spock: logic is sexy

BSG, I am not happy with you

So the boy and I have been devouring Battlestar Galactica as quickly as we can, but halfway through season 2.5, I am beginning to run into problems liking my favorite characters...or, more accurately, my favorite characters are not acting like themselves. I think someone on the production team said, "we need Adama to show more emotion" or "Kara Thrace needs a softer side" or whatever, and it's not working for me.

You know what, Sam Anders is a good-looking guy. If I were stranded in the wilderness, on the run for my life, and looked like Kara Thrace, hell yeah, I'd hit that too. No judgment there. I can even believe that Kara has been lonelier and in more pain that she'd like to admit, so her one-night stand might mean more to her than it would to other people. Again, no judgment. What I can't accept is the level of angst, and the accompanying self-absorption, self-destruction, and alcohol abuse that come with leaving Sam Anders. And what makes me particularly angry is that the writers want all her pain to be about this man when she was kidnapped by Cylons to be part of a baby farm. That would be horrifying for any woman, but for an abuse survivor like Kara? Someone for whom control of her body is probably very important? Someone who was probably emotionally manipulated a lot as a child, and then had that used against her by Cylon agents while she was physically incapacitated? That is so much worse than not getting to be with a guy! And the show wants to pretend that nearly being turned into a breeding machine never happened because Kara's problem is all about a MAN. I did not think I could get any angrier than I was...and then Kara has this beautiful moment where she lists the names of every pilot who's died since the beginning of the series, which exposes that she really does care and she was completely lying when she said she didn't even know their names, and I let out a huge sigh of relief because this was not about a man at all. Kara was just pretending it was because she did not want to acknowledge the pain of losing so many comrades and yes, being a little scared for her own life. And then came the last scene of the episode, and Kara has to say, "yeah, it sure sucks all those pilots died, but the real problem is Sam Anders." And I wish I were more articulate than this so I could say exactly how angry that makes me feel. But I can't. Instead I just have to say how fucking predictable and how fucking disappointing it is that after all Kara has been through, it really is about a man.

My only (and admittedly very vague) consolation is that Kara is not the sole prisoner of ridiculous angst. WTF Lee Adama? Seemed to be just fine and then tried to kill himself in his space suit and now mopes around being all dark and broody. I feel like some network exec just told the writers that one broody Adama was not enough, so do what you have to to get a second one. And also a big WTF to his back story with the girl. I don't even get it. Was she pregnant and he told her to fuck off? Did he tell her/pressure her to get an abortion? The boy and I both think the writers decided it would be interesting if he had an ill-advised affair with a prostitute, but they couldn't just make him be a lonely but sexual person who wanted to go to a prostitute, so they had to cough up some angsty back story to justify his decision. Except the story of Lee Adama with a prostitute would have been far more interesting if it had been about them and not his sweet, sad ex-girlfriend back on Caprica.

Honorable mention wtf's to Laura Roslin, who wanted to abort the Cylon baby for apparently no reason (not to mention the weird prophet/Christ figure thing she's got going) and Admiral Adama crying over Sharon's dead body. Really, Sharon is the only reason I've been watching this show lately, and they need to quit beating the trust angle over the head. We get it, she's an eeeeeeeevil Cylon and no one trusts her no matter how many times she saved the ship. Let's move on already.

I just hope the show hasn't completely jumped the shark and that more good episodes will be in store...eventually. I'm going to watch the whole series anyway because I would like to write some fic for it, and I probably need to know the whole canon to do that.
There are more good episodes. There are some amazing arcs. But there's also a lot of unevenness in the whole middle chunk of the series.

The last episode, you will either love or hate the last five minutes of.
That's a relief! I feel like all of season two has been so uneven! I was riveted through the ep where the Centurions invaded the ship, and then the whole shitty prophecy thing happened, and I was afraid my love affair was over. But then Admiral Cain showed up, and I loved that arc (and kind of hate them for killing her), so I thought the show had recovered its footing...but now. Ergh. I didn't even find time in my rant to mention my outrage over killing Billy. Don't get me wrong - I respect a show that kills its characters. But I want them to do it well, not because they're looking for some kind of shitty drama.
Cain also has an arc exclusive to the webisodes that I strongly advise you to never watch ever because it will make you seethe and flail and not in a good way.
I will bear that in mind. I was rather fond of Admiral Cain, in a weird backwards kind of way. First I had to get over my kneejerk desire for all female characters to be positive characters, but after that, I liked what they did with her because it was clear she had crossed many ethical lines, but it was also clear exactly why she did it. When she and Adama both backed off their assassination plots, I thought we were headed for a very interesting story arc. Alas... I guess I will just let her rest in peace instead of seeking her out in further canonical material.
Oh man, there are things I want to say but can't because spoilers.

