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Battlestar Galactica 2K: "Resurrection Ship, Part 1"

And the second half of the season gets off to a bang-up start, with Vipers writhing around each other in an effort not to start a bloodbath and Cain's hands already soaked with one. Now look -- when Pegasus found the civilian ships, the XO says it had been one week after the attack. So it's not like this has been years of deprivation and desperation which has driven Cain to insane lengths, like Rudy Ransom in VOY's "Equinox." It had been seven days since she'd left civilization behind. How nuts was she before this to have sunk so low so fast? Archer was in charge of the mission to save our entire planet and didn't commit grand-scale atrocities like that. Even when he did steal a piece of TECH, he didn't hurt the people on the ship he stole it from, and he certainly didn't butcher their families! Did she routinely assault her staff the last ten years? Was she like a grenade on a hair trigger? Wouldn't a psych test have caught this kind of megalomania?

I love the maneuverability of the Vipers -- how real they are in their movements. They're not sleek Trek ships which act like cars in space. They have momentum and inertia, they flip, they fly backwards, they slide, they stagger, they spin, their engines cut out, they fly in all vectors! Just having that big ball of poised dogfight was incredible. Trek FX folks always seem to forget the Z-axis. (and then to have all the Vipers snap into complementary formation against what they thought was a Raider... beautiful!)

Well, I guess we finally resolved the question: yes, Roslin is the civilian Commander-in-Chief who has authority over the military, the same way the U.S. is set up. Moogie says that's what Adama meant by his comment "She's come a long way." She's finally taking the reins which she's always had in her hands. I love that she addresses them like a principal disciplining a pair of rowdy, sullen, slouching teens. Then Cain starts waving her metaphorical, uh, sword around, and Roslin icily smacks her down. (But why didn't Adama either defend the actions of his men or point out what Thorne was doing? Is it because Cain had already allowed Thorne's "technique" and therefore didn't see it as something which a toaster needed defending from?)

Then Cain paces around sneering at the two of them for "debating the finer points of Colonial law" instead of raping and pillaging. "How the two of you have survived this long I will never know." Yes, but they did, did they not? And without resorting to barbaric tactics. Law makes civilization. It's what holds us together. The military, the leaders, are not above the law. That's what the coup and Lee's objections were about. Change the law if it no longer fits, but dismissing it or disregarding it because it's inconvenient is not acceptable. Abe Lincoln was wrong to do it, FDR was wrong to do it, let's not even get into contemporary politics, Adama was wrong to do it, and Cain is wrong. And picking and choosing which rules and regs to follow -- she likes the ones which give her "broad discretion" and authority to try, convict, sentence, and execute Chief and Helo, but ignores "do not murder" and "do not steal" -- is adding insult to illegality. The worst of it all is, as Roslin realizes and Adama finally accepts, Cain thinks she's right. She's doing all this not only for a power grab, but because she really thinks she's doing the right thing in the long run for whomever she's leading. That makes her genuinely dangerous. When rape, torture, abuse, piracy, and murder are acceptable and commonplace tools for daily survival, the leader must be stopped and removed. No civilization can withstand that kind of treatment.

Where's the media? Where are the reporters? Where's the Quorum? Where's Zarek? What does the civilian population think of all this? Are they getting suspicious and impatient yet about the supplies they were supposed to receive? Did anyone notice the Viper dance?

Interesting how having "guts and initiative" get Helo and Chief slated for execution (because Cain disagreed with them) but get Kara a promotion (because Cain liked the outcome). I am disturbed that Kara seems to be getting comfortable with Cain's ideas -- haring back to the Colonies to kick out the Cylons, rolling over for her command -- but hey, Starbuck is no saint, and kicking toaster ass sounds like a great way to come back covered in glory, which appeals to Kara's volatile nature.

Roslin really has "come a long way" to be bluntly suggesting assassination. And she's right. Cain is a dangerous, aggressive threat, and the threat needs to be removed for the safety of the fleet and the species. Someone accustomed to that much power (again I wonder, how much power did she have before the Cylon attack? This is arrogance of long standing, not recently seized and jealously held) would never agree to sit quietly in a brig. Her loyal minions might or might not adapt, but if she's alive, she can get messages out and keep her followers together (as Roslin proved in the beginning of the season).

