When an old enemy, the Cylons, resurface and obliterate the 12 colonies, the crew of the aged Galactica protect a small civilian fleet - the last of humanity - as they journey toward the fab... Read allWhen an old enemy, the Cylons, resurface and obliterate the 12 colonies, the crew of the aged Galactica protect a small civilian fleet - the last of humanity - as they journey toward the fabled 13th colony, Earth.When an old enemy, the Cylons, resurface and obliterate the 12 colonies, the crew of the aged Galactica protect a small civilian fleet - the last of humanity - as they journey toward the fabled 13th colony, Earth.
BSG is a very human story. Yet unlike Star Trek, they're not resolved by the end of the episode. Here the characters are real people who make mistakes, grow and learn from their errors. Or maybe they don't...
The point is that in the new BSG, the impact of the loss of the Colonies is something everybody must deal with, be it on a resource-management level to dealing with the loss of their families. The impact of the Cylon attack - never explored in the original series - is a major emphasis in the show and the viewer genuinely does get the feeling of the "rag tag fleet."
Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the original series as much as anybody, but it was a product of its time and audience-slot. The new BSG is a much more adult production, both in terms of the writing and performances and the intended audience.
Additionally, the show is very non-sci-fi, but in a good way. Whenever any "science" turns up, it's integrated in such a way as to have minimal impact on the plot and, unlike Star Trek, it isn't used as a Deus Ex Machina to simply resolve the "crisis of the week." In fact, I'd go as far as to say the show is closer to 24 or The West Wing than it is Star Trek or Babylon 5, with the focus being much more on the people and their individual actions, rather than a wide-scale "space opera."
Performances are all strong, with James Callis being the real star. His tortured performance as the guilt-stricken Baltar are a joy to watch as he flips from near-hysterical lunatic to scheming toad to smooth womaniser. Olmos has the presence to give Adama the air of authority required. Sackhoff's performance as Starbuck is "subtly obvious" - she plays the brash, cocky pilot a little too well, something that's explained in later episodes. And Bamber's Apollo is a mix of heroic action and self-doubt which balances well. Mention must also go to McDonnell's President Roslin who, over the course of the series, has grown in stature and presence in a very subtle manner.
Quite simply, Battlestar Galactica is one of the most consistently strong shows I've ever seen. Considering this is only the first of (hopefully) many seasons, it's amazing to see how the show has "hit the ground running," with each episode being an improvement on the last. And considering the high standard of the first one, that's quite the achievement.
Watch it. You won't be disappointed.
- Dec 10, 2004