Difference between revisions of "Experiment in Terra"

From Battlestar Wiki, the free, open content Battlestar Galactica encyclopedia and episode guide
m (Summary)
m (Text replacement - "{{TOS}}" to "")
(9 intermediate revisions by 5 users not shown)
Line 51: Line 51:
*John spirits Apollo away from he Precedium so he does not have to answer any questions from the President and General Maxwell. John then goes on to confirm to Apollo that Terra is not [[Earth (TOS)|Earth]], and their search for the [[Thirteenth Tribe (TOS)|Thirteenth Tribe]] will continue.
*John spirits Apollo away from he Precedium so he does not have to answer any questions from the President and General Maxwell. John then goes on to confirm to Apollo that Terra is not [[Earth (TOS)|Earth]], and their search for the [[Thirteenth Tribe (TOS)|Thirteenth Tribe]] will continue.
== British writer Matthew Wharmby's Summary ==
==Adama's Notes==
''It is now seven sectars since the escape of our captives, numbering amongst them, a group of Nomen and the dangerous soldiers from the Eastern Alliance, whose ominous destroyers apparently cruise these skies in search of any opposition to their political will. I have a recon patrol launched to track the escaping destroyer to its base on Lunar Seven. Once located, we can assess the strength of the Alliance on the outpost and determine our next step.''
Apollo (or is it Starbuck?) does a spot of unintentional freelancing for the Beings of Light, has his fifteen minutes of fame and averts a nuclear war, but all this and he's not on the right planet after all.
The Eastern Alliance's runaway destroyer tears towards Lunar Seven at star speed, pursued by Blue Squadron. The fascist (or national-communist, if you like, as I think they've got as much East German to them as Nazi German) Enforcers note the pursuing vipers, and in an unfilmed scene makes plans to lure the Galactican ships into a trap, assuming nearby destroyers can rendezvous in time. However, that's the last we see of Commandant Leiter and his crew, as Apollo is suddenly diverted. As he peels away from the rest of Blue Squadron's vector to make doubly sure there are no additional Alliance destroyers lurking, his ears are assailed by the unmistakable signature whine of the Ship of Lights, which pitches up behind him and swallows him up before the rest of Blue Squadron can blink.
As Boomer and Starbuck are wondering why their patrol leader has suddenly disappeared into thin air, Apollo awakens in a surprisingly familiar place, his uniform and laser bright white as before. Although his memories were wiped after the momentous events of 'War of the Gods', he recognises the Ship of Lights. Conveniently, an envoy materialises and greets Apollo with a cheerful 'hello'. This is John, engendered for the reassurance of corporeally-based beings such as Apollo, and played by Edward Mulhare (instantly familiar as Knight Rider's Devon Miles). We'll begin to see that all is not as it seems, for a very interesting reason - the script was actually written for Starbuck, and not Apollo. Thus we see Apollo acting quite out of character in many ways, and it's a strange sensation. Try and put that out of your minds, though, and keep reading.
The Guardians, angels, Seraphs, call them what you will, have a mission for Apollo, brushing aside his petty little concerns about his squadron. He's going to be sent to stop the impending war between Nationalists and Alliance on Terra itself, but the time constraint is such that Apollo can't do it as himself. Thus, he is going to have to assume the identity of a player in the Terran conflict, one Colonel Charlie Watts of the People's Nationalist Force. Watts has been imprisoned on Nationalist-held Lunar One, but has escaped. Apollo will take his place in order to deliver news that will hopefully put the Nationalist President off signing a misguided peace treaty with the Alliance. The predictable question, such as 'but won't I look different from him?' are answered briskly by John with a reassurance that Apollo will appear indistinguishable from the missing Colonel Watts. 'Actually, he's quite a good-looking fellow', John quips, showing that these otherwise deadly serious angels do have a sense of humour. As Apollo is sent on his way, however, John is none too convinced of the mission's likely success, pleading to an unseen superior higher above that he's working with primitives.
