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PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 6:09 pm 
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of Vinyamar
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SPOILERS!

Hard to believe we don't have a thread for this yet!

I grabbed a copy of Lost Tales, but I haven't watched it yet. In the meantime, ooh I dunno... LotR comparisons?

Well, there's the obvious Rangers, and their "We stand on the Bridge and none may pass". The tecnomages and "Do not meddle in the affairs of Wizards for they are subtle and quick to anger"...

Favourite eps?

"Passing through Gethsemane" is a standout for me, and of course the season spanning three parter "Babylon Squared" and "War without End"

Sleeping in Light. :cry: :cry: :cry: :bawling: :bawling: :bawling:

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Last edited by Alatar on Mon Aug 06, 2007 3:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 7:35 pm 
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"Z'had'dum." :bawl: And you can't imagine, considering what happens there, that "Khazad-dûm" was not the word in the back of Straczynski's mind, no matter how fvervently he denies it.

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“There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 10:48 pm 
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of Vinyamar
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Have you read the Tecnomage trilogy Prim? Written by Jeanne Cavelos from a plot outline by JMS, so they're "canon". Really, they are very, very good.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 10:51 pm 
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My son has been telling me I need to read it for several years.

Maybe I'll go collect them from him now.

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“There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 11:33 pm 
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Needless to say, there are spoilers...


I never saw a single one of these shows when they were on TV. I was a big STNG fan and just couldn’t be bothered to watch a cheap imitation, which is what I thought B5 was when I first heard about it. But, because of the glowing recommendations I have seen for the series here, mostly the praise Prim has had for the show, I finally decided to watch it, and have been doing so for the past few months. I’m on season 5 now with 2 ½ disks left to go before I’m finished with the series, and then the movies.

I am absolutely loving it. As has probably been said a million times, the first season was difficult to get through, the acting was so rigid and stiff, the stories seemed rather dull, but the payoff came with the subsequent seasons, and the buildup and follow through of the Shadow wars were just incredible. I’ve been trying to deliberately stretch out watching the disks, but for last half of season three and the first half of season four I was riveted to the tv and would watch four episodes at a time (and then sit on my hands for two days waiting for Netflix to send the next disk).

Everything after the Shadow Wars has seemed like it has been slowing down and winding down to a soft landing. But really, how do you compete with a battle for the survival of all known life forms in the galaxy? I love that sort of thing! Epic on an astronomical scale! Star Trek tried to do that from time to time, but the episodic format of the show was a hindrance, whereas the serial nature of B5 was more accommodating to telling a grand story.

One comment about the acting - I saw somewhere else someone referred to Sheridan and Sinclair as the “Cardboard Captains”. While I certainly agree, I do think Bruce Boxleitner did a much better job of making the character more believable and more human. But I just watched the episode last night that had the comedians Penn and Teller playing, of course, comedians (their names were something like Zooty and Spooge, or something) and next to them Sheridan seemed like the stiffest piece of wood ever to set foot on a stage. It was so painful it was almost cute. I love Penn and Teller but they were so out of place on that show it hurt.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 11:35 pm 
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"War Without End" - superb. :)

So many superb episodes, though, I'll have to rewatch them all at some point ... but one of my all-time favourites is the season four finale, "The Deconstruction of Falling Stars" - just wow. :)

I had a big thing for Michael Garibaldi, who always reminded me of Bruce Willis. :D Sexiest security man in space. :D

And Bester - one of the best villains ever!

Fantastic series with wonderful characters. I think seasons three and four have to be my favourites.

So many loose ends left dangling in series five ...

Wikipedia has an impressive list of all the Tolkien references and allusions in the series (and other stuff):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babylon_5_influences

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 11:48 pm 
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tinwë, I helped persuade you to watch B5? And you like it?

My toes are tingling with glee. I am so glad! :love:

I haven't watched it for a long time, except THE LOST TALES the other day, in which I was sorry to be disappointed (I posted to complain in the TV Obsessions thread). But the itch is coming back, and it's right there on the shelf, and it does make the treadmill time pass faster. . . .

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“There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 04, 2007 6:37 am 
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I'm surprised the website doesn't mention mbar - the elvish word for home, which sounds suspiciously like Minbar.

It's been so long since I saw B5 episodes - when they first came out, actually. One of these days I'll sit down and have a marathon.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 04, 2007 3:42 pm 
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I hated this show when it first came out, or at least I hated the first couple of episodes. My son was into it right away and he kept nattering at me to give it another chance. Eventually I did.

I saw an episode the other night that I'd never seen before, featuring two maintenance men working away through some big battle. It was good.

The cardboard captains were cardboard, although I agree with tinwë that Boxleitner was better than the other guy. Actually, the only characters I really love are G'Kar and Lando. The "good guys" are usually too "goody-goody". Particularly D'lenn. Not sure about any of these spellings, btw, but I guess you know who I mean!

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 04, 2007 4:08 pm 
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I loved Garibaldi, too. Very human character, with big problems, many of which he created for himself.

But I'm an old softy, so I also really enjoyed the Sheridan-Delenn arc. The moment in the final episode that completely destroys me involves them.

