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Old August 24th 13, 18:15   #21
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Re: Aborted Reboot

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While watching Crusade, I was also never reminded of Star Trek. Beyond the basic format of a crew on a spaceship, the series was very different in tone, style, storytelling and characterization. The dense backstory, while not usually necessary to follow the storylines, really sets it apart.
And yet the planet-of-the-week format makes it kind of the same. And the top-down perspective of characters (Command staff and department heads) makes it similar. And the fact that it's set on what's primarily a research vessel which just happens to be a kickass warship makes it similar, too. And the whole 'boldly going where no man has gone in a really really long time' thing with the dead worlds. You've even got a five-year mission of sorts.

My point is not that it *IS* Trek, my point is that it (And virtually every other ship-based SF show since 1966) has been derivative of Trek. Personally, from the glimpse we got of it, I think it was better. I have faith in JMS, and I'm sure had the show continued, it would have been the best damned ship-based SF show ever. Honestly.

But all we've got is what we've got (To paraphrase Sheridan).

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There is so much else happening around the galaxy, which we learn about in bits and pieces. The E... a good system for controlling them. As Dr. Kirkish said in Messages from Earth, “They don’t want it so they can fight these things. They want us to become more like them.”
No argument. As I said, I think it'd become a much better show than Trek and peers.

My *SUSPICION* is that the show was deliberately starting out from a position that would be familiar to most viewers. "Oh, it's like Trek," and then it would ratchet things up and up and up until it became brilliant, thereby exposing the lie that Trek was the most brilliant thing ever, or even a very good TV show. My first hunch when the series was done was that it was a kind of "Beat 'em at their own game" thing. A sort of "The other team has an OK premise. Here's what it'd be like if they had any clue how to use it."

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The particulars of the Telepath War are generally unknown, but I think it was meant to be much bigger and uglier than people suspect.
I should hope so.
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Parliament of Dreams humorously brought up the story of two races fighting for supremacy on Centauri Prime, with the Xon losing and being exterminated (I loved the scene of Londo’s feast). The Telepath War would be Earth’s version of this type of war, pitting Homo Sapiens against Homo Superior, but not so funny. Its end result is one that doesn’t satisfy anybody.
My own suspicion is that was a periscope from an earlier evolution of the story, that never came off. Remember Kosh said "They are a dying people." And there's the Xon thing. And then in season 5, there's the Hyach/Hyach-do thing, which makes it clear they're going gradually extinct because they wiped out the other sapient species on their homeworld. My huch is that was originally intended as a Centauri storyline, but it kept getting put off, and then it just didn't fit anymore, so it got reassigned to a species no one cares about.

I've never heard anyone else say that. That's all me.

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. The remnants of Psi Corps are lurking in space, and JMS suggested they could return to their place of authority over human telepaths if the BTI doesn’t work out.
Interesting. I hadn't heard that. So why is Bester on the run in Crusade? Why isn't he with the Corps forces?

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maybe he has an interest in writing more for Crusade, beyond penning its extended epitaph. He has said in the past that it’s a story he would like to finish in some way.
Here's hopin'!

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I agree with KoshN, I’m not really interested in the storylines of ‘Lost Tales’ or ‘Legend of the Rangers,’ which seemed kind of thrown together.
No doubt. They were ad-hoc attempts to continue the Crusade storyline in another form.

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But Crusade and the Telepath War are huge, compelling stories which are begging to be told. I would love to see a revival of Crusade on television, but the chances of that happening are, let me see, do a little math, carry the two, and… they’re zero.
I don't think they were that bad two years ago. The "Reboot."

There's "The Story" and "The Show." They're not the same thing. JMS had a story, and Crusade was the show he was going to use to tell it. That didn't pan out. He could, however, cook up another show to tell the story, and I think that's the point of Lost Tales and Rangers. "Story" and "Format" are not the same thing, so even if Crusade remains dead forever, it doesn't mean the story is dead, just one means of telling it.

Which is what, I think, the reboot was all about.

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A Crusade movie would have to jettison almost all of the content planned for the series, and cram the rest into two hours. Can anyone imagine a film where all the carefully planned mysteries are resolved in quick succession, because time is a factor? It would not work well that way, it would lose the intelligence, the sense of wonder. They might as well throw in a pod race for the rubes.
I don't think that's ever been on the table. Not even remotely an option. And, yes, it wouldn't work. It'd be pointless.

