Sunday, April 08, 2007

Awesome vs. Not Awesome.

You know how sometimes you're having a day that's maybe not so awesome and so you say to yourself, "I need to think of something awesome," and so then you think about when Adama jumped the Galactica INTO New Caprica's atmosphere and they're dropping straight fucking down while all the Vipers are streaming out of it, then they jump back into space before they flatten the whole fucking town? Well goddamn right, because that's AWESOME.

But, it's not SO awesome that at least a dozen or so "videomakers" should have cut it into music videos for bands like the Offspring, Hendrix, and Velvet Revolver. WTF??


paulmdavis said...

Just be glad you've avoided the promos the SciFi network was running this year with slow-motion scenes of Lee and Starbuck and the All-American Rejects playing in the background. Worse than any fan video could possibly be...yikes!

Dr. Anne Elizabeth Moore said...

i can't post as a user, so here's a comment i need feedback on:

"How could Starbuck not be a Cylon? She had that memory of the circle design from the temple implanted in her since birth evidently, as a psychological trigger to activate her later. That symbol was thousands of years old and no one had ever seen it before but Starbuck had been drawing it over and over since she was a small child. Then she was compelled by the symbol to fly her ship into a storm and blow herself up—there's no way she's not a Cylon, otherwise she would be permanently dead (instead of resurrecting in another body.) If she's not a Cylon, she's a ghost.

"My theory is that Starbuck IS still one of the good guys, though. I think the Final 5 Cylons ARE good guys and that's why they have that split with the other 7 models.

"The best thing about that show is the theme is The Human Condition: is it so inherently flawed that the Cylons actually are RIGHT to want to wipe the humans out? every time the humans get close to proving them wrong, they do something inherently human that is totally fucked up and start to prove the Cylons right. But then they also manage to prove the Cylons wrong, too. It's like Adama said: "We never asked ourselves whether or not we DESERVED to survive." Are the humans inherently "good"? No, they're not -- in fact, most of the reasons the Cylons have for thinking humans should be wiped out out are valid. But so far they have managed to (just barely) succeed in proving their worth anyway -- this is very much the actual Human Condition, and that show has a very mature understanding of it. Which is totally surprising considering that it is a revival of, of all things, Battlestar Galactica."

Please advise, as my relationship with the writer may hinge on this discussion.

Sinker said...

Hmmm. My main feedback? "I wish this was an actual blog post."

Second? "All the conversations I have with people about BSG go like this:

'Dude, can you believe it?'

'TOTALLY fucked up!'

'I know!'"

So if you're getting someone to give you a literate, nuanced deconstruction of not only Starbuck's death but the entire theme of the show and how it relates to the human condition, then I think you're doing OK.

That said, I do not believe Starbuck is a Cylon, if for no other reason than last time I checked, Vipers don't resurrect.

paulmdavis said...

Okay, let's just say that your writer may be correct in that the final five are "different" Cylons, and they may be "good" in the sense that they are more sympathetic to the humans, but I'm not totally sold on the Starbuck-as-Cylon thing...they haven't really sold that angle to me, esp. the way they played up her very human relationship with her mother and her "destiny"...I'm thinking there's some spiritual mumbo-jumbo happening here moreso than Cylon-icity. Also, let's not forget that they were allegedly harvesting her eggs...or something like their human/cylon hybrid experiments.

That said, I find it very interesting that even back in season one, Leoben knew so much about Starbuck's mother, and I'm pretty intrigued by the relationship between he and Starbuck. It's been set up from very early in the show, and I think it's pretty significant to the overall thing.

So, I'm am not as convinced as your friend here, Anne, though I agree with the observation that one of the show's strengths is the ambiguity of whether there is some legitimacy to the Cylon mission. One of the things that really drew me in from the beginning was the way in which it subverted the usual "heroes" and "villians" setup, drawing the Cylons as sometimes-sympathetic characters and showing the humans as very flawed, and at times, doing worse than the Cylons. I think this ethical ambiguity, and the way that Rosilin and Adama do very unethical things, that is one of the most impressive things about the characterization on the show.

But this is all your friend's comments, Anne, what is your take on this?

Sinker said...

Prompted by Paul's nice response there, here's me digging a little deeper:

If anything, a constant bubbling just under the surface in this show is a meta-discussion of souls.

I mean, really, the "downloading" that the cylons do FORCES a discussion of whether they've got souls, right? And since Caprica 6 and Not-Boomer are able to break from the rest of their line--and continue to do so even after downloading into a new body--then I think it's pretty easy to surmise that what we're really talking about is the transference of souls since, at their base, all the Capricas and all the Boomers share the same original programming and circuits.


If that's true, then I think the Starbuck thing is another level of soul-ness. Paul's right: We've seen flashbacks to her as a child, so she's not emerging fully-formed like the Cylons do. She's growing.

But clearly, she's got something going on with her that links back to something larger, something older, and something that the Cylons can plug into as well--hence whats-his-name's ability to correctly prophesize about her.

Remember: It has all happened before and it'll all happen again. This all relates back to that. Starbuck's part of a larger continuum of time and belief. That it's allowed her to regain life--with a viper-class fighter no less--is something to be explored.

paulmdavis said...

Also, whaddywe gotta do to get Anne on here as a "collaborator," so to speak?

Dr. Anne Elizabeth Moore said...

we're as screwed in terms of that, paul, as we are in terms of the worthiness of human life in general, ha ha ha ha ha ha.

Sinker said...

I am working on trying to update my blogger account to the "new" blogger which will fix all these goddamn problems.

Ultimately though? Should have gone with WordPress.

Sinker said...

I think that Blogger is SERIOUSLY trying to piss me off.

Apparently I can't upgrade to "new blogger" from "old blogger" until I've been invited to do so. WTF???

Dr. Anne Elizabeth Moore said...

som questions:

1. are we totally convinced that cylons do not age, but emerge fully formed? and don't make go hunt down some scifi mumbo jumbo on the internet. i need an intelligent response to this scientific issue.

2. what if we posited for a second that roslyn was the cylon (she got sick when the others did and is already used to ignore hallucinations of the bob dylan song type), and that starbuck's special status was, instead, not cylon-ness, but savior-ness of some kidn that is beyond human and cylon? huh?

3. the thing about them harvesting her eggs, right, is that that was THEIR explanation for all this. they might not have been doing that at all, right?

4. which reminds me, why the fuck is the black doctor some kind of lesser cylon? he's easily the hottest. (except chief, sam, and maybe starbuck).

5. i dunno about souls. has this been an actual theme in the show, and what has been said? 'cause even though that's the common name for that essential human-ness thing we all supposedly know about but can't really define, i think one of the points of the show is that we get to qwuestion whether or not it exists. i think "love" has been posited more directly as central to humanity—but then just as quickly abandoned as possible for cylons as well.

as far as what i really think, paul, i'm still weighing all the evidence. i got into this discussion with the writer quoted at length above because i was unwlling ot believe starbuck was a cylon. because i like her or because there is no evidence? i cannot say yet.

Sinker said...

Two things:

1) the doctor cylon is a discussion for an entirely new post. I mean seriously: machines with racial issues.

2) apparently Blogger won't let me update the site until they decide that I'm worthy of being invited to do so. What's that they say about clubs that wouldn't have you as a member?

paulmdavis said...

I cannot reply to this important discussion Cylon issues right now, though I will say that Blogger was really annoying me for this very reason because I had upgraded my account, and it wouldn't let me join with that account, which means that now I have to log out of all my Google accounts to post here with my new "old" account! So, in short, I have had similar issues, dammit.

Thoughtful reply to above Cylon issues will come later!