Posted by: da_nibbler | February 15, 2009

Info Overload. Prep Surgery. (BSG ep 4.15)

The episode of surgeries. But first we get a new introduction text:

“This has all happened before and it will happen again. The Cylons were created by man. They rebelled. Then they vanished. Forty Years later they came back. They evolved. 50298 human survivors. Hunted by the Cylons. Eleven models are known. One was sacrificed.”

And we’re back with Tigh and Ellen, who was killed by her husband, who later turned out to be one of the last five Cylons himself, during the occupation of New Caprica. We witness her awakening in a reanimation/download chamber on a Cylon base ship.

Cut to present day aboard Galactica, where Anders is undergoing surgery (remember he got shot in the neck in the previous episode). Apparently he’s got a bullet lodged in his brain. The doc’s got it all covered and we are more interested in his memory flashes criss-crossing across our screen and his erratic mumbling anyways. Didn’t he just mention Ellen?

Back to Ellen, 18 months ago, being greeted by John, who, as we find out, was named by her after her father. To top it all off she also made him in his image. Ellen created the human-like Cylons? More importantly John seems to be in on Ellen’s plan. So he must have always known she was one of the last Cylons. How come none of the other Cylon leaders, like Six and Diana, knew nothing of it? More on that later.

On Galactica Tyrol shows the re-instated Admiral the little problem near the FTL drive he discovered in the previous episode. Adama installs Tyrol as Chief again, disregarding him being a Cylon. After all his XO is one too. “Fix my ship, Chief.

In medbay Anders wakes up and asks Starbuck to bring the last five Cylons, including Ellen, to him. He remembers everything. She reminds him that Ellen is dead, not even thinking about him mentioning her in this context at all. That would have confused me a little, but apparently not Starbuck.

“It’s too many layers. Just get the rest of them. Please tell them I remember everything. Earth. Why we’re here. Everything. I’ve seen everything!”

Back in time on a Cylon base ship John and Ellen have a fundamental discussion as to why she created the human-like Cylons the way she did and why John altered his own programming. One of the Sharon’s comes in, the original Boomer, and is getting a face to face with her creator, Ellen. “Watch, Boomer. Make up your own mind.” After having heard that I guess she will do so later on.

Anders is explaining to the other three of the last five Cylons what had happened to them. They were working in the same research facility and when the nukes hit they downloaded into a resurrection ship orbiting the planet. Apparently that technology, organic memory transfer, has been part of the history of the 13th colony, but it fell out of use after their people started to procreate. The Fab Five, aka the last five Cylons, were trying to re-invent that technology to save their kind. Confused enough? Yeah, me too. Tell us more. But now Cottle steps in and says visiting hours are over. Come on man!

On Colonial I Roslin is working on a memorial for the recently deceased, aka shot for not doing what Zarrick wanted, Quorum members. Lee wants to make the best out of the situation and take a step forward to not only establish a new Quorum, but a revamped version of it.

“These old planets, that’s not who we are anymore. We’re a fleet now and our daily lives are defined by the ship we are on. We’re not Capricans anymore. We’re from Galactica, we’re from Colonial I. Maybe we should acknowledge that.”

Roslin agrees and hands over the in-official reign of the government to him. She needs someone to do the heavy lifting for her.

Tyrol is still giving Adama the tour of destruction through Galactica. Basically the ship could fall apart any second now. And just like in the real world Adama is appalled that the people that built this military machinery cut corners to make more profit. (Anyone reminded of the US soldier electrocuted while taking a shower in his barracks in Iraq thanks to faulty wiring by the US company that got that contract? And the same company just got the renewal for all electrical works for our boys and girls in Iraq. Wohoo.) Okay, back to the show. Basically Tyrol is telling the Admiral that Galactica’s days are numbered. “I can squeeze a bit more life out of her”. The clock is ticking, and it’s ticking mighty fast.

Meanwhile back in medbay Anders is finishing his story. Can someone check whether Cottle is wrapped up all nicely in a locker somewhere? Don’t want anyone disturbing us now as we’re getting closer and closer to the truth. We are told that the Fab Five went to the 12 colonies to warn them. They knew that they’d continue creating artificial life and to tell them “Treat them well, keep them close.” But when they reached the colonies they were already at war with the Centurions. It had happened again. Remember the whole schtick about “It has happened before and it will happen again”? Guess it’s just in our nature.

The Fab Five made a deal with the Centurions, who had already managed to create the hybrids but nothing that could live on its own. Stop the war and we’ll help you. That was the deal. The Fab Five developed the eight human models (please tell me how you made Six, cos I want one!) and gave them resurrection. Starbuck says what we’re all yelling at our screens: “Eight? You said eight. We’re missing someone.” And now of course Anders has to have a collapse and where is Cottle? Oh yeah, isn’t he still wrapped up nicely in a storage room somewhere. Typical.

