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THE ZOCALO DISCUSSION TOPIC - PAGE 2

Previous discussion topic:
Even new viewers have seen a few of the B5 movies so far -- Thirdspace, The Gathering, A Call To Arms, etc. Do you have a favorite? Why?


Date: 1/6/2001 3:15:24 PM EST
From: andresvene11@hotmail.com (Andres E. Hidalgo Sandoval)

The unfinished story... can be the stories of Dr.Franklin, Garibaldi and Ivanova, just after "Objects at rest" and before "Slipping in light", and the finale stories of all of them after "Slipping ...". It's my opinion.


Date: Thu, 21 Dec 2000 10:12:04 PM EST
From: Will Linden

On the subject of Christmas on B5.... I had visions of :

In come I, old Father Yearend, welcome or welcome not!
I hope old Father Yearend shall never be forgot!
["NO, NEVER!"}
Yearend comes but once a year!
And when it does it brings good cheer!
Roast duck, candy, fine bravari, and mince pye,
And who like that better than Mr. Garibaldi and I!

And on the mummers come, with Ivanova as the Princess, G'Kar as the Dragon ("You mean I have to go on with Moll..."), Franklin in outrageous type-casting, Vir as Jack Finney, and Marcus (who probably conned everybody into it) as St. George.


Date: Mon, 18 Dec 2000 6:14:37 AM EST
From: nickhindle@cwcom.net

My fave B5 movie is River of Souls. I not really sure why, as many of the leading characters are not in the movie, and there isn't loads of CGI action, but I think it's because it's a great (original) story, and the acting is excellent.


Date: 12/16/2000 4:25:42 PM EST
From: kailin@attglobal.net (Kailin Yu)

OK, I do have a favorite, or two. I actually have two, for two very different reasons.

First off, I think A Call to Arms is a great stand alone movie. You can tell that it sort of leads into a series, but not so much so that you can't enjoy it for it's own sake. You don't need to know too much about the B5 universe to understand it, it's just a great little action adventure yarn.

But the best movie of all the B5 movies is far and away "In the Beginning". It's true that you need a little more knowledge of the B5 universe to really be able to understand and enjoy this film, but it pays off in so many ways. My brother-in-law wants to start watching B5 and when he saw how I had my tapes arranged by season, and with the movies set aside, he wondered why I wouldn't let him watch In the Beginning before he had seen at least the first two seasons, and preferably the third season as well. I told him that just because it is a prequel to the story, not all of it happens in the past, some is several years after the B5 story, and that certain story lines all come together and collide at this one point in time in this one place. He didn't get it then, but after watching The Gathering, and the first 3 seasons, I finally let him see it, and then he understood how it would have answered some questions, and raised several others. The third Centauri novel danced around this timeline brilliantly, and gave the final sequence the meaning we had all been trying to deduce.


Date: 12/16/2000 3:22:17 PM EST
From: andresvene11@hotmail.com (Andres E. Hidalgo Sandoval)

My favorite movies are two: The Gathering (the beginning of the story, more story than special effects (I think) and The River of Souls, a very good story after the end of the regular series --(The return of the Soul Hunters) with the main characters and other guest stars, very original. Anyway, I like all the movies (Except A Call of Arms, I haven't seen that movie).

Andres.


Previous discussion topic:

Topic #1
OK, who has been keeping up with all of the episodes and movies? We had "Thirdspace" last night. What was your opinion this time around? Did you like it more, less -- about the same? Season Three began with "Matters of Honor". Is the series as good as you remember it? Better?


Date: Tue, 5 Dec 2000 6:47:39 PM EST
From: Rick Riebs

Heya Sandy,

Well, as I've mentioned before, not only is the richness of the show enhanced by seeing it on a nightly basis (thus avoiding week- and months- long delays between shows), but now that I've all but totally accepted the John Sheridan character, and Bruce Boxleitner in that role, it has a whole new emotional resonance. I look forward to "Z'ha'dum" with some trepedation. I thought it was a kick-yer-butt-off ep even when I didn't care about John's fate. Now that I do. . . well, the local Kleenex concession may get a run for it's money!

What's caught me by surprise most recently is the full force of the "wham" arc episodes. "The Fall of Night," to be sure, but "The Long Twilight Struggle" just caught me TOTALLY unawares! Ye gods, how did Joe stuff so much in to just a couple episodes? After B5 took out the Centari cruiser in TFoN, I had to remind myself that not only wasn't the ep over with, there was one more big ol' WHAM yet to come! And what a knock-out that was. It's just so odd: I knew what was coming and I knew what Kosh would appear to be, but the sequence still went ahead and took my breath away. My life, this is SUCH gold. I've held for a while that B5 is not only the best SF TV ever, but the best show on TV ever, period. Now the re-run is just proving it even more forcefully. Can't wait for it to all start again, but this time be ENTIRELY in widescreen.

BTW, have you or anyone else over there noticed the signal breaking up at least once during each showing? I don't know if it's the new West Coast feed or just my cable company's problem. Anyhow, take care and chat at ya later.

Rick


Date: Mon, 4 Dec 2000 3:34:57 PM EST
From: LTutihasi

I've been following the series, including the movies, religiously. I now have two sets of tapes. When the wide screen issue is fixed, I can reduce the number of sets I have but not until. This second time around, I'm seeing all the episodes in context rather than one at a time as before. I think the individual episodes become richer as a result.

Our cable company experienced a few blips in the broadcast of THIRDSPACE. I don't know if it was a local problem or a general one.


Date: 12/3/2000 6:31:18 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

I keep trying to like Thirdspace but on second viewing, I don't like it any better than I did the first time. I think it could have been a fairly good single episode, but as a movie it just didn't make it. After so many trash-the-station scenes, you begin to wonder when they'll think of something else to do. The alien warships were interesting and sufficiently evil-looking, but I still think the aliens themselves looked like giant deer ticks and that a can of Raid would have been just as effective against them as an atomic warhead. I thought the actors did a very good job with what they had to work with, especially Mira, whose part was written so kittenish she had to work pretty hard to convince us she was the leader of a war fleet. I thought Pat's performance was just great and I'm glad she got a chance to show what she can do.

I'm thoroughly enjoying watching the series again and am constantly amazed at how many layers and subtleties it has, and how much more I see each time I watch it. As with any series, there are always favorite episodes and those you don't much care for. I find, however, that with B5, even the episodes I was neutral about on first viewing have little vignettes and character pieces that make them more interesting the second time around -- or third, or fourth. I don't think I'll ever lose interest in this series or quit watching it on the tube or on my tapes.


Date: 12/2/2000 3:17:41 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: andresvene11@hotmail.com (Andres E. Hidalgo Sandoval)

Two months ago, I watched Thirdspace at HBO LA. Terrific! River of Souls too, 3 or 4 weeks ago). Boths films are high quality (and high perfomances of all the cast).


Topic #2:
Since Christmas is quickly approaching, I thought a seasonal topic might be fun. What do you think Christmas would be like on Babylon 5? Would the Centauri ignore it? Join in on the fun? Would the Narn observe a religious date of humans with respect and honor? Would they all get together for a festive party? Can't you just see Garibaldi dressed as Santa Claus!!!!


Date: 12/15/2000 2:39:31 PM EST
From: cal@world.std.com (Charles Lurio)

It was suggested to imagine Garabaldi dressed as Santa.

I'd find it much more amusing to think of G'kar dressed as Santa...Or if you really want to create a problem, how about Londo? How do Centauri wear _any_ kind of hat with that hair, let alone trying to wear a Santa type cap.

An even more 'frightening' or amusing thought; Londo dressed as Santa while sitting on the the Centauri throne and having to greet little kids on his knee...;-)..."Ach! And what would you like from the Great Maker this year young lady?"

cheers,
Charles


Date: 12/12/2000 2:29:42 AM EST
From: msweet2@stny.rr.com (Matthew B. Sweet)

You know, I said last week that Christianity might be on the downslide in 2260. But I look at the year, and Babylonians are STILL running on Christian time! 2260 years after the Birth of Christ! The year isn't 469 years after the French Revolution, or 259 years after Fallout of the Third World War or even XII years after the Earth-Minbari War. It's amazing thet JMS has kept the "Christian" year in tact. Maybe Lando can play the old Scrooge because Lando tends to make fun of differences of religion, as presented in Season I, while G'kar will always be present at an Earth religious gathering in his formal garb and follow Chistian ethics because it is better for his people to expose himself favorable to all beliefs and religions.

I really think that John Seeradon should be the Santa Claus and I think his Teddy Bear should go again on the Market with the little J.S. on the belly. Ivanova would pass out gifts, considering her Russian background and always excited about Christmas. Franklin could invite his patients in his ward to the Christmas Party as a moral booster for them, Garabaldi could slap people over the heads if they didn't come to the party, Bester could come to the station and check if everyone was naughty or nice, The Minbari cold scan Bester to see if HE has been naughty or nice, The Drazi could share their scarves for one day and the Purple Drazi could fight for the Green Drazi until next Christmas. But all and all, the PPG's are silent and besides a few domestic insults made by the Centari and the Narn, the night is peaceul until the Shadows ruin the whold party by getting stuck in the dip! Damned insects anyway!

Merry Christmas to my fellow Fivers!
The best,
Matthew Sweet


Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000 11:37:59 PM EST
From: Cuchu106

I really think that Christmas will be a very underground holiday in 2260. Surely, Ivanova gave Sheradon a gift for Christmas in 2259, but she lived in Russia, where the thinking isn't as enlightened as the rest of the world. -- But, isn't Ivanova Jewish? What was she doing celebating Christmas?

Christmas will be celebrated formally and in privately in homes or quarters with a small gathering of people.

Yes, I think G'Kar will celebrate the holiday with a family who celebrates the obscure Terran faith because he needs as many allies as he can to defeat the Centari.


Date: 12/2/2000 10:08:21 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: jeffferoce@mediaone.net (jeff feroce)

XMas on the station would be wide-spread merryment. It seems like most of the races would probably have a similar version, if we are to believe that God is the creator of the universe. If so, I'm going on the assumption, therefore, that Christ would have appeared in different forms to different races and that perhaps he came with the same mission to all. On the other hand, for those races whose religion was nothing of the sort, I would imagine that almost everyone on the station would at least participate in the partying, the infectious merrymaking, and gift exchanging.

The Centauri seem to look for any excuse to party, so I certainly think they'd be the first in line at the door. Also, I can envision CnC decorated with garland and bows, and XMass lites draped betweent the 2 gigantic docking struts that project from the front of the station. As for parties, they'd be happening all over the place, especially in the Zocalo. Yep, Garibaldi would be the perfect Santa Claus, although Londo would do an adequate job too.

Great topic.


Date: 12/2/2000 3:17:41 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: andresvene11@hotmail.com (Andres E. Hidalgo Sandoval)

I think all the races on B5 could celebrate holidays like the "human christmas" including the Centauries, adaptable to each "race", of course. I can't imagine Garibaldi like Santa Claus, though can be, all is possible. I imagine a Christmas with the real peoples, what do you think?


Date: 12/2/2000 11:27:38 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: nooserat@earthlink.net (Zontar Miguel R.)

A B5 Christmas. Since both Londo and Vir have an interest in Earther histories and cultures it might be plausible that Londo order the younger Vir (not the Vir of the recent books) to dress in a Santa outfit. Vir would then open a bottle of Brivare (a drink not for Minbari!).


Season Two has just ended over at SCIFI. There are a number of very memorable moments in the story -- and the best is yet to come! What were some of your favorite moments? Was it Sheridan's venture to take the alien life-form back to Sector 14? The special effects were pretty good! What are your favorites?


From: sara adler [mailto:delenn@ync.net]
Sent: Thursday, November 30, 2000 9:59 PM

***I can't say I am very good at keeping up with which season we are still in, but I thought that we are still in season two. Well, regardless, some of my favorite moments have been from this week's episodes. Some of which are: Talia's exposure, Delenn's trial against "Sebastian", and tonight's episode when Earthforce begins to go to hell and the Nightwatch begins to truly show it's presence and force and throws Zack into torment deciding where his allegance truly lies. I also forgot that this is also the episode where Kosh exposes himself to save Sheridan. Another really good moment!


Discussion topic:
This week we had a chance to see "A Coming of Shadows" again. What a marvelous episode. It really does get things moving at warp speed. Do you have favorite moments from the show?


Date: Fri, 17 Nov 2000 2:19:29 PM EST
From: CCB5Flamekeeper

Sandy,
I had to add my 2 cents to this one.

" The Coming of Shadows" is certainly one of the more outstanding Babylon 5 episodes. From any standpoint it is top notch drama. But the scene that blows one away has to be the scene where G'Kar sidetracks Londo into having a drink with him to celebrate the possibility of peace between their people's, while Londo knows what he has done to create war between them. It is amazing to see the face of Londo, astonished, sickened, and having to play along with G'Kar knowing it is all a lie, and maybe even regretting his action. That is one of the more outstanding scenes from the series, I feel, and that is saying something, considering what we saw over the 5 year arc. But, it is wonderful writing, acting and concept, and most instructive.

Thanks for the opportunity,
Take care,
Connie


Date: Sat, 11 Nov 2000 2:58:30 PM EST
From: "Andres E. Hidalgo Sandoval"

Hi Sandy:
Interesting the topic of this week. For me, "The coming of Shadow" is one of the better moments into the story of B5. The defeat of the shadows ((408) too, and, one impossible forget, "Sleeping in Light".

