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Difference between revisions of "33"

From Battlestar Wiki, the free, open content Battlestar Galactica encyclopedia and episode guide
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{{Episode Data|
 
{{Episode Data|
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| Title= 33
 
| Title= 33
 
| Series= [[Battlestar Galactica (RDM)|The Re-imagined Series]]
 
| Series= [[Battlestar Galactica (RDM)|The Re-imagined Series]]

Revision as of 14:51, 24 January 2006

Universal Logo
"33"
An episode of the Re-imagined Series
Episode No. Season , Movie {{{movie}}}
Writer(s)
Story by
Director
Assistant Director
Special guest(s) {{{guests}}}
Production No. {{{production}}}
Nielsen Rating {{{rating}}}
US airdate USA {{{US airdate}}}
CAN airdate CAN {{{CAN airdate}}}
UK airdate UK {{{UK airdate}}}
DVD release {{{dvd}}}
Population {{{population}}} survivors
Extended Info {{{extra}}}
Episode Chronology
{{{title}}}
Related Information
Official Summary
R&D Skit – [[R_and_D_TV (Season {{{season}}})#33|View]]
[[IMDB:tt{{{imdb}}}|IMDb entry]]
Listing of props for this episode
[[frakr:{{{frakr}}}|Satirical view of this episode on WikiFrakr]]
Promotional Materials
Online Purchasing
Amazon: Standard Definition | High Definition
iTunes: [{{{itunes}}} USA]


Overview

Continuing from the events of the Mini-Series, battlestar Galactica and the Fleet must avoid their Cylon pursuers, which ambush them every 33 minutes after each successful Jump.

Summary

On Galactica

  • The crew of battlestar Galactica have been on continuous alert for some 130.35 hours, during which time the Fleet has had to make an Jump every 33 minutes to escape their Cylon pursuers shortly after their initial escape from Ragnar Anchorage.
  • Everyone in the Fleet is beginning to feel the strain – particularly Gaius Baltar, who is also distracted by Six’s repeated conversations about God having a plan for him, and also her wanting to have his children.
  • Vessels in the Fleet are also beginning to feel the strain: Jump engines and their controlling computers are starting to breakdown or malfunction, requiring Galactica to linger longer and longer in the Cylon line of fire while the rest of the fleet complete their Jumps.
  • Following jump number 237, President Roslin receives word from a Dr. Amorak aboard the Olympic Carrier concerning information on how the Cylons overcame Colonial defenses.
  • Overhearing the conversation, Baltar is worried: he knew Amorak at the Defence Ministry. As Six points out, Amorak might have information on Baltar's complicity with the Cylon attack.
  • There is insufficient time before the next Jump to bring Amorak aboard Colonial One, but Roslin wants to see him directly after the Jump has been completed.
  • Elsewhere, Sharon "Boomer" Valerii is having problems accepting her new ECO, Crashdown, and is feeling guilty about leaving Karl "Helo" Agathon on Caprica to his fate.
  • When the next Jump is made, the Olympic Carrier, complete with Dr. Amorak and 1344 other souls, fails to appear with the rest of the Fleet. Six tries to convince Baltar that it is because God is watching over him.
  • Thirty-three minutes later, the Fleet is ready to jump, but the Cylons don’t appear. Adama orders a stand-down from the immediate alert, but the Fleet is to maintain a readiness to Jump, in case the Cylons do return.
  • When Baltar continues to refuse the concept of God, the Olympic Carrier reappears; Commander Adama orders the Fleet to Condition One alert, fearing the worst. He orders the Jump clocks reset in anticipation of the Cylons arriving.
  • The Combat Air Patrol lead by Lee Adama intercepts the starliner. Adama orders all communications with the Carrier jammed and the Carrier is ordered (through signal lamps) to remain at it's current position. When the Carrier fails to heed orders not to approach the fleet, tensions rise, and a radiological alarm reveals there is now a nuclear weapon on the liner.
  • As the crisis deepens, the Cylons appear precisely 33 minutes after the return of the Carrier, confirming that the Carrier was used somehow by the Cylons to track the Fleet. Adama wants to destroy the liner, but Roslin hesitates to give the order, as no one can be sure if the 1,345 people aboard the Carrier are still alive. Baltar is terrified she won't give the order for fear of Amorak's information.
  • Six uses the hesitation to push Baltar into “repenting” before God. As soon as he does, Roslin gives the order to destroy the liner. Apollo and Starbuck (reluctantly) open fire, destroying the liner. After the Fleet makes a Jump once more, the Cylon's relentless pursuit is halted.
  • A day later, everyone is living with the consequences of their actions. Only Billy Keikeya has a small nugget of good news: at some point in the proceedings, a baby was born in the Fleet.

