BSG: A Disquiet Follows My Soul (Or; Geata Grew Some Balls) and The Oath (Or; Everything Goes to S**t)

So!

I’ve done a double-BSG catchup so I’m up to date with the episodes now. This blog will encompass the two most recent eps, but I’ll try and make it slightly more comprehensive than the last one (KEYWORD: Try)!

.:SPOILER ALERT!:.

We’ll start with ‘A Disquiet Follows My Soul’.

This episode is all about an impending alliance with the rebel cylons which has the majority of the fleet in an uproar. The cylons essentially want to offer their far more advanced FTL (Fsater Than Light) technology to the entire fleet (aww, isn’t that nice?), but in order to outfit the ships with the unfamiliar technology, cylons will have to do the bulk of the engineering work. This is totally unacceptable to most, but what is even more unacceptable to them and to the rest of Galactica’s crew is that the cylons want civilian status, they want inclusion into the rank and file of the fleet, with all the benefits and privelages that entails (including the protection of the Admiral). While an out-and-out alliance is not going to swing just yet, Adama is Adama-nt that the fleet recieve the FTL upgrade. The Quorum meet to discuss and vote ‘NAY!’ on just about everything, with Tom Zarek heading the meeting and leading the rabble to the neatly stacked, specially made, cylon-burning torches. One of the ships – specifically the one hauling the fleets entire supply of tylium, the Hitei Kan (I got the spelling from Wikipedia. Go Wiki!) – makes a run for it when faced with a boarding party from the Galactica following a mutiny by the crew, using their FTL to jump away from the fleet, following Zarek’s order. Adama has Zarek arrested and gets the co-ordinates of the Hitei Kan from him (we’ll come to that later). The ship is brought back, but while incarcerated in Galactica’s brig, Zarek strikes up a bargain with one-legged multiple-side-switcher Gaeta. Gaeta will get Zarek out and is putting together a plan to oust the keepers of the status-quo and install a new, totally anti-cylon reigime in charge of the fleet, with Gaeta and Zarek at the helm (if you’ll pardon the pun).

In other news: Roslin and Bill are getting along fine, but Roslin doens’t want to be President anymore. She stops taking her medication and goes for a run. Baltar renounces God in an angry speech. Saul Tigh and Number Six have a healthy sprog on the way. Tyrol lears that he is not Nicky’s dad (after bringing him into sickbay and learning that they boy will suffer renal failure in the not-too-distant future); that honour belongs to Hot Dog – they get in a brawl which marks the end to Baltar’s speech. Gaeta confronts Thrace about her past actions towards him (particularly that part of their history which sees them in an airlock, one standing, one kneeling); Gaeta has, it seems, finally grown some balls and decided that enough is most definately enough.

This episode, for me, brought back something of the old BSG, something that was lacking in the previous couple of series’. It was hard, it was challenging and it never once alluded to mystical prophecies (okay it did once, but Roslin converting the last half of it into “blah, blah, blah, blah” kind of rules it out) or took us away from the core of what BSG is really all about; the remnants of a victimised race, living all alone on the fringes of space with too little food, too little water, skittish personalities on the threshold of breaking-point and a grim determination to survive, whatever the cost. It’s Boys From the Black Stuff in space.

It was refreshing to see Laura Roslin weak at the start, then energetic and euphoric during her run instead of being actively political and concerned only with the matters of the fleet. It feels good that she is taking some time to herself and having a bit of fun with her remaining time.

Tom Zarek was another welcome addition to the episode, he has been away for too long and it was great to see him here, once more on the path to securing the presidency for himself and trying to take the fleet in a new direction. It’s always nice to see Richard Hatch in BSG. Aside from being the original Apollo and holding the history of the show in his own hands, he is a fantastic actor and any episode is made better just by watching him.

The occasion of Tigh and Six’s child’s scan was a reminder to us all that cylons are not supposed to be able to reproduce, and that this marks the start of something new; life without ressurection ships.

Tyrol teaching Hot Dog the first lessons of parenting (The first rule of parenting is that we do not talk about parenting. The second rule…) was nice, but at the same time very edgy. It felt quite natural that Tyrol should want to give up Nicky as soon as poss after their history together, but that he wouldn’t trust anyone straight away to do the job as well as he did it. Hot Dog’s reluctance to be a parent was short lived, but in these times where loneliness is too foten amongst the stars, I’m betting he was jumping at the chance to have someone to care for.

I’m going to say that having Ron D. Moore both writing and directing is what made this episode so great. There wasn’t any action (save a bit of running), there wasn’t much in the way of future-techno-babble or problem solving Geordi LaForge style, there wasn’t anything much that made this episode stand out on paper, but his practiced, careful and, most of all, loving hands were noticeable throughout the episode, and that’s what makes it greater than most.

All in all a good episode!

On to: The Oath.

