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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr
enik1138 at popapostle dot com
Battlestar Galactica: Acts of Defiance "Acts of Defiance"
Battlestar Galactica #3 (Dynamite)
Written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning
Illustrated by Cezar Razek
Cover by Alex Ross

Apollo attempts to piece together his new reality; Starbuck meets some surprising figures in the Cylon prison.

Story Summary

Starbuck's mysterious cellmate tells him that Zee is a twisted scientist now working for the Cylons who is performing experiments on humans to perfect a way of transferring his mind into a new, healthy body; his current aged form is toted around on a specialized Centurion that keeps him alive with tubes and wires implanted into his body.

On the planetoid, Apollo learns the altered history of the new timeline and meets the alternate Serina, who still lives, but does not know him. It is revealed that in this altered timeline, Adama never became a battlestar commander, going into the diplomatic service and eventually becoming president of the Quorum of Twelve, where he attempted a peace accord with the Cylons with the aid of his chief advisor, Baltar. Baltar betrayed the Colonies and most of humanity was wiped out in the resulting Cylon assault. All of Adama's family was killed, including Apollo and Athena. Instead of a rag-tag fleet searching for Earth, humanity's remnants are scattered to the corners of space, fighting a guerilla war against the Cylons, but with little unity between groups.

During an equipment raid staged by human pirates, Starbuck learns his hairy cellmate is actually his own alternate self, Captain Starbuck, mastermind of the plan. The group escapes with tech and weapons and Starbuck is astonished to see that Captain Starbuck's base is the last surviving battlestar...Galactica.


Didja Know?

The individual issues of this series do not have titles. I made up the titles myself, usually based on a concept or bit of dialog from the issue.

Didja Notice? 

The Alex Ross cover of this issue is based on the famous Star Wars Style A poster art by Tom Jung for the original theatrical release of that film (another version, called Style B, was done by the Brothers Hildebrandt and used on many promotional and licensed items). Notice that Starbuck stands in for Luke Skywalker (with a laser gun for a light saber; note also that the Cylon eye creates the "lens flare" cross), Athena for Princess Leia, Boxey and Muffit for C-3PO and R2-D2, a Cylon Centurion for Darth Vader, Vipers for X-Wings, and the Galactica for the Death Star. Indicating Starbuck's more womanizing nature, a second female in the form of Cassiopeia clings to him as well; possibly Cassiopeia's clinging pose was inspired by Frank Frazetta's cover painting for the 1966 Lancer publication of Conan the Adventurer.
Alex Ross BSG #3 cover Tom Jung Star Wars poster Hildebrandt Star Wars poster Frazetta Conan the Adventurer cover
Alex Ross
Battlestar Galactica #3 cover
Tom Jung
Star Wars Style A poster
Brothers Hildebrandt
Star Wars Style B poster
Frank Frazetta
Conan the Adventurer cover

On page 2, the mysterious prisoner who is Starbuck's cellmate (who turns out to be a hairier, alternate timeline version of Starbuck himself!) uses the word "flark", presumably as an expletive; it is used several times by humans throughout the issue. This is the first use of the word in the BSG universe. It may have been borrowed by the writers from the 1991-1994 sitcom Dinosaurs, which had a TV-show-within-a-show segment called The Flark Show, a program devoted to using the expletive "flark". Presumably, "flark" is the Dinosaurs version of "fuck". Notice the similarity to the usual BSG version of the expletive, "frak". 

On page 3, notice the Centurion that supports and transports Zee looks a bit more like the antebellum Cylons of BSG2000 in leg and chest design than the "classic" Centurions around it. Zee's Cylon   Antebellum Cylon

On page 6, Apollo refers to the temporal weapons on the modified Vipers (seen in "Memorial") as "warper units".

On page 7, Apollo finds that Serina is still alive in this alternate timeline...and quite a tough warrior. The original Serina, who became Apollo's wife, was killed by a Cylon in "A Death in the Family".

On page 8, the alternate Adama tells Apollo there was never a battlestar called Galactica. We find out at the end of the issue he was wrong.

On page 10, panel 1, notice that the gigantic Cylon jailer head (seen in "Time and Punishment") comes crashing down in the explosion set by the guerillas during their raid of the prison.

On page 12, the alternate Starbuck jokingly retorts to a comrade, "Risk is my middle name!" In the study of "A Death in the Family", I commented on that episode's novelization, in which Starbuck jokes, "devious is my middle name," and what use would a society that seems to have only single names for individuals have for the term "middle name"? However, if one accepts Dynamite's Galactica 1980 mini-series as part of the canon, the Colonials do have at least first and last names, though only the individual's preferred appellation is generally used publicly.

The alternate Adama states he served aboard the battlestar Rycon, but was passed over for command and went into the diplomatic service. In "Take the Celestra", Kronus was said to have once been the commander of the Rycon; there was no indication that Adama ever served on that battlestar in the original timeline.

On page 18, Apollo reveals that he, and his family, have known Starbuck since at least when he was 12 yahrens old. At this age, Starbuck decked a boy named Thom for holding hands with Athena! (The Richard Hatch novel Armageddon states that Adama had taken in Starbuck as an orphan and raised him as part of his family all those yahrens ago; but the later Starbuck mini-series published by Dynamite has him being raised by a foster family.) 

Unanswered Questions

How is it that the alternate Adama is not aware of a battlestar called Galactica? He was the president of the Quorum and clearly a ship by that name was built, eventually captured by Starbuck's space pirates.

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