The Living Legend, Part I

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The Living Legend, Part I
"The Living Legend, Part I"
An episode of the Original Series
Episode No. Season 1, Episode 10
Writer(s) Glen A. Larson
Story by Ken Pettus
Glen A. Larson
Director Vince Edwards
Assistant Director
Special guest(s) Lloyd Bridges as Commander Cain
Production No. 50919
Nielsen Rating
US airdate USA 1978-11-26
CAN airdate CAN {{{CAN airdate}}}
UK airdate UK
DVD release 2004-12-28
Population survivors
Additional Info
Full Credits
Episode Chronology
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The Young Lords The Living Legend, Part I The Living Legend, Part II
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Listing of props for this episode
Related Media
Photo Gallery @ BW Media
Promotional Materials
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Galactica is reunited with Pegasus, a sister battlestar previously thought destroyed. Led by the legendary and sometimes arrogant Commander Cain, the fleet is torn in its loyalty between Adama and Cain, but they eventually join forces in a daring attack on the Cylons.


  • Just as Sheba and Bojay are about to finish off Apollo and Starbuck, Sheba's scanner shows that the occupant of the Viper she is pursuing is human and orders a cease fire. In the ensuing dialogue, Apollo and Starbuck are informed that Sheba is strike leader of Silver Spar Squadron. They are re-united with Bojay, who once served with Galactica's Blue Squadron before he was transferred to the Fifth Fleet that perished at the Battle of Molecay, two yahrens before.
  • Sheba and Bojay escort a bewildered Apollo and Starbuck aboard the battlestar Pegasus, commanded by the legendary Commander Cain.
  • Aboard Galactica, Flight Sergeant Jolly reports to Commander Adama that the fleet is low on fuel. Colonel Tigh reports that there is what appears to be scans of something massive, the size of a Cylon city not too far off. Adama orders the fleet to dead stop while awaiting word on the fate of Apollo and Starbuck's patrol.
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  • Apollo and Starbuck are re-united with warriors aboard Pegasus and are informed that Cain ordered the Pegasus out into deep space after the Battle of Molecay. They have been fighting the Cylons and using fuel and weapons from the Cylons to fuel their own personal war effort.
  • Colonel Tolan, Cain's second in command, takes Apollo and Starbuck to Cain's quarters, where are re-united with the "living legend." They inform Cain of the fate of the Colonies, and of the 220 ship rag-tag fleet. Cain, now with information of Galactica surviving the war, declares that the Cylon Empire is about to fall as he plans to mount an offensive.
  • Aboard Galactica, Athena informs Adama and Colonel Tigh that there is a visual echo coming from the scans ahead. The scanner shows a battlestar. Omega informs Adama of a message coming over Fleet Com-Line Alpha — a communications channel used only between Colonial warships. Adama feels the message is a hoax, but Cain appears on the monitor and informs Adama, much to the delight of the latter, that he will be aboard shortly.
  • Cain, with Apollo and Starbuck in tow as he boards Galactica, informs Adama that the Cylons now control Gamoray, a society once thriving with 50 million people. This means the Cylons now control over half the universe.
  • Cain had been doing strike runs on Gamoray for fuel to fund his war campaign, but could not figure out why the Cylons didn't send basestars to finish him off. His answer was now clear: the renegade traffic the Cylons were having problems with was Galactica and her fleet.
  • Cain tries to get Adama to side with him in an effort to conquer the Cylons on Gamoray. But Adama declines, citing the safety of the fleet as his main priority.
  • Aboard Pegasus, Cain meets with Starbuck and Apollo and asks about a woman he once knew before the war. It turns out the woman was Cassiopeia, the woman Starbuck is involved with. Cain then introduces the two to Sheba, his daughter.
  • After the meeting Apollo asks Starbuck whether he plans to tell Cassiopeia about Cain's survival. Starbuck dismisses any suggestion of Cassiopeia rekindling a romance with Cain again, but Starbuck does tell her later that Cain is alive. Cassiopeia immediately runs off to reunite with her former lover aboard Pegasus. They share a tender embrace and reminisce before Cassiopeia tells Cain about her relationship with Starbuck. She asks Cain for time for her to think.
  • Aboard Galactica, Apollo asks Starbuck how Cassiopeia took the news. Viewers learn a little of Starbuck's character: The warrior doesn't form deep attachments to people after being raised on his own. Young Boxey puts in his two cents in, reeling off a list of other women Starbuck has waiting for him.
