Saturday, October 07, 2006
Something I have been looking forward to for months finally happened. Battlestar Gallactica finally started it's new season. Yes, I know I have no life. But this show is the BEST I tell you! The BEST! What I love about this show.... is that it moves forward. What I mean by that is that the writers don't just keep regurgitating the same story line over and over. I think so many shows get stale because there is this fear that moving the story along will also push it toward a type of completion. And in many minds that means the end of the show. But Battlestar Galactica is different. A lot has happened in just two seasons and it looks like a lot more is going to happen in the third. If you haven't watched the show, and I highly recommend you do, there's a pretty decent summary of what the show is about here. The first season follows the human survivors of the cylon attacks and their struggle to survive and evade the pursuing cylons at the same time. In addition to the basic story, which follows the original TV series, there is quite a bit of human drama and interplay between the human-like cylons and the human survivors. I mentioned in my previous post that we didn't know the identities of many of the cylons and as the first two seasons progressed we learned the identities of about 6 different models. There is still an unknown number of models left to be discovered later. What we learn about the cylons in the two first seasons is that they are obsessed with God, and feel they are His creations. Though it is unclear, since they can be continually resurrected, how they feel their souls are connected to God. We also find out the cylons are also determined to breed with the remaining human population. In the second season the cylons actually kidnap women and attempt to impregnate them to create half-cylon half-human babies, though they are unsuccessful in these attempts. Again, it's not entirely clear to what end. The cylon Sharon, also known as Boomer becomes pregnant by Karl Agathon, aka Helo, before he is aware she is a cylon. They later come to believe that the pregnancy was possible because they were in love. Sharon is allowed to carry the pregnancy to term, though the baby is taken away and she is told it died. There are so many complex story lines that it is impossible to repeat them all. I could tell you about Laura Roslin, the President of the colonies, played by Mary McDonnel and her battle with cancer. Or of Gaius Baltar, the Vice President, and his obsession with his cylon lover whom he believes to be dead. But it wouldn't even begin to get across the intensity of the show, which you'd need to watch to understand. The last season ended with the surviving humans being discovered by the cylons on a habitable planet the humans had colonized. The new season, which started tonight, shows us what has been happening in the four months since the cylons have taken over. It is what I imagine Nazi Germany must have been like for the Jewish who had to live under their rule. People are arrested in the middle of the night, kept in prolonged captivity and tortured. The cylons also attempt to create a human police force, but they are mostly viewed at traitors and become targets of insurgent attacks by rebelling humans, who also resort to suicide bombings. The show is dark, violent and uncompromising. I love that it explores the dark side of man's psyche and never takes the easy way out of a situation. I am continually impressed at the depths of the shows intelligence and it's one of the few shows on TV that makes me think beyond the credits. There is so much I'd like to add to this post, but there just isn't room. The political machinations that brought the survivors to the planet are so real that you can just see it happening. Characters that appear noble are anything but, and characters that look to have sold their souls are often the best allies the humans can have. Misunderstandings cost lives, and lives are willing sacrificed in the name of the greater good. I don't believe you have to be a fan of sci-fi to enjoy the show since the emotional elements are so good. But if you're like me, and you like sci-fi, then I don't have to tell you twice how good it is. You'll already know.