Those of us fanboys who are a little older and (dare I say it?) a little wiser rarely mince words over our love for the original BATTLESTAR GALACTICA. Oh, you young pups can have your newfangled version, what with Starbuck first being a girl then a corpse then a (what?) angel (???). The galaxy is big enough for both versions, but, for all its bells, hoots, and wrinkles, I tend to prefer the original. It was a straightforward old-fashioned good-versus-evil story – much like George Lucas’s STAR WARS that helped inspire it – and that’s good enough subtext for me.
(NOTE: The following review will contain minor spoilers necessary solely for the discussion of plot and characters. If you’re the kind of reader who prefers a review entirely spoiler-free, then this may not be for you! Instead, I’d encourage you to skip down to the last two paragraphs for my final assessment. If, however, you’re accepting of a few modest hints at ‘things to come,’ then read on …)
The race to find that shining planet known as Earth is still underway in this new continuation of the classic GALACTICA. As our tale opens, Commander Adama – a bit older, a bit grayer (if that’s possible) – recounts how it all began, much for the service of new readers more than it is anything else. Adama’s plagued by a dream – a nightmare, really, of how it all began – but why is it the events don’t quite ring true the way all of us knew they played out? Some of the events are similar, but there are significant differences as well. Could it be that our heroes have found time out of joint?
The classic Cylons are up to the usual shenanigans as they’ve once more found the ragtag fleet led by the Galactica. Before Apollo and Starbuck can serve up any significant damage from the cockpits of their respective Viper fighters, they’re recalled to the flagship by Adama. His reason? Two new Vipers have been outfitted with Temporal Weapons by the mysterious Doctor Zee, and the commander has decided that now is the time to use them! Before all is said and done, this new Cylon attack will leave our heroes stranded … with the Galactica completely vanished from sight!
Fans of the original program will find plenty of reasons to be excited by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning’s latest incarnation as place after place – the hangar deck, the Galactica’s bridge, the sickbay – appear as if they’ve been lifted right from prints from the 70’s TV show and deposited on the page in glorious color. While these new Temporal Vipers look a bit too similar to catfish for my artistic tastes, that’s still a pretty benign misfire considering they’ve turned the nostalgia factor up to eleven. (I hope you get the reference.)
Outside of that, this first issue largely serves two purposes: to bring readers up-to-speed with the who/what/where/when we are and to fundamentally introduce this new story arc. It’s entirely effective, and it’s entirely exciting to this old war dog who loved the classic’s look. The last few frames set-up what looks to be an impressive departure (of sorts) for the heroes, and I, for one, will be excited to see where this one goes in thirty microns!
BATTLESTAR GALACTICA #1 is published by Dynamite Comics. The story is by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning; it’s illustrated by Cezar Razek with colors by Vinicius Townsend; and the lettering is by Simon Bowland. The issue bears the cover price of $3.99, and that’s a bargain so far as this GalactiFan is concerned to revisit the original worlds of Kobol.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. If you’re a fan of classic Battlestar Galactica, then what’s not to love about a welcome return to that familiar cast and crew in this, the year of their 35th anniversary? Look past some modest character tweaks. Look past the inclusion of Doctor Zee. Look past a possible time travel story. You do that, and I’m sure you’ll feel like I did: it’s all a dramatic homecoming for the original Adama, Apollo, and Starbuck, thanks to the fine folks at Dynamite Comics!