Previously: We were introduced to Tom Zarek, political terrorist. Roslin agreed to have elections as soon as her term ends. Also, Helo starts to figure out that Boomer might be a Cylon.
Now: Who says we can't have fireworks just because our home planet was destroyed and we're struggling to survive in the cold recesses of space?!
For Colonial Day (a government holiday similar to "Independence Day") President Roslin announces the assembly of a Quorum. (Whee! A quorum! Much more fun than fireworks!) A representative for each planet of the twelve colonies is going to be elected.
Also, if you thought that the apocalypse means you can escape pundit panel shows, you're wrong! Lots of exposition about Colonial Day is delivered via a radio show with the universe's three surviving journalists. (We're like cockroaches, you're never going to get rid of us.) Wallace Gray, a heretofore unheard of adviser in Roslin's cabinet, is introduced. To Roslin's dismay, former prisoner, hostage-taker, and political terrorist Tom Zarek is elected to represent his home world of Sagittaron.
Adama wants to prevent Zarek from traveling to the luxury liner Cloud Nine, where the quorum is happening. Roslin tells Adama they need to let it all play out, rather than giving Zarek the chance to play martyr. Zarek makes an acceptance speech from his prison ship. It does not exactly sound like he's hoping for world peace. He sounds like he's been listening to too many Bob Dylan songs. P.S., this whole time a faceless assassin has been taking a really long time packing his murder bag full of killing tools. He's done now.
Starbuck goes to see Baltar to tell him that she's head of his security detail, and their shuttle to Cloud Nine is leaving tomorrow. Baltar wants to know why he has to go to the quorum, and Starbuck breaks it to him that he's Caprica's elected representative. After Starbuck leaves, he starts complaining about how boring being a politician is going to be, but Six sees her chance and points out that being a politician means you can adopt a wide stance and hardly anyone will care.
Cut to: Cloud Nine. Starbuck and Apollo are talking about how hard this security job is going to be. Then they flirt and squirt each other with a garden hose. I guess that water shortage didn't set the luxury liner back any, seeing as the grass looks perfectly coiffed.
Tigh and Ellen are on the receiving line for all the diplomats arriving. Tigh refuses to shake Zarek's hand, but Ellen is game for it. Plus she sort of flirts with him, which is par for the course for her. (When Zarek arrives, he gets heckled, and a huge Sagittaron dude tries to step on the heckler, but Apollo stops him. Big Dude will appear later, don't worry, so to make sure he does, Apollo talks some smack to the guy about not touching the other passengers.)
Zarek works his way down the receiving line to Roslin. She shakes his hand and even goes so far as to give him air kisses on both cheeks. Zarek tries to assure Roslin that he is not her enemy. She doesn't appear to be confident of that.
Cut to the Quorum meeting. It's so boring that Baltar has fallen asleep. Imaginary Six wakes him up and points out that one of the reporters is not wearing underwear, and has been checking him out all day. Then Six points out that Baltar can boink anyone he wants, but she has his heart.
Zarek breaks up the meeting by objecting to the Quorum agenda, wanting instead to elect a Vice President. Baltar seconds the motion, when prompted by Six. The motion passes, so nominations for Vice President go out: Zarek is the first candidate submitted.
Roslin is stalking around Space Force One, totally not happy about the thought of Zarek being elected Vice President. She wants to nominate her friend Warren Gray. He's really uncomfortable about the idea, but Roslin is a scary bitch when she wants to be. So Warren agrees.
Zarek is doing a little soapboxing for the reporters about how Roslin has done nothing new with the infrastructure of the fleet. I don't really know when she's had time to, seeing as it's been nothing but crisis after crisis for the past month, but okay, go on Tom: He claims that people on the bottom, like the gardener he points to aboard the Cloud Nine, go about their duties as they did before, even though there's no real monetary system, no payroll, no benefits. Everyone is still going through the motions befitting their class and rank. Just when it sounds like he's calling for a revolution, he changes direction and says that we should stop caring about the individual, and start caring for the community.
Apollo is out drinking and is offended by Zarek's tirade over the wireless radio. He asks the bartender to shut it off. That's when Big Dude from Saggitaron makes his re-entrance. The two of them get in to a pissing match about the radio, which includes Big Dude clocking Apollo in the head with a bottle. Starbuck gets in the mix, and notices a nondescript dude with a gun. She takes him down.
In the interrogation room, Apollo and Starbuck are doing a lot of yelling at nondescript dude. He claims to not be an assassin. They threaten to throw him out of an airlock. He continues to claim he isn't an assassin.
On Space Force One, Roslin refuses to let Apollo throw nondescript dude out of the airlock, but can't take the chance that Zarek has another assassin on board. She orders Apollo to shadow Zarek everywhere.
Out at the bar, Ellen is drinking, as usual. Zarek pops up as the bartender to flirt with her. They talk politics. Zarek wants to know where Valence (the nondescript dude) is. Cut to: Dead Valence. Whoops!
Now Baltar is working the reporters, assuring them that Roslin is terrific as a president. Meanwhile, Roslin is being briefed about the death of Valence. She's half listening to Baltar ranting on the radio, who takes a few potshots at Zarek. Apollo tries to warn her that Zarek is definitely going to come after her again, and she insists that Zarek will not be elected Vice President.
Not seeing any victory in having her friends run for the vice presidential office, Roslin meets with Warren and tells him he's out. Despite saying he didn't want the post in the first place, Warren gets bitchy and calls Roslin a backstabber. Roslin then turns to Baltar to be her second, chasing him down while he's in the men's room. Remember when Roslin said she suspected Baltar was a Cylon conspirator and would never believe otherwise? She's completely backpeddling on that, sucking up to Baltar. (The reporter with no panties pops out of the bathroom stall after Roslin leaves.)
Apollo and Starbuck are changing in the pilot locker room, and talking about the assassination plot. Apollo points out that Starbuck is kind of smelly and gross. She claims she cleans up good.
Quorum vote: Six votes Zarek, Six votes Baltar. The tribal member voted out will be asked to leave the tribal council area immediately. The winner is: Baltar! Because Roslin's vote was the tie-breaker.
At the after-quorum celebration, Starbuck is all spiffed up in a sexy dress and lip gloss. Apollo asks her to dance. Zarek finds Roslin and swears he was not responsible for any of that killing Valence stuff. Cough cough. The two of them actually have really nice chemistry together, it's a shame that everyone hates Zarek just because he's a suspicious-assassin-ordering-pants.
Adama asks Roslin to dance, and whaddya know! They have chemistry, too. They compare politics and war. Roslin points out that in war, you can only get killed once.
Meanwhile! Back on Cylon-Occupied Caprica: Helo and Boomer #2 make it to Delphi City, a military fortress. And then Helo finally gets it! He sees a copy of Boomer walking around Delphi City, and Boomer #2 shoots her. He runs away from Boomer #2 -- because the best thing to do when you find out your girlfriend is a cybernetic entity capable of killing a man with her bare hands is to try and outrun her. She can't possibly catch you! Her synthetically generated skin is too soft for that!