A fugitive with sensitive information about the Earth government flees
to Babylon 5.
Tony Steedman as Dr. Everett Jacobs.
Bernie Casey as Derek Cranston.
Richard Moll as Max.
Wanda De Jesus as Sarah.
P5 Rating: 8.20
Production number: 213
Original air date: March 1, 1995
Written by J. Michael Straczynski
Directed by Menachem Binetski
- After the victory over the Dilgar, the Earth Alliance experienced a
period of rapid expansion bolstered by a general sense of optimism,
a sense that the future was bright. Somewhere along the way, that
was lost -- Dr. Franklin says the future was like waiting for that special
toy for Christmas, and when you get it you find that the reality doesn't
measure up to your expectations.
- Dr. Franklin studied medicine at Harvard. One of his teachers, Dr.
Everett Jacobs, went on to become then-Vice President Clark's personal
physician. Dr Franklin says, "A lot of us looked up to him as a role model.
He's the best there is."
- Dr. Jacobs examined Clark before and after the "accident" on Earth
Force One that killed President Santiago -- and found no evidence of
the viral infection Clark used as an excuse to leave the ship
shortly before it was destroyed.
- How and when will Dr. Jacobs' data be used?
- What did Kosh and his ship say to each other after Sheridan and the
others left the docking bay?
- What did Kosh teach Sheridan?
- How did Sheridan convince Kosh to allow his ship to be used to save
- What did the ship "sing" to Dr. Jacobs?
- Why was the fact that Kosh's ship is alive such a surprising thing
to have confirmed, when a simple "scan for life forms" was able to
detect it? In all their surface probes while the ship sat in the
docking bay, it seems odd that nobody
thought to scan for life, especially since it was already known or at
least suspected that Vorlons use organic technology (cf.
- Sheridan mentions to Kosh that there's a council meeting to discuss
the Narn refugee problem. That might be related to the smuggling
operation started in
"Acts of Sacrifice"
-- has it been revealed already? (Not necessarily, of course; there
are probably thousands, if not millions, of refugees who have nothing
to do with that operation.)
- Kosh speaks to his ship, and it displays some text in an unknown
script, presumably the Vorlon written language. That implies that
Kosh and his ship are not in telepathic contact, or at least not
when he's not on board -- somewhat remarkable, considering that Kosh
and the ship have both demonstrated telepathy or something like it
"All Alone in the Night"
and the ship in this episode, both with Dr. Jacobs and, more
importantly, the maintenance workers referred to by Ivanova.)
- There may be a Ranger (cf.
"The Coming of Shadows")
in this episode, though it's very subtle. As Sheridan and Garibaldi
reach the bottom of the stairs, just before Sheridan sees the red
ribbon, a man walks by the two of them, wearing the same outfit as
the Ranger from the aforementioned episode. Which might be
coincidence, except that Garibaldi notices the man, even turns and
watches him climb the stairs, before looking back at Sheridan, who
is meanwhile occupied with the ribbon.
- A couple viewers have commented that Sheridan looks a bit too
smug as he gives the data crystal to his co-conspirator at the end,
almost as if that isn't the real crystal. Is it? Does he trust
her? Is he up to something other than what the General thinks he is?
(Recall that we never heard his answer in
"All Alone in the Night.")
Also, he doesn't give her Dr. Jacobs' code to unlock the data, though
of course he could simply be giving her an unencrypted copy.
- On a related note, did Sheridan keep a copy of the crystal for himself?
- Sheridan confronts Kosh twice. The first time a bit tentatively, the second time
directly. Amazingly, he engages Kosh's interest and actually begins what may
develop into a dialog (or at least a monologue) with Kosh.
Also of note, the first time Sheridan confronts Kosh he says that Kosh "called to
him." This is a reference to the dream sequence in "All Alone in the Night".
Kosh replies, "I sought understanding. I listened to the song. Your
thoughts became the song." Sheridan asks, "Has this ever happened before?"
and Kosh says, "Once." When was that? One possibility is
Talia Winters (cf.
-- Kosh told her to "listen to the music, not the song."
- Kosh's second conversation with Sheridan, of course, bears close analysis,
especially given its relation to Sheridan's dream in
"All Alone in the Night."
- Sheridan: "You wanted to see me?"
- Kosh: "You wanted to see me."
- "Well, I guess everybody does. See what you really are,
inside that encounter suit."
- "They are not ready. They would not understand."
Analysis: It's not obvious exactly who he means by
"they." At least one person was ready to
see Kosh, namely Delenn (cf.
Of course, it begs the question once again:
what is Kosh, that one might not "understand" when
one saw him? (And why does he care whether people understand?)
- "Am I ready?"
- "No. You do not even understand yourself."
Analysis: Is Kosh speaking in a general sense here --
"You aren't self-actualized" -- or is there something specific
about Sheridan that Kosh knows and Sheridan doesn't?
- "Could you help me to understand you?"
- "Can you help me to understand you?"
- "Well, I can try. Is that what you want? An exchange of
information? I tell you something about me, you tell me
something about you?"
- "No. You do not understand. Go." Kosh turns away.
- "Dammit, what do you want? What do you want from me? You
know, ever since I got here I've had the feeling that... that
you've been watching me. The records show you hardly ever
went to council meetings until I showed up. When I was
captured... it was you who reached out and touched my mind.
Now you call me here... why? Just to throw me out? Are we
just toys to you? Huh? What do you want?"
- Kosh spins around to face Sheridan again. "Never ask that
Analysis: Almost undoubtedly a reference to Morden's
"Signs and Portents"
-- but it raises another question of its own, namely, why does
that question mean anything special to Kosh? How does Kosh
know what Morden asked of the various ambassadors? Perhaps
it's what the Shadows always ask, since Kosh seems to know
about them. Perhaps the Vorlons were, themselves, asked that
question a thousand years ago.
