Battlestar Galactica & Caprica Reviews

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BSG TOS 1980 - Season 1 - Episode 10

BSG TOS 1980 - 1x10 - The Return of Starbuck - Originally Aired: 1980-5-4

My Rating - 7

Fan Rating Average - 5.39

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Dr. Zee reveals to Adama a dream he had about a warrior whom Adama recongizes as Lieutenant Starbuck, who was lost 14 years ago in a Cylon attack. Zee goes on to describe Starbuck's crash landing on a barren planet, where he built himself a Cylon companion from scavenged parts and befriended a pregnant woman who'd arrived there in time to give birth. [DVD]


- While many BSG 1978 fans despised BSG 1980, this episode is largely considered to be an exception to their collective assertion that BSG 1980 is not canon.
- This episode was an attempt to save this series from cancellation. A sequel called "Wheel of Fire" was planned, but the last ditch effort to save the series failed; the series was canceled.

Remarkable Scenes
- Starbuck battling the Cylons, crashing into the planet, and discovering the crashed Cylon figher he shot down.
- Starbuck deciding to repair and revive one of the Cylons.
- Starbuck reviving a Cylon. I loved the Cylon's reaction to seeing Starbuck.
- Starbuck: "I don't believe this. How do you hurt a Cylon's feelings?"
- The Cylons landing on Starbuck's planet.
- Starbuck launching Angela and Zee into space.
- The Cylons attacking Starbuck.
- Cy shooting his own kind to save Starbuck.
- Cy's death.

My Review
An episode depicting how Starbuck was lost. This is a welcome change of pace from Galactica 1980's usual repertoire. This flashback into BSG 1978 makes it clear just how much better the original series was compared to Galactica 1980. It's a shame we couldn't have just had BSG 1978 season 2 instead.

Listening to Starbuck narrate his own fate was a very nice storytelling technique and the story of the events which befell Starbuck, Cy, Angela and her baby was most touching. The idea that a Cylon Centurion could be turned and learn how to be friends with a human is fascinating; it tells us that they are something more than programmed killing machines. Or at least that they had the potential to become something more.

BSG 1978 and 1980 similarly had the potential to become something more and that potential was never tapped. But like BSG 1978's "The Hand of God," I couldn't think of a better way to close a series. "The Return of Starbuck" was Galactica 1980's best episode, and what better way to close a series than on its best episode.

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