Battlestar Galactica

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A+ | 1 USERS: A+
The Stockdale Paradox

"I'm gonna die here with the bones of my ancestors." Bitterly: "And it beats the hell out of being out there with Cavil." Cavil, who was right after all. Who looked into space, into the future, into the eyes of the Final Five, and knew they were nothing. A cold dark universe, ones and zeroes; a watch left in the sand with no one left to wind it. "Gonna die in the cold and the dark when Cavil catches up with us." Saul tries, talking up the old man and the new home, and she sighs. He's not getting it; he doesn't understand the great notion, even now. Even after he's torn out his own heart, and killed it, for love of a nation that doesn't include him. Yet. "Don't you ever want to stop fighting it, Colonel? Hmm? Don't you just want to stop all of this?" Saul wonders. "And just ride the tide out to sea..."

The last thing Saul Tigh does, on Earth, is to walk out there. Into the ocean, that perpetual motion machine that goes around and around. Where we all come from and where we all will go, pulled by the moon and settled by gravity, making the world go around. Ruined monuments and forgotten buildings litter her. His legs ache in the gloomy dusk, and the water pulls at his feet, beckoning him on. He doesn't feel the cold. The waves crash over his shoes, and he walks further out still, toward broken monuments and someone else's forgotten history. He puts his hands into the water, staring down into a memory. His eyes go wide; he can feel it coming. He reaches suddenly down, into the water and comes up with something. Warped and ripped metal, from a cataclysm long ago. It wakes in him.

Saul Tigh rushed through the chaos, past mailbox cubbies and the rubble of a preliminary strike, searching desperately for his wife, Ellen. She called out his name, and he finally heard her, and found her by her voice. She was calling him home. She lay under a pile of concrete and rebar, and shuddered, terrified. "I'll get you out!" he shouted. Trying to hold the pieces together.

Saul projects, shoving cascades of water to the side, searching for her in the eddies and the thrashing water, soaked to the skin, caught in memory.

There was a white flash, something far away. He labored over her, losing hope but desperate to save her, and she finally touched his face. She was calm, and beautiful, and she knew how far the thrashing would get him. Imagine the eyes of something infinitely loving, that's seen just enough of the future to know that the better world is coming. That eventually we will go home. She was joyful, even as she bled out beneath the stones.

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Battlestar Galactica




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