- "At least I got a response out of you. So what'll it be,
- "I will teach you."
- "About yourself?"
- "About you. Until you are ready."
- "For what?"
- "To fight legends."
Analysis: Two interpretations are immediately
apparent: "to fight the Shadows" (who are legendary to the
Narn and probably others) or "to dispel myths." The first
seems too obvious, given Kosh's tendency to be
cryptic. The second interpretation suggests that the Vorlons
aren't revealing themselves because they feel they'll be
associated with something from mythology. Once Sheridan
learns to combat those preconceptions, he will be ready.
(See Notes.) Alternately, it could
refer to Sheridan himself; he's a legend of sorts to the
Minbari, possibly an obstacle to the joining of humans and
Minbari as envisioned by Delenn (cf.
"All Alone in the Night.")
- Do we now have a clue to the telepathic abilities of the Vorlons?
This reference to "the song" and Sheridan's thoughts "becoming" the
song during his dream sequence hint rather strongly that telepathy
is the Vorlon's primary means of communication. If so, then this
confirms that Sheridan's dream wasn't altogether a dream, and that
he may have some latent/budding psi skills himself.
Further note: The constant jabber that occurs when Kosh speaks. It sounds like
there are...many "voices" in it. If telepathy is common to
Vorlons, then they may have some equivalent to a "hive mind", or at least constant
and unbounded access to each other. If so, then why does Kosh periodically return
to the Vorlon homeworld? Further, does the same physical "Kosh" return? Still
further, if each Vorlon is to a greater or lesser extent all Vorlons, does it
matter which physical Vorlon is present? Taken to the extreme, the tag "Kosh" is
simply a convenient referent supplied by the Vorlon hive-mind to the folks at B5.
(Of course, it may well be the ship that needs to return
home, not Kosh at all.)
- In this episode we see that the ship is an independent entity, in essence a
living creature. It shows up as a non-human life form, even though we are shown
that Kosh himself was not on board. Further, Doctor Jacobs says that the ship
"sang to him" while he was unconcious and aboard. This hints strongly that the
ship shares "the song," which means that it's part of the Vorlon community mind.
If the ship is part of the Vorlon super-entity, and if the ship is itself organic
technology, then this implies that the Vorlons can create any kind of physical
creature they want, with that creature sharing the community mind. That means
that the ship is nearly as much or as much a Vorlon as Kosh.
- A number of readers have speculated that the ship is actually Kosh,
and the encounter suit just a remote probe or a servant. That seems
unlikely, though, given the events of
in which the Vorlons were ready to start shooting over an attack on
what was in the encounter suit. But it's worthy of mention.
- A Biblical reference that might be relevant, or might just be a
coincidence: During Sheridan's secret meeting,
Sarah tells him "Whatever you do, I suggest that you do it quickly."
This is the same thing Jesus Christ said to Judas Iscariot
immediately before Judas went out to betray Jesus to the Sanhedrin.
If this isn't a simple coincidence, the implication is that Sheridan
will eventually betray someone. The victim isn't clear, though.
His cadre on B5 are obvious
candidates, as is the cabal he and Hague are members of. But for that
matter, it might be the Psi-Corps (though his betrayal could be
the Psi-Corps, cf.
"All Alone in the Night"
and Bester's comment at the end of
"A Race Through Dark Places.")
A more whimsical connection is that the actress speaking the line
is named Wanda de Jesus.
- A relevant reference might be "Childhood's
End" by Arthur C. Clarke (though the shape of the Vorlon encounter
suit suggests the opposite association from the one in the book.)
- When Franklin and Garibaldi stop to eat, it appears they're actually
munching on Kellogg's NutriGrain Breakfast Bars (though the scene
doesn't provide a close enough look at the bars to tell for sure,
so it probably doesn't count as product placement.)
- During Sheridan's meeting with Sarah, they are in what looks like an
equipment room. She sets up two devices, presumably to defeat any
bugs or scans. The problem is that she leaves them there when she
leaves. During their next meeting they are not in evidence at all,
and again she isn't shown retrieving them before she leaves. Of
course, Sheridan could have taken them. (See
- In addition to its ants (cf.
B5 has roaches.
- Sheridan has what he considers very good shielding on his office. He
talks to Ivanova quite openly there immediately after Agent Cranston
- Kosh's comments to Sheridan bear some resemblance to the Dalai
Lama's observation (cf.
"Points of Departure,")
namely, "It will be even better when you begin to understand what
you do not understand."
- Minor continuity glitch: when the station's scanners are
configured to look for Dr. Jacobs, the display reads "Dr Evert Jacoby,"
not "Dr. Everett Jacobs."
- There was no intended reference to Anne McCaffrey's story; Kosh tends
to speak naturally through a series of musical/tonal/atonal chords,
and I figured his ship would communicate in the same way, which to
another would sound a little like singing.
- Will Richard Moll return?
At this point, Richard's part was a one-shot, but if we
come up with the right role, I'd love to see him again.
- What did Sarah leave behind at the
It's a flashlight, and he's also holding one. You caught
a very small glitch. Originally, he came out, flashed twice with
his flashlight, giving the code; then she did the same, and
THEN stepped out of the shadows, putting her flashlight down on
the ledge beside her. It took too long, though, interminably,
so when we edited it, we cut out that sequence...and
hoped nobody'd notice the flashlight sitting there.
- From "Infection," the visiting Doctor points out that, regarding
organic technology, "some even say the Vorlons have got it." All
this stuff gets set up somewhere.
Compiled by Dave Zimmerman
and Steven Grimm.