The Law of Volahd, Part 1

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The Law of Volahd, Part 1
The Law of Volahd, Part 1
An issue of the The Law of Volahd series.
Issue No. 1
Writer(s) Chris Scalf
Penciller(s) Chris Scalf
Inker(s)
Colorist(s)
Letterer(s) Tanja Scalf
Editor(s)
Cover Artist(s) Chris Scalf
Adaptation of
Published December 1997
Collects
Collected in
Reprints
Reprinted as
ISBN [[Special:Booksources/|]]
Population {{{population}}} Survivors
Chronology
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The Law of Volahd, Part 1 The Law of Volahd, Part 2
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Plot Synopsis

Immediately following the events of "The Hand of God", the Fleet finds itself in need of vital fuel and weapons supplies, happening upon a mineral-rich planet whose inhabitants, the Acmarans, claim that they are at peace, administered by a god they call Volahd.

Summary

"The Hand of God" Events

  • Two Viper pilots are discussing the need to pull the Cylon Raiders away from Galactica as they approach the basestar.
  • On the basestar, Starbuck is planting charges, while Apollo watches for Centurions. A Cylon opens the door, seeing the warriors and telling them to halt. Starbuck and Apollo flee to the core.
  • In space, the Vipers fight ferociously with the Raiders, with Boomer reminding everyone to watch for a flashing red dot, which identifies Starbuck and Apollo's Raider.
  • In the core, Starbuck comments that the charges they set will go off any micron, as they climb the charges go off, thus blinding the basestar.
  • At the hatch to the core, Apollo comments that Galactica would be attacking any moment, thus facilitating their need for escape before they're goners.
  • Colonel Tigh informs Adama that the squadrons are outnumbered, and detect the baseship.
  • As Galactica opens fire with their forward lasers, Apollo and Starbuck's Raider escapes the basestar just prior to the ship's destruction.

Aftermath

The back cover of Battlestar Galactica #1.
  • Adama makes a log entry, noting that it has been "a couple of sectons" since the battle, and expresses his "fear of the unknown" that will "always plague my mind until we find the lost Thirteenth Tribe".
  • While the Warriors are celebrating the victory, Adama shuttles over to the prison barge to deal with Baltar, who is demanding to be released as part of Adama's bargain for Baltar's information on Cylon basestars.
  • As Baltar screams about the bargain, Adama firmly suggests that Baltar lowers his voice, "unless you want to trade your freedom for a death sentence!"
  • Baltar questions the threat, until Adama points out that many of the prisoners around him would likely never agree with their bargain, seeing as their families were destroyed by a holocaust made possible due to his treachery.
  • Apollo interrupts the conversation, informing Adama that Tigh is requesting his return to discuss a troubling development. Adama promises to continue the discussion later and leaves.
  • An unnamed guard looks at Baltar through the cell door, much to Baltar's chagrin. The guard remembers his loss of a loved one during the attack, cradling an unnamed woman in his arms. The guard promises that the commander is "dead wrong", which leaves Baltar seriously concerned.
  • On Galactica, Tigh informs Adama that all ships in the Fleet are reporting minimal fuel resources, but also notes that long-range scans detects planetary systems with "rich mineral and tylium supplements". Adama quickly orders that the Fleet be brought to a dead stop and that a patrol be dispatched to investigate.
  • Tigh also informs Adama that Galactica's firepower has been severely diminished due to the attack, while Omega reports that an unknown signal is being detected on the rear scanners.
  • Adama reviews the starchart, asking about the signal; the signal is faint to the point where its heading can't be determined. He then orders a patrol to investigate the planet cluster for resources, noting that the Fleet needs them before doing anything.
  • In the officer's bunk, Starbuck discusses the bright side of their travels through space when Sheba enters, telling them that she's heard that there is a patrol. When asked who selected the team, Starbuck begins to make an excuse, while Boomer coughs, prompting Starbuck to make himself scarce by announcing that he "just remembered" that he needs to meet Cassy in two centons.
  • Apollo, who selected the team, is left alone to explain why he excluded her from the mission. Sheba and Apollo begin arguing; Apollo feels that he's protecting her, while Sheba convinces him that in order for their relationship to continue, they both need to compromise and work together as Warriors, protecting each other in that capacity. They kiss.
  • Blue Squadron launches, heading towards the planet with the strongest mineral readings. As they approach, Apollo notes that this planet has strong cyranite readings that would likely interfere with radio contact with Galactica.
  • Starbuck asks to speak to Apollo privately on the "internal console frequency".
  • Once switched over, Starbuck asks Apollo whether it was necessary to choose Lomis and Colin as wingmen, seeing as they're "kind of green".
  • Apollo replies that, while recognizing their relative lack of experience, the Galactica has been "pushing our pilots around the clock".

