Saturday, January 14, 2006

Cain of fools

First up, the press tour blog roars back to life with some "Sopranos" semi-news: David Chase definitively saying that the show isn't going beyond that two-part sixth season. It's what everyone assumed, but it's still useful to hear it out of the decapitated horse's mouth.

And speaking of cable shows that cleave their seasons in two, "Battlestar Galactica" continues to kick large amounts of ass with the conclusion of "Resurrection Ship."

I think everyone knew going in that Admiral Cain had to die. Even a show this fond of messing with the status quo couldn't plausibly keep Cain around much longer than this. While I appreciate the poetic justice of Gina Six being her executioner -- and how exactly is it that Ron Moore and company are talented enough to make me sympathize with a genocidal madwoman? -- I think it was a bit of a cop-out to have Cain fall by the hand of a Cylon. It's like all those dramas where pregnant women miscarry before they have to decide whether to get an abortion; the end result is the same, but you don't have to change your opinion of them. (And, yes, Adama did call off the assassination even before Gina punched a hole through Cain, but that's a luxury the writers had because they knew where the story was going.)

So much to love here: a suicidal Apollo watching the battle while floating through space in his EZ chair ejector seat, Fisk saving Helo and the Chief from being tortured while still remaining pro-Cylon torture, Starbuck adopting Cain's point of view (mainly because Adama's not savvy enough to tell her the story of Cain's civilian fleet), Baltar severing ties once and for all with the imaginary Number Six, Boomer and Adama having the "Why do they hate us?" conversation, etc. Really, there wasn't a minute of this where I wasn't totally engrossed.

So where do we go from here? Unlike the original show, Galactica 2.0 managed to kill off its Cain while keeping its Pegasus in play. Before, Fisk obviously had his doubts about his boss' methods, but his speech at the funeral suggests that Cain's murder has hardened him once and for all to her side of the Force. Adama outranks him, but can Fisk cause problems for the fleet? Does the increasingly hawkish Starbuck stay on Pegasus? Does Apollo come the hell out of his funk? Will the new Pegasus XO be as willing to spill drunken secrets to Tigh? And was Adama kissing Roslin a tender gesture of respect or a signal of some future fraternization between the executive and military branches?

Best show on TV right now, easy, and I'll be curious to see whether Sopranos, The Wire and/or Deadwood can reclaim that title when they come back later this year.

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