Man, I could not disagree with this paragraph more. The climactic action sequence of the Res Ship arc - including especially the shots that are entirely CGI porn - is inextricably tied up with the thematic and narrative course of the story and could not possibly be excised without dramatically lessening the whole.
And that's why most of it happens off-screen while Baltar and Gina have a heart to heart, and the rest of it happens off-screen while Lee succumbs to hypoxia. Meanwhile, the post-battle scene of Starbuck and Fisk preparing to carry out their final orders goes in one uninterrupted sequence, to show its relative unimportance and how it totally isn't the climax of the three-parter.
The reason everyone loves the battle in Res Ship 2 is that it is not the same as Hand of God or Daybreak pt 2; it's not mindless CGI filler to keep stupid viewers entertained. It's beautiful, purposeful visual art that is also an integral component of the narrative and thematic climax. The soundtrack, the score, the acting, every plot thread, they all come together right there, and the CGI acts in support.
So, in other words, the Resurrection Ship three parter is not an action story
I also think you've badly misjudged the central problem of the Res Ship arc. It's certainly not 'Cain has arrived and will probably kill everyone'; it's precisely the opposite - Cain has arrived and her monstrosity might, horrifyingly, be what saves everybody. That's the danger: are her methods the only way to survive? Would we then still be worthy of survival?
For a while, I was utterly confused by this, wondering if you watched the same episodes I did. Nearly every scene she was in or talked about painted Cain as deluded, ineffective, or both. Her first statement after arriving in the fleet is, "Welcome back to the Colonial Fleet." Adama lost eighty people in the Cylon attack, while Cain lost ten times as many, in an ill-considered suicide mission which she carried out after murdering a fellow officer and close friend. Adama protected the civilian fleet through hundreds of Cylon attacks, while Cain, with twice the firepower and a quarter as many people to protect, got all her civilians killed in one day. Baltar got a full dossier on the Resurrection Ship from Gina in five minutes with a set of clean clothes and a sliced apple, while Cain ordered the torture of Sharon, undoing months of goodwill with no gain.
Cain refused to give Roslin or the Fleet the time of day, furnishing Galactica with supplies and ignoring the rest of the Fleet. Cain claimed to be on "detached service" when the President could literally see her out the window, demonstrating a contempt for the very rule of law from which she derived her authority. To paraphrase Lee, if Roslin isn't President, then Cain isn't an Admiral, Adama isn't a Commander, and no one has to listen to a damn thing Cain says.
Everything in the three-parter, and Razor, demonstrated Cain to be a danger to herself and others. Like the best dicators, she can only maintain her position through a combination of charisma and unflinching brutality.
Then I realized that you were talking about Adama and Roslin deciding the only way to solve the Cain problem was to shoot her in the head. Here's the problem with that, though. Stabbing Cain in the back, while certainly crossing a moral line, is nowhere near the equivalent of summarily executing an insubordinate officer (who, incidentally, was right), summarily executing dozens of innocent people and leaving thousands more to die, or condemning her own crew to a guaranteed suicide-by-Cylon. If Almighty God hadn't intervened to make sure Cain's chickens came home to roost at that exact moment, Adama would've just postponed the inevitable confrontation with Cain or, worse, ceded leadership of the Fleet to her, leaving him to join the silent, bullied mass of humanity that let her commit atrocity after atrocity while saying nothing (the most depressing thing about Razor is that aside from Belzen, no one ever stood up to her, even when they were dead meat either way. It kind of puts a damper on my argument that BSG is about the triumph of the human spirt over unimaginable adversity, and makes the flashbacks in the movie a fairly dry recitation of stuff we already knew with no surprises. Imagine if one of the civilian ships Cain was pirating went on a suicide run against the Pegasus, and Cain had it shot down. That would've been an addition which is both plausible, and plausibly wouldn't be mentioned by Fisk to Tigh).
Is Adama still worthy of survival when his act of mercy leads to Cain taking over the Fleet when Roslin dies a week later? When she starts wiring civilian ships to nukes and using them as traps or fireships? Saying murdering Cain to prevent her from committing atrocities is itself a vindication of those atrocities is nonsense, like a racist demanding that you tolerate his intolerance.
