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Old February 20 2010, 04:59 PM   #601
RoJoHen
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

TheGodBen wrote: View Post

The b-story treads old ground as we once again have Ivanova angry at the PsiCorps for what happened to her mother,
Ivanova's characterization in Season 1 goes something like this:

"I hate the PsiCorp."

"I'm Russian."

"I hate the PsiCorp."

"I'm Russian."

"PsiCorps? Hate 'em."

"Did I mention that I'm Russian?"
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Old February 20 2010, 05:00 PM   #602
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

TheGodBen wrote: View Post
Neroon wrote: View Post
"Eyes" seemed to be intended to portray how tenuous Sinclair's position as governor of B5 was. How his appointment there was not exactly universally popular among EarthForce personnel
Which is fine, but they could have found a way to do that than this. As Starbrow suggested, it could have been more like Coming of Age where the senate sends an unlikable lackey to investigate Sinclair in the hope that he can be ousted, but at the end of the episode he finds nothing and even treats Sinclair with respect. Having Zayn be a one-note villain was too easy.
I disagree. ben Zayn was not the focus of the story. Sinclair was. Spend too much time on giving the villain too much attention and you take away from the series regulars. Of course you can do that and get a good story, but it'd be more strategically valuable later in the series, not mid-S1. At this early stage in B5's life, there is precious little time to go down various alleyways that might never pan out. The sponsoring studio wants to see results yesterday.

Different series + different creators = different approaches, which does not equate with one being better, just preferable depending upon the viewer. Sinclair is not Picard and was never intended to be Picard. Sinclair's background is to be more mysterious and full of question. Picard is set up to be more the vintage Trek-like hero of unquestioned integrity and morals. Both can work and work well.
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Old February 20 2010, 05:03 PM   #603
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

RoJoHen wrote: View Post
TheGodBen wrote: View Post

The b-story treads old ground as we once again have Ivanova angry at the PsiCorps for what happened to her mother,
Ivanova's characterization in Season 1 goes something like this:

"I hate the PsiCorp."

"I'm Russian."

"I hate the PsiCorp."

"I'm Russian."

"PsiCorps? Hate 'em."

"Did I mention that I'm Russian?"
I'd amend the Russian part to include:

"I'm Russian so I understand the hardships and bleakness that is human existence. I am deeper than all of you because I understand such angst ridden things."

During the first season, I kept expecting her to say:

"It's a Russian inwention."
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Old February 20 2010, 06:25 PM   #604
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

And Bester is sort of like a Russian PsiCop.
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Old February 20 2010, 06:33 PM   #605
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

CorporalClegg wrote: View Post
And Bester is sort of like a Russian PsiCop.
"Telepathy is a Russian inwention."
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Old February 20 2010, 07:12 PM   #606
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

middyseafort wrote: View Post
CorporalClegg wrote: View Post
And Bester is sort of like a Russian PsiCop.
"Telepathy is a Russian inwention."
hehe... I just finished watching TOS all the way through for the first time, and it's so nice to finally get many of the jokes that are thrown around here.

and Ivanova was dreadful in season 1. at least she becomes bearable in s2
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Old February 20 2010, 09:27 PM   #607
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

Neroon wrote: View Post
I disagree. ben Zayn was not the focus of the story. Sinclair was. Spend too much time on giving the villain too much attention and you take away from the series regulars. Of course you can do that and get a good story, but it'd be more strategically valuable later in the series, not mid-S1. At this early stage in B5's life, there is precious little time to go down various alleyways that might never pan out. The sponsoring studio wants to see results yesterday.

