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Flesh and Bone

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Flesh and Bone
"Flesh and Bone"
An episode of the Re-imagined Series
Episode No. Season 1, Episode 8 (discuss)
Writer(s) Toni Graphia
Story by
Director Brad Turner
Assistant Director
Special guest(s)
Production No. 108
Nielsen Rating 2.5
US airdate USA 2005-02-25
CAN airdate CAN 2005-03-05
UK airdate UK 2004-12-06
DVD release 20 September 2005 US
28 March 2005 UK
Population 47,954 survivors (No population change.)
Extended Info {{{extra}}}
Episode Chronology
Previous Next
Six Degrees of Separation Flesh and Bone Tigh Me Up,
Tigh Me Down
Related Information
Official Summary
R&D SkitView
[[IMDB:tt{{{imdb}}}|IMDb entry]]
Listing of props for this episode
[[frakr:{{{frakr}}}|Satirical view of this episode on WikiFrakr]]
Promotional Materials
Watch this episode's promo (on-wiki)
Online Purchasing
Amazon: Standard Definition | High Definition
iTunes: USA | Canada | UK


Contents

Overview

When a copy of Leoben Conoy is captured aboard a civilian ship, President Roslin orders his interrogation, and Lieutenant Thrace is assigned the job. She finds herself facing the possibility that the Cylon may have planted a bomb somewhere in the Fleet.

Summary

  • Laura Roslin has a chamalla-induced dream in which she sees Leoben Conoy. She is awakened by Billy, who informs her that a Cylon agent has been captured aboard Gemenon Traveler.
  • The Cylon turns out to be Leoben Conoy, and while Adama wants him destroyed, Roslin insists he be interrogated.
  • Kara Thrace is assigned the interrogation task. Meeting with her, Adama warns her that Conoy cannot be trusted. Not that he lies, but rather he twists everything into half-truths and masks fiction with the veneer of truth.
  • They briefly discuss the Cylon Raider Thrace is still working on ("You Can’t Go Home Again", "Six Degrees of Separation"), and Thrace informs him good progress is being made: the avionics are now understood, and they are focusing on the FTL systems.
  • Later, Sharon Valerii visits the Raider for a second time (the first being in "Six Degrees of Separation"), and appears to comfort it by humming.
  • Tyrol arrives, and she asks if her previous comments helped. He confirms they did, and asks how she came up with the idea. She claims it’s because she’s a Cylon -- something Tyrol doesn’t find remotely funny.
  • Elsewhere, Thrace travels by Raptor to Gemenon Traveler. Once there, she observes Conoy, noting that he is sweating, before she enters the room in which he is being held, wanting to know what he is doing with his head on the table.
  • Conoy claims to have been praying. Their religious differences are immediately outlined as she refers to “gods”, he to “God”.
  • When he starts playing games with her over names, she tries to walk out – and Conoy reveals he knows who she is, which stops her. He then claims to have hidden a nuclear warhead somewhere in the fleet, which will go off in just under nine hours.
  • Shaken by the fact he knows her name, Thrace reports the news on the bomb to Adama and Roslin. Adama orders radiological searches to be made aboard all ships and tries to reassure Thrace that Conoy could have learned her name from anywhere.
  • When she returns to the holding area, Conoy continues to question her about her beliefs, outlining the key difference between humans and their religion and Cylons. A meal arrives for Thrace and she eats, allowing Conoy to finish what is left.
  • As he finishes the food, a systematic beating commences, Thrace convinced that because he is programmed to act completely like a human, Conoy will be forced to react like a human, take the beating until the pain forces him to start talking.
  • As this starts, Valerii visits Gaius Baltar in his lab and demands that he run a test on her to determine whether or not she is human. Baltar is reluctant to do so, but Head Six prompts him into doing it.
  • Conoy’s beating fails to get him to talk about the bomb, only to talk more about God. As the subject of water has formed a lot of his analogies, Thrace opts to up the torture by using it, and sends the guards from the room.
  • When they are gone, Conoy demonstrates his supernatural strength, breaking the chains that bind his wrists and pins Thrace to the wall. He could kill her, but he doesn’t – he has something to tell her, soon. A surprise.
  • On Galactica, Adama visits the cadaver of the Conoy he encountered at Ragnar Anchorage (Miniseries), his rage almost causing him to beat the body with a telephone handset.
  • On Traveler, Thrace commences sessions that involve holding Conoy’s head underwater for increasingly lengthy periods to try and get him to talk – convinced that he is too far from Cylon influence to transfer his consciousness to another body, should this one die.
  • Conoy talks about Thrace’s childhood and upbringing, demonstrating he somehow knows a lot about her. The dunkings continue.
  • Baltar finishes a scan on a blood sample from Valerii, confirming that she is a Cylon. Terrified of what will happen if he tells her, he fakes the result to look human.
  • In her private quarters on Colonial One, Roslin has another vision of Conoy, prompting her to order a shuttle to take her to Gemenon Traveler.
  • On Traveler, Thrace halts the water torture and Conoy reveals his surprise to her: the humans will find Kobol, and Kobol will lead them to Earth. What’s more, Thrace’s specific role is to deliver his soul to God.
  • At that moment, Roslin arrives and puts a stop to the torture, as it has failed to reveal the location of the bomb.
  • When Conoy has been cleaned up and dried off, she tries to reason with him, and he confesses there is no bomb; grabbing her, he whispers that Adama is a Cylon. See spoiler for possible analysis.
  • Shocked by this, but her mind made up, Roslin has him ejected into space – fulfilling the sequence of events in her dream.
  • Later, on Galactica, Thrace prays for Conoy’s soul, while Roslin meets with Adama, Conoy's words clearly having cast doubts deep in her mind.

