Tuesday, 25 January 2005

Saga of a Star World

Kobol's Last Gleaming, Part II was shown last night on sky one. Battlestar Galactica's S1 finale is of Buffy/24/Alias calibre. The audacious twists and turns, culminating in Adama's 'assassination' by a Boomer Cylon replica, were irresistible. The exploration of Cylon religion (ideology) provided the production with an opportunity to reprise the cinema of Stanley Kubrick and intellectual concepts penned by Isaac Asimov and Philip K. Dick. Whilst the biomechanical Basestar interior evoked the designs of fabled surrealist H.R. Giger.

Turning back to the original Battlestar Galactica TV series. In Europe three feature-length episodes were released theatrically (in alternate form):

*Battlestar Galactica (1978)
Abridged version of Saga of a Star World. Includes Baltar's execution, which was deemed too violent for TV audiences.

*Mission Galactica: The Cylon Attack (1978)
The Living Legend Part I & Part II and Fire in Space.

*Galactica III: Conquest of the Earth (1980)
Galactica Discovers Earth, The Night the Cylons Landed Part I & Part II, The Young Lords and stock footage taken from the movie Earthquake (1974).

We didn't own cable (Rediffusion television was one of the earliest providers). So, I only viewed the first theatrically and the 'sequels' on video rental (Sony Betamax). Baltar's execution (in the theatrical version) is confusing and his return is never explained. It would be nearly a decade before I had an opportunity to see the entire Battlestar Galactica series including the risible Galactica 80.

I've ordered the 2003 mini-series (R1 DVD) from Play. Compare and contrast R1, R2 and R4 releases here.

On an unrelated note. Some iDisk users are experiencing service problems following scheduled maintenance (at the weekend). I'm very happy to report that none of the purported issues have afflicted my account. Again, this only serves to underscore the importance of archiving data on a regular basis.