Asta 2

BSG: A Day in the Life

Due to a variety of factors I ended up reading quite a few reviews of this ep before actually watching it. I think it’s safe to say the reactions ranged from mixed to not happy. After finally seeing the ep this afternoon, while I do agree it has its faults, I liked it, a lot. (You may guess why. ;)


Let me get the Tyrol/Cally stuff out of the way. I’m still at a bit of a loss as to how this had anything to do with Adama’s storyline. Adama had a marriage going bad and took a hike. Tyrol feels like he’s going through a rough patch. Um, that’s the parallel?

I actually think it’s kind of interesting that Tyrol isn’t happily married guy. We aren’t really sure why he married Cally. She loved him and he probably felt guilty about beating the crap out of her. And it wouldn’t be a huge leap to think he just wanted to start a family, have something to call his own, and perhaps he thought she was his best bet. But now with the demands of a baby and a whiny wife, it’s taking its toll on him. I’m rather stunned that Cally thinks she can just stay at home and be a mom. Everyone has to make sacrifices and they are pretty damn lucky to have private quarters and day care so quit complaining Cally!

What I ultimately really didn’t like about their story is Tyrol’s revelation that he wanted her with him and wasn’t thinking about Nick. That doesn’t really jive with him hanging out at a bar instead of being with his wife or dreading going up those stairs to see her. Once the ‘I almost lost her’ moment passes will he feel the same? And where does Seelix who is obviously crushing on the guy fit into all this? I’m trying to determine if it was sweet she brought Nick to see him or a little creepy how cozy she was holding him and playing mommy for a few minutes.

Laura was awesome and Mary was just so cute! Of course, her going to the gym to work out is fanfic gold. Well, if you ship a certain couple. ;) And even if, damn it, they weren’t in the same room there was some definite Lee/Laura second hand interaction there. I expected to have to do some handwaving with Lee becoming involved with the law, but I really don’t feel that I have to because she set forth very convincing reasons as to why it should be him. It’s believable that there is very little legal talent left in the fleet. And because I work with lawyers, her comment about herding cats rings true. As does stating that just because someone knows the law it doesn’t mean they necessarily know right from long – but Lee does. Which, Woo Hoo!, harkened back to KLG when he supposedly mutinied, but it was the right thing.

Lee’s reaction to all this? OMG, I want to have that scene’s babies. It was just so…perfect. And when I say perfect I mean Jamie’s performance. He’s said in interviews, repeatedly, that one of the things that has dragged Lee down, led to his self-doubt and depression, is that he feels trapped by the war and his position on Galactica. Where does he have to go? He can only advance in the military if his father dies and he feels he can’t abandon his people for “a pipe dream”. It was just fabulous that Lee got to finally voice these feelings, however subtly, on screen. I could feel the sense of loss he has been carrying all this time. He did choose to go into the military, partly out of social responsibility I assume, partly because of a desire to gain his father’s approval. Adama abandoned the family (more on that in a minute) and Lee most likely saw this as a way to bring him back into his life.

I have to admit when Lee said, “You’re kidding?”, in response to Laura wanting him, er, for the job, I immediately translated it too, ”She remembers me???”. ;) I loved Adama’s telling him that she picked him because she needs someone she can trust and he definitely fits that. Again, a subtle acknowledgment between the two of events in KLG.

I also liked that they didn’t establish that Lee longed to be an attorney, but it had been one of a dozen jobs he had considered, maybe would have chosen after leaving the military, but this isn’t a dream come true for him. Lee doesn’t need a war as Dee told him in ‘Precipe/Occupation’ but he does need something to challenge and engage him and, frankly, he’s in a rut as CAG with no other hope of getting out of it. Yet, it’s so Lee that he put aside his personal feelings and didn’t jump at the chance, rather, he points out that being CAG is a full time job and his people need him.

