Thursday, November 22, 2007

Battlestar Galactica: Razor Flashback Finale—The Escape

(Pictured above: Do NOT frak with this manCommander William Adama as played by Master Thespian Tough Guy Edward James Olmos.)

A Happy Thanksgiving to Fanboys and girls everywhere. FanBoyWonder and Mrs. LoveyWonder have been enjoying our holiday doing nothing…absolutely nothing as we recover from the big trip South to see the grandkids last weekend. So far, doing nothing is everything we hoped it would be (Office Space anyone?).

But as we catch up on our sleep and the fog starts to lift, we’re getting back up to speed on our reviews starting with the final Galactica Flashback “mini-sode” just in time for Battlestar Galactica: Razor original tele-movie airing Saturday at 9 p.m. (EST) on Sci-Fi Channel (check local listings).

The Upshot from Sci-Fi Channel: Lt. William Adama/Husker (Nico Cortez) witnesses the rise of a new Cylon threat while he gets some unexpected news from the Battlestar Galactica.

Last week, we left Husker in an untenable position. Young Adama encountered survivors and victims of secret Cylon experiments following his crash landing into a Cylon lab on a baron ice planet. However, the aforementioned laboratory building is coming down around him and Husker has concluded (with the urging of the trapped victims) to run to save his life and spread the word of what the Cylons have done here.

As he emerges from the laboratory warehouse, Husker sees the Cylon basestar lifting off from the ground (hence the severe seismic tremors). Radioing his Mayday to Galactica, Husker urgently reports the Cylon experimentation on humans and that the “toasters” are getting away with their findings.

Yet the voice on the other side of Husker’s wireless informs Adama that an armistice has been signed and the war is over.

Flash forward forty years to just two days before the start of the second Cylon War/Cylon genocidal sneak attacks on the twelve colonies.

We see Commander William Adama (Edward James Olmos, although in the credits he is listed as “Admiral”) standing before a display case with a Cylon Centurion inside along with other relics of the first Cylon War aboard the Battlestar Galactica museum.

Remember, when we were introduced to the re-imagined BSG in the miniseries, Galactica was about to be decommissioned and turned into a museum of the Cylon War (not unlike the U.S.S. Intrepid in New York City) while Adama was also set to be retired from service.

As Commander Adama ponders the events of his youth, Aaron Doral (Matthew Bennett in an all too brief appearance)—the Galactica museum’s public relation’s feeb informs Adama that his son, Capt. Lee Adama/Apollo (Jamie Bamber) has been confirmed as lead pilot in the flyby planned for the battlestar’s decommissioning ceremony.

Of course, we all know now that Doral is a Cylon of the flesh and blood kind (“skinjobs”), the successful end result of the human experiments that the one-time Viper jock named Husker witnessed all those years ago.

Doral leaves but not before making a comment that “Galactica’s war is long over,” and Adama ponders the old Cylon Centurion a bit longer.

Cut to an outside shot of the Battlestar Galactica—the very first shot of the Galactica that we first saw in the BSG mini-series…but in reverse as instead of zooming in, the camera zooms out making the obsolete warship look smaller and smaller —full circle.

Only the beginning…….

Okay…this is why Edward James Olmos is The Man. Commander Adama hardly has dialogue lines of consequence yet it’s what Olmos the actor DOESN’T say—his trademark heavy silence and pained expression of thinking backward—that wraps up this flashback story quite nicely.

But just as in last week’s “mini-sode” Survivors, here again in The Escape we see the storytelling limitations of the mini-sode format.

In his “escape,” although we’re supposed to believe that the Cylon lab is collapsing around him, which prompted him to leave the imprisoned survivors behind, it looks like Husker has merely stepped outside the building and it really rattles the viewer’s suspension of disbelief.

Our immediate thought in watching this was… “Okay, the Cylons are bugging out, can’t he go back inside and rescue the prisoners at his leisure???”

A CGI image of the building collapsing or even an off-camera sound effect or something to indicate the survivors had indeed perished would have gone a long way toward preserving the integrity of the story.

However, in the grand scheme when viewed together in sequence, these Flashbacks will stand-up and provide some nice extra context when viewing the main event—Battlestar Galactica: Razor.

Following the airing of Battlestar Galactica: Razor this Saturday night on the Sci-Fi Channel (check local listings), with FanBoyWonder commentary to follow. So say we all!!


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