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Old May 10th, 2003, 05:55 PM   #1
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Battlestar Galactica 1978 BG-17: Hand Of God

Sheba, Apollo, Cassiopeia and Starbuck retreat to an ancient navigation dome aboard the battlestar, where they intercept mysterious, fragmented transmissions (recognizable as those from the 1969 Apollo moon landings). As they attempt to enlist Boomer's electronics/communications knowledge with the transmissions, the fleet faces a Cylon basestar. Tired of running, Adama orders a military strike. Both Apollo and Starbuck volunteer to take Baltar's Cylon Raider to the basestar to infiltrate and cripple the ship's systems, to give the Galactica a better chance of victory. Baltar bargains for his freedom in return for tactical data. The Galactica (and Apollo/Starbuck's mission) is successful; the Cylon base ship is destroyed and the fleet departs their galaxy, in search of Earth.

Series stars; Richard Hatch as Apollo, Dirk Benedict as Starbuck, Herb Jefferson Jr. as Boomer, Lorne Greene as Adama, Terry Carter as Colonel Tigh, Maren Jensen as Athena, Tony Swartz as Jolly, Laurette Spang as Cassiopia, Noah Hathaway as Boxey, Sarah Rush as Rigel, David Greenan as Omega, Anne Lockhart as Sheba, Jack Stauffer as Bojay, Larry Manetti as Giles, Ed Begley, Jr. as Greenbean, and John Colicos as Baltar.

(Thanks to Michael Faries Battlestar Galactica.com)
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Old July 19th, 2003, 10:26 AM   #2
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"Don't stand there gawpin , like you never seen the Hand of God before!"
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Old July 19th, 2003, 06:33 PM   #3
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This episode is a classic. It is also the end of a magnificent series. The effects teams went out of their way in many instances. The Viper/Raider combat scenes seemed new in some shots. The audience was also shown the innards of the mighty Basestar.
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Old July 20th, 2003, 06:40 AM   #4
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Default choreography

What I noticed even back in 1979 when it first aired was that the episode seemed almost "choreographed." I didn't pay attention to the special effects, but I did notice the camera angles. Some of the incidental music is new, too.
In the scene where Apollo and Starbuck first climb down the ladder in the base star, the camera is on the floor, looking up at them. This is an angle used only in this episode. And the way they descend the steps looks like it was planned out deliberately.

Mary
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Old August 25th, 2003, 05:10 PM   #5
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Default Guest Stars...

I have read recently that this was the only episode where there were no guest stars. I was thinking about this, but what about Fire in Space? Were there any guest stars in that one?
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Old August 25th, 2003, 05:58 PM   #6
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Default Re: Guest Stars...

Quote:
Originally posted by Charybdis
I have read recently that this was the only episode where there were no guest stars. I was thinking about this, but what about Fire in Space? Were there any guest stars in that one?

Anne Lockhart.
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Old August 26th, 2003, 08:43 PM   #7
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I so agree Kingfish. I thought that was one of
the best special effects ever!
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Old August 26th, 2003, 08:55 PM   #8
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I liked the part where Apollo Sheba Cassie and Starbuck were in the bubble on the Galatica. When Apollo opened the doors and you seemed to be just setting in space, that was a great scene! The only other time one could see space like that was in a viper, but you couldn't walk around.
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Old August 27th, 2003, 12:03 PM   #9
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amberstar: that is exactly why this was my favorite set. And my favorite space that I wish existed in reality. What a beautiful place.

My favorite scene is when Sheba finally cracks Apollo's shell and they both admit there might be feelings there.... it still kills me that the show ended with this episode because of that.