This episode changed a lot from an early draft. For a better break down of the changes and a look at the sides, check out wisteria_’s episode analysis. Briefly, Carolanne was not an alcoholic shrew (though she still did become emotionally abusive after Adama left), she threw Adama out/made him leave after discovering from Tigh that he reupped in the military without telling her, and Lee tells Adama that he can do the math and knows Carolanne was pregnant with him when they married. While I would have liked to have seen the show go with the more complex characterization of Carolanne and the Adama marriage as the sides described, I’m glad the dropped the had to get married plot point. I remember reading the sides, coming to the bit about her being pregnant, and thinking, ‘Great, yet another thing Lee can feel guilty about.’ You know he would blame himself for his parent’s unhappiness even though his conception was beyond his control. I enjoyed Lee finally letting the pain bubble to the surface and unleashing his anger (Damn you Bill for shutting him down!), but no more guilt please. And Lee’s “I don’t think she ever loved you” still makes sense. People marry people they don’t love all the time without an unplanned pregnancy involved. I think the flashbacks (granted, they were from Adama’s POV) did a reasonable job of showing she had feelings for Adama, but not necessarily love. Maybe she was enamored with the hot shot viper pilot? Maybe she was trying to piss off her parents? It really doesn’t matter.

So what does the revelation about Carolanne say about Lee’s relationship with Kara? On one hand, I could have lived without them sharing abusive mother issues (though I think it’s safe to say Kara had it worse). On the other hand, this does help to explain some things. No wonder Lee flounders at relationships and is lost as to how to make one work. Hell, I give him points for at least trying instead of running away and Dee definitely seems like the right choice in terms of emotional health. I don’t honestly think Lee is attracted to Kara because he’s a glutton for punishment or he doesn’t know anything else. He knows how messed up his mom was and why Adama ran. Lee could never help or fix his mother and Lee has a desire to make things better. He wants someone to lean on him as well as lean on them. He has that with Dee. He wanted/wants that with Kara. It’s why I think he’s pushed her so much when it would have been best to give her space. He’s been desperate to help her, make things right for her, but he’s failing to see that the person has to do that for themselves. So, I don’t think Lee has an oedipal complex. He just sees the same patterns and, as an adult, ways he thinks he can change them.

When it’s been implied that Adama was an absentee father I assumed that meant he was gone for months at a time. Now I’m thinking years. He had no clue as to what Lee and Zak were going through? Or did he choose not to see it because it made his decision to bail easier? Yeah, he really is a horrible father and the fact that Lee admires him and has anything to do with him at all amazes me.

To show Lee has grown, his “Is it ticking?” in response to the mysterious box shows he can joke about his difficult relationship with his father and not just be angry about it all the time. And we all know that Adama was never going to tell Lee he was sorry or that he screwed up, so the only thing he has left to offer Lee are the books and the possibility of a different life than he has right now.

Random things:

How can Adama say that Lee has never had an interest in the law and then five minutes later recall how Lee use to go through his father’s law books every chance he got?

Helo’s flying again? Is his punishment over? Is everyone settled in Dogville? I suppose since Lee wanted to make sure the pilots, all of them, didn’t lose their edge after 49 days without a Cylon attack, it makes sense that all the personal go through the training exercises. They may need Helo in the air again in the future.

Ok, the bit between Helo and Hot Dog was funny, but what was the point?

Loved seeing the Lee/Kara friendship and her being so supportive of him, but a transition from the OMG ANGST to this would have been nice.

Laura said, “The Caprica Six.” It’s interesting that she’s acknowledging Caprica as an individual.

When Adama was chewing everyone out because they couldn’t come up with a plan to save Cally and Tyrol right that very second, I liked that Lee kept his cool, didn’t automatically back down, and pointed out how Adama’s brilliant suggestion wasn’t going to work.

Dear writers, we just got done with the Lee/Dee/Kara/Anders soap fest, let’s not go there with Laura and Adama now, OK?
  • Current Mood: happy happy
I loved it! *beams* I wear my oddness in this fandom proudly.

OMG, I want to have that scene’s babies. It was just so…perfect. And when I say perfect I mean Jamie’s performance.
Wasn't it?!! *clings* Oh, it was so so beautiful! I may have watched it multiple times already...

