- The article discusses the Original Series character. For information on his Galactica 1980 counterpart, see Adama (1980). For information on his Re-imagined Series counterpart, see William Adama.
|Children||Apollo, Athena, and Zac (KIA)|
|Marital Status||Widowed; formerly sealed to Ila|
|Role||Commander of battlestar Galactica, President of the Quorum of Twelve|
|Portrayed by||Lorne Greene|
|Adama is a Cylon|
|Adama is a Final Five Cylon|
|Adama is a Human/Cylon Hybrid|
|Adama is an Original Series Cylon|
|@ BW Media|
|Adama in the separate continuity|
Adama is the commander of the great battlestar Galactica, commander of the refugee fleet, and military commander of the evacuees of the Twelve Colonies of Man. He is also the spiritual leader of the surviving Colonists, leading the quest for Earth.
Adama is a native of the planet Caprica, which is where he graduated from military academy.
Early in his career Adama was involved in a parapsychological research project at the Colonial Military Institute (TOS: "War of the Gods, Part II"). He flew with his executive officer Colonel Tigh in their younger days, and later served as an aide to Commander Kronus aboard battlestar Rycon (TOS: "Take the Celestra").
As well as being a career military officer, Commander Adama is also a member of the Quorum of Twelve, the governing body of the Colonies.
The Peace Conference
Adama is mistrustful of the Cylons at the time of the Peace Conference to end the 1,000 year Cylon War, and as a result Galactica is the only battlestar to survive the Cylon sneak attack. Despite the destruction and great personal loss, Adama is able to organize the survivors in an escape from the Cylons and lead them on the search for Earth.
Even as the Fleet is leaving their home system Adama immediately encounters resistance with the Quorum. Sire Uri presents Borallus as a destination, as the Fleet lacks the supplies to reach Carillon. Adama insists that Borallus is too obvious, and is surely a Cylon trap. Apollo suggests a shorter route to Carillon through the Straits of Madagon.
Once at Carillon, the council tries to convince Adama to disarm the Fleet. They agree to let the people decide at an award ceremony Sire Uri has organized for Apollo, Starbuck, and Boomer. Adama secretly conspires with Colonel Tigh to send non-essential crew to the ceremony dressed as warriors, so that they would have a fighting force ready in case of a Cylon attack. The Cylons do attack, crushing Sire Uri's ceremony as well as the efforts to disarm the fleet (TOS: "Saga of a Star World").
Discovery of Kobol
Adama is pleased when he learns that Apollo plans to be sealed to Serina. When Apollo and Starbuck discover the magnetic void, Adama researches the ancient texts, and believes he has discovered a description of the same phenomenon in an account about the discovery of Kobol. With the Viper pilots ill, Adama orders shuttle pilots to begin training as Viper pilots. He doesn't realize that by doing so he has called up Serina for Warrior duty, much to Apollo's chagrin. Adama sends out the newly trained Viper pilots on a vital mission, destroying a Cylon outpost and escorting a medical shuttle to obtain information about the mysterious illness. Adama's strategy is vindicated when the mission succeeds without any Colonial losses. As Baltar's basestar catches up with the Fleet, Adama manages to evade him by turning the Fleet into the magnetic void (TOS: "Lost Planet of the Gods, Part I").
Apollo and Serina are sealed, with Adama presiding over the ceremony. During the ceremony, Kobol's star appears, leading them out of the void and to the ancient world of Kobol. The planet has ruins and pyramids. Adama chooses a site for a camp, and posts guards even though the planet is supposed to be dead. Adama explores the ruins with Apollo and Serina. Adama suspects the ruins are Eden, the largest city on Kobol and the first to fall. Adama recognizes the seal of the Ninth Lord of Kobol, the last leader of Kobol before the thirteen tribes went to the stars. Adama hopes to find information about where the thirteenth tribe went, to learn something that might help them find the location of Earth. They find the entrance to the Tomb of the Ninth Lord of Kobol. Serina recognizes that Adama's Quorum medallion is the same as the seal on the entrance. Adama uses his medallion as a key, opening the door. Shortly after they enter a trap is sprung, but using the medallion again releases them. They enter a room that appears to contain a sarcophagus. Shortly after they enter, Baltar enters the through a different door. Adama throttles him, trying to choke the life out of the traitor until Apollo pulls them apart. Baltar tries to sell Adama on a scheme to return to the Cylons, appearing to have surrendered to him. Galactica could then launch a surprise attack and cause maximum damage. Adama is not buying it, saying that their future lies in front of them, along the path of the thirteenth tribe. Baltar scoffs at this, believing that Earth is a myth. Adama has Baltar taken away, and begins studying the tomb.
