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Virtual beings denote the curious virtual images seen by Gaius Baltar and Caprica Six, often referred to as "head characters" by the use of "Head Six" and "Head Baltar" by internal documentation and scripts.
"Torn" establishes the humanoid Cylon visualization process known as projection. In the Miniseries and Season 1, before the term "projection" was introduced, the character of Gaius Baltar has frequent visions of an image of his Cylon love interest from Caprica, now known as Caprica Six.
After her resurrection from the Caprica mission, Caprica Six herself is haunted by a virtual image of Gaius Baltar.
Neither character directly reveals the presence of these images to each other or any other character. The images appear to Six and Baltar together during the Battle of The Colony, revealing the truth to the pair. Occasionally both Baltar and Caprica Six have been viewed reacting to their virtual companions, either by talking to themselves or by physical reaction, though this has generally been discounted as general "oddness". Baltar makes reference to seeing angels while speaking on the wireless as a cult leader, and when convincing John Cavil to stand down during the Battle of The Colony (Islanded in a Stream of Stars, Daybreak, Part II).
The personality of each image is often represented in the clothing that they wear. Virtual Six often appears in a revealing red dress, and the virtual Baltar appears in a pinstriped suit, apparently custom-tailored (Miniseries, "Downloaded").
Each personality is not a copy of the original character's personality, but generally behaves as a militant version of the original. The Virtual Six espouses Cylon philosophy and religion in a zealous, unwavering manner. Likewise, the virtual Baltar often criticizes Caprica Six when she attempts to rationalize the destruction of the Twelve Colonies or other Cylon motivations. Both personalities tend to sway its actual opposite to side with their philosophy: For virtual Baltar, the need to become more human (and, like the actual Baltar himself, selfish); for virtual Six, worship of the Cylon God and distancing Baltar from any opportunity to give support to the Colonial causes.
In the last days of the journey, the virtual beings are suggested to be what our society would call Angels, more specifically Angels of God (something already stated by Baltar's Virtual Six in "Home, Part II" and "Torn"), however writer Jane Espenson has stated that she personally believes they are "a far-advanced culture with an interest in humanity." This would mean they are similar to the Beings of Light.. (Islanded in a Stream of Stars, Daybreak, Part II)
Baltar's Virtual Six
Baltar initially believes that the virtual Six is a hallucination in its first few weeks of appearances, but later believes the virtual Six's initial suggestion that she is generated from a Cylon cybernetic implant. He disproves this notion when Doctor Cottle gives him a brain scan, showing no abnormalities (Home, Part II).
Baltar's virtual Six is aware of events, people and places that Baltar does not appear to know consciously. She tells him of a Cylon transponder hidden in Galactica's CIC, and appears to aid him in his conversion from Colonial polytheism to Cylon monotheism through guiding him in how to destroy a Cylon tylium refinery (The Hand of God). The source for virtual Six's data is unclear.
Baltar's visions of Six not only have the Cylon appearing with him on Galactica, but the two also envision themselves in Baltar's now-destroyed home, on the beach, and other locales. The virtual Six projection seems to be able to force Baltar to see additional items in his environment, such as the human skulls on Kobol as well as visions of the interior of the ancient Opera House and an image of what virtual Six believes to be a Cylon-human hybrid child. When an actual child does appear in the Fleet, the virtual Six claims it is her vision fulfilled. Baltar is convinced by this that she cannot be a hallucination, but Cottle's scan appears to have ruled out the possibility that she is an implant. He asks her who or what she is, and she replies that she is an angel (Kobol's Last Gleaming, Part II, Valley of Darkness, Home, Part II).
Over time, Baltar is seen by some characters speaking to himself, which is often the case when he is speaking to Virtual Six. In several instances, the virtual Six appears to Baltar to be a physical entity, grabbing him by his clothes or body, or assisting him with objects ("Six Degrees of Separation", "Taking A Break From All Your Worries"). She has even demonstrated an ability to physically interact with Baltar. On one occasion, she pushed him into a bulkhead and grabbed him by the throat. In another example, she lifted him into a standing position after he was beaten by a Galactica marine (Escape Velocity). In both cases, this provoked reactions from other people.
