- Why was Claudia Christian's name taken out of the
credits but Jason Carter's left in?
We had no choice. Contractually, when we moved "Sleeping in Light" into
the fifth season, we had to move her credit from "Deconstruction" or
incur an additional episode's payment. We didn't even realize this
until WB called and put us on notice about this literally 3 days before
the episode was uplinked. It wasn't a choice we had; they said that it
had to be moved. We could leave Jason in the credits because he didn't
appear in SiL.
- Any significance to the Agamemnon clip used to
replace her credit?
It seemed an appropriate placeholder when WB told us we had to
omit Claudia's credit because she also appears in (the new) 522,
"Sleeping in Light," to avoid incurring fees.
- Since this episode was numbered 422 rather than 501,
will the production numbers of season 5 episodes be changed
Yes, the S5 episodes will be renumbered prior to broadcast.
More Soviet Revisionism in action....
- Do you ever get the urge to thumb your nose at
people on the net who predict B5's demise?
Nope...no intentions of doing that.
I have something MUCH better in mind....
- It's discreet...but not obscure.
And best of all...it's eternal...and the whackos who've bugged me
for five years are not.
- A few people have interpreted the final
card as "meanspirited" (when it's on one level a reaction *to* five
years of constant carping and meanspiritedness from lots of sectors,
from the nets to the press and elsewhere)...but what it is, is a
statement of hope. That whenever you try something different, there
are going to be naysayers, and people who say it can't be done, and
certainly can't be done by *you*.
It ain't just B5, it's any dream out there.
And in the end, they are wrong.
That's the message of the card.
That, and the truth that in 10 years the naysayers will be
forgotten, and made irrelevant...but the show, the *show*...goes on.
And will be around long after they and I have gone to dust. And all
people will know when they see that card, 50 years from now, was that
some jerks said it couldn't be done, and they were wrong, because they
are *always* wrong. If you have the dream, the ability and the
passion, you can bring your dreams to life despite overwhelming
opposition. That's the message.
But for those on the other side, they will never see anything
other than meanspiritedness because that's all they can *ever*
see...because that's all they can bring to the table.
There's an old saying about books, which I'll rephrase to
include B5: Babylon 5 is like a book, and a book is like a mirror: if
an ass peers in, you can't exactly expect an apostle to peer out.
- There will always be short-term
setbacks, but as long as we climb back a few inches higher than we were
before we fell down, we keep moving toward the goal of becoming a
better people, and getting off the planet. Taking our place among the
stars. While it's vaguely possible that I may *see* a Mars colony
sometime within my lifetime, I know that I will never live there...but
that ain't the point, it isn't a victory if *I* do it, and a failure if
*I* don't, it's if *we* do it or not. Maybe we'll do it today, maybe
we'll do it tomorrow, the point is to decide to DO it, and then by god
And yeah, that little closing card is going to remain on the
show for its life...which will be long, long after its detractors (and
admittedly myself) have gone to dust. On the one hand, it is a
statement of hope to anyone else out there who has a dream, to follow
it no matter who speaks against you, no matter the odds, no matter what
they say to or about you, no matter what roadblocks they throw in your
way. What matters is that you remain true to your vision.
On the other hand, for the reviewers and the pundits and the
critics and the net-stalkers who have done nothing but rag on this show
for five years straight, it is also a giant middle finger composed of
red neon fifty stories tall, that will burn forever in the night.
In billiards, we call that a bank-shot.
- Does the Great Burn mean the B5 crew ultimately
It depends on your point of view.
The fact, as I see it, is that no one and nothing will ever solve
all of our problems at once, now and forever. People will always be
people. You can't wave a magic wand and fix it all.
Yes, there was another war...but had the Shadows not been stopped by
our characters, there likely wouldn't have been a human race at ALL
Yes, there was a war, and many died in it...as tends to happen in
war...but the nominal right side in it came out on top, which would
not have been the case but for Garibaldi's simulacra giving them a
leg up on things.
We have had, continue to have, and will always have wars, and grief,
and struggle...we will climb up and fall down...but each time we
climb a little higher, and in the end, we *do* build the world that
our ancestors would have wanted for us...we *do* leave the cradle at
last, and we take our place among the stars teaching those who
For my money, that's as happy an ending as we or anyone can ever
- You spoiled the events of season five!
As with anything else, B5 (in whatever incarnation) is about *process*.
You saw Londo being strangled by G'Kar...but you didn't know how they
got there. You know the result of the Earth/Minbari war...but I suspect
there will be a lot of surprises in "In the Beginning."
As with all things, the joy is in the going. We all know we're going to
die, that as the poet said, "we are born astride the grave." But
knowing that inevitable reality has never stopped human endeavor
It's the journey and the doing that matters.
- Re: speechwriters and others hanging around after the
fall...look at the remains of the Soviet Union. After the fall of the
communist party, you'd think they would all have been run out of town
on a rail. But many of them just shifted over and found similar
positions, or kept the communist party going, after everything they'd
The problem with most people is that they don't hold a grudge
near long enough.
I'd have to check, but yeah, I believe we stuck a ranger symbol
on the encounter suit.
