Mormons, or, Galactica 1980 marathon, part 3

February 26, 2006

Husband informs me that Barry Van Dyke and Not-Starbuck’s dorky motorcycles could fly in the first episodes of Galactica 1980, I was just in some sort of fugue state during the flying dorkcycle scenes and didn’t notice.

Oh well. Welcome to day 3 of the Galactica 1980 Fest, wherein we don’t actually watch an episode of the show because it gives us a pain right here and we need a little break. By “us” I of course mean “me.” Even as I type Husband is happily viewing an episode of Miami Vice that starred Miles Davis, who seemed intent on proving that a great, great musician could be a bad, bad actor. The episode is from 1985. The following year, Don Johnson proved to the world that a bad, bad actor could be a bad, bad musician with his opus, Heartbeat, but that’s a post for another day. I don’t think this episode is going to be as good (if by “good” you mean “bad”) as the one with James Brown as the leader of a UFO cult.

Tivo is not your damned friend.

There is a Miami Vice-Battlestar Galactica connection. It’s not Glen A. Larson. It’s Edward James Olmos, who co-starred on Miami Vice as the token (token actor, that is) and now stars in Battlestar Galactica (the iteration I refer to as “the real one”, much to Husband’s annoyance) as Admiral Adama. (Lorne Green Action Facial Hair sold seperately).

This post is a little too paranthetical (even for me).

The problem with prolonged viewing of Galactica 1980, and in fact any show from the franchise, is that it inevitably leads to prolonged ranting (by me, at any rate) about Mormons. Not all Mormons. Not even most Mormons. Only the Super-conservative misogynistic Mormon missionary dudes who live up the blocl. I got rid of them for a long stretch of time at one point by actually inviting them in and spilling the ashes of my deceased cat (it was actually a peppermill, but they didn’t know this).

So yeah, maybe I do have a problem with some Mormons. But those are specific individuals and they’d be annoying no matter what flavor of oppressive theology they adhered to. But I could ignore all that, if the Galactica Universe wasn’t just ooy-gooy with theology, which I find boring and trite. Again, no matter whose theology it is. Series creator Glen Larson really wears his religion on his sleeve in this one. Yes, I know, plenty of sci-fi is just rehashing of established religion. (I just did that nerdy thing where you clear your throat while croaking a word, in this case: The Matrix. You just didn’t hear it). I don’t care. It’s intellectually lazy. If you want to invent a religion, invent a religion. Don’t just make anagrams and call yourself clever.

If there’s overt Mormonism in some of Larson’s other epic masterpieces, Knight Rider, Buck Rogers, and Quincy spring to mind first, I’ve never noticed. My own babblings about Mormons and Battlestar Galactica are neither insightful nor interesting, so I’ll send you elsewhere if you’re interested in reading more on the subject.

Michael Lorenzen’s essay on “Battlestar Galactica and Mormonism is interesting, albeit stiff and awkwardly written. This essay is probably a better summary, although it doesn’t go into the depth that Lorenzen’s essay does.

Well, whatever. Just think about all those naked Lucy Lawless cylons and it will all a-okay.

You may think that it’s silly to devote time to the Glen A. Larson oevre, but that just means you haven’t been following U.S. politics closely enough. According to the requisite sci-fi moment in this year’s State of the Union Address, President W pointed out that Manimal is a serious threat to our freedom:

A hopeful society has institutions of science and medicine that do not cut ethical corners, and that recognize the matchless value of every life. Tonight I ask you to pass legislation to prohibit the most egregious abuses of medical research: human cloning in all its forms, creating or implanting embryos for experiments, creating human-animal hybrids, and buying, selling, or patenting human embryos. Human life is a gift from our Creator — and that gift should never be discarded, devalued or put up for sale. (Applause.)

Sure, there are loads of bioethical issues to be addressed in the field of xenotransplantation and creation of chimeras is a hot topic. Personally, I think it’s unfortunate the Prez wants to devote more resources to stopping this research entirely, not because of the medical implications but because I’m so looking forward to someday being able to mutate into various animals at will, especially raptors.

Again, not for any medical reason. Just because the idea of being able to poop on people and get away with it sounds kinda fun. And raptors are big, big birds.

And on that note, it’s time for us to finally catch up with Friday night’s ep of (the real) Battlestar Galactica, “Downloaded.” With special guest star Lucy Lawless.

Go on to part 4

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