It's been (nearly) ten years since Battlestar Galactica first aired the miniseries/pilot. Late in 2003, over two nights, I watched a show that would change my outlook on television forever.
Until Battlestar aired, I didn't have much time for non-scifi television. I watched DS9 through to the end and stuck with Enterprise despite a growing sense that, not only was Enterprise bad scifi, it was simply bad television.
Then, in the first few minutes, Battlestar grabbed me by the neck and never let go. It proved that being a genre show wasn't good enough. You could be great television and great scifi. You could explore complex issues and thorny interpersonal relationships and have giant chrome robots, poundy drums and space dogfights.
It's often said that Battlestar drew in non-scifi fans because of the smart writing and well-drawn characters, but it drew me out of a scifi morass of cliche and tired caricatures and into a world of shatteringly good television. I'd have never watched Friday Night Lights if it weren't for Battlestar, or Mad Men, or Breaking Bad.
Ronald D. Moore's quest to do great television that happened to be scifi was a triumph. He got the right cast, the right story and the right director and those four seasons of television stand shoulder to shoulder with the greats.
I can't believe it was ten years ago.