Nowplayingmag.com has reviewed Episode 111: Colonial Day:
Battlestar Galactica - “Colonial Day”
Written by Scott Collura
Monday, 21 March 2005
After the tense action of last episode, Battlestar Galactica delves into a perhaps even more tense arena in “Colonial Day” – that of the political landscape. When President Roslin decides to rebuild the Quorum of Twelve, the Congress-like branch of the Colonial government, former terrorist/freedom fighter Tom Zarek enters the fray as one of the representatives of the Quorum. And when he suggests that a vice president should be appointed as a successor to Roslin, the president suddenly realizes that her life – both political and otherwise – might be at stake.
One of the more sensible modifications to Galactica from the original series to the new has been the implementation of an actual government in the show’s world, one very much like that of the U.S. government in fact. In the old show, the Quorum of Twelve was discussed and seen sometimes, but as Galactica showrunner has said, they seemed like little more than a bunch of old guys wearing togas whose wishes were always countermanded by the obviously wiser Commander Adama.
Of course, in Moore’s universe that kind of methodology won’t fly. Adama more than anyone is aware of the dangers of his being perceived by the people as a military dictator, and that’s why the delicate balance of his relationship with President Roslin is so important to the survival of the fleet. When Zarek is announced as a member of the Quorum of Twelve, Adama’s first instinct is to shut him down, but it’s Roslin – who has more at stake than anyone in this regard – who insists that he must be allowed to participate. He was, after all, legally appointed to the position by the people.
Richard Hatch’s Zarek, back for his second appearance this season, remains an interesting character. He receives a cold reception to be sure when he attends the Quorum of Twelve gathering, and one can’t help but feel for the guy – an ex-con who’s trying to make good for himself and his people. But then, an assassination plot develops, with Roslin presumed to be the target, at the same time that Zarek positions himself as the potential vice president, and the question is raised yet again about Zarek’s motives.
Roslin’s reaction to these developments is equally interesting, as she designates her own candidate for vice president. And eventually, the at-first-reluctant Dr. Baltar enters the political fray too; the character continues to rise effortlessly through the ranks of society, despite his dark, dark secret.
All these political machinations end in a victory party that sees the Galactica crew getting some much-deserved R&R – even the third-tier Lt. Gaeta gets to cut some rug at the celebration. Good for them, because with only two episodes left in the season, Battlestar Galactica is no doubt gearing up for some serious business for all of this gang. B+