I can remember watching the original series when I was young, on both the cinema screen and on tv. It was camp and fun to watch but nothing more than that. The remake though is not so much worlds better than entire constellations better... The Mini Series, Series One and Two brought us a superbly realised Sci Fi drama. Gone completely is the campness of the original series. Instead we have a gritty and at times breathtaking social drama, with strong characters and compelling interaction. Plots are superb and are at times breakneck and harrowing. Each of the subsequent series has maintained these very high standards, and Season Three is no exception.
Season Three kicks off at where the previous season ended and sees the Cylons ruling the majority of the surviving humanity, after the disastrous decision to land and set up home on New Caprica. President Boltar enjoys a decadent lifestyle and is a complete stooge of the Cylons who use him to control their human subjects. Before long a wide scale insurgency starts with attacks on Cylons and humans who are collaborating with them. As the fighting becomes increasingly vicious, tactics become ever more extreme, and suicide bombers are used against the oppressors. In the meanwhile the military fleet still in space can only watch and wait while this is going on, all the while planning a strike to free humanity from its enslavement on New Caprica... Edward James Olmos reprises his role as the humane but tough Admiral Adama, having to deal with probably the greatest threat to his command since the Cylon attack on the colonies. Olmos' Adama is a complex individual, a tough military officer but governed and influenced by family ties, and loyalty and compassion for his men. Olmos reprises this role with the same brilliance that he achieved in the earlier seasons. Mary McDonnell is former President Roslin who once again has to take up the mantle of leadership. Mcdonnell excels in this role as the former school teacher turned politician who carries out her role in accordance with her own highly moral stance. James Callis resumes his role as the wretched Baltar, weaker and more uncertain than ever. His interaction with the Cylons though is a genuine point of interest in this new series, particularly with Cylon N06. Jamie Bamber returns as Adama's son Lee and continues his uneasy relationship with the brilliant but insubordinate Starbuck played by Katee Sackhoff....
The Cylons have evolved into a far more menacing, sinister, and yet profound foe. As the various series have progressed, we the viewer have got to know more about them. Mindless machines they are not, instead they are an evolving life form which is in the process of changing its view of things. Unlike the old series, some Cylons are made to look like humans, and some even think they are human. From an initial view of wanting to totally exterminate Mankind, we have seen a change to wanting to subjugate them instead. Going even further some Cylons have formed relationships with people. Now instead of wanting to destroy Earth, it would seem that the Cylons are actually keen on going there to make it into a home....
Battlestar Galactica Season Three continues the same excellent standards of what has gone before. Sure it is more character focused than previous seasons but it remains superb Sci Fi, enriched by excellent plots and that superb characterisation. In my opinion it is not just the best Sci Fi series currently around, it is also one of the very best TV series full stop. It has plugged into the post 9/11 psyche which is brilliantly depicted with rawness and grittiness on screen. At this moment in time, I cannot think of much if anything else to touch it. Simply brilliant and I cannot wait for Season Four.
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