Non-spoiler review of Friday night’s Battlestar Galactica

There’s something pretty much awesome about watching the final episodes of Battlestar Galactica at the Bagdad Theater, with a respectful and engaged audience of fellow geeks. Nobody talks during the show; they all wait for the commercials. It’s gratifying to hear the “shush! shush!” sounds as the episode begins.

That’s not to say that the crowd is dead silent. We all laugh and applaud and gasp at the same events, which for me magnifies the intensity of each important moment. And as the show works its way to a finale, each important moment is already stuffed full of intensity.

Friday night’s episode was described as “action packed” by many sources and, damn, it delivered. The recent past on the show has created a mood of deliberation and sadness and mourning, after the fleet found Earth but discovered it was a dead world. “The Oath” was the point in the story where someone (Zarek, I’m lookin’ at you) takes the darkest turn possible. Or maybe several someones (Gaeta, get in line behind Zarek).

And when that happens, the other characters react. Strongly. With guns blazing.

I guess the message is, if you’re depressed because you’ve striven (strove?) for a goal, only to have that goal turn to ashes and leave you in a self-pitying place, start shooting things; it’ll make you feel better.

I’m trying very hard to not spoil anything, here. But just know that all the characters are being shown in stark high contrast. Character, said a famous mad scientist, is what you are, in the dark.

And the end run of Battlestar Galactica has been very dark indeed.