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Psi Cop March 11th 14 12:43

Telepath War
 
Why did JMS tease us all series long about the telepath war and then not devote any episodes to it? Or a movie? It would have added more to the story than what Thirdspace or River Of Souls did. In fact, apart from In The Beginning, I have tried to jettison the 'movies' from my B5 consciousness altogether. And I don't want to know about books - I wanted to see - on the screen!!

Jan March 11th 14 13:40

Re: Telepath War
 
The general consensus is that JMS was saving the actual telepath war for a feature film. Whether that's true or not, who knows?

Jan

B5_Obsessed March 11th 14 13:55

Re: Telepath War
 
JMS reportedly held that back in the hope that there would eventually be a Babylon 5 feature film ( oh how young and naive we were). With a proposed budget of $30-35 million, the cost of an entire season of B5, JMS felt he could deliver a high quality, action driven product while also rewarding the actors with movie-sized paychecks for all their years of service in the hot tub factory. Even though we can pretty much figure how things turned out, along with the fates of some specific characters, it would have been something to see.

Republibot 3.0 March 11th 14 16:01

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Psi Cop (Post 447380)
Why did JMS tease us all series long about the telepath war and then not devote any episodes to it? Or a movie? It would have added more to the story than what Thirdspace or River Of Souls did. In fact, apart from In The Beginning, I have tried to jettison the 'movies' from my B5 consciousness altogether. And I don't want to know about books - I wanted to see - on the screen!!

Well, I don't think there's much disagreement that the Telepath War thing ended up being handled badly in retrospect. [Annnnnnd cue disagreement] It seems like he intened to flash back to it much like B5 flashed back to the Minbari war.

The idea of a movie was mentioned several times, but I don't know how serious it was. The only script for a film that I've ever heard was "The Memory of Shadows," which involved Franklin and some new character running down shadowtech. That doesn't appear to have anything to do with the Telepath war.

Raw Shark March 11th 14 16:33

Re: Telepath War
 
A script treatment (a partial one, really, just the set-up) appeared in one of the B5 script books, 'War of the Mind' I think it was called. After Lyta's Resistance stepped up their campaign against Psi Corps with terrorist attacks and abductions, the Corps retaliated. The conflict was spreading, and growing out of control. After staying out of it as long as he could manage, Sheridan arranges a peace conference aboard Babylon 5. Both sides have forces in place to wreck the conference and bring the war to B5. Mysterious alien attacks in deep space, too, all the usual good stuff you would expect.

Working out a decent timeline of the war is tricky, from the bits and pieces of information floating around in the series, the books, JMS' comments, etc. So many elements to work with, much more complex than the Earth-Minbari War. Lies, betrayal, sleeper agents, implanted control personalities, secret deals and alliances, alien involvement, Corps motherships, nuclear weapons, concentration camps, a coup in EarthDome, looming genocide... It's quite a vicious cauldron he was constructing, with Earth as the central battlefield.

Raw Shark

"Everyone here knows that the first casualty of war is always the truth."
Capt. Sheridan

Republibot 3.0 March 14th 14 13:14

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Raw Shark (Post 447392)
A script treatment (a partial one, really, just the set-up) appeared in one of the B5 script books, 'War of the Mind' I think it was called. After Lyta's Resistance stepped up their campaign against Psi Corps with terrorist attacks and abductions, the Corps retaliated. The conflict was spreading, and growing out of control. After staying out of it as long as he could manage, Sheridan arranges a peace conference aboard Babylon 5. Both sides have forces in place to wreck the conference and bring the war to B5. Mysterious alien attacks in deep space, too, all the usual good stuff you would expect.

Working out a decent timeline of the war is tricky, from the bits and pieces of information floating around in the series, the books, JMS' comments, etc. So many elements to work with, much more complex than the Earth-Minbari War. Lies, betrayal, sleeper agents, implanted control personalities, secret deals and alliances, alien involvement, Corps motherships, nuclear weapons, concentration camps, a coup in EarthDome, looming genocide... It's quite a vicious cauldron he was constructing, with Earth as the central battlefield.

Raw Shark

"Everyone here knows that the first casualty of war is always the truth."
Capt. Sheridan

Huh. I'd heard a paraphrase of that outline before, but had no idea where it originally came from. Thank you!

Chronolgywise, Lyta left the station in 2262, and said she'd have her forces in place in 2 years, so, 2264. Crusade starts in 2267, and the conflict was said to be 'recent'. So: no more than three years in duration, probably less. Legend of the Rangers too place in 2265, and G'kar describes Lyta as "Gone." There's no sign or mention of war in that movie, so it must have run between 2262 and 2264/65 at the latest. It appears to have been a fairly breif (But obviously pretty bloody) conflict.

Incidentally, I've always questioned the 2267 date for Crusade. In "A Call To Arms," they say the attack took place five years to the day from the formation of the ISA, but the ISA was formed in the end of 2261.

Raw Shark March 14th 14 17:06

Re: Telepath War
 
I think I'm the one who summarized it before. 'Wars of the Mind' was intended to be a feature film. Looks like there’s a short story in the ‘TV Movies’ script book I didn’t see before.

Patricia Tallman was supposed to be in the Crusade episode 'The Path of Sorrows,' which was to depict Lyta's death, self-detonating using her super-telepath abilities to destroy the hidden Psi Corps headquarters. She wasn't available, so they got someone else to play the captured telepath, and the base appears to be destroyed by a nuclear weapon. Is it known if Lyta was killed during this incident, or was this part re-written because Tallman was unavailable? I think JMS said somewhere that Lyta did not survive the war, but I would think he would want her death to be an on-screen and memorable event.

Although the episode makes it looks like this attack is the final nail in Psi Corps' coffin, I think it's the breaking point, after which the shit really hits the fan. With the Corps' leadership largely eliminated, someone has to step into the role of leader, namely Bester. And then the gloves really come off. Bester would do whatever he felt was necessary to protect the Corps and get the situation back under control. And Bester's solutions tend to be very ugly. One of my absolute favorite parts of B5 was in 'The Corps is Mother, the Corps is Father.' The ending, where Bester's latest protege volunteers to push their prisoner out of the airlock into hyperspace was so chilling, such a perfect example of the cold-blooded nature of the psyche of a Psi Cop. That episode was so weird in its format, kind of clunky, but it really came together at the end. I tend to remember season five for its good parts, of which there were many.

