Well, this was incredibly good timing! This week’s episode of Battlestar Galactica focuses HUGELY on being a father, and, well, yesterday was Father’s Day in the U.S. Even more interestingly, it’s about being an imperfect father, and about priorities. We get a lot of insight into the Adama father-son relationship, too, so that’s always fun.
Previously on Battlestar Galactica, we go WAY back to an early and awkward Lee and Bill Adama interaction – Bill asks how Lee’s mother is; Roslin talks about how she wants to build a cabin and settle down; Callie and Tyrol are fighting, so Tyrol’s drinking; and again, we’re going to give Baltar his trial.
Okay, where the hell are we? Bill Adama’s dreaming, apparently, in a house surrounded by trees and birdsong. He wakes up, and he’s back in Galactica, and there’s a blonde lady next to him?! Tigh shows up, and the bed’s empty? Tigh wishes Adama a happy anniversary.
Somewhere else on the ship, Tyrol looks exhausted. He comes back to his cabin with a bottle for Nicky, who, gah, has an incredibly annoying scream/cry. Tyrol informs Callie that they’ve got work that morning – somebody else called out sick. Callie was looking forward to spending time with their son, but Tyrol volunteered them both to cover the shift.
Tigh updates Adama about the day, and Adama suddenly sees the blonde lady from before, and, presumably, hears her voice. Suddenly we’re with Adama, back in the house from the opening scene, and the blonde woman’s there. Adama looks at a photo, clearly from his wedding day, and the woman’s talking about how they had more bad times than good. In a new technique for this show, we get a voiceover from, oh, let’s call her Mrs. Adama, talking about how Bill only remembers her one day a year. She says its going to be a long day, and Bill replies that it always is.
Callie, Seelix and Tyrol go down to Airlock Twelve, where no one’s been since the repairs after the Cylons crashlanded a ship there and blew the place apart, more than a year ago. (Remember that?) Tyrol and Callie fight over lots of things: their son, their marriage, etc. Seelix is in the control room, and suddenly somehow the airlock doors shut. Seelix reports that there’s a tiny leak somewhere in the airlock, and that’s why the doors shut. Tyrol finds the leak, but still – Callie and Tyrol are stuck in an airlock.
Okay, I need to take a moment here and explain something, procedurally. When I write these recaps, I’ve got the episode playing from Netflix on my laptop, pausing when the show gets ahead of me, rewinding when Lee’s shirtless, etc. But since I’m typing, I really am mostly listening to the show, keeping barely half an eye on the visuals, rather than watching with rapt attention. And this is rarely a problem, except for this episode. The voiceovers are KILLING ME, and they seem to be continuing.
For example, Adama is reciting the names of the staff he’s not familiar with, and what his interactions with them are, while he’s back at the house, inspecting a bicycle and walking around ponds. Mrs. Adama – who’s apparently long-dead? Seems to be omnipotent? It’s like a weird Head Mrs. Adama.
Bill goes to meet with Roslin, and they get a little flirty. Roslin brings plans for Baltar’s trial, but there are more questions than there are answers – whose law do they try Baltar under? We are reminded again that Adama’s father was an attorney, and that they didn’t get along. Roslin wants Lee to lead a committee to organize this whole procedure, and Adama says he’ll talk to him. Adama also invites her aboard for the whole day – she’s gonna go to the gym!
Down in Airlock Twelve, Tyrol’s trying to fix the faulty patch, but he and Callie are still fighting. Alarms are going off, and Seelix is trying to fix things.
In Adama’s head, his wife is laying into him – he wasn’t a good father or husband, it seems, and she feels like she never knew him.
STARBUCK MY LOVE WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?! There’s a pilot briefing meeting, and Helo’s back in flying gear, also Hot Dog has an STD? Kay. Lee comes in, lectures the pilots about getting lax; they’ve been talking about how long it’s been since the last Cylon sighting. Bill Adama watches from just outside, and talks to his dead head wife about how well Lee’s doing. She criticizes Bill for not praising Lee as a father. Adama Sr. talks to Adama Jr., and tells him that Roslin wants him to assemble the framework of Baltar’s trial, that she needs someone she can trust. Adama tells Lee that he remembers when Lee would look at Adama’s father’s law books. Lee says that he did once think about becoming a lawyer, Adama says he never knew that. Lee implies there were periods of time when they didn’t speak. He also says that he’d be too busy to work on the legal proceedings, so that’s not gonna happen.
