Forced to explain why she botched her attempt to bomb the Trojan Spaceport in this episode, Lacy (Magda Apanowicz) stammered, “It got complicated.” I get the feeling that CAPRICA itself is getting complicated – to the point where it is taking on a life of its own; one that its creators are having trouble reining in. Which is pretty ironic for a series about runaway technology.
On the surface, this week’s installment was about Sister Clarice Willow (Polly Walker) settling accounts with Barnabas (James Marsters), who dared to challenge her control of Soldiers of The One field operations. But beneath the surface, it was a story swallowing its own tail. The political intrigue within the STO seems to be just story filler and a way to inject action into an overall story that is about ideas. The problem is, it is difficult to make ideas look interesting onscreen. It’s tough to dramatize, say, consternation. So why not bring in a bunch of good-looking young people and let them blow them stuff up?
Last week viewers got to visit New Cap City in V-World, but this week we finally visited one of the other planets of the 12 colonies when we got a glimpse of Tauron City, home of Vergis Industries. But the thing most people will probably remember about this week’s episode is the appearance of James Marsters as Barnabus Greeley, an authority figure in the Caprica City cell of Soldiers of The One.
Marsters’ genre cred is unimpeachable: He broke through as that other soulful vampire, Spike, on BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, moved on to playing SMALLVILLE’s Brainiac and, recently, the amoral Capt. John Hart on TORCHWOOD. Here Barnabus is a True Believer: he practices self-mortification as a way of avoiding sin – yet isn’t averse to belonging to a violent terrorist cell. I guess it’s all in how he can justify it to himself. Torturing his own flesh with that cilice is pretty extreme. And, despite his asking, “What gets unleashed when this thing gets to Gemenon?” I suspect he rejected Lacy’s (Magda Apanowicz) appeal for transport to Gemenon more out of concern for getting caught by the authorities than humanitarian worry over the morality/lethality of whatever cargo she wanted to drag along. STO are in the middle of campaign of bombing holocafes, for gods’ sakes, so he’s a believer in situational ethics, at least. Important tidbit: Keon (Liam Sproule) built the device that Ben used to destroy Maglev 23. Marsters’ appearance was brief but effective. I want to know more about this guy!