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Werthead

Babylon 5

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7 hours ago, Loge said:

Has been a couple of years since I last watched the series, but if I recall correctly, the finale of season 5 was shot at the end of season 4 when Straczynski expected that season to be the final one. Isn't Ivanova in it?  

Yep.

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BABYLON 5 Rewatch, Season 2 Episodes 9-10

The Coming of Shadows, which may be the best episode of the entire series, and GROPOS, which isn't, but it's still decent despite doing that odd American thing of obsessing over father-child relationships to the point of utter insanity.

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BABYLON 5 Rewatch: Season 2, Episodes 11-12

All Alone in the Night is a pretty good story. The two twists (the dream and the revelation that Sheridan's part of a counter-conspiracy against President Clark) are excellent do some economical storytelling, getting Sheridan involved in that storyline despite not being present in the build-up to it in Season 1, and it's good to see Earthforce show up and kick some arse for once.

Acts of Sacrifice has some fantastic Londo and G'Kar scenes (it's underrated in how important it is for both of their character devleopment, I think) but it's also a bit slight and the Lumati storyline is way too silly. But it's not offensively bad.

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BABYLON 5 Rewatch: Season 2, Episodes 13-14

Hunter, Prey is a very solid episode, although I was a bit upset to hear that guest star Bernie Casey had only just passed away (last month!). He was very good in both B5 and DS9 as the founder of the Maquis.

There All the Honour Lies was a lot better than I remembered: the digs at DS9, the merchandise store, the "perfect beauty" scene and the very, very witty script (Ivanova gets the best lines) are all excellent. The Minbari murder story is pretty boring though. It's a shame Peter David didn't get a chance to write for the main series again, although some of his novels for the show are very good.

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And Now For a WordBabylon 5 doing Fake News before it was cool.

Hah, I'm surprised I've not thought of that before, but you're absolutely right, so much of B5's portrayal of the media through ISN was very prescient.  Everyone always gives ST TNG and DS9 cred for things like Ipads and such, but B5 and how they handled the press is even better IMO.  Surprising to me in a way too, as JMS is and always has been a big supporter of the freedom of the press - impressive that he wasn't afraid to criticize them, particularly since back then the only "big" cable news service was the mighty CNN.

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9 hours ago, SerHaHa said:

Hah, I'm surprised I've not thought of that before, but you're absolutely right, so much of B5's portrayal of the media through ISN was very prescient.  Everyone always gives ST TNG and DS9 cred for things like Ipads and such, but B5 and how they handled the press is even better IMO.  Surprising to me in a way too, as JMS is and always has been a big supporter of the freedom of the press - impressive that he wasn't afraid to criticize them, particularly since back then the only "big" cable news service was the mighty CNN.

ISN wasn't an example of criticizing free press.  It was an example of criticizing authoritarians who get into power and then turn the press into a mouthpiece for their propaganda, and for stroking the ego of the big boss in charge.

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14 minutes ago, SpaceChampion said:

ISN wasn't an example of criticizing free press.  It was an example of criticizing authoritarians who get into power and then turn the press into a mouthpiece for their propaganda, and for stroking the ego of the big boss in charge.

Pretty much this. And I wouldn't say it was prescient, as it already had plenty of examples to draw from, i.e. all the communist regimes of the 20th century.

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BABYLON 5 Rewatch: Season 2, Episodes 17-18

One of the best one-two punches in the show's history. In the Shadow of Z'ha'dum finally tells us WTF is going on and makes the stakes clear. Confessions and Lamentations is simply incredibly well-paced and delivers a massively bleak ending, all framed by one of Christopher Franke's scores. It's also, easily, the best non-arc episode the show ever did.

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ISN wasn't an example of criticizing free press.  It was an example of criticizing authoritarians who get into power and then turn the press into a mouthpiece for their propaganda, and for stroking the ego of the big boss in charge.

I never said he was critical of free press, only that from all I've read and the interviews and cons I've heard JMS speak, he respected the press, and the freedom of the press.  Yet, in the story, regardless of who was controlling or giving the marching orders, still wasn't afraid to make ISN look both very bad, and then, very heroic after Clarke's fall.  There were episodes pre Clarke and very early in Clarke's rule prior to him consolidating his power where ISN was shown to have its own agenda IMO.  That's how I look at it, I certainly didn't say he was criticizing free press, or ISN as free press, that wasn't my intention at all, sorry for not being clear.