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Old September 8th, 2003, 07:54 PM   #10
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I so agree Amberstar .........It was one of the best scenes ever.
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Old September 8th, 2003, 08:55 PM   #11
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So many things about that show made it sad to see it end. That is the first time we also pick up a transmition from EARTH! Thanks to Starbucks gun. Cylons in the same galaxy as Earth, makes one wonder just how far the empire had sperad! Also, the Sheba Apollo twist; that leaves one wanting more........................
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Old September 11th, 2003, 10:03 PM   #12
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Default ***** 5 STARS

Even today we wont more, The series had something to build on.from this episode, Apollo and Sheba, The use of the space dome to find earth {And no just to make out in!} Baltar being free, and sent off to a near by planet.
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Old October 17th, 2003, 07:14 AM   #13
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Hello jewels,

Yep,
"The Hand of God" is my all time favourite episode,
The scene between Sheba and Apollo was deeply touching,
then afterwards when Cass and Sheba are in the Observation Bubble,
and
Cass: "...why did I ever fall in love with a Warrior?..."
Sheba: "...I don't know...",

And then the look of realisation on Cass's face,
Woo man, powerful stuff,


Quote:
Originally posted by jewels
amberstar: that is exactly why this was my favorite set. And my favorite space that I wish existed in reality. What a beautiful place.

My favorite scene is when Sheba finally cracks Apollo's shell and they both admit there might be feelings there.... it still kills me that the show ended with this episode because of that.

Jewels

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Old October 28th, 2003, 12:21 PM   #14
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"The Hand of God" was, without a doubt, my favorite episode of Battlestar: Galactica. Whenever I think of the original series, THAT is the episode which comes first to mind. Ironically, as it was the last episode of the series, it was, I think, the most elaborate and gave the audience the best look at the "guts" of Galactica. And the set where the dome irised open and the navigator was virtually sitting in open space? FANTASTIC!!

But the most memorable thing of that episode for me was the revelation at the end that the signal they had received and been trying to "clean up" was from Tranquility Base announcing "The Eagle has landed!"

Now, as the episode played out, you could get this earlier than the closing scene, but much like "War of the Gods", the ride we were all on to get to those closing moments made it all worth it!

Truly a very good episode and a worthy LAST episode to a fantastic and enduring sci-fi series!

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Old November 17th, 2003, 09:33 PM   #15
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Default This eppy was frustrating....

It was the last eppy of the series...and No Athena for the last few eppys... At this point of the show, us Maren Jensen fans just got fed up and watched something else.....when the series was on TV.

By the way it was a Skylab mock up that was used for the Base star interior....probably left over form the 6 million dollar man..hee hee.


I have to admit after the middle of the season...Maren for what ever reason was not being used...and in Glen Larson's last interview..he mentioned recasting Athena.....thank goodness he didn't get another season to do such a stupid thing......

That was the most frustrating point I had with BG TOS....I would have loved to see Athena and Apollo developed as a characters with Adama..but it was not to be. The comics did a better job.

Sorry folks...all these memories are coming back because of the DVDs....Glen Larson's best decision IMO was giving Maren Jensen a chance to go on the show...but his biggest mistake was not using her and Athena more on the show. For a lot of guys she was the big draw....and me included. I just hope Richard Hatch convinces Maren to come back to reprise Athena again....

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Old November 18th, 2003, 02:06 AM   #16
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Default Re: This eppy was frustrating....

One more thing...In the DVD where Richard ,Dirk,and Herb, do their commentary.....I am sooooo glad that they got to comment on their thoughts on how Maren was just stunning and had a natural acting ability that was really real...in spite of the crummy decisions to not use Maren and the short sightedness of how they treated her character in the latter part of the series. BG was great in the first 3 eppys...and I liked the episode Fire in space only because it was the only eppy that really featured Athena....again sorry folks...I am talking from a Maren Jensen fan's point of view.....heh and it was great to hear all three former cast mates say they were fans of Maren too....



Maren Jensen we miss you.

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Old December 20th, 2003, 06:17 PM   #17
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I came to a conclusion after playing the game where one has to fly the Raider in formation, Apollo and Starbuck were either the luckiest two in the galaxy or the Cylons were mindless drones. It is very difficult to do. When did they train for the mission? A Raider flies much differently than the Colonial Viper. Also if the Cylons ran a scan at any time the gimmick would be up. Plus the fact that they flew straight into the middle of a patrol.

