Battlestar Galactica cast member Kate Vernon (Ellen Tigh) talked with SCI FI Wire exclusively about the show and what role she may play in the series' final episodes in advance of tonight's installment, "No Exit." Click on the jump to read the full interview, but beware: There are big, massive spoilers ahead!
Vernon said that Ellen Tigh comes to "a place of peace and understanding" in her final moments. But she wouldn't reveal when or how Ellen—recently acknowledged to be the fifth and final Cylon—reaches those final moments.
"No Exit" airs tonight at 10 p.m. ET/PT on SCI FI. Following are edited excerpts of our exclusive interview with Vernon.
What did you hear from the fans after the revelation that Ellen was the fifth Cylon?
Vernon: Oh, it's mixed. The reaction was a big reaction, but a very, very mixed reaction. And that's exactly what I was expecting. Some people were sure I was the Cylon. Some people can't believe I'm the fifth Cylon. All I can say is that's probably exactly how [executive producer] Ron Moore wanted the audience to react. Ron and [executive producer] David Eick have their reasons for bringing me back and for creating this absolute that I'm the fifth Cylon, and it has to do with the relationship Ellen has with Saul [Michael Hogan]. It's one of the oldest relationships in the universe. It's the oldest marriage going. And the revelation brings a lot of meaning to the relationship and the dynamic. So much is going to be revealed in the [upcoming] episodes that I think people are going to be fulfilled. You can't satisfy everybody. There will be fans angry forever about this, but c'est la vie. That's good writing. That's good TV.
You obviously know what happens and aren't going to tell us, but what's your sense of what Ellen actually wants from Saul?
Vernon: Hmm, I think Ellen just loves her husband. Ellen wants peace. But I can't tell you too much.
She loves him? Despite her screwing around? Despite all the headaches they've caused each other? Despite him killing her, she loves him?
Vernon: Ellen's motivation from the beginning of time, which will be revealed, has been to simply be with her husband. That's all she wants. She has been in direct competition with Adama [Edward James Olmos]. That man is stealing her husband away from her, and that has caused Ellen to act out in childish ways. But it's all based in love. It would have been a one-dimensional relationship had I just been a drinking sort of ... bitch. Who cares about someone like that? The underlying thing is that she's depressed, and she wants her husband, and she's in competition with this very powerful man.
We know you're going to take the fifth, so to speak, on this, but give us a preview of what's coming up in "No Exit" and beyond.
Vernon: I don't want to give too much away. I don't want to give anything away, but each show is going to be full of revelations and information. I would just ask the fans to watch them with an open mind. Everyone's storyline is going to be, certainly not tied up with a pretty bow, but everyone's storyline will have a lovely crescendo.
You pointed out that some people guessed that you were the fifth Cylon, and that's no doubt because of the groundwork laid in assorted moments over the years, like Saul burning a photo of Ellen or Baltar [James Callis] lying about a blood test. But now some people think that with the business involving Starbuck [Katee Sackhoff], Moore is laying the groundwork for Ellen to somehow not be who we've been told she is. Your thoughts?
Vernon: The fans are seeing these other possibilities. They're seeing this other possibility that Starbuck [is] the fifth, and maybe I'm just this weird red herring, even though the story says—literally says—I am the last Cylon. So I think the fans are going to want to believe what they're going to want to believe, and come the final episode of Battlestar Galactica ever written, some might still think, "You know what? It was Starbuck. I know it was Starbuck."
Lastly, whatever Ellen's last moment is and whenever it occurs, how satisfied are you with her fate?
Vernon: I'm really, really, really, really pleased. I think Ellen comes to a place of peace and understanding and fulfillment.