Although this show is traditionally thought of as a sci-fi show, I believe that the writing is so good that people who normally find this sort of fiction to be over-the-top would be drawn into the intense drama that the writing of this show provides -- written mostly by Joe Michael Straczynski (jms), however there are some notable exceptions.
Make no mistake, this is a character driven show, not a techno-babble driven show. Things don't happen merely because the ingenuity of the objects present demand it, but because the characters are making the events happen.
Rarely have I seen a television show that can generate such a range of emotions in the viewer. I must say that the music is probably some of the best music made for a television show ever, in that the mood set is always just on the mark (music by Christopher Franke).
Now to be fair, some people probably rate this show a bit lower than a 10 because of the last season. Although I admit that season 5 is not as good as the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th seasons (which are the best), it is not really the fault of the writer. There was a good chance that the show was going to be cancelled at the end of season 4, and it was only renewed at the last minute. So season 5 was flung together, with most of the source material used up in season 4. For that reason, I do not detract from the rating of the core of the show (seasons 2-4).
Likewise, season 1, is viewed by many to be a bit slower than seasons 2,3, & 4. But so many TV shows are finding their feet in season 1, I tend not to let that detract from my rating either.
What can you expect sitting down to watch this show for the first time? An amazing story whose continuity is simply amazing, stories of characters who change deeply throughout the seasons, and visually stunning effects that hold up today, especially amazing given the budget and time when this show was made.
The character acting in this show is simply unparalleled in television. I don't know how jms managed to get so many fine actors at one time in one show. But you will notice how good they are once they really get rolling in their parts.
This show is simply a piece of artwork, and is well worth experiencing - especially given this age of "NetFlix".
I would not be surprised if a resurfacing of this show happens some decade in the future, as I think it's popularity will continue to grow over time.
I originally watched this show as it came out, and loved it at the time. But I could never fully enjoy it having not seen all the episodes.
Once the DVDs came out, I bought all 5 seasons, and the movies. I must say watching the whole series in order gives it a spectacular feel that is unparalleled in the world of non-Trek Sci-Fi. The whole of the show is worth watching, but I recommend watching the Prequel movie first: "In the Beginning" it really gives a great look into the workings of the characters, especially Delenn and Sinclair.
The whole of the cast seems absolutely perfect. There is not a single casting choice I would question. In particular, Captain Sheridan is possibly the best Captain of all the Sci-Fi serieses I have seen. He has the personality and presence that really mark the show. Marcus Cole, Londo Molari, Vir Cotto, G’kar, Garibaldi, Commander Susan Ivanova, are all unforgettable, and I defy you to forget the Vorlons. Morden makes a fantastic evil character, working for the Shadows, his performance is unbelievable. All the alien races fit beautifully into the world of Bab 5. The Minbari, Centauri, Narn, Vorlon... and all the others. They are probably the most recognizable SciFi species outside of Trek, and for good reason, they are all memorable and unique, probably more so than all the Trek Races.
I don't really want to spoil any storyline for those who haven't seen the series, but the whole of the story, especially the season-long story arcs are great. The first few seasons most notably are fantastic in regards to their story line, with Season 5 being somewhat less spectacular. The Shadows in particular, are a favorite of mine, and that war has some stunning graphics, way ahead of the 1995 baseline. The ships are all beautiful and I would love to pilot a Whitestar. Given the weaponry and the space battles, Bab 5 probably has more pound for pound beauty than other shows in the genre.
Of course once again, the fate of the universe lies in the ability of humanity to pull together the races of the galaxy.
This was J. Michael Straczynski's biggest and best work. The writing in this show, mostly due to JMS was a true literary work.
I think given the chance, Babylon 5 will fit firmly in your heart as a staple of the genre.
Few US television shows have ever come close to the quality of "Babylon 5", and those that have were anthology shows, such as "The Twilight Zone". Brilliantly written and brilliantly acted, thrilling, sometimes broadly comic, and at the same time capable of impressing the eighty-something retired organist at my church as "the most moral show on television" -- this despite the fact that the creator, J. Michael Straczynski, who also wrote over 90% of the episodes, is a self-avowed atheist.
