[Season 1 !Season 2 !Season 3 !Season 4 !Season 5 !Crusade ]
Babylon 5 was our last, best hope for SFTV.
However, after the end of the Shadow War [mid-Season 4] things petered out; Season 5 was only confirmed at the last minute, and was mostly filler. The Fall of the Centauri arc was good, but it ended half-way through the Season and left the show to linger aimlessly.
Still, in the last episode JMS finally did the cameo he swore he would never do. Then he did a spin-off series, Crusade - which he likewise swore he would never do - but then cancelled it half-way through Season One when the Network took too much control. Alas!
So what can we learn from B5?
Well, to start with a 5-year story arc is too long; these days many shows only get a half-season [12-episode] run. A 3-year arc would be much more viable; B5 was dead for about half a Season before the show actually ended, and still managed to leave a number of very important loose ends.
Secondly, the Networks are bastards. But then we all knew that anyway.
As of 2013, the show is let down by badly-dated CGI. It was one of the first shows to use CGI, but that was twenty years ago! This show deserves the kind of updating of SPFX that the Star Trek franchise has been given.
P- 1 22 Feb 93 The Gathering
This is the first ep after the pilot, and it shows far more of everyday life on the station.
An armada of spaceships attacks a remote Centauri colony. This sets the tone for the emnity between the creepy Narn Ambassador G'Kar (Andreas Katsulas - Star Trek: TNG ) and the Jovial, put-upon Centauri Ambassador Londo Mollari (Peter Jurassik - Tron ).
A damaged ship is salvaged, and a comatose survivor is rescued. Minbari Ambassador Delenn identifies him as a Soul Hunter - a being that collects souls, which defies the Minbari tradition of reincarnation!
Another Soul Hunter [Morgan Shepherd - seaQuest DSV ] arrives.
Sinclair and G'Kar want to get Londo to the negotiating table. The sooner they can negotiate a treaty for the Euphrates Sector, the sooner they can avoid further military engagements like in Episode One. However, Londo is busy having an affair with Centauri seductress Adira ( Fabiana Udenio ). Unfortunately Londo does not realise that her pimp, Trakis (Clive Revill), wants to get his hands on House Mollari's blackmail files.
Garibaldi detects illegal use of the station's top-security communications line back to Earth. He turns to Ivanova for help.
Dr Franklin is visited by his old friend, space archaeologist David McCallum ( Invisible Man (1970s) ). Unfortunately, McCallum's sidekick Marshall Teague is up to no good. The result is a murderous bio-weapon on the rampage.
There is a week-long festival on the station, and each homeworld has to send representatives of its dominant religion. This means a lot of newcomers are on the station. One is Catherine Sakai, the on-again off-again GF of Commander Sinclair.
A messenger comes to G'Kar. The message states that an assassin has been hired by a rival Narn politician. G'Kar cannot trust his new attache, Na'toth. Instead he hires a bodyguard from the insectoid gangster, N'Grath.
Delenn gets a new attache, Lennier. He helps her run a Minbari religious ceremony - they are both of the religious caste.
Londo and his attache, Vir Cotto, bond at the Centauri religious ceremony. It is merely a drinking session to celebrate the genocide of a rival species, the Xon. This explains why the Centauri cannot see the true form of Vorlons - a twist that is not revealed until the end of Season 2.
The humans still do not have a single dominant religion. Sinclair has a difficult task in arranging a ceremony. Unlike in the main rival show, Star Trek , where there is no freedom of thought because all our differences have been set aside.
Talia's friend, Jason Ironheart, drops by to visit. Unfortunately he was the victim of a Psi-Corps experiment, and is now an unstable telekinetic. Ironheart is pursued by Psi-Cop Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek ).
Aliens aboard B5 are victims of racist attacks. G'Kar makes things worse by whipping up paranoia among the non-humans. Garibaldi's job is to sort it all out, but (despite being specifically told not to in a previous episode) Sheridan gets directly involved and makes himself the bait in a trap. The anti-Alien bigots are led by Alvares (Richard Chaves - Predator ).
A couple of young Centauri (including a bald-headed Danica McKellar ) want to marry for love, but this will mean defying a legally-mandated arranged marriage. Will Londo Molari, the Centauri Ambassador, help them?
A couple of Earthforce secret agents arrive on B5 - Knight Two (Christopher Neame - Licence to Kill ) and Knight One (Judson Scott - V: The Series ). Their mission is to abduct Sinclair, and use a Matrix -type Virtual Reality simulation to interrogate him and recover his memories of his missing time at the Battle of the Line.
It is a fair guess that the Minbari had something to do with his missing time. Does Ambassador Delenn know more about this than she has let on?
It seems that G'Kar has scored a terrible own goal. His aide, Na'toth, tries to kill the VIP she was supposed to secretly meet with. The VIP is the last of the Dilgar species, who were almost annihilated in a war ten years previously. When she dies, her entire species will be extinct.
For the first time, the Minbari are shown as politically duplicitous. The Warrior Caste are accused of hiding the war criminal.
Dr Franklin's newest patient is a young boy whose parents are religious extremists. When Sinclair ordered the doctor to save Ambassador Kosh in the pilot episode, he set a legal precedent.
Finally, Earth has splashed out and allowed Sinclair and Garibaldi to upgrade the security setup. This is because the President of Earth is about to arrive. The head of the Presidential security team is Garibaldi's best friend's daughter. She bears a grudge, blaming Garibaldi for her father's death.
There is a conspiracy by some anti-Alien extremists. Again!
The Station's docking facilities are site of a terrible accident. The facilities are inadequate, and the workers threaten to strike. The Government prefers to spend its funds on military expenses - although Garibaldi's riot squad do not even have helmets! This is a nice example of the show's cynicism about governments, and this is BEFORE the forthcoming election!
Meanwhile, G'Kar wants to obtain a special eggplant for a religious ceremony. Londo has the only one on the station, and refuses to give it over. Very childish, but it foreshadows future events.
Ivanova and the Station's fighter squadrons must protect freighters from space-pirates. The raiders' codenames are references to the TV show The Prisoner!
This is noteable as the core episode of Season One and the first appearance of ultra-smooth villain Mr Morden (Ed Wasser). He visits the Station, and takes an interest in the Ambassadors. He interviews them, and asks What do you want?
Sinclair tells Garibaldi about the mysterious events at the Battle of the Line. He implicates Ambassador Delenn. Meanwhile, Delenn is building a strange giant pyramid in her quarters.
G'Kar argues with Londo - the Narn is now a comedy figure, no longer a pseudo-villain. Londo has visitors - an aristocrat, Lord Kiro (Gerritt Graham - Star Trek: VGR ) and his aunt, a seeress. She foresees the violent destruction of the station - but she does not know when this will happen!
The Station plays host to the galactic fight-to-the-TKO this week. Originally censored for gratuitously violent kickboxing scenes, this episode is now being shown alongside the other episodes in this rerun of Season One.
Strangely, this ep has a lack of subplots concerning the four alien ambassadors.
Magistrate Jim Norton (Bishop Len Brennan in Father Ted) deals with alien abduction cases. Well, lawsuits based on historical abductions in the Twentieth Century. He also handles criminal prosecutions, such as a case against a small-time gangster from Downbelow. Unfortunately, the gangster, a moneylender named Deuce, is a veteran of Blade Runner . He intimidates his victims using a monster in a Kosh-style encounter suit.
David Warner ( Time Bandits ) is the last of the Grail hunters. He comes to the station to meet the Ambassadors. He teams up with Jinxo, a survivor of the FOUR previous Babylon Stations. Despite blaming himself as a Jonah who gave the stations bad luck by leaving them, he is altogether too cheery.
After the failed attempt to abduct and interrogate Sinclair, his sceptics in Earth Central have taken a more direct route. Colonel Ari Ben Zayn of Earthforce Internal Affairs arrives on the station with orders to investigate all senior staff.
The Colonel brings along Psi-Corps agent Harriman Gray (Jeffrey Coombs - DS9 ). Ivanova would rather resign her commission than let a Psi do a surface scan of her mind.
The Minbari General Neroon arrives on the station, and we discover that the Minbari leave their gun-ports open as a salute. The Minbari leader's body goes missing. Garibaldi must tear the station apart looking it. Strangely, while Delenn mentions the Warrior and Religious castes, she never mentions the Workers' caste.
Meanwhile, Talia and Ivanova debate over a young Psi girl. Last ep Ivanova would rather resign her commission than let a Psi do a surface scan of her mind. However, she would rather allow unlicenced telepaths run free and unregulated than have them controlled and (if necessary) doped up by the Psi Corps. She actually does not see the contradiction!