Starbuck is released from Cylon captivity, and returns to report the presence of the basestar just outside Galactica sensor range. Apollo drags Baltar back to the room with Adama, informing Adama of the impending threat. Adama refuses to flee, hoping to find something about the thirteenth tribe and Earth. Kobol's star begins to shine again, and the reflection off Adama's medallion causes the sarcophagus to draw back, revealing a staircase. Baltar dashes down the staircase and everybody chases after him. Before he can be stopped, Baltar tosses the lid off of the real sarcophagus of the Ninth Lord of Kobol, and seizes the scepter out of the hand of the mummy. This activates a trap, sealing Baltar, Adama, Apollo and Serina in the tomb. Inside the tomb, Adama discovers the information he is searching for. He reads about the last days of Kobol, but as he gets to the part about where the thirteenth tribe went, the Raiders begin to bombard the temple. The inscriptions are destroyed. An explosion opens a hole out of the tomb, but also crushes Baltar beneath a large stone. The Colonials are forced to leave Baltar behind as they escape the destruction (TOS: "Lost Planet of the Gods, Part II").
Fleeing the Cylons
When Apollo is pursued by a group of Raiders, Adama is forced to hold Starbuck and Boomer from helping Apollo. Adama realizes that Apollo is leading the Raiders away from the fleet, and that his distress calls are meant for Cylon ears and are not genuine. While Apollo is gone Adama plays the role of the grandfather well, telling Boxey stories of Earth. Adama allows Starbuck and Boomer to go on patrols to later look for him, and they manage to pick up his signal and return him to Galactica (TOS: "The Lost Warrior").
Adama reopens the dining rooms aboard Rising Star, promising a reservation there for any pilot willing to test the new Recon Viper. Starbuck takes him up on the offer. Adama is saddened to order the destruction of the Recon Viper when it begins emitting signals that indicate that Starbuck is no longer in control of it. Cassiopeia identifies the signals as Aerian merchant code, allowing Adama to countermand the destruction order. When Starbuck is returned to the fleet Adama hosts a dinner aboard Rising Star, welcoming his warrior back and the new members of the Fleet (TOS: "The Long Patrol").
During their journey, Adama feels the Fleet is being herded into a particular area of space. A recon patrol eventually discovers the Cylon plan, when they encounter the Ravashol pulsar. The pulsar is powerful enough to destroy Galactica with a single burst. Unable to attack it from space, Adama hatches a plan to send a commando team to destroy the pulsar from the ground (TOS: "The Gun on Ice Planet Zero, Part I").
Despite no indication on the success or failure of the commando team, Adama is forced to order the Fleet forward in order to stay ahead of the Cylons. The commando team succeeds just before Galactica comes into range of the pulsar, and the Fleet and Galactica are saved (TOS: "The Gun on Ice Planet Zero, Part II").
Cylon Raiders destroy two out of the three Agro Ships and damaged the third, forcing the Fleet to seek out a new source for seed. Adama wants to trade an energizer without Colonial markings for the seed on the planet Sectar. Unfortunately for Adama, only Siress Belloby has such an energizer. Adama meets with her in her quarters aboard the freighter Gemini, and agrees to her terms. She gives him the energizer in exchange for courting her. She also insists on accompanying him on the mission to Serenity, a small agro colony on the planet. Siress Belloby ends up being kidnapped by the Borays. Adama is unable to negotiate her release, until Starbuck strikes a bargain with the leader of the Borays. Siress Belloby is unimpressed by Adama's negotiating attempts at releasing her, and lets him off the hook for having to court her. She informs him that what she needs is a "real animal" (TOS: "The Magnificent Warriors").
After learning that Starbuck has been shot down over Antilla, Adama orders Apollo and Boomer to go retrieve the warrior in a shuttle. He hopes that the shuttle might be able to slip in and rescue him without attracting any attention. Apollo and Boomer successfully return him to the fleet, after he helps the children to destroy the Cylon outpost and rescue their father (TOS: "The Young Lords").
The Fleet is running low on fuel when Pegasus and Cain arrive on the scene. Adama is delighted to have the help of another battlestar. Cain informs Adama that Gamoray is now under Cylon control. Pegasus has been harassing the planet for a while, but now that Galactica has arrived Cain feels they can launch an attack against the planet. Adama is not interested in attacking the planet, preferring instead to attempt to capture some Cylon tankers to obtain the fuel. Cain destroys the tankers during the mission, forcing Adama to consider the attack. Cain refuses to redistribute fuel from Pegasus to the rest of the fleet, and Adama relieves Cain of command. After a Cylon attack against Galactica, Adama allows Cain to assume command of Pegasus again, to help fight off the threat (TOS: "The Living Legend, Part I").
