I’ve noticed that people who appear to be from certain ethnic backgrounds on BSG tend to be from the same original colonial planets, and I can’t help but be fascinated by the relationship between ethnicity in the show and in real life.
For instance, I think every character we’ve seen from Geminon is played by an African American/Black actor, and the citizens of Geminon are also known to be very pious and knowledgeable about Scripture. Remember Hamilton, the guard from Galactica’s brig who brought Roslin Kamala root? The political representatives from Geminon all seem to be black folks, and Ithink the priest, Elosha, was also from Geminon. Could the writers be suggesting that black people are somehow associated with deeper religious beliefs?
This makes me wonder if the other actors’ ethnicities aremeant to signify their home planet among the twelve colonies, or ifthey signify nothing at all. It does seem that citizens of Caprica are a diverse group – think the Caprica Buccaneers, the professional Pyramid team led by Samuel Anders. When Starbuck and Helo run into the team on Caprica (Episode 204: “Resistance”), we can see they’re from all different ethnic backgrounds (most notably one of the toughest members, a black woman named Sue-Shaun).
Does this suggest that some colonies were mainly homogenous while others were diverse? Perhaps Caprica, as the central “home planet” for most of the main characters, is a kind of United States of the colonies – a more diverse population compared to other countries (planets) like in Africa or East Asia.
That brings up another interesting question. How long ago was it, in the BSG universe, that mankind was created (by gods or by a god, depending on your perspective)? It would seem that it was long enough ago to allow ethnic diversity as wide ranging as our own to develop, which I imagine is at least a few thousand years. So, has the planet Kobol been sitting quietly, waiting to be rediscovered, since the exodus of the original thirteen tribes? Or has this all happened before?
Actually Ronald D Moore commented on this in his blog. He said that the fact that all the characters from Geminon was simply an error in casting and scripting that no one realised until afterwords, and that it should be asumed that the each colony is ethnicly diverse.
Interesting – thanks for the tip! I also noticed the young woman who seeks an abortion at the end of Season 2.5 is from Geminon and is also white, so that makes sense.
Also, D. and Zarek are both from Sagittaron.
Tigh and Boomer are both from Aerelon (sp?) (Or, at least, Boomer could pass. She was supposed to be from Troy, which was a colony near, and presumeably of, Aerelon.)
I’ve also noticed that they tend to completely disassociate the ethinic implications of names from that of the actor playing the character (Sharon Valerii, Billy Keikeya, etc.) I was just watching the newest video in Eick’s blog, and they’re introducing a new character named “Bullldog” Novacek. He’ll be played by Carl Lumby, a black actor. I suppose this is to prevent any ‘earth baggage’ from being invoked, while still being able to use familiar, normal-sounding names.