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

 
 
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Old March 3 2013, 11:32 PM   #16
Nagisa Furukawa
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

Awesome Possum wrote: View Post
"God did it" isn't the answer, Starbuck got them to Earth, God only brought her back to life.
So, God... did it??
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Old March 3 2013, 11:34 PM   #17
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

Nagisa Furukawa wrote: View Post
So, God... did it??
Yeah, I uh... don't see any difference there.
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Old March 4 2013, 12:49 AM   #18
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
Nagisa Furukawa wrote: View Post
So, God... did it??
Yeah, I uh... don't see any difference there.
It didn't all depend on God doing anything, that's just the method they went with on the show. It could have been a Cylon experiment or other random thing. The biggest point is that it allowed Starbuck to develop more as a character and resolve the issue in the end. It was a single event in a character's development that eventually lead to the conclusion. Yes, God impacted the character of Starbuck. But so did Adm. Adama, Apollo, her parents and basically every other character she met.

Saying "God did it" implies a cop out, "Deus ex machina" in an situation that actually involves God and machines. The proper use is when there is an issue so big or completely impossible to solve, so a god magically pops in and solves the situation. That did not happen on BSG, anyone who says otherwise did not understand what was happening. Also for what it's worth, the concept of the Cylon God playing a part in events was first mentioned in season 1 and advanced throughout the entire run of the show, mainly in association with Baltar and Head Six.

An actual example of "Deus ex machina" is several of the Doctor Who finales under Russell T Davies' run. Rose gets magic time powers and wipes out the Daleks, brings Jack back to life and saves the Doctor. The Doctor uses satellites and psychic powers to de-age himself and save the Earth. Donna gets Time Lord abilities through a glowing hand and wipes out the Daleks and saves reality. All completely out of nowhere and all at the last minute.

If you're just upset that it was God, then I don't know what your issue is. That storyline was set up years in advance and wasn't a last minute cop out because they couldn't come up with anything better. The whole concept of the Cylon God was a major part of the series, if they had simply ignored it or said it was aliens or some other stupid idea would have been an actual cop out.
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Old March 4 2013, 01:00 AM   #19
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

It just seems... lazy. That the writers don't have to explain anything because a God can revive characters and give them visions of what to do when it is required by the plot. If that is satisfying storytelling to you then fair enough but I prefer the show to use different narrative devices. God and an afterlife rids it of consequence and weight.

It doesn't do anything interesting with the idea of a God. It's just humdrum monotheism presented in an unambiguous, uninteresting way.
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Old March 4 2013, 01:02 AM   #20
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

TOS Apollo was killed by Iblis, and then brought back to life on the Ship of Lights. (War of the Gods, part 2)
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Old March 4 2013, 01:09 AM   #21
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

Awesome Possum wrote: View Post
Saying "God did it" implies a cop out, "Deus ex machina" in an situation that actually involves God and machines.
No, it doesn't. Neither of us said or implied anything about a DEM.

You said, ""God did it" isn't the answer, Starbuck got them to Earth, God only brought her back to life."

But if Starbuck was brought back to life by God... and given the notes she needs to do it by God... the notes themselves being a song seeded throughout the universe by God... all as part of God's plan to get them to Earth... how is it unfair to say "God did it"?
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Old March 4 2013, 01:09 AM   #22
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
It just seems... lazy. That the writers don't have to explain anything because a God can revive characters and give them visions of what to do when it is required by the plot. If that is satisfying storytelling to you then fair enough but I prefer the show to use different narrative devices. God and an afterlife rids it of consequence and weight.

It doesn't do anything interesting with the idea of a God. It's just humdrum monotheism presented in an unambiguous, uninteresting way.
You probably shouldn't have watched a show that dealt heavily with the religions of both the protagonists and antagonists. Especially since visions and prophesy were an instrumental aspect of the plot throughout the run. That's a heavy part of the Kobol story arc, Roslin's entire arc, Baltar's entire arc and the reason Leoben was obsessed with Starbuck. The whole series dealt with religion, complaining that a god showed up doesn't make sense.

