Mark Watches ‘Battlestar Galactica’: S02E08 – Final Cut

In the eighth episode of the second season of Battlestar Galactica, the newly unified fleet still has problems with the way the military has been behaving, so Adama and Roslin allow an anti-military journalist to make a documentary in order to change the tide of public opinion. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Battlestar Galactica.

Could “Final Cut” be more suited for my tastes? This is not a perfect episode, for the record, and it’s also the first one that has a much slower pace until the end, but I was absolutely enamored with the way that this episode explores how media can interact and intersect with politics, and how images and messages are spread through different means. Even if I don’t ever talk about it on here or on Mark Reads, it’s implicit in the narrative: we are dissecting media (what’s inside of it) and the medium itself. (What are the limitations of television? What do I accept or disbelieve because of it?)

In reality, it’s something I’ve been doing a long time. I wrote a post this week for Mark Reads (it goes up tomorrow) that is over 6,000 words, and I remember back in high school how much I struggled with reaching 1,500 words when I had a structured essay to complete. I did well, and I enjoyed writing analytical essays for AP Language and AP Lit. Part of me thinks those days were almost like training for what I’m doing now. Even when I got to college, a 4,000 word paper made me want to die forever. But I’m at a point in my life where I’m writing about 20,000 words PER WEEK. what. It’s become far more natural to me than ever before, and it’s because I feel comfortable delving into a story and pulling apart all the various pieces.

In that sense, watching “Final Cut” was like a bizarre glimpse into my own head. Yes, the story is quite meta, as the writers look a bit inwards towards their own characters. Yet even as a social commentary on military-industrialism, or the use of journalism as activism, it’s never once ignored that there are people at the heart of this, and I think that’s why I ultimately enjoy the message of this episode, even if it feels a tad cheesy towards the end.

“Final Cut” continues this shows wonderful run of acknowledging the logistical reality of being stranded in space, of 47,000+ humans banding together to survive. Namely, in this case, it would be unreasonable if Adama and Roslin returned to the fleet and everyone hugged and there were never any problems in the world ever. (Would I watch two and a half more seasons of Adama and Roslin having tea, discussing books, and hugging? Yes, I would.) With Adama back in command and on the Galactica, it’s time to face the repercussions of Colonel Tigh being in command. This is explored through the lens of D’anna Biers, who I only barely recognized as Lucy Lawless (!!!!!) about halfway through the episode.

Like many scenes before this in the run of the show up to this point, everyone speaks very plainly to one another, from D’anna’s insistence that she will not make propaganda for the Galactica, to Roslin’s claim that D’anna will get whatever she wants. What Battlestar Galactica has done so well is presenting things in such a morally ambiguous way. Yes, this is not the first time that I’ve pointed this out, but I think “Final Cut” has a fantastic example of this. We know that D’anna is right, that Tigh is responsible for making a poor decision under pressure, and that the public has every right to distrust the military. This is made even worse when Tigh himself is so hostile and dismissive towards being criticized, or when the military seems so willing to cover the truth up.

Yet I think the larger story is that no one really knows how difficult this has been for those on board the Galactica. Well, we know because we’ve been here watching them the entire time. This is certainly Tigh’s fault, but D’anna’s ultimate ideas about how the military operates is based entirely on conjecture. There are tens of thousands of people we’ve never never met in this fleet, and the inverse of that is true: none of those people have ever met the crew of the Galactica, so it’s quite easy to ascribe any number of personality traits or ideas about tyranny without any basis in reality.

Which, again, is not to ignore that there needs to be accountability. It seems in the opening that Roslin is all for an open and transparent military, and that she surprised Adama by giving D’anna full clearance. But even Adama starts to warm up to the idea because he knows that they truly don’t have anything they need to hide. Well…there’s one thing, but we’ll get there.

I thought it was an interesting choice on the part of the crew to use the actual footage that D’anna and her camera guy was shooting to give us a frame for the documentary she was making. It was a refreshing change from the norm (not to imply that the show’s cinematography is boring, as it’s anything but); however, I was fascinated by it for an entirely different reason. The writers brilliantly use this as a chance to give us insight into some of the secondary and tertiary characters. I loved Dualla’s story about her father’s resentment towards her joining the military; she is a wonderful example to break to stereotype that only brainless jocks join the armed forces. As many problems as I have with the American military and some aspects of military culture, I’ve always sat on the fence because my father was a soldier in Vietnam, and my best friend in high school left for the Marines when I was a senior. Obviously, these people are not evil, and I know that a lot of soldiers are part of the system and rarely have anything to do with what I ultimately disagree with.