Luckily, when Adama actually did have to take a stand against a murderous despot taking over the fleet without God intervening to keep his hands clean, he didn't have another battlestar full of troops to fight against, and you know what happened? Adama won, and then he shot the bastards, because otherwise, they would've kept making people die needlessly. And it still wasn't a vindication of Cain's "If it doesn't make you want to vomit from its sheer depravity, it's not a difficult enough decision to be the correct one" philosophy.
Cain is absolutely the antagonist of Pegasus/Resurrection Ship. The question is not whether her methods are necessary, it's whether her methods will allow her to overwhelm our heroes, who live by a moral and ethical code, and tear down everything they've fought to preserve. In grand morality-play fashion, Cain doesn't, because her own decisions result in her being shot in the face without any help from Adama and Roslin.
In either case, though, the Resurrection Ship itself is not the antagonist of this non-action story, making it a poor comparison for a story where the military objective is the primary plot of the drama.
(Now wasn't that much more fun than just saying, "It sucks," "Yep, sure does," in an endless loop every friday? That's why I'd like to actually discuss
We saw the guy who ~had a baby~ sacrifice himself (as of course he inevitably would).
No, he didn't. He *****ed out and flew away. Why, there are any number of things that could happen now. He could have a crisis of conscience, return and then sacrifice himself in a later segment, making you right retroactively. He could defect to the Cylon side. He could survive the whole thing, at which time Coker and Adama have to decide if they'll tell the truth about him deserting them or cover for him.
See, B&C has already surprised you, and you didn't even notice.
The decision to turn the B&C pilot into webisodes and cancel the show even before the pilot was aired happened for a reason. And after watching the B&C webisodes, i'm glad they canned it.
It was originally intended to be a webseries, then aired on TV, then released on video. After seeing the script, SyFy decided to skip the web part, then after seeing how long it was taking to do 1,800 effects shots, they decided to go back to the original plan. Then they apparently assed around for a year until finding an on-line distribution partner with the infrastructure to hold up to a massive influx of traffic, and then put it on YouTube, just like any idiot could. I blame brain-spiders for that last part.
At this point TOS portrayed a far more realistic and believable depiction of war, in fact its leagues better than B&C in pretty much every category.
At this point in TOS, Apollo was dating a reporter he'd know for five minutes who had been widowed for six minutes (whom he'd marry in the next episode, with her widowing him immediately thereafter), and
President Adar's naiveté had mistaken a
Cylon attack for a welcoming committee, which seems odd for someone raised in a society that's been at war for a thousand yahrens (same goes for Apollo, Starbuck, and Zac talking about the good old days before the war, when they were a Star Trek ripoff and not a Star Wars ripoff). Starbuck hadn't decided to go AWOL to manage a set of three-faced singers on their tour to the ruined husks of the twelve worlds yet, though, so you've got that going for you.
At this point its hard to believe the crew on B&C even saw the RDM version let alone where heavily involved they've stomped on so much established canon and made so many painful errors in depicting the content.
The problem is, I've been hearing variations on this comment since season two first aired. I probably would've heard it with "33," if "Litmus" hadn't been my first episode. At this point, I've become inured to cries of "They're ruining it! Let's all talk about how much it sucks now that they're ruining it!"
In B&C, the main characters perform stupid, totally unbelievable death-defying maneuvers every few minutes, and this shatters my suspension of disbelief.
I agree with your analysis. It's not the quality of the action, it's the quantity of the action. B&C's fatal flaw is the relentless pacing. I just don't care about that problem so much, and I recognize it as being inherent to the premise. Big epic war action and impossible set-pieces in stand-alone ten-minute chunks is pretty much the design brief for every "Halo" game (except they chunk into thirty seconds).
I've been spoiled on the fate of Beka, but I'm honestly not sure if Coker is going to be inspired by Adama's can-do spirit to re-up so he can be part of the future installments they had in mind, or if he's going to fall victim to retirony. I suppose it could be both. Anybody want to start a pool?
Except it's already got reflective ships
Note to self, don't tell newman if I start experimenting with linear color space.