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Recap / Battlestar Galactica 2003 S 03 E 01 Occupation

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Season 3, Episode 1:


Three months have passed since the Cylons occupied New Caprica. Throughout the settlement, various events are occurring.

Ellen is having sex with a copy of Cavil, and after they finish, he informs her that she will get what she wants. At the same time, Tigh is in a prison cell and has a bandage over his right eye. Another Cavil enters the room and briefly discusses how they've changed his cell multiple times to break his will, then leaves the door open so he can exit. Ellen meets Saul outside of the building, revealed to be the New Caprica Detention Center, and asks what happened to his eye. He refuses to discuss it and says they should leave.


Elsewhere, Tyrol and Anders are arming a bomb. Both flee as a Heavy Raider touches down, and a group of human Cylons exiting the craft are blown up in an explosion.

In a nearby apartment, Kara is setting a table when Leoben Conoy arrives, bringing her dinner. She asks for a knife, but he cuts her dinner himself. As he explains that she's beautiful, Kara stabs him in the neck with a pair of metal chopsticks. He dies, though not before telling her that he'll be back soon. Kara sits down and begins eating dinner while her hand is covered in his blood.

At the school, Roslin is writing a journal entry about the settlement's current situation, and how they haven't been able to reach Galactica and the rest of the fleet in months. She writes that many of the colonists have formed a resistance movement that is conducting sneak attacks against the Cylons, but that they need to step up their efforts. She finishes by saying that the Cylons have formed an all-human police division, which is arresting and torturing civilians, but the resistance has also received some unlikely help from an informant inside Baltar's cabinet.


Onboard Colonial One, a group of Cylons are discussing the current state of affairs. Two copies of Cavil argue that they need to increase their control over the colonists, and suggest killing Baltar as a public statement. Caprica-Six says nothing will happen to him as long as she's around. The rest of the Cylons decide to resort to random public executions, with only Caprica-Six and Boomer disagreeing.

At night, the informant places a document inside a dog bowl and tips it over. Tyrol later discovers the document and brings it to the other resistance leaders—Tigh and Anders. Tigh reveals to both of them that Cavil removed his eye in detention, but praises their earlier attack on the Heavy Raider. Tyrol says that the document he received shows that they need to target the New Caprica Police Academy next, as they will be holding a graduation ceremony and Baltar will be in attendance.


Tigh also asks if they've heard any word from Galactica, and Tyrol replies in the negative, reporting that the Cylons are jamming their communication attempts. Anders is rueful, suggesting that the fleet abandoned them and no help is coming, then says he hasn't seen Kara in four months.

In her apartment, Kara is approached again by another copy of Conoy, who once again tries to make advances at her. Kara rebuffs him while he says that all she needs is more time, and he leaves. After he exits, Kara notices the front door of the apartment is open, but when she attempts to escape, she runs into a hallway with jailbars across it, and screams in frustration.

Galactica and the rest of the fleet are in a nearby sector. Bill is standing at the situation room table, planning out an operation, when he becomes frustrated and hurls a model Raptor across the room. Meanwhile, a group of Raptors is attempting a training exercise and are continually making mistakes.

Bill walks through the darkened corridors of Galactica and arrives in the CIC, where Helo, who has been promoted to XO, briefs him on the training exercise. Bill orders the pilots to continue practicing, and has a brief conversation about the training efforts with Lee, who has gained much more weight in the interim.

The next day, as a Raptor sits near the planet waiting for any comm traffic from the surface, Tyrol uses the frequency the informant gave him to send a message to Galactica. In turn, the Raptor reports that they will contact them every twelve hours, and that they are coming to rescue everyone.

At the resistance base, Tyrol reconsiders whether they should go ahead with the police ceremony bombing in light of Galactica's message, but Tigh contends that they should only scrap it if Baltar isn't attending.

Discussing his itinerary with Gaeta, Baltar decides to skip the ceremony, and Gaeta (revealed to be the informant) tries to inform Tyrol of the change, but the message isn't received and the operation continues as planned.

At the police graduation ceremony, a copy of Number Three is honoring the recent graduates, including former pilot Duck and tech specialist Jammer. Duck wires himself with a package of explosives strapped to his body, and when the Number Three steps up to congratulate him, he detonates the bomb, killing himself, Three and most of the recruits in the room…


  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted—several of the colonists (including Ellen) have lesions on their faces.
  • Content Warnings
  • Darker and Edgier: Between the Ellen/Cavil sex scene, the suicide bombings and Anvilicious plotline referencing the then-ongoing Iraq occupation, it is much darker than the majority of the previous episodes.
  • Dead Drop: Gaeta communicates with the Resistance this way. He leaves information in a filing cabinet and turns over a nearby dog bowl to indicate that a delivery has been made. Tyrol notes that this anonymous system is safer for everyone.
  • Death Seeker: Duck, who volunteers for the Suicide Attack so he can be with his wife, who was killed by the Cylons.
  • Eye Scream: Tigh had his eye removed by Cavil during the Time Skip.
  • Field Promotion: Helo has been promoted to Galactica's XO in Tigh's absence.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: The sex scene between Cavil and Ellen (who is trying to free her husband in exchange for a sexual favor) takes on a new meaning when it's revealed in the next season that she is a Cylon and that she built Cavil's model, in the image of her father no less, making it a combination Electra Complex/Oedipus Complex.
  • If I Can't Have You...: Conoy keeps Kara imprisoned because he sees a future where they get married, and says that her attempts to escape are futile and she just "needs more time" to get to know him.
  • Impromptu Tracheotomy: Conoy gets stabbed in the neck with a pair of chopsticks, courtesy of Kara.
  • The Informant: Gaeta, who has been leaking confidential information to Tyrol.
  • La Résistance: The Darker and Edgier resistance movement on New Caprica, suicide bombers and all.
  • Les Collaborateurs: The humans who join the New Caprica Police are viewed as traitors and collaborators by the rest of humanity.
  • The Lost Lenore: The death of Duck's wife, Nora, is what convinces him to conduct a Suicide Attack against the police recruits.
  • Mauve Shirt: Duck, who kills himself in a suicide boming at the end of the episode after being present through the back half of the previous season.
  • A Million Is a Statistic: In the webisodes, Tigh and Jammer discuss whether the resistance's increased strength and popularity within the settlement was worth the deaths of ten people, and the former replying that people die all the time, using the deaths in the attack on the Colonies (20 billion) as proof.
  • New Meat: The Raptor trainees, who continually botch their training operation.
  • No, Mr. Bond, I Expect You to Dine: Starbuck stabs Leoben to death while he tries to serve her dinner.
  • P.O.V. Cam: As Cavil takes out Tigh's eye.
  • Recycled Set: The apartment Kara is imprisoned in is the same location used for her apartment on Caprica.
  • Refusal of the Call: In the webisodes, Duck refuses to join the resistance movement because he wants to raise a family on the planet. Nora's death causes him to rethink his choice.
  • Reverse Mole: Gaeta is using his position as Baltar's aide to secure information for the Resistance.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Leoben.
  • Suicide Attack: Duck blows himself up with an explosive vest to kill the majority of the New Caprica Police Academy recruits.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Compared to his previous attitude towards her, Tigh is shown to be much more concerned for Kara's welfare than ever before, to the point that one of the first things he does when he leaves confinement is ask if she's alright.
  • Webisode: The Resistance, which follows the increasing frequency of Cylon attacks on resistance members and Duck's decision to become a suicide bomber.
  • You Are Fat: Lee, to the point where his father calls him out on being soft, "both mentally and physically". Ouch.


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