13
Jun
08

Why Galactica?

The single most puzzling question no one has answered about Galactica’s triumphant return is why did it come back?   When I explain the history to people, it still boggles my mind: it was on for one season  thirty years ago.  One.  On top of that, it was never very popular and no one – not even the fans – regard it as high art.  Yet it retained enough of a dedicated, passionate following to insure that one day she would return.

But why?  What kept that mediocre one-season-wonder so near and dear to my  heart that seeing it come back was literally a dream come true?  I think the answer boils down to one word:  Cheeseburgers.

Everyone loves a cheeseburger. Not in the same way you love a perfectly cooked Porterhouse steak or a delicately seasoned Ahi tuna, but it’s delicious in it’s own way. Of course, I always look forward to that carefully prepared, five-star meal, but naturally I am more often in the position to grab something a little less ambitious. A cheeseburger is perfect. It’s fast, it’s good and nothing else tastes quite like it. Is it the best money can buy? Of course not. But it’s tasty and there for us when we need it.

And so my mind wandered to food when I asked myself that question: “Why did I still love Battlestar Galactica?” It was a cheap knockoff of Star Wars and I can count the number of really good episodes on one hand. Yet it still held a place in my heart just as special as A New Hope & The Empire Strikes Back.

Why did it endure?

To answer that we have to look at the context. If you were at that ‘magic’ age when Star Wars was released in 1977 (somewhere between 8 and 13), you were totally blown away by it. You were born again. It changed your life. You ate, slept and breathed Star Wars. You bought every magazine that even mentioned it and you played the Story of Star Wars album so many times the phonograph needle was reduced to a molten stump.

But all of that started to get old. With Empire still years away, you needed something to fuel that sci-fi fire in you. Sure, Star Trek was great, but you’d already seen each episode a dozen times. There had to be something more.

Then along came Battlestar Galactica. That three hour premiere was like spraying lighter fluid on a campfire. Finally, we had an outlet for all that pent-up, epic sci-fi-adventure energy. Sure, Star Wars was still king, but Starbuck, Apollo and enemy Cylons gave us something to look forward to, not in two or three years, but every week.

Was Galactica a great show? No. Viewing it as an adult, I think it has its moments and harbored a lot of unfulfilled potential. But as a kid, it provided the cheeseburgers that satisfied my daily hunger. In a great time of need, Galactica  regularly fuelled the passion of a sci-fi loving generation and for that reason alone it would always shine.

Of course, thirty years later, fans are still putting up with inane dialog, pathetic robots, dismal characters and a depressing lack of compelling drama, but we love it anyway – after all, it’s still Star Wars!

 

 

 


52 Responses to “Why Galactica?”


  1. 1 peter noble
    June 13, 2008 at 5:14 am

    “Of course, thirty years later, fans are still putting up with inane dialog, pathetic robots, dismal characters and a depressing lack of compelling drama, but we love it anyway – after all, it’s still Star Wars”.

    Funny, I’ve been a fan of Battlestar Galactica for 30 years and I don’t see any of the tripe you posted in the show.

    Battlestar Galactica definitely isn’t Star wars and that’s probably why I like it.

    The often trotted out phrase “cheap knockoff of Star Wars” was old in 1980 when Irving Hill, an LA Federal Court judge stated that the two were very different when viewed as a whole and that Star Wars features a group of rebels attempting to usurp the tyrannical hold of the Empire on the galaxy… while Battlestar Galactica centres on the last survivors of the human race vigorously trying to escape from a robot race bent on exterminating them.

    I’m thankful that the many Battlestar Galactica fans I know are nothing like you.

  2. 2 tim callender
    June 13, 2008 at 6:00 am

    Mojo! You hit it right on the head: “With Empire still years away, you needed something to fuel that sci-fi fire in you. Sure, Star Trek was great, but you’d already seen each episode a dozen times. There had to be something more.” That’s it exactly!! That’s why I watched every week.

  3. June 13, 2008 at 7:19 am

    And today, the new BSG is now the Porterhouse – with a layer of Boursin and toped with fried crispy onions. Star Wars is now the burger and Star Trek, well it’s an upscale burger with imported cheese. Great post.

  4. 4 David
    June 13, 2008 at 7:34 am

    Another Good One Mojo!

    My personal story or recollection is that the BSG premiere on ABC was THE FIRST thing I ever video taped as a kid! We just received our first VCR, a big top loader JVC (I think) with an angled front and play-school colored buttons. While most of my video tapes have been sent to the great VHS library in the sky, I still have the original BSG tape from that night and it still plays – black values suck and plenty of video noise, but I have it.

    I retain it, not because of my nostalgia (well, perhaps a little), but there was something to it that transcended its intention. Or as you say, a lot of unfulfilled potential.

  5. June 13, 2008 at 8:03 am

    I get what you are saying, the media was so unkind to Battlestar that after the show left the air with the stench of 1980 I was embarrassed. When putting my film cast and crew together I avoided the title I said we’re doing a sci-fi adventure film. You are right 1978 Battlestar Galactica is like a good cheese burger a favorite comfort food, unlike a dish at the Sci-Fi Channel pretending to be a five star meal that is all presentation and garnish with a flavorless over cooked tiny piece of meat.

    Where I disagree is that IMO Battlestar had a story as deep as and more compelling to me than Star Wars.

  6. June 13, 2008 at 8:26 am

    Those were dark days indeed when you’d watch any POS (Starcrash, anyone?) because it WAS science fiction.

    I. too, was at that at that magic age and share that inexplicable love for the old show, flawed as it was.

    However, I was distracted the whole time I read this wondering, who the hell shot that group photo and buried Apollo in the back??! Jolly gets more in the shot? Really? Why not stand Greenbean in front of Starbuck?

  7. 7 Captain Otter
    June 13, 2008 at 8:39 am

    Well put! BSG-TOS has always been somewhere between a guilty pleasure and a warm childhood memory- so for me, a cheeseburger is the perfect metaphor for my feelings about it.

    As far as the current BSG, it has become my favorite piece of Sci-fi because it excels both as spectacle and as a gritty and honest psychological examination of humanity. It has truly broken new ground and I cannot wait to see how future sci-fi projects take the baton after BSG ends. I hope some creative crew out there is up to the task.

  8. 8 Boris
    June 13, 2008 at 9:10 am

    Let’s not forget that it was on for one *expensive and highly publicized* season — this was absolutely not your average one-season wonder, but rather a TV show that was originally intended to be a set of TV movies. Regardless of the seriously lacking scripts, which I think improved following the Count Iblis story, it had a number of unique elements that made it more than a hamburger in the eyes of its most passionate fans, who pushed for its revival.

