Five-Minute Battlestar Galactica
February 20, 2009
All of this has happened before, and all of it will happen again. But not necessarily in that order.
For the last few years, Battlestar Galactica has been the nearly undisputed heavyweight champion of TV sci-fi. It's been acclaimed in places that usually dismiss the whole genre as kid stuff. Every major site seems to have at least one BSG fan on staff. Mine is no exception -- Kira and IJD were bitten by the BSG bug early on. The show couldn't break through every barrier; it hasn't matched the amazing cultural reach of the original Star Trek or The Twilight Zone or even The X-Files. But it's done a lot to make people take sci-fi seriously again.
Anyone who remembers the original show can't fail to be stunned by that.
My own feelings about BSG have always been mixed. I've watched and enjoyed each season, but I don't think I'll ever understand what the fuss was about. There's almost nothing truly new about the show, certainly nothing revolutionary. It goes for dark-and-gritty in a very predictable way, its politics are unsubtle and often wrongheaded, and the early seasons were full of in-your-face sex that was every bit as cynical as Enterprise's, but never got the same criticism. (Fortunately, BSG outgrew that last habit and became surprisingly mature about sex.) BSG was also the heir to an annoying legacy: like other shows before it, it's drawn many fans who will not shut up about how their show is soooooo much better than Trek. It didn't help that their usual target was Enterprise, which I loved like a man loves a fine Cuban cee-gar.
But for all my griping, I do like BSG a lot. And there's no denying that it's big business. Kira's fiver of the miniseries has been extremely popular, especially thanks to her comic version. It's become the most frequently-linked feature on this site by a wide margin -- which annoys me, but also presents an obvious opportunity. I've just been too cranky about BSG to take advantage of it.
No more. I got all that off my chest with the April Fool's 2006 event. Now I'm cool with BSG, and dammit, I'm not letting it end until I finally start a proper subsite here.
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