The Super Scouts, Part I

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The Super Scouts, Part 1
"The Super Scouts, Part 1"
An episode of the Galactica 1980 series
Episode No. Season 1, Episode 4
Writer(s) Glen A. Larson
Story by
Director Vince Edwards
Assistant Director
Special guest(s) {{{guests}}}
Production No. 55106
Nielsen Rating
US airdate USA 1980-03-16
CAN airdate CAN {{{CAN airdate}}}
UK airdate UK
DVD release
Population survivors
Additional Info
Episode Chronology
Previous Next
Galactica Discovers Earth, Part III The Super Scouts, Part 1 The Super Scouts, Part II
[[IMDB:tt{{{imdb}}}|IMDb entry]]
Listing of props for this episode
Related Media
@ BW Media
Promotional Materials
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iTunes: USA

After the school ship Delphi is attacked by the Cylons, a shuttle carrying Captain Troy and a group of children crash lands on Earth, and Commander Adama and Dr. Zee must work to rescue the stranded crewmembers, who are becoming sick due to drinking contaminated water from a chemical plant.


Act 1

  • Commander Adama meets with Dr. Zee in his chamber. Here, Zee tells Adama that he's "considered the consequences of endless pursuit upon the children of the Galactican Fleet," deciding that their children must be the first to settle Earth or they are sure to die in the wilderness of space. The task cannot be done openly or at once and negotiation with any faction on Earth is out of the question, for it would sew mistrust and paranoia on Earth, potentially leading to what Zee calls "the final war".
  • A shuttle approaches the freighter Delphi, the Fleet's school ship.
TV Guide Ad for The Super Scouts.
  • In a classroom on board, Dillon is instructing the children about gravity and atmosphere. During his lecture, he admonishes Moonstone, who tries to cheat by looking up terms on his wrist computron. Another student is able to answer and Dillon moves on to discuss atmosphere, which Starla participates in, and Dillon notes that the kids might get tired sooner due to the thinner gravity. During his discussion, Troy enters, mentioning that due to the lower gravity, they would be able to jump higher and run faster than Earth kids.
  • As the children cheer to this, Dillon kiddingly tells Troy that the class well behaved until he came in. Troy tells the children that study period is over, "at least for the instructor". Concerned, Dillon asks what the issue is, and Troy tells him that the ship is now dead in space.
  • Suddenly, the Delphi stops moving through space, having developed engine trouble.
  • Aboard Galactica, Boomer tells Adama that he's allowed the Delphi to slow to repair her main engines. Adama notes that he is aware of this fact, asking if the ship has regained its place in the Fleet. However, Boomer reports that this is not the case. Adama asks if Boomer recognizes the significance of that freighter, he replies that its the Fleet's schooling ship and notes that "all our children are on board".
  • Adama orders that a fighter escort be sent at once.
  • As the Vipers launch, the Cylons have spotted the Delphi and are on course to intercept it.
  • As Troy and Dillon walk through the corridors, Dillon warns Troy that if the "old tub" sits still long, their shuttles won't have the range to reach the Fleet. Dillon replies that they'll "crash load" them and abandon ship. The attack klaxon blares; Dillon voices his belief that this must be a mistake, as the Cylons haven't attacked in a generation.
  • As the Cylon's attack continues, a crew member informs Troy and Dillon that there are shuttle pilots wanting to lift off before they are trapped on the ship. Troy orders that no ships are to launch until they have a full load. When the same crew member notes that there are sealed compartments, Dillon replies that they'll unseal them to rescue everyone.
  • Troy and Dillon quickly comb through the ship to ensure everyone is evacuated. They run across another civilian crew member, who tells them that there's children in a sealed compartment. Telling them that he can't open the door, Troy blasts the door with his laser pistol. The kids inside scream in reaction as the door falls to the ground.
  • Leading a Viper attack wing, Boomer radios Galactica, alerting them that Delphi is under attack. The Vipers kick some chrome plated arse as Troy and Dillon rescue the kids in the trapped compartment.
  • With the dozen kids, Troy and Dillon reach the shuttle, where they meet up with a goofy major, who informs them that 125 kids are accounted for. When Troy tells them that they have 12, the chipper bloke replies "That makes 137. All accounted for!" After the bloke helps load the kids on the shuttle, he stays behind on the ship.
  • A pilot asks Boomer for permission to pursue the Cylons, who are breaking off their attack. Boomer replies in the negative.
  • Troy tells the children to secure their braces. As he goes to start up the shuttle, Dillon helps secure the kids into their seats. Starla and Wellington[1] refuse Dillon's help to be buckled in. Dillon backs off, noting to Troy that they're a "feisty bunch," which Troy affirms, claiming they had to be in order to survive.
  • Troy and Dillon launch the shuttle from the ship, the engines firing at full thrust. They launch.
  • Watching from a distance, Boomer tells them to "Come on, come on!"
  • The shuttle manages to escape as the Delphi explodes. However, the shuttle experiences damage, causing a loss of fuel. Dillon transfers what is left of the fuel into the left bank.
  • Boomer contacts the shuttle, giving the Fleet's coordinates to them. After running the figures through the computron, Dillon and Troy discover that they cannot go back to the Fleet. They can't hide in space and await for help, since a Cylon force would surely destroy them. Troy makes the decision to head to Earth, which results in cheering from the children.