    However, if anything it should be easier to revive a show than to create a new one, and every season there are a lot of brand-new pilots that don’t make it. In the end, it is the staying power that matters, and nBSG wouldn’t have stayed on if it weren’t for the production team and its highly experimental approach to television. I credit oBSG mainly for setting up the potential that nBSG fulfilled, such as the search for Earth and the related mythology, but in all other respects, nBSG is light-years ahead. Although the new series did motivate me to watch the original on DVD, you won’t make me a fan of the original, not even in cheeseburger mode.

  9. 9 Kevin Adkins
    June 13, 2008 at 10:32 am

    Well put. I believe I recall Ron Moore describing the new BSG episode “Hand of God” as a “cheeseburger” — his point being that while the new show is mostly a heavy meal (character drama, politics, ethics, etc.), every once and a while you just want a cheeseburger (lots of action, shit blowing up, etc.).

    Thanks so much for keeping up with the blog, by the way. It’s fast become one of my favorites.

  10. June 13, 2008 at 10:39 am

    The old BSG has a special place in my heart, too. I also love the new BSG. There is room for both, and more than enough love for both.

    And am I the only one who is still waiting for a home video release of the full length TV pilot, the 3hr version they ran that first night, and never again? I figured it would be included in the Cylon Mask box set, but alas it wasn’t. I think there’s still a missing 15-20 minutes, forgotten in a vault somewhere.

    And if it has been restored and released, please tell me which DVD it’s on!!

  11. 11 B5fan in a BSG world
    June 13, 2008 at 11:04 am

    I wasn’t a fan of the original series at all. I somehow still get it confused with that other SF masterpiece “Buck Rogers in the 25th Century” with the weird “beedee beedee” robot. In fact I didn’t start watching the new BSG for a year or so because my memories of the original were so negative. I wonder if in the grand scheme of things sticking with the exact same Battlestar Galactica name helped or hurt the new series.

  12. 12 Dawg
    June 13, 2008 at 12:52 pm

    You are mistaken in several areas. As already noted, it was not a cheap knock-off of Star Wars, it was a different concept entirely that actually predated ANH. It did have untapped potential, a basic storyline that was far deeper than anything Lucas came up with and subsequently overwrote, but the storyline was never fully developed.

    And it was popular. The premier broke viewing records. Consistently in the top 20 shows – an enviable position for any television outing before and since. It got canceled because the suits didn’t make enough money off of it, even though it was in the black. It was money, not the lack of an audience, that ended BSG.

    Inconvenient things, facts.

    The new doesn’t hold a candle to what the old was, to say nothing of what it could have been and could still be.

  13. 13 darthmojo
    June 13, 2008 at 2:55 pm

    Are you guys out of your minds? Are you actually accusing *me* of hating the original BSG? Of not supporting the show and it’s memory with “every fiber of my being?”

    HAVE YOU LOOKED AT THE CONTENT OF THIS BLOG? Have you seen me at the frakking Emmy Awards in my original series uniform? Christ on a crouton!

    This piece was written from a very general standpoint. Of course BSG is different and at it’s core is nothing like Star Wars. But it was greelit because of Lucas’ epic and ABC was there to cash in on the tidal wave of interest in sci-fi. That’s also why the VAST majority of us tuned in initially.

    The general public perceived BSG as a Star Wars clone, and the general public drives the market. I am well aware that BSG was a top-20 show when it was cancelled, but the ratings were in decline and, cost issues aside, the production was a nightmare for ABC. They wanted the show gone and they got what they wanted.

    Besides all that, if you’re a fan of the original series and think it was an incredible piece of sophisticated, character-driven drama that deservs to be alongside MASH and HILL STREET BLUES in the TV Hall of Fame, then this was not written about you. I daresay most fans of the 1978 BSG now look back at it, see all the cheese and flaws and wonder why they loved it so much. This is what I wanted to explore here.

    I did not write this to pick on BSG; I talk about the flaws but we all know the show had moments of brilliance and much potential – without that, there wouldn’t have been anything to latch on to all these years. But I stand by my beliefs that the heat generated by Star Wars made us a far more captive audience – an audience that embraced a flawed series with a lot more enthusiasm and love than it if had just appeared out of nowhere.

    Ultimately, it doesn’t matter why Galactica survived; the fact that it did is an entertainment industry miracle and I, for one, am please as punch if only because it led to a revival that brought us the new series.

    A series which, depsite *its* flaws, has taken all that unrealized potential and allowed it to flourish. You die-hard original series fans should kiss the ground Ron Moore walks on, because not only has Galactica been revived, he’s forced a world which once snickered at this show to take it seriously.

  14. 14 Epaminondas
    June 13, 2008 at 5:05 pm

    Great post! I can totally relate to what you’ve said here as I was 8 when all this happened. I remember those dark days between ANH and Empire and BSG and Buck Rogers filled that void. Of course at that age plot, dialog, and continuity weren’t big issues, we just wanted to see the ships! On at least that level, these shows mostly delivered.

    The new BSG has given the genre a tiny scrap of credibility in the eyes of people who don’t watch SciFi precisely because of shows like the original. Here’s hoping in the coming years this momentum continues and we get more quality work and that the voices of those who would take us backwards continue to be marginalized.

  15. June 13, 2008 at 6:09 pm

    Finally, someone tackles the “love/hate” relationship that fans of the original BSG have with the old show.

    Of course, by doing so, you’ve just made yourself a target for a small .01% of the online fandom of self-appointed guardians

    You see, I’m a fan of the original series. Yet the rational part of me rejects my fondness for the original series because it is an example of something that is poorly produced, unsophisticated, half-assed assembled and badly executed.

    I doubt that any real, objective original series fan could argue against the following facts that the series:

    A. was rushed into production;
    B. was poorly managed by Glen Larson, his associates, and the studio;
    C. brazenly ripped off plots from “Inferno”, “Earthquake”, “Guns of Navarone”, “The Magnificent Seven”, “Shane”, and “Patton” just to throw something on the air;
    D. was produced as a result of the “Star Wars” craze — Larson said this himself in “Sciography”;
    E. had poorly conceived characters and universe history–by the end of the series, everything comes from Caprica, no mention of the other Colonies whatsoever;
    F. had characters that were horribly inconsistent (Baltar was a power-hungry ego-maniacal one week, but the next he was a thoughtful guy who tried to sue for piece after encountering the manifestations of the Beings of Light);
    G. had a horrendous grasp of actual science (what, the solonite hand mines were magnetized, but the boots of the space suits weren’t?), because the people involved never knew how to write science fiction (except for Leslie Stevens), but he never wrote a damn thing except for “The Beta Pirates”.
    H. poorly thought out scripts (what, you’re going to leave humans behind on their backwater settlements like Equellus and Proteus just for the Cylons to come in and clean house?). Why not evacuate the planets? Oy!

