The following will contain SPOILERS if you have recorded the show to watch later.  Read on at your own risk.

The anticipation that has been building for this season 4.5 premiere of Battlestar Galactica culminated with a well deserved and in my opinion, well written episode of darkness, dispair and shock.

They took the usual darkness that permeates the background of this tale of the stragglers of the human race and cranked it up a whole bunch of notches.

The Disappointment:
The disappointment of finding out that Earth was ravaged by war infected the entire collective of humanity.

This Earth is nothing but ruins and weeds.  It was a planet that was completely nuked over 2,000 years ago.

Our “allies”, the skin job Cylons discover old Centurion parts in the debris.  (The original Centurions from the first series)

It turns out that the five final Cylons were alive on the planet 2,000 years ago when it was nuked.  The 4 all had flashbacks when they came in contact with parts of the ruined city.  Tyrol found his own nuclear shadow that was left over from the attacks.

The first revelation they surmised was that the 13th colony were Cylons who habitated this planet and CALLED IT EARTH.  This, to me, says this is not Earth.  Just a like named planet.  It was this colony of Cylons 2,000 years ago who were devestated by the war.

The Depression Affects Everyone:
The depression is taking its toll.  Roslin is burning the prophecies and just doesn’t care.  She doesn’t even want her cancer treatments anymore.  People are fighting in the hallways of the Galactica.  Graffiti on the walls of the Galactica say “Frak Earth”.  Admiral Adama confronts Tigh, threatening to kill himself.  All that is left of humanity is falling into despair.

The most traumatic casualty of the depression was Anastasia Dualla.  In the beginning, she found some childrens jacks in the dust of the wasteland.  It made her cry.  Later, after a date with Lee Adama, she’s got a glow about her and things look good for a reconciliation with Lee.  While humming to herself, she takes off her wedding ring, puts it in her locker and without a glimmer of an emotional clue showing, uses her sidearm to end her life.  It was a graphic, quick, shocking and completely unexpected moment that actually traumatized me.

I started getting irrational thinking this was her way to “come back” as the final Cylon, but I also knew that the final Cylon was going to be revealed in the last few minutes of the episode so things had to have happened fast for her to come back.

Back on “Earth”, Starbuck discovered the wreckage of her Viper and what I presume to be her corpse in the cockpit.  The body was charred, had blond hair and it was wearing the necklace with her wedding ring and HER dog tags.  She built her own funeral pyre and burned the body.  Very surreal.  So much for DNA verification.  Now she doesn’t know what she is.  Is she the final Cylon?

Admiral Adama looks to take the fleet away from this travesty of a mistake and asks Gaeta to find the nearest G, F or K type habitable system.  Adama announces that they will find the previous inhabitants new home.  That’s a promise.

As they’re getting ready to leave, Col. Tigh walks into the ocean and gets his own flashback.  He sees himself in the attacks and he’s looking for his wife in the carnage and finds her.  He finds Ellen under some debris.  More or less, she tells him it’s OK because they will be reborn.  Tigh suddenly realizes that Ellen is the 5th of the five.  Ellen?  Ellen??

I Have Questions:
If Ellen is the 5th, what does that make Starbuck?  Is she indeed a Cylon as I am initially believing or is she something else?  And where is Ellen?  She passed away before the resurrection ships were destroyed last season.  And obviously the final 5 did have the ability to regenerate.  But there was only one copy of any of them at any one point in time.

It was a traumatic discovery that Starbuck made.  Did you get caught up in that?  Were you so caught up that you didn’t dwell on how her ship crashed here?  She vaporized far away on another planet.  Didn’t she?

The holocaust that wiped out this Cylon colony is most distressful.  But who destroyed them?  Was it they themselves or someone or something else?

Is there something / someone else in the background of all this?

In Closing:
I applaud Moore and Eick for not drawing this out and making us drool all over ourselves for the season.  They took their depressing story and made the previous seasons seem like the Macy’s parade.

Oh, and by the way, over on my post questioning who the last Cylon was, I surmised that humanity is the final Cylon.  I was off a bit but obviously I was almost on the right track being that the 13th colony turned out to be Cylons.  Also, kudos to our readers: Stimcaps, Scott (April 23rd comment) and kirbeegee.  Out of the 300+ comments, they nailed Ellen as their choice for who the last Cylon was.  At least is wasn’t Boxey!

In the Last Supper picture of the last Cylon post, we now take a look at the image and notice it’s populated with a few couples, and the empty seat is next to Col. Tigh.  Ellens seat apparently.

What are your thoughts on this newest episode of Battlestar Galactica?  Intense, wasn’t it?