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There's a reason why her initials are S and M ...
Since I've gotten into livejournal as a result of my Battlestar… 
18th-May-2005 12:16 pm
Since I've gotten into livejournal as a result of my Battlestar Galactica obsession, I thought I should post a piece I wrote on the SciFi board comparing the characters of BSG's Commander Adama and Miami Vice's Lieutenant Castillo, both of course played by the incomparable Edward James Olmos (insert obligatory squee here ;^). It was written in response to the following quote from siouxsmn:

Yes, EJO was a good reason to watch Miami Vice. You could probably imagine that version of EJO as a younger version of Adama. He was serious in that roll too.

Fascinating exercise, comparing the roles of William Adama and Martin Castillo. On the surface, both are iron-hard, controlled men who are completely dedicated to their jobs and their code of ethics. Castillo, however, came from a background far more brutal than Adama's (so far as we know at this point), and his self-control was therefore more absolute. He had his vulnerable moments, particularly when an episode focused on him, but most of the time he was as implacable as a force of nature. EJO's genius in that role lay in keeping the man's emotions under 100% control, while simultaneously never letting us forget they were there.

He does the same with Adama, of course, but as a character I think William Adama has more balance and nuance. He can be ambushed by circumstances more easily, has had the occasional endearingly awkward moment, and is more willing to relax his guard every so often. Could you ever see Castillo using Adama's "and I can dance" line on a lady? Not a picture that comes easily.

The most telling moment of comparison for me so far came in "Tigh Me Up, Tigh Me Down". The scene in Baltar's lab was priceless, with Adama simultaneously confronted by Ellen Tigh's baseless accusations, the Colonel's hurt, angry frustration and the President's suspicions, while Baltar is desperately trying to pretend he's not involved. If Castillo ever wound up in similar circumstances (not too likely to begin with), he would simply cut everyone to silence with a scathing, laser-eyed stare and begin restoring order. Adama is certainly trying to restore order, but in his eyes we can see the faintly desperate look of a man wondering when he lost control of the situation.

So, while I love both characters equally, I must say that, for me, William Adama is the finer, more human creation. Edward James Olmos is another actor who only gets better with age.
18th-May-2005 06:08 pm (UTC)
... William Adama is the finer, more human creation. Edward James Olmos is another actor who only gets better with age.


I barely remember EJO in his other roles (Kim has some video research to do :) but AFAIC, none of them can hold a candle to Adama.

It probably does not help that I have at totally squee-worthy adolescent (in emotion only... my mature woman stuff is completely in play also ;) fangirl crush on the man.
20th-May-2005 04:11 am (UTC)
I agree that Castillo was the more controlled of the two. I've only seen season one, but he never, ever lets the shell crack open...well, except for when he found out who was responsible for his team's ambush and he tried to choke the guy!

Adama seems to have come to some terms with his life- for Castillo, the hurt is still too raw. OH! I have to remember that for the story! LOL

Did he ever give a glimpse of what was inside him in the other seasons? I know Bushido is supposed to focus on him and his past. In light of the little fic I'm playing with, any help would be appreciated about his background, etc.

AS for the fic, would you like for me to post it here for you to read or where?
20th-May-2005 05:14 am (UTC)
Did he ever give a glimpse of what was inside him in the other seasons?

Glimpses are pretty much all we got in the first few seasons.

As you know, we learn in the first season that Castillo is a former DEA operative. In "Bushido" we discover that he is ex-CIA as well; he enlists Crockett and Tubbs to help him protect the Russian wife and child of a friend from his Company days. In "Whatever Works" we find out he has some kind of association (not romantic, I don't think) with a Santeria priestess played by Eartha Kitt. Little hints, tidbits like that ... unfortunately I don't have the episodes taped to go back and mine for info like I want to!

Here I must admit that I missed most of the fourth and all of the fifth season thanks to network execs idiotic decision to put Max Headroom up against Miami Vice on Friday nights. That killed MH in fairly short order, but in the meantime I had to make a choice. I really wish I'd watched or had some way to tape that fifth season in particular! I know that Castillo's ex May Ying shows up again, but I never saw the episode and have no idea what happened to her. GAH!

Suffice to say, if anyone can point me towards season 2-5 episodes, I'd be grateful. I'm still saving up for the season 1 DVD's ... gotta have Castillo in that swimsuit ... droooollll!

22nd-May-2005 07:00 pm (UTC)
I've read the episode guides for some of the shows- well, actually I tried to find the ones that feature him, such as Bushido- and seems there's some sort of problem with her husband, Ma Pak (?) and Castillo is involved in what goes on. That would be a good one to see!
20th-May-2005 05:16 am (UTC)
AS for the fic, would you like for me to post it here for you to read or where?

Here would be lovely, as far as I'm concerned! If it has our sweet Commander in it as well, kimbari might want to see it posted on her brand-new william_adama community.

20th-May-2005 04:14 am (UTC)
Thinking the "Link" button would take me back to your front page, I clicked on it. Don't know what it did, but if it did something to mess up your journal, I'm terrible sorry!! Tell me how to fix it and I will.
**hides face in shame**
20th-May-2005 04:32 am (UTC) - No worries!
You don't seem to have done anything, so no harm, no foul. B^)
21st-May-2005 04:16 pm (UTC)
Adama's "and I can dance" line on a lady?

I really, really liked that scene and tht line. So cute omg.

Sadly, I didn't see the Miami Vice DVDs until after we had picked the ones we wanted for the weekend. *sigh* That sucked.
26th-Jun-2005 02:20 am (UTC) - the death of commander adama
It drives me crazy! Ever since I started watching this show, I can't think straight! the man is like number six and baltar. I'm the poor female Baltar and EJO is like Six! He haunts me all over the place! I guess ever since Boomer plugged him, I think he's in me like six is in Baltar's mind!
29th-Jun-2005 04:56 am (UTC) - Re: the death of commander adama
Don't worry ... you're not alone in your obsession. ;^) Head over to the william_adama community (if you haven't already) to find your fellow obsessers!
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