Battlestar Galactica

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: B | 3 USERS: B+
YOU GRADE IT
The Garden Of The Scar

The Cylon have a word for Home, too; it changes definition just as often. The Plan was simple: kill the Colonies, kill their parents, take their place. Live in their irradiated ruins, find a way to become parents themselves: Home. Once we'd begun to fracture them, Home became New Caprica and DEMAND LOVE: a way to repent for their childish sins, their murder and rapine. (And if you balk at "childish," there, go out into the world tomorrow at noon, and there on the street, on a sidewalk or in a naked field, you will see a child with a magnifying glass, and maybe that word will change definition too.) And now Home is all of them together -- the ones she could gather -- searching for Earth, still following in their parents' footsteps, because nobody ever told them something better.

But the Colonies and the Cylon, all these orphans, they're not the only ones looking for Home, are they? Ever notice how often the Big Rock Candy Mountain turns out to be all rocks, no candy? Ever notice how the milk goes sour and the honey gets hard and you start eating locusts and grasshoppers and those bugs like on TV? Joseph Smith talks to angels, too, and strikes out for Home, and when he gets there even the water tastes like tears. Every Promised Land is a Lie. These are just two parts of an unending series of scattering that has happened before and is happening right now; the Promised Land is always a Scar, never a Garden. Ever wonder why Jews are constantly looking for any excuse to plant trees?

The point we're at in the story, we were brought there by the actions of scores of people. Mainly how they got there was by getting confused about whether they were living inside a story or outside it. The Cylon thought they had to make stark reality out of cold metaphor, so they killed their parents and set about in their sad, broken image. The Colonists thought they could stay in their Twelve separate boxes, in Twelve separate stories, under Twelve separate flags, and never admit what a small number 50,000 actually is. Boomer went from one lie to another. Adama led us from the brink of one lie to the crest of another. Caprica and Athena and Laura and Hera are caught in a madness of their own. Laura and Gaius tried to be mythology and ended up nearly damned forever.

The exit point for this story is when we realize that the opposite is true, and much less struggle: that your life is a story being told by nobody but you. When we talk about killing our parents that's really what we're saying: letting the Admiral and the President step down from their pedestals and walk around like human beings for awhile. They deserve the rest, and so do we: it's exhausting trying to climb inside somebody else's story. Especially when you're just projecting it anyway; whether you're Lee trying to make up for Zak, or Caprica and Three trying to redeem how badly they fucked up their midrash in God's absence: that's all on you. That's the story you've been telling yourself, and trying to fulfill.

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Battlestar Galactica

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