  • Back on Pegasus, Cain and Cassiopeia talk about Sheba and how their relationship may cause issues between Cain and his daughter.
  • Meanwhile in the Officers' Lounge, Apollo and Starbuck meet with warriors from Silver Spar Squadron. Sheba and Apollo butt heads over the military differences between Adama and Cain. Cain enters the lounge with Cassiopeia and Sheba leaves, very uncomfortable with seeing her. Apollo confronts Sheba about the conflict, but Sheba says that working with Apollo won't be a problem.
  • A meeting of the commanders is convened and a plan is made to intercept Cylon Tankers to provide fuel for the fleet. Adama proposes to use a squadron from each of the battlestars. Cain declines at first but Adama reminds him of the need for the warriors to integrate for the benefit of morale. Cain agrees, boasting that his warriors would be glad to pass along their experience to Galactica's warriors. Apollo is surprised by Cain's arrogance.
  • During pre-launch, Sheba discovers that Cain has joined the mission, to her surprise and concern. During the mission they are intercepted by a Cylon patrol. Blue Squadron seems at the mercy of the Cylons until Silver Spar Squadron engages. Cain orders Blue Squadron to pursue while he goes off to take care of the tankers.
  • Aboard Galactica, Cain maintains his story during a meeting with Adama, Apollo and Sheba, and also cites Blue Squadron's inexperience. Cain now pushes the attack on Gamoray to Adama, stating that it is now essential to seize fuel for the fleet. Adama tells Cain, rather tersely, that he will give his answer in the morning.
  • Apollo knows the truth but remains silent. Confronting Sheba, she maintains that the tankers were hit by incidental fire. Apollo tells her that he has found a weakness or two.
  • Another war meeting is convened and Cain pushes harder for a total victory at Gamoray. Adama again declines, citing the risk of too great a loss of life, and offers an alternative; Pegasus is carrying a full fuel load and Adama wishes to distribute part of that load amongst the fleet. Cain still feels a victory is possible. Adama is not interested and orders the fuel to be distributed. When Cain refuses the order, Adama (the ranking officer) relieves Cain of his command, and orders Tigh to assume the bridge of the Pegasus.
  • In the Officers' Lounge, Sheba and Bojay tell Cain that the Pegasus's crew will follow his orders . Cain refuses, telling the two that what they are talking about is mutiny. Cain may be the stubbornest warrior in the fleet, but he's also the best, and won't leave the fleet defenseless.
  • Aboard Baltar's basestar, Lucifer informs Baltar of the finding of the Colonial Fleet. Baltar tells Lucifer to prepare of an attack to finally finish off Galactica for good without support from Gamoray. All Baltar wants is a celebration from Gamoray and to take command of Gamoray for himself. Lucifer suggests that they go through the formality of destroying the humans before organising the victory celebrations.
  • Lucifer questions Baltar's plan. Baltar responds that there are other IL-series Cylons that will gladly be at his side after the victory. Baltar then offers to personally lead the strike force to punctuate his point of victory much to Lucifer's surprise.
  • Meanwhile Apollo, Starbuck, Boomer and Jolly board Pegasus for the fuel distribution. Tolan and Tigh confer on the Pegasus' bridge: Tolan wonders if they should wait until the bad moods on board from the warriors over the treatment of Cain subside. Tigh disagrees and orders the transfers to begin.
  • In Pegasus landing bay, Galactica's warriors are met with resistance from Silver Spar Squadron, culminating in Apollo and Boomer drawing their pistols at Sheba and Bojay. Just as it appears a fight is imminent, an alert is sounded as Cylons attack the Fleet.
  • On Galactica, Cain and Adama agree to use Galctica to defend the Fleet, while Pegasus accelerates to lightspeed to swing round behind the Cylon task force (the largest one since the destruction of the Colonies), and catch them between two fires.
  • Cain flies his Viper back to Pegasus and informs Tolan and Tigh of his resumption of command on the battlestar. His crew cheers while Tolan tells Tigh that the situation isn't personal. Tigh understands, commenting "How can you fight a living legend?"
  • Galactica takes heavy damage to her Alpha landing bay. Just as it seems the Cylons are going to destroy the ship, Baltar's Cylon pilot informs him of a second battlestar. Baltar is incredulous, but the pilot re-confirms the second battlestar's existence. When Baltar sees the Pegasus coming straight for him, he orders his pilot to retreat.