'Got to give up the late nights,' Apollo chuckles, very Starbuck-like, in his cockpit, believing he's awakened from a corker of a dream. 'My uniform's turned white!' he then gapes in amazement. Even more baffling is that Terra is now visible dead ahead, despite Blue Squadron's position being some considerable distance away. John appears on Apollo's monitor and explains the discrepancy. Far away, in Starbuck and Boomer's vipers, Apollo's beacon suddenly winks on again. Starbuck has no idea how Apollo got so far away in such a short time, but intends to find out. Boomer is instructed to keep after the fleeing destroyer while Starbuck heads for Terra to find Apollo.
Apollo puts down in a desert on the Nationalist side of the surface of Terra - not unnoticed by local authorities - where Charlie Watts's girlfriend Brenda is waiting. As soon as she meets Apollo, and gets him into her ground car (which has been dubbed with a suitable futuristic sound, but what, through the darkness, looks suspiciously like a '76-90 Chevrolet Caprice with enough landram-borrowed roof lighting to gut the battery in mere minutes), she starts bellyaching about how she got called in the middle of the night to come and pick him up in the middle of nowhere, with no warning.
Apollo, of course, has no idea what this pretty(ish) but distinctly neurotic young woman is on about, and his attempts to try and get some basic information out of her don't do altogether well. 'What was your name again?' he can't help but ask. 'Amnesia,' Brenda diagnoses in one, rolling her eyes. 'That's a pretty name,' attempts Apollo. Actually, come to think of it, this isn't as non-Apollo as it looks. Where Starbuck would have probably taken the opportunity to exercise Charlie's privileges with Brenda and quickly, Apollo comes off like a complete klutz with women, which is rather endearing - and definitely Apollo.
Back at Brenda's fashionable flat in the city, she lets 'Charlie' get his bearings while she goes upstairs to change, or freshen up, or whatever it is women seem to spend two hours in the bathroom doing. What she's really doing is calling the law! Some welcome, and some girlfriend! The rationale is that Charlie's been acting dead strange since he got back from captivity, and may be ill or traumatised. Downstairs, Apollo is completely stumped as to what to do next, when John appears. 'Hello,' he chirps again, but Apollo is less conciliatory this time. How is he going to avert this war when he doesn't even know who to get in touch with, for example? Brenda is even more suspicious when she comes downstairs (wearing not a great deal - she's changed all right) and sees 'Charlie' conversing with what appears to be an imaginary friend. When Apollo attempts to introduce John, the Seraph warns apologetically that she can't see him. When the doorbell rings, Apollo gets suspicious, but the two Nationalist military police have him covered before he can pull his laser on them. He is carted off angrily, cursing John as much as he does Brenda.
Aboard the Galactica, Tigh and Adama muse over the Terra situation after receiving Starbuck's report, and sanction his long haul to Terra in lieu of pursuing the Alliance destroyer. 'We could be flying into a war zone,' Tigh warns. Down on Terra, word has reached the Nationalist President Arends that Charlie Watts has escaped, but the President has ideas of his own that Colonel Watts's reappearance threatens to scupper. Apparently, none of the general population knows that the Eastern Alliance has captured all of Terra's satellites from the PNF. If Watts were to spill this information, it would derail Arends's grand plan to sue for peace with the Alliance's Supreme Commandant. Therefore, Charlie, and anyone in contact with him, are a threat. Accordingly, Apollo soon finds himself joined in prison by General Maxwell and Brenda. Across the hall, sympathetic Colonel Stone has also been imprisoned. Apollo is now able to reveal his true identity to the Nationalist dignitaries, who only now begin to understand him. If peace were signed so