Lee - Polite Face - lila-valerius

BSG: The Road Less Traveled

Let me jump aboard the band wagon!


There will be no meta this week. I saw the train heading off the rails by the first act and figured it wasn't worth my time to think too much about this episode. By the end, I had no clue what the point was. Usually the A and B stories run parallel and then intersect, but other than Kara and Tyrol have both suffered mental collapses, I'm not sure what the storylines had in common.

I actually dealt much better with Tyrol's characterization than Kara's. His breakdown began with Adama last week and he's just continuing to spiral out of control. And I think he we saw him beginning to get his act together. I don't think he's buying into Baltar's sermons, rather he was finding a purpose to go on - find out who/what he is and knock Baltar off his pedestal in the process.

As for Kara, I don't know how turning her into a raving lunatic is good character development. I think we all saw the mutiny coming before the opening credits rolled and how can we not side with the mutineers? Putting aside The Crazy, she is disobeying Adama's orders. And I loved how part of her argument was Adama would not leave them, meaning her, behind. Yes, he would. After YCGHA, he learned his lesson about risking the fleet just to save her. I think what is really irking me is that she's begin to feel a sense of self-importance.

Other Thoughts:

* They’ve been gone almost two months and they are just now low on fuel? And what about food? And they’re flying a CAP???

* Helo looked very pretty. He should be sweaty with his hair brushed back more often.

* When is anyone going to point out that Baltar’s followers are almost entirely women?

* Tory is not exactly the queen of subtle. I was half expecting Tyrol to ask her if she killed Cally. And I’m no expert, but I’m pretty certain you can be on anti-depressants and be suicidal.

* Poor Sam. First there was Lee and now Leoben. I guess he doesn't make her feel special enough.

* Leoben was on Caprica. Huh. That throws a wrench in my theory about him.

* An alliance with the Cylons. Going together to the promised land. I really don’t want a unification of the races.

* Favorite line: “If there is a god, he’s laughing his ass off.”

* They killed Mathias! The Bastards!

* Tyrol strangling Baltar? Awesome!

* Leoben seemed to be channeling Kara in asking her to kill him. I’ll let others analyze the Kara/Leoben interaction in depth because while the actors have great chemistry and I find the relationship intriguing, I just don't care that much. Leoben does seem to have some genuine insight into Kara, yet I also think some of his statements are simply made to get under her skin. And it's pretty damn obvious that the person Kara was is gone.

* Honestly, I can deal with no Lee, but NO LEE AND NO LAURA?!?! You have to give me one of my favorite characters show! And no Adama! That’s just insane!


One of the most intriguing aspects of this episode is one they didn’t touch. Sharon hears about a Cylon civil war and there is NO reaction from her? In ‘A Measure of Salvation’ she was definitely upset at the news of the genocide being planned, yet she finds out that the Cylons have turned on each other, are being permanently killed, and nothing? Are we to believe she has now totally cut herself off from her race?

This was also the first time we saw real strife in the Agathon marriage. I don’t believe they will be heading for divorce, but is it just the situation that is bringing out the worst in them or is the situation revealing problems that have always existed, yet never addressed? I’ll be curious to see how they interact once they are back in the fleet.

And how the hell could they be separated from their child for two months? Especially after they missed the first year and a half of her life. That’s insane. One of them should have stayed behind.

Looking back at my notes, I think there is some stuff to be analyzed, but, unfortunately, I was too distracted by The Crazy to pay close attention or care.
  • Current Mood: blah blah
One of the most intriguing aspects of this episode is one they didn’t touch. Sharon hears about a Cylon civil war and there is NO reaction from her? In ‘A Measure of Salvation’ she was definitely upset at the news of the genocide being planned, yet she finds out that the Cylons have turned on each other, are being permanently killed, and nothing? Are we to believe she has now totally cut herself off from her race?

...

And how the hell could they be separated from their child for two months? Especially after they missed the first year and a half of her life. That’s insane. One of them should have stayed behind.


Yeah, real WTF moments... a bunch of writers fell down on their jobs, methinks.

