Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Battlestar Galactica Finale: In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb...

... a pathetic, diseased, bleeding lamb.

I was a great fan of this show from the get-go; I remember defending the uneven pilot episode to all my nerd friends, pointing out the beautiful use of the Firefly-inspired outer space camera work.

This show has gone the route of other science fiction shows I have enjoyed, such as Alias and Smallville: 2 1/2 good seasons, then it lost it's way and never recovered.


BSG went off track after second season, when it ceased to be about the survival of humanity and more about ridiculous religious dogma and political "intrigue". The beauty of the BSG concept, both in the original and in the new series, is the idea that when fighting for survival you will see the best and worst of humanity emerge. New BSG was doing that beautifully for the first two seasons, then just dropped it.

Also, the series suffered because they never gave the Cylons a clear purpose, except for maybe after the Resurrection ship was destroyed. Then their motivation became about survival as well, through the capture of the Human/Cylon child, but we don't even really SEE that until the final episodes.

This entire final season has made little-to-no-sense whatsoever. The characters were written with zero consistency; people were acting in a manner completely contrary to their previous behavior, acting differently from episode to episode, without any explanation whatsoever of what might of changed their personalities. The Five had little to no transition from believing they were human beings to accepting they were Cylons. And did we really need to see Admiral Adama drunk for half the damn season?

As for the final episode itself, where to begin? It's so nice of Ron Moore to have a bunch of white people from outer space come down and teach us poor humans how to be civilized. I realize that's the concept of the original series, that the seeds of humanity were from outer space, but then maybe you shouldn't kill off all your minority characters before the end, except for one. Speaking of which, it's also good to have confirmation that all Asian people do indeed look alike, since we're all apparently descended from ONE FRAKKIN' CYCLON!

What was with the ridiculous little evil robot montage at the end? Oh no, our robo-toys are going to DESTROY us! Where's Sarah Connor? Did the BSG universe arrive in the Terminator universe? And it was done so emphatically, as though the danger of robots rising up to destroy us was somehow on par with global climate change, world hunger or the AIDS epidemic.

The whole Starbuck disappearing thing. So she was an angel of some sort? Not only was that a complete cliche that's been done countless times before (and better), but they had just done the exact same moment TWO EPISODES before, with Kara and her father! A ghost having visions of a ghost?! WTF? And we never see any real moment of realization on her part, or transition into acceptance of being an angel, much like with the horrible Five Cylons storyline.

And does anyone believe that 30,000 people, who throughout the entire series couldn't agree on ANYTHING, would all suddenly agree to destroy all their technology and ships to go live in the wilderness? Ridiculous! The idea that they didn't want to repeat the mistakes of New Caprica is ludicrous; the reason their lives on New Caprica were so difficult was that it was a relatively barren planet with a narrow strip of habitable land around the equator. New Earth is resource abundant! Provided of course you have, say, the TECHNOLOGY to access those resources. It's completely unrealistic, not to mention just plain bad story writing, to think they'd just fly their fleet of STARSHIPS into the sun. (On a bit of a tangent, it made me think of a similar situation in Star Trek 8: First Contact, when the crew of the Enterprise is forced to abandon ship on the Earth of the past, and Captain Picard instructs his crew "to find a quiet corner of North America and ...stay out of history's way." Much classier.)

I will probably keep coming back to this posting and updating it with more awful things about this finale as they come back to me. It's one of those seasons that the more you think about it, the worse it gets.

Waste of a good concept, waste of a good start.

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