‘Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome:’ What Did You Think?

by on February 12, 2013

in Entertainment, tv reviews

This is a spoiler-free review of Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome (BSG:B&C)

Syfy premiered the prequel web series Sunday night, 2-10-13, Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome, from David Eick Productions.  It starred Luke Pasqualino (Skins, The Apparition) as a young William Adama, Ben Cotton (Stargate Atlantis, Hellcats) as his disgruntled co-pilot Coker and Lili Bordán as Dr. Becca Kelly.  If you had a keen sense of observation, you probably caught Tricia HelferMike Dopud was hard to miss and Brian Markinson was someone you have probably started noticing in various genre series.

Blood & Chrome takes place in the 10th year of the first Cylon War.  The web (Originally “aired” on Machinima.com in November of 2012) to TV series promised more action than the sedate drama, Caprica presented, as we followed the young and ambitious Ensign Adama in his first mission.  And oh, what a mission it was.

production still of Luke Pasqualino in 'Battlestar Glactica Blood and Chrome' tv movie

The movie opens to a space battle with Adama in the middle of it, and right off the bat, we get he’s a daringly excellent pilot with a sense for “flying.”  But being cocky and “knowing” he was a good Viper pilot put him in a spot and his very first real assignment on the Galactica was a “milk” run, transporting Dr. Becca Kelly to a destination in a clunker of a ship, a Raptor.  He wasn’t happy at all about it.

But the episode takes Adama (and the viewer) on a surprise, action-filled journey that was very reminiscent of the Ronald Moore remake of the original series.  The series that helped solidify Syfy’s place on the map of networks, back in the day.

Though there were spots or moments that the effects didn’t hold up to a perfect 10, the 2-hour TV movie had me riveted.  It was a great story and it was good to be watching Battlestar Galactica on TV once again!  And I’d love to see a series based on the young Adama come to life.  It was awesome seeing the Galactica in its day, in seeing the older Cylons and their base ships.  This is what BSG is about and if it mustered up enough interest/ratings from fans, I think it would make an excellent new addition to the Galactica franchise.

Still of an Old Cylon in 'Battlestar Glactica Blood and Chrome

But…

I’m still waiting for the TV ratings to be released 2 days later.  I haven’t seen any noise from the network, so there’s nothing they feel worth boasting about.  But the the users chiming in over on IMDb have been rating it with an 8.0 out of 10.  An 8/10 on IMDb is pretty big actually.

But I can only guess that the ratings for BSG: B&C won’t be incredible…  It premiered four months ago on the web, which probably pulled some of its ratings TV steam.  I watched the first two segments and bowed out because I wanted to catch it all fresh during it’s TV premiere.  The other issue I see getting in the way of it’s ratings is because the 2nd hour of the movie was up against the mid-season return/premiere of The Walking Dead, and sure as s***!, Syfy put the program up against a power horse of a ratings getter.

And while writing this just now, I finally caught the top-100 show TV ratings numbers for cable from the weekend and BSG: B&C is not on that list.  But is that bad?  The 100th show on the list, Storage Wars from A&E, pulled in 1.54 million viewers.  OK, maybe that’s not good.

If I see any real numbers, I’ll update it here in this article.

Update:  The TV Ratings for Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome are reported to be “1.145 million viewers, 0.31 A18-49.”  Thanks to “Blin” in the comments for passing that on.

But now, I guess we wait to see how the DVD of Blood & Chrome sells. (On Amazon:  Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome (Unrated Edition))  If it does well enough, Syfy might be prompted to do a new series.

INCOMING Brusimm Opinion!

But putting this BSG prequel series up on Sunday night felt a bit like when they moved the prequel series, Caprica, from Fridays to Mondays.  As if Friday wasn’t bad enough, the move to Mondays outright killed it.   And the network then had every “right” to cancel the series due to ratings.  As one fan wrote me the other day, “I swear, some days, I think someone over at NBC has it out for BSG!”  (That was heavily edited, removing the expletives and other emotional content.  Sorry Jeff.)

And putting the show on after many TV series are coming back from their mid-season breaks seemed an uphill battle.  I don’t care if it already premiered on the web four months ago.  I think the TV movie should have been slapped out there on a Friday night or even as a Saturday Night Original Movie during the TV season winter break.  It would have had a much better chance at minimally decent ratings.  (This reminds me of the PBA always telecasting their bowling tournaments during NFL or NASCAR events.  The sport has a solid fan base but just horribly non-optimal airing times.)

I’m happy to have had a new piece of the franchise entertain me.  The Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome TV movie was a fantastic addition to the franchise.  But for the moment, I’m not holding my breath on seeing any more of it, at least on TV.

Keep in mind, Syfy is now run by a corporation with a laser-focused eye on profit.  One of their very first acts when the net was taken over was to cancel the long-running Eureka series.  So I’m not sure we’ll see this on TV again.  Maybe a recurring, single-camera, green screen web-series?  I’d love to see something more from this.  It was fun!

= = =

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

dave February 21, 2013 at 10:23 am

I liked BSG Blood and Chrome, I hope Syfy turn it in to a full series. I think they have a great cast put together for it.

Tim Miller February 13, 2013 at 6:39 pm

Bruce,

Everyone at my office and most of the people I know between the ages of 18- 30 pronounce Syfy as SEE FEE with a sneer. And no, it isn’t about the name change but about the change in attitude that went with it. The ratings are more of a reflection of the destruction of the network’s brand by its executives and less about any particular movie or show.

Why get interested in a particular series when the network cuts production costs or pulls support from popular shows and then just doesn’t renew them.

Viewers have come come to feel that they are like Charlie Brown and the football. The network, like Lucy Van Pelt, yanks the football (cancels or fails to renew a show at the last minute) after convincing us that this time they won’t do it. The excuse offered months after the fact is “Oh, we really liked the show but the ratings wouldn’t support it or costs were to high.” BULLS[expletive removed]!

Well, like Mr. Scott would say “Fool me once.”

This network will always have higher ratings for wrestling and reality shows about ghosts (boy! that is an oxymoron) because that is the easy way they chose to take.

Also, they really don’t understand the genre of the the science fiction “B” movie. They only get it right once in a while by accident when the hire Roger Corman to produce one for them. When it works, they have no idea why. Most of the time the Saturday night fare is a waste of a lot of good actors talent on a crap script and crap production.

If I were in charge, I would clean house and bring in people who actually liked and understood the genre.

Despite all this, I watched ‘Blood and Chrome’ on the internet. I streamed it from youtube to my Smart HD TV and then watched it Sunday on Syfy and DVR’d it at the same time. I will probably buy the DVD or Blu-ray if it is available because I’m a sucker for space operas. Unfortunately, I am only one of a small 1.145 million who watch in spite of our feelings for the network.

Syfy has an image problem but they really don’t seem to care. It makes me angry because it wouldn’t take a lot of effort to turn this around. They have to know that and yet they keep doing the same things over and over.

Bruce Simmons February 12, 2013 at 10:34 am

THANKS for that Blin! So just a wee bit outside the top-100 cable shows for the weekend. That’s not too bad, all things considered! Thanks again bud! -Bruce

Blin February 12, 2013 at 10:31 am

Per Nick (in the comments) at TVByTheNumbers:
Sunday’s Blood and Chrome 8 PM: 1.145 million viewers, 0.31 A18-49

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