If you cut it out, it's just people being chased by robots with no motivation. Then they find a place to stay, end of story. It could have worked, but I doubt it would have worked as well. It would have likely been another boring Trek clone.
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Old March 4 2013, 01:12 AM   #23
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

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The whole series dealt with religion, complaining that a god showed up doesn't make sense.
Well, I found it dumb, cheesy, crass and unnecessary. I prefer it when BSG is about characters making tough decisions in tough situations. Not just following visions that God put in their head. It's boring storytelling.
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Old March 4 2013, 01:16 AM   #24
Nagisa Furukawa
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

Awesome Possum wrote: View Post
DalekJim wrote: View Post
It just seems... lazy. That the writers don't have to explain anything because a God can revive characters and give them visions of what to do when it is required by the plot. If that is satisfying storytelling to you then fair enough but I prefer the show to use different narrative devices. God and an afterlife rids it of consequence and weight.

It doesn't do anything interesting with the idea of a God. It's just humdrum monotheism presented in an unambiguous, uninteresting way.
You probably shouldn't have watched a show that dealt heavily with the religions of both the protagonists and antagonists. Especially since visions and prophesy were an instrumental aspect of the plot throughout the run. That's a heavy part of the Kobol story arc, Roslin's entire arc, Baltar's entire arc and the reason Leoben was obsessed with Starbuck. The whole series dealt with religion, complaining that a god showed up doesn't make sense.
In Season 1, you had polytheistic humans who thought they were right, monotheistic robots who thought they were right, and one guilt-ridden human who saw the robot he fucked everywhere, who may be an angel of god or may be a sign of his insanity from being responsible for the genocide of the human race.

In Season 4, you have an actual god who can make anything he wants in the plot to happen. It's INCREDIBLY simplified and more literal than where the show began.
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Old March 4 2013, 01:18 AM   #25
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

Nagisa Furukawa wrote: View Post
Awesome Possum wrote: View Post
Saying "God did it" implies a cop out, "Deus ex machina" in an situation that actually involves God and machines.
No, it doesn't. Neither of us said or implied anything about a DEM.

You said, ""God did it" isn't the answer, Starbuck got them to Earth, God only brought her back to life."

But if Starbuck was brought back to life by God... and given the notes she needs to do it by God... the notes themselves being a song seeded throughout the universe by God... all as part of God's plan to get them to Earth... how is it unfair to say "God did it"?
She didn't get the notes from God, watch the episode. She remembered the song from childhood, she worked it out with a vision of her father. The visions are linked to God, but that's part of the show. People don't complain about the transporters on Star Trek. They're a plot device to tell a story, you need the characters to get somewhere and you don't want to waste time landing the ship.

The visions were a visual method of representing characters working out ideas and revealing aspects of the plot that couldn't be explained in other ways. It would have been boring to show her sitting by herself trying to write a song. But having a character there for her to talk to and write works. In many ways, it's similar to Luke seeing Obi Wan's ghost in the Star Wars trilogy. Luke needs information or the plot needs him to be somewhere, so Ben appears to tells him the story of Vader being his father or tells him to go find Yoda. It isn't a cheat, it's an extremely old story device. BSG just used it to help further a mystery of the show and tied into the ending.
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Old March 4 2013, 01:29 AM   #26
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

Nagisa Furukawa wrote: View Post
In Season 4, you have an actual god who can make anything he wants in the plot to happen. It's INCREDIBLY simplified and more literal than where the show began.
But he didn't. Starbuck got them to Earth, Baltar resolved the conflict between humans and cylons (until the Colony blew up) and the human and rebel cylons seemed to have ended the cycle of creation of machines, rebellion and genocide. The involvement the Cylon God had remained the same throughout the show, the characters just began to realize what was happening.
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Old March 4 2013, 04:28 AM   #27
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

Of course I was happy with them; there's really no basis for complaining about the character arcs.
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Old March 6 2013, 06:56 PM   #28
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

