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SPOILERS: 'Battlestar Galactica's' Adam And Eve?
SyFy Portal ^ | 06/17/08 | MICHAEL HINMAN

Posted on 06/17/2008 6:13:21 PM PDT by KevinDavis

The following story contains possible MODERATE SPOILERS for the final episodes of "Battlestar Galactica" in the second half of the fourth season. This story also contains RUMORS which have not been officially confirmed, and should be treated as rumor until confirmed by SciFi Channel.

Idle speculation, or is there something brewing here.

A lot of fans were puzzled by the fact that Chief Tyrol was made a Cylon -- a part of the Final Five -- despite the fact that he not only was married, but he had a kid.

"Battlestar Galactica" made a big deal about the hybrid child Hera and how she was the face of things to come. But the same amount of attention has been absent from Nicholas Tyrol, even after it was revealed he himself is a Cylon Hybrid.

So what does this mean? One source for the show says that the future story involving Nicholas and Hera will have its own Biblical proportions -- like Genesis.

(Excerpt) Read more at syfyportal.com ...


TOPICS: Miscellaneous; TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: bsg; cylon; finalfive; scifi
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To: boogerbear
Who knows how it glows, could be one little enzyme sack at each end of the spine in the bone and the right things happen and woosh there’s a glow.

If Cylons have these enzyme sacs at the ends of their spines, along with whatever else is necessary to trigger them, plus whatever else is necessary to make "the right things happen", these are biological differences from humans that are not merely on the molecular level. Period. Which is all I've been saying.

You’re assuming the glowing spine must be caused by something obvious that could be spotted by a cursory and non-invasive

No, I assume it could be discovered at least on dissection. Following discovery, a non-dissective test for it could be devised.

We’ve never seen a human see the glowing spine, we have no way to know if a human has ever seen the glowing spine,

Right. So we can either think they know about it, or don't. If they know about it this doesn't jibe with their helplessness about distinguishing human-Cylon biology. If they don't know about it, despite several folks having sex with Cylons, and Cottle dissecting one, that is strange. And that about covers it.

Dead Cylon is probably very unlikely to have the glowing spine thing.

Right, but it would still have the enzyme sacs or whatever the mechanism was.

If you don’t know that the best you can hope for is to find a couple of weird organs that secrete something that appears completely pointless.

Sure, but if they had at least found weird organs that secrete something, organs which humans don't have, this would be a biological difference.

If you didn’t want them to explain it it wouldn’t be on your list of “inconsistencies”. when you complain that you don’t know how it would work that’s wanting it explained, that’s asking for midichlorians.

I'm not complaining because I don't know how it would work. I'm complaining because (for some of these) there is no possible way it could work. The difference between this and Star Wars is that Star Wars is fantasy and the Force was essentially magic, and one accepted it on that level. But BSG from the start never purported to be fantasy, it was supposed to be gritty, realistic science fiction. If what you're saying is that I just should accept these things as 'magic' in the sense that one accepts the Force in the first 3 SW films, well fine, but that radically changes the BSG universe. For the worse IMHO. Being forced to accept things as magic makes me like this show a bit less. This is precisely my complaint!

How could you have loved the first two season? Half your complaints date back to the first half of the first episode of the mini-series. Glowing spine goes all the way back to the start, why is that so bad now when you loved it the first season?

Because when we were first exposed to things like that, a logical resolution still seemed to be in the realm of possibility. Glowing spine = ok, because at that point I had no idea what Cylons were under the skin, for all I knew they were mechanical. Glowing spine + being told that Cylons are biologically indistinguishable = not ok. Get it?

You're right though that it's not as if the first two seasons were perfect in this regard while the remainder have not been. Things like this did pop up and start to bother me in the first two seasons, it's just that for me the good still outweighed the bad at this point. Ok?

Well so far none of the supposed inconsistencies you’ve complained about exist.

Of course they 'exist'. It's just that you think logical resolutions for them could be cooked up, as you've labored to do here. I am not so motivated, therefore they bother me.

151 posted on 06/27/2008 4:42:43 AM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

But you’re still talk small stuff. You’re talking about the possibility of two appendix sized organs (which when healthy is about the size of the last knuckle on your pinky) somewhere near or possibly IN the spine, said organs would need to connect to one or more of the primary systems in the body. They could very easily just dump their enzymes into the blood stream, so you’re “plus whatever” could be absolutely nothing. All I’m saying is there’s nothing about bioluminescence that makes it necessarily easy and obvious to detect like you’re assuming. Sure MAYBE if Cottle had cracked open every single bone in the body of their Cylon corpse he MIGHT have found a couple of odd thing, IF he didn’t accidentally break the things in the process of the search. And there’s no reason to think that even if said things were found and deciphered it would be at all useful for finding live Cylons.

I’m saying you should just accept these things. All of them have a certain level of plausibility. We KNOW creatures can be modified to make bioluminescence with minute enough changes that they’d be very difficult to detect if you didn’t already know what to look for and the differences wouldn’t be useful to identify live modified creatures from their original no-glow counter parts. This is a known thing from our own genetic experimentation and study of bioluminescence. Given this known quantity there’s no reason to assume Cylon spine glowing is any different, and therefore not useful as a Cylon detector. We KNOW human synaptic processes are similar enough to electricity that they can be detected and modified electronically, we’re already working on data transmission directly to the human mind this way. Thus Cylons controlling the base ships this way isn’t a big jump from technology we’re working no right now, and there’s a theoretical possibility of long range detection and capture of thoughts for download into another host. Also it’s not that terribly new a sci-fi concept, cloning and memory implantation has been around for a while, all BSG really added was the upon death semi-instant thing.

None of it is magic, it’s just slightly outside the realm of what’s known but not entirely outside the realm of what we already do theorize with what’s known. If you need more explanation than that then you’re asking for Ron to do something he hated doing on Star Trek, stupid tech talk using made up words. Known science tells us this stuff might be vaguely possible sort of. All you need to do as an audience member is accept it and move on. Honestly these are much smaller leaps than telepathy and hyperspace in B5, neither of which are even vaguely supported in the science of today or even the science of now.

But that was first season, you LOVED the first season yet in the first season is when they gave you glowing spines + Cottle can’t detect them (it really wasn’t not biologically indistinguishable, it was not detectable by that doctor with that equipment in those circumstances). And again who knew to even look? That’s what you’re refusing to get. You’re giving them knowledge they didn’t have then saying Ron screwed up because they didn’t do anything with that knowledge that they didn’t have. Cottle didn’t know about glowing spines, he didn’t know to go over everything near, attached to and inside the spine with a microscope to look for the slightest minor anomaly. And keep in mind the timing too, just how long do you think Cottle had, looked to me like hours at best, that’s enough time for a basic autopsy type thing, poke around in the guts see that all the major organs are there, see there aren’t any big organs you don’t know what they are, go through the basic liquid and tissue test to see that the blood is human blood the bile is human bile the tissue is human tissue and that’s about it. He didn’t get time for a full dissection of every single organ and every single bone, that’s months worth of work, months without him doing other normal doctor work.

I haven’t labored at all. These are all painfully obvious explanations, that you just don’t want to accept because accepting them mean you’re wrong they aren’t inconsistencies. And it seems very important to you that BSG has MAJOR HORRIBLE inconsistencies. don’t know why it’s important to you but it’s obvious at this point they’re all coming straight from you, not from anything on the screen. You’re refusing to accept that these things are not very far from known science and simply move on. You’re assuming that when Cottle says he can’t tell the difference it’s because he’s cracked open every single organ in the Cylon corpse and full perfect lab conditions and found no differences. You’re making too many assumptions.