This is going to be a bit more blow-by-blow as far too much happens for me to sum up. Well, I could sum up by saying ‘Gaeta takes over the Galactica, people die and there’s a lot of great scenes and a wonderful stand-off at the end’, but I won’t.

So, the fleet arn’t letting any cylons on board to do the upgrades on the FTL drives, which Adama considers a military perogative, and, therefore, not a deicision civillians need to worry about. Gaeta helps Zarek escape and, during the course of their theft of an empty raptor, ex-Pegasus deck chief Laird takes a wrench to the back of the head and is killed (by Zarek, the nasty man!), but there is a witness… Zarek gets back to Colonial One, and Lee wants to know why he’s out of the brig. Lee tries to call Adama, but Gaeta answers the call and fobs him off. Still in CIC, a fire has broken out on C deck, home of the communications array, and Adama calmly orders a fire team to C deck. Gaeta reports that both the main and back-up arrays are down. In the barracks Kara and Hot Dog have a bust up (Hot Dog: “You’ve slept with half the fleet and have nothing to show for it.” nice) and Kara storms out and into the wake of people fleeing the imaginary fire. She disobeys commands to leave and makes her way in the opposite direction unnoticed. The fire is in fact a ploy by Gaeta to get everyone out of the way so that he and his followers can get guns from the lockers on this deck and sabotage the communications; cutting Galactica off from the fleet while the take-over is in progress (this includes internal communications, therefore any attempt to retake the ship will be hampered by lack of communication with the various and numerous resistance cells). Anders is tossing a ball around when Seelix lures him into her honey-trap. He gets captured by mutineers. Lee gets back to the Galactica and is effectively captured by mutineers in the docking bay. One holds a gun to his head but before he can fire is promptly blown away by Thrace, who shoots another mutinous pilot in the chest and secures Lee’s freedom. They run for cover. Mutinous marines storm the Agathons’ apartment and take them away, leaving Karl with a nasty bump on the noggin. They throw them in a cell with Six and Anders. In the CIC, Gaeta takes over and places Adama and Tigh under arrest. They are taken to the brig. Lee and Kara get to Roslin’s quarters and they discuss their next plans. Roslin has an idea about the radio. On the way to the brig, Adama and Tigh escape, killing one marine and taking the other hostage. Tyrol is helping Baltar’s people out by reinforcing their position against attackers. Baltar wants to leave. Lee, Kara and Laura leave her quarters and make their way to Baltar’s hideout. When they get there, Tyrol tells them that he can get Adama and the Pres out if they get them to Storage Bay 2 in an hour. Roslin talks to Baltar and coerces him into letting her use his pirated wireless linkup. Gaeta calls Zarek and tells him the good news; Galactica is theirs. Zarek is unimpressed that Adama is still alive, indicating that he would not have been as lenient to the old man as Gaeta was (big mistake Gaeta). While they are talking, Roslin addresses the fleet, talking about how the cylons are their last chance at finding a new home and that they should not let themselves be swayed by feelings of fear and doubt. Gaeta cuts the transmission, but not until after the harm has been done. Lee and Kara, out looking for Adama, bump into the admiral and Tigh. They let the marine hostage go. Kara tries to shoot him and, after being reprimanded by Adama, shouts “they’re not your men anymore, they are the enemy!”. Quite right too. In SB2, Roslin and Baltar talk about Gaeta and the uprising. Baltar tries to convince Gaeta to give up, but to no avail. The resistance get the other important parties to the Storage Bay, but, on hearing that one of Gaeta’s marine strike teams are heading in their direction, Adama and Tigh decide to stay and buy the others some time while they run. After a long goodbye the Pres gets into the waiting raptor with Baltar and Eight and Tyrol, Lee and Kara scuttle into the air ducts. Gaeta, in CIC, orders Narcho to destroy the fleeing raptor. The marines arrive and, after a touching but sparse scene of brotherly love between Adama and Tigh, begin cutting their way into the bay. Adama fires a few shots through the gap. A marine primes a flashbang and sends it into the storage bay where it goes off. “To be continued…”

To be honest, I’m all worn out just writing that.

This episode was a real tour de force, a great hark back to when the action flowed thick and fast and snap decisions had to be made and damn the consiquences. It was refreshing seeing a hostile takeover go so well, be planned so smoothly and executed so ruthlessly. Who would have thought that Gaeta had it in him?

It was nice, also, to see the admiral’s relationship with the president burgeoning, to see them connect in the open, around other people, but the director managed not to let it get in the way of the story telling, and nothing was overblown or too dramatic. I will say, though, that Saul Tigh’s face on seeing the Pres come out of Bill Adama’s room was absolutely classic! I’ll have a look for a screenshot.

The ending was also very well executed, the interplay between the characters was almost perfect, and I was happy to see not one person say “No admiral! Don’t do it!”, as people are altogether too often doing in these situations. I’m very much looking forwards to the next episode!

All in all, two brilliant episodes. This is why I watch BSG.

Cheers!

NBM

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~ by ninjabreadmen on February 3, 2009.

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