Podcast:Exodus, Part I
|"Exodus, Part I" Podcast|
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|Length of Podcast:||44:14|
|Ronald D. Moore|
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RDM: Hello. Welcome to the podcast for "Exodus, Part I", the second or third episode of season three of Battlestar Galactica, depending on how you want to count. I'm Ronald D. Moore the developer and executive producer of Galactica. And welcome you once again to the exciting and always interesting podcast. Tonight Mrs. Ron is here but she is probably going to be silent, since she's exhausted.
Terry: Well, I don't know about silent.
RDM: (Laughs.) Never silent.
Terry: It will be the sound of me turning magazine pages, like the sound of chinking teaspoons on bowls last week with those-
RDM: It's called a shoutout.
Terry: I'm not doing a shoutout.
RDM: She's doing-
Terry: That sounds so-
RDM: She's a shoutout to-
Terry: -fat, white person-
RDM: -to her peeps.
Terry: -trying to do black lingo. It's so pathetic.
RDM: A shoutout to her peeps in the hood.
Terry: I'd like to say hello to my compatriots. (Laughs.)
RDM: And I'm saying hello to nobody.
Ok. So here we go. "Exodus" is, as I alluded to, or actually stated, last time, "Exodus" has been split into two separate episodes because it was such a large piece of material that we quickly realized that it was probably gonna be two different parts.
Terry: Oh, look. The tinkling of ice.
RDM: Ah the tinkling ice.
Terry: Oh and the kittens are joining us.
RDM: Yes the kittens are start-
Terry: They have names.
RDM: Tonight's Scotch is a Longmorn Fifteen-
Terry: Oh, god...
RDM: A highland Scotch. A darn fine one.
"Exodus" is two parts. We kind of knew it going in, even though the script itself was no longer or shorter than any other script. There was just so much material to cover and we knew that to play the action beats correctly, to deal with all of the various threads coming together, it just seemed unrealistic, from the get go, to really do it in an hour. Director for this episode, Felix Alcalá, did a really great job in bringing all this together on time and on budget, which is an accomplishment in and of itself. But nevertheless we still felt the need to split it into two pieces to really play it.
Now here at the beginning, we're of course revisiting the end of "Precipice", last week's episode. And essentially what we wanted to do was play these events over again for the audience and then lead you to a certain point, in the recap section here, and then restart and show you what happened from the other perspectives. This was very tricky. It took a lot of massaging on the page and in the editing room to really make this whole sequence work. but here we're still- here come the Cylons over the hill. Some great work by Gary Hutzel and his visual effect team. That's very tricky stuff. Getting those guys coming over that rise. The rise wasn't really clear on the shoot. They had to artificially play around with the ground and where the Cylons- where their feet actually touch the ground and all that kind of stuff.
So know you can see we're doing the chiron, "One hour earlier". I took a pass at the script after David and Bradley did as well, and this section here at the beginning of the tease was some of the most difficult stuff to make clear. That, ok, we're gonna dial back an hour and show you how the rescue developed from Tyrol's point of view. And this little beat here with Ellen and Tigh, I thought was really important. They really wanted to have one more scene of the two of them together before all hell broke loose in this particular relationship. And I thought it was really important to see them togtether one more time as a husband and wife.
Terry: Hey. Can I interrupt?
Terry: Can I tell them I've seen all the way through episode eleven?
Terry: I have seen all the way through episode eleven as of last night, and this show, this season is so good. You really- tell your friends and relatives. It's really- he's done a really good job. He really has. They all have.
RDM: If Mrs. Ron says it's so, it must be so.
Terry: You guys know that I'm critical when I need be.
RDM: Now you'll notice here that Tyrol has mysteriously lost his beard. This has to do with a lot of complicated scheduling problems that we were dealing with, because while we were shooting these episodes and shooting pickup scenes we were also having to shoot scenes for the flashback episode that's coming. It's kinda hard to unwind all of this and explain it now, but in essence, this scene, this little sequence of Tyrol and Tigh and Ellen in the tent was a pickup that we added later. Once we were stretching this into two episodes we needed a little- we were slightly short on the first episode, maybe about nine- seven minutes short, I believe, on the first hour. And on the second hour we were only three or four minutes short. So we still had to go back and pickup some material to round out the two hours. This scene is one of them. Well, we were also shooting it after the fact. That is, we had already shot these episodes and we were going back and shooting them in tents. You could tell that was an interior set that we were doing, much later in the schedule. Well, by then, he had shaved Tyrol's beard. 'Cause he had come back to Galactica. I don't think I'm giving too much away by saying, "Yes, they do eventually get back to Galactica".