The entire effect is completely unlike anything you have ever seen, except, perhaps, "Der Ring des Nibelungen" (and the score to "Babylon 5" often feels like Wagner reconceived for the 20th century), because the outline of the plot for the entire five years of the series was written before the pilot was shot -- which means that the entire series must be watched at least twice. You'll be amazed how often a clue is left out in plain sight, years before the payoff.
The entire cast is good, but the three main aliens are stunning: Peter Jurasik as "Londo Mollari" and Andreas Katsulas as "G'Kar" execute a formal tragedy, a decades-long dance of death (not without comic moments); Mira Furlan as "Delenn" has one of the most spectacular roles ever written for an actress in any medium; we see her as a shy young political intern, a freshman politician, a vengeful warrior queen, a diplomat, a kingmaker, a flirt, a wife, a mother, and a crone.
"Babylon 5" is a tale of war and diplomacy, love and hate, fate and personal responsibility, and the two sides of prejudice.
And if you give me $1,000,000 and the cast of "Babylon 5", I'll give you a Shakespeare Festival.
This series was unique.. and still is. The ONLY television series written like a novel with a beginning a middle and an END. Planned with a 5 year story arc right from the beginning. I watched every episode live when it came out and haven't watched it for almost 15 years now, but I STILL remember it. You won't be disappointed. It is NOT one of those series that ropes you in.. and never ends..like they seem to like doing these days...leaving story lines unresolved.. until the show gets canceled. If you watch Babylon 5, when you're done you will have that same feeling you get when you turn the last page of the last chapter of a fantastically written novel.. that feeling you get when you close the book and think.. aahh.. now THAT's how things should be done! That's B5.
Now I'm a fan of alot of Sci-fi's, Star Trek, Stargate, Andromeda etc. but this just blows them out the water. This show is truely a Classic. The storyline starts abit slowly during the 1st season but nearing the end and approaching season 2 it just goes to lightspeed. I've never seen such a riveting and thoroughly engaging story in a Sci-fi drama before in my life! Every episode ties in with future and past events, twists and turns behind every corner! The characters are all marvelously acted and all instantly memorable. Though it ended before it's time, if you haven't already watched this gem of a show I recommend it enormously.
(I know the scores out of ten but...)
A Babylon 5 out of 5 :)
Face the facts: Babylon 5 has set a level that other shows are struggling to meet.
a lot of the c.g.i. now common in a lot of shows was first done one Babylon 5. what is commonplace now was invented and master by the crew on Babylon 5. look at the special effects of ST: Next Generation vs. the effects of Babylon 5. Next Generation was still using models. Babylon 5 was the first show to seamlessly blend live action with computer animation.
but the special effects is just a minor point of Babylon 5. the true strength of this show was the writing. to truely enjoy and feel the magnitude of Babylon, you have to start to watch it from the beginning. elements introduced in the first episode is carried on and developed through out the entire series. Babylon 5 blew away the episodic story-telling of Star Trek and modernized story-arc story-telling. with collected boxed sets, it is now easy to watch Babylon 5 in it's true glory.
it may have been years since Babylon 5 has been on the air but it's still cutting edge and way ahead of the time.
One of Babylon 5's strongest points is the characters, the not so cliched characters. Unique and not transparent. The opinions we developed of them in the first season undoubtedly drastically changed by the end of the show. Nothing is what it seems, as G'Kar often said, making every plot twist that much more unexpected.
And the not so cliched bad guys. They werent just 'evil' for no apparent reason. They had reasons, and they all thought they were doing the right thing, making them so much more difficult to overcome.
The mystery in season 2 and 3 is exhilarating, and the way the show only gave us clues for the first two years. Everything just built up. The show started slow, like a regular episodic sci-fi at first, entertaining, but no big deal. But then conspiracies began to unravel, tension built until it felt like it was going to explode! and it did.
I would say it is a space opera, but perhaps with fewer cliched elements than usual, and somewhat more plausible.
I love this show & never missed one program of this show bcz its my favorite movie of all time. I wish that it came back on television that I can watch it again please bcz I would love to see it again on tv.
I love babylon 5 bcz its my number 1 favorite movie & television program in the whole wide world & never missed an tv program of this show & wish that it came back on television that I can watch it again please bcz I would love to see it again on tv. I don't think my sister Tiffany Weber has ever seen this program before but I wish that it was back on tv so my sister Tiffany Weber could have the chance to see this program please can u guys put it back on tv please for me & the rest of the fans that love Babylon 5 too please.