Raw Shark

"Quantity has a quality all its own."
Joseph Stalin

Jan March 14th 14 18:25

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Raw Shark (Post 447446)
Is it known if Lyta was killed during this incident, or was this part re-written because Tallman was unavailable? I think JMS said somewhere that Lyta did not survive the war, but I would think he would want her death to be an on-screen and memorable event.

It's certain that she died during the Telepath war and it *seems* conclusive that this was the incident since in the Crusade Writer's Bible, JMS wrote that she and Lennier die during the TW and the original draft of the script that featured her has a back view of a Minbari fighting with a pike and she calls Lennier's name just before the explosion. That said, since it wasn't actually seen onscreen, if JMS changes his mind, the option's still open.

Quote:

Although the episode makes it looks like this attack is the final nail in Psi Corps' coffin, I think it's the breaking point, after which the shit really hits the fan. With the Corps' leadership largely eliminated, someone has to step into the role of leader, namely Bester. And then the gloves really come off. Bester would do whatever he felt was necessary to protect the Corps and get the situation back under control. And Bester's solutions tend to be very ugly. One of my absolute favorite parts of B5 was in 'The Corps is Mother, the Corps is Father.' The ending, where Bester's latest protege volunteers to push their prisoner out of the airlock into hyperspace was so chilling, such a perfect example of the cold-blooded nature of the psyche of a Psi Cop. That episode was so weird in its format, kind of clunky, but it really came together at the end. I tend to remember season five for its good parts, of which there were many.
In the unproduced script "Value Judgments" by Fiona Avery, I think there are some flashbacks to Bester's trial for war crimes (or am I thinking of the Psi Corps trilogy? Not certain). I don't recall any details at the moment but the script was published in 'Crusade: Other Voices Volume 2' along with some other goodies.

Jan

Springer March 15th 14 14:22

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447437)

Incidentally, I've always questioned the 2267 date for Crusade. In "A Call To Arms," they say the attack took place five years to the day from the formation of the ISA, but the ISA was formed in the end of 2261.

A Call to Arms may have taken place in 2266, but don't forget that Racing the Night was set 6-12 months after the attack, which would take us into 2267. It was only after TNT interfered that the first half of Crusade would have taken place in 2266.

Raw Shark March 15th 14 21:19

Re: Telepath War
 
"Don't write off the Goose until you see the box going into the hole!"
Mad Max

Once the script is changed, then I would say yes, all bets are off. Lyta was written out of the series after 'The Gathering,' with Harlan Ellison joking that she must not have been a very good telepath because she didn't know she was being replaced. But life happens, and Andrea Thompson had to be replaced too, so they got Pat Tallman to come back, thankfully (although I liked them both). With a main character like Lyta, the driving force behind the Telepath War, I would expect her death to be something momentous, and thus captured on film. And most likely, still going out with a bang. To not do so would be a wasted opportunity in storytelling. I thought it was really strange in 'No Country for Old Men' when Josh Brolin's character was suddenly <spoiler alert> killed off-screen. It was confusing and kind of ineffective.

And it still puzzles me that people think the Psi Corps base being destroyed in 'The Path of Sorrows' is on Mars, even though it is surrounded by grass, trees and water! Most human telepaths live on Earth, and the bulk of the Corps' assets and administration would be there as well.

Jan, I think the flashbacks you're referring to are in both 'Value Judgments' and the Psi Corps trilogy. It is mentioned at least once that Bester is considered the worst and most notorious of the Psi Corps war criminals, the one with the most blood on his hands, the hardest one to capture or kill. Once Lyta returned from her adventures with G'kar to launch her campaign to topple Psi Corps, Bester's broad experience would make him the natural choice to lead the Corps' crackdown. And from there, other opportunities would arise for such an ambitious and loyal operative and commander during an ongoing crisis. Corps telepaths would be deserting to the Resistance or being killed off by Resistance terror attacks, intricate organizational systems would be coming apart, new security and combat units needed as never before. Psi Corps would be in chaos, scrambling to adjust. Given its devotion to discipline and hierarchy, it would turn to a strong leader to solve its problems. And they would find Bester, ready and willing to take over the world.



Raw Shark


"All true stories end in death."
Norman Mailer

B5_Obsessed March 17th 14 15:55

Re: Telepath War
 
And Value Judgments would have picked up that thread, with Bester emerging from his post TW hiding place to command the remaining telepath ships and forces that had escaped detection and leading a final assault, presumably against Earth. It all ends with Garibaldi being notified that Bester has resurfaced.

Republibot 3.0 March 17th 14 21:06

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Raw Shark (Post 447446)
Patricia Tallman was supposed to be in the Crusade episode 'The Path of Sorrows,' which was to depict Lyta's death, self-detonating using her super-telepath abilities to destroy the hidden Psi Corps headquarters. She wasn't available,

According to HER, that's not what happened. She said JMS called her up and said "I got a great script for you," and she said "Send it by" and then she never heard from him again. Availability wasn't an issue.

I heard someone else (Possibly JMS, but I don't remember. It was someone connected to the show, though) say that the network just didn't want to use Pat. They felt it would be confusing to viewers to bring in characters from B5, they thought she was too old, a buncha' stuff.

Both of those stories are probably true. OTOH, the rumors that they actually FILMED Pat's scenes, then cut 'em and re-shot 'em with another actress are certainly untrue.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Raw Shark (Post 447446)
Although the episode makes it looks like this attack is the final nail in Psi Corps' coffin, I think it's the breaking point, after which the shit really hits the fan.

Eh. It's a theory. My own theory (No more valid than yours) is that we were watching the climax. JMS likes to show us scenes without context so that we only figure them out later on. So we know what we saw, but we don't know what it meant. So I tend to think that was the last nail, and that the Psi Corps movie/trilogy, had it/they ever been made, would have culminated with that.

