Battlestar Galactica
Islanded In A Stream Of Stars

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A+ | Grade It Now!
All My Darling Daughters

Because as much as this episode is about the concept of home -- Laura's off-tone speech rapidly making subtext into text as clumsily as possible -- it's also about finishing the equation Sartre and Milton started: not "hell is other people," not "myself am hell," but something much better. Home is other people. Home is letting go of the place you only thought you were standing; the place you thought was home. And it takes the heaven of everybody else to get you there. (The shepherd Bodhisattva vows not to enter paradise until everybody else does first; the trick is that you then obviously have to go about making sure that happens. I submit to you that's precisely what we're doing and we don't even know it -- this is also my explanation for Gaius Baltar's amazing ability to duck enlightenment, if not redemption -- but imagine a whole world like that. It would be like Canada, but with God. How awesome.)

Lee leads Kara, Kara leads Sam. He thinks he's talking about Six, but it's Caprica that leads Gaius. And then Gaius leads Kara, too. Laura leads Bill, Bill leads Saul. Hera is Boomer's angel. Daughter Eight is Saul's, and Ellen too, toward something we can't yet see. All of them looking -- and helping each other to look -- for strength, and for wisdom, and that measure of acceptance that moves you into the next thing, the next shape, the next home. Pilgrims of mortality, they'll say at the funeral, and voyagers traversing the stars, in search of grace, unity, life, love: No man is islanded.

So of course Kara -- fresh from playing piano with her father, another one -- can't help but poke at the bruise. She knows it's right, somehow, but there's static from her own experiences. If there are angels, there are demons; if there are angels, she might be one. The answer is staring her in the face, but her own pain obscures it; we have a history of getting these messages confused. So she baits him, and he admits it's the truest sermon yet: he sees them, he admits to Six's lavish delight, "with alarming regularity." Kara makes a joke about him being full of shit, and gets up off the toilet. He retreats to the old Cuttle's Breath superiority as she's leaving -- "You are entitled to your opinion, obviously" -- but as she's leaving, there's something in her manner that draws him back. "Who are you, by the way, again?"

Kara washes her hands, unsurprised. Unrecognizable to herself. She doesn't even know he loved Caprica for two years without knowing her name; he doesn't remember she called him "Lee" when they were frakking. "Me? I'm a dead chick, that's who." He blows her off, but she gets serious. Desperate to speak, to tell someone real, and who's the only person more self-absorbed than she is, gazing at himself in the mirror? A plan begins to hazily unveil itself, and her voice turns deadly serious. "No, I mean it. I'm dead, as in six feet under dead. Dead, as in crash-landed, burned to a crisp dead." He washes his face, intrigued, and she produces the old dogtags. "Here. I took these off my body. What was left of it, anyway. On Earth... You used to be a scientist, run some tests. Pull out the old Cylon detector, do whatever you need to do." He responds, not to her beauty but to her need; he takes them easily. "The only thing I know for sure: I'm not an angel."

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Battlestar Galactica




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