On Caprica

  • Helo is on the run in the rainy woodland, and has Claymore-like ordinance he uses to blow up pursuing Cylon Centurions.
  • Helo's six days on the run comes to an end when he is captured by the Cylons, after being distracted by the appearance of a copy of Number Six, wearing a white raincoat.
  • Helo is “rescued” by a copy of Valerii, who shoots Six and then leads Helo away into the woods. Helo mistakenly believes that this Valerii copy is actually the "Boomer" copy that left Caprica and returned to rescue him.

Summary from Sci-Fi.com

In the wake of the Cylon sneak attack, the ragtag fleet of human survivors is forced to play a deadly game of cat-and-mouse with their pursuers. Every 33 minutes, they make a jump to a new location. And every 33 minutes, the Cylons manage to find them. The pilots are on the brink of exhaustion, relying on artificial stimulants to keep fighting, and the civilians are beginning to doubt the leadership of Commander Adama and President Roslin.

When the Olympic Carrier, a commercial passenger ship, fails to make a jump and then later mysteriously turns up unharmed, Adama fears it has been infiltrated by the Cylons. His choice: destroy it and the 1,300 souls it might still be carrying, or risk the annihilation of the entire fleet. Adama is not alone in fearing the mystery ship. Baltar, who remains mentally connected with his beautiful and deadly Cylon companion Number Six, panics when he learns one of the ship's passengers has information about a traitor in the president's inner circle.

Meanwhile, down on the ruined, Cylon-occupied colony of Caprica, Helo is on the run from another group of Cylons. He's going to need help to make it back to the Galactica — but there's no help in sight…. --©2005, SCI FI. All rights reserved.

Questions

  • Billy reports that the number of survivors is down by 300 - some lost through death from injuries, etc., some "lost" through initial inaccurate counts, and the rest of whom have "disappeared". How can people simply "disappear" in the fleet?
  • Does Doctor Amorak truly have something on Baltar's involvement in the holocaust?
  • Is Six actually in contact with other Cylons, and thus was involved in the disappearance / reappearance of the Olympic Carrier?

Blooper Moments

  • During the opening titles, Galactica is shown to be making a Jump with her flight pods extended - not only that, the shot was recycled footage from the Mini-Series.
  • Billy may be a good PA, but he’s not good at math. The inaugural episode starts with 50,298 survivors. He informs Roslin this is in error by 300 = 49,998 survivors. When the Olympic Carrier is destroyed (1,345 people), he reduces the total to 47,972 – that’s a reduction of 2026, or 681 people MORE than listed on the Carrier!
    • Whatever Roslin taught at school, it wasn’t mathematics – she fails to pick up on Billy’s error.
    • This is after five sleepless nights and doubtlessly uncertain population figures coming from across the Fleet, making the uncertain numbers of survivors partly reasonable. The business of performing an accurate census, after all, is of a comparatively low priority than the business of self-preservation.
  • When Dualla admits that she lost the Olympic Carrier, her headset changes sides during the conversation.
  • As Helo fires upon the Cylon Centurion that survived the detonation of an anti-personnel mine (similar to a Claymore mine), the first time Helo fires the pistol, it is heard to fire, but there is no accompanying visual spark from the barrel. In contrast, the second shot is accompanied by both a spark and the appropriate sound.
  • As the Cylon Centurion approaches Helo from behind, you can see the rain hitting it, but it does not drip off the Warrior's body. In contrast, water is dripping from Helo's face in a fairly consistent and noticeable manner.
  • After the disappearance of the Olympic Carrier in Jump 238, and the timer is running towards the 33 minute mark, the viewer can see that the clock is at 10 seconds. When focusing on Adama and Tigh, the viewer hears ten seconds counting off, but when the camera quick-pans to the overhead console, it reads that 3 seconds have passed.

Analysis

Overall, a good opening episode that cleverly adds to a number of arcs from the Mini-Series: is Boomer a Cylon? What is the Six who is interacting with Baltar? Can the Colonials truly escape the shadow of the Cylons?

