Call me a HUGE nerd for loving this rebooted version of a complete dweeb cult classic from the late 70’s, i don’t care. But the truth is, the new Battlestar Galactica has run longer than the original, and is only loosely based on the mythology and concepts. And you have to call a lot more people nerds who basically are of the opinion that this is, under the radar, the best show on television these last 4 years, forget sci fi, the best drama on TV.
This isn’t a defense of the show however, this is a review of the finale. Yes, the show is over! And it was well worth it. So Ron Moore, producer and writer on the show had an epiphany while penning the final hours; that he needed to stop worrying so much about this final battle and rescue sequence staged by Admiral Adama and bring the finale back to the resolution for the characters themselves. There have been some huge, long running story arcs for an incredible ensemble cast in this show, and really its been about them. If you break down Bstar as plot driven, you can find a lot of logic loopholes and a lot of missteps and unanswered questions. But if you look at it as a case study of flawed, conflicted but lovable characters in a most intense environment, you always have a winner. And that’s what the finale really is, the resolution of all these arcs, almost all of which are totally satisfying
The final conflict surrounding the Cylon colony and saving Hera is rather epic, and there is lots of eye candy. But some of it felt semi-rushed, and the significance of why they are near a black hole, and why they were all there at that time isn’t fully addressed, you basically accept that they were meant to be there at that time to do certain things. Some people might say in the end, its kind of a cop out to say that there is just an invisible force at play, that this was their destiny. But that’s been a theme throughout the whole show!!! I’ve seen tons of complaints on boards and comments about how they think the show turned into a right-wing evangelical cop out, and these people are totally ignorant. First, the show has always dabbled in metaphysics and mysticism, 2nd, Ron Moore and many of the individuals on these shows are no where close to conservative right wingers. Ron Moore was a big part of controversial, liberal story threads when writing and directing on Deep Space Nine. So that complaint is just lame.
So a lot of my questions don’t get answered directly. That is, there is no tidy explanation (in the scientific practical sense) for some of the long standing mysteries in the show. Essentially the show says, as what told us from the beginning, that God, the Gods, or some guiding hand was involved all along. Starbuck was “an angel blazing with the light of God.” And Baltar and Caprica were seeing “Angels/Demons”….nope, no microchip in their heads. Roslin was the dying leader to lead them to “earth”.
The biggest ? of them all is “this has all happened before and this will all happen again” being left open ended for re-occurrence. And why does the so called “God” allow the cycle to continue. Who, according to the Baltar and Caprica angel/demons doesn’t like that name. Some might say that the creators get a little preachy in the end, but i think it is legit to ask the viewers, to challenge us not to continue the cycle represented in the mythos of Battlestar Galactica. The end brings us to present day and says “you have a choice”. They managed to take all the political, cultural, societal parallels in the show and make them relevant by having a message in the end. Look what happened in this invented universal history we are unaware of, will we follow the same path?
And i don’t think that the message leans to any political preference. I don’t believe it is anti technology, pro-green, or anti-war. I believe the story was pro-humanity, meaning what needs to be done to extend humanities existence into the future. And the answer is really left to us to determine. The creation of AI machines that destroy us is allegorical for any number of methods we humans might concoct to bring about our demise.
The finale was not without plot flaws, but I really could care less, when you create a show as rich and complicated as this, the plot naturally gets into a painted corner. It really was about the characters. They should be particularly applauded for the process that Gauis Baltar was brought through and his ultimate redemption. James Callis, the actor, should never be forgotten for bringing one of the most fascinating characters in TV/Film history to us. I thought they had created a situation where Baltar was truly not redeemable; and so i thought that he was going to be forever ambiguous or outright evil in the end. But they brought him to a place where you wanted him to be good, despite his incomprehensible selfishness and his multitude of sins, and his final actions are not only convincing but masterfully worked into the overall resolution. I believe his path parallels the path that humanity in the Battlestar universe had taken. And as he recalls, “you know, i was a farmer”, rediscovering a true facet of human ingenuity, one of creation, rather than destruction.
BSG will be missed yo!