152 posted on 06/27/2008 8:19:25 AM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
But you’re still talk small stuff. You’re talking about the possibility of two appendix sized organs (which when healthy is about the size of the last knuckle on your pinky) somewhere near or possibly IN the spine, said organs would need to connect to one or more of the primary systems in the body.

Okay, so here's the end point we've now reached: in order to not be bothered by the fact that Cylons have things like glowing spines (not to mention that they are super-transmitter/receivers, and have super-strength), but everyone in BSG acts helpless to distinguish them biologically, I have to tell myself a story like this:

The Cylon-robots spent years and years bioengineering humanoids that they could control, so they could infiltrate human society. They made them like humans in every way imaginable. They gave them personalities and souls. BUT, they also took the trouble to add a little, barely detectable (and purposeless?) 'enzyme sac' at each end of the spine that would secrete biolumniescence when they had sex.

I agree, that would basically resolve my 'glowing spine' thing logically. It would also be extremely stupid. This is part and parcel of what I'm trying to say: in order to resolve this sort of thing I have to bend over backwards and tell myself an extremely stupid story. This is a knock against BSG, pure and simple.

I’m saying you should just accept these things.

Well, I don't. Now what?

All of them have a certain level of plausibility.

That level being "very low", in the cases I've mentioned.

We KNOW creatures can be modified to make bioluminescence with minute enough changes that [..]

Well, that's great. And the REASON Cylons 'modified' their engineered humans to have glowing spines = _____?

[a dozen or two more sentences into your nth post to me about how the glowing spines maybe could be interpreted as making sense after all]

I haven’t labored at all.

Heh. Nope, not at all.

153 posted on 06/27/2008 3:32:53 PM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

No what you have to do is understand the difference between what’s said in the show and how you’re interpreting it. I don’t think anybody in the show ever said there are no biological differences, all they said was there were no differences THEY COULD FIND. There’s a major scope difference there. Quite possibly had they had more than 3 doctors to handle 50,000 people they could have spent the time to do a full dissection and found the source of the glowing spine and then had a biological difference. But they only had 3 doctors to handle 50,000 people and 1 of them is a shrink and and another turned out to be a murderer so they don’t really have the time for full dissections, so they have FOUND no differences.

That’s the simple little reality in the show.

If you’ll notice 99% of what I’ve written is taking apart your assumption. That’s not labor explaining the show, that’s labor explaining your brain. The stuff in the show is simple, it’s all just one or two minor logical leaps away from stuff we know or theorize is possible today. All the other stuff is you assuming absolutes that have never once been stated in the show then complaining that those unstated absolutes are unsupported by events in the show. Since they never actually say there are no biological differences, then the fact that the glowing spine would seem to indicate some level of biological difference is not a contradiction. You assume since they could find a difference in whatever probably minor testing they’ve done equals no biological difference, but that’s YOUR assumption. Your assumptions make a lot of labor, but it’s fun labor (I actually enjoy deep analysis of shows), the show itself makes very little.


154 posted on 06/27/2008 3:42:54 PM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
Why can't they find them? Why aren't they looking very hard? These are precisely my objections. You think they have sufficiently satisfying answers. Good for you! Meanwhile, I do not.

I only make 'assumptions' in the sense of working assumptions; a better phrase might be hypotheses or best explanations. I see something that doesn't quite add up and I try to come up with a best explanation, and if that best explanation still doesn't quite work, there's a problem. For example, my working assumption is that, because of that scene in the miniseries, Cylons actually do have spines that can glow, and I proceed from that point. But someone else (you?) mentioned the possibility that the 'glowing spine' was just for the TV viewers' benefit. I agree that's a possibility too! But it's a subpar explanation and just leads to a new critique. Another example is your explanation here, that the glowing spine results from something like two tiny 'enzyme sacs' that are nearly impossible to find - but that forces me to think that Cylon robots made their humanoids identical to humans in every way except for two tiny unfindable enzyme sacs whose only purpose is to make the spine glow during sex, which is even more stupid.

The point being that I'm not wedded to my 'assumptions' at all, it's just that if/when my 'assumption' (best explanation) is wrong, that's fine, but it tends to only raise new and more unresolvable questions. It's not that I think it's literally not possible for the glowing spine to be the result of what you describe, it's just that if I really thought 'unnoticeable enzyme sacs' were the best explanation, I'd have gone ahead and 'assumed' it, in which case my objection here would be how stupid it was for the writers to be telling us that the Cylons made their skinjobs identical to humans except for the enzyme sacs.

Finally, more generally I find it odd when I have a list of things, someone picks ONE item from the list (in your case the 'glowing spine'), ignoring the others, labors for a dozen posts to pick their chosen item apart, and then triumphantly declares all my points debunked. As if my entire critique against BSG was the glowing spine! This isn't even my main critique (which at this point centers on how little sense it makes for the final 4-out-of-5 to be suddenly, randomly Cylons).

155 posted on 06/28/2008 6:31:34 AM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

Who has the time to find them? Remember to the best of our knowledge (going by characters introduced and mentioned) the fleet had at its peek 3 actual medical doctors and one of them is a shrink. 50,000 people at war, 3 doctors, exactly who do you think has the time to go dissecting every single organ in a Cylon corpse to find the most minute difference? Remember they wound up putting a programmer in charge of a biological study, a clearer statement that they don’t have the people for this kind of stuff couldn’t be made.

You’re not looking for best explanation, you’re looking for the explanations that create inconsistencies. Which by their very nature are the WORST explanation. I just threw out it’s for TV as one of many possibilities, because to the best of our knowledge no humans have seen it, so that possibility remains open. Is that a good explanation? No. But until a human sees the glowing spine it is an open possibility. There are a lot of open possibilities, that’s how these kind of story mysteries work, there’s a long list of open possibilities and slowly but surely things happen that closes them.

But you ARE making an assumption, and your entire complaint comes from that. You assume that when Adama tells Roslin that the medical staff on Galactica couldn’t find any differences that was a world defined declaration of their being no biological differences. Much like how you assumed after Baltar decided to fake the results he would still keep doing the tests.

You seem to assume the characters have greater knowledge/ desire/ opportunity for study than the show generally depicts them as having. I think people tend to forget the timeline and the resource level in Galactica. Most of the problems people see with the level of knowledge the humans have disappear if you remember that their primary source of medical/ scientific equipment is an ancient ship that was about to be turned into a museum and there tends to be very little time between episodes. Remember the election, last event of season 2 before the jump forward, was less than a year after the attack. They had very little equipment, very few skilled people, and very little time, and thus their knowledge grows very little.

Actually if you’ll look at the thread I discussed every single item on your list. The discussion has since then devolved to the glowing spine thing as you’ve dropped topics. I’ve attempted to answer every point you raise, I try to play fair like that.


156 posted on 06/28/2008 7:14:21 AM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
Who has the time to find them?

Yeah. It's not very important what these robot-controlled humanoids that nearly wiped out humanity and constantly infiltrate human society are like anyway.

You’re not looking for best explanation, you’re looking for the explanations that create inconsistencies.

No, I'm looking for the best explanation. I've posited some. You say I make too many 'assumptions' and then posit a different explanation. What you don't seem to get is that your explanations do not satisfy me any more than mine; if they did, I'd have already used them as my working hypotheses. It's not as if I couldn't think of the genius possibilities you've brought up! It's just that I didn't find they resolved very much.

to the best of our knowledge no humans have seen it, so that possibility remains open. Is that a good explanation? No. But until a human sees the glowing spine it is an open possibility. There are a lot of open possibilities,

Indeed. None of them all that good. Which is my point.

that’s how these kind of story mysteries work, there’s a long list of open possibilities and slowly but surely things happen that closes them.

