some Monday links and TV

August 17, 2015

My event at the Tattered Cover two weeks ago was recorded, and you can now listen to the podcast!

And here’s a new Holy Taco Church newsletter!

Current TV watching:  I’ve started re-watching Babylon 5 all the way through. I’ll take as long as I need. I’m only up to season 1 ep. 6, but I am reminded how much I really really like this show. This is my third time through, I think. I also think that criticisms of the show — bad acting, bad writing, bad production values, etc. — are off base. These aspects of the show aren’t any worse than the average episode of 90’s Star Trek, and criticisms of it ignore the incredibly ambitious thematic and narrative scope of the show.  Having seen the whole thing through once, it’s very cool to see the seeds planted early on.  Earlier than you might remember.  Ep. 1.06 might be our first glimpse of a Shadow vessel, though we won’t know what they are for another season yet.  Ep. 1.05 features a side plot where the various alien races give presentations on their dominant religion, and in the middle of the Minbari ceremony Delenn gives this very significant look to Commander Sinclair — and that won’t pay off for a couple more seasons.

Also in that episode, right at the end, Sinclair present the dominant Earth/Human religion — no one knows what he’s going to do, he hasn’t told anyone about the presentation he’s worked up.  Well, this is what he does:  he has gathered together representatives from every different religion he could and introduces them to the alien ambassadors one by one.  And the line of representatives stretches out, dozens and dozens of them.  It’s so earnest and endearing, it’s just great.

Complain about the production values of the show all you want, but that one scene of Sinclair presenting Earth religions in all their astonishing diversity is as great — and more deftly presented — a celebration of human diversity and ingenuity and value as Kirk or Picard ever gave a speech about.


4 Responses to “some Monday links and TV”

  1. I always watched B5 for the story, and that’s what always kept me coming back.

  2. WanabePBWriter Says:

    I think it is more important to see Babylon 5 in order than any other series ever made. Years back I saw the episode Were Delenn is fretting about her hair and having dinner with the Commander. It seemed so very silly and pointless without knowing the back story, thankfully a friend convinced me to give it a try from the beginning. By the time I was up to that same episode I was totally in, and the episode made complete sense. I think that most of the haters have more than likely seen only one or two episodes out of order and you just cannot do it that way.

  3. LOVE Babylon 5…for my money, it’s still the best TV show I’ve ever seen. It was simply the best at telling one whole coherent story from beginning to end. No one’s really done it since, IMO.

  4. Griggk the goblin Says:

    One of the things that always bugged me about Roddenberry’s Show was that if there was any mention of religion or gods, it was something to be debunked or disproved, Prime Directive be damned. Over on Bab5, though, religion plays a major role in understanding the races and the characters…heck, without the thrust of the Mimbari and Narn theologies, there wouldn’t have been a story arc.

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