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An episode of the Re-imagined Series
Episode No. Season 1, Episode 2
Writer(s) Ronald D. Moore
Story by
Director Marita Grabiak
Assistant Director
Special guest(s)
Production No. 102
Nielsen Rating 2.6
US airdate USA 2005-01-14
CAN airdate CAN 2005-01-22
UK airdate UK 2004-10-25
DVD release 20 September 2005 US
28 March 2005 UK
Population 47,958 survivors (Population decline. 2,340)
Additional Info
Full Credits
Episode Chronology
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33 Water Bastille Day
Related Information
Official Summary
R&D SkitView
[[IMDB:tt{{{imdb}}}|IMDb entry]]
Listing of props for this episode
Related Media
Photo Gallery @ BW Media
Promotional Materials
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Galactica loses over 60% of her water reserves due to sabotage, forcing the Fleet into a crisis and Commander Adama to seek a new supply.


In the fleet

  • Sharon "Boomer" Valerii finds herself dripping wet in her flight suit, sitting in an equipment room on the flight deck. She is disoriented, and upon opening a duffel bag containing her uniform, she discovers explosives, complete with detonators.
  • After drying and dressing herself, Boomer goes to a small arms locker and finds that a further six detonators are missing, throwing her into a panic and seeking Galen Tyrol’s help.
  • Laura Roslin visits Galactica to thank the crew for their hard work in defending the Fleet following the recent events (TRS: "33").
  • Protocol is observed during her visit, with officers in dress uniform. Roslin believes this is because William Adama enjoys it; Lee Adama informs her that his father ordered the reception out of respect for her position as President.
  • Virgon Express arrives alongside, ready to take on new water supplies. Adama explains to Roslin of Galactica's near-perfect water reclamation abilities, and how it must tank water to ships that don’t have recycling facilities themselves.
  • In the equipment locker, Tyrol and Boomer, on the verge of a breakdown, discuss the missing explosives. Tyrol promises he’ll see her through the situation, convinced someone is trying to frame her.
  • As the water transfer operation commences, a series of explosions rip through Galactica, rupturing her water tanks and spewing much of her massive reserves of potable water into space.
  • An investigation of the explosion begins. Over 60% of Galactica’s reserves of water have been lost, leaving the Fleet with a critical shortage. Because of its recycling/storage capabilities, 16,000 people are dependent on Galactica for drinkable water.
  • Pushed to give a reason for the loss of the water, Lieutenant Felix Gaeta presumes that the detonation of a nuclear warhead close to the water tanks (TRS: "Miniseries") may have weakened the tanks, causing them to rupture.
  • During his presentation to investigators, Tyrol admits sabotage was the cause of the explosions, revealing the fact that explosives had been taken from a small-arms locker, but covering for Valerii by saying it is unlikely they will discover who took the explosives as security throughout the ship has been lax, and record-keeping patchy, at best.
  • Adama orders Raptor flights to nearby star systems in an attempt to find an alternative source of water.
  • Reducing the number of people in the inquiry to senior command staff, Roslin and Gaius Baltar, Adama reveals the truth about the humanoid Cylon threat, stating his belief that there is a Cylon infiltrator aboard Galactica.
  • Baltar is quizzed about his progress on constructing a working Cylon detector. He makes various excuses for his lack of progress, all of which Adama discerns as Baltar's need for assistance on the project. Adama assigns Lieutenant Gaeta to aid him.
  • Following the meeting, Gaeta leaves with Baltar, unhappy about having someone “watching” him. He escapes Gaeta by joining one of Kara "Starbuck" Thrace's card games and ends up flirting with her.
  • Boomer locates water, but has problems trying to report the find while her Cylon sleeper personality tries to detonate explosives she has strapped to her chair.
  • Boomer finally is able to report the find, and she and Alex "Crashdown" Quartararo return to Galactica to be greeted as heroes.
  • Boomer gets Tyrol to check her seat, where he finds the explosives. He later reveals to Boomer he has handed the explosives to the Master-at-Arms, assuring her that this is good, as it puts the Master onto the same lines of investigation they are now pursuing.
  • On Colonial One, impressed at the way Lee Adama helped her through the pomp of her reception on Galactica at the start of the episode, Roslin asks Captain Adama to become a special advisor to her, to help her understand military jargon and protocol. She also tries to help him come to terms with the destruction of Olympic Carrier (TRS: "33"), which has been plaguing his conscience.

On Caprica


Episode Notes

  • This is the only episode featuring the deckhands' white EVA suits.
  • Galactica has at least five Raptors on board.
  • Colonials have an equivalent plastic explosive to C-4 called G-4.
  • Tigh states that only three Marines know that the Cylons look human. Alex "Crashdown" Quartararo's comment to Sharon Valerii in "33" indicates that at least one of them is responsible for leaking this information to others.
  • Galactica has an astrometrics lab equipped with spectroscopes and telescopes.
  • This episode shows a population loss of 2,340, this matches the analysis in "33" as 300 were lost in on an screen estimate revision, and 681 off-screen losses (deleted scenes show some of this) possibly due to revised counts, plus the 1,345 lost on Olympic Carrier, minus a loss for the newborn. The final count in "33" was 47,973 so 15 losses occurred between episodes.
  • "The Plan" later reveals that Valerii's instructions came from Fleet Cavil, who summons the sleeper agent's personality via a carved wood elephant in order to supplant the "human" personality.

