Dynamite has sent us a new writer’s commentary from Peter David on Battlestar Galactica vs. Battlestar Galactica #4. The issue has covers by Adam “Mojo” Lebowitz and by Johnny Desjardins. Interiors also by Desjardins.
And now we begin to see the start of Kali’s plan. She is endeavoring to make Bill Adama and Saul Tigh suspicious of the original BSG crew. Up until now, she has come across as a reasonably sympathetic character. But now we are beginning to see that she is definitely up to something, and it will not mean well for either of the Galactica crews. So readers’ antenna should definitely be rising now, as they realize Kali is not a benevolent individual. Then again, considering she is named after a Hindu goddess of death, I was kind of tipping my hand early on.
I’m pretty sure that Gaius had the shortest jail escape on record. He couldn’t have been walking around more than five minutes before running into Starbuck, who naturally promptly decks him. Baltar witnesses all this, of course, but doesn’t do a damned thing to aid his potential ally. He blames Gaius for his utter incompetence in getting caught, and doesn’t want to be anywhere near him as the marines show up, because he’ll be subjected to questions he really does not want to deal with.
I’m hoping that fans let out a squeal of joy upon seeing Count Iblis finally show up. When I was writing this series, it very much felt like playing a big game of chess. On one side we have white, the original series, with all their cast members, and on the other side black, the darker-in-tone revival. There were also a king and queen who are their own shade of gray. The queen showed up in the first issue and now the king has finally made his appearance in issue 4. I think the resemblances to the original actors have been hit or miss, but I really like the artist’s rendering of Patrick Macnee.
My feeling is that when Bill gets to Laura’s quarters and discovers Adama has spent the night there, he would love to punch him out. This story is set before Bill and Laura have actually become a couple, but I don’t believe that their romance came out of absolutely nowhere. They’ve spent almost three and a half seasons together; the thoughts must have been percolating in Bill’s minds that he wanted a relationship with her. But his common sense kept telling him that he should keep it professional. Yet now he thinks that Laura may be attracted to his counterpart. So yeah, he’d probably like to throw down with Adama. But the fact is that he has made no overt move on Laura, so she has no reason to be romantically fixed on Bill. And if she chooses to get involved with someone else, Bill should have nothing to say about it.
Count Iblis settles in nicely with the Skinjobs. I expanded a bit on Iblis’ previous ability to be so suggestive that people feel drawn to him; now he can control minds. My feeling was that it was particularly easy for him to control the Cylons because they are actually bred to obey. The mechanical Cylons obey the Skinjobs, and the Skinjobs obey their makers. Since obedience is their default setting, it played right to Iblis’s strengths. Ideally readers will start putting two and two together and realize some other things, which get spelled out more clearly later in the issue. Just as I praised the art for the semblance to Macnee earlier on, I have to say that Cavil doesn’t look a damned thing like Dean Stockwell. Sorry. Also notice the spiffy scene transition where we end on a close shot of Sharon and then on the next page have a close up on Athena. I wanted them roughly in the same position but the artist had her looking to the left at the end of 11 and then into camera at the beginning of 12. But at least they look like each other, so that’s a plus.
I played with time in terms of storytelling a bit. On this page, we introduce Athena and then have Kali’s reaction happen at the end of the page without tipping who it is that’s screaming when they see her. Fortunately we reveal it on the next page.
Now the reader should definitely know something is up. When Kali first encountered Saul, it should have been perfectly obvious from her dialogue that she knew what Saul really was, even though he himself didn’t know. But now she sees Athena and she freaks out, demanding to know how Bill could possibly tolerate the presence of a Skinjob on the ship. If she were really concerned about it, she would have outed Saul when she first met him. So it’s obvious that she’s playing some sort of game here. Furthermore it is not coincidental that Apollo is nearby when she starts yelling and making accusations. We don’t show it, but she spotted Apollo there and saw this as an opportune moment to further distrust between the two crews.
Sheba is definitely not stupid. She knows a lot about a lot of things, and most of all, she knows her father. Something is definitely off with her. And of course, since we’ve revealed that Count Iblis is in the mix, it should become obvious to the reader that he has taken over Cain’s mind and given him a set of instructions that he is carrying out despite the fact that Cain is no longer in his presence. Cain, even with his mind controlled, is aware that if anyone can break the influence on him, it’s his daughter. So naturally he sends her to be locked away in order to protect Iblis’s influence on him.
Well, THAT didn’t end well.