Retrospeculative TV

RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “The Coming of Shadows” (Season 2, Episode 9)

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Ok, definitely last week was a low ebb for me. The Talia Trilogy of Tedium really wore me down, and I really was ready to chuck the whole thing, not because it’s a bad show, but simply because it’s so much a product of its time that it’s kind of hard to rave about stuff that…eh. You know what? Not gonna’ go through that again. Suffice to say: anything involving Talia Winters in specific, or Human Telepaths in general, kinda kills this show. It’s a neat idea, I’m glad they tried it, but it’s easy to see which cylinder isn’t firing.

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “A Race Through the Dark Places” (Season 2, Episode 8)

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I just watched the first episode of Lost. This wasn’t the first time I’ve seen it, I’m not a virgin. We were - and remain - huge fans of the show on the site here. In fact, we had two different guys running independent reviews of each episode as they aired, just because there was enough stuff in the story that it was possible one of us might miss something. It was good enough a show that we didn’t *want* to miss anything, so we reviewed each ep twice.

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “Soul Mates” (Season 2, Episode 7)

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Despite my general dislike of the Talia Winters character, and my very specific dislike of havint two Talia stories back-to-back, this is a darn near *Perfect* episode, and funny, too. Everyone should just set down their drinks and/or pencils and/or surgical equipment and watch it now, but assuming you’re too lazy to do that, I’ll just tell you about it instead.

PLAY BY PLAY

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “A Spider In The Web” (Season 2, Episode 6)

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Lots of stuff happens here, setting the stage for far more stuff to happen down the road, and since this is Babylon 5, you just *know* it’s building up to something big, right? But is it…? Well….

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An alien delegation is visiting the station to do negotiate possibly joining the League of Non-Aligned Worlds, or the B5 Advisory Council or something. It’s not entirely clear what, but we’re told it’s important, and that it all went well.

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “The Long Dark” (Season 2, Episode 5)

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This episode is better than I remembered. Still a little uneven, still got some stuff that doesn’t work, still doesn’t quite *feel* like a B5 episode, but it’s better than I remembered, and they get points for trying something new while they were still trying to find their footing after the big changes between the seasons.

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “A Distant Star” (Season 2, Episode 4)

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If the previous episode is where Babylon 5 *wants* their average to be, this episode is more like where it actually is. It’s certainly not bad, certainly far better than the competition at the time (cough cough DS9), but it’s not *as* good as they’re generally shooting for.

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “The Geometry of Shadows” (Season 2, Episode 3)

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Man, this is just a wonderful episode. I mean, yeah, I remembered it as being pretty good, but one of the joys of this project is revisiting stuff I haven’t seen in a long time and holding it up against my memories. My memory is pretty good. I don’t get surprised much, so when something’s better than I remembered it’s a good day. This was a good day.

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “Revelations” (Season 2, Episode 2)

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Let’s do this a little bit differently. There’s a lot of balls in the air here, so let’s lay ‘em down in order. Stuff with an Asterisk is specifically in or referred to in this episode. The rest is stuff we‘ve picked up over the last 24 episodes and the premier movie:

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “Points of Departure” (Season 2, Episode 1)

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After last week’s amazing season finale, we find ourselves once again in Crapsiville. Crapsville, baby, population: You. There’s no sugarcoating it: This is a terrible episode, and a disastrously placed one as well. Coming right at the start of the second season, I know plenty of people who’d gotten interested in the show based on my incessant chatter, decided this ep would be the right one to jump on board with, cringed themselves into incontinence, went to the bathroom to clean up, and never came back.

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RETROSPECULATIVE TV: Babylon 5: “Chrysalis” (Season 1, Episode 22)

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Londo and G’kar are haranguing the B5 Council about the Quadrant 37 crisis, the latest in an endless show of Narn aggression and reluctant Centauri conciliation. This region borders their respective territories, and the Narn have started sending warships across the line on the map into Centauri space, probably just as a show of force. Somewhat later, Londo is instructed by his government to simply give in to Narn demands. He does not take it well:

Londo: “Vir, how many gods are there in our pantheon? I lost count after our last emperor was elevated to godhood”

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