Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by JesterFace, Mar 30, 2021.
But the whole leading mankind "to it's end" was her thing.
I'd call that a poor excuse for sloppy, lackadaisical world building. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying everything must be explained within the text, or even subtext of the story; but the people writing it should at least have a general idea of what the hell is going on, if not right from the off then at least fairly early on, even if a large part of it is to be left upto subjective interpretation. Otherwise it leaves behind a bunch of dead-end threads, go nowhere characters, and random cryptic references that either don't fit with each other or worse, are directly at odds. Which wouldn't you know it, is exactly what we did get! (See also: 'Lost')
What always comes to mind is something I remember reading JMS saying about how cutting his teeth writing for 'Murder She Wrote' taught him how to properly construct a mystery. One of the key factors being that you must play fair with the audience or else the whole thing just falls apart. You have to plan the murder before you plan the investigation. You have to leave the audience with enough clues that you run the risk that a certain percentage of them will deduce the solution on their own. And you have to be OK with that.
People can head canon all they like. Personally, I prefer not to have to do the authors' work for them.
I love head canon. That was pretty much my entire life since I was 8.
I'm not saying you can't, or you shouldn't or even that there's no value in it. I'm saying that if you HAVE to in order for a story to make sense, then that's a failing of the author and shouldn't be used as a justification after the fact for poor writing.
I was actually pretty happy with the end of Lost, they didn't explain everything, but they explained enough that I was satisified. BSG on the other hand, I was less satisfied with, since it never really went that deep into exactly what the hell was going on.
I always thought that the plan was just "Let's exterminate all the humanity".
And then opening the Cylon equivalent of a Starbuck on the ex-Colonies. Really, they ever showed that there was more than that? Yes, I remember that there was some experiment going on some human survivor, but it seemed to me just a side project.
It’s fairly clear from her comments 150,000 years later that Head Six is an associate of the entity Head Baltar refers to as ‘it’, which according to him doesn’t like to be called God.
And then in The Plan, we learn that the Cylon plan went sideways in the first season and they were all just winging it afterward. I used to joke after seeing The Plan, that the series should change its post season one scroll to "...And they had a plan."
Speaking of plans, how do we create a thread finale here so that all the opinions converge into a rousing, on-topic conclusion? Threads should have a five-week arc with an ending, right?
“Number Six was one of seven models of Cylon designed by the Final Five Cylons to be virtually indistinguishable from humans of the Twelve Colonies of Kobol. As ‘Head Six’ or ‘Virtual Six’ she was perceptible mostly to Dr. Gaius Baltar and associated with an entity which dislikes the name ‘God’. As Caprica Six she was instrumental in deceiving Dr. Baltar into allowing her access to the Colonial Defense Mainframe, which contained the information needed to directly enable the Fall of the Twelve Colonies.”
If nuBSG is the exhibit for making it up as they go along and stuff like B5 is the poster child for careful, years-long planning, then: Making it up as they go along, for the win.
Breaking Bad is an example of making it up as you go along, but really, really carefully. It turns out you don’t actually need an arc, just careful evaluation of where each character wants to go next, with as few extraneous elements as possible.
Yeah, there's nothing wrong with "winging it", as such, but throwing out multitudes of random shit and only actually following up on a small fraction of the open threads because the writers didn't know what to do with them afterwards is far from a winning strategy. BB, yes, did it right.
Mankind ended because Hera became mitochondrial eve and thus all living humans had cylon DNA, not because they made it to Earth. 6's main function was making sure Hera survived.
Breaking Bad could get away with winging it because they didn't use prophecies and dreams to build their tension, or imply a grand plan was in place. If Walter had a dream in season 1 that foreshadowed future seasons, they wouldn't have been able to wing it.
Battlestar Galactica winging it was more like if the Babylon 5 writers had been winging it.
They were planning to emulate humanity, which is why they were so obsessed with procreation.
And Cavell's plan was just to inflict pain and suffering.
I’d still like a Peacock limited series where we find out that humans in our future never come up with Cylons as such… but millions of years from now they’ve developed our technology and genetics to the point where life essentially has become uneventful, so in the end a group of them finds a planet they name Kobol, call themselves the Lords of Kobol and start having fun cosplaying as Prometheus and co., having taken an interest in earlier stages of human evolution. The entire history of Kobol then becomes a simulation of our history for their benefit in the real world, and things start to take an interesting turn when their own creations begin to develop Cylons…
(Let’s face it, they were all either created or born to the Lords’ creations. How else to explain so many copies showing up as completely unrelated people on Battlestar Galactica, Caprica and especially Blood & Chrome?)
The biggest thing about the Kobol "planetarium" that always bugged me was that they used the "old" names of the colonies and showed the recognizable constellation star configurations as they would have appeared from our Earth during our time. Star positions, even from our closest neighbor systems, would appear different enough to look a little wonky. Not to mention adding stellar drift into the mix.
They made a point of using ancient Greco-Roman names in the show to give a clear provenance to our humanity, implying that they are definitely in our distant past, following with TOS' interest in van Daniken's "Ancient Aliens" theory. Although Starbuck's Humvee and the "Made in China" pencils on the CIC op table threw a bit of a monkey wrench into that theory for a short time. They really started getting schizophrenic as to the show's timeframe after all that. Are they before us? Are they after us? They inserted the "This has all happened before, this will all happen again" thing, I think, as a way to legitimately say "yes" as an answer to both questions.
So, if they wound up on our Earth at the very end, before any spacefaring race had existed to go back and build that simulation, how could it have ever existed? Or was Earth 1 close enough to us to allow this? Were they in Alpha Centauri or some other relatively close star system? You would still have the problem of stellar drift, if we're talking about thousands, or possibly tens of thousands of years/yahrens of time spent between the exodus from Kobal to Cyrannus/Earth 1, and then some inhabitants from Earth 1 return to Kobol to build the planetarium.
Eh... It just doesn't track. It's like they completely gave up on a lot of that early-series world-building because they could no longer make it fit into the path the narrative took later on. In fairness, I think a lot of series suffer from this, to varying degrees. YMMV.
It tracks better if we fix the premise with science in mind so that humans evolve on our Earth, period, and only in our distant future go on to recreate humanity on Kobol. They were in the future all along, the planetarium was showing constellations from our time as part of that simulated history the Lords of Kobol were trying to create, which was constantly drawing from whatever bits of our history were preserved from millions of years ago, suits and ties included.
Since the constellations also match those seen from Cylon Earth (following automated adjustments?), that would in fact be what’s left of our Earth, and the one they find at the end was terraformed to look like something from out of our past. The Lords’ technology is no laughing matter, so 150,000 years later the simulation has reached a state resembling our present day c. 2009.
That could work.
Yeah, that actually makes more sense than what we actually got in the show itself.
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