I did like the show enough, but the ghost of the original Galactica haunted me. Actually, the ghosts of Farscape and Babylon 5 were rattling some chains as well. The classic show and it's characters had more character, more layers. Gone are the distinctive Egyptian accents in the costumes, or any reference at all that they are descendents of the "Ancient Astronauts" that founded Earth. But if this show became a weekly, I'd probably still watch it. Characters can and will develop with time.
I don't know how many of you here have never seen the original series, so for the sake of assumption, I'm going to go into a comparison/contrast.
Male or female, this wasn't Starbuck. I saw none of his trademark sarcasm. The original was not a hero. Before the war he was a hotshot pilot, a gambler, a ladies' man and even a coward. When his entire civilization was destroyed by the Cylons, he was still those things. When the remainder of humanity needed his skills as a pilot and a warrior, he was gambling in alien casinos trying to cut deals for safe passage off of the Battlestar. He tried to run a number of times. It was as time went on and his character progressed that he grew into the role of a hero. This new Starbuck was a hero. She was emotionally invested and concerned about this war. The original Starbuck would have had more of a "get me the hell out of here" attitude, while his best friend Apollo would grab him by the collar and drag him into the line of fire.
This wasn't Apollo. In the classic story, Apollo was going to fly in a ceremonial parade celebrating peace with the Cylons, but gave his spot to his younger brother Zack. (played by Rick Springfield!) The Cylons attacked, and Zack was killed. Apollo knew it should have been him and he was racked with guilt. Their father Adama blamed Apollo for letting his brother fly before he was ready. When their home planet was bombed, Adama and Apollo took a shuttle down to find their home in total ruins. Adama's wife died in the bombing. The loss of Mom and Zack brought father and son together like never before, and really drove home to them the impact of the war before them. This Apollo was a hero who valued the remnants of his family second only to saving what was left of humanity. He was a loyal son and warrior, NOT a bitter brat who enjoyed torturing his dad with the memory of his son and ex-wife.
There were strong female characters in the original Galactica who no longer exist since they converted some male lead characters into females.
Athena - Adama's daughter, Apollo's sister. She was the navigator of the Galactica. She was also a previous love interest of Starbuck. She wanted to be a Viper pilot, and she overcame a long tradition of chauvenism, ultimately proving her superior pilot skills when the 'boys' needed rescuing.
Cassiopeia - a prostitute who found refuge on the Galactica. Due to her profession, the other refugees treated her like trash, telling her she didn't deserve to survive when so many others had died. Starbuck jumps to her rescue, and she becomes his one true love. Much to Athena's annoyance.
Serena - (Jane Seymour's first TV role) played a refugee who';s husband was killed in the attack. She and her son Boxy survived. She started a brief romance with Apollo before she was killed, and Apollo then adopted her son as his own.
Athena, Casseopia, Serena and Boxy. Four very important characters to the original series that no longer exist.
There was something else that Battlestar Galactica had that none of the other sci-fi series prior to it had, two black lead actors. Boomer was the working-class warrior/pilot, regularly fighting alongside Apollo and Starbuck. He is now an Asian female. Colonel Tigh was second-in-command of the Galactica, sharing the burden of leading the remainder of humanity to safety. He's now a snivveling white guy who seems to second-guess himself, and inspires no confidence in his crew.
In the original series, Baltar was Satan, the fallen one, the betrayer. He was the sell-out. He handed over everything the Cylons needed to wipe out humanity under his own free will, with the small exception of a colony that he could rule. He lived among the Cylons, as their willing servant. He gave them insight into the human psyche and advised them on how to conquer humanity. The new Baltar Accidentally handed over this information to the Cylons because he was thinking with the wrong head. He actually feels sorry for what he did in his own way. Rather than living among the Cylons, they implanted a chip in his head with a neural clone of Scorpius on it, whispering to him, trying to sway him to their side. Oh, did I say Scorpius? Sorry. My bad.
I'm still trying to make sense of the whole Cylon thing. The whole "they walk among us" thing is so overdone. I'm not even paranoid anymore. Modern sci-fi has made me numb to the wholeb 'body snatchers' cliche.