Delenn's friend the beardy Minbari arrives on the station.
Meanwhile, Ivanova's crew investigate unusual activity on the planet's surface. Yes, this is the episode where the machine on Epsilon 4 is discovered. Sinclair once again abandons his post in the CO's office on B5 and charges headlong into danger.
The situation on Mars has boiled over. The Martians are revolting! The battle for independence has begun. Unfortunately, Garibaldi's lost love is somewhere on the planet. He cannot get in touch with her via normal channels, so he asks Talia the Psi Corps rep for help.
Earthforce sends in a heavy cruiser to secure the alien tech discovered in the previous ep. Now Sinclair has this to worry about, along with the AAA on the planet and an alien warship that arrived.
The dying alien from the machine will need to be replaced. Will this be one of the regular cast members, or a guest star?
Delenn goes off on a solo mission. We find out a bit more about her true relationship with the Minbari Grey Council. They offer her a promotion, which puts her in a difficult position. If she accepts, she will lose her role as Ambassador on B5. But if she turns it down, it could go to a political rival. And with the Warrior caste being the way they are, that would not be a good thing.
This is the Arc-intensive episode that was not concluded until Sinclair's reappearance in the middle of Season 3.
Babylon Four, the space station that mysteriously disappeared years earlier, suddenly reappears. Sinclair and Garibaldi lead a team to investigate.
The B4 has been jumping through time. The crew have captured an intruder who may be involved - a hairy alien named Zathras.
This episode introduces the alien healing machine. The woman who uses the machine was once a regular Doctor, but she got addicted to stims and fell from grace.
The main plot concerns a serial killer (rent-a-villain Mark Ralston) who is convicted by Magistrate Jim Norton (Bishop Len Brennan in Father Ted). Talia has to do a mind-scan of him, and discovers his choir of victims. Reminscent of the Emperor Cartagia's reign in later Seasons ...
Londo takes Lenier to tour the station's night-spots. Pole-dancers, drinks and a poker match. It turns out that Londo has a secret weapon in Poker - his well-trained trouser-snake!
The Narns are acting aggressively in Centauri space. Londo is about to make concessions when he gets a call from Mr Morden ...
Garibaldi investigates a murder, and discovers a conspiracy.
As befits the end of the Season, there are a couple of cliffhangers. One regular cast member gets shot and left for dead, another one gets cocooned in a giant chrysalis, and a third one goes walkabout to discover the
This ep takes up a week after the events of the previous ep. Jeffrey Sinclair has since been recalled by EarthForce HQ. Ivanova is the only senior staff member still standing. General Hague (Robert Foxworthy) assigns John Sheridan (Bruce Boxleitner - Tron ) as Sinclair's replacement.
The Minbari cruiser, the Trigati, went rogue after the Battle of the Line. Yes, it has not been refueled or upgraded in twelve years. However, it seems that the B5 military scanners have not been upgraded since the war either!
The new crew line-up includes a Squadron Commander named Keffer. He is the most junior-ranking of the main cast, and will have very little to do.
Delenn is still in her cocoon, so Lennier looks after her affairs.
Londo plots with Morden, and Clarke's part in the death of his predecessor Santiago is further hinted at.
Sheridan's sister visits, giving us a glimpse of his wife ( Beth Toussaint ). Sheridan blames himself for her fate. She was a Science Officer on an archaeology expedition to The Rim ... The same place that Mr Morden is interested in, the same place that G'Kar found the darkness.
Delenn emerges from the cocoon ...
Londo has a new friend - Reefa (William Forward), an ambitious political plotter from the Centauri homeworld. The Station is visited by Techno-Mages in one of the show's greatest episodes. Londo tries to trick their leader (Michael Ansara - Buck Rogers in the 25th Century ) into endorsing him.
With her old friend Sheridan now running the station, and her new promotion, Ivanova starts to relax a bit. She lets her hair down and starts to smile every now and again. However, the B-story; Green! - Purple! - yes, Ivanova meets the Drazi!
The Station is visited by Russ Tamblyn ( Twin Peaks ), Sheridan's former commander on the Agamemnon. Things go badly for the Agamemon, and we are told that no ship has ever been rescued from Hyperspace. An encounter in Hyperspace marks the beginning of poor Keffer's obsession with the Shadows.
Sheridan is stressed by the civilian responsibilities of running the station, and wishes he was back running a starship again.
Doctor puts the senior staff on special diets, which they all resent. Garibaldi gets his smuggler friend Orwell (Miguel A Nunez - Tour of Duty) to illicitly import some special Italian foodstuffs. This actually addresses an important theme in the B5 universe: food seems to be a special pleasure for most of the characters.
B5 is visited by Dwight Shultz, fresh from Starfleet duty in Star Trek TNG. He plays a GROPO who had a close encounter with an invisible alien in the Minbari war and is now a half-crazed prophet of doom.
The crew recover a woman who has been in stasis for a hundred years. The interior of her ship is coated in dust, like in Aliens . But her ship may have an unwanted hitch-hiker ...
Garibaldi leads the SWAT team's first wave. Sheridan and Ivanova lead the backup unit. Now, on a space station that contains a quarter of a million humans and aliens one would imagine that the Police Department would have its own specialist SWAT unit, instead of relying on the Bridge officers to fill in all the time!
This is an Andrea Thompson episode. Someone wants to kill B5's telepath - the main suspects are Free Mars terrorists, but as ever there is a conspiracy afoot ...
The main suspect is a Mars Independence politician ( Adrienne Barbeau ) - damn, she looks different with her clothes on.
A hitman from Bureau 13, a shadowy human organisation, is responsible for the killing. But Talia is a witness, and the killer will be after her. Garibaldi takes personal responsibility, so he can get to know her better. His new sidekick, Zack Allen, also helps run the security detail.
We have known that Psi-Corps is up to no good ever since they were revealed to be running a secret TK assassination programme in Season One.
The station is visited by London's three wives. This is not the only troubled marriage of the week. Another visitor is Talia's ex-husband (Keith Szarabakja - Angel ), a trader who sells an ancient artefact that ends up in the hands of Londo's youngest wife. The artefact is boobytrapped and puts Londo in med-bay - convenient for his wives, for he threatens to divorce two of them. The Writer/Producer, Joseph Michael Straczynski, was formerly a writer/producer on Murder She Wrote.
In a subplot, Delenn asks Ivanova for advice on human biology. Yes, this is the one where she mentions her menstrual cramps, and thus we learn of her human reproductive system!
This starts with Earth Alliance's decision to charge Sheridan and Ivanova rent for their quarters. Sheridan refuses to pay rent on his quarters to EarthCorp.
Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek ) arrives on B5, his mission - to locate the base of the Underground Railroad, a group of renegade human psychics who want to evade the Psi Corps.
Ambassador Delenn takes Sheridan out to dinner, so she can find out what it is to be human; yes, this is the episode where she wears THAT dress!
B5 is visited by the Centauri Emperor, who brings round his would-be assassin G'Kar to the ways of peace. But by the end of the episode, Mollari had made a similar change in the opposite direction.
Londo and Morden take out a Narn outpost, starting a war. Londo has a flash of the future, where he is Emperor. Maybe we are both damned, he says. It is a small price to pay for immortality is the reply.
Garibaldi meets a Ranger - Frederick Lehne, who looks very young compared to his appearance in Supernatural .
B5 plays host to a military intervention force. The Ground-Pounders (GroPos) are led by Paul Winfield, who is Doctor Franklin's dad. There is a cliched father-son reunion.
The GroPos are gender-integrated, apparently Aliens style - with females in combat units. Garibaldi dates a (female) GroPo named Dodger, but he gets frigid. He mentions Lise again.
The B5 defence grid is updated, which may come in useful in future episodes. Keffer's scenes involve him bunking down with new lodger Ken Foree ( Dawn of the Dead ). Unfortunately, the end of the episode is marred by dodgy CGI.
Sheridan is ambushed and kidnapped by Streibs. He dreams of Ivanova, Garibaldi, Ivanova, Kosh and a psi Corps uniform. Unfortunately, he and a captive Narn (Marshall Teague - ) are being tested by the Streibs and are forced to fight each other.
Military rebel Robert Foxworthy ( ) is on B5.
Delenn meets the Grey Council - Neroon has replaced her!
The war hots up between the Narn and the Centauri. G'kar runs around trying to get the other races to intervene, but with predictable results. Worse, Narns and Centauri aboard the station begin to fight. The Centauri kick ass with their space-age kung-fu! Na'Toth has a couple of lines, but Mary Kay Adams is weak and squeaky-voiced compared to the original actress, Julie Caitlin Brown.