Be Careful.
Andres.


Date: Thu, 9 Nov 2000 2:44:45 PM EST
From: "Gary L. Tuck and Mike Tuck"

My most treasured Babylon 5 memory was the scene(s) of Ivanova dying (she really looked like she was in pain in that sick bay bed) and Marcus sacrificing his life for her's by using the alien healing device. That whole subplot was more interesting and compelling than the main story of those particular episodes (all though, the main story was good, too). Ivanova knowing she was going to die, Marcus knowing he was going to die saving her (and whispering "I love you." to her), and the scene afterwards of Ivanova crying over Marcus's apparent death were the most touching and tear-inducing moments of the entire series and really showed what this show could do in terms of drama. It was the only time I remember that they showed Ivanova cry. It was nice to see that she had a softer side - she was human after all - and that maybe she did have some sort of feelings for poor Marcus, even if she realized this too late. Even though it was sad and I hated to see Marcus go, I couldn't help feeling a sense of satisfaction after watching it. "Wow, that was powerful !" There are other moments in the series, but that is the one that is most memorable to me.

-Mike Tuck


This Week's Discussion Topic:

Now that Season One has ended and we've begun watching episodes from Season Two at SCIFI, let's talk about Season One! What did you think of it? Many of us have seen it -- more than once -- but for some it may be the first time through. What would you consider the MAJOR points of Season One? Was it to get the storyline established, give us the background of the characters only? Did it set the scene for the later seasons well?


Date: 10/30/2000 4:45:35 AM EST
From: LAZY JP

I think that Season One was the palette upon which the following seasons were drawn.


Last week's topic:
Let's try something totally different this week! Do you think merchandise helps a series? For example, Farscape, although only going into it's second season, already has action figures, trading cards, a fan club, and more. Is that helpful to the show or is it purely a dollars and cents issue? What is your opinion? Date: 10/24/2000 12:01:02 PM EDT
From: falco@eskimo.com (Rick Riebs)

Very much so, and I can tell you from recent personal experience. In advance of B5's run on Sci-Fi, I started wearing my B5 t-shirts as often as I could just so that someone might notice and ask me about the show. Then I'd have the chance to talk up the show and tell them where and when to find it. This actually did happen, oddly enough when I went to vote in an early September primary. So obviously having show-branded merchandise out there is a great way to promote the show.

It also gives fans a more personal connection to the show. You feel more a part of the action if you're wearing a "Farscape" t-shirt, drinking out of a B5 mug, or even if you whip out your Star Trek keychain to open your door. Sure there's dollars and cents involved, but it's up to the individual to figure out if a particular item is a worthy show collectable or just a further milking of the franchise. And if the show's even a tiny bit more lucrative for the producers/creators/syndicators/what-have-you by virtue of the merchandising money, so much the better!


Date: 10/21/2000 10:36:00 AM EDT
From: BATLRUVIN

I believe that the web pages and the fan clubs are essential in this day of over extended people that need to know what's coming up.......so the shows that they like can be supported.........

I think for the collectors amongst us the merchandise is always a plus........and investors in the series can reap rewards by backing the merchandise.......both are seperate but connected.......the writing drives the series and the merchandise supports the series as well as commercials........

I believe good series survive with loyal fans, and if I had to choose......fan clubs and information and public appearences by actors and creators are the most important. Keeping the public informed about a series and it whereabouts is the most important. Second is merchandise if it is use to commercially support the series......bar


Date: 10/22/2000 8:05:29 AM EDT
From: macbreck@access995.com (Mac Breck)

YES! I think merchandise helps a series, but NOT the merchandise you mentioned. What would help a series is merchandise such as Bumperstickers and window decals (that attach to the INSIDE surface of the window). Bumperstickers could be used on car windows (outside the window, for use on cars that have "Privacy" glass), and the decals could be used inside the window (prevents weather damage, and removal by trekkies gone bad). This kind of merchandise would let Babylon 5 fans show their support for and help advertise the series. At least one of the bumperstickers and decals should mention "Now in WIDESCREEN on The Sci-Fi Channel". If you ever want to see Crusade or Babylon 5 movies, Babylon 5 HAS to get more advertising.

Why won't the show's creators LET us fans help them advertise the show?

Another place where merchandise could help is in the area of the Babylon 5 books. Right now, Babylon 5 books are almost HIDDEN in bookstores. What is needed are Babylon 5 Displays. The publisher should cone up with display materials to showcase the books (e.g. a standalone B5 display). The holidays are coming up people! Dammit, I just wish SOMEBODY would wake up!

Mac


Last week's discussion topic:
We've now had a full week of seeing Babylon 5 at SCIFI. What did you think of it? Did SCIFI do a pretty good job of promoting the show? Did you like the new widescreen version? Were you ticked by the squeezing of the credits and music at the end? Let us know you opinion.


Date: Sat, 21 Oct 2000 3:43:23 PM EDT
From: "Andres E. Hidalgo Sandoval"

Hi Sandy:
About the discussion topic of the last week (sorry the delay) and the discussion of this week, I say you I enjoy ever the continuous re-broadcasting of old chapters of B-5 (Warner Channel for LatinAmerica). I find ever new things, details, etc., in each new transmission.

Signs and Portents: the biggest arc story, no doubts. The beginnig of the real story of B-5 Universe.


Date: 10/11/2000 6:02:41 PM EDT
From: LTutihasi

I'm not sure that "enjoy" is the correct term, but I feel that I understand the show better.

Laurraine Tutihasi
ltutihasi@aol.com


Date: 10/3/2000 4:09:43 PM EDT
From: tuckbros@crunet.com (Gary L. Tuck and Mike Tuck)

I'm glad that SciFi is airing B5 repeats so that the show is still on the air and possibly gaining new fans who have never seen it before. But I'm critical of some aspects of the airings. I'm not a big fan of the widescreen format. I know it was shot that way and it does give it a kind of theatrical look, but to me, it is distracting to constantly see black areas at the top and bottom of the screen. I keep looking at that instead of the show. Also, it seems to me that it makes the images smaller. The squeezing of the credits at the end is annoying too. They can wait and advertise their other programs after the show is completely over, it won't kill them. Also, I am disappointed in the advertising for the show. I was watching SciFi prime the week before B5 was to air and only saw it advertised two or three times over the week. I saw more ads for another airing of Blade Runner and the "miracle drug" Ener-X than I saw for B5. Say what you will about TNT, but when they got the show, they showed the ads all the time and they really made the show sound as great as it was. All SciFi said was: "A story this big should be shown in widescreen." or something to that effect. Big deal. That doesn't tell anyone what the show is about who hasn't seen it before. Since they paid so much money for it, they should have advertised it better. Seems like they were taking it for granted that everyone had already seen it and knew what it was about. I do hope that the ratings are good though, if for nothing else, so there might be a slim chance of them bringing back Crusade. That's probably unlikely at this point, though.

-Mike Tuck


Date: 10/1/2000 5:19:19 PM EDT
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

I'm so glad to have Babylon 5 back, and uninterrupted by wrestling and ball games, that I haven't been very critical of how it's being shown. I also don't know diddley about the technical aspects so I wouldn't be critical of those in any case. I've already spotted a couple of places where the Sci-Fi channel left in some little things that TNT cut. Like most of the respondents, I hate it when they shrink the credits and announce stuff over them, and I would be happier if there were an introduction of some sort instead of jumping suddenly into the teaser. But on the whole, I'm just happy to be able to count on seing the series right straight through at a consistent time.


Date: 9/30/2000 4:29:17 PM EDT
From: delenn@ync.net (sara adler)

As for the promoting of the show on Sci-Fi, I only saw a few ads for it. Not nearly as many as I would have thought there would have been.

I think I like the widescreen version, although it is still a rather new concept to me. I'm still used to networks formatting the picture to the TV screen.

And, yes, I am upset about the credits being pushed aside for upcoming events and other information on the channel. I realize that it is the latest thing the networks are doing, but, the credits are there for a reason and I thought that commercials were put in place to advertise for upcoming events and shows, not while the credits are scrolling by. Perhaps if enough of us complain about this maybe Sci-fi will take it into consideration and cease to cut off the credits.

Thank you for allowing me to voice my opinion.

Sara Adler


Date: 9/30/2000 4:17:49 PM EDT
From: Dizzheart

My opinion is, the timing sucks. I haven't seen it and likely never will, since it's on at 4 pm on the West Coast, and I still have a job :(

Abysmal as the 6 am timeslot was on TNT, it actually worked better for me. I saw quite a few episodes while I was eating breakfast, checking the mail and otherwise getting ready for work.

I surely wish the Sci-Fi Channel would get a West Coast feed set up.

Janice Jacobson
dizzheart@aol.com

Janice: I saw something recently that indicated SciFi was looking into a West Coast feed, so we'll keep our fingers crossed.!


Date: 9/30/2000 1:40:32 PM EDT
From: RobWired

Sandra,

I give SciFi a passing grade for its first week of Babylon 5, but that's on a pass/fail system only!

To begin with, the pilot, ''The Gathering, '' was split in two for broadcast Monday, Sept. 25, and Tuesday, Sept. 26. Which was fine, except -- EXCEPT! -- Part 1 on Monday ran long. The word should've been put out that it would run long, but it wasn't. So the B5 message board over at scifi.com had its share of complaints about people's VCR timers being set up, only to have the VCRs shut off before the show ended. I have no idea if Part 2 ran long. Being one of those people who set up the timer on my VCR and not having a complete Part 1, I didn't tune in Tuesday for Part 2.

Also, there is no fanfare, by which I mean, there is no warning that B5 is about to start. I suppose you could say that SciFi's own promo of someone's finger on a glass touch screen is warning enough, but it isn't Babylon 5-specific. There is no opening cue like TNT's music with what looked like a videocassette cover with G'Kar's face on it. Heck, even in early syndication, at least the PTEN logo popped up on screen before the show began.

Anyway, there were some complaints that there's no fade in/fade out time for those with their fingers on the pause button who take the commercials out.

It's nearly unanimous on the squished credits at the end: No one likes them. It even raised the topic of SAG strikes. I voiced the opinion that Christopher Franke didn't have to write opening and closing themes for each season if this is how the episodes were going to wind up. One fan listed the episodes that have very specific endings, and asked that those episodes be left alone, episodes such as ''And the Rock Cried Out, No Hiding Place,'' which ends with a gospel song of the same title. There was someone who posted on SciFi's B5 message board that he was the director of promotions at SciFi. He addressed the topic of the distracting banner ads for ''Outer Limits'' that plagued the first part of ''The Gathering.'' No one liked them; he said the fans had spoken, and the banner ads would be gone. As far as I can tell, they've been removed. Someone else posted that SciFi has odd commercial breaks near the end of the show.

Yes, and that person took the response to heart. He's going to try to have those closing credits untouched. Don't know if he'll be successful, but he's giving it a shot!

Another complaint was sound quality, for instance, the right channel cutting out on someone's DirecTV broadcast. Even those with regular cable complained of audio noise.

The best thing -- and it is no small thing -- is that the regular episodes are presented in widescreen, ''the way they were meant to be seen.'' Except -- EXCEPT! -- SciFi squishes the credits at the end and makes them smaller with its promos of upcoming shows, compressing the credits to unreadability before we have a chance to see who the guest stars were and more. Which is a shame; there are so many inside jokes that have their clues in the credits, like Lennier's mention of ''Netter's Syndrome,'' or ''the model Copeland J5000'' that Marcus refers to in one episode. Well, I'm glad for the widescreen anyway.

Ranger Robert


Date: 9/30/2000 12:18:42 PM EDT
From: believer@telepath.com

Dear Sandra:

In general, since its inception, SCIFI has confused science fiction with horror, so I have never been interested in the vast majority of its programming until it aquired B5. Because I do not watch the SCIFI channel now except to view B5 -- (am totally burned out on the other scifi programming it broadcasts, so much of uneven quality) -- I can't comment too much about its promotion of the program... except to say that the promo blurbs that it ran during B5 toward the end of the week were exciting and full of the action shots. I always thought the TNT promo was very good and offered a variety of different emphases for the different promo spots. After all, B5 is such a multi-faceted show, there are many wonderful angles and perspectives that could be used as promotional devices. SCIFI, I am sure, will "get it together" and do better. I would also like to see that network re-establish its focus on science fiction and drop the ridiculous horror stuff, about which I couldn't care less, nor would I let my young child view. Unfortunately, the network will probably continue with its hodge-podge mix of good stuff and junk; but for me the SCIFI channel will be a "one program" network. I will only watch it for B5.

Yes, I love the widescreen; and Yes, I am totally P-O'd about the scrunching of the credits at the end. I am also extremely irritated by the manner in which -- while the scrunching is happening -- the network "talks" over the music and runs other advertising and announcements. I suppose I could endure the verbal talk-over if I could read the durn credits. Very bad decision on the part of SCIFI to do that.

And while I'm ranting:

I was particularly angry on the first day to see the little visual program announcement in the lower left hand corner of the screen advertising the showing of "The Outer Limits" at a later time. SCIFI could have put that little visual blurb in the corner of its own network identification announcement instead of putting it over B5. Very Bad Decision!!!!!