I'm really glad that JMS has said no one else will ever play G'Kar. No one else could. Andreas Katsoulas made him real, so you don't see the alien make-up; you just see a person, living and suffering and growing. And that voice! The closing words of "Z'ha'dum" made my hair stand on end, and still give me chills.

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“There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 9:06 am 
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Primula Baggins wrote:
I'm really glad that JMS has said no one else will ever play G'Kar. No one else could. Andreas Katsoulas made him real, so you don't see the alien make-up; you just see a person, living and suffering and growing. And that voice! The closing words of "Z'ha'dum" made my hair stand on end, and still give me chills.


G'Kar was totally of the awesome. :bow:

But Londo Mollari was also a fantastic character. And the guy who was his subordinate ... what was his name???

I also really liked Lyta Alexander. Complex relationship she had with the Vorlon - but then, didn't everybody?!



SPOILERS!!!!




What was that amazing ep from season 1 or 2, when Jack the Ripper turned up on B5 - in the service of the Vorlon. :shock: Just FREAKY. :blackeye:

Another of my favourite B5 freaky moments ... when Laura Ingalls turns up on Z'ha'dum, in the thrall of the Shadows. :D And then dies in that big ole thermonuclear explosion engineered by Sheridan. :shock:

(The actress, Melissa Gilbert, was married to Boxleitner, wasn't she?)

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 10:07 am 
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I really need to rewatch it. I started at some point, but got stuck somewhere in the middle of Season 1 for some reason.

But, already by then, I had noticed several LOTR influenced things. ;)

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 11:46 am 
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Lets not forget the shock of having one of the major characters turn out to be a plant by the Psi-Corps!

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 2:33 pm 
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Di, Melissa Gilbert and Bruce Boxleitner are still married, as far as I know.

If we're discussing the series as a whole, maybe it would be simplest to put a spoiler warning in the thread title? Then we could all speak freely. :)

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“There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 3:19 pm 
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I, on the other hand, hate it like poison when they drag guyz like Jack the Ripper or Sigmund Freud into these shows. I could just barely tolerate the Holodeck and the goings-on there, but only just barely. (As for Sherlock Holmes, I have never been under his spell except when the divine Jeremy Brett is involved . . . .)

What I want is Science Fiction. That's what I want. Give me scifi, scifi, that's what I want.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 3:30 pm 
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Edited! But I'd appreciate no spoilers on the B5 Lost Tales just yet....

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 3:39 pm 
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vison wrote:
I, on the other hand, hate it like poison when they drag guyz like Jack the Ripper or Sigmund Freud into these shows. I could just barely tolerate the Holodeck and the goings-on there, but only just barely. (As for Sherlock Holmes, I have never been under his spell except when the divine Jeremy Brett is involved . . . .)

What I want is Science Fiction. That's what I want. Give me scifi, scifi, that's what I want.


So why can't the Holodeck, or 'resurrecting' Jack the Ripper (or whatever the dickens the Vorlon did to him) be part of science fiction?

:scratch:

I mean, there's always a fantasy element about any sci-fi, surely, because it's all speculation and fantasy about a future we can't imagine.

:)

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 3:45 pm 
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Pearly Di wrote:
vison wrote:
I, on the other hand, hate it like poison when they drag guyz like Jack the Ripper or Sigmund Freud into these shows. I could just barely tolerate the Holodeck and the goings-on there, but only just barely. (As for Sherlock Holmes, I have never been under his spell except when the divine Jeremy Brett is involved . . . .)

What I want is Science Fiction. That's what I want. Give me scifi, scifi, that's what I want.


So why can't the Holodeck, or 'resurrecting' Jack the Ripper (or whatever the dickens the Vorlon did to him) be part of science fiction?

:scratch:

I mean, there's always a fantasy element about any sci-fi, surely, because it's all speculation and fantasy about a future we can't imagine.

:)


There can be. But it is extremely noticeable that the writers resort to this when they run out of other ideas, about halfway into any given second season. It's like when some semi-famous "guest star" turns up on a sitcom: you pretty well know it's curtains for both the show and the "guest star"!

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 3:48 pm 
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Oh, OK. :)

I've not watched enough sci-fi to notice. :D

I was never a Trekkie, and didn't even watch all of The Next Generation, although I enjoyed it.

I thought that B5 was the best thing I'd ever seen, sci-fi wise, so I just assumed all the ideas in it were completely original. :D

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 06, 2007 3:50 pm 
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I think I understand where vison is coming from. Sometimes having too much of a connection between the SFnal world and our own world and time kind of lets the lightning out of the bottle—it brings in an element of the mundane that doesn't have to be there.

Now, I thought the Jack the Ripper episode of B5 was a very strong one, but it is also something that crops up a lot in SF—he was such a monster, people seem to want to try to give a "story" reason for his being what he was. It attempts to make sense of the hideously incomprehensible.

But like vison, I like SF because it takes me elsewhere. There are plenty of involving SF stories, in books and in visual media, that include serious reflection on the human condition, without explicitly bringing in references to our own or recent cultures and times. Sometimes the most interesting way to comment on now is to turn it inside out and look at it from an alien perspective.

Edit: Cross-posted with vison and Di's most recent posts.

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― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King


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