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'BSG:' Mommy dearest

Posted by Joanna Weiss  February 20, 2009 08:26 AM

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If you're not caught up with this final season of "Battlestar Galactica," read no further. If you are, come ponder with me.

Last week's information dump, while clunky, was certainly useful in helping us get a handle on the Final Five and the story of Earth -- and I love the idea (and execution) of Ellen Tigh as mother to the petulant Cylon children. Poor Kate Vernon had some awkward expository dialogue to deliver, but she still managed to do it well, with a mix of parental frustration and scientist's resignation. The Sam's-recovered-memories device was even clunkier, and Doc Cottle's repeated interruptions gave me flashbacks to "Lost," in which no relevant questions are ever answered in due time. (At least, here, the questions were asked.)

Of course, the "BSG" writers still left us with a lot of unknowns. Chief among them, for me:

1) How did Ellen Tigh get resurrected? Did Cavil/John leave more models of her body lying around? Did he keep models of the other Final Five, as well? And now that the Resurrection Ship is gone, is there hope for a new Sam?

2) How exactly does Cylon anatomy work? This has always been a bit of a pet peeve for me; if these folks are machines, the writers have never given us any insight into the form and nature of their machinery. Does their wiring just happen to look and function exactly like human neural cells, so that a human neurosurgeon/sometime P.C. can operate on them easily?

3) Who is Daniel, and how is he related to Starbuck? (I'm guessing we'll find this out soon enough.)

4) Maybe this is a particular obsession of mine, and not completely relevant to the show, but I keep trying to figure out where this puts us, the viewers, in the timeline of our dear old Planet Earth. Here are some useful answers directly from the writers, courtesy of the Chicago Tribune's Maureen Ryan. It seems the humanoid Cylons left Kobol at some point, then populated Earth, then figured out how to build machine Cylons, which rebelled and killed them. So are we those humanoid Cylons? Is the destruction of the Earth in our not-all-too-distant future? And does it all start with the iPhone?

Post your own questions and answers here, and check back this weekend...I'll try to ruminate on tonight's episode before too long!

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13 comments so far...
  1. Question #2 was somewhat addressed early in season 1. "Skinjob" anatomy is very similar to human. Doc Cottle had to get down to a microcellular level to identify the subtle biochemical differences between human and skinjobs. So for structural procedures like surgery, a human doctor should be quite able to operate on skinjob anatomy. Even (especially?) if that doctor is a PC.

    As for #4, I still remain slightly skeptical that the "Earth" they found is truly "ours". This is mostly based on a few cryptic comments from Eick and the writers, along with the whole "why don't we ever see the moon or any identifiable familiar landmasses" thing. Plus the fact that RDM and company are very good at misdirection. (Remember when they had us all convinced that Katee Sackhoff was gone from the show for good?)

    I'm not saying that they pulled a fast one with Earth, but I do think it's still a remote possibility.

    Posted by Tony Romo Lampkin February 20, 09 11:20 AM
  1. I figured Cavil wanted Ellen resurrected, at least once, so he could witness how her "human" life had affected her. Remember, one of the first things he did after she awoke was express disappointment that it changed her so little. So, there's a chance he has replacements for the other 4 lying around as well, though they will be of little use if he does not rebuild the resurrection technology. Of course, that may also be his reason for making sure Ellen would resurrect... he may know his own limitations and perhaps foresaw that the wisdom of the Final Five (such as resurrection technology) might be required someday, so long as it was under his control.

    Posted by chowdaddy February 20, 09 11:22 AM
  1. #1: She died long before the resurrection ship was destroyed. Cavil confronts her with this in the show and she mentions about him now "feeling his mortality." Her resurrection at the beginning of the episode is not a challenge to the timeline it would seem.

    #4: Even if this is another earth, it's good to know they got Hendrix there.

    Posted by Robert Casteline February 20, 09 11:44 AM
  1. What's interesting is that Sam was Hendrix which implies that the Earth founded by Cylons is not "our" Earth.
    Also, I have to wonder about the Admiral. Adama has been popping pills and grimacing in pain recently - is he ill? Could Bill Adama (and NOT Laura Roslyn) actually be the dying leader that leads the colonials to Earth?

    Posted by Andy February 20, 09 12:30 PM
  1. gime old battlestar anyday, not this soap opera junk, starbuck is man, not some model bimbette.

    this is days of our lives in bad space vehicles.

    Posted by steveh February 20, 09 01:34 PM
  1. How about the Galactica as the "dying leader?" Given the all-of-a-sudden structural issues and Tyrol's recommendation not to jump her, it seems like the battlestar is another "dying leader" candidate. It would fit that it may not complete the journey it in its current condition.

    Posted by ajr1021 February 20, 09 01:36 PM
  1. Who gives a Frak,as long as the show goes out with a good ending that we can believe in. It has been the best reincarnation of an earlier TV show. May BSG live on forever.

    Posted by Neponset February 20, 09 01:56 PM
  1. lol @ steveh.

    Let me refresh your memory of the Original Battlestar, old man. Here's the plot of episode 6:

    "Marooned on a frontier planet, Apollo befriends a young widow and her son, rallying a town against "Red Eye"— a likewise marooned, yet memory-damaged, Cylon centurion gunslinger. The storyline is very much reminiscent of the classic western Shane."

    Sounds like Academy Award winning stuff, right there.

    Posted by Matt February 21, 09 05:24 AM
  1. So cylons came from kobol. Where they lived what, in harmony with humans? I think they were the Gods of Kobol. Humans worshipped them. Maybe served them? Were created by them? And the cycle repeats.

    Posted by daniel February 21, 09 12:40 PM
  1. Question # 3 is from the beginning of the show years ago. I think that Daniel is Apollo's brother who was with Starbuck. Adama's other son that died years before the final battle.

    Posted by BSG lover February 21, 09 02:50 PM
  1. I think the lost brother was named Zack.

    Posted by Joanna February 21, 09 05:20 PM
  1. question number 5:

    how did Boomer and Ellen find the fleet after escaping from the baseship? Anyone? If they can do it, why can´t Cavil?

    Posted by aloha February 22, 09 08:09 AM
  1. Question #4 "...And does it all start with the iPhone?..."

    Yes. The "eye"-phone is the great grandfather of Saul Tigh.

    Posted by The Final Hybrid February 22, 09 08:37 PM

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