Saw it last night with some other Swarthmore geeks (you know who you are).
It was good stuff. I guess it had better be, given how long it is until the fourth season begins. (The Sci-Fi Channel really doesn’t seem to know what to do with series, just how to get Mansquito 3 produced…)
Spoiler-protecting invisible text follows for all you normals who just wait for it to be shown on TV or who didn’t want to endure numerous ads for Mass Effect and Zune. (Actually, I was almost as interested in the Mass Effect ad as BSG, but that made me a freak even among the geeks.)
There were a few interesting bits about the Cylon religion here that I found fairly gratifying. Basically, we get a sense that Cylon monotheism may be the result of experimentation begun in the first Cylon-human war in which the Cylons were trying to understand and even become organic life. This process appears to have created a kind of apotheotic machine-human hybrid rather like the basestar-driving bathtub-dwelling hybrids seen in the last season. The “God” of the Cylons has ever since then dwelt in mystery apart from the main race of Cylons. This kind of worked, I thought.
On the other hand, the whole “this has happened before” theme cropped up again and it’s going to need very very specific payoff in the final season of the show to be meaningful. I keep returning to the proposition that either the humans of the colonies or the humans of “Earth” are going to turn out to have been the organic creation of a previous generation of intelligent machines (the Greek-named gods worshipped by the colonials) who then turned around and committed deicide against their creators as the best possible payoff. But if it just turns out to be a kind of banal claim about cylical character of violence, etcetera, that’s going to be seriously lame, like much of the second half of the third season was.