Podcast:Crossroads, Part II
|This page (like all pages on this wiki) was imported from the original English-language Battlestar Wiki based on what was available in the Wayback Machine in early 2017. You can see the archive of the original page here.|
RDM: Hello, and welcome to the podcast. This is Ronald D. Moore, executive producer and developer of the new Battlestar Galactica. I'm joined here by the lovely and talented Mrs. Ron. Say hello, Mrs. Ron.
Terry: Hello, Mrs. Ron.
RDM: And we're here to do the much talked about and much delayed final podcast of season three for "Crossroads, Part II". The Scotch today is Highland Twenty-five, which was a gift from my lovely wife. The smokes are American Spirit, and the smoking lamp [lights cigarette] is lit.
Terry: See? I told you. I'd let him do it.
Terry: I have a gas mask on.
OK. "Crossroads, II". As we talked about during the podcast of "Crossroads, I", a great deal of material that used to be in the second hour was pushed up into the first hour for editing reasons, most having to do with time. Mike Rymer, who directed both parts, his cut of the second hour was somewhere in the twenty minutes over range, which is pretty far over, when you think about it.
Terry: Just a tad.
RDM: Just a tad. So when the initial timings came in there was a great deal of panic around editorial and in the production offices about, "Oh my God. What are we going to do about this?" But when I sat down and watched the two parts together, first I was really amazed and just in love with it and thought we really- we had really managed to achieve something of this- with these- this two part finale. But also I realized that there was a way that we were going to get to time. I wasn't quite as worried as I was, say, when I asked for the ninety-minute version of "Pegasus" and last sea- the ninety minute version of last season and the extended version of "Pegasus" and all that. I just had a an instinct that I was going to get these down to time.
This sequence. The Adama shaving and Laura Roslin phone call was something that I added in my polish onto the script. I don't know why I love Adama shaving so much. There's something very mundane about it. Something very ordinary and every day that I think is-
Terry: Why is that whenever you watch any man shave, you're waiting for them to do exactly what he's going to do- ouch!
RDM: Yeah. I don't know. It was something that we established way back in "33" of him shaving, and it's a way in to scenes with him. And we've come back to it a couple of times ever since. And I just like it as a recurring motif in the show. And this phone call with Laura is actually one of my favorite things we did all season. It's just such a lovely little beat. This was originally a scene that was in part one. This scene was then going to lead to Laura going to the press conference that you saw in part one where she goes and she faces the press. And that's actually what she's referring to in the scene when she says, "I don't think I can face them." And him telling her to, "Don't let them see you sweat." And then she was gonna go and- oh and my-
RDM: The tape froze up there for a second. I'm having trouble with the DVD for some reason. Uh...
Terry: Even more of a delay.
RDM: I've gotta pause here for a second.
OK. We'll try to keep going here, because the podcast has been delayed so long. My DVD copy from post is hiccuping, and stuttering, and giving me problems, so if the timings don't match out to the episode exactly, that's why.
Anyway, the Laura conversation was originally intended to essentially bridge scenes from her to c- saying that she had cancer to going to the press conference, and the reason why I liked it so much was in the nature of this conversation between Laura and Adama you really see that they're very intimate with- one one o- one another, in a platonic sense. There's a sense of these are friends. That she can call up Adama on the phone in the morning and say, "Yell at me to get out of bed." And he'll take the phone call while he's still in the bathroom and chat with her, and I think it's a lovely scene that says a lot about their relationship and how far they've come-
Terry: Yeah, I was gonna say how far they've grown.
RDM: How far they've grown since the miniseries and now that Laura's experiencing cancer again, it just- it seems like it speaks volumes about where he is and where she is in his life.
Then we have Tyrol being awakened-
Terry: Speaking of cancer, since you're done with that cigarette, can we make that the last one?
RDM: Uh, yeah. Well, I'm not even- see I've still got more here to smoke?
Terry: OK. But that's the last part? OK? That's the last one.
RDM: [Exhales smoke]. Anyway. So Tyrol wakes up in the middle of the night. Tyrol's involvement as one of the final four Cylons, of course, we'll talk about in depth later, but essentially he was- we were going to have Tyrol be one of the people that was hearing the music in part one, but at the script stage, I believe, we started switching those pieces around and it gave us one more thing to reveal in this episode, that there was somebody else who was hearing these same things.
And then we get here into this scene with Tory and Anders, the revelation that they're having an affair. Again, through the editorial process, this was originally in part one, and there was a reference to the fact that Laura was aware that Tory was having an affair with Anders in part one, after the press conference, which got cut, which I think I referred to by accident in last week's podcast, thereby giving away a spoiler, but-
Terry: Yeah. So bad...
RDM: These are the risks you take. The idea originally was going to be that Tyrol was walking his child down that corridor, and Tyrol kept walking the baby to try to get the baby to go to sleep.
Terry: Didn't I see that cut?
RDM: Yeah. You did see that cut. Terry saw that cut. And as Tyrol was trying to get little Nicky to fall asleep he kept- he would take Nicky down this one particular corridor in Galactica where the ambient noise or the rhythm of the machinery actually lulled the child to sleep.
