Battlestar Galactica (S04E06): Faith

Grade: A-

Last week was a slow one for Battlestar, drifting into fillery waters, but tonight’s episode more than made up for it, with several big reveals and great mix of pulse-pounding action and heart tugging moments. Things are definitely spiraling towards a conclusion, which is bittersweet, as it heralds the incoming end of the show, but awesome as well, as many of the long-held questions surrounding the series begin to be answered.

Let’s jump right in.

The mutiny on the Demetrius was avoided, but not before Gaeta found himself with a bullet through his leg, thanks to a certain Starbuck-loving cylon, Anders. Nothing like a quick shot to someone’s leg to get everyone to shut up and listen to you, I guess. So with mutiny averted, Starbuck decides to take a small crew in a Raider to visit the supposedly damaged cylon basestar and somehow find the answers she’s looking for.

It was interesting to watch Starbuck’s crew, consisting of Anders, Athena, Leoben, and a chick-whose-name-escapes-me, meet and interact with the Sixes and Eights on the basestar. There was some bickering, of course, because no one trusts each other–and for good reason–and then a random Six killed the chick-whose-name-escapes-me, which made for the second episode in a row that a non-important, secondary character has gone to meet their maker(s?). Come to find out, that chick was part of the resistance and had killed that Six back on New Caprica, who had been pining for some sweet-sweet revenge ever since. But it seems the humans follow the philosophy of blood for blood and are satisfied only when the main Six puts a bullet through the random Sixes head, but not before locking lips in a creepy clone-sister lesbian kiss. It was kind of hot, except that moments later the Six was dead, which kind of ruined the mood.

Leoben kept going on about how Starbuck needed to meet with the Hybrid to find out more about her super-special destiny, but when she was taken to the hybrid it just kept spouting off its usual nonsense. The it started screaming like a robot banshee, causing a random toaster model to shoot and kill a random Eight, and then the hybrid finally said something that was less cryptic, though still very much in riddle form. She said something like: “A dying leader. The truth of the opera house will be revealed. This missing three will give you the five, who have come from the home of the thirteenth. You are the harbinger of death, Kara Thrace. You will lead them all to their end. End of line.” This did not go over too well with Starbuck, obviously, but then Six figured out that the “three” mentioned was probably the boxed model Three, D’Anna. It seems the return of Lucy Lawless is now imminent, since apparently she is the only one that knows the faces of the final five.

Athena was confronted by her fellow model eights (unfortunately not naked this time), and her interactions with them made it clear that she has greatly distanced herself from her cylon brethren and truly become a much more human character. She seems to hold the key to the humans and cylons co-existing, as she shows that they can be very much alike in many ways. It was sad when the dying eight, shot by the berserk toaster, reached her hand out to Athena, who began to touch the hand, but then pulled it away in a physical image of just how much she is attempting to put a gap between herself and her kind.

Ander’s was like a little cylon in a candy shop on board the basestar, looking around all wide-eyed and mystified at everything he saw, especially the hybrid’s tank. He kept trying to reach his hand over to touch it, but never did. I wonder what would have happened? Would the hybrid have started freaking out (again) and saying stuff, like “All your bases are belong to A-N-D-E-R-S!” Or…not. Moving on: the look he had on his face when they figured out D’Anna could identify the final five was priceless.

So that was the action side of the hour. Meanwhile, back on Galactica, Roslin revealed her new hairdo. She ditched the wig this week and showed her bald head to the world, which was a pretty surprising and sad image. Everyone’s known she has cancer, but now it’s very obvious and you can see it having its effects on her. She spent her time in the medical center, or whatever they call it, receiving treatments from good old Doc Cottle (who is apparently the latest suspect on the Battlestar forums of being the last of the final five, though I don’t buy that). Roslin met a fellow cancer patient in the infirmary, Emily, who’s much further along in her battle with the disease, and the two began to bond. The woman told her that she listened to Baltar’s sermons because she had a dream about being on a river and seeing her family and friends on the far bank, waiting for her. Roslin proceeded to debate religion with her–about how the one, true God Baltar rambles on about is the Cylon God and nothing more than a myth. Emily proceeded to point out that the idea of the greek gods, living on some mountain somewhere, is pretty ridiculous. Here, here. Then, Roslin breaks down remembering her mother’s struggle with cancer and did such a good job at it that my eyes started tearing up as well. Damn, she’s good. Emmy award for Mary McDonnell, please? It’s long overdue.

The woman Roslin met in the infirmary dies a predictable death (it was clear she was only there to teach Madame President a lesson of sorts), but Roslin somehow foresees her death in a dream of her own when she witnesses her leaving the boat and joining her family on the shore. Then she sees her own family, including her mother, waiting for her. But she says she’s not ready, wakes up, and promptly skips to Adama’s cabin to make googly eyes at him. Watching them in that scene, it was clear they’ve come a long way since the beginning in regards to their faith. Adama may not be religious, but he’s become more open–like letting Kara go off on a gut instinct–and Roslin is trying to find something to grasp onto as she faces her own mortality. I thought they were going to kiss, sitting there with their faces inches apart, but alas–nothing. Not even a good hug-a-thon. Oh well. Is it gross that I want the dying president and the old, scarred Admiral to get it on?

A very good episode in a very good season, I’d say, and the wait from week-to-week is only getting harder. At the same time, I don’t want to rush this experience, because once it’s over, it’s over.

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