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So Say We All, edited by Richard Hatch
Genre: Non-Fiction
Publisher: Benbella
Published: 2006
Review Posted: 2/6/2008
Reviewer Rating:
Reader Rating: Not Rated

So Say We All, edited by Richard Hatch

Book Review by Heather Hunt

Have you read this book?

When I picked up this anthology of essays on the reimagined "Battlestar Galactica (BSG)," I thought I would be at a disadvantage since I missed out on the third season when the Sci-Fi Channel in all its twisted wisdom moved the show's broadcast night from Friday to Sunday. Some of us have to get up early Monday mornings and be to work; Friday is just perfect for science fiction viewing, if you ask me. But I digress.

My lack of Season Three knowledge wasn't a problem, however, because So Say We All: An Unauthorized Collection of Thoughts and Opinions on Battlestar Galactica was published in 2006 and only covers up through Season Two. I imagine there will be a further edition as the show continues.

This first collection is rather heavy-handedly edited by Richard Hatch, who writes the official Introduction along with lead-ins to every essay as well as the concluding piece. I understand he's the only major player to be a part of both productions, but it makes one wonder if he'd be so effusive about the reimagined show if he had not been asked to be a part? I think not, but readers can make their own call on this one. In fact, I'm wondering if he actually did any of the editing for these essays since the title page gives the full editing credits as "with Tee Morris and Glenn Yeffeth."

This review is taking a rather down turn though I don't intend to give the impression that the collection does not include some incredible writing and commentary. It does. I shall list my favorites now.

* "M U A C Sig Briefing" by Peter B Lloyd is a fascinating dramatisation of a Cylon scientific briefing on the status of the new Cylon models with Artificial Consciousness - and the human experimentation that is being conducted to create such beings.
* "Galactica's Gods" by Charlie W Starr is a surprising comparison of the Cylon god to the Christian god. This anthology actually contains three essays on religion, which is unusual for SF, but appropriate for BSG because of its prominent religious themes.
* "GINO" by Bill Gordon stands for "Galactica In Name Only" and is an impassioned and articulate rejection of the reimagined BSG. Kudos to the publisher for including this essay in respect of the fandom that remains loyal to the original vision. I actually find myself with some sympathies to this position.
* "Report to Congress," by husband and wife team Bill Fawcett and Jody Lynn Nye, is another dramatisation, this one a hilarious report before Congress on the reintegration of BSG's main characters into the civilian life of Earth after they do indeed arrive here and require assimilation. How about President Roslin as host of "Mrs. Roslin's Neighborhood" or Number Six as a judge on "American Idol?"

Diehard fans will undoubtedly devour all of these essays, but I admit to slogging through some of them, including Matthew Woodring Stover's bitter diatribe on how "The Gods Suck" and James John Bell's "An Army of One God," although it was educational in identifying the Masonic and Mormon influences in BSG. Overall, "So Say We All" should please fans of BSG as well as those of intelligent, hard-hitting SF in general. Benbella Books really knows how to put out high-quality TV show anthologies.
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