I’ve noticed an interesting theme running through BSG – being trapped. It’s interesting how being trapped, held,or imprisoned -physically or psychologically -can affect people.

Some physical examples we see- Sharon in the cell on Galactica, Six (Gina) in same cell, Roslin in the brig, Lee in the brig when Adama is shot. Helo stuck on (Old) Caprica after Boomer rescues civilians. Starbuck held in the pregnancy farm on Caprica. Lee floating in space after ejecting (trapped in the suit with no oxygen). Lee and Starbuck trapped in the firing range room when the Cylon virus lets the oxygen out. A number of people held hostage on Cloud Nine when Billy is killed. Starbuck trapped in the apartment/prison with Psycho-Leoben, and actually banging on metal bars to be let out. The occupation of New Caprica essentially imprisoned the human population. Tigh and others held in the Cylon prison cells on NC. Baltar is stuck on the Basestar with the Cylons.

Mental examples? Baltar has a version of Six trapped in his mind, Starbuck’s trapped in her head trying to fight off demons. I’m sure there are plenty more- but this whole theme gets me thinking that the barriers thrown up against these characters and the way they keep fighting them offreally shows us what they’re made of. I hope that one of the toughest characters, Tigh, has it in him to break away from his demons as well.

3 Responses to "Trapped"
  1. A. Lo says:

    To expand a little bit on this idea:

    In a larger context, we could view the entire human and Cylon race as being trapped. The humans are homeless and struggling for survival. The Cylons are struggling to find an identity and a purpose. In some ways, you could even argue that both humans and Cylons want the same thing, but it’s placed them in an antagonistic relationship with each other.

    But what I like about BSG is that you CAN’T collectively apply it to each individual, as each person’s actions and choices are colored and informed by their experiences, circumstances, and any mental/emotional baggage. For example – you have humans who view the conflict as very black/white and then you have someone like Helo who is much more conflicted due to his relationship w/Sharon. Similarly you have different Cylon models who can’t agree on what course to take with the humans.

    I view the humans and Cylons as each collectively trying to do “the right thing”, while each individual has to struggle with what that means for him/herself.

    BTW, to address a discussion that’s gone on for a bit regarding ranks now that the Pegasus is gone, I read an interview with David Eick where he says

    “Well, basically they’re going back to a situation where they are demoted. One of the issues we deal with in the subsequent episodes is that there is no room to stand on ceremony. People basically have to suck it up and do a job and they’re lives are not about being on a career path, it’s about survival.”

    And one last thought – if you compare the male Cylon models with the female ones, then is it really any surprise they can’t procreate?

    A. Lo
    Olathe, KS

  2. John P. says:

    Similar to what A. Lo said, I think they general predicament of the races represents the overall theme of the story.

    I mean, it’s truly a tale of claustrophobia on its deepest level. They (still) have a fairly decent sized fleet in which individuals are able to move about fairly freely, which at first consideration takes away from the “trapped” undertone, as most space operas emphasize that theme by restricting characters to one small ship or station. That said, they are trapped nonetheless as a solid wall is everywhere they look. In fact, you can take the tones of claustrophobia one level further. It’s juxtaposed, in a way — they are trapped…trapped in endless open space.

    Fear, the fear of enclosure, it’s one of the most basic human emotions.

  3. Pike says:

    Just give me land, lots of land, with a starry sky above. Don’t fence me in…

    (you have no idea how glad you are that I didn’t phone that one in.)

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