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Series / Battlestar Galactica (1978)

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"There are those who believe, that life here, began out there, far across the universe, with tribes of humans, who may have been the forefathers of the Egyptians, or the Toltecs, or the Mayans. They may have been the architects of the great pyramids, or the lost civilizations of Lemuria or Atlantis. Some believe that there may yet be brothers of man, who even now fight to survive somewhere beyond the heavens..."

(For the rebooted 2000s series, see Battlestar Galactica (2003).)

At the end of a long, genocidal war between the twelve colony worlds of humanity and a race of robots called the Cylons, there finally appears to be a hope for peace. But the supposed end of the war is nothing more than a trap; humanity is almost completely wiped out when Cylon treachery (and a human traitor) catches them almost completely unawares. The survivors gather together to form a "rag-tag fugitive fleet" of refugees under the protection of the last remaining battlestar (the humans' most powerful class of space battleship), and flee Cylon-controlled space. Their goal is a legend — a lost thirteenth colony world, known as "Earth", which they hope can help them stand against the pursuing cybernetic enemy.

Television's supposed first attempt to cash in on the popularity of Star Wars (and hilariously, Lucasfilm tried to sue). Originally called Adam's Ark, this 1978 Glen Larson production fused a Wagon Train to the Stars gimmick to a dose of Von Danikenite "Ancient Astronauts" atmosphere and a dash of Mormon theology. The result was a Space Opera with unsupported pretensions to a Myth Arc that was noteworthy for a number of television firsts: first SF series set in a spacecraft with sets that didn't look like they were built from cardboard and drywall, first TV series to cost a million dollars per episode, and the first primetime series to recycle Stock Footage so much that everyone noticed it.


Although its first few episodes showed a certain amount of promise, the series quickly descended into a series of one Planet of Hats after another, many of them merely recycled plots from popular westerns. Its viewership ratings were high, but the TV network executives of the time had not yet embraced the notion of a million-dollar-an-episode series, so it was cancelled after one season. The fanbase was not amused.

In the face of a massive write-in campaign, the executives decided to Retool the series into a less expensive spinoff, and so Galactica was promptly resurrected as Galactica 1980, starring an older Boxey (now "Troy") as a substitute for Apollo.


Battlestar Galactica provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Ace Pilot: Apollo, Starbuck, Boomer, Jolly, Greenbean, Cree, and Sheba. If you aren't a Bridge Bunny, good chance, you're an Ace.
  • Aerith and Bob: Siblings Miri and Kyle in "The Young Lords".
  • Aggressive Negotiations: Count Baltar arranged a peace treaty between the 12 Colonies and the Cylons. The Colonies sent five Battlestars to the conference, leaving the Colonies completely undefended. The Cylons carried out a massive attack on both the Battlestars and the colonies, almost completely wiping out both.
  • Aliens Speaking English: Justified with the Colonial outposts the Rag-tag Fleet encountered earlier; becomes blatant with the Terrans, who were explicitly not Colonial, but whose only problem communicating with the main cast is not understanding what a "centon" is.
  • Amazon Brigade: The Viper pilots are laid low with space flu, and the (all female) barely trained shuttle pilots must step up. Chauvinism is largely averted: Apollo and Starbuck are suspicious of their experience level, not their sex. They are not the elite forces that Amazon Brigades usually are, but they are better than expected for a bunch of brand new pilots. Mysteriously, few of the woman warriors are shown in that role, despite the desperate need for Viper pilots, but they do appear sometimes.
  • Ancient Astronauts: The Thirteenth Tribe is implied to have settled the real Earth, with several pieces of Colonial culture resembling Earth artifacts, like the Viper pilots' vaguely Egyptian-styled helmets. The advanced aliens encountered in "War of the Gods" resemble Mormon angels.
  • Apocalypse How: During a peace conference in which there was to be a truce with the Cylons, Baltar sold out the 12 Colonies, and as a result the Colonies were mostly destroyed along all of the other Battlestarsnote .
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: Almost any Sire or Siress is of high-brow low-moral character, and both of the Counts (Baltar and Iblis) are pure Evil. The Sires who aren't evil are useless or obstructive, with roughly two exceptions, both Siresses.
