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The Changing of the Character


Beyond the rim
Simply put, I love J. Michael Straczynski's style of writing. Dialogue, plotlines, scene setups - I love them all, but what still shocks me about how great JMS's writing is how he makes the same character he started with pull a 180, thus twisting a character to be the exact opposite of what they had been.
I am in complete awe when I look at the show, and see G'Kar, a warmonger for two full season, make a believable, complete turnabout from his former self. He does the same with Lennier, an obedient follower, rebel against his master, and Vir, a man without ambition and fearful of success, by making him the Emperor.
It is really incredible the way in which JMS realistically tears every fiber of a character, and rebuilds the fibers in a completely differing pattern. He forces everyone, even supporting cast characters, to undergo a change, and become dynamic characters.
I love it.
Watching the well-paced metamorphasis of a character in JMS's arc style is truly enjoyable, especially on repeated viewings. I've seen the series all the way through many times, and I'm still forced to ask myself how JMS foreshadowed and planned all of it so perfectly.
I don't have any questions or message or anything like that, I just wanted to get started here posting praise for a small part of what makes JMS the man.
I agree full-heartedly. I think that's what makes Babylon 5, in my opinion, the best television show ever. The characters are dynamic!

In too many shows, characters become bland: they're created with a history, and they stay pretty much the same for their entire time on the show. The only time the opportunity to change comes if the actor playing the character decides to leave the show.

With Babylon 5, it's totally different. The fact that jms created the show to be a novel on television fully set it apart from the rest of television. That there is a definite beginning, middle, and end allows for the purposed development of characters from being one way to being a completely different way.

Most shows never accomplish something so energetic and provocative. Instead, their characters pretty much just remain as they always have been. And, for me at least, that turns the show stale after a while.

I like dynamic storytelling, which is probably why I love Babylon 5 so much. I just wish other shows would take on a similar approach and development, but alas, that's just not how television studios seem to want to conduct business.

jms was an artist, in my mind, not a businessman like most of the creators of television are; and for that, I'm most grateful.
Yeah, you see just about every major character go through some kind of change or other. I agree that is part of what makes B5 such a great show.
G'kar's transformation has got to be one of my favorite bits of the whole series (I just love "Dust to Dust" -- It starts out being an episode about Bester, and winds up with G'kar's conversion and lots of Kosh! How could you go wrong?). And indeed, the character development is what sets Babylon 5 apart, not just from almost all other TV, but from most scifi movies and even a whole ton of books.

JMS is indeed the man.