rashly, nothing would be able to defend the Nationalist side from the long-feared Alliance first strike. Anguished, Apollo can only plead to an invisible John for help. In the lab attached to the prison block, Dr Horning is puzzling over Apollo's laser and communicator, noting that the latter begins to receive transmissions from Starbuck. The Nationalist authorities, not least of them the President, are suitably alarmed that a second alien ship has infiltrated their airspace within hours. As it happens, John has to compete for angel status on this episode, as Starbuck has arrived. Landing next to Apollo's viper, he has barely got out of his cockpit when police forces in helicopters appear and set down close by. Cannily absolving himself of any blame should he 'accidentally' waste this local law enforcement, Starbuck records into his communicator 'Let the record show that in first contact with people from Terra, my laser's set for stun'. Five Nationalist military police dismount from each flying craft and line up in front of Starbuck, who is crouching down behind his viper. After a brief exchange, the Nationalists make a move to apprehend him, but Starbuck shoots first, dropping all ten with stun fire. He then, extremely gratuitously, blows their two flying craft to smithereens.  
As Starbuck enters the city, he is puzzled to hear a strange voice coming from behind him. John appears, touches him on the shoulder and says 'And now, you remember.' Looking down at his now white uniform, it all comes back to Starbuck. Making his way into the prison block, he is threatened by guards whom he has to stun (or rather, frighten them off by shooting a light fitting off its mountings and onto the floor). Dr Horning picks up Starbuck's shout of warning 'Stop or I'll blast you!' on Apollo's communicator and drops the device in startlement. When Apollo sees Starbuck come to rescue them, he is overjoyed and needs to convince the Maxwells and Stone no further as to who he says he is. The Nationalists are indeed using the peace plan to mount a first strike, and Apollo must get to the Presidium where Arends is about to make his 'peace in our time' speech, and waylay the President's foolhardy quest for glory. The Galactica, meanwhile, has left the fleet, and is charging headlong towards Terra at light speed, with not a moment to lose before it can bring its weapons to bear to avert nuclear war over Terra.
On the Eastern side, a dark bunker is the setting for the Eastern Alliance's Supreme Commandant to bombast his own ideas of 'peace in our time'. Gleefully, he announces that the time has come to ready all missiles for immediate launch. We then see stock footage of ICBMs on trailers being moved to launch positions.
Starbuck has Brenda drive him back to his viper so he can get in range to inform the Galactica that all hell is about to break loose. Brenda is appropriately awestruck when she sees the Colonial viper in her headlights (plenty of them, as I mentioned earlier!). Starbuck can get his spot of flirting in, but this time he doesn't even get a kiss goodbye. Oh well... In the Terran Presidium, Arends has delivered his speech, which has produced the desired effect among the audience - shock and muted approval. However, Arends is stunned to see that his political adversaries have escaped and are presenting a counter-argument of their own, spoken by Apollo. The Galactica's strike leader then makes a splendid speech in which he wistfully outlines the tragic recent history of the Colonies (although making sure not to mention anything or anyone by name). In a stinging slap at one-sided peace dreams, he notes bitterly that 'the opposite of war isn't necessarily peace. More often, it's slavery.' Only strength alone can keep opposing sides apart. On the other side of the planet, the Supreme Commandant pushes the button. Scores of intercontinental ballistic missiles breach their silos and charge into the sky...
President Arends doesn't seem too ruffled at his opponents' attempt to spoil his party, and doesn't look threatened enough to have them re-arrested, but it's all academic when General Maxwell steps up and informs them, sotto voce so as not to spread panic, that the Alliance has launched their first strike. More angry than terrified, if not completely resigned, Maxwell states blankly 'We've got about six minutes.'