  • A-Team Firing: The Colonial Warriors and the Cylons are not very good shots while on the ground. Case in point the pilot episode where they're standing three yards away from each other on a narrow bridge and fail to hit one another.
  • Bar Full of Aliens: the Tucana Sisters' bar has a mostly non-human clientele.
  • Battle Couple: Apollo and Serina, his wife, for one two-part episode. She dies heroically, mostly to get her out of the way.
  • The Battlestar: Trope Namer. The Galactica and her sister ships carry large fighter complements as well as weapons capable of taking out a Cylon Basestar.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Serina gets shot and dies in the medical bay, but looks like a beauty queen throughout.
  • Big Bad: The Cylons' Imperious Leader, both the first and second one.
  • Blood Knight: Cain. He is effectively Patton Recycled IN SPACE!.
  • Bloodless Carnage: For all the laser fire and explodium, there's hardly a drop of blood or burn mark.
  • Bright Is Not Good:
    • The Cylons wear (or are made of) bright shiny armor.
    • Count Iblis, evil incarnate, wears shining white robes.
  • Call a Rabbit a "Smeerp":
    • They don't have dogs, they have daggits.
    • They don't play poker, they play pyramids. Which is sometimes like poker and sometimes like blackjack.
    • It's not basketball or hockey, it's "Triad." Confusingly, the 2000s version called it "Pyramid," and the card game "Triad."
    • They don't spend dollars or Deutschmarks, they spend cubits. Which are rectangular coins.
    • Inverted in "Greetings from Earth" when the Terrans mention a wolfpack and a bear, and the Colonists have no idea what they are (a lupus pack and ursine, obviously!).
    • Calvinball: the card game Pyramid and the sport Triad.
  • Campaign Comic: not exactly, but arguably a prototype of this sort of comic was created by Marvel. A Paperback of the pilot movie was published by using stills from the film with comic-style text balloons for the dialogue.
  • The Captain: Commander Adama, who ends up essentially being the leader of the entire "rag-tag fugitive fleet" of survivors from the Colonies.
  • Captain's Log: Read into a log computer with voice recognition.
  • Catchphrase: "By your command.", spoken by the Cylons, when acknowledging a superior officer.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder:
    • Count Baltar. In "Lost Planet of the Gods", he tries to get into a position to backstab either the Cylons, the Rag-Tag Fleet, or both at once — and not even the audience is sure where he actually wants to aim the knife. It all ends with him pinned under rubble at the bottom of a Space-Egyptian pyramid when both sides refuse to trust him.
    • Commander Cain. In order to have his way, he destroys needed fuel tankers to force Adama to attack a base. Adama calls him on this, everyone expects him to backstab again, and no one is surprised when he disobeys orders again in a later attack.
  • Comic-Book Adaptation: Marvel Comics published an adaptation of the original TV movie, and then (unusually for most comics based on TV series) went on to adapt some of the early episodes as well before branching into original stories (the comic ran for nearly two years, outliving the TV series). Rob Liefeld produced a short-lived series in the 1990's (complete with tie-in action figures of the characters molded in his art style). Dynamite Comics later published comics based on the classic series alongside its adaptations of the remake.
  • Conveniently Close Planet: Planets are usually pretty close together, and the Colonial homeworlds were, apparently, all in one star system.
  • Crystal Spires and Togas: to the Nth degree, and amped up even more with the Seraphs, who inhabit a space city of crystal and wear glittering robes.
  • Cyber Cyclops: The Cylons, with their constantly scanning one red eye. IL-Series Cylons have two scanning red eyes.
  • Dances and Balls: In one episode the colonists shake their disco funk with hand-held cords, in another they have a slightly more formal hand meeting dance.
  • Deadpan Snarker: In one episode when Baltar is attacking Galactica while Pegasus is pulling round, his Cylon pilot says, "I really think you should take a look at the other battlestar."
  • Death Ray: Blasters, which shot a quick, invisible beam of energy. Much like real, laser pistol-like devices. As part of the lawsuit settlement with LucasFilm, BG was prohibited from showing hand weapons that shot visible bolts on-screen. The space combat scenes were not so limited, for whatever reason. Thus ironically making BG's hand-lasers more realistic than Lucas's blaster weapons.
