The Problem of Evil in Battlestar Galactica’s Ending

Whether you thought the ending to BSG was good or bad (and I certainly belong in the latter camp), one thing that you cannot deny is how, within a two-hour time period, Ronald Moore radically and irrevocably changed the entire orientation of the show. Instead of a futuristic/sci-fi socio-political allegory about human existence in the aftermath of catastrophe, the show, with the help of the finale, became Touched By An Angel…in space.

I was never really sure how seriously I should take the religious elements of the show, that is, until the finale. All the stuff about ancient prophecies, guardian angels, the One True God, I thought they were just the cosmology of the fictional BSG universe. Instead, I find out that Ronald Moore is a deadly serious religious man who believes that the BSG’s fictional universe has religious, metaphysical foundations.

It seems every major plot arc in the show can be explained thus: It was caused by Angels carrying out God’s will.

WHAT. THE. FUCK.

I seriously hope Lost does not pull this shit on me when it ends.

But putting the artistic merits of using such a heavily religious explanation aside, let’s take the show’s finale on its own terms. Even then, I still have problems with it. To me, the most pressing issue raised by the show’s finale is this: what kind of God would go through the trouble of causing massive genocide through nuclear annihilation, drag the survivors of said genocide through space, make them suffer severe hardship, only to let it happen ALL OVER AGAIN?

I mean, what was the point of Hera if she’s just going to engender a race of people who will create robots, which will then rebel, which will then wage war against their creators…you see where this is going don’t you? What kind of fucking God would allow this to happen? If a God like that would allow something like this to repeat ad nauseum, then what the fuck is the point of the Angels? I thought they are supposed to guide the humans and cylons to their destinies? Which is what, eternal recurrence of genocide and wandering in space?

This is the fundamental problem with theodicy, and it’s kind of ridiculous for BSG to introduce such a weighty topic in the very last fucking episode and just leave it, without even attemping to grapple with it.

Damn you Ronald Moore!