Terry: No spoilers.
RDM: Watch the spoilers. I already made some errors last week, I was reminded of.
Terry: By me.
And Tyrol's beard had already been shaved off. Well, we had the option at that point of either, see there's his beard in the main title section. We had the option of either just shaving it off and saying, "Ok. Tyrol decided to shave it himself because the Galactica was coming."
Terry: Which is what I thought when I saw it.
RDM: Or we could go for the fake beard.
RDM: And the fake beards just suck.
Terry: They always suck.
RDM: I mean, anyone who's ever seen the movie Gettysburg will tell you just how quickly bad beards can s-
Terry: Who's in that?
RDM: Gettysburg was a Ted Turner flick that-
Terry: Oh. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
RDM: With big cast and was almost single handedly destroyed by the-
Terry: By the beard?
RDM: (laughs) -by the beards, which were some of the worst ever seen.
Terry: Well, it's also really important that everybody can understand, these decisions aren't just bad planning.
Terry: They just- sometimes these things happen when you make movies and tv.
RDM: See, all of this. All of this whole sequence was shot weeks later, after we had shot the rest of the episode. And there was just no way. I mean if-
Terry: And you have to decide. Do you want the story to be better or do you wanna-
Terry: -stick to just the absolute continuity? And story should win. 'Cause your audience is sophisticated enough to-
RDM: Yeah, they'll track with you. And you know what? There's a couple of people out there that probably notice that Tyr- "Hey! Tyrol shaved his beard." And then moved on rather quickly. But it eats up a lot of discussion time.
Here's a section where Tyrol's beard is- has been shaved, but this has a different reason for it being shaved because this was shot after we had done the flashback sequences which also had to be shot on the New Caprica sets. So there was a point where we just committed to the fact that he was gonna be without his beard in this entire episode. So- it's- like I said, there's several factors at work. There were the- oh, who cares? It's Tyrol's beard, and it's gone.
RDM: And we love it.
Terry: You're done.
RDM: This was all complicated because we had to figure out how to establish these two different locations. There's the location where the trucks are with Laura and Tom Zarek and there's this ambush out by the river. And again, we're showing you the scenes that we didn't show you last week, so- in order to explain how they get out of these situations. Here's the chiron, "Breeders Canyon, blah blah, rendezvous point," which was added after the fact. I hate- I generally hate adding chirons and ADR later 'cause I kinda would prefer the audience just figuring these things out or wonder or it be mysterious, but there's always this battle and balance that you're trying to achieve where clarity, "Oh, don't let the audience be confused. Confusion's bad." So you get into all these sorts of back and forth decisions of adding chirons and ADR to explain things much later.
Here you can tell that we're back in the sequence as you remember it from "Precipice", essentially we're telling you the same story, we're leading you to the same point, but now you're gonna understand a different context for how these events are taking place. Now you know that Sharon has- her Marines are spread out there in the trees someplace and they're on guard, more than we led you to believe in part one. Same thing in the sequences coming up with the trucks. You now know that Tyrol is on the way. Here. In Pergamus Flats. (chuckle) Which I think I was thinking about buying a house in Pergamus Flats.
Terry: Where's Pergamus Flats?
RDM: I have no idea. It's some name we made up. (chuckles)
Terry: You would think that maybe it's too much information.
RDM: What, for the podcast?
Terry: Uh huh.
RDM: Well ya know, hon, we gotta talk about sumpin'.
Terry: (Chuckles.) No I- it's just funny, 'cause I- I don't know.
RDM: Yeah, the tendency to overexplain some of these things?
Terry: Well- no, no, no. Not you. Just meaning in general. Remember how when you were a kid and you just watched a movie and you just watched-
RDM: Oh, well yeah. But, if you're gonna- I figure if you're gonna listen to the podcast at all, it's because you wanna hear how the sausage is made, so...
Terry: No, I agree. I don't know.
