This week, Eldhrin returns and declares Battlestar Galactica the best thing currently on television. Read on and see if you agree.

Cast

James Callis as Dr. Gaius Baltar
Edward James Olmos as Admiral Adama
Mary McDonnell as Laura Roslin
Katee Sackhoff as Kara “Starbuck” Thrace
Jamie Bamber as Lee “Apollo” Adama
Michael Hogan as Col. Tigh
Tricia Helfer as Number 6
Grace Park as Sharon Agathon/Boomer

Tahmoh Penikett as Helo
Aaron Douglas as Galen Tyrol
Dean Stockwell as Brother Cavell
Richard Hatch as Tom Zarek
Kate Vernon as Ellen Tigh
Luciana Carro as Louanne “Kat” Katraine
Kandyse McClure as Anastasia “Dee” Dualla
Callum Keith Rennie as Leoben Conoy
Nicki Clyne as Cally Henderson
Christian Tessier as Tucker “Duck” Clellan
Michael Trucco as Samuel T. Anders
Alessandro Juliani as Felix Gaeta
Rekha Sharma as Tory Foster

Synopsis

With the fleet back together and the occupation ended, President Zarek moves to find and eliminate people suspected of collaborrating with the Cylons. On board a Cylon Basestar, Gaius Baltar’s life hangs in the balance.

High Points

  • Zarek and Roslin again. This season their interactions have given us glimpses of what an unstoppable force they could be if they were to work together with each other and the Adamas
  • Tigh’s reaction to Gaeta’s appearance in CIC. In fact, Col. Tigh in general.

Low Point

  • I didn’t particularly appreciate the predictability of some of the actions of the jury of peers

The Scores

Dealing with collaborators at the end of an occupation is not particularly original. In my own experience this episode reminded me in part of the conclusion of Secret Army, which shows some rather unpleasant vigilante executions of suspected collaborators in the aftermath of the liberation of Brussells at the end of the Second World War. As is quite normal with Galactica, having an episode remind you of something does not give you much of an idea what is ultimately going to happen, and everything gets such fantastic scripting and acting that none of it feels recycled. Five out of six.

Effects were of less impact and importance this week, which probably gave the studio the chance to catch a nap, as there’s no way they got any sleep doing the work for last week’s episode. That isn’t to say that they were bad though. They’ve always been good at people being sucked into space by rapid decompression, and the exterior shot of the Cylon fleet was breathtakingly beautiful. Six out of six.

The story is solid, vital, interesting and perfectly paced. Five out of six.

The acting left very little to be desired, although I was a little disappointed with Alessandro Juliani in the launch tube. Michael Hogan is showing us just how a character can balance on the edge of sanity, and Katee Sackhoff’s portrayal of Starbuck is becoming quite disturbing. Five out of six.

For this week’s episode the production team had to build something we’ve not really seen before – a room inside a Cylon Basestar. The result is clearly not particularly well-suited for human occupation, and has a wonderful homage to the classic moving red light from the original series. Elsewhere, we really get the feeling that Galactica is at or over capacity; the crew quarters are crowded and noisy, as are rec rooms. It’s pretty much exactly what it should be. Six out of six.

Emotional response has dropped somewhat from last week’s highs, but this is inevitable given the situation in the plot. Not to say there is no tension, as they’re still dishing it out in spades with side helpings of sympathy and contempt. I sometimes get the feeling that this show is playing me like a lute. Five out of six.

Overall six out of six. Okay so the thrills and explosions and sheer plot-moving action aren’t there this week, but nothing here feels wrong, slow, out of place or really eases up on the inexorable movement that this story has.

So the grand total for Collaborators is an excellent thirty-eight out of forty-two. Best show on television at the moment? You bet.