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Old August 4th 15, 18:25   #42
Lennier's Tears
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Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: DC-ish
Posts: 318
Re: EpDis: Midnight On The Firing Line

Spoilers for later seasons of B5 below. Skip this entire comment if you're concerned about spoilers.

Great list! Reading through it, however, it occurs to me that I didn't explain myself clearly. I meant to single out those Centauri visions of the future as the one (or one of the few, as it turns out) fantasy element that has no explanation inside the B5 universe. Some of the other items on that list are "magical" to us, the real world audience, but not to the characters on the show. There is either some science fiction explanation clearly stated on the show, or it's implied that these things are "normal" in that universe. [I'm not sure I managed to explain it any better :P]

Since I wrote my previous replies on this thread, though, I have read the Soul Hunter thread (I haven't yet gotten around to posting in it ), and I found that some of this stuff is much more ambiguous than I thought and that it was made and presented that way on purpose. I actually really like the ambiguity surrounding the Soul Hunter stories, which I previously assumed to be straightforward "magical" .... but I'll put that in the appropriate thread.
  • Technomages: It's specifically stated in The Geometry of Shadows (and probably again in Crusade, but I have only watched that once so far, so I can't say for sure) that technomages use technology to simulate "magic". There is no real magic involved, and I think that's supposed to be obvious to both the B5 audience and the people inside the B5 universe. I could be wrong about the second .. there must be some reason they try to create this illusion.
  • "Fate". That's an excellent example, and probably more ambiguous than I assumed. I had assumed that in case of the Centauri it was meant to be an actual "supernatural" element, but perhaps it's as open to interpretation as the soul hunter stories. In the case of the Minbari belief in fate, I think it's portrayed as a whole lot of superstition that is (somewhat reasonably) based on time travel shenanigans.
  • Telepaths: It is never explained to the viewer exactly HOW telepathy works in the B5 universe, but we do find out how human telepaths (and those of the other younger races) came to be. There's nothing supernatural there, just Vorlons messing around.
  • Jason Ironheart: That's another story I never interpreted as anything supernatural, but it is clear that the characters on the show don't REALLY understand what happened there. Still I don't think any of them assumed "magic", just something that's very rare and entirely outside their area of expertise.
  • Soul Hunter: For me, that is one of the harder ones to find a "reasonable" explanation for, but it COULD be done. I'll talk about it more in the other thread.
  • Humans with Minbari Souls: I always thought that was meant to be something Minbari believed .. or at least SOME Minbari. It was never meant to be in-universe "truth", was it?

There's some other things that could be added to that list, like Sheridan's amazing resurrection and whatever happened to him at the time of his (second ) death. Again, I always assumed that that was supposed to be a fairly straightforward not-at-all magical thing to the B5 viewer, but something that may have seemed possibly supernatural to the in-universe observer. But, maybe to some other viewers that is also a clearly supernatural plot, I really don't know.
I think we're well beyond pastels now.
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