Daybreak, Part One

I must admit I am a sucker for flashback scenes like these. Seeing the characters who have been beaten down back in the civilized part of their lives, and a glimpse of the world that was. Though I have to feel that with so much to be resolved, these scenes could have been put in some slightly earlier episodes to paint the picture. All these flashback characters -- the regulars except Eight, plus Sam -- are about to reach dramatic fates, including death next week, and we're being given some things to help understand their character. We've seen shots of flashback scenes for Saul and Ellen and more of Bill.

The Flashback of Baltar and Six has two meanings. We see Baltar as we expect him, though still caring for and resenting his father. And we seem to see Six being genuinely nice. But we forget, because it has been so long, that Six is doing this only to get into Baltar's life. Her plan, back then, is to betray and kill Baltar Sr., Gaius, and everybody else we see in these scenes. So what have we learned about her?

The question of the Colony was resolved, not as I had predicted. For those interested in some newer screen caps and updates, these can be found in the Colony Geometry thread. It's a giant space station, even bigger than we thought (even when we thought it was big.) Check out the screen capture to observe 3 tiny base ships in the image. One commenter suggests that it is no coincidence it is around a singularity. This is something which has the power to destroy it, in theory. That's harder than it looks. First of all, naked singularities are now not believed to exist. But in any event, a singularity offers a giant gravity well. It actually requires quite a bit of effort to take something in high orbit and move it to lower orbit. You have to dump a lot of energy. If you are coming in from outside, you could fall right into the well, but once you are in orbit you have a lot of angular momentum.

I still like the virus plan, though we may not get it. I do expect there to be several fronts of attack, and I expect Cavil to be able to counter all but one of them, the one that finally gets him. They need to do many things -- rescue Hera, defeat Cavil, liberate the Simons and Dorals from Cavil's lies, and militarily attack the Colony and its supply of base ships. (I have to wonder, shouldn't Simon and Doral be saying, "how the hell did we forget building this place?" Maybe Cavil has let them partly in on things.)

A flashback for Sam was surprising. After all, he's not exactly at the level of the other characters, though of course he has become a plot device. This supports the idea that he will use his new control of Galactica to strike the military blow, using it. He will be the perfect weapon. Can we doubt that we will see him make the perfect shot, perhaps even the perfect catch?

I have no read on the symbolism of Lee and the bird. Any thoughts? This has to be symbolic. Lee's roof is even the first shot of the episode on Caprica, though we don't know it then.

Roslin's fountain scene, at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, was well known to fans since students there took photos of it. Some had hoped it was a scene from their future home, but she's not getting there. I do suspect she may get to look at it from space, Moses-like. It is curious that Roslin saw her mother in Faith while the defining tragedy in her life is about her father and sisters.

But with all that, surprisingly little on our mysteries, including the famous opera house. Kara's work on the tune suggests it might well contain coordinates for the new home.

The Colony is certainly nowhere near real Earth. There's no black hole very near us, let alone a naked singularity.

And I was really expecting Baltar to join the volunteers. Perhaps that would be too pat. But he needs to do something for his redemption soon. The string-puller, who gave the Colony coordinates to Sam to give to Adama, has big plans for Baltar still, and also wants the battle to happen.


Okay, watched it. There was some tub thumping and hand wringing, and a whole lot that dragged along which was topped off by another cock tease. Um, yeah. It's all very dramatic 'n' stuff but huh? The whole thing was like it was telling us answers to things we already knew the answers to. All the mysteries seemed to have been tied up when I blinked on the wrong frame. Ellen is an unconvincing mother as the Asian porn star drags along like a puppy dog, Galen chews his nails, Tigh delivers the best forgettable line, and Anders smouldering presence is overshadowed by his capped teeth auditioning for the next Fred Astaire remake. Adama's too old and fat for action so broods and shouts a lot.

Pigeons popped up in Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Life and, now, BSG. ALL IN THE SAME FRAKKING WEEK! One pigeon is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is deliberate. It might just be that production live in a small world and someone had a crate of things to get rid of, or they got talking in the bar. I'm not saying I hate pigeons. Sure, they're dirty and give you lung disease if you breath their cack in, poo white stuff that corrodes stonework, and have scabby feat that look like some old womans claws.