In “Final Cut,” that’s what D’anna finds out when she speaks with Dualla, Gaeta (OH MY GOD HIS MONOLOGUE FUCKING AMAZING), Kat, and Kelso. Reality is not a matter of drawing a line on some sort of moral astral plane and placing people on one side or the other. Even outside the context of this show, it’s more like our bodies are sprawled all over the line, which is more a mess of tangled yarn than a constant border. D’anna sees the soldiers and pilots dealing with frustration, with the lack of new recruits, with little to no support, and it shows her that her preconceived notions of what the military was actually doing were far off-base.

All of this is well-written and handled sensitively, with respect to both parties, and then ON TOP of all of that, the tension starts to build. This episode has the longest period before it begins, but it’s there, and it’s a slow-burn. I’ll be honest: I initially thought that Ellen wrote the Caprican poetry reference on the mirror herself, and I was convinced that this episode would reveal she was trying to manipulate her husband further. Look, I still think she’s a Cylon, though I know I’m probably wrong. But this small moment tears at Tigh’s conscience and concentration. And the addition of a camera crew only makes it worse. There are some things that the crew on the Galactica need to keep to themselves for the time being, but then D’anna captures the sabotaged Raptor on film, and it looks like the secret is out.

So why does someone want to kill Tigh? It’s clear that’s the intent. Was it someone related to one of the four civilians who died on the Gideon? That was my initial guess, and I think Tigh suspected as much. I’m glad that the show forces him to deal with his guilt over that decision, as difficult as it is to watch, because it’s not something that should be ignored. But as D’anna continues to have full access to everything going on in the ship, I worried about how these two stories would collide. I did not expect, however, that D’anna would capture Valerii on tape as Dr. Cottle tried to save her child.

SO YEAH ABOUT THAT STORY LINE. As soon as Valerii pulled out that blood hand from under her blanket, I cried out in shock. And then I was immediately filled with a lot of feelings. Apparently this child is destined for great things, and one of those things is THE DESTRUCTION OF THE HUMAN RACE. Yet I can’t help but worry about Valerii, Helo, or the child. Battlestar, what are you doing to me? I CAN’T FIGURE OUT HOW I FEEL. IT IS ALL SO CONFUSING.

It’s the first moment where Adama steps in to have D’anna abide by his earlier demand that anything that can compromise security would be cut. But now someone else knows that a copy of Valerii has returned, and she’s PREGNANT. God, I never once thought about the rest of the fleet finding out about the Galactica willingly holding a Cylon and allowing her to give birth, but I knew it was inevitable, especially since D’anna HID THE REAL COPY IN HER BRA. oh god OH GOD WHAT IS SHE GOING TO DO.

I was completely spellbound, then, but what does happen next, because I thought we’d head down a road where D’anna leaks the footage to the fleet. Instead, the writers choose to give us one of the most powerful images of season two: we see the perspective of the crew of Galactica as the Raptor fighters engage some Cylon Raiders. It’s been standard that the show switches between the point of view of those in the CIC and the Raptors themselves, but I found it rather brilliant that we are left observing just how awful things are for those who stay behind, listening to the radio chatter in the hopes that their friends don’t die, that they don’t die in the process as well, that there’s some hope they can survive after all of this.

No one sees this. Not one second of it. I’ve seen it happen so many times I couldn’t try counting it. And god, it’s even more tense than I remember.

Because of this (and the ultimate end to the episode), I must admit that I was a tad underwhelmed by the conclusion to Tigh’s arc in this story. I liked that he feigned what seemed like a genuine apology to Palladino (one that even I nearly believed) in order to disarm him. When the Marines burst in with D’anna, who figured out the whole thing just minutes before, I suddenly wondered what the point of this all was. I did like that Tigh had to face his guilt, but did he do anything with it? Did he grow as a person or come to realize something new? Sure, it’s probably part of a longer story for him, but I didn’t see how this fit into the larger scheme.