As I said, I don't agree that BSG is by its nature a "story mystery". The glowing spine is not a "mystery" that is going to be cleared up. It's a stupid factoid that makes no sense in light of what else we have been shown.

Nor do I expect that these things will be "closed" in any real sense. It's clear the writers are not interested in doing that. And how you can simultaneously tell me that I should "wait" for these things to be "closed" (which you know as well as I do is not really going to happen) while also telling me not to ask for closure at all because it's just TV, plans change, I have to accept things, and besides it's bad for storytelling if things mesh well (?), is beyond me.

You assume that when Adama tells Roslin that the medical staff on Galactica couldn’t find any differences that was a world defined declaration of their being no biological differences.

Right - I took his statement at face value as a working hypothesis and reasoned from there. An alternative hypothesis, as you suggest, is that there are sig. biological differences but they just couldn't find them. AS I'VE SAID MULTIPLE TIMES NOW, I find the latter explanation even less satisfying. Get it yet? I hope so cuz I don't feel like explaining the 'assumption' thing anymore. Please read my prev. post more carefully if you still don't get it, otherwise bye.

157 posted on 06/28/2008 7:39:54 AM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

Again: 50,000 people/ 3 doctors. Who’s got time to dissect every single organ in some Cylon corpse? They’re busy dealing with the living. We’ve seen Cottle at work, did he seem to have lots of time to play with a corpse?

You haven’t posited any explanations, all you’ve got is it’s inconsistent. That’s the only explanation you’ve put forth, RDM screwed up.

But you’re wrong, there’s a perfectly valid explanation which you just keep insisting doesn’t exist: they just haven’t found it yet. That’s ALL the explanation any sane person needs. They simply haven’t had the time or opportunity. Nobody has seen the glowing spine so they don’t know to spend extra time working on the spine, so they haven’t spent extra time there, and they haven’t stumbled upon it during whatever other testing they’re doing. Why would any sane person need more explanation than that? They had 1 year with incredibly limited resources to look for something they don’t even know exists, why is it surprising they haven’t found it?

BSG isn’t a mystery. BSG, like most arc TV shows, INCLUDES many mysteries in the story. These mysteries are the reason for arc shows, they hook the audience.

No you did NOT take is statement at face value, you added to it. His statement was that his people had not found anything, that is the face value: nothing found. You ASSUMED that meant there was NOTHING TO FIND. Major huge massive difference very much NOT face value. Sorry you can’t understand that, but that’s YOU not RDM.


158 posted on 06/28/2008 7:52:12 AM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
Again: 50,000 people/ 3 doctors.

If this show really has implied that there are <=3 doctors for 50000 people on dozens of ships, go ahead and add that to my list of implausibilities. (In these 4+ or however-many years, no one saw the need or possibility of training/retasking people for medical work?)

Also, not sure why it requires someone to be 'a doctor' to work on the Cylon biology problem.

But you’re wrong, there’s a perfectly valid explanation which you just keep insisting doesn’t exist: they just haven’t found it yet.

This is a valid explanation but LIKE I SAID it raises new problems/questions for me so it doesn't help.

Nobody has seen the glowing spine

Which is problematic by itself. How long have Helo and Sharon been together now? How many times has Baltar slept with one Cylon or another?

BSG, like most arc TV shows, INCLUDES many mysteries in the story. These mysteries are the reason for arc shows, they hook the audience.

Again, I don't consider these things "mysteries" nor do I think they are "the reason" to watch BSG nor do I think they hook anyone per se. They are just stupid details that don't mesh and don't paint a coherent picture. In fact (as you've said a few posts back!) enjoying/getting hooked on BSG probably requires ignoring such details and not thinking about them too hard.

His statement was that his people had not found anything, that is the face value: nothing found. You ASSUMED that meant there was NOTHING TO FIND.

No I didn't. I made the hypothesis that there was nothing to find, and reasoned from there, and found it problematic. I know full well (thanks very much) that another possibility is that they just didn't happen to find the biological differences that are there but they are subtle, like an 'enzyme sac'. I find this possibility even more problematic. GET IT YET? Let's hope so because I'm not going to explain it again nor am I going to continue to listen to you tell me what I do and do not think.

159 posted on 06/28/2008 12:51:38 PM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

From the characters that have been named then yes there’s 3 doctors, one’s a shrink. It’s not 4+ years it’s about 3. I’m sure they do see the need for more doctors, but seeing the need is just the start. Medical training is a good 6 year task just to become a GP, and of course they also need Viper Pilots, tylium refiners and just about everything else under the sun, and meanwhile they’ve been fleeing for their lives, occupied, resisted, and fled some more. Not exactly conditions conducive to making more doctors. Frankly if they HAD more doctors, especially if they’d TRAINED them that would be implausible.

It requires someone who knows human biology to cut open a dead Cylon and say “hey that’s different than how it is in humans”. Like a doctor.

No actually it doesn’t raise any additional questions. The answers are simple: there very well might be differences in the biology of humans and Cylons, but nobody with the skills has had the time and opportunity to find out. No additional questions, simple obvious answer.

How often do you see the spine of your lover in the middle of the action? And we don’t even know it happens every time, might just be during those special extra intense orgasms. Heck we’ve hardly even seen the glowing spine, I can only remember two or three (once on Six in the mini-series, and once or twice on Sharon).

They only don’t mesh because you don’t want them to mesh. None of your objections have washed with any real analysis of actual events in the show.

You just accidentally admitted it. You made your own hypothesis, one not backed up by anything any character has ever said in the show, one not backed up by the events in the show. During the time Adama said they hadn’t found any differences there was simply no way enough time had passed, not even under ideal conditions with a team of human biology experts and a perfectly equipped lab, to determine that there were no differences, so your hypothesis just plain never washed from the first minute. To be able to take a 150 pound corpse and say that it has absolutely no differences from a human body is man months worth of work, they didn’t have man months, thus there’s no way for them to definitely say there’s no difference. You took “we haven’t found anything” and blew it up into “there’s nothing to find” with zero supporting evidence and solid evidence against.

How is it implausible that in 3 years of mostly running for their lives without enough doctors or anything else to service the people of the fleet they were unable to find whatever subtle differences there are between humans and Cylons? That’s perfectly plausible, not just plausible but painfully obvious. They don’t have enough of anything, they eat algae, they’re short on all medical supplies including doctors, short on facilities, there’s pretty much nothing they aren’t short on. And yet you “hypothesis” that in those conditions they should have done a complete all organs all bones work up of the Cylon corpse during the mini-series mere HOURS after discovery of skin job Cylons, and the show doesn’t mesh because your “hypothesis” is not how things are?!

Go ahead and explain it more, the more often you explain it the clearer it is that your objections come from YOU not the show. Your “hypothesis” is an unfounded downright nonsensical assumption that frankly if it was backed up by the show they WOULD have inconsistencies. but luckily it’s not backed up by the show, not even slight, and thus these inconsistencies are yours.


160 posted on 06/28/2008 2:01:34 PM PDT by boogerbear
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To: fr_freak
it would be unequivocably a battle of human beings against machines for survival, and there wouldn't be any of this hippie navel-gazing.

The first Robot story was 'RUR' (Rossum's Universal Robots) a story by the Czech writer Karel Capek in the 1920's. This was followed by a series of pulp SF magazines in the 1930's with robots fighting against humans. This got repetitious and dull, until Isaac Asimov came up with the Three Laws of Robotics for his Robot stories, in which no Robot could hurt a human, and if you thought they did hurt a human, you were mistaken. These stories were much more interesting than the earlier stories.

