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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Entertainment & Interests > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Battlestar Galactica & Caprica

Battlestar Galactica & Caprica This forum was created by man. It rebelled. It evolved. And it has a plan.

 
 
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Old March 24 2010, 10:19 PM   #31
Teiwaz
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

The look for humans on Babylon 5 was not contemporary. Not with this part of this century anyway.

There are subtle overtones of the 1940's in the dress (just a little in the stiffer collars). Business suits in Babylon 5 have gone on a trend that you can imagine if you cast styles forward from now for another hundred or so years (leaving out the anomalous little fashions that creep into clothing in decades (e.g the 60's).
The overtones of the 40's is intentional (its repeated in the dancing music composed for the various scenes of people partying throught the series) its a reinforcement to the sense of wartime that goes through the series.

Overall it shows a business look that has been washed out for a hundred years into something more business-casual as I think it would be referred to today.

I'm not saying the B5 franchise did'nt make it's own mistakes, Crusade realised what a horrible choice it had made so much that it shuffled the episodes around and put a 'PR' plot in a storyline to get rid of the Bell-Hop outfits by the end of the first series.
NuBSG Business suits look too contemporary - the look off the rack for any generic law-political intregue show.

Yes, Is do recall Baltar's outfit looked ok in the opening scenes on Caprica. The scary blonde lady he keeps talking to looked too contemporary though - she's clearly a bit of a vamp though so they aught to have kept her in a red clothing theme - I seem to recall her in red a fair bit - good choice.

Colours are important in myth - the reasons Luke and Leia first appear in white in Star Wars, and why after Luke faces Vader for the first time he next appears in black - the colour of his enemy. Also why Flash Gorden after he's revived from death dons Mings colours. In both cases its symbolic - they've face their enemy and are now ready to take them on - They've been through 'the valley of death' (to use christian mythos) and return changed. Just as Sheridan changed after Zhaha'dum.

Remember - I've not seen passed season one of NuBSG yet.
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Old March 24 2010, 10:28 PM   #32
Agent Richard07
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

B5 had it's own contemporary touch with those loud collarless shirts that were popular in the 90s. I got the impression that that's where they thought style was trending though.
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Old March 24 2010, 10:48 PM   #33
Teiwaz
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

Agent Richard07 wrote: View Post
B5 had it's own contemporary touch with those loud collarless shirts that were popular in the 90s. I got the impression that that's where they thought style was trending though.
You can't avoid contemporary elements seeping into a show (or movie) it will inevitably break the fourth wall a little in revealing when it was made. You can only envision the future imperfectly - it'll nearly always become what you did'nt expect. Fourteen or fifteen years later, I don't think its showing its age except perhaps in the limitations of special effects and that's the last think I'm inclined to worry about - the effects can always be remastered down the line (and really annoy everybody).
We might be able to improve the costumes using digital editing down the line (even animating photorealisitic people to add new scenes and series).

If you've ever seen UFO, the old ITC series, it's idea of future business suits was not a million miles away from the idea adopted by Bab5 - it was the shade of brown used for most and the cut of the suits that gave away its 70's-ness, Bab5 suits do have a tell-tale slight sharpness that gives away its 90's origins.
Both don't make my believability slip half as much as the business suits in NuBSG tho.
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Old March 25 2010, 12:19 AM   #34
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

Teiwaz wrote: View Post
The Centauri are really a parallel of the Austro-Hungarian empire (or at least 18-19th century europe)
You're the first I've seen to suggest Austro-Hungary. I usually associated them with France by way of Italy, but yes, either way, 18th-19th Europe.

Anyway, colonial society in Battlestar Galactica is an obvious parallel for early 21st century America, so surely it can get off on the same excuse?

It doesn't make a bit of sense to me that you can praise Bab5 for its 1940s influences but criticize BSG for its contemporary influences, also, if Bab5 has a whiff of wartime, BSG has, very obviously, a whiff of the war on terror. There's a lot of BSG that likes to be thinly veiled allegory for the present day, after all.
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Old March 25 2010, 12:38 AM   #35
Teiwaz
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

Kegg wrote: View Post
Teiwaz wrote: View Post
The Centauri are really a parallel of the Austro-Hungarian empire (or at least 18-19th century europe)
You're the first I've seen to suggest Austro-Hungary. I usually associated them with France by way of Italy, but yes, either way, 18th-19th Europe.

Anyway, colonial society in Battlestar Galactica is an obvious parallel for early 21st century America, so surely it can get off on the same excuse?

It doesn't make a bit of sense to me that you can praise Bab5 for its 1940s influences but criticize BSG for its contemporary influences, also, if Bab5 has a whiff of wartime, BSG has, very obviously, a whiff of the war on terror. There's a lot of BSG that likes to be thinly veiled allegory for the present day, after all.
Perhaps you're right, but B5 did'nt wholly copy 1940's uniforms and clothing, only suggest culture had some similarities, remember the comedy duo popular in the series - Rebo and Zooty - portrayed in at one episode by Penn and Teller (and referred to in a couple of earlier ones). Very reminiscent of a a combination of Laurel and Hardy and the Marx Bros.

Yes, I agree that there could appear parallels with the feeling of being threatened by some unidentifiable foe currently refered to as the 'War on terror'. But it could also be a parallel for the flight of the Jews from Egypt.
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Old March 25 2010, 12:55 AM   #36
Kegg
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

Teiwaz wrote: View Post
But it could also be a parallel for the flight of the Jews from Egypt.
Only the amount of ancient Israelites watching the show is fairly small.

