Battlestar Galactica finale: all good things...
Saw it again tonight, legitimately this time! ;-) Understood and appreciated even more clearly the appropriateness of the flashbacks. Balthar doesn't completely achieve his hard-won redemption until he breaks down saying "I know farming" - his father who he hated and who we saw in an earlier flashback was himself a farmer, Baltar being brought up on a farm. In that one phrase and the tears that follow it, Baltar accepts who he truly is, but more importantly experiences reconciliation with the memory of his father.
The Film Studies teacher in me has found it wonderful to see some of the younger (adult) cast seemingly grow in confidence as actors through the show's run. Tricia Helfer + Grace Park have been outstanding as the various incarnations of their respective Cylons. "Head" 6 + in the red dress and Caprica 6 have to be two of THE all-time great "femme fatales".
But, one who it has been a joy to watch mature and grow is Jamie Bamber as Capt. Lee Adama, the Admiral's son. In the epilogue to the final show, he brought his character full circle. In the flashbacks we hear from his brother how he hated his father in pre-genocide times. And though their mutual love and respect has been apparent throughout the subsequent 4 full seasons, they have not always seen eye to eye. Far from it. But Lee gradually learned to stand on his own two feet without constantly comparing himself with his father (+ grand-father). His goodbye to his dad was a wonderfully touching moment and I dare to suggest that in Jamie Bamber's face at that moment there was emotion and appreciation from him, the actor, to Edward James Olmos, the actor, that went far beyond the confines of character. It was a goodbye from actor-dad to actor-son. But then I think so many of the goodbyes at the end were like that: eg. President Roslin's to Doc Cottle who basically kept her character alive from episode one, series one, to the end of the final show.
Roslin (the brilliant + beautiful Mary McDonnell) + Bill Adama (the equally brilliant EJO - the rock around whom the whole show gravitated) end as man + wife, he gives her his ring in the moment of her death.
I said before that he was like Moses. No, they both were. A civilian leader + a military leader. At the very end he shows her the beauty of their "promised land", their new "Earth" (our Earth 150,000 years ago) from their raptor craft as they fly off together and she quietly, beautifully slips away - like Moses, seeing the promised land before her, but unable to stay to appreciate it. Her job is done, her journey run its course.
Just like Starbuck, who was born again, sent back by.... God, an "angel of fire" said Leoben. Her relationship, her on-off love but unchanging friendship with Lee Adama has been one of the highlights of the whole 4 years for me. Katee Sackhoff + Jamie Bamber played out that relationship brilliantly. Never did it strike a false note, despite the roller-coaster ride it took them on. And here in the final show the hope that somehow they might find peace together didn't happen in the way I think many wanted, but it made sense to me and I found their final moments beautiful, heart-rendingly sad and yet optimistic. She was to finally be at peace with herself and be able to "pass over" and be with her actual husband, Sam ("See you on the other side.").
How could I finish without a word about old Saul Tigh, Bill Adama's faithful right-hand man and best friend. His character arc (as actor Michael Hogan says himself) has been such a rewarding one. I loved his little moments of humour in this final episode, the little conspiratorial laughs shared with his buddy. He wins the award for the best way of saying "frak" and "frakkin'" (my new favourite swear word) and "Gods dammit!". Why has this actor not made it big outside of his native Canada? He's 60-odd now, but "Gods dammit" he's fantastic.
Tigh (Hogan) + Adama (Olmos) during series 3.
The online forums show a mixture of opinion on the ending to the show. Some think it was too overtly spiritual and not scientific enough (eg. Starbuck's "ascension"). But I think the following article nails the surprisingly religious resolution to so many of the plot threads and character arcs, which IMHO had actually been prepared (for the most part) throughout the whole 4/5 series.
Battlestar Galactica finale: Mysteries solved; Mystery contemplated
BSG-final Spoilers abound below. You have been warned.
Even I was a bit surprised at the degree to which Battlestar Galactica's mystical questions received mystical answers in last night's 2-hour finale, "Daybreak, Part 2." There's been a lot of God-talk (and gods-talk) throughout the show, and the resolution showed that there really was a divine hand behind the show's story. But, as one of the messengers says in the final scene, don't call him God—"You know he doesn't like that name."
As expected, Gaius Baltar, God's favorite broken instrument, played a pivotal role in the conclusion of the human-Cylon war.The final battle comes down to a standoff between Brother Cavil and the fleet's leaders over the hybrid Hera, it's Baltar who convinces the Cylon leader to lay down his arms in an impassioned mini-sermon:..... see here [SF Gospel: Battlestar Galactica finale: Mysteries solved; Mystery contemplated] for the full article by Gabriel Mckee.