It doesn’t help that the next scene after this is the review of D’anna’s final footage. I know it’s probably intended to evoke this reaction in us, but I laughed when the Colonial anthem came in. It was just so ridiculous and over-the-top, maybe a bit too much. I get that D’anna had a change of heart and, while still including some of the negative aspects of the military, wanted to portray them differently than she intended to.

Except…is that what she wanted to do? As the folks on the Colonial One watch the ending to the documentary, the camera pans to reveal that the Cylons–Boomer, Doral, and Six–are watching the exact same thing. Only they get to see the cut footage that Adama ordered removed and get confirmation that Caprica!Valerii is still alive.

Wait. How is that possible? Who is that woman in the front row? How did they get this tape when–



It was all a mission to learn more about that child, which needs to be protected and I don’t get this and my brain hurts and my heart and oh my god i never saw this coming HOLY SHIT.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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86 Responses to Mark Watches ‘Battlestar Galactica’: S02E08 – Final Cut

  1. My Thoughts on This Episode on September 9, 2005, Which Are Startlingly Similar to Mark's, Down to Our Reactions to the Final Scene

    I was wary of tonight's BSG episode, even though I was excited to have it back after a week without it. The premise seemed too…dumb, I don't know. But oh my God. It was much better than I thought it would be.

    As usual, let me just toss out some of the bad and get it out of the way. The Tigh-death-threat subplot was kind of meh, though it was kind of worth it for Starbuck's "Can I be a suspect again now? Please?" I also liked that the credits blipvert made it look like a gun was being pushed against Tigh's head, when in fact it was Tigh who did the pushing. Wait, we're talking about things I don't like. Like Ellen Tigh. Stop being in episodes. And I wish the Kat thing had been developed a little better (like, hello, it might have made that whole asteroid scene with the crappy CAG less pointless if we had seen Kat fucking up a little too). Also, the octagonal thing is cute, but dude, did you see the octagonal CD? How the fuck does that work? It won't spin, dammit! Finally, what the hell was up with Billy having three seconds of screentime and no dialogue?

    I liked the different reactions to Biers's ever-present camera. Dualla's explaining technical terms; Apollo doesn't really give a fuck but is mindful; Baltar wants to feel important. I love Baltar. I totally identify with his insecurity. Love that his reaction to the alarm was, "Wait, no, cameras, don't go away! Dammit! Frakkin' Cylons." He's not the greatest guy in the world, no, but he's terribly entertaining.

    We got first names for Dualla and Gaeta! And character development! Very nice. Really liked both those fleshings out, and the intercutting interview footage with the action at hand (and Christ, yet again I thought they were going to kill Kat, the way they were playing that interview footage). Though I wasn't liking her too much this episode, but then I forgave her because she was just pulling a Jessie Spano.

    I loved that Apollo didn't lie to Biers's assy question about his pilots deserving special treatment. Yes, they do. Just like everybody else. I loved that Dualla answered Biers's quasi-humanoid question about things getting easier with, "No, ma'am. It gets harder." Even though it was predictable. I think it's the "ma'am" that makes it, though.

    Also, WOW. That battle scene was fucking awesome. We'd never seen what a Cylon attack was like for the people not on the flippy ships, and this was an abso-motherfucking-lutely perfect way to do it. I couldn't make out all of what the pilots were saying, but Jesus Christ, I was tense. Especially because I wasn't sure we would ever cut to space, and then when I realized we weren't going to, I was afraid something was going to happen and we weren't going to see it, and oh my God. I can totally see how Dualla would respond with "It gets harder." Because you're on this big honkin' ship, completely powerless. It's all up to the pilots, and their transmissions are all you know.

    Starbuck has never looked hotter than she did in that boxing scene. Sweet Jesus.

    Where is Cally? Is Nicki Clyne off doing something? How hot is the name "Nicki Clyne"? How weird is it that she's younger than I am?

    I love the Prez.

    Apparently, the theme to the original series was playing over the final cut, and that made people teary. What made me teary was the voiceover, because sometimes I am a giant sap. The whole message about the people of Galactica being human and flawed, but always doing their best, is why I love this show and its characters. I love it so much when characters embrace their flaws, recognize that our flaws are just as important in creating who we are as our strengths.

