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Blood on the Scales

The last two episodes have offered very little on key show mysteries. This doesn't mean they were not good episodes. The Oath was one of the best of the series for drama. Blood on the Scales was good, but suffered because there was not so much suspense over the outcome. It's still too far from the end to be rid of Adama. I thought the death (and return) of Tigh would have had some interesting consequences but it's not too bad to see him make it through it. The only question was how Gaeta and Zarek would fall. For a while, I was expecting we would see a firing squad scene with Adama, and Gaeta would have instructed his men (in advance) to execute Zarek instead, Zarek being there to witness it. But I'm glad they didn't go this over the top.

In particular I was glad that they also did a more realistic sabotage of the FTL drive. In so many shows, the character would have found his access codes still working, even though he's effectively left the fleet. And in so many SF shows, his simple sabotage of the FTL engine would have had explosive results and spectacular special effects. Instead, the FTL did what any complex computerized machine would do if a part was damaged or removed -- report the fault and shut down. Nicely done.

The sabotage of the FTL turned out to be not needed. Moments later Adama retook the control room, and had the ship jumped he could have jumped it back. Presumably this scene leads us to something else because of the stranding of the Galactica, and the apparent structure damage to the hull in the jump room.

These ships, meant for basic jumping around a close group of colonies, should never have been made so well as to travel 15,000 light years. Perhaps a military-spec ship would be, but it would have been a good touch if the trip to Earth had involved several ships breaking down, forcing the fleet to go back and redistribute their populations into more crowded remaining ships. Simple civilian ships should never have been able to go this far, for this long. The Galactica, while old (and not having jumped in 20 years) would not be the first to fail.

We see Caprica Six, hearing of Saul's death, not taking long to get back in with Baltar, presuming that's her. It does need to be her, as with Ellen's upcoming return, something has to break in that relationship. (Update: Whoops, this is in error. Though we are going to see something about that love triangle, I am sure.)

And of course, the previews for next week show...

They show Ellen awakening in a Cylon resurrection tank, alone but with a centurion on guard. Since the Final Five's own resurrection technology is thousands of years older than the current models, I had expected it to look entirely different. I certainly felt it would have to be on a ship different from the Cylon one, though we see that in the previews. However, I have also always suspected that the new Cylons got their tech and resurrection hubs from the final five, but don't know it. And it is no stretch to suggest that since the raiders and seven have programmed-in rules about the Final Five, so would the centurions (inhibitor or not.) So this just might be a scene from the modern Cylons' resurrection system before it was destroyed.

Ellen knows the truth, we are told, and Anders also gets all his memories back. Possibly the Final Five can no longer resurrect until they build or activate another facility. Does add more suspense with death being more permanent for them. This suggests Ellen has been playing a part in various events -- the trip to the Algae planet, the battle at the Nebula, the locater beacon in the viper on the 13th colony, Starbuck's bizarre journey.

So back to the mysteries next week.


Two things:
1. Caprica Six is on Galactica. She spent most of this episode in the brig and then taking care of Hera. That's another Six that ends up with Baltar on the basestar.

2. I bet 10 cubits that the scene of Ellen coming out of the tub of goo will be revealed to be actually be a dream sequence or some other fakeout in the actual upcoming episode.

I agree in part on number 2. The previews for "Scales" made us all believe that Saul was going to die as a result of that stand off in the air lock. Those editors are very clever in how they edit their previews. They give you just enough to wet your apatite, but rarely give away any significant info.

BSG has felt like a cock tease for some time and previews are stepping into lying territory. Yeah, I know serial programmes can benefit from having a page turning quality and previews are there to stimulate interest but after the immersion bubble popped I don't have time for being jerked around.

Next episode promises a lot of insight and resolution but we've been here before. If someone said it was a dream and the programme had a purple rabbit jumping out of Baltar's ass and giving the camera a big wet kiss, it would be a coin toss to know which one is the real deal. I won't believe anything until I see it.

Normally you never believe previews which reveal something that would be a huge plot point. I just wondered if this was an exception because his death would not necessarily be permanent. I got suckered!

Also please remember that the producers don't make the previews. That's the network. The network wants to suck you in to watching the next episode, but they don't have the same feel for the show as the producers do.

In any case, I'm sure the scenes of Ellen waking up in a resurrection tank are "real". Since she's dead, she can't have a dream sequence. So if she's in the episode alone, it's likely real. Anyway, now that we know she's the final cylon, she has to come back at some point!