It was just fabulous that Lee got to finally voice these feelings, however subtly, on screen. I could feel the sense of loss he has been carrying all this time. He did choose to go into the military, partly out of social responsibility I assume, partly because of a desire to gain his father’s approval.
*nods* It was all good. It was solid Lee development, building one what we've seen before. YAY! \o/

Yet, it’s so Lee that he put aside his personal feelings and didn’t jump at the chance, rather, he points out that being CAG is a full time job and his people need him.
Mmmm, yes, very good point. That captures something essential about him.

I enjoyed Lee finally letting the pain bubble to the surface and unleashing his anger (Damn you Bill for shutting him down!), but no more guilt please. And Lee’s “I don’t think she ever loved you” still makes sense.
Yes, I agree. I was a bit 'wtf?' when I read the original planned outline and I'm really happy they dropped the 'had to get married' thing. I think it makes Carolanne's (thank you for providing spelling!) lack of love for Adama more subtle. As you say, she may have had affection for him, but not that deep abiding love that keeps you from hurting someone or leaving them.

It's interesting that you read them as flashbacks--I guess that's how they were formally scripted? I didn't know that and I definitely read them as a manifestation of Adama's own mind, not formal flashbacks at all.

He’s been desperate to help her, make things right for her, but he’s failing to see that the person has to do that for themselves. So, I don’t think Lee has an oedipal complex. He just sees the same patterns and, as an adult, ways he thinks he can change them.
Absolutely! And that's so Lee-like and something I would think lots of people can relate to. He recognises the need to 'fix' something, it clicks with his past patterns, and he pushes to find a way to make it work this time.

Now I’m thinking years.
Oh, yeah, I'm thinking years. For some reason I always suspected that.

I liked that Lee kept his cool, didn’t automatically back down, and pointed out how Adama’s brilliant suggestion wasn’t going to work.
I loved that scene! I was cheering Lee through this entire episode. I really like that he's so calm and centred at the moment. Even though confronting his father was difficult, he did it. And he did it without descending into rage. I am full of happy. :-)

This episode has made me a very cheery (if insomniac from Lee thoughts) fangirl and I guess it's just a good thing I'm only on the edges of BSG fandom if everyone else hated it. My f'list are good to me--there are lots of people from other fandoms who also watch BSG and I've seen many of them say they liked this eppy. Funny that it's the hardcore fans that hate it.
I think it makes Carolanne's (thank you for providing spelling!) lack of love for Adama more subtle. As you say, she may have had affection for him, but not that deep abiding love that keeps you from hurting someone or leaving them.

Hee. I don't know if Carolanne is the official spelling, but it's the one I'm going with. She was still Caroline in the sides so I don't know if there is a correct spelling.

And I agree that without the added pregnancy plot point it makes Carolanne's lack of love for Adama more subtle *and* more complex. It wasn't a matter of just having sex and getting pregnant and feeling they had to get married. They were in a relationship, both made a choice based on what they thought they felt for each other, and she ended up regretting it for some reason. If only the rest of her story could have been handled in such a nuanced way.

It's interesting that you read them as flashbacks--I guess that's how they were formally scripted? I didn't know that and I definitely read them as a manifestation of Adama's own mind, not formal flashbacks at all.

I agree those were not normal flashbacks. I just used that term because Adama was thinking of things in the past or at least projecting his feelings in the past. But, yeah, Adama was not recalling specific events, rather creating fond rememberances which Lee reveals have little basis in reality.
I thought you might be happy with this one. :)

When Bill told Lee that Laura wanted him for the job, Lee had that look of excitement when he said "Really? Did she say why she asked for me?" that it reminded me of a hopefuly school boy hearing that his crush had been asking around for him during recess. :)

he can do the math and knows Carolanne was pregnant with him when they married.

That means Lee's birthday is in a few months. Aww. Seriously, why can't they ever celebrate a damn birthday on this show, of all shows, where people should be celebrating life any chance they get?

