ensures that the new Imperious Leader will be one seriously smart, seriously bad dude, which is considered a good thing in Cylon society. We also learn that Cylons - even the centurions - consider themselves to be alive, and don't want to throw away their lives for nothing.
Baltar: "They're machines, aren't they? They'll do what they're told..."
Lucifer: "We are all machines, Baltar, even you, of a different sort."
Wow! That's pretty avant garde for 1978, isn't it?
As you saw in the clip, Lucifer was quite taken with Baltar's own manipulative tendencies. "He's so devious! We have much to learn from him!" They don't hang a sign over it or anything, but I love, love, love the idea that Count Baltar of Orion is so bad that he's giving Lucifer himself evil-lessons. Talk about meta-humor!
In the second episode, Baltar tracks the Galactica to Kobol, the lost motherworld of humanity. There he hatches a crazy scheme which he never lets his cylons in on, but he later explains it to Adama. In a nutshell, he claims to be an innocent pawn who was captured by the Cylons at the armistice (He's lying). He claims to have been to their homeworld, and was sent after them to give a message of coexistence (He's telling the truth). He says that the Cylon forces are stretched way the hell too thin, and the homeworld is all-but-undefended, and that one battlestar could overthrow the Cylons if it got close enough (He's probably telling the truth here). He tells Adama to *pretend* to be his prisoner, his ship will escort the Galactica back to Cylon as a prize vessel, they'll attack, the Cylon Empire will fall, and they'll rebuild it with humans in charge. (This is actually a good plan!) His unstated angle is that he, Baltar, will be the emperor of this new Human/Cylon empire, but still...
Back on the Base Ship, Lucifer is in Baltar's throne "Just trying it out." In a breif conversation with a Centurion, we hear the following:
Centurion: "Our orders were very specific. We were to escort the Galactica as prisoners."
Lucifer: "Yes. The thing that intrigues me about that is exactly who was to whom's prisoner..."
Again, wow! Lucifer knows that Baltar is completely un-trustworthy and working on his own agenda. And yet he tolerates it? Why? Because "We have much to learn from him" - in other words, Lucifer believes that Baltar's own unhinged, unpredictable duplicity will give him - Luficer - an advantage when dealing with the other IL-series cylons! Lucifer wants to be emperor some day!
Lucifer and Baltar are a great team, perhaps because they're both the same kind of megalomaniacs. Their aims are the same - to be the unquestioned, sole, godlike ruler of their people. This makes them uniquely interesting to watch, particularly as Lucifer is clearly fascinated by Baltar. Baltar appears to develop a somewhat-grudging appreciation for his first officer as well, though it's quite obvious that neither of them trust the other. (And Lucifer apparently attempts to kill Baltar in one episode, resulting in the human having a pronounced limp in a subsequent episode). Making this weird-as-hell chemistry better is the always-great John Colicos (who played Kor, the original Klingon in Star Trek:TOS) and Johnathan Harris (Dr. Smith from Lost in Space) giving his over-mannered, fey, undeniably mellifluous voice to Lucifer. The devil was, after all, reputed to be silver-tongued.
Added to which, they're quietly funny, you know? Baltar's scenery-chewing condescension versus Lucifer's cattyness. It's fun. And of course since the original show was steeped in the whole "Ancient Astronauts" thing (Stupid as that is), it seems likely that the Lucifer we meet on the show was at one point or another intended to be the *real* Lucifer from the Bible.
And then there's Baltar. The man is a marvel. Colicos took an oily one-note Judas and turned him in to an endlessly interesting puzzle. His performances are always fun to watch in a way that you only got in 60s/70s TV, and you simply don't see anymore. He spins everything to his own advantage. He's utterly, completely, compellingly evil. He tried to kill 44 Billion people to secure his own advantage, and he doesn't care. He ended up killing 48 Billion because he didn't plan things through well enough, and yet he still just treats that as an "Oops." When sent out by the new Imperious Leader to offer an olive branch to the humans and thereby end the conflict - which, by the