This post recaps, with pictures, the series finale. Dude, if you have not seen it yet, a) what are you waiting for? and b) do not read this, and c) DO NOT EVEN SCROLL DOWN because you will see some REVEALING SHIT HERE, okay? Okay.
First of all let me just say that this entire season of Battlestar Galactica has been incredible, and the series finale is no exception. I’m glad they aired Part I of “Daybreak” before the finale last night, because I really appreciated getting to watch all three hours of it together. That first hour seemed so much more purposeful and cohesive in close connection with hours two and three. The things we learned about the past actually turned out to carry some weight here, as I was worried they might not. WHEW.
Moving on then: I got pretty snap-happy, as you can imagine, when I was gathering the screen shots for this recap. Hence there are forty-some photos here. I’ve divided them into sections and I will provide some thoughts for each section, but otherwise the captions will have to suffice. Let’s go then, shall we?
Things That Happened in the Past:
In the final two hours of “Daybreak,” the scenes from the past began to take on deeper significance. While last week they seemed largely irrelevant, this week they seemed more tightly woven into the show. I appreciated, but did not really love this aspect.
Adama puked all over himself this one time outside a strip club.
Boomer was a bad pilot and owed Adama a favor.
Kara double-dog-dared Lee to do her; said she didn't fear death and didn't want to be forgotten
Laura had a blind date with a former student and slept with him; kicked him out of bed; joined a presidential campaign.
Shit Gets Difficult for Our Guys for a While:
During the battle, the temporary detente, and the ensuing mayhem, I was once again on the edge of my seat every single second. I even made an effort to pay attention to the usually inscrutable-to-me SPACEBATTLES so I could observe what was happening to which ship at what time. Among the highlights for me was seeing Six, Baltar, Imagination Six, and Imagination Baltar all together in the same scene. While I’m kind of grumpy about the direction the show has decided to take with the Imagination Team (angels, higher powers, “divine hands” at work – gag me please), I still loved this moment. I also found myself excitedly jumping around and screaming at the TV during the scene when Starbuck has to jump the ship but she doesn’t have the rendez-vous coordinates. Holy frak that was an incredible moment.
It's Admiral Hoshi and President Crazy-Ass Romo Lampkin - This doesn't bode well.
Even Caprica Six and Baltar have to fight to protect the ship. Baltar looks mighty ridiculous in that get up.
Galactica jumps right into the metaphorical crotch of the Colony and faces attack immediately, a.k.a. SPACEBATTLE.
Lee leads the team into the Colony.
Starbuck has a gun and she's not afraid to use it!
In the meanwhile, Simon is poking a tube into Hera's ear. OH WOE. Oh, no, wait, I don't care.
Centurion against Centurion - this toaster battle was clangy and frakking intense!
Six and Baltar see Imagination Six and Imagination Baltar, and each one learns that the other one can see the Imagination Angel Team. One of my favorite scenes!
Boomer pays back that favor, gets all shot up. RIP, Boomer, you inscrutable Cylon Lady.
OH NOES, MY BOYFRIEND HELO IS HURT!!!
Baltar, Athena, Six, and Roslin collectively hallucinate that whole Opera House thing again, leading them to the CIC with Hera.
In case we forgot, here are the faceless final five as imagined in the past.
And here are the final five, revealed and arranged around and in the Bathtub of Mystery.
Baltar pontificates annoyingly, yet poignantly, about a higher power. I grumble.
Bathtime is for sharing - sharing information about Cylon resurrection, that is. At least until something goes horribly wrong.
Well, Frak. Something went horribly wrong and now Galactica is under sustained fire again.
"There must be some kind of way out of here," said the pilot to the FTL drive.
In the most frakking awesome scene ever on BSG, Starbuck uses her crazy music math to jump the ship to Bob Dylan's magical coordinates. HOLY FRAK.
Galactica survives the jump, but is so broken apart she'll never jump again. It's a good thing they made it to ... wait, where are they exactly?
Holy Frak, It’s Motherfrakking EARTH:
I really, really did not think this was going to happen. Really.
HOLY FRAK. IT'S MOTHERFRAKKING EARTH.
