21 March 2009

Post-BSG series finale thoughts

So...Battlestar Galactica had its series finale last night. As a fan of the series (albeit not a die-hard), to say that I was eagerly looking forward to the finale is a understatement. Although, admittedly, I was somewhat frightened that Mr. Moore wouldn't be able to deliver the necessary answers in two hours of television land. Once work was over with (as in, the midnight release of the Twilight DVD being done), I was able to see this rather awesome series finale in beautiful high definition widescreen; there's few joys in life like a widescreen HD TV.

Pathetic, I know.

Although I love the show and really enjoy the themes and ideas presented within the context of a science fiction space opera, BSG "re-imagining" developer Ron Moore commented many a time of how they - the creative team - sorta threw caution out the window and went in some random direction because they needed something dramatic or some giant twist. There wasn't some big, grand scheme. This finale wasn't four years in the making, it was a desperate man's attempt of tying together years of fantastic happenings and unexplainable phenomena in three hours of television time.

And for the most part, he succeeded. For now, I have a few little remarks that I'm not going to bother to compile in some cohesive form, so I'm just going to make a list. As I continue musing over the events from the finale, and the other questions it raises, I'll add to the list.

(Keep in mind, spoilers follow; but really, if you're reading this post, either you deliberately want the finale spoiled for you, or you already watched the episode, thus making this disclaimer superfluous)

- The entire space battle was AWESOME! Epic, even. It easily rivaled, and perhaps surpassed, space fights in motion pictures with thrice the budget. If there's one irrefutable thing about this finale, it's that the giant, jaw-dropping, holy-potatoes of space battles did not disappoint.

- Roslin expressing her gratitude to Doc Cottle and in order to stop a potentially heartful moment, begs him to revert back to his normal self by stuffing a cigarette, grunting, and running off. This finale had many things lacking in previous episodes, one such felt aspect is a sense of humor, which seemed to return with full force.

- Alright. Now, what was Starbuck's true purpose for coming back? If the Gods were manipulating anything, why have her die in the first place? So she can blow up at earth, and her new body with a new albeit exact replica of her viper can fly back to Galactica and months later with the help of four of the Final Five and D'Anna charge up the coordinates for Earth? Why couldn't "All Along the Watchtower" make more of a presence in the show before these last four episodes?

- So this whole "harbinger of death" business is related to the Cylons, not the humans, correct?

- Although I love the usage of Gods and The One True God in the show, I feel Moore really dropped the boat in two of his explanations by using angels. When Moore didn't seem to conjure up a adequate answer for a burning question - such as the Six that Baltar sees and the Baltar that Caprica sees - he equates them to divine intervention. Cloaked to seem ingenious, it comes across more as a series creator simply giving up, shrugging, and saying: "I got nothin'." Same thing goes with Starbuck - really lame 'explanation.'

- This may have been addressed before, but who exactly nuked the real Earth?

- I LOVED the sequence when the C.I.C. room "became" the opera house, when Caprcia Six and Baltar walked in with Hera, and the Final Five are standing/sitting above, exactly how it was in the vision. It was sweet.

- And concerning visions - that whole Laura, Athena, Six, and Hera sequence, the fruition of that vision, was intense, man.

- Another thing that bugs me about Kara's so-called purpose. Technically speaking, her whole life was meant to die and then show up in a new body to direct them to earth? Why? Why go through all that trouble? Why not have the coordinates for Earth already locked away in her head at a young age, and "All Along the Watchtower" clicks it on? And since, technically speaking, she should have remained dead if not for divine intervention, does this mean that there is absolutely no free will, and that the Gods were going to manipulate everything to their design regardless?

- The payoff from the seemingly dropped storyline of Tory killing Cally in "The Ties That Bind" (S04E03). Tyrol got himself some vengeance, big time! Say what you want about how awesome this finale was, but I think it'll be this sequence of pure rage and revenge that will be most talked about and revered for times to come.

- Gaius Baltar has always been a favorite character of mine in the series, and he's been horrendously underused this season (speaking of which, what is the purpose, now, of his companions needing guns to defend themselves? It seemed to be a major storyline that would show up later, but..nada). Luckily, he has a single moment of small redemption, of some sort of heroism by choosing to stay on Galactica and fight. I was even cheering at the tele.

- The flashbacks with Tigh and Adama at the strip club went on far too long, and added very little to the overall story. Also, what was up with the bird that Lee saw at Zack/Starbuck's apartment? Am I missing some sort of big-time symbolism?

- So, what exactly is God's whole giant grand schemy plan?

- Why exactly did Bill put himself in exile from everyone else? I wager he'd want to spend some much-needed time with Lee, but I guess he has better things to do...

- Let me get this straight - the explanation for all things unexplainable is that the force of the Gods [or in the Cylons case, the One God] are responsible for all of these freak happenings and strange visions that can't be possible? I can buy that, but I'm disappointed.

- And that damn space battle was AWESOME!

Overall, I'm satisfied with the finale of Battlestar Galactica. It tied up some loose ends, left others dangling, and also opened up other questions, but I guess you can't ever have a fully complete series finale [alright, I lied: The Shield finale was about as perfect as you can get]. Bloody hell, writing all this really makes me want to have a all-day BSG marathon. Well, maybe skip season two, the more lackluster of the seasons in my mighty opinion.

Anyway, how'd you guys like it?

1 comment:

thebonebreaker said...

BSG is one of those shows where multiple viewings are sometimes needed in order to 'get it all' - I am all for a straight through marathon myself! ;-)

I loved the finale - like you said, the space battles were indeed epic! [and the best part of the show was indeed watching Chief's reaction and subsequent re-action to Tory's treachery!]