Adama and Tigh weren't blown up so much as knocked out by the bomb at the end of last week's frenetic episode, and are taken into custody. Meanwhile, the Raptor bearing Roslin and Baltar to the Baseship narrowly avoids being blown up as well. A peak experience with the Chief causes the newly sprung Mad Bomber What Bombs At Midnight to radically reconsider skinjobs, his own absurd racism, and whether or not murder/suicide is ever a good idea. He ends up joining Adama's posse, redeeming himself in the middle of a much bigger shitstorm and making his insides look a whole lot more like his outsides.
Not so fortunate are the entire Quorum, whom Zarek has executed the second they blink about his self-declared Presidency. Goodbye, Jacob Cantrell. We especially liked your hip new 'burns. When not gunning down entire governing bodies, Zarek amuses himself giving speeches to a quickly fading Felix and lying about everything, to everybody, all the time. Half the time he doesn't even know he's lying, but still manages to demoralize people at their most vulnerable: first telling Bill that Saul's dead just as Felix is throwing him a ridiculous mock trial-slash-existential ass-cover, then telling Laura Bill's dead and expecting her to roll over. Roll over she does not.
Also not rolling over: Admiral William Adama, who literally spends the entire episode telling every single person in the world to fuck off as loudly as one can through one's dentures. He is a Lean, Mean, Fuck You machine. It is amazing. Turns out his Bucket List has one item on it, and that item is: Everybody Goes To Hell. Bill's Care Bear Glare powers have never been so magically delicious. He tells Gaeta to cram eleven things up his ass, invites Zarek to blow him, calls his lawyer a pimp, tears holes in the hull using his glare... A couple of lieutenants actually cry, because he's that scary. Finally they have no choice but to tie him to a chair in front of a firing squad. Then he just starts spitting at people.
Chief spends the entire episode crawling through exceedingly tight ducts and getting into hilarious scrapes, then pulls out the actual guts of the Galactica FTL drive with his bare hands at the very last second, saving the day. Meanwhile, Lee and Kara spend the entire episode running around beating the shit out of everybody in incredibly awesome ways, and eventually free the Cylons and toasterfrakkers from the brig. While trying to find and help Bill retake his command, though, Sam Anders gets shot up real bad -- only to be rescued by Kara and the reluctant Romo Lampkin. The rest of the Cylon/human posse meet up with Adama and take back CIC in about one bloodless second.
Laura meets resistance in the form of Final Fiver Tory Foster, who is totally uninterested in hanging around the Fleet now that it's gone pear-shaped and can't save everybody from Cavil. Laura gives fifteen speeches about the awesomeness of Bill Adama before getting real and declaring war on the Fleet itself from the helm of a Cylon frakkin' Basestar. Needless to say, when Madame Airlock returns, it is both very awesome and very loud. (Also: Leoben finally got hot. Very distracting.) Laura's about to deliver the whoop-ass, too, when Felix suddenly realizes that he has been fortune's fool, pees himself, and gives up exactly one second before Adama's posse takes over the whole Fleet again.
Gaius swans about on the Baseship for awhile with new Farrah-haired Lida Six before realizing that A) even though his cult is totally lame, they're still his responsibility because they love him, and B) if that's true about the cult, it's one thousand times truer about Felix Gaeta. So he rushes back to the Galactica just in time to watch them clean up the mess, have one last truly heartbreaking date with Felix, and then witness his execution, Zarek alongside, by Adama's firing squad.
So, yeah. It's definitely the second half of the story, and moves just as quickly as "Oath," but between the lyrical language (in particular, Bill and Laura get multiple Tigh-quality soliloquies), laugh-out-loud moments, real nailbiters, and Felix's deftly sketched and moving final hours, I'm giving this one the edge. Which is surprising, given the narratively perfunctory/obligatory nature of this mutiny, and its speedy resolution. But then, frak knows what's going to happen next. Here's to seven more hours of this quality shit right here... Starting next week with the return of one Ellen Motherfrakkin' Tigh.
This is a good one, worth looking at. And not just because it's like a weird sci-fi retelling of Howards End, with the poor and the rich and the intellectual bourgeoisie robots in a three-way war, but most especially since it's the last chapter in an act, and that's always fun and a little queasy, watching all the pieces get moved around. This show, and Season Four particularly, have always been pretty amazing that way, not that we could ever see the patterns at the time: How the Demetrius took us all the way through Act I, and Laura jumped at the end of that: twenty-one hours, chopped into seven-episode chunks, laid end-to-end from here to Earth, starting with stories about faith and how far it takes you. Really, really simple when you come down to it. (What's funny is S3, where "Rapture" is the obvious midpoint, and "Hero" and "The Woman King" are the act breaks. Which Act wants them? Neither!)
This, Act II, is pretty beautiful in its simplicity: the simultaneous two-parter about what happened next on Galactica and the Basestar, and then three stories about Frak Earth: the way the enemies came together to find their fondest hope, and had it taken away from them, and went catatonic. And then here, now, another two-parter on the other side of that, about the mutiny. Seven hours of story about the ending of this show, and the way it undoes itself: How we measure loss. Having the season chopped in half always throws it off, but you can reconstruct it. So most exciting, then, now that the Final Cylon has been revealed and Earth can frak itself, is what we know about those last ever seven hours, Act III: three of them are the finale, and then there's the midpoint of the act, and then there's the three that start next week.
I mean, God. Kara's entire giant mess, the Opera House, the Deal With Hera, Caprica actually doing something for once, my Boomer finally coming back to life, Laura turning into whatever she's going to turn into, the immaculately white Einsteinian self-sacrificing whorl of timespace that I hope starts the cycle again, Galactica tearing apart, Ellen Tigh with all the facts and voting YES. Maybe Act III is just entirely those Jacob-type things, maybe we'll have an episode that's just the Hybrid talking for 44 minutes like that one episode of Mad About You, and a really depressing finale (on my birthday, mind) and they'll find me just having sublimed right out of my brain, drooling on the hardwood, after seven ninety-page recaps in a row. But besides that shit, the best-for-last shit I personally love most, is this: if Earth was the Little Bad, what's the Big Bad going to be? I say Time. I don't think we ever have enough time. I do know, now that Gaeta has boned a dude and Caprica's knocked up with Saul's baby, my own personal prophecies have all come true, which puts me way ahead of Pythia, and since it's all filmed at this point I figured I'd shoot the moon. We'll see.