When Bill told Lee that Laura wanted him for the job, Lee had that look of excitement when he said "Really? Did she say why she asked for me?" that it reminded me of a hopefuly school boy hearing that his crush had been asking around for him during recess. :)

Totally...I sign this! :)
Lee had that look of excitement when he said "Really? Did she say why she asked for me?" that it reminded me of a hopefuly school boy hearing that his crush had been asking around for him during recess. :)

Hee. That is a great description of his look. :)

I'd love to see them celebrate a birthday on the show. Bring on the algea cake! ;)
Glad you have a positive read on this one! I was oddly meh on this ep, despite the Lee quotient, so it's good to read a different spin.

Ok, the bit between Helo and Hot Dog was funny, but what was the point?

I was wondering that too. I hope it's just a little favoritism ("hey, EJO's directing, let's throw Bodie a bone!") because if it's setup for some disease-of-the-week ep down the road that's really icky. ;0P
Ok, the bit between Helo and Hot Dog was funny, but what was the point?

It's probably partially to give Bodie (or at least a tertiary character some screen time) and a nice bit of humor and background texture--like Kara's ribbing of Lee, which didn't really have much of a point plot-wise either. They also may be trying to give Helo more friends...

Well, I should correct myself first off - EJO didn't direct this one, he did "Taking a Break." But I thought the bit stuck out like a sore thumb because it was a beat or two too long, especially for a minor character like Hot Dog. As I said, it started to make me think it was setup for a later arc, in which case, eww on the setup. :0)

Kara and Lee I give a little more leeway, because they have a much longer on-screen history, and it keeps the 'shippers interested in the story. But YMMV, of course! *g*
See, I thought the Kara/Lee scene was a nice way of showing that they were on good terms again. Granted, I would have liked more of a transition from TaBfAYW to this, but I thought it was a good scene to show they are at a seemingly healthy place now in their relationship. Plus it was cool to see Kara give Lee a compliment. :)
My only point was that it was more of a character moment than a plot one. Like the Helo and Hotdog exchange. Neither scene accomplished much to forward the plot, but instead added depth to character interaction/relationships. Unless in the future Kara becomes Lee's speechwriter, then it'd be a plot point, lol. ;)
I think we all know Hot Dog would have died a long time ago if not for nepotism. He's not a very good actor. The only reason that scene worked was Tahmoh's reaction. And I didn't notice it on first viewing, but on the second go round I picked up on Sharon sitting behind Hot Dog getting up and moving. How contagious did they think he was???
How contagious did they think he was???

Hee! Yes! I saw that! And then Dragon (the tattooed pilot) took the empty seat. Uh-oh, cooties!

And btw, Happy Birthday to youuuuuu!! :0)
I’m glad the dropped the had to get married plot point. I remember reading the sides, coming to the bit about her being pregnant, and thinking, ‘Great, yet another thing Lee can feel guilty about.’

I agree that Lee does not need anything else to feel guilty about, but I wonder if that wouldn't have made a stronger parallel to Tyrol and Cally's marriage. Perhaps that's what the writers were thinking when they originally put the two marriages side-by-side like that.
You may be right. But then I wish we had learned that Cally got pregnant and Tyrol married her because he felt it was the right thing to do. It would help to explain whay he seems to feel rather tarpped by his marriage.
There was some definite Laura/Lee in this, although they weren't in the same scene hehe! First as Laura suggested Lee I was like omgs can't she ask him personally and like both are still offended.

Jamie's reaction was perfect, I totally saw Laura/Lee context gleaming there! "She still remembers me?!" EXACTLY hehe
The way Jamie reacted...his facial expressions...these kind of expressions, don't know how to explain...he only has these kind of expressions when it has something to do with Laura!

Well about his first response, Lee sounded like he wanted to hear a good reason why to help the President. It wasn't enough for him to hear that she trusts him, perhaps he also thought a personal appearence would have been more fitting in this matter!

....awh I love my ship ;)!
I did wonder why Laura couldn't have asked to speak to Lee and make the request herself. Maybe she was afraid to be in a room alone with him. ;)

I actually liked this episode too. It felt kind of season one. An "event of the week" but one that was organic - that grew out of the beating the Galactica had taken and was resolved in a way that was almost lowkey.