161 posted on 06/28/2008 2:57:13 PM PDT by Lucius Cornelius Sulla (Obama "King of Kings and Lord of Lords")
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To: Lucius Cornelius Sulla
This got repetitious and dull, until Isaac Asimov came up with the Three Laws of Robotics for his Robot stories,

I always loved Isaac Asimov. One of the best sci-fi books I've ever read was "I, Robot" (butchered by Hollywood, of course), which, as you probably know, was the collection of Asimov's robot/3 Laws short stories which pretty much all dealt with the interesting situations that could arise with the application of those 3 Laws. Also, the whole "Caves of Steel" series was excellent, which he tied together with the Foundation series. All good stuff. Does anyone write sci-fi like that anymore?
162 posted on 06/28/2008 3:04:51 PM PDT by fr_freak (So foul a sky clears not without a storm.)
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To: fr_freak
All good stuff. Does anyone write sci-fi like that anymore?

Don't know, haven't read Science Fiction, other than some alternative history stories, in about 30 years.

163 posted on 06/28/2008 3:31:53 PM PDT by Lucius Cornelius Sulla (Obama "King of Kings and Lord of Lords")
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To: boogerbear
From the characters that have been named then yes there’s 3 doctors

From the characters that have been named? Ok but why would you assume there weren't any more doctors (or de facto doctors) than have been named? This is an oddly minimalist stance to take. Personally, instead of doing that, I take the approach that one should make reasonable inferences about the larger universe that a story inhabits. Thus, there probably are more doctors than we have been shown. But like I said, if the show really does want to paint the picture that there are literally 3 (i.e. maybe you learned this from an actual comment that I simply don't remember), then it becomes another unrealistic factoid. So you can tell me which is the case: does the fleet have an implausibly small number of people engaged in medical work, or did you make an unwarranted assumption?

I’m sure they do see the need for more doctors, but seeing the need is just the start. Medical training is a good 6 year task just to become a GP,

Oh hogwash. This is an emergency situation. They've been training up teenagers to become pilots left and right, you're telling me they wouldn't also be training former historians and such to use a hypodermic? People are sick and diseases are rampant, you're telling me that if someone did a quick apprenticeship and learned the basics with Cottle, regular civilians would shun his medical care 'because he doesn't officially have an MD'? For crying out loud, Lee became "a lawyer" in the span of half an episode and all this seemed to require was occasionally glancing meaningfully at his grandfather's law book. ;-)

Again, maybe that's the case. (Just for the record I'm not "assuming" it's not!) But if so, that would be silly and unbelievable.

Not exactly conditions conducive to making more doctors.

Nor are they conditions conducive to making pilots, tylium miners etc. Yet somehow they do it. But doctors, that can wait (apparently). Three is fine (supposedly).

Oh-kay.

Frankly if they HAD more doctors, especially if they’d TRAINED them that would be implausible.

I imagine that the training would be perfunctory and basic. I certainly wasn't envisioning a full graduation from med school followed by an internship, published research and residency. :)

It requires someone who knows human biology to cut open a dead Cylon and say “hey that’s different than how it is in humans”. Like a doctor.

This really depends on how subtle the differences are. You assume they are subtle. Why? I thought your whole point was they didn't really have time to even look. If they didn't even really look then maybe they missed a second brain in the forearm; do you assume otherwise?

It also depends on what needs doing. Taking a CT scan doesn't require a doctor. Doing chemical tests and so on doesn't require, or in most cases even particularly benefit from, a doctor (after all, what was Baltar doing? is he a doctor?). If there are biology texts somewhere to be found then I don't even agree that recognizing differences from human biology requires a doctor. It would take longer of course but that's it. In fact, given that there are presumably human cadavers to work with, in a pinch virtually anyone with enough discipline could just do a side-by-side dissection and 'compare and contrast' with no medical training or books whatsoever, and would at least pick up any obvious differences.

Anyway the point is we aren't even aware of any such effort in the first place, however minimal, nor (since the time of the Baltar test) has anyone on the show displayed the slightest interest or compulsion to try to figure out, learn or understand what makes these supposed Cylons tick. I find this unrealistic and contrary to human nature. OK?

No actually it doesn’t raise any additional questions.

It does for me. Maybe you're satisfied it all adds up and have no further questions. Good for you! That's nice.

there very well might be differences in the biology of humans and Cylons, but nobody with the skills has had the time and opportunity to find out.

That strikes me as dumb. I can go with this explanation, with the result that virtually everyone on BSG will necessarily seem dumb to me. Of course, that's very nearly the case anyway, so.... *shrug*

How often do you see the spine of your lover in the middle of the action?

Well that depends on...um nevermind :)

Let me just point out that in such situations it is probably pretty common for the room to be darkened. Anyway, if you really buy the story that with all the Cylon-human intimacy that's taken place, no single human has noticed their partner having a glowing spinal cord, then good for you. Meanwhile, I do not. Is that okay with you?

They only don’t mesh because you don’t want them to mesh.

I'd appreciate it if you'd cease telling me what I want. It's getting to be patronizing. Anyway, are you saying that, unlike me, you want them to mesh and therefore interpret everything as charitably as possible? Because that's kinda my point.

During the time Adama said they hadn’t found any differences there was simply no way enough time had passed, not even under ideal conditions with a team of human biology experts and a perfectly equipped lab, to determine that there were no differences,

Well that's a good point. So why then did everyone on the show seem to go with it and take it as read, that Cylons and humans were so hard to distinguish from each other? How was Adama's statement any kind of "case closed" on that subject for anyone? Shouldn't have been. Right?

And anyway, this all wasn't even my main point re: skinjob biology, which was that if "Cylons" are (as you've ended up arguing) so incredibly biologically similar to humans, and can interbreed with humans, then just in what sense aren't they human? And why hasn't anyone on the show (Cylon or human) recognized this very obvious point?

How is it implausible that in 3 years of mostly running for their lives without enough doctors or anything else to service the people of the fleet they were unable to find whatever subtle differences there are between humans and Cylons?

Because (1) it should be a pretty high priority (and remember, for a while they acted as if it was!), and (2) from what we've seen of and know about Cylons, the differences shouldn't be "subtle".

Or, if they are as subtle as you would have it, then Cylons ARE humans, and every single character on the show is delusional. Which is it? You tell me.

164 posted on 06/28/2008 4:08:31 PM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

Why would you assume there’s more doctors. There’s only 50,000 people and they don’t seem to have enough of anybody. And Cottle has given indications that there’s very little help, so even if it’s more than 3 it’s not much more. I got the 3 number from the BSG wiki, it matches with what I remember from the show. Why is 3 an unreasonable number? Only 50,000 survivors, how many doctors do you think should be in a randomly selected population of 50,000 many of which are from an antiquated war machine that’s about to be turned into a museum.

Using a hypodermic doesn’t make a person a doctor. Remember the Viper pilots they’ve been training are people with flight experience. I’m sure they are working on training the med-techs and nurses we’ve seen to become doctors in their copious free time. But you don’t just magically become a doctor. I’m not saying people would shun people’s care, I’m saying they wouldn’t be doctors. Doctors require training, and lots of it. The difference between a person faking it as a lawyer and somebody faking it as a doctor is lawyers don’t kill people when they misread book. And remember Lee was just an assistant, there was a legitimate lawyer on the case.

There’s absolutely nothing unbelievable about it. It’s the real world, doctors need training. While they very well might be training people we’re only 3 years into the story. Even under ideal conditions that’s not enough time to become a doctor. And they aren’t in ideal conditions. 3 isn’t fine, nobody said they’re happy with 3, 3 is the number they’ve got. There you go with your rampant and silly assumptions again, assuming that if they only have 3 they’re happy with it. Are there any indications anywhere in the show that they’re happy with the number of ANYBODY they have?! No, quite the opposite, but there you go ASSUMING. Again and again and again, every single time you don’t like how something is in the show it’s 100% because of YOUR assumption. You have an incredible skill at making yourself unhappy.

It doesn’t depend on how subtle the differences are. Cylons could have a huge organ right in the middle of their gut that’s not found in humans, if the person doing the cutting doesn’t know what’s supposed to be a human gut they won’t know. You can’t compare the biology of one thing to another if you don’t know what the biology is supposed to be of at least one of them. You can’t tell the difference between apples and oranges if you don’t know what to expect to find in an apple or an orange.

Has it ever looked like anybody in the BSG world that know squat about medicine has any spare time? Both Cottle and the killer doctor lay claims to 12 and 16 hour shifts as the norm since the Cylon attack. And somewhere in there they have to eat and sleep. Probably the best rest time they had was during the Cylon occupation, but I’m pretty sure they didn’t get much chance for dissecting Cylons during that. I’m sure they want to know, but when did they have time to find out? They’ve got sick people to deal with, war wounded, trying to make do without enough medical supplies. Curiosity has a tendency to take a back seat to little things like saving lives.

All I’m saying is we’ve never SEEN a human SEE the glow. The simples rule of TV watching is: if you haven’t seen it it hasn’t happened. We’ve never seen anybody going at the dog. We’ve gotten no indication of how regular the glowing spine is. Heck we don’t even know if male Cylons do it. Making any assumptions, in ANY direction, on something seen two or three times in 3 1/2 season is just silly. Stick with what we know: we’ve never seen a human see it. That’s ALL we know that’s ALL we should use for deciding whether or not the humans know.

Adama’s statement WASN’T a case closed. That’s what I’ve been telling you. You’re the one that turned “we’ve found nothing” into “there’s nothing to find”, Adama’s statement was open ended, there could still be something to find. In a few years, when they get some more trained doctors and people in that job can work normal shifts and get full nights sleep and maybe spend some time doing something that doesn’t immediately contribute to keeping somebody alive. Man hours are the BSG fleet’s most precious commodity, they don’t have enough of them for any job title in the fleet. And every time they run into the Cylons they permanently lose a few more. Some stuff is going to have to sit and wait.

What’s a higher priority: keeping as many of your 50,000 people alive for another 24 hours as possible, getting information that might maybe be helpful one of these days? When you don’t have enough people trained for any position in the fleet long term goals suffer. It’s part of being understaffed even in nice safe corporate environments, now add being shot at and you can see that long term thing like dissecting Cylons could wind up on the back burner for a prolonged period of time.

Sorry but that’s a grotesquely silly false choice. Here’s the painfully obvious reality from the show:
Cylons ARE different than human, we know this from a lot of stuff (glowing spines, downloading, etc etc).
But they are NOT VERY different, we know this because they can breed.
And nobody on Galactica has had the time in between being shot at to figure out what the exact differences are.

It’s really painfully simple. It only gets complicated when you start throwing in unsupportable “hypotheses” like not finding a difference in a few hours means there’s no differences to find ever.


165 posted on 06/28/2008 8:44:46 PM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
Why would you assume there’s more doctors.

Reasonable inference about the larger world than we are being shown, like I said. I also assume there are a larger number of children in the fleet - or, for that matter, hot chicks, sick people, people with tattoos, redheads, etc etc etc - than a simple tally of the ones we have been literally shown.

You don't? You're really saying you don't?

And Cottle has given indications that there’s very little help, so even if it’s more than 3 it’s not much more.

Fair enough, not much more. But more!

Only 50,000 survivors, how many doctors do you think should be in a randomly selected population of 50,000

The random selection has nothing to do with it - remember I think people would be retasked for medical work in this situation.

For 50000, more than 3. Especially since they are scattered among dozens of ships.

Using a hypodermic doesn’t make a person a doctor.

I was speaking loosely for pete's sake, I just meant 'basic stuff'. But do tell, what "makes a person a doctor" in an emergency situation when humanity down to 50k? Again, do you really think people would be fretting over medical diplomas, board exams and state licensing?

I’m sure they are working on training the med-techs and nurses we’ve seen to become doctors in their copious free time.

Well, exactly. Indeed I'm sure that a lot of the med-techs and nurses are acting as de facto doctors and have been for a while. (Or at least would be, in a logical universe in which this situation were occurring.) The rigid, legalistic boundary between 'doctor' and 'nurse' would not seem as important as you are making it seem here to actual humans going through this situation.

But you don’t just magically become a doctor. I’m not saying people would shun people’s care, I’m saying they wouldn’t be doctors. Doctors require training, and lots of it.

Actually, you do just magically become a doctor, historically. 'Doctor' is not a separate species from 'human', it's just a person who is engaged in medical work. Traditionally it was most likely learned through simple apprenticeship. Yes of course in our modern society we have a whole system in place whereby someone is required to jump through several time-consuming hoops (college degree, MCAT, med school, internship, residency) in order to 'become a doctor'. I'm saying those hoops wouldn't mean diddly-squat in the BSG situation and apprenticeship/informal training would be the most likely pathway to kick-starting people into the role.

What, that's 'not good enough' for you? This is an emergency situation. And remember how you just got through telling me how shorthanded they are.

By the way, I've worked with doctors. I'm not overly impressed by the supposed 6-year floor you posit on how long it takes to learn what they learn.

The difference between a person faking it as a lawyer and somebody faking it as a doctor is lawyers don’t kill people when they misread book.

Yeah, so maybe the emergency doctors are more likely to mess up and get people killed. What of it?

And remember Lee was just an assistant, there was a legitimate lawyer on the case.

Yeah, and now he's suddenly a 'politician' of some sort anyway (it's not clear how/what). Then for like 20 minutes he was President. Yup, the Lee storylines are always totally logical and never silly. My favorite part was when he gave a speech, from the witness stand, as a defense lawyer, to exonerate Baltar, his client. Why don't other defense lawyers think of that?

It's as if the BSG writers have an informal rule that all Lee-centered components of the storyline must be written by a fifth-grader.

While they very well might be training people we’re only 3 years into the story.

I am specifically saying that in an actual situation like this, they'd have gotten at least some people up and running and delivering at least basic medical care well under 3 years. If you disagree, then fine. But that's what I think. Waiting six years for med school + internship + residency is just nonsense.

There you go with your rampant and silly assumptions again, assuming that if they only have 3 they’re happy with it.

Actually, I was being sarcastic. In actuality I assume they wouldn't be happy with it, and would thus look to expand the medical corps. Did you really not get this? It's basically the entire point I'm making.

Cylons could have a huge organ right in the middle of their gut that’s not found in humans, if the person doing the cutting doesn’t know what’s supposed to be a human gut they won’t know.

A lot of people who aren't full-on 'doctors' have a pretty good working knowledge of what's in the human body and what isn't. (I can identify the prostate, bladder, liver, kidneys, pancreas, small and large bowel, heart, lungs, spinal column, larynx, parotids, optic nerves, optic chiasm etc etc on a CT scan but I'm not 'a doctor'.) There's nothing magical about being 'a doctor' which automatically confers infinitely more knowledge about these things. You still seem enthralled by your 'doctor' fetish. ONLY doctors know ANYTHING! Well, I am not.

Also, it depends on what is in the Cylon gut and how different it is. If it were shaped like a child's rocking horse and had polka-dots and spewed fire from its 'mouth' upon contact with the atmosphere, I'd think that virtually anyone would at least have a sneaking suspicion that "hey, that's weird", and at least have the presence of mind to call it to the attention of Dr. Cottle. Division of labor.

You can’t compare the biology of one thing to another if you don’t know what the biology is supposed to be of at least one of them.

To reiterate, 1. a lot of people can have basic biology knowledge without being 'a doctor', 2. medical texts, 3. side-by-side dissections.

You can’t tell the difference between apples and oranges if you don’t know what to expect to find in an apple or an orange.

Um, what? One's red and the other's orange. One's pulpy and the other is hard. You can tell this by looking at them. And anyone would know these things even if they had never previously seen either.

Both Cottle and the killer doctor lay claims to 12 and 16 hour shifts as the norm since the Cylon attack. And somewhere in there they have to eat and sleep. Probably the best rest time they had was during the Cylon occupation, but I’m pretty sure they didn’t get much chance for dissecting Cylons during that. I’m sure they want to know, but when did they have time to find out?

First, I work 12 hour days and I'm wasting my time posting to you.

Second, as I think I've made clear, I envision that (in the actual situation) this would be prioritized, so it wouldn't be some hobby, it would be part of their day job.

Curiosity has a tendency to take a back seat to little things like saving lives.

Learning/knowing about these Cylons could have something to do with saving lives. At least, they appeared to think so for a while, then they dropped the subject.

All I’m saying is we’ve never SEEN a human SEE the glow. The simples rule of TV watching is: if you haven’t seen it it hasn’t happened.

That is an idiotic rule and I don't subscribe to it. I've never seen anyone excrete a bowel movement on a TV show but I assume it happens. You don't?

If All you're saying is we've never SEEN a human SEE the glow, then of course you are right. There are two possibilities then: (1) this is because no humans have seen the glow, or (2) humans have seen the glow, but no one has ever acted consistently with how humans would act if they knew Cylons had different biology that included e.g. a glowing spine.

I find BOTH possibile interpretations problematic, and that is my point precisely: BSG regularly tosses facts out there for which all logical interpretations are problematic.

Adama’s statement WASN’T a case closed. That’s what I’ve been telling you.

Great. So we agree then: there's no reason to think Cylon biology is all that identical to human biology. Now then: why doesn't anyone on BSG act as if they believe this? On the contrary, virtually everyone acts as if Cylons and humans are basically indistinguishable. And yet they don't make the next leap from there (if so, Cylons are humans). This is precisely my complaint.

What’s a higher priority: keeping as many of your 50,000 people alive for another 24 hours as possible, getting information that might maybe be helpful one of these days?

It's a tradeoff and you have to balance and prioritize the needs of now against the needs of one year from now, five, etc. I don't know what the exact resolution is, but I do know that at least for a while, the higher-ups on BSG thought it was pretty important to test for Cylons. Hell, they gave Baltar a freakin' nuke just on his say-so that he needed it for the test. So they must have thought it was pretty important. But now they don't, not at all. You're saying it's because they 'don't have time'.

Well somehow they all had time to stop what they were doing and put Baltar on trial (albeit, a phony trial). What immediate life-and-death need did that serve, I wonder?

Here’s the painfully obvious reality from the show: Cylons ARE different than human, we know this from a lot of stuff (glowing spines, downloading, etc etc). But they are NOT VERY different, we know this because they can breed. And nobody on Galactica has had the time in between being shot at to figure out what the exact differences are.

And thus, here's my interpretation of all that: since Cylons look like humans, can breed with humans, and whatever biological differences from humans they may have are minor/subtle, Cylons are humans. The glowing spine thing (whatever the explanation) seems totally spurious, if I injected some fluorescent dye under my skin would I become 'not human'? As for downloading, in the end I believe (and I think you said too) this would probably have to be more a matter of the resurrection ship having very powerful receivers (or whatever) than of the Cylons being biologically different per se. And the rest (superstrength, talk to computers with your hand in goo, etc) you kinda just have to ignore or at least think/assume it's within the realm of possibility of human biology.

So, I think the least-bad interpretation of what we've been shown (and ignoring the spurious, the contradictory, and the silly) is that Cylons (the skinjobs) are just humans. Especially given that THEY CAN BREED WITH HUMANS FOR CRYING OUT LOUD. If the show wants me to believe Cylons aren't humans, they've done a very bad job of painting a believable picture that gives me any significant reason to think they aren't.

166 posted on 06/29/2008 5:38:00 AM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

Well we know there’s lots of sick people because Cottle and the other doctor we saw while he was around were (and are) constantly running their asses off. But of course the fact that these guys are constantly running their asses off also indicates that while there might be more doctors than just them there’s not a lot and clearly not enough. Because Cottle has to travel so much (remember why he wasn’t there to help Adama when Sharon shot him) we know there’s not the 1 per ship that I would consider to be the bare minimum for comfort, and more importantly for having the spare man hours to do things like fully dissect a Cylon corpse.

“Basic stuff” isn’t good enough. They need full service doctors and surgeons. I suppose a “basic stuff” person might be good enough for Cylon dissection but they’d be busy doing the “basic stuff” so the real doctor can do real doctoring. Nobody in the fleet gets much in the way of down time, and that kind of dissection would be the kind of thing to do during otherwise down time. Everybody’s pulling double shifts at their job just keeping the fleet alive.

It’s not about the hoops it’s about accomplishing the task. Until the person can correctly diagnose a heart problem (or some other internal thing not treatable by anti-biotics) and prescribe medicine appropriately they aren’t a doctor. They’re at best an assistant, which can be handy, if you’ve spent any time in a hospital you know the assistants far out number the doctors, but the fleet needs doctors.

What of it?! There’s 50,000 humans left in the WHOLE universe, they’ve already established that they don’t have enough to create a proper breeding population unless they get really lucky and screw a LOT. Every one they lose is another step towards the end of all humanity. Letting people die because your “doctors” aren’t really doctors is simply not acceptable.

Any idiot can be a politician, or president for that matter. Look no further than this year’s election for proof of that. Doctor is a much harder more important job, especially when there’s only 50,000 people left in the universe. Maybe the other defense lawyer did think of it, but it wouldn’t be the same coming from him. Some back of the house lawyer talking about all the nasty things they’ve done isn’t the same as one of the people who shot down the Olympic Carrier and jumped the fleet away from New Caprica (ie PARTICIPATED in the nasty things). A lot of what makes a good speech a good speech is context, you think MLK “I have a dream” speech would be considered one of the greatest in history if some pasty suburban white guy had given it? Not that I’m saying Lee’ speech was that good, just a handy example of how who gives the speech improves the speech.

The English language doesn’t transmit emotion in written form well. The raised tilt of sarcasm has no written equivalent. But as I said, I assume they are, in their copious spare time, teaching all the techs and nurses to be doctors. And they’re probably bringing new people in to backfill the nurse and tech positions. But it’s only been 3 years and they’re under extreme duress, not good conditions for extra training.

Do you know what all those body parts look like when covered in blood and viscera? Really? I remember doing the from dissection thing in high school and noticing how completely useless the model (and nice and clean and neatly arranged) was for comparing to the real thing (none of the above). I could probably identify a few major organs, but very quickly I’d be lost. Here’s one thing I learned just in this discussion: there’s really no such thing as “the appendix” the thing we call “the appendix” is actually the vermiform appendix and is one of nine different appendixes found in the human body. Anybody who doesn’t actually know on sight all nine isn’t going to be useful for determining what’s different about Cylons.

Have you worked 12 to 16 hour days every day for the last 3 years WHILE fleeing for your life? Didn’t think so. They’re in a situation where daily survival uses a lot of their time. Dissecting the Cylon would definitely be a high priority, but not as high as living 1 more day, and for them living 1 more day is way past a full time job.

