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Recap / Battlestar Galactica 2003 S 03 E 05 Collaborators

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Season 3, Episode 5:

Collaborators

Several members of the Galactica crew, including Tigh, Tyrol, Anders, Seelix, Charlie Connor and Jean Barolay, have set up a secret tribunal called The Circle, which is carrying out punishments on crewmen and civilians who acted as collaborators during their time on New Caprica.

Jammer is pulled into one of Galactica's Viper launch tubes by the group and is read a conviction notice that says he was responsible for working with the Cylons on the New Caprica Police and killing civilians during raids. Jammer tries to protest his innocence, and appeals to Tyrol by telling him that he freed Cally from her bonds just before the detainee convoy was attacked by Centurions. However, Tyrol refuses to allow Jammer's one act of goodness to override his acts of collaboration, and the group tells Jammer that his punishment is death. The group leaves and Jammer cries as they activate the release hatch, sucking him out into space.

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Tyrol goes to Cally and, still confused over what Jammer said to him, asks her if she remembers what happened during the detainee rescue. Cally says that everything is still vague, but that she remembers that one of the officers cut her free. Tyrol realizes that Jammer was telling the truth.

Baltar is sitting on Colonial One, watching and listening as Bill, Tigh and Roslin talk about how he had to act the way he did on New Caprica. HeadSix appears and tells the group that they're being too lenient on Baltar, and Roslin tells him how much she wants him, causing him to realize that he's having a dream…

…and Baltar wakes onboard a Cylon Basestar, where he is laying on a red lounge chair. A Centurion appears at the entrance to the room and Baltar looks around in confusion.

Elsewhere, the fleet is still repairing the damage and getting themselves sorted after the escape from New Caprica, and Galactica's outer hull is shown to be damaged from the battle. Onboard Colonial One, Roslin meets with Zarek, who assumed the presidency after Baltar abdicated his rule, and asks him what he wants to do next. Zarek initially tries to act as if things are normal, but after Bill browbeats him, Zarek says that he will cede the presidency to Roslin and reconvene the Quorum of Twelve, then step down. Roslin offers to keep him on as Vice President in return.

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In Galactica's CIC, Gaeta enters and looks around, then tries to help perform repairs on the comm systems. He's impeded by Tigh, who mockingly asks if he's seen the eye he lost in detention, and accuses him of being a collaborator. When Helo tries to stand up for Gaeta, Tigh continues with his ranting until he's calmed down by Bill. The admiral tells him to get some rest, but Tigh doesn't want to hear it.

The Circle reconvenes and decides on their next case, eventually deciding on Gaeta. Anders refuses to vote, having realized that the members are voting on emotion instead of evidence, and declares that he won't take part in any more killing. Tyrol also refuses to vote until they get a sixth member.

On the Basestar, D'anna visits Baltar and tells him that it's been 3 days since he came aboard, and that the human Cylon models are debating whether to spare or kill him. She notes that the group is in a deadlock, with the Six model being the only ones who haven't come to a decision.

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In Bill's quarters, Lee meets with him and tells him about the unexplained disappearances of several crew members over the last two weeks, and Bill promises to look into it. He also tells his son to keep exercising after the latter tells him about his weight loss.

Gaeta goes to the mess hall to eat dinner, but is confronted by Kara, who accuses him of being a Cylon sympathizer and a coward. Gaeta tries to counter by stating that he was the one who was tipping off the Resistance about Cylon activities via the messages under the dog bowl, but Kara continues to harass him until he leaves.

On the Basestar, Caprica-Six visits Baltar and tells him that she let her feelings get in the way of her loyalty to the Cylons. Baltar tells her that he still needs her, and that she loves him, before she walks back out.

Aware of Kara's treatment of Gaeta, The Circle brings in Kara as the sixth member, who is more than happy to vote for Gaeta's execution. Sam enters and tries to convince Kara not to participate in The Circle, but Kara says that she is in a different place now, in her need to kill, and in her marriage. Tyrol still isn't sure, but the group finally convinces him to vote for the trial.

As Gaeta walks the halls, he's knocked out and brought to the launch tube, where the group once again reads his crimes to him, and says that the President has authorized his trial. They ask if he wants to say anything, but Gaeta refuses to beg for his life. Kara, still angered from her experiences on the planet, tries to goad Gaeta into a confession, bringing up the statements about the dog bowl. Tyrol realizes that Gaeta is the informant, and subsequently tells the group, who look on at shock at each other and that they almost executed an innocent man. Tyrol releases Gaeta and they leave, while the group members stand around unsure of what to do.

