Caprica: There is Another Sky

By  · Published on February 28th, 2010

Synopsis: After discovering that William has been cutting class to hang out with Sam, Joseph decides to take him on a father-son fishing trip that only ends up weakening their already tenuous bond. Meanwhile, Tamara’s avatar is trapped in a particularly seedy corner of the virtual world – she’s wandered into some Grand Theft Auto-esque game with an unknown objective. On the Graystone front, Daniel fights to stay relevant within his own company by suggesting that Graystone Industries mass-produce Cylons for commercial use.

Review: “There is Another Sky” confirmed something that I’ve felt since Caprica’s premiere: The Adamas are more entertaining than the Graystones. Up until this point, the show has revolved around Daniel and Zoe. And while there’s definitely something fascinating about the Cylon genesis story, the Adamas and all of their familial strife are far more appealing.

First, Joseph’s internal conflict just seems richer than Daniel’s. In this episode we see that he’s still struggling with the loss of his wife and daughter and that this grief is only widening the chasm between father and his son – this was really the first time that Joseph and William’s strained relationship was examined in any kind of substantive way. On top of that, Joseph is at odds with his Tauron heritage – during the pilot, he tells his son that Adama is a strong Tauron name but during this episode he tries to persuade William to ignore the derogatory comments of some teenage bigot. (William rightly ignores his father and pegs the kid with a huge rock.) Obviously, Joseph is a complicated guy and this first, Adama-centric episode proves that his story shouldn’t be playing second fiddle to the Graystones’.

Thinking about franchise mythology, it’s kind of cool to see that honorable Commander William Adama of Battlestar Galactica was sort of a delinquent as a kid. Pardon the Star Wars comparison, but it’s clear that, like Anakin Skywalker in Episodes I-III, William, in this BSG prequel, is eventually going to have to make a decision between light and dark – or more precisely, a military career and a life as a criminal. What’s really interesting though, is that choosing to model himself after mobster Uncle Sam (which we know he doesn’t do) would actually be a way of honoring the Tauron heritage that his assimilated father has been so keen to reject.

Finally, we have Tamara Adama, who may turn out to be the most amusing member of the Adama clan. Once scared and confused, Tamara’s avatar is now “awake” and kind of badass. This virtual game subplot is sure to add some action into the mix and perhaps, in the process, regain some of the BSG fans that may have felt alienated by Caprica.

One of the major triumphs of this episode was how focused it was. We didn’t get six storylines stuffed into one hour-long episode. I do like that Caprica has a large ensemble, I think it’s one of the show’s strengths, but trying to incorporate every character into every episode was overkill – it seemed like the writers were trying to cover too much territory too fast. So, moving forward, I hope that each episode will be as focused as this one.