Terry: Like driving a baby in a car.
RDM: Like driving a baby in a car, which many of us have done in Southern California, to try to get our children to go to sleep. And in one version of the story he was gonna encounter Sharon or Helo. I can't remember if it was Helo or Sharon was taking Hera down the same corridor too, and it was this thing about the two parents and raising a kid on Galactica, and they were bonding, but yet, Tyrol was gonna start to hear this odd music and it was connected to Nicky, and it was connected to him, and he started hearing something at this one corridor of the ship and then he kept going back to it, and this sequence that we shot was the second one where he's going back again after he had done it with Nicky once on his own, he had actually gone back.
We're now in the "We need a mistrial" sequence. This scene was actually quite a bit longer. There's lots of little dropped lines and pieces of dialogue. It was a great scene, and I was here when they shot this particular scene up on the set. I went up for the last couple days of production on the episode. And it was really great to see these three, all three of them, really at the top of their game. This idea of going through the mistrial was something in the back of my head for quite a while. I wanted to play at early st- at the story stage I started talking about having Lampkin manipulating Lee to force a mistrial, and that Lee would be taking actions and introducing things into evidence that then would cause a mistrial, and that Lampkin was actually manipulating Lee all the way along, paying off the line from "Son Also Rises" where you hear the voiceover Lampkin say about, "A son who's decided to-" I can't remember what the line is. "Go against his father." And I wanted this notion that Lampkin- that Lee was getting manipulated, and didn't realize it, and then realized at the last second, and then he had gone- he was in for penny and for pound at that point. What else could he do? But Lampkin was going to essentially force a mistrial on his own terms. Which is a version of what happens now, but we took out the naked manipulation of it and then forcing Lee into situations that he couldn't quite plausibly do. But this idea of the mistrial as tactic was something that actually I remember was played in a lawyer movie from a long time ago called From the Hip and there was a line in there someplace about- I remember the lawyers speculating among themselves about whether their client was, I believe John Hurt, was trying to get a mistrial because the chances of an acquittal grows or something, and that notion of a tactic to force mistrial in order to help your client stuck with me, and it was one of the things I wanted to play in the episode.
This little bit here where we discover that Anders is a nugget, and in flight training, we had more on this story. There were- we never saw him begin the process, but we had a little bit more in the episode of Anders as nugget and taking Kara's place. He literally moved into her quarters, where- her junior officer's quarters.
Terry: Is that what that is?
RDM: Yeah. She- he was in her bunk.
RDM: And he had taken over her locker and had her things, and he was essentially trying to carve out another- a new niche for himself, but still following in Kara's footsteps in some odd way. That he couldn't quite divorce himself from the past, even as he tried to move forward.
It's in here that we hear the first line of "All Along the Watchtower." I think it's- I'm trying to remember the sequence these things go. I think Anders walks away and says, "There must be some kind of a way out of here." Or Tyrol says, "There must be some kinda a way outta here." I wanted to sprinkle in the lyrics from the song throughout this particular episode, and there internal debate about- David and I debated a lot about when would you recognize the song. And I maintain that if you didn't know the gag, if you didn't know that- where we were going, that if you put in the line, "There must be some kind of a way outta here," that that-
Terry: I didn't catch it.
RDM: -you wouldn't catch it. But funny enough, when we watched this episode at the frak party in Berkley, you- if you were listening to that tape, I don't know if you can pick it up, 'cause I haven't listened to the podcast, as usual, but s- when-
Terry: Somebody finished the line.
RDM: Somebody finished the line, "There must be some kinda a way outta here." And then, "Said the joker to the thief," said somebody in the audience, and we were sitting there, and I went, "Oh my God, they're picking up on this shit."
Terry: I wonder if that's 'cause they heard. I saw Jimi Hendrix live and I didn't pick it up.
RDM: I think if you know- if I tell you "All Along the Watchtower" and then you watch the episode, you'll pick out every single line.
Terry: That's what I think.
RDM: OK. That's the end of my teaser.
RDM: Act one.
RDM: Oh... don't ham it up for them.
RDM: Talked with Mary extensively about the fact that her cancer was coming back and how she was gonna deal with it this time, and we decided that one of the things sh- that was gonna differentiate it from the first time that she had cancer was that she was going deal with- she was gonna take the conventional therapy, she was gonna take their version of chemotherapy, and deal with the consequences. In addition to doing chamalla and whatever else she was gonna do to fight it. But she was gonna essentially fight it on every front. She wasn't going to hide in any way from what she going for-
Terry: And you're not trying to make Laura look younger there, are you?
RDM: No. That's (unintelligible)- you asked me that before.
Terry: I know I did.
RDM: If we're trying to look Laura look younger in the visions. I guess it was on the boards. No. It's not. She's- it's just lighting and she's just a lovely woman and-
Terry: She's all made up.
RDM: Yes- yeah. It's just different.
