Tuesday, March 24, 2009

OMB Editor/Publisher Proclaims Self "Lord of the Battlestar Galactica Geeks"

SPOILER ALERT: Any Battlestar Galactica geeks who haven't seen the series finale yet should read no further ...

But for all other fans ... you may begin setting shrines up to me now (preferably made of sweet sweet candy) ... for I now anoint myself "Lord of the Battlestar Galactica Geeks!"*

Why, you may ask, would the mild-mannered editor (kinda) of a major (minor) metropolitan newspaper (news site) say such a thing?

Simple. I correctly predicted how the series would end - saying that since the new BG has followed the story arc of the old BG more closely than most people realize it only stood to reason that we'd see the appearance of "higher powers" in the show before its conclusion.

You can read my two comments yourself toward the bottom of the comments to this article ... and note the dates of the comments are currently listed as "9 weeks ago" - just after the original piece was published on 1/18/09


Or check out screenshots of my comments here


and here


Now I didn't predict the exact ending - that is, I didn't realize that they'd actually make the conclusion of the last episode match the statements of the opening lines of the original series fairly closely: "There are those who believe that life here began out there, far across the universe, with tribes of humans who may have been the forefathers of the Egyptians, or the Toltecs, or the Mayans. That they may have been the architects of the great pyramids, or the lost civilizations of Lemuria or Atlantis. Some believe that there may yet be brothers of man who even now fight to survive somewhere beyond the heavens ..."

So maybe you all will have to build slightly smaller shrines to me given that fact.

But I'm feeling pretty smug nonetheless.

Kidding aside, I might go to the trouble of reviewing the last episode in the Open Media Boston Arts section because I actually think the producers kind of screwed the pooch - even though the last hour featured some of the most powerful dramatic moments in TV history.

*DISCLAIMER: May not be the actual Lord of the BG Geeks. Arena battle with other contenders to the throne TBA.



Blogger VictoryCig said...

So how many points do you get for predicting the ending of a series that lost sight of all its interesting assets?

Battlestar began by asking interesting questions about macro themes like governing a crumbling society, authoritarianism vs democracy, and representation of marginalized communities. Even after they started all the religious mumbo jumbo, they had a good season on New Caprica where they looked at oppression and Pax Robotica. (And a bad ass rescue mission, too.)

In the last season and a half, though, they focused on micro level analysis of individual characters, ignoring anything interesting happening at a scale larger than that of a love triangle. They rehashed imagery and symbolism we saw in the first two seasons, and the dialog became predictable and melodramatic.

The finale was mystical, corny and preachy, and treated the audience like children by making its criticism of the developed world painfully explicit. The series moved so far from the direction I wished it had gone; I stuck with it only because I knew it was ending.

All that said, I grudgingly and sadly admit it was probably still the best sci fi on TV since Deep Space Nine ended.

March 28, 2009 4:29 PM  
Blogger jpramas said...

I get 6 points ... but that's neither here nor there.

I certainly wasn't happy with the way the series went.

The whole pomo relativist thing throughout the series (e.g., Baltar being ambiguous, rather than simply evil ... or the Cylons having feelings too and can't we all just get along), and the hippie back-to-the-land thing in the finale, were examples of elements I think could have been handled better.

That said, I'm probably more of a fan of their interior focus in the last couple of seasons than most critics. I thought it was kind of daring to show people falling apart after their hopes for Earth were dashed the first time around.

And the finale had some elements that were emotionally engaging, if ultimately contrived and unsatisfying. Some good performances from the main actors. They created a good haunting vibe that was mucked up by their ultimate choice to not keep their culture and civilization in tact.

Finally, I agree with you on DS9, but think Babylon 5 was ultimately a better series - with a far better finale. B5 was materialist to its core, and any mysticism on offer was ultimately explained scientifically in one way or another.

Things that seemed like higher powers or magic always turned out to be other species further along the road of evolution. No one had any answers about the nature of existence. Even god-like creatures were shown to still be questing for meaning.

Would love to see that series picked up again. A much more interesting universe than BG when all is said and done. DS9 deserves another run too.

March 30, 2009 2:57 AM  
Blogger Radioview said...

B5 and ST: DS9 are two of my favorite TV programs. But as long as we're mentioning shows that deserve more episodes, how about "Farscape," A show that was terminated by the Sci-Fi Network because the channel was going in another direction (read: silly ghost-dominated "reality" shows). It's sad to see Ben Browder and Claudia Black making a living with bad scripts on "Stargate" these days.

Anyway, my true passions are for the old black and white series such as TZone and The Outer Limits. The former had better writers (except when Harlan Ellison was writing for OL) but the latter had cooler outer space monsters.

March 30, 2009 5:05 PM  
Blogger TWoods said...

To me BSG was always about faith.

Faith in your fellow human, even though that human was a flawed, disturbed, needy example of the human condition.

Faith in yourself that you can and will survive the current hell to find whatever version of Earth will have you.

Faith in knowing that even if this Earth was not the one of prophecy (and religion), the next glimmering blue planet has the ability to restore faith for all humankind.

But in the end, they made it about religion. While faith and religion are often seen hand in hand they are NOT one and the same.

Yes, there was always a religion underpinning to BSG (especially when you consider its roots), but BSG always left us to decide for ourselves what version of religion we would choose to believe, or not believe.

And then, at the end, with no real explanation, it was decided for us. This was all the plan of God, the angels, and religion.

Oh, and then there are all the questions that weren't answered. And the glaring inconsistencies. WHY did they go to all the trouble to have Anders run the fleet into the sun, and still keep Adama's ship on the planet? Where is that ship exactly? They are all eschewing technology, but walking away with steel suitcases, metal and latex shoes, and all manner of things that could easily be found by the future humans, deep in a peet bog or perhaps a backyard in Iowa.

While some of the scenes were emotional, well acted, and hit all the right notes. The overall tone felt unfinished, preachy, and very much like a cop out. So unlike the brave and honest BSG we had come to know and love.

April 5, 2009 5:54 AM  
Blogger Jesse Kirdahy-Scalia said...

I can't believe they flew the ships into the sun. I watched that scene with my mouth hanging open. "You have frakking space ships! Don't destroy them! Space ships!

April 5, 2009 10:41 AM  

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