A Niner Watches Babylon 5 (NO spoilers, please)

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by TheGodBen, Jan 24, 2010.

  1. stonester1

    stonester1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Too right on the military wives thing, Reverend. Seen it myself and was completely shocked when it happened in front of me.
     
  2. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yes but Caesar died on the 15th.

    I suspect it's a trifle deliberate.
     
  3. MPH

    MPH Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Like others have said the non arc related stories are mediocre to bad and not worth watching. Im rewatching the series but find myself missing out the non arc eps so in S2 there was only about 7 episodes I actually watched:eek:. I just find it hard to watch the standalones as some of the acting and dialogue is so bad.
     
  4. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    Back when they were both on, I think most of us here agreed that B5 did the big arcs best, and DS9 did the little personal stories best.
     
  5. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    All Alone in the Night (**)

    Sheridan forgets the first rule of being a space captain; if you fly off on a mission only supported by redshirts you will be captured and they will all die. In this case Sheridan is abducted by some Greys who keep him hostage and force him to fight some aliens who are wearing evil mind controlling hats. It must have been horrible for the aliens wearing those hats, they were terribly unfashionable, I couldn't imagine how silly I'd look wearing one. Anyway, Sheridan shifts into Kirk-mode and refuses to kill the aliens for the Greys' enjoyment, he just beats them with big, heavy iron bars. In the end Sheridan teams up with a Narn and they both escape the horrible sci-fi cliché.

    I'm guessing the Greys were gathering intel for the Shadows, but that doesn't excuse the story for sucking so bad.

    Meanwhile, Delenn goes and meets the Grey Council (not affiliated with the Greys) and gets told that she's a freak by her peers because of her hair. Ah, the memories of my teenage years come flooding back... :sigh: Anyway, Neroon takes her place on the council, then he makes a speech which makes a lot of sense to me and makes me wish the Minbari had wiped out humanity while they had the chance. Shared souls, yeah right. :rolleyes: Neroon for President!

    The episode finally gets good as Sinclair (Edit: I meant Sheridan! Damn these S names!) and Admiral Leyton begin a counter-conspiracy against the Psi Corps and the evil President Clark, which is unfortunate because that's when it ends. Ah well, until next time...

    Captain Greyshirt: 11
    Scott Bakula: 27
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2010
  6. Can

    Can Commander Red Shirt

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    The whole point of Streib storyline and Sheridan's abduction was the visions he saw while he was in captive...Other than that it was an empty story device...
     
  7. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    I have a soft spot for All Alone in the Night, though you're review is pretty spot on. It does introduce a recurring character, and probably not the one that you think. Too much of a spoiler? Bah.
     
  8. stonester1

    stonester1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    This one introduced a few elements that would recurr. And showed the first real signs that Delenn's decision to manifest prophecy would cause her problems. And you heard the first mention of why the Minbari surrendered at "The Line" when they were poised to butt-rape humanity w/o lube.

    It was somewhat less than it's parts, but the parts still make it worthwhile.
     
  9. Hound of UIster

    Hound of UIster Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The minbari are very much a theocratic based government despite the claims of equal representation of all castes within their central government. Of course
    the warrior castes attempt to take control and turn it into a military dictatorship doesn't work out well either and I suspect the same will be proven true in the future of Delenn's worker dominated government
     
  10. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Even the name of the ruling body says it all; Grey Council- "grey" being the language of the Religious caste, Adrenato, (the Warriors are "dark", Vik, the Workers "light", Lenn-ah). In fact, I've been thinking about that...

    "I am Grey. I stand between the candle and the star. We are Grey. We stand between the darkness and the light". The light, I assume, is Minbar, its cities of crystal (maintained by the workers, who speak "Light"). The candle is the symbol of hearth and home. The darkness is the distant threat of the shadows (the Grey Council was formed to stand against the Shadows during the last great war) and so the darkness means the war. The warriors go out and fight that war, far from home, living in violence and chaos. They become the darkness, in a sense. They speak "Dark" and their flagship is the Black Star. The Grey Council is on a ship, situated neither on Minbar nor in the dark places where the warriors fight. So, they stand between the candle and the star. This leaves us with the Religious caste as Grey. The Religious caste, who keep the prophecies and are allied with or direct the Anla'shok, would be between the warriors holding the line and the workers building and maintaining the cities. The Anla'shok serve the One. Valen, whose memory they honour, was an aspect of the One (the One who was). Valen created the council. So, is the Grey Council supposed to reflect the religious caste? If so, what does this mean for the supposed unity of the castes, all equal? Is this partly why the warriors are so concerned about religious influence over the Council that they risk upsetting the balance by replacing Delenn with Neroon?


     
  11. Myasishchev

    Myasishchev Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I was wondering when you'd get to this one. It is ridiculously awful, isn't it? Sheridan was kidnapped for no particular reason by no particular body, and taken to their redressed basement.