Act 2

  • A 747 passenger jet, Flight 427 outbound from Los Angeles, ascends to 30,000 feet and are in range of Omaha center. After finishing the communication, the flight begins ascension to 35,000 feet and switches over to Omaha.
  • The co-pilot tells the captain of 427 to "look out," and the captain pilots the ship deftly out of the way of the descending ship, which happens to be the Super Scouts' shuttle. The captain angrily growls to the co-pilot to get Omaha and, believing that the shuttle is military, voices his strong feelings regarding how sick he is of hot shots clogging up the commercial air lanes.
  • On an USAF installation, Colonel Jack Sydell gets a phone call from Major Harvey Jensen, who informs him of the incident with 427. Jensen admits that they don't know what it is and tells him that he'll be reviewing the radar tapes to review the incident; Sydell notes that this incident is something he was waiting for, and boasts that he has a large enough budget to find out "who these guys really are".
  • After ending the conversation, Sydell tells his secretary to have a plane ready for him in 10 minutes.
  • The shuttle lands in a field on Earth. Troy instructs the children that it's "absolutely necessary" that they obey every order they are given, encouraging them to remember their training.
  • They exit the shuttle, the children fearfully and, in awe, slowly exiting the shuttle as well. One of the children picks up a flower and smells it. Starla comments that she wishes her parents and baby brother could see Earth as well. She then asks if there was a way to let her family know that they're all right, to which Dillon replies in the affirmative.
  • Troy tells the children he is sure they've never experienced the "sensation of being on land with open skies and fresh air," telling them that it's absolutely essential that they stay together for their own protection. Some of the kids begin taking advantage of the lighter gravity, jumping high into the air. After Troy tells the children to stop and Dillon comments about their babysitting duties not being easy, two hunters run into them.
  • Before they are able to fire their rifles, the Warriors stun the two Earthlings. Troy devises a plan to use the Earthlings' vehicle to move the Super Scouts to another location and launch the shuttle into space again, so that it cannot fall into the hands of the US government. This effectively puts them on their own. He tells the children that they'll locate apparel that will allow them to blend in with Earth's children.
  • In the morning, Dillon and Troy ride on their turbines down a highway, where they attract the attention of two California Highway Patrol officers since their bikes lack license plates. They take an off-ramp and hide behind a sign, which one of the two CHiPs see as it's one of his favorite hiding places. However, upon riding up to the sign, they find that the legs and feet they saw are no longer there—as the Warriors activated their invisibility field. The second CHiP makes it clear that the first CHiP made a mistake, laughing that "from now on, I'm in charge".
  • Standing in front of a department store, Troy looks up the term in the wrist computron. Troy subsequently instructs Dillon to obtain clothing here while he goes to the bank across the street to exchange cubits for U.S. currency. He believes that since their ancestors have a common ground, the bank will be able to recognize the value of the cubits, which are made from gold (or auric, as it's known to the Colonials). He seared off the markings with his laser, believing that they can quickly analyze the metal.
  • When Dillon attempts to enter the building via the revolving door, he is spit back out again. Confused, he asks Troy whether or not their Earth brothers have some form of alien detector. Assuring him that the Earthlings have no such device, Troy tasks Dillon with exchanging the cubits for currency, while taking a crack at the revolving door himself. The same thing happens to Troy, which amuses Dillon.
