Battlestar Galactica 4.13 "The Oath"
This marks the first of a multi-episode arc that focuses on the mutiny amongst the human fleet, orchestrated by Tom Zarek and Felix Gaeta, wherein the sides of the humans have split between those who want the help from the rebel!Cylons and those that feel like the Adama/Roslin administration are being blinded by their false hope. The episode has the gradual uprising of the civilian and crew mutineers as Gaeta carefully plotted out scheme to prevent all wireless connection to be transferred to Adama, until much later as the entire fleet is starting to tear each other to pieces and then moves in to take him and Tigh down from their commanding posts. The known Cylons are thrown into the brig, Lee and Kara start making their way around Galactica trying to find meaning to what's happening, Roslin attempts to make peace with the fleet over Baltar's untraceable wireless connection, and near the end the stability of humanity has reached its end as blood is being shed against their own; what's right and what's wrong doesn't matter anymore, it's all about survival.
Battlestar Galactica is known for its intensity and the amount of realism placed into a science fiction show, and this episode did not disappoint in giving us that. They maintain the ever-threatening fear of becoming extinct from both sides of the war, and the lengths some will go to perserve the survival for their own race.
Gaeta and Zarek: Starting a revolution or creating an anarchy?
If there's one thing this show has taught me is to never underestimate what human beings are capable of doing to each other, and as said this episode brought in those gray areas, reminding us of how high the stakes are.
Thinking about Gaeta's involvement in this coup d'état against Adama and all those who want an alliance with the rebelling Cylons, I'm torn with being sadly disappointed and absolutely outraged about his decision, and just wanting to thwap him over the head repeatedly for his association in this so-called revolution. This is Felix Gaeta we're talking about, he would be the last person who I would suspect to get caught up in Zarek's twisted ideas for idealistic revolutions and change. Then again, with everything that's happened so far with the lack of hope about finding a true home for the last survivors of the human race, his experience on New Caprica and the background information given in the webisodes, I can understand his absolute frustration with getting absolutely nothing in return for how the government is being run.
I'm not suggesting that all revolutions are horrible, in fact some can be necessary. But only if a government refuses to listen to the people and are doing questionable things that are getting others killed or making situations worse than better. Admittingly, Adama and Roslin haven't really been listening to the fleet as they are refusing and not liking the idea that the advanced Cylon technology can help their FTL drives so they can move faster thus escape any particular attack from Cavil's forces, which is also understandable. However to organize a secret insurgancy against the government altogether, resorting to violence and taking prisoners, is absolute madness.
People are tired, they are angry and frustrated. Combine their feelings towards President Roslin's visions and prophecies being a farse and Admiral Adama's blind trust in the rebeling Cylons, Zarek is using this opportunity to take advantage of the situation to create chaos and overthrow Adama and Roslin from power which he's been envious from the very start. Transforming people's fear into outright hatred, and having whatever they're doing to be justifiable acts of the preservation for their survival. Yes, because killing other people thus reducing the human population even further totally is getting your message across. But their mentalities are "anything goes" at this moment, nothing is worth salvaging, they only see black and white and if they have to slaughter everyone that disagrees with them or sides with the Cylons for any reason then so be it.
The episode is called "the oath" for a reason -- multiple times there have been mentions of swearing the military oath for the protection and preservation of humanity, of the people of the fleet. Many of the insurgents believe that Admiral Adama has broken his oath, has forgotten his way of being the leader of the human fleet by wanting an alliance with the Cylons. Gaeta even confronts him about it, his anger is clear that he feels betrayed, he feels that Adama has lost his senses and is following blindly in such a hope to find a salvation and a home which, as far as the people know, is a lost cause. Gaeta felt that he couldn't go to Adama with his concerns because Adama would go to Roslin, and she is basically on the same side as him, so the only way he could get anyone to listen to him was to join forces with Zarek. A man whose political activist record deems respectable to those who want a change which is effective to say the least, but dangerous for an overall democracy and humane civilization.
I've stated before that I can understand both sides, but the irrationality of the situation has gotten so out of hand and, seeing Gaeta in this light, and seeing how carefully he constructed such a distraction and organized all these people to create chaos aboard the ship, I just can't side with him at this point. I see his concerns, but that was definitely the wrong thing to get involved in. He should've known better, they all should've known better. And now look at what's come of it.