Otherwise........ I'm having a wonderful time revisiting B5. My whole family is again involved in the magnificent saga. We're grateful and happy that the show is being aired again in its entirety in proper chronology. But as always, networks are far from ideal places and there will always be complaints and conflicts about the continual vying between entertainment as a busines and entertainment as an art form. B5 is art. SCIFI channel is a business. There are obviously going to be compromises along the way... such as scrunching the credits and overlaying program announcements on top of the program itself. SCIFI made some bad decisions. Perhaps they will change their ways.

Have a wonderful day!

Michele Marie Moore
Norman, Oklahoma


Previous week's topic:
We've dwelt a great deal on Babylon 5, for obvious reasons. Let's turn to Crusade for a bit. Which of the main characters would you like to see more of? Why?

Date: 9/27/2000 6:39:02 AM EDT
From: JBONETATI

Hi Sandy!

There are two characters I'd especially like to see more of: Gideon and Mattheson.

Gideon because, despite what he told the Earth Senator, he is subtle. This struck me particularly when Galen told him that he wouldn't release control of the Excalibur. Instead of blustering and threatening, Gideon simply accepted that there was nothing he could do about it at that moment and went on from there. Even after that betrayal, he still tried to help a troubled friend. I also got the impression that we would be seeing a struggle between Gideon's darker and higher impulses, possibly connected with his use of the Apocalypse box.

Mattheson I'd like to see more of simply because he seems to be so simple. The other Teeps we've seen were all driven by a cause or 'destiny'. Mattheson is just a guy who happens to be a telepath but still has the same hopes and dreams that all of us have. Now he's following his dream and has the same self-doubts and uncertainties that we all have. He reminds us that telepaths really are just like us, with different gifts which can be as much of a curse as a gift.

Later,
Jan


Date: 9/26/2000 1:24:54 PM EDT
From: aclark01@dexter.k12.mo.us (Clark, Adam)

To: TheZocalo@aol.com Captain Gideon. Hands down. When Crusade premiered, my first instinct was that Gideon was going to be my favorite, and I was right. I feel he's a strong leader with a very troubled history---and I for one would like to see more of that history.

Of course, everything would be okay if they'd just bring back Crusade...

Adam Clark
Senior Trumpet Section Leader
Dexter High School Varsity Band
Dexter High School Jazz Band
aclark01@dexter.k12.mo.us


Date: 9/23/2000 10:48:14 PM EDT
From: captain.average@home.com (Captain Average)

I would like to see more of each of them - albeit for different reasons. Herewith are four examples:

Galen - the Technomagic is cool, of course, but Galen is something of a rogue Technomage - he seems to be motivated by different forces than the other (let's- run-and-hide-all-our cool-stuff-so-the-Shadows-can't-get-it) Technomages. Not only does he want to help, he's quite adamant about it.

Dureena - there was something about our thief that struck me as if she was being set up for very big things - a kind of almost Arthurian thing.

Gideon - he isn't the typical starship captain in way, shape or form. His willingness to utilize the Box, for example, and the way he manipulates situations, make him more of a trickster than a traditional hero. He's a very interesting type to be cast as the captain.

Max - again, there's 90 - 95% of Max we never got to meet. The show was just beginning to hint at the depths of this character - little things like the way he began to fit with Dureena as a team (though most likely not as a couple); his ability to talk his way out most trouble spots (in the bar, for example); his knack for making connections that pay off later, and so on...

And so it goes with all of the cast of Crusade's characters: none of them is precisely what they seem to be and more often than not, they would have turned out to be completely different from what we were expecting (and, as is JMS' wont, the differences might not have been polarized opposites, either - just completely different...)

Captain Average
The Crusading For Crusade Superhero


Last week's topic:
Topic for this week is:
If you had the money to make a Babylon 5 or Crusade movie, what would the storyline be? Would you pick up on one of the many threads left hanging or would you develop a totally new one?


Date: 9/21/2000 5:12:32 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: ugleb81@hotmail.com (Greg Joynson)

How about some sort of follow up to Thirdspace? I'd like to see more about that. Or how about the Telepath war? Although I'm not sure how successful that would be as a film.


Date: 9/18/2000 2:35:42 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: tuckbros@crunet.com (Gary L. Tuck and Mike Tuck)

If I had the money to produce a Babylon 5 or Crusade movie, the storyline would probably be the "Telepath War" that has been mentioned (but never shown) in Crusade and some of the novels. This would involve the cast of Babylon 5 and Bester (set after season 5, of course). A Crusade movie would involve the story/secret behind that alien box that Captain Gideon has. Otherwise, a new B5 story set either during the 5 year arc (an "untold tale", so-to-speak) or after the five year arc that would have a good reason to reunite the B5 crew on the station (since most of them left the station and went their separate ways after the last season 5 ep, it would have to be a plausible reason to reunite them, some big threat, like maybe the Drakh or the return of the Shadows.)

-Mike Tuck


Date: 9/18/2000 5:39:08 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: ACBCassidy

I think we are all very comfortable with the feel of Babylon 5 but would love to look more into the nooks and crannies that JMS has hinted at in episodes past. That in itself would no doubt pick up on the many threads left hanging and still develop totally new storylines but within the context of an established framework as such.

But then I guess that is just wishful thinking ...

Angela Cassidy


Date: Mon, 18 Sep 2000 3:58:12 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: nickhindle@cwcom.net

If I had the money to make a B5 / Crusade movie...

It would have to be Babylon 5, with links to the original story arc, but interesting enough to be entertaining to people who haven't seen B5 before. There are two great story lines that would have to be in it;

Some (long) time in the future...

The gift that Londo gave to Sheridan and Delenn for their son is about to awake and start on it's evil path. The first ones, and of course Sheridan, in the dimensions beyond the rim, are aware of this and make plans to return and save the Universe...

Meanwhile, due to Lyta's incredible powers, she has hardly aged since leaving B5. She suddenly starts hearing Vorlon voices singing to her, so Lyta and G'Kar (now a very old Narn) return to the Vorlon homeworld, and discover something amazing...

If I win the lottery... ;-)
Nick.


Date: Sun, 17 Sep 2000 3:37:27 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: "Cripe, Helen L."

If I were filthy rich enough to make a B5 movie I wouldn't even care what its sales figures or ratings would be -- the most important thing would be the pleasure it would give all the fans. As to the movie I'd make, several come to mind:

1. The one everyone wants to see -- The Telepath War.
2. How Sinclair as Valen defeated the Shadows and also how he found Catherine again.
3. G'Kar and Lyta's adventures
4. More about the Minbari worker caste, especially how their majority in the Grey Council might have changed Minbari society. I can't think of a good story line off-hand, but it's an idea.
5. Lennier's adventures and what finally happened to him.
6. How the Excalibur found the cure for the Drakh plague.
7. The Babylon 5 Station under the administration of Lochley, after Sheridan & Delenn left.
8. Just about any good story involving the Rangers
9. G'Kar's story after he and Lyta returned from their adventures
10. The adventures of Alyt Neroon (being a Neroon nut I had to include this one).

Many of these might make better novels, or series of novels, than movies, and that's fine with me --- however, I would hope any such novels would be written by authors familiar with the B5 universe and that they would never become the formula junk that the Star Trek novels have become.


Date: 9/16/2000 9:29:51 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: l.elsea@prodigy.net (linda elsea)

I would like to see a movie where Sheridan returns from beyond the rim to save the universe from some great menace with the help of the first ones and add a little more romance between John and Delenn.

Linda


Date: 9/16/2000 8:19:58 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: macbreck@access995.com (Mac Breck)

The Telepath War. Actually, this would make for a very good mini-series of Babylon 5 movies, a half-dozen or so.

I wouldn't pick a Crusade movie because I want Crusade to be picked up and done right, with Season 1 fixed and filled out.

Mac


Date: 9/16/2000 9:15:28 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: JBONETATI

Hi Sandy!

Some of the stories I'd like to see in a B5-universe movie:

More of Crusade (naturally).
The Telepath War (of course).
Kosh's story.
G'Kar's story.
How Deathwalker ended up as the last of the Dilgar.
Dureena's story.
A story about the station from an alien point of view.
Lockley's early years.
And I'm sure many more given a little while to think about it. Some of these might be better as books. I'd be fine with that, too!

Thanks,
Jan


Date: 9/16/2000 4:49:32 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: Wanderingscholar

Hi!

Number one choice: The Telepath War. (Although I personally am dying to know what happened to Lennier!)

Would also like to see a conclusion to the Crusade storyline - we know they save Earth because of "Sleeping in Light", but how?

Of course as a true believer, seeker and fan I want everything possible and impossible (don't we all???), but the Telepath War is the biggest continuity gap in the story arc we now have.

I sincerely hope this is leading to something! A fan can dream after all.....

Lenelle Davis


Date: 9/16/2000 1:31:28 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: delenn@ync.net (sara adler)

I would really like to see a movie for Bab5 that shows the Telepath war. I think it would help connect the end of B5 with the beginning of Crusade. I would also just like to see Lyta kick the crap(pardon the language) out of Bester! Anyway, that is the movie I would like to see created.

Thanks for letting me voice my opinion!

Sara


Date: 9/16/2000 11:07:59 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: captain.average@home.com (Captain Average)

I would go in one of two ways:

a) Full Cast: The full story of the telepath war (probably need two or three films to do it justice...);

b) The Adventures of Lyta and G'Kar - they're easily the oddest (and yet simultaneously, most logical) pairing to come about on the show. Besides, I'd like to find out about their "pleasure thresholds"! *G*

Captain Average
The Curious Superhero


Date: 9/16/2000 10:38:56 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: BATLRUVIN

Interesting thought......since many of the threads have been picked up by books over the past couple of years........I would like.......as JMS alluded to in his presentation at I-CON (Stoney Brook) to have a series of movies made to (as JMS said) "peek in on the characters and the progression of their lives along the plot lines" already established........yes there is MUCH to be explored that way in the characters individual histories and most valuable.....the connection from the series to Sleeping in the light.......and a whole wealth of episodes that exist from the sleeping in the light to the tapes rescued from earth as our sun goes supernovae and the evolution of the Kosh type characters that rescued the tapes.........asking too much......but think of all the people who would be employeed for so long.......bar


Date: 9/16/2000 9:13:10 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: mkusch@ON-Luebeck.DE (Manuela)

Hi, Sandra!

Well, there are two things - and I'm even in my wish to see both of them on screen:

A Babylon5 movie about the Telepath War: The only clues we have had so far are via the script at Bookface (re: Bester) and the Centauri Books.

My other choice would be a Crusade movie. One of the scripts at Bookface showed a rift between Galen/Gideon and the subsequent cliffhanger JMS had planned. I would have loved to see a storyline in which (if ever) their friendship could be rebuilt by the events in it. No idea how they finally found a cure - they will, according to B5's last eps - but I would've liked to know how the crew of the Crusade changed by the events.

I know the latter one might sound somehow convoluted, but I guess I kinda still mourn Crusade's demise. :-)

Manuela

Manuela:
I know how you feel about Crusade! Talk about hanging threads. The entire series is a hanging thread. The story was just about to begin!

Take care,
Sandy


Last week's topic:
Babylon 5 was one of the few sci-fi shows to give some attention to religion. We were introduced to a number of Jewish traditions via Susan Ivanova. There were other references as well. What did you think about this?

Date: 9/11/2000 12:11:30 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

I thought there were examples of behavior influenced by religious beliefs throughout the entire series, many beliefs expressed in different ways by different characters.

To me, one of the best and most inspirational examples is G'Kar's "We are one..." address to the new Alliance in Season 5. I used it, with very slight abridgements, as the closing of my prayer one Sunday when I was Lector at church. Many members of the congregation said they were moved by it and nobody had a clue that I had taken it from a science fiction television show.


Date: 9/11/2000 7:10:54 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: Gary.Magid@alcoa.com (Magid, Gary D.)

As a person who was raised Jewish and recently (3.5 years ago) baptized Christian (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the Mormons), I found it very refreshing to see the way religion was treated on B5. I felt like there were people willing to take a chance on displaying things that other shows were afraid of displaying. I hope in the future there will be other opportunities such as the ones on B5.

I found that the references were very accurate and very touching in many cases.


Date: 9/10/2000 7:31:31 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: zetawing@yahoo.com (Angie Zetawing)

Religion is actually what drew me to the show.

Being a Christian, I found the show had much more substance and meaning because of the religus aspects. Characters seemed to be more believable and alive.

Now, the sci-fi fan in me just saw B5 as much more realistic than any other show out there, past or present!

Thanks for giving me the chance to express my thoughts.


Date: 9/9/2000 8:35:15 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: delenn@ync.net (sara adler)

I thought it was wonderful to see another religion outside of Christianity on a television show and to see it explored somewhat in depth as opposed to just mentioning it so people know it exists. I am Jewish and Ivanova is one of my favorite characters. She is strong and kept her faith and continued to find time to observe the holidays even though she is in the military and not with her family and never seemed to have anyone else of her faith to observe the holidays with her. She was also still able to adapt to life on the station and in Earthforce without losing herself and her religion in the process. I liked that a lot. I also liked watching to see if the practices were being observed correctly. As far as I could tell, they were. I would like to think that other religions such as Judaism will be portrayed in depth on other shows and that this wasn't just a one time thing. Thank you for your time in listening to my comments and opinions.

Sincerely,
Sara Adler


Date: 9/9/2000 5:48:22 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: captain.average@home.com (Captain Average)

To my mind, the fact that B5 didn't ignore religion made it a more complete universe than most SF universes we get on television.

