Battlestar Galactica

Season 4 Episode 8

Sine Qua Non

Aired Friday 10:00 PM May 30, 2008 on Syfy



  • Trivia

  • Quotes

    • Lee: (as Romo holds him at gunpoint) No one blamed you, Romo, because at a certain point, we all made decisions that saved our lives at the cost of others. You think you're unique, Romo? Think your sins are so special?
      Romo Lampkin: Is that it, counselor? You're going to rest your entire case on that pathetic little bit of insight?
      Lee: No, on this. The clean slate, the fresh start, maybe they are illusions, like you said. But at a certain point, faith in ourselves, in our right to survive as a species, as a people -- that's not a given. That's a choice.

    • Romo Lampkin: Writs of forfeiture. (hands Admiral Adama a paper document) The captains want to be absolved of any blame should anything untoward happen. One of the less ennobling consequences of a legal culture. No one wants responsibility.

    • Romo Lampkin: Word to the wise: sometimes it's better to settle for what you've already got.

    • Romo Lampkin: Lampkin's First Rule of Legal Dynamics: When an irresistible force meets a movable object, stand aside and wait for the class-action suit.

  • Notes

    • Adama: What do you hear, Starbuck?
      Kara: Nothing but the rain, sir.
      Adama: Grab your gun and bring the cat in.
      Kara: Yes, sir.
      Adama and Kara are repeating the jodie (a military marching chant or cadence) from an early scene in the Miniseries. The jodie was also heard in the first Razor flashback. The young Adama recited the jodie with his lover, Lt. Jaycie McGavin. It is also heard in "Maelstrom" between Starbuck and Adama. Ronald Moore based the lines on jodies he heard during his days in Naval ROTC at Cornell University but he has never written out this jodie completely. Instead he leaves it up to the audience to wonder about the words of the full jodie as well as the reason this jodie holds special meaning for Adama and Kara.

    • During the fight sequence, Adama throws Tigh onto the table, causing Tigh to demolish the model of the old sailing vessel. Adama says, "You know how many times I've had to repair this thing?" This is likely an inside joke referring to the scene from the Season 3 episode "Maelstrom" where Adama smashed the model ship with his hands after Kara's Viper had seemingly been destroyed. Edward James Olmos was not aware that the ship was an expensive model that the production staff was renting. He improvised Adama's actions in the scene. Fortunately the model was covered by insurance, according to Ronald Moore.

    • The song that Athena hummed to Hera was the same tune that Boomer hummed to the captured Cylon Raider in the Season 1 episode "Flesh and Bone." As noted in that episode guide, the melody is taken from a Korean lullaby that Grace Park's mother used to sing to her when she was a child.

    • Lee's full name is Leland Joseph Adama, which is given for the first time.

    • As of the end of the teaser, there are 39,674 survivors in the fleet, one more than the total listed in the previous episode.

    • Jamie Bamber read the "Previously on Battlestar Galactica" line at the beginning of this episode.

    • This episode aired in the U.K. and Ireland before it debuted in the U.S. Sky One (U.K.) broadcast the episode on May 27, 2008, three days before the Sci Fi Channel broadcast. This was the first episode of Season 4 to air in the U.K. and Ireland before airing in the U.S. The Sci Fi Channel did not air an episode of the series during the previous week because of the Memorial Day holiday weekend.

    • Sine Qua Non

      The title of this episode originates from the Latin phrase "sine qua (causa) non," meaning "without which (cause) not." The phrase refers to an essential or indispensable condition or element.

  • Allusions