03 June, 2007

Secret TV Project

Congratulations to James, after he has revealed his secret TV projects to be Doctor Who and Torchwood. Some people have mentioned it was 'luck', perhaps jokingly, but to quote Gary Player, the golfer: "The harder you practice the luckier you get.". James works hard and he's getting his just rewards. His drive and dedication should be an inspiration to us all.

I suppose now is the time for me to announce my own secret TV project. I have also had to keep it under my hat because there would be trouble if I revealed what I was doing too soon. It's Battlestar Galactica. No, not writing it. I'm good but I'm not that good. I was watching it for the very first time.

Yes, I was indeed a BSG virgin and popped my cherry in a crazy orgy of all the episodes (miniseries and three series) in the last week. I didn't mean to watch them over such a short period of time but those muthafrackers sure know how to do a good cliffhanger.

The reason I had to keep it quiet was because as soon as I mentioned I was watching it my inbox would collapse under the weight of spoilers. Everyone was going on about the brilliant season 3 finale and I really didn't want to know what it was ahead of time. Some might have thought I was already watching it because I said 'frack' a lot (BSG's way of saying 'fuck' without getting into trouble with the FCC) but that was because of Veronica Mars. She said it because she was a fan of BSG too.

As a self-proclaimed expert on television, the shame of never having seen one of the, supposedly, greatest shows of all time was too much to bear and I was scared of being caught out. To be honest I did try to watch the beginning of this last season but I felt I had missed too much. Plus some English bloke was talking to a blonde chick but no-one else could see her, which was just stupid. Having caught up and watched that third season in full, there is no other word for it than 'genius'.

It somehow managed to deal with what it is to be human, to deal truthfully with love and war and still have the most amazing action sequences seen on television. BSG proves the audience can be treated like an adult and still be thrilled like they were a child. It doesn't have to be one or the other.

I think I've learnt a lot, including the importance of heroes and villains who are flawed and multi-faceted but do clearly heroic things and do clearly villainous things. I was in the kitchen remembering some bad thing the Cylons had done and I punched my toaster. I even dreamt about the Cylons, I had a foursome with number 3, number 6 and number 8 - it was a nightmare!

However you do it, I had to borrow a mate's DVDs, I highly recommend watching it too. Now I'm waiting for the two hour special in the autumn and the final 22 starts in the spring. However will I pass the time? Watching them all again with the writer commentaries. Sweet.


Andy Conway said...

I'm presuming this is you talking, Robin, and not you quoting someone else's piece (it's not always easy to tell on this blog). So, welcome to the club.

I avoided BSG when it came out because I thought there was no way it could be any good. But the weight of opinion got to me and I borrowed a mate's box sets and watched the lot (there's a bit about watching the pilot on my site: 'Plot Points From Hell').

Without doubt one of the greatest TV drama series ever. The writing is so good it hurts.

Robin Kelly said...

Yes, sometimes peer pressure is a good thing. I now think watching them from the start on DVD is the way to go due to its serialised nature.

I've read your piece and I agree about the characters. It's obvious that they're not just there to spout exposition and leave.

Andy Conway said...

One thing that strikes me as odd is the way they've released the DVDs. Newcomers might miss out on the very crucial three-hour pilot because it's released separately and not part of the 'Season 1' box set.

The pilot, which sets up the catastrophic 9/11 premise for the whole saga, is billed as the 'mini-series' and it's where you have to start if you're going to tackle BSG.

And yes, I'm seriously contemplating watching it all over again with those podcast commentaries during the hiatus... but then there's a whole season of Entourage to catch up on, and the Deadwood discs staring at me, and all those movies...