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JMS now has Studio JMS, publishes his own comics, and could probably get permission from WB to do B5 comics on his own, with total creative control. Unless there’s a spite factor between them.
I don't think there's any spite. JMS made Warners a lot of money, and they've been up for backing his projects. They didn't back 'em as solidly as they could have, granted, but they did give him more money than any of us will ever see in our lifetimes to do Crusade, Rangers, and Lost Tales. As to Lost Tales, it's not Warner's fault the straight-to-DVD market collapsed. That ruined a lot of people's plans for a lot of things. The movie fell apart because JMS didn't want to re-cast, and then Richard Biggs died. Warner's recasting decision is admittedly stupid, but I can see it from their POV: "We're blowing $50 mil on this thing, and the only star is the guy from 'Scarecrow and Mrs. King?' That wasn't even a good show!" I'm sure there's a great deal of annoyance, of course.
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Old September 3rd 13, 18:38   #22
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Re: Aborted Reboot

with some of the dross on TV at the moment, surely there has got to be some room for more B5?
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Old September 6th 13, 16:25   #23
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Re: Aborted Reboot

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B5 and Crusade made me see the weaknesses in Trek and have absolutely no further use for Trek at this point. Sure, I may watch an episode of TOS or TNG if it comes on TV while I'm channel surfing, but I don't own any Trek on DVD, and wouldn't spend the money now for TOS or TNG.
Well, I finally saw TOS Seasons 1 thru 3 (Remastered DVD sets) at a price point I couldn't ignore, and in a fit of nostalgia, I bought 'em. So far, I've only watched "The Man Trap" and "Where No Man Has Gone Before." I wish Warner Brothers would show as much reverence for Babylon 5 as CBS has shown for TOS with these DVD sets.
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Max Eilerson: "The story of my life. I finally find a city like this, intact, deserted for ten thousand years. Probably contains hundreds of patents that I could exploit and I'm going to die. I can appreciate dramatic irony as much as the next person, but this is pushing it a bit."
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Old September 8th 13, 03:27   #24
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Re: Aborted Reboot

A continuation of Babylon 5 is of no interest to me. The series finale was a fine end to that universe as far as I'm concerned. JMS lost something after Season 4 of B5. Season 5 was a major step down in quality. All of the TV movies were horrible other than In the Beginning and A Call to Arms. Crusade was just derivative tripe, and that goes for the unaired scripts. Sure TNT has some blame there, but what about Gary Cole being completely miscast and uninteresting? I've never once been tempted to rewatch that series or waste money buying them on DVD. One watch on TNT was enough for me.

LOTR was even worse. Lost Tales was a slight return to form, but it wasn't the budget that was the main problem.

If B5 returns I'd like to see it taken over by someone else. JMS got to tell his story and you're not going to be able repeat that magic with a new cast.

The simple fact is that serialized Television has come leaps and bounds since B5 aired. Classic B5 in reruns just can't compare. The special effects are terribly dated due to the use of low poly models.

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Old September 8th 13, 14:48   #25
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Re: Aborted Reboot

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Psicorps is a huge bleeding hole in the narrative, though, I agree. that's got to be handled.
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Other than The Telepath War, it WAS handled in the Psi Corps trilogy of novels. Only The Telepath War was skipped, left for a theatrical release or series of theatrical releases.
The books were more about Bester's fate than the Psi Corps. The war itself was not really covered and could sustain a series if blended with other elements.
That's why I said "Other than The Telepath War,..."
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"Crusade" (1999) - "War Zone"
Max Eilerson: "The story of my life. I finally find a city like this, intact, deserted for ten thousand years. Probably contains hundreds of patents that I could exploit and I'm going to die. I can appreciate dramatic irony as much as the next person, but this is pushing it a bit."
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Old September 8th 13, 15:46   #26
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Re: Aborted Reboot

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A continuation of Babylon 5 is of no interest to me.
A re-telling or re-boot of "Babylon 5" is on no interest to me. I feel about this like G'Kar felt about the rebirth ceremony in The Parliament of Dreams. Paraphrasing: I've already been born once, and quite sufficiently, I think.


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All of the TV movies were horrible other than In the Beginning and A Call to Arms.
I definitely find In the Beginning and A Call to Arms to be, by far, the best, but I didn't find Thirdspace or The River of Souls to be "horrible." I never liked Thirdspace, and would give it at most, 6 out of 10, but The River of Souls grew on me and I rate it a 7 out of 10, and compared to The Legend of the Rangers*, Thirdspace and The River of Souls are gems.



