Monday, January 01, 2007

Battlestar Galactica is Crap

It was with great anticipation that I finally got hold of the first season DVD and whacked it into my player, relishing the thought of hours of enjoyment.

But, let's be honest: It's complete crapola. It could be one underlying theme or approach that makes it crap, but I can't quite put my finger on this 'unifying crapness', so I'll just list my complaints and see how that goes.

1. My biggest complaint, the game killer, is that there are no Cylons. That's right. Battlestar Galactica has no Cylons. Oh, individual CG Cylons turn up every second episode for about 3.5 seconds. But that's it. No laser fights. No interrogations by terrifying androids. No Terminator-style battle scenes.

2. What they do have is human cylons. That's right, robots that look like humans, even think they are humans. There is one particularly irritating human cylon woman who may or may not be real, who may or may not be helpful, who may or may not be getting it on with this human scientist. Like some cheap Fatal Attraction situation, deliberately designed to be vague and frustrating. She ain't that pretty either. These human cylons are supposed to take the place of the real thing, but all I hear is blah blah blah, blah blah blah, we couldn't afford cylons. And if you have no cylons, you have no contest.

3. There are no battles. You will watch 3 episodes before you see spacecraft do anything. You can watch five hours in vain to see a cylon spacecraft destroyed. There are no dogfights, heroic last stands, grim fightbacks, or victories of any kind. Instead you get endless anxiety without resolution.

4. It's not about anything. The classic angst and fear that is tapped into so successfully by the original series or Terminator, or even the Cybermen of Doctor Who, the idea of man versus robot, is entirely absent. The theme of good versus evil, done so well by, say, Star Wars, is not even attempted. Instead you get human drama and politics. Like some kind of West Wing combined with Futurama. But without the future, because...

5. It's not even science fiction. If it's set in the future, the future must look like Washington about the time of the Watergate scandal. Apart from an occasional CG scene, it's about as futuristic as Top Gun. There are no automatic doors, food dispensers, transport beams, personal communicators, holo decks, androids, not even any robots or aliens! Instead it all looks depressingly late-2oth century. Empty coffee cups on tables. Paper everywhere. Communication by radio. Books! The human president appears to work in an aircraft cabin, everybody else sits in the passenger seats! Where is the shiny out-0f-worldness of Star Trek, the cool metallica and technology of Alien?

6. It's barely fiction. Plots inspired by modern life. Terrorism, who can we trust? How much democracy should we have? How can we find the traitors in our midst? Society versus the individual. The needs of the many versus the needs of the few. An entire episode was spent dealing with prisoner's rights! Not a cylon within lightyears! God, what is this crap? I don't need to see this in science fiction, it's like a BBC documentary!

7. It could have been so good. It could have been a new V. Now that was science fiction. Good versus evil. Heroism, glory, guts, sacrifce, freaky aliens. Or it could have been like Starship Troopers. Now there was a movie. Hot chicks with nice boobies and shining eyes who take showers with the troops and make frantic love to them in between battles. Huge battle scenes with lots of death and victory. The heroic quest, against a backdrop of an epic clash of Good and Evil.

Instead it's Crap.


Anonymous said...

Good points. There is a hell of a lot which this show doesn't do. And much of what it does try to do, it doesn't do very well.

Anonymous said...

OMG!!!!! I'm not alone!!!! This show is a load of dren. Every point is spot on!

1) The future is the future if it's the time of the Watergate scandle! HAHAHA. True that!

2) It's not science fiction. It's modern crap with a shallow plot and weak ass dialog lines told to a DUMBED DOWN populus that must think this is "intelligent debate."

3) RIGHT, RIGHT, RIGHT!!!! DULL, DULL, DULL...who are the bad guys? Not the Cylons, it's the stupid sophomoric interpersonal relationships of these "card-board" cut out 90210 wanna-bees!

4) They can't get this CRAP off TV fast enough.

Anonymous said...

Too true. My sister and her husband love this show a little too much and when I explained it was just overstylized crap, with little substance they defended it like I stomped on thier religion.

LOL its nice to know I am not the only one that thinks this show is a load of BS.

Anonymous said...

Thank you! I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks this show sucks. I don't try something called the sci-fi channel so I can watch lingerie models lecture some guy about religion. That is seriously a big part of the show! Was the entire cylon race created by Hugh Hefner? What's thier mission, bore us all to death with their social, religious, and political commentary? Please, please, someone make the bad show go away.

Anonymous said...


I know friends who love this show far, far too much, and don't understand why i don't share their passion. But seriously-what's to love? After being forced to watch the mind-numbing pilot that seemed to last several ice ages, they then went on with series one. And nothing happened. At all. A whole episode of sweaty men in a grey room watching a clock on the wall. Or something. I don't know, I can't remember cos it was such SHIT.