The virtual Six has been present when Caprica Six is near only twice. She is also conspicuously absent during Shelly Godfrey's tenure on Galactica (Six Degrees of Separation). The virtual Six seems to, for the most part, vanish during the period when Caprica Six and Baltar renew their relationship on New Caprica. When Baltar is aboard a Cylon basestar, Caprica Six explains the projection process to him while the virtual Six hints that this process is very similar to how she and Baltar communicate and that Baltar may himself be a Cylon (Torn). Virtual Six also appears to Baltar, when he discovers Hera under Maya's dead body and disappears when the real Number Six comes near Baltar and the baby (Exodus, Part II).
Virtual Six has a musical theme, a simple 9-note motif with a staccato xylophone and some violins, which plays behind almost all her appearances. This theme also plays without Six present in "Rapture" after D'Anna Biers collapses in Baltar's arms after her vision of the Final Five, until Baltar is clubbed by Galen Tyrol.
From the end of Season 2 on, the virtual Six claims more often to be an angel from God.
Ultimately, Virtual Six is revealed to be a very real being -- not a projection of something inside Baltar's mind -- sent by another being that may be God. Both her and Virtual Baltar appear to both Caprica Six and Baltar; each is shocked that the other can see them. On Earth, Virtual Six, along with Virtual Baltar, reveals to Caprica and Baltar that their destiny had always been to protect Hera, who was the future of both races. They leave, saying that while God's plan is never finished, their lives will be much less "exciting" from now on.
One-hundred fifty thousand years later, Virtual Six is with Virtual Baltar in New York City, looking over the shoulder of a man reading a National Geographic magazine article about the remains of Mitochondrial Eve -- the current population's earliest common evolutionary ancestor, Hera Agathon. The two discuss how all of this has happened before, and whether all of this will happen again. Virtual Six believes things will go differently this time. Virtual Baltar chides her when she refers to God, saying, "You know it doesn't like that name." The two then walk off into the teeming crowds of New York City (Daybreak, Part II).
Caprica Six's Virtual Baltar
When a virtual Gaius Baltar appears to Caprica Six in "Downloaded", the notion that the actual Gaius Baltar was part of a Cylon plan to manipulate him via the virtual Six is revealed to be highly unlikely, as other Cylons are unaware of him and do not mention the plan or its effects to Caprica Six.
The virtual Baltar's appearance and demeanor is just as much an extreme opposite of the actual Baltar as the virtual Six's behavior is to Caprica Six.
At her resurrection, the virtual Baltar immediately tells Caprica Six that only she can see and hear him, and not to reveal what she sees to the other Cylons present. The virtual Baltar is never asked by Caprica Six about his origins.
The virtual Baltar confronts Caprica Six with her guilt in the slaughter of billions of human beings, and with the logical error behind the Cylons' actions. Under the influence of the virtual Baltar, Caprica Six speaks out against the war alongside another resurrected "hero of the Cylon", Sharon Valerii. The two forge a new quasi-benevolent path, albeit temporarily, for the Cylon race.
The revelation in "Torn" about the Cylons' projecting abilities suggests that the virtual Baltar is generated by Caprica Six's own projection ability. Since the actual Baltar is not confirmed as a Cylon, the origins of his virtual Six are questioned by Dr. Baltar himself during the revelation of the principles of projection.
The virtual Baltar appears irregularly in seasons 2 and 3. In "The Woman King", Caprica Six is observed by Laura Roslin and Tory Foster as Caprica Six speaks and kisses the virtual Baltar, who is, of course, invisible to Roslin and Foster.
While Baltar's virtual Six claims to be an angel sent from God, Six's virtual Baltar seems to be contemptuous of the Cylons' concept of God (Downloaded). He is also described by Ron Moore as more of a "devil" figure in Six's consciousness.