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Old December 20th, 2003, 11:18 PM   #18
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Hi all!

I have to agree with many of you, this last ep was truly the best. I do love the Living Legend ep and it's a close tie, but after seeing these again, I'm beginning to lean more toward this one. Oddly, these two eps are what looks like everyone's favs. and they are both the only ones where the Galactica goes on the offensive. Hmm...

Here was a story and execution which gave us a taste of what truly could have been - BSG had turned the corner and was on its way to TV greatness. It is so bizarre that The Long and Winding Road is considered the Beatles' last group effort, and it summized that moment in time precisely. And here we had The Hand of God doing the same thing with BSG, so very very close to contact with Earth. And so terribly ironically, the message is received AFTER they leave the dome - EXACTLY what happened with BSG - they didn't learn how successful and beloved it really was till after they shut it down! Talk about prescience!!!

Time severed its ties with an emerging legend, and just like James Dean, we stop and wonder each of us, what truly might have been.

It was so close...


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Old December 20th, 2003, 11:43 PM   #19
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P.S. Two funny shots! Starbuck at the base of the ladder as Cassie climbs above him - he begins to look up, then gives a mischievous grin and looks away (Cassie is in a dress and he's a gentleman after all...). The other one is when Cassie is arguing with him that he will probably meet a beautiful prisoner on the BaseShip - and Starbuck again gives a thoughtful rolling of the eyes - hey, it could happen!

BTW, Richard's impressively varied facial expressions when Sheba is trying to be intimate with him are fantastic - he says not a word, yet you can "see" his thoughts wandering from Serina to SHeba and back again - wow!
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Old January 9th, 2004, 11:58 PM   #20
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My favorite episode.

I like that they finally brought Apollo and Sheba's relationship to the forefront. It's powerful when Sheba actually mentions Serina. WOW! Good stuff.

The scenes in the celestial chamber dome are great. It was a great way to bring more depth to Apollo's character and give Starbuck and Cassie some funny banter. I love Anne Lockhart almost as much as Jane Seymour and Anne gives some wonderful performances in various scenes in the series, including the scene in this one with Apollo in the Raider. But I must say she over-acts with Sheba's reaction to the dome's view. Granted "Oh Apollo, I love it." is tough dialogue for any actor to work. I would have directed her differently. A simple nod with a look of deep wonder would have been better and more Sheba-like.

The Galactica attacking the Basestar was simply exciting, such a change from the other episodes in the series.
The infiltration of the Basestar by Apollo and Starbuck is
edge-of-your-seat excitement. And Boomer's famous line at the end is awesome.

On the Epic DVD Series, it is truly sad to hear the laments of various cast members (Richard, Dirk, Laurette, and Herb in particular) about how this episode showed how much the show had grown in a year and how good it could have been if more years of the show had been done. This episode leaves us with a wonderful ending to a great series.

Great episode.
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Old January 11th, 2004, 08:13 PM   #21
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I loved those scenes muffit. Thanks for pointing them out.
I will be watching that ep tomorrow!
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Old January 11th, 2004, 08:32 PM   #22
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I finally got a chance to watch The Hand of God again tonight on Dvd, and it does leave you wanting more!
So much is left undone, the story has to continue......

To think we came so close with DeSanto........ and now maybe we have another chance if Larson will deliver on his decision to do a movie.
One can only hope
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Old February 14th, 2004, 11:52 AM   #23
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Default * to 4****

****

The most exciting Episode. I wish it could have been a 2 parter as it seems too short to be perfectly honest. Loved the touch of having the transmission of the Lunar landing after you see Starbuck and Apollo going down the hatch for the last time...
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Old February 29th, 2004, 04:40 PM   #24
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MMaola, I agree with everything you said. So much so, these two sentences were the only things that made sense to post...

