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misterd
Fri, Feb 27, 2009, 9:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Deadlock

The thing about the deleted scenes is that while they may not be canon, it does sound as if they effectively refute many of the complaints about Espensen's plotting (though at this point in the series, she was likely handed a plot and told to fill in the dialogue). So while it is reasonable to ignore those scenes in the episode review, they should not be ignored when looking at the writer's work, or in trying to understand where the episode went wrong.
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misterd
Thu, Feb 19, 2009, 12:10am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Blood on the Scales

Occurprice,

Check the survivor count over these episodes. Roughly 100 people had died in this coup already, and it is safe to assume most of them were Galactica crew. This on top of the dozens lost over the past three years. I'm not sure Adama could afford to start offing every one involved in the mutiny, especially not veterans and figures with important positions, and still keep a workable crew.
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misterd
Thu, Feb 19, 2009, 12:06am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Blood on the Scales

Jammer,

Hatch has to see Zarek as the hero. He is Zarek, and Zarek sees himself as the hero. To do otherwise would be to betray the character.

But Zarek was a man of ambition, albiet ambition cloaked in good intentions. Hell, I'm even willing to grant the character some surface sincerity - he probably believed in the causes he fought for, but down deep, it was always about him, his ego. He was always the only one who knew right from wrong, the only one able to lead the movement. Wrapping himself in The Cause only furthered his self aggrandizement.

As for the politics, well, I wouldn't peg Zarek as left or right, especially not in contemporary terms, but I find those on the left have a greater (though not definitive nor exclusive) tendency to miss how the very best of intentions can lead to heinous acts.

Now, as for Zarek's killing of the council, I'm a bit on the border. It was a more nakedly villainous act than Zarek would normally attempt. However, we know he was at least accused of violent acts in the past (and never denied them) and in season 2 plotted to assassinate Apollo. In the end, I feel that if ever Zarek were to do this deed, it would be now. He has removed Adama and Roslin from power. The fleet is emotionally, spirtitually adrift, and more than any other time likely open to new leadership. But that leadership has to be uncontested. Zarek clearly had the support of many fleet captains, but if he were opposed by the council, the coup could fall apart completely. He had already committed treason. If he failed, he would be executed. Therefore he had to commit fully to the success of the revolution, and once the quorum made it clear their loyalties lay with Roslin, I don't see how Zarek had any choice.

That said, I don't believe it was an act he did from malice, or one he took pleasure in. It was a purely practical matter, one borne of the necessity of his mission - and Zarek was always a "goals justify means" kind of guy.
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misterd
Sun, Feb 1, 2009, 7:56pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: A Disquiet Follows My Soul

@Paul

Few people are corrupt in the popular sense of the word. There are few who are so naked in their amorality. Most people rationalize their behavior. Zarek seems one of those able to use his "good cause" to justify whatever he does, but in the end, its only Zarek who actually benefits.

I have to say on other sites there is remarkably little sympathy for Gaeta here. Truthfully, I think it hard to sympathize with Adama. Just a few weeks ago these cylons were trying to blow them all up. Now they are being trusted to tinker with the most essential systems on these ships? And Adama is simply ignoring civilian law because he decided this was a crisis. The president has disappeared in Galactica's belly, Adama's son is put in her place, and Adama's advisors consist of 4 Cylons and their spouses. No, there's nothing suspicious about this at all.
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misterd
Sun, Feb 1, 2009, 12:59am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: A Disquiet Follows My Soul

A little harsher than I would be but I see where you're coming from. This is definately a setup/transitional episode, and with so few hours remaining, we want them all to be gangbusters. But you need to take the time to set up the dominoes before you can watch them fall.

The only complaint that I completely disagree with you on is your take on Zarek. Zarek has always come across to me as Galactica's Al Sharpton (if I can toss my own state's politics in this). He's a guy with a cause, a cause he may actually believe in and at times a cause very worthwhile, but deep down you can't shake the feeling that it really is all about HIM. In many ways he doesn't want the problems solved because then he wouldn't have a platform to stand on. Remember, this is a guy who tried to have Roslin killed in season two, and may have been involved in an assassination in season one. He's a smiling villain, a villain often on the right side of a losing cause, but he is still a villain.