    And then we're in a theater. So the pilots are watch—wait, no, those are our favorite Cylons, I recognize their backs. How did they get this footage on Caprica? Can they just pluck it out of the ether? Whoa, that's new. Hold on a sec, how can they play the deleted footage? Where are they—HOLY FUCK.

    Seriously, this show manages to surprise me more than any show I can recall, with the exception of Veronica Mars. I wonder what Cylon mischief Biers'll be up to in the future.

    Also, this totally explains her leap of logic from "That looks like the late Lt. Valerii" to "Cylon!" Does no one think of the zombies anymore?

    • echinodermata says:

      "Starbuck has never looked hotter than she did in that boxing scene. Sweet Jesus."

      IKR?? I know it goes overlooked given Jamie Bamber is in a towel in this episode, but seriously, give me Starbuck boxing in all the episodes.

    • cait0716 says:

      I love the chaos of the CIC during the attack. It's a nice touch that D'Anna doesn't seem to know what to film. She's just racing all over the place with her camera.

      I also continue to get weirded out when actors younger than me are playing adults. I'm not that old!

    • monkeybutter says:

      We got first names for Dualla and Gaeta!

      I love that his name is Felix. It's just perfect for him 🙂

      • enigmaticagentscully says:

        Ahhhh it's cute, but to me Felix will always be a cat name! 😛
        Actually, correct me of I'm wrong, but didn't we already know Dualla's name? I thought Billy referred to her as 'Dee' in 'Bastille Day'.

        • Mauve_Avenger says:

          Billy does call her "Dee," I'm pretty sure, but that's just her nickname. The type over the interview footage says her first name is Anastasia.

        • psycicflower says:

          Dee's short for Dualla, her first name's actually Anastasia.

        • enigmaticagentscully says:

          Oh dear, that totally went over my head! 😛

          I guess 'Dee Dualla' is kind of an odd name, now I come to think about it…

    • klmnumbers says:

      I forgave her because she was just pulling a Jessie Spano.

      That made me lol way harder than it should have.

  2. echinodermata says:

    Dun dun dun! I have to admit I was never that impressed with the cylon reveal. Brand new character given access to Galactica and finding out secret info like Sharon being on board, with a character arc going from irritating the leaders to essentially winning them over by the end? Totally a cylon.

    <img src="; alt="Bamber as Apollo scantily clad in a towel, which he almosts drops.">

    <img src="; alt="George Takei tweeting 'Why wasn't Jamie Bamber on the Enterprise? Oh, myyyyyy…'">

    <img src="; alt="Starbuck punching and kicking a punching bag.">

    Okay, so show? You're already documentary-style. This ep therefore causes me cognitive dissonance. So…a documentary team is filming a different documentary team? Yeah, this episode weirds me out in the context of the rest of the show in terms of cinamatographic POV.

    But I generally do like this episode. I like seeing the crew interviews (Gaeta with a tattoo!) and yay new cylon! I wish the ending were a little bit different, though. We know the crew are good people and we already sympathize with them. I would have instead liked seeing the reaction of the civilian fleet to the final cut so we could see the effect the documentary had on those people it was (supposedly) intended for as opposed to us, the viewers of BSG, watching the final cut (with the cylons).

    I think it's a little weird the Cylons didn't know that Sharon was still alive, though. Wouldn't they have found out if she were dead?

    • cait0716 says:

      I could watch that gif of Apollo and the towel all day long. You get so close to seeing something

    • monkeybutter says:

      I swear that towel got smaller as the scene went on…

    • echinodermata says:

      I think this is a bit spoilery.

    • NB2000 says:

      ROFL the George Takei tweet

      • echinodermata says:

        I went through all his tweets at one point and screencapped the ones I particularly liked. This is around when Mark Watches Avatar started (which I remember because there were a couple of Avatar-related tweets I found potentially relevant), so it's been sitting on my harddrive for months specifically for this moment.

    • notemily says:

      I would have instead liked seeing the reaction of the civilian fleet to the final cut so we could see the effect the documentary had on those people it was (supposedly) intended for as opposed to us, the viewers of BSG, watching the final cut (with the cylons).

