Monday, April 28, 2008

Battlestar Galactica - Season Four - Episode 4

Good episode overall. Not great, but at least continuing this season's string of solid stories. Rather than delve into plot details (there's plenty of sites of the web great for that), I'll instead focus on the show from a director/writer's standpoint, and what I may have derived from this episode.

For starters, not much happened to drive the meta plot forward. Mostly what we had was fallout from the first three episodes. The focus was very tight and character-based. While in the past, I've tended to dread these episodes (as they are usually filler), this one didn't suffer from that at all. Three of the four secret Cylons (Tory, Tigh, and Tyrol) all had the hems of their sanity start to fray a little bit. I imagine the encounter between Tigh and Six might have looked pretty dicey on the page, but the actors pulled off these scenes fantastically. Solid writing and acting all around.

The one area where I feel the show is sliding in the opposite direction is Baltar's journey into Christ status. In spite of the fact that they've been setting him up since the finale of Season One to be some sort of eventual religious figure, it still rings totally false. I don't buy his character converting. The fact that Baltar is so often played for laughs tends to undermine the power I think his religious arc is supposed to have. The writers seem to drift back and forth from making it seem like it really IS a genuine religious conversion, to making it seem like it's 100% fakery on Baltar's part. I think it needed to pick one or the other. Instead of being intrigued by Baltar's journey, I'm bored and skeptical.

In any event, it looks like Baltar is headed for Christ status, as it seems destined that Baltar be killed or sacrificed for the sake of his religion. I'll just continue watching and continue cringing every time Baltar starts spouting off religious mumbo-jumbo.

Finally, I have to say that the scene where Head Six seems to pick Baltar up was amusingly well-done. Casts more doubt and wonder on exactly what's going on with Baltar's innter Cylon.

Next week looks like we get to spend a lot more time on the Demetrius.

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