Meanwhile, Ivanova has a diplomatic mission of her own. She has to negotiate with a new species. The new ambassador mentions that his people do not get involved in events concerning inferior species, simply leave them to their fate. This mirrors Earth's attitude toward the Narns, and also resembles the Starfleet Prime Directive. Finally, the ambassador requests that Ivanova seal the deal with him ...
Bernie Casey guest-stars as a Hunter sent to catch a fugitive. The Command Crew is put on alert for the President's doctor, who has become a fugitive. He was Dr Franklin's mentor - but as Garibaldi points out, Dr Franklin's last old friend was David McCallum. Could be worse - Talia's was Jason Ironheart, and let us not get started on Sheridan's wife!
The old man has all his evidence on a data crystal - retrieving it becomes a subplot reminiscent of Escape From New York . Sheridan has to hand it over to Wanda de Jesus , who claims to be working for The General (Robert Foxworthy - ). Pity that despite having evidence of Clarke's involvement in the assassination, the Earthforce rebels never put it to any use. In other words, the whole ep is for nothing.
Sheridan continues his interest in the mysterious ambassador Kosh. This time we get to see the Vorlon's ship, too.
Sheridan: What do you want?
Kosh: Never ask that question!
This is another one of the handful of scripts by Peter David. Sheridan kills a Minbari in self-defence, but gets accused of murder. His lawyer is the babelicious Julie Caitlin Brown , in her human form now she is no longer playing the Narn Na'Toth. If and when the case goes to trial, Sheridan will have to step down as Commanding Officer of B5 - probably permanently.
Everyone knows that Minbari never lie - but as Londo Molari found out, this is not entirely true. The Minbari have objected to Sheridan Starkiller running B5, and now they may have their chance of politically smearing him.
Earthdome has been interfering with the station's funding again. Previously they cut costs on the star-dock, and billed the senior staff extra rent. Ivanova is assigned to sort out the B5 merchandising stand. Londo complains - his action figure is not anatomically correct! Ivanova takes a shot at their rival show, Star Trek: DS9 , when she says We're not some Deep Space Franchise. This station is about something!
Londo Molari is now such a VIP in Centauri political circles that he is due to get a new assistant. Poor old Vir Cato is getting the sack. Will Londo stick up for his loyal sidekick, or will he embrace his new success and status?
This episode is constructed as found footage. An ISN reporter interviews the main characters, and several supporting ones
A Narn ship attacks a Centauri vessel. Babylon 5 is no longer neutral territory
Morden (Ed Wasser) is in town again, although Londo Molari is not around to meet him. Vir Catto (Stephen Furst) is uncharacteristically confident, and predicts he will outlive Morden.
Sheridan wants to know what happened to his wife's ship. Delenn and Kosh offer to give him some exposition.
Ivanova discovers that Franklin is using stims.
Talia Winters and Zack Allen attend a briefing session. Alex Hyde-Whyte ( Biggles ) is a representative of President Clarke's new branch of Big Government, the Ministry of Peace (AKA MiniPax). This Orwellian creation is now building up a field-work unit, the Nightwatch.
Sheridan is troubled by a psychic beastie that came through the temporal rift left by B4 in Babylon Squared, which Garibaldi says was last year. Sheridan goes exploring the Grey sector of the station, which is infamous for mysterious disappearances.
Londo Molari has a guest - his old buddy Carmen Argiento ( Stargate SG-1 ). Londo faces his best friend in a duel, because of Londo's association with Reefa.
Delenn has Lennier cook a special meal for another date with Sheridan. This illustrates the recurring theme of food in the B5 universe. It also reminds the viewer of the relationship between Delenna and Sheridan, to add some personal involvement when she decides to place herself in harm's way.
The station is hit by a deadly plague that has crossed the species gap. Yes, the 250,000 humans and aliens are now at risk from an unknown and incurable disease! The Markabs believe that the disease is caused by immorality, and they ignore science by seeking a religious cure. Ironically, the Markab Doctor who sacrifices himself for science is Jim Norton - best known as Bishop Len Brennan from Father Ted. But do not worry - just like in Star Drek the good guys will find a cure by the end of the episode and everything will go back to normal. Won't it???
The show nears the end of Season 2 - yes, we have come to the Final Four!!! Lyta Alexander ( Patricia Tallman ) returns, with a message from the Mars Resistance. Psi-Corps has a deep-cover agent among the prime movers of the show's cast, and only Lyta can uncover the spy!
There are two major revelations in this episode. The first is that Ivanova and the blonde psi had a crush on each other. The second - that Patricia Tallman (with her hair changed from the dreadful cut in the B5 pilot episode) is a babe! Unfortunately in 1999 she was married to the guy who played Kosh, but as C-3PO always says it's my lot in life to suffer.
The station is visited by Draal again - only this time he is played by Herman from The New Munsters. The problem with the character's new cheery, jovial look is not the fault of the actor; his guest-appearance in NYPD Blue proved he had no limitations in that respect. No, it appears to be a deliberate (and foolish) choice by the producers. But it does even out the episode's very dark tone.
The Narns attack a Centauri supply depot, but are ambushed by Londo's Shadow allies. On-station, the Narns start a bar-room brawl with the Centauri - and the big-haired goofs kick their scaly butts with space-age Kung-Fu! And Londo? What of Londo? As he watches the Centauri mass-drivers pummel the defenceless Narn homeworld he realises the horror of what he has done.
The Earth-news reports of Centari bombings and civilian casualties are so frighteningly reminiscent of the reports from Chechnya currently being shown on the other channel. After East Timor, and Kosovo, and Bosnia ... Since the end of the Cold War and the beginning of the era of peace so much blood has been shed ...
And to save the galaxy from itself, Sinclair's Rangers are now given over to Sheridan (equal authority with Delenn) ...
Final Four? Yes, these episodes are the high point of the whole Babylon 5 arc.
Zathras? Zathras? Blast him, he's never there when you need him!
Kosh has doubts about Delenn, so he summons an Inquisitor from his homeworld.
The Inquisitor is a human - an Englishman from London, 1888. He even has the top-hat and cape. Will Sheridan eventually work out who he is meant to be? The original UK broadcast referred to the West end of London.
The Centauri plan for the big push on the Narn homeworld. Reefa intends to use Mass Drivers to destroy their cities, even though this is against interstellar treaties.
Now the Narns are out of the fight, the Centauri start invading other worlds. MiniPax sends a couple of VIPs to the station. One is a Politician (Roy Dotrice - Beauty and the Beast (1988) ), trying to test the political landscape. The other is the boss of the Nightwatch, trying to get B5 personnel like Ivanova and Zach to cooperate.
A Narn Heavy Cruiser limps into sanctuary. Sheridan promises that B5's defence grid will protect it, but inevitably the Centauri will show up and make things difficult.
Kosh has to reveal himself.
Ivanova provides the voice-over about 2260 - The Year of the Shadow War. Zach (previously a supporting character) and Marcus (a newbie) are both in the credits.
A week after the events of the previous ep, a mysterious stranger arrives on B5. He is a human Ranger named Marcus, and he brings a message that the Centauri have blockaded a Ranger base. Luckily, Delenn and Lennier take Sheridan and Ivanova to their new warship - the White Star.
Keffer's flight recorder has gone viral. EarthGov sends an investigator (Tucker Smallwood - Space: Above and Beyond ) to interview all the VIPs on the station. However, after the NightsWatch and the Politician last time, none of Sheridan's gang trust him.
Morden is back, and Londo decides the Centauri do not need the Shadows any more. Morden has one request - that the Centauri clear their blockade so the Shadows can wipe the Rangers out themselves.
Someone starts setting off bombs in the station. The Centauri blame the Narns, despite G'Kar needing Sheridan's support. The Narns blame the Centauri, even though Londo was nearly killed too. Lennier is hospitalised, and Londo visits him. But after another explosion, Londo and G'Kar are trapped in an elevator together.
Once again, Sheridan himself must personally take on the mad bomber. Luckily, Garibaldi has a bomb disposal expert (Cary-Hiro Taganawa - Mortal Kombat ).
One of the new monks (genre veteran Brad Dourif - Alien: Resurrection ) is being stalked by someone who mimicks the MO of a serial killer.
Lyta Alexander ( Patricia Tallman ) is back aboard the station.
