And the second half of the season gets off to a bang-up
start, with Vipers writhing around each other in an
effort not to start a bloodbath and Cain's hands already
soaked with one. Now look -- when Pegasus found
the civilian ships, the XO says it had been one week
after the attack. So it's not like this has been years
of deprivation and desperation which has driven Cain
to insane lengths, like Rudy Ransom in VOY's "Equinox." It
had been seven days since she'd left civilization
behind. How nuts was she before this to have
sunk so low so fast? Archer was in charge of the mission
to save our entire planet and didn't commit grand-scale
atrocities like that. Even when he did steal a piece
of TECH, he didn't hurt the people on the ship he stole
it from, and he certainly didn't butcher their families!
Did she routinely assault her staff the last ten years?
Was she like a grenade on a hair trigger? Wouldn't
a psych test have caught this kind of megalomania?
I love the maneuverability of the Vipers -- how real
they are in their movements. They're not sleek Trek
ships which act like cars in space. They have momentum
and inertia, they flip, they fly backwards, they slide,
they stagger, they spin, their engines cut out, they
fly in all vectors! Just having that big ball of poised
dogfight was incredible. Trek FX folks always seem
to forget the Z-axis. (and then to have all the Vipers
snap into complementary formation against what they
thought was a Raider... beautiful!)
Well, I guess we finally resolved
the question: yes, Roslin is the civilian Commander-in-Chief
who has authority
over the military, the same way the U.S. is set up.
Moogie says that's what Adama meant by his comment "She's
come a long way." She's finally taking the reins
which she's always had in her hands. I love that she
addresses them like a principal disciplining a pair
of rowdy, sullen, slouching teens. Then Cain starts
waving her metaphorical, uh, sword around, and Roslin
icily smacks her down. (But why didn't Adama either
defend the actions of his men or point out what Thorne
was doing? Is it because Cain had already allowed Thorne's "technique" and
therefore didn't see it as something which a toaster
needed defending from?)
Then Cain paces around sneering
at the two of them for "debating the finer points of Colonial law" instead
of raping and pillaging. "How the two of you have
survived this long I will never know." Yes, but
they did, did they not? And without resorting
to barbaric tactics. Law makes civilization. It's what
holds us together. The military, the leaders, are not above
the law. That's what the coup and Lee's objections
were about. Change the law if it no longer fits, but
dismissing it or disregarding it because it's inconvenient
is not acceptable. Abe Lincoln was wrong to do it,
FDR was wrong to do it, let's not even get into contemporary
politics, Adama was wrong to do it, and Cain is wrong.
And picking and choosing which rules and regs to follow
-- she likes the ones which give her "broad discretion" and
authority to try, convict, sentence, and execute Chief
and Helo, but ignores "do not murder" and "do
not steal" -- is adding insult to illegality.
The worst of it all is, as Roslin realizes and Adama
finally accepts, Cain thinks she's right. She's
doing all this not only for a power grab, but because
she really thinks she's doing the right thing in the
long run for whomever she's leading. That makes her
genuinely dangerous. When rape, torture, abuse, piracy,
and murder are acceptable and commonplace tools for
daily survival, the leader must be stopped and removed.
No civilization can withstand that kind of treatment.
Where's the media? Where are the reporters? Where's
the Quorum? Where's Zarek? What does the civilian population
think of all this? Are they getting suspicious and
impatient yet about the supplies they were supposed
to receive? Did anyone notice the Viper dance?
Interesting how having "guts and initiative" get
Helo and Chief slated for execution (because Cain disagreed
with them) but get Kara a promotion (because Cain liked
the outcome). I am disturbed that Kara seems to be
getting comfortable with Cain's ideas -- haring back
to the Colonies to kick out the Cylons, rolling over
for her command -- but hey, Starbuck is no saint, and
kicking toaster ass sounds like a great way to come
back covered in glory, which appeals to Kara's volatile
Roslin really has "come a long way" to
be bluntly suggesting assassination. And she's right.
Cain is a dangerous, aggressive threat, and the threat
needs to be removed for the safety of the fleet and
the species. Someone accustomed to that much power
(again I wonder, how much power did she have before
the Cylon attack? This is arrogance of long standing,
not recently seized and jealously held) would never
agree to sit quietly in a brig. Her loyal minions might
or might not adapt, but if she's alive, she can get
messages out and keep her followers together (as Roslin
proved in the beginning of the season).
