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Grand Fromage
Jan 30, 2006

L-l-look at you bar-bartender, a-a pa-pathetic creature of meat and bone, un-underestimating my l-l-liver's ability to metab-meTABolize t-toxins. How can you p-poison a perfect, immortal alcohOLIC?




The_Doctor posted:

The tiny lowlife bar way deep in Brown Sector (I’ve really got to see a map at some point)


Here's a map of B5. I'm tagging out of an abundance of caution but I don't think this is really a spoiler.


is from an RPG.

Brown - Life Support and Waste Reclamation facilities
Blue - Maintenance and Operational controls
Green - Arponics and the ambassadorial quarters.
Grey - Atmosphere monitoring and the station's original power station.
Red - Public and Commercial facilities including hotels and Medlab
Yellow - Power supply, fuel tanks, various labs.

This map is from the show:

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The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


I like this cutaway view I just found (and I don’t think it needs to be spoilered)

Torrannor
Apr 27, 2013

---FAGNER---
TEAM-MATE


You're brave, I'd always be wary of looking up things like that for fear of spoilers.

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


I literally just searched ‘Babylon 5 map’ and went straight to images, and thankfully this was one of the first results. Dodged several bullets I’m sure!

Grand Fromage
Jan 30, 2006

L-l-look at you bar-bartender, a-a pa-pathetic creature of meat and bone, un-underestimating my l-l-liver's ability to metab-meTABolize t-toxins. How can you p-poison a perfect, immortal alcohOLIC?




Torrannor posted:

You're brave, I'd always be wary of looking up things like that for fear of spoilers.

That's why I figured I should post one since I need fear no spoilers.

I was also going to post a map of the B5 setting but there really isn't an official one. It takes place in a fairly small part of the galaxy by sci-fi standards though. B5 is at Epsilon Eridani, which is a remote location in the show but only ~10.5 light years from Sol.

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


I figured the space and where stuff is in relation to other stuff is probably as meaningless as it is in Trek. It’s however far away stuff needs to be for dramatic reasons. I’ve noticed occasionally you’ll get references to distance, like in Believers where Ivanova and the liner are still an hour away from the jumpgate.

Aardvark!
Mar 3, 2002


Torrannor posted:

You're brave, I'd always be wary of looking up things like that for fear of spoilers.

I had to stop even googling actor names,since google brings up pictures of the show instantly in previews if they're not a big enough actor. I'm making a notepad of actors to look up after I finish.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk



Jms explicitly dgaf, he said that ships move at the speed of plot.

MonsieurChoc
Oct 12, 2013

Every species can smell its own extinction.


I love O'Neil cylinders, I think they're neat.

pentyne
Nov 7, 2012

I just couldn't look at your old avatar anymore
Fucking nauseating!


Milkfred E. Moore posted:

I think that's just how JMS does his writing. While B5 was the predecessor for modern shows like Battlestar, Game of Thrones, Expanse, etc. I think Babylon 5 was very different in how it developed a lot of its 'twists.' JMS has said that a story shouldn't be predictable but you should be able to predict it. In that sense, if everything is laid out and explained well, the audience should be able to see where it will go. He's a big believer in a well-executed Chekov's gun. So, I think for a lot of B5, the 'twists' can seem almost obvious - especially if you're paying attention and binging through it - because JMS believes that they should be foreshadowed. This is different to a lot of modern shows that do serialised storytelling, where big twists just happen because it keeps the audience guessing/engaged. Wow, this person is a Cylon! Wow, this person killed the Night King! Can you go back and see the breadcrumbs or hints that led to those big moments? Naaah.

JMS had to do a ton of things to make B5 be a functional show because of what he was dealing with, low budget, airing on a fly by night regional network PTEN, and all the challenges associated with a production like that given people coming and go with opportunities.

He essentially wrote out the series in advance, the so called "series bible" he pitched to Paramount is what everyone claims DS9 is based off despite massive, massive differences. Once he finally found a home for the show he ended up doing a thing where he would create very intricate outlines for every single character giving everyone a "plausible" out if the actor ended up leaving the show or he had to fire/cut to save money. It'd be insane to think of that now when you have a show like Grey's Anatomy that just have a character leave via writing a farewell note after the actor said he was done that a narrator reads out over clips of the other people looking wistfull.

pentyne fucked around with this message at 04:45 on Jun 6, 2020

Angry Salami
Jul 27, 2013

Don't trust the skull.


