UPDATED: The original Starbuck tells the new show to frak off

Jan. 20, 2009 | 9:24 p.m.

Starbuck

UPDATE: Wow, I just found out that this essay that was presented as new content yesterday on Breitbart’s Big Hollywood blog is in fact from a 2004 posting on Dirk Benedict’s own website. I guess the people at Breitbart are big advocates of recycling and misrepresentation. Sorry to pass this on as something new, which it appeared to be. 

You remember "Battlestar Galactica," the original television show? It was dismissed by many as a "Star Wars" knockoff and it had a creepy orange robot dog called a Daggit but it was a lot of fun and nobody got hurt. The stars were the late Lorne Greene and Richard Hatch (who has been great as a competely different character in the new, re-imagined series) and, of course, my fave at the time, Dirk Benedict, whose Starbuck was a sort of Han Solo rascal who gave the show a lot of comic relief (he would go on to portray the con-man commando Face in the "The A-Team").

Well, it turns out that Benedict has watched the revival of the show, which has been hailed far and wide as a dark and sophisticated masterpiece, and silently seethed. Why? Well, let him tell you in a grouchy rant from the Big Hollywood blog:

There was a time, I know I was there, when men were men, women were women and sometimes a cigar was just a good smoke. But 40 years of feminism have taken their toll. The war against masculinity has been won. Everything has turned into its opposite, so that what was once flirting and smoking is now sexual harassment and criminal. And everyone is more lonely and miserable as a result.

Witness the "re-imagined" "Battlestar Galactica," bleak, miserable, despairing, angry and confused. Which is to say, it reflects in microcosm the complete change in the politics and morality of today’s world, as opposed to the world of yesterday. The world of Lorne Greene (Adama), Fred Astaire (Starbuck’s Poppa) and Dirk Benedict (Starbuck). I would guess Lorne is glad he’s in that Big Bonanza in the sky and well out of it. Starbuck, alas, has not been so lucky. He’s not been left to pass quietly into that trivial world of cancelled TV characters.

‘Re-imagining,’ they call it. ‘Un-imagining’ is more accurate. To take what once was and twist it into what never was intended. So that a television show based on hope, spiritual faith and family is un-imagined and regurgitated as a show of despair, sexual violence and family dysfunction. To better reflect the times of ambiguous morality in which we live, one would assume. A show in which the aliens (Cylons) are justified in their desire to destroy human civilization, one would assume. Indeed, let us not say who the good guys are and who the bad are. That is being ‘judgmental,’ taking sides, and that kind of (simplistic) thinking went out with Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan and Kathryn Hepburn and John Wayne and, well, the original ‘Battlestar Galactica.’

Wow. Really? The show with the orange robot dog is a prized symbol of lost American integrity? Didn’t see that coming. But wait, there’s more …

More from the Starbuck rant…

In the bleak and miserable "re-imagined" world of "Battlestar Galactica," things are never that simple. Maybe the Cylons are not evil and alien but in fact enlightened and evolved? Let us not judge them so harshly. Maybe it is they who deserve to live and Adama and his human ilk who deserve to die? And what a way to go! For the re-imagined terrorists (Cylons) are not mechanical robots void of soul, of sexuality, but rather humanoid six foot tall former lingerie models who f**k you to death. (Poor old Starbuck, you were imagined too early. Think of the fun you could have had ‘fighting’ with these thong-clad aliens!) In the spirit of such soft-core, sci-fi porn I think a more re-imaginative title would have been "F****ed by A Cylon." (Apologies to "Touched by an Angel.")

One thing is certain. In the new un-imagined, re-imagined world of "Battlestar Galactica" everything is female driven. The male characters, from Adama on down, are confused, weak and wracked with indecision, while the female characters are decisive, bold, angry as hell, puffing cigars (gasp!) and not about to take it any more.

     Battlestar_origina

One can quickly surmise what a problem the original Starbuck created for the re-imaginators. Starbuck was all charm and humor and flirting without an angry bone in his womanizing body. Yes, he was definitely ‘female driven,’ but not in the politically correct ways of Re-imagined Television. What to do, wondered the Re-imaginators? Keep him as he was, with a twinkle in his eye, a stogie in his mouth and a girl in every galaxy? This could not be. He would stick out like, well, like a jock strap in a drawer of thongs. Starbuck refused to be re-imagined. It became the Great Dilemma. How to have your Starbuck and delete him too?