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Crusade was just derivative tripe, and that goes for the unaired scripts.
IMHO, that comment is a steaming pile of BS. ��~~



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Sure TNT has some blame there, but what about Gary Cole being completely miscast and uninteresting?
Originally, I didn't care for Gary Cole's casting in Crusade, but having watched the entire series many times and having read the unaired scripts, I came to agree with his casting as Capt. Gideon. I'd love to see a retelling of Crusade, with a new cast, following what was done in the aired episodes and the unaired scripts, fixing the problems caused by SOBs at TNT, and continuing from there as if TNT hadn't been SOBs.

An interesting idea might be who would the people here like to see cast in the Crusade roles, IF Crusade was retold and continued. It's like something we've been playing with on the John Butcher bboard regarding "The Dresden Files."



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I've never once been tempted to rewatch that series or waste money buying them on DVD. One watch on TNT was enough for me.
That's too bad, because it you watched it in a better order (No order is perfect though, thanks to the SOBs at TNT-Atlanta.), you'd probably like it more. Also, as with B5, you would see stuff that you didn't notice on your first time through. HOWEVER, if you're 110% DETERMINED to hate Crusade based upon your first impressions, gotten during the 1999 TNT run, that's YOUR loss. If I came across any Crusade episode on TV today, I'd watch it. I can't say that for Trek (any of
em).


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LOTR was even worse.
THAT was TERRIBLE. I rank it with the Dell novels 4 & 5, in awfulness. Crusade, watched in a decent order, is a couple orders of magnitude BETTER than B5:LotR.


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Lost Tales was a slight return to form, but it wasn't the budget that was the main problem.
The small budget, in light of all the previously built up B5 & Crusade resources that were GONE (Poof!), was a HUGE problem. There was no money to RECREATE what should never have been lost (all the CGI files, and a lot of the costumes and props). Hell, the station looks like it had a smaller skeleton crew that B5 did in Sleeping in Light!. Also, IMHO, the first Lost Tale sucked. The SECOND was a return to form, but the TINY budget REALLY SHOWED throughout. C'mon, they had a doorway and a wall. THAT'S IT!




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If B5 returns I'd like to see it taken over by someone else. JMS got to tell his story and you're not going to be able repeat that magic with a new cast.
I want to see JMS in charge, with creative freedom like he had with B5 (no damned meddlers!). That said, I am not AT ALL interested in a reboot. He ought to adopt Harlan Ellison's "pages taped to the store window" philosophy. I WANT TO SEE CRUSADE continued, somehow. Novels would be PERFECTLY A-OK with me. I'm completely OK with reading the rest of the Crusade story and visualizing the characters. Hell, that's almost as good as having it in DVD sets!

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The simple fact is that serialized Television has come leaps and bounds since B5 aired. Classic B5 in reruns just can't compare.
BS! ��~~


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The special effects are terribly dated due to the use of low poly models.
So, UPDATE the effects. Do it up right, at least as good as CBS did with the Trek-TOS Remastered DVD sets. C'mon WARNER BROTHERS, show some faith and spend some money!!!!!


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The first half of Season 5, the Byron part, was a major step down in quality. 90% of this was caused by Claudia Christian going AWOL at the last minute before Season 5 was to begin production. However, the second half of Season 5 almost completely recovered from that. I say "almost" because we were still stuck with Tracy Scoggins. Still, once Byron was toast, things got markedly better.
AGREED!

* The Legend of the Rangers awfulness was caused by The Sci-Fi Channel wanting a different story, not a tying up of the Crusade dangling threads, AND was severely hobbled by the loss of 1993-1998 Babylon 5 and Crusade resources due to Warner Brothers near total lack of vision and faith, and a $3 million budget made infinitely worse by the lack of resources previously mentioned.
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"Crusade" (1999) - "War Zone"
Max Eilerson: "The story of my life. I finally find a city like this, intact, deserted for ten thousand years. Probably contains hundreds of patents that I could exploit and I'm going to die. I can appreciate dramatic irony as much as the next person, but this is pushing it a bit."

Last edited by KoshN; September 15th 13 at 21:10. Reason: I can't believe it took me a week to get back to this.
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Old September 9th 13, 06:32   #27
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Re: Aborted Reboot

PHP]Interesting. I hadn't heard that. So why is Bester on the run in Crusade? Why isn't he with the Corps forces? [/PHP]

I hope this quote thing works, grumble grumble...