The way that Ivanova's religious background was raised in "TKO"was poignant and thought provoking and totally eclipsed the rather mundane A-story in the episode. The ep "The Parliament of Dreams" used religion to show how the various races on B5 had as much in common as not. The ep "Believers" explored the consequences of refusing to honor another's belief system.

Then there was the exploration of the Brakiri "Day of the Dead", which had a physical effect on a number of the B5 characters (in the return of people who had had profound effects on their lives, even if indirectly as in the case of Morden and Lennier) - and also had long-term effects on them as people.

The title of the first season (Signs and Portents) had a vaguely religious tone - a tone that was reinforced both overtly in the aforementioned episodes and less so, but just as importantly in the day to day dealings with Delenn, whose religious beliefs and training informed every action she undertook.

The whole basis for the preparation for the upcoming war with the Shadows was the teaching of Valen, a revered Minbari religious figure.

The teachings of the Narn prophet-figure G'Kwan, underscored the importance of Delenn's beliefs and had a profound effect on the life of G'Kar who grew and changed more than any other single character on the show - excepting Sinclair (and indirectly on Michael Garibaldi who changed only slightly before Bester messed up his mind, but was in the process until then).

The reawakening of religious awareness in Susan Ivanova, upon her father's death, was almost like a baptism into the real world for her (it certainly had a more profound effect upon her than the death of her brother, which precipitated no similar crisis of faith - either in her parentage, her religion or herself, for that matter).

These examples, and others, give Babylon 5 a depth that others shows don't come near matching. Religion is a major factor in the lives of billions, and yet it usually ignored (or played down) on television.

By embracing the fact of the effects of religion and presenting them in well-conceived and written stories, the creative team of Babylon 5 gave the characters and situations in the show a firmer reality than we usually see in our entertainment media.

It doesn't matter if one is Christian, Hindu, Jew or whatever - the fact that a television program that was created primarily as an entertainment could achieve this kind of depth and perceptivity has to make one feel that there just might be hope for the human race.

If that's not a Good Thing, I don't know what is.

Captain Average
Superhero Paragon of the Judeo-Christian Ethic


Date: 9/9/2000 1:34:49 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: BATLRUVIN@aol.com

I don't remeber the name of the episode.......the introduction line at the end of the episode........to show the diversity of Earth Religious Cultures and how special Earth was to "ALLOW" all the diversity.........thinking of it still gives me chills........great moment.........bar


Last week's Topic:
Do you think the internet has enhanced your enjoyment of Babylon 5 and Crusade? Has access to the creator of these series made a difference in your perception and enjoyment of the shows?

Date: 9/5/2000 8:29:42 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: MRodman@fssa.state.in.us (Rodman, Michael C)

The internet definately played a big role in my enjoyment of Babylon 5 and Crusade, particularly Bablyon 5. I was not one of those that was on the band wagon from day one, but by the end of the first season, I was definately a die hard fan.

In the beginning, with poor support of B5 from the local networks, my use of the internet was simply in trying to help me find Babylon 5. It was constantly switched from time to time, network to network and so on. What a marvelous discovery when I started finding all these web sites devoted to B5 (especially the true gem of the Lurker's Guide to Babylon 5). A day wasn't complete without a nightly visit to see what additional comments had been added to the episode guides, to see if there was something I missed or things I had noticed that weren't reflected. It was a whole other dimention added to the show to see the anaysis, discussion, speculation and ramifications of each episode on the large story arc. As I would drool over my keyboard, it was torture to try to keep me from moving ahead to the episode(s) that had not yet aired. The love of character, and story were given a depth not possible via 50 minutes of television time. In many ways, I think people missed something by not having access to the internet to enhance the storys with background and technical informaiton at the motion of a few mouse clicks.

Hopefully Crusade will comeback and complete its story with the same level of depth and access.


Date: 9/3/2000 9:34:21 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: JBONETATI

Do you think the internet has enhanced your enjoyment of Babylon 5 and Crusade?
Absolutely! Resources like the ZOCALO and the moderated newsgroup added another facet to an already multifaceted universe. Interaction with other fans who wanted to discuss the latest episode or season made a huge difference. This run of the show, I'm making a point of reading the Lurkers Guide just before or just after the show.

Has access to the creator of these series made a difference in your perception and enjoyment of the shows?

Yes, very much so. Naturally, during the first and even second run of the show, the focus was on the story itself. Later on, while the point of watching was for the story, I had attention to spare for some of the things that JMS has told us about the storytelling and television making process itself. I'm still trying to figure out how he managed to pack so much into an episode.

Another thing that increased my enjoyment was when JMS would respond to questions about the characters from other fans. That would bring that character into focus much more than I think I'd have noticed on my own.

Having been privileged to see JMS at a few conventions during the run of B5 and then Crusade, too was a thrill. He had a gift for only giving enough away to make you anxious for more. All in all, I'm very grateful for his ongoing interaction!


Date: 9/2/2000 7:04:54 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: nakaleen_feeder@yahoo.co.nz (Luke Keegan)

Hi Sandy!

Well, the Internet has had a huge impact on my view of Babylon 5. Before I was connected up I was limited to what I watched on the video tapes and what I read in the magazine. Back then it felt as if B5 was not popular because I only had a few friends to talk to about it, and also there are no conventions held here as well.

But then I connected to the Internet and the effect was just amazing! Not only have I been able to get pictures, wave files, movie clips and articles, I can now talk to hundreds of people who are as addicted to B5 as I am. This feeling is pure bliss!

And also with Crusade, it was nice to know that I wasn't the only one who was sad about it's demise, and reading the scripts at www.bookface.com wouldn't have been possible without the Internet.

yours sincenerly
Luke


Last week's topic:
Ranger James has sent in a suggestion for this week's discussion topic. What other actors do you thing would fill the shoes of the cast had they not been available or chosen?

SIGHTINGS

From: AZIA3@webtv.net [mailto:AZIA3@webtv.net]
Sent: Monday, September 04, 2000 9:27 AM

SOMEWHERE I SAW THAT THERE WAS A CHAT GOING ON A FEW EVENINGS AGO ABOUT BRUCE WILLIS VS. JERRY DOYLE FOR THE ROLE OF GARIBALDI.( WHO HASN'T NOTICED CERTAIN CHARACTERISTICS THAT THESE TWO ACTORS SHARE?) ......WELL, ANYWAY.....THIS IS TOO COOL....MY WIFE AND I (BOTH HUGE-BIG TIME-B-5 FANS) HAVE OVER RECENT MONTHS RECORDED ON TO VHS ALL THE MOONLIGHTING EPISOIDES . LAST NIGHT WE WERE WATCHING ONE CALLED "COOL HAND DAVE: PART 2". ADISON HAS ACCIDENTALY GOTTEN HIMSELF PUT IN PRISON . NO ONE KNOWS WHERE HE IS. THE GAG SEGMENT IS THAT EVEN THE NETWORK EXECUTIVES AT ABC DON'T EVEN KNOW WHERE HE IS...

WELL, PEOPLE ARE SHOWING UP TO TRY AND REPLACE DAVID ADISON JUST IN CASE.....

TWO NETWORK EXECUTIVES EXIT A DOOR THEY ARE DISCUSSING THE PREDICUMENT . IN A LINE OF DAVID ADISON WANNABES (SECOND IN LINE, IS OUR BELOVED JERRY DOYLE ) JERRY RESITES THE LINES, "DO BEARS BARE? DO BEES BE!"....AS THE EXECUTIVES PASS HIM BY.

MY GOODNESS , IF YOU'D BLINKED YOU COULD HAVE MISSEED HIM BUT WHAT A HOOT!

I WONDER HOW MANY BABYLON 5 FANS KNOW OF THIS "BIT PART" IN MOONLIGHTING?

THANKS.
CLIFTON DUNCAN


James says: I would choose Bruce Willis as Garibaldi. They have the same whit (compare Garibaldi to Hudson Hawk).

Who do you think could have played Sheridan, Delenn, Londo, G'Kar or other characters?

Date: 8/30/2000 12:56:40 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: captain.average@home.com (Captain Average)

My choices for an alternate cast for B5 are (and I'm sure everyone will understand my choices - even if they don't necessarily agree with them...):

Sinclair - Jeff Bridges
Garibaldi - Cary Hiroyuki-Tagawa
Ivanova - Andrea Parker or Hudson Leick or Jeri Ryan
G'Kar - Yaphet Kotto
Londo - Tim Curry
Delenn - Rachel Weisz
Vir - Wayne Knight
Sheridan - Anthony Michael Head
Talia - Tia Carrere
Lita - Xenia Seeberg
Marcus - Robin Sachs
Steven - Joe Morton
Lochley - Andrea Parker
Xathras - George Carlin
Morden - Stephen Dorff
Zack - Harry Hamlin
Kosh - Yoda (Frank Oz)

Casting Director - Captain Average


Date: 8/28/2000 2:37:03 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

Here's my alternate cast for Babylon 5:

Cmdr. Sinclair -- Tyrone Power
Capt. Sheridan -- Jonathan Frakes
Garibaldi -- Patrick McGoohan
Delenn -- Marina Sirtis
Ivanova -- Nana Visitor
Dr. Franklin -- David Warner
Marcus -- Paul Darrow
Lennier -- Alexander Siddig
Talia -- Sally Knivette
Lyta -- Yvonne De Carlo
Lochley -- Maureen O'Hara
Zack -- Michael Dorn
Bester -- John Vickery (but he could still play Neroon!)
Vir -- Michael Keating
G'Kar -- Avery Brooks
Londo -- Patrick Stewart


Date: 8/26/2000 9:32:57 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: e_reinholt@prodigy.net (Eric Reinholt)

My wife and I had talks about Bruce Willis playing Garibaldi (and I still think they would be great as "equal but opposites" in some movie) since I was for it but she was against it. (My wife doesn't particularly cotton to Bruce Willis.)

I think that Richard Hatch would have made a great Zack.

I've just GOT to say that I would have *LOVED* Patrick McGoohan as Bester.

Harrison Ford or Michael Bein would have put an interesting spin on Sinclair.

Kathleen Turner would have made a great Ivanova.

Ed Harris as John Sheridan.

I think Patrick Stewart could have done well as Londo although its almost impossible to think of anyone other than P.J. in the role.

David Ogden Stiers would have done a good job as G'Kar but like Peter Jurasik for Londo, I almost can't imagine someone other than Andreas Katsulas as G'Kar.

Virginia Hey could hold her own as the mystical Delenn.

I'll have to think about Vir and Lennier...

Eric


Date: 8/27/2000 9:12:41 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: anthonyfurey@hotmail.com (Anthony Furey)

Hi there,
I like this discussion topic a lot. Here's the actor replacement that I'd do:

Glenn Close = Delenn
Donald Sutherland = G'Kar and even Garibaldi (but I really think Andreas does it better than Donald can.)
Paul Gross = Sheridan
Maura Tierney = Lyta
John Hannah = Londo
Christopher Lambert = Marcus
Meryl Streep = Ivanova
William H. Macy = Zack

I can't do too much more of this... to hard on the brain :)


Last Week's Discussion Topic:
You know that you've been watching too much Babylon 5 when______________?

Date: 8/24/2000 9:00:04 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

You know you've been watching Babylon 5 too long when you try to make your car open a jumpgate on the Interstate. When it doesn't, you use your CB radio to call for a squad of starfuries to escort you to the next rest stop.


Date: 8/22/2000 3:31:15 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: tuckbros@crunet.com (Gary L. Tuck and Mike Tuck)

"You know you've been watching too much Babylon 5 when..."

1) ...in a public restaurant, you take one bite of your food and yell out loud (in Londo's voice): "You call this Spoo??!!! FAAHH!! This is not Spoo, this is...what do the humans call it?...ahh, yes, CRAP!!!"

2) ...you get mad at someone, launch into a long, drawn out speech, and then yell, "...Now get the hell out of our galaxy!!"

3) ...you wander around Wal-Mart saying to everyone that comes near you (in Londo's voice): "Ahh, yes...Mr. Garibaldi !! How good of you to join us!"

4) ...you answer your phone by saying (in Londo's voice): "What is it now, you moon-faced assassin of joy??"

5) ...you ask the ticket seller at an airport: "When does the next shuttle for Babylon 5 leave?"

6) ...you anxiously ask your pilot: "When is the jumpgate going to open?"

7) ...when filling out a form at a doctor's office, under "parents or legal guardian", you write on the blank: "The Corps is Mother, the Corps is Father."

8) ...at a gun store, you ask the clerk for the latest model PPG.

9) ...at the McDonald's drive thru, you order some fresh-cooked McSpoo and a side order of McFlarn.

10) ...you go to your barber and say you want a trim in front and a "peacock style" in back.

(*WARNING: Saying or doing any of these in public more than once will probably get you thrown in the loony bin.)

That's all I could think up, for now. If I think up any more, I'll send 'em to ya.
-Mike Tuck


Date: Sat, 19 Aug 2000 11:59:06 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: "Captain Average"

You know you're watching too much B5 when you can pick up the tonal differences in the names of the Xathras Brothers.


Date: Sat, 19 Aug 2000 9:19:57 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: Will Linden

... you start sputtering "This is completely unacceptable!" at bookstore clerks.

