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View Poll Results: Deathwalker
A -- Excellent 8 24.24%
B -- Good 15 45.45%
C -- Average 9 27.27%
D -- Poor 1 3.03%
F -- Failure 0 0%
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Old December 15th 04, 21:17   #11
GreenMonkey
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

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nor any subplot that helps a larger story arc
As has been mentioned earlier in the thread, Sinclair's solution to the problem made many political enemies on Earth. It's one of the key reasons for the investigation in Eyes. It's also possibly part of the reason he was sent to Minbar and they replaced him with someone they thought would be more willing to play along.

*eh* That's not much in my book. If you go over each ep with a fine tooth comb you can generally find *something*. Not enough for me.
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Old August 3rd 08, 15:15   #12
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

Enjoy, rip it apart, it's all cool!

http://worldsoforos.com/secondviews/...-112/#more-702
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Old August 4th 08, 15:07   #13
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

I like this episode. Sinclair's solution indeed made him a lot of enemies back on Earth, and it made B5 seem more like a real place. It's fun to see some of the logistics behind what makes the station work.
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Old May 18th 10, 16:55   #14
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

This episode is a real contrast to the preceding "Survivors"! I really like the down-to-earth (down-to-station?!) story that focuses on the people who keep the place running on a practical level. I'm not so optimistic as to think that humans will have overcome all their self-created problems in 200 years.

I also like the young woman in this episode (Neeoma) much better than Lianna. She comes across as a tough cookie and seems much more real than the Major. That could be a matter of better casting for the role; I'm pretty sure her voice makes a difference as well - it's very energetic. She also has a sense of humour, something lacking in the previous female character.

The secondary story is quite a contrast and feels more humorous; as I felt the subtext coming across from Londo's words, I can't help but think that the flower was an aphrodisiac. It is nice to learn something about Narn religion as a postscript to "Parliament of Dreams" - and good to know that not all Narn adhere to the same beliefs. I thought that G'Kar's singing sounded very like Jewish chants in its melodic progression.

What comes through very strongly once again is Sinclair's wisdom and cleverness in making decisions. He is a veritable Solomon! I greatly admire those traits and miss them in Sheridan later on. My favourite part is the fact that he uses the laws passed by Earthdome against them! I love it when someone goes by the book and still gets his own will.

One quote strikes me as being very Tolkienesque: "There's no happily ever after, just new battles." Tolkien spoke of "the long defeat", meaning that evil is not vanquished once and for all. We cannot fight the battles for future generations, but only leave them with "clean earth to till".

Sinclair is warned by the Senator that he has made enemies by embarrassing Zento. Is the latter ever mentioned again, or is that just a general foreshadowing of the attitude Earth offcials take toward him?
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Old May 18th 10, 17:18   #15
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

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Sinclair is warned by the Senator that he has made enemies by embarrassing Zento. Is the latter ever mentioned again, or is that just a general foreshadowing of the attitude Earth offcials take toward him?
This incident is brought up in "Eyes."
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Old May 21st 12, 12:24   #16
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

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The story is fine, it does help make B5 seem more real, etc. But I don't see any real character development, nor any subplot that helps a larger story arc - the reasons why I like B5 so much. I gave it a C. At least it didn't suck like "Grey 17 is missing" or "Infection".
If "Grey 17" was called "Denn'Shar" ("to the death", which was Marcus' challenge to Neroon in defense of Delenn--to me the real A-story), I think it would be remembered more as an arc episode.

While there's nothing too direct relating to the arc, we do get a good sense of the "flavor" of political trends on Earth with this one: that labor is being particularly devalued (this seems to increase or decrease in historical cycles), government is becoming more inflexible and less receptive to moral appeals (again relatively speaking), anyone without (percieved) power to exert is getting stepped on more, Zento reflects some glaring arrogance of the powers-that-be (no real attempt to negotiate whatsoever), etc.

I like the reference to the Matewan Massacre of the 1920s (although it's pronounced MATE-wan, not MAH-teh-wan as in the ep)--the movie Matewan about this pivotal labor-struggle event is one of my favorites.

I think Zento's acting was a little overdone, and while he is supposed to come off as very arrogant, I think the flunkie EarthGov would send in that situation would be more of a slick smoke-blowing bullshitter type (well he did try to do a little BSing, but he clearly wasn't very good at it) than an unsubtle heavy-handed ass--but maybe that really does reflect their real level of arrogance.

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Old May 22nd 12, 20:00   #17
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

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nor any subplot that helps a larger story arc
As has been mentioned earlier in the thread, Sinclair's solution to the problem made many political enemies on Earth. It's one of the key reasons for the investigation in Eyes. It's also possibly part of the reason he was sent to Minbar and they replaced him with someone they thought would be more willing to play along.
Man, did EarthGov screw up with the replacment!
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Old September 20th 15, 19:56   #18
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

I find myself in agreement with several people here, specifically Vacantlook at the very start of the thread and Alioth's more recent post quoted below.

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Originally Posted by Alioth View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenMonkey View Post
The story is fine, it does help make B5 seem more real, etc. But I don't see any real character development, nor any subplot that helps a larger story arc - the reasons why I like B5 so much. I gave it a C. At least it didn't suck like "Grey 17 is missing" or "Infection".
If "Grey 17" was called "Denn'Shar" ("to the death", which was Marcus' challenge to Neroon in defense of Delenn--to me the real A-story), I think it would be remembered more as an arc episode.

