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EpDis: Believers

The War Prayer

  • Total voters
"Believers" is an "ok" episode for me. I like that the resolution of the plot isn't a "pretty" one; there's no easy answer.

I liked the series of scenes of the parents going from one ambassador to another trying to get someone to speak for them and how none of them would jump onboard. Kosh's line "The avalanche has already started; it is too late for the pebbles to vote," while being typically Vorlon, I think it also hints at perhaps some underlying regret or similar emotion from Kosh over his own instance of requiring medical intervention against the wishes of others.

It was a very good episode for Franklin and gave a lot for Rick to chew on as an actor.

What keeps me from viewing this episode as stellar though has a lot to do with finding the acting of the Shon character to be rather weak. Also, the that the religion of the aliens feels just sort of slapped together to suit a one-use need for this episode. I'd imagine there are plenty of people who disagree with me on this issue of their religion, but it's how it seems for me. I guess for so much of this episode's plot being reliant upon the "alienness" of the aliens, it just didn't feel alien enough for me. It might just be a side-effect of a one-shot alien culture since it's something that's gotten me about a whole lot of aliens in various episodes of Star Trek too.

So, for me, it's balances out to an average episode.
A family of aliens with lumpy foreheads and a moral dilemma get lost on their way to an episode of Star Trek TNG and end up on Babylon 5 instead.. Sadly for them, B5 is a much darker and more complex place.. Brilliant stuff, well-written by Peter David, one of my favourite standalone episodes..
A family of aliens with lumpy foreheads and a moral dilemma get lost on their way to an episode of Star Trek TNG and end up on Babylon 5 instead.. Sadly for them, B5 is a much darker and more complex place.. Brilliant stuff, well-written by Peter David, one of my favourite standalone episodes..

Written by David Gerrold, actually.

Written by David Gerrold, actually.


Oops, sorry.. :eek:

Could anyone explain Fingel (sp?) eggs? And Shakespeare corporation? I think they may be references but I don't know what to.
I gave this one a C. Generally speaking, unless there's a really interesting twist to the storyline, I find all "science over religion" stories to be rather boring.

That said, I thought that the interaction between the parents and Franklin was well done.
The Fact that the parents were actually prepared to murder their own child ( even if they no longer believed it to be such ) was for me a powerful moment and thus pushes me to give believers a B.

One of a few episodes I can happily skip without watching again - gimme Grail anyday. David Gerrold should stick to tribbles, correct???
I gave it a C and that was generous!It rehashes an idea I see all too often, that a parents religious views trump life, God will heal them if it's His will :rolleyes:. Or the infamous, they aren't covered completely so they had to return to the burning building or God will be offended. The premise that they can't be cut into is IMO ridiculous!! If you get a paper cut do you loose your soul? The acting was of course excellent and Kosh's line was pure Vorlon, but I personally found the premise flawed.
Probably the best part of this episode was how Sinclair was involved in the situation. But of course we're all looking back on this episode with the advantage of hindsight. The story seems weak to us, spoiled as we are by the darkness of Seasons Three and Four, but the pure grimness of Believers was one of the warning signs that this would be no ordinary ST clone.
I actually gave it a "B". People with almost equally strange religious views on medicine exist right here today on planet Earth. I find it hard to consider the premise all that hard to believe. Papercut means you have to be killed? No, just no major surgery.

I liked Franklin and Sinclair's interaction a lot. The sudden shift in attitude should have clued him in, though, as to what was going to happen.

And it was one of the first episodes to give you an idea that "this isn't Star Trek anymore". I gave the episode a B because I thought it was better than average, but I have a tough standard for "A" when it comes to B5. ;)
That is one of the strongest points in this episode that this isn't a star trek style episode where the parents kept their religious beliefs at the end.In the boy would have died with or without the operation so everyone is right depending on there beliefs .Okay thats it from me.
How do you know Franklin would not have saved him?

Besides Babylon 5 is an Earth Alliance station... one thing is respecting the beliefs of other races, but Earth law is applied there or should. You would think the parents would be arrested for murder.
You know, that's a thought that never occured to me. Were teh parents charged with a crime for this? B5 law is a bit vague, but out-right murder would almost certainly be covered, wouldn't you think?
I don't think the parents were arrested for murder cause I think in the end it would be ruled even if they were charged it would come as religious beliefs or that the EA has no right to interfere with religious cultures but now I am sounding like STAR TREK. m
We are on the same page, but look ahead a couple of paragraphs :). The premise of the believers seemed to be that if their "shell' was broken ie by surgery, then the soul seeped out: major surgery/paper cut, bye bye soul is my reading on their beliefs. And maybe I didn't like it because I've met the parents evil-step-twins :cool:. Maybe if the kid had changed even a little bit then I might have had some sympathy. :confused: Again, for me, the "cause" was silly.
I get your meaning about cuts. As a woodworker, I would think that there would not be many on their planet, unless they allowed "souless" woodworkers. I thought it was a reasonably good ep but, except for the ending, very Trek like. Not a favorite, but it did let you know that happy endings were not requisite on B5, a good sign on the first run.
I would say that Shon's parents seemed more concerned with "being cut into" not exactly being cut. So, I think their focus was on someone else cutting someone, not someone accidentally cutting oneself as a papercut would be.