The Singularity thing, Colony design, and asteroid belt is just Blofeld's lair writ large. Oh, where are wee going to hide out thooper theecret bayth. Under a dirty big light everyone will send probes to? C'mon, times have moved on. H.A.R.M uses simulated lava in their underground base, guys. More seriously, it plays into some of the spooky, edgy, and striking design ethos picked for the Cylons. It looks like it was done because it was cool, and they'll be some bullshit excuse for its existance or they'll leap away somewhere.

I've been very unsatisfied with the plot of series 4. I don't think it worked or followed on from the earlier series, and that's a major reason for me just wanting to get it over with. The Final Five and other characters were never really developed which makes the whole thing so far seem like a pointless dash only to slam on the brakes as the traffic light changes colour. Now, we have to wait until the Final Final episode for the show to get its panties off.

The pigeons showed up in SCC 2 weeks ago, but nice try.

There was another pigeon this week but they popped up in three seperate shows within a schedule burp. Anyway, the post said what I wanted to say even if the timing is a bit rough due to a kink in airing times. Hey, I'm beginning to sound like Ron. Irony is the fifth fundamental force, or something.

Ron Moore has never said irony is the fifth fundamental force, or anything like that. What are you talking about? And schedule burp? There was no problems with the schedule. Maybe they changed something where you live, but nothing changed here in Cali, and the person who said the pigeons began showing up in SCC before in BSG are absolutely right.

I said pigeons appeared in the same week. They did. That's unusual for shows that normally don't have pigeons let alone have them as key symbols within the story.

If I create an account can I choose to ignore all anonymous posts? Is that option available?

Only if you can find or write a drupal module that lets users tune what comments they see. I don't know of one, but there are a lot out there.

I have no plans to post after Brad's finished with BSG. Can't comment on the other guy (the one who posted the "nice try" flamebait") but I expect he'll fade out. Personally, I can't stand it when people start nit-picking or getting judgemental about other posters. It's just a well of pain. Find something else to post about or take the dog for a walk.

In Mission Imposssible 2 long before either? And wasn't this half a season of BSG filmed and finished while they were still shooting SCC's first season?

Both T:SCC and BSG were affected by the writer's strike at around the same point. T:SCC returned with continuing episodes being framed as a new series with extra episodes to make a full run. BSG just aimed at finishing the run of previously contracted episodes. Can't remember how Life was affected or what their shooting schedule was.

It may mean nothing other than someone had a brain fart. People talk and things go around, and they can emerge from different angles and at their own time but can be connected in some way even if it's not directly obvious. Or it could mean nothing and be a complete coincidence. We're swimming in the same pond. These things happen.

I think it was a good call and a cool thing to write up, so I did.

-reminded me of Roy Batty's death in Blade Runner. Homage?

I got a bit bored with BSG so trundled off to scan a list of sci-fi books to see if there was anything that caught my eye. There was a lot of stuff that BSG looked like it sailed close to but of the books I browsed the general plot looked like a close rip of Evolution, by Stephan Baxter.

While I'm mentioning books there was a series I can't remember the name of or who it was by. It was about some guy who wore a ultra-light mesh armour under his clothes and had some device made out of two needles that he used to transfer his conciousness. It's been bugging me for ages. Any clues?

I am pretty sure Six genuinely liked Baltar's father. I think we are going to find out that Baltar's father plays a larger role in why she fell in love with Baltar. I also thought it was great that Baltar's father is complaining about the fact his son feels he is above using elbow grease to get anything done. The bit about getting away from the farm, where real work was done, was Baltar's goal, even as a child.

Being useful and kind is an effective way of getting someone to do what you want, and making them think they're on top and you like them. They also end up doing most of the work for you which is less costly and distracting than banging heads.

At the opposite end of the scale we have inverse snobbery. This can be explained by closed minds and selfishness. People often fear what they don't understand or loss, so end up trying to impose familiar patterns and ties on someone else.

Who knows what is good or bad?

Someone just told me a read on the pigeon I can kinda sorta see if I squint a little:
"the pigeon was supposed to represent Baltar–this annoying creature leaving little turds everywhere he goes whom you just can’t seem to get out of your house."

I never would have thought of that reading myself.

What is the origin of the snapshot of young Hera and a number six Adama picks off the Memorial Wall? Was there a scene where either Helo or Athena put it up there after Boomer's escape with Hera? In his speech, Adama notes that the whole crew has probably heard at this point about Hera's kidnapping--so maybe someone besides Helo or Athena put it up there?

