K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick! (bop_radar) wrote,
K, Bop or Boppy--take your pick!

Battlestar Galactica 3.20 Crossroads, Part I

As expected from Part I of a season-ending arc, this episode had an incomplete feel to it. It had some strong moments, but much of its power, I suspect, will come from seeing where things end up. There were a few oddnesses, like Tory losing it, that don't really fit yet. (Though I was at least grateful we got to hear Laura crack it with her. I've never been that impressed with Tory, but she was seriously hopeless in this ep--yelling at Baltar's prosecuting lawyer? Not smart.)

And then Tigh's mysterious music... I don't feel I can even begin to speculate on that. I kind of wish it was just a symptom of him going completely batshit, but I fear some deeper significance at work ... :-( Sam can hear it too. 'Tis the music of lost wives, apparently. (If it is, I will stab things.)

Courtroom scenes are difficult. Particularly when we don't know the legal framework they're working under. However, I thought the prosecution lawyer was very charismatic--a well-chosen guest actor. Her opening address was very strong, and I thought using the device of the population total (and missing number) was very powerful--it also structured the courtcase into the larger story of the series, since Roslin's tally has been one of the most poignant features of the fleet's survival.

Lampkin's defence speech was interesting, though I was a little unconvinced that the crowd would be as receptive, or at least as silent, as they seemed. By overstating the militaristic 'payback' aspect of the trial, he was no doubt trying to create a culture of public embarrassment about such motivations. Although I'm not that convinced that many people in the fleet are embarrassed by those emotions. *frowns* I found Roslin turning up late very amusing. I also loved that we could see in the background, as Lampkin expounded, that she was making that face, the smiling tolerantly one that she puts on when she is Most Displeased or bored.

While I'm in sympathy for Laura, may I say that regardless of the origin of her insights, I felt really sorry for her having to justify her suggestions to Tigh. Hell, I feel sorry for her having to even have a conversation with Tigh. And I loved her walking off shaking her head. 'Boys!'

Gaius was at his comedic best, I felt. The scene where his 'disciple' visited him was hilarious: 'I'm not The God, a god, of any derivation thereof...'/'Well, that's very baffling!' Although I had a disturbing moment when I realised that what Head!Six says to Baltar about his disciples (they see you better than you see yourself) is strikingly similar to what the Oracle said to Kara about Leoben. It was also fun to see him flip out about his 'security guard' turning lawyer. ;-)

I really liked the circular connections in this episode. Laura suggests Tigh talk to Six, which results in her opening up Tigh's wounds regarding Ellen, which results in his collapse on the witness stand, which results in Adama's defensiveness with Lee, which provided the final drive to make use of his insight into the origin of Laura's initial idea about Six.

This trial is public, and the way that the key players conduct themselves in that public arena will affect the way they are viewed by others. Tigh's actions were embarrassing. Adama gets points for being a good friend, but allowing your best friend to serve as XO is a whole different matter. I've been frustrated by how Tigh's return to his post hasn't been problematised on the show and I'm glad it's come out into the light now. I felt some sympathy for Tigh when he killed Ellen--I found that a genuinely moving moment. But I felt little pity for him on the stand. He was stupid enough to get drunk and get up on the stand. And Adama's friendship did nothing to prevent him from doing so. I'm with Lee on this one: Tigh embarrassed himself.

Lampkin is right--Lee is a really bad liar. Lampkin's got Lee's measure perfectly--he pegs correctly that the person Lee needs to prove something to is himself, and that Lee's not going to be comfortable with the idea that he withheld something that could have helped Gaius's defence. Once again, nicely manipulated, Mr Lampkin.

Of course, Lee's lack of a poker face did him no good in his meeting with his father. However, that does NOT justify the way Adama turned on him. This is the part of my review where I have fits of rage against Adama. It's entirely possible that I paused my viewing to throw things... their father-son exchange got so completely out of hand, and I cannot believe that after all this time and all the effort that Lee's put into rebuilding that relationship, Adama still puts Tigh first. Is Adama sulking because Lee turned down CAG to play lawyer? Er, he's still giving you tactical advice, Bill! You've got the best of both worlds! Grrrrr.

