Battlestar Galactica 4x13: "The Oath"

Discussion in 'Battlestar Galactica & Caprica' started by Agent Richard07, Jan 30, 2009.


Grade the episode...

  1. Excellent

  2. Above Average

  3. Average

  4. Below Average

  5. Poor

  1. Gregsmack

    Gregsmack Captain Captain

    Mar 20, 2007
    Toronto, Ontario
    ^ Did you even watch this episode?

    1. Starbuck is not killing her comrades "all day" because she likes doing it. Her comrades are clearly committing mutiny against the ship's commander (and her surrogate father, for all intents and purposes) and, not to mention, they had Lee at gunpoint ready to pull the trigger. If she enjoyed it so much, she would have shot them all in that scene. As she said, "these people are your enemies now"

    2. They need FTL upgrades so that they can find a new home before fuel and resources run out. Very simple. This was said. Again, do you watch the episodes?

    3. The mutiny takes places now because, as stated by the head mutineer during the actual climax of the mutiny (Felix arresting Adama, in case you don't know), the crew has lost faith in their leadership for leading them to a ruined Earth and now attempting to force them to ally themselves with the Cylons.

    4. You assume that everything that is depicted in this series is condoned by both writers and viewers alike, don't you?
  2. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

    Oct 8, 2005
    Los Angeles, California
    You usually make some valid points, stj, but you're off the deep end on this one. The only point worth discussing is the state of earth. The issue of its irradiated state is a bit of a scientific cheat, there's no doubt, but it's not debilitating. Baltar indicates "low levels of radiation," which are unlikely, but exist as narrative shorthand to illustrate the planet was destroyed in nuclear war. What we see is a completely destroyed ecosystem on the planet-wide level. Budget confines our view to one area, but dialogue indicates the entire planet is in a similar state. The tiny plant Roslin picks is the only thing left growing on the planet, or close to it, and it is barely surviving. The planet can't support a settlement, plain and simple.

    The fleet can't return to New Caprica or Kobol for the obvious reason: the Cylons have a presence there. And even if they didn't, Kobol is extremely far away (it's been, what, close to three years of constant travel since they were there?) and New Caprica turned out to nearly inhospitable. In just a year of settlement, the planetary conditions were slowly choking colonial settlement, before the Cylons even showed up.
  3. marillion

    marillion Vice Admiral Admiral

    Sep 3, 2003
    Workin' in a coal mine...
    Wow.. That's all I can say.. Just a beautiful episode.. Such amazing textures of character development.. While I understand that every show must have its end, episodes like this make me yearn for more....
  4. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

    Oct 8, 2005
    Los Angeles, California
    From the snipe about Numb3rs and the reference to reading about Starbuck's actions in "cold print" rather than seeing them, it's a safe bet stj didn't tune in last Friday. Can't say I blame him--he doesn't like the show, and he has his reasons. Myself, I don't bother to tune into anything outside of Battlestar Galactica and 24 these days, and the latter is only a force of habit mixed with amusement at the show's increasingly blatant ideological bent.
  5. Aragorn

    Aragorn Admiral Admiral

    Dec 30, 2002
    Wouldn't he have to if he wants to fulfill his own prophecy about it? As well as make manifesto-sized posts that dwarf posts from this forums biggest fans combined?

    Ultimately though, his opinion will be the same whether or not he watches it.
  6. D Man

    D Man Commodore Commodore

    Apr 14, 2004
    Tropical Minnesota
    Based on where they ended things with Gaeta shaking Zarek's hand last week, I was expecting a slow-burn type revolution to start brewing. I was absolutely floored by this episode's pace. Great action, great ideological conflicts, great dialogue, great everything. BSG has been on a huge roll since coming back. EJO was at the top of his game, I really love it when he raises his voice and gets into his rage. He was great on both sides of the spectrum. "It's been an honor to serve with you, my friend." :techman:

    One small thing that bugged me was Kara's line about having been dead before...I thought from her point of view she flew into the maelstrom, saw Earth, then appeared in the nebula? Beyond her raw emotions over finding her own ship and body on Earth's surface, she (or at least her conscious memories) hasn't really been dead before. I guess she was just saying it for effect, but it didn't quite work for me.
  7. Samuel T. Cogley

    Samuel T. Cogley Vice Admiral Admiral

    Nov 7, 2001
    Hold still, Jim.
    Yeah, that felt like a Buffy/Joss Whedon line, but I still loved it.
  8. Kchunda

    Kchunda Commander Red Shirt

    May 1, 2003
    I took that to mean she was referring to what everyone thought about her, esp. since Narcho made that comment in the hallway during the "fire".