And that brings me to the laundry reports. I agree that came across as preictable, conventional television. But while like Adama I suspect that Zarek has been using his position for personal advantage. if Adama had REAL evidence, he would have used it long ago. He hates this man,and would love to see him out of power. As a member of the Quorum, he's dangerous. If Adama had ANY evidence on Zarek, he would have used it long ago.
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misterd
Sat, Jan 24, 2009, 10:18pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Sometimes a Great Notion

@Jack Bauer

They couldn't really do a 6 month leap forward, and there wouldn't be much point to it. The fleet's primary concern is survival, and they couldn't settle there. They needed to go, and now, both for practical reasons, and because they couldn't allow the fleet to sit there for months and simply ponder the frak pack they'd been served.

And I can very much see things degenerating that fast on the ship (a few days, it seems). Think how little these people have left. Think all they've been through - starting with the genocide f their race. Endless months of being crammed into this vessel, with poor food, little entertainment, and nothing to break the monotony except a stay on Cylon occupied New Caprica. This was the one hope they had to cling to, and the rug was pulled from them in a brutal way. Who wouldn't want to give up at that point?
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misterd
Sat, Jan 24, 2009, 10:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Sometimes a Great Notion

Ellen is one of the few characters that fit every clue we were given (admittedly many of those were given after the decision was made), and she is the only one that had real reason to suspect her nature.

Look at the major clues given:
1) Not in last supper photo.
2) Was considered a possible Cylon by end of S1.
3) Would be a familiar face.
4) Not in fleet during "Revelations".
5) Searching for redemption.

Who did that really leave? Oh sure, you could parse the clues (I sure did), but if you assume they were playing fair, and the final Cylon was assumed to be human (ie not Head Six, not the Viper or Galactica, or Boomer, etc) we were left with dead characters and minor characters (Hot Dog, Socinus, Racetrack, Skulls, etc). Since half the audience probably wouldn't even realize the minor characters have been on the show regularly, they were pretty well left with the corpses: Caly, Billy, Elosha, Kat and Ellen. Billy and Elosha don't fit the redemption thing, Kat seemed to find her redemption when she died, and she has the problem of being only slightly more significant than Hot Dog. That left Caly and Ellen, and, given what we had been told about Nicky not being a full Cylon child (ahem) that left out Caly.

Of course, there could have been more about these people that we didn't know, but only one of them collaborated with Cylons, cooperated in the assassination of a political figure, and appeared in the fleet under mysterious circumstances.

Of course Ellen was the Cylon.
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misterd
Sat, Jan 24, 2009, 9:59pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: The Face of the Enemy

I was wondering how this was going to tie in with the season, and putting such an enmphasis on Felix made me wonder if this was more build up to making him the last Cylon. But after watching the 2nd.. er 12th.. or 14th? episode of the season, its very clear where this fits in with the season. Man, I never really thought about how badly Gaeta has been screwed over by the rest of the cast!
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misterd
Fri, Jan 16, 2009, 8:38pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Revelations

Solid review as always. Great point on the sudden end to the Earth storyline. I feel the same way, but doubt I would have thought to comment on it. If I may, this also comes across as Ron Moore's final (probably unintentional) poke in the eye to Voyager, which ended, unsatisfactorily, with everyone reaching Earth, and never really finishing the story. If BSG ended the same way, it wouldn't be satisfactory. Even if Earth were a paradise, we couldn't even accept "happily ever after" as an answer, or at least not without being shown how that's possible in this world. I love that the final 10 episodes will essentially be serving as an epilogue that wraps up all or most of the mysteries and character arcs.
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misterd
Fri, Jan 16, 2009, 8:29pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Sine Qua Non

Good review of an ambitious but flawed ep, but what I reall want to know is why we have to wait so long between reviews! When are we going to get the next one? All this waiting, weeks and weeks between.... what's that? It is? The one after that too? Oh. Um. Okay. Thanks.
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misterd
Sun, Dec 21, 2008, 8:29pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Escape Velocity

Can't wait for the DVDs as the details of each episode tend to blur together, but as I recall this was one of the weaker eps of the season. Too much transition in too many storylines.

