"Serve and Protect"
Battlestar Galactica (the mini-series, part 1,
Written by Ronald D. Moore and Christopher Eric James
Based on a teleplay by Glen A. Larson
Directed by Michael Rymer
Original air date: December 8, 2003
The aging Battlestar Galactica
enters the battle while the Colonies fall against the Cylon
(This episode opens with Colonel Tigh
burning a photo of his wife and ends with the seeming death of
Apollo and President Roslin in a nuclear detonation in space.)
full story summary of Part 1 of the Battlestar Galactica
mini-series at the Battlestar Wiki
Notes from the BSG
This episode takes place immediately
after the events of "Humanity's
Battlestar Galactica mini-series was made up of
two 2-hour parts, originally broadcast on the Sci-Fi Channel
(now known as
Syfy). I have chosen to break down the
mini-series into four ~45-minute segments to more closely match
the running times of episodes of the ongoing TV series that
followed it. For this episode, I have assigned the title of
"Serve and Protect" based on events in the story such as
Laura Roslin's choice to serve the Colonies in public office,
first as Secretary of Education, and now as President, and the
Colonial warriors' choice to protect and defend their fellows
Characters appearing or mentioned in this story
Ellen Tigh (in photograph)
Petty Officer Dualla
Pilot of Colonial Heavy 798 (identified in the novel
as Captain Russo)
Co-pilot of Colonial Heavy 798 (identified in the
novel as Eduardo)
President Adar (mentioned only)
The photo that Tigh is burning with his cigar at 46:22 on the
Blu-ray is presumably that of his wife, Ellen, though it is not
the same actress (Kate Vernon) who goes on to play her when she
turns up alive in the fleet in "Tigh Me Up, Tigh Me Down". In
the audio commentary of this episode, Michael Eick says that the
photo is of his wife, Jenny (producer and actress Jennifer
Birchfield-Eick). It seems odd that the photo does not have the
corners cut off as most paper-based media in the Colonies does.
During his shipwide announcement of the Cylon attack against the
Colonies, Commander Adama says that Admiral Nagala has taken
command of the fleet aboard the battlestar Atlantia
after the destruction of Fleet Headquarters on Picon. Nagala was
previously mentioned in
"A Higher Purpose". Fleet
Headquarters on Picon was visited in
"Twisting in the Wind".
Atlantia was the battlestar President Adar was
on when he was killed in its destruction in the Cylon ambush in
Notice that even the monitor screens on the Galactica
are often in the octagonal shape favored by the Colonies.
As Starbuck enters CIC at 50:39 on the Blu-ray, notice that she
looks at Colonel Tigh and taps her cheek, indicating the bruise
he wears from her punch in
Adama tells Starbuck they've already lost 30 battlestars in the
attack. Starbuck says that's a quarter of the fleet.
When the red electronic eye opens and begins scanning
back-and-forth on the Cylon Raiders at 53:30 on the Blu-ray, it
is an early indication that the Raiders themselves are now
autonomous robots in their own right, with no pilot (as Starbuck
later learns in "Act of Contrition").
When Cylon Raiders fire missiles at their Raptor, Helo tells
Boomer to drop the swallow. A swallow is a drone device used by
the Colonial military to lure enemy missiles away from their
As Helo and Boomer's Raptor approaches Caprica orbit at
58:21 on the Blu-ray, notice that the shattered and
burning hulk of a battlestar is seen floating on the
left side of the screen. Seconds later, the silhouettes
of two Cylon basestars can be seen in the distance
against the glow of Caprica's blue and white surface.
At 58:33 on the Blu-ray, Commander Adama almost looks to have a
halo around his head with the tactical map behind him!
At 58:40 on the Blu-ray, one of the old Mark II Vipers is marked
with the call sign "Ready".
When the gauges in his Viper go out after destroying the Cylon
missile intended for Colonial Heavy 798, Apollo calls for help
from the larger ship,
Krypter! Krypter!" This term is the Colonial equivalent of
In the audio commentary of this episode, it is stated
that the pistols used by Boomer and Helo are based on
the pistol carried by Rick Deckard in the 1982 film
Blade Runner. The two guns are similar, but not exact
matches. (Photos from the
Internet Movie Firearms Database.)
||Deckard's pistol in Blade Runner
At 1:08:11 on the Blu-ray, notice that Boxey's mother(?) is seen
sending him forward to get on board Boomer's Raptor with the
other children. The woman is not the same woman in the framed
photo that his presumed father sets on the desk at
Armistice Station in
so it's hard to say which woman, if either, is his mother. The
Boxey entry on the Battlestar Wiki site states that the woman in
this scene is his aunt, but it's not corroborated in any way. In
"Bastille Day", Boxey tells Colonel Tigh his mother is dead.
As the Galactica launches Vipers at 1:09:03 on the
Blu-ray, the launch officer says, "Joker, this is shooter, I
have control, stand by." The term "shooter" appears to be slang
for "launch officer" in Colonial military parlance.
At 1:09:53 on the Blu-ray, Starbuck is seen piloting the Mark II
Viper that once belonged to Captain Raymond "Raygun" Lai. In the
real world, Ray Lai was a concept artist for the mini-series.
The scene of the crewmembers becoming trapped behind the
bulkhead doors while fighting the fire on Galactica may
have been inspired by similar scenes in the BSG70 episode
"Fire in Space".
Trying to reassure Tyrol (and himself) about the fates of the
crewmembers in the vented part of the damaged
Galactica during the battle, Tigh tells him, "No
one's a rook anymore." The term "rook" is short for "rookie".
