The new SciFi Channel revival of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA won rave reviews today from the Los Angeles Times and Brian Lowry at Variety.
Those who don’t frequent Internet chat rooms have missed much of the
off-screen drama surrounding "Galactica’s" voyage, with plenty of overheated
bleating from fans of the original that has gone a long way toward giving sci-fi
nerds a bad name. Fortunately, producers of the new show have mostly tuned out
the static and stuck to their guns, crafting a very adult series whose principle
shortcoming is being almost unrelentingly grim — though not inappropriately so,
given the subject matter.
Lowry says the producers aren’t entirely tuning out the whining from the fans of the original series.
The producers have thrown a bone to die-hard fans by casting Richard Hatch —
Apollo in the earlier version, who has spent years lobbying to revive the
franchise — in the third episode. Hatch plays a political prisoner who leads a
rebellion against the fleet, which is doubtless a small inside joke.
I’m sure the producers are expecting calls from Herbert Jefferson, Laurette Spang and all the other Galactica has-beens in the morning.
3 thoughts on “Battlestar Galactica”
I watched the first two episodes and I liked’em…it’s a hell of a lot better than the original BATTLESTAR GALACTICA in every way (and certainly more interesting than STAR TREK ENTERPRISE). Dr. Baltar reminds me of Jonathan Harris’ Dr. Smith…in a good way. I like the look of the show, too. They’ve found a style of showing spaceships and space battles that seems fresh.
How anyone could pine for the original series after seeing this is beyond me (the only thing I miss is the Stu Phillips theme, but it is too grandiose for this show). That said, it would be nice if, in future episodes, they included a story.
The two things I liked, from a technical standpoint anyway, are the CGI’d Cylons – the “toasters,” not the human-like versions. In the miniseries, they looked CG’d. The made them look real in “33” and “Water.” I’m wondering if they started using actors in the prinicple photography, then did a “Gollum” on green screen to dub in the actual Cylons. Water rolling off the armor. Very nicely done.
The other thing, the thing that gives it a sense of realism, is the handheld technique of the fleet shots. The focus jerks quickly and shakes like a combat photographer might be sitting on the hull of a ship watching all this. Much better than the orchestrated (and often overblown) beauty shots we’re usually treated to in scifi movies.
And if the show jumps the shark, they can always take advantage of the documentary feel, bring in Chris Guest as a weapons expert, and have him say, “Well, these are ray guns, but they’re special ray guns. Their power goes up to 11.” But save that for the series’ downward slope, ‘kay?
I just got done watching my first episode. Friday night at 10 is a tough time. I grew up on Star Wars and Galactica and time does mysterious things to your memory. While Star Wars holds up, the original BG is horrible. But, I still love the old Klingons–er… Cylons and the ships and the score where top notch. I appreciate what they’ve done with the new show and all, but the overall feelings I get from it are cold and numb. Where’s the heart?! Well, in the original, the heart came from Starbuck, and now there’s a chick playing Starbuck and I get the whole “flip the womanizer sterotype” concept but…she just isn’t Starbuck.
The same thing has happened to the latest Star Wars movies. The character that Starbuck was originally modeled after doesn’t have a counterpart in the new films. The Rogue! That’s what’s missing…no Han Solo, no Starbuck, no heart.