One thing that makes this play a little different in hindsight is the Chief's confession that he wasn't all that fond of Callie in the first place. While Tigh is eaten up by Ellen's death, even though he had good cause (in his mind, anyway), Tigh may be haunted by the fact that he just doesn't care that she's gone, and may even be a relieved, which must force him to wonder if this is because he's a Cylon?
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misterd
Thu, Dec 11, 2008, 9:57pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: The Ties That Bind

Just curious - was that average mean, median, or mode?
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misterd
Sat, Dec 6, 2008, 8:06pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: The Ties That Bind

We just bust your ass because we love what you do and want more. You do what you got to, and we'll be hear when you're ready with the goods.
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misterd
Mon, Dec 1, 2008, 5:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: The Ties That Bind

In Tori's defense, she worked side by side with a tough as nails, do what it takes President. Surely some of that rubbed off on her (or she had those traits in the first place, which is why Rosalin employed her). That same President has made a hobby of spacing Cylons, so Tori had every reason to fear discovery. And let's not forget that Tori spaced a woman who had shot a former friend-turned Cylon, a woman who was moments before trying to kill her own child for its Cylon heritage. Yet somehow we all sympathize more with Cali than Tori.
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misterd
Sun, Nov 23, 2008, 12:34am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: The Ties That Bind

Wait, I think I'm on the wrong site. I'm looking for the one that endlessly reviews Six of One?

Sad thing is its been so long since I watched this ep, that I don't know if I agree with the review or not, except in its broadest points.
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misterd
Mon, May 19, 2008, 4:49pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: He That Believeth in Me

Matt, Nog's leg wasn't wrapped up all that neatly. They did take time to adress Nog's feelings over the issue. You can't quite compare Nog's finished story to Gaeta's when Gaeta's tale has only just begun.
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misterd
Sun, May 18, 2008, 1:32am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: He That Believeth in Me

One last one...

Dukat and Baltar, feeling guilty over their contributions to genocide, are haunted by visions
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misterd
Sat, May 17, 2008, 12:16am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: He That Believeth in Me

More DS9 vs BSG...

Blood tests for changelings vs Blood tests for Cylons (neither of which works)

Butch Cardassian/Cylon hater finds herself helping them in a civil war in the final season...

Now all we need is for Gaeta to belt out some Vic Fontaine tunes...
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misterd
Sat, May 17, 2008, 12:07am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: He That Believeth in Me

Of course it will be contrived. The whole series is contrived. Within the series, all evidence points to the current situation being manipulated by greater forces, which allows the writers to play the parts of the Gods (or the Final Five, or whomever is the one manipulating things).

As for DS9... (spoilers for DS9 and episode 4.7 of BSG follow!)

We have the skin jobs vs the Founders... shape shifting alien infiltrators...

Cylon ressurection vs Vorta cloning...

The leader of the fleet with religious visions vs the commander of the space station with religious visions...

Baltar vs Dukat... the narcissitic, opportunistic, yet often sympathetic, villains at odds with hallucinating leader...

Nog's leg vs Gaeta's leg...
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misterd
Fri, Apr 25, 2008, 12:13am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: He That Believeth in Me

If you'd seen Ron's Trek stuff, you'd know that he's good, but not perfect. If you listen to the podcasts, he'll flat out admit that shows like Black Market and A Day in the Life failed. I know of no show that managed to stay consistent in it's quality from beginning to end (The Wire was close, but it peaked in S4), and almost every show makes a wrong step somewhere at some point. I disliked the Apollo/Starbuck affair last season, I hated that they went in that direction, but I got over it easily enough. In fact, for numerous reasons, when I rewatched the S3 DVDs, I was surprised to see the storyline wasn't dragged on for as long as I thought it was. It also helped that I now knew there was a point to Starbuck's arc, which I couldn't be sure of then.
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misterd
Sat, Apr 12, 2008, 10:55pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: He That Believeth in Me

Good analysis, Jammer, though I wonder if you will have to update this review now that the Cylons leaving has been explained in Six of One. I understand not wanting to spoil the future episodes for readers, and also for preserving your "first take" for posterity or nostaligia, but maybe an "in hindsight" addition (with spoiler warnings, of course) should be added to some episodes.

As for Baltar's cult, I imagine they are little different than the lunatics who write love letters to Charlie Manson and David Berkowitz, which means most of them would be moon-eyed, soft-brained women (sorry if that comment offends someone, but I see few hard-headed, clear thinking men falling in love with male mass murderers). Many are probably leftovers from the "love the Cylons" saboteurs we saw back in Season 2 (the ones not blown up with Gina).
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