Ever wondered why there are so many confusing messages sent out in the show, why it seems every clue has multiple meanings and new plotlines appear out of nowhere when the ratings start to falter?
Ron Moore: It certainly evolved over time. When the series started I didn’t know where I was going to be by the end. I decided to worry about that later, and to try to just take 10 episodes at a time. I’d finish those then starting working on the direction of the next 10 shows, and so on. (Source)
BSG is a new breed of TV show, just like LOST, its fickle nature is well suited to a broadcast industry in which ratings are everything and a show can be pulled from air on little notice.
Ron Moore (continued): As we got into mid-way through Season 3, I started to really feel that the 4th Season should be the last year. By the time we got to the end of the 3rd Season, I definitely felt like “Okay, next year’s it. We’re in the third act of the story, we should end the show while we’re strong.”
Going into the 4th Season, we had various meetings with the writing staff, big sort of conclaves where we said “Okay, what is the end of the series? Let’s really break it down and talk about it.” We had 3 or 4 of those kind of gatherings where we reevaluated what we wanted to do, tore it apart, put it back together again, and kept refining exactly what the shape of the 4th Season was going to be. To answer your question, all of this year we’ve had an idea of where we’re going and how it’s going to end. We really didn’t start focusing on the end of the series until it was time. (Source)
RDM: and you just find ways that they all sync up together eventually…its its its especially as we’ve been constructing the end of the series its surprising how many of those pieces we were really able to pick up again and actually weave back in and there was surprisingly little that I feel like we never got around to actually, actually tying up (Source: Revelations Podcast @ 27:47)
The show is setup with ambiguity at almost every turn. It gives the writers freedom in the future to take the show wherever they think appropriate at the time.
Take the final five for instance. It seems that RDM didn’t come up with the idea that the Final Five would be humans within the fleet until Season 3. There is no mention of the Final Five prior to Season 3 except for the fact that we had been told there were 12 cylon models, and we only knew the identity of seven of them. Discovering another 5 skinjobs becomes a bit tedious for the audience after a while. The entire Final Five plotline was created for Season 3 and the fact they were going to be humans, but fundamentally different probably wasn’t created until midway through Season 3. As for their identities, well that wasn’t decided upon until the end of Season 3!
Tigh was one of the first names tossed out. Tyrol, Anders, and Tory. And they all had reasons why their backstories worked for the Cylons and for what the final four Cylons would be in particular. Tyrol had a connection to Sharon, obviously, had fallen in love with a Cylon. He was drawn towards the Temple on the algae planet. Anders had survived two resistance movements, very mysteriously. He had also fallen for Starbuck who has a specific destiny, the Cylons keep saying. Tory we knew the least about, so she was a bit of a wildcard. Tigh was the most problematic, and Tigh I went back and forth on all the way up to the point where we were shooting the episode and wanted to make sure that we knew what we were doing, and we weren’t blowing something. (Source Crossroads Pt II podcast)
In a sense this is clever, but if you are looking into early episodes of the show for clues of how it will end then you will dissapointed – even the writers had little idea of where is was all headed. It’s only now that we have reached the last season that it becomes possible to speculate about how it will all end.
So next time you are watching a new show, remember that mystery and ambiguity is there to keep you watching, and trying to solve the puzzles, although interesting, means very little until the writers decide to create answers for the puzzles they have created – and this doesn’t have to happen until the audience begins to tire and starts demanding those answers.
This entire site is dedicated to the Head.Six theory, not because Head.Six has been the final cylon since the start, but because it makes most sense toward the end. The theory does involve certain interpretations of existing facts and it works around those just as the writers have had to do while creating the final series. Of course the producers reserve the right to invent more backstory in the remaining 10/11 episodes that invalidate this theory, but the way things stand at the moment, with what the show has told us, as well as producer and writer interview quotes and actors reaction to the grand finale, Head.Six being the final cylon would not only make perfect sense, but would also bring an excellent ending to a brilliant show.