I guess Baltar is going to have to kill Gina in the
end, to put her out of her misery. Is that ever
going to play hell with his psyche.
Adama feels the need to point out that the bastards
who attacked Pregnant Sharon were not from the Galactica,
and not under his command. He may not like her, he
may fear her and make sure she's jailed, but there
are things you do and do not do with prisoners. When
a prisoner is cooperating, there are additional levels
of consideration. When a prisoner is pregnant, there
are other factors to think about. Adama understands
those lines and limits, and it means enough to him
to make sure that Sharon knows where he stands.
It's a little thing, but it's part of the greater point
that Adama will not use "any means necessary" to
survive or to win. He doesn't merely want to win, as
Cain does, but to win and be able to look himself in
the mirror most mornings. (When the camera came up
on Boomer, my first thought was that he was going to
ask her to be the assassin.)
I'm glad that Helo and Chief are coming to some kind
of accommodation. Ongoing triangles get ugly or boring
very fast. And since they're really the only two who
can understand the predicament they were in, it's better
that they support one another than be at each other's
In listening to Baltar's Six talk
about the Triad games she went to, it struck me that
I don't think
we often hear her say "I." She rarely talks
about her own thoughts, feelings, experiences. To hear
her reminisce about her life on Caprica was eerie.
(I should point out that "I scalped two tickets" means "I sold two
tickets illegally," not "I bought two
Cain growls and (literally) spits
at Gina. "This thing used
to sit in our mess and eat our food," she grates.
On the one hand, yes, that's exactly what she did,
and what Boomer did -- pretended to be human. That
betrayal and outrage is something all our people had
to go through with both Sharons. But note that Pregnant
Sharon, who hasn't killed anyone, is treated with wary
neutrality. Galactica Sharon shot Adama, so
there was a reason to be angry with her. And Gina did
(if you believe Cain) kill several Pegasus people.
But do we know the context? Was it her mission to kill
the officers? Did she kill them while defending herself
from assault and rape? Did she try to set bombs or
take out an engine? Which is the greater offense, to
kill people or to betray them by masquerading as something
she wasn't? Because of the setup with Baltar and his
Six, we're supposed to feel sympathy with this battered
woman. What if she fired one of Pegasus's nuclear
warheads at Scorpius and killed a billion people? Just
things to remember.
So if the mysterious Cylon ship makes more drones/clones/copies,
could it repair existing bodies? Is that going to be
the source of Roslin's cure? (Because you know there
has to be one. There's no way Moore is going to kill
Jack keeps saying "the Admiral made the decision." Distancing
himself from her? Emphasizing that she alone is making
these insane judgments, rather than "we decided" as
though he was part of it or agreed with her?
Moogie points out that while Cain is now sending her
XO to Galactica, and has a Galactica person
as her CAG, Adama (who has lost his son/CAG and trusted
lieutenant) still has Tigh.
Even in ordering assassination,
Adama is honest. He tells Kara "pull out your weapon and shoot Admiral
Cain in the head." Cain tells Jack "terminate
Adama's command, starting with Adama." He's owning
up to what he's doing. She's cloaking it in convenient
military euphemisms. If this plays out (and Cain doesn't
die by taking Pegasus into the xerox ship and
self-destructing), Jack will break and Kara won't.
Right now that seems more likely, since we have several
people on Pegasus who have to get out before
it FOOMs. How ironic is it, though, that Adama is ordering
Kara to do what Galactica Sharon did to him?
Especially after he apologized to Pregnant Sharon about
the attempted rape? (To her credit, Roslin is also
up front about it: "You've gotta kill her," not "We
have to remove her" or any similar equivocation.)
Two friends who just caught up with the show in the
last month (another convert! one more and I get a toa--
oh wait, I can't say that) made what I thought was
an excellent prediction: since the showdown over Cain
will likely fall to a personal conflict (Kara tries
to shoot her, one of her own people tries to shoot
her, etc.) and Pegasus will still be intact
so our people can return, my friends suggest that after
it's all over, "the XO will take the Pegasus back
to Caprica to hunt for survivors and destroy the farms." That
would tie up lots of loose ends as well as giving plenty
of fodder for future stories and an in-and-out arc
with this second battlestar.
All these powerful women glaring and snarling at each
other! Running the show! Calling the shots! And none
of the men feeling threatened or emasculated by that!
Good lord, there's hope for TV yet.