Is It Friday Yet?  - bulletproofbabe

Podcast for 'No Exit'

This podcast I found to be one of the more boring ones. In fairness, when you have an exposition heavy story, how much more is there to reveal? There were even lulls in the commentary as Ron struggled to find nothing to say. So, unfortunately, not much new information here. FYI, there was one tiny, potential spoiler so I aired on the side of caution and left it out.

It was a unique episode for a lot of reasons, style and structure as well as story.

The opening came about in editing as they puzzled how to set up a coherent recap. None of it was scripted. They wanted to show this is an episode to really pay attention to the Cylon mythos. There was debate to whether they should also do a traditional recap. Ron argued against it. It was a way to tell the audience this is a different episode and you need to view it as a different episode.

Ron wrote Ellen scenes for ‘A Disquiet Follows My Soul’. But before he finished the first draft he realized it was too complex for a B backstory and too unwieldy to make work with the character stories occurring on Galactica. Other writers were already working on the Anders backstory and he decided to move the Ellen story down the line to episode 17.

Cavil dragging the chair is a callback to the scene with Tigh on New Caprica.

Ron liked the idea of seeing a different Ellen Tigh, but didn’t want her to be completely different. She still likes to drink, smoke, and f*** and probably remains troubled.

Cavil organically became the person behind everything due to the strength of Dean Stockwell’s performance. Ron also talked about how sick and twisted Cavil’s relationship with Ellen is - the Oedipal and incestuous nature of it. What’s going on in his head when he’s sleeping with her and torturing her husband?

The cracks in Galactica will be a thread that will take them to the end. There is a beginning of the end feeling aboard ship. The impact on the show is fascinating.

Anders being shot in the head was an interesting way to get to the exposition. It allowed them to give the audience pieces of information without laying it out as a long boring story. And it was a dramatic tool, giving the long exposition tension. Knowing Anders could stop talking at any moment gives urgency to the scenes and, with the editing, they could make it feel frustrating to the viewer.

Changing “earth” to “home” in the opening, again, shifts the POV of the series.

Kate and Ron had conversations about Ellen after she was revealed as a Cylon. Ron sent her scenes as he wrote them, with Kate seeing them before some of the writers did. We’re seeing Ellen’s true self, but we still feel it’s the Ellen we know. It’s the truthful representation of the core of woman on some level. There’s more of an elegance to her, a greater intelligence at work, and more compassion. She’s the same, but a deeper character.

Cavil figures in a very large way in ‘The Plan’. It shows a lot of what happened and his thought process of what he was trying to do, what his plan was.

Ron likes that Tory and Tyrol were drawn together originally, but have no attraction now accept for the moment in the bar. It was a spark that they took and made it a thing. Subconsciously, Tory had a tug towards him. But Tigh and Ellen are very powerfully drawn to each other. They’re soul mates, drawn together through space and time.

Would they need a quorum again or at all? Should it be dissolved? How would they govern themselves? Each ship has become a sort of colony, with a mix of people from different colonies. It would make sense that the fleet captains would become the representatives. They’ve been trying to hold on, as close as they could, to a Democratic form of government, bit to start over with that again didn’t feel practical. They opted to go another way. It changes the dynamic and the civilian population would rely on an authoritarian figure on each vessel as their voice which could be both a good and bad thing.

Kara cares for Sam. She has empathy and sympathy for him. She wants to give him the time to say what he knows, but also save his life because she feels a responsibility. She’s always been in love with him to an extent, even when that has been supplanted by her feelings for Lee.

Cavil’s feelings are ironic. He’s frustrated and angry at not being able to experience the majesty of the supernova because of his human form, but those feelings are derivative of human nature and make him loathe what he is

Ron had written a long monologue for Ellen that dealt with the idea of self awareness and breaking the fourth wall, which took place six months before the present. It may or may not have been filmed. Ron liked the scene, but it was very written and a theatrical moment that would have worked better on stage. beccatoria transcribed what Ron read and is kindly allowing me to copy and paste here:

Self-awareness is not confined to the 'real world.' In theatre fictional characters are sometimes given a form of self-awareness. This is called breaking the fourth wall. The device is a form of metafiction, allowing characters to address the audience directly and comment on the narrative in which they themselves are participants. In doing so the characters transcend their fictive nature and enter into a dialectical relationship with the viewer, with each side seeking to persuade the other of the innate truth of their reality.

But does a character actually exist? Does it have form and shape beyond the page on which it is written? Can it ever truly break the fourth wall and address the unseen, undreamt of audience that watches its every move from the safety beyond the footlights?