Different series + different creators = different approaches, which does not equate with one being better, just preferable depending upon the viewer. Sinclair is not Picard and was never intended to be Picard. Sinclair's background is to be more mysterious and full of question. Picard is set up to be more the vintage Trek-like hero of unquestioned integrity and morals. Both can work and work well.
But the problem is that the exact opposite is happening, Sinclair is coming across as a Kirk-like hero of unquestionable integrity because most of the antagonists he faces are 1 dimensional and clearly in the wrong. It's similar to the problem on Voyager where the writers feared that they'd make Janeway look weak if any of her crew challenged her decisions, so characters like Chakotay were emasculated. The opposite happened, by never being properly challenged Janeway appeared weaker than she was.

Sinclair's track record...
The Gathering: G'Kar was the ultimate villain at the end of the episode, this revelation was played as comedy.
Midnight on the Firing Line: A MacGuffin.
Soul Hunter: A man considered insane even by Soul Hunter standards.
Infection: A b-movie monster.
Mind War: Bester seems like he could be multi-dimensional in the future, it is hard to judge him on this episode alone.
The War Prayer: A racist.
And the Sky Full of Stars: A ham whose motivation isn't explained, at least not in this episode.
Deathwalker: A genocidal witch.
By Any Means Necessary: A prig.
Eyes: An unstable, covetous rival.

Sinclair's best moment so far was the section in Believers where he had to weigh up whether to save that boy or not, other than that I'm not finding him all that interesting as a man. He's more a mystery than a character in his own right. In fairness, Sisko was like that too for the first two years of DS9, he was good in Emissary but it wasn't until Past Tense that he really started to come together as a character. The problem with Sinclair is that he can't be afforded the luxury of time like Sisko was because I know he will be replaced by Sheridan in season 2. I don't know, maybe he sticks around as a recurring character and I'll get to see him prove himself against compelling antagonists, but right now I feel that they're wasting him by putting him up against people like Ben Zayn.
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Old February 20 2010, 10:54 PM   #608
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

Patience...just take it all in...
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Old February 20 2010, 11:13 PM   #609
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

The real clincher for "Legacies" is Delenn being the perp, I'd agree. It's definitely a good example of the relative uptick in quality as season one enters its final lap.

RoJoHen wrote: View Post
Ivanova's characterization in Season 1 goes something like this:

"I hate the PsiCorp."

"I'm Russian."

"I hate the PsiCorp."

"I'm Russian."

"PsiCorps? Hate 'em."

"Did I mention that I'm Russian?"
Oh come now, she was more developed than that.

Uh.

She was also Jewish. There, see?

TheGodBen wrote: View Post
But the problem is that the exact opposite is happening, Sinclair is coming across as a Kirk-like hero of unquestionable integrity because most of the antagonists he faces are 1 dimensional and clearly in the wrong.
Exactly. It's lazy, conveinent writing, especially in something like "Eyes." Star Trek can be guilty of it at times, but really, its best and most probing episodes morally are the ones where there is another side to the argument - consider "The Measure of a Man", which is a goddamned powerhouse of Picard's intellectual and moral integrity, but that doesn't mean Riker or even his old flame - or even Maddox - come off as one-note villains. They all have perfectly rational reasons for either what they want to do or argue to be the case.
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Old February 20 2010, 11:48 PM   #610
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

I swear, some of the B5 bashers, with their quick Trek comparisons, come across as...catty/bitchy. Yes, Kegg, I would be talking about you.
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Old February 21 2010, 12:02 AM   #611
Kegg
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

stonester1 wrote: View Post
I swear, some of the B5 bashers, with their quick Trek comparisons, come across as...catty/bitchy. Yes, Kegg, I would be talking about you.
I'm a B5 basher now? This comes as a surprise to me. I do energetically enjoy taking the show down a few pegs or nine, but I also do like it very, very much. That's less contradictory than it sounds: There's things I really like about B5, and then there's all this other stuff I'm not keen on.

Anyway, with more than a few other posts being to the effect of 'now the show gets incredibly amazing', well, I like to counterpoint. Did I mention "Counterpoint" is my favourite episode of Star Trek: Voyager? I'm like the guy in that episode: Love Mahler, allegedly sympathetic guy, but I have it in for the telepaths.

