I will be the first to admit that my first impression to actress Katee Sackhoff was not a positive one. As I was late to the game when it came to watching “Battlestar Galactica”, the first time I saw Katee was in the final season of “24”, as Dana Walsh. Even though the series ended on a relatively strong note, Katee’s portrayal of a, yet another, mole in the agency, was incredibly irritating. There were times when Kim Bauer was less annoying.
That being said, when I finally took a chance on the re-imagined “Battlestar Galactica” in 2011 (nearly 2 years after the show went off the air), I began to see Katee in a completely different light. Her fierce, yet nuanced, portrayal of Kara ‘Starbuck’ Thrace, the incredibly gifted, but profoundly self-destructive, Viper pilot was quite impressive. Thrace had a level of emotional depth not usually seen in a science fiction series (of course, much of “Battlestar Galactica” was like that).
Now, while I remember the original, campy late 70’s version of “Battlestar Galactica”, I can’t say it held any special place in my heart. I just remember it being the typical cheese-fest show that was endemic in the late 70’s and through much of the 80’s. Having recently attempted to watch to the old series again, I know my original impression was correct. Since I didn’t have that kind of attachment to the original series, I had no problem with the character of Starbuck, which was male (played by Dirk Benedict) in the first show, now being portrayed as a female by Sackhoff.
Katee’s performance as Starbuck is one of a million different elements of the re-imagined “Battlestar Galactica” that have stayed with me long after I watch the final episode (which I have done three times now, after marathoning the entire series each time). To have earned such iconic status for her groundbreaking role is not too shabby for this former young star swimmer who took up acting when a knee injury derailed her amphibious dreams.
Of course, Katee’s acting resume isn’t all about being Starbuck and kicking those frakkin’ Cylons across the galaxy. Her first regular acting job was on MTV’s hormone-driven, guilty pleasure dramedy, “Undressed”, back in 2000 (when Katee was just 19). She followed that with her first major film role in “My First Mister” (with Leelee Sobieski and Albert Brooks) and then got to play Richard Dreyfuss’ daughter in the short-live series “The Education of Max Bickford”.
In addition to “24”, Katee’s post-“Battlestar” resume has included doing voice work on “Robot Chicken” and “Star Wars: The Clone Wars”. She has also recently taken the role of Victoria ‘Vic’ Moretti on the A&E western drama “Longmire”. On the big screen, she recently starred in “Riddick”, Vin Diesel’s second sequel to the surprise sci-fi hit “Pitch Black”. With “24” a distant memory that has long been replaced by the awesomeness of Katee as Starbuck, her future acting endeavors will be worth watching. So Say We All!
Of course, some of the fun-loving attitude that Katee brings can be found in her ink. I have been able to identify three real tattoos that Katee has, as well as her famous ‘fictional’ tattoo from “Battlestar Galactica”. On her right forearm, just below the elbow, she has the Latin phrase ‘bona fiscalia’, which can mean ‘good year’, ‘good property’ or ‘public property’.
Finally, here is her famous, fictional, tattoo that Kara Thrace got with husband Sam Anders (Michael Trucco) in “Battlestar Galactica”. When they embraced, their separate tattoos formed a unified circle with wings. A symbol for the colony of Caprica is also present.
You can also follow her on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/kateesackhoff