Wednesday, March 18, 2009

This is the end, beautiful BSG

All good things etc. But how ridiculously hard it's going to be to say goodbye to the very last season of BSG. In as much as it's been a stop start ride, necessitated by the writer's strike, it's also been as full of amazing acting, nicely skewed story lines and (lest we forget this is Sci Fi) fucking amazing special effects as we've come to expect from THE SINGLE BEST TV SERIES FOR THE LAST TWENTY YEARS. Like all great art BSG has made me think in totally new ways about the world around me. Over the last few episodes the tale that's addressed topics as pertinent to our times as war, torture, fundamentalism, religious bigotry, racism, the role of the family and just good old human relationships has one rather big card to play. The end of the humanity itself.
It's come to me as a slow creeping feeling of grim resignation and almost depression. Every day I get on an overcrowded tube train and smell hear and almost drown in the weight of a city at near breaking point. And while it may seem odd to compare the fate of a planet bulging with a species that over-consumes and over-pollutes its home to the point of destruction with the story of a race that's almost too few to continue, and without a home, the parallels are inescapable.
BSG shows us a deeply flawed, selfish, half insane society, tearing itself apart and at war with its own technology while squeezed into a constricting space. The world this society has left itself (let's not forget that the Cylon rebellion was man's sins come back to visit them) is drab, almost universally grey and literally now collapsing under their feet. The last few episodes leading up to this Friday's denouement have featured one element that's added to the sense of approaching disaster and apocalypse: the sound of the old battleship herself, groaning as she stutters towards her last battle. I urge anyone who's a fan to watch the last one or two shows wearing headphones. If the sound designer doesn't get some kind of award this really isn't a fair world at all.
So, this may be a television show about robots and spaceships and such, but it's also turning in its last moments into a commentary of how truly frakked (hem hem) we all are. It's brutal, ugly and by no means pretty, but it's as true as you can get in this day and age.
For anyone yet to experience this show: you better grab it fast. It's so of its moment that in five years it may look oddly pessimistic (or ridiculously optimistic, depending on this brave new dawn we all live in).
Personally I will feel the loss of all of this cast like i would the death of a close friend or relative. And if you think I'm being stupidly over the top, ask someone else who watches BSG. I bet they agree.
So, farewell angry, contrary, feisty, irritating Starbuck. Bye bye old man Bill Adama with your face like a car crash and voice like gravel. Toodle-oo one-eyed drunken Tigh; slut-supeme Ellen; self-doubting, essentially decent Chief; self-serving, slippery Gaius; calm yet oh-so-passionate President Roslyn; bombshell bland Six/Caprica and all the others. It was a doomed, miserable affair, but sometimes misery needs company. So say we all...

3 comments:

Peter said...

is jane seymour in it?

Dan said...

Hear hear! Only halfway through series 2 and already (to reference the other greatest TV show of the last whatever) I feel ya.

Matt said...

It's the show that binds the family together, from my 14 year old nephew to my 71 year old mum. I thank you Mr Jones for hipping me to it in the first place.