And another thing- New Doctor Who has better ideas but even THAT has gone SHIT because they now make it slushy & sentimental. They're writing it for girls who don't like sci-fi. Damn-it! What's wrong with us geeks? I'm a geek and PROUD!

Anonymous said...

I sought out this show on DVD after reading a review that called it the greatest SF show ever. But mainly it's not sf, it's soap opera. As it goes on, it gets a little better, and racks up maybe half a dozen episodes that are pretty fair. BUT....

The writing is awful. Trite, hack tv writing. Virtually NO plots. Virtually NO characterization (except for the comic villain, who's pretty good). Dialogue of the "But there's one thing you're forgetting" school. Garbled exposition. Even outright illiteracies (in one episode somebody mentions "corporeal punishment").

The acting is awful (again, except for the villain, and one Daniel Craig-ish Cylon). The two leads talk in weird deadpan monotones. The supposedly tough soldiers - especially the women - act like snotty yuppies.

The battles are boring - as well as appearing to be physically impossible. There's no sense of danger or imminent death, and the way the scenes are shot, the tactics, the fire and counterfire, are incomprehensible. It's all like a big video game demo.

The "science" is magic, with lots of pseudo-mystical gobbledegook (a la "Roswell"). There's a mixed-race human/Cylon baby who's immune to disease. The ship's doctor thinks if he gives the president some of the baby's blood, it might cure her cancer. And it does! Only, two years later the cancer comes back. No explanation either way.

Once in a blue moon, an episode is built around an sf premise (a Cylon baby farm for humans, black marketeering in the fleet), but it's never developed. The issue is invariably resolved by either blowing something up or blowing somebody away.

And it won a Peabody Award!

DiracSea said...
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DiracSea said...
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DiracSea said...
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DiracSea said...

I Join the ranks of those here that expressed their relief that they were not alone in their disdain of this show. It is crap. All points above are legitimate. I might add that this show is probally the prime example of unoriginality, and lack of imagination. They took a highly original (granted the original was riding the wave of "Star Wars" success), and triumphant idea, and took everything good out of it, added a bunch of other stolen scifi ideas (all the boring ones) and presented us a turd. First; why did they have to go with the same old scenario of
"humans create machines, machines turn against us, machines wanna look like us, or be like us", when the original premise of the show was quite scintilating, original and hardly done in scifi revisions?: An adversarial lizard like race (The real Cylon Race) is dying off, they created the cylon robots to serve them, they hate humans with evey fibre of their being and will stop at nothing to wipe humans from the universe before they go extinct theirselves. Man, you could do all
kinds of stories with that, not to mention all the other high minded
ideas the original series touched on. Oh' and going along with the "not the future" comments, any civilization that is advanced enough to build ships like that are going to be advanced in other ways disimiliar to 20th century america, IE. they probally won't have cigarettes. Can you believe they had a united nations talk on this show? These people who made this show dont have one original idea, why would anybody pay
attention to any of their social commentary laced into the show? Why?

Anonymous said...

god yes. Totally awful. Up its own ar*e meanigless drivel. and very nearly christian progaganda to boot.

Tony said...

Thank you. Thank you for writing this review.

It's good to know I'm not alone thinking this show was idiotic to a mind numbing level. In fact it's so stupid it's puzzling how can one fuck this up so bad?

Anonymous said...

Quite agree. Someone lent me the box set and put simply it doesn't do what it says on the tin. You expect a decent scifi drama, what you get is a very very low quality soap opera with bits of space ship footage and a disappearing blond tart. Sincerely, this is really bad, stay away, do not buy.

running-is-a-lifestyle said...

Thanks god I'm not alone in the universe thinking this is total crap

Only I like some SF i cannot take my eyes off of it but I think I will have to - I totally agree with everything you guys said

Nothing make sense at all - the list is almost infinite...besides what you said let me add
one day they are about to die for dehydration and they have 0 fuel somehow the next day they have time to make elections and not just elections but they also party and out of 50.000 people there are about at least 10 journalists at every press conference....who pays for them
the entire human race was killed nobody mourn the friends and family that must have been left behind....

and the future 1970 style??? They have developed technology to jump around space and do not have an Iphone or something similar...!!
yes they had to save money and decided it was not even worth trying....

IT LOOKS LIKE THESE WRITERS REALLY WANT TO KEEP INTELLIGENT BEINGS AWAY FROM IT - but whose their target? all they do is talk about politics, rights....

just remebered the most annoying thing - one cylon human was tortured with water however when he gets out is hair is perfectly combed after 2 minutes!!!! why?? why??? why????
please I wanna know them

david said...

I just finished watching the pilot dvd for this new series and everything already mentioned here sums up my exact feelings as well.
However people on youtube are leaving comments about how great it is and stuff so it makes you wonder their age group? I was a kid in the 70's so i will of course be familiar with the original and like so many remakes of both tv shows and films today, they simply are turd, with nothing new to offer whatsoever.

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