When I first saw the pic though, my instant reax was "Holy shit! There was a young Hera and a number six on one of the 12 colonies before the Fall!"

Much appreciated if someone can clear this up so I can dispel a more bizarre thread that has now inserted itself into my figuring it all out efforts.

The pic was Hera and Athena. No 6 model present.

sorry...please replace #6 with #8 in the above post.

I would assume Helo or Athena put it up there. If I had to guess, I would go with Athena, since she pretty much assumes Hera is nothing but specimens under a microscope.

"Ahem... How could young Hera possibly have been on one of the 12 colonies BEFORE the fall - she was born on Galactica, after the fall of the colonies!"

Exactly. That's pretty much key info for Galactica mythology. But without knowing the exact manner in which the photo ended up on the memorial wall...crazier explanations come to mind.

Such as: There were #8s hidden on the colonies before the Fall. One got pregnant. Their kid looked like Hera. Someone who survived the fall knew them and put their pic on the memorial wall, but never ran into boomer/athena/misc. #8. This knowledge was lost to the Cylons for the whole duration of the show. It's nearly impossible to see the point of such a storyline, as Hera's uniqueness is now the most important thing in the show. I just watched the show on iTunes, so it really was an instant reax.

Thinking about it for 5 min., I'm betting the provenance of the wall photo (like the appearance of Tyrol in the brig)will be resolved in the extended edition of 'Islanded' to be included in the Season 4 dvd, and as someone suggested, it is Athena who places it.

If that turns out to be the will be pretty frakking annoying that once again, BSG producers cut info from prior episodes that is necessary to understand events in current episodes.

You can't tell where it was taken. It may be that somebody put it up last week after Hera appeared lost. Athena is not dead but they didn't want to cut up the photo.

I've said this before on this blog but I feel compelled to say it again, there is too much filler in these finale episodes. Some may accuse me of having a short attention span but there is so much to be resolved and yet they have hardly gotten to any of it. I note that the final epsiode is a double length and I suppose it would need to be to wrap things up. I'm becoming concerned that here will be questions left unanswered. I have to say I won't miss the show when it is finished which is a little saddening because it started so well 1st and 2nd season and then got a bit bogged down in 3rd season and this last one has been drawn out beyond belief. The end is Nigh.

That's pretty much my position. The first two were a rush but series 3 was just too much WTF as Ron obsessed the Apollo and Starbuck thing. I only rated "Black Market" for story. The rest had little meaningful plot progression. Series 4 started off as a big cock tease that got annoying. The remainder is mentionable only for the worst reasons.

I'm left thinking that the last episode will deliver something but not ebough to get over the messed up story and disappointment. Sure, I'll watch it and squeeze something out of it but it's like looking at the guy who messed up one time too many is going to get fired when management find out.

This last run has had the feel of a bad 1970's TV movie that you keep watching in the hope that it will become good but never does. We're into the last 10 minutes of that and down to the last extended (!!!) episode to save the day. I don't think it will. I expect they are likely to find the real Earth but as far as I'm concerned they burst the immersion bubble and broke the compact with the audience some time ago.

When it's done, I doubt I'll ever comment publically of Caprica or the comics that are following on, nor any future project Ron D Moore is involved with. I've been messed about by people like that before, and life is too short.

All I have to say is that the rather surprising appearance of a black hole at The Colony's location has prompted me to become increasingly fearful of some kind of time travel in the conclusion of the show...

Michael Hall says the galaxy seen at the beginning of Daybreak is the Milky Way, only upside down. I am fairly sure it is actually the 12 colonies. If the 12 colonies are an upside down Milky Way, I think you are definitely on to something.

You know, before I read your post, I had toyed with the notion that perhaps they would travel through the singularity and arrive on the other side, right on top of our Earth. I dismissed it because, well, there's no singularity above us, and. But if I take into account the parallel universe idea, which while it may at first glance seem out of place on BSG, explains a LOT-- than perhaps it's a one-way worm hole of sorts.

Ron Moore has experience with wormholes after all. If there's ANY truth to this idea, it begs the question: is anything on this show NOT tied back to Deep Space Nine??

It's a frivolous comment but most people are one trick ponies. They do one thing well then spend the rest of their lives repeating that with the odd variation here or there. If you examine most great scientists or artists, for example, you'll find a similar pattern. Later, people can change dramatically as they find whatever it is they've been looking for but this is rare. Time will tell.

Explain Carnivale then?

