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On Battlestar Galactica
Between the Stars
“This is a first day of the new era.”
—Richard Hatch commenting on the new Battlestar Galactica
When Glen Larson first introduced the series Battlestar Galactica in the wake of the unprecedented success of Star Wars, no one anticipated the revolution he was bringing to television. The Larson series changed TV in the same manner that the Lucas film changed movies.
It is entirely fitting that the series is enjoying a rebirth in the twentyfirst century thanks to Michael Rymer, david Eick, and Ronald Moore.
The special-effects revolution that began in the late seventies made it possible to bring production values to episodic science fiction that would have been considered science fiction itself only a short time before. The question then became what to do with all the new techniques.
Earlier, Roddenberry’s Star Trek demonstrated that episodic adult drama could sustain itself in outer space (where the sexual revolution was taking male/female relations anyway). But a starvation budget damaged the look of those classic Trek shows, except for a few good shots of the Enterprise endlessly repeated. The only consistently good makeup was the job done on Mr. Spock’s ears. Without Larson’s contribution to the tube, the later Trek series might have lacked visual richness.
Before the first Galactica series, science fiction fans had been trained to expect pictorial excitement only in rare big movies, and remarkable makeup sometimes on Serling’s The Twilight Zone and often on Stefano’s The Outer Limits. Suddenly Larson’s epic gave fans all kinds of blockbuster movie values each episode. …
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