Axe, noting that BSG has been lauded by the UN, opines:
In addition to raising all those issues that interest the U.N., BSG is the best “naval” show in years. Yes, it’s set in space, but Galactica in form and function is essentially an aircraft carrier or a large amphibious ship, tasked with escorting the survivors of genocide to a new home.
Interesting. I had never thought of Galactica as an amphib. One of the reasons that I’d never so thought is that it’s absurd; Axe has amphibs on the brain. First, Galactica has more in common with the Russian carrier Admiral Kuznetsov or the old Kiev class carriers than any American vessel. The Soviets included intrinsic surface and anti-submarine warfare capabilities in their carriers, which the US does not. This makes their carriers somewhat less dependent on support vessels, although it tends to reduce their effectiveness as aircraft carriers. Galactica is pretty much a hybrid carrier/battleship along these lines, similar also to the initial configurations of the Akagi and Lexington class aircraft carriers, which included a heavy gun armament.
Second, Galactica really isn’t an amphib. I can imagine, within the logic of the show, the necessity for a warship designed specifically for expeditionary warfare. It would carry lots of Raptors, have weapons specifically designed to attack planetary targets, quarter a large contingent of marines, and maybe have some maneuvering capability within an atmosphere. Galactica has a few Raptors, but they’re most often used for recon or fighter support. Galactica also has some marines, but they seem very much in the mold of the Nelsonian Royal Navy, intended to repel boarding parties and put down mutinies.
This leads to another (even nerdier) question; why do the Cylons and the Colonials only have capital ships? And why do they only, apparently, have one type of capital ship, rather than a specialized selection? To give some context, the navies developed in World War I and World War II included a number of different ship types, each with different specialties. Even in surface warfare, each type of ship had a particular job. This specialization reached its apogee with the USN post-1943, where Iowa class battleships, Baltimore class heavy cruisers, Cleveland class light cruisers, and Sumner class destroyers would each perform a duty in battle, such that a well balanced force of all four types would be superior to a force consisting of any one. Of course, it’s much more common for actual fleets to be cobbled together out of a variety of “legacy” ships, creating situations like the Battle of Jutland, where armored cruisers found themselves going up against dreadnoughts. In addition, it was largely impossible for a single capital ship to replicate the capabilities of both battleship and aircraft carrier in WWII, because no deck could accomodate the heavy guns of the former while allowing enough space for aircraft to operate. It’s easier now with missiles, but even the Russians deploy a wide variety of different warship types.
So I’m wondering; why wouldn’t the Cylon and Colonial fleets differentiate by type? I have to think that a ship that could go toe-to-toe with a base star without wasting space on an airwing would be useful. I also suspect that a vessel, smaller than a battlestar, that could focus on fleet “air” defense would be helpful. And finally, as noted above, I think that a battlestar-sized ship that focused on expeditionary combat would work out very well.
Let this serve as a finale-part one open thread.
… by the way, let’s note that the entire situation is due to the idiocy of Lee Adama; deciding to sacrifice Pegasus to save Galactica was, as has become apparent, a dumbass move.
…also, it’s clear that the timely deployment of the F-22 could have saved the Twelve Colonies…