  • On the second try, Troy manages to enter the department store, while Dillon narrowly avoids being hit by cars as he jaywalks across a busy street.
  • In the store, Troy runs across a sign for the Cub Scouts. As he's looking around, he encounters a chatty saleslady, who makes the assumption that he's a scoutmaster. During the conversation, she asks what scout council he is from. His reply, "the Council of Twelve," leaves her a bit flummoxed, but she comments that it "must be out of this area". When he picks up a handbook, he mentions that 12 would be fine, which segues into a large order of "12 of everything', leaving her in awe.
  • Meanwhile, Dillon approaches a bank teller and attempts to exchange the cubits for U.S. dollars. She notes that the markings have been seared off, which Dillon claims to have happened in a fire. She mentions that this is unfortunate, as rare coins are more valuable than gold. Dillon mentions that he is in a bit of a hurry and misunderstands the teller when she claims that it'll take time for the gold to be analyzed. He claims he can wait, but when she mentions that the gold needs to be sent out to be assayed, he first offers to analyze the cubits with his wrist computron. He quickly realizes his error when she asks about the foreign device, and instead asks for the cubits back.
  • Feeling that something is off, she asks pointedly where he got the gold and, as she does this, she presses a silent alarm button underneath the counter. Dillon notices this and the situation spirals out of control when she acts on her ill-found assumption that he is a thief. She calls out to Harry, a nearby bank guard, but he is stunned by Dillon. With his pistol now in hand, he is shocked when the teller begins throwing the cubits and bundles of dollar bills into a sack. She gives it to him and yells out that Dillon has a gun and should give him anything he wants.
  • He tries to give the bag back to her, but he hears the sirens and surmises that she's summoned the police. She beseeches him to give up his attempt to rob the bank, telling him that he needn't get killed over a "few lousy bucks". He promises to pay back the money, asking her where she lives. After initially resisting, he points the gun at her and she reveals that she lives on 327 Harrat Street, but is "moving just as soon as you finish robbing this bank". After Dillon runs off, she collapses on the counter.
  • Dillon b-lines it to the department store, repeating his near death jaywalking experience of earlier.
  • As the saleslady finishes loading up a bin, she tells Troy that someone will be around to help him bring the items to his car. When she asks how he'll be paying, he hems-and-haws briefly until Dillon arrives and gives her a bunch of crumpled up bills, asking if it would suffice. She replies that it would and jests "what'd you do, rob a bank?" and she laughs as she counts the money.
  • Troy asks Dillon where he's been. Dillon begins telling him that they need to leave quickly, but interrupts himself when he queries about the content of the large wheeled bin in front of them. After Troy confirms that its all there's, Dillon pulls Troy to the side.
  • Outside the bank, a police car pulls up. An officer already at the bank runs up to the arriving unit, telling them that witnesses claim the robber (Dillon) ran to the department store. The senior officer instructs the reporting officer to have him and his partner cover the back entrances of the store, while they'll cover the front.
  • Dillon has told Troy that he's robbed a bank. Troy admonishes him, claiming that he could be killed. When they note the presence of two police officers entering the building, Dillon replies that being killed isn't out of the question even now. They use their invisibility field.
  • The saleslady comes back with their change and a receipt, noting that the cart is wheeling away from her by an invisible force.
  • As Troy and Dillon ride down the highway once more, the same two CHiPs see them and decide that they aren't going to get away from them again. They pursue and Dillon and Troy use the flying feature of their bikes to evade the now confused patrol men. The patrol man leader asks: "How come this never happens to those two guys on TV?"