I think the metaphors were too mixed there.
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Old February 21 2010, 12:24 AM   #612
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

Kegg wrote: View Post
I'm a B5 basher now? This comes as a surprise to me. I do energetically enjoy taking the show down a few pegs or nine,
Or at least attempting, my question would be why.

but I also do like it very, very much. That's less contradictory than it sounds: There's things I really like about B5, and then there's all this other stuff I'm not keen on.
It's the latter that, for whatever reason, you seem singularly focused on.


Anyway, with more than a few other posts being to the effect of 'now the show gets incredibly amazing', well, I like to counterpoint.
I don't know how much of a counterpoint it is. You act like it's some kind of revelation that the show isn't always perfect, especially in it's first season. For some reason, you like to FOCUS on that.

I don't get that.

But yes, you do come across as a basher at times. Like when B5 was the shiney new scifi kid and you were a Trek fan who resented it at the time, and still do to an extent.

Me, I'm one of the happy Trek fans who WELCOMED the new kid and was glad to see this one wanting to defy previously established genre tropes and expectations, and throw a little something extra in the mix.

That TV science fiction didn't have to be Star Trek.

Star Trek did itself favors when it came to that realization itself, and shot itself in the foot when it retreated from that with a vengeance.

Did I mention "Counterpoint" is my favourite episode of Star Trek: Voyager? I'm like the guy in that episode: Love Mahler, allegedly sympathetic guy, but I have it in for the telepaths.

I think the metaphors were too mixed there.
Voyager would a a classic case in point of that retreat. There was a chance to truly break the mold with that unique situation, crew and location created. But no.

Mind you, there was lots of promise. Some good characters well cast, some good stories told in the mix, and I'm a Voyager fan now (for many years was not), but largely, it was an opportunity wasted.

Same thing happened to Enterprise.

Anyway, the point is, Babylon 5 wished to retreat from all that. And most of the time, it did a damn good job. And helped create a new paradigm that allowed subsequent creators to be more daring.

We as science fiction fans, as STAR TREK FANS, are better off as a result.
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Old February 21 2010, 12:43 AM   #613
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

stonester1 wrote: View Post
It's the latter that, for whatever reason, you seem singularly focused on.
To quote myself:
Kegg wrote: View Post
The real clincher for "Legacies" is Delenn being the perp, I'd agree. It's definitely a good example of the relative uptick in quality as season one enters its final lap.
That was the post just prior to the one that preceeded this disgression. It's not glowing praise, but I don't think it'd be altogether true I'm singularly focused on criticizing the show.

You act like it's some kind of revelation that the show isn't always perfect, especially in it's first season. For some reason, you like to FOCUS on that.
Because TheGodBen is currently watching the first sseason. I'll get to the others soon enough, no? Come "The Coming of the Shadows" and "The Long Twilight Struggle" expect me to be whistling a fairly different tune.

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Old February 21 2010, 12:52 AM   #614
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

Kegg wrote: View Post

That was the post just prior to the one that preceeded this disgression. It's not glowing praise, but I don't think it'd be altogether true I'm singularly focused on criticizing the show.
Such damning with faint praise, especially when stacked with just plain damning, makes it pretty clear where your biases lie. At least to me.




Because TheGodBen is currently watching the first sseason. I'll get to the others soon enough, no? Come "The Coming of the Shadows" and "The Long Twilight Struggle" expect me to be whistling a fairly different tune.
Oh, I suspect you'll get in your digs where you can.

One of the best eps of the series.
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Old February 21 2010, 12:55 AM   #615
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Re: A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

stonester1 wrote: View Post
Such damning with faint praise, especially when stacked with just plain damning, makes it pretty clear where your biases lie. At least to me.
I didn't say I was fair, I said I wasn't singular. My verdict is definitely largely against the first season, as I've already rambled about.

Oh, I suspect you'll get in your digs where you can.
Absolutely.
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