Battlestar Galactica

Season 1 Episode 7

The Long Patrol

Aired Sunday 7:00 PM Oct 15, 1978 on ABC

Episode Recap

The Galactica and the fleet leave their galaxy for a new one. Starbuck has volunteered for their first mission in exchange for a meal on the Rising Star. Athena cons her father into letting her off duty so she can join Starbuck for dinner.

On the Rising Star, Starbuck and Cassiopeia are celebrating before his recon mission. He bribes the greedy waiter to get him a private room. Cassiopeia excuses herself to go freshen up. When the door opens again, it's Athena at door. Shortly after, the waiter returns and is shocked to see him with a different woman. Starbuck bribes him to get another room for Athena. After eating some appetizers with Athena he returns to his original room to find Cassiopeia waiting for him. While there, he is paged to return to the Galactica. He bids her goodbye but gives her his lapel pin. He returns to Athena's room where he gives her his other lapel pin and tells her to stay and enjoy the room. On the way out, he runs into the waiter again and gives him his remaining cubits. Wandering the halls, Athena and Cassiopeia admiring their pins, run into each other.

Starbuck meets Apollo and Boomer in the launch bay wearing regular clothes--in case he has to land. His viper code-named Viper-1, has been re-engineered to give him more speed and range but his laser generators have been removed. And a voice-activated computer has been added. Starbuck launches and then does some fancy maneuvering. Then he turns on his Computer Voice Response Activated (CORA) and dares it to do the same--which it easily does. CORA scans the system ahead and finds two vehicles. With Starbuck's assent, she heads for them where they find a fighter chasing an unarmed shuttlecraft. Starbuck scares the fighter off and follows the shuttlecraft to the asteroid where it has landed. He checks out the lone occupant who happens to be a bootlegger named Robber. Robber knocks out Starbuck and steals his viper. The Galactica, monitoring his long range beacon, notes that the viper has returned to space.

On Viper-1, Robber instructs CORA to send an inter-galactic message as she repeatedly asks about Starbuck. Galactica notes that Viper-1 is transmitting a long-range message in a strange code but unscrambled. The transmissions are also picked up by Baltar's base ship and he launches a patrol to investigate. Galactica launches Apollo and Boomer to seek out and destroy Viper-1, believed to be in Cylon hands. On the asteroid, Starbuck revives and realizes his predicament. He manages to get the shuttle off but is immediately attacked by the unknown fighter and forced to follow it to another asteroid and its penal colony where he tries to bribe the guards with his cargo of ambrosia but is knocked out. He wakes up inside the prison. All of the inmates are named for the crimes their ancestors originally committed over 700 yahrns before. On the Galactica, a grieving Athena gives Cassiopeia the bad news about Starbuck.

Viper-1 begins transmitting again but Cassiopeia recognizes it as an Arien merchant code. The message is decoded as a request for the coordinates to Aries. The Galactica disengages the attack on Viper-1, which lands on a nearby planetoid, and advises Apollo to investigate. Athena and Cassiopeia call a truce until Starbuck returns. On the asteroid, Apollo and Boomer find Robber and his wife and daughter. Robber brings them up to speed on the Enforcers who run the prison keeping Starbuck. Three Cylon fighters are detected approaching from the rear on a heading to the asteroid where Viper-1 landed. Adama orders the fleet to move away at flank speed to avoid detection by the Cylons. Adama comforts Boxey by telling him a story about Earth. Back on the prison asteroid, Starbuck is accosted by a guard when he realizes that all of the cells are unlocked. The inmates think they've been making ambrosia for the Colonies for the past 700 years when in fact the prison colony has been forgotten and the ambrosia has been simply stockpiled. The prisoners revolt.

The prisoners and their guards leave their prison just as Apollo, Boomer and Robber arrive in their vipers. They bring everyone up to speed and then Starbuck joins Apollo and Boomer as they prepare to greet the three Cylon fighters. Starbuck turns Viper-1 over to CORA who flies circles around the Cylons confusing them until one crashes on the asteroid and the other two are destroyed by Apollo and Boomer. The prison's stockpile of ambrosia was destroyed when the Cylon crashed. On Galactica, long-range scans show Viper-1, two vipers and a shuttle craft. On the Rising Star, Adam is hosting a dinner for his family and Robber's. Boxey gives his father a hand-drawn rendering of a solar system. As the drawing is handed around the table, Starbuck tells him that one of the planets is wrong. When they ask him how he knows, he remembers that there was a drawing like it on his cell wall. Robber mentions that they were drawn by an earlier prisoner who never spoke. Adama tells everyone that the drawing is the depiction of the solar system containing Earth.