While the virtual Baltar acts mostly as a conversational foil for Six, in "Crossroads, Part I" he informs her that Saul Tigh has suffered the loss of a woman close to him, to assist Six in dealing with the interrogation by Tigh. It is uncertain how he or she obtained this information.
Virtual Baltar appears one last time in the series finale. He and Virtual Six appear together, and both Caprica Six and Baltar can see them, and are each shocked that the other can. He and Virtual Six are representatives of the being that some call God, who Baltar describes to Cavil as a force of nature that is neither good nor evil. Virtual Baltar and Virtual Six make one last visit to Caprica Six and Baltar to tell them that their role had always been to protect Hera, and now that that was done, the two Virtual Beings leave them alone. Virtual Six explains that God's plan is never over, but Virtual Baltar tells the two that their lives will be much less exciting, indicating that their role is over now.
The two Virtual Beings disappear, and are seen 150,000 years later in New York City discussing humanity finding its most recent common ancestor (Hera). The two discuss the cycle of life, and Virtual Baltar chides Virtual Six for calling the being they work for "God," as it apparently does not like being called that. Virtual Baltar has the series' last line, which is a response to Virtual Six's stern look: "silly me... silly, silly me." The two then walk off together into present-day New York City.
Gaius Baltar's Virtual Baltar
After his ascension to cult leader, Gaius Baltar encounters a well-dressed virtual version of himself after he meets Tory Foster. Baltar is initially shocked by his sudden appearance but eventually becomes amused by the idea of having himself as a conversational foil for once instead of Six. This virtual Baltar encourages him to engage in a relationship with Foster, claiming that she is "special," and guides him, after a fashion, through her covert interrogation attempt. This virtual Baltar does not elaborate on that point, but Baltar follows the virtual version's lead (Six of One).
It is unknown whether or not this Virtual Baltar is the same one that Caprica Six sees. Baltar asks if he is the virtual Six in another form, but the virtual Baltar points out that she would have little reason to disguise herself from Baltar.
It is likely that this is the same Virtual Baltar that Caprica Six, sees as he sees her version in the last episode and she sees Virtual Six as well.
Laura Roslin's Virtual Elosha
Laura Roslin converses with a being in the form of Elosha during what should be zero-time jump sequences on the way to the Resurrection Hub. (The Hub) This virtual being is unlike the others, in that not only do they interact outside the realm of others, it takes place during a time interval that should not exist. The being seems to have some knowledge of the future events, such as Roslin's death and the fact that William Adama waits for her, suggesting both reality for the being and the out-of-time conversations. Unlike Starbuck's Leoben, the experience is difficult to explain with unconscious dreaming or hallucination.
The Final Five's Virtual Beings
After recovering his memories of Earth due to being shot in the head, Samuel Anders reports that the Final Five were originally warned of impending nuclear destruction of Earth two thousand years earlier by images of people no one else could see. This information allowed them to prepare their recreation of Cylon Resurrection and the ship on which they escaped following the disaster. The one that appeared to Anders looked like a woman, the one that appeared to Tory Foster looked like a man. Galen Tyrol, much like Gaius Baltar, thought he might have a neural chip (No Exit).
Kara Thrace encounters a vision of her father going by the name of Slick, she does not recognize him as her father. As she spends time with him, she recalls playing the piano with her father. She assists him in composing a song and compares him to her father. While she plays the piano with him, she recalls playing the piano with her father as a child. She recalls a certain song, and notices that the score resembles one of Hera Agathon's drawing. As she plays the song with him, Saul Tigh and Tory Foster recognize the song as the same song they heard at the Ionian Nebula. When Saul grabs her and asks her about the song, Slick vanishes (Someone to Watch Over Me).
- The virtual "Leoben" that appears to Kara Thrace in the episode "Maelstrom" only appears to her in a vision while the pilot is unconscious. Since this virtual Leoben does not fit the Baltar-Six analogue, Battlestar Wiki considers him separately to the above.