Republibot 3.0 March 17th 14 21:16

Re: Telepath War
 
[QUOTE=Jan;447452]
Quote:

Originally Posted by Raw Shark (Post 447446)
It's certain that she died during the Telepath war and it *seems* conclusive that this was the incident since in the Crusade Writer's Bible, JMS wrote that she and Lennier die during the TW and the original draft of the script that featured her has a back view of a Minbari fighting with a pike and she calls Lennier's name just before the explosion.

So what the hell happened, anyway? Did Billy Mumy punch JMS' mom in the mouth, or bluster in while JMS was having an unfortunate bowel movement, which he then recorded and played over the PA system? Did he GET the part because he had pictures of JMS naked with a goat, and then get booted once JMS's detectives managed to burn the pictures and negatives?

I ask because, seriously, SOMETHING must have happened to make Mumy fall from favor. He's all over the place in Seasons 1-4, and though he's not the star, he is definitely a shining light, and he just brought so much to every scene. No offence to Stephen Furst, who did a great job, but Mumy was just chocolate-coated chocolate awesome with chocolate filling. And it was obvious that Lannier was being built up for some greater destiny. He had a future in front of him. It was probably something he wouldn't survive, but it was important.

Annnnnnnnnnnd then he's barely in Season 5, and he betrays his own character in a clumsy change of heart/change back scene. And then he's re-cast as an extra and dies with barely a namecheck.

Seriously: What the frack?

I mean, something MUST have happened.

Also, I'm not buying for a minute that the original plan called for him to die in the Telepath war. Dying rescuing Delen and Sheridan, that I could buy, but being bumped off like that in Crusade?

Nope, nope, nope, not buying it. Something musta' happened. JMS gets pissed, he kills your character.

KoshN March 17th 14 22:40

Re: Telepath War
 
[QUOTE=Republibot 3.0;447593]
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447452)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Raw Shark (Post 447446)
It's certain that she died during the Telepath war and it *seems* conclusive that this was the incident since in the Crusade Writer's Bible, JMS wrote that she and Lennier die during the TW and the original draft of the script that featured her has a back view of a Minbari fighting with a pike and she calls Lennier's name just before the explosion.

So what the hell happened, anyway? Did Billy Mumy punch JMS' mom in the mouth, or bluster in while JMS was having an unfortunate bowel movement, which he then recorded and played over the PA system? Did he GET the part because he had pictures of JMS naked with a goat, and then get booted once JMS's detectives managed to burn the pictures and negatives?

I ask because, seriously, SOMETHING must have happened to make Mumy fall from favor. He's all over the place in Seasons 1-4, and though he's not the star, he is definitely a shining light, and he just brought so much to every scene. No offence to Stephen Furst, who did a great job, but Mumy was just chocolate-coated chocolate awesome with chocolate filling. And it was obvious that Lannier was being built up for some greater destiny. He had a future in front of him. It was probably something he wouldn't survive, but it was important.

Annnnnnnnnnnd then he's barely in Season 5, and he betrays his own character in a clumsy change of heart/change back scene. And then he's re-cast as an extra and dies with barely a namecheck.

Seriously: What the frack?

I mean, something MUST have happened.

Also, I'm not buying for a minute that the original plan called for him to die in the Telepath war. Dying rescuing Delen and Sheridan, that I could buy, but being bumped off like that in Crusade?

Nope, nope, nope, not buying it. Something musta' happened. JMS gets pissed, he kills your character.

Don't forget Lyta. Both Lennier AND Lyta were to have died in The Path of Sorrows (Matheson's flashback).

Seems like JMS can hold a grudge forever and be a tad spiteful.

Raw Shark March 17th 14 23:09

Re: Telepath War
 
Hmm, I haven't heard anything about Bill Mumy and a falling out or anything like that. He was at the Phoenix convention, no problems that I could see. But the circumstances of Andrea Thompson and Claudia Christian were less than ideal, and they were there too.

Yes, just a theory of mine. And much like what you said about JMS showing us a scene and then it turns out to be different from what we think we're seeing, I think he showed us the Psi Corps HQ being obliterated because it looked like the end of the Telepath War. But he loves going back to an event, and revealing something new about it. I love when he does this. I think that something new in this case is that it appears to Matheson and the others in the flashback that the war is over, but it isn't, it's about to get much worse. Psi Corps' leaders have gathered at HQ because they think they're about to crush the Resistance. Instead, they get vaporized, and the Resistance base is deserted. The war is not over. Bester is not there, or he'd be dead. The Corps has telepaths all over Earth, Mars and the colonies, and of course in hyperspace, aboard the Motherships. It is said in the books or someplace that Bester becomes leader of the Corps during the conflict. The death of his superiors would pave the way for him to fill the vacuum. Psi Corps is on the ropes after losing their HQ, and may face a backlash from EarthDome for having let the war get so far out of control. Nuclear weaponry being detonated on the homeworld would shake any confidence that the Corps has a solid plan to end the crisis. The EA President might have a plan to bring the Corps under much stronger supervision, and let normals force a solution to the telepath problem. Bester can't allow that, it would undo generations of work, and put his telepaths in danger. And he has options.

Sheridan mentions something in 'A Call to Arms' about the last time he showed up in Earth space with an alien fleet, referring to his campaign to oust Clark, right? Or, what if this is yet another bit of misdirection, and he's really talking about when he had to take a war fleet to Earth AGAIN, to kick the Corps out of power because Bester has gone around the bend, and his reign of terror is far worse than anything Clark did? Leading a decapitated and weakened Psi Corps, he activates the sleeper agents, takes over Earthforce, moves to crush the Resistance, and seizes control of EarthGov, all at the same time. Telepaths would be in control, and normals would become subjects, just like he said years ago in 'Ship of Tears.' The 'thought police' nightmare would soon be a reality. And once Sheridan found out what had happened, what choice would he have? Can you imagine the Telepath War being resolved without Sheridan leading his coalition into the fray? JMS has described the war as a conflict between Psi Corps and Lyta's Resistance, with normals caught in the middle. Maybe all of the normals.