  • This is the first episode that represents a shift where Caprica becomes the dominant colony mentioned. For instance, the Battle of Cimtar is referred to as primarily Caprica centered, with no mention of the other colonies, although all the other colonies were apparently equally targeted.
  • This is the first mention of more then just one fleet in the Colonial Military. In the pilot there appeared to be only one main fleet. Pegasus was part of the Fifth Fleet.

Behind the Scenes

"The Last Legend"

  • This story began life as a writing assignment issued by Don Bellisario to Jim Carlson and Terrence McDonnell (after the decision to bring Galactica as a weekly television series was made), who were directed to write a single act. The general story idea to write an episode that was Patton in space." After turning in the first act the very next morning, Bellisario directed them to write the second act that was also done within a day. No further acts were commissioned, as Carlson and McDonnell were both hired on as story editors due to the strength of the first two acts, and the fact that Glen A. Larson decided to write a two-parter using many of Carlson and McDonnell's ideas from the two acts.[1]
  • The Carlson and McDonnell acts (twenty-five pages in total[2]) were sent to Anne Lockhart in order to entice her to the show[3][1], as she had rejected the part of Serina.[3][2] This gambit, along with a personal call from Larson saying that he would be writing the part for her[2], worked as she signed on for Sheba based on the strength of those pieces, a fact not known to McDonnell until a few years prior to 2008.[1]
  • Cain was originally called "Jedidiah" by Carlson and McDonnell, which was done in keeping with Larson's penchant for biblical references.[1]
  • McDonnell believes that the name Sheba was also in the original partial script that he and Carlson had written.[1]
  • The script was titled "The Last Legend," before Larson took the story assignment.[3]

"The Living Legend"

  • Glen A. Larson deliberately left Commander Cain's fate vague, thus allowing for future stories with Cain and Pegasus.[4]
  • Larson also wrote in much of Cassiopeia's involvement with Cain and the attack on Gamoray as Laurette Spang approached Larson asking for her character to be more involved, feeling that "early on I felt that I just wasn't getting anything to do."[5]
  • During shooting, it was believed that Lockhart was only a guest star; it wasn't until later that, following conclusion of her contract for Galactica, that it was revealed that she would be a series regular.[6]

Additional Releases

  • This two-part episode and the episode "Fire in Space" were edited together for a video release called Mission Galactica: The Cylon Attack. In this video, Jolly's report comes at the beginning, then followed by Apollo and Starbuck's patrol scene. The first 45 mins to an hour of this video were more narrative in nature with some scenes taken out completely from the original aired episodes.


  • In "The Living Legend," a decidedly popular episode of the original Galactica series, Adama finally meets his match, when confronted with another military leader, Commander Cain, who has his own league of loyal troops, and his own battlestar to boot. One of the few story arcs from the Original Series to be remade in the Re-imagined Series, "The Living Legend" provides many memorable moments, introduces a new regular character to the show (Lieutenant Sheba) and above all brings us Lloyd Bridges's interpretation of Commander Cain, an old "war daggit" if there ever was one.
  • Dramatically, the juxtaposition of two battlestar crews is interesting, as loyalties are put to the test when the military philosophies of the two commanders clash. Thematically, however, the episode is perhaps a bit more unclear. Adama, who has reluctantly followed the edicts of the Council of Twelve, represents a sort of benign military rule, coupled with the religious mantle that he wears as the person who is guiding the Fleet to the promised land of Earth. Cain, patterned no doubt on George C. Scott's depiction of the famous WWII general in the acclaimed 1970 movie Patton, represents a different philosophy - A damn-the-torpedoes, full-steam-ahead military machismo that Adama worries will get everyone killed. This point of view is never really challenged, however, and Cain takes a good portion of his crew and the battlestar Pegasus with him on a military gamble that at the end of the episode is never confirmed to have worked or not. By surrendering on more than one occasion to Cain's view, Commander Adama seems to legitimate it, which may leave the viewer with the conclusion that Cain's philosophy is valuable and a good counterpoint to Adama's perspective.
  • Cain is a character that was planned to return. Count Iblis suggests Sheba would see her father again a few episodes later, and there was apparently a script idea for a reunion had the series continued. Glen A. Larson's brief attempt to revive the series prior to the Moore production also involved Cain and the battlestar Pegasus, and the character has appeared in fan fiction and comics over the years.
  • Cain's comments suggest the Cylon empire is not that vast or powerful as he estimates the two battlestars might be able to defeat the empire. We also learn that the addition of the relatively sparsely populated planet of Gamoray (50 million inhabitants) means the Cylons now control over half the (inhabited-?) "universe" and the conquest is deemed sufficiently important for the Cylon imperious leader to visit Gamoray in person.


