Battlestar Galactica

Season 3 Episode 5


Aired Friday 10:00 PM Oct 27, 2006 on Syfy
out of 10
User Rating
653 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Tyrol participates in the Circle, a secret tribunal on Galactica that tries and convicts in absentia those accused of collaborating with the Cylons during the Occupation.
The death sentences -- administered without the knowledge of Roslin or Adama -- begin to weigh on Tyrol's conscience.
Baltar faces a similar jury among the Cylons, who must decide whether he is allowed to stay with them.moreless

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  • Collaborators

    Collaborators was an extremely entertaining and perfect episode of Battlestar Galactica and I really enjoyed watching because of all the character and plot development. Many deep emotions were touched or triggered in this episode which asked how to deal with traitors, though they may have only done so out of survival instinct or fear. It was interesting to see the different characters points of view. Tigh had some great lines and scenes. Roslin becomes President yet again with the assistance of Tom Zarek who had his own idea of justice for the Cylon collaborators. It was suspenseful watching Gaeta being discussed and headed for execution. Tyrol has some serious dilemmas to work through and made the right choice. In the end Roslin pardons the remaining Cylon collaborators in hopes of moving forward, and it was touching to see Tyrol sit with Gaeta in the Mess Hall as he was alone. I look forward to seeing things work themselves out between the former collaborators and every one else. I look forward to watching the next episode!!!!!!!!!moreless
  • Hopefully the simplistic vengeance-fueled hostility will no longer be a focus after this episode.

    This episode moved at a slow pace, suggesting that the plot was intended to be suspenseful, but nothing that happened felt particularly exciting or surprising. The threat of execution (for Gaeta and others) did not feel like a dramatic conflict, since it was easy to determine right from wrong, and so I felt like I was waiting for the tribunal to be faced with the negative consequences of their actions and relent, or else to be shut down. I would have liked to see a more compelling conflict than forgiveness versus mindless revenge.

    Starbuck's story also left me wanting more. Her actions were characteristically chaotic, but it was more difficult than usual to figure this mercuriality out. Tigh, too, seemed to be spiraling out of control faster than I would expect from someone who made a conscious decision to betray his betrayer wife.

    In all, "Collaborators" was a passable episode, but I would like to see more complex challenges for the characters now that they are back on Galactica.moreless
  • Justice or Vengeance? While lacking action, "Collaborator" ends up being one of the best transition episodes in television history, giving the viewer closure but creating more potential plot lines then any fan could ever hope for. Spoilers inside.moreless

    Following the events of Exodus, we see the people of the Battlestar hunting those who betrayed the human race during the cylon occupation. The question of Vengeance versus Justice is raised and the fates of many characters is revealed. The episode shows a major evolving of Gaeta and the death of "Jammer" to the death squads. Gaeta is revealed to be the inside source to resistance on new caprica but the evolution up to this revelation is played out rather well. While it was easy to guess that something like that would occur the actors played their roles extremely well and we see Gaeta regain his post on the battlestar in the end. The episode also acts as a stepping stone closing the New Caprica story line and opening new ones. Roslin is president again, Saul is dealing with the death of his wife at his hands, Baltar is with the cylons which could be extreemly revealing and Starbuck is dealing with the fact that Casey was not her child. Collaborator brings an end to one story line and starts a new one while showing us new sides to characters and creating potential plot lines for the future. While lacking action, this transition episode ends up being one of the best in television history giving the viewer closure but creating more potential then any viewer could ever hope for.moreless
  • It was going to be about vengeance and pain...

    I had a little longer brake than I usually prefer between this episode and previous one and so I had time to think what the story is going to be and I think I figured most of it out - I knew it was going to be about that Jammer and Gaeta will have his turn and that there will be a lot of trouble with people on different sides - and I most say it is a stunning storyline, the idea - how they worked in different sides and now have to manage to be together on the same side again.

    And the way they talked this episode - showed Tigh and his anger - everyone on the circle - the whole thing going on between Starbuck and Sam. I just think there is no way to describe it - very emotional, atmosphere creating and very dark episode. I loved it.moreless
  • Still great writing.