Grand Fromage posted:

That's why I figured I should post one since I need fear no spoilers.

I was also going to post a map of the B5 setting but there really isn't an official one. It takes place in a fairly small part of the galaxy by sci-fi standards though. B5 is at Epsilon Eridani, which is a remote location in the show but only ~10.5 light years from Sol.

It's also implied that the various powers aren't that big - in the pilot movie, Londo describes the Centauri republic as 'twelve systems and a thousand monuments to past glory', which is still enough for them to be a great power. Most of the Non-Aligned Worlds are implied to just have their home-world and maybe one colony of significance. It's a bit different from the Star Trek model of planet-of-the-week adventures where everyone's got hundreds of colony worlds that appear once and never get mentioned again, and it suits the more political dynamic of this show that a conflict over a single planet is a big deal.

Blindeye
Sep 22, 2006

I can't believe I kissed you!


Angry Salami posted:

It's also implied that the various powers aren't that big - in the pilot movie, Londo describes the Centauri republic as 'twelve systems and a thousand monuments to past glory', which is still enough for them to be a great power. Most of the Non-Aligned Worlds are implied to just have their home-world and maybe one colony of significance. It's a bit different from the Star Trek model of planet-of-the-week adventures where everyone's got hundreds of colony worlds that appear once and never get mentioned again, and it suits the more political dynamic of this show that a conflict over a single planet is a big deal.

Exactly. The Earth Alliance is just Earth, Mars, Proxima Centauri and a few other, small colonies at this point. It's kind of quaint to think how small these powers really all are in the grand scheme of things, or why building a large space station was such a massive undertaking.

Anonymous Zebra
Oct 21, 2005
Blending in like it ain't no thang

pentyne posted:

JMS had to do a ton of things to make B5 be a functional show because of what he was dealing with, low budget, airing on a fly by night regional network PTEN, and all the challenges associated with a production like that given people coming and go with opportunities.

He essentially wrote out the series in advance, the so called "series bible" he pitched to Paramount is what everyone claims DS9 is based off despite massive, massive differences. Once he finally found a home for the show he ended up doing a thing where he would create very intricate outlines for every single character giving everyone a "plausible" out if the actor ended up leaving the show or he had to fire/cut to save money. It'd be insane to think of that now when you have a show like Grey's Anatomy that just have a character leave via writing a farewell note after the actor said he was done that a narrator reads out over clips of the other people looking wistfull.

This isn't even remotely true, but it's not something we can discuss in detail in a newbie thread. The original plot for Babylon 5 that JMS "planned" ahead of time resembles almost in no way the plot of the show that aired, diverging mid-way through season 1 and never going back. Babylon 5 is a very good show for it's time despite the cheap budget, and huge production issues the show ran into, but JMS has been blowing air up peoples asses claiming for decades about how well planned the show was while evidence from his early internet posts show that he was basically doing a really good job of making stuff up as he went. Again, we can't really talk about it here, but everyone who has seen the series knows what major production issues I'm talking about and how they drastically changed the plot of the show.

Milkfred E. Moore
Aug 27, 2006

The fate of destruction is also the joy of rebirth.


Sanguinia posted:

I think there can be merit to a complete out of nowhere twist though. The two big twists during the season finale of Galactica Season 3 were mindblowing and exciting and you were almost desperate to know what was going on and what those reveals meant about the future AND the past. What resulted from them was... controversial, lets say, but that's not the fault of the moment, its the fault of the failure to follow up.

Well, no. I mean, that's kind of the problem with a Big Twist like that -- it's then up to whoever picks up the ball to have a drat good reasoning or explanation for it. Battlestar really, really didn't, as much as I love the series. I struggle to think of any story that goes for Big Twists like that which really ends up working.

pentyne posted:

JMS had to do a ton of things to make B5 be a functional show because of what he was dealing with, low budget, airing on a fly by night regional network PTEN, and all the challenges associated with a production like that given people coming and go with opportunities.