Battlestar_newThe best minds in the world of un-imagination doubled their intake of Double Soy Latte’s as they gathered in their smoke-free offices to curse the day that this chauvinistic Viper Pilot was allowed to be. But never under-estimate the power of the un-imaginative mind when it encounters an obstacle (character) it subconsciously loathes. "Re-inspiration" struck. Starbuck would go the way of most men in today’s society. Starbuck would become "Stardoe." What the Suits of yesteryear had been incapable of doing to Starbuck 25 years ago was accomplished quicker than you can say orchiectomy. Much quicker, as in, "Frak! Gonads Gone!"

This is just dizzying in its greatness. The funny thing is, the new Starbuck has a bigger pair than the Benedict’s fey version ever had. I can’t wait to see what happens when Sandra Bullock gets the role of Face in the "A-Team" remake …

– Geoff Boucher

RECENT AND RELATED

Bsg_propaganda_2Ellen Tigh speaks! The interview with the Final Cylon

"Battlestar" propaganda posters: Winning hearts and minds

Sci Fi says (gulp) goodbye to "Battlestar"

"Star Wars," "Battlestar" and "Trek" look for their future

"Caprica": A series update and the trailer for the movie

Adama has blood on his hands: A visit to the set of "BSG"

Still want more? ALL BATTLESTAR COVERAGE AT HERO COMPLEX

CREDITS: Images from original "Battlestar Galactica" from the Los Angeles Times archives. The photo of the new cast courtesy of Sci Fi/NBC/Universal

More in: Uncategorized, Battlestar Galactica

Comments


22 Responses to UPDATED: The original Starbuck tells the new show to frak off

  1. oakmonster says:

    Wow. Somebody's masculinity is a little bit threatened, it sounds like.
    Sandra as Face? I can actually see that!

  2. Trevor Spain says:

    Old news.

  3. freedom eagle says:

    Right wing Hollywood blog misses era that never existed. Perhaps he remembers a quality to the show that didn't exist either.
    Yawn.
    He should be lucky he got work, and that maybe the new show will sell a few copies of the old for his residuals.
    He does know that the original show was all thinly veiled Mormonism, right?

  4. Very simple says:

    I agree. I can't stand the new "serious" Battlestar Galactica. Bring back the shiny disco robot suits and black lounge singers with 4 eyes and 2 mouths

  5. the truth hurts says:

    seems to me that the fans of the new unoriginal Battlestar Galactica, including the writer of this article, are the ones most threatened. Otherwise they wouldn't bother to comment.

  6. Dirk Fan says:

    Even when it came out 4 years ago, people misinterpreted his meaning. This guy has no insecurity about his masculinity.
    freedom eagle: it was not only Mormonism. It was Egyptian mythology, Indian mythology, Christian mythology, "ancient astronauts", together with Mormon doctrine.
    And in 1978 it was cutting-edge. The new doesn't hold a candle to the old.
    But until you actually read the work, rather than pick out a few phrases and judge from there, you won't understand the point he was making.
    4 years ago. (Sorry, Geoff, for the chuckle at your expense)

  7. Joe the Rocket Man says:

    Emotion is feminine? I didn't know having feelings was feminine.
    Faith is feminine? I think most of the world would disagree with that.
    Grittiness is feminine? Has the writer of the cited article actually every met a woman before?
    The new, female Starbuck is more masculine than the "original" Starbuck. Brightly-colored Capes? An orange dog? Even Castro-district stereotype-embracing gays aren't that flaming.
    The reason Starbuck was reimagined was because the old "playboy" starbuck was just a sad, lame excuse of man who sole grasp on masculinity was a cigar he had to keep on his mouth to draw attention away from his lack of size down south.

  8. Tim says:

    Threatened? No. I really don't care. I just like to blog. I gave the new version an honest chance, and it simply bores me to tears. It's like watching Deep Space Nine on valium. On the other hand, the original was never that riveting to begin with. And, yes, the original was an exceptionally Mormon show.

  9. Sean K says:

    Who cares. The old one sucked, the new one sucks, the A-Team sucked and so did the movie 'Ruckus'. This guy hasn't done anything that didn't suck and that's why he hasn't had a job since he was 'face' on the A-Team.

