OK, Kara is not dead. I was 95% sure of that after reading spoilers and I'm 99.99999% sure of it now. Here's why:
* Who has a destiny then kills themself?
* The episode raised even more questions about Kara's special destiny while giving us no answers.
* Not!Leoben talks about her facing her fear and says something about "crossing over" which does not automatically equal death
* Her hand was on top of the ejection lever.
* Was it my imagination or was that a heavy raider I saw? But Lee said nothing about it. So did he see it?
* Lee conveniently called off the search and rescue mission.
* I don't think Kara is a cylon as we know them, but I get a feeling she may have some sort of ties to the final five.
* Um, Daniel Jackson. Fox Mulder. Remember how they 'died'? Yeah.
As for other things...
* I loved the Lee/Kara interaction in this episode. I haven't enjoyed seeing them together this much since 'The Captain's Hand'. It also pissed me off. Why is it that every time they get to a healthy place, a place where they talk about how they are feeling and are honest and not throwing punches the show has to kill that progress? First, we had Anders and New Caprica and now we have Kara's death and the guilt I'm sure Lee will be feeling for putting her back in the cockpit.
* But Lee made the right decision. I've been in situations where I had to give into the fear or push myself to move past it and so I empathize and agree with Lee's choice. And while his analysis was correct, when he stated that "her identity as a steely eyed viper jock is the only thing holding her together" it sounded more like a psychiatrist's statement then something Lee would say. I mean, if I wrote that my beta would be all over me. ;)
* Hey, they do have a psychiatrist in the fleet! He/she must be feeling a bit overwhelmed by now.
* Boy, could the talking about where to put their pictures on the wall have been any more anvalicious? What I want to see is Lee put up the picture of Kara, Zak, and himself because I think a part of him died too and part of his life is now over.
* I expected to see more of Kara's mother. My big gripe with the character is not about the character but that Ron has some damn need for people to make peace with their pasts. Look, she was a horrible woman who did horrific things to Kara and she deserved to die alone. People rarely have changes of heart on their death bed and people don't always forgive. Not to mention, what is Ron saying when a woman who broke bones and berated her daughter for not being good enough admits she loved her and Kara breaks down in tears in reponse? I'm sure he didn't mean it to come across as saying 'I love you' makes everything OK, but that's how it came off for me and it was very disturbing.
* So Lee and Kara have yet another thing in common - wanting acceptance from a parent and apparently joining the military as a means to the end. The difference being that Adama was distant rather than abusive and is proud, but just can't say it.
* Oh, Kara and Leoben at the beginning? I'll be in my bunk. ;)
OK, I said a lot more than I intended so this may be my only post. ;)