Starbuck gets airborne and desperately attempts to contact the Galactica, now arriving in the sector. Helped out by John, he gets through to Adama and can just about blurt out what he needs to say. 'Hurry up Commander, they're gonna blow each other up!' Tension rises on the bridge as Adama sounds battle stations. Omega tracks the rising missiles, reporting that the Nationalists have simultaneously launched their automatic counterstrike. As the warheads reach the ionosphere and begin to make their approach curve, the Galactica activates a powerful shield over Terra's surface. The missiles simply impact the shield and explode harmlessly, and the Galactica continues to extend this shield until the entire stock of Terran ICBMs is depleted. Down on Terra, both sides are bemused as to why a) they aren't dead, and b) neither are their enemies. Apollo winks knowingly, looking at the shock on the faces of his Nationalist counterparts, who don't know quite what to believe. Not so long afterwards, even the President is chastised when a direct communique comes through from the Supreme Commandant, who has suddenly gained a desire for peace of his own. The gobsmacked Nationalists look over to thank Apollo for his action - but he has disappeared.
On a Terran sidewalk by night, Apollo wanders along, with John by his side. As John prepares to take his leave, Apollo begs one last question. 'Is this Earth?' John looks skyward for permission, as Apollo protests after all he'd done for them. After some conferring, John gives the answer. 'I'm sorry, Apollo... your journey is not over'.
* I'm sorry, but I thought the final scene was tremendously weak. All that buildup to a good scrap, heart-stopping music included, let down with a pathetic green shield spat out of the front of the Galactica. And from a terrible angle made necessary by two separately matted halves; one of Earth and one of the Galactica's underside. And you don't mean to tell me that the Galactica could extend such a shield over the whole planet? If so, why couldn't she have performed the same thing over Caprica in the pilot, and let the attacking Cylon fighters blow themselves up in it?
* Nobody seems too panicked about the impending nuclear annihilation! I don't know about you, but when us kids growing up in the late Cold War used to speculate nervously about the four-minute warning, the usual consensus was that we'd be doing, well, what it takes four minutes to do. 'You can do it twice,' the girls would quip.
* I'm not mad keen on Brenda's attitude. If every girl who had boyfriend trouble called the Old Bill on such a weak pretext, there wouldn't be a bloke alive out of prison!<ref>Sheba’s Galaxy: The Ultimate Battlestar Galactica Information Site.</ref>
== Notes ==  
== Notes ==  
Line 161: Line 123:
:'''President Arends''': Well uh ... that's impossible. I have this treaty ...
:'''President Arends''': Well uh ... that's impossible. I have this treaty ...
:'''General Maxwell''': Well frame it! But hurry!
:'''General Maxwell''': Well frame it! But hurry!
== Deleted Scenes ==
:''See: [[{{PAGENAME}}/Deleted_scenes|The deleted scenes from this episode.]]
== Official Statements ==  
== Official Statements ==  
Line 182: Line 147:
== External Links ==
== External Links ==
*[http://www.hulu.com/watch/11940 Experiment in Terra full episode on Hulu.com]
*[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gxTuucbs2Tk&feature=related Experiment In Terra full episode on YouTube]
*[http://galactica1981.tripod.com/EXPERIMENT.htm Experiment in Terra full summary and review at Sheba's Galaxy]
*[http://galactica1981.tripod.com/MissingExperiment.htm Experiment in Terra deleted scenes]
*[http://galactica1981.tripod.com/EXPERIMENT.htm Experiment In Terra full summary and review at Sheba's Galaxy]
*[http://galactica1981.tripod.com/MissingExperiment.htm Experiment In Terra deleted scenes]
== References ==
== References ==
<div style="font-size:85%"><references/></div>
{{Episode List (TOS)}}
{{Episode List (TOS)}}
Line 200: Line 162:
[[Category:Episodes directed by Rod Holcomb]]
[[Category:Episodes directed by Rod Holcomb]]
[[fr:Épisode:Opération Terra]]

