Battlestar Galactica #9: The Young Lords

"These humanoids are not well constructed. They damage easily." "At least we don't rust."
SO SAY WE ALL: Starbuck crashes on a Medieval planet and works with kids against occupying Cylons.

REVIEW: It's getting harder and harder to take the Cylons seriously. In this episode, which has Starbuck crash land for the umpteenth time (maybe he's the one not to take seriously), the Cylons are taken down by rust and five children, most of them pre-teens. One might also start to question the value of the IL-series, with Specter a lying, jumpy sycophant, and Lucifer green with jealousy because an early model gets Baltar's attentions (there's promise of Specter's return, but it only happens in the books). It's all a little silly for machines, but if it's comedy, it's not unamusing. It's just not great at building up your big bad, is all.

At least it's not a western, right? This time, the planet (Attila) is fantasy-medieval, with big castles, winged helmets, and unicorns (either the species is native to this planet, or it's just a headdress). There's only one family left and everyone else has been killed by the Cylons (so is that helmet an Asterix joke?). The mom's dead, the dad is a captive, the kids are freedom fighters using their knowledge of the area to give the Cylons a hard time. Starbuck is to be a bargaining chip at first, but soon shows he knows tactics (AND the Cylons) better than the oldest kid Kyle, so he makes up a song to help them remember the rescue plan (which they pull off without a hitch), and he plants a kiss on the eldest daughter Miri (pre-Dallas Audrey Landers). You know, as Starbuck is want to do. Now, the kids aren't very good actors, and their dialog is meant to sound stilted and cod-Medieval, while the dad is naturalistic, for some reason. But, the story isn't without its charms, and the little song is a fun conceit to help us follow the action. When Specter talks in the middle of it at some point, it's actually shocking that he doesn't rhyme (if he had, I would have raised the score). Of course, the ending doesn't really work. All that's left of Attila's population is six blood relatives and they refuse to go to leave their home? Uhm... Especially with all that talk of Miri breaking hearts aboard the Galactica, it makes you think. Maybe the only heart she'll be breaking is her own brother's... Eeech.

Subplots are sparse. Adama is sick in bed, which gives him, Boxey (please don't tell the kid what happened on this mission), and Nurse Cass. It's their usual sweet grandfather-grandson relationship, but that's about it. Boomer's anxiety over letting Starbuck on Attila is much ado about nothing, though good emotional texture. In the end, Starbuck is easily found even if Boomer couldn't really know where his friend's Viper had landed. But there's a fun character bit when Starbuck asks for the fresh uniform he was jokingly promised. Indeed, he needed it, probably because the ladies demanded a bare-chested Dirk Benedict.

ALL THIS HAS HAPPENED BEFORE AND IT WILL HAPPEN AGAIN: Starbuck crashing is already a silly trope, but let's talk Star Trek. Are you telling me the script isn't ripping off the TOS episode "Miri", when it has a character CALLED Miri, a teenage girl who falls for our intrepid space hero, who is basically the only man in her environment populated by children, except for one older boy who means harm to said hero?

HUMAN DEATH TOLL: All but six people on Attila have been exterminated by the Cylons.

REWATCHABILITY: Medium - Not without its plot holes, but it's amusing to see Starbuck leading a bunch of kids, or Baltar playing the "smart" Cylons against one another.

2 comments:

arw1985 said...

Oh yay... this episode. You might find that some of the single-part episodes of the series kinda suck. At least they did for me.

Siskoid said...

BSG was a series of tv movies that unexpectedly went to series, so the first few one-offs were rush jobs. We'll see how later done-in-ones fare, I don't really remember. I guess the last time I watched BSG was at least 10 years ago.

 

Blog Archive

Category

5 Things to Like Activities Advice Alien Nation Aliens Say the Darndest Things Alpha Flight Amalgam Ambush Bug Animal Man anime Aquaman Archetypes Archie Heroes Arrowed Asterix Atom Avengers Awards Babylon 5 Batman Battle Shovel Battlestar Galactica Black Canary BnB 2-in1 Books Booster Gold Buffy Canada Captain America Captain Marvel Cat CCGs Charlton Circles of Hell Class Comics Comics Code Approved Conan Contest Cooking Crisis Daredevil Dating Kara Zor-El Dating Lois Lane Dating Lucy Lane Dating Princess Diana DCAU Deadman Dial H Dice Dinosaur Island Dinosaurs Director Profiles Doctor Who Doom Patrol Down the Rabbit Hole Dr. Strange Encyclopedia Fantastic Four Fashion Nightmares Fiasco Films Within Films Flash Flushpoint Foldees French Friday Night Fights Fun with Covers FW Team-Up Galleries Game design Gaming Geekly roundup Geeks Anonymous Geekwear Gimme That Star Trek Godzilla Golden Age Grant Morrison Great Match-Ups of Science Fiction Green Arrow Green Lantern Hawkman Hero Points Podcast Holidays House of Mystery Hulk Human Target Improv Inspiration Intersect Invasion Invasion Podcast Iron Man Jack Kirby Jimmy Olsen JLA JSA Judge Dredd K9 the Series Kirby Motivationals Krypto Kung Fu Learning to Fly Legion Letters pages Liveblog Lonely Hearts Podcast Lord of the Rings Machine Man Motivationals Man-Thing Marquee Masters of the Universe Memes Memorable Moments Metal Men Metamorpho Micronauts Millennium Mini-Comics Monday Morning Macking Movies Mr. Terrific Music Nelvana of the Northern Lights Nightmare Fuel Number Ones Obituaries oHOTmu OR NOT? Old52 One Panel Outsiders Panels from Sheena Paper Dolls Play Podcast Polls Questionable Fridays Radio Rants Reaganocomics Recollected Red Bee Red Tornado Reign Retro-Comics Reviews Rom RPGs Sandman Sapphire & Steel Sarah Jane Adventures Saturday Morning Cartoons SBG for Girls Seasons of DWAITAS Secret Origins Podcast Secret Wars SF Shut Up Star Boy Silver Age Siskoid as Editor Siskoid's Mailbox Space 1999 Spectre Spider-Man Spring Cleaning ST non-fiction ST novels: DS9 ST novels: S.C.E. ST novels: The Shat ST novels: TNG ST novels: TOS Star Trek Streaky Suicide Squad Supergirl Superman Supershill Swamp Thing Tales from Earth-Prime Team Horrible Teen Titans That Franchise I Never Talk About The Prisoner The Thing Then and Now Theory Thor Thursdays of Two Worlds Time Capsule Timeslip Tintin Torchwood Tourist Traps of the Forgotten Realms Toys Turnarounds TV V Waking Life Warehouse 13 Websites What If? Who's This? Whoniverse-B Wikileaked Wonder Woman X-Files X-Men Zero Hour Strikes Zine