Space Ramblings

Battlestar Galactica 4×09 Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner episode review

The racial metaphor that underlies the title of Guess What’s Coming to Dinner? would seem as if it might have some kind of meaning beyond the obvious joke, but like a lot of things in Battlestar Galactica 4×09 Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, it never quite does. We begin with more unnecessary suspense as the Demetrius is separated from the rebel Cylon base ship leading to a few nervous moments as Galactica prepares to fire on the Battlestar until it’s aborted by Tigh who apparently has a connection with Anders and the other Final Five.

Battlestar Galactica s4e09 Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner is the first BSG episode this season that seemingly gets back to the original premise of Cylons and humans in space and a large scale alliance to take on the resurrection hub that is the source of the Cylon ability to regenerate. Battlestar Galactica 4×09 Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner though is more about the visions which have now spread to Kara, Athena, Six, President Roslyn and include Baltar in them too. Meanwhile the ridiculous waste of time that is the Fleet’s government undergoes another crisis, led by Apollo, who’s currently being more annoying than ever. Roslyn’s vision quest takes her to the Battlestar while the visions, Hera’s drawings and fear of losing Hera drive Athena to shoot the Six. By the end of the episode as the Hybrid is brought online and the Base ship jumps, things are appropriately all Frakked up and another episode has been wasted.

And so another episode is expended on vague visions, on psychotic dysfunctional behavior by the regular cast, on a mixed bag of plotting and scheming and of course we can’t fail to mention Felix Geada singing after his leg has been amputated for a not insignificant portion of the episode. All in all this is a pretty good demonstration of why the post-Season 3 BSG has been losing audience quite badly. This sort of storytelling may shore up the soap opera demographic for BSG but it really makes you regret the waste of it all and wonder what a relaunched Battlestar Galactica that was genuinely focused on the story, instead of on having different characters lose their mind every week might be like.

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Comments
  • Sam Barber June 1, 2008 at 9:32 am

    Quote: “This sort of storytelling may shore up the soap opera demographic for BSG but it really makes you regret the waste of it all and wonder what a relaunched Battlestar Galactica that was genuinely focused on the story, instead of on having different characters lose their mind every week might be like.”

    Has it ever occurred to you that if 37,000 people lost their entire civilisation and were then holed up in a scummy rusting spaceships for four years in a neverending flight from merciless and indestructible robot aggressors, perhaps it would be the very struggle NOT to lose their minds that would be one of the most realistic and integral parts of the plot?! If you want soulless sequences of action, which is what you really mean when you say “genuinely focused on the story”, you’re watching THE WRONG FRAKKIN’ SHOW.

  • O_Deus June 1, 2008 at 12:57 pm

    There’s a middle ground between “soulless sequences of action” and stories that feature little more than different characters cracking up each week. That middle ground is located somewhere in the territory of good storytelling.

    Taking a premise that involves an alternate civilization in space, genocide and artificial intelligences hunting for the last remnants of humanity and turning all that into self-involved overacted character pieces is a tremendous and pointless waste

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