But What Does this Mean?
For one thing, we find out that Earth is a frakking breathtakingly gorgeous place. In almost every scene on the planet, the camera pulls back to give us rich, majestic views of the landscape. The beauty of these scenes is almost a bit hard to take. We learn what will become of the fleet, the Centurions, and the other Cylons, and shit starts to feel all poignant and ending-like here, but the goodbyes will continue for a nice long while even after the fleet flies into the sun.
The guys investigate an existing civilization they found on the planet.
They may be pre-verbal but Baltar has some plans for them already. No verbalizing necessary.
The Centurions will finally be free.
Adama pilots the last viper out of Galactica, like we knew he would. Flight suit looks good on you, dude.
Sam Anders pilots the rest of the fleet into the sun, in a moment pf physical perfection. I sniffle.
Goodbyes, Try Not to Cries:
More wide shots of velvety grassland, rugged hills and mountains, and a perfectly blue sky. In so many of these scenes, though, it seems as if everyone is destined to be utterly alone. Tyrol, Lee Adama, Bill Adama – they all wind up facing the future completely alone. Just as I was feeling a little despair over that, we saw groups of settlers heading off into the future together. Anonymous civilians, the Tighs, the Agathons – they all walk off toward their futures together. That’s nice. If you watched these scenes and didn’t find need of a tissue, I don’t know who you are.
Tyrol says goodbye to Tigh and Ellen before jetting off to Scotland, Iceland, Labrador, or some other cold island. Alone.
Lee and Kara wave goodbye as Adama and Roslin take flight.
Lee and Kara discuss their plans for the future, except SOMEBODY doesn't seem to have any.
And now Lee is alone.
Adama takes Roslin flying over the continent looking for a place to build that cabin, only he'll have to do all the building ALONE because she frakking dies in the Raptor. Sheesh.
Tigh and Ellen walk off toward their future.
Karl, Sharon, and Hera walk off toward their future.
Oh hey, it's the Imagination Team come to say goodbye to the real Six and Baltar.
Baltar knows a lot about farming.
Six and Baltar walk off toward their future.
And now Adama is alone.
Hera. Still annoying.
The Part I Would Happily Pretend Never Happened:
All right. Now we have come to the last five minutes of the show, a.k.a. the part I wish my DVR had failed to record. Let me say that I do think the implications and the ideas behind this ending are solid. After all, the notion that this has all happened before and will all happen again has been emphasized so strongly all season (and throughout the show). We know this. There was also always the thought that our Galacticans would possibly find their way to Earth — our Earth — and somehow connect with our society here. Nothing really came out of the blue with this ending. What I didn’t like about it was the quality I always call “too explainy.” I just don’t like it when movies and television take ideas that should best remain in the realm of implications and shared understandings and instead of implying them they spell them out directly in BOLD ALL CAPS BLINKING NEON. Give the viewer a little credit, please!
So while it was mainly the element of blatant explainyness that turned me off about the last five minutes here, I was also (only mildly) disgruntled with the whole worlds-colliding quality that occurs when characters from a fictional television show appear in the non-fictional world we viewers inhabit. It renders everything that was acceptable in the Reality-of-the-Show Fictional Realm into something that is, for me, unacceptable in the Reality-of-Life Nonfictional Realm. I can accept all the angels and higher power bullshit in the realm of fiction, but I find the assertion (and it really was an assertion) that there is a higher power designing our universe to be pretty distasteful. Well, mildly. I loved the show too much to get all het up about it.
Honestly, I would have been fine with this being the last shot of the series. But, sigh, it wasn't.
Oh look, it's Ron Moore. How frakking clever.
On the whole, though, I really, really loved this series finale. It certainly cemented Battlestar Galactica‘s place in my all-time top-five list of television shows. I have now begun collecting the DVDs (as some of you know I am obsessed with waiting until I can buy them at a low, low price from Amazon Used) and I plan to start re-watching the entire series sometime soon. And oh yeah! We have both Caprica and BSG: The Plan to look forward to as well. So I suppose it isn’t really truly over, yet.
What did you think? Favorite moments? What about the last five minutes? Am I crazy here?