From spoilers I feared this was going to be ‘Black Market – The Sequel!’ At 3 and a half minutes into the ep I declared to danceswithwords that it was going to be bad. I held that belief for about the next fifteen minutes. I will admit my viewpoint did soften, but this ep had *a lot* of WTF’s that I just cannot forgive. It’s a shame because, ultimately, the episode was beautifully shot (I love Michael Rymer) and Tahmoh not only looked, uh, GUH!, but he really acted his heart out. Plus, there were several nice character beats. But before I get to the few things I did like, let’s start with the WTF’s….
The previouslies that never were….they’re back! OK, for those who don’t listen to the podcasts or read my write ups (I don’t blame you for either ;) there was an entire subplot filmed for the second half of the season involving the Sagittarians, prejudice, murder, and Baltar’s involvement in certain things that happened on New Caprica. When all of that got cut it presented some problems here. So, we needed to see the clips to help establish what the hell was going to be going on, but, gee, I’ve been wondering for months what happened to Helo after Tigh resumed his duties as XO.
Problem the second, I never assumed or believed that the twelve colonies were equal and that the population lived as one big happy family. However, we have had NO indication that the Sagittarians were looked at as being the lowest of the low and not worthy of life. Tyrol and Tigh having issues with them because they refused to help in the resistance I can accept, but trashing them for their religious beliefs, referring to their stench, and calling them root chewers or whatever was excessive. And I cannot imagine Adama tolerating such behavior.
And why not isolate people when they are presenting a health risk to the entire fleet? I understand not forcing someone to accept treatment, but allowing these people to roam amongst healthy individuals is insane.
I really, really hoped that Helo was wrong. Not because I wanted to see Helo be wrong, but because him being right and Dr Roberts being a bigoted murder was totally predictable.
Tigh was being a bitter ass. I really hated him attacking Helo and, specifically, his marriage to Sharon. But the more I thought about it, the more it made sense. Tigh has every reason not to accept and trust Sharon given his history with the Cylons. Add to that that Helo is married to a member of a race that forced his wife to become a collaborator and he had to kill her because of it. I actually have to give Tigh credit for being able to face Sharon and work with her.
My other major problem was why did we have the scene between Laura and Zarek? Putting aside it didn’t have ANYTHING to do with rest of the episode, Zarek is arguing against having a trial??? He really is the fallen idealist. And, sorry, I don’t buy the rationale at all. Yes, some people in the fleet I’m sure just want Baltar shot and killed. I’m sure there are many more who would be relieved to know that they are still having trials and not just throwing people in jail or executing them…as the Cylons did on New Caprica.
The bonus scene was stupid and I'm glad it was cut.
What I did like…..
It was cool to see a majority of the cast hanging out together in the bar. We had Kara, Gaeta, Lee, Dee, Tyrol, Marge!, Cally, and Conner (I like Conner :) as bartender. Lee and Dee were getting along and in a believable ‘I didn’t want to slap them’ kind of way. I could even forgive Kara’s look because it wasn’t longing it was more ‘Whatever you two, I’m not buying it.’ ;)
Caprica (Or Six? Sharon called her Six, interestingly) and Sharon as buddies. I’m sure Sharon’s “I care about you” launched a hundred fanfics tonight.
While I understand spying on Caprica, Laura standing their with her coffee watching the faux make out session had a kind of creepy voyeuristic quality about it which I’m not sure they intended.
Head!Baltar returns. Does Caprica want to be human? Maybe. She is rather obsessed with the human concept of love and being able to create life. And now she is surrounded by humanity.
Helo finally buying himself a clue that, at least as perceived by others, he does often end up on the wrong side of everything. And I loved that he and Sharon were shown not to have the perfect marriage. They fought for so long to be together, then dealt, first, with the loss of their child and then the joy at having her back and being a family. Now that they have what they always wanted they have the time to address the things they haven’t talked about. Maybe Helo does have some resentment for sacrificing so much and being marginalized at best, distrusted at worst, for choosing to be with Sharon. And Sharon’s easy acceptance of what was happening perhaps is because it makes people forget who and what she is for five minutes. Still, you got to love a Cylon that does her own laundry. ;)
Cottle had a substantial role and that is just awesome. He admitted he screwed up, but how overtaxed is the guy? Can we really expect him to be double checking over another doctor’s work? And if he did find something he’d be forced to see jailed perhaps his only relief. Poor Doc Cottle. :(
One bit of trivia…in one of the early drafts of the script it was Hot Dog that becomes ill and Helo rushes into save. For many reasons, I think it worked better that they used Dee. (Honestly, I wouldn’t have cared if he died.) I was torn if I wanted Lee to become a widower or not.