The First Evil (asta77) wrote,
The First Evil
asta77

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BSG Ep 17: The Captain's Hand

I know its proper LJ edict to post all thoughts and reactions behind a cut tag. I would never, ever want to spoil anybody for OMG! What a fantastic episode! My show is back in form! Wheeeee!!! So moving along to the cut….

OK, I loved this episode. This is the Lee episode I’ve been waiting for and not in the ‘Hey, I’m spoiled’ sense, but in the ‘I have had certain hopes for Lee and I’m seeing those hopes come to fruition’ sense. So, before I get to why I feel this was one of the best episodes of the season, let me get my quibbles out of the way.

Previously on’s are meant to recap what we saw previously. They are not to be used as a method of filling in the blanks. It was quite obvious they took existing footage and looped in new dialogue. I don’t recall Gina telling Baltar to betray Roslin and run for president in the upcoming election. And I know Adama never mentioned Garner before and how he became the latest red shirt Pegasus commander. Enough Ron.

Lee and Dee. I have given this show every opportunity to convince me that this makes sense and is going to work. I throw my hands up. I am still a Lee/Laura shipper, but even I’ll admit that I saw more love and passion in the Lee/Kara hand hold and hug then in the Lee/Dee kissing and groping. Jamie nailed every other moment in this episode. I knew exactly what he was thinking and feeling. He can say more with a look than a lot of actors can with lines of dialogue. His rather passive expressions with Dee tell me there is no love there. And given her freak out at hearing the Pegasus had merely jumped, she’s being shown to be invested and, therefore, in for a world of pain. Unless she’s knocked up, which given all the talk of pregnancies and the need for making babies, who knows?

I’m torn on the exposition in the Lee/Dee scene. I appreciate that they established the timeline (though we’ve gone from moving at a snails pace to jumping ahead weeks at a time now), Tthat they are, once again, showing that people don’t heal overnight - Lee is fit to command (and apparently have sex ;), but not fly a Viper. And Lee’s been promoted and doesn’t much care (more on that later). However, I’d rather be shown this information than have it rapidly told to me all at once.

I’d complain about the trail of dead Pegasus commanders and that it needs to stop, but I think it’d safe to say it will with Lee in charge.

Everything else about this episode I adored. They tackled the abortion issue, color me shocked, and in a way that I felt was fair and non-judgmental. We had a myriad of different viewpoints. Sara’s viewpoint that under Gemanon law Rya is the property of her parents sickened me. However, Adama’s point I could see (and nice bit of continuity reminding Laura of her words from after the attacks) given the dire circumstances they are in. I can also understand Laura’s gut-wrenching reversal that goes against her personal beliefs after hearing Baltar’s damning (and false) information. But, in the long run, it will be a disastrous decision that will haunt Laura. The black market is still running. How long will it take before someone takes advantage of the need for women desiring abortions? And how many of these women will die?

I felt the abortion subplot may have been shoe-horned in up until Baltar’s announcement to the press. Then I understood, while an important issue, it served to set up a turn of events that I’m not sure Baltar can come back from. Six’s clapping at his triumph was chilling and seemed an affirmation that he’s given himself over to the cylon plan as it benefits him.

I’m certain Zarek was seeking more than a favor by withdrawing his name as candidate and backing Baltar. I’m sure he wants to maneuver himself into the VP position. But I wonder if he fell into the same trap as Laura did – siding with a devil he *thinks* he knows. I’m hoping that, like Laura, he finds he’s made a mistake and wouldn’t it be fascinating if those two joined forces?

I don’t want to steal danceswithwords thunder since I know she’ll have some great Kara observations. I do need to make mention of one of the comments she made on IM in regards to Kara wanting to punish herself - that she feels she needs to be punished. When I saw the scene between Lee and Kara in her quarters I knew she was right.

Kara begins trying to bate Lee as soon as he arrives on Pegasus. Though she claims otherwise, she’s obviously waiting for him in the corridor. She snipes at him for siding with Garner when, in fact, he is simply trying to maintain protocol and due his duty. When Lee calls for attention in the pilot’s briefing room, everyone does as he commands accept Kara. And she praises Stinger (He lives!) who is in the brig for mouthing off to Garner, as she does the same thing to Lee.