    Today is what, only Tuesday? Good lord. . .
  9. Ensign_Redshirt

    Ensign_Redshirt Commodore Commodore

    Aug 3, 2007
    Oh noes... another one who hasn't seen the show (or at least this particular episode), but thinks that he is able to make comments about it. Seriously, I understand it when someone says "that show doesn't sound very interesting or promising to me, so I won't watch it". But why do these people think that they can give comments on what has happened in the show?

    Take Numb3rs for example... I have never seen this show in my life. Because the premise didn't interest me that much. But I certainly won't comment on how good or bad the show is (or how stupid its fans are, for that matter). Because I don't know. Maybe I have even missed an awesome show with Numb3rs, who knows.

    Well, when it comes to putting down this mutiny, Starbuck is certainly depicted as the overzealous one. Later in the episode, Adama has to stop Starbuck from "executing" a mutineer who was captured by the Admiral. But it fits the character very well. Starbuck seems to take this whole mutiny thing a bit personal, because she interprets as an act of severe disloyalty towards the "old man". Also, Starbuck has always been the one who doesn't play by the rules... she's a bit of an outlaw, a "scroundrel" like old BSG's Starbuck, the "bad girl" if you want.

    Starbuck is the overzealous one, Tigh is the loyal one, Lee is the serious and pragmatic one, Tyrol is the reasonable one.

    Well, the Colonials have bet everything on a single card: Earth. This is what gave them hope, what made them go on. Then they discovered that Earth is a nuclear wasteland, this hope was destroyed. They don't have anything to live for anymore... except for vengeance and their hatred towards the Cylons. And in this particular situation, Adama and Roslin are suggesting an alliance with them. So a lot of anger gets directed at them. First, they failed to lead them to their "promised land"... and now they're collaborating with those who are responsible for this miserable situation in the first place.

    About the FTL drives... it has already been established in Seasons 1 and 2 that Cylon FTL drives are far superior to Colonial FTL drives. For instance, with a Colonial drive you'll need hundreds of jumps to get back to Caprica and the other colonies, while you manage to return there in a single jump if you use a Cylon FTL.

    As for Earth, I think it has been mentioned that the planet's soil is still contaminated. So you won't be able to grow anything eatable there.

    As for Kobol... well, for this you'll need the Cylon FTL drives too. I guess travelling back to Kobol with the Colonial drives would also take several hundred jumps now. Jumps that take you back deeper into the "evil" Cylons' (the Cavils etc.) territory again. Which brings us to another problem: The Cylons already know where Kobol is. So, it might not be the brightest idea to settle there. (New Caprica wasn't actually that bad of a choce hadn't it be for that nuclear explosion that lead the Cylons to the planet.)

    Oh, well, I don't even know where to start here... just one thing: From Adama's point of view, the Fleet hasn't to lose much either at this point. So you can just as well enter into an alliance with the Cylons. As for their trustworthyness... well, Adama's own men didn't turn out to be very trustworthy now. So, what's the point? Everything it turned upside down anyway.

    Well, we just don't know... why do you know for certain that the Cylon engineers are unable to upgrade Colonial FTL drives? We're talking about a technology which has already been established as being far superior to the Colonial one. IIRC, in the Season 2 finale, a Colonial Raptor was upgraded with a Cylon FTL to jump back to Caprica. Such a Cylon basestar is big... why shouldn't there be spare parts?

    In what way did Roslin "roll over"? Back then, she insisted on the position that she is the legitimate president. And it the end, she achieved that this position was recognized. Why didn't she use violence to get her office back? Well, all she had was a couple of unarmed or barely armed civilian ships... that's no match for Galactica.

    The current situation is entirely different. Back then it was a conflict between the military and the civilians. Now it's a conflict within the military. As such, Roslin has at least one faction of the military behind her.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2009
  10. flavaflav

    flavaflav Captain Captain

    May 21, 2004
    this ep had it's moments, but as with most BSG, it's a bunch of emo filled stupidity. The whole basis for a split in the fleet makes no sense, and at this point in the show the mutiny thing is redundant to say the least. this storyline has to fucking end already. if garbage characters like Gaeta and Zarek (his character went to shit this year) die, at least it may be worth it. It's amazing how only the death of annoying characters can make a show fun.
  11. Ethros

    Ethros Vice Admiral Admiral

    Nov 4, 2001
    1123 6536 5321
    I don't know why people even bother replying to posters like that? Especially individual elements of the post.
    We're all so obviously complete idiotic morons because we've seen the show, and they are the almighty supreme beings they believe themselves to be as they actually know every iota about the show without ever seeing a single second of it.

