Battlestar Galactica
Razor

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A | 2 USERS: A-
YOU GRADE IT
The Girl Hanging By One Foot

Fisk is down, on the CIC deck: only those people who will never be razors are allowed to fall in the first attack. Kendra could have gone one way, but she went the other. For the moment she slept, she was on the razor's edge, but Helena saved her and woke her to fire, like a fairy tale. It was a gift. Belzen seals off hatches, compartments, locates radiologicals that say this is nuclear, and Helena fills in the blanks. "It's the Cylons. It has to be. They've broken the Armistice and sparked an all-out attack." Just like she always knew they would. Just like every nightmare coming true at once, like every dream and unwanted memory and fantasy that sends the treadmill up another notch. Her life has been training for this moment, when the walls come down and the world ends, like she's always knew it would. Power's on, but that's about it: dradis is erratic, weapons offline, computers are kaput. And outside, it's still raining fire. Helena severs the dock connections and the ship pulls away in flame and light. It's a breakaway song, and there's nobody left to hear it, because everyone is dead.

On orders, Kendra spools up FTL for an emergency jump; without computers they could end up inside a star. I'm not saying they won't. Twenty seconds to a double nuclear strike, and Kendra's stalling, afraid of jumping into the abyss. Helena's just been waiting for her chance. Ten seconds, and Helena's getting irritated: "Just frakking do it, Lieutenant!" And all around them, the ships and crews slaughtered and burning, a million deaths a second on a dozen worlds. FTL comes online, and at five seconds to annihilation, they jump. And in the vacuum they leave behind, all the flame follows, and extinguishing itself. I mean to say that Pegasus leaves humanity behind and jumps into the dark places, and draws the fire away with it. "Drawing fire" -- it's an interesting phrase and quite a singular image here. If we're ever held down in a fixed position and I love you, I will jump out and show them my face, and I will draw their fire.

From Kendra ten months ago, whose face was open, who wanted to please and knew who she was, to Kendra now: a closed knife, click. Quiet and still. Acting-wise, I think this is my favorite scene in the whole thing. Her dignity and will, her curious absence speak volumes, not only in contrast to what we just saw, but in contrast to humanity. If Ada McGrath from The Piano ever spoke, it would sound like this. Immovable: "Who am I? I'm a soldier. As were Fisk and Garner. Neither of those men deserve my respect, so they didn't get it." Apollo is wonderful in this scene, the best flavor of Apollo there is: cleverness and wry grins, a tactical and open mind. "Fisk was a black market sellout. He was a piece of garbage, unworthy of the uniform. Garner was a martinet who tried to micromanage this ship like it was some bulky piece of machinery." Apollo agrees, precisely agrees with these, and asks for his own assessment: "Don't hold back just because I've got a pulse." Heh. "You're a step up. But that doesn't change the fact that you're an outsider who was brought in to clean up our mess, or the impression that your daddy just gave you a Battlestar, like he was tossing you the keys to a new car."

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Battlestar Galactica

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