Terry: -I liked that.-
RDM: -and we cut that- scene out, strictly for time. They just- recapped a little bit about what they had gone through, and Sharon talked about projection and told Laura about projection for the first time, which is Cylon way of creating environments around themselves and saying how impossible it should be for Laura and Hera to share such a thing and that as they talked they said, "Maybe there's someone else who was there with us." And then that took them down to see Caprica Six.
This little trio, Laura, Caprica Six, and Shar- Athena, is definitely something we're gonna be following up in- up on in season four. Actually, as I speak to you now, I'm doing this on Easter Sunday, I can tell you that the writing staff is well into the fourth season. At this point we have broken the first, I think, nine episodes of season four. I know what all the opening storylines are and it's pretty cool. We're pretty excited about where we're going. In any case, this notion of Shar- we went through a lot of discussion about what the visions were gonna be. I think in my polish on the draft I put in the visions, and the visions were going to be- had more- that door opened in the Opera House and there was intense light and wind came out, and it was like Laura and Sharon trying to fight through the wind to get to Hera, and then Caprica Six appearing out of the wind, and all this stuff. It just got shut down for production reasons, mostly, because the location that that building, we couldn't bring in giant ritters and do wind and they were afraid of damage, and light source, and even light was tricky. Sometimes you go to locations and the building or the property owners will have all kinds of restrictions on exactly what you can and cannot do on these- in these places.
Terry: And that's a really old building.
RDM: And that's a pretty old building. So, understandably enough, they were very concerned about what crazy ass thing the people from Galactica were gonna be doing in their- location.
Terry: I'm sorry for the sound of scissors. I'm making birthday invitations.
RDM: Yes she is.
Terry: Sorry. I'll try and be quiet.
RDM: Yeah. "There must be some kinda way outta here," says Tigh.
Terry: See, I-
RDM: Which I think is great.
Terry: -didn't catch that.
RDM: This little bit with Gaeta was always in all the story versions, was that Gaeta was gonna get on the stand and perjure himself. And was gonna do it deliberately, 'cause he hated Baltar so much and was gonna sink him. In the original version of the draft this was the th- they- I'm tryin' remember. They did discredit him. They found a way to, the defense team, that is, they found a way to trap him in a lie. He actually was proven to be a perjurer, in the initial drafts. He had gotten up and they had found a way to-
Terry: Did you film that?
RDM: No. It never got filmed. We proved- I'm struggling just to remember what it was, but there was a way that they had of trapping him and pr- oh. That- I remember what it was. They had proof that he- at the time he said he was watching Baltar sign the document-
Terry: -That he was somewhere else.
RDM: He was somewhere else. 'Cause they- he had made a dead drop of information to Tyrol that they could track back and had the timeline to prove it, and that the document that Baltar had signed, the death warrant, had a dates- had a timestamp on it, or was timestamped or something.
Terry: You know, and the interesting thing about this whole thing is that- I don't know. Do you really blame him? I mean... you go to the O. J. Simpson trial, everybody's favorite trial to reference, but, how many people would perjure themselves because they're s- absolutely sure that a murderer is guilty.
RDM: Oh, and if you-
Terry: But they think he's gonna get off on a technicality.
RDM: Well that's the thing, is- at this point in the trial it looks like he's winning.
RDM: And he looks like he's gonna get off. And Gaeta is just not gonna let this guy go. He's gonna burn him.
Terry: And the beauty is that the law is the law. Even if somebody goes free and he's guilty.
RDM: That's right. That's the way it works. And I think- in the first draft, they did bust him. They busted him for perjury, and so essentially most of the prosecution's case was destroyed, and that was when the Sagittarion storyline that we had developed was gonna come to the fore. Somebody came to Lee at the end of part one and gave Lee a videotape of an incident on New Caprica, and the videotape seemed to show Gaius Baltar ordering Cylon Centurions to fire on a civilian population in a massacre. And it was a damning bit of evidence, and Lee had it, and Lee- the struggle for Lee was, "Does he turn it over to the prosecution, or not?" And ultimately he did turn it over to the prosecution, and then they used it in court, and it looked like all was lost, and then it turned out, through digging and plot, Tom Zarek was very involved in the show at that point, and it turned out that Zarek had actually manipulated the event, and it was Zarek who had given the order, and Zarek was- it was in some kind of power play, and in some fashion that prompted a backlash from Baltar, and that's why Zarek was in jail at the end of the New Caprica story.
End of act one.