Production Notes

  • When Season 1 premiered in the United States, "33" and "Water" aired back-to-back as a two hour TV event. This was also the case when Season 3 first aired in the United States with the episodes "Occupation" and "Precipice".
  • Initially, the episode was to focus on a paper shortage in the Fleet.[1]
  • According to Gary Hutzel, the water tank was a virtual set consisting of one wall and a ramp leading away from it.[2]



  • Some humanoid Cylon are sleeper agents (as stated by Six in the Miniseries). "Water" sees a new wrinkle added: that the Cylon "personality" within a humanoid Cylon can be active without the apparent knowledge of the "human" personality. Boomer's "waking up" scene and subsequent reactions demonstrate that her human persona has no idea of what is going on. Her confusion is genuine and complete, right down to the fact that she has lost track of time (wishing Cally Henderson a "good evening", only for Henderson to tell her it is early morning).
  • As promised at the show's outset, basic logistics and supply issues are a major concern on the series that the characters have to address.
    • Some viewers may think that 600-odd tons of food a week is a lot of consumables to have available and wonder where it all comes from. However, the Fleet comprises many ships, apparently including many supply ships with such supplies like Gideon.
  • The violent water ejection from Galactica is mostly accurate. Presuming that the water tanks on Galactica were under some pressure, per Baltar's comment that a human could not withstand the pressures within the tank, the water would leave the ship in the manner shown. Water in a vacuum and in the absolute cold of space will both freeze and boil. The resulting ice crystals will then quickly sublimate, attaining a vapor state directly from a solid state. The expelled water appears to sublimate instantly.[3]
  • Water is an excellent radiation shield, in particular for neutron radiation, possibly explaining why the water tanks are placed on the outside of the hull.


Answered Questions

For answers to the questions in this section, click here.
  • Is Sharon Valerii completely unaware her Cylon personality, which planted the explosives?
  • Is the wireless message picked-up by Karl Agathon on Caprica genuine, or a Cylon fake, designed to keep him on the planet?
  • Do the Colonials have food recycling capabilities to match their water recycling capabilities?
  • Why do the Cylons want to keep Agathon on Caprica?

Unanswered Questions

None listed.

Official Statements

From Ronald D. Moore's blog entry of January 27, 2005:

One of the strange things about writing and producing television is the delay between action and reaction. Tomorrow night's episode was written almost a year ago. The battles, thoughts, emotions, disappointments, and victories happened in what seems like the distant past, so when I sit down to watch the show along with the rest of you (and I do watch them on the air) it's like seeing a page out of an old yearbook. I can remember bits and pieces of the production process, the early drafts of the script, the days spent in the editing bay playing with the footage and waiting for the visual effects to be completed, but none of it is current, all of it belongs to a season now firmly planted in the past.
However, I do find that the same distance from the rigors of production also afford a better vantage point for watching the show with something approaching objectivity. You get so used to an episode during all the aspects of production that the simple pleasure of watching it as a piece of entertainment is slowly vacuumed away over time. Only now, months after the fact, can I watch these shows from a little remove and my impressions of the episodes are often not the same as when we produced them.
For instance, during the shoot of "Water" and shortly afterward, I was acutely aware of just how long the script was and how much material was going to have to be lost along the way. I was fairly upset with myself for writing something so bloated and large that it was killing us on the stage and would later require major surgery in the editing room to make our mandated runtime. The first cut of "Water" ran 10-12 minutes long—essentially an entire act that had to go—and for a long time when I watched the final locked picture I was always uncomfortably aware of the "cheats" involved. That is, the dropped scenes, the internal cuts made to scenes that made a hash of some of the logic I'd tried to lay out, the half-expressed thoughts, the missing emotional beats, etc.
However, when I saw the final aired episode, I was hard-pressed to even remember most of the cuts or why they had bothered me in the first place. (Although I still missed a nice bit with Baltar in the Wardroom, where he tossed off a theory of how six small charges could've blown open the water tank, as it was both helpful to the plot and an entertaining bit of grandstanding by the character.) Frankly, I used to think of "Water" as one of the weaker shows in the first season, but now it seems like a fairly coherent piece.
Of course, this kind of shift in perspective after shedding the baggage of production works both ways, and I've found that sometimes revisited shows much later that I'd always considered to be "classics" turned out to lose their charm along with the experience of making it. So as we go forward, I'm both excited and vaguely terrified at how I'll view the rest of the season.
Speaking of excited and terrified, I must admit to being overwhelmed by the response you've generated regarding this blog. There's a remarkable backlog of questions on the board and I'll try to both post here more often and answer more of your questions. I don't know what to tell you in terms of what will catch my eye, but I'll try to look for both the straight-ahead fan questions and the more off the wall questions—don't be afraid to venture far off-topic, some of the more interesting discussions I had at Trek had nothing to do with the show itself.
At the start of the season, I intended to reveal things very slowly – Sharon was going to realize something was wrong over a longer period of time, and her relationship with Tyrol was going to be very solid. But when I got into "Water" I decided to speed things up by putting Sharon and her relationship with Tyrol in a crisis immediately.[4]

Noteworthy Dialogue

Agathon: I don't suppose we have a plan B?
Valerii: Plans B, C, D and E are the same as plan A; get off the planet and get back to the ship.

Guest stars


  1. Bassom, David (2005). ed. Adam "Adama" Newell Battlestar Galactica: The Official Companion. Titan Books. ISBN 1-84576-0972, p. 48.
  2. Bassom, David (2005). ed. Adam "Adama" Newell Battlestar Galactica: The Official Companion. Titan Books. ISBN 1-84576-0972, p. 51.
  3. Haberman, John (04 May 1998). Re: Will water boil or freeze in outer space? (backup available on Archive.org) (in English). Retrieved on 4 September 2023.
  4. Bassom, David (2005). ed. Adam "Adama" Newell Battlestar Galactica: The Official Companion. Titan Books. ISBN 1-84576-0972, p. 50.