On Caprica

  • After sleeping with Karl Agathon, "Caprica" Valerii meets with Doral and Six to inform them of developments.
  • Doral informs her that a little love nest is being set-up nearby. Six adds that she must lead Agathon to it and keep him there – or kill him.
  • Reacting to the instructions, Valerii returns to Agathon – and goes on the run with him, leading him away from her Cylon colleagues.

Notes

  • This episode takes place within 24 hours of the events portrayed in "Six Degrees of Separation".
  • Doctor Cottle has apparently been successful in his quest for chamalla, given that Roslin is now using it in her fight against cancer.
  • There are 47,954 survivors in the Fleet, presumably including Galactica’s crew, as the figure has fluctuated between 45,000 and 50,000 over the past few weeks in rounded figures. This represents a net loss of 18 since "33", with doubtlessly uncertain census counts throughout the interim.
  • Laura Roslin may have precognition, and / or Cylons may be psychic.
  • Boomer believes her family were all killed—together with almost her entire past—in a “tragedy” that destroyed the colony of Troy.
  • Baltar’s Cylon detector works. It takes "a couple of minutes" to process Boomer's sample.
  • Baltar now knows Boomer is a Cylon.
  • Leoben Conoy's execution via ejection from an airlock is relatively "unspectacular" compared to similar sequences in many science fiction films, such as Outland in which people explode. Whether the decision not to show his death in a more gruesome fashion owes as much to Standards & Practices as it does to scientific accuracy, it is at least more in line with what is known about human physiology and hard vacuum. The later episode "A Day in the Life" indicated that survival in vacuum is possible for up to a minute; see that article for additional scientific discussion of the effects of hard vacuum on a person.
  • At the beginning of this episode, Boomer is humming a melody when she touches the captured Cylon Raider. The melody is from a Korean children's song, 'The spring pool on the mountain'. It reappears in the episode "Sine Qua Non", being hummed by Sharon Agathon to her daughter Hera.
  • Some of what Conoy revealed may be from psychic abilities on his part. In his later episodes he displays almost psychic abilities at times and in The Plan its shown that when he grabbed Kara by the throat for a moment, he had a vision of a few of their future encounters although one is with the Virtual Leoben.
  • The Plan shows that Conoy was found out because marines were showing pictures of him and Doral around and two men he'd just passed recignized him. He escaped and hid aboard the ship, but was caught later by the marines.
  • The Plan also shows where his obssesion with Kara Thrace started: when he hacked into the military communications he repeatedly listened to her while she was in her Viper and became obssesed. He became even more obssesed when he learned about how Thrace learned how to fly and flew the captured Cylon Raider on her own. Leoben explained to Cavil that Thrace "plucked the knowledge from the stream" and that that meant she had a greater destiny. That and his vision were what created his burning obsesion with her.

