Sunday, March 06, 2016

Battlestar Galactica: A Measure Of Salvation (S3/E7)

by JASmius

Rating: * (out of four)

Written by: Michael Angeli

Directed By: Bill Eagles

When a boarding party from Galactica, accompanied by Athena, follows in Baltar’s footsteps, they bring back with them the handful of Cylonoid survivors in order to find out more about what happened, why, and how it can be exploited.

Doc Cottle quickly identifies the virus as one long since eradicated in their now lost colonies (some form of meningitis), further evidence that this buoy was left by the thirteenth tribe millennia earlier. Humans are, accordingly, immune, and getting knocked up by a human gave a partial immunity to Athena, but not only do the Cylons have no defense against the pathogen, but their immune systems will not allow the vaccine to function in their bloodstreams.

Even better, or worse, depending upon one’s point of view, and as is foolishly confirmed by one of the Cylon captives, the plague is communicable through their “resurrection” process, meaning that if any of the infected models “download,” the disease will spread throughout their entire population, including their centurions and raiders and base ships (which, remember, are also substantially organic).

Now we come back to the overwrought polemic I prefaced last week. Apollo hatches a plan that is, to my mind, a no-brainer – indeed, a veritable Godsend: jump the Galactica within range of the nearest Cylon base ship, kill the infected Cylon prisoners, causing them to automatically “download,” and let nature take its course.

The question for President Roslin and Admiral Adama is brutally simple: return the genocidal favor and ensure humanity’s survival (and perhaps Earth’s as well), or take the “moral high ground” and more or less guarantee their own people’s eventual extinction.

Yeah, sure, the Cylons might come up with a cure of their own in time, but how would that put the human diaspora in any greater peril than they are already? And what purpose does occupying the moral high ground serve if nobody will be left to defend it?

The only member of the palace guard that took what might be called the Bashir position was Helo, to whom it fell to, naturally, sabotage the plan by liquidating the infected Cylons before the Galactica could jump. I don’t recall how they knew where to locate the nearest Cylon base ship, or how it is that the Cylons couldn’t have followed the last battlestar back and eradicated it and the ragtag fleet, or why no action was taken against Helo when everybody had to know he was responsible for the sabotage. I also was puzzled by Helo’s vehement objection to the plan when his Cylon wife seemed to have so little difficulty reconciling herself to it. It just didn’t ring true to me. But, again, obviously the Cylons weren’t going to be wiped out at a stroke, so there was no point in raising such a high moral question that was destined by necessity to remain unconsummated.

It wasn’t the only annoying moral issue the writers raised. There was also the matter of the Cylons discovering Baltar’s little omission from his reconnoitering of the afflicted base ship, and jumping to the paranoid conclusion that Baltar led them into a trap. So they decided to [drumroll, please] torture him into confessing his perfidy, when, of course, all from which he’s ever really suffered is the nervous complaint, and perhaps a touch of priapism. Having nothing to confess, and knowing that confessing anyway will just get him executed, the poor schlep arrived at his own personal Kobayashi Maru scenario. He literally had no way out.

So he retreated into his “mind projection.” And how – doing it with Imaginary Six as if for a porno video, crying out his imaginary passion and love to the Cylon administering the torture. Which, as it happened, was not Caprica Six, or any of the male models (which would have been hilariously funny), but D’Anna Biers, who seems to be confusedly falling in love with Baltar just as Caprica Six is falling out of it.

And to think that if Helo had retained his senses, Baltar would have had to settle for spanking his frank.

Come to think of it, that might be his real Kobayashi Maru.

Next: The arrow Adama shot in the past falls back down right up his ass.

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