This is a one-off episode, not part of the Story Arc. In an odd coincidence, this episode was discussed by the panel at the Mecon 2k SF Convention. David Wingrove mentioned it as an excellent example of SF insofar as science (in this case, the mind-wipe) plays a central role in the plot!
Draal has a plan to help contact the First Ones. Ivanova goes to the planet's surface, and gets plugged into the Matrix. She discovers proof of Vice-President Clarke's conspiracy with Mr Morden. She also discovers that the First Ones hide out near Sigma 957, where G'Kar saved Sinclair's girlfriend in Season one. Marcus gives her a lift in the White Star.
Nightwatch boss Julie Musante ( Shari Shattuck ) arrives on B5. As part of Clarke's new policy on Civilian Oversight of the Military, she has been appointed as the station's Political Officer. Sheridan is immune to her charms when she tries to seduce him, but Zach is more than eager to serve under her ...
The human population have decided to express discontent with Clarke's rule. Unfortunately, after Julie Musante's briefing last episode, the Nightwatch have decided to outlaw political dissent.
Bester the Psi-Cop (Walter Koenig - Star Trek: TOS ) comes to B5 again. He is hunting a drug-dealer who specialises in Dust, Ivanova and Garibaldi want to kill him, while the Doctor prefers a non-violent solution. The traditional way around the Psi Corps involves bringing in non-human telepaths.
Vir Catto returns from the Centauri delegation to Minbar. He joins Londo in negotiations with the Drazi. But Londo has other problems ...
G'Kar is trying to buy Dust, to create a Narn telepath. The only way to know if it is worth the money is to test it on himself. G'Kar's vision includes exposition from a Narn-looking Vorlon played by Jim Norton (previously the station's Magistrate, last seen as a Markab in Babylon 5 [Season 2, Episode 18] Confessions and Lamentation). And the new lady Magistrate gives shockingly light sentences.
Doctor Franklin is overworked, and takes it out on his staff. Surely a symptom of stimulant abuse ...
Corwin gets promoted to Lieutenant - Sheridan orders Ivanova to find out if he is trustworthy enough to involve in their conspiracy.
A parasite (similar to the Tingler) is smuggled aboard the station and used on a human test subject. The subject dies, the body discovered by Security and taken to med-lab for an autopsy. Meanwhile, the conspirators behind the parasite's induction are involved with Marcus' underworld contacts.
Typical JMS ambiguity; are the parasites really evil?
We get to see the gorgeous Patricia Tallman again, and see her carrying Kosh ...
The NightWatch are cracking down on political dissent. They think that anti-Earth sentiment has infiltrated the military, even as far as Command level. Even Sheridan is no longer above suspicion. But why do these Earth-lovers not investigate the Commander-in-Chief as well? Clarke is not a King, he is merely a President - a hired hand, really. He does not claim to have Divine Right to Rule, so his reign will end after a maximum of three terms (one inherited, two elected) and then he will fade away.
The scariest thing about this episode? When it was aired, the Nightwatch policy of search and surveillance without warrant was viewed as alarmist science fiction. But it was an accurate prediction of Dubyah's Patriot Act.
Viir is back from his posting on Minbar. The episode starts with Londo re-writing Viir's report to Centauri Prime, to remove excessive facts. It is revealed that Lady Morella, the late Emperor Turhan's third wife, is due to stop by the Station.
Earth Alliance declared Martial Law. The elite guard attacked the Senate, and a Russian Senator urges citizens to form a living barrier around the building.
General Hague tried to organise a counter-strike.
The guest-cast is notable for 2 reasons, both linked to Star Trek.
G'Kar is released, with 3 weeks still to go on his sentance. The warrior Narn also pops up this episode as well.
Off-world security is handed over specifically to NightWatch personnel only. Garibaldi is none to happy about this, and Zach is torn ...
Can Sheridan recruit the Narns to his side, and outsmart the NightWatch?
Morella is a prophetess, and tells Londo he will have 3 chances to avoid his dark fate;
Also, we learn that Londo and Viir will both be Emperor - one after the other is dead. Can the two ever trust each other again, or will typical Centauri paranoia win?
General Hague's ship, commanded by his replacement (Bruce McGill - Quantum Leap ) arrives at B5. They are being followed by the Earth Fleet. It is a pity that Sheridan never deployed the White Star to help Hague in the previous episode. After all, he was willing to take on Earthforce in order to destroy the Shadow vessel. He would have maintained deniability, since the White Star is a Minbari/Vorlon design.
The entry and exit ports to the station are clogged - the Aliens all want back to their homeworlds, while the incoming humans all want refugee status from Earth. A Minbari Ranger arrives on the station.
Mars is rebellious, as always. Clarke bombs Mars, and the other colonies realise they will be next. They declare Unilateral Declaration of Independence. Clarke realises that B5 might go UDI too, so he sends his Presidential units to take out Sheridan and put the Nightswatch back in charge. The station must stand and fight, or fall to Clarke ...
The Earth Fleet is defeated, but the Nightwatch still has secret units still in operation. They plot to attack Delenn; without her, Sheridan will lose the support of the Minbari, and will thus become vulnerable.
Marcus beats up all his underworld friends and contacts to find a lead. It is ironic that when the Nightwatch threaten torture, they are portrayed as villains - while when Marcus does it, he is portrayed as pragmatic and even heroic. Lennier shows that Minbari may look like you [humans], but we are not you by lifting Marcus off the ground one-handed - then confesses his affection for Delenn.
Londo slips Reefa the first part of a binary poison; yes, even the snakes are fighting.
The end is a Minbari ceremony of rebirth; the command crew each tell Delenn their innermost secret, and in return she gives them new uniforms. The station also gets a new insignia.
Ivanova turns up for her shift naked - but it is only a dream. :( Vir Cato is on Centauri Prime, to deliver his reports from Minbar. The Chancellor advises him to use his own judgement, and not to let Londo ...
Back on the station, the command crew are in Delenn's new black jim-jams. Their anti-Centauri prejudice means they do not put in much of an effort when Londo's quarters are infested with insects.
Vir's (soon-to-be) wife turns up, as do some murderous Narns. Ivanova discovers that someone has been shipping Narns off-world. He is a Centauri using the name Abrahamo Lincolni.
The station sees the arrival of a man who is apparently King Arthur Pendragon, played by Michael York (who was also the villain in Season 3 of Seaquest DSV ). He befriends G'Kar, of all people!
Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek ) arrives on the station, and requests help in ambushing a Shadow convoy transporting weapon parts.
Alfred Bester (yes, we now confirm his name) shows his softer side. For some reason, there are no Minbari Teeps available this time, so Sheridan has to find another way to control him.
Londo awaits his girlfriend's arrival on the station. No mention of his wife (he only divorced two of them). Mr Morden is lurking around the station.
Garibaldi suspects that Doctor Franklin is addicted to stims.
This is the long-awaited sequel to Babylon Squared, and features the return of a much-loved character from Season One. No, not Sinclair - though he does pop up - this reviewer is referring to the fact that we finally get more Zathras!
Sinclair (Michael O'Hare) is back! His best buddy Garibaldi flies off in a Starfury to investigate something, so ironically they never meet together again.
Continued Next Week.
This is the end of the B4 story arc, continued from Last Week.
20 years in the future, we learn:
Delenn has a time-flash of her first meeting with Sheridan's ex-wife, at the end of Season 3.
Zathras explains that Sinclair, Delenn and Sheridan are all The One.
And in that unforgetable last scene, we find out who Valen is.
Kosh is dead, long live the new Kosh - a new Vorlon ambassador arrives on the station, and treats Vorlon-adapted human Lyta Alexander ( Patricia Tallman ) like dirt. He is angry that the previous Kosh did not leave a soul fragment in her before the Shadows killed him; Lyta suspects that Sheridan got the fragment instead.
Sheridan takes the White Star. Even with Lyta Alexander ( Patricia Tallman ) aboard, can it defeat a Shadow vessel?
The Doc's stim addiction has been long revealed; he resigned, and now Garibaldi discovers that he went walkabout. Doctor Franklin meets a seductress who seems more interested in his access to narcotics.
The Narn warship that B5 sheltered in Season 2 returns. Sheridan needs military support to attack the Shadows. Garibaldi returns G'Kar's book.
Garibaldi delegates some responsibilities, and sends Zach to recruit some Teeps. Zach is having trouble recruiting enough telepaths to fight the Shadows. Ivanova locates Dr Franklin, still on walkabout, so she can contact the Telepaths' Underground Railroad.
Now that Sinclair is gone, Delenn takes over as head of the Rangers. Neroon, the Minbari General, objects - he challenges her right to lead a military organisation, and threatens violence. Lenier gets Marcus the Ranger to help by delaying Neroon until the ceremony has begun.