He essentially wrote out the series in advance, the so called "series bible" he pitched to Paramount is what everyone claims DS9 is based off despite massive, massive differences. Once he finally found a home for the show he ended up doing a thing where he would create very intricate outlines for every single character giving everyone a "plausible" out if the actor ended up leaving the show or he had to fire/cut to save money. It'd be insane to think of that now when you have a show like Grey's Anatomy that just have a character leave via writing a farewell note after the actor said he was done that a narrator reads out over clips of the other people looking wistfull.

One, wrong.

Two, this isn't a conversation for this thread.

Anonymous Zebra posted:

This isn't even remotely true, but it's not something we can discuss in detail in a newbie thread. The original plot for Babylon 5 that JMS "planned" ahead of time resembles almost in no way the plot of the show that aired, diverging mid-way through season 1 and never going back. Babylon 5 is a very good show for it's time despite the cheap budget, and huge production issues the show ran into, but JMS has been blowing air up peoples asses claiming for decades about how well planned the show was while evidence from his early internet posts show that he was basically doing a really good job of making stuff up as he went. Again, we can't really talk about it here, but everyone who has seen the series knows what major production issues I'm talking about and how they drastically changed the plot of the show.

The truth of Babylon 5's production is a much better story than JMS' claims, but his claims were all a necessary part of the production process.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk



POINTS MEANINGFULLY AT OTHER THREAD

Seriously I'm interested, but shoo plz

Anonymous Zebra
Oct 21, 2005
Blending in like it ain't no thang

EDIT: ^^^Understood. I'm just talking about TV production here. Definitely not going near the actual plot of this show.

I want to just say that a lot of modern TV shows tell a cohesive multi-season story that ends in a satisfying manner while the actual production was simply making things up as they went. In fact, I'd argue that if I made you randomly guess at a show that followed a "show bible" you'd probably be wrong. Breaking Bad is an example of a show that a lot of people thought was planned out pretty far ahead, but which actually had them filming the first episodes of a season without knowing where that season was even going. BSG, and Lost also had no plans (despite BSG literally claiming there was a plan in their opening credits). These shows, instead of worrying about being constrained by a plot, decided on themes and let the story develop based on where those themes took them. This is also why there are 1,000 Youtube videos about the character arcs of the characters in Mad Men even though that show's plot was made up as they went.

Meanwhile the TV show Game of Thrones was severely hampered in later seasons because they were trying to stick to a plot bible from GRRM that ignored the way the actors (and directors) had developed the themes in earlier seasons, and which was unsatisfying because they basically had to quickly move all the pieces to the right places despite it not making any sense. In contrast, The Expanse TV show looked at the books and decided to take the good stuff and ignore anything that didn't work, which is why that show is developing so well despite also being based on already written books.

My point from all this hurf blurf is that B5 is a good show, that looks like a cohesive story in the end because the show-runners kept the themes consistent and developed plot points based on information previously given to the viewers in early seasons. But by no means was any of that actually planned, and in fact, how far things went off the rails is actually pretty amazing.

pentyne
Nov 7, 2012

I just couldn't look at your old avatar anymore
Fucking nauseating!


Fair enough. There's the thing from when the show aired that JMS joining the B5 .usenet and discussing the show and stuff and dropping in details he would know, and all that has mostly blended into apocryphal stories since.

Sanguinia
Jan 1, 2012

#RXT REVOLUTION~!
2000





Milkfred E. Moore posted:

Well, no. I mean, that's kind of the problem with a Big Twist like that -- it's then up to whoever picks up the ball to have a drat good reasoning or explanation for it. Battlestar really, really didn't, as much as I love the series. I struggle to think of any story that goes for Big Twists like that which really ends up working.

I guess that depends on your definition of "working." Lost may have ended on a lovely note, but earlier seasons had big out-of-nowhere twists that worked out amazingly. Game of Thrones ended on a lovely note but twists like Ned Stark's death or Obryn Martel's failure to win the Trial by Combat or Jaime losing his sword hand certainly fit the bill in my book as Big Twists which super worked.

If you wanted to say "I struggle to think of a Big Twist WHICH THE WHOLE STORY'S ENDING DEPENDED ON which really ends up working," that's a bit more reasonable.

Milkfred E. Moore
Aug 27, 2006

The fate of destruction is also the joy of rebirth.


