Battlestar Galactica
Lay Down Your Burdens, Part I

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A | 1 USERS: A+
A Stupidly Tilting Planet

Colonial One. Roslin says forcefully that the planet is "a rest stop," "a place to load up on food and water." She makes it clear that, in her head, there will be no settling. "You've heard the Captain's reports," responds Tory, pushing the idea because she is a Cylon. "Every ship in the Fleet has people begging, pleading, demanding [that] they get time down on the surface." The other aides all nod, and Roslin is cool with "a few hours," but whatever, that's not the issue yet. "Suddenly Baltar's holding out hope for breathing real air, growing real food, sleeping in a bed instead of a bunk," counters Tory. "Living in a house instead of a ship." Roslin scoffs that it's a fantasy: "All the data indicate that life on this planet would be hard. It would be a struggle to even eke a living out for a few years." Tory mentions the whole dradis-interference part, and Roslin's got an answer again: "What, are we now assuming that Cylon technology is not sufficient enough to find this planet? We just found it." Roslin's right, but she's going to lose. I don't believe it. Tory says that people vote their hopes, not their fears, and that's oversimplifying, because it's more of a sine wave than any other graph, and right now she's right, but once they're entrenched, it'll swing the other way. "Baltar is offering them what they want to hear, and you're offering them a bitter reality," Tory adds. Roslin protests that it's the truth, and she's right, but Tory's more right: "They don't want to hear the truth. They're tired, exhausted. The idea of stopping, laying down their burdens, and starting a new life right now is what is resonating with the voters." Also with Tyrol and the majority of the cast that have tried to commit suicide in the last nine episodes. Tory bottom-lines it right between Laura's eyes: "It could turn the entire election around."

Cavill browbeats Tyrol more about his denial -- always a sound therapeutic tactic -- and there is much denial, and then Cavill tells him to go to hell and gets up to leave, engendering a "wait wait don't leave" gambit, and Cavill calls Tyrol an idiot, and Tyrol acts like a puppy some more, and Cavill finally lays it out for him: "Come on! You think you're a Cylon." Tyrol bites back a tear and protests that he isn't, and then Cavill tells him his breakthrough for him: "Well, of course you're not. But that's what you're afraid of, isn't it? That you might be a Cylon and not even know it, just-- just like Boomer, right? Right? That's the thought that's torturing your dreams and crippling your soul. 'I'm a Cylon, just like Sharon, and I deserve to die.'" Tyrol buys it, because of course it's true, and this is lame and dilettante and they could have at least asked a clinician how this would actually go, and Chief asks how Cavill could possibly know for sure that he's human, and Cavill gives yet another callback: "Maybe because I'm a Cylon, and I've never seen you at any of the meetings?" Chief looks at the wall and almost smiles because now it's Good Will Hunting all of a sudden, and Cavill slaps his hands together and says his work is done: "You're going to have to go back to work and try and leave all of this behind you." Chief whines that he can't face the deck or Cally, and Cavill almost slaps him: "Well, you'd better. That's the only family you've got. Just know that that's your family and that they love you. Even Cally. Especially Cally." Why, she'd kill for you! "If you doubt your humanity and your essential nature as a human being, all you need to do is look to them for the salvation you've been seeking from the Gods. The Gods lift up those who lift each other, Chief." And having ended his spree of being a thousand monkeys with a thousand copies of past scripts, shooting out meaningful past dialogue for no reason, all in a cluster, Cavill drums his fingers on the table exactly like the poundy drums of a given act-out, in close-up. If Cavill doesn't show back up this week, I'll be pissed, because that was a lot of setup for an average-at-best "Here is your breakthrough and good luck with that, no need to thank me" kind of crappy ending like that.

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Battlestar Galactica




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