    I recently read somewhere where the networks preferred that Battlestar series would be better served if there were more single story episodes and not one big long season story. I would gather this is one of the first attempts of this new line of thinking. The story unfolds as the fleet is back underway on the search of earth. I really like the idea of a secret council and how it is used to find all the people who helped the cylons. The idea of flushing people out airlocks is not unique but effective. No traces or even evidence since most people don't even look outside. The final solution although flawed seemed unique way to deal with the problem. Given the circumstances of the last few episodes it is normal that this episode would be a bit slow in action but still interestingmoreless
Edward James Olmos

Edward James Olmos

William Adama

James Callis

James Callis

Gaius Baltar

Jamie Bamber

Jamie Bamber

Lee "Apollo" Adama

Katee Sackhoff

Katee Sackhoff

Kara "Starbuck" Thrace

Mary McDonnell

Mary McDonnell

Laura Roslin

Grace Park

Grace Park

Sharon Valerii/Sharon Agathon

Winston Rekert

Winston Rekert


Guest Star

Lucy Lawless

Lucy Lawless

D'Anna Biers/Number Three

Recurring Role

Aaron Douglas

Aaron Douglas

Galen Tyrol

Recurring Role

Dominic Zamprogna

Dominic Zamprogna

James "Jammer" Lyman

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (5)

    • After convicting the first suspect and then someone named Chadwick, the Circle has 57 more cases to consider over a three-day period. Thus, we know that this special brand of "justice" is not an open-ended process.

    • Kara Thrace's serial number is 462753 as seen on her dog tag.

    • Among the names on the execution list that Baltar signed on New Caprica are Justin Singh (clerk), Denis Moore (driver), Xander Zorost (mechanic), Laura Roslin (teacher), Lester Thoro (food services), Arimin Stahl (supply), Sally Menlo (facilitator), Kalan Pelham (administrator), Alex Lamere (office worker), Fore Ramone (office worker), Jane Seadle (mechanic), Jacob Morose (entertainer), Sue Emmanual (doctor), Ali Mueller (botanist), and Tom Zarek (detainee). Kara held up the list during her session with the Circle as they debated Felix Gaeta's guilt or innocence.

    • Although Number Six told Baltar in the miniseries that there are twelve Cylon models, only seven models are voting in the decision about Baltar's fate.

    • The Circle was made up of Saul Tigh, Galen Tyrol, Seelix, Charlie Connor, Jean Barolay and Samuel Anders. After Anders resigned his position, Kara Thrace took his place.

  • QUOTES (17)

    • Adama: Go sleep this off. That's an order.
      Tigh: Ohhh, yeah. Just go to sleep. Forget about it all. Just forget about everything. Well I'm not forgetting. I'm not gonna forget.

    • Tigh: (to Connor) You think we're a bunch of thugs, handing out punishment on a whim? Jammer didn't get airlocked because you thought he was guilty. There was evidence. You read the witness reports. He was tried and convicted by this Circle. This is about justice. You got that? Justice!

    • Tigh: Well, isn't that nice. A man can turn his coat, collaborate with the enemy, contribute to the deaths of thousands, but the old man needs his phones fixed and suddenly all is forgiven?

    • Tyrol: (referring to Gaeta) He's the reason we know about the death list. He's the reason I saved Cally. He's the reason we're on this ship. He's the one who gave us the inside information. There's our source, Colonel.
      Gaeta: I did what I could. I don't know what else I could have done.

    • Tigh:(shouting at Gaeta) Hey! Look at me! As long as you're here, maybe you can help me out. I'm missing something. I lost it in detention. Since you're so buddy-buddy with the Cylons, maybe you know where it is. How about it? Do you know where my eye is?

    • Tom Zarek: Ah. Come on Laura. You're not that naive. Let me tell you what's gonna happen if these cases go to trial. It'll consume this fleet for months. Maybe years. People will be lining up to testify against their neighbors. It'll be a circus. An entertainment for the mob and you'll be signing death warrants almost every day. Is that how you want to spend your next term Laura--as executioner in chief?

