1. This episode is really all about Roslin
Roslin, Roslin, Roslin. From the very start, we know she’s dying; it’s cancer and it can’t be cured, especially now that medical care is at a bare minimum for the fleet. We do get the chance to glimpse into the President’s life on Caprica, if only briefly, as Secretary of Education she meets with President Adar regarding a teacher strike affecting Caprica. Not only do we see her settle the strike, we see Adar basically command her to resign because he feels this result makes him look weak, oh, and we see the two having an affair. Roslin isn’t one to back down and says she’ll deal with his demands when she returns from Galactica, but we all know that day never comes. In reality, the most important thing we see, and the most important thing Roslin sees in her flashbacks, is the meeting of Baltar and Six on Caprica.. Will Roslin remember when she wakes up? It sure seems like it.
How could anyone sympathize with a group hell-bent on destroying those that you love, or a group that has already destroyed those that you love? As it turns out, there is a group just like this in the fleet and they’re already hard at work committing various acts of sabotage, like the one that nearly cost Kat and Starbuck their lives while out on a Viper training mission. This rouge group is manifesto ready, one with a credo against Adama’s war machine, and the Commander himself agrees to meet with the group in order to figure out what the fleet is up against. Turns out the group simply wants peace with the Cylons, the machines that destroyed their planet and most of their fellow human beings, and this rogue group of humans is attempting to achieve peace through destructive means, such as suicide bombings.
3. The Cylon child
Seemingly out of nowhere, Roslin commands the Cylon child be terminated based on the doctor’s determination that there are abnormalities in the scans he has done, and in the fact that she believes the child is a danger to the fleet. Baltar fights the command, eventually appealing to Adama, but Adama says he will back up the President. Helo and Sharon are understandably upset over the command, but in the end, Baltar comes through with scientific evidence no one can deny; he discovers the Cylon child has no blood type, and that when he exposed President Roslin’s cancer cells to the Cylon child’s blood, the cancer was gone in a matter of hours. Guess what, that baby was not terminated, and the President was cured. However, Roslin now knows about Baltar and Six back on Caprica. Sounds like Baltar saving two lives may lead to his own destruction.
4. Vice President Baltar
I constantly forget Baltar is the VP, and the fact that he’s next in line is a frightening thought. If this episode is all about Roslin, Baltar is a close second. He’s a character that’s tough to pin down. What’s his true motivation? What does he really want? The other characters in the series don’t really know and we as an audience don’t really know. I’m not sure he really even knows. Before he heads over to Cloud Nine and sees Pegasus Six for the first time since she escaped the Battlestar, he seems perfectly happy to slide right into that President’s chair on Colonial One, but, after Six hits him and asks him to turn the fleet against Adama in order to turn the Cylons into the saviors of mankind, he’s not having it. He won’t be turned into a puppet of the Cylons. He won’t be responsible for the downfall of mankind. He won’t be in a position to make those tough decisions. And so, he devises a way to save Roslin and the Cylon child. But, by the end of the episode, he wants back in. He wants to be President and wants Roslin out of the way. Geeze, Baltar. Make up your mind.
5. The epiphany someone has yet to have
The fact is, Baltar is certifiably bonkers. Like crazy. And, in reality, he had some sort of serious mental break after the Cylons attacked and he realized the integral role he played in the destruction of Caprica and the almost destruction of mankind. His arrogance led to the apocalypse. And yet, no one has noticed. He speaks to himself in public areas. He’s nervous all the time. He can’t make decisions. He has a high security clearance and he is the freaking Vice President and no one has thought, hmmmm, maybe we should get this guy some help. I guess they all think he’s a super smart mad scientist. Which I’m sure won’t lead to any problems later. Like him sending a nuclear weapon to a known Cylon.