Sanguinia posted:

I guess that depends on your definition of "working." Lost may have ended on a lovely note, but earlier seasons had big out-of-nowhere twists that worked out amazingly. Game of Thrones ended on a lovely note but twists like Ned Stark's death or Obryn Martel's failure to win the Trial by Combat or Jaime losing his sword hand certainly fit the bill in my book as Big Twists which super worked.

If you wanted to say "I struggle to think of a Big Twist WHICH THE WHOLE STORY'S ENDING DEPENDED ON which really ends up working," that's a bit more reasonable.

Well, Ned Stark's death is kind of the whole point of the first season? He's continuously made out to be an idiot who's going to get shanked by realpolitik, and then he is? Sooo...

Aardvark!
Mar 3, 2002


Any other huge untagged GOT spoilers yall wanna discuss here in the Babylon 5 blind watch thread?

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


Yeah, y’all are being real assholes right now.

Roth
Jul 9, 2016


Game of Thrones is poo poo and I don't like it, so please stop talking about it in a Babylon 5 thread.

Roth
Jul 9, 2016


If you want to talk Babylon 5 or Game of Thrones in depth you can always make a thread for it.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk



There is a good thread over in tviv that will welcome all of your b5 discussions tyvm

Roth
Jul 9, 2016


sebmojo posted:

There is a good thread over in tviv that will welcome all of your b5 discussions tyvm

But my section activity

Hodgepodge
Jan 29, 2006


e: wrong thread

i kind of like the vibe of just dropping a random post about lotr metaphysics here at this point though

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010



Legit Cyberpunk



Roth posted:

But my section activity

Then the willows must scuttle carefully.

Aardvark!
Mar 3, 2002


S1E10 I wasn't a huge fan of this episode. I think the doctor's deafness leaves his acting a little flat compared to the rest of the cast, so his storylines aren't as impactful. Also his set is one of the worst, the medical scanner is like a plastic paperweight or something and not remotely convincing.


The underlying moral problem here is pretty interesting. If it were humans I would obviously side with the Dr., but in episode 2 we literally saw souls being released from glass orbs, or at least that's what was implied. How can we pass judgement on alien customs given that?


S1E11 The West Wing did the "lost sobriety" episode better. I did like this episode, but if you're going to have your alcoholic character lose his sobriety it should be a bigger deal imo. Good backstory for Garibaldi, decent episode plot with the frame-up and eventual resolution.

Aardvark!
Mar 3, 2002


Man how has there not been a new big-budget prestige show with this or a similar premise yet?

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


TheAardvark posted:

S1E10 I wasn't a huge fan of this episode. I think the doctor's deafness leaves his acting a little flat compared to the rest of the cast, so his storylines aren't as impactful. Also his set is one of the worst, the medical scanner is like a plastic paperweight or something and not remotely convincing.


The underlying moral problem here is pretty interesting. If it were humans I would obviously side with the Dr., but in episode 2 we literally saw souls being released from glass orbs, or at least that's what was implied. How can we pass judgement on alien customs given that?


S1E11 The West Wing did the "lost sobriety" episode better. I did like this episode, but if you're going to have your alcoholic character lose his sobriety it should be a bigger deal imo. Good backstory for Garibaldi, decent episode plot with the frame-up and eventual resolution.


I agree with all these points.

There’s not many sets on B5 that don’t look cheap, honestly, I think a fair bit of it comes down to lighting. It’s all so harsh and bright under certain lights that you can’t help but notice how flimsy and cheap it all looks. The observation dome/Ops looks terrible and small, but I think if you lowered the lighting in there a little it would go a long way. Think of Voyager’s bridge when they go on red alert. The general lighting darkens and it looks really good, picking out the crew stations more. Something like that would have been more fitting.


And you’re right, I keep forgetting this series has souls as an actual thing, rather than just an abstract concept.

And yeah, Garibaldi’s dip into (and just as quickly back out of) alcoholism felt like it lacked impact. Make it a bigger deal, as you say. Maybe lead up to it more in the prior episodes. I was thinking it might be a well they return to in future, and this was a setup point.

pentyne
Nov 7, 2012

I just couldn't look at your old avatar anymore
Fucking nauseating!


