We get a serious amount of time on Caprica in this episode and the next, which is quite refreshing really because Tigh is just stuffing things up more and more back at the Fleet. When ships start to refuse to supply Galactica because of the declaration of martial law, Tigh – egged on by the ambitious Ellen – send marines to get their much-needed tylium. And there are shots fired, and civilians are killed. With this catalyst, Apollo decides to go the whole mutinous hog, and get Roslin off Galactica… and Billy decides he can’t, ultimately, countenance that, although he doesn’t stop them. This is, of course, a huge step for Apollo; his gut instinct for civilian, democratic government overrules his military training and his loyalty to his commander/father. I think his character, in these episodes, is at one of its most formative and interesting stages. So often in TV and movies we get unconflicted soldiers – or if they are conflicted, the agonies aren’t nearly as finely played out. The irony of relying on Zarek for refuge is, of course, delicious.
On Caprica, Starbuck and Helo have a shoot-out… with Caprican survivors, and resistors. When they finally agree neither side are Cylons, we finally meet Samuel Anders: top Pyramid player and all-round lovely man. Starbuck naturally agrees with me on that, by the way. Discovering there are still people on Caprica is an awesome revelation – it’s nice that the writers didn’t just ditch the planet. Of course, Sam is a good reason for it, but still it shows an holistic approach that is quite refreshing.
2.5 The Farm
This is one of my least favourite episodes in some ways because it deals with some very unpleasant topics. One, really: the issue of how repopulation might happen after an apocalypse, and how women might be treated in the aftermath. Starbuck is injured in a firefight with some Cylons,and she wakes up in a hospital. A pleasant young doctor tells her sympathetically that Sam is dead – sad! – and that she is lucky to be alive – yay, I guess? Anyway, he then gets around to telling Starbuck that basically her ovaries are her most valuable asset, childbearing her most valuable skill, now, to rebuild humanity. Can you guess how Starbuck reacted? Quite quietly, actually, probably at least partly because she’s still woozy from the drugs. But she’s certainly not very impressed. She gets more and more suspicious of the doctor… until finally she gets out of her room, and discovers that the hospital is being run by CYLONS!! and that there are other women hooked up as incubators. This short scene is horrific, and upset me quite a lot. I was so pleased when Starbuck got out and those women were put out of their misery… although terribly angry that there was no way, apparently, to actually save them. I know the idea of how women might be treated in this sort of situation has been dealt with by a few authors – Marion Zimmer Bradley and Joanna Russ, for two, neither of whose books on the issue I’ve read, although I certainly mean to. It’s not really something authors tend to deal with… male authors, especially, I think.
Also, almost as an aside we learn from Simon, the doctor, that Starbuck’s xrays show many, many old, healed fractures – especially on her fingers… Starbuck is incredibly angry at hearing this, and it goes no further, but it does hint at yet more dreadfulness in her history.
Back at the Fleet, Adama is awake again – hooray! But he doesn’t revoke martial law; instead he decides he wants to search every single damned ship to try and find the President and his son. Hello, bitter betrayal. Seriously not happy. Roslin decides to ‘play the religious card’, and makes an announcement to the Fleet declaring her intention to return to Kobol and thence find Earth. Adama decides to let her go, not expecting many to join her… but about a third of the Fleet do follow. This, of course, places Adama in an incredibly tricky position. Follow Roslin? Keep wandering around aimlessly? Oh the decisions. Plus, there’s quite a nice moment where Adama cries over the dead Boomer – shot by Cally, of all people – showing just how conflicted he is over this once-beloved and valued member of his crew. I really, really love the humanity of both Adama and Roslin, and the fact that both leaders can have this humanity and still be completely believable hard-asses.
- Starbuck in the brig: 1
- Baltar in the brig: 1
- Women Baltar shows interest in (not including Six): 4
- Women Baltar actually gets to sleep with: 2
- Baltar religious conversions: 2
- Different sexy dresses worn by Caprica-Six: 12
- Apollo sides with President against Dad: 4
- Number of Cylons viewers know about: 5
- Number of Cylons humans know about: 2 (and Starbuck an additional one)
- Roslin has a vision: 3
- People deliberately thrown out the airlock: 1 (+1 threat)
- Ships lost: 1
- Ellen gets suggestive: 3
- Starbuck and Apollo do fisticuffs: 1