 

The prescient part, I was referring to the advent of technology, and the effect it would have on the press.  None of the communist regimes, as I recall at least, had anything resembling what we have now, or ISN represented in that future - that was my point specifically, that abusing authority and turning that on the press - something that is happening right now with the current regime and certain news orgs - very similar to the Clarke/ISN theme, made possible by us all being interconnected instantly thanks to technology.

Busy couple weeks, I'll read your new stuff tomorrow Werthead, thank you again for all your work with this.

Edited by SerHaHa

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No probs. Between Stranger Things S2 (and rewatching S1) I'd gotten a week and a half behind anyway.

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On 9/30/2017 at 9:06 AM, Werthead said:

the Lumati storyline is way too silly. But it's not offensively bad.

Ivanova's 'big finish' is perhaps the single worst bit of acting in the entire series.  Painful to watch in every way.

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1 hour ago, Bronn Stone said:

Ivanova's 'big finish' is perhaps the single worst bit of acting in the entire series.  Painful to watch in every way.

I'm not convinced the acting is the problem. Can you really imagine any actor pulling that scene off?

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Just now, felice said:

I'm not convinced the acting is the problem. Can you really imagine any actor pulling that scene off?

True enough.  The wrongness is there on nearly every level.

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BABYLON 5 Season 2, Episodes 19-20

Divided Loyalties, which was more shocking before we knew it came about because JMS was being cheap-arse and then doing his normal grudge thing against an actor who'd had the temerity to disagree with him.

The Long, Twilight Struggle, which is one of the best episodes of the series. An absolute gut-punch and stellar stuff from the Jurasik and Katsulas team.

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For those in the UK and Ireland, Babylon 5 is re-airing on Pick TV from tomorrow evening.

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BABYLON 5: Season 2, Episodes 21-22

Comes the Inquisitor is a nicely-played beast but Americans are now officially banned from ever using Jack the Ripper in anything ever again. Stop it.

The Fall of Night is a going-against-expectations finale in which big things happen, but it's not a massive gamechanger like the Season 1 finale. We don't even find out what Kosh really looks like, we just "think" we do. Some really good stuff and of course Roy Dotrice makes for a splendid guest star.

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BABYLON 5: Season 3, Episodes 1-2

Matters of Honour is dumb but fun, with a solid new character in Marcus Cole and a cool ship in the White Star, even though it was ripped off from the Defiant in DS9 (as confirmed by B5's effects supervisor, who confirms they were ordered to include it in response to the Defiant).

Convictions is a lot better than I remembered. The procedural investigation stuff is well-done and it's a shame was never see the explosives expert Morishi again. It's also more interesting when you realise the actor is now a regular on Man in the High Castle. This is also the episode where the ultra-laidback Bruce Boxleitner got extremely angry with the guest star for getting too into his role and spitting on him.

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I just found out Kosh 

Spoiler

has wings; or over millenia, the Vorlons conditioned other races to see them as angel-like beings. Either way, I'm not quite sure how to deal with the sheer awesomeness of it.

I really like the show. I just have one major issue: I'm no astrophysicist so I could be completely wrong on this--it really bothers me that Io is apparently a stable Earth colony. Isn't that moon so small and so close to the much larger Jupiter such that the proximity is essentially turning the moon inside-out through volcanic eruptions? Every time someone mentions the Io colony I'm kind of bothered. But like I said, I don't have the scientific knowledge to back this.

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2 hours ago, Kyoshi said:

I just found out Kosh 

  Reveal hidden contents

has wings; or over millenia, the Vorlons conditioned other races to see them as angel-like beings. Either way, I'm not quite sure how to deal with the sheer awesomeness of it.

I really like the show. I just have one major issue: I'm no astrophysicist so I could be completely wrong on this--it really bothers me that Io is apparently a stable Earth colony. Isn't that moon so small and so close to the much larger Jupiter such that the proximity is essentially turning the moon inside-out through volcanic eruptions? Every time someone mentions the Io colony I'm kind of bothered. But like I said, I don't have the scientific knowledge to back this.

Io has a huge amount of energy production facilities on it, which Earthforce uses to fuel its entire fleet. That's why there's a big colony there (built under a massively radiation-shielded dome in an area of the moon that's tectonically stable). The colony is also on the far side of the moon to Jupiter (Io is tidally locked to the planet). It's a little bit of a stretch but nothing too bad.

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