06 October 2006

Will the Real Starbuck Please Stand Up?

I once admired Kara Thrace
But now, I find, I long for Face
His mission clear, his manner strong
His feathered locks ne'er got too long

At first she'd fight and never cry
Went toe-to-toe with Colonel Tigh
But now she weeps and whines all day
(Though still, I'd roll her in the hay)

Dirk! Please save us! It's not too late
Rescue Kara from her sad fate
Stockholm Syndrome is bad enou'
The depths she's sunk we can't allow

Come fight and quip and never cry
Kill the Cylons with steady eye
Finish off her batshit captor
Free her from her evil toaster

* * *

Yah. Spoilers. Oh well. This was a fantastic two hours, though I felt bad for Ron Moore's tough bind. It's hard to tell this story of suicide bombers, detention, resistance, sectarian strife, and terrorists (with the great unspoken line wondering whether humans were expected to greet the Cylons with flowers) and not risk seeming an apologist for our foes. There were a few moments I felt came off a bit forced, but that's more a function of how close to home this hits.

I believe a people have a right to defend their homes, their families, and their lives, so I'm neither shocked nor particularly appalled by suicide bombers. While I detest their causes, I take no issue with their tactics. I know to some this makes me a moral relativist, but I support any and all means of defending my home, hearth, kith, and kin. If roles were reversed - America under Sharia - believe me, I'd be building bigger fucking bombs than the Iraqis and Palestinians.(1) Besides, my peeps aren't stuck with the whole "other cheek" schtick. We're strictly Old Testament.

This is the first time I've ever been 100% behind Tigh - though I think his fixation on Baltar is foolish and emotional - killing the Vichy cops is right on. Yes, "[j]ustice is like the hawk...sometimes it must go hooded", but masked bands of "police" disappearing people in dead of night are the enemies of freedom. Duck is a hero.

The first act, which I'd seen the other day, was pitch-perfect on every thread. But Christ have they fucked with Kara! I loved the way she killed Conoy and went back to her dinner. I loved that she knew it was only a temporary respite. Then she lost her way. Starbuck would have killed the child. Smothered it or drowned it. It's the hard thing to write and the hard thing to direct (and almost impossible for poor Katee Sackhoff to perform,) but it's the only way Starbuck would respond. She hates Cylons. She kills Cylons.

Beyond that I thought the evolution of the characters was spot on. Fat Apollo is great. I know it's just a body double and a fat suit, but it still cracks me up. Jamie Bamber should henceforth always be called "Fat Apollo". Ellen Tigh's betrayal of Saul is heartbreaking to watch. Finally, I believe that no matter what, she loves her bully of a husband. She loves him so much she'd sell out the human race and prostitute herself to save him. She'd always seemed a contrived plot device before; now she's the show's most tragic character.

Everyone else was likewise where they belong. Only Starbuck, ready to throw it all away for her zealous Cylon "husband" and bottle-grown toaster, needs a swift kick to the head.

1 It really helps being a Jew. We got way beyond algebra.