Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Thoughts about--B5

The London, KY, library has a very nice collection of DVDs that can be checked out, and I have taken advantage of them lately. Some things that they had, and which I was curious about, were a few seasons of the sci-fi TV show 'Babylon 5'. So far, I've been able to watch through seasons 2 and 3 and a few episodes of 4, but since one big story line is ended shortly into season 4, I thought I would give my opinion at least up to that.

B5 can be compared and contrasted with Star Trek, especially DS9. In comparison, the shows are largely human-centric, and like DS9, B5 takes place mostly on a space station that is in some parts trading center and diplomatic center. Although Earth in theory seems to run B5, up until they break away from it, the theory seems to be that it's a place for all alien races, with the hopes of bringing peace.

Unlike Star Trek, the humans are not a homogenous whole, but rather more like, well, normal humans, so one big story line involves B5 breaking away from the human government and going solo. Another thing B5 treats with some seriousness is religion, whereas in Star Trek it was mostly a non-issue.

Most of season 2 was ok, but not great. It wasn't until the last few episodes of that season that things took a turn that seemed to indicate an increase in drama and intensity. Season 3 kept up that pace pretty well, and 4 promised more of it.

Which may explain my disappointment in how the one story line ended. For the past two seasons, there had been this one alien race, the Shadows, who was causing problems, while another, the Vorlans, was seeming to help the good guys prepare to combat them. Then the dramatic showdown ends with those two alien races leaving together for parts unknown, going outside the galaxy, and leaving the 'younger races' to fend for themselves now.

There was something unsatisfying about it. I suppose one thing was the idea that in the end the 'good guys' and the 'bad guys' weren't really all that much different. I was expecting more.

I suppose I'll keep on watching season 4, as it could be interesting. I'm not as much into it now, though.

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