Last week's discussion topic:
While pulling something else together this week, I started to think about all the great quotes Babylon 5 generated. Do you have a favorite? I know, it's hard to think of just one, so let's make it 2 or 3. Be sure to let us know where it comes from -- it will help remind us of the scene in which the quote was delivered.

I have loved the line from Tennyson from the first time I heard it -- but having it said by Sinclair reinforced it's meaning to me. "To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield" -- is something we can all strive for. My favorite quote?
"No dictator, no invader, can hold an imprisoned population by the force of arms forever. There is no greater power in the universe than the need for freedom. Against that power governments, and tyrants, and armies can not stand. The Centauri learned this lesson once. We will teach it to them again. Though it take a thousand years, we will be free."

G'Kar, The Long, Twilight Struggle

Date: Mon, 7 Aug 2000 9:15:12 AM EDT
From: "Sprenkel, Marcus D."

On trying to attract the attentions of the First Ones.

Marcus: " ..or should I put a bucket on my head and pretend to be the Vorlon God, Boo-gee?"
Susan: "Yes!. That's it"
Marcus: " Oh good. I'll go and get a bucket"

On trying to communicate with the First Ones.

Susan: "Maybe they understand us, but are choosing not to communicate."
Marcus: "Sorry, I didn't realise they were french!"

Regards
Marcus D.Sprenkel


Date: 8/7/2000 1:14:24 AM EDT
From: phax_halfelven@hotmail.com (loree gilley)

My absolute favorite quotes are from the episode And The Rock Cried Out No Hiding Place.

John refering to Delenn, "Pain in the butt."
Delenn responding, "Grouch."
I think that this is probably the cutest of the silly little scenes I've seen in the series between one or two of the characters.

Another of my favorites is from Shadow Dancing.(actually a lot of my favorites are from this episode.)

First and foremost is the Antient Egyptian Blessing.
"May God stand between you and harm in all the empty places where you must walk."

Ivanova asks "Well who wants to live forever anyway?"
Marcus responds, "I do actually, but what the hell."

After John tells Ivanova and Delenn of his dream Ivanova resoponds at one point, "You are the hand? Why would I say anything as dopey sounding as that?"

"This is a car not a bottle of wine."
Amanda in All The Worlds a Stage.

We live for the One. We die for the One.
Izil'Za Venni. In Valen's name.

Phax_Half-Elven


Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 5:22:04 AM EDT
From: Chantal Delessert

For me it is the "I stand between the darkness and the light" speech.

Boîte


Date: 8/5/2000 12:48:10 PM EDT
From: cpl_glo@earthlink.net (Glo.Phillips)

My favorite quote tend to be the ones which show us the something about my favorite characters.

For example, John Sheridan in The Fall of Night, showing just how hard it is to force him to betray his principles, as he rehearses what to say after being ordered to apologize to the Centauri, and being told that they were sure he could find the right words himself:

"I apologize. I'm .. sorry. I'm sorry we had to defend ourselves against an unwarranted attack. I'm sorry that your crew was stupid enough to fire on a station filled with a quarter million civilians, including your own people. And I'm sorry I waited as long as I did before I blew them all straight to hell... As with everything else, it's the thought that counts."

Or Marcus Cole, in A Late Delivery From Avalon, explaining his view of the universe:

"You know, I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair. Then I thought, wouldn't it be much worse if life were fair, and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them? So, now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe."

And lastly, let me quote Neroon, from Grey 17 is Missing:

"Denn Shar, you said. To the death. And death there was. The death was mine. To see a human invoke the name of Valen, be willing to die for one of my kind when I was intent upon killing one of my own, the rightness of my cause disappeared. Strange, that a human in his last moments should be more of a Minbari than I. Perhaps it is true what Delenn said. That we are not of the same blood, but we are of the same heart."

-- Love,
Glo.


Date: 8/5/2000 12:37:18 PM EDT
From: anthonyfurey@hotmail.com (Anthony Furey)

Hi,
My favourite quotes... or at least the good ones I can remember are:

1. "No one here is exactly as they seem." G'Kar from The Gathering, wait, or is Midnight on the Firing Line ???

2. "You will no pain." "You will no fear." "Then you will die. Have a nice flight!" That's G'Kar and Na'Toth and I'm pretty certain it's from Parliament of Dreams.

-Anthony


Date: 8/5/2000 10:22:09 AM EDT
From: vorlon@whale-mail.com

Hi
This is my favorite B5 quote:

"HOPE IS ALL WE HAVE."
(Lorien; Whatever happened to Mr Garibaldi)

Koona


Date: 8/5/2000 9:56:50 AM EDT
From: macskiver@hotmail.com (Hotmail)

Here's my three favourite quotes:
"Understanding is a three edged sword, your side, there side and the truth"

"There is only one human who has ever defeated a Minbari in combat. He is behind me, you are in front of me"

and
"now get the hell out of our galaxy!

Okay, probably misquoted on a few of them, but I am only human :)
Ranger Dave


The last week's discussion topic:
There were SO MANY great special effects for Babylon 5. Do you have a favorite? If you do, pass it along and see if others agree with your choice.

My favorite has always been from the first season - when Sinclair's starfury turns around in mid-air to shoot at a raider ship! It was the first time a lot of people had seen this maneuver and it sticks in my mind not only for the dramatic quality of the action, but for the scientific accuracy it reflected.


Date: 7/30/2000 5:46:04 PM EDT
From: egallant@iopener.net (Emery Gallant)

Hi there!

My favorite B5 special effect is the fourth season episode in which Garibaldi lures Sheridan to the Mars saloon under the false pretense of helping free Sheridan's Dad, and double crosses him. The scene where Garibaldi slaps the drug patch on Sheridan, and he tries to fight the effects and fend off the bad guys was incredible, with its stop-motion photograpghy and lighting, not to mention the music score during that scene. It was hypnotic and very suspenseful.


Date: 7/30/2000 11:58:45 AM EDT
From: glowindark@adelphia.net (Mike Luoma)

I'm sure many will nominate space battles and such, and if we were only talking about that, "No Surrender..."'s Battle for Proxima contains some of B5's finest, imho. But the final shot of Sinclair, now Valen, flanked by the two Vorlons as the first Minbari enter Babylon 4 at the end of "War Without End" has to be my favorite all-time B5 special effects shot. It's a fast screen shot, but the mythological/iconographical resonance is immense. I'd love to have a huge poster of it...

What made B5's effects especially powerful, though, was the writing. We cared about and knew the impact of the events depicted by effects because the writing gave us the background and gave the material the weight to do so.

Mike Luoma


Date: 7/29/2000 6:04:05 PM EDT
From: l.elsea@prodigy.net (linda elsea)

I think the destruction of B5 after Sheridan's death was so moving and spectacular. It would have to be my favorite.

Linda


Date: 7/29/2000 2:45:22 PM EDT
From: RobWired

My favorite B5 special effect were the light flares in the camera lenses, whether in outer space or on the Minbari homeworld. From my perspective, this effect seems to take a page form Stanley Kubrick's ''2001,'' where the camera flares were painted to add to the realism of an outer space ''shot.'' Subtle but subliminally noticeable if missing.

Robert Folsom


Date: 7/29/2000 9:56:38 AM EDT
From: anthonyfurey@hotmail.com (Anthony Furey)

My favourite effects are in Za'ha'dum when the shadow ship rises out of the excavation site and when the white star crashes through the ceiling in the same scene that John jumps. Also, from my sentimental side I love watching the station blow up in Sleeping in Light.

-Anthony

_


Date: 7/29/2000 11:32:23 AM EDT
From: chdeless@caramail.com (Chantal Delessert)

Same favourite special effect fo me, for the same reasons ! I just went WHAOUH !!!!! and had to rewind to see that again !


OK, here's a fun one. Picture all of the Babylon 5 main characters on a island (think Survivors here). Which one would you see leaving first; which one last -- and why?

Date: 7/26/2000 2:45:30 PM EDT
From: tuckbros@crunet.com (Gary L. Tuck and Mike Tuck)

This is a good one! Of course, it depends on the time frame of each character in the 5 year arc (G'Kar started out as a very angry trouble maker, then changed into an introspective at-ease alien; Garibaldi started out as a jokester, then became sullen and hard to get along with, etc...) I think Londo would probably be the first one voted off the island because of his association with The Shadows and the Drakh and his selfish, destructive behavior. (Can you imagine him sharing his spoo with anyone else on the island?) Sheridan or Delenn would probably be the last one left. They both are leaders and are fair to others most of the time, but tough when they have to be. Delenn is more patient than Sheridan and is used to fasting at times, so starving on an island wouldn't bother her too much. I'd say Sheridan would probably win because he is a good strategist and is respected and liked by the other B5 island survivors. -Mike Tuck


Date: 7/24/2000 4:17:01 PM EDT
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

Bester would leave first because the rest of them would throw him off the island.

Delenn would be the last one left because she can survive anything. We already know she lived past 140 years.


Date: 7/23/2000 6:23:56 PM EDT
From: tml01@gnofn.org

Kudos to whoever came up with this one! I haven't laughed so hard in a long time! My response wound up rather wordy and may be too long for the newsletter. Here goes...

<*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*>
In my B5 Survivor scenario chronological time is irrelevant - sort of a quasi Day of the Dead feeling. I see Lorien, Kosh and a Shadow playing host and presiding over Tribal Counsel, and Draal being the ever omniscient cameraman. Naturally, there would be two tribes to start: the Dark Tribe and the Light Tribe. The Darks would consist of Londo, Bester, the Drak guy, Morden, Anna Sheridan, a couple of Drazi, President Clark and a couple of Night Watch flunkies. The Lights would consist of all the good guys and gals: Sheridan, Delenn, Ivanova, G'Kar, Garibaldi, Franklin, Lyta, Marcus, Sinclair and Zathras.

Day 1: Dark Tribe: Pres. Clark orders the Night Watch flunkies to set up camp while the Drazi do nothing but complain, the Drak watches from the shadow of tree cover, Londo spouts off about the indignities of this whole thing and Bester sits around reading everyone's minds.

Day 1: Light Tribe: Everyone pitches in together to clear the beach, find food and build shelter. Everything is hunky dory except that the darned shelter fell down 3 times and the 4th one disappeared into thin air along with Sinclair and Zathras, but the rest of the tribe managed to build adequate cover before nightfall.

During the next few days the Darks get to know each other better. Morden's favorite question: What do you want... to do now??? Londo does nothing but sit around cheating at cards and flirting with Anna. The 2 Drazi get the urge to do the Purple/Green thing and wind up drowning each other. The flunkies are patroling the beach while Clark and the Drak have secret talks about voting strategies and indemnity challenges. Meanwhile... over at the Lights' beach Garibaldi is cooking up a mean batch of rat, Sheridan has set up a baseball, or rather a coconut-ball, diamond while Delenn admires more than his face. Marcus is totally irritating Susan. After eating the wonderful "rat chez Michael" everyone gathers around the campfire to listen to G'Kar read from the Book of G'Quan.

The Indemnity Challenge: Hey, the Lights have Lyta! Even with Bester and the Drak guy the Darks loose every challenge. Nuf said! While the Lights are gorging on bushels of fruit, fresh chicken and fish, and singing Kumbaya like true happy campers, the Darks are getting nastier and nastier. The Drak starts hedging his bets by tearing off keepers and letting them loose. At night Draal's holographic cameras catch glimpses of them running across all the sleeping bodies. With each loss as the torch light is put out at Tribal Council Kosh declares: You have always been gone.

The Joining of the Tribes: Londo and G'Kar are sent by their respective tribes to check out the other's. After feasting and reminiscing about old wars and dreams of death, G'Kar and a hung-over Londo collect what's left of the Darks (Bester and the Drak) and head for the Lights. The 3 items they chose to take with them: the keepers, the plague and the brevari, of course.

Surviving together: Life on the island basically becomes a challenge between Lyta and Bester. When video time comes along, the Lights all get messages from their buddies at B5: Lockley has the station under control, Number One croons suggestively at Steven, Talon salutes G'Kar, Vir waves at everyone (including Londo), Zack even mentions Lyta. The Darks, I'm sorry to say, received no tape - it was destroyed at Za'Ha'Dum.

Who Wins the Credits?: One by one the Darks are voted off and the Drak leaves them all a surprise: he poisons the well with the plague. Then the Lights decide to approach the situation in the fairest manner possible - they draw straws. Whoever gets the short straw leaves. Of course, Garibaldi had to point out to G'Kar that if he didn't keep his voice down at the campfire sing-alongs, that Lyta would make sure he got the short straw. So, day by day, the happy campers went home to MedLab for plague antidote and interviews on ISN. Finally, two were left: Lyta and Garibaldi. Everyone else got to vote on who should have the million credits. The votes were overwhelmingly in favor of Lyta. After all, Garibaldi did have Edgers Industries, and he'd just launder the credits into Lyta's secret account anyway. So, in essence, *that* is how Lyta raised enough money for the telepath war and everyone considered their debt to her paid. The End. Faith manages. So does Vorlon enhanced telepathy. ;-)

<*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*> <*>


Date: 7/22/2000 7:27:41 AM EDT
From: chdeless@caramail.com (Chantal Delessert)

Londo will be the first one to leave beacause they've run out of alcohol.

G'Kar will be the last because he endures and will always be the last one standing


Last week's (July 17) topic:
A number of movies coming out now are adaptations of stories presented originally in other formats -- books, comic books, etc. Do you think the big screen (or TV) can ever match what has been written by some of the best authors of all time? Give examples of productions that you think have worked -- and those that have failed.