  • Out in a field, Colonel Sydell and a team of people are scouring over Shuttle Alpha's landing site. They can't find anything. Present with Sydell is Mr. Brooks, who is surprised when Jamie Hamilton arrives. She mentions that she got word over the wire and is told about Sydell, who is with Air Force Special Detachment One, a USAF team that investigates UFOs and other unknown phenomena. He asks her again what she's doing there, and she concocts a story about her compulsion for such stories.
  • Captain Bannister approaches Sydell, informing him that they searched everything within a 15 mile radius, noting that there's nothing of note, except an encampment of boy scouts camped in the woods. Believing them to be more willing to share information—information which is likely to be more accurate than two hunters who've had too much "eggnog" to drink—he proceeds to seek them out, as he tells Brooks, who overheard the conversation.
  • After Sydell walks off to his car, Brooks tells Hamilton that he believes that there's no story now, and that Sydell is grasping at straws. Brooks tells her that he'll see her back at the station. She heads off to her car as he walks away.
  • Back at the Super Scout's camp, two children are horsing around in a tent. Troy and Dillon approach, asking for their attention. One of the Super Scouts corrects Troy on his use of the word encampment in lieu of the word "tent". As they're lined up, Lancer jumps high above the trees, noticing that three cars are approaching their position. Dillon confirms this and the children are excited about seeing Earth vehicles.
  • Colonel Sydell introduces himself to the group. Behind him is Hamilton, who recognizes the scout masters as Troy and Dillon. As Sydell questions Troy and Dillon, the Super Scouts are fooling around with his car, honking the horn, deflating the tires, and other hijinks. Sydell notes this and comments that "boys do love cars, don't they". Sydell asks if they mind if he talks to the children, Troy tells him to go right ahead.
  • After he heads to talk to the children, Troy tells Dillon to go with Sydell. Hamilton tells Troy that he can't be hiding behind kids, but in further talking about it, she realizes that the children aren't of Earth, and begins reeling from the shock of that. Troy convinces her to smile, for it wouldn't do too good to faint.
  • At the car, Sydell asks the children if they saw anything last night. He is interrupted by a Super Scout who blasts the horn. He tells the kid to stop, then grabs his arm, noticing the wrist computron. He believes it to be some fancy scout watch and then asks if they've seen anything. The scouts reply in the negative. Furthermore, Troy informs them that the children were asleep during the event, and almost lets out that they "landed," but corrects himself.
  • Sydell offers Troy his card, letting him know that the Air Force is interested in information, regardless of how mundane it is. Sydell then questions about the lack of a car, which Troy explains away as it being in town getting supplies. Sydell wishes them to have a nice encampment, noting that he used to be an Eagle Scout himself.
  • Moonstone looks up the term in his computron, which leads to a bit of humor over the literal meaning of the term.
  • That night, the Super Scouts, the Warriors and Hamilton are sitting around a campfire. The Super Scouts are singing a song. At the conclusion of this, Hamilton is the only one clapping, saying that she wants to learn the song.
  • Starla comes out of a tent, telling Dillon and Troy that Moonstone is sick. Troy and Dillon respond quickly. Using the wrist computron, Troy scans him, finding that his pulse and respiration are 80 percent below normal. Hamilton believes Moonstone is in shock. When questioned, Starla offers that he's been sick for only a few minutes.
  • Another Super Scout tells the Warriors that a fellow Super Scout has also fallen ill. Troy scans him, coming to the conclusion that they are dying.

