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Battlestar Galactica 3.03 - "Exodus Part 1"

Despite the ominous Great Escape conclusion to "Precipice" there was of course no chance that Roslin and Zarek would get killed off at this point, so the question was how they would get out rather than if. "Exodus" supplied the answer in a by-the-numbers fashion.

More jarring was the fact that the trap at the rendezvous site was so easily taken care of. You'd think the Cylons would send more than a couple of Centurions. The sole consequence of the trap was to expose Ellen Tigh as a traitor, which makes me think that was the only reason for it.

In both instances it's harsh to point the fingers at writers Weddle and Thompson given their task was to extricate characters from a cliffhanger. And in any case, I gather major plot movements are broken by a room of writers (my plural form of choice) rather than individuals.

The preparation scenes on the Galactica didn't quite work. They were played for weight and drama, as if there was real doubt about the success of the mission. And while that might be true for the characters, it's certainly not for the viewers, which makes, for instance, the extended farewell scene between Adama and Apollo dramatically somewhat redundant if, as usual, well played. Also, I thought Adama's motivational speech at the end was uncharacteristically purple. (Edit: In the podcast commentary Ronald Moore states that they were deliberately going for a classic, "St Crispins Day" moment. That's fair enough, but the poetry needed to be better.)

Movement on the miracle baby front. Roslin really has become the hardnosed pragmatist, hasn't she? The only reason she doesn't come off as extremist is because Tigh's attitude last week places her own in a much more moderate class. Typically (though this is not a criticism but a sign of good writing) just as Sharon feels she has been accepted as a Colonial the baby's fate is used to drive a wedge into her own conviction. The baby was also put to a third use: to flesh out the character of Number Three. I really like the way the Cylons have become much more complex.

Babies in genre fiction have a tendency to grow up real fast, whether by detours through interdimensional portals (Angel's Connor), alien growth spurts (Trek's Alexander) or some other means. So it'll be interesting if Hera will be allowed to grow up in "real time". One method I'd like to see is for the show to jump forward in time again, by several years. If BSG is to become a real epic (which it certainly has the potential to), it makes sense for the pivotal events to occur over the course of years, generations even, as the fleet searches for Earth. Given the precedent set in "Lay Down Your Burdens", I have no problem at all if seasons 4, 5 and the rest were each set five, ten or more years into the future.

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» Battlestar Galactica 3.04 - "Exodus Part 2" from world in progress...
There's a difference between predictable and inevitable storytelling. "Exodus Part 2" contains both. [Read More]

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