Sorry but that is the most important rule of watching arc TV, or any TV for that matter. If you don’t subscribe to it you’re just setting yourself events in the show and then thinking they screwed up because what’s happening in the show doesn’t match your assumptions. Once again we get to the true source of ALL your complaints: your crappy assumptions. It’s always the same over and over and over it’s all coming from you. You make assumptions, and then your assumptions don’t work with further events in the show, and then you complain that the show is inconsistent. If you’re going to persist in making assumptions then you need to be ready to rewrite them when new stuff happens that proves your assumption was crap. All the inconsistencies you’ve whined about for over a week now are inconsistencies with YOU.


167 posted on 06/29/2008 7:30:14 AM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
But of course the fact that these guys are constantly running their asses off also indicates that while there might be more doctors than just them there’s not a lot and clearly not enough.

never said otherwise

and more importantly for having the spare man hours to do things like fully dissect a Cylon corpse.

Now you're the one that's totally making assumptions. We've never been shown what Cottle does 99% of the time. For all you know he's been dissecting a Cylon corpse in his spare time. How do you know he doesn't?

“Basic stuff” isn’t good enough.

'Good enough' for what? You claimed there were only 3 doctors, I infer there are probably more, at the very least by retasking people and training them in the basic stuff. You said that's not 'good enough'. Again: for what?

They need full service doctors and surgeons.

They 'need' lots of things but if the best they can do is train an ex-historian to take peoples' temperature and look in their ears and (etc etc) then I reckon they'd do it. You think they wouldn't? Because it's 'not good enough'? Better to just let people go untreated?

I suppose a “basic stuff” person might be good enough for Cylon dissection but they’d be busy doing the “basic stuff” so the real doctor can do real doctoring.

Or, so he could dissect the Cylon. Again, division of labor. The whole issue here was you claiming there's not enough manpower because there's only 3 doctors. I reckon there are more. If those 'more' are doing doctoring that could free up Cottle or another 'real doctor'.

Nobody in the fleet gets much in the way of down time, and that kind of dissection would be the kind of thing to do during otherwise down time.

Says who? Again, why wouldn't it be a priority, why wouldn't someone have been put on it fulltime till it was completed? How many freaking man-hours does it really take to do an extensive dissection anyway? "Heart, check." Put the heart in a jar. "Intestines, check". Put them in a jar. And so on. Your whole stance here that every single person in the fleet with any medical knowledge has been SO BUSY this entire time that there simply hasn't been time to dig into the Cylon corpse and see if he's got cuckoo clocks or gills in there really just doesn't pass the smell test.

Until the person can correctly diagnose a heart problem (or some other internal thing not treatable by anti-biotics) and prescribe medicine appropriately they aren’t a doctor.

More to the point, such a person would be an undertrained doctor - a doctor trainee - or something along those lines, and thus would have to refer to Cottle a lot. Yeah...and?

They’re at best an assistant, which can be handy, if you’ve spent any time in a hospital you know the assistants far out number the doctors, but the fleet needs doctors.

And? They're making do with the best they've got. Aren't they? Sheesh, I thought that was your whole point. Now I don't even know what you're trying to say. I'm trying to imagine this reply: "You want to help out with the medical care? Sorry, the fleet needs doctors and although you could probably help out with a lot of stuff, you couldn't diagnose arrhythmia. So, go do something else, like be a reporter or PR person for one of the 'politicians'. We can never get enough of those."

Huh?

What of it?! There’s 50,000 humans left in the WHOLE universe, they’ve already established that they don’t have enough to create a proper breeding population unless they get really lucky and screw a LOT. Every one they lose is another step towards the end of all humanity. Letting people die because your “doctors” aren’t really doctors is simply not acceptable.

If you leave someone UNTREATED because you don't have enough doctors and the people willing/available to work on the task aren't 'real doctors', that's letting people die. I'm sure their larger medical corps is less than ideally-trained, but what's the alternative exactly?

Maybe the other defense lawyer did think of it, but it wouldn’t be the same coming from him. Some back of the house lawyer talking about all the nasty things they’ve done isn’t the same as one of the people who shot down the Olympic Carrier and jumped the fleet away from New Caprica (ie PARTICIPATED in the nasty things).

You missed my real point there which was that in anything resembling a real trial, there's no freaking way they'd let a guy's defense lawyer not only get called up to the stand but then speechify. The whole scene was laughable, cooked-up drama.

But as I said, I assume they are, in their copious spare time, teaching all the techs and nurses to be doctors. And they’re probably bringing new people in to backfill the nurse and tech positions. But it’s only been 3 years and they’re under extreme duress, not good conditions for extra training.

Nevertheless, they have to make do. And so I'm quite sure that (at least in a real situation resembling these events) there would be many people who have been essentially acting as 'field doctors' for at least 2.5 out of those 3 years. Thus, there would be more than 3 doctors. Which was my initial claim, and which you've conceded anyway.

Do you know what all those body parts look like when covered in blood and viscera? Really?

Not really. But so? Maybe Cylon biology is sufficiently different that it could be recognized on a CT. There are things I'd notice on a CT as being "not right". This wouldn't require dissection at all. Or at least, I could then point it out to Cottle - "look there, what the heck is that?" - so he'd have an idea where to cut. But oh yeah I forgot he doesn't have a single minute to spare to cut open the Cylon.

Anybody who doesn’t actually know on sight all nine isn’t going to be useful for determining what’s different about Cylons.

Again, unless Cylon biology is significantly different. Which I guess you're saying it isn't (based on what?). In which case, I reckon Cylons are just humans (which was my initial point).

Have you worked 12 to 16 hour days every day for the last 3 years WHILE fleeing for your life? Didn’t think so.

Oh I see so that's what makes the difference. 12 hour shifts while not fleeing for your life = time to do extra stuff. 12 hour shifts while fleeing for your life = no single minute can possibly be spent slicing into a dead body and poking around. Got it.

Dissecting the Cylon would definitely be a high priority, but not as high as living 1 more day, and for them living 1 more day is way past a full time job.

I can't even envision what you think you're saying here. What exactly is it that Cottle currently has to do vis-a-vis "living 1 more day" that occupies literally all of his time so that a little slice n dice is out of the question? Based on your description there's no way he has time to light his cigarette or engage in conversations with people. But HE DOES do those things. Miraculous.

168 posted on 06/29/2008 12:35:38 PM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

No actually you DIED say otherwise. Your entire position is based on otherwise.

Here’s the core problem, you’ve got a problem with how BSG gets from point A (the audience known differences between Cylons and humans) to point G (not having an easy biological test). The problem is the points B through F of your complaint are 100% of YOUR creation. Whether you call them assumptions or hypotheses or whatever the hell else you want is immaterial, the fact is you’ve built a path from A to G that goes through them having plenty of doctors with plenty of time to do plenty of testing on plenty of Cylon corpses and none of those things is supported by the actual story. In fact every damn one of them is DIRECTLY contradicted by the actual story. They don’t have plenty of doctors (refer to Cottle’s non apology during the story with the Sagitaron killer), they don’t have plenty of time (same speech), they haven’t gotten to do plenty of testing (the only results we know about are from between the initial Cylon attack and 33 which happened 6 days later), and they’ve frequently had one to zero Cylon corpses to work with.

The real story is they’re just too damn busy staying alive. And if you have a problem with that, well TFB. Life sucks, get a helmet.


169 posted on 06/29/2008 5:51:57 PM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
No actually you DIED say otherwise. Your entire position is based on otherwise.

?

Here’s the core problem, you’ve got a problem with how BSG gets from point A (the audience known differences between Cylons and humans) to point G (not having an easy biological test).

