This cain chick is all evil and stuff and she flirts with starbuck and promotes starbuck and roslin's all like "kill that bitch" and adama's like "no! bad!" and then he's all like "Whoa, she's wicked evil. Starbuck, totally end her." and meanwhile cain's all "End Adama for me, would you Stensland from LA Confidential?" and meanwhile helo and chief are all "Hey, check out how not dead we are" and Apollo and Starbuck IM each other in their plans at the begining omg!
So, I'm going to start off by talking about Cain. Cain is fucked up. She's -- I keep calling her evil, but I think that it should be understood that when I say that, I just mean capable of atrocities that we've not seen anyone else commit yet and clearly hideously traumatized by the Cylon attacks and in a very locked down war-time mentality. That having been said: bitch does unforgivable things, but I am totally intrigued by her.
The scenes that really got me the most in this episode were Cain scenes. The scene between Cain and Starbuck, the scenes with Cain and Roslin, the scene between Cain and Six.
Let's start with the scene between Cain and Six -- her behavior there is really interesting to me. The way she kicks Six, and goes on and on like a scorned woman about Six having pretended to be their friend, Six having heard their stories, pretending to be one of them -- Six was a soldier with a mission onboard the Pegasus, she tells Gaius, and my money is on Cain having been her mission, as Gaius was the other Six's mission. I'm not neccesarily saying that Cain and Six did it, though the thought is crossing my mind even now *watches it flit over brain*, but I'm saying that if Cain has figured out that she was somehow partially responsible or linked to the Cylon attack through her relationship (of any kind) with Six it would be somewhat of a rationale for her zealous (to say the least) need to fight the Cylons. If she is trying to atone, the ruthlessness with which she does it could be seen as some kind of attempt at self-expiation, as would her insane plan (if she believes in it) to return to Caprica and route the Cylons. At the same time, though, she's clearly a woman that feels she's landed in the middle of a war without humanity, and that one cannot meet an inhuman enemy humanly. I'm not even referring to Cylon-inity here, I'm talking about the act of genocide as being so completely horrific that one cannot remain honorable in the face of it, which would make it all okay for her. But the Six thing lingers with me.
Now, about that Caprica idea...How much does she mean that, and how much is she just trying to manipulate Starbuck there? I think that yes, she believes it is her duty as a military commander to protect the 12 colonies which she seems to think of geographically rather than culturally as the Galacticans do. (I'm calling them Galacticans and Pegussisies from now on, I've decided.) But I think she's also attempting to suborn Adama's control on what she views as military assets -- ie Starbuck. Who, yeah, she's a big bad ass as a pilot, and who the fuck wouldn't want her on their side? Particularly considering the fact that despite all of her attitude, she believes in the structure of the military in a way that Lee just doesn't. Which is part of why it makes so much sense that she promotes Starbuck, rather than Apollo -- she's looking for loyalty above leadership, and Lee's loyalty is certainly not to her, especially if it wasn't entirely to his father's command.
Also. Yes. I do think she was borderline flirting with Starbuck. I think Starbuck didn't see it becuase she was so freaked out and nervous and then shocked, but yeah, I think Cain sees herself in Starbuck in a way that -- well. I'm not entirely sure she's one hundred percent wrong on that one. They have some points of similarity; Cain's like a horrid dark mirror of Starbuck, in a different world. Starbuck's excitement about going back to Caprica - eh. I could take it or leave it. I mean, I dig the fact that it's consistent, but I have some issues with her being dumb enough to think (having seen Caprica has she has) that they could actually do that. Though I could see how somebody as charismatic as Cain could make her believe it, just for that one second.
Particularly when someone has an ego like Starbuck does.
But this is neither here, nor is it there. What is here is the time to discuss Helena Cain and Laura Roslin. First off: I say settle the whole thing in a cage match. Roslin would be all "Bitch, please, I got nothing to fear because I'm gonna die anyway!" and then she'd rip Cain's face off daintily and smile tightly at the unpleasantness of it all and maybe have a vision or something. But at any rate, Roslin continues to blow me away. She sees more than anyone else what it is that makes other people work, and she has a fantastic knife's edge ruthlessness that a leader in her position needs, but it's tempered with compassion. Cain has that ruthlessnes, but lacks the compassion, and in their scenes together Cain's abrupt, nearly violent brittleness in conversation stands no chance against Roslin's fortitude. Cain is adrift, and you see that when she's in the same room as Roslin, because the fact that Roslin can talk her down has nothing to do with chain of command (question: does anyone know if the president of the colonies is Commander In Chief? If so, Roslin could be all "Hi. I'm in charge. Shutthefuckup, would you?"), nothing to do with the make up of the colonies, and everything to do with the fact that she can look into Roslin's eyes and see someone who will do what needs to be done, but do it with grace. I think she hates Roslin because she thinks of her as weak because she thinks of compassion as a weakness, but man, if she could see Roslin in conference with Adama, she would have another fucking think coming.
Roslin totally knocked my socks off this episode. Her physical suffering juxtaposed with her political and psychological strength just blows my mind. This woman is every inch the strong leader, and I adore her. She's crazy, fucked up, dying and terrified, but she is amazing.
