Caprica 1×05 “There is Another Sky”

THE MEAN INDIVIDUAL, HE VANISHED IN THE BLACK OF NIGHT

I didn’t actually take notes on this one at all, so this review’s really gonna suck. The V-World bits were interesting. It prompts the question of exactly who these people are on the outside, sometimes. The older woman who hired Tamara and the New Cap mob boss she was sent to knock over both prompt the obvious questions of why, in a world where you could look like anything, they would choose to be so tired and fat, respectively. On the other hand, we didn’t see many examples of people with done-up avatars (as far as we know). In fact, it was just Evelyn. Zoe claimed to have done it (but she couldn’t in actuality, but that’s another episode), but that’s it. I realize a lot of that was probably to limit confusion; if there wasn’t an explicit story need for it, like in Evelyn’s case, it’d just be irritating to have the V-World person and their real-world body played by different people.

There’s also a question that I wondered about in the pilot. My guess is that all the V-World environments are populated with a mix of real people and NPCs. I figure there’s some way to tell the difference (possibly the ancestor to the Humanoid Cylons’ sixth sense for telling identical copies of the same model apart), but we as the audience don’t know. The reason I bring it up is the fat guy (I’d look up the names, but, honestly, they’re one-shots and you probably wouldn’t remember their names any better than I do) had a boy and a girl hanging off of him. So were these Avatar tramps, or does someone actually get off work, flop on the couch in their jammies with a cup of hot chocolate, and put on their holoband so they can play a game that consists of being stroked by an obese mobster in an ivory suit? I’m not an MMORPG player, so maybe I just don’t get the mentality. Maybe it’s just another form of grinding. Maybe its an S&M thing, and the players for those two have some high-stakes, high-responsibility jobs and they unwind by getting to be some fat bastard’s pet for a few hours.

Tamara picks up on the fact that she owns the game pretty quickly, all told, and her head start in messing with V-World will serve her well in several episodes when she decides to make Zoe pay for her progenitor’s crimes.

I WAS UNDERAGE IN THIS FUNKY BAR, AND I STEPPED OUTSIDE TO SMOKE MYSELF A J

There’s an interesting deleted scene where Clarice is high as a kite in the Dive (love that name) and leaves a detailed, if rambling, voicemail for Amanda explaining the specialness of Zoe-A, her importance in the Apotheosis project, and asking Amanda out on a coffee date so she could become part of the One True God. She later wakes up from a sound sleep and remembers what she did and panics. Nestor panics, too, and he’s a bit of a prick about. Granted, Clarice just recorded a full confession, but, still. It’d be more helpful to just concentrate on how to fix it which, I presume, happens in a deleted scene in the next episode. (Edited to add; it isn’t on the DVD, but I think it was in the script. There are some harsh edits in a phone call between Amanda and Clarice suggesting something was moved around.)

TAKE THE NOOSE OFF YOUR AMBITION

Zoe just has one scene in the episode. It is a doozy, though, when Daniel gives his “Let’s see how much hubris we can get away with before it finally bites us in the ass” speech, where he actually explicitly says that the beauty of the Cylon is that it’s a thinking being with no rights. The best part is that she’s really enjoying the show and tell, eyeballing all the fine folks on the board, beaming as Daniel brags about how intelligent “it” is. Daniel probably wouldn’t have had nearly as much trouble getting her to talk in a few weeks if he hadn’t gone and made her mutilate herself. And then he had to go and cross every line he could find trying to get Zoe back.

THE MORE I SEE, THE LESS I KNOW, THE MORE I’D LIKE TO LET IT GO

While Daniel’s trip down that character arc is still in the future, Joe’s version of it is a bit more compressed. Having found last week that just offing people for the hell of it doesn’t make him feel good, he’s just kind of listless. His son’s a little punk, his brother has long since gotten tired of being helpful, and his mother in law just sits there chopping raw rabbits with that damn cleaver and telling him that all his problems would go away if he’d just man up and kill someone. Anyone! Joe tries to win back Willie by reliving a family fishing trip, but Willie is a terrible human being and just bitches and whines the whole time, before he ends up rising to the bait of a bunch of other kids who, by methods I don’t fully understand, can tell that he and Joe are Taurons. God only knows how, since accents and ethnicities are spread throughout the Colonies, and they aren’t visibly tattooed. Finally, Sam convinces Joe that he needs to move on, so they have a proper Tauron funeral/wake/shiva-sitting, where Joseph and Willie both get mourning tattoos (clue #23 that he’s not Bill Adama, though he can borrow his family theme music). Joe has finally accepted that his wife and daughter are gone, and is ready to move on with his life… and at that exact moment, some punk kid comes up and tells him that Tamara-A is still around.

Isn’t that how it always is? Now, I’ve never suffered a loss anywhere near on the scale of losing a spouse or child, but we’ve all had something upsetting happen to us. A disaster, a firing, a break-up, whatever. And you’re going around, finally getting over it, having a really good day, and then something happens to remind you of how you got hurt, and it all comes crashing back down again. It’s worse for Joe and Daniel in their cases, though, because Zoe-A and Tamara-A give them the illusion that they can do something about it, even though they really can’t (the final scene of Caprica notwithstanding). In that respect, it’s almost less like a death and more like a dumping, in that neither of them can move on until they manage to obliterate the irrational belief that everything is going to go back to the way it was. Joe’s just going to have to learn that Tamara isn’t going to get back together with him, and there’s nothing he can do to change that. Well, he’ll certainly get the message in the end.

Caprica: Season 1.0 is available on DVD.

~ by David Gian-Cursio on February 3, 2011.