- Fleeing from the Cylon tyranny, the last battlestar, Galactica, leads a ragtag fugitive fleet on a lonely quest: a shining planet known as Earth.
Not really one of the TvShowsWorthWatching?
, but it has sentimental value.
started a grown-up version in December 2003. And it is worth watching...
was remarkable for a few reasons:
- It managed to replicate the special effects of the original Star Wars film only one year after it was released, and apply it to the budget and restrictions of a television show. BG looked good, and pushed forward the state-of-the-art for SF TV shows.
- It featured an "arc" storyline, in which the characters progressed closer and closer to their goal of finding Earth. It wasn't Babylon 5, but we're talking 1979 here.
- It was real SpaceOpera on television, a rare thing. Other than Buck Rogers, were there any other true space opera TV shows made in America afterwards until say, Space: Above And Beyond?
looked good, and pushed forward the state-of-the-art for SF TV shows.
Well, it better
have; as I recall, it cost a million dollars an episode to make - the first show to break that barrier. -- MikeSmith
If you disregard the very nice, very low budget, and totally
effects of SpaceNineteenNinetyNine
One of the first computer programs I ever wrote, on my trusty Atari 800, was a simulation of the tactical computer displays on the Galactica bridge. I don't know if my career developing graphical real-time displays was influenced by BattlestarGalactica
, but there does seem to be a connection. -- KrisJohnson
Less helplessly cheesy, but unbelievably managing to be less scientifically accurate than BG, there was always SpaceNineteenNinetyNine
Which was a British bit, wasn't it? Not American at all. <whew!>
is more like BattlestarGalactica
Actually, I heard they would be putting together new
episodes based on the original story line. http://www.battlestargalactica.com/about/bg2/index.html
I don't know if the world's ready for a female Starbuck, though... -- MikeSmith
Here's the review of the SciFiChannel?
series. Like StarTrekEnterprise
's review, it starts with the sucky parts.
- the problem isn't Starbuck's a female - the original character essentially was anyway. The problem is her wonderfully photogenic Attitude would give her a combat survival quotient of zilch.
- the leader Cylon drones are now human female doppelgangers who hop in bed with you at the drop of a hat, whether or not you can help their devious plans. Oh, come on - this isn't GeneralHospital?LostInSpace?. I got your CylonDetector riiight here, and it says to run in the other direction.
That said, now here's ... YOW! Vunderbar! You Beauty! And why we can't stop watching...
- The plot isn't a cheap comic book script, and it doesn't flinch from showing the very adult after-effects of the destruction of an entire civilization. The BG Original Series started after losing the first battle. In the pilot for the new series, we get to meet real people who get left behind, and killed by real weapons of mass destruction.
- The SpecialEffect?s push the state-of-the-art. MotionCapture? works at all scales, from alternately over- and under-stated simulated hand-held camera work, to physically accurate Viper and Raptor fighter craft simulations. When you see a Viper reverse direction, it flips end-over end (the fastest way), then rolls upright (to match its teammates). The motion looks just like an operator in a studio used a joystick to reverse a computerized model of a Viper with specific physical characteristics. The result - nothing more than an amalgam of existing MiddleWare - is breathtaking on screen. It is poetry in motion.
- The technology is deliberately kept to 21st Century standards, with only two additions: a clean and hyper-efficient propulsion system, and a hyperspace Jump technique that inefficiently and jarringly makes you disappear and reappear somewhere else. No cute warpspeed chase scenes. The only reason any humans are still alive is retreat is the most effective military tactic. If every ship in your fleet is jump-capable.
- the characters are real humans, with all the trappings, including bull-dog clamps, neckties, goofy TeeVee shows, and pride going before their falls.
- the show brings forward only the best of the original series. Cylon centurions don't draw their guns from holsters; the guns are built into their hands. (Duh!) Dr Gaias Baltar's treason is brought forward, but masked in soul-wrenching subversion, not vacuous 1-dimensional gloating. Captain Adama's decision to seek Earth is brought forward, but only as a rhetorical device, not a flight plan. The plot arc must then convince him Earth actually exists to seek.
- "Uh, thanks! The chicks are nice, but did you have to lead all the ornery metallic Cylons here too?"
- "daggit" is out. Quadruped pets are "dogs". But Frak is in, thank goodness, courtesy of FakeCussWord
- the plot is a real arc (unlike the original BG series, where they skipped forward to Earth as a sad attempt to boost the ratings as they went down). Yes, it's corny in the worst soap-opera ways. If Cylons can stow-away on board the Battlestar, why don't they stop playing cat and mouse with us and just finish us off? The plot also constantly refreshes itself with HarryPotter twists that propel each episode.
- the plot revolves around politics and scarce resources within the fugitive fleet. Not on the StarTrek gimmick of an endless succession of alien planets with cutesy problems.
- I still wonder how they manage to replace all that material (ammo, blown up Vipers) without the rest of the military-industrial complex around. I hope they started this show with a finite number, and they count them. Period.
- Captain Adama is [the late Tejano singer] Selena's dad! How cool is that?!
- (that is, Olmos plays Selena's dad in the movie Selena. Olmos is a veteran gritty actor.)
, this show appears to have linked a solid plot arc to a unified audience. It might go wrong, but we can't imagine the show indulging in the chronic style problems that ruined STE's atmosphere and ratings. So, unlike STE, the odds are very high this show will successfully fulfil its mission.
And could the SciFi
put on a couple shows that don't absolutely suck
right before it???