The Battlestar Galactica phenomenon continues with this undeniably compelling look at where the real conflict between humans and the Cylons began...in a vibrant world remarkably like our own: Caprica. Fifty-eight years before Battlestar takes off, two powerful families – the Graystones and the Adamas – find their destinies irrevocably intertwined after a devastating explosion. As both houses struggle with the line where humanity ends and artificial intelligence – the Cylon race – begins, they’ll face off in a battlefield of corporate conspiracy, murder, sexual politics and family backbiting. From executive producers Ronald D. Moore and David Eick comes this highly anticipated prequel starring Golden Globe nominee Eric Stoltz and Esai Morales and presented in uninterrupted Dolby 5.1 surround sound.
Corporate espionage, online role-playing games, terrorist attacks--the world of Caprica isn't so different from our own. The science-fiction series delves into the complex back story that led to the superb rebooted Battlestar Galactica: two men connect through mutual grief, each having lost a daughter in a bombing. Daniel Graystone (Eric Stoltz, still best known for Some Kind of Wonderful) is the multimillionaire inventor of the holoband, a virtual reality version of the Internet; Joseph Adama (Esai Morales, NYPD Blue) is a lawyer and functionary for a crime family. Their glimmering friendship swiftly mutates as each realizes that the other offers something he wants… which eventually leads to the answer of Battlestar Galactica's greatest mystery: how did the Cylons begin? Caprica is flush with hot-button issues, ranging from alternate sexualities to religious extremism to troubling moral questions raised by accelerating technology; the world is a skillfully conceived dark mirror of contemporary life. The characters, unfortunately, are not so well developed. Too many of them have no clear desires or driving impulses--which isn't unlike real life, but makes for a meandering story line. On several occasions characters have to do something dumb just to keep the plot in motion; again, not unbelievable, but it's hard to stay engaged with characters you can't respect. Still, every episode has at least one moment that's truly clever or emotionally compelling, just enough to keep a viewer going. The series strengthens as it gets further in, so this may be one of those precarious first seasons where the creators work out the kinks (the first season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer was pretty rocky, but then it soared into the stratosphere). Caprica has a lot of potential; if it finds its footing, this could be great television. --Bret Fetzer