  • Demoted to Extra: Athena ends up getting this treatment. She starts out as a Bridge Bunny, but is only sometimes shown on the bridge after the pilot. Then she's used as part of a triangle with Starbuck and Cassiopeia, but that plot is dropped fast. The only time after this she's given any significant screen time is when she's one of the characters trapped in the fire during "Fire In Space." Late season, she spends her time, apparently, as a school teacher. This was reportedly due to the producers' lack of interest in coaching Maren Jensen, who was at that time an inexperienced actress. Cassiopeia was developed to take Athena's place as a frontline female character.
  • Dirty Coward: Baltar. Commander Cain once altered the course of a battle just by heading the Pegasus in his direction to scare him into pulling back and leaving the other two basestars to protect him.
  • Dirty Old Woman: Siress Belloby, who declares that she needs "a real animal" of a man at her time of life. She demands that Commander Adama court her in exchange for an energizer to trade for seed grain to restart agriculture after a Cylon attack and is rather forceful about kissing him and Starbuck. She winds up staying behind with a hedonistic pig-man who'd held her captive for a while. Think of her as a one-off Lwaxana Troi.
  • The Dragon: Baltar, to the Cylons' Big Bad; then, later, to Count Iblis.
  • Draw Sword, Draw Blood: The Borellian Nomen had a warrior's code that said that if they drew their long knife, they would prefer suicide to seeing the knife resheathed unbloodied.
  • Driving a Desk: Used for the in-cockpit shots.
  • The End of the World as We Know It - all twelve of them.
  • Enemy Mine: In "The Return of Starbuck", the final episode of Galactica 1980, he does this with a Cylon that slowly becomes more and more human, even developing a human-like voice.
  • Everybody Is Single: Apollo gets married in the second episode, and still spends most of the season a widower; his father is also a widower (common in the Fleet, one assumes), and every one else is not married.
  • Everything in Space Is a Galaxy: The crew of the Galactica often use the term "galaxy" when they should have used "solar system". For example, Commander Adama says that Earth is located in "a galaxy much like our own" ...and in the last episode, the basestar is apparently the only one in the galaxy in which the Galactica is located, and the rest of the Cylon fleet is spread throughout the universe looking for the Galactica's fleet.
  • Excessive Steam Syndrome: The pilot does this. Starbuck and Cassiopeia are seen kissing in the hangar bay, while Starbuck's other love interest catches them by surveillance camera. Cue the push of a "Steam Vent" button.
  • Expanded Universe:
    • Novelizations of episodes of both the original series and Galactica 1980 were released while the two series were on the air.
    • A second series of novels, set after the end of the TV series (but ignoring Galactica 1980) ran from 1997 to 2004. Several of the earlier episode adaptations were re-released during this period as well.
    • There have been three different comic book adaptations — by Marvel, Dynamite, and Rob Liefeld's imprint Maximum Press.
  • Explosive Instrumentation: Somewhat less than other shows.
  • Face, Nod, Action: In the episode "Saga of a Star World", the fleet arrives at the planer Carillon. Starbuck and Boomer go exploring on the planet in a vehicle. When they encounter an alien building, they draw their weapons and get out of the vehicle. They look at each other, nod and move out to check out the building.
  • Fantastic Measurement System: According to The Other Wiki's article, the only distance unit that wasn't an Earth name was "metron" (1 meter).
  • Father to His Men: Adama. Literally in the case of Apollo, Athena and Zac - while he lasts.
  • Fictional Sport: Triad, which resembles a cross between basketball and the Mesoamerican ballgame played by two-man teams dressed in Zardoz outfits. Apollo, Starbuck, and Boomer are avid players.
  • Fighter-Launching Sequence: When the Colonial Vipers launch, it involves turning on several switches followed by pressing the "TURBO" button on the flight stick.
  • Genocide from the Inside: Baltar's goal is to completely destroy humanity.
  • God Test: In "War of the Gods Part 1", Count Iblis claims to have great powers and knowledge. The Council of Twelve gives him three challenges: to deliver their greatest enemy (Baltar) to them, to lead the fleet to Earth, and one more to be named later.
