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User:Penumbra/Sexuality in the Twelve Colonies

From Battlestar Wiki, the free, open content Battlestar Galactica encyclopedia and episode guide
This article is about sexuality in the Twelve Colonies of Kobol, as depicted in the re-imaginded series' continuity. For sexuality depicted in the Original Series, see: Sexuality in Battlestar Galactica (TOS).
Lee Adama with Shevon, a prostitute (Black Market).

The civilizations of the Twelve Colonies of Kobol seem to celebrate a rich sexual diversity.

While there are many tensions within the worlds regarding issues such as cultural heritage and origin, religious views or race, no such discrimination has been linked to sexual orientation or gender.

The Cylons, as a mainly Colonial creation, seem to share these principles and acceptance.


Human Sexuality

Gender

Athena, one of the Lords of Kobol

Within Colonial society there seems to be little differentiation between male and female persons. Occupations, ranks as well as civilian and religious positions seem to be held by men and women alike.

There seems to be no notion of a superiority of one sex over the other or a clear division of gender roles. The most notable differences between sexes are in their respective clothing and hair styles, as well as the use of make-up and jewelery. However, some other stereotypical perceptions of male and female behavior are shown, mostly carried over from real-world paradigms (see Analysis).

Neither transsexual nor transgender people have been prominently seen within Colonial society. It seems, though, that at least within the V-Club these sexual derivations were accepted (Caprica pilot).

Religion

Colonial Religion seems to make little difference between male and female persons and has apparently little to no dogmas regarding sexual activity.

Colonial clergy consists of both, brothers and sisters, as well as priests of both sexes. Oracles seem to be traditionally female.

The Lords of Kobol include male and female deities. The One True God of Colonial monotheism is generally spoken of as male.[1]

Nonetheless, some traditional doctrines regarding marriage exist (The Eye of Jupiter). At least some interpretations of religious scripture do also regard abortion as a sin (The Captain's Hand).

Military

Pilots aboard Galactica (Final Cut).

Within Colonial military gender is apparently no point of concern regarding positions, capabilities and ranks. Both female and male crew members of Galactica and Pegasus are shown in a huge variety of different appointments, ranging from deckhand to CAG to Rear Admiral.

The military also seems to have a strict unisex approach to different aspects of life aboard their ships, including crew quarters and lavatory compartments (Miniseries). One notable exception are formal celebrations, where male crew members are shown to exclusively wear their uniforms whereas female crew members are allowed to wear evening gowns (Colonial Day).

In military tradition, every senior officer is addressed as "sir", regardless of their gender.

One of the very few restrictions regarding consenting sexual relationships can be found in the Colonial forces, were senior and junior officers are not aloud to be involved with each other (Miniseries).

Language

The most prominent language of the Twelve Colonies[2] does not have a grammatical gender. Therefore, most terms and descriptions might be equally applied under many different circumstances.

However, in some instances a generic he is used, even though not only male people are addressed.

Other languages of the Twelve Colonies do have a grammatical gender, including Tauronese and Old Gemenese.[3] However, it is unknown how this might affect gender conceptions of their respective worlds.

Sexual relationships

Many kinds of sexual relationships have been shown within the Twelve Colonies. These include sexual encounters between one man and one woman, same-sex relationships, group sex, prostitution as well as sexual assault.

Most Colonials seem to prefer consenting sexual partners of the opposite sex (e.g. Gaius Baltar or Laura Roslin). However, individuals have been shown to engage same-sex relationships likewise (e.g. Clarice Willow and Felix Gaeta) or exclusively (e.g. Sam Adama and possibly Helena Cain).

The age of consent within the Colonies is not known and might actually differ within the twelve societies or even based on religious views. However, Amanda Graystone seems shocked to learn that her late 16 year-old daughter Zoe had a boyfriend (Rebirth).[4]

Pornography seems to be common within the Colonies (Pegasus (Extended Version), Caprica pilot) as were strip clubs and prostitution (Daybreak, Part I, Black Market, The Plan). On Caprica, at least before the First Cylon War, teenagers also secretly engage virtual sex in the V-Club (Caprica pilot).

Pedophilia and child prostitution do occur within Colonial Society but are generally frowned upon. However, for some time after the Fall this becomes a lucrative business within the fugitive Fleet (Black Market). Rape has also been shown to occur, most notably against two Cylon prisoners (Pegasus).


Marriage

Marriage within the Twelve Colonies is a social union that clearly defines the romantic relationship between two or more people.[5] It is not known if there is any clear distinction between civilian and religious partnerships. However, at least for some people marriage seems to be a sacred vow before the Gods (The Eye of Jupiter).

While most marriages are between two people (e.g. between Lee Adama and Anastasia Dualla - Lay Down Your Burdens, Part II), group marriages are also legal in the Colonies (e.g. between Clarice Willow and her wifes and husbands - Rebirth).

Divorces (and subsequent remarriages) seem to be rather common within Colonial society and do apparently coincide with religious beliefs (Miniseries, The Eye of Jupiter, A Day in the Life). Colonials have also been shown to be unfaithful to their respective spouses (including Richard Adar).


Cylon Sexuality

Cylon Centurions

The Cylon centurions are not known to engage any kind of sexual relationship. It is also not known, whether Graystone Industries or any other company ever invented robots that are used for sexual pleasure rather than military use or hard labor.

Since at least the very first Cylon has a personality based on a real person and centurions are known to be conscious, the notion of romantic or sexual behavior is not entirely implausible.


