Blowback

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Blowback
"Blowback"
An episode of the Caprica Series
Episode No. Season 1, Episode 14 (discuss)
Writer(s) Kevin Murphy
Story by
Director Omar Madha
Assistant Director
Special guest(s)
Production No. 114
Nielsen Rating
US airdate USA January 4, 2011[1][2]
CAN airdate CAN November 2, 2010
UK airdate UK
DVD release
Population {{{population}}} survivors
Extended Info
Episode Chronology
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False Labor Blowback The Dirteaters
Related Information
Official Summary
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Promotional Materials
Watch this episode's promo (on-wiki)
Online Purchasing
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Overview

Lacy Rand's training as a soldier in the STO starts in an unexpectedly violent way. Jordan Duram is pushed to reveal the identity of his confidential informant. The Guatrau becomes a danger to Daniel Graystone—and puts serious doubts into the minds of Sam and Joseph Adama.

Summary

Teaser

  • In the spaceport of a major city on Gemenon, Lacy Rand looks around uncertainly, and then walks up to a young man to ask for directions. The two begin a conversation and lie to one another about their reasons for being on the planet, until Diego approaches them, calls Rand and Odin Sinclair by name, and leads them to a jump ship waiting to fly them and other young Soldiers of the One recruits to the retreat of the Monotheist Church.
  • Sitting among other recruits, the two continue to talk as the jump ship reaches cruise altitude. Rand confesses the doubts she harbors about her monotheist faith, and Sinclair tells her that his parents had him abducted, drugged, and transported to Gemenon for training. Diego steps forward and publicly introduces himself, welcomes them all, and promises that those who survive the ordeal of training will become "warriors of the one true God." At that moment, a much larger vessel positions itself above them, fires clamps onto the jump ship, and forcibly reels them in. The recruits scream in fear, and Diego arms himself for battle. The Apolli invaders quickly lower an airlock seal onto the jump ship, force their way in, and shoot the adult STO soldiers dead. Their leader speaks to his men in Old Gemenese. Sinclair whispers a translation to Rand: "The mighty gods are striking back."
  • Amanda Graystone peeks through an open door in the Willow house at Clarice Willow, who is talking out loud to someone on a holoband connection. Mar-Beth Willow comes up behind Amanda, scares her, and accuses her of spying on her wife. Amanda claims that she suspects Clarice of using drugs again, but Mar-Beth does not buy the excuse.
  • Meanwhile, Clarice meets with Alvo in their regular V-world room and demands that he use his Global Defense Department contacts to retrieve a pin once owned by Zoe Graystone. Alvo pledges to do as she asks.
  • GDD director Gara Singh accesses an evidence room late at night, opens a box labeled "Graystone House," and takes out a pin in the shape of an infinity symbol before replacing the box and leaving just as quietly as he entered.

Act 1

  • Amanda meets with GDD agent Jordan Duram in a public park with nothing to report except for Mar-Beth's suspiciousness. Afraid for her physical safety, Amanda pleads for a surveillance camera. Duram hesitates due to the risk of revealing her as his confidential informant, but he relents.
  • In Singh's GDD office, Duram makes his request but does not offer a warrant to back up the request. Without it, Singh immediately demands documents on all of Duram's CIs. He flatly refuses, citing professional standards and the fact that the GDD may have a leak. Singh does not change his position.
  • Daniel Graystone meets with Joseph and Sam Adama in the Graystone Industries headquarters to show them surveillance footage from a loading dock: U-87 Cylons being smuggled offworld. Sam turns hopefully to his older brother and asks if the Guatrau has changed his mind about sending assistance to rebels fighting on their homeworld of Tauron. Joseph is reluctant to answer, reminding Sam that the Guatrau is interested in money first and foremost before finally admitting that the robots are heading for the STO on Gemenon. Sam becomes outraged at the Guatrau's willingness to continue ignoring the plight of their own people, and at Joseph's complicity in helping him to ship weapons to the very group that murdered his own wife and daughter. Joseph tries defending himself, but Sam leaves the room. Daniel tells Joseph that selling this kind of technology to an enemy of Caprica puts him in danger of being executed as a traitor. He promises that he will take the Ha'la'tha leadership down with him if that happens, and insists that Joseph set up a one-on-one meeting with the Guatrau.
  • Aboard the captured jump ship, the Apolli leader communicates with local authorities by phone, promising to harm his hostages if they do not comply. As this takes place, Rand and Sinclair whisper to one another. Sinclair tells her that he has been communicating with another recruit by eye contact, preparing to strike at the inevitable moment that their captors will start to grow hungry or tired and begin to lose focus. He slowly works on unscrewing a metal rod from beneath his seat. Suddenly, the Apolli leader pulls a boy up from his seat. The boy cries and begs for his life, but he is pushed inside an airlock out of view of the other recruits. A single gunshot is fired. Rand looks out a window and sees a body tumbling toward the clouds below.

