Ron Moore confirms final Cylon not in Last Supper photo

I’ve received word, via E-mail, from Maureen Ryan of the Chicago Tribune regarding the famous Last Supper promotion photo. As you may know, in the interview surrounding that photo, the Entertainment Weekly reporter asked if the Final Cylon was not in the photo. Moore responded:

You ferreted that out pretty slyly. I didn’t really want to give that away.

This equivocal answer (he doesn’t say the Cylon is not present, the reporter does) had many people wondering. Ryan did an interview with Moore in which she asked him about it, and that contained a confirmation with some reporter-added text in brackets:

MR: Just so I understand what I think you told EW for the story that went with the photo, none of the people in that photo is the final Cylon, right?

RDM: Yeah. I said that. I probably shouldn’t have said that [laughs] but I have said that. So, yeah [that is the case, the final Cylon is not any of the people in the photo].

I wrote to Ryan, and she confirmed that Moore had just said what was attributed to him, and the text in brackets was her elaboration on the meaning of his “So, yeah.” However, she wrote to Moore, and he responded to her. She reports to me by E-mail that Moore has OK’ed the following quote:

“Ron Moore confirmed to me that the final Cylon is not any of the people in the Last Supper photo.”

So, short of a tricky interpretation of “people” (which I pointed out to Ryan before she asked Moore, so it seems unlikely) this seems pretty definite.

I must admit this surprises me for several reasons. First of all, I would not expect Moore to give away such information conclusively regarding the central mystery of the season and show, cited every time in the opening titles. I would expect him to equivocate, and now he has said he did not.

The other reason it surprises me is I don’t really like the choices this lays down upon us. My current pick had been Baltar, the Chosen One but his story will obviously be different. Most of the minor characters did not provide a dramatic enough story to be the climax of the season. And now, almost all the minor characters have been eliminated by the proclamation by D’Anna Biers that the final cylon is not with the fleet. This leaves mostly dead characters, for whom my top pick is Joseph Adama, with Elosha more distant. I am not sure the audience would be satisfied by these.

I’ll have written some more analysis of the minor and dead characters.

Clarification

I've commented on this before so this is old news to me. It's a surprise you've finally bitten on it but you've wrapped it up quite soundly and done some extra checking. I'd say that adds value. I still wasn't totally sure how to handle this one. Squeezing a clarification out of Ron is a big plus. I'm a bit disappointed in some ways that it's not one of the characters in the photo, and the mixed bag of characters that makes a candidate isn't something I'm on fire about. On the other hand, the Final Cylon tease was getting damn annoying and this might help ease some of the pressure.

Ron's telling porkies about Starbuck's earlier death was no big deal for me. It's an old trick for British television. I was pretty much expecting her to come back. The fan and staff reaction looked a bit over the top to me but American's can cling a bit more tightly to sincere presentations and loyalties in some ways so that's understandable. On the other hand, I've found Ron's relative openness and closeness to the fans pretty good. The British can lack confidence and shut themselves away a bit. Ron's example is something we can learn from.

I don't buy it....

Moore is a trickster. Come ON! He can't say "yes" to that question, otherwise we would know the final cylon was one of a handful of people. Of COURSE he has to deny it! But, the only character that makes any sense being the final cylon is Apollo (Lee Adama). All other possibilities are lame.

I would agree

I have been saying that for some time, I didn’t believe he would actually answer a question like that. He should either equivocate or say “you know I’m not going to get into that right now” and nobody would be surprised. Yet he did answer, and confirmed the answer. I find it odd, but it’s what we have.

Aaron Douglas has stated

Aaron Douglas has stated that Ron Moore was screwing with all of you about the photo BECAUSE Moore and co. HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH THE PICTURE AT ALL.

http://community.livejournal.com/aarondouglas/56259.html

Sorry, but y'all were had. Honestly, I find it more disturbing so many people believed someone who is obviously going to lie. Oh wait, that is how every politician gets elected...

Thanks for this post...I may be back to square 1

1. Could there be more than 12 models? After all, there is essentially one Cylon for each tribe/colony, so shouldn't there ultimately be thirteen? This would make RDM's statement technically true while still allowing one of the Final Five to be in the photo. Frankly, I'm banking on this to keep my Helo theory alive.

