Battlestar Galactica & Caprica Reviews

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Caprica - Season 1 - Episode 13

Caprica - 1x13 - Things We Lock Away - Originally Aired: 2010-10-19

My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 5.76

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Synopsis
Zoe, believing that Tamara holds the key to a higher purpose, seeks the girl known to New Cap City as The Deathwalker in the most dangerous places. But when Tamara shows herself, she brings a world of hurt to Zoe.

In the must of Clarice's attic, Lacey struggles to hold on to her sanity. Clarice continues to leech information from Amanda, all the while unaware that Amanda is an able opponent in the spying game. Amanda has recovered somewhat, and the two women prepare to move out of their shared cabin. Having found no evidence so far, Amanda, at the urging of Detective Durham, asks to stay with Clarice, who brushes the request off as silly.

Daniel's conniving has paid off, and the board vote turns in his favor. But now he is presented with a new dilemma, as Joseph tells him that the next, unavoidable step is Vergis's murder. Daniel convinces Joseph to give him a shot at reasoning with Vergis, but Vergis, knowing the Ha'latha as he does, understands that there can be no upshot but his own death, and asks Daniel for the mercy of present murder. Daniel refuses, and Vergis lulls him into thinking that an alternate plan could work. He asks Daniel to swear an oath on a dagger, and as the two men grasp the handle, Vergis plunges the blade into his own chest. Coughing blood, he breathes his last on Daniel's floor.

Lacey's hunger strike earns her an audience with Clarice, who convinces Lacey to surrender information about Zoe's avatar program. When Lacey tells Clarice that Zoe kept data in a gold brooch, Clarice once again reaches out to Amanda, and this time relents to her request to come live with her. But the problem of Lacey remains, and rather than let her husbands kill Lacey, Clarice sends the girl to Gemenon for STO training.

And just as Zoe is about to give up her quest for meaning and surrender to the constant beating she receives from Tamara and her entourage, she finds an inner strength to believe in her cause. Struggling to her feet, she delivers an inhuman beating to Tamara, and in this state of extreme submission, Tamara has no choice but to listen to Zoe. She tells Tamara that she believes they can move past the violence and animalism rampant in New Cap City, and together help humanity reach its higher spiritual purpose. The two girls face an uncertain future, but they know that together, they are all but unstoppable. [Blu-ray] [DVD]

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- The C-Bucs stadium as a colosseum in New Cap City.
- Vergis being ousted out of Graystone Industries by the board of directors.
- Olaf: "Be careful what you both say. We don't need the kids talking." Mar-Beth: "Right. About the teenage girl tied up in the attic?"
- Tamara holding Zoe responsible for the train bombing.
- Lacy trying to escape Clarice's house and screaming for help, all in vain.
- Joseph insisting to Daniel that Vergis must not merely be ousted, but that he must be killed as well.
- The flashback to Zoe creating her avatar program.
- Clarice pumping Lacy for information about Zoe's avatar program.
- Clarice sending Lacy to a STO training camp on Gemenon.
- Zoe burying the hatchet with Tamara.
- Daniel trying to forge a truce with Vergis only to be rebuffed when Vergis demands that Daniel kill him where he stands.
- Vergis lulling Daniel into thinking that they will join forces to destroy the Ha'latha together, only to force his own death at Daniel's hands.
- Ha'latha thugs coming to Daniel's house to cover up the murder and dispose of the evidence.

My Review
Another outstanding story with only a few minor issues. The centerpiece of this story is how our antiheroes manage to further neutralize their enemies. Zoe converts Tamara, Clarice subjugates Lacy, and Daniel kills Vergis. The episode's greatest flaw, however, is that one of these conflicts simply isn't anywhere near as compelling as the others: the Zoe and Tamara story is the unfortunate weak link.

The central problem with Zoe's and Tamara's conflict is the framing device. While the idea of endless, brutal beatings as a means to torture someone who can't die is intriguing, the execution of this idea leaves much to be desired. For one, it goes on far too long. But worse yet, neither of the actresses playing Zoe or Tamara are particularly adept and delivering a nuanced performance of anger. They instead come across like whiny children, which, to their credit, is probably what the writers wanted. Whatever the cause, it's just not interesting to watch. That said, the Zoe/Tamara subplot definitely works as a story. Had they met under less violent circumstances and if perhaps less time was spent on this subplot it certainly could have worked well enough.

What definitely doesn't work though are the flashbacks Zoe has to her childhood. There are two major problems with this. The first problem is a simple issue with the plot logic. Avatar Zoe has a series of flashbacks depicting original Zoe creating her. However, during the flashbacks, she states that she has no memory of creating herself. For these two facts to be reconciled, we have to assume original Zoe gave avatar Zoe more of her memories later on, but there's no mention of this.

That's not a terribly big deal though. What I find far more troubling is Zoe's memories of seeing a quasi-angelic future version of herself which 1. originally saved her from the house fire and 2. originally commanded her to create the avatar program. This is at best an inherited manifestation of her mother's hallucinatory tendencies which was certainly Amanda's least compelling plot arc and at worst a rehash of the supernatural angels from BSG. The choices here are bad (hallucination) or worse (angel). Hopefully it's just a hallucination, or some sort of mixed up memory. Anything as long as it isn't supernatural.

The rest of the episode is easily just as compelling as Retribution though. Lacy delivers another wonderfully strong performance while her character continues to deepen and evolve. There seems to be recurring theme of various people telling her she's worthless and useless now, something which clearly troubles her possibly to the point of developing an inferiority complex. One particularly nice touch was the visible decay of her finger nail polish which seems to symbolize the decay of her innocence as she sinks further and further into the clutches of the STO. In this sense, this show is an excellent reflection of how otherwise normal kids get involved in terrorist organizations in the real world.

Another recurring theme is the body count following Daniel. With increasing frequency, Daniel has been directly or indirectly responsible for someone's death. Cornell, Philomon, two of Vergis' men, and now Vergis himself. The only wrinkle in this plotting is that Vergis was such a fantastic character that I'm sorry to see him go. But it was a good death. Vergis went out as well as the Pegasus did on BSG. All in all, Things We Lock Away is a fantastic episode and easily would have been worth a perfect score if it had spent more time on the Daniel/Vergis and Clarice/Lacy stories and less time on the Zoe/Tamara story.

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