Wednesday, October 20

Galactica Station's Review of Caprica 1.10 - Unvanquished

Hi Everyone!  This is Captain Kickass and it is my pleasure to bring you a review of the Caprica episode Unvanquished.  We at GS are excited that reviews will be starting again and I personally apologize that we are a bit behind with season 1.5.  Hopefully things will calm down soon.  On to the review!

I really enjoyed some of the parallels in the season 1.5 opener to key events in Season 1.0.  The episode begins with a shot of a drunk Daniel Greystone nearly passed out on the couch.  Distressed, he flips channels on the TV.  Every channel is discussing Vergis’s takeover of the C-Bucks, Greystone Industries, or Amanda’s fall three weeks earlier.  Daniel stares miserably at the screen.   The scene largely paralleled the situation Daniel and Amanda found themselves in after they found out Zoe was connected to the STO.  They were already miserable but sunk to a terrified despair.  They flipped channels and watched Sarno make fun of them on his show.   Daniel Greystone has always been depicted as a steely, ruthless businessman, suave, collected, often with a drink in his hand. In contrast, the current Daniel is a slovenly mess. He has quite obviously lost everything and makes me think back to what he used to be.

But Daniel has a streak of determination and ruthlessness that surpasses all of his emotions.  Back when Amanda announced Zoe’s possible involvement in the attacks, Daniel fought against the backlash by going on Sarno himself and throwing himself into his work.  He became even more ruthless, eventually going as far as torturing Cylon-Zoe while he thought that his daughter’s avatar was inhibiting the machine.  How much more callous could a man get? 

Now, Daniel musters up that old determination again.  He somehow pulls himself to his feet and manages to go meet with the Tauron mob boss.  Sam and Joseph Adama are in attendance as Daniel tells the mob boss about the potential of the avatars to bring loved ones back and of the eventual possibility of finding them bodies.  The mob boss asks Daniel why it would work this time.  Daniel argues his point passionately and in return, asks the Tauron mob for their help in retrieving Greystone Industries from Vergis.  The mob boss considers his proposal and talks to a seemingly reluctant Joseph Adama.  He ends up appointing Joseph as his advocate in the matter.

We don’t know exactly what Daniel has up his sleeve this time.  I don’t believe that Daniel quite believes that the avatars can be brought back, but at this point, he is willing to do anything to retrieve a piece of all he lost – his company.  Daniel is well aware that the deal he’s striking is dangerous, but really what has he left to lose?  He doesn't care. We also don’t know what Joseph’s motives are.  Before Daniel commits to their deal, Joseph asks him to make a call that will kill Daniel’s mother.  Daniel appears to actually consider doing it, but cannot go through with it.  The scene is chillingly similar to one earlier in the season in which Sam bluffs Joseph regarding killing Amanda Greystone.

It should be hard to feel sympathy for poor, pathetic Daniel Greystone.  He has engaged in countless cruel actions in the name of business and power.  He {indirectly} allowed for the death of one of Vergis’s men, tortured the Zoe-Cylon endlessly, and considered killing his own mother just to name a few.  But oddly, it isn’t hard to feel sympathy for him.  Rich, powerful, smug, morally deficient and whatever else he may be,  Daniel Greystone feels emotions and is conflicted over the immoral choices he makes.  His mad craze to bring Zoe’s avatar to life in avatar form was a direct result of the loss of the daughter he loved.  Similarly, it could be argued that his actions toward Vergis and Cylon-Zoe were also a result of that loss.  He’s a man in deep pain that was probably a bit morally grey anyhow, and Zoe’s death started a spiral that Daniel (and Amanda) never recovered from.  So I suppose I should despise him, or love to hate him, but honestly, I love watching him and trying to figure out what he’ll do next.  He’s psychologically complex and completely damaged.

Meanwhile, on Gemenon...  

A teenage girl with the coloring of Zoe hugs her mother with a sad knowing look in her eye.  She walks into the C-Bucks stadium.  The camera pans to several other people, including Clarice, and they all walk into the stadium and activate black devices.  The stadium blows up.  Whoa - another parallel to the very beginning – the bombing that started it all.
Clarice removes the holoband and looks at the Priest (no, I don’t remember his name)  triumphantly.  He doesn’t understand, and she puts the holoband back on to show the specific people from the stadium rematerializing in a sort of paradise.  She takes the holoband off and explains that that is her idea of Apotheosis, or “artificial heaven.”  She argues that Apotheosis is The One True God’s plan for humanity.  The Priest does not agree with her.  Clarice then asks for an audience with someone called “Mother,” and the Priest looks surprised.

The Priest meets with a robed woman who looks like a female Pope (no offense to my Catholic friends).  “Mother” as she is called, listens quietly as the Priest describes Clarice’s “crazy” idea of Apotheosis.  It’s not clear if Mother agrees with the Priest, but she agrees to let him eliminate Clarice.  Clarice is of course one step ahead of the Priest and seduces a guard named Diego.  When the Priest appears to supposedly take Clarice to meet Mother, she and the guard turn on him, brutally killing him.  Clarice then introduces herself to Mother and tells her that the Priest is dead.  The Mother doesn’t say that she agrees outright with Clarice either, but she astounds Clarice by allowing her control over the STO cells in Caprica and anything else she wants.

Clarice is an incredibly complex character as well.  Everything in me shouts “Villain!” when the character appears on screen, but I question myself on that.  Why do I think she’s a villain?  If she orchestrated the bombings at the beginning of Caprica, well then, surely she would be a villain.  But, there was some indication that she was as surprised by the bombings as everyone else was.  So, what actually makes me think of her as a villain?  Is it her creepiness?  Her cold manipulation of others?  Her polygamy (which is societally accepted)?  I don’t know.  She IS a terrorist/spy.  But is she any more evil than Daniel, Joseph or Sam Adama?  Maybe?  Maybe not.  Why/how did she become who she is now?  What brought her down this road? She sure is thrilling to watch in any case.

What about Mother?  What are her real thoughts and motives?  How will she fit in the show?  I get the feeling she is VERY dangerous, but I don’t quite have a reason for that yet.

Oh, and Amanda’s alive!  YES!  Why is she living with Clarice?  I guess we’ll find out.

All in all, this was a terrific episode, rated 9/10.  Some questions I’d like to leave you with:

  1. Why is Clarice obsessed with Zoe in particular?  Was Zoe close to making Apotheosis possible?  Hmm.  Is the idea if Apotheosis a precursor to cylon resurrection?  What does Mother really think?
  2. What is Daniel up to?  What about Joseph?
  3. What will the Tauron mob do to Daniel?
  4. Will Zoe find Tamara?
So many questions!  I can’t wait to see more of Caprica.  I found Season 1.0 rocky in some places, but I find myself not wanting to blink in this half.  Here’s hoping Caprica has found its feet at last!  

Be sure to look for a review of episode two in a day or two!

-Captain K

No comments: