“This piece of work is monumental. It’s going to make you realise so much more that you’re going to have to go back and see the whole series again,” says Edward James Olmos of The Plan. That’s pretty hefty hype, even for Adama. He has a point about re-watching the series, but not for the reason he believes. No, you’ll need to re-watch because there is so much to-ing and fro-ing between new material and old footage that, unless you have memorised the whole thing, you won’t know your toasters from your launch tubes.
A wannabe-revisionist retread of the first couple of seasons, The Plan follows the ever-excellent Dean Stockwell as the Number One Cylon, Cavill. Two Cavills, as a matter of fact – one embedded in the fleet (see exactly how Grace Park’s Boomer was used as a sleeper agent), the other ‘humanised’ on Caprica by the band of rebels led by Sam Anders (Michael Trucco).
Spanning 300-odd days, plot holes are plugged and nefarious plots unpicked. Sort of. Stockwell is as good as you’d expect but who knew the absent Mary McDonnell was so vital to the show’s sense of gravitas? Virtually everyone else reprises, but Roslin never even appears in the re-used episode footage, striking an oddly hollow note.
Olmos and Jane Espenson’s commentary is a lip-trembling farewell, with Olmos growling out a plethora of thank yous and former Buffy writer Espenson providing geek-chat. The remainder of the extras are fluffy, above-average EPK fodder, with the FX doc the main highlight given that The Plan showcases some of the best special effects seen on Galactica. That’s especially true of the vivid rendering of the destruction of the colonies – even more impressive when Olmos and Espenson reveal they weren’t scripted, only concocted during the editing phase.
Olmos makes the most of the difficult task of weaving the material together and, as befits Adama being at the helm, there is an almost complete lack of humour, but then Galactica could hardly be accused of being breezy. Is it a bad thing to be described as ‘solid’?
If you’re missing the ragtag fleet then this will make you misty, but for Capricans and non-skin-jobs, it’s of moderate interest.