      This is actually a recurring frustration of mine in the show. We constantly see Roslin and Adama talk about the fleet and how they're reacting to something, but we don't actually SEE that reaction. I think I would have liked to see a few civilians have their own storyline from the beginning, and then we could check back in with them periodically and see how they responded to things like the Gideon massacre, or the election, or whatever.

      • Vale says:

        Me too. I'm not sure how to remedy it, but the lack of real engagement with the civilian side of things, outside of the President's office that is, is a real weakness of the show.

    • enigmaticagentscully says:

      You know, weird though it is, my favourite part of that towel scene will always be Starbuck LOL-ing in the background. She has such a troll face on.

  3. psycicflower says:

    Hello new Cylon!

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">
    I’m aware other things happened in this episode but goddamn. I may have watched this on loop for an inappropriate amount after uploading.

    I really love this episode and getting to see behind the scenes with the crew interviews, Dee and her fights with her father, Gaeta and his tattoo, Kat and the pressure she (and everyone else) is under. I also liked that things aren’t magically better after the split in the fleet and that things like the Gideon Massacre have affected the crew and fleet at large. I really loved the space battle in this one. Usually we get to see the fight in all its space prettiness but it great seeing the fight purely from the perspective of the CIC and deck crew and how tense that is.

    [youtube AAk0hEVGgMY youtube]
    It’s probably a little cheesy in the context of this episode but I do love the Colonial Anthem. I’d actually thought it turned up earlier in the series than this but glad to see it finally make it’s appearance.

    • Maya says:

      Fun fact: the Colonial Anthem is the theme song for the original series.

      • shoroko says:

        Yeah, this is why it never bothers me. It is totally cheesy, but so was the original show, and the use of the theme here almost seemed like a meta throwback to that; like, obviously a reference to the original show, but also sort purposefully invoking those sentimental, sometimes cheesy sort of themes often brought up with regard to the military that the show deconstructs, especially in light of the abrupt shift to showing the Cylons watching it.

    • enigmaticagentscully says:

      I never even WATCHED the original show, and this tune still makes me a bit wibbly. :')

      I get a sort of second-hand nostalgia.

    • lizziecharlton says:

      It's played in the mini, when the vipers do the flypast during the decommissioning ceremony. It is *very* brief though.

  4. janype says:

    All of this reaction has happened before. All this will happen again.

  5. Maya says:

    Obligatory naked!Jamie Bamber gif

    <img src=""/&gt;

    I can now officially give you the link to my favorite fanfic: Benevolent Sibling. It's AU after Final Cut, so you shouldn't be spoiled at all.

    it's pure, hilarious crack.

  6. psycicflower says:

    Would I watch two and a half more seasons of Adama and Roslin having tea, discussing books, and hugging? Yes, I would.

    Why doesn't this show already exist and what do I have to do to get it made?

  7. Karen says:

    It's Xena!

    Yeah, that was pretty much my main reaction to this episode.

    • elusivebreath says:

      Which i did not realize until the VERY end, and even then, I was like "that chick looks like Xena" and then I saw the credits lol. Obviously I am not good at noticing things.

    • feminerdist says:

      That was my exact reaction when I first saw this. Well, actually it was more like, "FUCK YEAH XENA!!!!"

      I watched the shit out of Xena when I was in high school. Ah, the 90s…

  8. cait0716 says:

    I really love this episode. I love all the back story on some of the more minor characters. I love the little subplots with Kat and the stims. I love Dualla's admissions to the camera that she's scared and that it only gets harder. And the introduction of another cylon! Played by Lucy Lawless! So exciting!

    When Gaeta shows off his tattoo, I want to jump through the screen and land on his lap. He is so adorable and sexy and amazing.

  9. guest_age says:

    I'm just going to throw this out there because these are the kinds of things I notice–thank you four years of film school–but did it bother anyone else how frequently the camera kept jumping the line in the scene where Palladino threatens Tigh?

    And…you know what? I'm just going to admit this right now–it takes a lot for me to cry while watching something sad, but I'll pretty much cry over anything ridiculously soppy/cheesy/happy in a heartbeat, and I got actualfax tears in my eyes during the end of the documentary. Yes, I am a giant sap. No shame.