  • Gold-Colored Superiority: Ordinary Cylons were silver/chrome but special commander Cylons were gold.
  • Greater Need Than Mine: Apollo sacrificing himself to Iblis, for Sheba.
  • Hate Sink: Sire Uri from the show's pilot "Saga of a Star World" is a member of the Quorum of Twelve, the ruling council governing the Twelve Colonies of Man. Once a man of integrity and good intentions, Uri became corrupted by fame and power. In the wake of the near-annihilation of the Colonies at the hands of the Cylons, Uri gorges on hoarded food while most refugees starve and shows no mourning for his wife, instead enjoying the company of women decades younger than him. Despite the fact that Commander Adama voted for his seat on the Council, Uri makes attempts to undermine him at every opportunity, including plans that impact the fleet's survival and despite knowing that the Cylons are still chasing them, Uri tries to push through a plan to disarm the Colonies' militia, a plan that falls through when Cylons attack an announcement of his plan and Uri is forced to relinquish control of the situation to Adama's son Apollo.
  • Head-in-the-Sand Management: President Adar, with disastrous results. It leads to the basic premise of the show, and also to his...
  • Heroic BSoD: "Can't you see, I've led the entire human race to ruin; I've..."
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners:
    • Apollo and Starbuck - Not only do they often fly together, but they're also on the same Triad Team.
    • Starbuck and Boomer also make a pretty good team, and the novelisations state that Adama and Tigh were their generation's Starbuck and Boomer, albeit in a somewhat more serious, responsible fashion.
  • Homeworld Evacuation: Somewhat inverted, the twelve colonies of Kobol are being evacuated and searching for Earth, which is the "lost" thirteenth colony.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Cassiopeia is a "sociolator", although only one person is ever shown to have an objection to her profession.
  • Humanity Came From Space: One of the most prominent examples. Earth is one of over thirteen colonies of the original human homeworld, Kobol.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy:
    • You'd think intelligent computers would be better shots. But you try to shoot with your eyes darting back and forth constantly.
    • Apollo, Starbuck and Boomer aren't much better in Saga of a Star World. They're seen firing at Cylons three yards away on a narrow wooden bridge and nobody goes down.
  • Infinite Supplies
    • Averted in the pilot, when resources were so scarce that the fleet practiced mandatory rationing, and braved the Nova Matigon so as to make it to Carillon for resupply before they starved.
    • Averted in "Living Legend", when the fleet needs fuel, for plot reasons.
  • Instrumental Theme Tune: a full symphonic suite, one of the things inviting comparison to Star Wars. Was recycled as the National Anthem in the revised series.
  • Killer Robot: The Cylon Centurions, who seek to destroy all of humanity.
  • Living Legend: In the episode "The Living Legend", the Galactica encounters the battlestar Pegasus, whose captain is the Colonial military legend Commander Cain.
  • Loophole Abuse: How Galactica is in a position to defend itself in the first battle.
    Adama: "We cannot launch, Colonel; it has been expressly forbidden. However, this might be an excellent time for 'battlestations drill'."
  • Lost Colony: Earth, specifically; however, several others show up in the course of the series.
  • Loveable Rogue: Starbuck is a pretty likeable guy when you aren't annoyed at one of his irresponsible schemes.
  • Microts: Honed to an art form. They had:
    • "microns" (or "millicentons") for seconds
    • "centons" for minutes (hours in the pilot)
    • "centars" for hours (after the pilot)
    • "sectons" for weeks
    • "yahrens" for years
    • Lampshaded in the episode "Greetings From Earth," where the Terran colonist asked "What is a centon?"
  • MacGuffin Location: Earth, the legendary planet settled by the lost Thirteenth Tribe, is the object of the refugees' quest.
