Battlestar Galactica & Caprica Reviews

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Caprica - Season 1 - Episode 15

Caprica - 1x15 - Blowback - Originally Aired: 2010-11-2

My Rating - 7

Fan Rating Average - 5.95

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Synopsis
Lacy deals with a hijacking whilst on route to Gemenon, Clarice deals with learning that a GDD spy lives among her, and Daniel confronts the Ha'latha about the stolen Cylons. [Blu-ray] [DVD]

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode along with the next four were aired first in Canada prior to anywhere else in the world due to Syfy's cancellation of Caprica.
- A line from Odin during the teaser confirms the long suspected idea that the Caprican language has become the lingua franca of the Twelve Colonies, much like how English has become the lingua franca of the real world.

Remarkable Scenes
- Lacy's ship getting hijacked by anti-STO militants.
- Clarice's mole in the GDD being revealed as Duram's boss, Gara Singh.
- Daniel confronting Sam and Joseph about the stolen Cylons.
- Joseph revealing that the Cylons are being sent to the STO on Gemenon, much to the disappointment of Daniel and Sam.
- Daniel confronting the Guatrau about selling Cylons to the STO.
- Guatrau, regarding Daniel: "He's a very ambitious man. Brave too. I like him. He reminds me of myself at that age."
- Daniel meeting with virtual Amanda again, only to see her behave even less appropriately than he expects.
- Clarice accessing Zoe's resurrection program.
- Lacy freaking out and single-handedly retaking the ship, causing the fact that the entire hijacking was a ruse to test the new recruits to be revealed in the process.
- Daniel finally being reunited with his real wife.
- Clarice assassinating Mar-Beth.
- Duram chatting with Gara Singh about Mar-Beth's murder.
- Odin and Lacy witnessing the execution of those that failed the test. Odin: "Never forget who these people are and what they're capable of."

My Review
Blowback is another strong episode, but less so than the previous few primarily due to the resurgence of my least favorite Caprica cliche: the fake-out. However, Lacy's trip to Gemenon being a big test is perhaps the most effective of the fake-outs so far. Despite the drama being largely anticlimactic, the final coda of a scene at the end of the episode was a very necessary and much appreciated framing device to bring the narrative surrounding the STO into some much needed focus. Indeed, the plot does a nice job of never letting us forget exactly who these people are and what they're capable of.

The visuals surrounding hijacking itself gave me fond memories of what felt like a bunch of Firefly episodes being mashed together. In particular, the Reaver chase from the Serenity pilot, the hijacking from The Train Job, and the similar hijacking from Trash all seem to have visual similarities with this episode's space ship hijacking.

The decision of the Guatrau to send Cylons to the STO on Gemenon is indeed stupid as Daniel implied, but consistent with his character. What I found surprising was the Guatrau's decision to kill Daniel. One thing I disliked about that was that the Guatrau didn't make it terribly clear whether or not he wants Daniel dead regardless of if Daniel succeeds at building the resurrection program or if he only wants Daniel dead if the resurrection program is not delivered on time.

I got the distinct impression that the Guatrau is planning to kill Daniel either way, but if so, that seems arbitrarily reckless. If the Guatrau is really gunning for Daniel, why not just get the Caprican government to execute Daniel for treason, just as Daniel fears could happen? He could cover his tracks in the process and get plausible deniability on the side of the Ha'latha, thereby rendering Daniel's threat to Joseph about the Caprican government going after the Ha'latha as well distinctly moot.

The most effective plot thread in this episode is most certainly Agent Duram's double agent exploits. Just about every scene Duram has here is amusing; the best of course being his final scene with his boss, Gara Singh, where he plays Gara like a fiddle, manipulating him like a master. The actor does an excellent job of conveying both Duram's insight into as well as contempt for Singh's duplicity.

Duram's plot thread also of course creates the entire justification for Clarice to murder Mar-Beth which was highly entertaining. This development elevates Clarice's amusing line from the previous episode about how if she felt it were god's will, she would destroy her family beyond merely being a marvelously chilling scene to being excellent foreshadowing. Apparently Clarice's prayers to god that he not ask this of her were not very effective...

The one weakness there though is that the subtle misdirection of the plot toward the end of the episode indicating that Clarice was told that Amanda was the spy just wasn't very effective. It was pretty clear that the scene cuts were creating a deliberate ambiguity exactly for this purpose. However, that doesn't diminish the value of Clarice's rage one bit. The best detail is how Clarice felt the need to personally murder Mar-Beth, but left the cleanup to her thugs. Clearly a woman who knows what she wants. ;)

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Hugo on 2013-04-10 at 5:14pm:
    I want more Duram! Can't we switch out Joseph and have more Duram instead?

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