TheAardvark posted:

Man how has there not been a new big-budget prestige show with this or a similar premise yet?

It's hard to grow a new media franchise around such a classic 'nerd' pastime as sci fi. GoT was so notable specifically because it gained a massive foothold in the culture as a fantasy series.

The Expanse was under a perpetual threat of cancellation its entire run for low viewer figures. Its only around still because it's Jeff Bezo's favorite show.

Aardvark!
Mar 3, 2002


One thing that's helping me with the sets is trying to think of the show more as a play than as television. It fits with some of the acting, too, you can tell Michael O'Hare spent a lot of time on stage.

Torrannor
Apr 27, 2013

---FAGNER---
TEAM-MATE


Yeah, it's often compared to a stage play on television. And if I recall correctly, several of the actors were more known for their theater work than television roles at the time B5 was shot.

Narsham
Jun 5, 2008


Anonymous Zebra posted:

My point from all this hurf blurf is that B5 is a good show, that looks like a cohesive story in the end because the show-runners kept the themes consistent and developed plot points based on information previously given to the viewers in early seasons. But by no means was any of that actually planned, and in fact, how far things went off the rails is actually pretty amazing.

Once everyone’s posted their thoughts on the final episode, I’ll be happy to post a synopsis of the original plan for the Five Year Arc (the original is eight pages long) from the B5 Script Book series. That’s also a good time for our posters to reflect on how things developed in comparison to their thoughts now in S1, and maybe even for the rest of us to chime in as well.

Also, when “off the rails” describes the normal conditions of TV development and production, I don’t think the analogy fits. No show survives first contact with actual production. When the time comes, I’ll be interested to hear what the new viewers think of what we got in comparison to the original plan, and we’ll see whether “off the rails” or “massively revised and improved” work better to describe what happened.

TheAardvark posted:

One thing that's helping me with the sets is trying to think of the show more as a play than as television. It fits with some of the acting, too, you can tell Michael O'Hare spent a lot of time on stage.

Another thing to keep in mind is that B5 was on the air at the same time as TNG and Deep Space Nine, but its budget was half as much as for those shows. The sets might be cheap, but on things like alien prosthetics and make-up or costuming, B5 can compete.

Midjack
Dec 24, 2007





Edit nope

Aardvark!
Mar 3, 2002


S1E13 - Signs and Portents
Short thoughts for now, I'll come back around with more once The_Doctor posts their thoughts.

I said "What?" and "What the gently caress?" a dozen times this episode. I was thinking "wow the shadows are cool, too bad the raiders are boring AF and going to come back" and 10 seconds later "HOLY gently caress LOOK AT THAT HUGE TENTACLE SHIP CLOSING THAT STORYLINE"

great episode, going to binge a lot of this show today I think.

Sad King Billy
Jan 27, 2006

Thats three of ours innit...to one of yours. You know mate I really think we ought to even up the average!

This thread is a joy. I look forward to more first-time reactions.


Avoid the Centaurum Official Business Only thread full of spoilers

Sad King Billy fucked around with this message at 18:25 on Jun 6, 2020

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


Did you skip 1x12 - By Any Means Necessary?

Aardvark!
Mar 3, 2002


The_Doctor posted:

Did you skip 1x12 - By Any Means Necessary?

I didn't, I'm just sticking to high level thoughts/reactions since I have to take notes if I want to remember specific lines/etc. and I'm watching all this on my TV now. I missed posting about 12 because it was the last one I watched before I got busy with other stuff last night.

I'm going to let you do your longer write-ups and add my thoughts after the fact, mostly. Don't feel pressured or anything, I'm just too lazy to do a more thoughtful analysis on my phone.

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The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


TheAardvark posted:

I didn't, I'm just sticking to high level thoughts/reactions since I have to take notes if I want to remember specific lines/etc. and I'm watching all this on my TV now. I missed posting about 12 because it was the last one I watched before I got busy with other stuff last night.

I'm going to let you do your longer write-ups and add my thoughts after the fact, mostly. Don't feel pressured or anything, I'm just too lazy to do a more thoughtful analysis on my phone.

Lol, longer write-ups. I'm writing spur of the moment thoughts into my Notes app while I watch and then c/p-ing them straight into the thread once I've tidied them up.

But ok, 1x12 here we go!

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