Analysis

  • Originally, many might have labeled Galactica-Sharon the "Good" Sharon and Caprica-Sharon the "Bad" Sharon. However, actress Grace Park has repeatedly said she never viewed one or the other as good or bad, and in this episode Caprica-Sharon switches from helping the Cylons, to actually aiding Agathon and switching to the Colonials' side. Meanwhile, by the end of Season 1 Galactica-Sharon becomes an increasingly darker character.
  • Boomer's memory of leaving Agathon behind on Caprica (in the Miniseries) appears amongst other of Sharon's flashbacks in this episode, indicating that she possesses Boomer's memories up to that point. She later states that to be the case in "Scattered", "Home, Part II", "Resurrection Ship, Part II", and "Scar".
  • Leoben's comment that Kara Thrace's role is to "send his soul to God" cannot refer to her actions in this episode. Roslin orders his death over Thrace's objection. He is most likely referring to her later role in the Cylon/human alliance that resulted in the destruction of the Resurrection Hub (The Hub) or the Hybrid's more vague prophecy that she is the "harbinger of death" and will "lead them all to their end" ("Razor", "Faith", "Islanded in a Stream of Stars", "Daybreak, Part II").

Questions

Answered Questions

For answers to the questions in this section, click here.
  • Is Leoben Conoy's comment to Kara Thrace concerning Kobol meant personally (as in she herself will find Kobol) or in a general sense?
  • How will Roslin react to Conoy's claim about Adama? Considering that she has already demonstrated a willingness to readily accept the worst about a person without proof, as was the case with Baltar in "Six Degrees of Separation."
  • Why is love so vital to the Cylons?
  • Other than silica pathways and the substance discovered by Gaius Baltar in the cremation process of the genetic material of a humanoid Cylon, are there any other major differences between them and humans?
  • Do Conoy and the Cylons truly possess powers of prophesy?
  • To which Adama does Conoy refer in his final statement to Roslin?

Unanswered Questions

  • Why is Thrace given the job of interrogating Conoy? Why not another officer?
  • Was Troy destroyed in an genuine accident, making it a convenient "cover" for the Cylons to create Sharon Valerii's "history," or were they responsible for the destruction of the colony?
  • Why does Roslin run towards Leoben Conoy and away from the Marines in her dream?
  • What did Baltar use as his control sample when testing Boomer's in the Cylon Detector? More of Doral's hair? A tissue sample from "the Leoben from Ragnar Anchorage"?
  • Was airlocking an execution method used before the Fall, or did Roslin come up with it on her own?

Official Statements

[This] episode remains somewhat notorious in that it probably represented the most extreme period of tension and disagreement between ourselves and the network. I know those stories are legion, and show people like to talk about how they weathered the storms, and put up a good fight, and saved the show from the cretins who've gotten their fingers. That has not been the case with this show at all. We've actually enjoyed a great deal of support and a lot of courageous spiritedness and boldness from this network.
However, in that particular case, there were drafts of the script that were pretty extreme in terms of what Kara [Thrace] was going to do to Leoben [Conoy], and they were emblematic of what was going on at Guantanomo and places like that, and the connection to our own culture was probably a bit more literal and precise and less metaphorical than it had been [in other episodes of the show]. But as a microcosm, in and of itself, it serves as an example of what Ron was just talking about -- which is that we would find ourselves saying things like, "But it’s not a person, why are you telling us to cut the scene where she gouges his eyeballs out?!"
No, there wasn't that scene, but "why are you giving us grief about this?" In a way, it became our argument because we were trying to take something real and force the audience to have the same trouble with it that the network was having. Anyway, it was just an interesting microcosm of everything [Ron Moore was] saying.[1]

Noteworthy Dialogue

  • Conoy to Starbuck, towards the end of his interrogation, just before Roslin's arrival:
Conoy: Each of us plays a role; each time a different role. Maybe the last time I was the interrogator and you were the prisoner. The players change, the story remains the same. And this time – this time – your role is to deliver my soul unto God. Do it for me. It’s your destiny. And mine. (He pauses) And I told you I had a surprise for you. Are you ready? You are going to find Kobol, birthplace of us all. Kobol will lead you to Earth. This is my gift to you, Kara.

Guest stars

References

  1. David Eick's statements about torture in an interview with the Concurring Opinions website.


Re-imagined Series Episode List — Miniseries and Season 1


Battlestar Galactica (Re-Imagined) Miniseries (2003): Miniseries, Night 1 | Miniseries, Night 2

Battlestar Galactica (Re-Imagined) Season 1 (2004-2005) Episode List

33 | Water | Bastille Day | Act of Contrition | You Can't Go Home Again | Litmus | Six Degrees of Separation | Flesh and Bone | Tigh Me Up, Tigh Me Down | The Hand of God | Colonial Day | Kobol's Last Gleaming, Part I | Kobol's Last Gleaming, Part II | Next Season Episode >



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