Battlestar Galactica


There will always be a special place in my heart for the reimagined Battlestar Galactica series. Moreso than maybe a lot of people. Not only was the show excellent in my opinion and completely my kind of sci-fi, my favorite genre to begin with, but I saw it at a crucial time in my life.

The show had begun airing in 2004. I had heard great things about it, but to me it was always the show that on one after Stargate SG1, which was my favorite show.Unlike SG1 which was usually one story per episode, BSG was a continuation from episode to episode which means you really have to start at the beginning. For somebody just catching the beginning of each episode after watching their favorite show, I had no idea what was going on. So I would always just shut it off and tell myself that one day I would start it from the beginning.

That day came at some point in the year 2007 after three of the four seasons had aired. There was a strange brew of things happening at the time. For one I had just discovered the band Muse and their album Black Holes and Revelations which itself was a space themed record that seemed like it fit perfectly as the unofficial soundtrack of BSG. Still my favorite album of theirs. But more importantly my dad had passed away in March of 2007. This of course devastated me. It was a complete shock and came out of nowhere. I had just turned 28 years old 1.2 months prior. He had just turned 64 only 2.4 months earlier.

Battlestar Galactica was a comfort to me. In a way, Bill Adama reminded me of my dad. Similar body type and stature, similar personality. A kind caring father who would give his family the shirt off his back if anyone needed it. A man with a sense of duty on his shoulders. A man who knew his job well but was becoming weary of it in his older age. Still, he got out of bed every morning and put his boots on and went off to lead men. Not on some intergalactic battleship, but on the construction job site as a general superintendent.
He was always very calm and collected and nice to everyone, but every once in a great while if you got him angry it was as if you had pissed off God.
It was in these ways that the character of Bill Adama reminded me of my father, so I took to that character for that reason. Even if there were aspects of him that were not like my dad. Then gain maybe there was less of my dad in the character than I am even willing to allow myself to believe right now, but maybe it was that I superimposed my father onto Bill Adama because that is what I needed at the time. Because they were close enough.

Right there you can see why this show has a special place in my heart. But there is more. Specifically that one line “For children to reach their full potential, their parents have to die” spoken to Lee by Kara in the four season. That hit me hard because my dad was always there for me, making it easy for me when he could. I could always fall back on him if I needed to, now he wasn’t there to be my safety net.

What is interesting about the show is that last line was spoken to Lee, Bill Adama’s son. While I liked the character of Lee and could relate to him a little bit, I was relating more to Bill Adama as a whole.
What this show did was show me the transition I had to make myself. I was a father myself at that point and my son was  three years old. I still wasn’t used to being a father at that point in my life. But I realized I had to make that transition into Bill Adama myself and I think that is why I was relating more to Bill Adama and that line really just kind of sealed the deal for me.  Essentially I was watching a projection of my father on screen while also understanding I had to become him for the sake of my son. So in a way Bill Adama helped me better understand my father, say goodbye to him and realize I needed to become him in a sense.

Deep stuff. But it’s all of this wrapped into a time period of events in my life that made this show significant to me.  On top of being what I otherwise believe to be a great series that ticks off all kinds of checkboxes on my sci-fi must have list. I probably would have enjoyed it had those events of my life not occurred. So when I hear people say the ending sucked or they lost interested or something I tended to wave a hand. I’m definitely biased. They have their reasons and I have mine for liking the show. Admittedly I still had issues with parts of the show. But on the whole I really enjoyed it, even the ending which I thought was great.  At the time of viewing I was a pretty hard nosed atheist, but I still enjoyed the spiritual aspect of the show which I think turned some of those people off. Even so it didn’t bother me and I thought it added to it. But then maybe I needed a little spirituality at that time in my life. Even if only in the events of a TV show.

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