This is the 29th in a series of “Battlestar Galactica” recaps. This year marks the 15th anniversary of the franchise. Read the last piece, “Revisiting Battlestar Galactica: ‘Crossroads (Parts 1 And 2)’” here.
The opening episodes of Season Four begin in Season Three’s climactic space battle. However, the true drama arises from conflicts of faith and vision within the human and Cylon camps.
Starbuck’s seeming return from the dead challenges not only Pres. Roslin’s prophetic vision of the path to Earth, but also Adm. Adama’s atheism. Baltar similarly seems to finally convert from atheism to monotheism in a possible case of faking it until you make it.
Meanwhile, the emergence of the near-Final Four among Galactica’s crew is detected by the Cylon Raiders. Cylons are programmed to avoid thinking of the Final Five – a tenet which already caused the boxing of the Threes after D’Anna sought their identities at the Temple of Five. Increasingly, the Cylons cannot stop thinking or talking about the Final Five, triggering a schism among the higher-level “skin jobs.”
‘He That Believeth in Me’
Amid the battle with the Cylons, Galactica is thrown into turmoil upon hearing transmissions from Starbuck. Roslin believes it is a trick.
Among the near-Final Four Cylons, Col. Tigh briefly hesitates during the fight, even hallucinating that he shoots Adama. Tyrol has to talk rookie pilot Anders into his Viper.
Entering a dogfight, Anders finds himself unable to fire. A Cylon Raider turns to fire on him, but turns away after scanning his ship. Shortly thereafter, the Cylon forces withdraw entirely.
Jeanne (Keegan Connor Tracy) takes Baltar to a monotheistic cult which has built a shrine to him. Baltar says he was praying for her sick child, Derek. They are watched by Charlie Connor (Ryan Robbins), who lost his son on New Caprica and was a member of the Circle.
Starbuck disembarks on Galactica, believing she was gone for hours, not months. Adama orders a medical evaluation. At a debriefing, Starbuck can recall only stars matching those seen in the Tomb of Athena, a ringed gas planet, and a flashing triple star.
Tyrol discovers Starbuck’s Viper bears its original tail number, but is brand new and missing its navigation data. Roslin orders Starbuck to the brig, over Apollo’s objection that Starbuck may be the clue they were supposed to find at the Ionian Nebula.
Jeanne brings Derek to Baltar. The child is unconscious and feverish, beyond medical treatment. During the night, Baltar almost leaves the cult but returns and prays earnestly for the one true god to take him instead, confessing his sins. He is overheard by some, though he is unaware of it.
Roslin asks Caprica Six about the Final Five. Six says she tries not to think about them, but feels they are close.
The near-Final Four meet. Anders questions his actions during the dogfight, while Tigh rallies the group to maintain their true selves.
Starbuck tells Adama her sense of the path to Earth is fading with every jump the fleet makes in the wrong direction.
Adama and Apollo review the video of Starbuck’s Viper exploding. Adama confirms that Roslin is staying with him during her cancer treatment. He offers to reinstate Apollo, but Apollo is considering a civilian government job.
In the head, Baltar shaves and cuts his hair. He and his bodyguard are attacked by Connor and an accomplice. With a razor at his neck, Baltar tells Connor to kill him before the bodyguard subdues Connor. They return to the compartment. Derek’s fever has broken, which is celebrated as a miracle.
Starbuck, under guard, wonders to Anders if she is the product of an experiment at the Farm. Anders says he would love her even if she was a Cylon; she replies she would kill him if he was a Cylon.
Another FTL jump causes Starbuck to lose more of her sense of the path to Earth. She subdues her guards, grabs a firearm and goes to Adama’s quarters, holding Roslin at gunpoint.
‘Six of One’
Starbuck reminds Roslin she disobeyed orders to retrieve the Arrow of Athena per Roslin’s vision. Starbuck places the gun on a desk and tells Roslin to shoot her if she disbelieves her. Roslin fires at Starbuck, but misses at close range as security takes Starbuck into custody.
The near-Final Four discuss whether Starbuck is a Cylon. Tyrol suggests gathering information from Baltar. Tigh suggests they use Tory as bait.
In the brig, Adama tells Starbuck she lost her last ally. When Starbuck describes him as Roslin’s wet nurse, Adama begins choking her. Starbuck wheezes that it is nice to know he still cares.
On the Cylon Basestar, a Two (Leoben), a Six (Natalie) and an Eight (Sharon’s model) confront the lead One (Cavil) about the Raiders discovering the presence of the Final Five during the battle. Cavil notes their faith precludes them from thinking about the Final Five and proposes “dumbing down” the Raiders.
The Ones, Fours (Simons) and Fives (Dorals) vote to lobotomize the Raiders; the Twos, Sixes and Eights vote against, creating a deadlock – until Boomer splits with the Eights to support Cavil.
Following the pilots’ “retirement” party for Apollo, Roslin confronts a drunken Adama, who suggests Starbuck may be the clue to Earth they seek. Roslin relishes the atheistic Adama considering a possible miracle, but recounts her own miraculous journey and refuses to apologize for disbelieving Starbuck. Roslin says Adama would rather be wrong and die than lose Starbuck again; he tells her to get out of his head.
The next morning, Apollo receives a full-dress sendoff on Galactica’s hangar deck. Getting a hug from Dualla, he remarks that she got the house.
On the Basestar, Natalie implores Cavil to stop lobotomizing the Raiders. When he refuses, she summons two Centurions. Natalie reveals all of the Centurions’ inhibitors have been removed, whereupon the toasters shoot the lead Cavil, Simon and Doral.
Tory easily beds Baltar. She suggests she may be a Cylon. Baltar responds that while humans made Cylons, they were given souls by the one true god.
The fleet jumps again, anguishing Starbuck. Helo brings Starbuck to Adama on the hangar deck. Adama informs Starbuck he is detaching the Demetrius to allow her, Helo, Anders, Athena and Gaeta to trace her path to Earth.