Raw Shark

"Let's just say I have ambitions, and leave it at that."
Alfred Bester, 'Ship of Tears'

Jan March 18th 14 00:45

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447590)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Raw Shark (Post 447446)
Patricia Tallman was supposed to be in the Crusade episode 'The Path of Sorrows,' which was to depict Lyta's death, self-detonating using her super-telepath abilities to destroy the hidden Psi Corps headquarters. She wasn't available,

According to HER, that's not what happened. She said JMS called her up and said "I got a great script for you," and she said "Send it by" and then she never heard from him again. Availability wasn't an issue.

I heard someone else (Possibly JMS, but I don't remember. It was someone connected to the show, though) say that the network just didn't want to use Pat. They felt it would be confusing to viewers to bring in characters from B5, they thought she was too old, a buncha' stuff.

I think you're mixing up your stories. Bottom line was that she turned it down because of money. They (Babylonian) offered what they could, she felt it wasn't enough. I'd imagine that JMS simply phrased it as an availability matter because it's none of our business.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447593)
I ask because, seriously, SOMETHING must have happened to make Mumy fall from favor. He's all over the place in Seasons 1-4, and though he's not the star, he is definitely a shining light, and he just brought so much to every scene. No offence to Stephen Furst, who did a great job, but Mumy was just chocolate-coated chocolate awesome with chocolate filling. And it was obvious that Lannier was being built up for some greater destiny. He had a future in front of him. It was probably something he wouldn't survive, but it was important.

Annnnnnnnnnnd then he's barely in Season 5, and he betrays his own character in a clumsy change of heart/change back scene. And then he's re-cast as an extra and dies with barely a namecheck.

Seriously: What the frack?

I mean, something MUST have happened.

Also, I'm not buying for a minute that the original plan called for him to die in the Telepath war. Dying rescuing Delen and Sheridan, that I could buy, but being bumped off like that in Crusade?

Nope, nope, nope, not buying it. Something musta' happened. JMS gets pissed, he kills your character.

Wow, seriously? It never occurred to you that it might be a budget issue? <sarcasm> Yeah, JMS was so pissed at Mumy that he gave him (and Peter David) a writing assignment for season 5. Boy, howdy, that's sure pissed all right. </sarcasm> And while that script was spiked, there's at least as much evidence that it was because JMS changed his mind about how the Centauri War was going to go as anything else. I know, because *I've got the script* and I've offered the synopsis here a number of times.

You can 'buy' anything you want about the plans for him to die during the Telepath War but it's in black and white in the Crusade Bible. In fact, their paragraphs are one after the other:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Crusade Writer's Bible dated June 18, 1998
Lennier, former aide to Delenn, is deceased, killed in action during the telepath crisis in 2265

Lyta Alexander, who helped create a forct to bring down the Psi Corps, was also killed in action during the telepath crisis.

Anyway, remember that Claudia pissed him off plenty but her character didn't get killed off. :p

Quote:

Originally Posted by KoshN
Don't forget Lyta. Both Lennier AND Lyta were to have died in The Path of Sorrows (Matheson's flashback).

Seems like JMS can hold a grudge forever and be a tad spiteful.

So you're saying that Pat Tallman pissed him off somehow? How? We're talking about the FIRST draft of "The Path of Sorrows", written before she was ever even contacted about the part.

And the script specifies that we only see Lennier from the back. There would be no reason to pay for Mumy to have been there at all. Any more than there would have been for Doyle to appear in 'Value Judgments' since Garibaldi would only have been seen from the back, too. Babylonian didn't spend money unnecessarily and having either of those actors for those scenes would have been a complete waste.

Jan

Springer March 18th 14 09:14

Re: Telepath War
 
Going from what I remember being discussed at the time I also thought Pat's non-involvement was down to money, and how small the role was (I'm sure I remember a quote from her where she wasn't impressed at all with what she was offered). Pat and JMS still work together today – Pat works with him on Studio JMS – so I don't see how they had a falling out. I'll dig through my B5 magazines this evening and see if I can find it.

Regarding Lennier, I remember Mumy saying he wasn't happy with how his character betrayed Sheridan but nothing else. I do find it odd that Lennier ended up dying in the Telepath War as the telepath plot never had anything to do with Lennier, but I guess that is an untold story of how Lennier and Lyta came to work together. All things considered, I think Lennier had plenty of time spent on him over the five seasons. He was only in 6 or 7 episodes in season 1 and the same again in season 2, remember. From season 3 onwards he seemed to get a larger role, mainly helping out on the White Star. In season 5 he had a great little heroic arc when he went off looking for proof that Centauri ships were behind the attacks.

Delenn was certainly training Lennier to replace her one day, but once Lennier fell in love with her, I think his path was set.

Jan March 18th 14 10:02

Re: Telepath War
 
From JMS: http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-6177

I do recall there being some bitterness on Pat's part as written in the Andy Lane book. But if my memory serves, it might well have had something to do with her then-husband Jeffrey Willerth having been fired from the show. Grudges anybody?

Jan

Republibot 3.0 March 18th 14 12:08

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by KoshN (Post 447596)

Don't forget Lyta. Both Lennier AND Lyta were to have died in The Path of Sorrows (Matheson's flashback).

Seems like JMS can hold a grudge forever and be a tad spiteful.

True. Well, I can understand Lyta dying. That seems to be her destiny all along (Note that she wasn't in Sleeping in Light, filmed prior to season 5 where Lyta got entirely too much screen time) And Lannier wasn't there either. I have no problem with them dying eventually, you know, like Sheridan and Londo and G'Kar did. But those served a grander purpose. Lyta too (Evidently).

Lannier feels like he was yanked from the show.

Republibot 3.0 March 18th 14 12:16

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447605)
I think you're mixing up your stories. Bottom line was that she turned it down because of money. They (Babylonian) offered what they could, she felt it wasn't enough. I'd imagine that JMS simply phrased it as an availability matter because it's none of our business.