RDM: One note on Felix Alcalá. Felix is the director of the infamous Pern, Dragonriders of Pern pilot that I almost did that failed to get off the ground years ago, for the now defunct WB network. (laughs) The WB. I love the fact that I lived longer than the WB. The WB killed my pilot for the Dragonriders of Pern several years ago. Felix was going to be the director and I had not spoken or seen Felix since and when he arrived for prep for this episode I went over and shook his hand and we were just happy to see each other 'cause that had been a really bad experience for both of us and now we were doing something that was actually going to be shot. And it was kinda fun and it was great having Felix. He real- this is a big, complicated piece of business. This one is truly like moving an army around. There's a lot of moving parts. There's a lot of logistics involved in setting all this stuff up and Felix just marshalled his way through the process. I mean, he stepped on a few toes along the way, but that's Felix. Felix is great. And they love- and he's good at what he does.
Here we have the ambush. All these shots of the Cylons were much agonized over. And when do you cut to the Cylon and how do you play it in the action sequences? Endlessly storyboarded back and forth. This idea was something I came up with of Cally's in the way, she's doing the countdown, Tyrol's gonna knock her down, and the second he knocks her down they're gonna open fire. And this took a great deal of discussion. How is it gonna work? Lining up the eyelines. It was complicated even further by the fact that "Precipice", the opener of this, is shot by Sergio. So Sergio shot chunks of this and Felix shot other chunks of this and then we had visual effects guys bridging the two with scopes and with silent Centurions and what have you. And needless to say this was, like, an editing nightmare but our crack team of editors pull it off one more time.
There goes Jammer. Jammer, interestingly enough, in early drafts Jammer was killed in that sequence. He died in the firefight and then there was even a draft where Jammer died a little bit later on. And I ultimately decided not to do that. And- for reasons that will become clear in future episodes.
This is also a pickup. This little pickup here of Connor finding the map was another little piece that we didn't have that we had to go back and recreate later for this key thing of- when he walks up and says that he's found the map and it was on a skinjob, we didn't really have the shot of when that occured. Sergeant Mathias is named aft- Gunnery Sergeant Mathias. Again, I wanted it to be a woman, for whatever reason, and someone in her forties that looked like she'd been around the block a few times. And she's actually named after the high school superintendent that preceded my father at Chowchilla Union High. His name was Jim Mathias and I just decided to name it after him.
Terry: Does your father know that?
RDM: I don't think so. I didn't ever mention it to him.
This is a piece of business that I really dig. 'Cause it's really dark. Dean Sto- Cavil reaching for the gun, her kicking the gun away and knowing that he's got a bullet in his gut and that it hurts and she's just gonna lie there and suffer. And for a logical reason, she doesn't want him to download and tell everyone what he's seen.
Terry: They're asleep.
RDM: The kitty cats are asleep. We wore them out.
This was a very unusual way to end a teaser, which is a hopeful note. The previous two hours have been so dark and so grim, that I felt that we were not only justified but required to have an uplifting tease-out. That hey, we're gonna make it. Stick with us, folks, 'cause we are actually gonna make it out of this situation for once.
Ok. This is what I was actually referring to in last week's podcast. And when I talked about D'anna and the Oracle and Amanda Plummer. I mistakenly told you all that it was gonna turn up in the second half of "Occupation" and "Precipice" and of course, it wasn't and there was a lot of, "Huh?" reaction out there on the boards, but this is- this was all shot for, scripted and shot, as part of the teaser to "Occupation". D'anna was gonna be standing outside the Oracle's tent at the same time all those other events were happening. And I wanted to set the Cylons moving. Now it wasn't a dream and we didn't have the dream. In the original draft, and as scripted, she refers to the dream in with the Oracle but you never saw it. Now in this version of events you see the dream. You see her wake up. We shot that much later as well, her waking up.
This sequence with Baltar and Six in bed, Caprica-Six in bed, was also shot for "Occupation". This was going to be the first- if you remember in "Occupation" there's a shot of a D'anna walking down the road and it pans up to Colonial One and we were gonna cut it in- and we cut inside in "Occupation" and you see a meeting of all the Cylon hierarchy talking with Baltar. Well, actually, it was gonna cut to this sequence where they were waking up in bed. He's impotent. They're having a bad relationship, and it ain't going too well.
Terry: Could you hand me the phone?
RDM: Hand you the phone? You're gonna make a phone call?
So this- this was like the opening to set up how- where Baltar's head was at. And that it wasn't at a very good place. And that he was having this really weird, screwed-up relationship with the woman- I mean, it's interesting. This is, like, the woman that led him astray to begin with way back in the miniseries. She is the recreation, the reincarnation, of the original Six that he was in a relationship with and that she used him and he was using her and then "genocide happens".
