It’s challenging not to be afraid of things, or people, or Cylons, that we don’t understand. Helo hasn’t made his affection for new Sharon a secret, she’s carrying his human/Cylon baby for gosh sakes, but others are not giving him any slack for caring about his baby momma. He’s ostracised by other members of the crew, and, of course, called Cylon lover. It seems a bit ridiculous on screen, but the basic fear of the unknown, or fear of those that are different, isn’t too far from our own, recent, history. Cally is even released, after serving a short sentence, for essentially murdering Boomer in cold blood. It’s war. And the Cylons are the human’s enemy.
2. Helo and Chief Tyrol
Helo and the Chief meet up, while drunk, to discuss their Sharons. Chief was in love with now dead Sharon, and Helo now has his Sharon, though she is locked up. There’s obviously a physical fight between the two, because it’s over a lady, well, a Cylon lady, and Helo doesn’t want to fight as it’s obvious the Chief is despondent, as is much of the crew, at this point in time. They’ve been wandering in space for some time, never knowing when the next attack will hit them, and they all just keep spinning their wheels in order to survive. What’s the point? This brings us to a weird scene I’d like to discuss briefly where the Chief is examining a Viper, feeling it’s parts to determine what’s wrong with it, and he starts thinking about Boomer, and the time they had together. Hold up. Wait. What? Is it because she’s also a machine, like the Viper? Because he loves those ships and loves Boomer? The writers just needed to toss a flashback in somewhere? Weird.
It’s always interesting when humans give human-like descriptions and names to non-human things or ideas. Like a virus. A computer virus. In this episode, the Galactica is still sick; she has a virus and it’s the one the Cylons implanted into her computer systems when Tigh linked them during his disastrous time in charge. Damn it, Tigh. Galactica has one plan to remedy the situation, and it’s to reboot their computer system. Basically, turn it off and turn it back on again. (Any IT Crowd fans out there?) Anyway, while their systems are down, about 200 Cylon Raiders surround the Battlestar, and they’re defenseless, but Adama chose to trust Sharon, who he let out of her cell, and she saves the Galactica by disabling those Raiders. As Adama tells Roslin, they had a mutual goal: survival.
Sometimes the reliance and focus on hope seems epically corny, but then it pops up in a way I can’t resist, and that reliance on hope draws me right back into its comforting arms. The crew is struggling in this episode, they have no hope. Chief Tyrol is in the worst shape; he’s come to realize who Boomer really was, and she was killed right in front of him. He’s despondent and hopeless. But, the words of our resident cynic, Tigh, push the Chief into action; he decides to build his own Viper. Everyone thinks the Chief is looney. Like bonkers. They insist it will never fly; even Cally doesn’t believe in the ship. But as time goes on, and the Chief moves further along, others see his success, and they want to join in. Even Tigh helps him find an engine for his ship. Well, in exchange for some alcohol, but men don’t change overnight. And last, but not least, Helo helps Tyrol with his ship. Starbuck, fearless as always, volunteers to fly the Chief’s new creation, and it’s successful. The new, faster Viper rises from the ashes of Tyrol’s despondency and brings hope back to him, and to the crew.
The doctor, a character I always love to see more of in this series, tells President Roslin she only has weeks to live, maybe a month, at best. It leads us to wonder what this means for the crew of Galactica and the entire fleet. Adama has come to rely on Roslin, even seek out her guidance and opinions when faced with difficult decisions as he does when Sharon offers him assistance with the Cylon virus. Plus, Baltar is Vice President and no one wants him to take over, except, maybe, Baltar. Perhaps this newfound hope will be short lived.