Perhaps that's how she painted the eye. She'd seen it before, or had the knowledge given to her by her father (daniel?). The OTG may be on the other side, communicating via head folk. Very intriguing line of thinking. The more I ponder it, the more i like it as the final puzzle piece, because everything would seem to fit.

I would be disappointed if the plot is resolved using a device introduced in the last episode.

That's almost like saying you don't like a twist ending because it is introduced at the end of the movie. Let's face it, lot of new concepts will be introduced in the last episode if they're going to answer any of our questions.

A twist ending is one which, upon reflection has been building up from the very beginning, but which is nonetheless surprising. They are most common in mysteries. Properly done, when you see the twist, you look back at the book and see how the author was always leading up to it.

An ending where you bring something in on the last page that was never even hinted at before, especially something of magical power, is deus ex machina. (That literally means god in the machine and in this show, if we see a super-being AI god, we would get that, though that has had many hints leading up to things.)

Consider the end of ST:TNG. While I'm not fond of it, Q is something they had been using since the first episode. The theme of Q testing humanity and Picard fits the whole story. Had Q appeared for the first time in the last episode to test Picard with his ancient galaxy destroying explosion, you could have fairly said, "what the hell was that?")

No no no no no no no. The Usual Suspects has a twist ending that there is 100% no way to notice until the very end when revealed and it was amazing.

Cavil was the same way. Did they intend him to be the mastermind when they introduced him? Probably not. But they did a good job in choosing him, because everything fits very well. As someone who went back and re-watched the series it does almost seem like it was pre-planned. Same thing with Tyrol being one of the five.

If they do it right, a newly introduced plot device can seem like it had been planned if it matches up and makes use of previous events. Like i've said, I can deal with so-called 'retcons' if they work.

The Cavil plot is not being introduced in the final episode. It's pretty clear they had it worked out for all of Season 4, and probably had rough guidelines for it before that. As soon as Cavil was revealed as #1, many of us caught on that he was special in some way, knew more than the others, but very few spotted him as the mastermind behind it all. But, in part because of the actor's age and style, he's been the "senior" Cylon since he was introduced, taking that role from Doral. I have not done a rewatch but many who have say he fits pretty well. The Cylons have obviously had different levels of knowledge from the start. Leoben knew all about Kara and her destiny and finding Kobol. Dorals on Caprica seemed to be the ones explaining things. Sixes and Eights seemed to be bottom of the totem pole, again fitting the role of their numbers. So it makes sense to me they always figured the Cylons had a pecking order of knowledge and internal influence, roughly in tune with their numbers. The numbers were not given to the audience until later on several of them.

But anyway, something planned over a whole season is OK as a surprise ending. Something introduced in the last episode is not. Not if you are a "Story Arc" show like BSG. It's expected more in a purely episodic show.

"something planned over a whole season is OK as a surprise ending."

Who's to say that a wormhole or whatever plot device they use will not have been 'clearly worked out for all of season 4' once they reveal it and how it fits in? Maybe there will be an 'Ah-ha' moment that will make you realize it was there, but you never noticed it. I know you pride yourself on being perceptive (as we all do, i'm sure) but good stories can often hid clues very from even the most keen-eyed of us.

The hidden clues have to show up once you have the reveal. The final episode is 1/3 over, and we have been shown the singularity. We're not sitting and going, "Ah, I see how now all through season 4 they have been leading up to resolving this with a naked singularity which causes alternate reality/time travel/technobabble."

If you suggest that something new will come in the 2nd 2/3rds of the episode about the singularity that will make us then understand it, I guess the only way to test that is to wait.

"We’re not sitting and going, “Ah, I see how now all through season 4 they have been leading up to resolving this with a naked singularity which causes alternate reality/time travel/technobabble.”

Isn't that exactly what Lisa and I are doing? lol.

"If you suggest that something new will come in the 2nd 2/3rds of the episode about the singularity that will make us then understand it, I guess the only way to test that is to wait."

Yes, that is what I suggest, but not just about the singularity, but about any possible plot device that might be at first glance perceived as a deus ex machina.

I should point out that I think alternate reality is an incredibly badly used trope of SF. Writers frequently use it (or its cousin, time travel that tweaks one thing in the past) in complete opposition to how chaotic and inter-related the universe really is. You can't just change one thing and have everything else be the same. It's all connected if you go back in time any distance. Like Marty McFly having the same brothers and sisters but living in a nicer house. The reality is that if your parents had the sex that made you one second later, there is a 50% chance the resulting baby would be of the opposite sex, and a near 100% chance they would be from a different sperm and no more like you than a brother or sister. And that's just on the human level.