Terry: Hasn't she been there throughout?
RDM: No. There's "Head Six"-
RDM: -as we refer to her. There's "Fantasy Six" that he sees all the time. Then there are other versions of Six. But this model's-
Terry: I thought this is was the one that talked to him on Caprica- on the ship.
RDM: On which ship?
Terry: On Galactica.
RDM: No. No. That's the "Fantasy Six" in his head.
RDM: Terry doesn't want to really watch the show.
Terry: I do too. I just, like every other audience member- it's just-
RDM: It's just confusing. I know, I know... it's-
Terry: -not clear. (Chuckles.)
RDM: This I like. This little beat here where he asks her not to go, to me tells you the whole- everything you have to know about the relationship. That it really is a relationship. That he's scrapping at her. There's a lot of ugliness. There's a lot of darkness in what's going on between the two of them. But when she gets up and leaves and is about to walk out the door, he asks her to stay. And she comes back. And that's the relationship. They're together and they're trapped and they wanna be trapped. And they don't know what the hell to do with one another.
Another great matte painting, or matte shot. I don't know if they call them paintings anymore.
Kara and Kacey. I like the little echoes here of- there's a sense, a feeling in the production design that is reminicent of that dark little apartment that we saw of Kara's on Cylon-occupied Caprica. There's not really a direct correlation between the two but there are echoes of it. There's the- something about the staircase and the way it's set-decked and the way it's shot makes me feel like it's Kara's home as well, in a very twisted reality.
Very tricky to get interesting performances out of child actors. This is one- oh, I think I said this last week. But this is one of the better child actors that I've dealt with. And the key is usually just giving them very little- the younger they are, the simpler you have to make the material. If you're asking them to say a lot of lines and emote and give you specific reaction shots and looking at a certain way, looking in fear. It becomes very hard to coax it out of them on the set because they're just little kids. And they're overwhelmed by the environment. So you have to- if they're very young you have to almost think of them as props. And that you're just moving them from place to place and you're looking for little, key little bits and you're not asking very much of them as actors.
Again, all this was shot to go into the tease. Amanda Plummer is our oracle, who's coming up, which was a, just a great little piece of casting. She's always been one of my favorite actresses. It was great to have her on the show.
Terry: Oh, she's really good.
RDM: She's really good. It's a really interesting scene.
Terry: I love the set, too.
RDM: It's a great set. I love all the detail stuff with all the symbols and the lettering and all the runes scattered about the tent. There was a challenge to figure out, "Ok. What is the- what is an oracle in this world? How do you play the prie- how do you play someone like this that- in a different way?" We kinda decided that, really, she should be what she is and hat there would be a certain mysticism about her. She wouldn't- shouldn't try to go- Matrix really broke that mold. In the Matrix you go and you see what's her face, whose name I can't recall. Is it called the oracle?
Terry: I don't know.
RDM: It might even be the oracle. Oracle is, like, her title. Her name is Sellona- Selloi Dodona. Which is the name of an actual oracle from ancient Greece, I believe. Who is actually someone you can look up on the internet and learn all about. So I borrowed her name, the name of that oracle, to use as our own.
This concept- I liked the idea that the two theologies of faith, the polytheistic and the monotheistic, that they were starting to have certain points of crossover. That the oracle of the Colonials' religion was actually gonna get a message from the God of the Cylon religion and pass through, as a conduit, to D'anna. And that there was some kind of common point between the two. That the both religions and both faiths had some glimpse of the truth, had some idea of the eternal but neither one was exactly right. But that there were paths that each side could take or be on that would eliminate the truth of the universe to them.
And then we- and this was, I thought, a nice way to dive back into the storyline of Hera, of the little girl. Again, this was all gonna start in "Occupation" but it was just too many storylines moving simultaneously. And this starts a arc that we're gonna play with D'anna of- for many episodes. And D'anna's journey and her arc as a character begins here. Her starting to dream about the child. What does the child symbolize? What is the meaning of God to D'anna? Why is she questioning God? What is she questing? What is she looking for? All those things propel her in subsequent episodes.
This was also a pickup scene that we added later. I wanted a scene of the two crews of the Pegasus and Galactica saying goodbye before they headed on their separate ways. That each assumes- this- be the last time that they see one another.
