Monday, February 1, 2010

How I Finished Battlestar Galactica and Got Back to my Life

Do not read if you are concerned about Spoilers. I am going to talk about the ending. ***SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS***

I finally finished. And I felt perhaps a small tickle of dissatisfaction at the ending. Don’t get me wrong, there was much to love and much that I expected, but some of the major items were not clearly resolved, or perhaps more accurately, not resolved to my liking.

Item 1. Who/what was Kara Thrace?

Was she an Angel come back to guide humanity to a new beginning? Clearly she died and was reborn/reissued, that was established. So why did the cylon hybrid and Sam go on about her being the “harbinger of death.” Were we to understand that as the harbinger of death to the bad cylons? Because she was a part of that, but Racetrack and her nukes were probably more directly responsible, weren’t they?! Or the harbinger of death to technology and the Caprican culture? I don’t know. I’ve read some theories where they speculate that Kara is the daughter of a human mother and a rogue #7 that escaped (the Daniel model that we never met). And I like that idea, even if it wasn’t verified by the finale. To paraphrase Starbuck herself, I don’t know what she was, but she’s certainly not an angel (at least not in my book).

One definition of harbinger according to the OED is to “One sent on before to purvey lodgings for an army.” Which certainly does make sense. But why then of death?

So, yes, in case you’re wondering, I did want someone to say, “kara is the harbinger of death because…” some things should be spelled out for me.

Item 2. Gaius Baltar.

I loved Gaius. He added some great comic relief and totally propelled the plot along. What I did not love was that the Six he saw in his head turned out to be some sort of angel vision. Or that Caprica, “his” six saw some sort of extra douchy “Gaius Angel” in her head. Can angels be douchy? Here, the answer is apparently yes, although had anyone consulted me I might have answered no. I don’t need them to be in white flowy glowy togas, but please, not that. Truthfully, I really really really would have preferred them to be imagined visions instead of Godly messengers, simply because it raises problems for me. I can accept a God who doesn’t get involved and isn’t on “any one side”, but by sending angels to direct behavior he certainly got his fingers dirty in this one. Obviously religion played a huge role in this series from the beginning. I just didn’t like the way it was wrapped up. I thought it was messy and perhaps a little preachy.

Hera is the Mitochondrial Eve for humanity. Excellent! Loved this! It was an awesome answer as to why Hera was so important. One thing bothered me though, either life started in Africa and spread out (with the help of Hera and her progeny) OR the survivors spread out and repopulated the planet separately (as they did in the show – because it seemed like they were dropped off and/or walked to separate places). I can’t reconcile those two things. And the inter-breeding thing with earth’s residents wigged me out. It seemed sort of strangely racist like we’ll breed with the savages and bring them up to our level. Yuck.

Item 4. Techology is Eeeeevil.

Yes, it turns out that in order to live in a state of grace we need to relinquish technology. Because if we don't, then we'll just build us a new cylon race...or something like that. This bothered me. Technology is only as bad as the way it is used. Getting rid of the Battlestar and the fleet? Yes! I think that was great. No way to run away from the inevitable problems that will arise. Getting rid of medical advances? Ack! Getting rid of technology to build appropriate shelters? Egad!

Why didn’t they use their knowledge and tools to create a better society? And I’m not talking about some utopia – because where there are humans there are those messy human emotions. I’m talking about using your technology to live better within the environment. Living in a sod hut on the prairie does not make a person/society better. It makes a person cold and probably bug infested.

And then that montage of Artificial Intelligence that was real? I love me a happy ending, and I don’t mind that everything that has happened will happen again because yes, history repeats itself. But gag me. So, um, this entire series was to warn us that we are building our own cylon race and will have to start this entire thing all over again? Sigh. Disappointing and trite.

And now the real question. Do I have it in me to watch Caprica? Only time will tell!


Jen Robinson said...

I just finished watching the whole Battlestar Galactica series, too, Patti. I did wonder about some of these points, too (especially how Hera could be the sole ancestor if all of those other people were there, spread around the world). I was also disappointed because all through the series, I just wanted Lee and Kara to live happily after ever together. I do like the notion that she was the child of a rogue Cylon, though...

I watched the Caprica pilot, and will likely watch the rest, though it seems pretty different.

Galactica was an excellent series for me to watch while riding my exercise bike, though. I loved most of the characters (except for Gaius, I didn't like him), and the action kept me pedaling.

Patti said...

Well, when I say I love Gaius it is mostly because of the outrageous and inappropriate things that came out of his mouth. I thought he was very funny. And a good villain.

I'll probably end up watching Caprica too. At least after a healthy dose of only watching movies for awihle. I need a break from TV obsession!

Anonymous said...

I felt the same way about the series finale! It seemed so anti-climactic after all of the build up throughout the series. To follow up with Caprica seems more of the same--I'm not sure how many times the sci-fi channel can tell people robots are bad before they damage their own market.