    We're not worthy, we're not worthy!
  12. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Jul 15, 2006
    Star Trekkin Across the universe.
    Because its fun.
  13. Ensign_Redshirt

    Ensign_Redshirt Commodore Commodore

    Aug 3, 2007
    Yeah, I know... everybody who likes Babylon 5 and the new Battlestar Galactica is insulting Babylon 5 by liking BSG. ;)
  14. stj

    stj Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Dec 27, 2006
    the real world
    You don't need to put bad girl in scare quotes. That kind of person is just plain bad, female or not. But BSG fans love her for it. Reading the thread proves that. Commenting on it may be tactless but it's true, and no one needed to see the episode to notice it.

    The Roslin who surrendered the government earlier didn't do so from fear or powerlessness. I did see that episode and it just isn't so. The details of her reaction now, offhandedly cited in this thread, flagrantly contradict that kind of character. (Yes, I still think a Roslin who falls in love with the man who threw her into jail, where she had a drug withdrawal psychotic break, is simpleminded bullshit. Thus, rage at a threat to her man doesn't work as an excuse either.) My point that real people would have thought about what to do when Roslin was too sick to act is correct. Whether heartsick over the ludicrous ruins, or from cancer would be irrelevant.

    There were a few clotted posts above about the Cylon motivation for the genocide, which even gingerly suggested that the show should have dramatized this. (This sounds to my ears an awful lot like some of the stuff I've said for a long time at great length.) That's a clumsy way of thinking about why mutiny now in the story line? The real answer of course is that with an end in sight they can commit to killing characters.

    Their real problem is writing some foolishness about a mutiny aimed at nonalliance with Cylons. Since humans lost the war long ago, that's foolishness. But the Cylons have taken up surrendering to humans as a feelgood story of human (US) superiority. Therefore, war with the Cylons has to be an option within the story, no matter how ludicrous a development that is. The military wanting to continue the war is a natural development from that option. But the thread plainly shows that some nonsense is babbled so that Adama, the military and the government are the peace forces, against the disloyal and dishonorable---and civilians. Or is that redundant? The bare details show clearly how screwed up the story logic is. I say because BSG is highly militaristic as well as patriarchal, ergo Adama and the bulk of the military must be right. You might explain it some other way.

    The real point is that I shouldn't have to explain any of this. These things should matter to the fans of the show who like to discuss such matters.

    Oh, as for the science goofs---I know you people hate science, but not everyone does.
  15. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

    Oct 8, 2005
    Los Angeles, California
    The colonial alliance with the Cylons is a metaphor for American superiority? Ludicrous. It's an alliance of mutual cooperation. The rebel Cylons, of which there are very few, need the colonials for military protection. They lose in the number game vs. Cavil's forces. They probably still lose even with the colonials on their side, but at least it's a chance. The colonial people need the Cylons now because of their jump drive technology, which is their only hope of reaching any kind of habitable planet at this point, since Earth is destroyed. Previous to discovering Earth, they needed the rebel Cylons in order to (a) strike at the resurrection hub (thus eliminating the Cylon's main advantage of immortality), (b) retreive D'Anna (and through her find the identity of the final five Cylons).

    The bold assumption that our willingness to accept minor science goofs (and, upon doing some minor web research, it may not even be a goof, given all the variables involved, the radiation may well last centuries as depicted) means we hate science is an assumption left unsubstantiated by the facts. No doubt it makes hating Battlestar Galactica and its fans easier, though.

    I admit, that's a thirty-five year old document. If it's wrong, why not offer a link in support, or recommend a book?
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2009
  16. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

    Jan 31, 2007
    Watching it now - did the sound go all choppy and Dalek-like in the US, or is just Sky over here that have fucked things up?
  17. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell Comfortably Numb Premium Member

    Jun 12, 2001
    where it hurts
    (Directed mostly at stj's points.)

    War with the Cylons is not an option for sustaining the human race. It just isn't. The Cylons on the baseship aren't there because they particularly want to be, but because they wanted to find Earth and the Five. They succeeded in both, sort of, and since they helped the humans destroy their Hub, they really have nowhere else to go. Their fates are bound together out of necessity rather than convenience. I have seen no indication that the Cylons find themselves the least bit inferior to humans--and the humans who've had experience with them have had to take the difficult realization that the Cylons are not inferior, either. Even Adama has tacitly accepted this, even if it's not something he'd say openly.

    We have yet to get a final answer on the motivation of the Cylons with regard to nuking the Colonies. Since "God", the "virtual" characters, Starbuck's return, and other factors have not yet been elaborated on, I suspect all of those elements are intertwined with the actions of the Cylons. RDM has stated that all of the above will be answered by the end of the series, and he hasn't been known to lie about such things (with the one obvious exception of Starbuck's death). Given the mystical bent of the show, I don't expect everything to get a concrete and precise explanation, but at least pointers in the right direction. I'm sure the show's writers expect BSG's viewers to be smart enough to not need everything spelled out for them.

    The crack about BSG fans hating science, though... what the hell? Trek has done much worse with regard to scientific accuracy, and here we are on TrekBBS, discussing the relatively minor goofs of another show. Only Trek gets a pass on the crazy science, eh?