This thing with the table salt. This scrubbing of the line. You may not have seen on the new cuts of this, this is a added scene later. This is a little tradition that I believe David and Bradley found that was- they pour the line, the line of salt. The Galactica crewmen stand on one side. The Pegasus on the other. And Racetrack reads from the scripture.
Terry: Where'd they find it?
RDM: Where'd they find what?
Terry: What do you mean they found it?
RDM: Oh. They researched it. They have- they're both, especially Bradley, has a lot of contacts with actual military pilots.
Terry: You know it's really interesting, I think, because that's an old pagan thing is to draw a circle of salt.
RDM: Yeah, really? Circle salt?
Terry: As a protection. Salt is a mineral of protection.
RDM: Oh. Well he might- he might have blended them.
Terry: Or maybe that- or maybe it was already blended.
RDM: Yeah, I don't know.
Terry: It's very old.
RDM: I don't know. I should ask them where they got this specifically. But then they rub out the line. They rub out the line to-
Terry: That's what you do when you dispel the bad energy.
Terry: You put a circle of salt and then you brush it all away-
RDM: And then you brush it away?
Terry: -and it brushes aw- it soaks up the bad energy and brushes it away. I don't know why I know that.
RDM: Well that's cool.
This is- also a bit of a trick because we shot this later and we- this is literally. Everyone in this shot is literally everyone we had. We couldn't fill the hangar deck. We didn't have the money, the time to really give a giant crowd so we had to use carefully chosen camera shots to give you an impression of more people than we had.
This scene was shot in sequence for "Exodus", so this was the only goodbye scene that was scripted. I like this little scene. It has one of my favorite lines in the series, really. This little scene when Adama says, "Don't make me cry on my own hangar deck." Which I thought is just so interesting. It's an admission that he wants to cry, and it's an acknowledgement of the formality of the occasion and the dignity of the deck and that there was a point that he wasn't gonna break down beyond but he had to let his son know that he- that the feeling was there. It's an interesting relationship between this father and son.
Terry: People are gonna hear me typing?
RDM: Yes, people are gonna hear you typing. They'll probably be able to recreate what you are typing.
RDM: There'll be some people that'll be able to-
Terry: I'm typing on the "Okay thread".
RDM: Typing on the "Okay thread".
And Bear's brought back that sort of Celtic score for this sequence which has become a hallmark of their relationship. There's something about the- I've always loved these little beats of people coming and going on the ships and how they announce it. When I was on the- when I was briefly on the USS W.S. Sims, one summer cruise, I got to stand watch at the quarterdeck for a while. Not by myself, but with one of the chief pet- one of the petty officers. And I always- there was always something really interesting about when the commander of the ship or another ship would leave or enter and they always struck the bell and announced the name of the ship. It was, if they can- if the commander of the Hornet was coming aboard, you'd hit it and go, "Hornet arriving." And when he'd leave you hit the bell and say, "Hornet departing." There was something really like the- the weight and the majesty of the ship itself came and went with commander that I always really liked.
Now this has a different feeling and different context, because this was happening. The surgery scene wasn't really directly connected to any of the insurgent activity when it was shot for the tease. It was a little bit more generic. Things had happened. You'd got the feeling there was gonna be some battling and there were casualties. Now, here, you get the feeling that this is the aftermath of yet another suicide bombing.
Terry: That's what I thought it was.
RDM: Yeah. Now it is here. It's also interesting, this little beat there with her with Jake. As scripted, she was integrated with that whole plot with the dog and the dog bowl. She knew Jake. She liked to pet him, and that was something that neither Tyrol nor Gaeta were aware of and when the shit hit the fan in "Precipice" and Gaeta was coming out to try to warn Tyrol, he turned over the dog bowl, left the message, and then D'anna happened by, saw Jake, petted him-
Terry: I saw that one.
RDM: You saw that one.
RDM: She saw Jake, petted him once more, started to walk away, turned around, and saw that the dish was upside-down and kinda, "Hmmm." And just turned it right side up and walked away. And that was why Tyrol's- why the message missed Tyrol. But it was kind of a-
Terry: I have to watch that again.
RDM: It was a complicated, subtlety that got lost in translation. And once we moved the whole storyline down it didn't matter anyway. So now it's just a nice little bit of continuity that she knows Jake and keeps track of him.
I like in this- now, by putting it in the third episode you're able to concentrate on this storyline a little bit more. Now she feels much more on the hunt.
