen is the fifth. Ellen.

Surprising? Yes. Out of left field? Sure. A bit disappointing? Hell yeah.

Keep in mind, this is based solely on Saul’s memory of the holocaust. She said that they would be reborn together, but that sounds like something any human could say to their spouse if they were facing imminent death. Then again, the fact that he’s having memories of her at all — that she in fact lived on Earth 2,000 years ago — would imply that she is indeed the final Cylon.

But I’m not sold that she is the fifth, especially in light of what Starbuck found on Earth (and how quickly they revealed it). However, it seems like with the timing of Saul’s flashback, that’s exactly what we’re supposed to believe. And it may in fact be the truth. But it also might be Saul wanting Ellen to be the fifth. Until we see her alive and well, I’m going to be skeptical.

And that’s mainly due to Starbuck, who finds a corpse on Earth that has flowing locks of blond hair and her ring/dog tags around its neck. Couldn’t she be the fifth?

Grrr.

I’m interested to hear what other viewers out there think about this episode. Are you sold on Ellen as the fifth? Or is it Starbuck or someone else? Is there some other explanation?

And where does the fleet go from here?

(FYI, I’m normally going to post this blog sometime on Saturday morning.)

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