I wouldn't be surprised if the series ends with everyone killing each other off in a huge space battle and there are only the last several survivors from both fleets. One can only hope that Gaeta will see the error of his ways, which I'm sure judging from the previews, but he's sunk himself too deep of a hole to climb out now.
Humans and Cylons, will there ever be a common ground?
At this point in the series I'm seriously hoping that these two sides can work things out, particularly the last surviving of the human fleet and the rebel Cylons, though this episode again pointed out that not everyone is going to be behind a truce with the rebel Cylons, especially those that only see the Cylons as deadly machines who will probably trick them because, after four years and even generations of the Cylon versus human wars, it's bound to happen again and again. I'm just wanting to shout "CAN'T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG?!" and have them all kiss and make-up, but it's not going to be that easy, particularly with this now mutiny in the human fleet.
What it's come down to now is one simple thing: the preservation of their own species.
It's understandable that fear, and even the anger of the people in the fleet, so this particular uprising isn't much of a surprise as this threat has been placed upon them without much consent. Taking this into a different perspective, outside of fandom, if our government and/or military had made an alliance with another group that have had questionable kind of history and quarrel with us for years and years, and suddenly we, the people, are supposed to be trusting of that? It makes sense there would be an uprising based on not knowing whether to trust these others who have created nothing but trouble, and in fact the grudge of having the machines assassinate nearly their entire race. However, because we understand more about this alliance and what it all means for everyone's survival, the insurgency is without a doubt an idea gone awry and out of control, even with the best intentions, and that the dream of having Cylons and humans to officially join together is just that, a dream. At least for now.
I still firmly believe that the purpose of ending and restarting a generation is to finally come to a common ground of understanding, even if it means offing off hundreds to get to that point. And that Hera is definitely tied to this somehow, and will eventually come to the realization of both sides that she is their salvation and answer to cohabitate with each other.
But again, "all of this has happened before" and due to the newfound knowledge of the Thirteenth Tribe, whatever happened there will happen again after the new generation of human/Cylon populations in the future.
Memorable Moments of the Episode:
++ Adama and Tigh are totally BFFs for life, whether Tigh is a Cylon or not their friendship is everlasting. Just the fact that they strolled about the halls with guns, and in the end stayed together while Roslin and Gaius boarded the raptor to go to the baseship and fight off those marines? Epic bromance is epic, y'all. And totally badass.
++ Also, the fact that the rebel Cylon baseship is now a safe sanctuary now that Galactica is being overrun by angry civilians creating havoc? Interesting twist of events there.
++ KARA FRAKKING THRACE = MOTHERFRAKKING BADASS LIKE WHOA! Seriously, I love that girl. We've been deprived of some good kickass ass-kicking from her lately. I mean, I love that we're all about her destiny and whatnot but, for some 'ole good fashioned gunfights and her just not giving a flying frak about anything and saving Lee's ass from getting his head blown off by one of their former-marines? Just shooting the hell out of everything and everyone just because she can? HELLZ YEAH! Her and Lee fighting side-by-side, just like old times, and I loved it.
++ "Speaking as someone who's died once, it's no fun." LOL KARA U BE A FUNNY BITCH, AND ILU FOR IT. XD
++ Gaeta. Oh, Gaeta, Gaeta, Gaeta. *shakes head* Should've seen this coming though, because of what happened on New Caprica and with his leg (also caused by another mutiny he was partaking in) and then what we learned from the webisodes as I mentioned before, yeah, all of that setup for this moment. I should say it's been a long time coming for Gaeta to have a backbone and standup for something, but this wasn't that something I expected of him. But all of this, the devastation and desperation and anger, just finally made him snap. He may think he's doing it for the right reasons, that this is a democracy and a revolution that needs to take place, but he needs reality slapped into him in that what's happening is creating a fallback for humanity.
++ Going against Admiral Adama, of all people? Oh hell no. Airlock time for everyone.
++ He also arrested his boyfriend! Oh no, bad Gaeta! No cookie for you! *thwaps him*
++ MASSIVE HUGEASS GUNS! GUNFIGHTS! BANG BANG! VIOLENCE AND BLOOD BATHS AND BETRAYALS! PPL DYING LEFT AND RIGHT! OMG SHOW, YOU NEVER FAIL TO AMAZE ME WITH YOUR ANGST.