The opening sequence of shots ending with the second Valerii on Caprica is interesting: is this a hint to the real identity of Boomer on Galactica? Also, is the good-natured teasing between Starbuck and Boomer during the CAP an indication that others have noticed Boomer seems to be handling the lack of sleep a lot better than others. Could this lead to some kind of rumour-mill starting-up about her? (Answers start in "Litmus")

As to Baltar's Six: three possibilities seem to suggest themselves:

  • She is a working of his own psyche; a reaction to his betrayal of his people to the Cylons. Certainly, his increasing psychosis in the episode would seem to point to this; but then, he has - like the rest - been five plus days without sleep, and some degree of paranoia is bound to result.
  • She is, as she suggested in the Mini-Series, an implant in his head and possibly in communication with the Cylons. However, if this is the case, surely the Cylon hunt for the Fleet would continue despite the destruction of the Olympic Carrier - as the Cylons would be tracing the fleet through Baltar. Given the humans are to all intents and purposes "on the ropes", it seems odd that they would break off the attack when they have such a clear advantage. (The brain scan on Baltar in "Home, Part II" dismisses the notion that a mechanical implant is in his head, although it may not be medically recognizable or even in his head, but elsewhere.)
  • Could Six be could she actually be a complete download of "Six's" personality, captured at the point of destruction of Baltar's home, and now contained in his head, possibily occupying his subconscious, out of contact with her own kind, but able to fully interact with his thoughts and feelings – even manipulate his thoughts and feelings? This may suggest Baltar could be a Humano-Cylon himself.

Meanwhile, the episode builds on some of the relationships established in the Mini-Series: Apollo and Starbuck clearly have a past, at least through Thrace's relationship with Lee's deceased brother, Zak, one that reaches beyond command hierarchies, exhaustion and tempers. The hangar deck confrontation is a valuable byplay not so much for what it says, but for the way in which it is communicated - a large element of non-verbal communication passing between Thrace and Lee Adama prior to her taking the stims.

Similarly, Roslin's mistrust of Adama, as expressed at the end of the Mini-Series following his admission that "Earth" was a deception on his part, has begun to grow into an edgy respect: she knows full-well that without his leadership, the Fleet would not have survived 5 days of repeated Jumps - and she is prepared to admit it. (Roslin deals with Adama's deception about Earth starting in a multi-episode story arc starting later in the season and concluding in season 2.)

Then there is Adama's relationship with his son. From the scene where they discuss responsibility, it is evident that there is a gulf between them still - one that may well be held open in part by their relative positions aboard Galactica. Adama is Lee's father and the commmanding officer of Galactica. While both again appear to want to bridge the gap – the difference in rank still prevents them openly discussing things: hence Lee's act of rebuffing his father's attempt to console him following the shooting of the Olympic Carrier. (The tension between the Adamas comes to a head with significant reconciliation in "Act of Contrition", "You Can't Go Home Again", "The Hand of God", and in the concluding first season and opening second season episodes, starting with "Kobol's Last Gleaming, Part I" through "Home, Part II".)

Overall the three storylines evident in the episode – escaping the Cylons, Baltar and Six and Helo on Caprica - are cleverly interwoven, with the main storyline; the Baltar / Six relationship in particular intersecting smoothly through the crisis involving the Olympic Carrier, while the Helo subplot is given enough exposure to engage us and deflect attention from the "A" story sufficiently to heighten the drama, without actually interrupting the overall story flow.

Indeed, such is the subtlety of the Helo sub-plot that the questions it raises don't really reveal themselves until a second viewing, and you realize they are related to the central Cylon theme: why does Six ask him if he is alive? He clearly is, and the question is not a reference to either his leg wound or his radiation-induced sickness. Nor is it simply a throwback to her "sister's" first words to the Colonial officer at Armistice Station. It is something that appears to go to the very center of Cylon reasoning. (Answers to the strange manipulations with Helo are explained in the second season episode, "The Farm".)

Similarly, while it could be over-sensitivity given the amount of time the Valerii on Caprica was on-screen, but one couldn't help but feel she was perhaps a little too human; too familiar with Helo? It seems odd that she is introduced to Helo through the "killing" of the Six construct. Why resort to the "murder" of one of her own? Was this simply to establish her credibility in the eyes of Helo? Could she not have found another way to make contact with Helo? Contrasted with the comments regarding Boomer's heritage back on Galactica, are the writers attempting to imply something? Could it bee that BOTH the Valerii characters are Cylons that believe themselves to be human? (The Valerii model indeed shows a history of being too human as season 1 and 2 progresses: See the Humano-Cylon article for more.)

