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:: Battlestar Returns ::

The Cylons were created by man. They evolved. They rebelled. There are many copies. And they have a plan.

It is a simple enough setup, but these opening lines to the Sci Fi Channel's re-imagined Battlestar Galactica deceptively mask the series' intricate space opera plot. Considered by many to be nothing short of the greatest television show of all time, Galactica expertly bends genre definitions by fusing action, drama, love, philosophy, and science into a final product so well polished that many episodes seem to rival the standards of most feature-length films.

Last Friday marked the beginning of Galactica's fourth and final season--and if the premier is any indication of the quality to be expected over the coming weeks, then we are definitely in for a treat. To quote Dwight from The Office, if you are not watching Battlestar Galactica, "Then you're an idiot."

During past seasons of Battlestar Galactica (BSG), I took it upon myself to review and recap each week's episode. I have since ceased to do so mainly because I found myself watching the show with my critiques in mind instead of just sitting back and loosing myself in the narrative. With the show's much anticipated return for a fourth and final season now begun, however, I just couldn't let this momentous event go uncovered.

Picking up precisely where the season 3 finale left off, Apollo (Jamie Bamber) can't believe his eyes after the dead-for-two-months Starbuck (Katee Sackhoff) appears flying along side him. The reunion is short lived, however, as a massive Cylon fleet threatens to finally destroy the temporarily disabled Rag Tag Fleet--forcing the duo to join the desperate fight. Mysteriously, on the verge of victory, the Cylons bug out and allow the humans to flee to safety. This causes the four recently revealed toasters--Tyrol, Tigh, Tory, and Anders--to question if they might have had something to do with it. Meanwhile, the now acquitted Gaius Baltar (James Callis) is hushed away by a cult of followers operating out of an abandoned corridor in the Galactica.

And that's only in the first 15 minutes.

Early in season 3, BSG set the standard for television special effects in the two-part episode, Exodus. Without question, the opening minutes to the season 4 premier--He That Believeth In Me--has not only rivaled it, but most every CGI scene you're likely to find at your local movie theater. The effects are just that frakkin' good. Everything from the beautifully rendered starscape backdrop do the squadrons of Cylon Raiders maneuvering like a flock of birds--never is the drama and intensity of the moment interrupted by cut corners or anything even remotely resembling an act of laziness. I don't know how they do it, but I certainly hope they keep doing what they do. There's no question that the visual effects team of BSG stands without equals.

But don't think for a second that BSG is all style and no substance. Far from it. Unique to this series, as opposed to more secular sci-fi such Star Trek, is an underlying spiritual aspect. The humans in the BSG universe worship a combo Roman and zodiacal pantheon. Instead of "Oh my God!" it's "Oh my Gods!" It is their religion and the legends of the lost planet Earth told in its scriptures that keep the survivors of the human genocide going. In conflict with this are the Cylons, whose more Christian inspired religion focuses on one true, all-loving God. This of course creates an interesting role reversal between opressor and opressed.

Then there's Gaius Baltar.

Beginning the show as an atheistic, selfish playboy, his journey has been a rollercoaster from the fleet's go-to scientist, to the Preisdent of humanity, to the most hated man alive, and finally to messiah figure. At the start of season 4, it appears as if he's going to turn into the Jesus of the show. Although he shaved off the messiah beard, but his cult followers seem to like him better that way. And only one episode in, he has already offered his life to the Cylon God in exchange for an innocent child. Will Baltar need to be killed for the sins of humanity to be forgiven? I doubt the writers would be that obvious, but something tells me Gaius' suffering is far from over.

It's hard to believe BSG is going to be ending so soon. I would be lying I said I wasn't depressed by this fact. Hopefully its compact, 4 season run will allow it to end with a bang and go down in the annals of television history as something truely special. But what of this grand conclusion? How will a show that prides itself on explosive season finales bring an end to the entire series? Two pressing questions remain: who is the final Cylon, and how the frak is Starbuck alive? I've been so wrong in my past predictions that I wont venture a guess here, but I do have some thoughts on plot twists we can expect:

-I think we might finally get to see Zach Adama on the show. If this means he's a Cylon or will simply be featured in a flashback/religious experience I can't be sure, but something is going to happen here.

-Now that Tyrol is a Cylon, that means his son must be a hybrid. This will become an important aspect.

-This is more of a personal hope than a prediction, but that'd be great if Romo Lampkin made a comeback.

-The ending will be completely different from what everyone expects...and it will be amazing.

:: Dead End ::

Well, that's all for this week. I trust you enjoyed your trip into this shadowy nether-realm known only as the K-Files.

For the latest updates on the world of Khyron, bookmark http://www.khyron.net/. With content updated regularly, you're sure to find your fix for all things entertaining and paranormal. As always, feel free to send any questions/comments/suggestions to KFiles@khyron.net.

Keep your eyes peeled for the next  K-Files, arriving sometime next week. Later.

~Khyron, 2007.


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