Battlestar 4.19 - "Someone to Watch Over Me"
On one of his recent podcasts, Ron Moore compared the story of "Battlestar Galactica" to a wide tapestry, and said that these last episodes serve as a tightening of the strings, to pull the whole thing together.
If you have watched this show since the mini-series I am sure you are feeling quite rewarded for your investment. Even though Moore has admitted that certain major plot twists were produced as the show progressed (a perfect example of this would be the reveal that Ellen Tigh was the final Cylon) it is clear that story has been moving towards a grand destination.
This episode "Someone to Watch Over Me" is filled with an incredible amount of moments that gain their dramatic strength from events in previous episodes.
Let's take the story of Boomer (one of the main characters from this episode) and condense it into bullet points. I think you will see just how complex her story is, and how perfectly it intertwines all of the best qualities of this show:
- Boomer is the eighth Cylon skin job, sent to infiltrate the Galactica. Her programming causes her to shoot Adama in the chest.
-Boomer is set to stand trial, and is supported by her lover, the Chief, but is shot dead by Cali.
- She is reborn on the original Caprica, and has a difficult time adjusting to the fact that she is a Cylon. She and Caprica Six start a movement amongst the Cylons, pushing for the idea of a peaceful coexistence with the humans.
-After witnessing the Cylon occupation of New Caprica and the atrocities committed by the human Resistance, Boomer loses faith in humanity. She becomes a plaything of sorts for Cavil.
-Two episodes back, Boomer shows the potential for being redeemed. She frees Ellen Tigh from Cavil, who was planning to dissect Ellen's brain, and brings her to the fleet, to be reunited with the other Final Five members.
Some of the other beats you need to know to get the full effect of Boomer's story are:
- Cylons are able to live in their own imagination. They can escape to a virtual reality in their own mind.
- The Chief is a member of the Final Five, and even though he married Cali, he was unaware that his son was conceived by Cali and Hotdog.
Of course some of this had to have been planned from a very early point of the show's production, but there has never been a plot twist that has been too far fetched to not be a part of the path to the final episode.
In the case of Boomer, because of her constant switching in allegiances, throughout the show's run and how touching the scene was, in this episode, when she invited The Chief into her imagination, it came as a total shock to me that she could have been working for Cavil the entire time.
The scene where she had sex with Helo while Athena was bound in the closet, watching, was quite painful to sit through. BSG is one of the few shows that such a scenario could even occur, and it is so brutal a show that there was no way we would be spared Athena's torment.
Boomer, just like any character on BSG has done some horrible things throughout the show's run, and the beautiful part is, for every atrocity there was some sort of justification for the character's actions. Like Boomer, every character is well developed and has some hand in the ultimate fate of the Galactica. In the case of this episode, Boomer has kidnapped Hera, the only living human/cylon hybrid and her escape has crippled the Galactica.
It took me a while to backtrack through Boomer's character arc. While watching the show, you aren't given the option to bring yourself up to speed. 'Battlestar Galactica' chugs ahead, without halting the narrative to make sure that everyone has caught up.
There are only three more episodes to go, and I ask, is there any other show that you have watched where the mythology and the single episodes have blended so well together, leading towards the show's conclusion. If so, tell me.