Thursday, November 30, 2006

TV: Watch, and read about, 'Battlestar Galactica'

Originally uploaded by
goldteethblog. has posted a great feature about the writers of The Sci-Fi Channel’s "Battlestar Galactica." If you've been avoiding the show because of that goofy title, well, you need to get over it.

Remember, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" was arguably an even more ridiculous title, and that was one of the best and most critically acclaimed shows, like, ever. This season, “Galactica’s” third, alone has aired some of the finest television I’ve seen in years.

The show is a reimagining of the campy 1970s space saga of the same name, which I’ve never seen. The update follows the last human survivors of an attempted genocide. The humans organize a fleet of ships, lead by the Battlestar Galactica, and flee into space pursued by a synthetic race called Cylons. Yeah, it might sound like standard sci-fi stuff, but the quality of this show is unprecedented in sci-fi TV. It’s resem-bles “Firefly” in that it’s a space saga without the cheesy alien costumes or lazer blasters.

Executive producer Ronald D. Moore, a veteran of “Star Trek: The Next Generation” and “Roswell,” delivers a smart, dark and impactful series driven by flawed and relatable characters, smart social commentary and absorbing ideas. “Galactica” can be read as a bold examination of post-9/11 America. The first major storyline of this season was in-formed by the current Iraq war, with humans acting not unlike Iraqi insurgents under the thumb of the op-pressive Cylons. The show manages to examine all the major tenets of our culture — politics, religion, faith, friendship — without being cloying or losing its visceral kick.

The Slate story is essentially a review of the “Battlestar Galactica Writers Meeting” podcast. The podcast is an unedited four-hour recording of writers David Weddle and Bradley Thompson “breaking” a story for a season two episode with Moore. The story and the podcast might interest non-“Galactica” geeks, since it details what TV writers go through when creating an episode. Read the story, and then buy the show on DVD. You have to start with the miniseries, then season one and so forth. Fans of quality TV will be sucked in in no time.


danholmes43 said...

I think that The Sci Fi Channel's BATTLESTAR GALACTICA isthe greatest sci fi series of all time. What I find great about the show, is the way the writing is so perfect. The characters are real and after 9/11, BATTLESTAR GALACTICA has more meaning today than it might have in 1978. The original BATTLESTAR GALACTICA was ABC-TV and Universal Studio's answer to "Star Wars," but the newer series is written for a much adult audience.

Boyd G. said...

Season three has been the best so far, especially the beginning arc. I like sseing more of the cylons, how they live and plot.