So "Another Earth, with the same people except on this one fundamental thing X is different" is just wishful fantasy. Nothing wrong with that, but it's not SF.

I wouldn't call it fundamentally different. Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are the big brands on the block but Bhuddhism, Shinto, and Taoism are sizable groupings. Things may be prominent and stick around for a while but they only loom large like that from an individual and relatively short lived perspective. Indeed, today's market for religion may be laughable in a relatively short period of time. Things are already changing, and they will change again.

In an alternate world where things were different very long ago, it is not just our religions that would differ. It is we who would differ. Our mouths would not be connected to our noses, for example.

This very discussion about people evolving differently has come up at least 100x on this board and it is about time the hard science folks come to the realization that this isn't hard sci-fi. It isn't. It was never intended that way. It never will be that way. Just watch the interview, I think done by BSGCast with the science adviser for the show, who specifically says his job is to find a way to make the science fit the script. Not the other way around. If the writers set out to give people hard sci-fi that is fine, but they never did, so stop trying to argue based on scientific rationale. Especially when it comes to naked singularities and the like where you could put 500 scientists in a room and they would argue about how it all works.

The naturalistic science fiction pitch was made and milked for all it was worth. Now, some science adviser isn't there to check its credibility but make it fit? That sounds a bit close to the financial packages people bought and sold on voodoo economics that, well, just went pop.

I avoided BSG until into series 2 because of leftover perceptions of the original series. Someone made a convincing pitch to me so I played a marathon catch-up. Back then I'd recommend that everyone give it a shot. Today? I'd be too embarassed to mention it. That's not me selling anything. That's me not buying it.

I don't mind this role for a science advisor. Though there should also be times where the science advisor says "you can't make science fit that script" and the writer then:

  • Tries to rework the script
  • Decides it would be too much work to undo, but resolves to ask the science advisor earlier next time, or
  • Decides (and probably knew in advance) that a dramatic goal is more important

While some readers here think I refuse to accept any scientific mistakes in a show, that's not true. That's an ideal. What bothers me the most are scientific mistakes which could easily have been fixed.

Today we live in an e-mail world. If a show is paying a science advisor -- and this is such a small part of the budget of a TV show -- it's really easy to E-mail and get answers well before vast efforts are put into a story that can't be made to work.

The big stuff should definitely be scoped in advance.

I have said it before, but I will say it again, I really think the show for you is Firefly. Based on everything you have said you wanted BSG to be, that is Firefly. Spend the $25 for the box set. $35 if you want the Blu-ray.

Firefly is a great show. I love Whedon, big fan of Buffy, Angel etc. Those are fantasy of course. Firefly has rather poor science as well. Like almost all TV SF, it has no concept of planetary geometry. It has "hundreds of worlds" around a single star, all warm and sunny. It has people running into one another on trips through interplanetary space, which doesn't happen. It has planets hidden behind giant nebulae inside a solar system and the only way through involves going short distances from other packed ships full of reavers.

It's a fun show, good drama, good characters, and a number of good SF elements, but it's not a show you would want to hold to a high standard of SF accuracy. So I don't.

Firefly may be an example of my last case above. They wanted to recapture themes from old westerns. They may well have known it was silly but did it because they had a story they wanted to tell.

Now you may have suggested it because it has no FTL. But I don't think it has no FTL because of a desire to be true to physics. I think it has no FTL because FTL can be a plot destroyer. With FTL you can go across a planetary system in moments, and that would wreck most of their plots.

I think it is far more likely that singularity is gonna collapse, or explode, or whatever a singularity does than I think there will be an alternate reality ending. I would probably put a matrix-like existence with projection above alternate reality in terms of likelihood.

I would think something dramatic happening to the singularity is very low on the probability scale. One might as well attack the sun with a ball of wax. Magic bullets are in short supply and the sense of our own power is just so much ego. I expect the singularity could shurg off the combined might and resources of the humans and cylons without so much as a burp.

Yep. And in our universe Starbuck is a man.

Which means we got totally ripped off.

