Battlestar Galactica – O M Frakking G

Yeah. Holy balls. So Ellen’s murder on New Caprica lead to a resurrection that only Cavil knew about. He kept her locked up for a year and a half, with only himself and Boomer for company, and they discussed everything: where the skinjobs came from, why Cavil’s such a dick, why there’s no Number Seven, and who invented the One True God. Once this story — modeled on Sartre’s eponymous play, naturally — catches up to us, Cavil decides to vivisect Ellen so that he can rebuild the Resurrection Hub; Boomer finally pulls her shit together, realizes Cavil is creepy and awful, and escapes with Ellen, returning her to the Fleet in a Colonial Raptor. (Where Galen is. Wifeless. And still adorable. And a Cylon. And OMG.)

The damage to Galactica is way worse than we ever thought: tiny hairline fractures through every single bulkhead and beam. Chief offers to apply Cylon tech — a biological agent that will bond with the metal and strengthen it as it matures — but Adama is not interested in desecrating her broken-ass bones that much. Then he gets super duper drunk and realizes that having his ship come apart around him would be way worse, so he says yes: Galactica herself will become the ultimate jury-rigged cybrid. The best part about this sequence is when Chief says he can fix the old girl, but Bill better forget about jumping her again anytime soon. Laura’s not gonna like that!

What she does like is Lee, and the idea of having no Quorum at all, because the whole concept is dumb at this point. She says she’ll stay in office for the time being, but he’ll be the puppetmaster, and can invent whatever system of democracy he feels like. I agree in theory, because that’s exactly what they should do, but it’s the kind of thing you don’t want Playa Palacios finding out about. You know?

Caprica’s son kicks for the first time, and she and babydaddy Saul are way too happy about it. On any other show, you’d think that this was because Ellen is coming back, and their love is a forever love, and hot blonde catfight, and Caprica has to be a single mom, and she and Gaius can be mommies together. But because it’s this show, it seems way more likely somebody’s going to come along and kill the shit out of that baby, and then Caprica Six is going to destroy them into particles.

Meanwhile, that bullet in Sam’s head is pressing on his Earthly memories — and causing him to quote entire passages from Paradise Lost, naturally — and he remembers everything about the Final Five, where they came from, where they met, and why Cavil’s such a dick.* He fills in the blanks for the Dylan Four, while getting hit with harder and harder seizures, until Kara finally wigs out and — against Sam’s screaming wishes — lets my buddy and Resident Expert John Hodgman operate on his sexy brain. So of course, because Kara actually had a rational thought and tried to do save her husband’s life, Sam is now in a braindead coma and can’t answer any more questions at all. And boy, the Q&A of this episode is intense. Normally this is where the recaplet would end, but instead the explanation part is longer than the actual account of what happened, is how intensely explainy this was.

If I actually have this straight: Thirteen Tribes set out from Kobol, and the Thirteenth (Cylons) settled on Earth, where they stopped resurrecting and had babies instead. They created robots, I think, who went crazy on them and threw them a big old war just like ours did. Luckily, a group of five scientist-types were able to rediscover resurrection technology, and download themselves into new bodies at the moment of their holocaust. (After being warned by mysterious and invisible Sexy Chip People, no less.) Tory and Galen were the hot young couple, Saul and Ellen were the hot old couple, and Sam was apparently like what if Bob Dylan hung out with Watson and Crick. So they took a sublight voyage backwards along Athena’s Arrow, to find the other Tribes and tell them in no uncertain terms, Do Not Fuck With Robots.

Sadly, the robots did not go unfucked with. The F5 got here too late, but forged the Armistice out of promises to help the Centurions create skinjobs. This they did: eight humanoid models, to further the toasters’ goal of becoming more like their creators (as seen in the whole Hybrid lineage). Yes, I did say eight models. For a total of thirteen, at the fulcrum point of which is Seven, a model named Daniel that never made it off the production floor (except for the one that knocked up Socrata Thrace, I will bet you one trillion dollars) because Cavil, the firstborn son, was jealous of him in an insane Biblical grabbing-the-foot kinda way. Then he murdered and boxed the F5, and released them every few years into the population until the holocaust was ready to go. Which is where we came in.

The reason that Cavil is such a dick, though, is because he resents the Five, particularly Ellen, for creating him in such an old, creepy body. They seem to agree that the F5 made the human bodies and weird hormonal imbalances we’ve grown to love in the Significant Seven because the One True God would approve of that — but then also, the OTG seems to have been invented by the Centurions in the first place, which makes no sense. Even Chief finds that weird, so I’m sure there’s more to it. (Like, maybe a whole series coming to your screen fairly soon, with a writing staff including but not limited to Jane, the wonderful fellow who wrote this episode, and Michael Taylor.) So Brother John Cavil gives a fairly moving and convincing speech for why he’s so pissed off, and you finally get Cavil: he’s basically like Pinocchio going, “Really? Lederhosen? Fuckin’ forever?” Only instead of singing a little song about it and kicking Ellen in her shapely Gepetto shins, he knowingly and nastily:

Destroyed utterly the life and civilizations on twelve planets, burnt the knowledge of their creators out of his brothers and sisters, killed Daniel and boxed Three, wiped and boxed the Final Five just to make sure they ended up in the holocaust, had a day-long conversation with Chief about how he wasn’t a Cylon even though he totally was, tried his best to kill off the idea of God(s) Himself(s), plucked out his father’s eyeball, and fucked his own mother while she was in mortal mode on New Caprica. Moral of story? You Never Fuck With Pinocchio. Welcome to the last act of the last season of the very best TV show of all time, and here’s your Dramamine.