Date: 7/21/2000 10:50:57 AM EDT
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

I'm usually disappointed with what movies and TV do to books, and generally if I've read a book that I particularly enjoy, I avoid the movie like the plague. The worst adaptation of book characters to the screen that I've ever seen are the Margaret Rutherford movies about Agatha Christie's Miss Marple. They are just dreadful and in no way resemble either the character or the books and stories written about the character.

On the other hand, the British-made PBS TV specials featuring Joan Hickson as Miss Marple are probably one of the best book to TV adaptations ever made. Joan Hickson is Miss Marple to perfection, and altho the TV episodes take some liberties with the plots of the books, they preserve the atmosphere and the main plot lines.

Other book adaptations don't fare so well on the tube. David Suchet is as good in the role of Hercule Poirot as Hickson is in the Miss Marple series, but unfortunately the writers often make a mish-mash of the stories by combining elements of several stories into one, or going too far over the top with the character of Poirot. The same is true of the Jeeves series -- absolutely hysterically funny, and perfectly cast, but as the series progressed the stories became muddled and the series lost the freshness and flavor of the original Wodehouse books.


Date: 7/18/2000 9:08:26 PM EDT
From: phax_halfelven@hotmail.com (loree gilley)

Thats a tough one. Some movies that I've seen that were adapted from novels were great, and followed the novel very close, but on the whole I think that you can do only so much with movies and that the written word is much more fulfilling in making the character's thoughts and feelings known. The novel I am currently reading, I think should never be made into a movie. The Deed of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon is a fantacy novel about a young sheepfarmers daughter that runs away form home to be a mercenary and eventually she becomes a Paladine. I have read the novels three times before and I still find that as I read of her nervousness just before her first battle, I feel that same apprehension.

First of all the books are suberbly written, the background sights and the appearances of the characters are beautifully described, and the descriptions of the food will make you hungry. I swear I could taste the stew as it is described and feel the heat of the freshly baked breads. You can't get these feelings watching a movie or a show. Although I love the shows I get to watch I just don't get the same feeling about them as I do when I read a well written novel.

Maybe I'm partial to novels though, since writing fiction is something I'd love to do for the rest of my life.

Sorry if it sounds like I don't appretiate movies or TV. I love them. In fact if I have free time and I'm not writting or reading a novel I'm glued to the TV watching some movie or old episodes of B5 or any of the other shows I have recorded and love.

Because there are things that TV and the movies can do that novels can't, and that is get messages out to a wider range of the public. Where I grew up I was "weird" because I liked to read books that didn't even have pictures in them. Every one I knew watched TV. Some of them I could talk to without them thinking I was strange because they had seen an adaptation of a novel I had read or was in the process of reading. So, as I said that's a tough question. I think I side with keeping novels as novels and finding something else to televise.

Of course, Babylon 5 is better than any novel though.

We live for the One. We die for the One.
Izil'Za Venni. In Valen's name.
Phax_Half-Elven


Date: 7/18/2000 4:00:04 AM EDT
From: chdeless@caramail.com (Chantal Delessert)

I usually am disappointed when I seen the movie of a book I've read. With a book, the author lets you know the feelings of a character, and what she/he thinks, in a movie you can only relate to what emotion the actor/tress is "emitting". It's like loosing a dimension or a sense, like looking at the photograph of a statue or a landscape once you've seen the three dimentional thing (try imagining that with the Grand Canyon or the Statue of Liberty). Sometimes the actor/tress doesn't look the way I've imagined the character and it's even more difficult because I keep on thinking that it is the wrong person.

And a movie based on a book cannot be anything else than the interpretation of the story by someone else. Someone who's emotions might not have been triggered by the same things than you, someone that saw something else in the story. I think a good story is unique to everyone and so everyone has a different conception and perception of it. But that won't stop me from going to see "Lord of the Rings" hoping it will be great.

I enjoyed the movie "Dune" but without trying to compare it to the book. I liked it as a somewhat different version, a kind of a book's 4th cover presentation, it couldn't show all the complexity of Herbert's masterwork ! I liked "Millenium" but saw it so long after I read John Varley's book that I didn't try to compare them.

On a different level, I enjoy to read a novelization after I've seen a film beacause there I get the character's thoughts.

Bye, Chantal


Date: Sat, 15 Jul 2000 10:14:38 AM EDT
From: Pat and Steph Obley

I think there are benefits and disadvantages to making movies out of books. It depends on the book, but sometimes you can notice something new about the story by seeing it in a visual format or experience it in a new way. Other times, it ruins the mental picture you have conceived or changes the story in an important way. An example of one I think worked, although some would disagree, is Carl Sagan's Contact. As usual, some things were left out from the book to the movie, but the essence of it was the same. I think the movie version was intelligently done. It seems most books don't come out well on the big screen or comic books for that matter. Both mediums depend on imagination of the reader. I think the ones that do work have had a lot of input from the authors themselves. It will be interesting to see if the Lord of The Rings movies do the books justice.

Steph


Last Week's Topic:
How many of you have read the new scripts JMS made available on www.bookface.com? If you have read them, what did you think of them?

Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2000 11:29:20 AM EDT
From: "Cripe, Helen L."

I've read the JMS scripts mentioned and about all I can say is, Wow!! What powerful stories!! I had guessed a few things in them, but not nearly everything. He did exactly what he always said he would -- flipped the story from the expected disease cure-hunt to something far bigger in scope, and had he had a chance to do the full arc, would probably have brought in even more changes. Wonder if there's any chance at all that he'll novelize the rest of Crusade for us? What a wonderful series of novels that would be -- and these two scripts certainly have us drooling for more.


Date: 7/6/2000 5:33:35 PM EDT
From: donkinney@earthsolutions.net (Don Kinney)

After I read the two excellent scripts, all I could think is: "TNT SUCKS!"

But that's just me...


Date: 7/6/2000 4:32:02 PM EDT
From: otten@toad.net (Neil Ottenstein)

The Crusade scripts on www.bookface.com are great. They underscore just what we are missing with the cancellation of Crusade. Luckily, with the episodes that we did see, we can visualize what was going on in the scripts and hear what the actors were saying. It is quite an interesting experience reading a new script. They seemed to show that as many people had expected, finding the cure to the Drakh plague was only going to be one factor and possible just a catalyst to the events in the whole series arc.

It would be nice to see as many B5 scripts as possible also up on bookface.

Neil Ottenstein


Date: 7/6/2000 3:22:38 PM EDT
From: macbreck@access995.com (Mac Breck)

I read them as soon as I found out they were there, and LOVED 'em. These babies have GOT to get filmed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Last Week's Topic:

With the discovery that there is indeed water on Mars, here's the topic for this week:

Should NASA be given the ability to put more effort into exploring Mars and other planets in our solar system? Is the effort being put forth on an international space station worthwhile?

Date: 7/2/2000 12:46:35 AM EDT
From: SNBennet@cs.com

Well, considering I plan to one day possibly work for NASA as an engineer or possibly an astronaut, I would have to say that more effort should definitely be given to exploring other planets in our solar system. They could provide us with invaluable information about the formation and functions of life and planets, which could benefit humankind. They could also provide materials that we could us. And they could also serve as colonies for human settlers, and, in the distant future, as jumping off points for space travel beyond this star system. A couple days ago while on vacation, I visited the Kennedy Space Center and was able to view parts of the international space station being built. It was a wonderful experience, and if you're in the Florida area (and even if you're not), you should check it out. I think the effort to create the station is worth it. Although only two nations have gotten people into space, space is not owned by only those two nations. And since ISS is being built by nations who have and who have not accomplished that, the station represents that outerspace is not owned by a single person, corporation or nation--it's for everyone. ISS shows that people of different nations can come together peacefully for a common goal; it shows that nations can unite their efforts to accomplish something good. ISS also provides a workplace to help study diseases in zero gravity, which could lead to cures or better treatments for those diseases. Other scientific experiments that could be beneficial can be preformed in the zero-g environment of the station. ISS can also be a place to train astronauts for extended trips in space, possibly to train them for visits to Mars. And just remember what Commander Sinclair when asked if Babylon 5 was worth all the trouble and money: "We have to stay here, and there's a simple reason why. Ask ten different scientists about the environment, population control, genetics; and you'll get ten different answers, but there's one thing every scientist on the planet agrees on: whether it happens in a hundred years or a thousand years or a million years, eventually our sun will grow cold and go out. When that happens, it won't just take us. It'll take Marilyn Monroe and Lao-Tzu, Einstein, Morobuto, Buddy Holly, Aristophanes... and all of this... all of this was for nothing unless we go to the stars." bye, Stephanie


Date: 6/29/2000 5:50:10 PM EDT
From: Greyjedi@coruscant49.freeserve.co.uk (Russell joynson)

Moving away from earth could one day become essential. We have no idea what environmental catastrophies could be just around the corner. Global warming is still not completely understood, for example. There is also the risk of an asteroid collision. We have all ready had several 'near misses' with so called 'planet killer' sized asteroids. The point is that anything could happen to adversely affect our environment in the future. If that ever happens, it could be lights out for our civilisation if we are all still on earth. There's an old saying about keeping all our eggs in one basket.


Date: 6/28/2000 4:12:38 PM EDT
From: tuckbros@crunet.com (Gary L. Tuck and Mike Tuck)

I think that NASA should put as much effort into exploring Mars and other planets as they can afford. I believe that space travel and exploration is not only very fascinating, but could find the answers to many of our questions here on Earth. The limitless questions we have about our universe and the possibility that cures for diseases or even extraterrestrial life could be found out there are more than enough reasons to continue searching, in my opinion. The naysayers that don't want more money going into space travel simply don't have any imagination or foresight. All they think about is what is right here on our small planet (compared to the rest of the cosmos, we're small). They want to continue to sink all of our money into trying to solve our problems with little or no results with current methods (famine and disease are still prevalent over many parts of the world). They don't realize that the answers may be out there somewhere in space. It may take a long time to get them, but the time it takes will be worth it. If nothing else, discovery and hope are a big part of being human. And space exploration promises discovery and hope.

-Mike Tuck


Date: 6/25/2000 3:23:49 AM EDT
From: Jhawks2

Sooner or later, they're going to have to really invest in Martian and extra-terrestrial exploration. It's not an 'if,' but a 'when.' Unfortunately, the Cold War is over, which was space explorations best friend. Now that it's down to international cooperation, we all have agendas and higher priorities than space exploration. Personally, I'd love to see more time and effort devoted to interplanetary exploration, but it's going to be slow going for the next couple of decades. --Armen


Date: 6/24/2000 11:34:16 AM EDT
From: anthonyfurey@hotmail.com (Anthony Furey)

Hi Sandy,

I think that NASA should be able to explore other worlds. Our world's population is growing an enormous amount and it will come time when we can not properly feed all these people... or should I sat that the 3rd world countries will become more poor and North America and Europe will become richer, reaping from the low economies and cheap food prices of these other countries.

We've been on this planet for a long time, and it's time for us to move on. It's not like we're leaving home, because we don't truly know where we came from, or where our home is.

The universe is out there waiting to be explored... we have to expect the unexpected and be prepared for problems, but to answer the discussion question: Yes.

- Anthony


Date: 6/24/2000 10:54:48 AM EDT
From: obley@sunline.net (Pat and Steph Obley)

What a great topic, here's my two cents:

I believe space exploration is the best thing we can do for ourselves and this planet. We are multiplying quickly, causing a need for more and more space and resources. Instead of completely depleting our planet, we should look to space (the moon, Mars, asteroids, comets, etc.) to help provide some of these resources. Also, as we grow intellectually, the new things we learn about the universe around us will help to feed our mind and give us hope that we are not alone. I think the International Space Station is also important because it gives a starting point for future exploration and is the first venture that will give private interests - and possibly eventually, the common person - a chance to get involved in space exploration and research. And, most importantly, it is the first major project ever created as a world, with many countries playing a part. For the first time it isn't the Russian space station or the American shuttle or the European probe ... it's the *International* Space Station ... it represents not all, but many parts of the planet Earth. This may be dramatic, but I think they key to future peace and understanding here will come from space, whether it is finding life out there or just working together to understand the universe.

Steph


Last Week's Topic:
There has been a lot of debate over the format of TV series. Should each episode be individual? Should there be a continuing story arc? Should there be smaller arc stories within a larger arc, similar to what JMSs did with Babylon 5? Does this format confuse new viewers?

Date: 6/20/2000 12:58:35 PM EDT
From: Marcus.Sprenkel@bakerhughes.com (Sprenkel, Marcus D.)

A good question. Long plots, short plots, or both?

If you look at science fiction down the years, you start to notice certain things, particularly about what people remeber as good, and what people remember as garbage. In the early days, you had the Saturday morning Flash Gordon series. Special effects that nowadays can be repeated by a 6 year old with a videoa camera, costumes that would get you a life sentence from the fashion police, and monsters that were less convincing that that strange man next door each halloween. But runnning throughout the entire 12 week run was a story that was fast paced and every week made you want to come the following week to find out exactly how Flash and Doctor Zharkov would saw Dale from the evil clutches of Ming the Merciless. The story was great, and you forgave everything else. Flash gordon was the first of the sci-fi serials, the others tried to copy it. Can you remember the other ones? Neither can I.

