October 30, 2006

The Law of BSG

I am not the only one taking notice of the fact that Battlestar Galactica is one of the best-written shows on television. One guy has suggested that this show is a fantastic lens for analysis of contemporary legal issues. He's absolutely right. This is not a "space opera" with vapid adventure stories, silly monsters, and bad special effects. (For that you can enjoy the classic series.) Science fiction is one of the best vehicles available for exploring contemporary issues in a rapidly-changing society, and it has been so since the first science fiction book was ever written.

BSG has explored the role of military tribunals, succession of office, the ethics of terrorism (and of fighting losing wars against it), political and electoral corruption, the proper role of the legal presumption of innocence, and the oft-explored moral issues of ends and means, desparation for survival versus ethical ideals, and the emotional impact of surviving a catastrophe. There has certainly been some exciting space and military combat, and unusual twists in the plot arc and character devleopment.

Seriously, if you're not watching this show, you're missing out.

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