    The motivation for the mutiny has made perfect sense to me, and has been discussed at length already. Everyone has their motives--some pure, some not. It's when the dust settles that the people who weren't true believers tend to get sorted out.
  18. Ensign_Redshirt

    Ensign_Redshirt Commodore Commodore

    Aug 3, 2007

    Supporting the alliance/opposing the mutiny:

    - Admiral Adama (military)
    - Starbuck (military, married to a Cylon)
    - Helo (military, married to a Cylon)
    - Lt. Hoshi (military) - probably
    - Hot Dog (military) - probably
    - Private Jaffee (military)
    - Chief Laird (military, formerly a civilian engineer)

    - President Roslin (government)
    - Apollo (government/civilian, formerly military)
    - Baltar (civilian)
    - all of Baltar's cult/followers, including Jeanne and Paulla Schaffer (civilians)
    - an unspecified number of Civilian ship captains who tried to reach Galactica after Roslin's speech (civilians) - unconfirmed

    - Colonel Tigh (military/Cylon)
    - Tyrol (military/Cylon)
    - Anders (military/Cylon)
    - Athena (military/Cylon)
    - Caprica Six (civilian/Cylon)
    - Cylon Baseship crew - probably

    Opposing the alliance/supporting the mutiny:

    - Vice President Zarek (government)
    - Lt. Gaeta (military)
    - Narcho (military)
    - Racetrack (military)
    - Skulls (military)
    - Seelix (military)
    - Capt. Kelly (military)
    - Sgt. Nowart (military)
    - Sgt. Maldonaldo (military)
    - Specialist Vireem (military)
    - Specialist Gage (military)
    - Connor (civilian)

    - 11 out of 12 Quorum delegates (government/civilian) - not actively involved in the mutiny, but oppose the alliance
    - an unspecified numbers of Civilian ship captains who opposed getting Cylon FTL drives installed on their ships (civilians) - not actively involved in the mutiny, but oppose the alliance

    There's a certain pattern that the show's main and regular characters tend to support the alliance and oppose the mutiny... no matter whether they are military personnel or civilians. The exception is Lt. Gaeta as the only regular character who is with the mutineers. Recurring, guest, and minor characters tend to participate in the mutiny.

    In general, higher ranking officers support the alliance with the Cylons, while lower ranking officers and crewmembers oppose it (but then again, high ranking officers are often main characters, while lower ranking officers are supporting characters). A lot of former Pegasus crewmembers seem to participate in the mutiny. All Cylon characters obviously oppose the mutiny, as do characters with close personal relationships to Cylons (including Admiral Adama and Helo).

    Most people who have directly to do with the mutiny one way or the other are military... but that's not surprising since it takes place on Galactica. The situation seems pretty quiet on the Civilian ships, they're merely trying to observe the events on Galactica as good as they can.

    There's also a certain irony that the opposition to the alliance with the Cylons stems from civilian/anti-military government officials (Zarek, the Quorum) and the more militant members of Admiral Cain's former crew (Specialists Gage and Vireem, also Narcho). So there's actually an odd coalition of the government's anti-military elements and the militaristic hardliners from Pegasus who have started the mutiny. Moderate military officers and civilians try to stop it.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2009
  19. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

    Jan 31, 2007
    Excellent episode- way better than last week!

    I never liked Gaeta and now I *really* want to see the peg-legged little toad take a couple of rounds in the face...
  20. Thor Damar

    Thor Damar Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Jan 27, 2009
    Thor Damar, God of thunder and monologue..

    I think it was all down to Sky frakking things up. I must have missed about 10 mins of the ep because of this as well as having to sit through those idiotic Iggy Pop sponsorship adverts every 15 mins!:rolleyes:

    Aside from good old home grown UK incompetence, I throughly enjoyed this part of NBSG's saga. Tom Zarek (or should that be President Zarek now?) and his delightful duplicity coupled with Felix Geata's skill at outwitting the Admiral (at least at the start) made the mutiny go smoothly at first and it would seem that they would be able to achieve a perfect Coup.

    Then people where gunned down in the corridors and in the CIC and the whole thing went to hell very quickly...

    The problem that everyone has is that there is no end game in sight for the muntiners, Zarek talks about a revolution but how can you have a meaning attempt at creating a new society when all you have is the dying remnants of the old one? There is no clear direction coming through other than "Kill the Cylon lovers!"this isn't a revolution, it's a Gods damm purge complete with death squads.
    Adama Loyalists are in much the same boat (or Basestar as it where), all they can do is Kill the leaders of the Mutiny and try to force the FTL drives on any remaning ships in order to escape Cavil's forces.

    The sad truth is that Humanity is royally fraked right now.