Spoilers for "Battlestar Galactica" coming up just as soon as I subscribe to Baltar's newsletter...
We're still self-contained with no Cylons in sight, but this was a vast improvement on the last few shows. There were some logic problems, plus things wrapped up a little too neatly by the end (I expected Tyrol to start singing, "Who needs the labor union? I dooooooooooo"), but it actually felt like an episode of "Galactica" instead of a dressed-up "Voyager" script.
But because I'm tired and cranky from the Oscars (about which I'll be complaining at appropriate length in tomorrow's column), I want to dwell not on the good (the moment where Roslin realizes Tyrol has a point, for instance), but on the thing that didn't work, and it was a big'un: Baltar's version of "Mein Kampf" becoming an underground best-seller throughout the fleet.
Look, Baltar makes some good points, and I can see how people living a miserable existence on a labor ship would want to buy into some kind of class warfare proposal, but this is Gaius Baltar here -- the same man who sold out all of humanity to the Cylons on New Caprica, and who was running things "Let them eat cake"-style even before the Cylons turned up. This would be akin to the broken German people falling under the sway of the men who crafted the Treaty of Versailles.
Baltar's a wonderful character and James Callis does great work (loved him slipping back into his natural accent in the scene with Tyrol), but this felt like the writers shoe-horning a pre-existing character into a role that screamed to be brand-new. And I worry that, whenever we get around to the trial, there's going to be some kind of pro-Baltar movement among certain segments of the fleet, and I just don't buy it. I know genocidal tyrants can have their supporters, but genocidal tyrants who sold out their own people to that people's invading sworn enemy? Nuh-uh.
What did everybody else think?