"Nothing, Bill," says Tigh. "Never felt better in my life." And he raises his gun, aims, and shoots. One shot through the Admiral's right eye, so they match. And Bill goes down, as Laura stares. It's everybody's nightmare coming true. It's a nightmare that's already come true once, coming back around again, in slow-motion, with sitars playing. Saul stares at the space his best friend was standing in, and then his mouth opens wide, and he begins to scream.
THE MEN WE WANT TO BE
"Colonel Tigh! I gave you a frakkin' order. Everybody that's ever held a stick, I want them up there now. Get 'em out! Put 'em up there!" Saul snaps to, grabs the phone, speaks into it: "Attention, this is the XO." His biggest fear, his first thought, the things on his mind: Bill, something happens to Bill.
Because he is an embarrassment, and a drunk, and a lonely old coot. And he's been a cancer, and he's been a murderer, and an insurgent. He's been put to bed like a baby, and felt weird about it in the morning, on more occasions than you could comfortably count. And every time, Bill says, "You're my friend." Like that's enough, but for forty years he's nearly been able to believe it. A stupider man could let it rest altogether, and not have to drink sometimes, when the snake in the mirror gets too strong, when her faded smell comes back, and a smarter man would see through that excuse. The Gideon will always be with us, but the Admiral forgives him, and that's how he puts the pieces together.
Except, what happens when he kills him? When the thing in Saul decides it's time for Bill to die, where will he go then?
Chief -- it's Chief Tyrol I am proudest of -- hustling around the hangar, shouting at his crew, getting pilots in their Vipers and Raptors, shouting, "Where the frak are these nuggets?" and "Momma's not gonna save you today!" and "You wanna fly or not?" Don't get me wrong, I fully expect him to go craziest out of the Four, just completely ass-monkey, before it's said and done. He's the only one with anything to lose, and this show is nothing if not brutal to the people we love most. But right now, he's doing a good job keeping it together.
Seelix hustles Anders onto the hangar deck, and Sam pulls Tyrol aside, worried he's going to turn his coat on the battlefield. "What the frak is wrong with you? Shut the frak up. It's like the Colonel said, okay? Just think of that. 'Be the man you want to be, 'til the day you die." Which Sam appreciates, as rhetoric and as good advice for all of us, but notes that it's sort of hard to apply, given that he doesn't even know what he is, right now. Chief stares him in the eyes and nearly shakes him with pent-up Chief thinky-face nerves. "You're Samuel T. Anders. That's all you gotta remember, Samuel T. Anders. Now get the frak in your ship." Athena arrives just as Chief is delivering this bizarrely barebones pep talk, and asks who else Sam would be.