View Full Version : Are there any Babylon 5 fans out there???

10-05-2008, 04:09 AM
If so, I have questions.

For whatever reason I never watched the show when it was on tv and I just now went back and watched all 5 seasons and am now watching the movies.

1. Does anyone know if J. Michael Strazynski (JMS from now on) intentionally waited till the last episode to make Laneer turn from good to bad? Yes, if you intentionally allow someone to die when you could eaisly help you are bad.

It was just so out of character and the fact that they did this knowing that there would be no way to ever come to grips with this, explain this or resolve this just makes no sense to me. Was this an oversite, because I'm pretty sure they knew the series would end.

2. Why did he write for Lita to make such a point about returning in two years, knowing that we would never be able to see this or resolve it?

3. Why did he write for Gerabaldi to have such an issue with Bester and then never resolve it? I understand that it was resolved in the books but still.

I have more questions but I will wait and see if anybody even watched the show first.

10-08-2008, 03:04 PM
Finally watched, huh? Took you long enough. I know I've told you a few times you should.

Anyway, the key thing to remember is, while JMS planned a 5 year show, things weren't looking good in year 4. The syndication company they went through went belly up and he couldn't find any takers for the show.

As a result, JMS decided to throw out some things and compress others, so he could end the show in 4 seasons if necessary. The Earth civil war was supposed to last well into season 5, with the season 4 cliffhanger being Garibaldi betraying Sheridan to the Alliance.

Instead, JMS threw out the plans he had for the Centari, along with some stand-alone stuff, and hurried the war along to it's conclusion. Since Sleeping in Light is self-contained 20 years hence, he went ahead and filmed it at the end of season 4, where it would have aired if the show couldn't continue.

However, TNT came in at the last minute and saved the day, not only commissioning season 5, but the first of the movies, and eventually, the sequel series Crusade.

Now, of course that was great news, but JMS was left to compose a season from his leftovers. He was further hampered when the actress who played Ivanova decided not to return for the last season. His planned arc in case they did get picked up was to have Susan take over B5 and fall in love with Byron. The building conflict would leave her torn between her duty, her feelings for Byron, and her hatred of the Psi Corps.

Alas, the story wasn't meant to be, and to salvage the situation, JMS elevated Lyta from a planned disciple of Byron's to his lover.

Anyway, I digress. There's a lot of problems with season 5, I just wanted you to have a history of the main causes. What you need to remember when looking at season 5 is TNT was really high on the franchise in general, and I believe JMS felt he had the avenue to explore these open questions. The problem is the relationship with TNT soured by the time Crusade was in production. According to JMS, TNT meddled way to much, and we ended up only getting a half season of another 5-year arc.

Don't know if Crusade is on DVD, I know there's torrents of it if you get desperate. It takes place 5 years after Babylon 5 proper. With only 13 episodes, JMS didn't have much time to delve into what's taken place in the interim, but one crucial piece we do learn about is the Telepath war, and it's aftermath. There was an episode that flashed back to the beginning of the conflict, and Lyta was supposed to appear, but the actress was unavailable.

After Crusade, JMS had the idea for another spinoff, and did a backdoor pilot for SciFi called Legend of the Rangers. Now, JMS blames it not being picked up for the fact it aired the same night as the Patriots-Raiders 2001 AFC championship (the "tuck rule" game), but, really, it was quite awful. It was set between B5 proper and Crusade, so again, we may have seen some of these elements, especially Lennier, but who knows.