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Tony Grist

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Battlestar Galactica [Oct. 15th, 2004|09:12 am]
Tony Grist
I never liked the old Galactica: too cheesy. I don't think I'm going to like the new one either: too pompous.

The only thing I want from sci-fi is cute ideas. If the ideas are cute enough I don't care if the sets wobble. Galactic war against a race of robots is not a cute idea.

Since the enemy are soulless robots we can kill 'em guiltlessly. They have no civilians. Ain't it great to be a soldier!

Honour, self-sacrifice, beautiful bodies.

Blood and iron.

OK it's just a TV programme but.....
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[User Picture]From: qos
2004-10-15 01:15 pm (UTC)
I do enjoy your comments on film and television.

I was twelve when Star Wars came out, which was very shortly after I discovered science fiction through a marvelous YA novel called Enchantress from the Stars, so when Battlestar Galactica came out, I was perfectly primed (and unsophisticated enough) to lap it up. I did recognize that it wasn't the greatest of series, but that was because even at 12-13 I got tired of the repetitive nature of many of the stories.

Since the enemy are soulless robots we can kill 'em guiltlessly. They have no civilians. Ain't it great to be a soldier!

The first time I read this, I thought you meant that the Galactica had no civilians. Then I realized that you meant the Cylons. But the "ain't it great to be a soldier" carries does extend to how civilians in the fleet were portrayed: short-sighted, undisciplined, usually whiny, and needing the benevolant dictatorship of patriarchal military commander Adama.

I haven't seen the new version, but I will probably rent it just to see what they did with it.

My personal pet peeve, coming out of my own peculiar academic and spiritual past, is that when Cassiopeia is introduced in the first episode of the original series, she is not just a prostitute, she is a "sacred prostitute," who explicitly tells Apollo and Starbuck that her profession is honorable and sanctioned by the temple. The producers backed off from that immediately, stuck her in a nurse's uniform, and "rehabilitated" her as little more than The Spunky Girlfriend. Not that they could have done else, given that it was supposed to be a 1970's family adventure show. But still. . .
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2004-10-15 09:10 pm (UTC)
Thanks.

I never watched the old Galactica systematically- just caught the odd episode here and there. I seem to remember reading or hearing that the original writer was a Mormon and that the series is full of coded Mormon theology.

The best thing about the new series is that they gave the Dirk Benedict role- the cigar chomping, super-macho fighter jock- to a girl. She's rather good in it too.

I'm hoping that the series may perk up as it progresses. They've got two things right; the sets and special effects are terrific and they've hired some good actors. All they need now are some writers.
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[User Picture]From: kaysho
2004-10-15 07:46 pm (UTC)
I remember the show being quite good, but given my age and gender at the time (and yes, only the age has since changed), that may not be saying much ... :)
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2004-10-15 09:12 pm (UTC)
It was better than Space 1999, but not as good as Star Trek (in either of its two early manifestations.) I had high hopes of the new series because there's been so little decent sci-fi on TV recently.
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[User Picture]From: jackiejj
2004-10-15 09:14 pm (UTC)
The only thing I want from sci-fi is cute ideas. If the ideas are cute enough I don't care if the sets wobble.

The old Star Treks had unapologetically tacky sets, clunky fake rocks scattered around, shag-carpet monsters, pulsing lights, go-go boots. God, I loved those shows.

I would have loved Next Generation, even if they'd had to keep their cardboard sets. But their new fancy star ship was part of the fun--everything was so clean! And those skylights in the officers' quarters, and the shiny space blankets.

I found Deep Space Nine less interesting, because the action was usually stuck at the space station. I've got all the Generation plots memorized, but when Patrick Stewart says, at the beginning of each program, "...to go where no one has gone before," I still get a thrill.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2004-10-15 09:53 pm (UTC)
My friend Judy says that the greatest strength of the original Trek was that Roddenberry hired real writers- including several famous names. Yes, those shows really took you out into unknown territory. There was a sense that anything could happen.

I was fond of Deep Space Nine. I thought it had a bunch of really interesting characters- including some strong women. I was a little in love with Kira Nerys. It deteriorated in the last two seasons- but that's true of so many shows.
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[User Picture]From: arielstarshadow
2004-10-16 11:40 am (UTC)

Galactica Fan

I actually loved the show, but then I was of the age where I was still young enough to ignore the cheesy aspects, and old enough to develop a mad crush on Apollo.

I bought some of the old eps on video, for sentimental reasons, and I have watched them on occasion. Aside from the nice feelings of nostalgia, my main thought is always that had I been on that ship, I'd have marched myself down to Adama's office and say:

"Let's see, Cylons want to annihilate the human race? So what do we do? Lead them to the last known colony?? Brilliant!"
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