Monday Night Movie – Battlestar Galactica (2004–2009)
My favorite of all the Sci Fi movies. When the first series aired on television in 1978, I was not impressed. It was a nice try but the storyline was mediocre at best and the acting was so bad you look forward to the commercials. However, in 2004 the Syfy Channel produced Battlestar Galactica (BSG) and they nailed it with compelling storylines, amazing special effects and strong acting by world class actors.
This is not something you are going to sit down and watch in one evening as there are 73 episodes at 45 minutes each episode but if you have the time, it’s a great story. You can buy the DVD collection from Amazon, watch it on Hulu or if you have Netflix with the DVD add-on, you can get the DVD and watch the entire show at your leisure.
The overall story of BSG is set in the future and Cylons have been created to serve Humans. Because of Artificial Intelligence (AI), they rebelled and went to war to gain their freedom and then disappeared in the universe. Forty years later the Cylons have evolved to look like Humans and returned to destroy the 12 tribes of Humanity. A small group of Humans have survived and are on the run, in search of the lost 13th tribe of Humanity which, as it turns out, resides on Earth. The Cylons pursue the Humans across the galaxy until Earth is discovered and a final battle between Humans and Cylons ends the war.
Although it is a Sci Fi show it appeals to a wide spectrum of audience. The storyline is built around the personal lives and conflicts of the soldiers, pilots who fight for the survival of Humanity. This is not the optimistic story about exploring new worlds and going where no man has gone before. This film focuses on the darker side of Humanity.
Because Cylons can pass for Humans there is an undercurrent of paranoia throughout the series. No one knows who is a Human and who is a Cylon, adding a real physiological dimension to the story. This is most apparent in the charter of Dr. Gaius Baltar, a brilliant scientist who is never revealed to be either Cylon or Human. I classified him as a Cylon but the story never tells you.
There are a few religious themes that run through the storyline. Both human and Cylon have a belief in Gods. After the destruction of the 12 tribes, President Laura Roslin leads survivors across the galaxy in search of Earth. In the Christian Bible Moses leads the 12 tribes of Israel across the desert in search of the promised land. Unlike Humans who believe in 12 gods, the Cylons believe in one god giving the constant line “The One True God” which I think is a jab at the Muslims but there are many layers to this story. The Cylons never die they are regenerated into a new body which reflects the Hindu belief in Resurrection.
I think the film appealed to me because it’s a dark and deep reflection of the complex post 9-11 world we live in.