Back in the airlock, there’s a hole in the patch, and they’re out of patches. This is really very not good.
Adama, Tigh, Lee, etc. power walk down the hallway, complete with drama drums. Callie and Tyrol’s situation has suddenly become an emergency. Somehow the patch made the hole worse? Adama joins Seelix in the control room for the airlock – they’re losing more oxygen, and apparently freezing.
In CIC, Lee explains that the manual override is down, and, oh, they’ll be out of air in half an hour, and it’ll take an hour to cut through the doors, and blowing the glass in the control room is essentially impossible. Adama demands a rescue plan.
On the flight deck, Starbuck, Lee, and Athena are launching a Raptor. They’re apparently trying something no one else has tried before. Callie and Tyrol put on emergency oxygen supply vests. Adama updates them – they’re going to be “taken out through the front door” – put a ship right outside the airlock with the hatch open, they’re gonna open up the airlock, and have to jump, in open space, from the airlock into the Raptor. According to Adama, people can live for up to a minute in open space. Callie’s worried about Nicky, and Tyrol says Lee and Dee will take care of him. Callie goes up to Adama and tells him of a civilian family she wants to have raise Nicky if they don’t make it. Finally, with the oxygen running out, Tyrol apologizes for the fight this morning, and for scheduling Callie to work this morning. Callie gets stronger, and says that they’re gonna be fine, or, at least, Tyrol is. Tigh says that if they’re outside for more than a few seconds, it’s going to be really bad.
Tyrol and Callie huddle together, and Lee and Starbuck are in the Raptor (in pressurized suits) ready to play catch. Adama blows the hatch to the airlock, which, you know, explodes, but Athena’s kickass piloting skills allow her to catch Tyrol and Callie as they’re sucked out into space. Lee says they’re in rough shape.
Adama’s in his quarters as Lee comes in. Chief and Callie are alive, but Doc Cottle’s not sure what their condition is. Lee knows something’s up with his father, but forgot it’s his wedding anniversary. Bill says that they’ve never talked about the divorce, or Lee’s mother. Bill says that Lee’s mother gave him a home and stability, but Lee doesn’t think that was the case – apparently the woman was mentally unstable, and abusive. Lee talks about his mother’s drinking and abuse, as Mrs. Adama’s voice is in Bill’s head. Apparently Bill left her, and now we’re back in that house, as they hash out the end of their marriage. Okay, to be honest, I find backstory like this INCREDIBLY INTERESTING, and my first inclination is to nearly type it out transcript-style. But I won’t, because
that would be really long. Essentially, Head Mrs. Adama tells Bill that he was a crappy father and husband, and put his work above his family. That marrying her was a mistake, and if he made that mistake, what other mistakes has he made? Apparently, Bill Adama’s insecurities have a voice, and that voice is the same as his dead ex-wife. Lee tells his father that he doesn’t think his mother ever loved him (him as in Bill, not Lee.)
In sick bay, Seelix takes Nicky to see Tyrol, who looks out of it but okay. Tyrol says that Callie’s gonna be okay. Tyrol gets out of bed, slowly, and takes Nicky to go see Callie – who’s in a hyperbaric chamber, but alert. Adama Sr. goes down and watches Tyrol and Nicky interact with Callie.
Lee goes home to Dee, and there’s a big cardboard box from Bill with a note. It’s Lee’s grandfather’s law books, and we get the swelling of (someone please tell me what instrument that is? On Netflix, there’s 5 minutes and 9 seconds left when it starts up) but it’s the Adama Jr/Sr theme, and anyway, Bill has passed his father’s books on to his son.
Adama goes to visit Roslin, who gives him a mystery novel, much like the one he gave her in the first episode. Adama asks Roslin about New Caprica, and they reminisce about THE BEST EPISODE EVER: when Roslin’s in the red dress and they’re talking about cabin-building. The both of them manage to be both flirty and official speech-making-like at the same time. There’s talk of if the Cylons hadn’t come back, what would have happened to them? TIME TO SCREAM MAKE OUT AT THE TWO OF THEM. Adama says they have certain responsibilities. Roslin says yes, she would have built a cabin. (The cabin, clearly, has become the stand in for the two of them living happily ever after.)
Adama’s back in his own quarters, and his dead ex-wife is there, and they agree that they had something, and he puts his wedding photo back in the bottom of his desk drawer, to be taken out next year.
Thanks to monchichi for the screencaps!