Act 3

  • Troy, Dillon and Hamilton take the three sick children to the Paradise Valley Medical Center. The nurse, Valerie, helps move them to a room. Moonstone is placed on the centermost bed, as Troy notes that he's the sickest.
  • Much to Troy and Dillon's consternation, Valerie cannot help since she is legally bound to assist a doctor, but is unable to take the responsibility. She goes off to try and contact Dr. Spencer on the radio.
  • Troy uses a syringe in order to take a cell biopsy. Scanning it with the wrist computron, they find that there are poisons in the sample that Troy's never seen before, since there is no Galactican equivalent.
  • They determine that Moonstone is suffering from cell dehydration and have to introduce fluids. After finding there is a Earth equivalent to the six-carbon-chain supplement (glucose), Hamilton comes up with an IV bottle with 5% glucose.
  • Valerie has managed to get Spencer, telling him that he has to get back to the medical center as fast as he can.
  • She rejoins the Galacticans in the room, discovering that they've attached Moonstone to an IV drip. She attempts to remove it, claiming that if Spencer finds out about it, she'll lose her job. Troy stuns her before she can remove it.
  • On Galactica, Adama asks Zee why, after all this time, the Cylons decided to attack the Delphi. Zee theorizes that the Cylons have not been idle, building better and more improved machines. To make matters worse, they have "evolved beyond our wildest fears," claiming that in thirty years it is possible to create a totally new technology. The Cylons don't use this technology to destroy Galactican Fleet outright, since they want to test their machines against living targets.
  • When Adama asks about the shuttle, Zee tells Adama that the children's ability to survive on Earth is likely the best indication of all whether or not the Fleet's people can survive at all.
  • Dr. Spencer arrives at the medical center. He notes the IV and how sick Moonstone has. When asked about the IV, Troy takes responsibility for doing so, and Spencer replies that the act probably saved the boy's life. Despite Spencer's initial wariness of the Warriors' claims, he apparently trusts their judgment. Troy mentions that they need tests for stomach content and a full blood series, including a neuro-transmitter anogram. He agrees, but asks about the anogram. Dillon tries to skirt the question by telling Spencer to do the best he can. Hamilton explains that the Warriors are into all kinds of research, coming from an "astro-medics place outside of Cleveland".
  • Spencer accepts this explanation and asks for Valerie's help. Since she is still stunned, she doesn't reply immediately. Spencer notes that her pupils are dilated and her skin is flushed. Val comes around, replying with a message meant to aid in tuning the color on a television. Spencer assumes she is still in shock due to the situation, saying that she came through like a trooper. Valerie follows Spencer to the lab, the former still confused.
  • Troy and Dillon mention that they need to rush back to the other children, assuming that they are "scared to death". When Hamilton asks what's causing the illness, Troy surmises that human immunities are different than Galactican immunities. Here, Jamie mentions that a cold can be deadly to the Warriors and the children, but they'll know more when the results of the analysis are finalized.
  • Hamilton expresses her apology for the children not having a better welcome to Earth; Dillon tells her that at least Hamilton was there for them when she was needed.
  • The remaining, healthy scouts lead Troy and Dillon to the water where the three took a drink. Upon testing it, Troy declares that "murder" has happened here: the water is poisoned. Quickly, a security officer from the Stanford Chemical Plant comes to them. They talk briefly about environmentalists; the man replying that the environmentalists are always stirring up trouble in matters that are "none of their business". He tells them that they have the permission to fish.
  • After Troy finds out where the plant is located, in addition to Mr. Stockton's name, they leave. The security guard makes a point to make sure they mention him to Stockton, and the Warriors assure him that they'll do soon.
  • Troy and Dillon meet with Mr. Stockton at the Stanford Chemical Plant. Stockton adamantly denies that the illness that the scouts succumb to has anything to do with the plant. Stockton questions their ability to analyze the water, unaware of their superior technology, and claims that they test the water all the time out of concern for their neighbors. Troy says that as such, he should be seriously concerned, and makes the claim that they're all dying. Stockton scoffs this, but Troy assures him that it is a cumulative effect.
  • Stockton tells the Warriors that he'll look into it. Troy questions when this will occur, and Stockton becomes more defense and Dillon takes over the questioning. Stockton replies that they'll look into it "right away' using their own chemists. Dillon asks when they'll hear anything, and Stockton assures him that they'll hear something soon.
  • At the sheriff's office, Deputy Collins reacts to a message on the teletype machine, which he tears out and runs to Sheriff Ellsworth with. He tries to tell Ellsworth about the message, but Ellsworth is talking to Stockton, who wants him to deal with the scout troop. After an angry Stockton reminds Ellsworth that they were all out of work for six months due to the last shutdown caused by "wild-eyed nature group". Ellsworth reminds Stockton to keep his own men out of trouble and agrees to handle the scouts.
  • After hanging up, the deputy tells him that the scout troop apparently doesn't exist. He notes that the reason they know this is because Spencer contacted the police station to track down the families of the sick kids at his clinic. Ellsworth gets angry and orders his deputy to wrangle up the other deputies to get all the scouts, including the "phony scoutmasters".
  • Just then, Hamilton enters the police office. She asks what's going o, and Ellsworth becomes defensive, essentially claiming that the children's sickness is just a play by environmentalists who want to shut down the plant. He further insinuates that Hamilton is involved in creating the issue in order to get a story. Hamilton voices her resentment of the accusation, but Ellsworth points out that a reporter started the Spanish-American War in order to make headlines. He also tells her to not leave town, as he's going to check every last one of them "right down to their fillings".
  • Ellsworth gives his call to arms to his men and they leave. They rush to their cars and ride off, leaving Hamilton behind.
  • Just after they leave, Troy and Dillon ride up in their turbines. Hamilton warns them of Ellsworth's intent and the Warriors fly off to warn the children. After they fly off, a car comes behind her on the road and the driver honks the horn. Initially angry that she's in the road, the driver starts to rip into Hamilton, only to have his mouth left agape at the sight of the flying turbines.