- William Adama sees and converses with his deceased ex-wife each year on their anniversary as demonstrated in "A Day in the Life". While the episode where this occurs shows William and Carolanne together in places and settings (ostensibly at their home on Caprica), this is a dramatic representation of Adama's ordinary imagination of what Carolanne may have thought about his predicament. As such, the visualizations of Carolanne Adama are not a virtual being similar to those above.
- Saul Tigh sees his dead wife in place of Caprica Six (Escape Velocity). This could be a simple hallucination, or, as Tigh is a humanoid Cylon, an example of projection.
- When holding a two thousand year-old, mangled mailbox hatch from the lobby of the Tighs' apartment building, Saul sees a dying Ellen again in a vision from his and her prior incarnations on Earth. Ellen is depicted in the vision as fully aware of their future reincarnations and the cyclical nature of their existence, which she prophesises for past-Saul in the moment before they both die. (Sometimes a Great Notion).
- In the fifth Razor Flashback, while exploring the lab, Adama has a hallucination of a hand reaching out to grab him from a device similar to a resurrection or Hybrid tank. However this could be a stress-induced hallucination. The same may be the case for the screaming prisoners in the lab, which could also be explained as a visualization for the audience. However, the voice Adama hears of the First Hybrid is the real voice, so this part at least is not a hallucination.
- Beginning in Season 3, Baltar's Virtual Six begins appearing less frequently, and makes only a few appearances in Season 4. A scene was filmed for "The Road Less Traveled" in which Virtual Six, stating that Baltar no longer needs her anymore, says goodbye to him and fades away; this scene was deleted (but included on the Season 4.0 DVD). Virtual Six reappeared after an absence of many episodes in "Deadlock", potentially rendering this deleted scene non-canonical.
- In the podcast for "No Exit," Ronald Moore refers to the Final Five's virtual beings as "the Messengers" and indicates that they are significant to the overall storyline.
- When asked by a fan at a convention about the differences between this Baltar and the real Baltar, actor James Callis described Six's Baltar as a man who "finally has his shit together.". (Warning: Video contains some explicit language)
- Callis mentioned at the same convention that his personal theory is that Baltar's internal Six is a being from another universe or higher plane of existence who only Baltar can interact with. This may relate back to the "angel" theory . (Warning: Video contains some explicit language)
- Actress Tricia Helfer has said that she has long since given up on trying to figure out just what Baltar's internal Six is.  She believes Caprica Six and Baltar both having internal counterparts is related to the scene from the Miniseries where she saves Baltar from the shock wave of the nuclear bomb that destroyed Caprica City.
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- "Question: Starbuck an Angel??? Really???" Espenson: "I'm going to answer re Starbuck and the "head" people, too. Well, here's how I always saw it. If someone from a far-advanced culture somewhere in the universe took an interest in humanity, isn't it possible that with their advanced tech that they could have abilities that would seem to us miraculous. Maybe we'd think of them as "Angels." Maybe they're the whole reason we have a myth of "Angels." But that's just me. The great thing about great novels (or tv series) is that some things are left open to your own philosophical solutions." Galactica Sitrep, http://www.boston.com/ae/tv/blog/2009/03/chat_with_battl.html
- Template:Cite rdm podcast
- Podcast:Someone to Watch Over Me
- James Callis (Gaius Baltar) Q&A FanExpo 2k6 - Part 3 (backup available on Archive.org) . (YouTube video) (September 04, 2006). Retrieved on January 24, 2007.
- James Callis (Gaius Baltar) Q&A FanExpo 2k6 - Part 3 (backup available on Archive.org) . (YouTube video) (September 04, 2006). Retrieved on January 24, 2007.
- IGN Interview: Battlestar Galactica's Tricia Helfer (backup available on Archive.org) . (January 18, 2007). Retrieved on January 24, 2007.