    Oh, and needless to say, any robots conceived in the Original Series should be jettisoned. Hector, Vector, Muffit… all need to go into a garbage chute.

    Now, it does have several things going for it:

    A. The designs of the ships, which remain unique even by today’s standards.
    B. Jean-Pierre Dorleac’s costumes, which are among some of the best that I’ve seen to date, although I do think they needed to find a way to identify rank on them. Pips, embroidery, etc.
    C. An interesting premise.
    D. Great actors. Patrick Macnee, Richard Hatch, Dirk Benedict (although it’s a stretch to call him a great actor, he’s decent at best, and plays the same maverick character in “The A-Team”; his other forays into acting leave MUCH to be desired), Anne Lockhart, Lorne Greene, John Colicos, and even Laurette Sprang.
    E. The bits and pieces of mythology along the way, Iblis, Cain, the Beings of Light, all that.

    However, even having said all that, a good 80% of the series can be jettisoned, since it’s forgettable aside from the one or three gems of goodness that you’d likely see in each episode, and that’s if you’re lucky.

    Yet still… there’s an irresistible force that compels me to watch all the episodes, even horrible ones like “Baltar’s (Attempted) Escape”, “Greetings from Earth (Sike!)” and, notably, the atrocious “The (Un)Magnificent Warriors”.

    And I think it has to do with the power of the concept that tried to break out of the mediocrity of the ineptly handled 1978 production. Let’s be honest here, the only thing that kept us coming back to the series was not the dog fights (because the special effect shots of the same Viper hitting the same Raider got incredibly old, real fast), but it was the actors and the hard work they put into characters that are otherwise bland as hell.

    Like you said, the series is a cheeseburger.

    Wow… I rambled on much longer than I wanted to, but… I wanted to try and convey the frustration I have with my “relationship” with this 30 year old television show. Because, Mojo, you are right smack on when you say that the only thing that keeps this show alive is the moments of brilliance and massive, untapped potential that Ron Moore and company was able to tap.

    Now, granted, I didn’t like the idea of someone coming in and basically gutting the old decrepit house that is 1978 BSG. I hated it, having seen that most “reboots” and spin-offs–the reboot that is the “Lost In Space” movie–blow chunks. Although I’m not a continuation or bust person (I was woefully under-impressed by DeSanto’s “interpretation” and Richard Hatch’s view of the series just didn’t gel right), I didn’t latch on to the concept of a female Starbuck, or an Apollo that was at odds with his dad, or the fact that the Cylons were created by man.

    But, you know what, I gave it a chance.

    And I fell in love. It fulfilled the promise that the original could never deliver upon, because during the Cold War, you couldn’t even touch upon these kinds of things. Terrorism, religious fundamentalism, and things that made you think about humanity and whether we, as a people, were worthy of survival.

    Unlike “Star Trek”, we weren’t pandered to. We weren’t given the “morality lesson of the week” that prevailed SF television since the 1960s or the jocular fun that grows old and trite with age. We weren’t told that “everything’s gonna be all right”. We were presented with a tale of a group of survivors undertaking an arduous journey. There was no fancy, flashing gambling ship; there were no worthless trips between ships just to “visit the Rising Star”… the subject matter was treated seriously.

    We were treated as adults. Even if we didn’t like it.

    This version of BSG did something that the original could never do, no matter how good people viewed the original as… was to garner serious attention and critical acclaim. Even if that attention was sometimes negative. (Not everyone’s going to like the show, after all. BSG is *not* for everyone.)

    And yeah, this new show fails to deliver sometimes. There are turkeys. There are lapses in continuity, or some inconsistent characterization, some bad acting, corny dialogue, or maybe an abandoned plot thread or two… but, overall, it’s the second best show on television right now. In fact, it is television unafraid of pushing the envelope.

    And the fact that the “Battlestar Galactica” name was even revisited by a major studio at all is a mathematical absurdity.

    And I can speak only for myself when I thank Ron Moore or anyone for giving this concept a serious second look. Outside of the small cult following the original series has (and the following of which I, as well as Mojo, am a part), most people do look upon BSG with scorn. They view it as “Battlestar Galaxative” or “Battlestar Ponderosa”, or an expensive “Star Wars” rip-off (because it DID usurp from the popularity of the “Star Wars” franchise, but didn’t rip it off).

    Anyway, now that I’ve written my eulogy, I expect the 0.1% of fandom to start their attack runs…

    So to them I say this: if you don’t like the show, don’t watch it. Pretend it is like “Galactica 1980” in that it is out of your minds. It’s a bad dream, or what not.

    BSG is worthy of being told in a multitude of ways. The way it is told now, for better or for worse, is emblematic of our troubled times.

    Keep the faith!

    – Joe Beaudoin Jr.

  16. June 13, 2008 at 7:20 pm

    I wasn’t born till 79, but I grew up watching BSG and Star Trek with my dad in the early 80’s so BSG always had that special place for me. I still love to watch the old ep’s, and one of these days I WILL own a Colonial Viper Pilot outfit from the Original. Jolly proved I can keep getting older and fatter and still be in one, unlike those form fitting Star Trek uniforms ;)

  17. June 13, 2008 at 7:31 pm

    I am proud to say I am a fan of the original more than the remake.

    First, let’s talk about this “cheese” thing.

    People think Star Wars is the shit because of the FX in the movie (I am talking about the original movie), yet say the FX in BG was “cheesy”.

    Get a grip, folks! The FX were done by the SAME people. So while you’re praising them in one breath, you’re TRASHING the FX artists of that time period in another. And *this* is where the Star Wars/BG rip off thing originated. Not in story. But in FX.

    I wonder how many FX artists today who think the FX of the original was “cheesy” will feel in 15-30 years when THEIR efforts are called “cheesy”.

    Are egos so out of control that one must trash the history that came before to make themselves feel better?

    Now the story/plot. Nothing “cheesy” about that either. In fact, the plot outline and story were good enough to merit not one, not two, not even three… but FOUR attempts at a comeback, and that is NOT counting G-80.

    Comeback attempt #1: Richard Hatch and the Second Coming.
    Comeback attempt #2: Glen Larson trying to counter Richard’s attempt.
    Comeback attempt #3: Tom DeSanto’s production, pulled out from under him for…
    Comeback attempt #4: Ron Moore’s remake.

    Now… if the original was so cheesy, then why use the same premise as the original? Right down to having a “Boxey” in the series mini? Why use many of the same ship designs for the rag tag fleet (Colonial Mover, Gemini Freighter, etc)?

    Tell me… is “shakey cam” what makes the remake “so cool”? Are all of the sex scenes/insinuations? what makes the remake “so cool”? Is it the unrealistic dysfuntions of the human race? What is it that makes the remake so much “cooler” than the original?