Bester was described in the Psi Corps trilogy as an example of the most dedicated telepath the Corps had produced, an example to loyal telepaths everywhere. I read somewhere that the Telepath War's leaders would be Lyta for the Resistance, and Bester for the Psi Corps. Where was that, does anyone know? I'm curious. What could possibly bring Bester, a hard-charging field agent of Metapol, to lead the entire Psi Corps and its millions of subject telepaths? Someone nuked the Corps' headquarters and its leaders, which we saw, and no, it wasn't on Mars, the scenery is clearly on Earth. The Psi Corps base at Syria Planum on Mars had to be destroyed at another time. Following the attack shown in 'The Path of Sorrows,' the Corps is desperate after being beheaded, and they turn to arch-hardcase Bester to get things under control, after he has almost certainly proven his leadership abilities in the Telepath War already. After the war ends, and the concentration camps near Brasilia and elsewhere are revealed, the citizens of Earth are outraged (and probably millions of them have died in the war, that doesn't help much), and the most of the Corps leadership is arrested or dead. Bester is still free, somehow, there's probably a story there. So why wouldn't he be with the rest of the Psi Corps fleet, or whatever's left of it? 'The Corps is Mother, the Corps is Father' spelled it out nicely, he does not see telepaths as his friends, but his family, and he accepts responsibility for protecting them. In the wake of a war that likely kills most human telepaths, he would be visiting the backwaters of the Earth Alliance, risking his life to search for other telepath survivors. What a powerful instinct people have, to 'get the band back together.'

PHP Code:
My first hunch when the series was done was that it was a kind of "Beat 'em at their own game" thingA sort of "The other team has an OK premise. Here's what it'd be like if they had any clue how to use it." 
Very well put. I think you’re right.

TNT is often cited as the main villain behind the decline of Babylon 5. I can't agree. The budget was lower on season 5, yes. Without TNT, there would have been no season 5 at all. As much as people hate the Byron storyline (not me, though), there were plenty of other episodes and events to make season 5 worthwhile. No one else would have picked up the series, it was TNT or nothing. They funded the re-editing of 'The Gathering,' which was originally clunky and had weird timing. I still like Copeland's opening theme, though. Without TNT there would be no 'In the Beginning' or the other movies, no Crusade, and probably nothing beyond that from anyone, the franchise would be kaput. They did these things on their terms, that's how sponsors work, he who pays the piper calls the tune. Of course there would be changes, of course budgets were an issue, and of course they cut their experiment off when the results fell short of their expectations. But in the end, TNT gave us all more B5, plus Crusade, and I for one am very glad they did.

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Old September 9th 13, 20:07   #28
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Re: Aborted Reboot

I think the biggest thing that hurt season 5 was the ending of the Earth civil war having been squeezed into the end of season 4, what with jms thinking they wouldn't even get a season 5 and all. If season 4 had ended with Sheridan's capture as the original plan was to be, then there would've been a ton of drama that we all know and love happening there in the beginning of season 5.
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Old September 9th 13, 20:45   #29
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Re: Aborted Reboot

if battlestar galactica can get a remake, then i'm sure Babylon 5 more than deserves a reboot.
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Old September 12th 13, 04:46   #30
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Re: Aborted Reboot

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* The Legend of the Rangers awfulness was caused by The Sci-Fi Channel wanting a different story, not a tying up of the Crusade dangling threads, was severely hobbled by the loss of 1993-1998 Babylon 5 and Crusade resources due to Warner Brothers near total lack of vision and faith, and a $3 million budget made infinitely worse by the lack of resources previously mentioned.
I'm sorry but you can't blame Sci-Fi for LOTR. They didn't write the script, cast the actors or come up with that laughable combat system the woman was using. There was a hint of something great, and a series with recasting could have fixed a lot of it. But the night it aired I switched between it and the Patriots game. I had to rewatch it to see everything. I think the leads were pretty bad and G'Kar was misused.

Luckily I found Farscape, the Sopranos, Deadwood, Rome, Carnivale, The Wire, The Shield, BSG, Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones after B5. That's my golden age of TV (starting with B5).

I've tried getting many people to give B5 a chance and many simply refuse or give up early. Even when I tell them which episodes to skip.

It's too bad that there's no real venue for classic Science Fiction on cable TV. It's also too bad that WB will never pay the costs of updating the effects in B5, especially for the scenes where it's mixed with live action.
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