Garibaldi is cleaning a S&W .38 from Grandma Garibaldi's Boston PD days. Zach tells him about a recent disappearance of a maintenance man in Grey 17, and Garibaldi goes to investigate. Down there he finds a missing level, the token black guy from Cold Case (he has not aged a day) and Robert Englund ( V ). The handgun-friendliness of this episode is strange, considering JMS' supposed anti-gun views.
Londo is after G'Kar. Londo has Vir tell G'Kar that Na'Toth is alive. Reefa plots (as ever).
The B-Story features Earth's religions. Wayne Alexander guest-stars.
The Shadows use tactics that were later copied by the IRA in the Omagh bombing. They use Kettling to maximise civilian casualties in a confined target area.
The show starts with Delenn coming face to face with Anna Sheridan. We get a series of flashbacks (re-filmed with Melissa Gilbert). She reveals that her expedition was sent to Za'Ha'Dum by IPX and EarthForce (New Technologies Division) as a result of the discovery of the Shadow ship on Mars. Unfortunately, Shadows do not kill their POWs. They use them in biotechnology!
We get lots of foreshadowing. When Sheridan looks in the mirror, Kosh tells him If you go to Za'Ha'Dum, you will die. Sheridan also recounts to Delenn the events of the future scene in the Sinclair episode, when 20 years in the future Delenn tells him Do not go to Za'Ha'Dum!
Sheridan disobeys the advice, and lets Anna take him there. He meets Morden (Ed Wasser), along with a Fixer who controls tiny facets of everyday life from behind the scenes. Indeed, he mentions that he and the Shadows work with the help of the Psi-Corps!
They explain that the conflict is not Good versus Evil but rather Lawful Evil vs Chaotic Evil! However, the human Shadow-helpers are Fascists, just as bad as they accuse the Vorlons of being.
The end? Sheridan dives into oblivion as a 1000 megaton blast goes off overhead. Garibaldi goes MIA in a Starfury. G'Kar gives the final monologue.
After the climax of Season 3, Sheridan and Garibaldi are still MIA.
Londo and Vir Cotto go to Centauri Prime, where they discover the new Emperor is dangerously insane.
Sheridan is in a cave with a strange alien called Lorien. Or is he?
Back on the station, Delenn is having terrible trouble getting over him.
G'Kar and Marcus try to track down Garibaldi, but run into Centauri trouble. Yes, G'kar - leader of the Narn resistance - did not bring his Bodyguards along!
Can G'Kar and Londo form an alliance? Luckily, it seems the Centauri security staff do not bother to bug their prison cells. Reefa was worth two thousand Narns. Cartagia is worth a million times more.
Cartagia's full insanity is made clear to Londo. Garibaldi and Sheridan arrive back. They discover that the Shadows are using PIRA terror tactics.
A Ranger Captain (Bryan Cranston - Total Recall 2012 ) is sacrificed.
Londo, G'Kar and Vir team up against Cartagia.
Everything is set for a big showdown between the Shadows and the Vorlons. Sheridan's fleet is massing, in order to protect the younger races from being caught in the crossfire.
Meanwhile, on Centari Prime Mr Morden and his Shadow associates have a showdown of their own with Londo and Viir.
The climax? Well, Sheridan and Delenn confront the 2 elder races ...
The Shadow War is over, but Sheridan still has other worries. Psi-cop Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek ) is given President Clark's directive - Shut down Babylon 5! The main method is to undermine Alien support.
Garibaldi gets a strange vid-phone message, and decides to quit his job and go freelance.
Londo, tired of Court intrigues, is back on B5. G'Kar gets on the NHS list for an artificial eye. However, although Londo went out of his way to help the Narns, G'Kar is in no way grateful towards him.
Bester arrives at B5. Patricia Tallman is summoned for security. The newly-promoted Zach offers to help her redecorate and buys her pizza. Bester makes Sheridan take him to Za'ha'dum. The planet is being evacuated by Allies of the Shadows - a foreshadowing of Crusade.
Sheridan worries about his father.
The station is host to a reporter from ISN. The second half of the episode is the ISN broadcast.
There is no sign of G'Kar.
Marcus and the Doc take a trip to Mars, with interesting fake IDs.
Back on B5, Delenn has flashbacks. These may be lifted from the Prequel movie.
Marcus and the Doc's fake IDs indicate they are a married couple. The compulsory food chat concerns pre-packed meals. When they get to Mars, they find that nobody there knows about the Shadow War! Marcus tells someone I'm a Ranger, and gets the reply You're a long way from Texas. In a reference to The Prisoner, the Resistance leader ( Marjorie Monaghan ) is named Number One.
Back on B5, we see Alien Gands in the background - a reference to Neil Gaiman's work before he was approached to write an episode. Ivanova talks with smugglers, and gets chatted up. Sheridan and Delenn discover each others' pleasure centres. Garibaldi is confronted by an anti-Sheridan group. This is the main arc plot, kept to the b-story.
Ivanova is given her own TV station.
On Mars, Dr Franklin and Number One ( Marjorie Monaghan ) get to spend some time together. Marcus gets to do guard duty, playing with his staff.
Garibaldi is set his first mission by the conspirators. Because Sheridan had Zach retrieve his Security-issue gear, Garibaldi has no objection to going up against his former comrades. However, the mission involves his Martian ex-GF from Season 1. Garibaldi and Lise are in a plot involving Telepath DNA, and they are pursued by Teep gunmen. Sheridan blames Garibaldi for the ensuing carnage.
Ivanova has set up a broadcasting station called Voice of the Resistance, However, the transmitter needs extra power to make Interstellar broadcasts. She heads down to Epsilon 3, and meets a certain Tim Choate character!
Delenn and Lennier are on a Minbari ship heading home. They are joined by her Military Caste rival, Dukhat. The crew are Religious caste (including Guy Siner - Allo, Allo), and they are mistrustful of the Military types. They will scuttle the ship, killing themselves (and Delenn) rather than let the Military caste win.
Sheridan uses reverse psychology on the League of Non-Aligned Worlds.
Delenn and her Military Caste rival, Neroon, work together to end the Minbari Civil War.
This ep also sees the start of the Earth civil war.
Sheridan's fleet faces off against an Earthforce armada commanded by Ken Jenkins (Scrubs) and Richard Gant ( Special Unit 2 ).
Londo offers a deal to G'Kar.
Lyta Alexander ( Patricia Tallman ) assumes the worst of Zach, but helps Doctor Franklin.
Garibaldi arrives on Mars, and meets his mysterious boss. The plan is that to get rid of the Psi Corps they must get rid of Clarke, But to take Clarke off-guard they must convince him they are against Sheridan .
Garibaldi tells Sheridan his dad has been captured.
Dr Franklin gets Lyta Alexander ( Patricia Tallman ) to Mars.
There is a mini civil war on Mars: Teeps (Lyta tells a tale of Psi Corps brutality) versus the anti-Teep billionaire.
Sheridan is interrogated for the full episode. There are no intercut scenes or musical effects. This is like a stage play - intense, almost claustrophobic.
Garibaldi manages to make contact with the Mars Resistance. Unfortunately, although they held Sheridan responsible for putting down the Food Riots a decade previously, they still needed him to follow through on his promise of Martian Independence. Can Garibaldi convince Lyta and Franklin to save him?
Sheridan is still holding up under interrogation. Can he escape, or will he get rescued?
Ivanova interrogates a captured pro-Clarke officer (Marc Gomes - Crow: Stairway to Heaven ). He realises that he will end up facing a War Crimes tribuneral, so he tells her what he needs to know. There is an ambush force of super-warships waiting for them ...
Ivanova leads the White Stars, with their Minbari-Vorlon tech, against Clarke's Human-Shadow hybrid vessels.
Garibaldi, Franklin and the Mars resistance start taking out Clarke's installations on the surface of Mars.
Sheridan leads the main fleet against the Clarke forces. The enemy's leader is Sheridan's old boss, the man who taught him everything he knows. And the old man has a damn good sense for when Sheridan is planning something.
Ivanova is still on her deathbed, and Marcus is obsessing about her. He manages to find out about the alien healing machine ...
Sheridan has handed himself over to what remains of EarthGov. After all, he was fighting to restore legitimate Government to Earth, not to impose himself as dictator.
Delenn has plans of her own. Londo and G'Kar are now best buddies, from the look of it. How this transition happened, when a couple of weeks ago G'Kar refused to sign on the same page of a document as Londo (even when it was to help Sheridan)
We see 4 segments of what B5's legacy is - 50, 100, 500 and 1000 years later.