The only I didn't like at the end was I felt sorry for Lee, who was basically left all on his own (With Adama going off and Starbuck vanishing.)
I always thought it would have been nice to have included a little scene somewhere near the end of Lee and Nurse Ishay flirting, just giving this little glimmer that maybe down on Earth they could have hooked up. (obvs because in real life the two are married)
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Old March 6 2013, 10:09 PM   #29
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

V wrote: View Post
Also I loved the ending, it was a satisfying conclusion to the series and couldn't have hoped for anything better. I know some people don't like it, but some people are just haters and can never be happy. That's why they try to ruin it for other people. I don't like Glee, but I don't bitch about it constantly and tear apart anything said by the creator like a stalker ex-girlfriend.
This is from another thread, but it brought up a point:

I feel that "the ending" of BSG was "bad", not in terms of "the last episode", but in terms of how the entire second HALF of the series went off the rails (Season 3 and 4).

The problems with Season 3 and 4 were slightly different:

In season 3, by their own *admission* the writers couldn't decide where they wanted the character arcs to go, so they meandered around (both Apollo and Starbuck and "existential crises" where they "didn't know what they wanted")
You're confusing inside baseball with any actual shortcoming in storytelling. The writers experimented with the characters, tried to find organic directions for them to go in. That Apollo and Starbuck would have periods of drift where they had no idea what they wanted was only natural. Both characters had their reasons: Apollo's needs to get out from under his father's shadow and Starbuck's self-destructive tendencies all played into their actions.


In season 4, the opposite was true: they had a set goal in mind, so they shoehorned characters into behavior and actions they wouldn't normally do (Tigh falling in love with a Six, etc.)
Tigh 'fell in love' with a Six because he recently discovered that he himself was a Cylon and had his entire worldview turned upside down. He also saw Ellen in the place of Six during the interrogation and wasn't entirely in his right mind. I think that, as a whole, Season 4 was very effective in putting the characters through the wringer and showing who would crack and in what ways. The utter destruction of Adama's emotional well-being when he found out about Tigh was particularly poignant.

In either case, I fee the characters behaved wildly "out of character" in the second half of the show. This isn't how the "Apollo" or "Starbuck" established in seasons 1 and 2 would react to situations...even unanticipated situations. Roslin was a loss in Season 3 too, as the writers admitted they didn't know what to do with the character. "Screw it, let's make Zarek just plain evil instead of morally gray" etc.
Zarak was never 'plain evil,' not even up to the final mutiny and airlocking. He did what he thought was right and paid the price when he came up short. Once again, you're using the unprecedented access we as fans had to the writers room process to fuel your assertion that just because the writers didn't have everything mapped out that their choices for the characters were wrong.

Now from the quote above, I've seen many people who say they felt the ending was "satisfying". My point is that it wasn't "satisfying" - it gave AN answer, but not a GOOD answer. In short, you weren't crying because of how the show ended, simply that it did end....the drama equivalent of a laughtrack. I.e. I don't mind that Kat had to die, I think the circumstances leading to her death were simply poorly written.
Are you seriously complaining about Kat's death? That was one of the most moving and heart-rending episodes of the series. As for your other assertions here, they amount to nothing more than taste. The end of BSG wasn't to your taste, so you're searching for some external source to validate your opinion.

Anyway, from the above quote, I want to be more specific. "I feel the characters became caricatures of themselves, and their meandering plotlines in the second HALF of the show were out of character". Well, you can argue against that....but what if I break it down?

Season 3 had a lot of problems, and there was a point when I realized that by *process of elimination*, no one was doing anything. I mean, I had to explain what happened to another fan new to the show, and I couldn't describe the arc of any one character in Season 3 -- Apollo and Roslin got better in Season 4 so this doesn't universally apply, but the shock when I realized they had so many characters and subplots that they couldn't devote enough time to any of them.