    I’m sorry, but please… do not call anything cheesy, as I am sure the people that put in the hard work didn’t think it was cheesy anymore than the people working today in FX think their own work is cheesy. Again, who knows what will be thought of todays work some 15-30 years from now.

    Did the original have flaws? You bet. Does the remake have flaws? You bet.

    I could trash the remake left and right here, having been inside the scoop back then. How it came into existance, the idea behind doing it, etc. But I won’t.

    All I am saying is: Stop trashing the original. It’s not “cheesy”. Appreciate it for what it is/was, and move on with your life.

  18. 18 Dawg
    June 13, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    What bothers me isn’t that there’s a love/hate relationship we BSG fans have with the show. And I’m not going to argue the quality of some of the scripts – when they got it right, it was spectacular, but when they got it wrong…. I don’t even find fault with the cheeseburger analogy. And I certainly do not begrudge you your own level of affection for the series.

    What gripes me the most is the wasted potential. Even at the time, ABC didn’t know what they had their hands on. I like to think Larson, Stevens, et al did but were hog-tied by the network’s interference. Had it been allowed to be produced as Larson & Co had envisioned it, we would have had Saga, LPOG, WOTG, and LL – all the pinnacle moments of the entire series – spread out over the season. Instead, due to the network mismanagement, we got Baltar’s Escape and Greetings from Earth, complete with Hector and Vector (the most criminal waste of talent ever on television). Scripts that were inspired by popular fiction were rushed into production to meet the ABC-imposed schedule. Don’t blame the production crew for that. Congratulate them for getting as much right as they did.

    You’re right – ABC rushed BSG into production because of the Star Wars craze. They took advantage of public interest. But your statement above was that BSG was a cheap Star Wars ripoff. That is not a factually correct statement. Nor is the statement that it wasn’t popular; yes, there was audience erosion after the record-breaking premier (there always is), but I understand that the show never dropped out of the top 20. By any measure of the time it was a popular show. It was killed because the corporation didn’t have a large enough profit margin. Period.

    It lived on, and the studio revisited the property, because something about it struck a chord in the audience and it became an icon in sci-fi. It certainly did for you, and it did for me, too. The original Centurion is instantly recognizable, as is the Viper fighter and the costuming. After 25 years of sitting on it, the studio decided that there was enough interest to revisit it – and remakes, after all, are the flavor of the month.

    But like them or not, both the Hatch concept and the DeSanto/Singer story would have brought us a movie/series that was far closer to the BSG mythos and backstory than the present incarnation ever has or will. Some of the chords that drew us in back in 1978 are entirely missing in this one – or turned on their heads. Say what you will – but the new show is not BSG. There is nothing of the original in the characters or in the story – except that they’re looking for a place called Earth. That’s it. And if you’re going to be intellectually honest, you have to admit the truth of that.

    Wasted potential.

    You will notice, please, that I do not comment on the quality of the new show. I know that most who will read this like it, and although I do not see in it what you obviously do, I won’t fault you for liking it. You like what you see, the message it sends you. That’s OK. You’re perfectly entitled, and you’re perfectly entitled to say so. Just as I am entitled to think otherwise, and say so.

  19. 19 Gemini1999
    June 13, 2008 at 9:10 pm

    Hmm…

    I’m going to make a few confessions here – some that aren’t well known and others that aren’t. One of the first is one of the ones that I’ve never talked about and it has to do with the “Star Wars Clone” idea. I remember the first time I saw a small blurb in Starlog way back when the original BSG series was in production and it had a description of the series premise that did sound a lot like Star Wars. I looked at the velour costumes in the pic and rolled my eyes and thought that it would never work. At the time Star Wars came out, it was lighting the imagination of every SciFi fan on the planet – at the time, you couldn’t imagine anything coming close. As the premiere date came closer, there were more and more articles – one of which in a magazine called Cinescene that had beautiful preproduction drawings and paintings of BSG and it looked nothing like Star Wars. As I found out more and more of the story premise for the show, I kept reading more articles and getting hungry for more. By the time 9/17/78 came around me and most of my friends couldn’t wait to see what ABC had come up with. I had just turned 18 at the time – I wasn’t a kid, but I felt like one waiting for Christmas. I remember watching the premiere of the series very well. It was something the entire family watched and it didn’t disappoint. As some have said, it was just what SciFi fans needed to feed their frenzy for more SciFi. It was all people my age could talk about at the time. Space:1999 had just left the airwaves the year before and the first Trek movie was another year away and Empire a year past that.

    I remember watching the series and some episodes were better than others, but I couldn’t get enough of it. It was bigger than most typical late 70’s shows were, but in other ways, it was quite typical of shows from that era. Isn’t that true of most television – it might seem groundbreaking at that time, but there’s always something that prevents it from being “timeless” because of when it was produced and what attracted audiences to entertainment of that era.

    30 years later, I watch those same episodes, but I tend to stick with my favorites which are the multi-part episodes as they seem to have more “meat” on them and at least a new effects shot or two to freshen them up. Out of all the stand-alone episodes, “Hand of God” was probably the most entertaining as it broke free of the constant run from the Cylons. I can sit and watch the original series to this day, but I’m aware of the flaws, I make note of them and move on. When you look at the original concepts of the show (I never knew about the Mormon plot elements until 25 years later)and I really think that if someone wanted to reboot it, there was a lot going for it as it was. That being said, I’m sure that even the most die hard original series fan will admit while they love the original series that it could use a bit of punching up.

    Watching the new series has been and interesting experiment for me. I remember starting out with a certain amount of skepticism, but hoped for something more. I’ve hung in there since the beginning and I’ve never missed an episode, but the direction that Moore and Company have gone with it has made it harder and harder to stick with. With the journey almost over and only 10 more episodes to go, I’ll hang in a bit longer just as a completist. As far as the writing goes, I feel like I’m watching a different show than other people. I keep hearing how much people love it and how it’s the best thing on television, but I’ve never felt that way. Sure, it’s had a moment or two, but it feels like those moments are too few and far between. The modern allegories that seem to be taken directly from the daily paper have taken the show in a direction that I tend to question quite frequently. I know that’s all to ask the question “are humans as a race worth protecting?” Now, that being said, I ask my self that question just from watching the news, so does it really need to be examined in a weekly TV show?

    I can live with the original Battlestar Galactica being described as “comfort food”, or even that “cheeseburger” that we all crave now and again, but the new series as a steak dinner with all the trimmings? Maybe to some, but I’ll take the cheeseburger in this case.

    Thanks for letting me ramble a bit.

  20. June 14, 2008 at 2:26 am

    I was in it for the Cylons. Period. LOVED IT. Didn’t Wolfman Jack
    make a cameo at one point ? Hard to imagine it was on for only one
    season. (I never knew that). What a great season at any rate… I
    also was a hardcore “Lost In Space” kid (and of course, “Space: 1999”!