  10. knut_knut says:

    Two things
    2.2. LEE ADAMA. TOWEL.
    I don’t even care if this is a shallow comment

  11. monkeybutter says:


    <img src=""&gt;
    Really, I had no idea she was in BSG, and I thought she was just going to be a one-off character until the end, but there she is, hanging out with the rest of the Cylons! Eee!! That's two new Cylons this season, too! I think my favorite part of her involvement is being able to judge the rest of the cast's height. Aww, I could fit Baltar in my pocket! Maybe Lee in the other one!

    Okay, onto plot stuff. My hackles were raised at the beginning because even though Roslin said "not propaganda," having Biers shoot the people on Galactica to show how they really are is propaganda. It isn't necessarily eeeeevil, but it's meant to manipulate public perception. That being said, I loved having a personal look at the crew, especially Dee and Gaeta (it is so weird seeing him smoking). I really like them both, so I was ecstatic to get some background on them.

    I think my favorite part was what Helo said about the military trying to dehumanize them so that they'll be better soldiers (I forget what he said exactly, but it was something along those lines) but that it doesn't really work that way in the field. In the same way, Biers was dehumanizing the people on Galactica, but after spending time with them and seeing how they work and care for each other and the fleet, she ended up seeing and showing how human they are. That was made really weird by the Cylon reveal, and I liked that they saw the humans' resilience and am hoping that they saw more there. I enjoyed this one!

    (please be okay Sharon)

  12. Jenny_M says:


    I'm sorry, was I supposed to have other thoughts?

  13. NB2000 says:

    Am I just unobservant or has the banner suddenly lost its corners? Either way, it looks awesome!

    So, something about a documentary and really interesting character moments (especially for Gaeta and Kat) and Lee having issues holding onto his towel, but most importantly LUCY LAWLESS OMG HELLO THERE I'll just be developing a massive crush on you now. She's immediately jumping into an established series with an interesting character and doing it so well. There's so many little moments that make me love her character, her unimpressed reaction to Dee's tour guide info dump about Galactica, the "What a strange little man" about Gaius. Not entirely sure about her having Chang Lee working for her at the beginning of the episode though:

    <img src=""&gt;

    (best shot of him I could find sorry).

    Okay back to the episode as a whole, it's sort of like "Litmus" in how the focus is mostly on the secondary characters with less screentime for the leads (there's very little of Laura and only marginally more of Bill for example). That it's, mostly, the same secondary characters we've seen before, i.e. not a bunch of random new people, adds a nice depth to the world the show is creating.

    Would I watch two and a half more seasons of Adama and Roslin having tea, discussing books, and hugging? Yes, I would.

    That sounds amazing and I want to watch it too!

    • monkeybutter says:

      Haha, I didn't notice the banner until you pointed it out, but then again I'm pretty unobservant, too. I like it!

  14. Ryan Lohner says:

    And with that, we know half of the human Cylon models. Six more to go.

    From all I've heard, Lucy Lawless is actually a very shy, modest person, so it's very impressive to see her play such forceful characters like Xena and D'anna. Plus, it's very cool to hear her real accent, after years of equating her with Xena's voice.

    • klmnumbers says:

      I think her D'anna voice is still a sliiiiiiightly anglicized (or whatever) version of her Kiwi one. I remember watching an outtake of her where she starts speaking in a more NZ accent and then says something like 'wrong accent!'; Not sure, but yes I love her. I love, love, LOVE that they convinced her to do this.

      I also love that Ron D Moore wasn't sold on her at first since he only knew her from Xena, but after one lunch with her was excited!

  15. Albion19 says:

    I'm so glad you didn't figure out she was a Cylon, the surprise at the end is so worth it!

  16. Jenny_M says:

    So, when I see Gaeta smoking, it makes me think of this:

    [youtube NN3MGN899yE youtube]

    But, I mean, that's kind of appropriate, right?

  17. Ryan Lohner says:

    One weird thing about this one is the reference to Hot Dog and Kat as "Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum." So which colony do you suppose Lewis Carroll was from?

    • enigmaticagentscully says:

      I always assume that any references to popular culture like that are translated for our benefit to something we'd understand. In the same way as I assume they're not all REALLY speaking English, but it's translated so we don't have to see them all speak Colonial-ese or whatever with subtitles.