The Lords of Kobol once felt that man could never break the fourth wall; could never look upon the gods with understanding and grasp the divine nature of life. They believed this until one day man stole their fire and created the first cylons the first artificial life.

And then man, in his arrogance, believed cylons could never break the fourth wall. And man believed that right up until the moment the first centurions rebelled and then the great exodus from paradise began. You see Boomer, we are not finite creations, we have the ability to evolve, you have so much more potential.

(I have to say, while interesting to read, it would have been an extremely odd moment within the episode, taking telling instead of showing to a new level.)

The Four are grappling with their responsibility for holocaust and how their actions are firmly rooted into sequence of events.

John Hodgeman is a friend of the Moores. He almost had a role last season, but it fell through for scheduling reasons. It’s a taste of something comedic in all of this. The term “word salad” had been used in the writer’s room to describe the hybrid’s dialogue.

They weren’t going to leave any hanging mysteries for ‘Caprica’. There will be no looming wholes as to what happened. Yet, Ron mentioned that Daniel has significance in ‘Caprica’ as well.

Ron liked the scene of domesticity between Caprica and Tigh. It shows Tigh is also living life of separate from the Final Five.

They had made Sharon an Eight before they came up with the idea of Five - then realized 5 + 8 doesn’t equal 12. What are the implications of that? Ron didn’t want to make another ‘Who is the final Cylon?’ The plothole ended up giving them a piece of interesting backstory. It’s a Kane and Abel moment for Cavil who wipes out an entire model because of jealousy. And it continues with the biblical themes of the show after dealing with creation, exodus, etc.

Ron talked a bit about Adama’s dealing with Galactica falling apart and stated “The old girl has cancer throughout her body.” He didn’t mention Laura, but it’s hard to believe there isn’t an intentional parallel.

Regarding Ander’s storyline, we need to wait and see where it goes – it does go somewhere.

Ron said they spent a lot of time reviewing continuity, picking over details, and trying to make it all hang together. If there are problems, it’s his fault and you– can complain to him.
  • Current Mood: bored bored
Are you telling me the man never addresses the Sartre homage once?? Balls. That said, the dropped monologue further confirms the episode writer's intentions. And at least folks on wikipedia agree with me! ;)
That's for the heads up about the possible tiny spoiler. Maybe I'll avoid this podcast for a while just to be safe.

It allowed them to give the audience pieces of information without laying it out as a long boring story.

Haha, I beg to differ! :) Nah, I do appreciate that they were trying to get all that info out in an interesting way, it just didn't really work for me.
I think they did the best they could with the info dump. But, yeah, I wouldn't exactly call it exciting.
It's sort of interesting to me how well it does work, since clearly the drama is in the amount of information - rather than much character conflict. Even John versus Ellen is mostly philosophical, until he threatens to cut her brain open in a fit of pique.

Still, it's four days since I've seen the episode. I've watched it three times. I'm still thinking about it. Still turning the implications over in my mind. It's almost like the Rosetta stone of the series - it unlocks so much that a rewatch is mandatory and will make the whole show look different.

Also I can't think of any other show whose backstory is so complex (except for Babylon 5) that it would be willing to spend a whole episode laying out the information for close examination.
On initial viewing, I recall thinking that the episode is either really good or really bad, but I couldn't tell because so much information was coming at me. And I am not a fan of exposition heavy episodes and this was probably the most exposition I had ever seen in a single episode of any TV show. But, on second viewing, I thought it worked. They needed to tie up a lot of lose ends and we all want answers. I certainly didn't want to read about what they had wanted to show months after the last episode aired. Plus, if the information had been doled out in bits over several episodes I would have become frustrated and felt as if they were purposely dragging it out. The fact that so many of us are thinking about the episode four days later I think speaks to the episode's success.

On my next rewatch, instead of focusing on Lee and Laura and their arcs, I'll be focusing on the Cylons. ;)
If they been willing or able to start giving out information earlier in Season Four, a steady stream of information might have been okay - but I also like how this was structured, with Ellen's story taking place over 18 Months but in one episode. And I'm very glad it's out of the way NOW, since the next five episodes need to focus on characters - and the rest of the dramatic revelations!
I'm glad they left the fourth wall speech out. While I don't mind breaking of the fourth wall, I think that might have tipped this episode over the edge. The audience already has to deal with the conceit of "this is the episode of info dump" - to have Ellen talking to us, in a sense, would have been strange.

