Spoilers ahead, people.
So here we fucking go. Last night's Battlestar Galactica kicked all sorts of ass—I'd say it was one of the best episodes of the series so far, actually, and if the constantly cheering crowd watching at the Bagdad last night was any indication, I'm not alone in my giddiness about the show being back in ass-kicking mode. And the Q&A with the episode's writer, Mark Verheiden, that happened after the screening? Pretty cool too, with Verheiden offering a few ominous hints ("You have not seen the last major character demise"), coming clean on Gaeta's character progression ("Obviously, when we started cutting his leg off and stuff, we had plans") and doing his best to not make fun of uber-nerds who asked, say, three-part questions about Hot Dog, as well as things like, "Did we ever find out what was up with the cave of naked Boomers?"
A rundown of the episode and a spot to discuss it, after the jump. (Also, yes, I really did title this post "The BSG Spot," because apparently, I have the same sense of humor that I had when I was 12. If you've got a better title idea for these weekly posts—"Good Morning Galactica," perhaps?—put it in the comments below.)
UPDATE: Now with video of the Verheiden Q&A, after the jump.
I think the most important thing about last night's episode, "The Oath," was its tone and pacing and action—I don't want to come across as a dude who only likes to watch things when shit is blowing up or guns are being fired, but that said, it was fantastic to see the crew of the Galactica kicking ass and taking names last night. Recalling some of the best episodes from seasons one and two, "The Oath" combined a really clever, well-executed idea about what could happen in the fleet (mutiny!) with some solid, adrenalin-y action courtesy of Verheiden and John Dahl, the director behind Rounders, Red Rock West, and... uh... Joy Ride.
Things I liked about this episode:
THE WHOLE "MUTINY ON THE GALACTICA" ANGLE. Verheiden said that this was an idea that'd been floating around the BSG writers' room for a few years, and it's easy to see why—the idea of a revolution taking place on board seems right in line with the kind of issues Battlestar so smartly examined in its early seasons, about how the fleet would actually function, and what challenges and developments would naturally happen. It works great at this late point in the series, though, when the reasons for such a mutiny seem far more justified than they would have earlier on. A mutiny happening because after years at war, Adama and Roslin decided to be all buddy-buddy with their most loathed enemies? Makes perfect sense, and seems like it'll set up some good stuff later on in the season, too. I mean, seriously—bringing in the jilted crew members from the Pegasus as part of the rebellion? Perfect.
ROSLIN AND STARBUCK NOT SUCKING ANYMORE. Other than Starbuck's whole "What am I? What am I?! WHAT AM I?!?!" monologue in the season premiere, there hasn't been a whole lot for either Starbuck or President "Waitin' Round to Die" Roslin to do of late. That changed last night, with Starbuck unleashing all sorts of rage against those trying to take over the Galactica, while Roslin finally stepped up to the plate and decided to start acting like Roslin again—tough, smart, determined. Between Starbuck's existential crises, Roslin's moping, Xena's "Meh, I'll just sit here and die on this radioactive planet, see you guys later," and Dee's decision to splatter her brains all over her locker, it's been a weirdly underwhelming stretch for the women of Galactica. Last night reminded me what a great leader Roslin is, and what a killer action hero Starbuck can be.
TIGH AND ADAMA DUAL-WIELDING. If I had my druthers, Inspector Tequila would be the star of every TV show ever—yes, even Gilmore Girls. (Also if I had my druthers, people under the age of 70 would start using the phrase "If I had my druthers" again.) But since that's not going to happen, I'll be satisfied with Saul Tigh and Bill Adama double-fisting weaponry in order to take back their ship. It was kind of like this... BUT IN OUTER SPACE!
Speaking of girly shows like Gilmore Girls, does anyone else miss Everwood? I kind of miss Everwood. That show was so great. It really taught you a lot about how valuable family is, especially in small town America, and also, whenever Ephram would play the piano... wait, what? Wha-huh? What just happened? Where am I? I didn't write that! Like I would watch Everwood! Ha! That show is for fuckin' sissies! SAUL DUAL-WIELDING! FRAK YOU, GAETA! CAVE FULL OF NAKED BOOMERS!
SPEAKING OF GAETA... Hey, look, he's finally doing something meaningful, and not just rolling his eyes and being a whiny little bitch! Did this make him any less annoying or hate-worthy? Not really, but it did justify his presence over the last stretch of episodes, and it does look like it's leading somewhere pretty great—when Adama told those taking over the C.I.C. that there would be "no amnesty"? Listen closely, Gaeta, you little shit, because I'm pretty sure he's talking to you. Once you've been thrown out the airlock, you can sing at the top of your lungs, and no one will ever hear you*.
What I didn't like about this episode:
I'M HONESTLY TRYING TO COME UP WITH SOMETHING HERE, BUT I CAN'T, AND I'M NOT GOING TO PICK APART THE SHOW JUST FOR THE SAKE OF SOMETHING TO WHINE ABOUT, SO I GUESS I'LL SAY THE CLIFFHANGER? BECAUSE OMG, WAS WAS THAT FRUSTRATING OR WHAT, YOU GUYS?! That said, though, I guess I'll survive if I just have to wait a week to see how things work out—and hopefully get a little more detail about how this mutiny was put together, 'cause I'm still having a hard time buying that poor little Gaeta set it all up himself. "Seven weeks, you'll have it all," Verheiden told the crowd that kept asking for hints as to what'll happen in future episodes, and while I kind of doubt that—there's still at least one TV movie in the pipeline, as well as that Caprica business—it did feel good after last night's episode to realize that as Galactica is heading into the home stretch, it seems to really be kicking into gear.
*Because there's no air in space, so the sound wouldn't carry. Get it? SCIENCE FACT!
UPDATE: Fatboy was kind enough to send along this video of the Verheiden Q&A—so even if you were too lazy to make it out to the Bagdad, now you too can revel in the glory of three-part questions about Hot Dog. Enjoy.