Caprica: Ghosts in the Machine

By  · Published on March 20th, 2010

Synopsis: In the latest installment of “Not Without My Virtual Daughter,” Joseph journeys deeper into New Cap City and winds up in a nightclub run by a riddling cross dresser who’s seen Tamara and believes that she might be the key to unlocking the game. Meanwhile, Daniel, almost positive that Zoe’s avatar is still inside of the Cylon, tries to force her out of hiding by attacking her psychologically – Zoe, however, refuses to allow him to break her. Finally, Vergis tells poor, fragile Amanda, who’s still having visions of her dead brother, about the stolen MCP and the two employees that were killed during the robbery, hoping to drive a wedge between her and Daniel.

Review: If I have to hear Joseph Adama say, “I’m looking for my daughter,” or “baby” one more time, I’m going to…well, I probably won’t do anything, but still, it’s getting a little tedious. Sure, New Cap City and the V-World are completely alien to him but this extreme naïveté, week after week, is frustrating to watch. As cool as it was to see Joseph finally man-up at the end of this episode, I know that next week he’ll be shoving a new picture of Tamara in everyone’s face, saying, “have you seen my baby?” Or “I’m just looking for my baby.” Or simply shouting “baby” out into the virtual ether. It isn’t his desperation or really even the repetitiveness of the dialogue that I find annoying – he’s trying to find his kid, so both of those things ring true – but his trek through New Cap City could’ve been more psychologically complex, instead it just kept hitting the same note.

Overall, “Ghosts in the Machine” wasn’t terribly impressive but that may be because it’s a preamble to next week’s finale. The awesome thing about Caprica, though, is that even the so-so episodes, like this one, are still pretty watchable. Eh, strike that. The Graystone family pup’s brush with death was totally unwatchable. (Daniel orders the Cylon/Zoe to shoot the dog and Zoe, refusing to give into her father’s perverse mind games, goes through with it. Everyone knows there’s a special place in robo-hell for animal killers, so it’s a good thing that the gun was loaded with blanks.) This scene and really everything that went on between Zoe and Daniel in this episode was, I think, supposed to underscore how different Daniel and Joseph are – even though, for me, that difference had already been sufficiently underscored. Both men are trying to find their daughters but Daniel’s approach is cold and cunning while Joseph’s is earnest and emotional.

Next week’s finale should be exciting. Hopefully, some light will be shed on Amanda’s situation with her brother – this is starting to become one of my favorite narrative threads. The gods need to give this woman a break – she lost her daughter, her job, she was kind of, almost killed and now she’s being manipulated by at least two different people. I also hope that Zoe figures out some way to sock her dad in the throat with her massive Cylon fist. Even though I didn’t fully buy her reasons for not trusting Daniel prior to this episode, there needs to be some sort of retribution for what he put that dog through.