It's amazing how much less I enjoy the show when Lee (and mom and dad) isn't onscreen. At all. Though, if I had to choose between him missing an episode and Black Market, I'd choose him taking a break for a week.
Though, if I had to choose between him missing an episode and Black Market, I'd choose him taking a break for a week.

Heh. I completely accept that there is not room for every character every week. And to have Lee absent or Laura or Adama, I could buy, but to have three of what I call the core four MIA is crazy. There was also no Six which meant no follow up to events with Tigh last week accept a mention by Tyrol that he knows (which I suspect means most of the ship knows and how does Adama feel about that?). Sigh.
Sharon hears about a Cylon civil war and there is NO reaction from her?

That was my initial reaction, though several people on the TWOP boards have pointed out that the Demetrius ain't exactly pro-Cylon, so she might be laying low to keep them off her back. Still sloppy writing, though. Might've worked better if we'd seen even a tiny reaction, followed by her visibly slipping on the mask.

And how the hell could they be separated from their child for two months?

When Ron said that the network made him put Helo in there, I thought that maybe Sharon's presence was because something big was going to happen with her in this arc -- that they needed here there because of something Cylon-related. Unless things change next week, that doesn't look to be the case. Hmm. Then again, if SciFi wanted more Helo without putting him on the Demetrius, RDM would've had to come up with another Helo-only plot arc... and we've seen how awful those tend to be!

I think what is really irking me is that she's begin to feel a sense of self-importance.

As a Kara fan, I'll even admit that you have a point. :) OTOH, I don't think it's consciously narcissistic, though it's a bit much. The self-importance comes out of her losing faith in herself after dealing with failure after failure. She believes (believed?) that she came back for a reason, that she was going to lead her people to Earth. Things aren't exactly working out that way, though. If she goes back to the fleet, she has to admit that she has utterly failed and might be crazy or worse. She can't deal with that, so she uses things like "Adama won't abandon us" as a way to hang onto her reasons for this search that's falling apart around her.

Usually the A and B stories run parallel and then intersect, but other than Kara and Tyrol have both suffered mental collapses, I'm not sure what the storylines had in common.

Last week, I liked that the very separate storylines were beginning to intersect. It looks like next week we'll get the Kara and Cylon Civil War storylines meeting up. That gives me hope. But yeah, the Baltar thing didn't work here, because it didn't tell us anything NEW. The Tyrol stuff could've been done in a couple of scenes, freeing up space for more of the other arcs.

Now that I think of it, Adama's the only significant character who doesn't have a role in any of the ongoing storylines, beyond acting as Roslin's awkward confidant and audiobook. Huh.
As a Kara fan, I'll even admit that you have a point. :) OTOH, I don't think it's consciously narcissistic, though it's a bit much. The self-importance comes out of her losing faith in herself after dealing with failure after failure. She believes (believed?) that she came back for a reason, that she was going to lead her people to Earth. Things aren't exactly working out that way, though. If she goes back to the fleet, she has to admit that she has utterly failed and might be crazy or worse. She can't deal with that, so she uses things like "Adama won't abandon us" as a way to hang onto her reasons for this search that's falling apart around her.

Sorry to jump in and reply here. But I got to say I like this explanation. I was having the same feeling as asta77 upon hearing that line. What you said here made sense to me...

Edited at 2008-05-03 05:11 pm (UTC)
Might've worked better if we'd seen even a tiny reaction, followed by her visibly slipping on the mask.

I can understand her not reacting in front of the crew or asking Kara for a private meeting with Leoben to get more details. As Pike(?) showed, not everyone views her as just one of the family. But we did see a few moments between she and Helo and even if he had asked her if she was OK after hearing the news and she said yes, it would have at least acknowledged that she it was an issue for her.

I do agree, Kara does not want to return to the fleet having failed in her mission. Not only is she looking at letting down the human race (no pressure there!), but those they doubted her to begin with will simply label her as crazy (and her behavior isn't helping). But to cling to the 'Adama won't leave us behind' idea, at this point, makes no sense. I'm sure she knows that Adama ordered the algae planet nuked with she and Lee on it. He's past endangering the fleet for any one person. It actually make me a little sad for her that she still is clinging to the idea that 'Dad' won't abandon her.