2. I agree Moore is willing to mislead his audience -- and even his cast and crew -- for the sake of preserving a surprise. He kept them in the dark about Starbuck's ultimate fate during filming of Maelstrom, and offered assurance of her eventual return only when confronted with near-mutiny among his leading actors.

2a. This also renders moot any statement from a cast member (apologies to Douglas and Sackhoff) regarding the photo or RDM's other machinations -- real or imagined. He can and will keep them in the dark if it will preserve the 'reveal.'

3. All this notwithstanding, I am now questioning my theory given Moore's definitive statements. I knew the original (in the EW article) was 'parse-able' to mean everything or nothing (very Clintonian in that regard), but these are more clear. While I believe he is a consummate showman, misdirection and ambiguity have been his tools. I'm not sure I believe he would flat-out lie to his audience. He might, but that would somehow feel like a violation of 'the rules.' So, I agree with you that it's 'odd.' A dodge would have been perfectly understandable -- respectable, even, under the circumstances. But a lie? Somehow I don't think so.

I will proceed to read your linked post with great interest.

Interesting that Maureen

Interesting that Maureen Ryan didn't provide her exact confirming exchange with Moore. She interpreted his statements the first time. She may have the second time also. Cheers, Dave

yes and no

She says she ran those exact words by Moore, and he approved them. So at this point, if you don’t want to accept the Last Supper photo as an excluder, you have to believe he is being very equivocal with “people” or lying, or that’s the virtual Baltar in the photo perhaps.

Fifth Cylon versus Final Cylon

Just because Ron Moore says the final Cylon is not in the photo does not necessarily mean there is not an unrevealed Cylon sitting at the table.

If Helo were the Fifth of the Final Five, then Hera would be the first Cylon child conceived naturally by two Cylon parents. This is the 'secret of the Opera House' and explains why the Cylons are so interested in her (and why Nicholas Tyrol, a certain hybrid, is mostly ignored by the show). RDM's statement about the photo would be technically correct, because Hera would be the 13th -- and final -- Cylon to be revealed. This also fits with the scene cut from the first season when D'Anna asks Gina what she'd name Hera, to which Gina replies "Call her Thirteen."

So, far from threatening my theory, I think Moore's statement actually strengthens it. Whew! I may end up being wrong, but at least I don't have to re-think everything.

One more thing, (though this is reaching a bit): I think Roslin is looking at Helo in the Last Supper photo. And the book Roslin is reading, SEARIDER FALCON, is an anagram for "Read Roslin Face."

evidence that Helo is the 5th

I was re-watching season 3 and there is the episode where D'Anna goes to the Algae Planet. Before that, there is a scene where she is flipping through drawings of the Final 5 she had made after each resurrection.

One of the figures in the drawings clearly has a very prominent widow's peak (where the hairline comes down to a point in the front - v-shaped).

None of the 4 revealed so far have a widow's point. However, Helo DOES have a widow's peak.

He said the final cylon is

He said the final cylon is not in the picture, but I'm pretty confident he was lying.

I think that the vacant spot belongs to Tory Foster.

The other cylons revealed at the end of Season 3 are all included, so why would she be left out.
Also, the seat is Judas's spot, and Tory definitely switches sides in Season 4.
Also, it would make sense to leave her out of the picture because she leaves Galactica to go to the Basestar, and the picture is of characters on Galactica!

SO, if the seat belongs to Tory, it can't belong to the final cylon, which means RDM lied, which means it's probably still Baltar.

Lies

Foster just has not been a major character at that point. In a way, she was a character invented to replace Billy after that actor left. Some of the other minor players have been added — but they have become more important characters.

I would love for him to be lying as there are far too many clues for Baltar as final Cylon. But it would be odd for him to confirm it twice if he’s lying. He is giving out clues, and other people on the show have been giving out actual lies, but this would be a pretty badly done and too bald-faced lie. He would much rather equivocate. He could be pretending that the final cylon is not a person so it’s none of the people in the picture. But this is pretty weasely.

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