Humanoid Cylons

The Humanoid Cylons are based upon eight different archetypes of behavior. Certain stereotypes might be associated with them but they are rather based on their respective model than the sex of their bodies - Number Sixes, for instance, have been shown to be overly sexually seductive, including relationships with human and Cylon males and females alike (Miniseries, Razor, Hero, The Plan).

The Cylon's sexual behavior is likely just as diverse as that of humanity. It has been stated that they have tried to reproduce sexually but any attempts at this have failed (The Farm).

While it is not clearly shown or stated, it is very likely that many inter-Cylon relationships occurred, even though biological reproduction is not possible. After the Fall Brother Cavil and a Number Six were involved for a couple of weeks (The Plan). Caprica and a Number Three copy have been intimate at least since Gaius Baltar arrived aboard their basestar (Hero, The Eye of Jupiter). Natalie also might have had a relationship with another copy of her model (Faith).

Many humanoid Cylons also engage in relationships with humans during the infiltration of the Colonies and the Fleet, the Cylon Civil War and likely after the settlement of the second Earth (see Interracial relationships).


Thirteenth Tribe

Little is known about sexuality on Earth. Only five survivors of the Thirteenth Tribe are ever encountered by humanity. Of those, four were in a relationship before the destruction of their planet (Tory Foster and Galen Tyrol, Saul Tigh and Ellen Tigh - No Exit).

All of those Cylons engage in relationships with humans and/or humanoid Cylons before and after the destruction of the Twelve Colonies of Kobol, for most of that time not knowing that they are Cylons themselves. Notably, the relationship between Saul Tigh and Caprica results in a pregnancy, although the child is later lost (Deadlock).


Interracial relationships

After the First Cylon War there is no indication that ethnicity or culture influences romantic and sexual relationships within Colonial society.

However, this was likely different before the Unification of the Colonies. At least Caprican society of that time shows strong anti-Tauron sentiments, potentially making relationships between citizens of both worlds difficult (Caprica pilot).


Cylon-Human relationships

After the Holocaust Colonial humanity discovers the existence of humanoid Cylons. Ever since interracial relationships between these two peoples became an increasingly significant issue for Colonial survivors.

About two years before the Fall, Cylons start to infiltrate the Twelve Colonies. Many of them enter relationships with humans in order to gain intelligence, social acceptance and/or because they fall in love. Most of these liaisons end with the attack but some of them survive the first days of the Holocaust. Aboard Galactica a copy of Number Four remains in a marriage with deckhand Giana O'Neill (The Plan), while Pegasus' commanding officer Helena Cain continues her relationship with a copy of Number Six, Gina Inviere (Razor).

Both relationships leave the respective human partner devastated when they find out that they have dated a Cylon. O'Neill suddenly approves of her husband's suicide (The Plan), while Cain orders her former lover to be tortured and humiliated by her subordinates (Razor, Pegasus).

On the Cylon-occupied New Caprica at least one human citizen privily enters a relationship with a Cylon (The Face of the Enemy). When William Adama finds out that his friend Saul Tigh (whom he thinks of as human) has started an affair with the imprisoned Caprica-Six, he seems disturbed, if not disgusted (Sine Qua Non).

It is not known, whether any new, true human-Cylon relationships occur after the rebel Cylons join the human fleet, though it is likely that this happens after the settlement of the second Earth (Daybreak, Part II).

Sharon and Karl Agathon

Sharon, giving birth to her daughter, with her later husband Karl Agathon comforting her (Downloaded).

The relationship of Karl and Sharon Agathon is humanity's first contact with an open Cylon-human love and results in the birth of the first (and for a long time only) hybrid. It is therefore easily one of the most important examples of an inter-racial relationship within Colonial society.

When Karl Agathon is stranded on Caprica, the occupying Cylons envision a plan to make him fall in love with a copy of model Number Eight (33, Litmus). Over a couple of weeks this plan actually works out and the Eight becomes pregnant with Agathon's child (Colonial Day). She soon returns with Agathon to the Fleet, betraying her own people (The Farm).

At the beginning, Sharon's status within the Fleet is problematic, at best. She is imprisoned and Karl Agathon is not allowed to have intimate or even private contact with her. In her prison she is assaulted and raped by Pegasus' crewmen (Pegasus), something Galactica's commander later feels guilty about (Resurrection Ship, Part I).

A forced abortion of Sharon's child, regarded as a threat to humanity, is considered and nearly executed (Epiphanies). She prematurely gives birth to her daughter, Hera, and the child is taken away and hidden from her (Downloaded).

During the settlement of New Caprica, Sharon starts to gain trust from Commander Adama and is allowed to marry Karl Agathon and eventually released from her cell (Occupation). It is only at this time and after the Second Exodus that the relationship of the Agathons starts to find acceptance among the majority of their fellow shipmates (Torn).

Gaius Baltar

The Final Five

Analysis

Depiction of gender

Depiction of sexual orientation

Notes

References

  1. This is especially true for the Cylons who likely adopted this faith from the early monotheists. However, Virtual Baltar later calls the omnipotent being "it" (Daybreak, Part II).
  2. Equivalent to real-world English.
  3. Which are based on Ancient Greek and the Romanian language.
  4. While Amanda is mainly shocked to hear about Ben Stark for the very first time, her dialog also indicates that she thought that Zoe never actually had sex before her death.
  5. No same-sex marriages have been seen on screen thus far. However, Jane Espenson and actor Sasha Roiz have confirmed that Sam Adama has a husband, named Larry.