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Babylon 5 sequel shows and such, a look back.

I've finally gotten around to watching my DVDs of the panels from Pheonix Comicon that I missed, and one of them was Points of Departure, which I missed because I was at the Claudia Christian one instead, and boy do I wish I was there so I could yak it up disagreeing with the panelists like I did with other ones. So like I said before in my look back at the first season, a problem I have with the show is that the good guys really are just a little too good in some ways, especially the Rangers, so really, I have to say that I prefer Crusade vastly over JMS's original idea for a spin off show. JMS has talked about this before, that there would have been a show about the Rangers going around helping to keep and create peace in the galaxy, and eventually the characters would have discovered some sort of corruption within the Rangers I think. Really, the idea of seeing the Rangers still be these knights in shining armor doesn't appeal to me. Apparently Crusade's story basically came from TNT insisting on certain things, and while a lot of what they eventually wanted was totally stupid, I think the idea of Crusade is far more interesting.
And on the subject of Crusade, they mention in the panel some stuff about things that were going to be in the show that were dropped because of TNT (I can't remember if I knew this already or not). Sheridan, Delenn, Franklin, and even Marcus would have been in the show as main characters. Now, I'm one to have NEVER wanted Marcus to come back, because I've always felt that it just cheapens his sacrifice. If Marcus was brought back, it would just be like "Oh yeah, I gave my life to save the woman I love, but you know, I got better." Hell, we already had one character come back from the dead, we don't need two. Also, I think that not having Sheridan and Delenn return was a very good idea. It lets us see new characters, and gives other actors a chance to show what they can do. However, I think that it would have been great for Franklin to return, since it's very logical. He's had more experience than pretty much anyone else in the medical field in the galaxy with various alien biologies, so he would be a vital asset to the Excalibur. Zathras was also mentioned to returned, and I have to say, I think that one of the reasons everyone loves Zathras is because he was only there for a little bit. He was really funny and everything, but I think that the idea would have worn out very fast if he was a main character in something. Though I wouldn't have been opposed to a Valen story with Zathras there as a main character, since it's only logical.
Really though, for an awesome B5 spin off, I think that the fifth season episode The Corps is Mother, The Corps is Father would have been an excellent idea for a show. The Psi Corps storylines is one of the absolute best in the show, even with how the telepath story turned out in the fifth season. One of the strengths of it is that this is a very hard subject to just say "Well, THIS is obviously the right solution!" and preach it. If telepaths existed, the simple fact is that they would have an unfair advantage, and people's rights would be a huge issue. They would be persecuted and hunted down, so an organization like Psi Corps would have to be made. Unfortunately it turned into a nightmare, but still, with proper oversight, a Psi Corps might be able to work.
I imagine a show starting Walter Koenig as Bester, Dana Barron as Lauren Ashley, Bester's horrible little apprentice, and Mike Genovese as Bester's superior. In the show we would see the good and the bad, the VERY bad about the Psi Corps, and we could see other young actors playing Psi Corps interns. What's great is that as it goes on, we would eventually come to the Telepath War. Characters would have to decide just what their values really are, just who and what they're actually loyal to, trapped inside an oppressive nightmare where your thoughts aren't private, where you don't know at all who you can really trust, an environment where you might not even be able to trust yourself, because you might have something hidden in your mind. Some characters would be loyal to the Psi Corps, like Laurel, others would feel caught in the middle, not knowing what to do, and others would flat out rebel and be forced to kill people they used to consider friends. I think this would have been an amazing show. I really don't know why JMS was so caught up on the Rangers.

Another thing is that they talk about Delenn and Valen's final fate, and again, I've always disagreed with the majority of fans. For some reason, everyone wants to imagine Sheridan, Delenn, and Sinclair all living happily ever after beyond the Rim, while I've always argued that it makes no sense whatsoever that Valen would be taken beyond the Rim. Who the hell would have taken him there? Lorien makes it clear that Sheridan was the first one to visit him in thousands of years. I have my own theory about what happened to Valen and Delenn, with their fates linked, and it sure doesn't involve any trip beyond the Rim. I've mentioned it before, but if any of you were interested, I could type it all up again.

Comments

  • croxiscroxis I am the walrus
    Crusade worked because it hit the ground running, very much like current television. It also used a 2 hour "episode" which used existing characters to set up the new premise and plot. Crusade then took an established plot point and introduced the new crew. TNG/DS9/Voyager had some camios in their pilots, but did little to facilitate the transition.

