Contents: Overview - Backplot - Questions - Analysis - Notes - JMS
The evidence of a Centauri connection to the cargo ship attacks is revealed to the Alliance.
P5 Rating: 9.21 Production number: 517 Original air date: June 10, 1998 Written by J. Michael Straczynski Directed by Goran Gajic
Well, the next episode is even more so...and the one after that, more so still. You get a slight breather for an episode or so -- still very strongly arc, though, just not as in-your-face hardhitting -- and then the last are whammers.
"I suspect a stream of apologies to you are about to begin."
Yeah, right, and pandas will fly out of my butt.
Since a number of folks have asked, here is the opening scene as written. (I only have the first draft in my home computer, modifications were done in the office, which involved trimming some of this for time.)
FADE IN: EXT. BABYLON 5: A new shot, closer, emphasizing the darkness of the station in eclipse. INT. DELENN'S QUARTERS - BEDROOM Sheridan is in bed, alone as we will discover in a moment. He rolls over, stirring, and we SHOOT PAST HIM to the doors, where we SEE a single flickering light through the translucent glass. He sits up. INT. DELENN'S QUARTERS - FRONT ROOM REVERSING past Delenn to the bedroom doors. She is seated on the floor, a single candle burning before her, the flame halfway down it, praying or meditating as the doors open and Sheridan stands in the opening. His voice is quiet. SHERIDAN Delenn...? Are you all right? She nods, distantly, not taking her eyes off the candle. SHERIDAN You should sleep. It'll be morning soon. You'll need all your strength for what's ahead. She nods again, but doesn't move. He gives it a BEAT, knowing she is in a place where he can never reach her, then goes back into the bedroom, leaving the door open. We PUSH IN SLOWLY on Delenn's face TIME-CUT - HER QUARTERS - LATER - ON THE CANDLE The fragile, guttering flame has now burned three-fourths of the way down. As we slowly PAN UP to Delenn's face, not having moved in all this time, we become aware of the SOUND of the shower running. She doesn't note it, until it stops. Then there's a BEAT and she looks up toward ANGLE - THE BEDROOM Still mainly dark, suggesting pre-dawn, mainly just the light spilling from the bathroom entrance as Sheridan comes out in a robe, toweling his hair. His manner here is sober, almost somber. He's trying to keep this normal, but knows that this is going to be a difficult and momentous day. The more we can set that tone here, the better. SHERIDAN It's...all yours. She nods, distantly. WIDEN as he goes to the bed and sits. He pulls on one slipper, puts his foot down, and picks up the other slipper...and just sort of stops. He doesn't want to put it on. He doesn't want this day to come. He doesn't want to do what he knows he's going to have to do. The slipper just dangles from his fingers, the strings cut. Delenn gets up, approaches and sits next to him, both with that faraway, haunted look. She touches his back, and leans against his shoulder for a moment, both taking comfort and strength in the momentary contact. Then she gets up and moves into the bathroom, the robe sliding off her shoulders as she steps OS. A BEAT, and Sheridan finds the wherewithal to put on the other slipper...and sits there momentarily as we HEAR the VO SOUND of a GAVEL POUNDING, and the VO SOUND of the council, along with: SHERIDAN (VO) There comes a moment, in all of our lives, when we have to do something we'd rather not do. When we know something we'd rather not know. This is one such moment. He stands and moves OS.
I took a great deal of care in blocking out every shot in that one, as opposed to some other cases, as with Mike Vejar, where I wrote, in "The Face of the Enemy," "They pull down Sheridan like a pack of wolves bringing down a lion" knowing that he would then take that and turn it into art. And he did.