Honestly, I don't see them using an alternate/parallel universe solution next week. I do think that you are onto something with the singularity and what is beyond, as it's a theory I had as well, you just worked it out a little better. Another universe? Probably not. Could it be our Earth? What if the lords of kobol or the string puller is back on Earth, on the other side of the singularity, communicating to them through it and the through Ionian nebula or the eye of jupiter, which could be other windows. Pulling Starbuck through, transmitting the song, etc. I don't know how would work out, as I don't have enough mental energy to devote to these theories, but they're ideas nonetheless.

I have loved this and hated it at the same time.
In season 4 i have mainly become frustrated with it. I'm with Brad and hard SF. Any other SF is lame to me, especially if dosed with a sugar coating of religion. I have become bored with religion in this show. they appear to be suddenly evoking the naked singularity where anything can supposedly happen including God the devil, evil and good and redemption etc etc. This is bullshit to be honest. Its called painting yourself into a corner and evoking a weak plot device you have never referred to before to get out of it in a ludicrous way. Shit, shit , shit It could have been oh so much better than this.

so it goes i suppose.

"This is bullshit to be honest."

Let's wait and see what it is before we go and trash it, shall we? You yourself said it 'seems' to be, which doesn't mean it is. It might not be a plot device for the ending, but simply a way to make the assault more difficult. Not anything can happen with a black hole, by the way. Most of what you describe is simply conjecture going on in internet chatter such as this blog. We've seen the singularity for all of a second or two and people are just making guesses as to what it means. While it's fun to speculate what may be, don't get all worked up over it if you don't like our speculation. We're probably wrong, anyway.

You can have hard and soft sci-fi and, I suppose, hard and soft religion. I'm with Brad in thinking that BSG aimed high and ended up making a slew of mistakes as its ploughed itself into the ground. As that's become more obvious, I note, some people are going fanboi over this. Circumspect views and not liking what's unfolding are dismissed as mere rubbish while their wild speculation and holy huddle is promoted as the one true carrier of the word. If that's what's happening I'm rather glad there's only one show left.

The galaxy is not upside-down! There is no top or bottom to a galaxy. These are just conventions we have put on as humans, just like how we put the north pole at the top of maps and thus think of it as the top of the world and the south pole the bottom. (Australians make maps for fun that go the other way, with south at the top.)

He just means the galaxy is shown from the other side (the south side) and we usually think of it as from the north side. That's Earth north and south, which are just arbitrary based on how the Earth started spinning. Our equator doesn't match the galactic disk (or the ecliptic for that matter) in any event.

We don't actually know what our galaxy looks like from outside. For example, a few years ago, we learned it is a barred spiral galaxy, and not what they have shown in BSG. There is debate about how many arms it has (2 or 4). Unlike other galaxies that we can study from outside, ours is harder to figure out.

We even only discovered recently that we have a few other satellite galaxies. They are up there in space, and would be huge in angular size, larger than constellations, if you could see them.

While whatever device they choose, if it's something they just thought up recently, they could make it work by tying it into past events, like the temple of five and the Lords of Kobol.

"With a book a writer can revise and get rid of the stuff that never worked, but a TV show doesn't have that option."

I've noted this to folks who complain of retconning on numerous occasions, but no one seems to care. It's something that does need to be accepted, however. No one is going to plan out a 4-5 year show and stick to their original plan 100%. Things change and evolve. Better ideas emerge, lesser ones are discarded or written out.

Some people would have considered it a retcon if Eddie Olmos dies in real life and they had to deal with it on the show. I don't know why people can't understand that this isn't comics and the term retcon can't be applied until the story is over and then a change is made. If they decide to tie up loose ends, that is just good story telling from a TV perspective.

There's also a stigma attached to the word 'retcon.' Sometimes retcons can work, and be really really good. The 4th Riverworld book, while truly an excellent novel, I felt had a weak solution. It's sequel retconned it and turned the solution around a bit, in a way that I felt worked better (despite the book itself being only so-so).

If after BSG is done, they release a sequel series that reveals the final five were actually originally 8 but three of them died, it would be a retcon. But if the story was good and it made sense, people shouldn't be angry.

Oh, most definitely. There are cheap retcons and great ones. A great one looks like it was planned all along, and is in fact cleverer than the original writing and plan. (Insiders on BSG have claimed this status for Season 4 and Ellen Tigh in particular.) Bad ones stretch credulity, and are not as clever as the original writing.

I don't agree that a story has to be over, and we have to be in a sequel to have a retcon. In a TV series, written one episode at a time, with overall plans written one season at a time, anything that goes back to write the past in a way different from what was planned in already released material is a retcon to me.

