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Recap / Battlestar Galactica 2003 S 02 E 15 Scar

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Season 2, Episode 15:

Scar

After being rebuffed once again by Roslin and Adama after asking to undertake a rescue mission to find the Caprica Buccaneers, Kara becomes depressed and starts drinking as a way to drown her sorrows.

At the same time, the fleet has begun mining an asteroid field to gather enough resources to build new Viper squadrons, but their efforts are repeatedly hampered by a relentless Cylon Raider, differentiated by its hull markings and nicknamed "Scar", who has conducted repeated strikes against the mining operation and killed several new pilots.

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Kat challenges Kara to see who can shoot down Scar, with the prise being Kara's signature beer stein she holds as the top pilot in the group.

Later, Kara visits Sharon in her holding cell and asks who or what Scar is. Sharon hypothesizes that Raiders can reincarnate in addition to the human Cylons, and that Scar is determined not to die because it doesn't have a Resurrection Ship to fall back on. Before Kara leaves, Sharon tells her to be careful out there.

Kara goes on patrol again, but Scar attacks and kills another rookie pilot. Back on Galactica's fight deck, Kat rails at Kara for giving the pilot, BB, bad advice, and later, Kat is forced to start a briefing by herself after Kara shows up late (from having drank earlier).

Kara assigns another pilot to take her place on the next patrol, but it goes awry and results in the death of yet another pilot, Jo-Jo, as a result of Scar's attack.

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In her anguish, Kara has a drink with Lee, and although they try to make love, she ruins the mood by being aggressive. She tells Lee that she's very confused over her feelings for Anders, and although she slaps him immediately afterwards. Kara then admits that he has been a good friend and gives him a kiss before leaving.

On their next patrol, Kara and Kat are surveying the area when Scar appears again from their rear guard. Kara realizes what is happening and tries to shoot at it, but her Viper is damaged in the process.

Angered and confused, Kara begins a suicide run against Scar while thinking of Anders, but Kat's cries to break off the run because Scar is a machine and will kill her finally cause her to snap back to reality and break off her run. Kara leads Scar deeper into the asteroid field, and tells Kat to ambush it from behind. The resulting maneuver results in Kat successfully destroying Scar.

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In an informal ceremony later, the Viper pilots, Bill and Tigh celebrate Kat's victory, and she drinks out of the beer stein. Kara then gives a tearful eulogy and toast to all the Viper pilots that have been killed ever since the attack on the Colonies.

Later that day, Kara is training with Helo, who tells her she did the right thing in letting Kat destroy Scar. He then tells her that she now has something to live for by rescuing Anders.

Tropes:

  • Ace Custom: Scar itself is identified by its dirty exterior and scar-like markings.
  • Anachronic Order: The episode cuts back and forth between Kara's confrontation with Scar and the 96 hours leading up to it.
  • Antagonist Title
  • Came Back Strong: Sharon points out that when you can reincarnate in a new body after dying in combat, "death becomes a learning experience." This applies to the animalistic Raiders (and probably the Centurions by extension) as much as to the fully sapient Artificial Human Cylons like Sharon herself. However…
  • Came Back Wrong: …death is also extremely traumatic, and being resurrected multiple times has driven Scar Ax-Crazy.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Sharon suggests that Scar is a resurrected copy of the Raider she used to escape the small moon in "You Can't Go Home Again", which she subsequently gutted.
    • Kat references all of the supporting Viper pilots who have died in the series to date.
    • Kat opens a bottle of wine, the same make (Leonis Estates) which was used to christen the Blackbird in "Flight of the Phoenix".
  • Death Seeker: Kara tries a suicide run against Scar, only to be snapped out of it at the last minute when she realizes she can lure the fighter out so Kat can get a shot on it. She remarks later to Helo that she could've made the kill but it would've meant her own death, and suddenly that actually mattered to her.
    Helo: You've found something to live for, not just die for.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Kara starts drinking heavily after Bill and Roslin refuse her request to go back to Caprica to rescue Anders and the other resistance members.
  • I Let Gwen Stacy Die: Kara gets a huge case of this when her drinking and inability to lead results in two pilots dying under her watch and Kat blasting her for not doing her job.
  • Infinite Supplies: Averted; the fleet is forced to use a mining ship to scavenge enough ore to build two new Viper squadrons.
  • In Medias Res: Continuing the trend of the previous few episodes, "Scar" begins with Kara going up against the titular Raider, then flashes back to show what led to that point.
  • Meaningful Echo: "So say we all."
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Discussed.
    • Sharon states that Kara is unintentionally responsible for Scar, as she believes it is a resurrected copy of the Cylon Raider the latter gutted and used for transportation to retrieve the Arrow of Apollo.
    • It's also indicated by Sharon that the destruction of the resurrection ship may have actually made things worse rather than better as far as the Raiders go, as instead of just deploying Leeroy Jenkins and Zerg Rush tactics they now make much greater use of stealth and ambush tactics, which are perfect for catching the inexperienced Viper pilots off-guard.
    • Kat blames Kara's ill-tempered advice to BB for his death: he and Duck could've and should've safely bugged out, but the rookie instead tried to engage Scar, following Kara's advice to Attack! Attack! Attack!. Kara defends herself by saying 99 times of a hundred, attacking would've the right move, but BB was too green to know this was the other one time.
  • Nicknaming the Enemy: "Scar", a Cylon Raider with a penchant for attacking Viper nuggets and mining operations.
  • Parenthetical Swearing: Kat refers to BB as an "FNG" once, which is military slang for "Fucking (Frakking?) New Guy".
  • Shout-Out: The final scene uses the title theme from The Deer Hunter.
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: With Lee in his quarters after she propositions him for sex. Subverted in that it ends with her leaving immediately after kissing him.
  • Whole Plot Reference: The episode appears to take many cues from the Space: Above and Beyond episode "The Angriest Angel", including an Ace Custom fighter who is conducting hit-and-run attacks against allied fighters and a hotshot pilot seeing if they have what it takes to stop the renegade craft.

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