I'm a big fan of the reincarnated Battlestar Galactica series. I think the writing is clever and thoughtful and the issues explored add real depth to the series, not to mention some great characters and battles. However, something else seems to be setting Battlestar Galactica apart from other SF TV series, which is the fantastic online presence of the show's braintrust and their innovative and creative use of digital technology to enhance the experience of the show and build their already sizable fanbase. Examples so far include the fact that Ronald D. Moore, the show's executive producer, has a detailed and candid blog talking about the show, responding to questions, sometimes admitting flaws in the overall story and occassionally sequeing into more personal territory; this not only expands the fan/producer interaction Joss Whedon or JMS style, but also adds a very human face to the production process. The second innovation was to put the entire first episode, "33", online freely watchable for all to view, complete with four deleted scenes. Putting this episode up was, I think, a very clever move especially since so many people have already downloaded torrents, and again builds a lot of goodwill. The deleted scenes are a nice touch, and the website also has deleted scenes from each episode which has aired in the US. The only downside is that it's streaming realplayer footage which is a little crappy at times (but entirely understandable insomuch as it prevents most people from saving the file). Finally, and most impressively, Moore is now doing a podcast before each new epsiode which contains a commentary on the episode. This is pretty much the same content that, I imagine, will turn up on the DVD, but releasing it online in advance certainly ties fans and the production team together very effectively. More to the point, all of these online extras can certainly enrich the experience of the show, as well as solidifying the US fans who may have already seen the epsiodes via torrents (the UK versions aired several months before the US), and tying those viewers directly to the US airdates. All in all, it's a better experience for fans who want all the Battlestar they can find, means the producers have already made a lot of the DVD material as soon as the episodes have aired, and relishes the possibilities of online distribution.
"A sinister cabal of superior writers."