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BSG Season 1: Flesh and Bone Ep. 8 July 29, 2008

Posted by Chris in Battlestar Galactica (Re-imagined), Shows I Like.
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Leoben Gives the Cold Stare Before Being Flushed

Yes, indeed…you might say (and you’d be right) that it’s been a long time.  It has.  I haven’t posted reviews for over a month (more?).  Ahhh, just watching the show’s opening is a blast from the near-past, and I begin to wonder how I could have stayed away this long.  BSG’s season one is certainly the best season of the series.

The episode starts with a Laura dream sequence in the woods where Leoben (Cylon) tries to warn her of Cylons nearby.  This is interesting since he’s a Cylon himself.  It suggests that Laura does not completely believe he represents a threat.  Then, suddenly he’s whisked away, as if pulled away by rapid depressurization….hmmm….well, onward.

My dream interpretation seems true (though clearly informed by multiple viewings).  The next scene involves Laura informing Adama that a Leoben copy has been caught among the civilian fleet and is being held.  Adama’s reaction:  flush him out an airlock.  Laura, curious of the connections between this dream and Leoben’s sudden appearance, suggests interrogation instead.

She wants a tough interrogator, though and suggests Starbuck.   This turns out to be an almost prophetic decision.  Starbuck dives in and is soon in it up to her ass.  Leoben quickly guesses her identity and gains the upper-hand.  He lays it on even thicker, telling her he’s seen the future and that they have a greater fate.  Then he tells her (under no apparent duress) that he has planted a nuke in the fleet and it’s set to go off in a few hours.  Stepping up to the challenge, Starbuck transitions from interrogation to torture.

With just a little more than an hour left before the big boom, Laura Roslin decides to step into the ring with Leoben.  But first, before she shows up, Leoben tells Starbuck that she will lead them to Kobol, the birthplace of humanity, and that Kobol will lead them to Earth.  As she tells this to Laura, it’s clear that Starbuck has been almost completely taken in by Leoben — she’s clearly rattled.

Laura says nothing in reaction, but immediately turns the tables on Leoben (or so it seems) by playing the “good cop” (to Starbuck’s less-than-stellar) “bad cop”:  releasing him from his handcuffs, apologizing for his treatment and saying she can do more — release him if she wants.  Now it’s Leoben’s turn to be taken in and he quickly tells her that the bomb doesn’t exist — that he made the story up to confuse them with a bluff.  Then, he makes a wily counter-move, exuding gratitude and submission, telling her in a whisper that Adama is a Cylon.  She quickly decides to chuck him out the airlock and completes the cycle foretold by her own dream.  She watches a second time as he is sucked away from her.  Starbuck is still rattled and has obviously developed feelings for Leoben.  She has an almost tearful goodbye with him, and in the second-to-last scene of the episode, asks the Gods to protect his soul (if he has one). 

In the very last scene, we’re shown one of the aftershocks of Leoben’s brief visit — a strained post-mortem on Leoben between Laura and Adama, where Roslin is doing her best to not looks suspicious of him.



1. Kym - July 30, 2008

Yes, and with the knowledge of later seasons to feed our minds, I wonder how much presaging the dream does of the way this season and the next slowly peels back the masks on major characters to reveal that they are cylons (Leoben tells Laura in the dream about nearby Cylons and, then when waking attempts to warn her that one of her cohorts is a cylon.)

2. Chris - August 2, 2008

Quite true…I wasn’t consciously thinking about the way this dream gives us a clue that she might be a Cylon. Thanks!

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