"We're not company spokespeople. We're parents!" -AmandaDue to a quirk in the scheduling (Syfy didn't want to counterprogram corporate sibling NBC's coverage of the Olympics opening ceremonies), we've had two weeks to dwell on Joseph Adama's request that his brother kill Amanda.(*) "Gravedancing" drags out the suspense for an additional hour, as Joseph keeps flip-flopping on whether he wants Sam to go through with it, and as outside circumstances keep delaying Sam's opportunity to do it.
"Actually, no. We're not." -Daniel
(*) That scheduling quirk also made this episode feel uncanny in its timing, as Daniel tries to make a big, televised apology on the same day that Tiger Woods tried something similar in the real world.
In the end, it turns out to be a bridge that neither Joseph nor the show are willing to cross. And while that's understandable, it also made "Gravedancing" feel a bit emptier than the previous episodes. There's a lot of talk about big plot developments, but unless you count Daniel Graystone's pledge to stop making money off of the holo-band (and whatever that means for his company, which depends so heavily on that revenue), not a lot actually happens in this one.
But even if "Gravedancing" was light on plot movement, the world-building and character development are still keeping a tight hold on my interest.
We learn that the colonies (or, at least, Caprica) legalized drugs in an attempt to eliminate drug-related crime (which would give the show the Bunny Colvin/David Simon "Wire" Seal of Approval), and I continue to enjoy just watching the production's mix of cutting-edge and retro, like the press gaggle all using cameras that look like something out of the 1930s while filming the raid on the school, even as Sister Clarice and Keon are swapping notes on their Caprican iPads.
"Gravedancing" was also a strong check-in on the Graystone marriage and the relationship between the brothers Adama. Whatever coldness exists in their marriage related to Zoe, Daniel and Amanda made a formidable team on Baxter Sarno's show(**) and even managed to find some humor in their dire situation by episode's end. And I'm really enjoying Sasha Roiz's work as Sam. He's a killer and a crook, but he's also gentle and charming and far prouder of his culture than Joseph, and it's easy to understand why Willie is drawn to his uncle far more than his dad.
(**) And I thought Jane Espenson's script and Patton Oswalt's performance neatly captured two "Daily Show" interview dynamics: both the one where Jon Stewart is determined to lecture his guests and the one where Stewart finds himself too impressed by the guests to keep asking follow-up questions.
Zoe didn't do much but dance this week (that and find a way to get out of that purple dress she's been wearing since the pilot), but the Zoe/Cylon shifting-POV gimmick continues to be fun to watch even when nothing is happening, since Alessandra Torresani has such expressive eyes (perfect for a sequence like this where Zoe's just enjoying the lab dork's attention) and looks so completely the opposite of a killer robot.
What did everybody else think?