The story arc of Battlestar Galactica is set in a distant solar system, where a civilization of humans live on a series of planets known as the Twelve Colonies. In the past, the Colonies had been at war with a cybernetic race known as the Cylons. With the unwitting help of a human named Gaius Baltar, the Cylons launch a sudden sneak attack on the Colonies, laying waste to the planets and devastating their populations. Approximately 50,000 humans survive, most of whom were aboard civilian ships that avoided destruction. Of all the Colonial Fleet, the eponymous Battlestar Galactica appears to be the only military capital ship that survived the attack. Under the leadership of Colonial Fleet officer Commander William "Bill" Adama (Olmos) and President Laura Roslin (McDonnell), the Galactica and its crew take up the task of leading the small fugitive fleet of survivors into space in search of a fabled refuge known as Earth.
The series was a ratings success for Sci-Fi, and was particularly popular in Europe and North America.Battlestar Galactica has received nationwide critical acclaim from the American media and has been honored with numerous awards and award nominations in its four-season run. It was the second most watched cable show of 2009, and spawned the spin off TV series Caprica, which aired for one season beginning in January 2010.