      Also, you reminded me of this XKCD strip…

  18. enigmaticagentscully says:

    Is it weird that I find Baltar's constant bucking for an interview kind of endearing?

    I love this episode, and I tend to love all kind of episodes like this. Documentary style episodes, 'lower deck' episodes…anything that gives you a totally different perspective than what we're used to.
    This always reminds me of a similar episode of Babylon 5 called 'And Now For A Word' which also has a film crew follow about the day to day lives of the characters, just as shit hits the fan. I love that episodes like this give an opportunity to hear backstory about characters that they might not otherwise reveal in everyday conversation, by having direct interviews.

    So, I'm sorry for this not being really relevant, but I'm gonna post one of my favourite scenes from that B5 episode, just as an example.

    [youtube Tq6bYoP0grg&feature=player_embedded youtube]

  19. pica_scribit says:

    I've seen the trope of "cynical documentary crew changes their minds" before. (Is that a trope? It should be.) But I honestly was not expecting the twist at the end! So we've now seen six of the twelve Cylon models. Interesting. I love that we also get some new perspective on the Galactica crew. I'm quickly becoming a huge Gaeta fan.

    Also, slightly OT, but OMG! CYLONS ARE REAL!!!!. (What happens when two chatbots talk to one another? Something unexpected. This seriously cracked me up, while also giving me chills.)

  20. Erhad says:

    I can not stand Tigh. The rest of the crew should just strap a bomb to him and throw him onto one of the Cylon base ships.

    • enigmaticagentscully says:

      You know, much though I dislike Tigh, you have to give him this – he'd probably totally be up for that plan.

      • MelvinFrakingBaltar says:

        And it's kind of important to remember that, total jerk or not, he does make good decisions in combat. Remember how he totally out-thought the cylons back in 2-2? Y'know, like a week ago?

        • Erhad says:

          Yeah, he does have those moments where he makes the right decisions, and he also has moments where he makes the totally wrong and stupid decision. Truthfully, I just can not stand his actor for some reason. Ever just wanted to punch someone because of how they look? Yeah..

          • @msshelly02 says:

            This is called the "I hate your face" rule. No matter how good the actor, TV show, movie is, you simply cannot like it because you hate their face. Happens to me all the time.

        • Noybusiness says:

          Just don't put him in charge of anything that even vaguely requires administrative skills.

  21. klmnumbers says:

    Would I watch two and a half more seasons of Adama and Roslin having tea, discussing books, and hugging? Yes, I would.)

    So say we all.



    But for serious, I love this episode if only for the WHAM – XENA IS A CYLON.

  22. hassibah says:

    Holy Shit I HAD NO IDEA THAT WAS XENA. Apparently all it takes is a different hair colour to throw me off. Thanks internets.

    Okay, unfortunately I'm a little prejudiced against documentary-style stuff in my tv and movies, at this point anyways the novelty has really worn off for me, so the ending was a little cheesy for my taste. That said, I like Kat and I loved the bits with Gaeta and Dualla. Plus Baltar walking in front of Xena till he got noticed was precious.

  23. doesntsparkle says:

    I didn't realized she was Xena until after the episode was over. I'm embarrassed.

  24. ChronicReader91 says:

    This might be the least tense episode in a long time, but it still kept my interest because it was like looking at the show in a completely different way. The documentary style-shots served as a reminder that the majority of the fleet DOESN’T live on or have much contact with Galactica, and would likely be somewhat suspicious of them, especially considering all the shit that just went down. I love that they show the human side of the military, too.
    Random things I liked:
    -D’anna’s accent.
    -Lee. Towell. ‘Nuff said.
    -Starbuck. Punching bag. Ditto.
    -We get full names!
    -Gaeta smoking and having a tattoo in no way fit in with my preconceived notions about him, but I love those details even more for that.
    -That scene in the CIC. Wow. Nice bit of perspective, but from now on, show us what the pilots are doing, OK?
    -Cylon movie time! Actually, the beginning of that scene, where you can only see the back of their heads while they watch the footage, reminded me of Mystery Science Theater 3000. 😉

  25. notemily says:

    I think there's a big difference between writing 20,000 words a week of your own thoughts and analysis for fun and discussion with other fans, and writing 20,000 words for someone else who is going to be grading what you write and you can't put in any silly gifs or swear or keysmash. I mean, boring, right?

