Monday, December 1, 2008

No Final Cylon Will Ever Be Good Enough

By Graeme McMillan

With Battlestar Galactica returning in less than two months, anticipation is at fever pitch over the identity of the show's Final Cylon. We've looked at the clues to date and offered some theories of our own, but with SyFyPortal claiming that it knows the character's identity for sure - and then offering up five possible choices to choose from - it's time to look at it from another angle: Which character would be ruined if they turned out to be the Final Cylon?

While Charlie Jane isn't convinced by SyFy Portal's claim of spoilage, at least three of the five contenders seem particularly believable (Especially when you consider the WTF-age of Tigh, Anders, Tory and Tyrol's reveals at the end of last season). But at what point does the revelation that "[character X] isn't who you thought they were at all!" cease to be shocking - or even interesting - and start to be annoying? Isn't there a chance that the mystery of the identity of the Final Cylon has been ruined by being built up so much, and that no solution will end up being satisfying enough to fans? Here are SyFy Portal's five choices for Final Cylon, and why we'd rather that none were true:

Lee Adama
Why It Sucks: Short of the Final Cylon being Bill Adama himself, isn't this the second most obvious - and boring - choice? The son of the man who led the fleet back to Earth, and the one who's been presented to be some kind of voice of a greater morality (See his defense of Baltar and new political career), being revealed to be a Cylon would feel to be a cynical "gotcha" moment on behalf of the writers... but, on the other hand, it may finally manage to make the character interesting.

Felix Gaeta
Why It Sucks: While it'd give him an excuse for that terrible singing episode - He was clearly trying to drive humanity insane with his maudlin wailing - there would be a strange feeling of Deja Vu if Gaeta turned out to be the Final Cylon. Haven't we already seen the mid-level administrative Cylon reveal with Torry? And, more worryingly - and this is actually enough to make me convinced that Gaeta is going to be revealed to be the Final Cylon - considering Tigh, Anders and Tyrol have already been revealed to be Cylons, wouldn't this make all of the main players in the New Caprica resistance Cylons? If that's the case, then that's not retcon irony, that's just a bucketload of fail.

Laura Roslin
Why It Sucks: It's too clean a wrap-up for all of Roslin's storylines, for one. The visions? She's a Cylon who was predestined to be The One. Being cured of cancer by Cylon genes? Because she's a Cylon! Pushing suspected Cylons out of airlocks? Because her subconscious was overcompensating for her secret! Falling in love with Bill Adama? Because she had to get close to the leader of humanity! And so on, and so on. It's too neat that I don't really believe that it could be true - and, also, I can't see Mary McDonnell going for the idea, either.

Ellen Tigh and Cally Tyrol
Why Both Suck: The last two suggestions on the list are disappointing for exactly the same reasons - Because they're dead, and because they were married to another member of the Final Five, without any of them knowing. Sure, both have a "They were killed by a member of the Final Five" thing going for them for those who like the gritty irony thing, but it feels like lazy melodrama for the long-awaited reveal to be about someone who's already dead at the unknowing hands of one of their own (Although, were it Cally, then Torry's cruelty would come to light - and she'd arguably see her the wrongness of her actions). Worse yet would be if it did turn out to be one of these two characters, and they then came back from the dead; this isn't Heroes, thank you very much, even if BSG's Mark Verheiden has jumped ship to NBC's superhero soap.

Assuming that SyFY Portal's list is real - and that the Final Cylon is amongst these five characters - there are some things to be thankful for. That Starbuck isn't in there, for one thing, and neither is Admiral Adama himself. But otherwise, it's a worrying look at what may be to come... partially because it gives the feeling that no-one will be good enough to be the Final Cylon, and that there's no "good" way to finish the series.

Battlestar Galactica returns to SciFi on January 16th.

The Final Five On The Final Cylon [SyFyPortal]

Original here

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