According to the audio commentary of this episode, the first
woman who is granted passage on the Raptor in the lottery at
1:16:35 on the Blu-ray is the wife of actor Edward James Olmos
(Adama). She appears again in The Plan.
At 1:16:54 on the Blu-ray, notice that the old woman who asks
Baltar to read her lottery number for her because she forgot her
glasses actually has her glasses sitting on top of her head!
The swearing in of Laura Roslin as President of the
Twelve Colonies aboard Colonial Heavy 798 after
the death of President Adar is reminiscent of that of
Lyndon B. Johnson as President of the United States
aboard Air Force One after the assassination of
President John F. Kennedy in 1963.
The scorched dead body that Cally cries over at 1:24:06 on the
Blu-ray is Specialist Prosna.
According to the novelization, the navigation specialist who
brings Adama a sheet indicating the battlestar's present
position is Specialist Johnson.
At 1:30:36 on the Blu-ray, Adama pulls off his glasses as he's
about to speak to Apollo over the commlink. Then he is seen
pulling them off again about 10 seconds later!
The name of Ragnar Anchorage comes from the Norse mythological
prophecy story of the battle at the end of the world, after
which the Earth will be reborn and repopulated. Since the epic
story of this TV series is revealed at the end to have taken
place about 150,000 years in our past, it could be interpreted
that the Ragnarok myth derived from the story of the end of
human civilization (in the Twelve Colonies) and the final battle
between humans and Cylons at Ragnar in the solar system of the
Colonies before the "return" of Earth when the human fleet
settles our current world.
Galactica prepares to make a hyperlight jump to
Ragnar Anchorage, Adama receives notification that the
Atlantia, Triton, Solaria, Columbia
and other battlestars have been destroyed. The Atlantia
and Triton were also battlestars reported destroyed
during the Cylon armistice in BSG70 in
Solaria was mentioned as destroyed during the armistice in
the novelization of that BSG70 episode. The Columbia
was seen or mentioned in numerous past stories of both this
series and BSG70.
Colonial Heavy 798 rendezvous with an assortment
civilian ships in the system, Captain Russo decides on the spur
of the moment to refer his ship as Colonial One now that it is carrying
the newly sworn-in President of the Twelve Colonies of Kobol.
The name is obviously that of the ship normally used by the
person holding that office, just as Air Force One is the name of
any Air Force aircraft that carries the President of the United
States here on Earth.
In the same scene, Captain Russo is calling Gemenon Liner 1701. The "1701" is likely a reference to
Trek and the starship Enterprise's registry
Notes from the
novelization of the Battlestar
Galactica mini-series by Jeffrey
(The page numbers come from the 1st printing, paperback edition,
published July 2006)
On page 98, Tyrol says that most of the
Galactica's ordinance was off-loaded at Rhapsody
Station, but a small amount is still aboard which was to be
delivered to Caprica Base.
Page 102 names a couple of
Galactica's Viper pilots in the Cylon battle as
Scott and Erin.
Page 108 names the captain of
Colonial Heavy 798 as Russo.
Page 111 reveals that Colonial ships typically use tylium as
fuel, just as in BSG70. The later episode "The Hand of God"
Page 118 reveals that the presidential advisor Roslin talks to
on the comm link from
Colonial Heavy 798 is named Jack Nordstrom (in
the episode, we get only the first name).
On page 122, Baltar estimates that the blast force of the
nuclear explosion that destroys much of his house was 30 klicks
away. A klick is military slang for "kilometer"...at least on
Pages 122-125 give us new material not seen in the episode.
Baltar picks himself up from the blast that smashes into his
house at the end of
and finds Natasi's (Caprica Six's) dead body, which helped to
shield him from the blast; then he heads off into the hills to
gain some distance from the continuing nuclear explosions
occurring towards Caprica City. We also get a scene of Boomer
landing the Raptor in the grassy field on Caprica.
On page 125, the pistols carried by Helo and Boomer are referred
to as Previn automatics. This name is never used in the TV
series itself, but then no other name is applied to them either,
so this works as well as any.
Page 127 names the co-pilot of
Colonial Heavy 798 as Eduardo.
Page 129 describes the cargo bay of
Colonial Heavy 798 where Apollo's Viper is
brought aboard as looking like the lower deck of a seagoing
ferry. As the
Battlestar Wiki points out, this is likely an in-joke, as
these scenes were shot on the lower deck of an automobile ferry.
On page 134, Boomer feels pity for the children left in danger
on Caprica, reflecting on her own lucky escape from a cataclysm
on her homeworld of Troy. This is part of the false backstory
programmed into her as a Cylon sleeper agent. "Flesh and Bone"
reveals that Troy was a mining colony that was destroyed, but
the nature of the cataclysm is never revealed.
Page 136 states that the tylium used in the Vipers is a
quantum-catalytic variety. According to
Wikipedia: In quantum information theory, a quantum
catalyst is a special ancillary quantum state whose presence
enables certain local transformations that would otherwise be
On page 138, a pilot with the call-sign Choker is said to be
flying a Mark IV Viper. This model has never been seen
On page 140, pilots called Wedlock, Keyhole, and Karen are
Page 165 reveals that Commander Adama brought Tyrol aboard the
Galactica when no one else wanted him due to a single mistake he
had made that cost lives. Adama had found him to be the best
spacecraft mechanic he'd ever met and a good leader.