All right. We admit it. Against our better judgment, we’ve been taken in by Battlestar Galactica. We dig the gritty feel. But, most importantly, we welcome a speculative fiction environment that has authoritative female presidents (played by Mary McDonnell, no less!), female fighter pilots who play by their own rules without coming across as token aggro-chicks and, from our inveterate male perspective, two very hot Cylon chicks. How often do we see developed women in these shows that aren’t horrible Katharine Hepburn clones? Not much, we’d say. We also like the executive officer — a raging alcoholic that’s an interesting cross between James Carville and Dick Cheney. The people on board this ship drink, smoke, have sex, and even jerk off (and are even caught with their pants down). In other words, unlike the bland folks in the Star Trek universe spouting off technobabble, they’re actually human. They even make bad command decisions. Plus, there’s interesting little design elements such as the paper with its edges cropped off, a general set motif of cramped physicality favored over glitzy computers, special effects shots that have a jerky documentary feel (a first, I think, on television), and some pretty cool Cylon Centurions (complete with a menacing mechanized gait reminiscent of Phil Tippett’s animation).
Even so, we’re mystified by the following gaping holes:
- If the Cylons have a finite number of models, many of them reproducing themselves repeatedly over the 5,000 or so humans that are left, why is a Cylon detector even needed? Would it not make better sense to take a head count and track the duplicates?
- Despite the “real” people portrayed, I’ve yet to see a fat person on board or someone with bad hygiene. Why does everyone on board Galactica seem so eminently fuckable, with their flawless teeth and perfectly coiffed hair? Further, would not the lack of sunshine or the outdoors make one antsy when confined aboard a cramped spacecraft? Wouldn’t the notion of the human race almost completely exterminated lead to widespread trauma, depression, and mental illness (so far unseen)?
- In a recent episode, Starbuck was stranded on a planet for something like 30 hours. While her oxygen was depleting, hunger apparently was not an issue and her strength remained unwavering, allowing her to escape.
- I haven’t kept count, but if there are only about ten to fifteen fighters on board Galactica, if two or three get destroyed every week, then some fanboy needs to do the math.