Every week, HackCollege scours the interwebs to bring you the best streamable TV shows, documentaries and movies that you may have missed. 

As some of my posts in the past may have hinted, I am an enormous nerd. I could probably recite the dialogue of every episode of Firefly in its entirety and know far too much about the lay-out of the U.S.S. Enterprise (Jean-luc Picard era, of course). So, of course, I’m also a huge fan of Ronald D. Moore and David Eick’s groundbreaking sci-fi masterpiece, Battlestar Galactica. For those who haven’t seen it, 2003′s gritty re-imagining of the classic sci-fi series was an arcing story of humanity on the verge of extinction while struggling against a race of cybernetic lifeforms known as Cylons, who had adapted the ability to perfectly replicate the appearance of humans. It was a constant parade of engrossing intrigue,  tortured characters, and most importantly, explosions in space.

Now, three years after the series concluded, creator David Eick is stepping backwards in the BSG timeline with the online prequel series, Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome. The series is set a decade after the Cylons, who were created by the human race to be automaton servants in the Thirteen Colonies established by humanity, first rebelled against their creators and in turn launched a war of annihilation against their former masters. Now, in the tenth year of the war, pilot William “Husker” Adama (Luke Pasqualino) arrives from the Colonial Academy to begin his service on the battlestar he would one day command: the Galactica.

While David Eick has notably received less creative credit for Battlestar than his co-creator on the series, Ronald D. Moore, Blood & Chrome nonetheless hits all the marks that made the 2003 series phenomenal, particularly the matching the tone and pacing of the first two seasons of the original show, which garnered the most critical acclaim during BSG’s run.

Every detail that made the original series most realistic and captivating sci-fi epic ever put to screen, including the use of composer Bear McCreary’s pounding, militaristic music and the shaky, documentarian cinematography is perfectly replicated in Blood & Chrome. Even more impressive is the quality of the set design and special effects for a series created for first release on the web. Pasqualino shines as the young and cocky William Adama, who manages to evoke the same quiet intensity found in Edward James Olmos’ portrayal of the character in BSG while also managing to chart new territory as you watch him develop from a self-assured rookie to pragmatic veteran.

While rumor has it that SyFy will be stitching the 15 minute episodes of the web series together for a 2013 TV movie and possible backdoor pilot for a new series, it still is incredible to see the amount of care taken in the production of  such a polished series for the web.

Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome is available for streaming in HD on MachinimaPrime‘s YouTube channel. Here’s the first episode:

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