3.26.2009

WANT A BETTER ENDING?

[Daybreak, Pt. II Review updated in below post]
There's little point in adding new posts to this site with the show over and all, but I might for a while. I'll add to the Death By Plot-Hole post (next one down) over time as I count the ways of lame. For now my attention is turned to finis
hing the 'episodes' for my version of the ending: Battlestar: Variant 1 [which you can link upper right]

I've had the story done in my head for many months but I just haven't had the time to type it out and fine-tune it yet. The first two 'eps' are done and part of the third, and the synopses are up for them all. I think you'll find it is much more satisfying than the weak Season 4.5 and the lousy god-did-it and angels-on-my-Battlestar ending we got.

I had originally intended to have all the work done over the interminable 9-month delay between Season 4 and 4.5 that SciFi imposed upon the fans, but I didn't get to it. Now more than ever we need a good version and I'll give it to you*.

Some stories are in script format, others in more of a novel format and some a mixture. This isn't anything I can sell - it is a labor of love since I did so dearly love the show through Season 2 and on-and-off after that. Enjoy.

*[for those of you who think it presumptuous of me to write a "better" version, let me save you time from posting in the comments: "You're a jerk/idiot/a-hole/smug/pretentious/arrogant/full-of-hubris/twat/clown/moron ... etc. etc." There I've done it for you. Now go enjoy it]

4 comments:

Drew said...

sorry for length/spelling this was typed in a hurry.

so i have read both of your finished episodes, and your synopsises of the others. I'll hold out final judegment until you are done, and while it is a good story, it's not really up my alley.

i've never been a big sci-fi fan. a few select things here and there, but nothing major. i got into BSG for an entirely different reason.

years ago when i was in high school i caught part of an episode of the original series during scifi's summer marathons they used to do during the summers, where every day was a marathon of a different show. i couldn't watch more than a one episode of that original, not because i didn't know what was going on, but because the acting was horrible, the plotlines convulted, the direction incredibly shoddy, and the special effects downright annoying. there were huge holes in the plot, bigger then anything we had in our current BSG ( in my opinion).

anyways, when i heard about this re-imagined series, i ignored it, thinking "why would they re-make such a shitty show???".

i'm a huge politics, religion, philosophy nerd, and often waste hours on sites like onegoodmove.org or slate.com. it was on slate that i was perusing the arts section when i read a review of the beginning of season 3 of the new BSG.

they columnist was talking about the insurgency on New Caprica, the suicide bombings and other activities, then revealed that it was the GOOD GUYS doing it.

i was like "what? they can get away with that on TV? in America?"

I resolved to start from the beginning of the show, ,and through the power of netflix caught up from the mini all the way through to the midway point of season 3.

i was hooked. it was NOTHING like the old series, and i was so happy with that.

i've gotten all of my siblings, and all but one of my friends into the show (though i'm the only one besides my roomate who has finished it, the others don't have cable and are waiting for the DVDS).

while i respect your desire for a different ending, i love the one we got, and i have to say, if they had taken the lord iblis/ship of lights route (i had to look this up BTW, wikipedia is my friend) i'd have been so pissed that i never would have watched the show again, and would have sold/given away my DVDs.

i have given the original series a second chance, starting from the beginning i watched the first 6 episodes, but i still have the same annoyed and disinterested reaction to it and can't even finish half of the first season.

maybe it's cause it was WAY before my time (i was born in '85) so i don't have the nostalgia attatchment to it, or maybe it's because it really is as bad as i thought. a friend of mine who loves the new series, also LOVED the old series, she watched it as a kid, however, when she went back to rewatch while waiting for 4.5 to premiere, she had the same reaction as me, she couldn't get past the first few episodes, and other then family memories, couldn't see how she'd liked it so much.

i will read your version, solely because you can tell a story well, but i don't really like where you are taking it, and expecially since you are using everything up to revelations, it seems to me as ridiculous an ending as 4.5 was to you.

i don't feel that lord iblis and the lords of kobol are any better of an explanation then Baltar's God, but the sense of openess of Baltar's God, allowing us to draw our own conclusions , appeals to me more, then having EVERYTHING explained away in some crazy last act deus ex machina.