  • Missing Mom: Ila, Adama's wife, is heavily implied to have been killed when the Cylons bombed out her home, and Adama is seen sifting through the bombed-out ruins of the building, picking up a family photo of her, and lamenting with tears that he has always been too late to be there for her. Although his children are hopeful she got away from the Cylons because they Never Found the Body, Adama lived with her long enough to how she would act and presumes, "No. She was here." Her fate is left ambiguous. Of the following, A: she did get away and was never heard from again and has yet to reunite with her family, B: someone already found and buried/cremated her, C: she was buried too deeply under the rubble to be found, D: she got thrown from the house during the attacks, or E: she was outright vaporized. With four-to-one odds she bit the dust, chances are not in Ila's favor.
  • Monochrome Casting: Averted with the principal cast including two Black characters, Lt. Boomer and Col. Tigh. Very slightly better than the typical Token Minority situation of the day in retrospect, but an improvement over the original Star Wars movie which had no minorities at all.
  • My God, What Have I Done? - in the novelization of "The Gun on Ice Planet Zero" (published as "Battlestar Galactica 2: The Cylon Death Machine), Ravashol evolved two sets of clones: thinkers and workers. But as Apollo informs him, his thinkers have evolved such high intellect that they cannot settle on a decision while the workers (who call him "Father-Creator") are thinking for themselves and breeding. The latter realization drives him into temporary Heroic BSoD - he'd designed the clones to be sterile, and the consequences of his failure temporarily overwhelm him. To his credit, he rallies, finds it in himself to do the right thing, and shows the colonists exactly how to destroy the gun (which he himself had originally designed for more peaceful purposes).
  • Oh, Crap!: Baltar's reaction in "The Living Legend" when he's gloating at seeing the Battlestar Galactica about to be defeated, only to see the Battlestar Pegasus on an attack run right at him.
    • He has another in the movie/pilot when reminded that the Cylon plan was not to allow even Baltar to survive.
  • Only One Name: Adama, Boxey, Apollo, Boomer, Tigh, Starbuck, Athena, and many more are only known by one name.
  • Planet Terra: Subverted. Despite multiple layers and episodes of teasing ("Terra" being a Geminese term for "Earth", the Terran political situation being based on the Cold War), the planet called Terra turns out to NOT be Earth.
  • The Political Officer: When the Council of the Twelve decides to lift the decree of martial law in "Baltar's Escape," they appoint Siress Tinia as Adama's "aide" to ensure he carries out Council decisions. She mostly interprets this as blocking anything too "aggressive," such as sending an escort of Warriors to meet the Eastern Alliance prisoners.
  • Prison Ship: The original series had the Prison Barge, a ship used to hold prisoners of various kinds, including prisoners of war. Baltar organizes an escape from the ship along with various characters arrested or captured in previous episodes.
  • The Promised Land: Earth, which is believed to the "13th Colony" whose people founded the other 12 Colonies.
  • Putting on the Reich: Virtually everything about the Eastern Alliance screams "Nazi Imagery," ranging from their philosophy that some are strong and born to rule, to their costumes, to the fact that the leader of the Alliance Enforcers has the rank of "Commandant."
  • Recycled IN SPACE!
    • Many episodes were blatant retreads of popular movies, frequently Westerns, right down to their titles.
    • Mormon theology and folklore is so prevalent in the series that fans and detractors alike tend to refer to it as Mormons In Space.
  • Red Alert: When a Battlestar goes into battlestations, the bridge is lit all in a bright red light ambience. As for the warriors, the ship class is so big that a scramble order requires personnel to ride a special internal rail car system to get to their stations.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: The Cylons, of course, but also Count Iblis.
  • Red Shirt Army: Mainly the Cylons, but the Colonial pilots get shot out of space fairly regularly, too.
  • Robot War: The Cylons are robots originally created by a reptilian race who destroyed their creators and later fought the Thousand-Yahren War with the Twelve Colonies, with the later skirmishes against the refugee fleet led by Galactica.
  • Rule of Symbolism: Glen Larson is a Mormon, and deliberately peppered the series with Mormon imagery. For example:
    • The star closest to God's throne, in Mormon theology, is named Kolob. The human homeworld in Galactica is named Kobol.
    • Ancient Egypt factors strongly into Mormon theology. The Viper pilots' helmets were designed to resemble King Tut's mask, and Kobol is shown with Egyptian pyramids on it.
