Babylon 5 – tape 1962

Here’s another random dip into Babylon 5, perhaps the worst show to watch random episodes. Our last look had the start of season one, so here’s some episodes from near the start of season two. Commander Sinclair (the ever-so-slightly wooden Michael O’Hare) has been replaced by the slightly cuddlier, but equally gravel voiced Bruce Boxleitner. He played Tron, you know? And, trivia fans, Peter Jurasik (Londo Mollari) was also in Tron – he played a character called Ram.

The first episode here is Soul Mates, one of the few season two episodes not written by series creator J Michael Straczynski. This one’s written by Peter David, a well known comics writer who also wrote several Star Trek The Next Generation novels.

the main plot is Londo’s Acension plus 30 years – some kind of Centauri milestone, so he’s asked the Emperor if he can divorce two of his three wives. He summons the three of them to the station so he can decide which to keep.

Elsewhere, Talie Winters’ ex husband appears, and tells her he knows a way to remove her telepathic powers, so she can quit the Psi-Corp. He’s played by Keith Szarabajka, who used to have a recurring role on The Equalizer, and is one of those actors who you like seeing pop up in various TV shows.

Also, Ambassador De’lenn has a bad hair day, so she and Commander Ivanova bond over hair products.

Timov

The next episode, The Coming of Shadows, sees the visit of the Centauri Emperor to the station. G’Kar isn’t happy. He plots to kill him at a reception, but before he gets near, the Emperor collapses from a pre-existing condition. He asks Dr Franklin to take a message to G’Kar – that he is sorry for the way the Centauri has treated the Narn.

Meanwhile, Londo asks Morden for his help in destroying a Narn outpost, and has a prophetic dream.

Londo's Dream

 

Garibaldi is visited by an unknown man, bearing a message from none other that Commander Sinclair, telling him about the Rangers.

 

By the end of the episode, the emperor is dead, as is the Centauri Prime Minister who was loyal to him, and the Narn have declared war on Centauri

This is what we used to call an arc-heavy episode, with most of it affecting the long-term story. There’s nothing here that doesn’t resonate further down the series.

Next episode is one of the less interesting ones. It’s GROPOS, which stands for “ground Pounders” – footsoldiers, basically. 25,000 soldiers come aboard the station under the command of General Franklin, played by Paul Winfield, who is also the father of Dr Franklin.

Paul Winfield

The crew form various bonds with the guest troops, which makes the end of the episode rather heartbreaking, as the friends they made all died in the first battle of the mission they were on. As that great philosopher Boy George told us: War. War is Stupid.

The next episode is All Alone in the Night. Sheridan decides to take a ship out to investigate a routine problem. “What could go wrong?” he says. Does anybody in the real world ever say that non-ironically? Naturally, something does go wrong, and he’s captured and put in a cell with a Narn and forced to fight.

Delenn is summoned back to Minbar, where the Grey Council decide whether she should remain on the council. They throw her off the council, but, when she returns to Lennier she “feels very positive about this.”

Sheridan has a prophetic dream while in captivity. They’re always a bit lumbering and mannered. David Lynch did the dreams better on Twin Peaks.

Prophecy Dream

At the end of the episode, General Hague tells Sheridan that he believes that President Santiago was murdered, and hints of a conspiracy.

Following this episode, there’s an episode of Deputy Dawg. It’s The Pink Flamingo, a family friendly retelling of John Waters’ cult classic. (This may not be true).

Then, Channel 4 News starts, leading with “The multi-billion pound crime of the 90s, mobile phone cloning, that the law here is powerless to combat.” I’m presuming this was in the analogue days when it was easier to sniff the signals.

The tape finishes during this broadcast.

Adverts:

  • Vauxhall Corsa – Ruby Wax
  • Directors Bitter
  • Lee Jeans
  • Now Dance 95
  • Wrigley’s Doublemint
  • Doritos – Judge Reinhold
  • Coca Cola
  • Anchor Spray Cream
  • BT – Phone Day
  • Terry’s Chocolate Orange Bars
  • Foster’s Ice
  • Lynx Systeme
  • Citroen Xantia
  • Successful Gardening
  • Tortella
  • Guardian Direct
  • Daily Mirror
  • trail: The Great Outdoors
  • trail: Without Walls
  • Audi
  • BT Phone Day
  • McCoy’s
  • Adidas
  • Foster’s Ice
  • Renault 5
  • Andrews Antacid
  • Polo
  • Dulux paint
  • Direct Line
  • Boddington’s – with Anna Chancellor?
  • Next
  • Irn Bru
  • Shout
  • Trail: Father Ted – this is a trailer for the very start of the series.

  • trail: Drop Dead Fred
  • Renault Espace
  • Cocacola
  • Virgin FM
  • Lee Jeans
  • McDonalds
  • Budweiser
  • Renault Espace
  • Renault 5
  • Doritos
  • Alton Towers
  • Thornton’s
  • Anchor Spray Cream
  • BT Phone Day
  • Holsten Pils
  • Irn Bru
  • Landmark Express
  • Vodafone
  • Crinklin Mini Cheddars
  • Blockbuster video
  • Now 30
  • trail: The Big Breakfasst
  • trail: Home Improvement
  • Ford Fiesta
  • Kellogg’s Crunchy Nut Cornflakes
  • Sky – Corbin Bernsen
  • Harpic
  • Enigma Lager
  • Renault Espace
  • Raleigh Max
  • Currys
  • Remegel
  • Irn Bru
  • Lynx
  • Carlsberg
  • Renault Espace
  • trail: Father Ted
  • trail: Bob Roberts
  • Toyota Carina E
  • Radio Rentals
  • Polo Spearmint – voice by Danny John Jules
  • Weeta-Flakes
  • trail: The Big Breakfast
  • trail: Goldring
  • Daily Telegraph
  • Guardian Direct
  • Nissan
  • Power Macintosh 6100
  • Daily Telegraph – Tony Parsons
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