So. Completely. Unfair. You do NOT call your son a liar and a coward. Words from parents sting. They scar deeper than words from anyone else, even partners. And Lee didn't know about Ellen. If it hadn't caused such a hideous family rift, I would have been giggling a lot over the fact that Lee clearly didn't care an iota about what happened to Tigh's wife. That's actually pretty poor of Lee, I think--purely from the perspective of knowing the men you serve with, I think he should have had some idea that there was something more to Ellen's death than just 'random death at hands of Cylons number 4765'. However, I like it as a sign of how he just doesn't rate Tigh as important at all. So WOW, Adama, you just made it incredibly easy for your son to rebel against you. And he did so with far more dignity and grace than you. You were an ugly character in this episode.

I think Lee found it surprisingly easy, in that final moment, to remove his wings. Not just because the altercation with his father had gone so far, but because he's moved beyond flying as a career. He's got newfound direction and confidence and there's an emptiness in the sky now anyway. So, I guess we've lost both our pilots now. No more Starbuck. (The show feels so empty without her!!) No more Apollo. *sniffles*

Unspoiled as I was, I had no idea that the episode would result in Lee cross-examining Laura to defend Gaius. And ouch! That was hard to watch. They've had so few scenes together in the last season and a half, it was painful to have that old intimacy dredged up here. Laura appealing to Lee broke my heart. Especially because Lee has conflicted feelings about what he's doing himself. He looked chronically uncomfortable when Lampkin first brought up Roslin's motives in prosecuting Baltar. I don't think he's at all comfortable with dragging her into it. And I think that's why, in the final moment, he grants her request and asks why. The answer kills him. Oh, Lee! *covers face with hands* You're never going to stop gathering reasons to feel guilt, are you? I adored the voiceshake on that question too. Oh, dear, dear, Lee!

I think it's also important to remember that Lee is a sceptic. Laura appeals to their joint experience with finding the path to Earth, but I think Lee's locked that experience away somewhere deep inside. He's rationalised it to himself, and he doesn't have faith in the spiritual. Although it was never explored, religious faith, and Laura's willingness to embrace it, was always a point of difference between Lee and Laura, and I think it's really interesting that it's arisen again now. (It also makes me wish the writers had done a better job of exploring that as one of the reasons that led to them drifting apart.)

Lee crosses the floor to face Laura, to look her in the eye when he asks her the crucial question. He does so in front of his father, to prove he's not the coward that Adama claimed. If his father's going to condemn him for attacking someone that his father holds dear, let it be for something he's actually done. Laura says she feels sorry for him... I'm not sure I do. I do feel he's been manipulated, but I also feel he's made his own decisions. He's on a journey to become his own man, not his father's. But I am sorry that it's cost him, once and for all, Laura's friendship, because I fear it has, and that was once so valuable and dear to Lee.

Laura came out of the trial relatively strongly. She held her own in the press conference as she always does. Unlike Tigh, she's not actually a mess, and that's a very important distinction. The transparency of the trial will, I hope, make that obvious. If it results in public pressure for Tigh to resign, I'll be very happy.

Lee, on the other hand, didn't come out so well. Oh, that's right--nearly forgot that he lost his wife in this episode as well. *facepalm* Dee, as usual, didn't get many lines. However, I wasn't surprised by the decision to script her walking out on him over this. She's Adama's girl, and this trial has brought to light all the aspects of Lee's character which are unlike his father. She doesn't sympathise with his stance, and she's got her own strongly held opinions. I'm really glad that finally we've got to a place where the difference in their values is made clear. Summed up in, I believe, a couple of sentences and some dramatic hand gestures. Ah, well. ;-)

I'm a little cranky still, so I'll indulge in some Helo squeeage--sooooo nice to see him back as XO and bonding with Felix. Loved his 'storm is rising' call too. So cutely melodramatic. (At least he didn't say the music is rising!) I had a moment of picturing him Legolas-like on a mountaintop, hand to brow, taking the pulse of the wind. ;-p

Finally Lee's idea about the tillium ship was frakking brilliant. And of course Adama uses it despite Lee's resignation! I hope it saves their asses so that they're all SORRY SORRY SORRY! *pouts*

I'm off to read asta77's brilliant post now.
Tags: bsg_meta, bsgseason3

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