Mutiny on the 'Battlestar Galactica'

Marymcdonnell_battlestargalactica_240 Wow, did the stakes get raised last week on Battlestar Galactica. The ship is wracked by an all-out mutiny, and part of me wonders whether the series will end with Kara Thrace, the last one standing, floating through space alone aboard a derelict battlestar.

By the way, thanks to Andrea for ably covering last week's carnage. If you knew Andrea, you'd know she already is as bad-ass as Starbuck.

[These spoilers don't take sides.]

We pick up where we left off: Roslin's Raptor is making a furious run to the basestar (and safety), while Adama and Tigh are captured by Kelly and his Marines. By the look of things -- and I mean bleeding ears and noses -- that grenade the mutineers used was of the concussion variety.

Roslin, meanwhile, is being chased by Hotdog and a pilot whose callsign sounds a lot like Nacho, so Nacho he will remain. Head Mutineer Gaete neglected to tell the pilots their target was the president; when Hotdog learns as much, he balks at firing. Nacho doesn't hesitate, but Athena does some fancy flying and gets to the basestar safe. Gaeta orders the Galactica's guns trained on the basestar, but Roslin convinces the Cylons onboard to move into the heart of the human fleet. Someone's been reading the Old Man's books on tactics!

Colonial One docks on Galactica so Darth Zarek can personally oversee Adama's downfall. To make sure the sham trial has a veneer of respectability, Romo "Badger from Firefly" Lampkin (fresh off getting Apollo elected president) is brought in as Adama's attorney. People, Badger is the best attorney in the fleet. He could even net his client a win during a crooked trial! Zarek and Gaeta are, therefore, dumb. Defense rests.

To prep for the trial, Zarek tries to sell the Quorum on Gaeta's leadership in the admiral role. With an "oh snap," Generic Quorum Dude reminds Zarek he's only the veep. Meee-owch. He leaves, but orders two of the Marines (who really must have drunk the Kool-Aid) to gun down the Quorum. They do.

Gaeta isn't happy with this. His mutiny was pure at heart, y'all! Zarek reminds G-Dawg that he didn't start the fire, Felix did. And besides, "the truth is told by whoever's left standing." Creepy. Remember when Richard Hatch played ultra-moral good guy Apollo in the original series? He sure does a great job playing evil.

The current Apollo, though, is seriously impressed when Starbuck takes out a mutineer while he's in mid-pee, stealing his weapons. The Die Harders make their way to the brig, where Apollo uses the ol' defused grenade trick to spur Starbuck into shooting down the guards. Which she does, holding her guns sideways and cross-armed. She is street. They free the Cylons and Helo.

Unfortunately, Sam farts around looting the guards' corpses, and more mutineers arrive on-scene. Starbuck returns fire, but not before Sam is hit in the neck. Will we get to see what happens when a Final Five Cylon dies? Nope. Starbuck drags him off in the direction of Doc Cottle, while Apollo and the others go to free the admiral.

At the sham trial, Adama condescends to Gaeta until Zarek gets the call that the Cylons have been freed. He lies, of course, and says Tigh has been killed. Adama clams up, so Zarek pronounces him guilty. Damn, might Badger have lost his first case?

Maybe, but he makes up for it while being led away from the scene: He kills his guard with only a pen. Suck it, Jason Bourne! Starbuck and Sam are there, and Badger helps her carry the wounded Cylon.

Adama's all set to be executed, but by the time Gaeta calls down with the order to proceed, Apollo's Angels have freed the Old Man. I don't think Zarek knows that, though, when he sends Roslin a message to surrender. He claims both Tigh and Adama are dead, and Mary McDonnell hits her scene out of the ballpark, visibly turning from (as Gaeta points out) a president to a war leader. "I am coming for all of you!" she shouts, and I get chills. Zarek, meanwhile, looks as if he just peed his pants. The basestar powers up its weapons.

Gaeta is done with death, though, and won't let the Galactica open fire. He wants to jump away instead, but Chief -- who has been crawling through ducts all episode -- disables the FTL drive. Adama and what amounts to a small army of loyalists storm the bridge and arrest the mutineers. He calls the basestar to let them know he's back in command, and Roslin weeps for joy.

At the end, Zarek and Gaeta face the firing squad, and there's nobody to rescue them. If it's any consolation, Gaeta's phantom limb stops annoying him just before he dies.

Jamescallis_battlestargalactica_240 Baltar Watch: Baltar had two short but verrrry interesting scenes. During the first, he had a vision of Adama's execution, though that never came to pass. During the second, though, Baltar and Gaeta seemingly had a conversation before the latter's own execution. They smoke and drink in a luxuriously appointed apartment, and Gaeta pleads with Baltar to make sure people know the "real" Gaeta. The cut suggests it was Gaeta's daydream, but I don't think so. I think our Messiah figure is finally exhibiting some supernatural powers to become, oh, the High Priest necessary for the wanderers to finally find a home. What do you think?