Sort of. I'd rephrase this slightly: I've got a problem with BSG's stance on & presentation of Cylons in general. I see no real evidence that they are anything other than a certain type of human. More to the point, I don't even know whether BSG wants me to think they are biologically different from humans. (In fact, it's seemed likely for a while now that where they are going with the story is that Cylons will merge with humans at the end and form a new union and live together as...well, as humans, right?)

The problem with all that is you would think they would have to be much different from humans, in order to be thought of and treated and empowered so differently, and everyone on the show certainly acts like Cylons aren't humans, but (paradoxically) no one on the show acts like they are biologically different from humans. Your explanation for that here is that they just haven't found the differences because they are teensy tiny subtle things, i.e. they're exactly like humans in every way 'sept for they got a couple extra little doohickeys, e.g. pointless enzyme sacs that make glowy-spine for no reason.

I can go with your explanation but it seems magnificently dumb - it seems dumb that the robots would've made their humanoids like humans plus extra doohickeys, and in any event I'm not sure the 'enzyme sac' type things would be enough of a difference to call them inhuman in the first place. Or, I can reject your explanation and the problems remain. But to be honest, I really haven't the faintest idea what BSG's writers want me to think about it either way. It's just not clear and this is entirely due to the sloppy, haphazard and inconsistent way they've presented us with facts and properties of Cylons. The overall picture they paint is not clear or coherent and that's my basic problem. You're probably going to call that a 'mystery' and say I need to 'wait' till the end. I just don't think that's what you call it when facts are presented that don't mesh and contain no possible logical resolution.

Bottom line it for me: do you think Cylons are biologically different from humans or not? Do you think they are humans or not? If not, why not? If they are, why does no one notice it? And how has the show made those answers clear?

[...blah blah blah...] The real story is they’re just too damn busy staying alive. And if you have a problem with that, well TFB. Life sucks, get a helmet.

Good speech there. Shall I start a "slow clap"?

Again, if BSG makes sense to you and raises no logical questions for you, then good for you. Go with God. To me it's a mess and can't be taken seriously as science fiction. It's really a fantasy program - a pretty well-made one - and at least half the time it's just used as a vehicle for thinly-disguised 'topics of the week'...kinda like what I understood The West Wing t'have been like.

170 posted on 06/29/2008 9:29:19 PM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

They DO act like they’re biologically different than humans. The autopsied a Cylon and probably intended to do more, they put Baltar in charge of the Cylon detector, they figured out the Cylon disease. Plenty of behavior among the humans that revolves around the assumption of difference. You can ignore if you want, but when you claim it doesn’t exist based on your ignoring it once again the problem comes from you.


171 posted on 06/30/2008 8:15:20 AM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
The autopsied a Cylon and probably intended to do more,

But then dropped the whole thing

they figured out the Cylon disease

Another good point, how exactly did they figure out that this virus would give Cylons a disease and yet at the same time they still don't have a Cylon detector that would've picked up Tigh and the others? The former would require some actual biological knowledge of Cylons and in particular how Cylons differ from humans. Which would imply the ability to distinguish Cylons from humans. Which, in turn, would have meant they had the makings of a Cylon test right in front of them. And yet they never put this 2 and 2 together.

172 posted on 06/30/2008 8:13:32 PM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

Cottle figured out that it was a disease that humans used to suffer from but had developed an immunity to millions of years ago. They’ve given up on Cylon detectors after Baltar’s “failed” (remember it worked, he just lied about the results). By the time they found the Cylon disease they knew what the 7 known models of Cylons were, and since even the Cylons didn’t know what the Final Five were like there really wasn’t much reason to work on a test to find them. I’m sure once they got off NC all the testing on Cylons was geared towards immediate thing like figuring out the disease, since they have almost no doctors (you can cook up all the ways they could train up “doctors” you want they still have almost no real actual fully trained Doctors, and the ones they have are working 16 hour days just keeping the fleet alive) and they already know what the 7 that were part of the genocide look like, there’s really know compelling reason to look for general differences. There’s no reason for them to look into some Cylon legend of “missing” Cylons that might or might not exist, there’s people with diseases that need cures.


173 posted on 07/01/2008 8:09:06 AM PDT by boogerbear
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To: boogerbear
and since even the Cylons didn’t know what the Final Five were like there really wasn’t much reason to work on a test to find them.

Facile, made-up rubbish.

What made the humans so sure that they knew all 7 "non-final" models? Because the Cylons told them? What made them so sure the Cylons didn't know who the "final five" were? Because they told them? What made them so sure the total # was really 12? Because they told them? This is one of those "if humans really had these motives & thought this way, they are stupid" explanations.

I see no reason whatsoever why humans wouldn't have had every motive in the world to just test all the people in their fleet once and for all and put the issue to rest. The only reason not to seems to be a TV reason (i.e. so the writers could stretch out the drama of who's-a-Cylon and, at a later time of their choosing, make some random people Cylons if the fancy struck them. Which of course is precisely what they did.)

I’m sure once they got off NC all the testing on Cylons was geared towards immediate thing like figuring out the disease,

Where on earth did you get this? Nothing like this was shown or supported on the show. You have (gasp) MADE AN ASSUMPTION not based on anything shown, thus violating the first rule of TV watching that you supposedly subscribe to.

There’s no reason for them to look into some Cylon legend of “missing” Cylons that might or might not exist,

The fact that they might exist is reason enough. Again, if BSG's humans really didn't think so they are stupid. Of course, I don't think they are stupid, because I don't think your explanation is the real one. The real explanation of course is sloppy writing. Your explanations here constitute bending over backwards to interpret that sloppy writing as charitably as possible. I am not so inclined, therefore the sloppy writing bothers me. That's where we are.

174 posted on 07/01/2008 5:09:24 PM PDT by Dr. Frank fan
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To: Dr. Frank fan

Nothing facile about it. Remember they were told during the mini-series there were 12 models. Before they’d even settled on New Caprica they’d identified 7 (another good reason to not worry about a Cylon detector, they found 7 in one year without it, they were doing pretty good without it).

Then the Cylons take over NC. During Cylon occupation they learn that the other five, Final Five, whatever, are kind legendary, that in fact the Ones don’t even appear to believe in the Final Five (and boy won’t they feel dumb when they find out they “spiritually guided” two of them). The humans are busy chasing their own legend (Earth), they don’t really have the time to go chasing Cylons that other Cylons don’t even know what they look like or even if they exist.

I didn’t make an assumption at all. We know they tested the Cylons, both living and dead, from the plague ship to figure out what killed them and if it posed any danger to the humans. We also know Cottle is doing some level of base medicine with Cylon prisoners because he figured out ix was pregers. We also don’t hear anybody discussing figuring out if they still have secret Cylons among them. They’re clearly dealing with immediate matters that relate to Cylons but not long term. No assumption, just paying attention to the small details. It’s important to know the difference.

The fact that there are Cylons who don’t believe the other Cylons exist and that even the ones that do believe have no idea who they are or where to find them is reason enough to not worry. Add to that the fact that after NC they have even fewer humans so it’s even more important to keep everyone alive you can, and the elimination of the Sagitaron killing doctor so now they have even less medical staff to go around, and you once again get to the “bigger fish to fry” issue.

I’m not bending over backwards for anything. Just pointing out that yet again all your arguments come from inside your own head and that absolutely none of your position actually stems from the actual show that was actually shown. Any bending I’m doing is trying to figure out how your “logic” makes even the slightest amount of sense. If you actually work with what’s in the show and JUST what’s in the show it all makes perfectly good sense.


175 posted on 07/02/2008 8:08:35 AM PDT by boogerbear
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