GA
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Old March 4th, 2004, 05:19 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jewels
amberstar: that is exactly why this was my favorite set. And my favorite space that I wish existed in reality. What a beautiful place.

My favorite scene is when Sheba finally cracks Apollo's shell and they both admit there might be feelings there.... it still kills me that the show ended with this episode because of that.

Jewels
Jewels I loved that scene too.

I also hated that the show ended with this episode and on THAT note
in Apollo's and SHeba's feelings for each other.
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Old March 20th, 2004, 01:32 PM   #26
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Default hand of god before earth terra

said new galaxy only basestar seen maybe this one was beforegreetings thats why they left terra just a thought best sci fi show best battlescene loved the longshot in terra when apallo comes towards the planet you can see the greatlakes and the mexican bay sure it was acopycat earth like in star treck i think it was muri or the one with the for ever children <not growing old> could the moon shot seen in dome have been from terra a long shot i know but it would tie it up better warstar cerbesus long range recon probe alpha this is flight comander mayhem who are you guys :norats: pray for spain and death to the cyclons and evil bomb builders god bless freedom and america
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Old March 23rd, 2004, 04:09 PM   #27
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Default deleted scene on dvd

There's been plenty of discussion over the years as to whether Apollo was willing--or even able--to return the feelings that Sheba had shown him in this episode. There is a deleted scene on the DVD that I think answers that question. This scene is just before Apollo and Starbuck launch in the Cylon raider. They are coming down the elevator, and Apollo says somewhat wistfully, "I wish I could have seen Sheba again." Starbuck gives him a questioning look, and then Starbuck gets another look as he realizes what Apollo is talking about.
Oh, how I wish this scene could have been included in the episode! It would have told everyone for sure what a second season could have brought!
Mary
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Old March 23rd, 2004, 04:55 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skippercollecto
There's been plenty of discussion over the years as to whether Apollo was willing--or even able--to return the feelings that Sheba had shown him in this episode. There is a deleted scene on the DVD that I think answers that question. This scene is just before Apollo and Starbuck launch in the Cylon raider. They are coming down the elevator, and Apollo says somewhat wistfully, "I wish I could have seen Sheba again." Starbuck gives him a questioning look, and then Starbuck gets another look as he realizes what Apollo is talking about.
Oh, how I wish this scene could have been included in the episode! It would have told everyone for sure what a second season could have brought!
Mary
That was one scene that should never have been cut. I think it was
crucial to the story line. Until I saw that scene ............I only THOUGHT
I had put two and two together .......................
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Old March 23rd, 2004, 05:54 PM   #29
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Default uncredited voices

There are three uncredited voices who can be heard in "The Hand of God," and they're always ignored in discussions of the episode, yet they are crucial to the storyline. Even more importantly, we all know who they are and can easily identify them!
They can be heard in the very last scene, and it is:

In the gamma frequency message, the voices say,
"3 1/2, 47 forward. Picking up some dust" (I think this is Buzz
Aldrin; somebody please correct me if I'm wrong.)
"We copy you down, Eagle" (capcom Charlie Duke)
"Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed" (Neil Armstrong)

Why are we always ignoring these three men? They're just as important in the Galactica saga as anybody else!

Mary
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Old March 23rd, 2004, 06:05 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skippercollecto
There are three uncredited voices who can be heard in "The Hand of God," and they're always ignored in discussions of the episode, yet they are crucial to the storyline. Even more importantly, we all know who they are and can easily identify them!
They can be heard in the very last scene, and it is:

In the gamma frequency message, the voices say,
"3 1/2, 47 forward. Picking up some dust" (I think this is Buzz
Aldrin; somebody please correct me if I'm wrong.)
"We copy you down, Eagle" (capcom Charlie Duke)
"Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed" (Neil Armstrong)

Why are we always ignoring these three men? They're just as important in the Galactica saga as anybody else!

Mary
You're right ........they are important. And NO they should never be ignored or
forgotten.
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