Act 2

  • Duram visits the evidence room and asks the attending agent, Alpert, about a camera seized during an investigation of a Libran porn ring. After Alpert says that it is still in storage, Duram bribes him to let him into the room. He finds the camera, but he also notices that the "Graystone House" box has recently been handled, and he finds an empty bag inside the box--the same one that had held Zoe Graystone's infinity pin. On his way out with the camera, Duram asks who has after-hours access to the room. Alpert tells him that only the top GDD leadership have the codes for that. Duram leaves, more suspicious and worried than ever.
  • At home, Daniel tries to convince the Guatrau that the Grace avatar program he is struggling to develop will change the very fabric of society. The Guatrau is unmoved, and challenges Graystone to admit that he believes selling robots to STO terrorists is unwise. Taking a diplomatic approach, Daniel says that it will bring short-term profit, but that it will endanger the bolder possibilities of the avatar program once it is perfected. The Guatrau asks how much more time Daniel needs to do that. He answers three months, but is given only two weeks.
  • The Guatrau walks along a Caprica City street with an entourage that includes Joseph and Sam. Despite his admiration for Daniel's courage, he worries about the man's ambitions. He gives a coin to Sam, symbolic payment for Daniel's assassination. The Adama brothers accept the order but are taken aback by it.
  • The lead hijacker of the STO jump ship tries a different approach, speaking to his captives about the "hubris" of monotheism in the hopes of convincing them to abandon their faith. One trembling young man stands and openly rejects the monotheist God, and kisses an Arrow of Apollo pendant around the leader's neck. He takes the young man away and asks his comrades to give him some food. Seeing that no one else will follow this example, he chooses the next hostage for execution, Devanna. She quickly regains her composure, calmly and confidently asks God to forgive him, and does not struggle as she is led to the airlock, shot, and tossed away. At that moment, Sinclair finally manages to unscrew the metal bar and prepares to use it.

Act 3

  • On the streets of Caprica City, Singh surreptitiously places a metal box containing Zoe's pin inside a newspaper vending machine, and sends a text message to Clarice. She sends her husband Olaf Willow to retrieve it. At the Willow house, Olaf examines the pin under a microscope, and finds a circuitry pattern. He connects metal leads to it, and complex program information scrolls across a computer screen. Clarice recognizes it as the avatar program they have been seeking for months. She declares this a great moment in the history of the faith.
  • Daniel returns to the V-world copy of the Graystone Estate and the latest version of the Amanda avatar. Unlike his last attempts, this version jumps from one emotional state to the next, scolding and then flirty and then enraged, throwing a dinner onto the virtual kitchen floor. Daniel concludes that she is only guessing what he wants, and disappointed by the worsening results of his work, exists V-world and orders the avatar deleted.
  • Duram steps into Singh's office and hands him the file on his CI, but demands that he destroy it and keep its information quiet. Singh agrees and the tension between the two men fades. After Duram leaves, Duram closes the blinds, puts on a holoband, and sends Clarice an e-sheet request to meet. In their regular V-world meeting place, Alvo warns her that there is a spy in her home. Clarice logs off, looks out her window at Amanda and Mar-Beth returning from a shopping trip, and becomes furious.
  • Rand is growing impatient and demands that they move against the hijackers soon, but Sinclair wants to wait until the next phone call. The lead hijacker barks at them to stop talking. Rand defiantly tells him that they were praying and that the monotheist God helps everyone. The hijacker angrily grabs her and calls for the airlock to be prepared. Rand rants hysterically at Sinclair for his dithering and demands that they take him instead. As she struggles with Rand, she grabs the hijacker's gun and yells out, "Now!" Sinclair and the other recruits attack and are winning the fight against their captors until Diego takes Rand's arms and orders her and everyone else to stop. The confused recruits see all the supposedly dead soldiers and hostages enter the passenger compartment, alive and well. Diego tells them that the entire incident was a test of how well they would function under stress, and that the bodies tossed out of the ship were dummies. The drop ship is released and continues on its way.