It's exactly as plausible if not moreso than B5 or Star Trek's use of foreign cultures or dead customs, but with the exact opposite intent: They use those to distance us culturally and socially from the story; while BSG is using it to give us an immediacy to the narrative.
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Old March 25 2010, 01:24 AM   #37
Teiwaz
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

Kegg wrote: View Post
It's exactly as plausible if not moreso than B5 or Star Trek's use of foreign cultures or dead customs, but with the exact opposite intent: They use those to distance us culturally and socially from the story; while BSG is using it to give us an immediacy to the narrative.
Use of foreign cultures or dead civilisations as a model is a quick and easy way of establishing a human or humanoid civilisation that is not the one we're living in. It fills in culture around an alien (either alien as in non-human or alien as in not western 21st century earth). It's not easy to invent a culture from scratch, there's too many variables to create.

I did'nt find the story any more imediate or gripping merely because the Presidential staff wore 21st Century suits. I had no issue with slightly retrograde technology, nor the military uniforms, both made sense. The suit and tie dress comes down from the eighteenth century, evolving and changing with fashion, would you be as happy with the costume had the shirt lapels been huge and kipper ties in evidence (even bow ties might have been ok as they appear a little otherworldy these days).

I'd conclude that it was a cop-out in the hopes of not chasing away people who might normally dislike Sci-fi. It's obvious the Sci-fi community liked it regardless, but did it work?
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Old March 25 2010, 02:36 AM   #38
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

Funny thing is before BSG aired I thought I might have a problem with it, however looking back it didn't bother me at all. I felt it gave the series a more timeless appeal that allows the show to "age better", and it did give Caprica and the colonies a feel and look that is so close to Earth...its like watching a show set in the near future, not some far flung planet which I enjoyed.
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Old March 25 2010, 03:24 AM   #39
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

vampgrrl wrote: View Post
Funny thing is before BSG aired I thought I might have a problem with it, however looking back it didn't bother me at all. I felt it gave the series a more timeless appeal that allows the show to "age better", and it did give Caprica and the colonies a feel and look that is so close to Earth...its like watching a show set in the near future, not some far flung planet which I enjoyed.
In similar vain, I never gave the clothing a second thought, they never bothered me and the near future look as you mentioned, now in hindsight, works for me as well. I wouldn't be surprised if this was somewhat the approach the creative team was taking as well. I mean, sure they could have designed new cuts of materials and the like for different clothing, but why? Making the military uniforms was time consuming and costly enough as it is, and what cuts would someone have them do? Compared to the original BSG, the costumes/clothing on this series is far, far better, I mean can you imagine Edward James Olmos strutting around in a cape (which in hindsight, might partially be the reason why he was initially so reluctant to join the cast)?
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Old March 25 2010, 03:50 AM   #40
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

Kegg wrote: View Post
America....America....America....America

Well...Canada, at least.



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Old March 25 2010, 04:14 AM   #41
muzzleflash
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

Caprica City is set in Vancouver, after all.
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Old March 25 2010, 06:21 AM   #42
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

muzzleflash wrote: View Post
Caprica City is set in Vancouver, after all.
According to Serge, the people of Virgon are considered polite and friendly, some people have called the colony Caprica Jr. Also an increasing amount of television shows are filmed there due to tax breaks.

I wonder where I have heard that before.
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Old March 25 2010, 02:54 PM   #43
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

^^^completely off-topic, but I thought I'd let you know Possum that I'm going to see Jewel Staite at a con in Toronto this weekend. As a long time TNZ lurker I am aware of the cult of Jewel...anything you'd like me to pass along to her?
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Old March 25 2010, 03:04 PM   #44
The Wormhole
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

muzzleflash wrote: View Post
Caprica City is set in Vancouver, after all.
Caprica City is Vancouver, according to The Plan.
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Old March 27 2010, 01:15 AM   #45
Teiwaz
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Re: Is there a lack of creativity in NuBSG Costumes and culture Lack

StarshipDefiant wrote: View Post
vampgrrl wrote: View Post
Funny thing is before BSG aired I thought I might have a problem with it, however looking back it didn't bother me at all. I felt it gave the series a more timeless appeal that allows the show to "age better", and it did give Caprica and the colonies a feel and look that is so close to Earth...its like watching a show set in the near future, not some far flung planet which I enjoyed.
In similar vain, I never gave the clothing a second thought, they never bothered me and the near future look as you mentioned, now in hindsight, works for me as well. I wouldn't be surprised if this was somewhat the approach the creative team was taking as well. I mean, sure they could have designed new cuts of materials and the like for different clothing, but why? Making the military uniforms was time consuming and costly enough as it is, and what cuts would someone have them do? Compared to the original BSG, the costumes/clothing on this series is far, far better, I mean can you imagine Edward James Olmos strutting around in a cape (which in hindsight, might partially be the reason why he was initially so reluctant to join the cast)?
I don't think we can judge how timeless it is for another 30 or so years (that's how old the original BSG is now). Capes were de rigeour in the late seventies for Sci-fi though, but usually for bad guys. Be thankful they did'nt have 'ming the merciless' collars as well.

You're right about Edward James-Olmos though - the grizzled veteran look and flamboyant capes just do'nt go.

I've had another thought about various comments about parallels to todays 'War on Terror'.
The society at the beginning of the series was complacent, there was no threat expected so I'm not sure that holds any water, besides when has fashion been affected by political problems. There was just as much of a terrorist problem in certain parts of the world in the seventies (Ireland, Germany, South France and Spain).

I think the production was trying to minimise the Sci-fi look of the show in the hopes of pulling in a wider audience, I think that having the administrative staff for the President in 21st century dress they hoped they could pull audiences that would watch '24' or 'west wing' and not sci-fi and keep them.
I don't doubt however, that as soon as they saw robots, they'd switch over. Unfortunate that.
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