I would have preferred Carolanne Adama not turn into yet another blonde, alcoholic, abusive spouse (seriously, if Kara drank just a tad more and they revealed Carolanne had been sleeping around, we could stop mourning the death of Ellen Tigh. I'm starting to wonder if the writers have a complex...) but I as too glad that they didn't spell out that she was physically abusive towards Lee so I can keep believing it was more emotional distance and manipulation which means he at least has DIFFERENT issues to Kara.

I have nooooo idea what's going on with Roslin and Adama. I mean, I don't ship them any more and am not particularly taken with the idea of them as a couple. However, I could handle it. What I'm not particularly interested in watching is a bizarre game of will-they-won't-they (or perhaps are-they-aren't-they) as the producers try to have the best of both worlds.

Wow, I'm cranky for an episode I actually quite enjoyed. You're right that Lee, in particular, was used well despite not being the centre of the plot; which shows IT CAN BE DONE!

The weirdest thing is, I don't really have any desire to write up this episode in my journal. I just...don't really feel I have anything to share on it. So...I'm not going to until I feel otherwise. Perhaps that's the most telling statement of all.

I'm looking forward to next week, though. :)
I'm starting to wonder if the writers have a complex...

I have seen that sentiment *a lot* around LJ the past few days. Apparently blonde = messed up bitch.

I didn't get the impression that Carolanne was physically abusive. The "mood swings" comment led me to believe it was emotional abuse and the hitting the bottle led to neglect when she was really drunk. I didn't have an issue with her having a drinking problem, but why did she have to be a violent drunk? What if she just drank herself into oblivion? If Lee had to become the caregiver and look after Zak it would explain his need to take care of people and guilt when he fails.

I mean, I don't ship them any more and am not particularly taken with the idea of them as a couple. However, I could handle it. What I'm not particularly interested in watching is a bizarre game of will-they-won't-they (or perhaps are-they-aren't-they) as the producers try to have the best of both worlds.

I can handle them as a couple too (as long as EJO keeps his shirt on ;p), but, yeah, there is this weird guessing game going on as to what is happening between the two. I still believe they didn't sleep together on New Caprica (Ron actually said that in a podcast), but they are going down this road that the only thing stopping them from having sex and a romantic relationship is their jobs which I don't buy. They have a ton of issues that they haven't addressed. And I don't like that the show seems to just want to hook them up because they are the two older actors and the 'parents' of the fleet.
Heh, your write-up made me feel better about the episode. I'm still annoyed with Carolanne's clumsy psychoanalysis of Bill and the whole abusive mother back story. And Tyrol/Cally could have been SO much more interesting if they had let her die (wishful thinking, eh?).

On the other hand, LEE!!! Lee/Laura interaction! Well, we didn't see this yet, but we'll have some later, right? W00t!!!

I liked that Lee kept his cool, didn’t automatically back down, and pointed out how Adama’s brilliant suggestion wasn’t going to work.

This was one of my favorite moments. Along with "She remembers me?"

I could have lived without them sharing abusive mother issues (though I think it’s safe to say Kara had it worse). On the other hand, this does help to explain some things. No wonder Lee flounders at relationships and is lost as to how to make one work....He wants someone to lean on him as well as lean on them.

I like this explanation, partly because I identify with Lee here.

Also, it doesn't hurt to start early -

Happy Birthday!
Carolanne could have been handled *a lot* better and I'm annoyed with Adama again, but I think I was so thrilled to sit through an entire ep with Lee in character *and* have an arc set up for him that I was more forgiving than usual about the rest. ;)

And thank you! :)
I agree the Carolanne angle could have been handled better. Why did it have to be booze? Why not depression? Why not prescription med abuse? It seems like alcohol has become shorthand for "issues" and frankly, that shorthand doesn't jive well with a son who wants to quit the military and open, of all things, a bar. You don't do that when your mum is an alcoholic!

Oh, and on the Tyrol/Cally front, I saw his desire to do the project with Cally as his way of wanting to reconnect to her and make things work by remembering who they were when they first got together. And Seelix is totally a cylon. ;)

But I agree, while it wasn't perfect, the episode was enjoyable and had some really good character moments. I give it a solid B.