Hadn't heard that one, but it works. A bit odd that she wouldn't do it for old times sake, but, hey, everyone makes bum decisions.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447605)
Wow, seriously? It never occurred to you that it might be a budget issue? <sarcasm>

Of course it did. We seldom had the entire cast on the show at the same time ever. There was more of that in S5, though. But aren't principle cast actors salaried? I mean, don't they get paid whether they're in an episode or not?

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447605)
Yeah, JMS was so pissed at Mumy that he gave him (and Peter David) a writing assignment for season 5. Boy, howdy, that's sure pissed all right. </sarcasm> And while that script was spiked, there's at least as much evidence that it was because JMS changed his mind about how the Centauri War was going to go as anything else. I know, because *I've got the script* and I've offered the synopsis here a number of times.

Jan, you've got to calm down. I asked a question in a humorous fashion, that's all. I asked because I don't know. That's why people ask questions: Because they don't know. If I'm wrong, I'm wrong, and I'm happy you know more than I do. That's why I asked the question: So I could know more than I did. And now I do. So thank you, and please calm down.

[QUOTE=Jan;447605]
Quote:

Originally Posted by Crusade Writer's Bible dated June 18, 1998
Lennier, former aide to Delenn, is deceased, killed in action during the telepath crisis in 2265

Yes, I know. I've got it.

Though if I were to follow my "JMS is pissed at Bill" theory through, that wouldn't prove anything as it would have been written at some point AFTER he theoretically got pissed at him.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447605)
Anyway, remember that Claudia pissed him off plenty but her character didn't get killed off. :p

He couldn't. She'd already filmed "Sleeping in Light."

Republibot 3.0 March 18th 14 12:18

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447620)
From JMS: http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-6177

I do recall there being some bitterness on Pat's part as written in the Andy Lane book. But if my memory serves, it might well have had something to do with her then-husband Jeffrey Willerth having been fired from the show. Grudges anybody?

Jan

Why was he fired?

Jan March 18th 14 13:27

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447632)
Hadn't heard that one, but it works. A bit odd that she wouldn't do it for old times sake, but, hey, everyone makes bum decisions.

I don't know all the ins and outs of it but as a professional actor, my understanding is that if you work for less than you have before, that effectively lowers your 'quote' or the amount you can ask for. Unless you're very well established, I hear it's a bad idea to work for less, regardless of sentiment. There's a lot of detail about that sort of thing in Pat's memoir.

Quote:

Of course it did. We seldom had the entire cast on the show at the same time ever. There was more of that in S5, though. But aren't principle cast actors salaried? I mean, don't they get paid whether they're in an episode or not?
Yes and no. They're usually contracted for X number of episodes per season and that amount is pro-rated into a salary. If they don't work X number of episodes, they still get paid for them. But not all actors in the opening credits (a good measure of principal actors) are even contracted for a guaranteed number of episodes. I recall JMS saying that for the first two seasons Andreas and Peter weren't given guarantees.

Quote:

Jan, you've got to calm down. I asked a question in a humorous fashion, that's all. I asked because I don't know. That's why people ask questions: Because they don't know. If I'm wrong, I'm wrong, and I'm happy you know more than I do. That's why I asked the question: So I could know more than I did. And now I do. So thank you, and please calm down.
Apologies. I'm obviously not used to your style of asking questions. "Also, I'm not buying for a minute that the original plan called for him to die in the Telepatth War" seemed more of a declaration.

Quote:

He couldn't. She'd already filmed "Sleeping in Light."
Sure he could. He didn't lock the episode and turn it in until the fifth season. He was even asked about changing Lochley for Ivanova but said he'd decided to leave it since it was the way he'd always envisioned it. He also didn't kill her off in the short story starring Ivanova written after the show ended.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447635)
Why was he fired?

I really don't recall. There may be more info in the Andy Lane book but I despised that second one and don't have it any longer.

Jan

Springer March 18th 14 15:15

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447638)

Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447635)
Why was he fired?

I really don't recall. There may be more info in the Andy Lane book but I despised that second one and don't have it any longer.

Jan

That entire second volume of Andy Lane's was full of bitterness. Awful book. Such a shame after the first volume was so good.

If I remember it right (I can check tonight when I get home) she wasn't complaining that Willerth got fired – as well as playing Kosh he also assisted the producers. When he caught one of the cast snooping around trying to find any info about the future of their character he reported them and he caught some flak as a result. I don't think he got fired did he?

Jan March 18th 14 15:42

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Springer (Post 447641)
That entire second volume of Andy Lane's was full of bitterness. Awful book. Such a shame after the first volume was so good.

I agree. Obviously the story wasn't told the way he wanted it to go so as far as he was concerned, it was all bad. It's that sort of thing that gives unauthorized books a bad reputation.

Quote:

If I remember it right (I can check tonight when I get home) she wasn't complaining that Willerth got fired – as well as playing Kosh he also assisted the producers. When he caught one of the cast snooping around trying to find any info about the future of their character he reported them and he caught some flak as a result. I don't think he got fired did he?
I do remember that part in the fifth season but I don't think that had anything to do with his leaving. And he may not have been fired, as in he did anything wrong, he may just have been let go for business reasons. I'm not sure if he transitioned over to Crusade? If you find out, I'll be interested to hear. Given that I couldn't check on my own, I probably shouldn't have mentioned it at all.

Jan

Springer March 18th 14 19:22

Re: Telepath War
 
Okay, so I have Andy Lane's offending book in front of me. To stay on topic I'll start with what Pat writes about her aborted Crusade appearance. She says that originally she was out of town when it was scheduled to shoot so couldn't do it; JMS had called her to ask her to change her mind, saying it was two or three great scenes. While she is away she hears from a friend who had been in a meeting with JMS who had apparently said "fine, we'll recast her". When she gets home she gets another call from the production offices asking if she would be available on a different date. But then she's told that the money will be a sixth of what it was on B5 (which pretty much tallies with JMS' explanation that Jan linked to earlier). She turns it down and gets an increased offer of half of what she'd been paid on B5. She says her self-respect couldn't accept that so she turned that down too stating that it was "just business".