    • Mormons have an eternal marriage ceremony called "Sealing". Getting married in the Galactica universe is called getting sealed.
    • In the history laid out in the Book of Mormon, a "lost tribe" of Israelites sailed to North America and became the American Indian tribes. Galactica is all about finding the "lost 13th tribe" of humans who colonized a remote planet named Earth.
    • Count Iblis is unable to take direct action against anyone who hasn't allowed him to gain influence over them - rather like the Mormon version of Satan.
    • The Seraphs use the line "as you are now, we once were. As we are now, you may become," which is straight out of Mormon theology.
  • Satanic Archetype: In "War of the Gods", the fleet is tempted by the promises of the mysterious "Count Iblis" (an Islamic name for Satan), who turns out to be a fallen angel from Caprican mythology.
  • Sci-Fi Writers Have No Sense of Scale: The writers simply didn't understand the difference between a solar system and a galaxy, and frequently used the terms interchangably. Made worse by the fact that only the Galactica is even capable of "lightspeed" (with no mention of an FTL drive), so the entire refugee fleet is moving at sub-light speeds.
  • Single-Biome Planet: In "The Gun on Ice Planet Zero", the surface of the planet Arcta is entirely covered by ice and snow, with a constant blizzard blowing overhead.
  • Sleeper Starship: The fleet comes upon a ship carrying two adults and several children. The fleet nearly kills the adult male by waking him up; the atmosphere on the Galactica is too thick for him, as the lunar colony they're escaping from has a fraction of the air pressure. Lacking the ability to keep them alive indefinitely, the ship is eventually returned to its course.
  • Space Clothes: Mostly averted. They're wearing clothing that's not in Earth fashions (except for some disco wear), but it generally doesn't fit the standard idea of this trope; if anything, they were going for an antiquarian look. The main exception to this are the Terran colonists, who do indeed wear shiney space clothes.
  • Space Cold War: This is the situation on Terra and its colonies. In "Experiment in Terra" the Eastern Empire attempts to go hot, but all their ICB Ms are shot down by the Galactica.
  • Space Jews: 12 Tribes, driven from their homeland and searching for the missing, legendary 13th Tribe? How can it not be? (This is mostly due to the prominence of the scattering and gathering of the twelve Jewish tribes in Mormon theology.)
  • Space Mines: In the pilot, they have to go through a Cylon minefield.
  • Space Opera: This show was one of many such productions (movie or TV) to made following the success of the previous year's Star Wars, which some consider this show to be a clone of.
  • Space Western: In one episode, Apollo had a walk-down gunfight with a rogue Cylon.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Baltar was Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves in the pilot movie; new scenes were shot for the series to keep him around as a recurring villain.
  • The Starscream: Lucifer is a more subtle variant. As for Baltar, if Classic Galactica had lasted longer he could have been the Trope Namer.
  • Status Quo Is God: Surprisingly averted, given the time period when the show was produced. Different characters are introduced and die throughout the series, characters' relationships with each other change over time, and there is a plotline that relies on continuity.
    • Played straight at the end of "The Living Part II". Once again Galactica is the "last Battlestar", as far as anyone can prove.
  • Stock Footage:
    • The special effects were based on optically overlaying stock footage (spacecraft, explosions, and so on), and several completed scenes were used more than once.
    • Some of the completed effects from Galactica were used in the B-movie Space Mutiny.
    • The beginning and end of one establishing shot (in a city) became two establishing shots in Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.
    • Footage of the 'Agro-Ships' was recycled footage of the forest-carrying freighters from Silent Running (which was originally done by a effects man who also worked on this show).
  • Sufficiently Advanced Aliens: The Seraphs are this to the Colonists. Interestingly, the Colonists regard the Seraphs as exactly this - technologically advanced aliens.
  • Suicide Attack: Cylon Raiders often kamikaze-attack into a Battlestar's hangers to disable the Vipers and either leave them stranded (if in flight) or keep the Battlestar from defending itself.
  • Survived the Beginning: Billions are killed in the Cylon attack but once safely away, the fleet manages to avoid substantial losses for quite a while.