Ellen and John are back to their verbal smack down with Boomer as the audience. John tells Ellen about Diana’s epiphany in the temple of the five and that he had her whole line boxed because of it. Boxing can be undone. Unlike what John had done to the number sevens, Ellen points out. Guess we know why we were never introduced to all eight human Cylon models that Anders just mentioned. One was permanently removed from the production line it seems. Well, we gotta cut down. The economy is a mess.

John finally lays bare his motives. He feels imprisoned in his inadequate, imperfect human body that Ellen chose for him.

“… you know how I perceived one of the most glorious events in the universe? With these ridiculous, gelatinous orbs in my skull. With eyes designed to perceive only a tiny fraction of the E-M-spectrum, with ears designed only to hear vibrations in the air. …. I don’t want to be human. I want to see gamma rays, I want to hear x-rays, I want to smell dark matter. Do you see the absurdity of what I am? I can’t even express these things properly. Because I have to conceptualize complex ideas in this stupid, limiting spoken language. But I know I want to reach out with something other than these prehensile paws and feel the solar wind of a super nova flowing over me. I’m a machine and I can know much more. I could experience so much more, but I am trapped in this absurd body. And why? Because my five creators thought that God wanted it that way.”

Yep, he definitely has got some issues. Ellen still thinks they gave them something unique – the chance to think for themselves, to be creative, to love – to be human.

Meanwhile Tigh and the rest want to hear everything from Anders, but someone got Cottle out of that storage locker and into medbay where he is taking up all the precious Anders time. Having the whole who-started-what-and-who-is-to-blame game Tigh doesn’t want to just pawn the whole mess onto the humans. “You point a finger back far enough and some germ gets blamed for splitting in two. No.” Anders might die with his next seizure, but the necessary surgery might get rid of his recently discovered memories. He doesn’t want that. But Starbuck, as his wife, overrules. He has until the anesthesia knocks him out.

John threatens to kill Ellen if she doesn’t help him build another resurrection hub since the newly formed Human-Cylon-Alliance just blew up the old one and freed Diana. Either she helps or he is going to cut open her head and study her brain. Nothing more than an electrical grid after all.

Anders is urgently trying to spill out all the information he’s got before he’s knocked out for surgery. John was the first Cylon “child” and helped the Fab Five create the others. The Centurions already believed in a single, loving God. That apparently made all the difference since the Fab Five believed that if the Cylons embraced love and mercy the cycle of violence could be broken. Unfortunately John had a twisted morale, turned on and killed the Fab Five. Blocking their memories and imprinting them with new ones when they resurrected, he boxed them for a while and introduced them one after the other. Anders reveals the 8th Cylon name as Daniel and screams at Saul to stay with the fleet as he is wheeled away to his surgery.

“The miracle is happening” is what Anders yelled and it is still ringing in my ears as I watch Tigh going back to his quarters and his impregnated Six Cylon (I really need to know how you get one of those). What could that miracle be? I think it is laying there on the bed. And it’s moving in its mommy’s tummy.

Back on the Cylon base ship Ellen is not telling John what he wants to hear. She is pointing out the flaws in his thinking and execution. Laying bare the sadistic streak that is part of his personality, brought out by his much hated humanity, that he is denying.

Ellen: “You’re a sadist. Why not just kill us and be done with it? Why send us to live among the humans?”

John: “I wanted you to see what they’re like up close and personal. So I gave you all grand stand seats to the holocaust.”

Ellen: “But we didn’t die. And then you decided that we hadn’t suffered enough. So you picked me up, put me on a transport, took Galen’s confession, played resistance fighter with Sam, tortured Saul, but didn’t kill him. You had a dozen chances. But you wanted to wait so that when it finally happened, when we download back, we’d be ready to admit we were wrong and pat you on the head for giving us the right amount of suffering, the right amount of punishment, all weighed out. Then we could give you the approval that you’ve always craved. You see, you claim to be a perfect machine but you are driven by the most petty of human emotions – jealousy and rage.”

And now we get to the real killer. John’s big secret. He was the one that killed one of the original eight Cylon models. Out of jealousy he killed the artistic number seven Cylon, Daniel. John has killed one of his own kind. The forgiving speech by his mommy Ellen is not having the effect she was looking for. Her brain surgery is prepping.

Back to yet another surgery. Tyrol is showing Adama just how badly fraked Galactica really is and suggests getting Cylon technology to help out. Adama refuses. But when he returns to his quarters and sees the fractures in the bulkheads even there he gets the message.

Instead of escorting Ellen to her scheduled lobotomy, Boomer, who has been privy to everything going on between John and Ellen, is helping her escape. I wonder where that Raptor jumped to?

In other news it seems like we have lost Anders. Not his body, but his mind. His EEG shows he “is not in there”. Now where could he have gone? Also Adama orders the chief to “save our girl”. The Galactica will be morphing together with some Cylon bio-tech.

Wow, what an episode. I’m exhausted. No surprise after three surgeries. Read you next week.

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