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LoneGunMan Gives 5 Stars To GALACTICA_1.3!Now WithRichard Hatch!

I am – Hercules!!

They finally found a way to get Richard “Apollo” Hatch to quit bitching and whining about how horrible the new “Battlestar Galactica” series was going to be. They hired him.

The horrible British continue to get new “Battlestar Galactica” installments before god-fearing Americans, and by all accounts the series remains on a roll.

We begin with scurvy-ridden “LoneGunMan”:

Episode 3 of the latest Battlestar Galactica has just screened over here in the UK, and fantastic it is again. I felt compelled to write you all a review!! If you want to use it, feel free!

Battlestar Galactica 1.3 FAQ

What's it called?
“Bastille Day.”

How does it begin?
Continuing straight from the end of the previous episode, the convoy is low on water thanks to Boomer's unconscious booming. They've found water, now they just need a way to get it, and it looks like that prison ship full of manpower could solve all their problems. However, problems arise when a political prisoner proves he wants more than just "points" towards their freedom.

Isn't that …
Yes, the aforementioned political prisoner is Richard Hatch, the original Apollo, acting his socks off in what could be the best performance of his career. A character with depth and emotion, he demands freedom - not from the prison, but for humanity from the government that no-one elected.

So what else is going on then?
Baltar continues his fantastically twitchy turn, finally confronting Adama about the "Cylon detector" he promised to develop. Six tells him just what to say, and before he knows it, he's asked for one of Galactica's precious nuclear warheads! Col. Tigh has fallen off of his wagon, much to Starbuck's amusement, and Helo and Boomer v.2 wander the abandoned Caprica city. But most of the action is in the prison ship.

So Apollo faces Apollo in a clash of the generations?
Okay, I confess, I didn't like the original Apollo. Hell, everyone watched the classic series for Starbuck anyway, and the remake was heading the same way. But this episode proves that both the Apollo's have the chops to pull of an excellent character confrontation. New Apollo's ideals come into play, and he shows he not only can act and be an interesting character, but he has the balls to order his father and the President around. Old Apollo is great, showing more grit than he ever could in the 70's, and I hope he'll resurface as a force to change humanity's fate.

Is this another comment on terrorism and the US government?
Yeah, it can be seen as that, the President is firm in the belief that terrorists should not be negotiated with, the terrorist element has a good point. He has a real cause to stand for, but he's resorted to violence. By the end of the conflict, you're not really sure who was actually right, but the resolution is perfect.

What¹s Good?
Again, tension is the watchword here. Gripping television that shows how SF should be done. Characters that are believable and raw, with a pace that never lets up.

What¹s Bad?
One goof that really annoyed me was the Raptors attaching themselves to the prison ship. Starbuck's little strike team cuts a hole in the bottom of the ship, they go through the hole and yet seem to descend into the prison ship from above. Er... okay, so artificial gravity and all, but what? Which way up? Other than that, having to wait seven days for another episode!

“LoneGunMan’s” rating for “Battlestar: Galactica” 1.3?


The Hercules T. Strong Rating System:
***** better than we deserve
**** better than most motion pictures
*** actually worth your valuable time
** as horrible as most stuff on TV
* makes you quietly pray for bulletins

On to the “Dark Avenger”:

Battlestar Galactica 1.3 FAQ

What's it called?
“Bastille Day.” So called due to the uprising which occurs on the fleet's prison ship in an effort to oust President Roslin, led by the charismatic Tom Zarek (a stellar performance by special guest star Richard Hatch).

What does TV Guide say?
"A desperate shortage of water forces Adama to recruit 1,000 convicts from the Astral Queen to drill on a desolate ice moon."

What do we learn?
Adama has Baltar working on a screening process which would detect any Cyclon sleeper agents. Only problem is, Number Six is the real driving force behind this operation, which would require the use of one of the Galactica's five remaining nuclear warheads. Speaking of Number Six, this is the first time since the mini-series that we see the 'real' her (not just the Harvey version of her in Baltar's head) - she refers to the Cylons as the children of humanity and, like all children, they must rise up and kill their parents. Okay.......

Is Starbuck still a chick?
YES! *this is getting old* She does actually have a few good scenes in this edition, generating some decent conflict with Tigh (who also puts a stop to Tyrol and Boomer's little office romance).

Does Apollo still suck?
Not so much this week. He does come off like a whiny teenager at the start of the ep. but he definitely appears to have grown a pair by the end, kicking some convict ass and laying down the law to Adama Sr.