  • The freighter Delphi, which is the Fleet's schooling ship, is shown in this episode. The stock footage that is shown is of the freighter Gemini from the Original Series—and its markings, complete with the name Gemini in huge letters, are clearly visible. The freighter is destroyed by the Cylons. Ironically, the Gemini freighter is also destroyed in Battlestar Galactica: The Second Coming, the movie trailer created by Richard Hatch.
  • The pendant seen on Boomer's neck is the same one that adorned Cain's in "The Living Legend". It makes its first appearance in this episode.
  • In keeping with the mandate of programs in the early evening times lots to have educational value, the theme of this episode is environmental conservation, which also comes up in "Space Croppers". Other educational beats include information on atmosphere and gravity.
  • The Delphi develops engine trouble and stops "dead in space". However, the ship should still have inertia, thus continuing to move in space, until slowed or diverted by a gravitational pull or other outside force.
  • The Fleet's present location is "33,000 Mega-Kays from Alpha Centauri".
  • The Colonial preteen population seems to be fairly small since the episode establishes there are only ~137 schoolchildren on "Delphi" or less than one child per ship. Perhaps this is due to the fact most first-generation refugees from the Twelve Colonies are widowers/widows/elderly people who had to leave the children behind, or due to strict enforcement of zero population growth policies.
  • Valerie's "message meant to aid in tuning the color on a television" is a take-off of late 1970s commercials for the RCA Colortrak television set which featured famous celebrities noting the color of their surroundings and how good the RCA Colortrak system was at "locking the colors in."


Changes from Script to Screen...

  • Among a few of the differences between the script and the final product:
    • Scenes in the new Cylon war machine between Andromus and Andromicus, where Andromus orders the attack on Delphi and is subsequently pleased with the success of the attack. Further, a scene where a Viper pilot asks Boomer for permission to pursue the unknown ship are cut.
    • The dialogue for a character named "Sunbeam" is spoken by Starla in the episode.
    • John Stockton's was originally named "Jack Stockwell".
    • "Collins" is the name of the Bank Teller that Dillon "robs" at the bank. However, this name is attributed to Sheriff Ellsworth's deputy, and thus is viewed in that light.
    • The Stanford Chemical Plant was originally called the "Paradise Chemical Plant". The name was changed to accommodate the use of stock footage from a 1972 episode of Columbo, "Short Fuse" which took place at the "Stanford Chemical Plant" (all footage of the plant comes from the Columbo episode).
    • According to the script, Troy and Dillon are incarcerated by Sheriff Ellsworth (unnamed in the script until the second part) after warning Stockton about the pollution in the water. Later on at the jail, Ellsworth delivers news that one of the boy Super Scouts died, thus ending the first part of the story.


