Sunday, 16 June 2013

Battlestar Galactica Rewatch ( Part 7)

Battlestar Galactica Rewatch ( Part 7)

Fire In Space

I've treated this episode as a standalone since I wanted to keep the next two episodes
together as they were intended to be although I guess Fire In Space would have been a
more than adequate final chapter in a Living Legend trilogy. They actually did release a
feature "Mission Galactica: The Cylon Attack" comprising of those three episodes so
there was a precedent.
However lets begin with a Cylon raiding force targeting the Galactica, the rest of the
fleet seems to be very much absent and since the Cylons seemed to have been on a
very specific suicide mission maybe the fleet wasn't really missed.
After being hit by raiders which were speculated to be filled with explosives/fuel the
Galactica is seriously damaged particularly one of the landing decks and the bridge, Adama
himself is taken to medical and ultimately requires surgery. As the fire rages and slowly
consumes the ship the remaining crew look for solutions to prevent the main generators and
fuel storage from blowing up and taking the ship with it while Apollo and co desperately try
to save the twenty or so survivors sealed behind jammed bulkheads in the rec center or
shall we call the rejuvenation center.
Where is Reford & Newman when you need them?
Fire In Space when you strip everything away is a very good idea, not original as we've
seen similar plots in scifi and particularly submarine movies over the years and of course
being trapped by fire is alas an ever present threat in large structures. Unfortunately the
episode is full of issues and they just tip the balance in favour of a more negative opinion
of the episode. We can begin with the lack of a CAP which I'm sure has been there in
the past, the really lack of effective point defence around two very critical elements of a
Battlestar and while closing bulkheads during a red alert is certainly a practical consideration
we see that some key personnel are prevented from defending the ship.
On that front why waste Cylons and Raiders, don't they have the ability to build long range
and low profile missiles which could very well be fired from outside scanner range and
from multiple sources.
I was also going to criticise the smoke getting into the various rooms through supposedly
air right doors but I suppose if the explosions warped the ships bulkheads then maybe just
maybe some gaps appeared. Of course you have to wonder if those air ducts which seemed
to connect every room to every other could be sealed under battle conditions, they seemed
very very convenient but at least Tigh had the decency to look embarrassed when putting the
substance in the duct to entice the robot daggit.

Busy doing nothing

Now here is a positive, ok it was stock footage but the huge fires raging in what look to
be an industrial setting made the Galactica look like a very real working space ship, maybe
they went for that look in Trek 2009 but BSG pulled it off perhaps thanks to the age, grime and
damage. Right lets return to the negative, why would you use Vipers to fire flame retardant when you
could outfit a shuttle, hover and pump a lot more chemical into the bays with no risk of crashing
into the ship and speaking of that why didn't the vipers dive instead of climb, nothing below but
space. I am going to finish with a positive though, the space walk and idea to blow compartments
was well done, the actual wire work and matt paintings were not convincing but within the limits of
the show they looked good and of course some of the ideas were used in the BSG re-imagining.

So to wrap up, some good ideas and some very bad ones but after everything I've said it still
ain't that bad an episode, it's certainly not one to skip on a series rewatch.

Fire In Space Wiki
Fire In Space IMDB

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