But yeah, the Baltar thing didn't work here, because it didn't tell us anything NEW.

Exactly. He was just telling us more of the same from last week and we had to have two sermons?

Now that I think of it, Adama's the only significant character who doesn't have a role in any of the ongoing storylines, beyond acting as Roslin's awkward confidant and audiobook.

Snerk. I hadn't though about it because, up until this week, Adama has played a significant role in the previous episodes, but that role hasn't been pivotal which is odd. Or if there is an alliance with the Cylons and no fleet to defend, is Adama's story to be what happens to an admiral when he has no war to fight?
And how the hell could they be separated from their child for two months?

When Ron said that the network made him put Helo in there, I thought that maybe Sharon's presence was because something big was going to happen with her in this arc -- that they needed here there because of something Cylon-related. Unless things change next week, that doesn't look to be the case. Hmm. Then again, if SciFi wanted more Helo without putting him on the Demetrius, RDM would've had to come up with another Helo-only plot arc... and we've seen how awful those tend to be!


Hmm, I didn't know Skiffy made him send Helo. If something changes next week and Sharon had to be there for plot reasons, and Skiffy wanted Helo along, why the hell not just bring the kid too? It's a little more plausible than abandoning her for two months with all her previous kidnappers still aboard Galactica. I could see them leaving her with Caprica Six, because they KNOW Caprica will kill to protect the kid. But if she's not with Caprica, then who?

And if they'd brought the kid with (after all, it was supposed to be an exploratory mission, it wasn't like they were intending to head to Cylon Central), that would've given all the more reason for both Helo and Sharon to be a mite twitchy about jumping Demetrius and its entire crew into a possible trap. Although I'm still irritated because "jump to rendezvous with the fleet" and "jump to Cylon basestar" were not their only options.

They have at least one Raptor aboard Demetrius. Why not have Kara and a few others check out the coordinates in a Raptor and figure out if Leoben's telling the truth? Kara talks to the Hybrid, and then she and her Raptor jump back ot Demetrius, in plenty of time to make their rendezvous with Galactica. And anyway, it's explicitly said in canon that Adama would let them come back once they'd refuelled. So unless Kara thinks Helo is either lying about that or naive, why not go that route? Or force Adama's hand by having Kara and a few others take a Raptor, THEN have Demetrius make the rendezvous with Galactica, on the understanding that Demetrius or Galactica will rendezvous with Galactica in a few hours? He's not the type to leave people behind if he can help it.

Sigh. I don't mind handwaving away a few inconsistencies (if I didn't have that skill, I never would've watched a single Joss Whedon show), but when there are lots and lots of inconsistencies, each one of them gets harder to swallow.
I'm agreeing with you here entirely, 100%!

Well, except maybe the part about Kara isn't what she was before. See, she's always been so convoluted, I don't really know what she was before to begin with.

Honestly, I can deal with no Lee, but NO LEE AND NO LAURA?!?! You have to give me one of my favorite characters show! And no Adama! That’s just insane!

Hear, hear!

One of the most intriguing aspects of this episode is one they didn’t touch. Sharon hears about a Cylon civil war and there is NO reaction from her?

Ha! I thought exactly the same thing! This part is the only thing that captured my attention tonight. She was very adament that they don't jump to the broken basestar. I figured it's self-preservation -- she wanted to go home, to her baby!
When they were all trying to get through to Kara that they needed to go back I was expecting either Sharon or Helo to mention the time with their child they sacrificed to follow her on this mission and.....nothing.
And it's pretty damn obvious that the person Kara was is gone.
Yeah, she's gone all right. I noticed it in the very first episode of the season. She was more back in this ep than in others, but I don't know if she's ever coming all the way back. Sigh.

* Honestly, I can deal with no Lee, but NO LEE AND NO LAURA?!?! You have to give me one of my favorite characters show! And no Adama! That’s just insane!
I didn't miss Lee. I would like to see him, but the politics bore me unless someone is doing something illegal like election stealing, or the order 112 or something. And I didn't like his hair last week. I'm perverse but I want Lee back in a viper! With short sweaty hair and looking slightly shell-shocked. I miss that Lee. And I'm afraid if they show Laura she'll look even more like she's got one foot in the grave and that will make me cry.