  • What is the new Cylon craft seen attacking the Delphi? (Answer)
  • What happened to Xaviar? In particular, what of their mission to pre-Revolutionary America?
  • How does Boomer know of Alpha Centauri by its Earth name?
  • Why doesn't Dillon use his invisibility field after leaving the bank, thus lessening the risk of getting caught by the incoming police?
  • Why didn't Doctor Zee provide the Warriors with currency, to avoid such a situation?
  • Weren't the Super Scouts trained to test food and water sources with their wrist computrons before ingesting them?
  • What happened to crew of Delphi ?

Official Statements

Galactica 1980 story editors Allan Cole and Chris Bunch on this episode:

Q: Were there any amusing incidents during filming?

Bunch: The school ship episode! (The Super Scouts, part one) If you look at the shot where they burn up the school ship, the sequence is - Troy and Dillon come out of this entryway. There's a control panel to their right which explodes. They start down the steps, then there's another explosion. They do a pinwheel, they pick themselves up...

Cole: And then they look around for a minute with a puzzled look on their faces...

Bunch: Then they haul ass out of there! There was supposed to be this enormous I-beam that would come down from the rafters and almost nail them. Unfortunately, we weren't there during filming, but we saw it during one of the few times we watched dailies: the scene was over, but the camera was still rolling. Vince Edwards, the director of the episode walks onto what's left of the set and says, "Wasn't there supposed to be a beam...?" Way up in the rafters, you hear someone say, "Beam!" - and it comes crashing down and misses Vince Edwards by an inch and a half!

Also in that episode, the ship is on fire and Vince directed everyone to stroll along as if they were underwater or walking through maple syrup! We're watching this in the dailies and Larson is way in the back screaming, "Why aren't they running???"

Cole: Larson's fuming and you can't redo the scene because the set's burned to the ground![2]

Allan Cole discusses Vince Edwards direction in this episode:

Allan Cole: Basic rule of special effects. If you are going to burn something, you only get one go. And if you recall, there was a big damned fire scene. You should have heard GL [Glen Larson] scream at Vince [Edwards] for the slow pace of the direction. But he really blew his top in the big explosion scene. There were about three major bits missing, including a beam that collapses, mushing the whole bridge. I personally witnessed this. Vince cues each special in turn, cues the stunt men, cues the blast, and then the stunt men (standins for Kent [McCord], etc.) stand up, scratch their heads then trot off. Vince shouts cut. Then walks out onto the set, puzzling. "Hey," he says, "wasn't there supposed to be a beam?" Up above, a prop guy thinks he's just gotten the cue. "Beam!" he shouts. Said beam slams downward, narrowly missing Vince.

Vince also had the brainy kid [Patrick Stuart] terrified. So scared he was frozen and wouldn't move his head during the whole episode. During dailies, GL kept muttering loudly, "What's wrong with his neck? Call his teacher! Call his mother! Call anybody who can fix his neck!" Making things worse was the fact that the frightened kid's voice was changing. So everytime he said, "Adama" there would be this big falsetto crack. Very, very, funny. Too bad it wasn't intentional.[3]

Cole and Bunch on the chaotic nature of the show and its constantly changing premise:

Q: Do you know if Larson had any other flashback episodes planned?

Bunch: Larson never plans anything! He puts paper in the typewriter and starts typing! Along about page 56 an idea pops into his mind. He'll get to page 58 and type "End Part One". There wasn't enough story in the three-part pilot to fill a one hour script!

