Battlestar Galactica Reboot Gives Perfect Musical Homage To Original Series

By Chris Snellgrove | Published

Battlestar Galactica

Tonally, the Battlestar Galactica reboot couldn’t be any more different from the original series. The new show was grim and gritty, and various changes to both the human crew and Cylon warriors hunting them reflect that. However, the newer show does reflect the original in one very subtle way: the original Battlestar Galactica theme is used in the reboot as the colonial anthem.

The Colonial Anthem

Battlestar Galactica

While there are some Battlestar Galactica fans who felt like the reboot should have just used the original theme song as its own, that was never really an option. Again, the new show is dark and brooding, and the triumphant theme of the original series just wouldn’t work for this kind of apocalyptic story. The original theme was upbeat and reflected the energy and optimism of Star Wars, so for the new series, Bear McCreary composed an appropriately moody new theme.

Still, Battlestar Galactica showrunner Ronald D. Moore enjoyed slipping references to the original series in his reboot, and he found a clever way to do so with the original theme from Stu Philips. Listen closely to the newer show and you’ll frequently hear this theme being used in-universe as the Colonial Anthem.

First Heard In The Miniseries

Battlestar Galactica

Did you miss the original Battlestar Galactica theme your first time watching through the reboot? There are some prominent uses of it in the miniseries: for example, the theme plays when the Caprica 5 TV station announces they will be interviewing rockstar scientist Gaius Baltar. It also plays shortly before Adama’s speech, after the Vipers conduct what is meant to be their last flyby as the Galactica is being decommissioned and turned into a museum.

The Old Theme Is Everywhere

Battlestar Galactica

Additionally, in the Battlestar Galactica reboot episode “Final Cut,” the old theme is used in a documentary filmed by D’Anna Biers. Listen closely in that same episode and you can hear crewman Stan Gibson whistling this iconic tune. The old theme haunts the new show all the way to the end, playing in the very last episode as the Galactica and the ships of the Colonial Fleet fly into the sun.

Caprica Got In On The Action Too


Incidentally, this re-used Battlestar Galactica theme honors the original composer Stu Phillips in a couple of different ways. For example, the classic theme heard in the show is arranged by both McCreary and Philips, so the original maestro’s presence is continually felt throughout the newer series. Additionally, the Caprica spinoff reveals that Colonial Anthem was composed by Stu Nomion, whose name is a reflection of Stu Phillips.

Anticipating Easter Eggs In Upcoming Reboot

Battlestar Galactica

We are currently on the cusp of yet another Battlestar Galactica reboot, and we can’t help but wonder if the new show will find a way to use the classic theme just like the old reboot did. As fans of the original series, we were always happy to hear that rousing theme pop up in the reboot, but it wouldn’t be surprising if the latest show focused more on paying tribute to the 2004 reboot instead of the original series. Let’s just hope those homages don’t force us to constantly hear McCreary’s cover of “All Along the Watchtower,” though if they want to reveal that Bob Dylan has been a Cylon all along, we’ll let it pass.