RDM: Act 2. And then essentially when they had convicted Zarek in the court of public opinion what happened was there was a move for a mistrial, Baltar got on the stand, Baltar got off on this rant, and various versions there were places where Baltar withdrew his plea. Said, "I won't be judged by any of you. I reject the court, I reject everything about the court." And as soon as he withdrew his plea then they were going to judge him guilty because that was the way the law worked or something. Ther were other versions where Baltar was on the stand and he said, "I am the son of God, you are all sacrificing me in His name." And was doing this other whole religious bit and we decided not to go there. It was essentially when I was doing my pass at the script that I said, "I want to go back to this idea of the mistrial." I wanted to use the mistrial idea as a way of one thing after another happening in the court room where it starts with Lampkin seizing on the idea of a mistrial and trying to put Lee on the stand, which we all knew that was something that you couldn't, that would be thrown out in any U.S. court. But given the exogent circumstances that were happening here we decided to push through it and we do have the prosecuting....prosecutor objecting vociferously to this notion and trying to stop the proceedings, but the fact that you have Adama on the panel and it's his son and the curiosity factor sort of jury rig.....sort of ad hoc judicial system that they've got here. I felt that we could push through it dramatically and get ot the place where we get Lee up there on the stand ostensibly to crush his father. Instead of crushing his father, he gives this eloquent speech that turned the tide of the court case and i thought that was an interesting place to go because you wouldn't see it coming. This sscene when Lee, when Jamie Bamber get on the stand and did this scene did the monologue, the moment that's coming up here, all the cast was there and I wasn't on set that day but I came the day the day after they had shot this scene and Mary McDonnell said, "You should have been here yesterday. Jamie did the speech." And I said, "Oh did it go well?" She said, "Oh my God, when he finished doing his first take of that speech the entire cast and crew stood up and gave him a standing ovation."
Terry: Aaaahhhhh, did they?
RDM: They did. They were blown away, it was really....
Terry: They did an amazing job.
RDM: Everybody I think went really, Oh my God, look at him go. I think the character made a giant leap here to because I think the character....taking him out of the uniform and putting him into a suit changes the character in an interesting way.
Terry: Well, you've always discussed the problem of Apollo that he's sort of the hero, but....
Terry: how does he define himself outside of always being the stand up guy; especially, placed under these circumstances. Now you get to see him..
RDM: When you take him out of the uniform
Terry: Really, Yah!
RDM: he's no longer so connected so intimately to his father. So he..it's not a quite as competitive as it was.
Terry: He gets to be himself more.
RDM: And then I really wanted-this was the-we played around with this speech in earlier drafts but I really wanted this speech to really be about collective guilt, collective shame, and really shine a light on some of the practicalities of what they were dealing with. They kind of threw together this judicial system and they threw it together to try this one man.
Terry: And one of the things that I like about is that is that point that you always have, "Well, you guys elected him." You all wanted to go down to that planet. Where's your, talk about personal responsibility, where is it?
Terry: It's really easy to put it all on one person, I'm not saying that he's not guilty but we're all guilty.
Terry: But they also pointed out what teh problems were going to be and people made the free choice to go in this direction.
Terry: and people made the free choice to go in this direction.
RDM: I mean it's....They talk about parallels to reality in the show and I'm always asked about the allegorical elements of the show and what's relevant to contemporary society and certainly, as I was writing this stuff about Baltar being elected president and the rest of them now hating his guts and wanting to throw him out the airlock was the notion that the country did elect George Bush.
Terry: Well and I said this just the other day.
RDM: Now everybody's ripping apart his ass.
Terry: And now everybody is ripping apart George Bush all over the....Oh, see how bad Iraq is and yet, where were they when we were going in? And now it's just his fault?
RDM: We went into Iraq with an overwhelming majority of the American people's support. I was not one of those people but
Terry: But the point is,
RDM: The point is
Terry: and and all the politicains
RDM: And now everybody wants to run away
Terry: there was not a democrat who was willing to say he was wrong.
RDM: And everybody wants to run away from it.
RDM: So in some ways that did inform it, but it's not a direct allegory to this trial, to the issues of this trial obviously. But the idea that they all participated in it, they all did it, they've all forgiven each other. But not this guy because we don't like you very much.
Terry: We need somebody we didn't like.
RDM: And ultimately, there's altruism in that. There's this notion in our culture, that once we decide we don't like somebody that's it. That's what they said about Marth Stewart. Martha Stewart was convicted because she's a bitch, she wasn't convicted for much else.
Terry: Well I was going to ask you this. There's a lot of discussion about the sort of slide under the rug that you give to some of the characters. When they commit, y'know, infractions that wouldn't go.
RDM: We talk extensively about each one of those things. There's been a lot of fan comment about the fact that Helo was not punished, well Adama's heart was not in the situation.
Terry: or Starbuck
RDM: Adama's heart was not in the situation. Adama didn't really want to commit genocide he was happy that they just didn't commit suicide that day and wasn't going to dig any further. I guess on one level you could say well that's an infraction of the rules. and that's wrong and that's immoral and Helo should have been charged. But in this Rag Tag Fleet in this "gang" as Lee puts it they are making up the rules. And Adama decided in that case, his sense of morality told him he's glad about what he did on some level and wasn't going to push it and that's the bottom line. And same with Starbuck and the rest of them they are kind of making up the rules as they go along and they have to decide what rules they are going to uphold.
Terry: Well and again in a situation like this, this show's about the constant examination about the structure of society. About which things work and which things don't. Gee you might be against abortion in this circumstance but under this one are you still? So, can you be so black and white and arbitrary and say these are the rules we will follow them at all costs.
