View Single Post
Old July 16th 17, 14:56   #31
Psi Cop
Looney's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Middle West U.S.
Posts: 1,029
Re: Rewatching Babylon 5.

Originally Posted by vacantlook View Post
And The Sky Full Of Stars

While there was a bit of a reference to Sinclair’s missing time in “Soul Hunter,” this is the first real, substantive episode to handle that piece of his history. Amnesia plots can be tiresome and cliché and common, so this really needs something more than just Sinclair’s lost his memory in order to be interesting. I think Babylon 5 does well with this plot by making it be a mystery that resulted in consequences. The war ended. Sinclair’s statements both in this episode and in the revised version of “The Gathering” make clear that Earth really had no hope to win the war; the Battle of the Line was solely a purposeful sacrifice mission to buy time for as many who could escape Earth to do so. So we know that the war ending, especially as a result of the Minbari surrendering, all in a relatively short time period that Sinclair just happens to not remember gives us this huge monumental shift in the galaxy’s politics but without an explanation as to why.
Yes JMS takes another cliche plot and turns it into something. One aspect I really like is that they take the time to introduce the Security Officer. The fact that they show the two Knights had inside help makes all the difference when telling this story.

Originally Posted by vacantlook View Post
I don’t really feel a need to see the Knights again. They, like with the later one-shot appearance of Bureau 13 (which had to be renamed for its respective production reasons) are both plots that kind of dead ended, despite their set-up suggesting something that should have brought them back into the show at some point. On rewatches, this kind of annoys me, even while I understand why things are the way they are.
And here is a detail that upset me. I agree that the Knight characters themselves really never needed to be brought back, but it would have been nice to have some explanation. Of course in this instance I think it is fine that they are not mentioned again. It just would have been a nice additional detail.

Originally Posted by vacantlook View Post
The theme of what one did during the war also includes information about both Delenn, which we already know she was on the Grey Council, but we also learn she was specifically at the Battle of the Line. We also learn about Dr Franklin, who tells Delenn that he destroyed his notes rather than let them be used to create biological weapons. So we get this reoccurring aspect to Franklin’s character introduced here: that he’s willing to take a stand and act in defiance of orders to do something, especially if he thinks doing so will save lives.
This quality in Franklin has always been a point of debate for me. I understand what it is supposed to tell us about Franklin, but once you've seen In The Beginning I feel like it actually detracts from his character. If Earth were really facing extinction and he still wouldn't use his notes then is that really all that noble of a stance he has taken? We're talking about all of humanity. Shouldn't that have been a desperate enough situation to warrant some debate? What I mean is that showing Franklin struggle with that debate would have meant so much more. If we had seen him just before the battle of the line being tempted to reveal his secrets or something I feel like I would have this doubt about his character.

Originally Posted by vacantlook View Post
So, the surviving Knight is shipped back home, his mind fractured from everything. The “maybe we’re both still inside” line is so expected and makes me groan. So many mental-located or virtual world stories put a line in like that, and somehow ever writer who writes such a line thinks they’re being clever, but really, they’re being cliché.
I agree, but at the same time I feel it serves a purpose - what if the rest of the series did all take place in Sinclair's mind?!?!?!?!
Looney is offline   Reply With Quote