Are we to believe she has now totally cut herself off from her race?
Sharon is so weird. It's like she's forgotten she's a Cylon. What's worse is like they've forgotten she's a Cylon. I never forget. They have three Cylons on the Demetrius. Anything could happen with that if the writers decided it to.

An alliance with the Cylons. Going together to the promised land. I really don’t want a unification of the races.
I also want no uniting. But I can't figure out what I want instead. If no uniting, how would you want the Cylon story to go?

Don't get distracted by the Crazy. There was a lot of Crazy this week. This month. I'm hoping for some sane people next week, but who are those people on BSG? :-)

Edited at 2008-05-03 03:22 pm (UTC)
I love the politics. ;-) Though I don't think it really had a place in this episode. It would have been nice to find out if Lee was able to get a meeting with Laura and inform her that her aid is now a Baltar groupie. Though given Tory still has the president's ear, I'm guessing she doesn't know yet. So is Lee holding back on telling her for a reason?

Hopefully, there will be less crazy next week. Though the preview is leading me to believe Sam may be joining his wife on the crazy train. ;p And it's not like I'm giving up on the show. I expected some clunkers this season. And if Alias taught me anything it's that no show can ever be that bad. ;)
Sharon hears about a Cylon civil war and there is NO reaction from her? In ‘A Measure of Salvation’ she was definitely upset at the news of the genocide being planned, yet she finds out that the Cylons have turned on each other, are being permanently killed, and nothing? Are we to believe she has now totally cut herself off from her race?

I've recently been rewatching, and that included the hideous A Measure of Salvation (I think... whatever the one is with the craptastic bio-warfare plotline they never went back to, on account of no one realized they could refrigerate a sample of the virus until the next time they saw cylons). If Sharon was pretty much okay with a human-caused genocide of her people then (it was Helo who got all goody-two-shoes with that one), then I think it's actually consistent that she wasn't too interested. Also, maybe it's something about her model -- after all, her model is on both sides, fully committed to both -- and neither -- faction).
Oh god I haven't watched it yet, and now I"m scared. But if there's CKR . . .

Everytime they try to do something dramatic with Kara I end up wanting to shove my foot through the screen.
I didn't watch last night - I was planning to catch a repeat during the week. I never thought I'd say I was better off watching the Cubs lose ;)
They’ve been gone almost two months and they are just now low on fuel? And what about food? And they’re flying a CAP???

I thought of two more questions after we signed off too. If it's a sewage recycling ship, (a) what were they recyling sewage INTO and (b) what are they doing with it now?

One of the most intriguing aspects of this episode is one they didn’t touch. Sharon hears about a Cylon civil war and there is NO reaction from her? In ‘A Measure of Salvation’ she was definitely upset at the news of the genocide being planned, yet she finds out that the Cylons have turned on each other, are being permanently killed, and nothing? Are we to believe she has now totally cut herself off from her race?

Her affect was really weird and detached in the entire episode. I would expect it to be more of an issue--both to her and to the rest of the crew--that she herself is a Cylon. I don't think the crew would necessarily distrust her more for it at this point, but you'd think it would at least be an issue.
I thought of a similar question, what has the fleet doing with it's sewage for two months?

I would think that half of your race is being slaughtered by the other half of your race would at least elicit a raised eyebrow. I bet Caprica will have a reaction.
What's your theory about Leoben? I can't remember...

And the characterisation of Sharon is really annoying me. None of the crew made a single Cylon dig at her after the raider blew up? She's not human, people, she's just unique! Plus there's that whole abandoning their daughter thing.

And Kara acts more like she's not human every week. Hmm...
Some of the Sharon weirdness is explained in the latest Mark Verheiden Q&A which I just posted about. ;)

My Leoben theory was that he actually does love Kara, he just doesn't fully understand the concept of love or know the right way to express his feelings because he didn't have the interaction with humanity that Caprica and the Sharons had. But now we discover he was hanging out on Caprica watching pyramid games which throws a wrench in my analysis!