RDM: And I think it was interesting, in terms of the specific during the trial, what could they really convict Baltar of?
RDM: What crime had he actually committed that she could be charged and convicted of. The attack on the twelve colonies was something the audience witnessed happened and no one else knows about. Laura saw him, the most Laura could say was that she had a vision where she saw him with the blond cylon and that's it. So there was no charge there.
Terry: While she was on watchamacallit
RDM: While she was on drugs, so that doesn't hold water. And the rest of it
Terry: Nobody saw him give the warhead to Six.
RDM: Oh uh to Gina, the warhead? Yah, nobody saw that. Nobody tracks him back to that crime specifically. So they didn't have a lot, but they disliked him like the audience dislikes him. So I wanted to play on that to sort of make you question whether sometimes the quest for justice is really a quest for vengance.
Terry: Well and also what does it mean when it is the audience who did see him give the warhead to Caprica-Six to know that he's guilty. You know that he's guilty but you have to allow the legal system to do what it does.
RDM: Cause otherwise there's no point in having it.
Terry: It's like watching instant replay in baseball even though you could see that the guy was out.
RDM: Yah, the umpire called it.
Terry: The umpire called it.
RDM: There was a version of the story, in fact it was the first draft in the initial stories where we were not going to give a verdict before the end. That Baltar was either going to yank his plea before they rendered a verdict or the attack was going to happen before they rendered the verdict and we were going to go out on the season with Baltar, his fate not completely resolved. Michael Rymer and David Eick were up in arms about it about the idea that we had to bring resolution to it by the end. I didn't personally think you did, I thought a cliffhanger's a cliffhanger's a cliffhanger. You could go out whenever you felt like going out; you could leave as many threads hanging as you want, but eventually I acquiesced ok let's give Baltar resolution. That was probably in retrospect the right decision because it allows this episode to bring this storyline to conclusion before we move into the whole Cylons, the revelation of the final four Cylons section. End of the act.
RDM: Top of the next act.
We'd had versions of the story- I don't think versions of the script- no. There were. I take that back. There were versions of the script, as well, where we followed the judges back into chambers and played some of the deliberations and some of the- interpersonal stories of Adama dealing with the other four judges, and eventually dropped it. It just- it was one element too many, and too many people to track, and more speaking roles, and it was just "too much of a muchness," as Ira Behr used to say.
Terry: A much of muchness?
RDM: "Too much of a muchness." And- so we dropped it. It's more effective this way. There's something nice about when the jury, or in this case the tribunal, just leaves the courtroom and then just comes back with the verdict, and it's a little cleaner, a little bit more simple. But there was some- I did like the idea of getting to see the captains discussing the case and how they would arrive at a verdict. I just thought- I thought it was an interesting idea, in theory.
This bit of business with Baltar getting the acquittal and then the courtroom erupting into chaos went on quite a bit more, actually. Rymer shot quite a bit of more material here that we had to just get out of, but there was- they rush him. Baltar is yelling. People are screaming. Baltar jumps up on the table at some point and is like yelling his innocence to the crowd.
Terry: They're just great.
Terry: Can you- can there be like a- those things added into a DVD at some point?
RDM: Yeah, well, the d- we always put deleted scenes in.
Terry: All of them?
RDM: Yeah, quite a few.
Terry: So you would put like this in?
RDM: Uh, probably.
Terry: But it's not edited together. I mean- extras.
RDM: Some of it is. Yeah, it's usually edited together.
Terry: 'Cause that would be ama- this was amazing. This whole thing.
RDM: We might be able to- I'll see if they can add that into the DVD.
Terry: It was great when the whole- that whole twenty-minute overage was...
RDM: That guy, the bald guy, actually had more.
RDM: He was gonna specifically be following Baltar later on, after the lights go off, and you see Baltar wandering through the ship. That guy, and another guy, were actually pulling knives and they were chasing Baltar through the corridor. At- just- him. This guy with the bald head. Just before Baltar runs into the women that save him, he was literally on the run for his life. There were people trying- to knife him in Galactica's corridors.
Terry: This is such a great scene.
RDM: Yeah, I love this notion.
Terry: This is so Baltar.
RDM: I think the writers came up with this.
Terry: This is great.
RDM: -with Robert Redford, after he wins, he just turns to his campaign advisor and says, "What now?" or "Now what?" And that was what we wanted to go here. OK, now he's free, he's been acquitted, and now what?
Terry: But for Baltar, of course, he's got an idea.
RDM: I actually cut a whole chunk of dialogue here where Lee comes across the room. He was gonna really put it to Baltar in starker terms about how he knew what a slimeball he was, etc., etc. And I thought, when I saw it, that it just- it was contradictoring- it was contradicting all the stuff that we had said- that Lee had said up on the stand, so I opted just to make it a quicker, more little bit of a flashpoint once his dad's name is brought up. I also really like the fact that Lampkin is not going to continue being Baltar's mouthpiece. That he really- he came in, he did his job, and he's moving on. But he has no illusions about his client either. He's not gonna be out there flakking for Gaius Baltar in the near future.