I guess Baltar is going to have to kill Gina in the end, to put her out of her misery. Is that ever going to play hell with his psyche.

Adama feels the need to point out that the bastards who attacked Pregnant Sharon were not from the Galactica, and not under his command. He may not like her, he may fear her and make sure she's jailed, but there are things you do and do not do with prisoners. When a prisoner is cooperating, there are additional levels of consideration. When a prisoner is pregnant, there are other factors to think about. Adama understands those lines and limits, and it means enough to him to make sure that Sharon knows where he stands. It's a little thing, but it's part of the greater point that Adama will not use "any means necessary" to survive or to win. He doesn't merely want to win, as Cain does, but to win and be able to look himself in the mirror most mornings. (When the camera came up on Boomer, my first thought was that he was going to ask her to be the assassin.)

I'm glad that Helo and Chief are coming to some kind of accommodation. Ongoing triangles get ugly or boring very fast. And since they're really the only two who can understand the predicament they were in, it's better that they support one another than be at each other's throats.

In listening to Baltar's Six talk about the Triad games she went to, it struck me that I don't think we often hear her say "I." She rarely talks about her own thoughts, feelings, experiences. To hear her reminisce about her life on Caprica was eerie. (I should point out that "I scalped two tickets" means "I sold two tickets illegally," not "I bought two tickets illegally.")

Cain growls and (literally) spits at Gina. "This thing used to sit in our mess and eat our food," she grates. On the one hand, yes, that's exactly what she did, and what Boomer did -- pretended to be human. That betrayal and outrage is something all our people had to go through with both Sharons. But note that Pregnant Sharon, who hasn't killed anyone, is treated with wary neutrality. Galactica Sharon shot Adama, so there was a reason to be angry with her. And Gina did (if you believe Cain) kill several Pegasus people. But do we know the context? Was it her mission to kill the officers? Did she kill them while defending herself from assault and rape? Did she try to set bombs or take out an engine? Which is the greater offense, to kill people or to betray them by masquerading as something she wasn't? Because of the setup with Baltar and his Six, we're supposed to feel sympathy with this battered woman. What if she fired one of Pegasus's nuclear warheads at Scorpius and killed a billion people? Just things to remember.

So if the mysterious Cylon ship makes more drones/clones/copies, could it repair existing bodies? Is that going to be the source of Roslin's cure? (Because you know there has to be one. There's no way Moore is going to kill her off.)

Jack keeps saying "the Admiral made the decision." Distancing himself from her? Emphasizing that she alone is making these insane judgments, rather than "we decided" as though he was part of it or agreed with her?

Moogie points out that while Cain is now sending her XO to Galactica, and has a Galactica person as her CAG, Adama (who has lost his son/CAG and trusted lieutenant) still has Tigh.

Even in ordering assassination, Adama is honest. He tells Kara "pull out your weapon and shoot Admiral Cain in the head." Cain tells Jack "terminate Adama's command, starting with Adama." He's owning up to what he's doing. She's cloaking it in convenient military euphemisms. If this plays out (and Cain doesn't die by taking Pegasus into the xerox ship and self-destructing), Jack will break and Kara won't. Right now that seems more likely, since we have several people on Pegasus who have to get out before it FOOMs. How ironic is it, though, that Adama is ordering Kara to do what Galactica Sharon did to him? Especially after he apologized to Pregnant Sharon about the attempted rape? (To her credit, Roslin is also up front about it: "You've gotta kill her," not "We have to remove her" or any similar equivocation.)

Two friends who just caught up with the show in the last month (another convert! one more and I get a toa-- oh wait, I can't say that) made what I thought was an excellent prediction: since the showdown over Cain will likely fall to a personal conflict (Kara tries to shoot her, one of her own people tries to shoot her, etc.) and Pegasus will still be intact so our people can return, my friends suggest that after it's all over, "the XO will take the Pegasus back to Caprica to hunt for survivors and destroy the farms." That would tie up lots of loose ends as well as giving plenty of fodder for future stories and an in-and-out arc with this second battlestar.

All these powerful women glaring and snarling at each other! Running the show! Calling the shots! And none of the men feeling threatened or emasculated by that! Good lord, there's hope for TV yet.

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