Afterwards, Zarek reveals to Bill, Roslin and Tory that he authorized the deaths of 13 suspected collaborators by the group, and that he did it so he could expedite the court process and protect the fleet from a witch hunt he saw as inevitable and to prevent Roslin from becoming "Executioner-in-chief". Roslin is taken aback by the news.

In a ceremony on Colonial One soon after, Roslin is once again sworn in as President. She orders a pardon for everyone in the fleet, regardless of whether they were a collaborator or not.

Back on the Basestar, Baltar awakens again to see Caprica-Six setting out some clothes for him, and realizes the Cylons have decided to let him stay onboard the ship.

On Galactica, a disillusioned Gaeta goes to eat in the mess hall alone again, but this time he's joined by Tyrol. Both men sit and eat in silence while the other crewmen stare at them, unsure of what to make of the scene…

Tropes:

  • All Just a Dream: Baltar imagining Bill, Roslin and others forgiving him for his actions on New Caprica, just before he wakes up on the Basestar.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: Roslin being sworn in again as President.
  • Black Comedy: Tigh accusing Gaeta of being a collaborator by mockingly asking if the latter has seen the eye he lost in the Detention Center on New Caprica.
  • Karma Houdini: The Circle (Tyrol, Tigh, Seelix, Barolay, Connor, and Anders, who is replaced by Kara for Gaeta's case), get a presidential pardon from Roslin, despite having almost killed an innocent man and ordering the deaths of 13 others. Zarek, the man who ordered the Circle set up in the first place, ends up getting appointed as Vice President, though this is likely more an act of political expediency than Roslin actually forgiving his actions.
  • Killed Off for Real: Jammer, who gets spaced at the start of the episode.
  • Hanging Judge: Most of the Circle to some extent, but Connor is by far the worst, at one point suggesting that they should just convict all the accused collaborators in one go and be done with it. Tigh, for his part, reacts angrily to the suggestion and says that they're carrying out justice, not being a bunch of angry vigilantes.
  • Les Collaborateurs: The Circle was established to deal with the humans who chose to work with the Cylons on New Caprica.
  • My God, What Have I Done?:
    • Tyrol, when Cally tells him that she did remember someone untying her bonds and telling her to run, thus validating Jammer's statement before he was Thrown Out the Airlock. While Tyrol clearly still believes that Jammer's execution was justified by the other things he did, it gets him thinking about the full story of those being tried by the Circle, which pays off when it comes to Gaeta's case.
    • Tyrol and the rest of the Circle, when they realize Gaeta is the informant and was helping them on New Caprica.
  • Not Helping Your Case: Jammer manages to temporarily talk Tyrol into giving him a stay of execution by mentioning that he set Cally free right before her scheduled execution, only to then talk Tyrol back out of it by going on a rambling justification of everything he did while working for the Cylons.
  • Persona Non Grata: Gaeta, by the Galactica crew. Notably, his status doesn't change once the Circle realizes he's innocent; he's still treated as an outcast by everyone except Tyrol, who eats lunch with him.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Anders storms out of the Circle halfway through the episode; having already started to become disillusioned with what he considers barely any better than vigilante justice, the rest of the group's (except for Tyrol) casual attitude towards possibly executing Gaeta pushes him over the edge.
  • Ship Tease: Roslin expressing her desire for Baltar in his dream.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Snap Back: By the end of the episode, most of the main cast has gone back to their previous positions before the New Caprica arc (Roslin as President, Lee as CAG, Tyrol and Cally working on the flight deck, etc). The only differences are that Zarek has become Roslin's Vice President, and Helo has been kept on as a member of Galactica's command crew.
  • Spotting the Thread:
    • Tyrol realizes that Gaeta was his informant because he put the confidential documents under the dog bowl, and frees him from his restraints while the other members of the Circle look on in shock.
    • Baltar also gets this when Roslin's declaration of love for him makes him realize he's having a dream.
  • Throw It In!: Gaeta was originally supposed to beg for his life when he is brought before his circle, but the actor playing him decided to play it as unrepentant, which the director liked and used in the episode.
  • Thrown Out the Airlock: Jammer. Gaeta is almost killed in this way until Tyrol realizes he's the informant and cuts him loose.
  • Toilet Humor: Tory places the framed photo Baltar had of himself on Colonial One above the communal toilet.
  • Witch Hunt: Anders leaves the Circle because he realizes they're just implicating people based on emotion rather than evidence.

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