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Windows 7 tip: (elevated) command prompt anywhere

via Download Squad by Lee Mathews on 2/9/09

The command prompt here power toy was a feature that a lot of users requested be built-in to Windows 7. Microsoft listened, and added it to a secondary context menu.

By holding shift and right-clicking a folder, you’ll see additional commands not listed on the standard menu, such as open in new process, copy as path, and open command window here. Suppose you need a command window with elevated privileges. Then what?

In Windows Vista, it could be done through the start menu by typing cmd into the search box and holding shift+control and hitting enter. This works in Windows 7 as well.

Combine the two, and you’ve got a right-click elevated command window shortcut: shfit+control+right click on a folder and choose open command window. Check your title bar: if it starts with Administrator, you’re set!

Some other sites have posted registry hacks to add a context menu entry for the admin option, but why bother? It’s already there – just hidden!

Just How Bad Is This Recession? Look At The Scary, Scary Graph

via Consumerist by Meg Marco on 2/9/09

Nancy Pelosi wants to scare the crap out of you, so her office has released the above scary graph, which we bring to you by way of Time’s Swampland blog.

Here’s what Pelosi’s office has to say about their work. (The graph uses “actual job-loss data,” from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.)

This chart compares the job loss so far in this recession to job losses in the 1990-1991 recession and the 2001 recession — showing how dramatic and unprecedented the job loss over the last 13 months has been. Over the last 13 months, our economy has lost a total of 3.6 million jobs – and continuing job losses in the next few months are predicted.

By comparison, we lost a total of 1.6 million jobs in the 1990-1991 recession, before the economy began turning around and jobs began increasing; and we lost a total of 2.7 million jobs in the 2001 recession, before the economy began turning around and jobs began increasing.

Time’s readers quickly got to work debunking the graph for not taking into account the difference in population, though it seems that they ultimately concluded that this recession is the worst since 1974-1975, and may likely be even crappier than that.

What do you think? What’s that? It’s so hard to understand you when you’ve got your hands shoved in your mouths to stop the screams from escaping.

How Bad Is It? [Time via Buzzfeed]
MORE: How Bad Is It? [Time]

AMD ushers in five new Phenom II CPUs, benchmarking ensues

via Engadget by Darren Murph on 2/9/09

Just a month after AMD launched its Phenom II CPUs and Dragon desktop platform, the chip maker is hitting back with five new processors in the quickly expanding line. The newcomers include the planet’s first 45nm triple-core CPU and three more quad-core siblings, all of which can operate in either AM2+ or AM3 sockets. As for performance? We hope your expectations haven’t been set too high, as the chips were generally found to be just “a logical extension of [the company’s] piecemeal upgrade plan and a fill in [the] gap to its lineup.” Reviewers across the web were generally pleased but underwhelmed by test results, with HotHardware noting that “overall, Intel still has the performance edge clock-for-clock and core-for-core.” In fairness, these chips were found to be good for overclocking, and for the right price, we could certainly see a few gamers giving them a go. For the full spill, dive on into the deep, intricate reviews below.

Read – Official AMD announcement
Read – HotHardware benchmarks
Read – PCPerspective benchmarks
Read – DesktopReview’s review

They’re back: Capcom announces Dead Rising 2 for PC, 360, and PS3

via Joystiq by JC Fletcher on 2/9/09

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That “Dead Rising 2” video from last week, that kinda looked like it could have been Dead Rising 2? It was totally Dead Rising 2. Capcom has officially announced the title not just for Xbox 360, but for PS3 and PC as well! The sequel occurs years after the events of the first game — with the zombie virus now spread throughout the United States. The action will take place in the “gambling paradise of Fortune City”. The main character is apparently no longer Frank West, but some guy in a jacket instead.

As rumored, the game is being developed by Canada’s Blue Castle Games. According to the press release, “A number of members from the original Dead Rising team will be working alongside Blue Castle Games throughout the development process,” including producer Keiji Inafune.

Gallery: Dead Rising 2

Remote Control Flying Cockroach ready to unleash hell on your enemies

via DVICE by Adario Strange on 2/5/09

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While it may be true that scientists have engineered real cockroaches that will one day robotically do your bidding, most of us still don’t have access to such dark research designed to harness the power of the hated pest. Luckily, we don’t have to wait for that creepy science to hit the mainstream thanks to the RC Flying Cockroach from Japan.

The remote controlled flying cockroach operates for up to 30 minutes per charge and comes with a roach docking station that only requires 6 AA batteries. Sure there are better things you could do with your time than directing flying roaches over the heads of unsuspecting friends, but really, haven’t you always wanted your own insect attack drone ready to unleash hell on your fellow humans? You can pick up the little critter for just $59.99 here.

Via Gizmine