It’s really hard to find good help these days, don’t you think? That’s about the only way I can explain what is happening in Battlestar Galactica. Commander Adama is desperate for anybody; he pretty much ignored the complete incompetence of Colonel Tigh when it came to ruling Galactica when he was incapacitated. As for President Roslin, she is enlisting the help of Tom Zarek, who was put in prison for terrorism, was the mastermind behind a revolt on the prison ship, tried to overthrow the government, and is now her biggest ally, other than Lee Adama, that she has in the world. With all of the idiots and traitors responsible for the existence of humanity, it’s actually very surprising that the Cylons haven’t been able completely wipe them out.When President Roslin made her spiritual plea to take the fleet to Kobol, 18,000 people on 24 ships left with her, about a third of the fleet. Adama isn’t really concerned about the people who left, his main concern is how he is going to run the rest of the society when they lost all of the mining and manufacturing that went along with those 24 ships. If the people who left die because of the Cylons, so be it.
As for the confederates, they have made their home the Astral Queen, which I though was the name of a porn movie, but I guess I could be wrong. Everybody is at Kobol, so now what to do? What if the Galactica comes back and blows everybody away? What if there are Cylons on the planet that are waiting to kill them? A lot of this whole plan depends on Starbuck getting back in one piece, so how long do they wait for her before deciding she got torn apart by a bunch of Cylons?
To answer the first question, it’s not hard to figure out what would happen if Galactica wanted to fight. They would come in, destroy anybody who resisted, and be on their way. If they wanted to do that, they probably would have already tried. Besides, why would Commander Adama bother? Without Galactica, just a few Cylon ships could take out most of the breakaway fleet. The real problem was on the surface of Kobol. There were some weapons aboard, but most people aren’t skilled soldiers. Luckily for Roslin, the prophecy says that any return to Kobol will have a cost in blood. So if people were skittish, they aren’t true believers and should just jump back to Galactica.
Well, that bit of reverse psychology works and now the only real question is when the hell Starbuck is going to get her ass back to Kobol. Almost on cue, an unidentified ship is detected, and although we are almost sure that it is Starbuck and Helo, everybody has an itchy trigger finger including Zarek’s new buddy Meier, being played by James Remar. Meier wants to shoot it down, and I say OK, just as long as we don’t have to look at your package. Just as Meier is about to send the signal to fire, we here Starbuck’s voice over the radio. Phew! That was close.
Now we know this is going to be a happy reunion. In comes Kara, and there is Lee to plant a smooch on her. There is Helo. Hey, good to see you aren’t a deformed mess and your insides haven’t melted from the radiation. And look, there’s Boomer! Uh oh. Everybody knows that Boomer is a Cylon, and even though this Boomer was not the Boomer that put the boom down on Commander Adama, Apollo still thinks that she should put the boom down on her. Besides, they can’t trust a Cylon. He puts a gun to her head, which of course causes Helo to put a gun to Apollo’s head, and everybody else in the room puts up their guns for good measure.
Helo is trying to convince Apollo that his Valeri was the only reason they were alive. Roslin agrees, and says they should all put down their weapons. Everybody agrees, and Roslin says to put Valeri in the airlock and let her go. Oooh, she’s one tricky woman. They are just about to throw her out of the airlock, when Boomer is able to convince them to hold off. She can help them get to the tomb of Athena, because she knows where it is. All of the Cylons are programmed with inherent knowledge of the scriptures. And even though Roslin thinks Sharon may be lying, and it may all be a trap, she believes that somewhere inside of her, Boomer is actually in love with Helo, and even if her love is just software, they can use that to her advantage.
So, times are so desperate, Roslin is going to welcome the aid of a Cylon. How are things going on Galactica? Well, they need a person to take over for Apollo’s duties in the fleet. In his job as CAG, he ran all of the operations. Even when he was in jail, he was serving his time while doing all of his other duties in the fleet. CAG is a big responsibility, and the person who takes over must be a great leader and skilled as a pilot as well. Adama chooses an officer, largely without Tigh’s input.Tigh complains, but why in the hell he is questioning anybody’s judgement is beyond me. The first three or four episodes of the season showed us what a visionary he is. Maybe it takes a good leader to know a good leader, and Tigh is not a good leader.
Although this new guy means well, he is clearly a huge mistake waiting to happen. In weapons exercises, he nearly gets one of his pilots killed in a training exercise, and during a refueling mission, he is completely lost, and two huge ships collide, although nobody is hurt. Maybe this is one decision he should have asked for some help with.
The other big job is to keep Galactica and the rest of the fleet together. Adama keeps using the family metaphor and mentions how strongly he wants to keep the family together. He says this to the crew, to the press, to whoever will listen to him. The more he says it, the more you think he is trying to get himself to believe as well. The departure of the other ships has had a huge impact on the morale of the fleet, Commander Adama included.