especially since Head Six has been talking of God since the mini, and it has always been a part of the show, i didn't feel like it was so "last act" as some others do, but then again, it was these battling concepts of monothiesm vs. polythiesm vs. diesim, the reversal of our own current events for the heroes to become the terrorists, the shock of cultural annihalation and deep space bedouism that drew me in to begin with. not the space battles or the special effects, but the characters, the politics, and the philosphy behind it all.

good luck, i will read all that you post, we may not agree, but it doesn't mean what you have to say isn't interesting and thought provoking, you just haven't been able to swing me to your side of the fence.

radii said...

Drew,

Thanks for the thoughtful post. Yes, the original BSG was a cheesy, cheap shlockfest - good for camp-value only (although some of the story elements were good). That was the era of Bionic Woman, Six Million Dollar Man, Wonder Woman, CHiPs, and Mannix and Hawaii 5-0 re-runs ... ultra-70s-cheeseball stuff, but entertaining.

Quality has gone up. In an earlier era we had Barnum&Bailey 3 Ring Circus, now we have the sophisticated Cirque du Soleil ... and the modern Battlestar Galactica.

My main criticism of Ron Moore's version is that he did not have a real villain and too many of his heroes' flaws were played out again and again. And we never really understood how the Cylons saw things so that they felt justified murdering billions of people. While this makes for interesting character study, it is less compelling as drama. In my story Baltar emerges as a true villian - no more Mr. Weasel Guy. Adama finally stops crying and steps up as a hero. I crystallize the characters and slowly take away the ambiguity and all the answers come together without a big info-dump from a returning character.

Glad you're along for the ride ... sorry it takes so long to finish.

ACyclcUniverse said...

"My main criticism of Ron Moore's version is that he did not have a real villain and too many of his heroes' flaws were played out again and again... In my story Baltar emerges as a true villian - no more Mr. Weasel Guy. Adama finally stops crying and steps up as a hero."

So essentially you take a drama so lauded for its deconstruction of the concept of the "Other", and replace that poignant social commentary with a set of stock 'hero' and 'villain' characters?

What you call "crystallization" I call reverting to cliches and one-dimensional characterization. Pretty much what afflicts the majority of television today (sans Mad Men, FNL, etc).

I mean, to each his own, but if THAT is the show you wished to see these past years, one devoid of complex ethical dilemmas and moral ambiguity... well, I'm not sure there's anything I could say.

I guess, in the final analysis, you probably should've stopped watching at the beginning of season 2 (which apparently you did, as your completely erroneous statement that the cylons never gave their side of the story is addressed in "Downloaded". It's told completely from the cylon perspective and postulates that there is no justification, that the attacks were a grave mistake perpetrated by devout religious fanaticism and a healthy dose of all-too-human vengeance."

radii said...

@ACyclc

What will emerge in my version is more clearly drawn characters - not all the mush Moore gave us, and certainly not one-dimensional caricatures. If you come along for the ride, you'll see.

While Downloaded is a good ep, I disagree that it covers the bases with regard to telling the tale from the Cylon perspective. We never got to know what it was like for them to touch that interface panel, what it was like to have communal memories, and so on. It was told to us a few times, but never shown.

Anyone who got hooked on this version of BSG liked the moral ambiguity and complex ethical dilemmas, but I felt they were often left dangling, or were diversionary or simple atmospherics they were used so often. Like spice in food, a little goes a long way.

Imagine, if you will, if Moore had chosen a path for Baltar, either good or evil. This would have served as an anchor point. If he truly reformed and became good he would have had to work awfully hard to earn peoples' trust given his track record - the think with the nuke could have come out and divided upon about him. Or, more fun, if he had simply emotionally cracked and fallen completely into his base nature - the audience would have been given a delicious villain played by a superior actor. Baltar could have sought to conspire with the 1,4,5 Cylons purely out of self-interest (much like the Baltar of TOS) and this could have created many interesting story possibilities.

Hindsight is 20/20 as the saying goes, but clearly Moore could have benefitted from his finale having been vetted by others or a couple passes by other writers.