RDM: Yeah, "What about me?" (Chuckles.)
Terry: He's such a narcissist.
Great look on both their faces.
RDM: This is like the only cat reference in the show, is him saying, "Hate using a cat metaphor, you'll land on your feet." We had just dropped the ball in terms of working the cat back into the episode and having something, other bit of business, with Lampkin and the cat, mostly for time. Again, we were just fighting time and I don't think it was even in the script drafts to find something else with the cat. Also that just everybody was bitching about the cat on the set and they had to deal with the cat. The cat takes up time.
Terry: Shoulda used a dog. A dog named Jake.
RDM: If I had known, we would've used the dog.
I love this little beat where he- puts aside the cane. He sets the cane aside and puts on the s- puts his sunglasses back on. There was another piece here that was cut, actually, where Lampkin gave Lee the pen, gave Lee the pen that we had seen Baltar use. 'Cause I think he had stolen it from Baltar once again and he handed to him, and that also got lost in the edit. Just the fact that he walks out of there without a- without the cane is just a great little beat. How much of everything he did was a put on? And how much of it was all for effect? And what did he (unintelligble)-
Terry: -It's all theater.-
RDM: -It's all theater. And he plays the game very well.
Adama cast the deciding vote in favor of acquittal was a late-breaking idea, too, that we wanted to get an idea what happened behind their- behind closed doors. And I though there was some- it validated, really, what Lee had done, if he had turned his father. And it just seemed like if the- argument that we presented in court had weight and had validity and was really the argument that carried the day, it seemed like Adama should be the one to recognize that, and that Adama should be the guy to cast the vote in favor of acquittal, because he would swayed and realize that they really didn't have anything on Baltar, despite all their anger and hatred and genuine feelings of vengeance, that they couldn't actually convict him for that.
Now we move into- now we're getting back to the Ionian nebula, and we're getting ready to get to- the next section of the show. Let's see. This came about- the revelation of the final four, came about as we were working on these storylines. We w- the writers had been breaking the season finale, the courtroom drama, and they were pitching it back to me and I was sitting there and I was- I liked it, and yet I had this nagging sense that we hadn't really transcended the courtroom drama. We hadn't really pushed it to the next level.
Here's Baltar wandering the corridors with his little box.
Terry: This is when everybody was chasing.
RDM: Yeah. Yeah this- well, after the lights go out was when-
RDM: -everybody started chasing him.
[Dialogue can be heard] 3...2...1... so they jump. We get to the nebula, and then just all hell breaks loose.
And then we get to Laura. Now, there was a beat here when Laura ha- reacts. I think we had actually put in more vision. Laura had more vision here of the Opera House in pieces, but it felt like we didn't need it any more. We had done enough with the visions and it was enough that she just reacts a split second before all the ships in the Fleet lose power.
And then Tigh in the corridors. Now, the notion was that- the guys had broken it as a courtroom drama, and I was getting dis- I wasn't quite satisfied with that, and I remember sitting in the writers' room saying, "You know, I've- I just feel like we need to do something bigger, and I've had this recurrent idea-"
Oh. That was the end of the act. I'll come back.
RDM: Top of the act. I had this recurrent thought about people walking towards one room on Galactica. Now the truth is, in the writers' room, some- I didn't. I had the recurrent thought for maybe three minutes in the writers' room at that point, and sitting there mulling it over, and said, "I've got this idea." And it was to- you'd have all four- four people walking from different points in the ship towards a room, and then they would just walk in the room, close the door, look at each other, and say, "Oh, my God. We're Cylons." And that that would be part of the revelation at the- that would be the finale. And everybody in the room went, "Wow." And they all said, "OK. Can we do this? Is it crazy?" And I thought, "Well, I don't know. Tell me I'm wrong here." And it was a lot of, "OK, let's make sure we're not losing our minds here. Is this a good way to go?" And the more we talked about, the more excited that we got. And then it was, "OK. Who are the final f- Who are four of the final five Cylons?" and would would they be? And it's- fell into place rather quickly, actually. Who they were seemed rather obvious to all of us, in a bizarre sense. Tigh was one of the first names tossed out. Tyrol, Anders, and Tory. And they all had reasons why their backstories worked for the Cylons and for what the final four Cylons would be in particular. Tyrol had a connection to Sharon, obviously, had fallen in love with a Cylon. He was drawn towards the Temple on the algae planet. Anders had survived two resistance ro- movements, very mysteriously. He had also fallen for Starbuck who has a specific destiny, the Cylons keep saying. Tory we knew the least about, so she was a bit of a wildcard. Tigh was the most problematic, and Tigh I went back and forth on all the way up to the point where we were shooting the episode and h- wanted to make sure that we knew what we were doing, and we weren't blowing something. Because Tigh- was the most human of that group in many ways. Had such a human story full of pathos and-
Terry: Caprica Six-
RDM: -angst, that I won- I was worried that we were gonna lose something if you deci- discover that he was a Cylon, he wasn't human after all. And then I realized and we all tal- the more we talked about it, the consensus was actually, "Yeah, you lose something, but you gain something, too." Because Tigh- because of all those things, because he had killed his wife, because he was a drunk, because he was Adama's best friend, because he hated the Cylons more than anybody else. When that character discovers he's a Cylon, that's an interesting story.
