Deciding to use the thousand prisoners on a prison transport ship to mine the ice on the planet they've found, Galactica's plans are upset when a political prisoner onboard leads an uprising, taking hostages. He questions the legitimacy of Roslin's government and demands free elections to be held in the fleet.



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Water is found on a moon, but now there's the question of how to retrieve it. Chief Tyrol thinks the work's going to be hard. The moon is very barren and the liquid water is too salt. Only the ice is good enough, but it needs to be melted on site. Tyrol expects he needs at least a thousand men to do the work in proper time. President Roslin decides to ask prisoners on the prison ship Astral Queen to do the hard labor and receive points earning their freedom. But none of the prisoners are willing to cooperate, their representative Tom Zarek, a well known terrorist, tells. He has plan of his owns, frees the prisoners with the help of a guard and takes Lee, Dualla, Cally and Billy hostage. Zarek demands elections to replace president Roslin. Meanwhile on Caprica, Helo and the Cylon Boomer have arrived in an empty city, looking for a hospital to retrieve anti-radiation medication. Written by Arnoud Tiele (

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Release Date:

21 January 2005 (USA)  »

Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

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Did You Know?


Tom Zarek is played by Richard Hatch, who played captain Apollo in the original Battlestar Galactica (1978). See more »


Lt. Kara 'Starbuck' Thrace: [Starbuck's filling in for Apollo at the squadron briefing] Now, one of you has been coming in a little hot lately, a little too hot, a little, um - oh I don't know, he's-burning-up-the-deck-with-his-skids-because-he-just-can't-pull-back-on-the-throttle hot. Now who is this speed demon, my prince?
Boxey: Flat Top, sir!
[the squadron catcalls]
Lt. Kara 'Starbuck' Thrace: Flat Top, you got a need for speed, do ya? Just can't wait to get back to the Big G and the loving embrace of your fellow pilots? Or maybe you have a hot date with...
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References Star Trek: The Conscience of the King (1966) See more »


Main Title Theme
Written by Richard Gibbs
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User Reviews

Picking the Side of Legitimacy
17 August 2008 | by (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – See all my reviews

Chief Tyrol concludes that the Galáctica need one thousand men to explore the ice on the planet and pump it to the spacecraft. Commander Adama proposes to use the prisoners on board of "Astral Queen" due to the dangerousness of the mission. However, President Roslin is against slave work and asks that the prisoners should volunteer receiving reduction in their sentences. When Captain Apollo makes the offer to the political activist and leader of the prisoners Tom Zarek, there is an uprising and the group is taken as prisoners. Zarek proposes immediate free elections, questioning the legitimacy of President Roslin.

"Bastille Day" is the best episode so far of this series, with a good discussion of the principles of democracy. In this regard, I loved the attitude of Captain Apollo, picking the side of legitimacy of the government and leadership of the survivors. The problem with this series is the lack of charisma of lead characters, mostly the ridiculous President Roslin, the traitor Dr. Gaius Baltar and the alcoholic Colonel Saul Tigh. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "O Dia da Bastilha" ("The Bastille Day")

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