Terry: You know, I remember him when he played the young stud on The Young and the Restless, in like 1971, or whenever, Young and Restless first...
RDM: And I know him from Soap. He was one of my favorite characters in Soap, which was a great, great series.
And this is a nice little bit of business here where he's describing that he was lying in the sun and that he had to- there's that thing about he had to, like, open his own carotid.
I also like- this was like an interesting little touch. Just to start implying that the more they download, the less pleasant it becomes. And that there's a sense of, like, pain. And that there's a sense of losing something. That each t- that these downloads are not just so free and easy for them. That they pay a little bit of a price in that doing it multiple times would start have an impact on them as people. That- 'cause I just figure you can't experience death over and over again without it, in fact, impacting you in some way.
Now this- that line about resources being stretched to the max is not a complete bullshit line. There's also, like, an implication that they're doing something else out there, is part of the rationale what's going on. It's also a rationale for why the baseships were pulled away, and so on. The Cylons are actually doing something. They are actually out there doing something else that is pulling resources from this little experiment on New Caprica. That it's not the only thing that they've got going.
Here we are with Sharon and Anders. There's certain questions that logically arise about the Cylons and reaction among themselves. What can Sharon access and when? Under what circumstances? But those are the kinds of details that I prefer to leave mysterious, 'cause I think they're more interesting. There are rationales for why she can get information and when she can't, but I don't think those are the kinds of things that are good to spell out in a show 'cause I think that they have more power by being opaque.
And now, what's gonna happen, Ellen? Which I don't think is resolved this week, as I recall.
Terry: I have to watch this again.
RDM: This is a good one. This one moves pretty- I mean this one just is kinda relentless. Just going and going and going and going. There's not a lot of moments here to take a break.
This beat here with Hera and, oh and I can't remember Hera's adoptive mother's name right now, but this little beat with Anders and Laura is out of sequence. This was shot to be much earlier and now it's much later in the show. There was a- I talked about this in the podcast for last week, there was a whole running storyline about Laura in the schoolhouse and them trying to hide Hera and that Simon had come to look for Hera and then Simon was kidnapped and as a result of that Laura decided to put Hera into more protective cover. And this is a scene that was really an outgrowth of that idea. That this- after the Simon incident, which now no longer exists, they had moved Hera into the caves and then- or into the tunnel and then she was asking Anders to take care of her and hide her and be very careful of what was gonna become of her. But it lives comfortably in this place too, because it doesn't really disrupt the narrative and now it just feels like we're following that storyline. And you find that ofttimes in editing. In editorial you discover that you can move pieces around much more freely than you thought that they would work on the page, 'cause they just hit you differently. And you don't realize the discontinuities, 'cause you're not really- you don't read the film the same way that you read the script.
RDM: And now, see this episode is just- it's better to put all this stuff together, because you're tracking this much better. If this was all spread out over all three episodes, and I suddenly dropped in the shot of D'anna looking over and seeing just a child, you may not even recall what that storyline was about.
See, now we're going right back down into the caves.
RDM: You've got mail.
Terry: Oh, god. I was trying to sneak it too before I have to hear the nine million comments about how-
RDM: (in a mocking voice) "Why is she on AOL?"
This- I was struggling with how do these guys have a reasonable expectation of getting the hell off this planet. And I sort of had a handle at this point about what the Galactica story was gonna be, which I'll talk more about next week, when we really get into the details of how Galactica will rescue these guys. But in this episode I was struggling with, "Ok. How do these people on the ground have a reasonable expectation of getting off?" And I came up with this idea that, ok, they had been practicing exodus. They had been practicing drills to get all these people to rallying points and to get them off the planet. And how would they do that? They would do that under the guise of fire drills and that they would- there has been four months have gone by and they've had chances to lay in the groundwork for disaster preparation and that under the guise of a fire drill they could put a scenario together where they could plausibly get people to practice, with block captains and so on, getting all these people out from here to there. And then once you had them out, and once they had practiced moving very quickly, going to a designated spot, that it was at least plausible that you could get them, then, to the ships. Once you were- had gone that far you were pretty close to being able to make the actual exodus itself work.
Love that little beat there with the beer bottle that comes flying in.
This is where the show starts getting really dark and powerful. Tigh being confronted about his wife and Ellen. Watch the interaction here and this whole little sequence between Michael Hogan and Kate. "I wanna explain." He's so, like, defensive of her.
