After several weeks of pretty subpar episodes, "Battlestar Galactica" finally turned in the first good hour since the beginning of part 2 of the second season.
The comparisons between "BSG" and 9/11 are unavoidable, and not entirely unintentionally, according to creator Ron Moore in the "Lowdown" featurette on the DVD. Of course, 9/11 was nothing compared to what the humans in "BSG" endured; at this point, there are fewer than 50,000 humans left (as far as they know). So what happens when a healthy-looking young woman who's pregnant wants to get an abortion?
Abortion on demand is available and legal in the "BSG" world, but on the other hand, Admiral Adama did point out that if the human race was to survive, it would need babies. Lots of them.
The writers did, I think, a brilliant job in raising this dilemma, and I'm also glad that it wasn't solved quickly in 43 minutes. Instead, it's launched Baltar's candidacy for the Presidency, based on his stated opposition to President Roslin's executive order banning abortion. (Even though Baltar's own study shows that at current trends, the human race will go extinct in 18 years!)
Meanwhile, to revisit a question that I had wondered about dating back to the "BSG" miniseries: how exactly is it that a battlestar is able to survive a hit from a nuclear warhead?!? Previously, I had wondered how it was that conventional explosives placed inside the water tanks could breach the hull (see season one episode "Water"), when Galactica survived a nuclear warhead hit in the miniseries. A reader left a comment to the effect that Galactica used its FTL drive to jump away just at the instant the warhead detonated, so the ship didn't take the full brunt of the nuclear blast; nevertheless, the hull was still weakened enough that the conventional explosives could breach it.
Okay, even accepting that, though, Pegasus took at least three nuclear strikes without jumping away at the instant of detonation. Nope, three nuclear warheads went off and the ship was still around.
Now, I realize it's dangerous to use our science and technology to measure Galactica's, partly because it's a fictional show and partly because they aren't us. Still, other than the FTL (faster than light) drives and the artificial gravity, the colonials' technology doesn't seem too far advanced beyond us. They still use chemically propelled projectiles as the main ammunition source, telephones, wireless communications, paper, alcohol, and so on. It would be one thing if the show's creators declared that the Galactica and Pegasus had "shields" like the starship Enterprise. But that's not the world of "BSG."
So how bad would a direct nuclear strike be, given our technology? Well, I suppose if Pegasus could survive being immersed inside the sun, it could survive one of the nuclear blasts . . . .