  21. June 14, 2008 at 10:56 am

    Darthmojo, I don’t think any of us question you being a fan of TOS. I’ve seen your Emmy outfit and TOS Cylon work in Razor and praised both here. We all know the Star Wars hype got Battlestar launched and I don’t disagree with your reply here except for kissing Ron Moore’s feet. What makes people fans of the original Battlestar Galactica flaws and all is we enjoyed what worked and saw the potential the series had.

  22. 22 Roko
    June 14, 2008 at 12:02 pm

    @Darrell

    “Cheesyness” has very little to do with the premise of BSG (which was [and still is], admittedly, very interesting), it doesn’t even have much to do with special effects (people generally adore old Sci-Fi classics such as “Forbidden Planet” – no matter it’s SFX), but badly written dialogue, general lack of serious drama, disregard for science… things such as those are why original BSG may be described as cheesy.

    Believe it or not, I am a fan of old BSG, though I’ll admit that I only still re-watch it because of nostalgia :( That show is part of an era long gone, may it rest in peace. New series is better in every way imaginable.

    Yes, cinema verite style is, arguably, a great idea (I personally like it very much), SFX are excellent (for what can be accomplished these days), and music is absolutely perfect… though these things come and go in trends, they might, or might not, date well. But it’s hard to imagine that thirty years from now anyone will say that 21st century BSG is cheesy. Why? Because it’s writing and acting give it uncharacteristically human touch, something that lacks from shows such as “Star Trek” and all those old shows that we call cheesy these days.

    Sorry for my bad english, I’m a long time lurker and just had to put my 5 cents :)

    Big thanks to everyone involved in the making of this great gem of a show!

  23. 23 Seijornec
    June 14, 2008 at 8:18 pm

    Mojo,

    Your right on the money here and I totally agree with your observations. Don’t let these other wankers get you down.

  24. June 15, 2008 at 5:39 am

    @ Roko

    I have seen and read everything that can be “cheesy” attributed to everything classic BG. Yes, some “professional news writers” as well as SciFi Channel spin doctors have called the FX, sets, scripts, costumes… you name it, they called it cheesy at some point.

    You point to the writing of the new series. Again I ask: WHAT makes it so interesting? I’ve seen my fair share of eps. The writing is all over the place. The “realism” of all the sex and the dysfunction is NOT realistic. The military representation throughout the series? Don’t even get me started there *LMAO*

    It seems as if they write on the fly, without a real idea of what they want to do. Eps this season have seemed like time fillers. Why? They started off in the beginning with the Cylons having a plan. What ever happened with that?

    The ratings, from the time of the mini series, has gone down somewhere around 66%. That’s TWO THIRDS of the initial audience. What happened?

    I find it amazing that it’s accepted to blast the original for all of its flaws, but rarely receive accolades for what it did accomplish, and yet the new series is so perfect… no flaws what-so-ever. Truly amazing, that.

    And as a last note: When you see or read Ron Moore created Battlestar Galactica, that’s bull. Glen A. Larson created Battlestar Galactica.

    @ Seijornec

    Does it make you feel good to sit behind your monitor and name call? This is what I was talking about in my first post in regards to things like that making people feel better about themselves. You’re a classic example.

  25. 25 JustBob
    June 15, 2008 at 8:53 pm

    Wow! It’s not often that I run into such a collection of thoughtful and poignant posts in one place. My thunder was stolen several times and I am left unable to add much of anything to this thread, save one item; I love Cheeseburgers!

    Well done, Mojo!

  26. June 15, 2008 at 8:56 pm

    @ darthmojo
    “Besides all that, if you’re a fan of the original series and think it was an incredible piece of sophisticated, character-driven drama that deservs to be alongside MASH and HILL STREET BLUES in the TV Hall of Fame, then this was not written about you. I daresay most fans of the 1978 BSG now look back at it, see all the cheese and flaws and wonder why they loved it so much. This is what I wanted to explore here.”

    MASH and Hill Street Blues were incredible shows. So was the premise for Battlestar. The difference is that MASH and Hill Street Blues were given a chance to grow, by their networks. MASH was given 11 years, Hill Street 6. Battlestar was given 17 episodes and then, 6 more in a half-baked production called Galactica 1980. If you’re going to compare anything, compare BSG to the first season of Star Trek TOS. Even with that comparison, Trek had more episodes. Trek was cancelled but, resurrected by the vaunted letter-writing campaign. Present day might have a comparison to Jericho and its own resurrection from the scrap heap.

    Besides, I tend to look beyond the ‘cheese’ and ‘flaws’ and try to determine the story that the writer is telling. THAT is what makes the show memorable for me. I see sf/x in a show, as a supplement to the story, not the story being a supplement to the sf/x.

    “I did not write this to pick on BSG; I talk about the flaws but we all know the show had moments of brilliance and much potential – without that, there wouldn’t have been anything to latch on to all these years. But I stand by my beliefs that the heat generated by Star Wars made us a far more captive audience – an audience that embraced a flawed series with a lot more enthusiasm and love than it if had just appeared out of nowhere.”

    Star Wars primed the pump. Only a fool would deny that. But, so what? It was all about timing. Even though Larson had the idea for Adam’s Ark, long before Battlestar was aired, had it not been for Star Wars, Battlestar may not have been seen for another decade.

    “Ultimately, it doesn’t matter why Galactica survived; the fact that it did is an entertainment industry miracle and I, for one, am please as punch if only because it led to a revival that brought us the new series.”

    I would prefer to have seen the new series, as it would have been told by Tom DeSanto. This so-called revival has not brought me anything.

    “A series which, depsite *its* flaws, has taken all that unrealized potential and allowed it to flourish. You die-hard original series fans should kiss the ground Ron Moore walks on, because not only has Galactica been revived, he’s forced a world which once snickered at this show to take it seriously.”

    Kiss the ground Moore walks on? Not hardly. While I did enjoy some of his work on Trek, that does not qualify him for anything other than a nod and acknowledgment.

    I would kiss the ground for one soul who walked this Earth. You might know of him, his name was Jesus.

  27. 27 darthmojo
    June 15, 2008 at 11:02 pm

    BST: Ron Moore has written far more good television than Jesus. And I may not know my sciptures inside out, but I don’t recall Jesus ever being nominated for an Emmy.

    And shows like HILL STREET BLUES didn’t need time to find their way, they were top-notch out of the gate – they needed time to find an audience. HILL STREET was the darling of the critics right from the word go and NBC kept it on the air until people finally took notice.

    The original BSG was never a critical success, and the quality it did display markedly sank during the entire run. In fact, with the exception of “Hand of God,” the second half of the season is an embarrasment even to die-hard fans.