Terry: Well, and the difference between him and Sharon, is that we didn't know Sharon for very long before she w- before we discover she was a Cylon.
Terry: So we've had all this time to develop all this knowledge and backstory with Tigh.
Terry: As to why- and to then, because we know him, he can't possibly be a Cylon.
Terry: But we don't enough about Sharon's history to know- all the things that might have been taken place for her, or for any of these guys for that matter.
RDM: Sure. And we have the backstories worked out. We know why it's these four. And we know how there backstories actually do work very well with what we've laid out in the show. Which we made sure before we committed to going in this direction.
Terry: Sleeper Cylons.
RDM: I was essentially looking for an excuse to put "All Along the Watchtower" on the show for a long time. I ha- When I was working at Roswell, I had an entire episode I was gonna do around "All Along the Watchtower."
Terry: You're getting a lot of flak for that.
RDM: Eh. That's OK. Whatever. This how the process works.
RDM: You're always- you have ideas that you think about and mull over a different context over course of time until you find the right time to do it and the right way to apply it.
RDM: And this is one of those cases. I was gonna put the song in the show, like, way back in the first season. There was an idea that Helo and Sharon back on Cylon-occupied Caprica were gonna come into like a bar or a cafe or something and the jukeb- they'd get the jukebox working one night and they were in some romantic setting and they would turn the jukebox on and "All Along the Watchtower" would start playing, and the idea is they would both- they both would recognize the song, casually. And that the audience would go, "Wait a minute. Wait a minute. Wait a minute. How can they recognize that song? It's not the Jimi Hendrix version. It would still be a cover of it, but how could that be?" And the idea was, and it still is, that there are connections between their world and our world. Between the story of people on Galactica and our contemporary reality.
Terry: Don't go too far.
RDM: And there are connections that transcend all these things. And so that the idea that there is a song that is recognized in the Galactica universe that we recognize as well, is not an accident. And that there is an explanation for all of that.
I love that when Tigh comes into the room. That's my favorite.
Terry: It's so Tigh.
RDM: He walks in. "Woooooah." The writers' have now taken that up in the room. They just sometimes write up on the board, "Tigh enters. Wooooah."
Terry: He's so fabulous.
RDM: The- we actually- to preserve this secret we actually published fake pages for the first time in the history of the show, that had an alternate ending to the series- to the season.
Terry: Well you guys talked about doing that now from here on out.
RDM: We've talked about that forever.
Terry: Because, you know what? When you guys start reading spoilers-
RDM: Oh yeah.
Terry: -you don't really know what it is you're gonna be getting.
RDM: Yeah. We put out fake pages. We'll prolly continue to do that in the future as we get deeper and closer to the end of the season.
Terry: You're gonna have to.
RDM: All this was- but a lot of the secret got out to the crew and to the cast anyway, which was fine, it just emphasized the point that these were secrets that we wanted to maintain.
I really like the way the foursome reacts here.
RDM: They all just distinct- reactions from one another. I love the way Anders looks at Tory and says, "You get aw- you stay away from me."
Terry: And he immediately just assumes command.
RDM: And Tigh-
Terry: "Close that door."
RDM: Yeah. And I think this tells us a lot about these characters going into the fourth season.
RDM: Tigh's reaction is, "I'm a man. And I'm Saul Tigh. And I'm gonna die that man." And he's just not gonna deal with it. He's gonna deny it. Even knowing- that they know on some basic-
Terry: That it's true.
RDM: -level that it is true. And it is true. That this is what they are. That they don't wanna deal with it. And they don't really know what their agenda is. They don't know what they're supposed to do. They don't know how they got here.
Terry: -go through these various inner workings and meltdowns and trying to define themselves and I don't think it's just so, "I am a machine."
RDM: No. It's never been that.
Terry: -Never been that.
RDM: It's always been more complicated.
Terry: It's always been exploration of who they are and what it means to be human or what it means to be alive. I mean from Six's first thing. "Are you alive?"
RDM: And the final four, and there's really five, of course, but the final four here are different Cylons than the other Cylons, and we've pretty much set that up initially, once we decided that- once we said, "OK. There's a reason that you've only seen seven, and that the final five are different, and that the rest of the Cylons can't think about 'em, can't talk about 'em, and that there's a whole mythos on their side about the final five Cylons." You're already saying that they're different than the others. That they're a different kind of Cylon and that the rules that we've est- painstakingly established for the other Cylons need not necessarily apply to these.