Later on in the films, the effects got better, but it was the ones with the good stories, the wheat, that remain in peoples minds and hearts, and the rest, the chaff, being cast into the wind of late night cable. "Forbidden planet", "The day the earth stood still" and "When world's collide" all relied primarily on stories, good ones, to hold the viewer, whilst the other effect based films had nothing to them. Most are now relegated to late night basic cable, never heard from again, or, in the case of a select few, they get the pleasure of being ritually dis-assembled by Mike Nelson and his crew on MST3K.

In the sixties in the US, "Star Trek" was the first major science fiction series, and it went for single individual stories every episode, with little to link them (although by the third episode it was obvious that if you wore a red shirt on an away mission, you'd better have left your will in an obvious spot in your quarters). In the UK, the classic "Doctor Who" went for a slightly different approach, with stories running for anywhere between 2 episodes to 10 episodes, all following the Flash Gordon cliff-hanger to link them and keep the viewer guessing. Rubbery monsters, wobbly sets and all, you can't say that a series that lasted 35 years and has a massive following can't have got everything wrong. It was the stories that kept it going. You watched one week, and then you had to watch the next week to see what was happening. Plus, both series gave us something else. Regular bad guys. If it was the klingons, the romulans, the daleks or the cybermen, if you heard that the next episode or story was going to feature one of your favourites, then you made special effort to watch it.

As Star Wars came along in 1977, we got presented with something that was cutting edge on the special effects, but if you look underneath it, you are looking at a story that in another time and place that would be somethingout of Knights of the Round Table or 1001 Arabian Night. i.e. classic stories. Loads of poeple jumped on the Star Wars Film Band wagon, and every single one of them failed, until Lucas came up with Empire and showed us that effects meant little if you didn't have a good story to go along with it. Having watched each of the Star Wars films on its own and the watching all three back to back, you notice that each film stands alone and each film stands together.

Back in the UK in the 80's, series like "Tripods", "Blake's Seven", and "Doctor Who" kept alive the tradition for the long saga-type stories, whilst the middle of the 80's, Gene Rodenberry re-invented the Star Trek formula with ST:TNG. The old Star Trek formula was working as well as ever, with the single-story-per-episode. But even here you can start to notice something coming in. References are made to previous episodes and some episodes are left open-ended. Whilst I personally am not a great believer in the sterile Star Trek universe, I must say that on the whole I did enjoy ST:TNG. They came up with some damn good ideas, some great characters and some brilliant on liners. Good writing for the majority of the 7 year run prevailed. (Alas for ST:DS9 and ST:Minivan).

For a science fiction series, B5 came up with something that was a little of a cross between the the Single-Story-Per-Episode mold and the long running Saga-type series. But, if you think about it, this format has been widely used in another television genre: The Soap Opera. If you are honest, the style is no more different that the style used in Dallas, Dynasty or any other of the soaps. Each episode of the soaps ask a number of questions, give out some information about the characters, answer a number of asked questions, and leave other questions un-answered.

So are we really talking about B5 being as soap opera in space? You could put it like that, but that would degrade from it's status.

The question that was asked was is it better to have a long running story lines, single episodes or a bit of both. I think that the question is grabbing the wrong end of the stick.

I saw an interview some time back on the TV with a Belgian animator, who said "The three most important things to remember are these: The story, the story and the story". And I believe it was Harlan Ellison who, when asked by JMS as to why no-one was buying his stories, advised him to "stop writing crap". And personally for me, that pretty much sums it up. Get a good story, and you can pretty much pull the viewer along irrespective of what else is happening.

It is the writing and the story that is the most important thing. Some stories will last for a short while, some for longer, but all of them need to be well written and intellegent to work. Life has good parts, bad parts, funny parts, sad parts, adventure, boredom, the whole nine yards. Weave these into a good well written story and people will watch it, be it a classic 5 year saga or a single episode.

Regards
Marcus D.Sprenkel


Date: 6/19/2000 5:51:29 PM EDT
From: druid@cosmic-salamander.com (Druid Janice Scott-Reeder)

I think every scifi fan enjoys the longer story arc. We just like the twists and turns and ins and outs of second guessing where the longer story line is going but...now we have to be realistic.

Look at Crusade. We may never know where JMS was going with the story because it was canceled. Hence I would say realistically, that a short story arc with each episode standing alone is the way to go as the longer one may never be fulfilled.

Janice Scott-Reeder


Date: 6/19/2000 11:13:26 AM EDT
From: JediMistressDrgn

Mmmmm. . .I think both a continuing arc and yet some individual stories from time to time. X-Files has done this successfully and B5 has in past. So for me both ways are the best ways!

Pam :0


Date: 6/19/2000 4:46:34 AM EDT
From: ACBCassidy

The main consideration here is not so much what we want but how talented the writer is in order to deliver it cleanly.

New viewers to B5, so I understand, could follow the individual episode - and once hooked, in the first 4 seasons, soon found out the arc - if only from repeats, videos or just badging old B5 hands.

B5 combined both the individual episode along with an arc - watch the pilot and see how much now makes sense - without actually announcing an arc existed until we were given the answers. But maybe that worked because the end was always in sight - in 5 years time. The time frame itself forced many answers and maybe ensured the arc's life. Or maybe the arc ensured the interest in watching for the answers.

If we could have what we wanted - well I guess the B5 format says it all!

Angela Cassidy


Date: 6/18/2000 3:05:25 PM EDT
From: nickhindle@cwcom.net (Nick Hindle)

Hi Sandy,

I think the secret of B5s success is the 5 year arc, where richness of the characters unfolds over the years (a bit like real life!), and the stories gather momentum, concluding in a special episode or two each season. Smaller stories within the major arc keep the audiences interest level up, while waiting for the next event in the overall story line.

Although stand-alone story lines are good for making it easy for new viewers to "hop on", it also makes it easy to hop off, which is what I found with TNG.

Keep up the good work,
Nick


Date: 6/17/2000 10:49:48 PM EDT
From: LTutihasi

I have enjoyed shows with either format. It is important, though, I believe, to know which kind the show is before we start watching. What has really bothered me lately is the way some shows start out as episodic and then become more continuing. I have noticed this with the Star Trek franchise. I think the creators of a show should decide which way they plan to go and stick with it. I have also enjoyed anthology shows, such as "Twilight Zone" and "The Outer Limits."

Laurraine Tutihasi


Date: 6/17/2000 1:18:32 PM EDT
From: sscott@solution.on.ca (Steven Scott)

I really enjoyed the story arc of Babylon 5, and I think this is a great way to do a show. However, it is harder for new people to join and "get" the show in progress. Star Trek, The Next Generation did have the long story arc, (as does ST:DS9 which is considerably more like B5 then ST with its current story arc) with little references to past episodes that if you have not watched the show, you would not notice.

While I prefer the B5 story arc (which was excellent JMS! Thanks.) I can see the networks desire to have stand alone shows that carry on some loose connection so new viewers may also enjoy, and then start to follow the series.


Date: 6/17/2000 2:39:11 PM EDT
From: cable1959@yahoo.com (Bill Curtis)

Sandy,

This was a great question, especially considering the poor shape that tv is in today! I think JMS's approach of smaller story arcs within the larger framework worked perfectly. I know I looked forward to each new episode; even if the episode itself seemed trivial, there were almost always hidden gems, tidbits, or portents of things to come. And although many of the episodes could indeed stand alone, the development of plotlines, and even characters, made the show much more enjoyable. I think if he had been given the opportunity, JMS would have seen the same success with Crusade. The 13 shows we did get were just starting to jell. I sincerely hope the Sci-Fi Channel will look at Crusade with fresh eyes, and let Joe finish what he started, and what we all want.

Last week's topic:
If you could go out on a date with one of the characters on Babylon 5 or Crusade, who would you choose and why? Describe your dream date.

Date: Mon, 29 May 2000 6:47:50 AM EDT
From: Kailin Yu

Well, I'm going with Neroon. Yes, I know he was on 4 or 5 episodes, but I think that still qualifies him as a sub-character. And his impact was huge, as you know. Aside from being one face of the warrior caste for us, since we were usually seeing religious caste, he replaced Delenn on the Grey council, tried to kill her in order to take control of the Anla'shok, and then ended up conspiring with Delenn to finally end the civil war on Minbar, finally sacrificing his life to save Delenn. I think that qualifies as having an impact on the story in a big way. It doesn't hurt that John Vickery's performance of Neroon was rather brilliant too. So, there's my two cents.


Date: Fri, 19 May 2000 12:11:05 PM EDT
From: SteveB213

You asked, so I'll tell you... I would've wanted a "dream date" with Carrie Dobro. I think she is the most intelligent & attractive woman I have seen in a recurring scifi role in a long time. I fell in love with her character instantly when she was introduced in "A Call To Arms". I also liked Dr. Chambers (???), the woman who took over as cheif medical officer for B5 when Dr. Franklin left the station for a position on Earth. But of course, she never did much during the series... an interesting character though when she did have small parts (like turning in Franklin for his erratic behaviors -- stim use)...


Date: 5/16/2000 3:44:45 PM EDT
From: aylisha@hotmail.com (Natalie Herman)

Hi Sandy!

Hmmm, well now, THIS is an interesting topic :P though one that I am finding a bit hard to answer, as there are so many choices for so many reasons :) So here is my pick. I have to take one from each show, as it would definately be too hard to pick otherwise.

So from B5, I would have to pick Garibaldi. Marcus is a close second, but I can not pass up on the G-man. Not only is he deffinately VERY good looking (esp in S5 with the bare head), but here is a man who loves to cook, and does so very well. And he is also funny, charming, stubborn, and has a lovely, hidden vunerabiliy under that tough guy image. And since I love the old Warner Toons, we can sit down with some good cooking and watch toons and chat, among other things:P.

Now for Crusade, I would definately choose Max. Galen is a somewhat close second, but Max definately takes the prize. Here is another guy who is hiding a very vunerable side under a tough, know-it-all attitude. And he is also VERY good looking. And archeology has always been one of my hidden hobbies, so I would LOVE to hear about all the things he has seen and discovered. Plus, he's a great dancer:)

So those are my picks, and as to where the date would be, I would leave it up to the guys themselves, to surprise me:)

Thinking thoughts that definately don't need posting,

Aylisha :P


Date: 5/16/00 10:04:04 AM EDT
From: leppardeyes@netscape.net (Mary Alice Kropp)

I've got to say Max Eilerson. Yeah, I know- mercenary, self-serving, cynical. Mercenary is close to my own heart :) and there's nothing wrong with a little self-serving cynicism! Besides, that's looking at only one facet of the man's character- he's also extremely intelligent, has travelled to who knows how many different places and has a really wicked sense of humor. Yes, it's usually biting and sarcastic, but also usually in return or in anticipation of someone making a cutting remark to him- in which case, I'd be just as likely to turn and bite hard, myself.

I think it would be fun to just talk to him- there is nothing more stimulating than a good conversation. But the wickedly devious part of me would like to take him someplace really out of character- an amusement park comes to mind. I'd love to see Max just have some fun!

-Mak


Date: 5/15/00 3:59:49 PM EDT
From: rs009055@pro.via-rs.com.br (Luciana Farias Horlle)

Hi girls!

Well if I could have a dream date with anyone in the B5 universe I would choose Lt. John Matheson from Crusade.

I think he's so cute...besides I think it would be very interesting to go out with a telepath and to have that feeling that maybe he's 'taking a look' inside your head and reading your thoughts. Beyond that he can be veeeery sexy in that uniform!

About the date...I don't know. Maybe go to Babylon 5 and have dinner in one of those wonderful and romantic restaurants; then, take a walk through the garden and maybe some other things later...I just hope that in that moment he could read my toughts!

That's it girls! Keep with the good work and let's bring Crusade back!

Sincerely
Luciana Horlle


Date: 5/15/00 1:50:17 PM EDT
From: heyer@stsci.edu (Inge Heyer)

Hi Sandy,

Why does it have to be a date? I would love to have a conversation with Ambassador Delenn over a good cup of, well, coffee for me, and whatever Minbari equivalent she'll have. To listen to a woman leader of such an ancient civilization, who could talk not only about millenia of galactic history, but about her unique role in more recent events, not just from the point of view of a woman, but that of a hybrid of two cultures, would truly be something I'd cherish.

Inge Heyer


Date: 5/15/00 10:05:56 AM EDT
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

Well, I don't know whether any of the guys on B5 would be interested in going out with anybody my age! But my preference would be a date with Neroon, assuming he isn't allergic to cat hair. In the past I've been known to intimidate my dates somewhat and I think Neroon would be fun and a challenge because I don't think he'd intimidate easily. I'd like to just sit and listen to him tell stuff about Minbar because I like the sound of his voice. Maybe I could persuade him to take me for a ride in his little shuttle. I'd like to take him bowling because I could probably beat him at it. Depending on how the date went, I might or might not tell him I named my cat after him.


Date: 5/14/00 10:24:56 AM EDT
From: gkarfan@webtv.net (Tammy Smith)

Everyone knows what *mine* will be! :)

If I went on a date with G'Kar, it would just be him talking, & me listening--I could listen to him talk all day! What a voice he has!

Londo would also be great--at least the fun-loving Londo of the early episodes. That would be an interesting date! But a date with a guy who has a keeper on his shoulder...sorry, but three's a crowd!

