Friday, January 18, 2008

"BSG: Razor" and "24: Day 3"

I saw "Battlestar Galactica: Razor" a little while back, which now puts me up to date with the show. It was a decent episode, I felt, as it fleshed out some of the peripheral events in Season 2 involving the Battlestar Pegasus, commanded by Admiral Helena Cain. We learn that Cain has two dirty little secrets, one from her past and one from her "present" (the episode is a series of nestled flashbacks; "present" time, from the point of view of that episode, is somewhere in Season 2): first, she had abandoned her kid sister to the Cylons over forty years earlier during the first Cylon war; second, she was the Cylon Gina Inviere's lesbian lover-- without knowing, of course, that Inviere was a Cylon. For my money, though, the best parts of "BSG: Razor" were the flashbacks to a young Bill Adama, hotdog pilot during his first-- and apparently only-- combat mission during the first Cylon war. The special effects during those scenes were first rate (except for the awkward moment when an obviously CGI Adama leaps out of his Viper's ejection seat-- the way that jump was animated left a bad taste in my mouth), and the chance to see Adama go at it full tilt was a refreshing change from the crusty old Adama we've come to know and love.

"BSG: Razor" also offers us a glimpse of a prototype Hybrid-- an old man whose pronouncements are, unlike current Hybrids, both lucid and prophetic. This Hybrid's revelation about Starbuck, given at the end of the episode, is for the viewer's eyes only, as the only human to hear it dies soon after, unable to transmit the news to the rest of the fleet.

Over the past few days, I've been watching Season 3 of "24," the only season I haven't watched thus far. One startling point in this season-- half of which I've seen-- is that there appears to be far less torture than in the other five seasons. Thus far, one crime boss has been roughed up a bit, and only two good guys-- Chase Edmunds and Gael Ortega-- have undergone actual, prolonged torture (Ortega's interrogation is mostly off-camera). I have to admit that I do find the prevalence of torture in "24" a bit disturbing, so Season 3 comes as something of a relief.

Alas, I already know, thanks to my divine foreknowledge, how Season 3 will turn out, but in the meantime I'm fascinated by this season's focus on the art of being a double agent. Infiltrators and other betrayers are a regular feature of "24," but it's not often we get to see Jack Bauer and other good guys mount such elaborate operations to snare their quarry. That, too, is a refreshing change from the usual fare.

When I'm finished with Season 3, I'll be all caught up with "24." Special thanks to my buddy Tom, who provided me the DVDs for both "BSG: Razor" and all six seasons of "24" from the Philippines. Salamat!


1 comment:

Stafford said...

without repeating said hybrid revelations, their exact meaning is up for debate. (Go figure!) The big question for me is: Was the Hybrid talking solely from a Cylon point of view, was it talking about only the human race, or was it talking more in general.
Extremely geeky analysis courtesy of Galactica Water Cooler here:
In the meantime, LOST starts again on the 31st!