The story of Battlestar Galactica begins a long time, uh, before now, in a galaxy far, far... from here. Humanity lives on 12 planets, called the Colonies of Kobol, until they are promptly wiped out by evil robots, called Cylons (featured in the Cracked article 6 Evil Henchmen Who Sucked at Their Job).
Luckily, there's some spaceships left, among them the titular Battlestar, with about 50,000 chronic alcoholics on board. Rather than risk the survival of the human race in a badass space fight, they puss out and hightail it for Earth. Their search for this mythical planet and the hope that it represents for a steady supply of tobacco and grain alcohol is the driving premise of the show.
The Original Series (1978)