Babylon 5

Season 1 Episode 4

Born to the Purple

Aired Monday 7:00 PM Feb 09, 1994 on
out of 10
User Rating
171 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Londo's career is in jeopardy when a beautiful slave seduces him and steals a sensitive computer file. Garibaldi investigates an unauthorized use of a restricted communications channel.

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  • Hard luck G'Kar

    An amusing turn of events in that G'Kar got to save Londo's career. The two really play off each other well, and I have a feeling this pairing will be one of the most interesting and entertaining in the series. I'm thinking along the lines of DS9's Odo and Quark.

    Londo and Adira, well, I don't know why but not quite to my taste. But I can appreciate the concept of falling victim to lust while the target of his affections wreaks havoc. And Londo in general begins to grow on me - some of the things he comes out with are hilarious. "Moon faced assassin of joy" indeed!

    Still trundling along at 7.5 for me here.moreless
  • Born to the Purple

    Born to the Purple was a really great episode of Babylon 5. I really enjoyed watching this episode because we learned more about the characters, there was action, and intriguing drama. This episode gave viewers more information about Londo and parts of who he truly is. I think this episode is another tribute to the overall success and appeal of Babylon 5. This series is set in outer space and has situations that we the viewers all deal with. I look forward to the next episode. There are a lot of directions this series can go and I can't wait to watch more!!!!!!!moreless
  • G'Kar saving Londo's career and the reputation of Centauri prime.. What a day...

    This is the episode that is somehow little less impressive than previous two. This had some really great irony there - the Londo and G'Kar.. the way one saved other... but G'Kar did get something in return too.

    The ofocurse the talks between Narn and Centauri and leaving those attachés to talk for ambassadors - oh, it was fun.. And taking game for Vir so it could only end up on the other side.

    I liked the story of Adira and now thinking on future - who could imagine that this woman will later play such a vital role in the destiny of Centauri Republic and lead to it's fall.. in some ways.. I love the irony in this episode.moreless
  • More character development for Londo

    After being absent for the Soul Hunter episode, Londo and G'Kar return to centre stage once again for this episode which majors on the Centauri.

    We find Londo in a relationship with an exotic dancer, something that would normally be something of a disagrace. It allows us to see the he is a person of great depth and complexity, yearning for the glory days 'the Great Centauri republic', whilst trying to find personal happiness. It turns out that Adira, his mistress, is a slave belonging to a bloke called Trakis, who is trying to get his hands on enough dirt to bring down the ambassador and seize the initiative in some unspecified battle against the Centauri.

    At the same time, Londo is negotiating with G'Kar - in the end, Londo has little choice to but to give in to a compromise in order to get Sinclair to help him with his personal issues with Adira and Trakis. We see the sparring and striving to get the upper hand as G'Kar and Mollari clash. At this stage, the two protagonists seem evenly matched, but we'll soon see Londo gain ascendancy.

    There is a secondary plot involving Ivanova using restricted comms channels to contact her dying father back on earth, and Garibaldi's feverish attempts to play Sherlock Holmes. The main purpose of this appears to be show the more human side of Ivanova, which hadn't really surfaced at this point.

    Another solid episode in the early part of the story, telling us more about the main characters.moreless
  • what do you want you moon faced assasin of joy.

    this episode of babylon 5 born to the purple mainly focuses around londo. commandar sinclair helps to proctect londo's political career when an exotic dancer named adria seduces the ambassador and steals secrets files which threaten to bring about the down fall of the centauri royal family. the ambassador falls for the dancer we will see adria in future episodes of babylon 5. which may bring the down fall of londo. meanwhile the chief garibaldi finds out that someone has been using the gold channel for personal messages. and we also find out that commandar ivanova recives some heart breaking news from home.moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • Centauri law permits individuals to own Centauri slaves. Owners are legally responsible for the actions of their slaves. This appears to be a slave system of economics rather than of caste. According to Trakis, powerlessness and slavery is the fate of all Centauri who don't play the game of blackmail and backstabbing.

    • Trivia: Londo's access code for the Purple Files is, not surprisingly, "Wine - Women - Song"

    • Continuity: When she drugs Londo's drink, Adira leans forward and kisses one cheek. But then the camera cuts to a reverse shot, and she's kissing the opposite cheek.

  • QUOTES (7)

  • NOTES (2)

    • Working title: "Amaranth"

    • In this episode, Mary Woronov is credited in the opening titles instead of Julie Caitlin Brown (a.k.a. "JCB"). Woronov was originally meant to be part of the regular cast, but was replaced because she could not handle the heavy prosthetics the Narn role required.


    • Londo: We Centauri live our lives for appearances: position, status, title. These are the things by which we define ourselves. But when I look beneath the mask I am forced to wear, I see only emptiness.
      This quote from Londo about the Centauri way of life is reminiscent of a quote by Captain Ahab in Herman Melville's Moby Dick: "All visible objects, man, are but as pasteboard masks. But in each event "in the living act, the undoubted deed "there, some unknown but still reasoning thing puts forth the mouldings of its features from behind the unreasoning mask. If man will strike, strike through the mask! How can the prisoner reach outside except by thrusting through the wall?"