    So please, don’t compare 1979 Galactica to HILL STREET because they just were not in the same league.

    But, to be fair, let’s consider something else – even if Steven Bochco himself had been the creator of BSG in 1978, there is no way in hades ABC would have ALLOWED Galactica to be that much of an intelligent, dramatically mature series. They wanted popcorn and laser guns. HILL STREET opened the gates for serious adult drama on TV.

    Straczynski always said B5 was meant to be “Hill Street Blues in space,” but even that show didn’t come anywhere close to hitting the mark. Despite its flaws, Ron Moore’s BSG is absolutely the first science fiction show that could rub shoulders in that league; you could watch the first season of NYPD BLUE and then the first season of Moore’s BSG and no one would question they were cut from the same cloth.

    Original BSG was not, but it was also not meant to be.

  28. June 16, 2008 at 5:39 am

    Mojo,

    As I said, some of his efforts on Trek were enjoyable but, I’ve not been the least bit impressed with ANYTHING that he’s done since. If he’s won awards for the stuff since Trek, good for him. Like I said, I’m not impressed.

    All that Moore’s show did was recycle the daily news. It offered no imagination as to what a society, millions of light years away and separated from “us” would be like. They surely would not be similarly dressed, have first and last names like ours, etc.

    I tried watching Moore’s show and it did not appeal to me, in terms of the supposed realism. I got more realism from watching the daily news shows. Much has been proclaimed about the so-called “sophistication” of today’s audience and it’s very amusing to read and hear. These folks need to have all of the dots connected with references made to present-day events, customs, etc, in order to “make the connection”. Where did their imagination go? Answer: it went nowhere because it never developed. There has been a systematic dumbing down of today’s audience and yet they seem to think that they’re more sophisticated than previous generations? Hardly. They seem to think that if we have sex on tv and curse every other word that it’s more realistic. Today’s writers do that when they can’t think of how else to write the story.

    Oh, and please don’t try to equate the simplistic little things that Moore has done with Christ. There’s no comparison and to try doing so is an insult. Moore is about as far removed from the perfection of Christ sa you and I so, let’s just leave it at that.

  29. June 16, 2008 at 10:10 am

    >…you could watch the first season of NYPD BLUE and then the first season of Moore’s BSG and no one would question they were cut from the same cloth.<

    That’s because characters on both shows wear suits and ties and eyeglasses and three-inch pumps.

    (sorry, Mojo – couldn’t resist.)

  30. June 16, 2008 at 11:18 pm

    Not to downplay the Hill Street Blues comparison, but I actually see today’s BSG as closer to The Sopranos (which is not a surprise, given that RDM is a fan). This final season has had especially striking parallels, by slowly establishing the characters, their situations & alliances, and putting the pieces in place for an all-out roller coaster ride to the end.

    Interestingly, all the bitching and moaning I’ve seen from bloggers and knee-jerk media is eerily similar to the gripes about the Sopranos’ final season — i.e., “it’s too slow,” “nothing’s happening,” … and of course, the classic lame-ass cliche, “Has BSG jumped the shark?”

    For the record, I was 11 when the first Battlestar arrived and was a year into my new life as a crazed Star Wars fan. So yeah, the thought of having a WEEKLY Star Wars experience is what turned me onto Battlestar, and it’s what kept me there. Sure, I see the flaws and the recycled effects shots (which I thought were great tho!), but I will always have a soft spot for the original.

    Mojo, words cannot describe the thrill I had upon seeing “Razor” for the first time when those original Raiders appeared. And kick-ass classic Centurions? Heaven! The baseships were the icing on the cake, especially with how menacing they looked in modern CGI. But the mother of all thrills came in the Raider cockpit scene; when the gold centurion’s orders were met with “By Your Command,” our 13-year old daughter and I literally screamed out loud.

    This was a great post & thread, and I’m fine with everyone having their preferences. But “Revelations” was one incredible hour, so count me in as one of those who worships at Ron Moore’s feet.

  31. 31 JustBob
    June 17, 2008 at 1:19 am

    As I was about to reply to BST’s post my son, Brandon, sadly informed me that Stan Winston has passed away.

    I’m going to delay my intended post for a bit.

  32. 32 Boris
    June 17, 2008 at 2:09 am

    BST: we know too little about Christ as a historical figure to be able to comment on what he personally did or didn’t do (as opposed to what others did in his name, e.g. the Crusades). Your belief in the truth of Biblical accounts doesn’t make them true in a reasoned discussion, which is why it is called faith (you might have heard of the word, to use your own condescending tone). Mojo didn’t bring Christ into this — it was you who interpreted the ground-kissing metaphor as a call to religious worship and was offended by it.

  33. 33 Roko
    June 17, 2008 at 9:26 am

    @Darrell

    Can we agree that both old BSG and new BSG are works of art and as such our opinions are purely subjective. It’s obvious that there’s a vast difference between us when it comes to what appeals to us, and it’s a good thing – it’s what makes us human (to resonate a bit of new BSG :)).

    You asked me what do I find interesting in new series. Well, let me answer it like this: I think that new BSG is better than the old in the same way in which Burton’s and Nolan’s Batman movies are better than the old TV series or in the same way in which [James Bond] Casino Royale is better than Moonraker etc. Though I doubt you’ll agree ;)

    We might continue this conversation in a space casino, maybe there would be some multi-faced singers there, and a few daggits guarding the place… I mean, that’s real, right? Sterile world with no sex and dysfunction ;>

    Enjoy.

  34. June 17, 2008 at 11:36 am

    @Roko

    With todays plastic surgeries, yup, there are plenty of multi-faced singers today ;-) Daggit was the originals term for dog, so yeah, dogs guarding is realistic. And a space casino isn’t far off into the future, as colonization of the moon is getting closer and closer to becoming a reality.

    And I’ll certainly agree with you on the works of art comment. That’s my over-all point: People forget that classic was a work of art as well. But they’d rather try to make fun of it instead.

    Now having said that, I’m going to plop in a few DVD’s of movies with Stan Winstons work in them.

    Damn fine FX guy we lost…

  35. 35 Epaminondas
    June 17, 2008 at 5:34 pm

    @Darrell Lawrence

    “FOUR attempts at a comeback”. Internet petitions don’t mean anything (didn’t you folks learn that when the petition to kill the new show was ignored?), and pointing out that after 4 trys it went nowhere hardly seems like something you’d want to advertise.

    “Now… if the original was so cheesy, then why use the same premise as the original? Right down to having a “Boxey” in the series mini? Why use many of the same ship designs for the rag tag fleet (Colonial Mover, Gemini Freighter, etc)?”

    Okay…
    The premise was fine, and far more fitting to adult drama than family entertainment.
    How much screen time did Boxey get after the first 2 hours?
    Nothing wrong with the ships, Just the actors, writers, and producers.

