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Science Fiction & Fantasy Farscape, Babylon 5, Star Wars, Firefly, vampires, genre books and film.

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Old December 29 2012, 02:44 PM   #1
FIDONZ
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Babylon 5 or Lexx?

Hi, I just found this forum while searching for discussions on Babylon 5 and Lexx. I read a few threads and noticed that many forum members share my appreciation for all things sci-fi, so I signed up. After all, who better to help me out with my dilemma than like-minded sci-fi fans?

This is the decision I have to make; I have enough cash to spare to buy an entire series. There are several I have never seen before (I tend to avoid good sci-fi until I can catch a series from the start so as not to spoil the plot) and I have whittled it down to two; should I buy Babylon 5 or Lexx?

Please, no spoilers, but which of the two would you recommend and why?

Thanks guys.
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Old December 29 2012, 03:00 PM   #2
DWF
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

Since Lexx has been rereleased you can get the entire series pretty cheaply, but it's a wild ride and you don't know much about the show you're going to be a shocked by some of it. B5 will cost you a bit more and it's a more sedate series.
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Old December 29 2012, 03:05 PM   #3
jayceee
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

(I can't comment on Lexx).

Recently I picked up the five seasons of Babylon 5 on dvd.

In the past, I've only seen some random episodes of B5. (Never seen the entire series sequentially). Previously, I didn't really think too much about the episodes or the show in general.

After watching the first several episodes of season 1 on dvd, I like what I've seen so far.

Part of the reason why I initially dismissed Babylon 5 (B5), is that I watched Crusade (a B5 spinoff) before watching any episodes of B5.

Crusade seemed like a bunch of disjointed episodes, without much of a storyline. Subsequently watching some random B5 episodes out of sequence, seemed to reinforce this viewpoint.

I wrongly thought B5 was just like another disjointed Crusade type show.


(Recently I picked up all five seasons of B5 on dvd as an impulse buy, when I saw them for less than $10 each per season).

Much to my surprise, B5 has an ongoing coherent storyline. Sorta like an ongoing soap opera on a space station.

The visual style of B5 is what I like in a sci-fi type show. I didn't realize what I was missing out on, over all these years.

Last edited by Neroon; December 29 2012 at 08:04 PM.
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Old December 29 2012, 04:33 PM   #4
Forbin
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

jayceee wrote: View Post
Part of the reason why I initially dismissed Babylon 5 (B5), is that I watched Crusade (a B5 spinoff) before watching any episodes of B5.

Crusade seemed like a bunch of disjointed episodes, without much of a storyline.
That's because it was, but only because of TNT network's overpowering interference. Half of the first 13 episodes were in the can already when TNT demanded massive changes. The producer made those changes under protest, and shot the next half of the episodes. Then TNT demanded they show the episodes with the changes first, and because Straczynski always has a linear plot arc in mind, any sense of order went all the hell. The big story arc wasn't going to start until late first season or season 2, so we never even got a hint at what was going to happen.

Crusade is best watched AFTER Babylon 5, and with the network screw-job kept in mind.
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Old December 29 2012, 04:40 PM   #5
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

As to which to watch, B5 or Lexx - well, they're two very, VERY different shows!

B5 is a 5-season-long novel, pitting humans against godlike forces for control of the galaxy, with many wonderful stories of personal and interpersonal struggle along the way, and epic, galaxy-shattering events. Plus, ya know, lotsa cool space battles. Keep in mind, at the beginning, that the CGI is some of the very first CGI special effects ever used on TV, so it starts out a bit crude. By season 3 it's state-of-the-art for the times. Also, season 1 is almost all set-up, like the early chapters of a book. Some people think it's kinda dull, but each episode has a little plot arc clue that may pay off several seasons later. It picks up the pace in Season 2, then everything explodes in S3 and the ride gets wild.

Lexx? well, I started watching it when it came out, thought it was insane over-the-top softcore porn, and gave up on it.
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Old December 29 2012, 04:46 PM   #6
jayceee
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

Forbin wrote: View Post
Crusade is best watched AFTER Babylon 5, and with the network screw-job kept in mind.
Definitely.

I was given the Crusade dvd set as an xmas gift many years ago. Didn't know much (nor cared) about Crusade or Babylon 5 at the time. But I watched the Crusade dvds anyways, when I was bored on a long weekend.
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Old December 29 2012, 04:52 PM   #7
Kegg
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

Forbin wrote: View Post
Lexx? well, I started watching it when it came out, thought it was insane over-the-top softcore porn, and gave up on it.
There's more to Lexx than that (although that's definitely part of it). It's best episodes are bizarre surreal farces - a character playing a game of chess with a Death-like antagonist, the cast being compelled to sing in a musical about the undead character's living days. At it's worst, Lexx is the worst TV show I've willingly sat through, but in its better hours, it was pretty fun.

But to answer the OP's question, Babylon 5 is a better purchase. Lexx has it's moments, but it's wildly uneven and it's probably too weird and/or too filthy or too often terrible for most viewers. And even then, when it comes to outre space opera, Farscape is by far the better series.

Babylon 5 has it's own share of problems - the first season is of decidedly mixed quality - but it when it gets going, it has some of the most satisfying arced narratives in sci-fi TV, and in Londo Mollari, one of the genre's best characters.

I hope this helped.
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Old December 29 2012, 05:17 PM   #8
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

As has been stated Lexx and B5 are two completely different animals.

I can't speak to an arc in Lexx, I never paid enough attention to get an arc out of it, but, what I did see, definitely seemed to have little more of a storytelling goal in mind, then the characters going from place to place trying to get laid.

Babylon 5 took itself very seriously (some think a little too seriously) and is my all time favorite series (behind it are ST: DS9 and Farscape).
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Old December 29 2012, 06:07 PM   #9
Kegg
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

^
All four seasons of Lexx have clear arcs, complete with typically bizarre payoffs. Season three is the most densely arced, so it generally does benefit from being watched in order.
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Old December 29 2012, 06:18 PM   #10
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

Babylon 5 is the second greatest thing that ever happened to science fiction. It would be first, but there's this little universe called "Star Trek".

As for Lexx. I've never seen it, so can't comment either for or against. But I can't imagine it's better than Babylon 5.

Although, you might, so who knows?
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Old December 29 2012, 06:23 PM   #11
sonak
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

Babylon 5 is one of the greatest sci-fi series ever created. Just overlook the effects and (sometimes) the acting and focus on the story.

Lexx I could not get into at all. I tried a few times and just gave up, it seemed awful.
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Old December 29 2012, 10:28 PM   #12
Asbo Zaprudder
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

Lexx has one redeeming feature - the Brunnen-G anthem - well, two redeeming features if you include Eva Habermann, but she only appeared in the first season and maybe a couple of S2 episodes. Other than that, it had some stunning conceptual ideas that weren't realised in its execution. Rent, don't buy, in my opinion.

Babylon 5 all the way...
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Old December 30 2012, 03:37 AM   #13
Greg Cox
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

LEXX always frustrated me. It always sounded interesting and appealing and boldly offbeat on paper, but the show itself was never as funny or sexy or interesting as I wanted it to be . . . .

I'd go with B-5.
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Old December 30 2012, 03:39 AM   #14
FIDONZ
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

I've read a lot of opinions on Babylon 5 being one of the all time best sci-fi series. So I've decided to buy that over Lexx.

Thank you to everyone for sharing their thoughts.
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Old December 30 2012, 03:40 AM   #15
Geoff Peterson
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Re: Babylon 5 or Lexx?

I would have gone with paint drying.
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