    I finally started watching B5 around the same time you did, but since I employed the simple expedient of skipping Season 1 more-or-less entirely. Hence I'm a little farther along; I understand I am also less the worse for wear. ;)

    :D

    Oh, and for Kegg:

    The reveal just about ruins Comes the Inquisitor for me. It's kind of stupid--and kind of offensive, too. Was Adolf Hitler unavailable? If they (the Vorlons or the writers, take your pick) were going to spit on real-life corpses, they could've at least gone balls out.
     
  12. Hound of UIster

    Hound of UIster Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think the Religious Caste just has preeminence above the others within Minbari society and the Council by being the de facto arbiters and caretakers of Valen's legacy. Before the war, the warriors probably deferred to them. The disgrace of surrender at the Line could have lead to them rethinking the arrangement and trying to take political power into their own hands.
     
  13. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

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    No, they don't and that's the whole point of the council. Before the council was formed, the three castes spent as much time and energy fighting each other as anything else, even clans within the castes fought for dominance.
    The council is specifically designed to create a balance - nine members, three from each caste - so that no one caste has dominance or preeminence over the other two.

    As for Adronato being the "grey" language, I've heard it before but have yet to find a credible source. Regardless, the term "Grey Council" isn't meant to bestow superiority on on faction or another, it's an expression that they are not any one extreme, hence; "I am Grey. I stand between the candle and the star. We are Grey. We stand between the darkness and the light."
     
  14. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd agree with the sentiment there's a strong theocratic leaning in the Minbari government. If anything, Delenn may have upset that by refusing the leadership position gladly offered to her, and Neroon's appointment probably reflects that.

    I just suspect Marshall Teague was available for Ta'Lon, and, once again, JMS made a virtue of conveinence. Teague had appeared in the first season as a human, after all, and would go on to be an unrelated human in Crusade.

    Or, given the title, Torquemada?

    Yeah, Jack the Ripper is a very cliched choice. Still the episode is what works best in B5, which is two people in a room arguing about Important Words. Another one of my favourite episodes is pretty much exactly that, you'll know if when you see it.
     
  15. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Bah, that's cheating! :p The rest of us had to watch Infection, (I had to watch it twice! :scream:) so don't think you can get away without watching it so simply.


    Acts of Sacrifice (***½)

    An interesting episode here, one that has many engaging moments but which never fully comes together, and the conclusion to both plots left me unsatisfied. Let's start with the a-plot, G'Kar tries to gain military aid from Earth and the Minbari in order to protect civilian Narn, but to do this he must keep the Narn on the station under control. There's some good moments, the best being the scene where he tries to convince Delenn only to realise that his past sentiments towards Londo and the Centauri have damaged his reputation with the other races. Sadly, the part where he tries to control the Narn isn't as interesting, and like a thousand other sci-fi shows before it, it ended with a knife fight. Realising that he went through all this trouble only to get a half-assed and unofficial response to the civilian problem was good, although I did have some trouble telling if G'Kar left the meeting crying or trying to do an evil laugh. That was unfortunate. :shrug:

    As an aside to that story, I liked the little bit about Londo feeling ostracised from most of society because of his actions in starting the war, and realising that the only friend he really wanted was Garibaldi. The resolution was a bit underwhelming, but I still enjoyed that first scene in the bar with Garibaldi.

    Initially the b-plot felt like a distraction from the more interesting a-plot, but I found myself enjoying it at points. I did like the fact that the aliens were impressed by the lurkers down on brown sector and decided to try and implement a similar social policy on their own world in order to keep the "inferior" parts of their society down, I thought that was clever and amusing. Deciding to shift that plot to one where Ivanova has to have sex with the guy wasn't as amusing, at least not to me, and I didn't find her screaming dance nearly as funny as the episode seemed to expect me to. 'Tis a pity.

    Scott Bakula: 29
     
  16. stonester1

    stonester1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Most consider that a classic scene, guy.

    :D
     
  17. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Crying and laughing, I think, it was one of those moments of bitter absurdity.

    Pretty much exactly what I thought. The social commentary was cute, but the sex scene was an idea gone spectacularly awry. Yetch.
     
  18. sidious618

    sidious618 Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, the dance scene. Not sure how that seemed like a good idea.
     
  19. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think this episode is where Claudia Christian's real personality really begins to merge with Ivanova. Note that at no point did she mention being Russian, hating Psi Corps or having a dead family. ;)

    As for G'Kar's last reaction, it's both laughter and tears. He got what he asked for, it will help his people but for all his efforts it's not nearly as much as he'd hoped for. Hysterical ambivalence probably sums it up well enough.
     
  20. Can

    Can Commander Red Shirt

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    It is like he humbled and humiliated himself both among ambassadors and among his fellow Narns. He even got wounded to keep them under control...And at the end what he got...Instead of military help he hoped for , only left over food and means to smuggle a few of his people. And even for that he should be or at least appear to be grateful !..He both laughs and cries to absudity and terrible tragedy of it...