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Monday, March 23, 2009
BSG: This is not a happy ending
You want to know what the story is in the magazine AFTER mitochondrial eve? It goes something like this:
"A body found in the mountains has been dated to approximately 150,000 years ago. The skeleton of a man in his late 30s, there were striking signs that this individual had had a difficult life. There were strong indications of starvation and malnourishment. Bone scars indicated repeated encounters with primitive weapons and possibly predators. As well there were clear indications of repeated bouts of malaria and other diseases common to the African plains below the mountain. The cause of death was probably either exposure, hypothermia or bloodloss, as the left leg was broken. Paleo-forensics experts concluded it was probably an agonizing death. What someone of that era would have been doing so high in the mountains, without modern protective clothing or sophisticated climbing gear, is a mystery. There are also puzzling reports of signs of something like modern dentistry on some of the teeth, but scientists dismiss this as simply an unusual anomaly due to high metal concentrations in the mountain deposit in which the body was discovered."
Lee Adama: "I want to explore!"
Oh do you Lee. You're on vacation are you? With the clothes on your back? With what calories are you going to get the energy to climb these mountains? How much leisure time do you think you're going to have, trying to scrape up enough nutrients to stay alive with a somewhat balanced diet, competing against hordes of very able predators and tribal angry protohumans?
God has not brought these people to the land of milk and honey, they are not going to spend the rest of their lives lounging in hammocks. They are going to die. Rather horribly and brutally. That's the reality.
You want to know how awesome colonization is, even when you have some technology, and entire empires just an ocean away, and you can actually speak to the natives who have a reasonable level of civilization?
Wikipedia - Colonial history of the United States
Now you could certainly imagine that it was different for the colonials, except for the second ending, which by placing them so far back in our own past, tells us that:
* no bodies of the colonists other than Hera have survived/been discovered (because the modern dental work would be a giveaway)
* none of their language survives except perhaps as some ur-word-roots (certainly no written language, since that wouldn't arise for something like over 145,000 years)
* none of their farming survives (since that wouldn't arise again for over 140,000 years)
* none of their technical knowledge survived
* none of their other culture survived
* they are not remembered in the modern era in any way whatsoever
* plus trying to find a partner would have been a nightmare - preverbal tightly familial protohumans? What are you going to talk about with your sickly, illiterate, primate love for the rest of your short life? Dirt?
This is not a happy ending. They are not on safari in Africa. This is not a fucking vacation adventure. They are not all going to become humble farmers, surveying the waving grain in their fields. Baltar is a farmer is he? And how is growing up as a farmer in an incredibly advanced integrated technological society of billions going to prepare him to scrape a living out of the dirt on a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT PLANET with no infrastructure and no technology whatsoever? Without even any domesticated farm animals?
After 4 years of fighting against all odds, these remnants from the pinnacle of a civilization are going to lead short, nasty, brutish lives and ultimately nothing they did will matter, they won't be remembered, they will have no impact on anything whatsoever. Roslin's board count is going to go from 39,000 to 15,000 to near 0 within the span of a few years.
Not only that, they will die KNOWING that this horrible end is God's idea of a good time.
Wow, that is quite the gift to your fans there, Ron Moore, thanks a lot.