This was directed by Stephen Furst (AKA Vir Cotto)
Neal Pearson ( Charmed: Season 1 ) has a small role as a a trainee monk whose faith is in doubt.
One of Clarke's trained killers has gotten himself onto B5. He intends to assassinate Sheridan at the Inauguration ceremony. But first, he starts grand-standing like an amateur. He kills a Ranger, just to leave a message.
Ivanova's replacement arrives. She is Captain Elizabeth Lochley ( Tracey Scoggins ), career military but she will not say who she worked for during the final battle. Was she willing to obey illegal orders issued by an unelected President?
Sheridan has gotten himself promoted from Station Commander to President-Elect of the known Galaxy. Well, he was not elected by the popular vote, but nobody (except on Earth) seems to have a problem with him. Garibaldi, on the other hand, is still a freelance consultant. He has nothing better to do than hang around and give unneeded advice to Zach, the station's real Head of Security.
Londo complains about Zach confiscating his favourite beverage. Well, it makes a nice change from people talking about food all the time. Unfortunately, as soon as Londo takes a swig of it he ends up in the ICU.
Londo is comatose, driven to halucinations and flashbacks by guilt. Despite having been friendly with G'Kar for the last few weeks, it looks as if he feels he still owes him an apology.
While Vir has to cope with the Londo situation, Lennier is trying to deal with the Delenn/Sheridan situation. He puts in for a transfer to the Rangers.
G'kar has completed the Declaration of Principles for the Alliance. However, nobody except the Narns and the Centauri has signed it. The Drazi are outspoken opponents, and Sheridan cannot talk the smaller worlds into signing.
A Ranger arrives from a rim world which has been subject to bi-annual plunderings. Just like the villagers in Seven Samurai, the natives need rescuing before they get exterminated. The Drazi never bothered to claim the world, so they have no reason to protect it. Will Sheridan uphold his inconvenient Principles, and send the White Star Fleet? And how many casualties are acceptable losses?
Garibaldi suggests upgrading the Alliance's forces. The Minbari, Centauri and all other races (except Narns) use Military Telepaths. Can Byron (Robin Akin Downs) be persuaded to recruit volunteers to help the hopeless? Can Garibaldi persuade Lyta Alexander to persuade Byron? Or will Lyta get sick of working for a living and join Byron's space-hippies?
G'Kar is constantly updating and rewriting the Principles. There are references to writers being touchy, a sign that JMS was getting too self-indulgent by this stage. Despite G'Kar's flowery prose the Declaration can be summed up by the Bill and Ted Line: Be excellent to one another!
This ep is told as a day in the life of Mack and Bo, a pair of maintenance grunts. They wander B5, repairing machines at specific locations where they can overhear conversations with key personnel. Dr Franklin explains why he cares about all life, including that of the raiders. Londo and G'Kar bicker like a married couple.
While the White Star Fleet is away at the Enfili world, B5 is vulnerable to attack by the mysterious force of raiders. Of course, vulnerable is a relative term - they still have the pre-war forces (defence grid, Starfurys and security grunts). They even have Draal's defences on Epsilon III, although he is never even mentioned this ep. A pity, because the raiders launch an unprovoked attack.
Last week we saw the lives of Mack and Bo, a pair of maintenance grunts. This time the story is about a couple of trainee Rangers. They are selected to travel with their instructors to B5, to meet Delenn. Unfortunately, while they are there they blunder into a new conflict.
An Australian gangster (Trevor Goddard - Deep Rising ) muscles in on the rackets on B5. His plan is to use a show of force, and leave lots of witnesses. He targets his greatest opponent - Zach Allen, Head of Security.
Delenn confronts Lochley, and basically pulls rank on her. Lochley is ungrateful for the offer of help sorting out the gangsters. She forgets that Zach is basically a tin-badge sheriff compared to the Rangers, who are an Interstellar Special Forces unit. And Lochley lets slip something that makes Delenn suspect the true reason that Sheridan recruited her.
Delenn approves of the true reason that Sheridan recruited Lochley. But Garibaldi is still suspicious of the newcomer.
The Telepaths may have a safe haven on B5, but it (and they) are still subject to Earth law. Thus, they are property of the Psi-Corps. Mister Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek ), who else, and a platoon to Psi-Cops arrive on B5 to collect them. They plan to round up the rogue telepaths who have formed a colony there. Despite Sheridan's offer of protection for them, and the fact some of them are taking Intelligence assignments from Garibaldi, they are still under EarthGov (and thus, Psi-Cop) jurisdiction. Luckily, Lochley can think on her feet.
The time has come for Londo to return to Centauri Prime. Delenn tells G'Kar that they need to send a bodyguard with him. And guess who gets the assignment!
There is a new gangster in town on B5 who has not learned the lessons that the Rangers dished out to the Australian gangster (Trevor Goddard - Deep Rising ).
The Teeps seem to think that having super-powers makes them MOPEs - the Most Oppressed People EVER! Lyta is spending all her time with Byron and his Cult. They all dress in black, like a Goth crowd. Naturally, they get picked on by bullies and thugs. Of course, like all outcasts who have superpowers they end up wanting to take revenge.
Zach seems to have lost the charm he exhibited a few episodes ago. He treats Byron as being responsible for the actions of his followers. Unfortunately, Byron is a mitigating influence who keeps them under control. When Zach locks the guy up on suspicion, and Lyta barely bothers to support Byron, despite being the perfect alibi witness, this leaves the violent ones to go unopposed.
Worse is to come. When Byron and Lyta get intimate, she lets him past her mental defences. Every teep sees what the Vorlons did to them. The Mopes want payback, and since the Vorlons have left the Galaxy then every other race must pay instead.
Elsewhere, Dr Franklin investigates the medical history of an alien species. After the revelation about the Drazi a couple of episodes ago, it is hardly a surprise that these aliens have a nasty skeleton in their closet. Unfortunately, this kind of thing was better dealt with in an episode of Star Trek: Voyager ! Also, the secret itself is nothing that the Centauri do not openly admit to having done. All in all, quite a disappointment.
This ep was written by Neil Gaiman. It does not feature the Gaim, a species named after him and recognisable by the Sandman style gas-mask helmets they wear. Instead, the ep concentrates on a creepy-looking bunch called the Brakiri.
The Brakiri are celebrating their Day of the Dead. Everyone assumes it is like the Mexican festival on Earth, so they play along to be polite. Lochley even agrees to sell a portion of the station to the Brakiri, making it legally part of Brakiri Prime until dawn. But that night, everyone who stays in the Brakiri section is visited by a ghost.
Sheridan and Delenn spend the night with guests of their own - Rebo and Zooty (Penn and Teller)!
Londo and G'Kar arrive on Centauri Prime. The idea of a Centauri Prime Minister having a Narn as a bodyguard is a topic of much conversation. But G'Kar has made peace with the Universe, and refuses to surrender his dignity.
The Centauri Regent is medically indisposed, and it seems his mental health has dropped off quite badly. Londo stumbles into at least one plot - well, one that is your basic Centauri game of thrones, and one that is something far worse. Londo and G'Kar encounter the typical events of Centauri politics - attempted assassination! Worse, there is a villainous alien race plotting a coup, and Londo seems to be a key pawn in their plans. Telekinesis, glowing red eyes, they look quite impressive.
Elsewhere, a fleet of warships is attacking and destroying random space-freighters. Sheridan orders the Rangers to investigate, but there is nothing they can really do. It is unlikely to be the Raider fleet who operated near Drazi space ... Nobody remembers that there is a mysterious species named the Drakh who now fill the void created by the Shadows leaving.
Back on B5, Byron plans to extort the Alliance members into granting him a homeworld for Telepaths. He has his people stalk each of the ambassadors, probing their minds for nasty secrets. Will the Alliance submit to blackmail? After all, the Teeps just need the deeds to an uninhabited M-Class world. Hey, what about the Markab world? Any survivors of the species cannot return there because it is heavily infected with the disease. And since there is no jump-gate there any more, it will be harder for anyone to harass the Teeps.
The Telepaths finally come into conflict with the other races on B5. Even in a space station full of outcasts, the Teeps cannot make the effort to fit in. Byron tries to stop the extremists, but he is a pacifist so he does not try very hard. Lyta, despite having superpowers and being friends with the station's crew, does not lift a finger. She is too busy being Byron's GF.
