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Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica. You’ll have to excuse me if tonight’s recap comes out like “word salad” but damn, that was a lot of information thrown at us! Between Anders’ brain damage and the Ellen flashbacks, we certainly got more than our fair share of answers tonight. And they also managed to squeeze in some fleet issues as a bonus. Let’s get that out of the way first.
If Adama can have a Cylon as an XO, why can’t he have one as the Chief? He re-Chiefs Tyrol and puts him in charge of diagnosing the ship. In a nutshell, the ship’s bones are brittle and ready to fall apart. Poor Galactica. Chief’s solution is to use some special organic matter that they have on the Cylon basestar that will essentially seal up the ship and help support the old girl so she won’t continue to fall apart. At first Adama’s all no frakkin’ way but then he starts drinking. He notices a gaping crack in his cell, takes some pills and calls Tyrol back to tell him to go ahead and use the Cylon technology to fix the ship.
In other Galactica news, Roslin’s basically giving Lee control of the presidency. Lee’s honored to accept the role and also accepts Roslin’s words of wisdom, which include telling him that he needs to not always worry so much about doing what’s right and focus on doing what’s smart. In other words, don’t be such a boy scout, Lee. Sometimes when you’re president of what’s left of the human race, you have to separate yourself from your own personal principles and do what’s best for the people. Lee takes the advice and puts it in his pocket. We’ll have to wait and see whether or not he’s actually going to use it when the going gets tough, as it so often does.
Ok, now on to the wow portion of the episode. Anders has a bullet in his brain and it’s triggering a flood of memories of who he and the other four final-fivers are and where they came from. He shares whatever he can manage to spit out. In the meantime, we’re treated to various flashbacks of what happened to Ellen Tigh from the moment she downloaded on the Cylon Basestar where Cavil and Boomer are, all the way up to the present. Between those two things, here’s what we learn:
The people on Kobol created the five. The five created the other seven… err… eight Cylons. Yes, there are eight other Cylons, not seven. Number seven was a Cylon named Daniel who was a kind, sensitive artist. Cavil, whose name we learn is really John, had all of the Daniel’s corrupted, which permanently destroyed the entire line. (I’d love it if it was revealed that one Daniel was saved. Otherwise what’s the point of the Daniel story to begin with?)
So the five, who were on earth, invented and re-invented resurrection. They gave the eight Cylon models they made to the Centurions as part of some kind of peace treaty. Up until then the centurions had only been able to create the hybrids so the eight models they were given to them by the five were a pretty big leap in the technology they failed to achieve. The Centurions provided the one-true-God ideology and the rest of what makes up the eight models was given to them by their creators.
Cavil, whom Ellen insists on calling John as that is his given name, is a bitter, pissed off son. He despises the five for making him weak. As a machine he thinks his senses should be stronger. He should be able to experience things as a machine should and not have to be plagued with human emotions and a weak physical make-up. Ellen sees Cavil as a beautiful man. She looks at him like a mother would look at her child. Even the most flawed child who is filled with rage can be loved by his own mother, right? Cavil doesn’t want love. He wants his resurrection hub back. When Ellen tells him she can’t rebuild it without the other four, he decides he’s going to cut her brain open and check her grid out.
Now it needs to be said that Ellen, whom we’re used to seeing drunk, horny or otherwise unraveled, is as calm as Yoda throughout all of this. And while Cavil spends the bulk of the flashbacks yelling at her for making him weak, Boomer is by his side listening. We know Boomer’s got a lot of emotional damage due to everything that’s happened to her. She once thought she was a human. She was even in love with a human and since learning her true nature, she was ripped from that world and put with “her kind.” It’s understandable that she might be having some kind of identity crisis. Cavil was trying to help her embrace her true nature and accept that she’s more machine than human. He was trying to teach her to separate herself from her emotions. Maybe this was the only way she could come to terms with herself. By trying to pretend that she’s not made up of human traits. Traits that were given to her by her creators, along with free will and the ability to be creative. Ellen doesn’t see those things as weaknesses.
We learn that it was Cavil who trapped the final five after they resurrected when earth was demolished. He suffocated them and then when they resurrected, wiped their memories and sent them to the colonies, giving them front row seats to the impending apocalypse. His explanation is that he wanted them to get a good taste of just how crappy humanity is. It’s interesting to me that all of them rose up and played key roles in humanity’s survival after the Cylons attacked. Even without the knowledge of what they were, none of them were the types of people to sit back and let the other humans do the dirty work.
When we finally get to the present day, Cavil/John is ready to open up Ellen’s head and get the resurrection hub info out. Boomer’s sent to escort her to her “surgery” but instead, she takes her to a ship and flies her the frak out of there, jumping away before the raiders can shoot them down. Ellen’s coming back and so’s Boomer! What does this mean for Tigh and his new pregnant Cylon girlfriend? Ellen didn’t seem to hold any ill will towards her husband for killing her. I’m interested to see how she reacts when she finds out he’s moved on. And how will Tigh react when he sees the love of his life is back?
As for Anders, he gives as much of a rundown of the things we learned from Ellen to the other three Cylons thanks to the bullet in his brain opening up the memory floodgates. He has a bad seizure and after that it becomes harder for him to get the words out. He mentions Daniel, which lets Kara know she’s not the eighth other-Cylon and he tells them how the other Cylons suffocated them and put them on the colonies without their memories.
Cottle has some squirrely brain surgeon named Dr. Gerard come in to remove the bullet. You might recognize the actor, John Hodgman as the dorky PC guy in those Mac ads. Just as they’re about to bring Anders into surgery, Anders yells out to Tigh not to leave the fleet. He says something about angels and it being beautiful. Don’t leave the fleet, Tigh! If you saw the previews for next week’s episode, you probably have a good idea of what Anders was likely to be referring to.
PC guy gets the bullet out and Cottle gives it to Kara as a prize. When Kara goes in to talk to Anders, who is still unconscious, some technician tells Kara that Anders’ brain is fried. Why she just blurted that information out rather than telling Cottle and letting him explain it to Kara with a slightly less abrupt explanation (and considering it’s Cottle we’re talking about, that’s saying something), I don’t know. I guess things work differently in sick bay than they do in normal hospitals where the wives get told their husbands are brain dead with a little more sensitivity.
And that’s about it. We have a lot more answers than we did at the beginning of the hour, that’s for sure. Oh, and in tonight’s touchy-feely moment of the week, Six reveals that little Saul Jr. is kicking around in her belly! Tigh gets all gooey about it and talks about getting some baby things. Again, how’s he going to react when his wife comes home?