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DVD TV Show Reviews

Battlestar Galactica: The Plan

by Suzanne 11/19/09

"The Plan" airs on SyFy January 10, but you can buy it now on DVD. The same can be said of the new series premiere of "Caprica". "The Plan" is a movie, though, and "Caprica" is a series. "Caprica" is a prequel to "Battlestar Galactica" and takes place years before the planet Caprica is destroyed. It is more like our current day society, with more advanced technology. Most of the scifi part of the show involves virtual reality. "The Plan" occurs at the same time as "Battlestar Galactica" and with the same characters (for the most part).

I forgot how much I loved watching "Battlestar Galactica" until I saw "The Plan". The series premiere/DVD of "Caprica" is good, but it's not "Battlestar Galactica". It's just too different from "Battlestar Galactica". "The Plan" is, essentially, "Battlestar Galactica" from another point of view. It focuses more on the Cylons on Caprica and on the Galactica than the series did. It goes through the whole arc of the series, but showing scenes with the Cylons that we didn't see the first time around.

So you do get to see all of the same characters in "Battlestar Galactica", just from different angles. You get more backstory, and more explanation, and some insights into the Cylons. It focuses a lot on Dean Stockwell's One and the other Cylons, and Sam.

This is just my guess, but it kind of seems like they noticed some flaws and nitpicks with "Battlestar Galactica" (perhaps pointed out from fans on blogs and message boards?) and used this, in part, to fix or explain those things. I can't say for sure if they did, though, because I only saw the series once, over a period of years. It's such a complex series that I should probably watch it again. The Plan definitely makes me want to do that. You just have to watch The Plan for what it is and enjoy it.

You do need to watch "Battlestar Galactica" before seeing "The Plan". Unlike Caprica, which is totally separate and doesn't require much knowledge of "Battlestar Galactica", "The Plan" is dependent on your having seen "Battlestar Galactica" and sort of remembering it.

As a story, it's kind of uneven and spotty, but these characters and actors are so great that I loved it anyway. It's just great to see them and to see a little more insight into the story. I wish we could have seen more of Roslin and Apollo, but it is what it is.

It's kind of wonderful, in a way, to see this, since it's kind of like a long DVD extra (although it has its own DVD Special Features), and revisit what happened and who the characters were. I sure wish that every series I liked would do that. It would be awesome. I also wish that the folks behind "Battlestar Galactica" would do some kind of sequel like this every year, but I don't think we could be that lucky.

Just like the whole series, it is not for children or anyone who doesn't like nudity or sex or violence. My one real complaint about the movie is where it ends. I wish it went further. It would have been interesting to see more.

Although "The Plan" is kind of talky and focuses on relationships, it does have some action scenes and some very shocking moments.

It's interesting to note that the story was directed by star Edward James Olmos (Adama), who also directed four episodes of "Battlestar Galactica". It was written by Jane Espenson, who wrote a few of the "Battlestar Galactica" episodes and created "Caprica".

There are plenty of special features on the DVD, including deleted scenes, an interview with Edward James Olmos, interviews with the actors who played cylons, a behind-the-scenes look at filming the cylon attack, another separate behind-the-scenes feature about visual effects, and of course commentary that you can listen to during the show from Olmos and Espenson. The movie and these extras are well worth the price of the DVD, which is pretty cheap. For any "Battlestar Galactica" fan, it's a must-have.

Review of "Caprica"


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Updated 11/19/09  

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