This ep is told mainly from Lochley's perspective. It starts with her daily workout routine, then follows her on her attempt to end the stand-off with the Telepaths. Zach is trying to cut through the bulkheads, but the Teeps are messing with the workman's mind. Lochley goes in alone, via the air vents, and tries to talk some sense into Byron.
The Drazi accuse their neighbours of being behind the raiders. Everyone accuses each other of being in league with the telepaths. Only Sheridan has the brains to stand back and see how they are being manipulated by an enemy that wants to break up the Alliance. Luckily, the White Star Fleet is in position to patrol the borders between the member races - as stated in the Alliance protocols. Unfortunately it seems the ambassadors did not bother to read what they were signing!
Londo has uncovered an inexplicable increase in military spending. G'Kar discovers some food prepared for a Narn ... so he is not the only one in the palace. Londo discovers what happened to Na'Toth ( Julie Caitlin Brown ).
Lochley has to call in some backup to deal with the Teeps. Yes, it is time she made good on her deal with Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek ) and the Psi-Cops. But by upping the game, she drives the renegades to extreme measures. They raid the Security team's poorly-guarded armoury.
Bester's bloodhound units are being ambushed by the untrained fanatics. But despite the evidence of his own eyes, Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek ) has no idea how far the Teeps will go to avoid falling into his clutches. He wants them to re-join the Psi Corps so they can unite against the common foe - Mundanes. But nobody else sees it that way.
Garibaldi wants to take revenge on Bester. His plan involves getting Bester to confess to being behind the Sheridan handover in the previous Season, not to mention destroying the genocide virus. But there is nothing to be gained from such revelations - Lyta already confirmed this for the rebels at the time, and Sheridan knows to take Garibaldi's word for it. Unfortunately, Garibaldi's revenge does not go according to plan. And when he goes to med-bay, things get even worse. Remember the CCTV clip from the final ep of Season Four? This is certainly not his day.
The mysterious raiders attack a smuggler's ship in Drazi space. One of the crew makes it to a lifepod. Garibaldi is sent to Drazi Prime to retrieve the survivor. Unfortunately, ever since his last run-in with Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek ), Garibaldi kind of fell off the wagon. He is a lousy drunk who cannot hold his liquor, which is not great for a covert operative. His drinking has begun to be a problem, because he passes out drunk at the most inopportune moments.
Londo and G'Kar arrive back from Centauri Prime. The local Narns are all in awe of G'Kar for some reason. Then G'Kar meets T'Lon (Marshall Teague), who tells him that his book has been Liberated ...
This is A Day In The Life ... of Mister Bester (Walter Koenig - Star Trek )!
The Telepaths finally come into conflict with the other races on B5. Even in a space station full of outcasts, the Teeps cannot make the effort to fit in. Byron tries to stop the extremists, but he is a pacifist so he does not try very hard. Lyta, despite having superpowers and being friends with the station's crew, does not lift a finger. She is too busy being Byron's GF.
Meanwhile, Londo and G'Kar encounter the typical events of Centauri politics - attempted assassination! Worse, there is a villainous alien race plotting a coup, and Londo seems to be a key pawn in their plans. Telekinesis, glowing red eyes, they look quite impressive.
Vir gets bugged by the Drazi. Londo promises him the role of Ambassador to B5, but only when he is ready.
Delenn despatches Lennier to a Ranger ship on the Centauri border. He gets paired off with another Minbari trainee Ranger. The Captain is Human, and throws them in at the deep end.
Garibaldi's wife pays a visit. Well, they never bothered getting married, but if he cared about getting half of her inheritance from her dead previous husband
Lennier sneaks off on a solo mission. He tracks the Centauri transmissions to locate their base, concealed in Hyperspace. It looks like the Psi Corps are not the only ones to have come up with that particular trick!
Londo cannot solve the mystery of what is wrong on his homeworld. He has been denied access to the Regent, he has discovered that military spending has gone up 15% instead of being reduced 25%, and now he is being ordered to supply detailed movements of cargo vessels leaving B5.
Lyta Alexander still wants a homeworld for rogue human telepaths. Will she remember how keen G'Kar was in the pilot episode to get TP DNA?
Londo is confronted with the evidence. A lot of it is circumstantial, but he knows (as does G'Kar) that something is rotten in the Centauri government. He refuses to admit his own suspicions, instead taking sides with the upper-class English-accented Minister who (unlike Londo) has direct access to the Regent. Londo and G'Kar return to Centauri Prime,
Instead of routing all the White Star Fleet communications through C&C, Sheridan has everything sent to Garibaldi's quarters. Of course, the only person who has discovered Garibaldi's secret alcoholism is Zach, who is a trained observer and worked with him more closely than anyone except Sinclair.
Lochley finally reappears.
As we learned last Season, the best way to attack the Stargate is to open a warp hole inside it.
Vir Catto asks Dr Franklin and Lyta Alexander to visit Drazi Prime.
This is all beginning to seem quite familiar. The ruler atop the Centauri throne is insane, giving erratic orders. Londo is unknowingly making reports that leak B5 info to the enemy. The Shadows' allies are at play on Centauri Prime, although admittedly the Drakh and the Streibs have much less charm than the infamous Mr Morden (Ed Wasser).
This time, Londo chooses not to abandon G'Kar. Even G'Kar himself admits the folly of this, since Londo can do both of them much more good if he is on the outside of the prison cell. But unfortunately, Londo can do little good on the outside either. The English-accented Minister who does the Regent's bidding is the Minister for Defence, and he will not help Londo.
The Drazi have fewer scruples than the Centauri these days, it seems. And the Narns, despite having their homeworld flattened by Centauri mass-drivers, can somehow mount a small armada of warships. Their combined strength can apparently flatten Centauri prime from orbit. Never mind that they do not have mass-drivers - apparently standard energy weapons can do just as good a job!
Londo finally confronts the Regent, who tells him the truth. Unfortunately the Drakh have decided to use Londo's old trick against him. They have also become make-up aliens, rather than the expensive-looking CGI beasties from last Season. Budgetary restrictions might explain why Garibaldi and Lochley do not appear in this episode, even in the segment near the end that is set on B5.
Londo is being manipulated by the Drakh, and must act harshly towards his old friends. He sends them away so he can attend his inauguration alone. Even Vir Cotto is sent away for his own safety. Unfortunately, nobody really considers the possibility that the Drakh might be back. After Cartagia's madness, they all just assume that his successors are equally corrupted by the position of power.
The Centauri Regent was acting erratic, borderline insane, ordering attacks that would precipitate a war. Now he is gone, Lyta Alexander ( Patricia Tallman ) is filling the same role. Instead of using the money from G'Kar for preparing a Teep homeworld in remote space, she is using it to finance a terrorist campaign on Earth against the Psi Corps. Lochley ( Tracey Scoggins ) and Zach set out to bring her down. But she has been touched by Vorlons (if not by Zach), so it may be harder ... more difficult than it seems.
G'Kar is suffering from his obsessive fans. He wants to get away from it all, by taking a scout ship to the outer rim.
The former Number One of Mars Resistance ( Marjorie Monaghan ), now a VIP in the Provisional government, visits B5. She has news about Garibaldi's Megacorp. Someone has put a price on Lise and Garibaldi, to avoid having them uncover the company's links to the Clarke administration.
Garibaldi has left. Dr Franklin says his goodbyes. Sheridan and Delenn are packing their bags, en route to the new Alliance HQ on Minbar. Sheridan leaves B5 for the second-last time.
On the ship back to Minbar, Lennier fulfils his prophecy. He eventually betrays the Rangers. And with ONE episode to spare! And on Minbar itself, Londo gives a mysterious gift to his former friends.
Like the other episodes at the arse-end of Season 5, this is pure filler. JMS had so much plot material left over he has released a trilogy of novels to wrap everything up. Why the hell did he not just use the material to write a decent script for this episode?
It is 20 years after Sheridan went to Za'ha'dum, and he has his Rangers send Deathday cards to all his friends. The show's survivors have all risen to the top of their professions - but only 1 of them [apart from Sheridan] has a child! They all look a LOT older, except Delenn.
Sheridan pays one last visit to the station, which is just about to be shut down itself. This is just a load of self-indulgent crap.
JMS makes the cameo appearance he swore he would never do, as the tech who switches B5 off for good. The scene where the station itself is destroyed is far more moving than the whole Sheridan is dying thing.
This show is a monument to JMS' vision, a story arc that took up 5 years of so many peoples' lives; actors, production staff, not to mention the viewers. However, JMS went back on his promise to limit the story to 5 years. He churned out a stack of made-for-TV movies like Thirdspace , and the disappointing Crusade.
