Here’s the thing about Gaeta. If you saw the webseries The Face of the Enemy then you know he got majorly played by an Eight back on New Caprica. She used him to get him to give up lists of names of people whom he thought were going to be spared only to take the list back to her Cylon pals and have most of those people killed. Gaeta learned about this during the recent webseries. So it’s understandable that he’s not willing to trust the Cylons. They manipulated him and he had to live with the fact that he aided in the deaths of the very people he was trying to save. How could he possibly go along with a plan to trust the Cylons with what’s left of the human race? Jaded and broken, Gaeta rebelled. It wasn’t easy to watch, especially if you were a fan of the character but I think it’s important to understand this, if only to gain an appreciation for his side of the whole mess, which was finally resolved in tonight’s episode.
While many of Gaeta’s and Zarek’s followers may have been anti-Cylon out of principle, Gaeta’s issues with Adama and Roslin’s willingness to trust the Cylons is based on something much more personal and not simply out of prejudice. Did he deserve to be put in front of a firing squad in the end? Sure. He knew the reckoning was coming. He was the one to give the go-ahead to have Adama shot and karma didn’t waste any time turning the tables on him and Zarek. We'll get to that in a little bit.
I forgot how much I missed seeing actual combat on BSG. I’m not just talking about baseships firing at Galactica or the occasional explosion but real, crazy combat. Starbuck might be a wiz as a pilot but on her feet, she’s even more fun to watch. Speaking of wizes, who didn’t cheer when she smashed that guy’s head into the wall behind the urinal? Starbuck and Lee spent the bulk of the episode kicking ass, taking names and rescuing people. After springing the imprisoned Cylons (and Helo) from the brig, they get separated when Anders is shot after he and Starbuck were trying to boost some extra ammo off the bodies of the soldiers Starbuck and Lee shot breaking the Cylons out. Anders’ is fate is left up in the air but I’m thinking he might actually die. If Kara resurrected, what’s to say Anders won’t also and maybe then we’ll get to see where that’s happening, since we know the Other-7 Cylon resurrection ship was destroyed.
Adama’s going to be “tried” for treason and by tried, they mean sat at a table where he tries to explain himself only to have Zarek order him to be executed anyway. We all know the trial’s a farce, especially after Zarek has all of the people in the Quorum, including a man with some awesome sideburns, executed, after they give him the old heave-ho when he tries to appeal to them during their meeting. Aaron Kelly is nearby as Zarek gives the order to have the Quorum massacred and it’s clear from the look on his face that he’s rethinking this whole revolution thing.
Who knows Galactica better than Tyrol? Maybe a few people but Tyrol knows the ship pretty well and he spends the entire episode squirming through the ducts of the ship trying to get to the jump drive. During his journey, he runs into Kelly, who considers shooting him. Chief has no energy to fight him so he basically just lays there hanging out of the vent waiting for Kelly to make up his mind. The two share a few laughs over Callie’s two-timing and Kelly inevitably let’s Chief go. Kelly has a brief breakdown afterwards and then returns to stand alongside the other soldiers, only to abandon them later, realizing he’s on the wrong side.
Adama’s trial is a total joke. Even with Lampkin (yay!!!) brought in to serve as Adama’s pimpish defense, Adama knows there’s no point to this and gives Gaeta the classic “Shove it up your ass” defense. When Zarek learns that the Cylons have escaped from the brig, he lies to Adama and tells him that Tigh’s been killed. Adama decides he’s had enough questions after that and he accepts his death sentence. He’s brought to the hanger to be shot but Lee and the escaped Cylons show up in time to stop the soldier who looks like Mark Wahlberg from passing along Gaeta’s orders to shoot Adama. Gaeta doesn’t know this. He’s too busy scratching his itchy stump and being pissed off at Zarek for murdering the whole Quorum. Plus, there’s another problem. Roslin and Baltar made it to the baseship because Hotdog was too busy “thinking” and not shooting down the raptor like he was ordered to.
Roslin appeals to the Cylons on the baseship, telling them that if they move their ship to the middle of the fleet, Gaeta will be too chicken to attack them. Tory’s all for jumping away, as are some of the other Cylons, despite three of the final five still being on Galactica. They figure those three are going to be killed anyway. They agree to go along with Roslin’s plan for the time being but eventually, the baseship is exposed again and they have to make the call whether to stay or go. Roslin’s power of persuasion is still top notch because she assures them that once Adama gets Galactica back, he’s going to know who stayed and who fled.
Baltar takes some time off to frak a Six. It’s like old times! When he wakes up after a nightmare about Adama being executed, the Six tries to make him feel better as only a Six can but he stops her and tells her he needs to go back to Galactica. He admits that he loathes the followers who mindlessly worship him but he’s responsible for them and has to go back to take care of them. It’s a strange little revelation and even stranger to see a slightly more moral side to Baltar. I’m not sure I like it. Or maybe I’m just tired of the cult plot and want it to be over.
After they decide to stay put, Leoben helps Roslin get her wireless working again and she begs the other ships in the fleet not to jump away and to shut down their FTL drives. Zarek gets on the horn with the baseship and announces that Adama’s dead (they think he’s been executed and don’t realize that the extremely pissed off Admiral is on his way back to the CIC). Roslin’s not happy about this but the news doesn’t have the effect that Zarek hoped. Roslin doesn’t surrender. Instead she throws her great and powerful Ros voice over the radio and tells him she’s coming for all of them.
Galactica’s spooling up their FTL and Gaeta and Zarek know they have at least some ships ready to jump with them. Little do they realize that not only is Adama on his way back but Tyrol is literally tearing the FTL thingy out of the ship with his bare hands. He gets the thing out before the ship has a chance to jump and Zarek and Gaeta realize that they either have to fight or give up. Zarek’s all about the fight but Gaeta realizes it’s over. Adama returns to the CIC and has everyone lower their weapons. Gaeta and Zarek are arrested.
Gaeta has a smoke with Baltar before he’s executed and tells him that he wants people to know him. We know who you are, Gaeta. You were an idealist who got screwed over too many times. You tried to do the right thing and it bit you in the ass… and the leg. My only regret on Gaeta’s behalf is that he had to be executed next to Zarek. The two may have shared a side and both were in the wrong (we think – the Cylons were pretty close to abandoning everyone, including their own people tonight and if it hadn’t been for Roslin, they probably would have.), but Zarek’s motivations were fueled by a craving for power, while Gaeta’s were based on a genuine wish to do what he believed was the right thing for mankind. In the end, they were both traitors but I guess I felt a little bad that Gaeta had to die at Zarek’s side.
We still don’t know what’s happened to Anders. Lampkin ran into Kara, who was struggling to get him to Cottle and he almost left her there but then decided to help out. Also, after Tyrol pulled the FTL drive out, he spots a huge crack in the side of the ship. Didn’t Tigh mention something last week about the ship having problems because it’s been years since it’s been docked and checked out? With everything Galactica’s been through over the years, I’m thinking the old ship might not have much left in her.
Finally, the touchy-feely stuff. With all the real deaths, fake deaths and almost deaths, I think it’s interesting that we’re getting to see some of these characters really assess their feelings for each other. Adama was more than relieved to learn that Tigh wasn’t dead. Roslin was obviously very pleased to see Adama was alive. And when Kara saw that Anders was shot, her immediate reaction was to stay by his side, abandoning everything else. Whether or not Anders does die, I think we’ll get to see how Kara really feels about him. It’s about time she made a choice in where her heart really is, especially now that Lee’s back on the market.