The good?
Richard Hatch undoubtedly steals the show, his character has definite recurring potential.

The bad?
The Boomer/Helo Caprica subplot doesn't seem to be going anywhere fast. Meh.

How does it end?
Apollo and the President make a pact.

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Readers Talkback
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  • Nov. 2, 2004, 2:16 a.m. CST

    First! And...

    by Keeks

    This series is shaping up to being the highlight of Sky's week - not hard, I know. Not TOO sure about the Thunderbirds-esque clips of what happens in the episode at the beginning though.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 2:51 a.m. CST

    Talk about Desperate Housewives!

    by Battousai

    It is clearly the best show on television right now.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 4:15 a.m. CST

    Good studio ep

    by alanmaccyd

    The first episode where I've really felt that they were keeping an eye on the budget (the inside of the prison ship aint exactly a grand set) but it still worked just fine. Great performance from Richard Hatch, ironically in the same ep where Jamie Bamber's new Apollo grows a spine. This one should win new Apollo some fans. Complaints? Not enough Boomer for my liking! And the Caprica stuff doesn't count - the 'Day 12 on Caprica' summed it up. What the hell are they supposed to be doing?!

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 4:16 a.m. CST

    I really wish they would ease up on the shakey-cam...

    by Jim Jam Bongs

    ...And it looks like they purposely light some settings low (when a scene is in a conference room, for example) or they blast up the lights in others (like in the hanger bay). Overall, this is a show that is literally hard to watch -- it's almost as bad as 24.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 4:29 a.m. CST

    Battousi: I think I speak for the geek demographic of AICN Coaxi

    by Jim Jam Bongs

    ...The acting is painfully difficult to watch, especially when the four leads share scenes together when they're discussing the mystery of Mary Alice. Their performances are stilted -- they share very little chemistry together. Everything feels so restrained and taut in the way they interact. I'm only still watching it to see what happens with the Mary Alice arc, but frankly it too is starting to bore me, and Mary Alice's all-knowing narration has become annoying, too cloying. That's the problem with this show: It gives off a vibe as if it believes it's more clever, funny, cutting edge than it really is. And let's be honest about who is really watching this show: It's the same demographic that watches Will & Grace -- not necessarily the "geek crowd". Hands down: The best new series that appeals to this group is Lost (and not just because there's a character based on Harry Knowles). Veronica Mars is probably the second best, but still an underdog even among the geeks.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 4:42 a.m. CST

    I agree about Desperate Housewives...

    by Prof. Pop-Cult

    I really wanted to like it too, but after a couple of episodes, I find myself losing interest rapidly. I've been zipping through all the plots just to get to the Mary Alice mystery parts to save myself time, but like Jim Jam I'm becoming bored with it too. I don't feel like I'm the audience for this show. People tell me it's SUPPOSED to be "campy" and badly acted. Really? If that's the case, this is the most subtle form of campiness and bad acting I have ever watched. You know what might have been actually cutting edge for this show? Casting a man in drag to play one of the women, and play it out as if, within the universe of the show, the character really is female. Now that would have been campy.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 6:15 a.m. CST


    by gameraboy has Battlestar

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 7:42 a.m. CST

    So far...

    by fop

    I don't think this has put a foot wrong - it's way better than the original series. I take Richard Hatch's recent comments that back in the 70s the writers were more restrained than now, but the more 'realistic' approach taken, from the camera style, to the focus on the realities of the survivors' situation (as opposed to 'let's go to the casino planet this week') really suits the whole concept of the show. And ironically Richard Hatch gives a far better performance here than I can ever remember from the original series. For the third week running this is way better than anything else on the TV. The only downer is how little publicity it's had. Many people I've been talking to don't even know it's on, so it would be a huge shame if something this good fizzled out over poor figures. Then again, most of the decent US stuff that we get (The Shield, Six Feet Under, NYPD Blue etc gets absolutely buried by the schedulers in ludicrous late night slots while yet more crappy reality shows and house makeovers fill the prime slots. Fantastic show though, and well done to everyone associated with it.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 8:57 a.m. CST


    by pammybabe

    This is a lot better than I expected. It's intelligent (for Sci-Fi), fun, well made and doesn't patronise it's viewers. Expected it to be cancelled soon.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 11:29 a.m. CST

    Is it legal in the US to download eps?

    by aceattorney

    Because I'm dying to watch it.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 2:07 p.m. CST

    Richard Hatch from Survivor is on this fucking show?

    by My Ass Smells


  • Nov. 2, 2004, 2:33 p.m. CST


    by kintar0

    Man, I hope Scifi's not paying to make this show when they could be paying to make more Farscape. The original Battlestar show was dope, granted, but I'd rather NOT have this new version if its gonna be all Battlestar Galactica: The Next Generation 9/11. How lame is that? I say bring Farscape back. The Peacekeeper Wars was the fucking cat's ass! I wonder if Creighton and Aeryn's kid has a Scorpius neural clone?