Nit-picks

  • Why is Boomer's Raptor launched alongside Apollo's Vipers for what everyone is expecting to be an interdiction exercise against Cylon Raiders?
  • Based on events from the Mini-Series and in later episodes, Raptors are occasionally used to support or augment Viper operations with strengthened DRADIS and perhaps radiological detection. Normally, Raptors are not on CAP with Vipers and are frequently deployed alone or as a group, but the events of "33" suggest that Commander Adama wanted to ensure extra coverage with the Raptor's stronger avionics to ensure extra coverage of Cylon activity.
  • The Corridor Memorial scene, while somewhat heavy-handed to some viewers, succeeded in continuing the writer's allusion to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States to the events of the Mini-Series through the use of the many memorials, the confusion in finding lost loved ones, and Dualla's amazement at the size of the memorial. (A picture of a Colonial soldier on one of the Colonies during its destruction also plays on the intense feelings of loss and hopelessness felt by many Americans when they saw similar pictures of New York City firefighters at the ruins of the World Trade Center.)
  • Similarly, the failure to openly resolve the issue of whether or not 1,345 people remained aboard the Olympic Carrier after its return weakens the story for some. Indeed, Apollo's flyby of the ship is suggestive that the ship indeed was empty - thus removing our feelings of horror one step further from the drama being played out on screen. Would the scene have been better portrayed with humans looking outward to give a heightened potential of loss? By not showing the passengers, the writers increase the magnitude of consequence to the Colonials. The ambiguity of the passenger's status also fit with the new Humano-Cylon modus operandi. Given that it is likely that a Humano-Cylon had infiltrated the Carrier, leading to its probable capture and transformation into a weapon, the operatives also tend to play psychological games on the Colonials for greater long-term effect than the mere loss of a ship. It is very likely that the Cylons knew that the missing passengers would make things harder for the Colonials and cause greater strife.
  • Another nit-pick comes with the reminder of Tigh's alcoholism. The by-play here didn't entirely fit, and came across as a clumsy reminder that the writers hadn't forgotten about Tigh's condition and would possibly be returning to it in the future (which does happen in season 2, particularly in "Resistance").
  • Some viewers had become curious of the significance to the use of the number "33" in this episode, as well as the use of the number "3" with events in later episodes. As with other science-fiction television such as "Star Trek", writers tend to play inside jokes, sometimes perpetuating this from series to series. Nothing to date has shown that these plays on numbers are anything more than jokes that do not infer additional relevant episode data. See the amusing Numerology page for more on these number jokes and the "mystery of 33."

Notes

  • Continuous jumping badly affects the FTL drives and management systems aboard commercial Colonial vessels, which are not as rugged as the Galactica's military-issue drives
  • The Cylons Jump ability is just as highly-accurate as the Jumps of the Colonials. In 238 times they manage to pounce on the Colonial fleet, arriving with precise momentum and trajectory to be able to close the distance and launch an attack
  • There are 5,251 people in the Fleet from Sagittaron
  • As of "33", there are 60 civilian ships in the Fleet, but errors in continuity of episode events, especially from "Home, Part I", may place this initial information in question
  • The head count of Colonial citizens at the end of the episode is 47,273
  • This episode won the 2005 Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form
  • Zoic visual effects artists hid small signs of movement within the Olympic Carrier in close-up effect shots as something of a morbid joke. Lights in the windows appear to flicker on and off rather rapidly and when slowed down there is some kind of movement visible on the inside of the ship
  • In the DVD commentary for this episode, Ron D. Moore states that during the scene when Dualla hands Commander Adama set of reports that he reads aloud (including fuel shortages, dozens of crewmen breaking down from nervous exhaustion, etc), Edward James Olmos ad-libbed "and ten suicides" in one take. The production team really liked the ad-lib, and thought the way Olmos acted the scene was fantastic. However, there were concerns that the network would think this would make an already extremely "dark" episode far too dark and alienate the audience during the premiere, and the line was reluctantly cut.