While there's nothing too direct relating to the arc, we do get a good sense of the "flavor" of political trends on Earth with this one: that labor is being particularly devalued (this seems to increase or decrease in historical cycles), government is becoming more inflexible and less receptive to moral appeals (again relatively speaking), anyone without (percieved) power to exert is getting stepped on more, Zento reflects some glaring arrogance of the powers-that-be (no real attempt to negotiate whatsoever), etc.

I like the reference to the Matewan Massacre of the 1920s (although it's pronounced MATE-wan, not MAH-teh-wan as in the ep)--the movie Matewan about this pivotal labor-struggle event is one of my favorites.

I think Zento's acting was a little overdone, and while he is supposed to come off as very arrogant, I think the flunkie EarthGov would send in that situation would be more of a slick smoke-blowing bullshitter type (well he did try to do a little BSing, but he clearly wasn't very good at it) than an unsubtle heavy-handed ass--but maybe that really does reflect their real level of arrogance.
There's really very little I could add to that. I agree on all counts (including the Grey 17 comment) except perhaps on Zento. I do see what you mean, but I kinda like him like that.

By Any Means Necessary is a fantastic episode. It is a non-arc episode, except in that it builds on Sinclair's political position and the antagonistic relationship between Londo and G'kar and things like that ... but you'll find some of that in all non-arc episodes ... at least up until season 5. The main storyline of the episode certainly is non-arc, but everything we learn about Earth and its government is so relevant to the main arc. This isn't our first hint that there's something rotten in the state of ... EarthGov (see for example Soul Hunter, Infection, Mind War, And the Sky Full of Stars), but this episode gives us a really good look at the political situation. [VAGUE SPOILERS for later seasons' storylines, skip to next paragraph to avoid]. A Santiago presidency clearly is not a Clark presidency but everything is in place here for a Clark to come into power. A government so willing to invoke the Rush Act isn't that far from a government that establishes a Ministry of Peace and a Night Watch.

Neeoma Connally is a great character and I love that her position exists in the universe of Babylon 5. Taking contemporary issues and putting them in a fictional future is a staple of SF and obviously not something Babylon 5 invented, but it's one of the areas where the show truly shines. The idea of a 23rd century where people still have to fight for a living wage, and where sub-standard parts get installed because shady contractors with the lowest bid is pretty depressing to contemplate, but it makes for a great episode, and the B5 universe in general is both interesting and believable.

Random stuff and things from this viewing:
  • Again with the hats. I commented on this in the "Survivors" thread, too. Lots of people wearing hats. Not fashion hats, but cold weather hats. Is it cold in the docking bays?
  • Loving Londo's pajamas/robe combo. Fancy.
  • Londo calls the Narns "pagans". That's interesting. Is there a hierarchy of religions in the Babylon 5 universe, and if so, what determines which religion is to be taken seriously, and how exactly is "pagan" defined in all this?
  • Sinclair gets angry at all the unauthorized people present in C&C, and wants them gone. How do they get there in the first place? Is there no security?
  • The G'Quan Eth is a controlled substance, only to be possessed for valid medical or religious reasons. Interesting. I wonder what kind of drug laws there are in the 23rd century Babylon 5 universe.
  • Zento wears a square pin on his lapel (see below). Is that just decorative or does it mean something?

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Old October 13th 15, 00:37   #19
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

Rewatched it again just now, and like everyone else here, I enjoy it. The idea that the future isn't free of real world problems--unethical, lowballing contractors, labor exploitation and unrest--is one of the things the show usually did very well, and that sets it apart from the vast majority of the other big franchise, Star Trek. And the interaction between Londo and G'kar is simply superb, as it always was; it's a pleasure to watch the two play off of each other. I also liked the way it was another step in the fleshing out of G'kar, which ultimately ends in his revelation and salvation: we get to see him as a deeply spiritual person. One of the most powerful features of the B5 story arc is the way that G'kar and Londo more or less switch places as the series goes on--Londo into the darkness and G'kar into the light. Very nice stuff.

The one drawback for me is Zento, not the character but the actor. He was waaay too over the top, a real cardboard villain. At the very end, when he sees how Sinclair has tricked him, I half expected him to snarl "curses! Foiled again!" and try to twirl his nonexistent mustache. If he's Earth's best labor negotiator, they are seriously screwed. Of course, that might have been the point, and the episode hints at it--if there are darker, authoritarian forces at work back on earth, they might engineer sending in the impossible to deal with asshole, since it's guaranteed to provoke exactly the kind of reaction you're hoping for.
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Old October 13th 15, 02:26   #20
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Re: EpDis: By Any Means Necessary

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The one drawback for me is Zento, not the character but the actor. He was waaay too over the top, a real cardboard villain. At the very end, when he sees how Sinclair has tricked him, I half expected him to snarl "curses! Foiled again!" and try to twirl his nonexistent mustache. If he's Earth's best labor negotiator, they are seriously screwed. Of course, that might have been the point, and the episode hints at it--if there are darker, authoritarian forces at work back on earth, they might engineer sending in the impossible to deal with asshole, since it's guaranteed to provoke exactly the kind of reaction you're hoping for.
It's interesting, I've seen several threads recently where people commented on how they thought a certain character was over the top (Orin Zento here, Ari Ben Zayn in "Eyes", Captain Pierce in "A Voice in the Wilderness"). I liked all of them exactly as they were. Apparently I have a thing for "over the top" characters
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