    Sorry man but cheese is a pretty accurate term here. Besides, poking fun at something doesn’t mean you hate it, hell I love my brother and he has a scar on the back of his head to prove it! This simply shows that RDM was smart enough to take the elements that worked and discard the rest. I also don’t think he’s the be all end all. Personally, I don’t hold DS9 in terribly high regard writing-wise (The Fed-Klingon-Cardassian-Dominion massive space battles are of course pure win!).

    @BST

    “They seem to think that if we have sex on tv and curse every other word that it’s more realistic”

    People have casual sex and swear a lot in the real world (these guys are sailors arn’t they?). They don’t hit the casino planet for a little RnR with the fate of the human race in their hands (unless of course, they want to get drunk and laid). When this happens, they turn to drugs, alcohol, and casual sex (especially the casual sex, generally speaking the drugs and alcohol are to help facilitate lots and lots of casual sex). Extreme behavior and a break down in a military command structure when faced with mind-numbing destruction is well documented (See the Russian front in WW II, no drugs, but lots of alcohol and yup, casual sex?), building mechanical dogs, not so much.

    “I got more realism from watching the daily news shows.”

    -You got more realism from watching an account of real world events than a work of fiction… Imagine that.

    “Much has been proclaimed about the so-called “sophistication” of today’s audience and it’s very amusing to read and hear.”

    -If I’d ever heard that I would agree, but who suggested today’s audiences are sophisticated? Or yesterdays for that matter?

    This is just too easy, I’ll stop now…

  36. 36 Seijornec
    June 17, 2008 at 8:06 pm

    @Darrell Lawrence

    I just wanted to let Mojo know that some of us appreciate his musings and don’t have a problem of calling out good cheese when he sees it. I guess I just get tired of people who spend their time arguing an opinion on others blogs. I used the term wankers as a general statement if you felt it was directed at you them maybe you should think before you type.

  37. 37 darthmojo
    June 17, 2008 at 9:04 pm

    I want to thank all of you for helping create Darth Mojo’s very first flame war! I had absolutely no idea that my editorial would be perceived negatively by anyone, so it was a delightful surprise to see the felgercarb start flying.

    When I called the original “cheesy,” I was mostly referring to things like capes on the uniforms, the generally simplistic interpersonal relationships, trading Adama’s girlfriend to the Pig Men and most of the latter half of the season.

    If anyone wants to defend these elements, I welcome you to try.

    Say what you will about the new Galactica, but there are very few – if any – moments in the show that fall into this catagory. It’s had its fair share of lackluster stories and plot holes, but it’s never cheesy.

    That being said, a little cheese isn’t such a bad thing; the new show could do with an occassional slice of fun!

  38. June 18, 2008 at 4:37 am

    @ Epaminondas

    Where do you get petitions from actual attempts at the revival? I named names of who tried, not petitions.

    And if I said after 4 attempts it went no where, then I guess you’re thinking is that 4th attempt didn’t go anywhere… which is Moore’s attempt.

    Try reading before typing :)

    And the actors were a part of the problem??? Then why the clamor to get Hatch and Benedict on the show?

    @ Seijornec

    Did I say I personally had a problem with what you said, or did I say you’re a classic example of someone that has to resort to name calling to make YOURSELF feel better?

    @ Mojo

    “When I called the original “cheesy,” I was mostly referring to things like capes on the uniforms, the generally simplistic interpersonal relationships, trading Adama’s girlfriend to the Pig Men…”

    You didn’t mention that the show Larson created was based on mythologies. In ancient times many militaries DID wear capes. I know even in the 1700’s they did too. Nothing wrong with a simplistic interpersonal relationship either. Still pretty common today in fact. As for the trading of Adama’s GF… again in ancient times, trading of people for items DID happen. Especially in war times, things like marrying off a princess to another Kingdom to unite them, etc etc. Hell, I wish I could have traded off my (now) ex *LMAO*

    Anyways, yes, today it seems rather corny, but back then? Different times, different story :-)

  39. 39 Boris
    June 18, 2008 at 1:35 pm

    I’m going to try to defend the latter half of the season, because it seems that around the time Adama started making “Captain’s Log”-style entries, the show was finally getting back on track with the mythology. The latter part of the season brought us Count Iblis (the Devil!), the Ship of Lights and more Cylon backstory. Say what you will about Hector and Vector, the Colonials were finally starting to make contact with humans who didn’t use centons. Were we looking at Earth’s future colonies or humans transplanted from Earth? They started receiving actual broadcasts from Earth…and then we got “Galactica 1980”.

  40. 40 Seijornec
    June 19, 2008 at 5:15 am

    @ Darrell Lawrence

    Touche’- but it really has nothing to do with my feelings… Just calling it as I see it…

  41. June 24, 2008 at 5:55 am

    Hi Mojo,

    Yes indeeed it has been a long ride! Clearly some of us have been at this too long. I’ve been lurking at your blog for a while. Like uberfan Joe Beaudoin, I’m another love it and hate it kind of fan. Some of the episodes I really, really loved. But it was surprising when I first rediscovered the series as an adult in the mid-1990s. Yes, I remembered the pilot, the Egypt episode, the Pegasus Episode, and a few of the others. But after 15 years, I had forgotten the rest, and for good reason. This was a series whose premise was so compelling that even forays in bad writing or the rubber science couldn’t keep it down. But when it was good, it was good! And that’s why some of us kept coming back.

    TCB!

    John

  42. 42 Eugenia
    June 24, 2008 at 3:57 pm

    Darn, someone just had to link to this blog entry…and I just had to read this…and now I just HAVE to respond.

    I’m not going to kiss Moore’s feet or worship the ground he walks on. I don’t think he’s even a very good writer, but that’s another issue.

    This issue is cheeseburgers and Battlestar Galactica.

    I would say the 1978 series is a cheeseburger grilled at home. Nothing pretentious, just hamburger, bread, cheese, etc. Honest food that is satisfying.

    I would say the 2003 re-imagined series is a cheeseburger at some yuppie establishment. Yes, it’s sort of a cheeseburger, but it has delusions of being a gourmet meal.

    This is the essential difference between the two series. The original was focused on telling a story with likable characters first with the meaning underneath. The re-imagined series is focused on meaning and then figuring out how to build a story around it. The re-imagined series could have been a much better series. I suspect when it’s over, its four seasons will have less narrative substance than the original’s one (and only) season.

    In defense of original:

    I don’t know why everyone gets hung up on the capes. After deciphering Moore’s choice of symbolism and codes in his series, he SHOULD have been using capes to denote change of character, identity, protection, vulnerability, etc.

    As for the “generally simplistic interpersonal relations”, well, there’s a wider range of dynamics in the original series between the characters than in the re-imagined one.