The scene between the two in her quarters is as painful as it is fascinating to watch. I didn’t pick up everything she said clearly on first viewing, but on rewatch what jumped out at me was her telling Lee that part of his job was to “keep loud-mouthed, disobedient, frak up Kara Thrace in line.” That’s exactly how she sees herself and her recent actions on Cloud 9 have only served to reinforce her low opinion. She informs him he’s failed at his job in an attempt to get his anger and disappointment to come forth and to confirm what she believes to be true about her. She wants that kick in the ass from him, literally. But Lee has made it clear he doesn’t want that kind of relationship anymore. When he states “You mean since I got shot?” there is an accusation there and bitterness and sarcasm, but immediately you see he regrets what he said and wishes he could take it back. It’s a huge leap in maturity from KLG.

Some people achieve greatness; some have greatness thrust upon them. Lee Adama is a result of both. Lee has always been capable of great things, but I don’t think he believed it until he was thrown into the belly of the beast. Up until the moment he was put in charge, he was adrift in his new role. He didn’t know where he stood with Kara. He couldn’t be the pilots friend anymore. He’s dealing with a commander resentful of his presence not only as a transfer from Galactica, but because he is a “viper jockey”. And while he’s done a pretty damn good job of making decisions under extreme duress in the past, he’s nearly always been following the orders of others. Now all the responsibility is on his shoulders.

I love the look of shock and terror on his face when Garner relinquishes command to him. It’s a real and honest reaction to the situation. I thought his stunned “I have the con” was on its way to becoming one of his repeated phrases to boost his self-confidence. But he realizes he can’t do that here, he must quickly get *his* people to follow him.

I mentioned earlier that his promotion to major meant nothing to him. I don’t think he thought he had earned it. But having survived trial under fire by making the right calls, he has a sense that he earned this. While the part of Lee who has always desired to please his father and make him proud and now feels he’s done so is nearly moved to tears by Adama handing him his promotion, there’s more to it than that. William Adama admitted he failed in choosing Garner to command Pegasus. Now he’s chosen Lee to help him redeem that mistake and himself and he wouldn’t give Lee this kind of responsibility unless he thought he could handle it.

I was blown away by the final scene between Lee and Kara. Not because they made peace in a very mature and healthy manner and all is as it should be again, but because Lee’s revelation as to why he’s been mad at her was not something I saw coming. Yet, it made perfect sense to me. Kara does buck authority at every turn and gets away with it. Lee did it once and he almost lost everything. He shows up on Pegasus to find her doing it all over again. I get why that would piss him off. Ever sense we’ve known him (and probably before) he’s tried to do the right thing and act in a way that was expected (I still say he would have gone back to dead Caprica girlfriend had the planet not been nuked). Even in his one attempt to disobey orders by helping Roslin keep her presidency, he was trying to protect the articles and stay true to his conscience. And he got thrown in the brig and estranged from his father (again) for it. Kara, in his mind, has always bounced back and gotten what she wanted. Now that he’s voiced and let go of this resentment, now that he seems to have found some contentment in his own life, I think we shall see a stronger Lee Adama and a stronger bond between the two.

Random bits I found of interest….

* Please tell me I didn’t hear the Pegasus communication guy called Hoshi? Let the Trek bitterness go Ron.

* The Galactica personnel are still considered outsiders. Have fun with the new job Lee!

* Lee: Once a mutineer always a mutineer. And it failed again. :(

* I’m glad they went in a totally different direction with Tori. She’s more experienced than Billy and probably better at her job. She’s also probably a Cylon.

* Tie for best exchange: “You’re the best pilot we got” / “About time you admit that.” and “You’ve got a brain?”

* The Cottle love grows. Not only am I sure he will continue to do abortions if asked (apparently he’s their only doctor, would they really throw him in the brig?) he throws out the suggestion that Rya was a victim of political persecution in need of asylum. The rolling of the eyes was the perfect finish.

* So Kara is now Galactica’s CAG. There is one on each ship. I’m very confused.

* Lee outranks Tigh. Tigh must take orders from a man he told wasn't fit to wear the uniform. Let the fun begin!

* Lee Adama in boxers. What? I had to mention it. Besides, he was getting dressed to report to Pegasus. It was an important part of the story. ;)
Tags: battlestar galactica s2
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