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 3:06 p.m. CST

    Q. Will all future TV reviews be in this format?

    by Christopher3

    A. Who knows? Look at what devastation Herc hath wrought upon the Coaxial Corner. Q. Why should I listen to the opinion of someone who talks to himself? A. I have no answer.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 3:08 p.m. CST


    by Christopher3

    The thing that most stretches credulity in "Desp. Housewives/Melrose Place 2" is why any of these woman would be friends in the first place.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 5:51 p.m. CST

    OK, what's going on here...

    by banana_dude

    I am not sure who exactly is reviewing each episode of this show, but i'm beginning to think one of two things is happening. 1.) It is an insider who works for Sky or some other company affiliated with the show, making it out to be one of the greatest shows to ever grace our TV screens (which it isn't by the way). 2.) Us British (or atleast the ones reviewing this show) are far less discerning TV viewers than their US counterparts, and have a giant hard-on for anything that has a budget of more than 5 pence (which most of our UK made shows are clearly working on). This show is not better than most motion pictures, and not better than we all deserve. Don't get me wrong, it's a fine show and more than entertaining, but 5* for every show so far?! I don't think so. The plotlines are adequate, but nothing we haven't seen before in the likes of Star Trek, Stargate, The Matrix and countless other sci-fi shows and movies. You name it, and the writers have pillaged it. The acting is OK, but mared by some pretty bad casting. The SFX are pretty much spot on, but again nothing we haven't seen before. This is a good show, but hardly groundbreaking, and hardly worth the 5* ratings it's been getting here. I'm sure many will disagree, but had this show launched in the US first, i doubt we'd be seeing such praise being heaped upon it by our US cousins.

  • Nov. 2, 2004, 6:04 p.m. CST

    Christopher 3: As I pointed out too, that's also the problem I h

    by Jim Jam Bongs

    ...They are all disparate stereotypes. They don't complement one another well, which is evident in their group scenes together. At first I thought maybe these scenes didn't work because they were badly written or badly acted, but I conclude now that the characters themselves are just badly conceived. Now before anybody takes issue with this criticism of mine, I point out Sex and the City as an example of where the four female characters were believable as close friends -- and I didn't like that show, nor did I watch it. But the few times I did, I could recognize that it was a well produced series and well conceived concept... it just didn't appeal to me, that's all.

  • Nov. 3, 2004, 8:33 p.m. CST

    I hate to say it...

    by Kelvington

    but I'm really enjoying this series. I thought the mini-series was ok, and when the first episode started, I was not impressed. But about 20 minutes in, I was really starting to enjoy it. Now three shows in, and the addition of Richard Hatch, it's pretty cool. I don't like the Scorpious mental-clone that Baltar has, because I don't think it could be done nearly as well as Farscape did it. Overall, this series is starting to get some good steam, so I suspect it will be cancelled in about two weeks. As for downloading it, tough shit, if the tiny brains at Sci-Fi gave a shit they would premiere it here in the US at the same time as it is over there. Regardless of ratings sweeps and crap like that. Besides I figure the SkyOne versions will have nudity and language that the Sci-Fi channel will cut out. Can you sense I'm still pissed they cancelled I-man and Farscape?

  • Nov. 4, 2004, 11:30 a.m. CST

    It is that good

    by Dave Patrick

    I think it is almost as good as the reviews suggest. Certainly is the one show I have to watch each week and stands up very well to the declining years of Stargate SG1 and the sputtering Stargate Atlantis on Wednesdays. Three consistent and entertaining episodes. More like a long mini-series than an episodic drama show. As to the downloading dilemna. Welcome to my world! It's nice to get new shows ahead of the Merkins once in a while. It's like the old days of the season finales of Babylon 5. Those of you who download BSG and have a ratings measuring box in your house, just make sure you watch BSG when it starts over there next year. Broadband is all over the UK and yet it doesn't seem to be seriously denting the ratings of import shows here yet. The season opener of the two Stargate shows on Sky One a few weeks back pulled in one million viewers. Which isn't bad for a subscription channel.