Battlestar Galactica & Caprica Reviews

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BSG TOS 1978 - Season 1 - Episode 08

My Rating - 4

Fan Rating Average - 4.91

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Convicts and clones join forces with Galactica personnel to disable a tremendous Cylon pulsar cannon that threatens the Galactica from an icy world. [DVD]

- If the weapon is indeed so powerful as to be capable of destroying the Galactica in a single volley, why not mount it on a Basestar and attack the Galactica directly? Maybe it depends on some sort of geothermal energy? This should have been explained.
- Letting Boxey slip on board a military shuttle on the eve of a long range tactical mission seems careless by even BSG 1978's low military standards.


Remarkable Scenes
- The hidden Cylon base picking off Vipers and the Cylon raiders ambushing the rest.
- Colonial officer gives rank insignia to someone count 2. Apollo gives a military medallion that his father gave him as a graduation gift to Boxey.
- The crash landing.
- There are multiple short clips in this episode of a Centurion staring at a very colorful alien computer display which is actually just a computer screensaver... I'm not sure why, but I find the idea of a Centurion staring at a screensaver vaguely hilarious.

My Review
Hey look! A mysterious moon! (Later described as an "asteroid" on the computer screen, but whatever.) It's an obvious trap, but let's dive into it even though we have nothing to gain by investigating it! The military tactics here are at an all time low, as is the writers' understanding of three dimensional space. You simply can't "squeeze" a space ship into a single course so exact as to approach a specific planet, moon, asteroid, or whatever it is within range of a planet-based weapon.

Furthermore, why was it necessary to recruit criminals for this mission? Why were the criminals constantly fighting each other? Why were Apollo, Starbuck, and Apollo even chosen for this mission in the first place? They're Viper pilots, not foot soldiers! The whole damn thing just reeks of being poorly thought out from the beginning. But aside from that, the episode was actually a pleasure to watch. Even though some of the special effects were recycled, most of them were edited (mostly to add atmosphere) making them feel nicely fresh. They could have done a better job on a few of the visual effects though, particularly the freezing atmosphere in which you can't see anybody's breath. ;)

Overall, not too bad. And fortunately, Baltar's and Lucifer's single scene, while still pretty cliched, was far less so this time around.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Somebody Else on 2009-09-15 at 8:03pm:
    The biggest issue I had with this episode was the unwise cold-weather gear and use thereof by the protagonists - the facial mask in particular utterly fails to heat the breath, which is the main point of wearing a facial mask in cold weather. In addition, the characters seemed to use the masks mainly while inside the shelter of the snow-ram, removing them when they went outside - why? Other than this, if the cold was truly lethal, why order a soldier to ride on the outside of the vehicle, where the effective temperature would be far, far below the actual one? And didn't these trained, experienced arctic-survival specialists know that the fastest way to die from hypothermia is to fall asleep, and the best remedy is sharing body heat? If the warriors were actually dying from cold inside their vehicle, then they should be dead long before the hunters ex machina had the time to carry them to safety. (Well, I understand why they didn't use the last one, but still...)

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