Posted by hyperpat on March 25, 2009
This is perhaps a little late, but my reaction to the final episode of Battlestar Galactica was: WTF? This was perhaps the lamest conclusion to any TV series I’ve ever seen, and it’s made doubly bad due to the prior excellence of the series. Basically the ending wrapped everything up by introducing a huge deus ex machina, and the audience is just supposed to swallow this whole and not choke?
On top of this, the thing that made BSG so good, its gritty, dark tone that wasn’t afraid of making sharp commentary about just about every human and government foible was just thrown overboard in a happy, happy ending (not counting the foreshadow that the whole cycle would repeat many years later). And rather than close the plot holes that had been hanging around from prior episodes (just who is Daniel, what is his relationship to Kara, etc, etc), it managed to introduce some new ones so large you could drive a Mack truck through them. Just for good measure, there’s a couple of places here that have characters acting totally contrary to their portrayed earlier character, without any explanation or even a gloss over to support their current actions.
If you want details about this episode, see the discussion over at Tor.com. WARNING: massive spoilers in this discussion, so if you haven’t seen this episode yet (and still want to), don’t go here.
There was an announcement during this show that there will be a new series starting in the fall that will look at the whole thing again, but this time from the Cylon viewpoint. Given the mess of this conclusion, I don’t think I’ll tune this in. I’m one very dissatisfied customer.
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Posted by hyperpat on February 17, 2009
Battlestar Galactica has had a pretty good run. Throughout most of its shows, it has been marked by a consistent level of good-to-excellent writing and acting. Now it’s trying to wrap itself up and complete the story line, which has led to, well, problems…
It became obvious even as early as season two that when the show was created, it really didn’t have a firm vision of where it would end up. As a consequence, the writers kept adding complications and tangential plot threads with little apparent thought to just how consistent the whole thing was. Centurions, Cylons, humans, the thirteen colonies, New Caprica, resurrection, the twelve (13?!) models of Cylons, the ‘Final Five’, the ‘visions’, the hybrids, the revisions the viewer had to make in his outlook as various Cylons were revealed, with some convenient ‘holes’ in these Cylon’s memories so they could have performed their prior actions thinking they were just humans… this list goes on for quite a ways.
Last Friday’s episode saw a massive info-dump that has started trying to make some sense of all these different threads. As could be expected, some items are being glossed over, some actions are just not mentioned, and there are still some rather large questions about how it all fits together. Still, even given these quibbles, I thought that someone, somewhere, did quite a bit of thought to come up with the explanations they did, and they have managed to almost make some sense out of the whole thing, no small achievement given all the things that have happened on the show. For a more detailed look at this Friday’s episode, see the round table discussion over on Tor.com. (Warning: severe spoilers within this discussion – if you haven’t seen this episode yet, don’t go here).
Now they still have five episodes to go, so there’s still room to wrap up some more of the problems. I really hope they can pull it off, without losing either the sharp dark ambiance or the biting social commentary that has been the hallmark of the best episodes of this show.
Science fiction with the quality of this show has been extremely rare, either on TV or the movies. It is no surprise that this show has developed quite a following of avid fans during its run, nor that it has gathered several awards. I’m crossing my fingers that they will end this show with all of its great qualities still intact.
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