Act 4

  • Daniel sits with the real Amanda in their living room and asks her to come home, confessing that he will not be able to deal with his current situation without her support. She resists, but goes on to tell him that his anxieties are the secret source of his personal success, and that he will eventually exploit them just as he always does, the way that he exploits everything. This insights relaxes him a bit. The two of them look at each other for a moment before kissing.
  • While Daniel sleeps, Amanda reads a text message from Duram. She grudgingly gets out of bed, goes to a park bench, and retrieves a package left for her: the camera she requested.
  • As Mar-Beth walks her newborn along an isolated nature trail, Clarice follows her from the cover of tall grass. She quietly steps through the grass and onto the trail, seizes Mar-Beth, and cuts her throat with a pocket knife. Olaf and Nestor Willow emerge from hiding and attend to their dead wife's body, while Clarice looks at the sleeping baby and resumes pushing the carriage along the trail.
  • On a busy Caprica City street, Duram shares news with Singh that the mutilated body of a woman who had recently given birth had been found in the Theoresos, that he has not received any word recently from his CI, and that Clarice Willow had recently called to report the disappearance of her wife. Singh claims that he is not to blame for this, but Duram assures him that Mar-Beth was aware of the dangers involved in being an informant. Singh leaves, and Duram's friendly face turns into quiet rage with the knowledge that his superior in the GDD is a traitor.

Act 5

  • Dressed in black uniforms, the recruits gather on a balcony of the Monotheist Church compound for a nighttime reception. The leader of the "Apolli hijackers" formally introduces himself to Rand as Kevin Reikle, the praetor of the STO. Rand tries to apologize, but he compliments her on gun-butting him. Diego calls everyone indoors for their meal. Sinclair pauses near the gates at the sound of something mechanical in the distance. He and Rand walk to the balcony's edge and look upon a rocky area below. Three dead bodies lie in the dirt, and two more individuals with their hands and legs bound await execution. Sinclair and Rand recognize them as the recruits who failed the test aboard the drop ship. The last to go cries until he is shot dead. Before stepping away, Sinclair reminds Rand that this brutal killing is the true nature of their hosts.
  • Rand lingers at the balcony's edge until the executioner steps into view. It is a U-87 robot, one recently sold by the Ha'la'tha to the STO. The robot stops, senses Rand's presence, and looks up at her.

Notes

  • "Blowback" is a term used for violent, unintended consequences of a covert operation.
  • Because the last five episodes of the season were rescheduled by Syfy, this was the first episode to air in Canada before the United States.
  • After the cancellation of the Caprica series was announced, the original SyFy timeslot of 10:00 PM EDT Tuesday was filled by an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation.[3]
  • The scenes of Amanda Graystone walking through the park and Clarice Willow stalking her wife Mar-Beth are intercut with one another and framed in a way to make it appear that Clarice is following Amanda. The truth is revealed only a few seconds before Clarice strikes.

Analysis

  • When Lacy first meets Odin at the spaceport, she asks, "Do you speak Caprican?" to which Odin replies, "Everybody speaks Caprican," indicating that the power and influence of Caprica have led to its native language being spoken as at least a second language throughout the other colonies. This accords with the fact that every character in the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica speaks Caprican, fifty-eight years after these events. The quasi-canon map of the Twelve Colonies lists official languages only for Caprica, Gemenon, Leonis, and Tauron, which could mean that Caprican has displaced other languages on the other colonies, or that the production team did not create a name for each one.
  • The "hijackers" speak Old Gemenese, which is similar to Romanian, as established in the re-imagined series movie "Razor". The quasi-canon map of the Twelve Colonies states that Old Gemenese is the official language of Gemenon (obviously, in this case, the word "old" does not mean that it has fallen out of use).

Questions

  • Are the Apolli a real extremist group operating on Gemenon, or are they a complete fabrication of the STO?


Official Statements

Noteworthy Dialogue

Guest Stars

References

  1. Gorman, Bill (27 October 2010). Caprica Cancelled by Syfy (backup available on Archive.org) . Retrieved on 28 October 2010.
  2. Exclusive: Syfy's "Caprica" to Sign Off Tuesday, January 4 (backup available on Archive.org) . (19 November 2010). Retrieved on 19 November 2010.
  3. Schedule | Syfy (backup available on Archive.org) . Retrieved on 29 October 2010.