Planetfall / Final Act

  • Entering the planet's atmosphere, discussions begin about the planet being beautiful enough to settle. During this, life forms are detected, readings that were not detected while the patrol was in orbit.
  • Apollo speculates that the cyranite levels were higher than he thought, ordering Colin to return to orbit to maintain a long-range scan in the event of trouble.
  • During the climb back out of the planet's atomsphere, Colin's ship strikes an energy field. Lomis panics, believing that they are under attack; as he turbos off, he to strikes the field.
  • Apollo orders everyone to hold their positions, asking if they detect anything on their scanners. Boomer reports that computron readouts indicate that both cadets' ships destructed at the same altitude on their hectometer.
  • The surviving patrol comes across an alien city. Apollo orders that they land to investigate. As the approach the city, they are greeted by a group of representatives lead by Taron, who speak their language.
  • Taron tells the Warriors that they are the Acmarans, their city, Salis, being "the city of perfect peace".
  • Starbuck rebuffs the claim, telling them that "something just fried two of our fighters!" Taron feigns ignorance to this "violence", claming that all "is peaceful under the watch of Volahd".
  • One of Taron's party, a female Acmaran, explains that Volahd is their god, protecting them and offering them wisdom.
  • When asked to see Volahd, Taron claims that he is the only one who can speak to Volahd, and tells the Warriors that it is Volahd's wish that they enter the city.
  • Entering the city, they discover that the force field originates from the city, and that Volahd protects the Acmarans from "the outer worlds, their conflicts, and wars". When asked why the field didn't prevent them from entering the planet's atmosphere, Taron claims that it was Volahd's intention that they stay.
  • Starbuck and Apollo both note that they are needed by their people; Apollo elaborates that they are looking for cyranite and asks Taron to help them get the mineral, so they may leave in peace.
  • Taron's female aide informs them that Taron will speak to Volahd on their behalf. As they wait, Taron presents himself in front of a column of eletricity. After a time, Taron claims to hear Volahd's command, then leaves to rejoin the group. Upon rejoining the group, he says "Akmarod!"
  • The Warriors are summarily restrained; with a staff crackling with electricity, Taron announces that Volahd has spoken, judging the Warriors evil. The sentence for which is death.
  • Starbuck is struck with the staff, screaming as the electricity climbs his body.

Notes

  • It is reiterated that the Fleet is constantly on the move and is not able to stay in one place for too long. Addressed in the comic is the need to obtain tylium fuel, a problem established in "Saga of a Star World" and recurring in "The Living Legend" two-parter.
  • The expletive "frack" is spelled without the "c", hence "frak" on pages 2 and 3.
  • Notable differences between "The Hand of God" episode and the comic depiction include the addition of additional Centurions and a pursuit down a corridor, whereas the computers were right near the main core in the episode.
  • The loss of the transmitter in the core and the waggling are not depicted in the comic.

Analysis

  • Briefly addressed in this issue is Adama's deal with Baltar, in return for destroying the basestar in "The Hand of God". Adama discusses that the bargain would not be viewed lightly by those aboard the Prison Barge, or throughout the Fleet, definitely suggesting that the bargain was struck without the knowledge of the Fleet's members.
  • As first seen in "Baltar's Escape", Adama makes trips to and from the Prison Barge, often having conversations in places where other prisoners can overhear.
  • The issue of Apollo dealing with Serina's death is brought up again in Sheba's confrontation with Apollo, who doesn't assign her to the expedition team to the Acmarans' homeworld. Sheba's argument about protecting each other as warriors is valid, and Apollo reconsiders Sheba's appointment to the expeditionary force.
  • Fighter cadets are still being trained, as exemplified by Colin and Lomis. The event that causes their deaths is almost similar to "The Gun on Ice Planet Zero, Part I", where Cadets Bow and Shields meet untimely demises at the hands of an energy weapon, with few differences. The cadets in both the series and comic are depicted as being easily frightened into taking rash, and often deadly, actions.

Questions

  • Who or what is Galactica detecting as they approach the Acmarans' homeworld on their rear scanner? (Answer)
  • Who or what is Volahd? (Answer)
  • Why would Volahd permit the expedition to land, knowing that they were "evil"? (Answer)
  • What is the Cylons reaction to their defeat at the Battle at Galaxy's Edge? (Answer)
  • Will Baltar be released, per Adama's promise?
  • What does Baltar's guard on the Prison Barge have in mind to prevent Baltar's release?
  • Does the Prison Barge have visitation rooms?

Noteworthy Dialogue

  • Sheba confronts Apollo about not being on the expeditionary force:
Sheba: Apollo ... I think I see what's going on here, you don't want me to go. You're afraid something bad is gonna happen to me, like Serina!
Apollo: Is that bad? Is it bad to care about someone so much you want to protect them?
Sheba: No! There's nothing wrong with it. But it goes both ways! Apollo, you already know the pain of being left alone. Don't leave me here with the fear of finding out what it's like to go thorugh the same pain you did! We are both warriors, and if we are gonna choose to continue a relationship, we both need to compromise.... we should be together, as warriors, risking our lives together, protecting each other.