++ Oh Racetrack, I love you but what have you gotten yourself into? It seemed like she wasn't happy with the setup but went along with it anyway, however Seelix? That whole speech with her and Sam, you so could tell she was pissed as hell and playing him and poor Anders, oh poor puppy Anders, being so oblivious until he started getting the shit beat outta him. DAMN YOU SEELIX, WHY?!
++ IF ANYTHING HAPPENS TO THE AGATHONS OR SAM OR CAPRICA-SIX I SWEAR TO THE CYLON GOD I WILL CUT A BITCH INTO TINY LITTLE PIECES! I AM NOT EVEN JOKING!
++ I do have to mention...anyone notice the cuteness of Caprica-Six and Hera? Adorable, and yet remember that it was Caprica-Six who has been sharing the Opera House dreams and that she felt the need to protect Hera, and Sharon's inexplicable fear of the Six's taking her daughter away -- shooting Natalie, and now she doesn't blink with Caprica-Six? I know perhaps it might be because they're all in this dangerous situation and that Caprica has her own child on the way, but it's just something that got to me. Perhaps it'll be explained in these last episodes, idk.
++ I loved the beginning of the episode before the shitstorm rose when Tigh was in Adama's quarters and then suddenly here comes Roslin from the back room, drapped in a bathrobe. His expression was priceless! He was all X_O, and I LOL'd.
++ Adama/Roslin reunion in the end = ♥ ♥ ♥
++ Everyone's reactions to their reunion kiss! Kara and Lee looking away awkwardly, like kids reacting to their mother and father making out, and the Eight looking at them and was Gaius kind of smiling a bit there? It looked like it to me.
++ I've been reading reactions to this episode, many with the flailing and squeeing and hyperventilating and such as expected, though there are some that think that it was because of Adama and Roslin's lack of paying attention to their own crew that this mutiny happened. While I do think that yes, since the discovery of Earth they, along with others, have been oblivious to things around them simply because of their ways of coping with the grim reality that there may not be a civilization out there, but I hardly think that calls for pointing fingers and blaming them specifically. Everyone makes mistakes, this was a fall that was unfortunate but inevitable given the high strung emotions and feelings of rage and past grudges finally coming out. It exploded violently and now they're all paying the price.
++ Gaius Baltar is still love, even without any head!Six stuff (srsly show, wtf?) him and his crazy lovecult is just hilarious. Again, his self-preservation kicking in despite how much he's changed. Still the same old Gaius in that sense, lol.
++ His conversation with Roslin was nicely done. It's good to see them on a civil kind of basis without wanting to kill the other, which that amends was made during the last half of 4.0 of course. It's also nice to see Roslin resorting to alternative methods to get her voice out towards the fleet using his secret club COM-system.
++ I also loved his conversation with Gaeta, trying to get him to understand, to talk, and with the "our little secret" and just, yeah. ILU Gaius.
++ "They are not your men anymore, they are the enemy!" Sad, but true. Oh Kara, have I mentioned I love you lately? *g*
++ Tyrol, bb, you are so awesome.
++ This season is all about revolutions, revelations and mutinies. Bringing forth answers to questions we've all had, and I'm liking the parallels between this insurgency to the Cylon civil war brought on by a means of change in government; however the Cylon civil war made sense, this however was shit-stirring that even with good intentions behind the ideas as mentioned, having it being played out makes all those involved petty and destructive. For the Cylons it's understandable because they did talk it through, but the humans? No, it's all shoot and let's take control, no reasoning or compromising.
++ And despite this being all Zarek's planning of creating a revolution in the first place, having Gaeta follow through with his orders and scheme, I am still very intrigued with the man. He's very influential, a powerful kind of guy who has something to say about the people but seen in a dangerous criminal-like manner.
++ DAMN YOU "TO BE CONTINUED"!!! DAMN YOU TO HELL!!! *shakes fist*
Overall: Hardcore and intense, just like Battlestar Galactica always is but doubling the intensity times ten. See what I said about "A Disquiet Follows My Soul" being the calm before the storm? Setting up for epic shit like this awesomely amazing episode. If we had something equally as powerful beforehand, it wouldn't have hit us like a bucket of bricks once this episode reached it's climax...and will continue to because this is a multi-episode arc which will define a powerful ending as well as a beginning of what's to come for all these characters.
All I can say is, BRING IT ON BBS! BRING IT THE FRAK ON! :DDDD