"The Death of Apollo" Part 6
Battlestar Galactica: The Death of Apollo #6
Illustrated by Dietrich Smith
Cover A by Mike Mayhew
The Cylon super-basestar launches a massive attack against
the fleet and Apollo is forced to make a desperate command
As the Cylon attack against the fleet continues, all looks
hopeless, even as all active pilots and reservists have been
deployed. Adama and Tigh jump into a pair of Vipers themselves,
leaving Apollo and Athena in charge of the overall battle.
Sephoni enters C&C and tells Apollo she has psionically detected
a weakness in the shielding of the super-basestar that may allow
a fusion missile to take it out. But the Cylons are jamming all
fleet communications and countermeasures aren't working, so they
are unable to notify their pilots. Apollo leaves Athena in
command and hops into a Viper, launching himself into the fray.
Communications soon return, but the other Vipers have used up
their fusion missiles, so Apollo goes in for the run and the
missile strikes true, destroying the basestar in a violent
Apollo emerges from the blast seemingly unscathed, but then
reports that his stick is jammed. Starbuck keeps shouting over
the comm for him to pull out as the Viper plunges toward a
nearby sun and Apollo is gone. Aboard the Galactica,
Xam also seems to receive a message of his loss, typing out
"Gone" over-and-over on his medtube touchpad.
Later, Commander Adama leads a memorial to his son, vowing to
find the planet Earth in his name.
Notes from the BSG chronology
Apollo's death in this issue, 10 yahrens into the fleet's exodus
from the Colonies, of course conflicts with his presence in
stories set after this time period, specifically the Richard
Hatch novels beginning with
Armageddon and the various Maximum Press comic book
mini-series beginning with
War of Eden. On the other hand, it's not impossible to
imagine that Apollo may have survived his seeming death here
through the intervention of the Beings of Light (though there is
no indication of that in this story).
Battlestar Galactica: The Death of Apollo was a
6-issue mini-series published by Dynamite Entertainment.
On page 1, Apollo communicates with a ship
of the fleet called the Atrius.
Also on page 1, Athena remarks on the
destruction of the Taurus Axillon. This brings the
fleet down to 210 ships from the last-assumed 211 in
"The Death of Apollo" Part 1.
Athena tells one of the Viper formations to
cover a ship called the Raxis on page 1.
On page 2, the middle structure of the super-basestar
looks like a standard basestar.
||Standard basestar (photo of Konami
basestar toy from
On page 2, the Celestra appears to be coming
under heavy fire. The Celestra previously
appeared in "Take the Celestra".
On pages 2-3 notice that a hexagonal grid
pattern is seen where explosions/fireballs are manifested on the
Colonial ships. This may be intended as a suggestion of a force
field protecting the ship. (See the Celestra-under-attack
On page 3, notice a fleet ship in the
upper-right corner that appears to have a head of a battlestar,
but with a different body.
On page 5, Omega reports there are sixteen
Vipers still held in reserve, but they are mostly hangar queens.
"Hangar queen" is a term used to describe a grounded aircraft
that is kept around only for parts or a craft that seems to
spend more time in maintenance than flight.
Tigh and Adama hop into some spare Vipers to
aid in the battle against the Cylons. Adama was an adept pilot
in his youth and last manned the helm of a Viper in
Sephoni's discovery of a vulnerability in
the super-basestar's shielding overlap which would allow a
well-placed fusion missile to destroy it may be a nod by the
writer to Star Wars: A New Hope and the Death Star's
similar vulnerability due to an unshielded thermal exhaust port.
On page 12, the joystick in Apollo's Viper
has a red middle button labeled "Missiles". Normally, this
button is white and labeled "Turbo", with the leftmost button
colored red and labeled "Fire".
Apollo seemingly dies as his out-of-control Viper
plunges into a nearby sun during the battle against the forces
of the super-basestar, but not before he has managed to destroy
the basestar itself, saving the fleet. It we take his death here
as gospel, this negates
his appearances in later stories from other publishers.
The issue ends, "In memory, Glen A. Larson,
1937-2014." Larson, of course, was the creator of Battlestar
Galactica. He died in November 2014, shortly before this
mini-series began publication.
Did Apollo commit suicide? On page 19 his Viper has emerged
apparently fully intact
from the explosion of the super-basestar, but he claims in his
communication with Starbuck that his stick is jammed. Yet, we do
not seem struggling with it; if anything it looks as if he just
lets go. And even if his stick was jammed, what are the odds
that the ship just happened to be headed in the direction of a
nearby sun? Plus, as Starbuck keeps shouting through his comm
for Apollo to pull out of the dive, Apollo doesn't even respond
further. He just seems to be staring acceptingly into his fate.
We saw in
"The Death of Apollo" Part 5 that he was not at all
happy with having to sit out the rest of the war outside of a
Viper cockpit due to his brain injury. It's also possible that
the physical stress of his actions piloting the Viper brought on
a stroke due to the microfissure injury in his brain, leaving
him unable to control the craft or respond to Starbuck's
Is Apollo really dead? Conveniently, there is no body. Since his
Viper plunged into a sun, that seems pretty final, but might the
Beings of Light have intervened as they have a time or two in
the past (and future)?
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