Noteworthy Dialogue

  • Colonel Tigh: Yes, we're tired. Yes, there is no relief. Yes, the Cylons keep coming after us time after time after time. And yes, we are still expected to do our jobs!
  • When Lee Adama and Kara Thrace are on Galactica's flight deck:
Lee Adama: Hey, did you see the note from the XO?
Kara Thrace: I saw it. No way.
Lee Adama: Kara, everyone else--
Kara Thrace: I don't fly with stims. They fudge with your reflexes, your reaction time.
Lee Adama: Come on, Kara, give me a break. Just--
Kara Thrace: Why are we arguing about this?
Lee Adama: I have no idea.
Kara Thrace: Neither do I. You're the CAG, act like one.
Lee Adama: What does that mean?
Kara Thrace: It means that you're still acting like everyone's best friend. We're not friends. You're the CAG. "Be careful out there?" Our job isn't to be careful, it's to shoot frakking Cylons out of the sky. "Good Hunting" is what you say. And one of your idiot pilots is acting like a child and refusing to take her pills. So she either says "Yes, sir" and obeys a direct order, or you smack her in the mouth and drag her sorry ass to sickbay and you make her take those pills.
(Lee and Kara both start laughing)
Lee Adama: Well, I'm glad I'm not working for you.
Kara Thrace: (laughing) Damn right you're glad.
Lee Adama: So do I have to smack you in the mouth, Lieutenant?
Kara Thrace: No sir, I'll take my pills. (takes pills from Lee) Perfect.
Lee Adama: Carry on.
Kara Thrace: (half-heartedly saluting) Yes, sir.
  • When Commander Adama and Colonel Tigh are talking outside the CIC:
Colonel Tigh: (grunting) Oh...a couple hours rack time does sound awfully sweet right about now...
Commander Adama: You deserve it.
Colonel Tigh: You know, the truth is, all this has me feeling...well, more alive than I have in years.
Commander Adama: You look that way too. It's good to see you without the cup in your hand.
Colonel Tigh: Ah, don't start.
Commander Adama: I know there's a whole lot of people on this ship, that wish you weren't feeling as good.
Colonel Tigh: (laughing) If the crew doesn't hate the XO, then he's not doing his job. Besides, I've gotta make the old man look good.
Commander Adama: I always look good.
Colonel Tigh: Look in the mirror.
Commander Adama: Seriously...
Colonel Tigh: Sir?
Commander Adama: It's one thing to push the crew. It's another thing to break them.
  • As the Olympic Carrier heads on a suicide run towards Galactica, Lee Adama, Kara Thrace and Sharon Valerii are flying beside the liner:
Boomer: (in a Raptor flying beside the Olympic Carrier) We have...new orders. We are directed to...destroy the Olympic Carrier, and return back to Galactica.
Kara Thrace: (in a Viper flying beside the carrier) It's a civilian ship!
Crashdown: (inside the Raptor) Yeah...a civilian ship with nukes.
(Lee Adama looks out the cockpit window of his Viper at the ship, which seems to be barren)
Crashdown: I don't see anybody in there. Do you?
Lee Adama: The Cylons will be here any second. If we're gonna do this, let's just do it. Starbuck, form up with me and we'll make one pass from astern.
(Lee and Kara fall back a fair distance from the ship)
Kara Thrace: Lee, what if you're wrong? (silence) Lee, come on. Lee!
Lee Adama: Okay, fire on my mark.
Kara Thrace: No frakking way, Lee. Lee! Come on!
Lee Adama: Fire.
(Lee and Kara both open fire on the Olympic Carrier, and it explodes in a ball of flames)

Official Statements

===

From RDM's Sci-Fi Channel Blog: Note on "Lest We Forget" ===

"It's probably been asked before, but I'm curious as to whom[sic] is in the picture in the Viper Pilot's briefing room, facing away from the camera . . . the one the pilots, including Commander Adama, touch when they enter and leave? This is touching, and is a wonderful human element to the story. So who is it?"
There was a scene cut from "33" where we saw Laura Roslin being given her copy of the photo along with a card that said it was taken on the roof of the capitol building on Aerilon during the attack. The photo was inspired by the famous shot of the fire-fighters raising the flag at Ground Zero that became iconic. I thought the Colonies would have their own version of this -- a snapshot taken in the moment that becomes a symbol of the day they can never forget and of all they had lost. The photo itself is of a soldier falling to his knees (possibly shot or simply overcome by emotion) as he stands on the rooftop over looking the devastation of his city, while the Colonial flag waves at the edge of frame. The inscription below the photo on Laura's plaque reads, "Lest We Forget" in itself a reference to the inscription on the watch presented to John Wayne's character in "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon."

Comments from the Cast

  • "Insomnia. Nobody has slept. Everyone's just coming to terms with the fact that they have lost everybody that they've loved or relate to." -- Jamie Bamber, [1]
  • "It was a hard episode, because, you just had to basically fall apart." -- Katee Sackhoff, [2]
  • "Episode 1 is extremely docu-style because the characters haven't actually slept for five days (sic) and they have been running from the Cylons for the 250th time. And its very stressful and they're about to lose the plot completely because of sleep deprivation." -- Michael Rymer, [3]
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External Links

"33" at scifi.com