Battlestar Galactica

Season 3 Episode 10

The Passage

Aired Friday 10:00 PM Dec 08, 2006 on Syfy

Episode Fan Reviews (33)

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out of 10
664 votes
  • Those who found Unfinished Business a little too radical (no guns, no space battles or crash-bang-(but plenty of wallops) might prefer The Passage.

    For me though the story really did reveal the flaw in 48-minute teleplays - The Passage really did need to be split over two episodes, if for nothing else to allow the demise of Kat to be given the proper consideration it deserved - and Luciana Carro really did deserve a chance to stretch out for a lot longer - seeing as it was her last opportunity to act in the series.

    In the first shot though we are being propelled forward at just too rapid a pace. The foods gone off (er...) the only grub is on a planet at the far end of a ludicrously radioactive nebula (not too sure about the scientific basis for this one)...the fleets ships have crappy electronics (er..) the paint jobs on the Raptors aren't too good (er...) Cat's got a drug/people running past (this storyline just never got going at all, other than to provide a flimsy excuse for Kat to self-immolate slowly). The remourseless pace is justified in recognising that this is a race against mass starvation, but I felt the pace was a race against the 48th minute being hit. There was no opportunity for consideration, pause...some of the special things that only BSG can do. One highlight was the Adama/Tigh scene ("there's a paper shortage") which almost felt ad-libbed (and was perfect). If it was ad-libbed it would be nice to see this encouraged. Give the actors a starting line, what they are supposed to achieve and a rough estimate of how long they should talk, and let them get on with it, with no script. There isn't a member of the cast who isn't capable of this - and no show on TV past or present could boast that claim.

    The pace was such that Mary McDonnell was criminally underused in this episode, whilst Lucy Lawless/Callis and Helfer had a story thread that was simply being used to setup the next episode. Surely a few scenes of the stress being imposed upon the fleet could have been written-in?

    And Kat herself? Dead and gone, with hardly a word. An emotional scene with Starbuck, and a brief one with Adama at the end. Yet she had more to say in Scar in Season 2.

    Too rushed, with too many inconsistencies and too few "special" BSG moments. I was one who scored Unfinished Business with a "10" - and weeks after that was broadcast I've had time to view it again and again and I now count it as the 2nd greatest piece of TV drama in the last 30 years (and the greatest was a BBC series called "Edge of Darkness" - Unfinished Business was THAT good).

    However the concern is that Season 3 is just too inconsistent - drifting from superb to mediocre from week-to-week. Actors like McDonnell and Park and Aaron Douglas just aren't being pushed enough with the lines and stories that they enjoyed in Season 2. The muti-faceted threads aren't there - last season we had the Caprica story (Helo and Starbuck and Boomer) and the Kobol thread (Roslin, Tyrol, Crashdown...) This year though we have none of that; Baltar is seperated from the presence of those he betrays/saves occasionally, and there is no ground-based thread to follow. Whilst the New Caprica thread was running there was a wider scope in the storylines, but now Season 3 (with some very notable exceptions) is too compressed, too insular...and sometimes, too rushed.