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Battlestar Galactica Season 4, Episodes 7-9 Review

15 Aug

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EPISODE 7: “GUESS WHAT’S COMING TO DINNER?”

The series as a whole constantly deals with the question of whether or not the Cylons should be considered humans, but “Guess What’s Coming to Dinner?” narrows the focus to the concept of mortality. “For our existence to hold any value, it must end,” Natalie tells the Quorum. “To live meaningful lives, we must die and not return. Mortality is the one thing that makes you whole.” The Resurrection Ship is a big factor when it comes to the Cylon identity debate, so it’s interesting to see these Cylons delve into the idea of mortality. Of course, even though Natalie reaches out and gives this speech, it doesn’t mean she’s free from the ongoing struggle between human and Cylon. Eventually, she gets several bullets right in the chest, and the irony is thick as we see the life rapidly draining from her body.

EPISODE 8: “SINE QUA NON”

Nothing like an episode that completely stops whatever momentum was built up so far. This isn’t a bad episode like we know the show can produce, but it’s certainly an extremely irritating one. As powerful a final sequence Adama leaving Galactica makes for, what comes before is a mishmash of questionable writing decisions and failed follow-ups to big plot points. In particular, it’s disappointing how the show handles a great character like Romo Lampkin here: he takes the whole episode to come up with the answer “Lee Adama”–one we figured out at the beginning–and his big Cat Death Anger Moment falls flat.

EPISODE 9: “THE HUB”

If there’s one thing that this show always seems to get right now, it’s the space battle sequences. The hub attack is beautifully handled by the production crew, and what sets it apart from previous space sequences is its emotion-driven nature. It’s not so much intense or exciting as it is reflective and poetic, and the show clearly understands just how important of a moment this is. It’s a culmination of a series’s worth of discussions about humanity and identity–serving as a reversal of sorts of the Cylon attack at the beginning of the series–and it’s nicely paired with a look at Roslin and her own humanity. McDonnell and Callis kill it in the scene during which Baltar confesses his role in the genocide, and McDonnell and Olmos close out the episode in a stirring fashion. For all the flaws writing-wise this season, this truly is an acting showcase for the cast.

GRADES: B+, B-, B+

Photo credit: Battlestar Galactica, Syfy

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