Latest revision as of 09:48, 28 April 2020

For other items of the same name, see: Experiment in Terra (disambiguation).

Experiment in Terra
"Experiment in Terra"
An episode of the Original Series
Episode No. Season 1, Episode 19
Writer(s) Glen A. Larson
Story by
Director Rod Holcomb
Assistant Director
Special guest(s)
Production No. 50928
Nielsen Rating
US airdate USA 1979-03-18
CAN airdate CAN {{{CAN airdate}}}
UK airdate UK
DVD release 2004-12-28
Population survivors
Extended Info Re-released as a telemovie
Episode Chronology
Previous Next
Baltar's Escape Experiment in Terra Take the Celestra
[[IMDB:tt{{{imdb}}}|IMDb entry]]
Listing of props for this episode
[[frakr:{{{frakr}}}|Satirical view of this episode on WikiFrakr]]
Promotional Materials
Watch this episode's promo (on-wiki)
Online Purchasing
Amazon: Standard Definition | High Definition
iTunes: USA | UK


The mysterious bright lights return again, transporting the bewildered Apollo to the planet Terra to avert war with the Eastern Alliance. Exposing a plan by the devious president, Apollo has Starbuck warn Galactica, which lends the protective powers of its shields to avoid planetary holocaust.


  • There he is told by John that he needs to help Terra and stop a war. Due to their lack of a substantive, corporeal form, they are unable to affect changes without need of a proxy (what Apollo sees is a projection or representation of their spirit). Apollo is also told by John that to the Terrans he will appear to be a missing warrior named Colonel Charlie Watts, to allow him some credibility during his attempts. After this encounter, Apollo wakes up near Terra, an incredible distance from his previous position, and well outside the Vipers' fuel range for a safe return to Galactica.
  • Starbuck and Boomer detect Apollo's distress signal at extreme range. Starbuck goes to help Apollo, while Boomer returns to Galactica.
  • Apollo is picked up after landing on Terra by Brenda Maxwell who was Charlie Watts' girlfriend and they return to her apartment. John again appears to Apollo and advises him he needs to reveal the truth about Lunar One. Whilst he is doing so, Brenda notifies the authorities of "Charlie's" return, believing him to need medical attention. Soon Officer Brace arrives and Apollo is taken into custody, and subsequently examined by Doctor Horning.
  • Back on Galactica Commander Adama decides that the battlestar will temporarily leave the fleet to investigate the beacon signal sent by both Apollo and Starbuck's Viper's, leaving behind two full squadrons of fighters to protect the civilians.
  • Starbuck, having landed and found Apollo's Viper, gets into a gun fight with the local security force, stunning them all. He then sets off to find Apollo.
Apollo is taken aboard the Ship of Lights to help the Terrans.
  • After a brief discussion with John, Starbuck rescues Apollo, Brenda and her father General Maxwell who have just been imprisoned by Brace for questioning the Nationalist President's decisions regarding the Eastern Alliance. Brenda and General Maxwell realise what Apollo has been saying is true... he is not Charlie Watts.
  • The Leaders of the Eastern Alliance confirm their plans to launch a surprise attack on the Nationalists whilst at the same time, in the Nationalist Precedium, The President announces that a peace agreement with the Eastern Alliance has just been reached. Starbuck and Brenda Maxwell leave to retrieve Starbuck's Viper.
  • The attack is begun, the Nationalist's missiles being automatically launched after detection of the Eastern Alliance's surprise move. Galactica arrives, and following Starbuck's instructions uses its weapons to destroy all missiles from both sides. This surprise turn of events forces the Eastern Alliance to sue for peace.
  • John spirits Apollo away from he Precedium so he does not have to answer any questions from the President and General Maxwell. John then goes on to confirm to Apollo that Terra is not Earth, and their search for the Thirteenth Tribe will continue.

Adama's Notes

It is now seven sectars since the escape of our captives, numbering amongst them, a group of Nomen and the dangerous soldiers from the Eastern Alliance, whose ominous destroyers apparently cruise these skies in search of any opposition to their political will. I have a recon patrol launched to track the escaping destroyer to its base on Lunar Seven. Once located, we can assess the strength of the Alliance on the outpost and determine our next step.