On Kobol, the landing party has made it to the beginning of the path to the tomb of Athena. The President decided to go, and they brought Boomer in cuffs. Apollo nearly killed her while she was behind bars but Starbuck made it back. If there is anybody who wanted to kill Boomer, it was Kara, but since Boomer helped free her from a life that had a choice of a)death or b)artificial insemination from a cylon and post-partum death, she had to trust her for now. Starbuck was there, since she did bring the Arrow of Apollo, not to mention she was one of the only militarily trained people available. That goes for Helo, and, of course, Apollo.
Since their exile, Apollo has been the President’s right hand man, and probably her choice to lead the fleet if she should die. The problem with that is that Tom Zarek still wants power. He was outsmarted by Roslin and lost the Vice Presidential election, but now that they are away from the rest of the fleet and he holds about as much control on the everyday lives of people as she does, he wants a little more. She is a figurehead, and very popular, so killing her is out of the question. Besides, she is dying anyway. Who he can kill, however, is Apollo, and with his friend Meier, they plan on finding a way to kill him while on Kobol.
The scriptures say the path to the Tomb of Athena is lined with graves. Roslin brought along Elsoha, the high-priestess since she knows the scriptures better than anybody else, and was the one who convinced the President of her destiny. As Elosha inspect a grave, it turns out to be booby-trapped. A land mine explodes, killing Elosha, and a bunch of Cylon centurions appear from the ridge above and start shooting. Luckily, the President also brought along a bunch of unnamed, anonymous members to Kobol, so they could be killed without too much explanation.
Now Zarek and Meier wanted some sort of excuse to cause some confusion so they could friendly fire Apollo, but there was no contingency plan if some centurions showed up to chew them new assholes, so they took cover with Roslin. Lee and Kara are pinned under another ridge, taking fire from centurions. Helo and Starbuck are firing away, but when Apollo sees that Boomer has made a run for it, he chases after her. He knows that her niceties were all an act, and that she would betray them. She probably knew about the booby trap, and is now making a run for it. As he gets closer, it is even worse. There is a rocket launcher near Elosha’s body, and Boomer grabs it. Just as Apollo gets close she aims it at him and fires. Except she wasn’t aiming at him, she was aiming over his shoulder, and took out the last of centurions. So now she kind of saved Apollo’s life as well.
We finish the scene with a grieving Roslin, who takes the bloody book of Holy Scriptures from Elosha. Did she have that thing attached to a chain on her belt or something? The land mine sent her flying about 10 yards, but maybe the shrapnel missed the arm she was holding the scriptures like it conveniently missed making her face into a bloody pulp. Everybody’s sad about who they lost, but really, it’s not like you can go back now, right? The team on Kobol presses on. What I would like to know is why the Cylons even bothered having ambush parties there. Why not just have about a thousand of the bastards near the tomb? Eh, I guess if I started to worry about that, I would have to think about what would happen if a Cylon basestar decided to appear and destroyed the entire portion of the fleet that came to Kobol, and then people would suggest I watch some more authentic sci-fi (imagine that, more authentic fiction, whatever that means ) like Babylon 5 or something, and then I would be (even more) lame. So I just won’t worry about it.
Back on Galactica, it looks like Commander Adama has regained enough motor function to take up his hobby of building model ships. Why do captains of sci-fi ships always have to be interested in history? They all have model ships and study napoleonic warfare and shit like that. Why can’t any of these captains be interested in something us normal folk like? Why must it always be old boats (or airplanes for that matter)? Why can’t their be a captain who likes video games or porn? Where is the guy who doesn’t read during his off hours, but just naps on his couch in his boxers, watches James Bond on TBS and scratches his balls? Now that’s the way to peel off stress.
But I digress (obviously), Adama is making his boat, and speaking to himself about rage and how it is tearing him up inside and he wants to explode. At this point, he is like those dudes who buy those two inch RPG characters and paint them by hand (no offense meant, I have friends like that who have actual wives and kids, but you are kind of whacked you have to admit). It turns out that the whole time Dualla has been sitting there, sort of listening. She is a petty officer, what I think is the lowest rank on the ship, but she finds it within herself to remind the Commander that it’s not just Galactica that is a family, it is the whole fleet. The reason why people left was because he had promised that they would find earth together. The President still believes in that dream, while Adama used it as a way to coerce people into following early on.
Adama asks her to leave, but she won’t go. Hey, this girl doesn’t really have backside, but you have to admire the backbone on this sister. She continues to tell him that he should bring the entire family back together, and if that means going to Kobol, that is what it has to be. After she makes her point, Adama seems a little upset, but he realizes that keeping your family apart for ideological reasons is just plain silly. And wouldn’t you know, his predicament in life mirrors his predicament with his own son. Funny how it works out that way. The Commander returns to the bridge and they make preparations to return to Kobol. He’s bringing the family back together. It’s not quite said with the Blues Brothers’ “We’re putting the band back together” gusto, but it seems to work nevertheless.
So, shit is going to go down on Kobol. For the first time this season, the entire cast is going to be in one place. From the previews it looks like Boomer is going to go crazy Cylon again when Adama is near and try and take out Apollo as well. Would they really do a (near)death scene again? I am pretty sure they wouldn’t, but the way things are going, you can never tell.