Introductions aside, let's look at a list of the "main cast members":

  • Admiral Adama
  • President Roslin
  • Gaius Baltar
  • Number Six
  • Apollo
  • Starbuck
  • Boomer
Then, you've got the prominent secondary cast members:


  • Saul Tigh
  • Ellen Tigh
  • Galen Tyrol
  • Gaeta
  • Dualla
  • Helo
  • Cally
  • Anders
  • Doctor Cottle
  • Hot Dog
  • Racetrack
  • Seelix
  • Kat
  • Tom Zarek
If I missed anyone please point it out.


So in terms of these characters subplots...no, I was not satisfied with how most of them ended up.


By a process of elimination:


Apollo and Roslin turned awful in Season 3, and directionless. Surprisingly they turned this around in Season 4....by just aping what they were in Seasons 1-2. Not necessarily "bad", but what was their storyarc? Apollo getting more political, Roslin having a relationship with Adama and then dying. Not the worst, kind of predictable, but they went so off the rails in Season 3 that it wasn't particularly satisfying. As for Admiral Adama....what exactly was his storyarc? He barely interacted with Roslin OR Apollo in Season 3....I mean, he had dialogue with them, but what the heck were the subplots? Not once did he discuss with his own son Apollo's marriage.

It was paint by numbers for them: "insert rousing speech here". And why would Adama *randomly* decide at the end that "I'm leaving never to return"? That was for shock value.


Starbuck....on the one hand, as with ever scifi hero, they gave hints she was a "chosen one" since Season 2ish, but had no real plan for what it was. Did the original Starbuck DIE at the end of Season 3, and this was just an angel who thought she was Starbuck? Was Starbuck resurrected by the gods? They gave no answers for this and "Starbuck is an angel" wasn't anywhere near what we were expecting. that being said, prophecy was part of the show so it's not as crazy as some of the other developments:


Baltar - all over the map. Why make a man of science become a cult leader? The writers didn't know what to do with him after he was president. They stretched out "Baltar in prison" for Season 3 for filler, then in Season 4 he didn't really "do" anything.



Six is an odd case because it depends on Head-Six or Caprica-Six. Caprica-six was underutilized and the plot with Tigh was absurd. The Head-characters being LITERAL angels contradicted the earlier seasons -- the writers admitted that didn't think they were angels in season 1, they invented that later.


Boomer - randomly make Boomer really evil, like Morgana on Merlin? That was forced.


Making Tigh, Tyrol, and Anders Cylons gutted each character, was absurd, and also wrecked Tyrol/Cally in the process (even before that, the writing for Tyrol/Cally was pleasant in seasons 1-2, phoned in in season 3).


Dualla never interacted with other characters, then they randomly had her marry Apollo, wasted time on a love quadrangle of doom, didn't use her enough then unceremoniously killed her off.


Gaeta and Zarek became randomly, suddenly evil because a Crimson Tide-esque mutiny would make for exciting TV.


Cottle, Racetrack, Hot Dog, Seelix? Faded into the background.


In terms of "character arcs" the only ones that more or less preserved their integrity were Helo and Athena.


my point is, it's easy to say "I liked where the characters ended up" but can you cite *SPECIFIC* examples? Most of the characters on the show got ruined.
None of your purported examples are specifics about anything except repeated claims that characters were 'ruined.' BSG didn't turn out the way you wanted, full stop. The rest is just a bunch of crazy rationalizations coupled with your disturbing obsession with RDM's management style.

As mentioned by several other posters, BSG set the stage from the very beginning. "I'm an angel of God" was uttered in the first episode of the series. Getting butthurt about a payoff four seasons in the making and then making the bizarre claim that RDM and his writers didn't map things out enough for your liking doesn't really make a whole lot of sense.
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Old March 6 2013, 11:27 PM   #30
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Re: Were you satisfied with the character arcs?

[QUOTE=V;7752532]
Cottle, Racetrack, Hot Dog, Seelix? Faded into the background.
Faded into the background? Ah yeah I remember those early episodes where the wacky adventures of Racetrack, Seelix and Hot Dog were always at the forefront of every story
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