  • The episode's title was derived from the 1962 film Experiment In Terror.
  • An extended version of this episode was made into a television movie with the same title.
  • Many fans have speculated that this episode was the inspiration for Quantum Leap, created by Donald P. Bellisario who was a writer for Galactica. When Apollo "leaps" into the life of Charlie Watts, you would have to think this gave Bellisario a few ideas. Interestingly, Bellisario was asked about this in an on-line interview and he said it is not true and that he can't even remember what Experiment In Terra was about. Considering the amazing similarities between the two, it's almost hard to believe him.
  • John reveals that Terra is not Earth.
  • Apollo's speech to the Precidium could be called "The Battlestar Galactica Thesis" since his argument of peace through strength pretty much sums up the stance of the entire series.
  • This script was actually written with the parts of Starbuck and Apollo reversed, but was changed when Richard Hatch complained that Apollo was being deemphasized in favor of Starbuck. To Hatch’s surprise the script was hastily rewritten. The dialogue stayed mostly intact, which resulted in Apollo talking in a way that sounds suspiciously like Starbuck. The differences are subtle, but they are noticeable if you listen closely enough. Apollo actually says "felgercarb", a word he has never said before.[1]
  • The Presidium on Terra was the French pavilion left over from Expo '67. It is one of the few buildings from the fair still standing. It is now Le Casino de Montréal.
  • The same stock shot of Le Casino de Montréal in this episode appears to also have been used for the Earth Defense Directorate on Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.
  • Adama misuses the word "sectar" as a measurement of time; an earlier episode notes that it is a unit of distance. The word that the writer of this episode may have wanted to use either centar (an hour) or secton (a week).
  • Some scenes of this episode were filmed at night at the Vasquez Rocks, notably the scene where Starbuck lands his Viper on Terra.
  • "Charlie Watts" is also the name of the drummer for the British rock group The Rolling Stones. It is rumored but unconfirmed that Larsen had the character named after Watts as a tribute to his reportedly being a fan of the show.[citation needed]
  • The "white uniforms" were reused in Galactica 1980 as part of the "time travel" effect employed in the series.
  • In the 2009 Galactica 1980 comic series, issue #3 is titled Experiment In Terra, an obvious nod to this episode.
  • This episode reveals that a Colonial laser is capable of stunning a group of people with a single shot.
  • Edward Mulhare (John) is probably best known for his role as Devon on Knight Rider.
  • Kenneth Lynch (Dr. Gordon) played Grover in the Galactica 1980 episode The Night the Cylons Landed, Part II.
  • One of the buildings in the Terran city was later used as the exterior of the Defense Directorate in Buck Rogers. The actual building is in Montreal, Canada.
  • John deLancie (Q from Star Trek: The Next Generation) appears as the Terran officer who approaches Starbuck's viper with a troop of soldiers. The scene occurs at Vaquez Rocks, an overexposed TV and film location because it has been frequently used to double as other worlds.
  • The Eastern Alliance in this episode seems very similar to the stereotypical image Americans held of the Soviet Union during the Cold War era. Interestingly enough, the Soviet Union issued a protest over Battlestar Galactica, claiming the series promoted false stereotypical notions that hurt the Soviet Union's image.


  • "Experiment in Terra" finishes off the arc started with "Greetings from Earth". It also serves as the last time the Beings of Light are seen in the entire series run, though this element will be reintroduced in "The Return of Starbuck", the final episode of Galactica 1980.
  • Many of the plot elements introduced in "Greetings from Earth" are closed in the episode, prime among them being the question of whether Terra is indeed the Thirteenth Colony. However, the Lunar Colonies mentioned in both this episode and "Greetings" are never seen. The conditions on the Lunar Colonies, now apparently controlled by the Eastern Alliance, are merely word-of-mouth, forcing the viewer to presume much of what has happened on these Lunar settlements. Of course, the plight of these Colonies, from where Michael and Sarah Fowler (and children) came, is seemingly written as an afterthought.
  • Much of the episode is an allegory of the Cold War, with fascism taking the place of Communism in the form of the Eastern Alliance.
  • This episode also reintroduces the concept of governmental authority as horribly flawed and inept, a recurring theme that has stuck with the series since "Saga of a Star World" and the episodes that have dealt with the Quorum of Twelve. Interestingly enough, this theme has been running through the entire arc, from the Quorum's handling of affairs in "Greetings" to their removal of martial law (and diminishing Adama's authority) in "Baltar's Escape". As was the case in both episodes, it takes Adama and the Warriors under his command to correct the errors in judgment, thus reinstilling the message that a strong military authority can right the wrongs of government.
  • The teasing in the series thus far has reinforced the fact that there is, indeed, another group of humans in the galaxy. Whether these humans are descendants of the Thirteenth Tribe that left Kobol ages ago is still very much in question, though it is something that viewers are to assume.
  • It is noteworthy that one of the writers of Battlestar Galactica, Donald P. Bellisario, would notably use the basic theme of this episode of putting the hero in the guise of a local accompanied by a "holographic" companion that no one could see again in the 1989 television show Quantum Leap. The similarities are quite obvious, especially given the Bellisario connection.


  • If the beings on the Ship of Lights were willing to interfere and save the planet Terra from destruction, then why didn't they interfere to prevent the destruction of the Colonies?
  • Why do the Beings of Light need proxies to do their bidding? Surely an advanced race would have resolved a more elegant solution than co-opting "primitives" for their needs?
  • Bearing in mind the interest the Beings of Light had with the Terrans, did the Beings of Light share this same interest and concern in the Colonials before or during the Thousand-Yahren War?
  • Why does Galactica leave the Fleet defenseless to protect Terra, particularly in lieu of Adama's comments in "The Living Legend", where Adama voices opposition to attacking Gamoray because it would leave the Fleet defenseless from a Cylon killing force?
  • Are the Cylons still pursuing the Fleet? If they are, will they too happen across Terra and likely destroy that civilization?
  • Why did John give Apollo the guise of Charlie Watts when Apollo immediately dumps this persona and introduces himself as Captain Apollo anyway? He then even tells the Precedium all about the Colonies but then is told to not say a word at the end to the leaders. Was this a writing mishap?