  • How many battlestars were part of the Fifth Fleet?
  • How many Pegasus crew members lost their lives at Molecay?
  • What colony does Cain originate from?
  • Why does Adama order the Fleet to come to a "dead stop"? Why not simply shut off the engines and continue drifting forward through space?
  • Again, when Baltar orders Lucifer to give him two of their best pilots, shouldn't all Centurions be equal in ability?
  • How many other races have fallen to the Cylons since the destruction of the Twelve Colonies?

Noteworthy Dialogue

  • Cain's thoughts on the Cylons:
Cain: Galmonging Cylons!
  • Starbuck and Apollo discuss Starbuck's inability to admit he gets attached to people:
Apollo: Are you in a little pain?
Starbuck: No! What are you talking about?
Apollo: Hey, hey. It's me, Apollo, remember? We talk about things.
Starbuck: Yeah, well, I— I guess I never did like to admit that I form, uh... attachments.
Apollo: You don't even like to admit it to yourself. You know, I never understood that about you.
Starbuck: You were always part of a very big family, and I never had that. So I just grew up keeping the number of people around me as large as I could.
Apollo: So you couldn't be hurt by any particular one?
Starbuck: Look, I don't care if Cassiopeia... feels something for this Cain. I just don't understand the, um, combination. He's uh– he's uh–
Apollo: Too old?
Starbuck: Yeah.
Apollo: Starbuck, I think you'd better read up on your Book of the Word. Some of the Elders of Kobol were married to some very young wives.
Starbuck: Wives? Aren't we getting a little ahead of ourselves here? She wouldn't marry him. Anyway... who cares? Not me!
  • Sheba on working with Apollo:
Sheba: Working with you won't be a problem.
  • Apollo letting Sheba know that he knew the Cylon tankers were indeed destroyed by Cain:
Apollo: We have found a weakness or two now haven't we?
  • Cain's toasting their premature belief of victory over the Cylons:
Cain: A toast to our victory over the Cylons!!
  • Apollo objects to Cain's insinuation that Blue Squadron was involved in the Cylon tankers' destruction:
Apollo: (to Adama) Commander, with all due respect, Blue Squadron was nowhere in the vicinity when those tankers blew up!
  • Baltar's Centurions attempt to tell Baltar about the second battlestar:
Centurion: Sir, I suggest you look at the other battlestar.
Baltar: That's impossible!
Centurion: No, it is a battlestar.

Deleted Scenes

See: The deleted scenes from this episode.

Official Statements

Anne Lockhart: I remember my first episode, which was the two-parter with Commander Cain…there are pieces of film which they will shoot and reuse constantly every episode, and the first time they had to shoot me in the [V]iper cockpit, shooting out of the Galactica, they gave me my helmet and said, here’s what you have to do…I had to lean back, like the gravity was forcing me back in my seat. Well, they started filming and I pushed myself back with all of my strength, hit my helmet, it flew up and hit me in the face, and that scene is in several episodes. I felt sooo stupid. The next time I did it I figured out to keep my head down and sent my back into the back of my seat instead of my head.[7]

Guest Stars


The Berkely novelization adds a lot of nuances and details to the episode.

External Links

  • The Pegasus Chronicles - four full-length novels available free online that continue the adventures of Commander Cain and the Pegasus.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Egnor, Mike (17 September 2009). Terrence McDonnell GALACTICA.TV interview (backup available on (in ). Retrieved on 12 June 2019.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Altman, Mark A.; Gross, Edward (2018). So Say We All: The Complete, Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History of Battlestar Galactica. Tor Books. ISBN 9781250128942, p. 181.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Altman, Mark A.; Gross, Edward (2018). So Say We All: The Complete, Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History of Battlestar Galactica. Tor Books. ISBN 9781250128942, p. 176.
  4. Altman, Mark A.; Gross, Edward (2018). So Say We All: The Complete, Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History of Battlestar Galactica. Tor Books. ISBN 9781250128942, p. 180.
  5. Altman, Mark A.; Gross, Edward (2018). So Say We All: The Complete, Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History of Battlestar Galactica. Tor Books. ISBN 9781250128942, p. 178.
  6. Altman, Mark A.; Gross, Edward (2018). So Say We All: The Complete, Uncensored, Unauthorized Oral History of Battlestar Galactica. Tor Books. ISBN 9781250128942, p. 182.
  7. Paxton, Susan J.. 1986 Galacon Q & A with Richard Hatch and Anne Lockhart (backup available on (in ). Retrieved on 12 August 2007.