They successfully repel the Raiders, and Adama meets with Cain to figure out how to best take advantage of the Cylons surprise at having to face two battlestars. Cain suggests a commando raid against Gamoray to take out the planetary defenses. Adama is worried that the basestars will attack the Fleet while they are refueling. They decide to send Pegasus to delay the basestars, while Galactica attacks the planet and secures the fuel. During the battle, Adama fear's that Cain has failed to delay the Cylons when it appears the Raiders make it past Pegasus and continue towards Gamoray. When Cain is revealed to be attacking the basestars, the Raiders are recalled which successfully prevents them from engaging. Adama realizes that this is what Cain intended the whole time. Adama tries to convince Cain to break off his attack, but Cain is adamant. After Pegasus and Cain disappear, Adama welcomes Sheba as part of Galactica's family (TOS: "The Living Legend, Part II").
During the suicide Raider attacks, Adama is critically injured in one of the explosions. He is taken down to the life sciences station, to be cared for by Dr. Salik. While he is being prepped for his surgery he suggests the idea of extinguishing the fire by venting the nearby air into space. Adama's plan works, and his surgery is successful (TOS: "Fire in Space").
Bojay's patrol goes missing, and Adama briefs the crew about what is known about the disappearance. Adama is suspicious of Count Iblis, and orders a full medical scan. He is furious when Sheba brings Iblis into Core Command. Meeting with Iblis privately, Iblis reveals that he will lead the Fleet to earth under his own leadership. The Beings of Light appear, causing great distress to the Fleet. Adama tells the Fleet that they are not an immediate threat. Some of the members of the precautionary intercept of Vipers that he sends out disappear, causing him to recall the remaining fighters. Iblis makes his power play. He offers the Quorum of twelve three wishes to prove his power. The Quorum asks for the capture of Baltar, to be lead to Earth, and reserve the third for later. When Baltar arrives waving the white flag of truce, he is captured and taken before the council (TOS: "War of the Gods, Part I").
The council finds Baltar guilty of treason, and sentences him to life imprisonment aboard the Prison Barge. One of the Council members moves that they immediately make Iblis their leader, but Adama still has reservations. He still wants to understand the mysterious lights, and the disappearance of the Vipers. When Count Iblis predicts Apollo will lose at Triad, Apollo considers forfeiting, as he fears that playing and losing will mean Iblis will gain more leverage against Adama. Adama convinces Apollo to play anyway. Adama is furious when he discovers that Core Command is understaffed. He learns that Count Iblis has ordered that officer curfews not be strictly enforced. He wants to speak to Iblis at once. Adama finds Iblis in the barracks, being assaulted by Apollo. He manages to restrain Apollo, saving Apollo's life according to Iblis. Adama confronts Iblis about the lights, but Iblis claims that he doesn't fear them. He claims to be above all laws, but Adama wonders if this is truly the case.
Alone in his quarters Adama practices some telekinesis that he learned while at the Colonial Military Institute, before Apollo was born. His silverware bending used to drive Ila crazy. The powers he exhibits are the result of a people who can expect to live 200 yahren beginning to explore their potential. He speculates that a race that lives for thousands of yahren would be capable of things that would seem miraculous. He believes the mysterious lights are the angels that the ancient Colonials wrote about. Adama hatches a plan with Apollo for Apollo to return to the planet where Iblis was found to do some more investigation. Adama instructs Apollo not to think about the plan, as Iblis may be able to read the thoughts. Adama will shield the plan in his own mind by crowding it out with other thoughts, something he learned in his training at the Military Institute.
Iblis senses something afoot, and is able to read the minds of the flag officers to determine that Apollo has left in a shuttle. He goes to confront Adama. Adama claims that he does not believe in Iblis like the poor souls in the wreckage did. Iblis claims Adama will pay with a life more precious than his own. Adama welcomes Starbuck, Apollo, and Sheba back when they return. Sheba asks if they had been caught between a struggle between good and evil, and Adama replies this will always be the case, even if they find Earth. This prompts the trio to recite coordinates to Earth (TOS: "War of the Gods, Part II").
Adama orders the terran shuttle to be brought aboard Galactica. When they find the people inside statis chambers, he orders Dr. Wilker not to interfere with the equipment, despite Wilker's persistent requests to try to figure it out. A power struggle with the Quorum of Twelve ensues, led by Sire Geller. Eventually the Quorum wins out, ordering the people to be removed from their shuttle. Before the orders can be carried out, a plan executed by the warriors allows the shuttle to escape, much to the embarrassment of Council Security and Sire Geller (TOS: "Greetings From Earth").