Now, Pat wrote the afterword to this book; I'd forgotten that Jeffrey Willerth wrote a foreword. He says he stayed with Babylonian Productions through to the first two episodes of Crusade. He doesn't say why he left, only that it wasn't on the best of circumstances. He complains that the actors had no information from the producers about whether they would return in the TV movies or Crusade and that they were all getting frustrated and angry because of it and finding stuff out on the internet before being told on the set, and he implies the producers were not caring about the crew, and that they 'wrangled' a new deal out of the union during the season three strike, which doesn't tally with other perspectives on that deal. Even Pat criticizes the producers saying that they would "have the cast feel disposable and replaceable" when in the next breath she praises JMS saying she'd never seen a producer/creator with such loyalty to the whole team and that the DS9 actors were astounded when they found out B5 actors could just walk into the producer's office for a conversation. So it's all very contradictory and I'm wondering whether it was edited a certain way to make it all sound more bitter than it really is.

Okay, that's dragged us off-topic. Hopefully though it can put to bed the idea that Lyta was killed off because Pat fell out with JMS.

Republibot 3.0 March 18th 14 19:33

Re: Telepath War
 
[QUOTE=Jan;447638]
I don't know all the ins and outs of it but as a professional actor, my understanding is that if you work for less than you have before, that effectively lowers your 'quote' or the amount you can ask for. Unless you're very well established, I hear it's a bad idea to work for less, regardless of sentiment. There's a lot of detail about that sort of thing in Pat's memoir.
[QUOTE]

Ok, that makes sense. Particularly given that she's primarily known as a stuntwoman, and was trying to break into the larger acting scene in her 40s, after the end of her only steady acting gig. Probably a bad time to settle for less.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447638)
Yes and no. They're usually contracted for X number of episodes per season and that amount is pro-rated into a salary. If they don't work X number of episodes, they still get paid for them. But not all actors in the opening credits (a good measure of principal actors) are even contracted for a guaranteed number of episodes. I recall JMS saying that for the first two seasons Andreas and Peter weren't given guarantees.

I think JMS said 7 episodes/season minimum to be part of the principle cast, though most did considerably more. That fits with his general sixes-and-sevens pattern when B5 was on.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447638)
Apologies. I'm obviously not used to your style of asking questions. "Also, I'm not buying for a minute that the original plan called for him to die in the Telepatth War" seemed more of a declaration.

Not needed. I'm obviously not used to reining it in when I'm in polite company. Sorry.

The "I'm not believing it for a minute" thing IS a declaration, though. I honestly don't believe for a minute that that was his 'original' destiny. That doesn't mean that JMS was pissed at him, though. There were a lot of 'original plans' that were set up and never made it to fruition. I see two threads that probably would have come to fruition in the David Sheridan incident that are probably worthy of their own thread, so I'll go start one. Suffice to say, I think Lennier was part of that, and it got dropped for whatever reason.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447638)
Sure he could. He didn't lock the episode and turn it in until the fifth season. He was even asked about changing Lochley for Ivanova but said he'd decided to leave it since it was the way he'd always envisioned it. He also didn't kill her off in the short story starring Ivanova written after the show ended.

Well, the short story was a fan thing. He put it to a vote: who do you want a story about, and they said "Ivonova." Clearly he couldn't kill her off there. As to SiL, I don't think it's realistic to re-shoot all or part of the episode, particularly on their short schedule and tight budget. They may have talked about it (I'd be surprised if they didn't, really) but it probably wasn't a viable option.

Republibot 3.0 March 18th 14 19:38

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Springer (Post 447641)
That entire second volume of Andy Lane's was full of bitterness. Awful book. Such a shame after the first volume was so good.

If I remember it right (I can check tonight when I get home) she wasn't complaining that Willerth got fired – as well as playing Kosh he also assisted the producers. When he caught one of the cast snooping around trying to find any info about the future of their character he reported them and he caught some flak as a result. I don't think he got fired did he?

Wow. Oddly, I don't remember much about the 2nd book. I drove myself crazy trying to find a copy (I discovered the first one long after both were out of print about 10 years ago), read it, and I have next-to-no recolection of it.

I do remember being disappointed, mostly at its brevity and lack of insight. I don't remember any bile, but given that part of the charm of the first book was its 'warts and all' style, it wouldn't surprise me if he was just pissed off at the bad 5th season, and cranked the thing out with as little effort as possible to fulfil a contract.

TOPIC DRIFT: the B5 season-by-season books: I read the first two and adored them 'cuz of their obvioius love of B5, but their willingness to call a turd a turd when need be. It was like it was written by a fan who recognizes the shortcomings of their favorite thing, but loves it anyway. Honest. Then, from three on they were far more...sterile? I guess that's the best way to put it. Not a negative word in 'em. I was actually doubtful they were written by the same author for a little while, but, yeah, they were.

Anyone know anything about the tonal shift there?

Republibot 3.0 March 18th 14 19:48

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Springer (Post 447647)
Okay, so I have Andy Lane's offending book in front of me. To stay on topic I'll start with what Pat writes about her aborted Crusade appearance. She says that originally she was out of town when it was scheduled to shoot so couldn't do it; JMS had called her to ask her to change her mind, saying it was two or three great scenes. While she is away she hears from a friend who had been in a meeting with JMS who had apparently said "fine, we'll recast her". When she gets home she gets another call from the production offices asking if she would be available on a different date. But then she's told that the money will be a sixth of what it was on B5 (which pretty much tallies with JMS' explanation that Jan linked to earlier). She turns it down and gets an increased offer of half of what she'd been paid on B5. She says her self-respect couldn't accept that so she turned that down too stating that it was "just business".

Entirely believable. I can accept all that. Issue resolved. Thank you for looking that up!