  10. Shadow says:

    Seems like Dirk Benedict longs for the 'good old days', when men were men and women knew their place. I watched the original series as a kid and thought it was great, but I was eight years old when the series ended. I saw a few episodes again last year and it doesn't hold up that well. What I found involving as a kid now comes across as cheesy and lightweight. The new Battlestar Galactica, on the other hand, is a top-notch show – well written, directed and acted; the characters and storyline are compelling and entertaining. I look forward to the remaining episodes.

  11. Brian Allen says:

    I loved the original when it was on and still love it for its place in sci-fi history. But the new one is a far superior show. That really shouldn't be surprising.
    Things evolve and for the most part, get better. There are always notable exceptions to the rule but Galactica is not one of them. The new BSG is still very much about faith, but also deals with the things people do in the name of faith. Sometime, sadly, that list includes political extremism and terrorism.
    I think one of the fundamental questions in war (which is often about religious conflict) is why you're right, or believe you are are. What tactics do the enemy use that you would consider deplorable? These are questions a real government has to ask. The original BSG can't claim moral or practical superiority because it didn't ask them.
    For the record, the new BSG wasn't even the first sci-fi show to tackle some of these issues. Even on the original Star Trek, somebody would remind Kirk when he was acting as brutal as the Klingons might in the same situation.
    And Kirk perfected the art of being driven through space by his libido before Starbuck ever chomped his cigar. You can be a "space pimp" and still deal with serious issues. The original BSG was very much conceived as "Star Wars for TV" and it impacted enough current actors and writers to be reimagined. We should be glad for that, but let's not pretend the show was something it wasn't.

  12. Lauryn says:

    Yikes. When I was 9, he was hunky. Now that I'm no longer 9, I can't get past the horrendous bitterness and really bad writing. There's a lesson in this, folks: if you're going to publicly make an ass of yourself, do it with some semblance of grammar and forethought, or at least enough so the writing isn't so distracting. He might have made a couple of legitimate points if they hadn't been so swathed in repetitive rhetoric and corny caps. (Or, in my case, arrogant alliteration.) Sorry, Dirk, especially that this has been dragged out again, five years post-rant. I hope you're doing better since then.

  13. Colleen McAllister says:

    Give me a break. As a long time science fiction fan, and one who actually liked Dirk Benedict, I thought the orignal Battlestar Galactica was a cheesy, poorly produced attempt at cashing in on the Star Wars phenonmenon. Battlestar was ok for what it was, but the quality of the new show is far superior. The point is, it is a new and different show. Not really a remake. There just isn't a comparision. As to hveing a female Starbuck. Well, to each his or her own. I prefer the male.

  14. S says:

    That's right. Make fun of the past. Becasue the present never ever turns into the past.
    First Starbuck was fun.
    Second Starbuck no.
    Same goes for both BSGs.

  15. Mark says:

    Dirk simply turns a mirror on modern entertainment. What is funny is that it hates its own reflection!
    Its not that the new show is poorly made…what sucks is that they had to ride the coattails of a famous title to get anywhere. Change about five names, two ship designs, and about two plot points and the show has NOTHING to do with Battlestar Galactica. They should have called it something else.
    The funny part is that this article keeps resurfacing! Like it or not, he obviously struck a nerve!

  16. dirkisajirk says:

    Dirk Benedict is a hack actor from the 70s in a handful of crummy shows. He has no business talking smack about one of the best shows made on TV.
    Unlike Dirk, whose stupidity is equalled only by his noise, Richard Hatch, the original "Apollo" is now a great character on the new series and has kicked major backsides.
    Too bad for Dirk he's an aging, bitter, angry little man with a small endowment to the humanities that ensures no one cares what his bitter nonsensical diatribe means.
    DIRK BENEDICT IS A DOUCHEBAG!

  17. olmosrocks says:

    Yeah well they should have not called the new show "battlestar galactica" because too many people know the old one was a suck-ass piece of crap.
    Lorne Greene sucked. Dirk Sucked. Their heavy handed Mormon bullsnot sucked. EVERYTHING about that short lived show SUCKED.
    Eddie James Olmos is light years ahead of the hacks on the old show as an actor. so is the ENTIRE CAST OF THE NEW ONE.
    It's nice they allowed Richard back on…he was in the doldrums until this came along…and what HAS dirk been in lately?
    Oh right. NOTHING. BECAUSE HE IS AN AGING OLD BAG WITH NO TALENT.
    REAL actors can act at any age. He was a 70s hair band with no more hair. Suck on it, 70s fanboys!

