As I finished watching last night’s episode of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, I was overcome with a strange emotion — an emotion that rarely sees the light of day when talking about one of television’s finest dramas. The emotion was happiness, and for the first time in this TV Addict’s memory, BATTLESTAR GALACTICA actually ended on a positive and somewhat uplifting note.
For over two season, BATTLESTAR GALACTICA fans have ‘suffered’ through endless hours of torture, war, mutiny, death and destruction. This rag tag fleet has seen it all — and with the exception of that episode where the crew came together and built a Viper from scratch — life has pretty much sucked.
Last night’s episode focused on the class system that was threatening to tear apart the fleet. Evidently not all twelve colonies are considered equal. For instance, families from Caprica come from ‘money’ and usually end up in positions of power and authority where as people born on Sagittaron or Aerelon are generally delegated to low level jobs such as farmers and laborers. Baltar put it best when he asked Tyrol, “Do you ever thing the fleet will be commanded by someone who’s last name is not Adama?” (Note: I wonder why they decided to call their new planet New-Caprica instead of New-Aerelon?)
Not surprisingly, the mechanics, laborers and low level workers are none to happy. And it doesn’t help that Baltar — hoping to gain sympathy — has secretly been publishing a book called “My Triumph’s, My Mistakes”.
How terrifying was it to see Tyrol confront Baltar with regards to the book’s truthiness (thank you Stephen Colbert)? The reveal that Baltar’s been deceiving the world about his true Aerelon heritage since he was ten years old is quite frankly terrifying (as was the moment when he slipped back into his Aerelon accent). Baltar’s ability to deceive is clearly second-nature, do we really want to find out what else he’s been hiding?
Enter Norma Rae, umm… I mean Chief Tyrol.
Having visited the Tylium Refinery ship (Tylium = Space Gasoline) and witnessed first hand the deplorable working conditions and what’s essentially become slave labour, the Chief decides to put back on his ‘Union Leader’ cap that he left on New Caprica and organize a strike.
Naturally, complications ensue, leading to a stand off between Admiral Adama and the Chief. In the end, the strike is ended, as Adama cannot allow for any activity that would risk the fleet’s safety. And after threatening to execute every striking member of the Chief’s team, Adama is kind enough to release Tyrol from jail and set up a meeting between the Chief and the President. The Chief becomes the de-facto union leader and ends the episode discussing class and labour issues with the President.
Oh, and the moment that put a smile on this TV Addict’s face: A young deck mechanic finally being allowed to break through the glass ceiling and become a Viper pilot. With BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, you come to appreciate those little victories!