Today we welcome William Adama back into our public awareness as Machinima launches the first two episodes of Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome, a prequel that takes viewers back to the Galactica during the first Cylon war. New episodes will be released over the next four weeks, and then aired on Syfy as a television movie.
The web series stars Skins actor Luke Pasqualino as a young Adama as he heads off to join the Galactica as a pilot. He’s teamed up with veteran Coker Fasjovik, played by Ben Cotton, and the two are sent out on a "milk run" on their assigned Raptor. As those of you who have seen the first two episodes of Blood and Chrome now know, that doesn't quite go as planned.
Earlier today, Spinoff Online had the chance to speak with both Pasqualino and co-creator David Eick, executive producer of Battlestar Galactica, its spinoffs movies and Caprica, to discuss this new series. Eick made it very clear that, contrary to reports, Blood and Chrome was never planned for television.
"I think where the confusion [about Blood and Chrome not being a web series] came in was the network, after seeing the scripts, said, 'Gee, we don't want to rule out the possibility of just abdicating the online venture altogether and throwing this up as a pilot as traditional series for Syfy,'" he explained. "There were discussions about that, but for a variety of reasons, I think not the least of which was because there was a genuine feeling that we had really designed something altogether groundbreaking from a visual effects standpoint, to stick with the original plan and its future may be online, may be on air, may be on DVD in terms of subsequent future episodes or stories. Who knows? But it was never any kind of rejection."
Speaking of future chapters of Blood and Chrome, Eick confirmed he and fellow producers David Weddle, Bradley Thompson and Michael Taylor have ideas for the next Adama story.
"As an exercise, which is not uncommon with these things ... we hatched a next mission, sort of what the next leg of this character study would involve, and should we be fortunate enough to go forward, there is absolutely a very organic kind of evolution of where we leave our characters at the end of this story and what would we would pursue as our next tale," he said. "I'm very hopeful and optimistic that we'll be doing that soon."
The plan is to have Blood and Chrome reinvent Battlestar Galactica for a new generation in the same way the 2003 miniseries did. Because of that, you won't see too many nods to the previous series, and characters like the Final Five (who, as we noted to Eick, technically do show up at this point in the BSG timeline) won't be around. Eick and his team even ruled out having a young Adama accidentally bump into a school teacher named Laura as a nod to his love interest during Battlestar Galactica because they decided it would be too corny.
But that's not to say that this will stand on its own in the BSG universe. There are Easter eggs scattered around for those who care to look (for instance, the theme song for the original series starts playing when Adama first sees the Galactica), and Blood and Chrome will also tie back to the short-lived Caprica. In fact, Eick is even considering having Esai Morales, who plays Joseph Adama (William's father) on Caprica make an appearance at some point in the Blood and Chrome storyline.
As Pasqualino said, "Battlestar wouldn't be Battlestar really without kind of the Cylon element with them," so expect plenty more Toasters this time around. "Seeing them from a young Adama's point of view is something completely different," he teased, and Eick added that the Cylons in Blood and Chrome will be unlike any iterations we've seen before.
"I think what the viewers of this Blood and Chrome story, this 10 segments, will discover is that as the Cylons embarked on their decisions to mimic and surpass human beings ... they didn't do it overnight. It's not like they're machines with gears and rivets one day and had softer skin the next day. They took time to attempt to approximate an evolution," he said. "Throughout this story, we will see examples of those approximations of evolutions, how the Cylons were attempting to push through their evolutionary process into becoming more human-like. And, of course, the results can be terrifying and unexpected."
Eick teased that a big turning point in the new series is going to happen when --spoiler alert! -- Adama is betrayed by the woman he loves. Our guess is we probably already met her (if you've seen the episodes, you know who we're talking about), but Eick said this event will spur Adama to his hatred of the Cylons and a reevaluation of his relationships.
"Where did that [hatred of Cylons in BSG] come from? Was it because he was a prisoner of war? Was it because involved in some horrible conflict? He wants to incinerate them, but why? The more I thought about it, the more I came up with the answer I thought was emotionally driven," he said. "For me, it seemed like maybe the most interesting answer was because of a broken heart, and that came from a very personal place where he'd been explained by someone he loved.
Eick added, "Adama will come to learn that, through the betrayal that he experiences from the one that he loves, he learns that a more reliable and trustworthy relationship is with his partner Coker. ... Through this experience, the audience of Battlestar might [decide] that that's why Edward James Olmos' character in Battlestar Galactica has this relationship with Colonel Tigh."
Lastly, Eick commented that the reason BSG and Caprica showrunner Ron Moore isn't involved is because he's moved on to other things, and not because of any hard feelings. In our minds, that opens this project up to potential collaborations farther down the road.