I do think you will have both moments of GLEE and moments of WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK IS THAT SHIT?? in the next season and a half.
I guess that is sort of inevitable when watching a whole series. I mean, it's not like Buffy didn't go through some serious dry spells...
I see you've hit the part of the show where I went OMGWTF??? quite a lot. Around about the middle of the second season, the show started to drag for me. It got angsty and it stayed angsty for a long, long time (with some moments of brightness). Actually, it started to feel claustrophobic. They all lived on this ship, and there was gloom and doom and ... yeah. But I was weirdly okay with the ending, so.

I agree, that episode with Lee made no sense whatsoever.

I don't remember enough of the middle Sam/Kara bits to comment on them, though I did ship them on and off - mostly because they actually had fun together that one time, and I could never get into Kara/Lee. Or Lee at all, really.
I liked Kara/Lee a lot at the beginning because it hit all my Pike/One UST buttons. It had all the same elements of two very controlled people letting themselves get involved, plus more sass. But then I discovered that Lee is not in fact a character at all...he is a cardboard cut-out who has nice muscles and wallows in the angst of the week. I can't say I find that very attractive.
I was just thinking - if you haven't seen it already, you might like "The Sarah Connor Chronicles." It only lasted for two seasons, but I really liked it. I bring it up because it's apocalyptic, and the protagonist is a kick-ass woman with a lot of issues (and a lot of weapons). There are some other strong women, though some of them are cyborgs (so I'm not 100% sure they count, though I think they do) and you don't need to be all that familiar with the Terminator movies, just the very basic concepts.
Yeah, things did get really messed up for awhile. I think that they got better (well, ok-- things get even more fucked up, but the STORY is better) and that the series has a lot of amazing highs and seriously wtf lows. I am seriously disappointed in the show's depiction of Kara. She's my favorite character (though I'm also fascinated by the 8s, even though they cheat her out of any decent storylines)

I like to think that Kara's dealing with her issues and that they're just not showing or telling it all. I like Kara/Sam (Lee bores me most of the time) but I do tend to think that a big reason she is so crazy over Sam and going back and rescuing and whatever is that it's her way of resolving her other issues. She can't fix what happened or how scarring or scary it was, but this she can fix. And a person like Starbuck needs something to fix, something to focus on, a cause. She needs something to do. And I think that focusing on Sam gives her that. But in reality, it's never really about him. I think she just needs to feel and this is her way of trying.

I am just disappointed that the writers didn't feel a need to give her better scenes, because I think she's the most interesting character of the lot. They go a little crazy with her, but she's got a few GREAT episodes.

Did you watch Razor, the Admiral Cain miniseries? I actually really liked it-- and I feel that it explains a lot of that arc better, especially the Six that kills her. Plus, Kendra Shaw is hot. holy frak. And Kara is ace in that! It's at the beginning of season 4.0 if you've got the dvds.

Edited at 2010-06-26 09:38 pm (UTC)
There's definitely some overdrawn angst in the series? Plenty of moments where I rolled my eyes. But it's not all bad, and worth it to get through, IMO, because of the epic places the series goes.

Also, when it comes to Kara, though I ship Kara/Sam (though more later in canon), I thought that in that episode it was not about Sam in particular, it was about Kara's need to fulfill her promises. She represses everything bad that happens to her (more of this in later seasons...yeah...) and is focused on loyalty to an extreme level (she's a perfectionist, even though she doesn't want to admit it). Sam is just a symbol of a promise she has to fulfill.
I stopped watching the show midway through season three due to my frustration with the writing. You may do better than that. I never had any urge to try to write for it, with one exception, and if I ever get back to that story, I don't need to finish the series to do it.
Admittedly, I jumped ship at the end of season two b/c I was disgusted with the character arcs. I really liked Kara/Lee. I mean really. Then this whole thing with Blanders? HE WAS NOT INTERESTING AT ALL. And yeah, baby farm -- way more important. Also, my husband and I were completely baffled by Lee's sudden angst, which later disappears and we never really hear about it again. And Roslyn's (sp) conservative/religious turn was distressing (though I think maybe it's supposed to be).

I hope you like further episodes and gush about them here so I can find out how it all ends, haha.