Now this section here, as we get into the attack, and then the eventual revelation of Kara at the end, was also a closely guarded secret. They were separate pages that were not put out initially. If you think back to the "Maelstrom" podcast, I think you'll find that I walked the line very carefully in that podcast. I don't think I ever lied about the fact that she was never coming back to the show. I think I talked pretty much about the fact- the reaction of people, and that we mean- that she was gonna be killed, and what a devastating thing it was to the cast and the crew. And how it really affected everyone. And all that is absolutely true. Now what I didn't get into was the rest of that story, which was that when the news went out that we were killing Kara in "Maelstrom", all hell broke loose up on the set in Vancouver, and I got a call from the studio one morning saying, "OK. I think you better do something. The cast and the crew are almost in a state of mutiny up there." And we went, "Huh? Oh my God." And so David and I called up Eddie and Mary first and said, "OK. Look. Here's the lowdown. Kara's coming back in the last episode." We told them how she was coming back and all that. And we didn't- we had not wanted to put them all in the position of having to lie to everybody, of having to lie to publicists and press, and lying to cast, other mem- lying to the crew, etc. But it had gotten to such a point that we had now had to share the information, and then Eddie and Mary shared it with the rest of the cast, and eventually key crew members were brought in. We had to break the secret just to maintain cohesion up there. But there were certainly people that were ready to like hang David and I in effigy.
This ending here with Lee. We shot two versions of all this. Actually a couple of different versions. When I was up on the set- the original scripted ending was that Kara was going to be in Lee's quarters. He was gonna be rushing into his quarters. He was gonna get his helmet and his flight uniform and then he was gonna turn to go, and then he looks up, and then Kara's standing in his quarters, and says, "Hi Lee." Yeah. Right here. Where he comes in, he grabs his flight helmet and stuff, and he turns, and then boom. Kara was gonna be there. We were gonna play the last scene with Kara in the room. And then when I was up in Vancouver I started having second thoughts and wondering if that made it too supernatural into the next season. How would she get in there? Too many questions and did I really wanna go down that route? And decided, to protect ourselves, let's do- shoot a version where he encounters her in the Viper. He gets in the Vi- in a Viper. He goes out, and Kara comes up next to him in a Viper. And ultimately in the cut that was the cut that- that was the way Rymer cut it, and I decided to go with that too. It was a stronger ending, and it was- it got us outside Galactica, you got action going and fighters, and you're- at this point you're unhinged in terms of where the hell it's all going, I think, and her reappearance- sure there were true- the true hard-core fans could probably sniff it out, but I think a lot of the audience was shocked when she came up and certainly that was the reaction at the frak party that we were at. There were a couple people here and there who were winking and somebody was saying, "I hope it's Kara," but I think the reaction generally was surprise. This is Bear McCreary, our composer, who's doing the cover of "All Along the Watchtower". He composed it and he covered it, and I think it's a great version.
Terry: And you wanted it to be a cover.
RDM: Oh I wan- it ha- I knew it was-
Terry: Didn't want it to be-
RDM: There was a point where the network wanted it to- they said, "Why don't we just use the Jimi Hendrix version? And let's pay- we'll pay for it and do it." And I said, "No, no, no, no. That's not the idea. The idea is not that the literal song can be used." I didn't under- there was no real connectio- there's no real logic to how you could actually hear the Jimi Hendrix version, which is the most famous version event though it's a Bob Dylan song, how that you could actually hear that version in the Galactica universe. But the idea was that the lyrics of a song, and the song itself, could tran- could be passed from culture to culture, or have found its way through the mists of time from one place to another, I could buy that.
Terry: There it is.
RDM: And there's Kara. And this- idea- When we talked about "Maelstrom", this was part in parcel what "Maelstrom" was gonna be. We said- we'll kill her here, we'll take her out of the main title credits for the next few episodes, but then she's gonna come back at the end, and say, "I found the way to Earth." And that fulfilled her destiny, because I think there was also questions after "Maelstrom" aired about whether that actually-
Terry: I love this.
RDM: -paid off everything. Did her death have any meaning? Her death didn't have meaning, but the resurrection of Kara does.
This was- this grand pullback through the cosmos was also in Rymer's cut, and I really fought for it. The people- the network wanted to drop it at one point. I think David wanted to drop it at one point. And I loved it because it held out a promise that I think was important to say to the audience, namely that we're really going to Earth and there it is. And it really moves the show strongly into the third act of what the series is. That was important to me. It was important to me to move the show into the third act.
So that is "Crossroads, Part II".
Terry: You are now free to fight among yourselves.
RDM: You are now free to fight among yourselves.
RDM: I don't know when the next podcast will be. I always think I'm gonna do more before the next season.
Terry: You know, we should. We really should.
RDM: I would really- I will really make an effort to. There's still some episodes of the first season I've never done podcasts for-
RDM: -I could get back and do. And, who knows? Maybe we'll try other formats and this and that.
Terry: Yeah. We'll think of some stuff.
RDM: But that's season three, ladies and gentleman. Thank you all for listening. It's been a great season for me. I hope it's been a great season for you. And that's it. So good night, to one and all, and good luck.
Terry: Take care, everybody. Be good to each other.
RDM: Be good. Good night.