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Old November 7 2012, 02:22 AM   #23
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Re: Ron Moore interview on Wired.com: answers

Ian Keldon wrote: View Post
= And let's not get started with his overreaction to Trek's "perfect people" which led him to create not realisitcally flawed people, but walking bundles of attitude and emo.

Well even I think that's an unfair criticism: many different drama subgenres want to focus on "flawed" people.

But there's a difference between "realistic portrayal of flawed people" and...."make them generically angsty because we've run out of ideas".

The first two seasons, the "flawed characters" writing was great.

Think like...late X-Files, or Buffy Season 6, everyone went full-on emo in Season 3 because the writers couldn't think of WHY they'd be upset.

I mean what they called "Apollo's existential crisis" they later grudgingly admitted was that they had no idea where to take his character.

***But what really annoys me is they didn't even successfully follow through on the "flawed characters" we'd been promised:

By which I mean, consider the whole "Starbuck is screwed up because her mother beat her as a child, to the point that she had broken bones". Right? First two seasons, they mentioned this but it wasn't blatant.

Did we get a serious, developed look at realistic psychological damage that children of abuse continue to play out a adults? Heck no.

The original idea for Starbuck's storyarc in season 3, made in late season 2, was that even though "Kacey" wouldn't really be Starbuck's daughter, she's later find out that the girl was being abused by her mother, and offer to adopt her to save her from that. So it would be a storyline related to the core of Starbuck as a "flawed" character: dealing with parent-child relationships herself. And in the process, it would be an opportunity to give detailed flashbacks about Starbuck's past with her own mother.

They stated all this in podcasts. They scrapped it at the last minute (when it was kind of too late to start over with weeks to go before filming). I'm not sure why, they felt it wasn't what the character would "do" -- maybe they were worried it would "Feminize" Starbuck too much, worried about the stereotype that a woman is only sympathetic in cliche gender roles like "woman is nurturing". I don't know. This may even have a kernel of valid criticism to them. But you don't throw out that idea so close to the deadline!

Regardless, consider that either the Kacey subplot *or something like it* would have followed up on the PROMISE of realistic and flawed characters.

Instead, we barely got a handful of flashback scenes with her mother in "Maelstrom" -- filmed at the LAST minute, they said: because it was on-location filming they only had one day to film it all so they had to rush it through, not film scenes or not have a chance to polish them.

Ultimately, they barely went into Starbuck's abusive childhood, which would have been a realistic character-analysis of her current mentality.

That isn't "about the character".

Tigh being angsty because he's a functional alcoholic? Well, that's "flawed characters". Tigh being angsty because *against all plot logic* he's made a Cylon? Self-admittedly for shock value? That's not even "flawed characters".

My point is that Season 4 Starbuck's "emo angst" over "am I dead or an Angel?" ....had nothing to do with storytelling about "Flawed characters".

****But in many ways it was the "anti-Trek". God help me I said it then, but didn't know the implications.

Consider that Trek is secular humanist; Moore always wanted religion, or spiritualism.

Its not just "religion", its the whole "Enlightenment vs Romanticism" debate in the arts. Spiritualism is part of Romanticism, specifically "Mysticism".

Moore was "the Klingon guy", and that's how "Romanticism" or "Mysticism" was snuck into Trek -- aliens who have their own cultural mythology. Moore was always in touch with that stuff.

But unlike Trek, BSG went headline into "religion" but in the romanticist sense.

I was hoping for a realistic analysis of religiously-based cultural conflict. Instead, oops!, turns out the whole reason for the Cylons attacking the humans isn't because of religious beliefs they ACTUALLY have, but because they were duped by the Big Bad Cavil who reprogrammed his fellow Cylons. and Cavil himself is an athiest. In which case, this show was never actually about religiously based violence, WAS IT?
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