For the last couple of years, I have been watching episodes of Battlestar Galactica on my Palm and then iPod. This isn’t the series from the 70’s with Lorne Greene, but the newer version that started in 2004 on the SciFi channel (now just SyFy). But the basic plot was the same in that robot Cyclons wipe out the human race except for a few spaceships full of people, led by a military spaceship called, the Battlestar Galactica, who all go searching for Earth which many think might just be a myth. I finally finished it up this week (I won’t tell you how it ends).
The series is a lot darker than the original. And they did make some significant changes, like some of the hotshot fighter pilots are now women and in addition to classic robotic cylons, there are humanoid versions that look like regular people (except better looking generally). The humans dismissively call the Cylons “toasters” or “skinjobs.” One of the hooks is that even though the Cylons have this great technology to make robots that look exactly like people, they only have a limited number of molds, so a lot of the Cylons look just alike. This is good for the actors because they can get killed and one of their copies can still show up in the show. Speaking of copies, one of the actors from the original series (Richard Hatch, who played Lorne Greene’s son, Apollo) got a minor, but recurring role in the new series.
Anyway, the original series only lasted one season, but the new one got a lot of acclaim for an original cable series and lasted four seasons. It is produced by a guy who worked on several of the Star Trek TV series sequels that started in the 90’s. There are a lot of neat sci-fi twists and even religious storylines (the humans believe in multiple gods, and it turns out the Cyclons believe there is only one God).
Honestly, the series wasn’t always that great. I thought they made some of the characters do kind of stupid things in order to make certain plotlines work. It was still worth watching though, all the way to the end when either the humans are wiped out by the Cylons, find Earth, or none of the above. But it certainly had a lot of neat ideas and concepts in it. And the cast was large enough, not even counting the duplicates, that there was always a lot going on. And the nice thing is it didn’t overstay its welcome like some shows (Lost).