  • Tempting Fate:
    • In "Murder on the Rising Star", Cassiopeia mentions during a Triad game that Starbuck and his rival Ortega are gonna kill each other if their fierce rivalry keeps up. Ortega is killed, alright, but it wasn't Starbuck that did it. It was Karybdis, who went by an alias Pallon during his time in the fleet.
    • In "The Young Lords", Apollo tells Starbuck that an ace only gets three ships: The one they train in, the one they escape from, and the one they die in. Only two minutes later, Starbuck's ship is damaged and Starbuck is forced to crash land, which is a series first.
  • Theotech: Even though the characters had a lot of Greek names and were gallivanting through space, the show borrows heavily from Mormonism, and some of it thinly veiled, at that (The Mormon God hails from a planet called Kolob, the Colonials originated from a planet called Kobol; the LDS church is presided over by a President and a quorum of 12 Apostles, the Galacticans by a Commander and a quorum of 12 Colonial tribal elders, etc.). Hardly surprising, as series creator Glen Larson was a member of the LDS church and drew on what he knew.
  • There Is Another: The Battlestar Pegasus, which appears in the two part episode "The Living Legend". It was thought to have been destroyed along with all the other Battstars. note 
  • Token Black Friend: Lt. Boomer is good friends with Apollo and Starbuck, particularly the latter. Colonel Tigh also seems to be one to Commander Adama. Averted in that both are painted as competent men; and in one of the novelizations, Adama is shown as thinking Tigh fit for command of his own Battlestar, if only there had been any left).
  • Token Minority: Averted to a degree with two Black characters: Lt. Boomer and Colonel Tigh. Furthermore, Tigh is a senior commanding officer of the fleet, Number Two to only Commander Adama, a rarity for American TV at that time to have a minority actor play a character of such authority.
  • Tonight, Someone Dies: In the second episode, this happens to Serina, Boxey's (biological) mother, who had become Apollo's wife (and Boxey's stepfather)[[/note.
  • Too Many Mouths: In the pilot, there was a female singing group that each had four eyes and two mouths (and apparently could each sing two different notes).
  • Two of Your Earth Minutes
    • It's lampshaded in the episode "Greetings From Earth" where the Terran colonist asks, "Wait just a minute, what's a 'centon'?"
    • Likewise, in "Experiment in Terra", when Starbuck tells a different colonist he'll be back in a "centar":
      Brenda: Whatever that is, I hope it's less than an hour.
  • Unusual Euphemism: Frack, felgercarb
  • Wagon Train to the Stars: Or, from the stars.
  • Wave-Motion Gun: The "Gun on Ice Planet Zero" from the episode of the same name, which the Cylons were using to blow any ships out of the sky (and space). Luckily, it was destroyed before it could do the same thing to the Galactica (and the rest of the fleet for that matter). However, they do lose about half of the civilian fleet before it goes down.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: Anyone who gets killed off within the pilot serves as a case of this, with some we even meet (Zac, Lila, Muffit. Boxxey's father, the original council members save Adama, the president of humanity, and any Battlestar besides the Galactica). Serina is also notable for squeaking past the mass genocide of the pilot, only to die in the very next story.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Sure Siress Belloby, use the one item in your possession that could help a lot of starving children (not to mention the last surviving remnants of your own race) as a bargaining chip in your bid to...get into Adama's pants... Really?
  • Whole Plot Reference: Several, including "The Gun on Ice Planet Zero" (The Guns of Navarone), "The Magnificent Warriors" (The Magnificent Seven), and "The Lost Warrior" (Shane).
  • Writers Cannot Do Math: The Fleet has 220 ships, and about 6,000 surviving Colonists. That's about 27 people per ship. Not crowded, but also no population base.gods No wonder the Fleet seems like it suffered a Depopulation Bomb. The revival does better, with about 200 per ship.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: Because it's been bombed out and is crawling with robot enemies.
  • Your Heart's Desire: Episode "War of the Gods Part 1". The mysterious being known as Count Iblis can read the mind of anyone he talks to and determine their greatest desire.

"Fleeing the Cylon tyranny, the last battlestar, Galactica, leads a ragtag fugitive fleet on a lonely quest: a shining planet known as...Earth."

Alternative Title(s): Battlestar Galactica Classic