The opening credits are incredibly lacklustre. The music is particularly uninspired. The plot introduction is blase: Galen asks Gideon Who are you? What do you want? Where are you going? Who do you serve, and who do you trust?
Earth has been attacked by the Drakh and seeded with a biogenetic plague. Captain Matthew Gideon (Gary Cole - American Gothic ) singlehandedly (and bare-fistedly) puts down a mutiny.
Tim Thomerson ( Trancers ) guest-stars as a Senator. He informs Gideon that the plague will destroy all life on Earth within 5 years - and Gideon is assigned to find the cure.
Meanwhile, the story is set up for Gideon to discover a Drakh ship that was shot down. Cue lots of really wooden acting from supporting actors. Of course, the Drakh themselves are quite wooden - just men in masks, not the impressive SPFX creatures we saw in the original series.
We get introduced to the new crew along the way. Captain Lochley ( Tracey Scoggins ) from Babylon 5 is around. Other babes include Marjean Holden (the african-american doctor) and Carrie Dubro (an expert thief from some near-human alien species). Gideon's first officer (Daniel Dae Kim - Lost ) is a Korean telepath (who does not wear black gloves!) who is also his best friend.
Gideon's ship is the Excalibur, 1.25 miles long. It seems to use Minbari artificial gravity technology - there are no rotating sections. While on their first test-run they are redirected to the Drahk crash-site; somehow they just happen to be the nearest ship! The Captain leads the Away Team [!!!] - there is a brief firefight with the Drakh, and Galen the techno-mage reveals his presence to Gideon.
Galen the Techno-Mage is present not a crew-man but as a hanger-on. This time he is in the form of Peter Woodward. He does the Kosh mysterious babble - well, he quotes a lot of the better lines from the original series. Galen saved Gideon's life 9 years previously (in Gideon's cliched personal involvement backstory).
The episode starts with Capt Gideon working out in the Excalibur's basketball court. The set is massive, especially when compared to the tiny Throne Room in the Centauri palace.
Gideon is called to investigate reports of a Golden Dragon. EarthForce are strip-mining the planet of a mineral that kills viruses, and may be a potential cure for the Drakh plague. However, there is resistance to their mining efforts.
The locals are a regressive culture - their technology is limited to medieval hand-tools and agriculture. The EarthForce troops, in comparison, wear what appears to be a variation of the USCMC uniforms in the film Aliens. Edward Woodward evens the odds - he guest-stars as Alwyn, a renegade techno-mage.
This was written by Fiona Avery, not JMS. However, it shows certain JMS touches, and no doubt he gave a strict outline.
PsiCorps has been disbanded, and replaced with the Bureau of Telepath Integration . The ship's resident Psi is visited by a new-model Psi-Cop. Of note to those awaiting the Psi war, the Excalibur has enough sensory ability to detect hyperspace shielding.
Galen the Technomage persuades Gideon to take the ship to somewhere called The Well of Forever, a mystical place somewhere in Hyperspace. On their way they meet some Hyperspace Jellyfish who get fresh with the ship. The end involves some JMS-style Personal Questions being answered.
This episode was written by JMS himself. The crew recover a strange alien creature that feeds off their memories. It gives flashbacks into the characters past lives; but instead of using bits of previous episodes, it gives real background to the characters.
We get a good look at the Shadow-type vessel that destroyed Gideon's ship 9 years previously. We also see Gideon win something called an Apocalypse box - an artefact that can tell the future, but seems to bring its owner a dark fate.
The team's archaeologist gets a message from his superiors in IPX, demanding a profit margin.
Gideon takes the ship to a remote planet, in search of 30 fugitives who got off Earth before the quarantine was enforced. It seems the fugitives (led by Brian Thompson - X-Files ) have brought the plague with them, and it is killing off the natives.
Gideon uncovers a typical B5 conspiracy involving EarthForce bio-weapons experiments.
Dureena, the near-human thief, discovers a lost tribe of her own people - and she had thought herself to be the last!
Finally we get ALL the regular cast together in one episode. The exception is Galen the technomage, who has been in every other episode but is now strangely absent.
Captain Lochley ( Tracey Scoggins ) finally turns up, as head of Security for a conference about the Drakh plague. The problem is that the conference is being targeted by a lunatic Doomsday Cult called Sacred Omega. The madman leading it hears voices - he thinks that Joan of Arc is telling him to kill people!
GideonYou are my new hero.
LochleyWho was your old one?
GideonWere you ever under him?
Lochley spits her drink out.
Eilerson the archaeologist and Dureena the thief ( Carrie Dubro ) seem to be developing a relationship as well.
Excalibur docks at B5, and the crew take shore leave. Eilerson, the archaeologist, is hanging out with the Doc ( Marjean Holden ) - Dureena is nowhere to be see. He has personal reasons for being there; he meets up with his ex-wife. She took a huge loan from a loan-shark, who is now stalking her.
Gideon and Captain Lochley ( Tracey Scoggins ) try to get the Brakiri Ambassador's permission to land on a planet colonised by a Brakiri client-race, the Lorcans. The Lorcans are religious fanatics who do not want their world to be defiled by unbelievers. Gideon will land on their world whether they like it or not; the Lorcans know this, and try to assassinate him.
Gideon and Lochley have dinner again - a second date, and then go for a stroll in Down Under - a third date.
This episode was written by JMS himself, and it shows. EarthGov has sent a couple of bureaucrats along to interfere with the mission. This is obviously Straczynski complaining about intereference by TNT execs. One is an interior decorator who thinks the ship's colour scheme does not illustrate power. The other is the Night Watch schemer played by John Vickery in the Babylon 5 series.
The Excalibur discovers a giant ship operated by an unknown species. The crew are dead, apparently by their own hand - the exception is in stasis. He is retrieved, but dies inexplicably in med-bay. The archaeologist tries to decipher the alien language.
There are many clues to the alien invasion taking place. The med-bay's brain scanner detects multiple brain-wave patterns. Also, the aliens' written language seems different from its spoken language. Eventually the truth is discovered, and we are given a Pod-people squeal straight from Body Snatchers
This episode was written by JMS himself. It starts with Gideon and the Earthforce Fleet promising the Drazi they will fire on Earth ships that break quarantine. Starship Excalibur is the last, best hope for Earth.
This episode is noticeably CGI-intensive. The heroes discover a mysterious civilisation, but as they explore it some mysterious force starts killing off the crew. Eilerson wants to patent the scientific formulas he has discovered, but Gideon is only interested in getting a cure to the plague.
The ship's internal monorail pops up again - they are obviously re-using the set from Mars and B5. There is another cameo by Gideon's Armageddon Box.
This episode was written by JMS himself.
The crew discover the remains of a mysterious civilisation that was destroyed by something or someone unknown.
Galen warns that nobody who has visited the planet has ever survived - even Technomages! He refuses to visit the planet himself: yes, this time the super-powerful being card is not in play.
Dureena ( Carrie Dubro , the show's token T&A) goes exploring among the skyscrapers - on the rooftops, where for some reason there are no air currents!
Doc-babe Marjean Holden develops a virus screen that can give temporary immunity to the Drakh virus. Gideon's Apocalypse Box pops up at the end again.
Gideon takes aboard an alien refugee. The alien is an artist - the Government of his species wants to destroy all culture and retain only functionality. The Captain wants the alien to hand over a cure for the plague, but it delivers something else - hope.
We finally get a year for this series - 2267. This episode was written by JMS, and looks like one of the better ones. It is an excellent satire on a certain US TV show first released at the same time as the original B5 series!
The Excalibur discovers a disc-shaped starship floating derelict in space. They salvage and search it - and find a couple of aliens with green skin and tentacle-things on their heads. The aliens speak English - they learned it somehow, though there is no record of the humans encountering their species. It turns out that they were investigating a conspiracy on their world, to cover up UFO sightings, crop circles (the Stars & Stripes) and the face on Mars (err, Mount Rushmore!). And they are being pursued by the Cigarette-Smoking Alien!
The tame telepath is still a tight-ass about using his powers, though he does come in useful.
The Excalibur is on a mysterious mission, awaiting contact with an unknown messenger. The messenger is Lance DeGault ( ), and he orders the ship to return to Earth.
Meanwhile, a Starfury from B5 is floating dead in space. The pilot? Captain Lochley ( Tracey Scoggins )!
B5 fans will also be pleased to hear that Dr Franklin also pops up. Franklin discovers that the virus is decompressing, like a zip file - a reference that Internet users will understand.
Yes, there is a bit of action at the end. The Drakh learn of the plot, and intervene.