  • Starbuck enters the prison complex with his gun drawn, yet when we see him inside the building in the very next shot, his gun is in his holster. It is not until he sees the guards that he draws the gun again. Why would Starbuck put his gun back in his holster when he knew he'd have to use it?
  • Starbuck is miles away from his viper helmet when John causes his uniform to turn white, yet when Starbuck returns to his viper, his helmet is white.
  • After Starbuck stuns the group of Terran soldiers, he leaves them there unconscious. When he returns later, they are gone. Where did they go? If they regained consciousness, wouldn't they have confiscated the vipers?

Noteworthy Dialogue

Apollo: What was your name?
Brenda Maxwell: [remarking on "Charlie Watts's" state] Amnesia.
Apollo: Amnesia. That's a pretty name.
  • Apollo reflects on John's sense of humor:
Apollo: That's very funny. At least you have a sense of humor.
John: In my job, dealing with primitive cultures, it's an absolute necessity.
  • Upon learning that the Vipers are transmitting emergency beacons near Terra
Adama: Tigh, plot a course for Terra.
Tigh: What velocity, sir?
Adama: Lightspeed.
Tigh: Sir, it has been some time since the Galactica has been pushed to—
Adama: Lightspeed, Colonel.
Tigh: Yes, sir.
  • Upon learning the Eastern Alliance has launched a nuclear attack
President Arends: Well uh ... that's impossible. I have this treaty ...
General Maxwell: Well frame it! But hurry!

Deleted Scenes

See: The deleted scenes from this episode.

Official Statements

  • Richard Hatch discusses his "Starbuck"-esque role in this episode:
Richard Hatch: One of the biggest, well, kind of practical jokes was, there was an episode written for Dirk [Benedict], and I got the episode and I…I was a little upset. I felt they were, you know, knocking Captain Apollo. I felt they were really pushing him aside and I said, I think it’s time that HE had a story, that you did something for this character rather than just letting him give orders and go march around the ship. So he, Glen [Larson] said, you’re right, we really should, we need a story with Captain Apollo going down to HIS planet. So, about two hours later, the script I’d had, featuring Dirk, arrived at my house, and it had been…the two characters of Captain Apollo and Starbuck were simply interchanged, they’d put my name where Starbuck was and put Starbuck where Apollo was. And I immediately got into the car and was seeking out Dirk to apologize, because I simply had no idea, I thought, down the road, the next story, maybe a couple of stories later he’d write one for Captain Apollo. He didn’t do that, he just took the very story that had probably been in Dirk’s hands, he’d been going “what a wonderful script I have here!” and two hours later he gets a script where he was now Captain Apollo and I’m Starbuck and literally he has not changed any lines. In any case I was very embarrassed and I found him at a party and I explained the whole situation to him and how sorry I was and he said, well, I understand, I just think you should go to Glen Larson and ask him to reverse it, put it back the other way. So I tried to find Glen Larson, and I told him, I appreciate the gesture, but the next time will you be a little more subtle? Sometimes you want to expand your character, you want to bring in new dimensions to the character and they gave Captain Apollo the chance to do a few things that he didn’t normally do on that show because, as you all know, Starbuck got to run around and have fun with the ladies and Captain Apollo…kind of had fun with himself…and from that time on they actually began to change, not change the characters, but to give Starbuck a little bit of the Captain Apollo quality and Captain Apollo a little bit of the Starbuck qualities, and they started to make the characters more well-rounded, and I appreciated that.[2]

Guest Stars

External Links


  1. Sci-Fi Channel Sciography Battlestar Galactica documentary.
  2. Paxton, Susan J.. 1986 Galacon Q & A with Richard Hatch and Anne Lockhart (backup available on Archive.org) (in ). Retrieved on 12 August 2007.