    Personally I would rather see Crusade rebooted over Babylon 5.
  • David of MacDavid of Mac Elite Ranger Ca
    Agreed about preferring a Crusade revival of some sort compared to a remake of Babylon 5. I realize all the business reasons why it's harder sell (though, apparently, whatever new incarnation is floating around for B5 also isn't that exciting to studios), but it also has a lot more places where it can go, while still hitting a lot of the same notes that make B5 more than just another space opera.

    Personally, I'd go for an animated continuation of Crusade, maybe distilled down to be less than five twenty-four-episode seasons. It seems like it'd be less expensive, and easier to recast or have actors reprise their roles after so long.
  • Crusade had an amazing amount of potential. I really liked the characters, the acting quality was across the board better than Season 1 B5. Forgetting the clunky "studio-interference" episodes, it was quite good.

    A reboot would work quite well, you can recast without people freaking out.
  • DarthCaligulaDarthCaligula Elite Ranger
    The thing is, aside from War Zone, I think that they were all pretty good and that they managed to make a good show even with TNT's interference.
  • PJHPJH The Lovely Thing
    edited March 7
    Crusade was awesome and it had a lot of potential. It was unique and I really liked the moody athmosphere it had. I also liked the acting crew, which I think was pretty much perfect for their roles.
    It's just a damned crime, that some of these idiot "suits" ruin everything they touch and don't respect the good stuff and the viewers at all. We lost a great unique story and adventure, which already had a good start and which scifi-genre would've needed to be shown on screen. Unfortunately now so many years have passed, that it can't be revived anymore as it was. Now it would be a completely different kind of show if restarted. I don't think there even are great charismatic "old style" actors like for example Gary Cole anymore who could jump into the same boots as Gideon. He was perfect for his role with his unique personality. As was Peter Woodward as Galen too. Can't think of anyone else playing that role. It just wouldn't be the same.

    But after having said all that, the story of Crusade could still be told as a new redesigned show and could still be good. It would be worth it for sure and in JMS's capable hands, it could still be great.
  • CanavandriveCanavandrive Registered User
    Just an idea to throw out there, but I think JMS should try to put together a Babylon 6 story. Maybe a thousand years after Babylon 5's retirement. A whole new generation of actors could come into play, a new plot, maybe an alien incursion from Andromeda or another galaxy from beyond the outer rim. I would think the Narn and Centauri would be able to shake hands by then and after a thousand years of peace a new shadow blinds the Interstellar Alliance. I claim no ownership to this idea and all rights are reserved by the respected owners.
  • That sounds contrived and awful
  • MatthewMatthew Earthforce Officer
    A psi corps based show does sounding interesting.
  • croxiscroxis I am the walrus
    It could work if it was largely standalone. I forget the timings but it could coincide with first contact with the centauri
  • DarthCaligulaDarthCaligula Elite Ranger
    Did you ever read the Psi Corps trilogy? It covers the history of the Psi Corps and has the first contact with the Centauri. I thought they were great books.
  • CanavandriveCanavandrive Registered User
    I've wanted to read the psi corps book for a while but I have to put it off for a bit more. Wasn't there a book based on the telepath war or were these the same books?
    Also go90.com now has Lost Tales on incase anyone wanted to revisit it or watch it for the first time.
  • The books pass over the telepath war, since JMS wanted to do a bigger story with that, but obviously that never happened. The third book makes references back to the war though.
  • SanfamSanfam I like clocks.
    edited October 9
    The more I think about it, the more I want a Telepath War series. Even if it just ends up being a one-shot re-entry into the universe, that entire arc offers so much that can appeal to modern audiences. Serialized TV is the norm now; The long story and use of infrequent recurring characters can work now where it was generally considered a possible negative in the past. Visual effects can better represent a mental battlefield. Cinematic presentation is absolutely possible in long-form entertainment; See Star Trek: Discovery. We'd get the opportunity to revisit some known characters while having enough time passing in-universe for it to no longer feel like a cheap cash grab.

    On the subject of the B5 "Extended Universe" (so to speak), I revisited Lost Tales recently and was really quite disappointed. It was acceptable as an entirely isolated Island of B5, but as part of the whole...nothing was brought to the table that wasn't already part of the established setting. No characters grew, nobody changed. Stuff happened and nothing was different as a result. Years later, it feels much more strongly like a tech demo for a studio than a part of an established franchise. Though at least we didn't get space-pyramids...
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