Quote:

Originally Posted by Springer (Post 447647)
Now, Pat wrote the afterword to this book; I'd forgotten that Jeffrey Willerth wrote a foreword. He says he stayed with Babylonian Productions through to the first two episodes of Crusade. He doesn't say why he left, only that it wasn't on the best of circumstances. He complains that the actors had no information from the producers about whether they would return in the TV movies or Crusade and that they were all getting frustrated and angry because of it and finding stuff out on the internet before being told on the set, and he implies the producers were not caring about the crew, and that they 'wrangled' a new deal out of the union during the season three strike, which doesn't tally with other perspectives on that deal. Even Pat criticizes the producers saying that they would "have the cast feel disposable and replaceable" when in the next breath she praises JMS saying she'd never seen a producer/creator with such loyalty to the whole team and that the DS9 actors were astounded when they found out B5 actors could just walk into the producer's office for a conversation. So it's all very contradictory and I'm wondering whether it was edited a certain way to make it all sound more bitter than it really is.

I'm willing to bet that's all true, honestly. Firstly, "The Producers" doesn't just mean JMS. He was executive producer, but there were six producers on the show, counting JMS. Also, I get the impression that the working environment in the TNT years was different than in the P-10 years. Shorter production schedule, less money, not much support from the network, and in Crusade they were working on a show the Network wanted dead. So the whole "We could go at any moment" thing is probably true, and it appears they DID intend to fire Gary Cole (Another case of "Piss of JMS and die").

Quote:

Originally Posted by Springer (Post 447647)
Okay, that's dragged us off-topic. Hopefully though it can put to bed the idea that Lyta was killed off because Pat fell out with JMS.

Nah, nah, nah, I never said that! I never said that Lyda died because JMS was pissed at Pat. I said Lannier died because JMS was pissed at Bill. I totally believe Lyta's death was part of the plan in the same way that Londo and G'Kar's deaths were part of the plan. Lyta was a bomb. There's only one thing bombs can do. It was obvious in Sleeping in Light that she'd done it.

Jan March 19th 14 00:53

Re: Telepath War
 
This is where I really ought to step back because I end up drilling too deep (and it really doesn't matter) but...

Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447650)
The "I'm not believing it for a minute" thing IS a declaration, though. I honestly don't believe for a minute that that was his 'original' destiny. That doesn't mean that JMS was pissed at him, though. There were a lot of 'original plans' that were set up and never made it to fruition. I see two threads that probably would have come to fruition in the David Sheridan incident that are probably worthy of their own thread, so I'll go start one. Suffice to say, I think Lennier was part of that, and it got dropped for whatever reason.

All I can tell you is that after many years of reading JMS' posts and seeing him in person, I've never seen the slightest inkling of any enmity he has for Bill Mumy. And frankly, I've 'caught' him telling the truth many, many times when it really didn't matter. Conversely, Bill is more than a little bitter over the fact that his script was spiked. He made a point of telling me about that when I asked him to sign my copy of 'Gut Reactions'.

Quote:

Well, the short story was a fan thing. He put it to a vote: who do you want a story about, and they said "Ivonova." Clearly he couldn't kill her off there.
(told you I should have stepped back, right?) Actually, the for choices were:
A) Old B5 Crew (during the 5 year arc)
B) New B5 Crew (after the 5 year arc)
C) Garibaldi
D) G'Kar
(copied directly from the coupon in the B5 magazine #19) So there was never any need for him to write about Ivanova at all but he chose to do so.

Quote:

As to SiL, I don't think it's realistic to re-shoot all or part of the episode, particularly on their short schedule and tight budget. They may have talked about it (I'd be surprised if they didn't, really) but it probably wasn't a viable option.
Unknown. Given that it was a season 4 episode and JMS has often said that he returned money to WB each season, a quick change to a couple of scenes might not have been a big deal. Remember, he didn't lock in effects or music until it was time to turn it in as if it were the real 522.

Jan

Republibot 3.0 March 19th 14 01:58

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447674)
This is where I really ought to step back because I end up drilling too deep (and it really doesn't matter) but...
All I can tell you is that after many years of reading JMS' posts and seeing him in person, I've never seen the slightest inkling of any enmity he has for Bill Mumy. And frankly, I've 'caught' him telling the truth many, many times when it really didn't matter. Conversely, Bill is more than a little bitter over the fact that his script was spiked. He made a point of telling me about that when I asked him to sign my copy of 'Gut Reactions'.

Ok, we're getting a little twisty and turny here, and that's my fault for not being clear. I said I thought that JMS and Mumy had a falling out. Probably I'm wrong about that. Let's assume for sure I *am* wrong about that.

That still doesn't mean that JMS couldn't have changed his mind about where he wanted Lennier to end up, right? I mean, he intended to have Garibaldi die at one point. He changed his mind. He toyed with the idea of un-killing Marcus. First it was Lyta, then Talia, then the possibility of a new, 3rd teep, then Lyta again. He changes his mind on occasion for reasons other than "they pissed me off."

So it's possible that he simply changed his mind about where Lannier buys the ol' death nugget, and that decision was completely independent of his relationship with Mumy.

(I discuss my theories on that in the thread "The David Sheridan Incident.")

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447674)
(told you I should have stepped back, right?) Actually, the for choices were:
A) Old B5 Crew (during the 5 year arc)
B) New B5 Crew (after the 5 year arc)
C) Garibaldi
D) G'Kar
(copied directly from the coupon in the B5 magazine #19) So there was never any need for him to write about Ivanova at all but he chose to do so.

Did not know that! Wish he'd done "B".

Springer March 19th 14 20:29

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447680)
First it was Lyta, then Talia, then the possibility of a new, 3rd teep, then Lyta again.

This is the first time I have heard that there could have been a third telepath character introduced. Did this get any further than just JMS musing about it?

Republibot 3.0 March 20th 14 02:55

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Springer (Post 447779)
This is the first time I have heard that there could have been a third telepath character introduced. Did this get any further than just JMS musing about it?

Probably not. I heard him somewhere mention that the network wanted a new Telepath to pick up where Talia left off. They seemed opposed to the idea of Lyta returning, but they agreed to bring her on as a guest star for an ep or two. Joe wasn't particularly pleased with the idea of Teep #3, and by the time the next season rolled around he just did Lyta and the network either had become cool with it or had simply forgotten their earlier objections.

I'm probably off in some details, I heard this like 15 years ago. I think it was only a breif window while he was considering it.

JoeD80 March 20th 14 13:49

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447680)
That still doesn't mean that JMS couldn't have changed his mind about where he wanted Lennier to end up, right?

