Thursday, April 3, 2008

Galactica Log 003

It’s all over the Battlestar fans. The waiting is finished and the fourth season starts tomorrow. It’s been over a year since the last episode of season three aired, and the promotion of the new season has been loud and constant. Fans are excited, of course, but there is another reason, rarely said aloud, for trying to work up as much excitement as possible for the show. BSG is a great show, every bit as great as fans and critics say it is, but it is not a popular one. Quite the opposite. The statistics I saw for last season put viewership at less than a million per episode. That’s not bad. That’s really, really bad. Originally Sci Fi only ordered ten episodes for this season, though they upped that to twenty before the end of the last season.

Now Sci Fi is working to promote the new season and to reach out to new viewers. That’s an obvious strategy, of course, but a difficult one for a show with such a long and detailed backstory. In the lead up we’ve seen the stars read out Letterman’s Top Ten list and we seen programs like Battlestar Galactica: Revisited (everything you need to know, even if you’ve never watched an episode) and Battlestar Galactica: Phenomenon (celebrity endorsements – seriously! If Oz likes it...). We’ve also finally got season three released on DVD. In my last column I said that I might not have time to get through the whole thing before the start of the new season. That was silly. I watched a disc or two a day and enjoyed every bit as much as I did the first time! It was interesting that in the psychedelic flash forward that ended the season, they not only discover Earth, they discover America! The only thing I really didn't like was the end of the extended version of 'Unfinished Business.' Dualla may not be the show's strongest character, but she came off as something of a doormat in that scene. Her little speech was not only out of character for her, it ran contrary to her behaviour in the rest of the season. Of course, I didn't just watch the third season. In anticipation of its release I watched seasons one and two and Razor. All in order, of course. The ramblings/prophecies of the Hybrid in Razor got my mind spinning:

At last they’ve come for me. I feel their lives, their destinies spilling out before me. The denial of the one true path, played out on a world not their own, will end soon enough. Soon there will be four, glorious in awakening. Struggling with the knowledge of their true selves. The pain of revelation bringing new clarity. And in the midst of confusion he will find her, enemies brought together by impossible longing, enemies now joined as one. The way forward, at once unthinkable, yet inevitable. And the fifth, still in shadow, will claw toward the light, hungering for redemption that will only come in the howl of terrible suffering. I can see them all. The seven, now six, self—described machines who believe themselves without sin. But in time, it is sin that will consume them. They will know enmity, bitterness, the wrenching agony of the one splintering into the many. And then they will join the promised land, gathered on the wings of an angel. Not an end, but a beginning.
Informative, yet obscure. And speaking of imponderables, who was the Leoben who wasn't Leoben in 'Maelstorm'?

If you’ve ever used Google News, you’ve seen the Google Alert option. In an effort to stay on top of things, I subscribed to alerts for BSG and they’ve been coming fast and furiously ever since! Of course, a lot of them are repetitive, the same news release over and over, quoted in different sources. And some are contradictory. We’ll know, for example, who the final Cylon is in the first ten episodes, or we won’t. It depends on who you ask and what you read. Among other things, I learned that:

• According to Olmos, the show doesn’t end on a happy note.

• Because of the strike, Moore worked to make sure the first ten episodes worked as a cohesive whole, but we still won’t know the truth about Starbuck – whatever that means – but the midseason break.

• The strike gave Moor and opportunity to tweak the second half of the season.

• There aren’t any filler episodes. There just wasn’t time.

• We don’t know when the second half of the season will air.

• There will be no movies, but there will be some season four webisodes. I assume these will lead into the second half of the season.

• The seven known Cylons can now recognize the four newly activated Cylons for who, or what, they are.

• The EW Da Vinci photo does NOT hold any clues. (Told you!)

Among the stranger things I’ve heard are Moore being quoted as saying that he never intended to tie the new prequel, Caprica, into any of the characters of the existing show, even though the earliest descriptions of the planned show have always done exactly that, and... (this may be important, or it may be complete nonsense – welcome to the internet) Starbuck, who, we’ve been told isn’t a Cylon, finds other Starbucks and fakes her death.

I've mentioned that I don't get to see these episodes as they air, so I think Thursday, the day before the new episodes are aired, will be a good day to post the column on. So, I'll see you next week and enjoy "He That Believeth In Me".

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