The Terra arc continues: We pick up with Adama dictating his journal, talking about how the council wants to release the Alliance prisoners they captured in “Greetings from Earth,” treat them as diplomats, and send ‘em home. Adama, of course, opposes this, but the council has never been presented as anything other than a buncha’ self-destructive goons, and now is no different.
Adama, Starbuck, and Apollo take a shuttle over to the Prison Barge to talk to Commandant Leiter. (Remember that cut scene from last week that involved a lengthy conversation in a shuttle, and I couldn’t figure where it would have plugged in to the episode? That’s because it wasn’t *from* that episode. It was supposed to go here) Leiter is exactly what you’d expect of a Nazi POW: he refuses to bend, brags of his own people’s superiority, and expounds on the “Universal Truth” of his people. In essence, his truth is that the strong rule the weak, and the failing of the “Western Nationalists” is that they go against this Unviersal Truth. Meaning what, exactly? They provide for their weak and ill? Prop up the weak? Refuse to submit? What? Never explained. Adama manages to trick Leiter into revealing that the alliance has “Almost” a thousand destroyers. Baltar is in a nearby cell, and overhears much of Adama’s conversations. He taunts Adama with his annoying fake laugh, then goes to serve lunch.
That’s right: He’s on Mess Hall duty, serving lunch to the other prisoners. Resse - who evidently surived last week’s frame job at the hands of Boomer and Jolly - escorts him to the kitchen. Once his shift is up, Baltar goes to sit with the Borellian Nomen from “The Man With Nine Lives,” and tries to talk them into joining him for an escape attempt. His plan: Break out the Eastern Alliance Prisoners, get to Terra or Lunar 7 or wherever, and be treated as a prince by the heroic Nazi-Commies, where he’ll give them tactical info that will allow them to bring down the Galactica.
“Your record to date does not exactly inspire confidence, Baltar,” Maga says, but eventually they decide to go along with it. “When the time comes, we will die for a moment.”
Maga: “We do many things to survive, even die.”
En rout back to their cells, all three Nomen keel over dead. Reese calls for a medical team while ordering the rest of the guards and prisoners away. The Nomen then come back to life and quickly dispatch the guards using jumping scissor kicks and whatnot.
Baltar: “Good Lord!”
Maga: “Confinement had slowed our reflex. They will improve now that we are free.”
They quickly take over the barge.
MEANWHILE: Back over on the Galactica, the council has voted to end the state of emergency that has been in effect since the Exodus began, and revert to civilian government. He will be left in command of the Galactica, of course, and he’ll retain his seat on the council as the Caprican delegate, but he’ll no longer have his position of overall grand poobah-dom. Also: he’ll be assigned a soviet-styled political officer to make sure he makes the right decisions. They attempt to offer him a gold watch (In the form of “The Star of Kobol”) as a retirement present, but he refuses.
Starbuck and Apollo are openly insubordinate when they learn of this, and Adama - who’s already pretty furious - gets madder at them. Starbuck says something insulting about the Council, and Adama says, “I won’t have that kind of talk aboard my ship.” Apollo says something equally scathing, and Adama gives one of his best lines ever:
“Maybe they’re right. When two of my best warriors openly defy the council and forget their oaths to the civilian government - we *have* been under martial law too long!”
Starbuck and Apollo are properly chastened.
Siress Tinia of the council is assigned as Adama’s political officer, and immediately sets about questioning his every move. Adama takes it with good graces, and respects her authority, but you can see he’s upset. She makes a fumbling pass at him, but he ignores it. They send a security detail over to the prison barge on a shuttle - Blackshirts like Reece - piloted by Sheba and Boomer, rather than a bunch of armed guards, and they insist the Galactica’s landing bay not have a guard detail when the shuttle lands. Leiters’ goons are *emissaries* after all.
Baltar and his allies capture the shuttle and