Cole: Also, the premise of the show seemed to change during filming! "We're going to use Xaviar - no, we're not going to use Xaviar. We're doing time travel - no, we're not doing time travel."

Bunch: "We've got this Air Force guy after them - no, we don't!" I still don't remember if we settled on the Air Force guy or not.[4]

Allan Cole on using kids on the show:

The kids on the show drove us all nuts. Shooting with children is probably the hardest kind of series to do. There are many, many restrictions. Plus they all have to have a teacher and if the kid is a star you have to listen to the teacher as if she were speaking from on high. And then there are the stage moms, all of whom ought to be locked up. It's a wonder any of the kids escape with a shred of sanity. If you have children, do not—I repeat: do not—urge them to take up a show biz career.

Do you recall the episode where all the kids from the mother ship troop into the Observatory? That was shot at night. And the only thing harder and more expensive than shooting at night (except for water, never, never do a water show) is shooting at night with children. They can only work a few hours at a time as it is. And night is golden time when it comes to wages—for both them, the teachers, and, obviously the rest of the cast and crew. This also means you can't shoot anything early the next morning. So if you don't have enough night stuff in your script to warrant another setup the following evening, you lose a whole day. The only way around it is to shoot on Saturday night, which gives you a natural Sunday "break."

In this case, because of the craziness on the show, neither option was open. Plus the kids were either all sleepy, or hyper—laughing hysterically or weeping; no inbetween. Or getting lost and you had to track them down again. Driving the planetarium staff out of their gourds.

I forget how many kids were in that scene, but the only way we could get it to work at all was to cast as many sets of twins as possible. Some kind of record—for casting twins—was probably set by that episode and the school ship episode. But "Program Practices" was all over GL for not having enough kids. So, he said, "Okay, I'll give you kids crawling out of your ears." And he did![3]

Noteworthy Dialogue

  • Adama and Zee discuss their predicament regarding Earth:
Adama: Perhaps we could confer with the leadership on Earth.
Zee: To negotiate with one faction on Earth is to arouse the mistrust and paranoia of every other. We could inadvertently trigger the final war.
Adama: So, we have tools we cannot use, medicines we cannot offer, and knowledge we cannot share.
Zee: All these things we will give to them. First, we must prepare the way.
  • Dillon wants to repay the bank teller for the money she gives him as he "robs" a bank:
Dillon: I'll get this back to you in time. Where do you live?
Bank Teller: Are you crazy? You think I'm going to tell you where I live? (after Dillon points the laser gun at her) 327 Harrat Street. But I'm moving just as soon as you finish robbing this bank.
  • After Dillon tells Troy about his bank "transaction":
Troy: You did what?
Dillon: It's called "robbing a bank". I couldn't help it, it just happened.
  • In the department store:
Sales lady: And what council are you from?
Troy: The Council of Twelve.
Sales lady: That must be from out of this area.
  • After Troy pays Sales lady with a wad of stolen cash:
Sales lady: Whadja do? Rob a bank? (laughs)
  • Troy uses an Earth expression in reaction to the two CHiPs that pursue them:
Troy: Aw, nuts.
Dillon: Nuts? You're hungry at a time like this?
  • Zee answers Adama's question about why the Cylons attacked the Delphi:
Zee: Adama, since the time of our defeat, the Cylons have not been idle. Not only have they developed new machines, but they have evolved beyond our greatest fears.
Adama: In what way?
Zee: Consider this: In 30 Earth years, it is possible to create a totally new technology.
Adama: If they're so almighty powerful, why don't they simply destroy us?
Zee: They wish to experiment with their new machines.
Adama: Using us as living targets.

Guest Stars


  1. Wellington is not given a name in this episode, but is given it in "Spaceball".
  2. Galactic Sci-Fi Television Series Revisited. Alpha Control Press, 1995.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Larocque, John (28 Feburary 2005). Interview with Galactica 1980 story editor Allan Cole (backup available on (in ). Retrieved on 11 August 2007.
  4. Galactic Sci-Fi Television Series Revisited. Alpha Control Press, 1995.