Musing on Battlestar Galatica (2004)

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250 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s impossible to be in the science fiction field and not eventually hear “Battlestar Galactica”. I’ve had Battlestar Galactica (BG) in my Netflix queue now for almost three years.  But it wasn’t until my recent immersion in hard science novels and television serials that I decided it was time to push play.

I didn’t research BG before watching it because I don’t do research on something until I know I like it.  Once I start researching it’s hard for me to stop, I’ll find myself doing it at every available moment and continuing to make connections. I knew a few things about BG, there were Cylons– machines made to be like humans and it took place in outer space. Really though when you think about it what more does a tv show need.

I was immediately hooked by the first episode which is actually the first part in a miniseries. The episode is filled with references, allusions, and allegories for social, theological, and ethical issues that humans face not only in connection with technology but with each other and what we believe.  How far should humans go in our quest to explore technology? What will be the consequences? I don’t know if it will be anything as bad as a cylon take over, but I can’t predict the future. Can we learn from these scenarios? The questions are endless and so are the answers.

Considering the scope of the show there are numerous characters, many that are only present for several episodes and some that are only present for an episode. I can’t say that I have a favorite character, but I am enjoying Dr. Gaius Baltar played by James Callis. In the 2004 remake, the character though not willfully complicit in the cylon invasion in the beginning does what he can to make sure that no one learns of his role afterwards. As the mini-series progress you learn that he was willing to ignore the misgiving he felt where his lover Cylon Number Six was concerned and in this way he was an accomplice.  His character alone exists in two worlds; one where he is with his lover the Cylon Number Six played by Tricia Janine Helfer and another where is with the rest of the crew.  As he shifts between these two planes ideas of fate, destiny, and a high purpose are explored. What dos Gaius believe? What do you believe?

 

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