    Siress Belloby wasn’t Adama’s “girlfriend” and he didn’t trade her to the Borays. Go ahead and laugh at the weirdo who remembers this. The technical aspects of the episode didn’t work in spots, but it’s still enjoyable to watch.

    Incidentally, Baltar (the original) does have a character arc although most of it is due to John Colicos.

  43. 43 Mark L
    June 25, 2008 at 4:11 pm

    The original was popular because of it’s multi-generational appeal. It was a family western in space. The young crowd got the sci-fi gadgets, the heroes and the babes. The older generation had the Bonanza-style plots, and very good actors like Colicos and Greene. It was a hit because it struck people at several levels.

    My basic objection to the new BSG when it came out was that it abandoned the family premise. The sex and violence factor were raised to the point that I couldn’t watch it with my 9-year old. We only recently started watching it. I enjoy the new series. The storylines – while predictable to a degree – are still more adult in nature. Still, I resent that they pushed the envelope as much as they have. It wasn’t necessary.

  44. July 3, 2008 at 12:29 am

    Darrell,
    I don’t think anyone was saying that the FX of the 3 hour premiere of ToS BSG were cheesy. What was cheesy was the constant re-use of those effects in later episodes. I liked the OS, but as an adult, I look back at it and have to laugh. It was cheese. But, those were far different times in which we lived. We had not lived through a 9/11. The compelling stories that we see today could never have been told back then. In a way it was a far more innocent time, but maybe that is because most of us were kids, and hadn’t yet had 30 or 40 years of life experience under our belts.

  45. July 3, 2008 at 11:21 pm

    Michael, ever hear of WWII? Yes, our country had lived through a “9/11”, except it was on a 12/7 instead :)

    Ever hear of Godzilla? The original movie, I mean. It was the analogical movie in regards to WWII.

    So yeah… Hollywood has been there and done that.

  46. July 4, 2008 at 9:46 am

    Well, Darrell, WWII was way before my time! So unless you are in your 70’s?

    I’, talking about my generation that grew up watching the original series. I have no recollection of Pearl Harbour because I never lived through it.

  47. July 16, 2008 at 5:53 pm

    The original tone that mojo put out was pretty off base. First, to call the original BSG a “cheap” copy of anything denotes the fundamental stupidity of the author. The original production cost of the 3hour movie has been quoted as being as low as $8M and as high as $14M. This is 1978 dollars so that is a helluva lot of money for a cheap knock-off. The original Star Wars cost about $15M to produce so BSG (at either quoted amount) wasn’t too far off.

    As for the idea that BSG copied Star Wars…I don’t think so. True…Star Wars success probably got it green-lighted and supported by a bigger budget than it would have otherwise, but that doesn’t qualify something as a copy of something else. If you’re looking for that, I think the Monkees copying the Beatles is more accurate. And let’s point something else out. If you want to berate BSG because it “copies” Star Wars, then let’s berate Star Wars for copying the 7th Samurai, and every movie on Arthurian legend ever made. I like Star Wars, but I liked BSG better as a story because it had a tie in to earth whereas Star Wars simply suggested their was this whole universe of simultaneously advanced and yet somehow ancient looking civilizations some of whom were so power hungry they would build ships the size of a planet (where did they get the damn money to do that???)

    The story lines of BSG were pretty simple…but mostly fun. The underlying story was that the powers of evil (call it the Devil, Satan, whatever you want) was/were bent on the destruction of humanity and had manipulated a race of beings that had let technology get the best of them to aid in that effort (that’s where the Cylons came from). There are also direct connotations that the goal of the evil in the universe was to keep humanity from evolving to the next level (becoming part of the cosmic consciousness)some Catholic and other Christian dogma suggest that when that happens the evil (Devil, Satan) ceases to exist. So Iblis’ objective is to continue on forever but he can’t if humanity succeeds in evolving to the next level.

    So that’s the real story line. In Star Wars you have a struggle between good and evil also but because there is no correlation to earth lore, we do not understand what the fundamental goal or objective of evil in the Star Wars Universe is other than to rule the Universe (to what end?) The Galactic Emperor wants to rule the universe and do what, get additional discounts on senior meals at Denny’s? Score with some young hotties, “..hey baby I’m Galactic Emperor…”

    Certainly, the original BSG is flawed. It was never intended to be a weekly series and the production values of a feature film (which it had) were nearly impossible to keep up. Episodes were in post production (several times) last minute the morning they were to be aired on ABC. Some of the dialogue of the show seemed thrown together (kind of like a Star Wars film in that way…don’t ya think?” “It’s obvious this contest will not be determined by our knowledge of the Force, but by our skills with a lightsaber.” C’mon.

    As for the new BSG…yes…BSG was hugely popular and still is. The PTB that made the re-imagined version banked on the enormous press they would get by calling their show BSG. I have no qualms about the new version…it could just as readily been called “Babylon 5”.

  48. 48 darthmojo
    July 16, 2008 at 7:06 pm

    JEFF: I think it’s funny that you typed out all that but abbreviated “Powers That Be” to save some time.

  49. July 16, 2008 at 10:20 pm

    Jeff. uhhh, no, I don’t think it could have been called anything else other than Battlestar Galactica, since it is a retelling of the original story. The basic plot is the same, with some variations. Also, I tend to agree with you that the original series wasn’t necessarily a clone of Star Wars. In fact, my understanding is that the concept dates back to 1974, when Glen Larson conceived a story called “Adam’s Ark.” That was the genesis of Battlestar Galactica.

    The problem that I had with the original series was the overuse of stock footage from week to week. However, I realize that was necessary to keep production costs down. I think at the time, the weekly episodes cost $1 Million a week to produce. I look back at it fondly. It was good for what it was at the time. Escapism. The new series is far superior in every way, production values, writing, character development and storyline. I don’t believe it would have been possible to tell it this way back in 1979.

  50. 50 Master Prudent
    September 20, 2008 at 3:54 am

    Bwah, ha, ha, ha, ha!

    Ha!

    Every time I see an old vs new BSG flame war I wonder if the same five people are posting the same argument over and over again.

    All this has happened before and all of this will happen again.

  51. 51 Mick
    April 29, 2009 at 4:41 pm

    I loved BSG as a kid.. I still love it..
    I dont question my reasons for loving it..I just love it.
    But, they really have to ease down on that silly camera movements on cg parts..
    Who’s idea is that anyways..? Looks totally noob..
    Everything else looks cool, and I still love it.. (love the blonde cylone chick too – makes me wanna become a cylon) LoL

  52. 52 Mick
    April 29, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    BTW. Mojo, I remember you and I exchanging emails about the 3D models of Galactica
    and some vipers way back in 1996 for the remake..( You were at Foundation imaging ) It sure as hell took them long enough
    to start the production man..


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