Battlestar Galactica (2003)/Lee Adama

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Major Lee "Apollo" Adama
Battlestar Galactica (2003)
Actor Jamie Bamber
First Appearance Miniseries
Last Appearance 4x20 - Daybreak, Part 2
Series Billing Billed
Episode Count -
Notable Episodes 1x10 - The Hand of God
2x04 - Resistance

Commander Lee "Apollo" Adama is the former CAG (Commander, Air Group) of the Battlestar Galactica and the current commanding officer of the Battlestar Pegasus.


Basic Information

Lee Adama, William Adama's only surviving son, is the product of a shattered family - his brother, Zak Adama, was killed in an accident during his Colonial military flight training, and his mother divorced his father in the aftermath. Lee harbored a deep-seated resentment for his father for years, believing that William Adama was responsible for essentially forcing his brother into the life of a fighter pilot.

His hatred of his father notwithstanding, Lee obviously inherited his father's skill at and love for flying, and ascended to the rank of captain in the Colonial fighter corps.

When the Cylons attacked the Colonies, Apollo was temporarily assigned to the Battlestar Galactica as part of an honor flight at its decommissioning ceremonies. He flew the aging Mark II Viper formerly flown by his father, a fact which he was singularly unimpressed by while everyone around him considered it an honor. After the decommissioning ceremonies he was assigned to escort Education Minister Laura Roslin Colonial Heavy 798 (soon to be redesignated Colonial One back to Caprica, a mission that was cut short by the Cylon attack.

Lee distinguished himself as a strong tactical thinker, saving the fleet from destruction by the Cylons at least once through use of an electromagnetic pulse bomb before making rendezvous with Galactica at Ragnar Anchorage.

Upon returning to the Galactica, Apollo learned that Galactica's former lead pilot, Jackson "Ripper" Spencer, had been killed, leaving him as the most senior fighter pilot in the Colonial survivor fleet, and he was promoted to CAG.

Lee and his father reconciled over the course of the first season, something which was sped up by the revelation that it was not entirely William Adama's fault that Zak had been killed—Kara "Starbuck" Thrace, Zak's fiancée and military flight instructor, had passed Zak through basic flight even though he should have failed it because she didn't want to hurt his feelings.

Apollo has strong opinions about government, including a habit of reading 'banned' books (such as Tom Zarek's manifesto). His opinions on the Fleet's government get him into trouble several times, once with the President and his father when he promises Zarek free elections and again with his father when he mutinies against William Adama's attempt to remove Roslin from power. He aided Roslin in her escape from a Galactica prison cell into the fleet and stayed with her during her search for the Tomb of Athena on Kobol.

During the situation surrounding the appearance of the Battlestar Pegasus, Lee was temporarly transferred from his duties as CAG to duties as a regular pilot on Pegasus and subsequently demoted to Lieutenant. After Admiral Cain's death, his CAG status was reestablished.

He began a relationship with Galactica communications officer Dualla, and during a meeting with her to discuss where the relationship was going the two of them were taken hostage by terrorists, who took over the lounge they were in on Cloud 9. During the fracas, Presidential aide and Dualla's former love interest Billy was killed, and the two apparently developed their relationship further in the intervening time between that incident and the next major incident to strike the fleet, and Apollo was promoted from Captain to Major.

Apollo visited Pegasus during a time period where the ship was undergoing a problem: it had lost two Raptors on a training mission that Starbuck, who was temporarily assigned to Pegasus, was running. Commander Barry Garner and Major Apollo had differences leading to Garner disobeying a direct order from Admiral Adama to not go after the missing Raptors, which Apollo and Starbuck believed were being used as bait to draw Pegasus into a Cylon trap. It was indeed a Cylon trap, and Commander Garner was killed saving the ship after placing Major Apollo in command. Apollo displayed proficiency and quick thinking and bought enough time for the ship's FTL drive to be brought back online, at which time they jumped away from the Cylons and back to the relative safety of the fleet.

Upon his return, Admiral Adama promoted Apollo to Commander (possibly a "brevet" rank granted on a provisional basis to anyone in command of a battlestar, since he completely skipped a rank grade) and gave him command of the Pegasus.

Character History

  • Miniseries: Apollo is introduced and becomes Galactica's CAG after the destruction of the Colonies.
  • 1x13 - Kobol's Last Gleaming (2): Apollo refuses to go along with William Adama's termination of Laura Roslin's presidency, resulting in his arrest.
  • 2x04 - The Farm: Apollo aids President Roslin in escaping from Galactica.

Memorable Moments

  • Miniseries: Apollo uses a decommissioned EMP coil being taken from Galactica back to Caprica to save Colonial One from destruction by the Cylons.
  • The Hand of God: Apollo leads Galactica's Vipers in destroying a Cylon base guarding a tylium mine.
  • The Farm: Apollo refuses to record a message denouncing his father for Tom Zarek.
  • Home (2): Apollo kisses Starbuck upon her return from Caprica, apparently surprising himself as well as her.


  • Original Actor: The character of Apollo in the original series was played by actor Richard Hatch, who plays recurring character Tom Zarek in the new series.
  • Reserves: According to the caption in Lee Adama's interview with D'Anna Biers in the episode Final Cut, Apollo is Colonial Fleet Reserve (i.e. Army Reserve) instead of regular Fleet.


  • Final Cut: "Like everyone else, my pilots have lost their families, their friends, everyone they ever cared about; but on top of that they're asked to put their lives on the line every single day, for a fleet that seems more interested in what they do wrong than in what they do right. They're not asking for your pity, but they damn well deserve your respect."