I feel that I’ve worked out a pretty good system of selecting the TV shows I watch. I wait until there’s sufficient Internet hype for a show, I put it on a to-watch list, and when I get around to it I watch it in one or two crazy week-long benders.
That’s exactly what I did with the “new” Battlestar Galactica. If you haven’t seen this thing, you really should. I came across it on Netflix, so I devoured it like only a teacher on summer break could: Parked on the couch in my dark, air-conditioned living room with a week-long supply of jammies, jelly beans, and Diet Coke.
If your family’s like mine and you enjoy your TV served up buffet-style, this show would be great to watch with older kids. The basic premise is that humans created Cylons (or androids) that turn on them, creating a war that leads to the annihilation of the planet. The remaining humans travel around in a fleet bound for a mythical Earth while constantly evading the Cylon army. I know what you’re thinking, but you’re going to have to trust me on this: Despite its stock sci-fi premise, this series is anything but ordinary. “So say we all!”
If you’ve seen this show, then you already know how fraking awesome it is. The action is stunning, the acting is hardly ever cringe-inducing (unlike most Sy-Fy Channel shows), and the plot is compelling. For me, however, the best element of this show is the characters.
So, Nerdy families, let’s play a game. If your kid could be any BSG character, who do you think they’d be? Whoever you end up choosing, we’ve picked out some products we think you — or, more accurately they — will like.
If your kid is patient, kind, and steadfast in his or her beliefs, you may have a little Adama on your hands. If he takes after the Admiral, you know he will grow into a good listener who naturally earns the respect of his friends and family.
To groom your future commander, make sure he or she has plenty of planes like this viper plushie or this viper brick necklace to help with his training. Don’t forget Adama was originally a viper pilot.
If your mini-commander loves reading in his spare time, then you know for sure he’ll lead the whole fleet someday. Make sure his mind is always fed with books featuring noble and clever leaders like Sir Gawain the True and The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom.
Think your littest one has what it takes to command a battlestar? There’s nothing you can do but put him in this battlestar uniform onesie and see how he handles the pressures of leadership. Or napping.
If your little Caprican is anything like Baltar, you know full well that the smarter a kid is, the bigger the trouble they get themselves into. Cunning, witty and charismatic, they probably believe that they can escape any sticky situation by using one of two things: science or a smile.
If you sense a spark of genius in your younger ones, you’re definitely going to want to get them started early on the basics. Get them counting while you teach them the dangers of interacting with Cylons with these awesome primer flashcards and matching Cylon number poster. How else will they be able to keep track of how many Cylons have been revealed as they watch BSG for the first time?
Don’t worry, if you do happen to have a little Baltar on your hands, they’ll at least be smart enough to reassemble whatever they accidentally destroy. They’re probably full of questions, so help them answer a few with this Mind Boggling Science Questions book.
Once your scientist has learned everything he or she needs to know, the next logical step is to enter politics. As a responsible parent, you should probably warn everyone he’s coming by dressing him in one of Baltar’s campaign T-shirts.
Kara “Starbuck” Thrace
I’ll admit it: There are parts of Starbuck’s character that you probably wouldn’t want your kids to emulate. She smokes cigars, binge drinks to forget her problems and has a bad habit of making impulsive decisions. But besides being the best viper pilot there is, she’s also an excellent leader and teacher, and always lives life to the fullest. If your little spitfire is artsy and fiercely independent, he or she may just be a budding Starbuck.
To foster your kids’ inner painter like Kara does, make sure they have plenty of inspiration and supplies at their disposal, like an art center stashed with colors and tools or the Imagine That! coloring book.
Have a tiny guy or gal beginning to bud into a fighter pilot? Encourage their bravery and tenacity with this Starbuck-esque pilot sleeper set. If you think the only thing missing from your baby’s Starbuck ensemble is her wing tattoo, you can have that too with this onesie. We also love this Kara Thrace/Legend of Zelda mashup onesie from Redbubble.
If decking the kids out in BSG gear is leaving you feeling left out, you can pay your own homage to Kara Thrace with this logo tee. (We heard you like Starbuck with your Starbucks.)
If your Starbuck needs some reading material for off-hours, she’s going to want books with characters who are as independent and artsy as she is. Try the hip reboot of the classic tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears Tale Moderne or the story of a man who remembered his life through newfound artistic abilities in It Jes’ Happened.
As the Secretary of Education, Roslin wasn’t exactly expecting to become the president of the 12 colonies anytime soon, especially since she was 43rd in line for the presidency. When the Caprica Cylon attack killed the 42 people ahead of her, she had no choice but to step up. As the journey to Earth continued, Roslin was elected properly and ultimately led her people using a balance of faith and logic. If your little leader in training has a gentle soul and strong resolve, she or he may align with President Roslin.
Keeping up morale while guiding a potentially doomed society into space is no easy task, so if your little presidential candidate has a knack for banding your small colony together, help them out with this so say we all pendant. And no politician is complete without buttons to pin on their supporters, so we suggest your nerdy family pick up these BSG baby buttons, just for fun.
If none of these seem to match your kids’ dispositions and you’re concerned one of them might be the fourteenth Cylon, don’t worry — they may never find out. Just act normal.