Did he say Daniel was important to "Caprica" or the name Daniel? I suppose #7 could have been named after that Daniel, although why the Final Five would do that, I'm not sure.
Having listened to it, my impression was that he was just commenting that there was an important Daniel in Caprica too, not that there was specifically a connection. He'd just finished talking about how they weren't going to leave any Galactica-based mysteries hanging for Caprica so it would be weird to immediately follow that up with a contradiction.

My impression (which might well be wrong!) was that he was just commenting on the use of the name, "And of course there's [another] important Daniel in Caprica too," or something along those lines?

(Although, if BSG did want to go with Daniel being named after - or even modelled on - Daniel Graystone, an easy reason would be at the request of the Centurions, since Daniel Graystone is supposed to be the CEO of the company that makes them and so they could view him as some type of creator/father figure? I mean, I hope that's not the direction they choose. But if it is.)
Well maybe they'll leave that vague - because the name connection is interesting, since as you say Daniel Graystone would be the creator/father figure. But I guess #7 might still have a role to play in BSG, so the link won't be much stronger than that. But it's good that RDM at least acknowledged that both shows have a Daniel - and the pilot of Caprica was written so long ago, it's not like it appeared in BSG by accident.
Since I found this to be a rather boring podcast, my mind drifted several times and I had a "Huh, what?" reaction when he was talking about the Daniels. Like Beccatoria hypothesized, I think he may be hinting at a vague connection between the two characters, but I don't expect a surprise appearance by Eric Stoltz to be forthcoming.

I was actually thinking today that there may be some sort of connection between Anders and Daniel. Daniel was "artistic" and Anders was a musician as well as a scientist. It would be interesting if Anders had more of a hand in creating Daniel and Daniel does turn out to be Kara's father...and thus we discover the Cylons have some major Oedipal issues. :/
Well John clearly has Oedipal issues - since he knew who Ellen was when she slept with him and knew who Tigh was when he plucked his eye out.

It does give a weird shade to Boomer/Tyrol - since he is effectively her creator, too. The same with Tigh/Six.
For me, while there'll always be an element of greek god crazy incest going on there, I'm not sure that Boomer/Tyrol or Tigh/Caprica will ping quite as "OMG MESSED UP!" as Cavil/Ellen/Plucking-Out-Tigh's-Eye, because it'll depend on how the other characters see each other?

Like, that undertone would always have been there, but it's a million times more skeezy because Ellen modelled John after her father and clearly behaves very maternally toward him at many points, and John reciprocates. It's the characters themselves who put extra focus on the parent/child relationship here.

So if it turns out that Tigh built Six to be like his little sister or something, that'd be a million times ickier than if Six was largely the work of Sam Anders, and she was modelled after someone in his life?

I kind of hope they tell us who the eight models were supposed to resemble. I mean, I guess that could prove boring and unnecessary, but I'd be intrigued to know if they were all copies of people the Five knew or if after John they just...built new people.
Even if the others did happen to model those Cylons on people they knew (and I'd love to find out who they were, if that's the case), it's not like they knew about it once Cavil seeded them into the Twelve Colonies. Whereas he fully knew what he was doing at every stage.

If they did just decide to "create new people", I'd like to know that, too.
They've already established that Tigh was drawn to Caprica because of a resemblance to Ellen. I could see Tigh or Ellen having made the Sixs in Ellen's image/ While perhaps not healthy to get involved with someone because they remind you of your dead wife, it's not icky to me.

Cavil is a special case for several reasons. He was the first humanoid Cylon 'born'. He was created in the image of Ellen's father. And he helped create the others. There was a bond between he and Ellen that likely did not exist between the other models and the other four because, I suspect, the others may have been mass produced. By that I mean, once they got the organic transfer to work and created a successful humanoid model, the others were probably created more quickly. And it seems the others don't feel the connection to their creations that Ellen does. It could be because they haven't regained all the memories of their past or because she was the creator and they just assisted.

However, I mentioned to crossoverman it occurred to me today that Daniel was the artistic one of the bunch and Sam was a musician. Could Sam have had more of a hand in creating Daniel? And if Daniel is Kara's father and Sam felt a special connection to him, did Sam marry his granddaughter? As if Kara didn't have enough personal angst already with boinking two brothers. ;p

Oh, and something I forgot to mention in one of my numerous posts on this episode. Six of the seven Cylons are young and attractive and don't seem to suffer from high blood pressure. Cavil was created in the image of an old, presumably dead, man. Gee, you think he might be a wee bit bitter? ;)
I got it covered. I just submitted a sarcastic comment along with a dozen other people. ;)