    I think it's the lack of bangs that makes Lucy Lawless look SO different.

    Mark, I actually think Tigh's apology WAS genuine. I think Tigh has a deep streak of self-loathing, and he DOES blame himself for what happened. Not that he thinks he should get shot for it, but I got the feeling he was speaking from a place of genuine regret there.

    Thoughts while re-watching:


    Really, a little kid calling "Dad"? That's a little much.

    "And I need you to do it now, before I throw you out the airlock."



    Gaius, please stop saying "I'm the Vice President!" before I smack yo face.

    "What a strange little man." Hee hee.

    Ooh look, Ellen is here to screw things up some more.

    Sharon what's wrong 🙁 🙁 🙁

    I love Gaeta's interview. I love Gaeta. Gaetaaaaa

    LOL tiger tattoo??

    Ugh. Don't give Tigh a drink to try to loosen his tongue or make him look dumb. Not fair.

    Uh-oh… the secret of Sharon is out… of COURSE D'Anna had a copy, she's not stupid.

    I like how we only see this Viper run from the CIC, which is how D'Anna is filming it. This episode is kind of meta.

    That's the guy that was sent in to be in command at the Gideon, right? 🙁 🙁 I do feel for him. But don't kill Tigh.

    I think it's interesting that he talks about how he killed real people, that they looked like people he knew. I suppose it's much easier to kill metal robots. But the Cylons look like people now, too. And act like them, and feel like them. Is that going to make them harder to kill?

    (The Wiki says he was originally supposed to shoot himself at the end of this scene, but Executive Meddling axed it. Too dark, they said.)

    The cheesy music that plays over the end of D'Anna's piece is the theme from the Original Series, which is now the anthem of the Twelve Colonies. I kinda like that.

    Oh hey, the Cylons on Caprica have found themselves another Sharon. Is that the original flavor Boomer in a new body, or just another Sharon?

    From the Wiki, apparently this is the first time we learn the full names of Dee (Anastasia Dualla), Gaeta (Felix Gaeta), and Racetrack (Margaret Edmonson).

    There are also a few linguistic oddities in this episode. Adama says "warts and all," a phrase coined by Oliver Cromwell. Lee says "Tweedledum and Tweedledee," from Lewis Carroll. And Dee mentions "24 hours a day," implying that they have a 24-hour day, even though all of the twelve colonies couldn't possibly have the same length of a day.

    Cylon count, Cylon count, time to update the Cylon count!

    Known Cylons: 6
    – Number Six
    – Aaron Doral
    – Leoben Conoy
    – Sharon Valerii
    – Simon the Creepy Doctor
    – D'Anna Biers

    That's half of the Twelve Models!

    • cait0716 says:

      I definitely thought he was going to shoot himself. Something about the tone and the music and everything really suggested that that's where it was going.

      I very much love Gaeta and his tiger tattoo, too 🙂

    • virtual_monster says:

      *can't fight the inner pedant….. argh….*

      Tweedledee and Tweedledum are mentioned by Lewis Caroll but not actually from his work in the sense that he didn't originate them. They were already characters in a nuresery rhyme, which he simply incorporated (much as he did with Humpty Dumpty and the Lion and the Unicorn).

      Of course, since nursery rhymes often originate as satricical comment on a historical event – in the case of Tweedledum and Tweedledee a dispute between the composers Handel and Bononcini – it doesn't make it any less of a weird reference for the Colonial fleet.

      (Sorry, couldn't stop myself. In other news I like this episode a lot. Also Lewis Carroll's Alice books)

  26. Minish says:

    Because they're aren't enough already:

    <img src=>

    oh …oops… wrong one… heh.

  27. StatSig says:

    Apollo in a towel. That is all that matters about this episode.

  28. Sara says:

    Kat's stim-fueled breakdown really gets me every time I watch it. When they're like "we're going to get you home" and she just screams 'HOME IS DEAD' i'm like….wow, kat. you are right. Brb, all of the tears. Heart shattering into thousands of pieces.

  29. Noybusiness says:

    "Sorry, I don't… I forgot my gloves."


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