  18. elilndar says:

    Wow… the funny part is, most of you dumb ass hacks weren't alive when the show was on. BSG when it first came out was fantastic. Everyone couldn't wait for next week when it was on. It was right up there with cartoons only being on Saturday mornings and the anxiety to watch them.
    Now, of course, everyone just get everything they want, and then some. And so to try to keep up, everything has to be over the top, and shock value is basically gone. Why is starbuck a girl who is more a man than most men? because they are reaching for anything that might shock the audience.
    The new show is ok and I like it for some reasons, thought I think they turned apollo into the biggest sissy i've ever seen. People have no idea how to look at shows in the era they were played in. It was fantastic when it aired.
    You people just have too much of what you want everyday, the days of simplicity are over and everyone expects everything. Sorry, but I agree with missing an age where men were the men and women were feminine and very sexy. Damn do we miss that today.

  19. Draken says:

    I did never intend to give Dirk Bennedict an answer of his ramblings.
    Do I respect his point of view….yes.
    I can understand that he loves his old show. I think actors/actress have some sort of that and its normal.
    I did watch the old show and loved it. But the new show is a lot better and I love it.
    But I am truly sorry Mr. Bennedict….you sounds really like someone with a LOT of issus include prejudice, racism (in a small form at least).jealousy, hate.
    "There was a time, I know I was there, when men were men, women were women"
    I mean I do respect his opinion (though its really a wrong side), but let me tell you….times change. Do you want slaves…I am sorry me as women I dont want all the day take care of the house like a slave and so on. If you want a dog, buy one.
    I give an example….I am since over 16 years volunteer firefighter and I love it. Me (one of this stupid male riden women yes is a firefighter). And we have exactly the same things to do as like mens. Another example…as kid I have been a victim of a group of radical kiddis who beat the crap out of me. A LOT of people watched this and didn´t help me to get out of that. (Mens include). One WOMEN did help me. All another one only watched.
    I have never met him in RL but I truly want to debat with him face to face in RL. Maybe he is a nice person, but I really dont like his opinion and whinery about all that. I am truly tired of such stupid moronic comments. Some people cleary have to grow up.

  20. Johny says:

    Well, I love the new(er) BSG but it obviously does reflect societies current values, or confused values. As an American, my trips to Scandinavia taught me that there are still women in this world who are very comfortable in their femininity and i guess 'men are men' there as well (i didn't pay as much attention) but the sexes do seem to blend a bit more harmoniously and open displays of romantic affection are still in vogue. Without that exposure to compare the colors, i wouldn't have been able to see the contrast in the hue of American relationships.
    That said, BSG's use of women in masculinized roles didn't bother me at all. The only real scary and morally objectionable plot device was the notion that violent child abuse can yield good results, referring to Kara Thrace's childhood and her mother breaking her bones as punishment. To put that in and then have it outright imputed that is what helped 'toughen her up' and be able to face her 'destiny' is the real sick and twisted ingredient that should have been tossed the second it came up in the writer's room. What signal does that send to parents?
    Michael Hogan's character certainly didn't lack any masculinity. And since when have women not been able to fight? Female Mongolian horse-archers would cut off one breast so as to better shoot an arrow.
    To me, the newer series is a reflection of the dilemma of American Martial Plan politics and self-righteous black & white thinking finally running out of steam. It's getting harder to find a convenient enemy to justify and fuel this expensive war culture as the truth is out that black was never truly black nor white white and the ubiquitous nature of technology is shifting the balance of power. Americans are so easily led along by the timely use of catch words and the cloak of patriotism that surely enough the use of such would finally get abused by less noble characters.
    Of course, a new enemy will always be around the corner just like you know the Cylons must eventually return.
    So you have an imperfect society and an imperfect series…not surprising.

  21. Johnson333 says:

    This guy is right on. Starbuck would have been way more believable in the new series as a man.

  22. David V says:

    Go Dirk!

    The new Battlestar is so different from the original, Ive always felt they should not have called it battlestar. There are far to many fundamental differences for it to be the same thing. There both good for what they are.

    Iff they had not called her starbuck or the show battlestar, it would have been flawless. It’s simply not battlestar.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title="" rel=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <pre> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Close
E-mail It
Powered by ShareThis