Summoned before the Quorum, Adama is informed by Sire Domra that he is to receive the highest honor, the Star of Kobol. They also inform him that the emergency has passed, and that martial law will be ending. Adama disagrees, but they insist on returning the Fleet to civilian control. Adama will retain his vote on the council, as well as command of Galactica. He will, however, be assigned an advisor from the council aboard Galactica, Siress Tinia. Baltar and several Eastern Alliance prisoners engineer a meeting with the Quorum. They capture the council, holding them as hostages in an attempt to secure their escape. After Adama is able to secure their successful release, as well as prevent Baltar from escaping, they agree to keep martial law in place (TOS: "Baltar's Escape").
Separating from Galactica from the fleet, but leaving two squadrons of Vipers behind, Adama investigates the beacon signals they are receiving from Apollo and Starbuck's Vipers. Starbuck contacts Galactica, informing them of an imminent Eastern Alliance missile attack against the Terran Nationalists. Galactica is able to shield the Nationalists and destroy the incoming barrage. Terra is saved, and the Eastern Alliance is forced to consider peace (TOS: "Experiment in Terra").
Adama and the Quorum of Twelve decorate Commander Kronus with the Star of Kobol, and award him with the command of additional ships. Kronus reminds Adama of the importance of strict adherence to regulation and discipline. Kronus later contacts Adama when his ship develops a propulsion problem, but asks that Apollo not slow the Fleet down for him (TOS: "Take the Celestra").
Escaping the Galaxy
Out at the rim of the galaxy, Adama is informed of the Gamma frequency signal. He orders a Viper patrol to recon the area when sensors are unable to yield any information. The Vipers discover a basestar, but manage to escape undetected. Due to the position of the basestar, a great deal of backtracking would be required if they were to avoid it. Adama is tired of running, and decides to go through the basestar, hoping to destroy it and secure a clean getaway out of the galaxy. Adama develops a plan that involves luring all the Raiders away with the Vipers, while Galactica flanks the basestar, hopefully taking it by surprise. Apollo has an idea to help guarantee the element of surprise. Apollo proposes that he and Starbuck use Baltar's Raider to infiltrate the basestar and disable its sensors. Adama is initially hesitant, but eventually agrees to the plan. In order for the plan to work, they need more detailed information about the basestar. Adama strikes a bargain with Baltar, agreeing to leave him on a habitable planet with supplies and a short-range radio.
Baltar briefs Starbuck and Apollo on the layout of the basestar. Baltar lets them know where to go, and how many guards there are, and their likely location. Apollo and Starbuck embark on their mission. Adama launches the Vipers, then takes Galactica around behind the basestar. Apollo and Starbuck succeed in their mission, allowing Galactica to get the drop on the basestar. With the basestar destroyed, the Fleet is able to safely leave the galaxy free of Cylon pursuit, heading towards what they hope will be Earth (TOS: "The Hand of God").
- Adama is one of only five characters in the Original Series to be featured in every episode, and the only character to be featured in all the episodes of both the Original Series and Galactica 1980.
- Adama's name is a variation of the name "Adam", the first man to be created according to the Bible in the Book of Genesis. Despite the origin of Adama's name, he functioned more like a Moses-type patriarch as he led and defended the Fleet time and time again.
- Despite the fact that Moses never made it to his people's Promised Land, the character of Adama (as well as the actor) did return for the "Galactica 1980" series, when the Fleet finally reached Earth. Greene was one of two regulars that returned, the other being Jefferson as a promoted Colonel Boomer. Greene also donned a Moses-like beard for "1980". See the Adama (1980) article for further information.
- Adama (also known as Nazareth) is also the name of a large city in Ethiopia.
Tie-in material information
- According to Encyclopedia Galactica (a non-canonical piece of merchandise published in 1979):
- Adama descended from the oldest, most distinguished bureautician families on Caprica. One of Adama's ancestors was said to be a founder for the Academy, the premier training institution for Colonial Warriors. At the eve of taking the admissions test for the Academy, he left to a remote retreat on Gemon (sic). While there, he studied under a mystic seer, devoting several yahren to "intense scrutiny of the Books of the Lords of Kobol, hoping to unlock some new, hidden meaning from the cryptic texts". After appearing to finish his tutledge, he joined the Academy and underwent efforts to combine "his studies of the occult with advances on the frontiers of science", which lead to attempts to use telekinesis and telepathy for military purposes.
- After graduating, he served with distinction during the Thousand-Yahren War (called the "Great War" in the book) and "returned to [Caprica] a hero" and assumed leadership of the "Caprican Praesidium". Adama believed that "survival is best assured through diversity and independence" and thus "pursued a military policy independent of the guidelines set by the Quorum of the Twelve". He also resisted the Cylon peace accords, but in "fearing the total isolation of his Colony from humankind, he was ultimately forced" to support the decision.
Adama from the Maximum Press comic book series.
- Kraus, Bruce (1979). Encyclopedia Galactica, p. 11.