And, oh, her scene with Adama when she was ill and she said she wanted a new body, a Cylon body -- and Adama nearly cried and she was in the fluffy pink robe, and they held hands! *hand to heart and undignified squeal* She will rule his heart with an iron fist in a velvet glove, just as she rules the fleet! She is the cappo di tutti cappi! She hopes your first child will be a masculine child! Insert other Godfather allusions here!
Anyway. Uhm. Things. Other things. Right! Tigh! Tigh continues to creep up on me as a character I love. I adore watching him play Fisk, because you always knew that Tigh was a basically good guy, and not incompetent, but watching him actually do something confidently (even if it is coax information out of a drunk man) makes me so happy. And he does do it skillfully -- invite the confidence, hide behind the gruff exterior of military man with only contempt for civilians and get the info. These scenes really do show the audience, though, that gruff though Tigh may be, he has a truly decent heart. He's the audience stand in in these scenes, he shows all the horror we feel, and Micheal Hogan does it really subtly but so effectively. These scenes are so incredibly redemptive of Tigh, in this way; because of his behavior during the Gideon Massacre and his brief dictatorship, he's the character you'd expect to be most sympathetic with these stories. But as I said -- he's fully, and correctly, repulsed by Cain's behavior here.
Speaking of repulsed - Doc Cottle. I loved his line to Sharon that what happened was unforgivable. It's understandable, of course, because he deals in bodies and the body he's dealt with, Sharon's body, is nothing but human beneath his hands. He's seen what's been done to her in detail, and he knows what it means, and as a doctor, he knows how it must have felt, what could have happened. God, kudos to Grace Park for that scene -- this is a Sharon realizing that for all of her feeling that Galactica is home, she is never going to be welcome there. She is not safe. She may never be safe around humans, and neither may her baby be. That syntax was weird. Sorry about that. And God, I totally loved that it was no comfort to her that the Pegusissies were the ones that tried to rape her, rather than the Galacticans; she's traumatized, and then put back into the scene of the crime. Not a lot is being proven to her in terms of the good will of Adama and his crew. The two people who genuinely cared about her are maybe going to be killed for it. Yeah, she's gonna feel really great about things.
And speaking of Helo and Chief -- their talk. Okay, first off, who all out there loves me and will write me Helo/Chief in that cell, hmm? Who, I ask you, who? Because I expect a great deal. Secondly: oh, Helo, honey. I love that he isn't walking into this completely blindly. He recognizes that he's in a trully FUBAR situation with Sharon, but he loves her anyway, and he can't stop, and he knows that. And, oh, the compassion he has for poor Chief, his romantic rival. When he says "If you can, stop" it's a strange thing, because firstly, if Chief stops caring about Sharon, then Helo won't have to worry about him as a rival any longer. But also, the way he says it makes me think that he wants Chief to have that option, to not have to feel this fucked up about Sharon, about this situation, about this woman who isn't a woman. Gah. Love them. And, Chief, Chief, Chief. So broken apart by the whole thing with Sharon, the woman he thought he'd marry, who died in his arms telling him that she loved him.
*sings a chorus of I love Battlestar Galactica and throws confetti*
I also love that Lee visits them, and Lee's face when he sees his Dad -- and Adama's, "Focus, son." It's a small moment, but a great one. Also, btw, WTF is up with Starbuck and Apollo imming each other in the planes, hmm? Anyone else feel weird about that? Yeah, okay, glad we're all in the same boat.
Six and Gaius, Gaius and Six. This is what I have to talk about now. Firstly -- Six went to pyramid games and wished Gaius would go with her. Or, hallucinatory!Six did. I still don't know how to take what she says, because, you know, we don't know what the frak she is, but I'm going to go with finding that weirdly sweet, and move along. But the Six in the brig being suicidal, truly suicidal, wanting for her life to be totally over, no restarts, no resurrection, nothing. Wow. I think no testimony could be more damning about what was done to her. Not any faded bruises, not any second hand discussion of what Thorne did, but that in and of itself is enough to prove that she was put through truly unconscionable torment. And Gaius' conflicted face when he tells Cain -- it's another small thing, but I do like the conflict there. He has done his duty, he's saved Six somewhat, and I don't think he'll let himself lose the one he has if the resurrection ship gets blown. He truly does love the woman he knew, and he is already feeling strongly about the woman in his care.
Who, btw? I think ends up killing Cain rather than Starbuck. I'ma call this right here and now: I think Cain gets thrown in the brig with Six. Did you see the hands in the previews? They were braceleted with bruises and wearing the green thing that Gaius brought Six. Plus, the venom in Cain's voice wouldn't be directed at Starbuck, I think -- they haven't the history for it. Whatever the history between Cain and Six may be, if it's only that Six is a Cylon, there is enough there for that level of venom.
Also, I think Fisk is gonna chicken out. He's not going to want to kill drinking buddy!Tigh, and I think that a lot of his actions have been predicated on Cain being the sole authority left in the universe; Adama opens another door to him. He won't be able to go through with it, says I.
Whether Starbuck can or not, I don't know. I think she'll hesitate due to her love for the Caprica plan, but I also think her love for Adama is such that it'll be hard for her not to act.
So, essentially? I'm totally on tenterhooks, and weirdly resent the fact that I cannot right now gobble up the rest of this season. It would be so much more convenient for me if I could just watch it all now while school is out! Get on that, Scifi!
Mainly: I give this episode an A for the palpable tension, the brittle edges that it has, and the sheer mindfuckyness and fabulousity of BSG in general. The End.