She surely is coming back, but this could be Tigh's dream in theory (though he's never seen a tank.) After all, Adama's execution was Baltar's dream for some reason. But I don't think it is. It would be silly to hype the "one will be revealed" all year and not actually bring her back.

Quote: "Blood on the Scales was good, but suffered because there was not so much suspense over the outcome."

No more so than a Shakespearean tragedy you've seen a dozen times before. I've downloaded the two episodes (Oath and Blood) from iTunes and replayed them. The dramas haven't lost their power, indeed, they've gained some.

As you say, these episodes cast little light on the show's mysteries. Until next week...

I agree. I've been rewatching the series. The Season 1-2 coup plotline is still thrilling even though I knew exactly how it would come out. BSG isn't some one-trick series where the enjoyment depends on surprise. The shows are suspenseful because of the writing, acting, and directing, not because you don't know how it's going to end.

1. Caprica Six is on Galactica. She spent most of this episode in the brig and then taking care of Hera. That's another Six that ends up with Baltar on the basestar.

Right. The Six on the basestar that Baltar hooks up with is Lida.

Lida doesn't look like any of the other Six copies. In fact, they costumed her like a Classical goddess with the very long wavy hair and a dress that looked sort of like a retro 70s chiton.

Blood on the Scales was good, but suffered because there was not so much suspense over the outcome.

I had no problem with the suspense in this ep. The writers are winnowing down the cast at this point.

My only problem with this episode was that it was just too quick a resolution for such a great potential storyline. While Gaeta's turn was recent, a mutiny of Galactica has actually been a long time coming. Ever since the beginning, Adama's made enemies all over the civilian fleet, and most of them didn't like military-run, fascist-style government (even if it was necessary).

Personally, I think this mutiny should have been the whole first half of the season, spread out over many episodes. Imagine the fleet fracturing, characters choosing sides, and then the fight to retake the ship. Frankly, just a third episode would've helped. It felt like it ended way too quickly-- like this 2-part story was a distraction, as if the writers just needed something to fill up two episodes.

I do agree, though, that The Oath is one of the best episodes of the series.

That's happened often with BSG, they sometimes rush really, really good plot developments and lose out on terrific opportunities to elevate the show to the level of literature. They really should take their time sometimes, like they did with the miniseries.

I think that the Six Baltar saw on the base-star could of been all in his head. We know he see's ppl in his head other than Six(ie himself)
Maybe this is another entity trying to influence him.

Well, at least according to the RDM podcast for the episode.

Tyrol disconnected the FTL before the countdown got to 1!!! Never have I ever seen that happen, it's always after 1.

I'm not assuming that the Centurion is actually standing guard as Ellen resurrects in the tub. It could be an editing fakeout using a shot from another part of the episode, perhaps a scene with a Centurion on the rebel baseship. That would be par for the course for SciFi's previews. I could see an intriguing storyline either way: she resurrects on a modern Cylon ship with one or more of the Seven around (Cavil?), or she resurrects in a secret Final Five facility and makes her way back to the Cylon or Colonial fleet.

But I do think Ellen will be back for real and will probably play a major part in the rest of the story.

However the rest of the decor around her tub, and her tub, look very "Cylon," ie. modern Cylon. Since I believe the modern Cylons got their tech from the final five, this could still be a completely different facility. Or it could be the same. The reason I think it might be attractive to the writers to make it be a hidden facility is that it would mean the final 5 are now possibly (but temporarily) mortal, which makes the story more interesting. Now, if I were a 4,000 year old being who had been through may wars, I would have a backup, but who knows?

They do, if you freeze-frame it, show a picture of the old resurrection ship in the preview.

How come no one ever talks about the great lines Tigh gets?
The one to Anders about Gaeta shooting off one of his legs in revenge.
or i might be the only one who thought it funny....

I've mentioned them a couple of times but I get too lazy to rewatch BSG and grab an accurate quote. The funniest one I half remember is about the crowded airlock. Can't remember any more. My memory capacity for stuff like that is a one slot FIFO buffer.

He told Adama he did die for a little while

I know the feeling, dear. ;-)

I'm sure somebody's already floated this theory but I have thought for a while now that Galactica is the dying leader. The cracks in the hull revealed in this last episode sealed the deal for me.

Also, it seams Adama and Galactica are so attached that maybe they are both collectively "the dying leader" who delivers the colonists (one could not have done it without the other) and that neither will survive (think "The Captain Always Goes Down With His Ship")

I thought they were setting things up that Adama was the dying leader. Over the past few episodes, we've seen Roslin get better while Adama was waking up each morning in a state of discomfort or pain and needs to take some pills. That would be an interesting twist, in any case.

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