    • Laura Roslin: Everyone, by law, is entitled to a trial with representation. Everyone. It is not an option to be discarded at the president's whim.

    • Kara: (to Sam) I'm in a different place now. I...I, I don't know how else to explain it to you, but I got out of that cell and it's like someone painted the world in different colors. And I look at you and I want to tear your eyes out just for looking at me. I just want to hurt someone and it might as well be you. So you should probably go before that happens.

    • Tigh: Everyone likes Gaeta so let's let him off the hook. Let's just look the other way on this one. Well, a lot of good people had to pay the price for what they did. Choices they made on New Caprica. Like my wife. That's right. Ellen collaborated, gave the Cylons information on the Resistance and she died for it. Because that's the price of collaborating with the enemy. And I liked her a lot more than I like Gaeta.

    • Anders: Hey! I quit because I'm not looking for ways to keep killing people.
      Kara: I need this, Sam.
      Anders: So what, throwing a few people out of airlocks is gonna make you feel better about yourself? 'Cause believe me, those aren't the people that kept you locked in that room.
      Kara: They'll do. And not just for me but for every person we left back on that planet because someone has got to pay. So you can either get with it or you can get lost.

      Anders: Is that what you want Kara? You want me to leave?

    • Kara: My gods. The whole thing's like a bad dream, only we woke up and the traitors are all still here.

    • Jammer: (pleading with the Circle) I was just trying to help people!
      Tigh: You didn't do a very good job then, did you?

    • Baltar: You're a person. A real person. A woman, and you're in love with me. And it hurts. I know it hurts, but believe me. I am the only one that can make it better. Don't you see? I am the only one.
      Caprica Six: No, this has to end. (walks away)
      Baltar: You need me! You need me! Admit it! Admit it, you need me!
      (Cylon Centurion blocks the doorway)
      And I need you too! Did you hear me? I- I need you too!
      (turns back)
      Maybe I should've started with that.

    • Caprica Six: I'm a Cylon, Gaius. Somehow I lost sight of that.

    • Lee: Now if you'll excuse me, I have a date with a jump rope.
      (Adama has a skeptical look)
      Lee: Hey, I've dropped half a stone.
      Adama: Keep jumping.

    • (in Baltar's dream)
      Roslin: (to Baltar) I've always wanted you.

    • (in Baltar's dream)
      Number Six: Don't make me angry, Gaius.
      Adama: You wouldn't like her when she's angry.

  • NOTES (6)

    • The Cylon baseships in this episode have a different appearance than those seen in previous episodes. This is not a new type of baseship, however. Producer and writer Bradley Thompson noted that Gary Hutzel, Mike Gibson and the VFX crew continually upgrade the imagery on the show. They decided to "echo the internal design elements of the baseship on the exterior."

    • Lee: Hey, I've dropped half a stone.

      A "stone" (pl. also "stone") is a unit of weight almost unheard of in North America, but still used in the UK. It's equal to 14 pounds or about 6.4 kg. So assuming that the Twelve Colonies are using the same standard of measurement, Lee has lost 7 pounds so far.

    • The story takes place on the third day of the Second Exodus, or three days after Adama's rescue of the survivors from New Caprica. The first Exodus took place after the initial Cylon attack on the Twelve Colonies.

    • Though credited, Grace Park did not appear in this episode.

    • The list of survivors returns for the first time this season. As of the beginning of "Collaborators," there are 41,435 survivors.

    • This is the second episode to include scenes set on a Cylon basestar, and the first since the Season One finale ("Kobol's Last Gleaming, Part 2").


    • Roslin: I've decided to form a Commission for Truth and Reconciliation.

      Commissions of truth and reconciliation have been convened in several countries throughout history following brutal dictatorships or other periods of violent upheaval. Those countries include Chile, Argentina, El Salvador, Sierra Leone and South Africa. South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission is considered to be one of the most successful of these commissions.

    • Number Six: Don't make me angry, Gaius.

      Adama: You wouldn't like her when she's angry.

      This dialogue mirrors the famous phrase used in the TV series The Incredible Hulk.

      Dr. David Banner (aka The Hulk): Mr. McGee, don't make me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry.