by Ronald D. Moore
Review by Drew Bittner
Umvd DVD ISBN/ITEM#: B00064AFBE
Date: April 1, 2005 / Show Official Info /
Since the review of the first few episodes, it's become clear that this new incarnation of Battlestar Galactica is some of the hardest-hitting and best sf on TV. Led by Edward James Olmos as Cmdr. Adama, the cast includes tremendous talent; even better, the actors have been put through their paces in harrowing storylines that blend religious, political and social themes.
The finale, a two-parter named "Kobol's Last Gleaming", involves the discovery of the legendary homeworld by a Colonial patrol. When President Roslin (Mary McDonnell) authorizes an exploratory mission, however, they find that the world is guarded by a Cylon basestar (a space borne carrier more powerful than the Galactica). If they hope to explore Kobol, they must destroy that basestar.
Adama's plan uses the Cylon raider captured by Starbuck (Katee Sackhoff) during a crash-landing. Equipped with a nuke, she'll fly it inside and leave the nuke. But when Roslin has a prophetic vision, Starbuck is persuaded to abandon that mission in order to fly back to the Cylon-held world of Caprica. There is an artifact there-- the Arrow of Apollo-- that they must have if they are to voyage onward to Earth. Betraying Adama's trust seems like a small price to pay, especially after Roslin reveals certain secrets to Starbuck.
Meanwhile, on Caprica, the stranded pilot Helo (Tahmoh Penikett) has learned that Boomer (Grace Park) is actually a Cylon. The betrayal of trust is shattering-- but even worse is Boomer's revelation about her "delicate condition."
Baltar's (James Callis) allegiance tilts further toward the Cylon cause, as Six (Tricia Helfer) tells him that it is not safe to stay aboard the Galactica. He joins the Kobol mission, finding himself in a theater where the next phase of the Cylons' unsettling plan is revealed at last. They aspire to knowledge of God... and destroying nearly all of humanity was only one part of their strategy.
When Starbuck reaches Caprica, the Arrow proves to be well protected, by an all-too-real copy of Six. The two have one of the best showdowns in the series.
Because she has disrupted the military side of their survival mission, Adama orders Roslin taken into custody. Lee (Jamie Bamber) interferes with the mission and is to be locked up as well. The Galactica's Boomer has undertaken the mission to blow up the basestar, using a salvaged Cylon transponder, but what she finds on the basestar nearly overwhelms her sanity--and confirms her worst fears about herself. When she returns to receive Adama's congratulations, her reaction is not what anybody would have expected-- and leaves the first season on a cliffhanger.
The show has been renewed for a second season, slated to begin in July. Anyone who hasn't seen it yet should take advantage of the next three months to catch up. This is one of the best sf shows of the last many years.
For more information, SciFi.com has an extensive webpage for the show at www.scifi.com/battlestar, including episode recaps, character and ship descriptions, and Ronald Moore's own weblog.