- About the 2362 sequence
Stephen filmed that sequence by having all of the cast on the
set at the same time, running multiple film cameras to get each version
- From a discussion of a 1997 convention featuring
BTW, if you want to flip Stephen out, and you get this before leaving
the con, give him the following message from me (I don't have the hotel
info at hand). Tell him Joe says this:
"Don't worry anymore about using mainly securecam style coverage in act
3, I've just come up with another approach where I can cover it in
dialogue to let you do whatever you want with the camera, so you'll
have all the flexibility there you want."
Here's a use of a convention you haven't seen much before....
- The "Just Married" label was missing from the
shuttle when it docked.
The painted letters were on the *right* side of the shuttle as
it went in. The CGI inside the bay showed the left side.
We don't miss these things.
- How did Delenn get into the studio?
Most TV studios that I've seen have back doors that open out onto the
back lot or the outside for fire control reasons. You can get into any
of the 3 B5 stages from the outside in, oh, about 5 seconds through any
of a number of doors. (Note to anyone looking on: yes, those stage
doors are secured, and there are guards, and unless you're a Minbari
you're not getting in.) And most of the TV studios I've been in have
been the same.
- It was mainly Earth that bore the burden of the great
Burn, and yes, that was the one Garibaldi got into....
- Wouldn't the colonies offer Earth some help?
Some probably would offer to help...but if technology is now
suspect, some might not want that help...other colonies might be of the
"screw 'em, they got what they deserved" perspective...often politics
gets in the way of charity.
- "By any chance, is the post-apocalyptic religious order
shown in "Deconstruction . ." a direct decendant of Brother Theo's
order on Babylon 5?"
It's altogether possible....
And Theo is only awaiting a story worth bringing him in for.
- Interesting aside...for the last 6-8 months, I've been
doing a fair amount of research into medieval England, especially the
medieval church, for a play I'm writing (which may become a novel if I'm
not careful). Dumped several hundred dollars on a massive order from
Amazon.com back a few months ago to fill out what I needed. That was
what tangentially led me into the post-Burn sequence in
"Deconstruction." My brain has been full of monks for the last 8
months or so, and knowing the role they played in maintaining secular
knowledge from about 500 AD and for some time thereafter, that seemed
the perfect route to go that would also resonate with the look of the
Rangers and the religious caste Minbari and the whole feel we were
It was only when I was about halfway into the act that I
thought, "Oh, crud, this is the same area Canticle explored." And for
several days I set it aside and strongly considered dropping it, or
changing the venue (at one point considered setting it in the ruins of
a university, but I couldn't make that work realistically...who'd be
supporting a university in the ruins of a major nuclear war? Who'd
have the *resources* I needed? The church, or what would at least LOOK
like the church. My sense of backstory here is that the Anla-shok
moved in and started little "abbeys" all over the place, using the
church as cover, but rarely actually a part of it, which was why they
had not gotten their recognition, and would never get it. Rome
probably didn't even know about them, or knew them only distantly.)
Anyway...at the end of the day, I decided to leave it as it was,
since I'd gotten there on an independent road, we'd already had a
number of monks on B5, and there's been a LOT of theocratic science
fiction written beyond Canticle...Gather Darkness, aspects of
- The future wasn't being transmitted back; we were seeing
the records of the past from the point of view of the final character,
one million years hence, who has come to collect them prior to the final
chapter in Earth's history.
- "My personal nit is that JMS has the sun going nova in
only a million years. This seems several orders of magnitude too soon
Actually, the computer voice specifies that it is continuing to
note atypical solar emissions...atypical meaning something unusual is
- And what if you, say, interfered substantially with
the mass of the sun by, say, causing a series of jump points to open
up *inside* the sun across several days?
- You'd also substantially decrease the mass of Sol,
which as I understand it, would result in the sun going nova.
- A lot of folks have found the eventual "going out" of
Sol to be depressing...but as was stated 'way back in our VERY FIRST
EPISODE, this is the one thing we can be sure WILL happen, sooner or
later (probably later). Ed. note: "Infection" was indeed the first
episode shot, but aired fourth.
All the more reason to get off the planet, asap.
- Did the future humans leave the galaxy as the Vorlons
No point in leaving the galaxy; stars go nova, it only affects
the immediate vicinity (big as that is). By this point, they were in
the position of the Vorlons, and now have to take their (our) place
guiding the younger races, the next wave, while not getting in the way
and remembering the lesson of the shadow/vorlon conflict.
- What about the other races?
The Minbari eventually make it; the Narn and Centauri do not.
They don't die out, they just don't hit a state of First One-ishness,
which is darn close to immortality (barring violence).
- Was Sinclair prescient? Did you have the sun's
destruction mapped out way back in season one?
One needn't be prescient...it's *going* to happen one day.
And to the second half...yeah, Deconstruction (or at least the
events that would go into it) was mapped out back then.
- I think it's fair to say that Sinclair has been in large
measure forgotten by Earth by the time of Deconstruction...but Valen
lives on in the memories of the Minbari...a reasonable trade-off.
- They were speaking English a million years in the
That's what you heard, that doesn't mean that's what it was; same as
when you go to Minbar, they're not speaking English, that's just our
hearing of it.
Since when do news anchors quote the Bible?
Why were Sheridan's childhood photos in black and white?
Even now portraits are often done in black and white just for artistic
NYU is still around in the future?
Trinity College is a working college in Ireland that dates back to the
American Revolution. Ed. note: In fact, Trinity College is even
older than that -- it was founded in 1592.
- Did Lise and Garibaldi get married?
No, they're not yet married.