Certainly Joe can change his mind any time he wants. However, as I mentioned in the other thread, Bill already knew Lennier was to die in the telepath war. This was before season five was even a go. I will upload the quote when I find it.

As for appearances mentioned up-thread, both Bill and Stephen had new contracts for season five. 7 episodes + 2 to direct for Stephen; 7 episodes + 1 to write for Bill. And although Bill's script wasn't used, he still was paid for it.

Edit:

Found the quote. Interview August 5th, 1997:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bill Mumy
When I read that Lennier was toasted as one who had fallen [in Sleeping in Light], at first I tried to appeal that. I went to Joe and said, "Does he have to die?" and Joe said, "He dies in the great telepath war. He'll die like a hero, and it's way down the line; it's two movies down the line." I said, "Yeah, but he has to die?" and Joe said, "Yes, he's dying. He'll die like a hero and it will be great death, and it's after the fifth season" and blah blah blah.

That's Lennier's fate: he dies in the great telepath war somewhere down the line in the future.


Republibot 3.0 March 20th 14 15:14

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by JoeD80 (Post 447818)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447680)
That still doesn't mean that JMS couldn't have changed his mind about where he wanted Lennier to end up, right?

Certainly Joe can change his mind any time he wants. However, as I mentioned in the other thread, Bill already knew Lennier was to die in the telepath war. This was before season five was even a go. I will upload the quote when I find it.

As for appearances mentioned up-thread, both Bill and Stephen had new contracts for season five. 7 episodes + 2 to direct for Stephen; 7 episodes + 1 to write for Bill. And although Bill's script wasn't used, he still was paid for it.

Edit:

Found the quote. Interview August 5th, 1997:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bill Mumy
When I read that Lennier was toasted as one who had fallen [in Sleeping in Light], at first I tried to appeal that. I went to Joe and said, "Does he have to die?" and Joe said, "He dies in the great telepath war. He'll die like a hero, and it's way down the line; it's two movies down the line." I said, "Yeah, but he has to die?" and Joe said, "Yes, he's dying. He'll die like a hero and it will be great death, and it's after the fifth season" and blah blah blah.

That's Lennier's fate: he dies in the great telepath war somewhere down the line in the future.


Huh. Well, I'm just damn wrong, I guess.

That's what I like about this site as opposed to Trek or Gate sites: People here know their stuff, don't just natter and attack. (Gate sites do that less than Trek sites, but still)

Anyway, thank you. I think I prefer what I daydreamed over what JMS had in mind, but I am clearly, clearly, clearly wrong.

Jan March 20th 14 15:23

Re: Telepath War
 
I've always been curious as to how Lennier ended up fighting with the Telepath resistance. I know that he wanted to redeem himself in Delenn's eyes but never really figured out why he'd have found the telepath struggle worthy - especially considering their bent toward terrorism.

One thing I forgot to mention upthread is that JMS mentioned in the fifth season script books having deliberately made sure that all of the B5 characters were spread out around the galaxy in case he was able to use them in Crusade. From what I gather, TNT somehow wanted to have the connection to B5 without having any actual characters from it. JMS was playing with some interesting ideas, though. At one point he seriously suggested Andreas Katsulast for the part of Galen. That would have been so cool! (pardon the thread drift)

Jan

Republibot 3.0 March 20th 14 16:13

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447830)
I've always been curious as to how Lennier ended up fighting with the Telepath resistance. I know that he wanted to redeem himself in Delenn's eyes but never really figured out why he'd have found the telepath struggle worthy - especially considering their bent toward terrorism.

Might not have related at all. Lots of times we want to do things, and don't get the chance. We want to redeem ourselves for something, and we get hit by a bus, or caught up in a war, or whatever. His redemption may have been learning to put his own need for redemption aside and doing what was needed for the greater good rather than for his own soul.

Which is arguably a recurring theme in JMS.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447836)
One thing I forgot to mention upthread is that JMS mentioned in the fifth season script books having deliberately made sure that all of the B5 characters were spread out around the galaxy in case he was able to use them in Crusade. From what I gather, TNT somehow wanted to have the connection to B5 without having any actual characters from it. JMS was playing with some interesting ideas, though. At one point he seriously suggested Andreas Katsulast for the part of Galen. That would have been so cool! (pardon the thread drift)
Jan

My limited understanding is that after B5 didn't get the ratings they wanted, they felt a B5 spinoff wouldn't drag followers from B5 since, in there eyes, there weren't any. So having a show with lots of ties to a show no one watched seemed like a bad move. Thus they wanted it to be as standalone as possible.

According to my limited understanding, which is often shown to be wrong here <G>

Jan March 20th 14 17:19

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 (Post 447842)
My limited understanding is that after B5 didn't get the ratings they wanted, they felt a B5 spinoff wouldn't drag followers from B5 since, in there eyes, there weren't any. So having a show with lots of ties to a show no one watched seemed like a bad move. Thus they wanted it to be as standalone as possible.

According to my limited understanding, which is often shown to be wrong here <G>

Sorta-kinda but not really. Yes, there was some of that - they didn't want new viewers to feel that they needed to see the original show - despite the fact that they were showing that show in re-runs. B5s ratings were fine as far as numbers of viewers was concerned. Good enough that the commissioned Crusade, as we all know. The difference was that Crusade was their first original show and they seemed to want that separate.

The 'problem' wasn't actual ratings that caused TNT to sabotage Crusade, it was that having B5/Crusade didn't grow their viewership. When B5 would come on, the TNT core audience would leave and the B5 folks came in. When B5 went off, the B5 folks left and the TNT people came back. That did nothing to increase their advertising quotes so they decided to get out of their contract by any means necessary (so to speak).

Corporate politics....isn't it amazing that anything of quality *ever* happens?!?

Jan

Republibot 3.0 March 21st 14 02:31

Re: Telepath War
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jan (Post 447845)
Corporate politics....isn't it amazing that anything of quality *ever* happens?!?

Jan

Generally it doesn't. And then you throw Warners into the mix, and it's vastly worse.


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