Terry: Well, he's always defensive of her. He's been defending her for years.
RDM: And then- He's been defending her for years. And look at his face. He's only got one eye to act with. You don't know what a challenge this is. He's only got half of his face, really. And look, the horror of it just coming to land.
Terry: Well he should get a nomination.
RDM: He's so good. He's really one of the unsung heroes of this show.
And then Sharon. Like I said in the first podcast, that little bit of business about setting up that she can get past the Centurions explains how she gets all the way inside the blockhouse here. And actually there was a beat, that we had scripted, where she was gonna encounter a Centurion and get by him and then we cut it, not for time but we cut it for budget, because we couldn't really afford yet another Centurion.
This little bit is one of the first times you've ever seen the Cylons actually interact with their computer system. She reaches in, we play the data stream across her face, she goes into the room. This is all just, like, trying to do it in little brushstrokes of how she interacts with her environment. And it's just enough to imply a superior technology without really hitting you over the head with it. It's just enough to get you to where you're going. And then she's confronted.
That is an homage to The Wild Bunch. David Weddle wrote a sterling biography of Sam Peckinpah, and one of the great lines of The Wild Bunch was Ernest Borgnine saying, "It's not who you give- It's not the fact that gave your- somebody your word, it's who you gave it to."
And the agony of this whole storyline of her being told that her child is dead, now being told the child's alive. Does she believe it? Can she believe it? What does it do to her loyalties?
Dodona Selloi not Selloi Dodona. See how- see how quickly it all fades from memory?
This little gag at the end here where she shoots her in the legs and leaves is actually (chuckles), I got that- that's actually an homage to the Terminator 2. That great beat at the gate when the Terminator and Ed Furlong are going to rescue Linda Hamilton and he's made the promise not to shoot- not to kill anybody. And then he shoots the guys in the- shoots the security guy in the legs, and he collapses. Ed Furlong looks at him and he just says, "He'll live." (Laughs.) And he goes inside. It's one of my favorite beats in the movie.
There's the landing field, much discussed landing field. Seldom seen. We were, like, sweatin' it right up until the end whether we were going to be able to show the landing field. 'Cause it was more money in visual effects and all these episodes were huge and way over budget.
Terry: Ow! Kitten attack.
Terry: I thought it was a girl.
RDM: No, it's a boy. It's Nicholas. Hera is a girl.
RDM: But Tyrol's child is a boy.
Terry: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Meanwhile... back at the farm.
This is the- this is a little bit of a reference, this little sequence here, is a little bit of The Longest Day. We wanted to play a little bit of The Longest Day, where they're all waiting for the word of whether they're gonna go to Normandy. And this beat right here is reminicent of the moment in the big airplane hangar when John Wayne hears that, "It's on." And he throws the coffee mug across the hangar. "It's on."
Terry: It's cold.
RDM: And this little beat with Adama coming in. I wanted us to be a little bit more classic than we usually go with the show. The show has a very naturalistic feel. We try to keep it very grounded. But this was one of those moments that I wanted- I wanted "St. Crispin's day". I wanted the "Henry V" sort of moment where he talks to his crew.
Now, again, this was not intended to be the climax of the first hour. This was intended to be midway. This was, like, the act two break of this massive episode that we were insane enough to think that would actually fit into an hour slot. But fortunately, because I got this great little piece, I've got this big dramatic high that I can go out on. We were able to cleave this episode in half kinda neatly. Even though, if you think about it, not a hell of a lot has really happened in this episode. It's moved really quick, and it's been a lot of pace, pace, pace. Scene to scene to scene. There's a lot of character stuff going on. Puzzle pieces are all lining up. Things are about to happen. But we get out of this episode before the actual rescue attempt. So it's really a bit of slight of hand that we're able to convey a sense of pace and momentum in an episode where not a hell of a lot happens. And that's how we go out. And then it's like, "And next week the shit really hits the fan, next week."
Terry: I wasn't so quiet tonight, wasnt I? Was I?
RDM: Not particularly, no.
Terry: Oh. Well, for me?
RDM: Did you get your mail? (Laughs.)
RDM: "You've got mail, Terry."
Terry: Well, you know what? If somebody had a computer program that worked that was on her Mac.
RDM: Yes, Terry is not too happy about the fact that we've dragged her kicking and screaming into the Apple era.
Terry: It doesn't work half the time. Bye everybody.
RDM: The big finale. Goodnight and good luck.