It takes a true genius retcon, however, to match the quality of a fully planned and fleshed-out story. In a good book, where it's clear the author knew the ending from page one, and wrote every page with the goal of taking us to that ending, the quality shows through.

That's way to big a concept to introduce in the last episode. It's like, "And then they woke up and found they were in the matrix" to me.

As for the galaxy, it's a galaxy. I don't understand at all what you mean by suggesting it is the 12 colonies. The 12 colonies were in a single star system (on a single planet in the pilot script) or at most on a group of close stars. What we see is a galaxy, something billions of times larger than a star system.

12 Colonies is 12 planets according to RDM in interviews. Not sure where you are getting a single planet from.

A single star system is not a single planet. I'm not sure what Greg meant by saying the galaxy wass the colonies-- I just took the opening shot to be an homage to the original series, frankly. Not sure if there's any other broader meaning.

Single-star system, or not, the script says it is the 12 colonies.

True, but how did take the image of the galaxy as an image the colonies?

Because the script for Daybreak says it is the 12 colonies....

A star system can look pretty boring on its own. It was probably too difficult to do something that stacked up or was graphically convincing, so VFX ran with something cheaper, easier, and more gripping. Also, I figure, it fits with Ron wanting to do "cool stuff" and not thinking it through at the planning or more detailed level.

Where did you read the script? Any other interesting tidbits like that?

If that's what they meant it to be, than I guess that's what it is. For those looking for some greater meaning behind it, I don't think it was anything other than a nice establishing shot.

Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

There is some history to this. In original BSG 1978, they had no concept of astronomy and how it worked. The 12 colonies were 12 planets that were somehow close together, without any thinking as to what that means and how it would be arranged. In fact, it's difficult, close to impossible to have 12 habitable planets in one solar system. (More below.)

In the original script for the miniseries, the 12 colonies were nations on a single planet called Kobol. By shooting time, this was changed to having them be 12 planets in the same star system. Moore knew that was hard to make sense of, but did it to match the rules of the original series.

You can pull it off if you have 12 large moons of a gas giant, or perhaps moons around 2 or perhaps 3 gas giants. The problem is there are only so many orbits you can have in the zone that's not too warm and not too cold. 3 is about it, and in that case the inner one is going to get close to 16 times as much sun as the outer one, so you need to play lots of games with the atmospheres to have workable temperatures. Heavy greenhouse far out etc.

It's really astoundingly improbable without terraforming. That's not out of the question here. The Lords of Kobol might have prepared such a system long before the exodus.

Ideally though it's 12 moons of the same gas giant. That's the only way you can watch the war going on via lightspeed communications. Otherwise, the only way to get messages back and forth (such as the beacon telling Laura she is president) is if you have raptors flying constant message flights, jumping back and forth at high speed, relaying signals FTL and announcing where they are. But in the war, the modern raptors are all falling prey to Cylon virus attacks and can't do this.

In the mini series, Adama specifically mentions different planets, and he uses those words. He rattles off a list of 3 or 4 planets, and the audience inferred that each colony was a planet. He can very easily revise it to be that those 3-4 are the only planets, and there are 3-4 colonies on each. But they're not moons.

Remember this brad: you say "In fact, it’s difficult, close to impossible to have 12 habitable planets in one solar system" but at the same time you admit that scientific knowledge was different just 30 years ago. In 30 years, we may very well find a system with multiple habitable planets. It may sound ridiculous to you now, but the beauty of science, as opposed to religion or faith, is that it admits that our knowledge is not only limited, but may be proven wrong later down the line.

Yes, by the time they got to filming it was 12 planets. However, they get live updates during the war, and collect ships from the different planets. This requires the planets be in the same system, ideally moons of the same gas giant. Even with 2 gas giants in the same system, or 2 around a distant orbiting binary, the radio signals would take many hours. The story works best with 12 moons of the same giant planet.

While knowledge can change, current knowledge has that as extremely unlikely to happen naturally. However, as I say, it does not have to be natural. In fact it makes a lot more sense as some act of the Lords of Kobol. 12 tribes, and they just happen to find 12 planets (moons.)

'Extremely unlikely' isn't 'impossible,' is it? In fact, by saying so, you admit that it's possible. I don't mind stretching current science when watching sci-fi so long as it's not too ridiculous. So far nothing on BSG has been, 12 planets included.


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