Tammy


Date: 5/13/00 10:22:08 AM EDT
From: One2bmup

If I was able to choose who to go out on a date with, it would be Jason Carter....hands down. His character of Marcus Cole was so believeable and fun loving. My dream date with him would be to go spend a day at the Omaha zoo and then have a nice dinner to talk and learn more about his sense of humor.

Kathy


Date: 5/13/00 10:27:30 AM EDT
From: obley@sunline.net (Pat and Steph Obley)

haha... that's a good one, hope hubby doesn't see this one :)

That's a toughie. I would probably choose Garibaldi, because he's so full of life and funny and straightforward. I think he would be a great date. Although Marcus and Galen would be close seconds.


Date: Sat, 13 May 2000 5:12:35 PM EDT
From: Jhawks2@aol.com

Now THAT'S a good one. There are lots to choose from. I might take Lize Edgars-Garibaldi because she's a successful professional and very attractive.

If we're just talking a night out for fun and excitement where we wouldn't have to worry about calling eachother later, DEFINITELY Dodger.


Date: Sat, 13 May 2000 2:57:26 PM EDT
From: ImRastro@aol.com

Londo of course. He has six....well, you know.


Last week's topic:

Do you think it is important to have an accurate reflection of science in science fiction?

Date: 5/12/00 6:03:32 PM EDT
From: obley@sunline.net (Pat and Steph Obley)

I'm a bit late in answering the discussion question, but thought it was an important one.

I absolutely believe that science should be portrayed as accurately as possible - with some exceptions for artist license and technology which doesn't yet exist - at all times. As someone who is studying science, I see it misrepresented so often. It doesn't do anything positive for anyone to misrepresent science. It makes the show look bad, and it gives people bad information. Science is a critical part of our understanding of the universe, the Earth and ourselves. To treat it lightly is wrong. Just as with anything else, getting the facts straight should be the top priority, and I felt like Bablyon 5 did a good job of that.


Date: Sat, 6 May 2000 10:34:37 AM EDT
From: RobWired

Sandra,

I think it is very important to have the science in science fiction correct. As with any genre of stroytelling, historical drama, for instance, inaccuracies can detract from the story. Literary license is one thing, and I sometimes don't mind when a movie or TV show plays fast and loose with the facts. Take the movie ''U-571.'' It was the British who boarded an abandoned German U-boat and recovered the Enigma machine, but ''U-571'' has Americans being the heroes, and the U-boat part of the story is different, too. But I know the movie is an entertainment. And it is accurate concerning submarining. So there are times when I will suspend my disbelief. After all, all stories ask you to do this. But it makes it so much easier when all the facts are correct. Or at least in the case of science fiction, agree with what we postulate.

Robert Folsom


Date: 5/5/00 10:10:07 PM EDT
From: blgorsic@yahoo.com (Bonnie Gorsic)

Hi Sandy,

I think it is a good idea for science fiction to be as truthful as possible to real science (i.e. don't claim the earth is flat), but also extend real science to ideas that might not have been thought about yet. When the original Star Trek series came on, real science didn't think about talking computers. But talking computers can capture the imagination, and maybe bring it into existence. The research that is going on now relating to teleporting objects is referred to as transporting things like Star Trek. Science fiction can push real science by suggesting creative ideas, and can educate people about real science in a way they would consider fun rather than difficult study.

Thanks for all your efforts in keeping B5 alive via the newsletters and chats.

Bonnie


Date: 5/5/00 5:42:50 PM EDT
From: LTutihasi@aol.com

If you are going to call a work science fiction, then I think it is of the utmost importance. Otherwise, it isn't science fiction.

Laurraine Tutihasi


Date: 5/5/00 9:40:59 AM EDT
From: vmoldafsky@netscape.net (Vicki Moldafsky)

I think YES as far as taking something known and moving forward to what could be. In referring to SF it is a presupposition that Science will be involved in some measure. To do otherwise moves the show, book, etc. into the realms of fantasy.

Yes, primitive people may construe technology for magic, but I still think there has to be a good foundation there to start with. If you recall even StarTrek based a lot of their technology on the cutting edge research being done in the sixties, which has now become reality. Who knows what is coming out of the research labs in the future?

Of all genres SF is the only one to examine technology and it's implications for the future. Cloning for instance. There have been many stories about the moral implications of cloning, should it be possible to clone a human. What rights would they have, if any. Or an AI that becomes fully sentient. Would it have any rights? Or would the clone or AI be considered property, as in slave.

Computers, cell phones, biological warfare, laser technology, etc. have all been examined by SF long in advance of the technology becoming a reality. Some of the scientists working in research labs are great dreamers. Who knows what they envision a future to be?

Regards,
Vicki


Date: 5/5/00 8:22:03 AM EDT
From: cable1959@yahoo.com (Bill Curtis)

Hi Sandy,

To answer your question: Do you think it's important to accurately reflect science in science fiction, the answer is a resounding yes. Although most good fiction, science or otherwise, starts with a great idea or imagination, without a basis in fact it's just unbelievable.

Think back to the amazing strides we've made in technology in the last 30 years alone: Star Trek's flip open communicator now IS the cell phone. Medical scanners: MRIs, bionics, implants, etc. All of these just sounded like science fiction 30 years ago, and are now science fact. My dad likes to say when he got started with computers, they were room-sized: now you can get a palm-sized one!

I think the whole point is one of checks and balances. If you can imagine something, you owe it to yourself, and the fans to research it to see if its possible.

Me; I'm waiting to get my hands on a star fury!


Date: 5/4/00 3:48:40 PM EDT
From: warrencd@email.unc.edu (Cheryl Warren)

Sandra,

I really enjoy the e-messages and appreciate all your work.

In answer to the question:
Yes, yes, a million times yes.

Think of the science-based problems that face our human society: global warming, environmental degradation, food supply issues. These issues are WAY too important to be left up to the politicians. Our last, best hope is an educated citizenry. Science fiction is not the only answer, of course, but good science fiction, soundly based on science, can enhance a viewer's appreciation of the role of science in our society.

There is a sound marketing reason for good science in science fiction, too--all of us geeks out here who love science AND love science fiction. Nothing turns us off faster than pseudo- or bogus science.

I teach environmental science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

best wishes,
Cheryl Warren


Date: 5/4/00 3:00:57 PM EDT
From: tuckbros@crunet.com (Gary L. Tuck and Mike Tuck)

I think that it is somewhat important to have accurate science in science fiction. Of course, this should not overshadow the plot or the characterization. Those are the main things that I am concerned with. But if they show a science error that is easily noticed by everyone, it can detract from the overall show or episode. I really can't think of any science error that I noticed in B5. My brother usually is the one to notice when any TV show gets something wrong. I'm more casual about it, unless it is just a major goof that anyone of average intelligence would notice right off.

-Mike Tuck


Last week's topic:
Do you have favorite "sub-character"? This is someone who was only on the show once or twice, but had an impact on the show and you? Who was that character and why did you love/hate him/her? Date: 5/8/00 3:24:51 AM EDT
From: chdeless@caramail.com (Chantal Delessert)

My favourite sub… is Neroon. I can't really explain why, there was a certain quality about him, a sort of chivalry, a sense of rightness and honour !

Tanks, Chant


From:
Sent: Thursday, May 04, 2000 1:19 AM

My favorite sub-character was Neroon. He grew from a card board character to one I grew to respect. I actually agreed with him when he disagreed with the selection of of Delenn as An-til-zah. The separation of church and state must be sacrosanct.

Thanks for listening
Laura Eklund


Date: 4/30/00 7:04:40 AM EDT
From: JBehling

Do I have a favorite "sub character?"

Yup.
No question.

ZATHRAS

Who else? Calm under pressure, fulfills his duty, is honest, has integrity, and knows the secrets of the universe. Who could be better?

-John Behling


Date: 4/28/00 10:19:02 AM EDT
From: senoucci@21st.de (Nadja Senoucci)

Hello,

So, my most favorite sub-character was Neroon. He always persued in things he believed were best for the Minbari.

He believed Delenn would not make a good Entil'Zah because she was not a warrior. But as he saw that others were willing to die for her, he saw that he was wrong and that she was a strong leader.

He always stood for what he believed was right. As in the end as he steped into the starfirewheel to take Delenns place and help his people back to peace. He said that he was a member of the religious cast and therefore turned his back on the warrior cast whose leader wasn't even willing to die himself (but sent others into death) for his cause.

In the end he died for what he belived in.

So, what I want to say is that Neroon was a very strong character that didn't change much over the seasons but learned a lot. And that made him very interesting to me.

CU,
Nadja


Date: 4/28/00 4:31:24 PM EDT
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

Anybody who knows me knows that my all-time favorite "sub-character" is Neroon. His early appearances interested me because he was a perfect gadfly and foil for the Minbari religious caste, who at times seemed a little too good to be true. In his final three episodes, "Grey 17 is Missing", "Rumors, Bargains & Lies", and "Moments of Transition", Neroon showed that he had the ability to grow and change, and the strength of character to make a great sacrifice for the good of all his people, thus ending the Minbari civil war. Aside from these nobler sentiments, there is the Voice and the Presence, enough to make me drool every time he walks across the screen even though I'm old enough to be his mother. I have his picture at my workstation in a place of importance - right beside those of my cats. And the most recently acquired boy cat is named "Neroon"!


Date: 4/28/00 11:03:51 AM EDT
From: cable1959@yahoo.com (Bill Curtis)

Hi Sandy,

For me, my least favorite would have to be the "Fake" Kosh, the replacement the Vorlons sent to B5 after Kosh was killed by the Shadows. The only thing missing should have been Sheridan's speech to the fake: "Mr. Vorlon Ambassador, I knew the real Ambassador Kosh, and you are no Ambassador Kosh!"


Date: 4/27/00 7:22:15 PM EDT
From: RobWired

Sandra,

I don't know if he qualifies; he may have had too much screen time, but my favorite sub-character is pilot Warren. My girlfriend and I were watching an epsiode that we thought was a dramatic one concerning Warren. True B5 fans, this was during a re-watching, in order, of all of the episodes. We started crying, then, to our relief, we discovered it wasn't time to cry. Yet. That will be in an upcoming episode.

Robert Folsom

Last week's topic:>br? What is your favorite one-liner?

Date: 4/24/00 11:56:31 PM EDT
From: DelennToo

Well, I know there are a lot of really good one-liners, but the line that stands out for me as representing B5 is from "Chrysalis," when Kosh tells Sinclair ...

"And so it begins."

Penny


Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2000 6:32:33 PM EDT
From: Denise Davis

Favorite One liner:

With out a doubt my favorite one liner is from the episode "War Without End" Part 1. Sinclair, Sheridan, Marcus, Delenn, Lennier, Zathras and Ivanova are about to depart for Babylon 4 and Ivanova says "I'll be waiting in the car." This episode also has a line that has always remained locked in my head (and my heart), "Hello, old friend."

Denise A. Davis
Upstate New York


Date: 4/17/00 2:36:08 PM EDT
From: tuckbros@crunet.com (Gary L. Tuck and Mike Tuck)

I am going to give a few one liners that I can remember, because it is a "toss-up" as to which one is my favorite. These won't be direct quotes since I haven't seen these episodes in awhile, I'm just going by memory. Also, I can't remember which episodes they are from, but I'll give a season it was in, if I can remember.

1st season: 1) (Sinclair to Garibaldi:) "Michael, you're more trouble than a toilet full of snakes..."
2) (Sinclair to some guest character:) "Get out of my way, or, by God, I'll push you out the nearest airlock."
3) (Sinclair asks Garibaldi how he feels after a fight (I think) and Garibaldi replies:) "Like I just made love to a meteor shower."
4) (Garibaldi says this to Talia Winters, referring to his love of Duck Dodgers cartoons:) "I want to show you my favorite thing in the universe...(looking at Talia) Okay, my second favorite thing in the universe."
2nd season: 5) (Sheridan said this on at least two occasions that I can remember, at least once to Ivanova:) "...Get the hell out of my chair."

4th season: 6) (Sheridan makes an impassioned speech as to why the Shadows and Vorlons should stop fighting and leave and then says:) "...Now, get the hell out of our galaxy!!"

There are probably more that I simply can't remember right now, but those are the ones that stand out in my mind.

-Mike


Date: 4/17/00 10:34:18 AM EDT
From: cable1959@yahoo.com (Bill Curtis)

Hi Sandy,

Your're right; it's hard to choose just one, there were so many good ones to choose from! I think one of my favorites would have to be from Londo: "No, you have that looks that says: hold by head to your ear and you will hear the ocean."

Londo to Zack
"The Very Long Night of Londo Mollari"


Date: 4/17/00 10:04:14 AM EDT
From: CripeHL@itrcorporation.com (Cripe, Helen L.)

My favorite oneliner comes from Lennier, who actually got a lot of great oneliners all through the series. It's in "Grey 17 is Missing", where, in reference to Neroon's threats against Delenn, Lennier says he thinks Neroon intends to go far beyond harsh language. Part of what makes this so funny to me is Bill Mumy's serious, deadpan delivery. He's a far better actor than he gets credit for, and his work as a kid actor makes that cutesy kid in the Star Wars movie look pretty pathetic.


Date: 4/17/00 1:18:24 AM EDT
From: Jhawks2

Favorite one-liner:

"Why not? The only human captain to survive combat with the Minbari is behind me, you are in front of me. If you value your lives, be somewhere else."

Delenn - Severed Dreams


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