What can I say? This show might be a bit old, but it's still as addictive as it was when it was launched. It has it all; good laughs, the drama, action, suspension that gives you the chills, dark conspiracies... but most of all, it has a touch of sometimes bitter and scruffy realism which combined into extra ordinary good filming and settings quality (for that time) gives this series that kicking creditability that makes you come back again and again for long marathons and leave you crying for more.
In a nutshell, this is one of those cornerstones that defines sci-fi and others will be measured against. Babylon 5.... We salute you!
Creator and main writer J. Michael Strazynski created a vast universe in which to tell compelling stories within a very well conceived five year arc. The genre is SciFi, but it could just as well have been set in another time and place.
The first time I saw images of Babylon 5, I took one look at Londo's hair and changed the channel. Fortunately for me friends convinced me to give the show another try.
I became entranced by the characters, the actors chosen to play those characters, and the developing storyline. Soon I realized it was not the typical fast food variety of TC show. This was great storytelling on a scale never before done on American television. Instead of the usual idiotic sit-com with wretched laugh track, Babylon 5 told a story which required the viewer to THINK! The show's own history was a main theme. The lore and legends of Babylon 5 were dramatic elements in many episodes.
Soon I very much enjoyed to interaction between characters. Londo and G'Kar were the perfect "odd couple" in this show. In reality, the actors were close friends. Delenn added a most compelling strong feminin side to the otherwise warrior-like Minbari.
The complete story is a novel for television at the very least.
The news of deaths of some beloved actors from this show hit many of us fans hard. First to pass was Richard Biggs aka Doctor Franklin. I think the next was Tim Choate who created the fantastic character "Zathras." Another guest actor of great reputation and a distinguished career was Paul Winfield who portrayed General Frankin, father of Doctor Franklin, passed away next. The most difficult real life death for me was Andreas Katsulas, our beloved G'Kar. G'Kar was the true moral voice of Babylon 5. Few actors have had the opportunity to speak with such eloquence in a TV program.
The deaths of these actors is a reminder to many of how precious life is and how we ought to express our true feelings to our loved ones sooner rather than later.
If you want to see what a true story-arc looks like from one of the best Sci-Fi minds of our time...feel free to lose yourself in what is easily one of the best epics ever.
I was lucky and caught the entire series the first time around and spent time converting those who had not caught the show from it\\\'s early stages. It was and is the best series depicting the space opera. Great graphics for it\\\'s time that will still stand up in today\\\'s digital age. Give the show a chance...the character development is one of the best anywhere...period! You won\'t be dissappointed.
Babylon 5 was a great science fiction show that came out a year after Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. They both had a different take on the classic "starship-and-crew" format of science fiction in the sense that instead of a ship, they used a space station. It took me a few months to realize this shows potential, as I grew up watching Star Trek: The Next Generation and was obviously far more familar and drawn to ST series. I would argue strongly that the middle seasons (2-4) were certainly the best of the series. The beginning of Season 1 was a little sluggish at first and Season 5 definately seemed out of place amongst the first 4.
Babylon 5 was a unique mold-breaking vision set forth by its creator. The series was planned, from beginning to end by its creator. He has a story to tell, with well-written characters and points to make. In B5, characters weren't eliminated because they were unpopular or the actors wanted out, but instead every major character elimination (such as the death of Marcus Cole, the departure of Commander Sinclair, or the elimination of Vorlon Ambassador Kosh) served the overall plot of the show and you could sense that it had some importance. The series, in fact, was so well planned that points and events that were brought up in the first season weren't truely explained or understood until Season 4. Everything in the series had a purpose and a function to the greater story, and this makes B5 not just a great piece of science fiction, but a great piece of art as well.
One of the things I loved about B5 was the continuity of that overall plot from episode to episode. Unlike most previous sci-fi series each episode connected to each other. B5 wasn't a series where each episode completely stood alone, as you saw with Star Trek's original series, Next Generation and early parts of DS9 and Voyager, but instead this was like a 4 or 5 year novel being played out before your eyes. I firmly believe that DS9 took lessons from B5 as we saw some of that connectivity between episode in the later seasons of DS9. B5 paved the way for the creators modern sci-fi sagas, like Sci-Fi Channel's Battlestar Galactica for example, to realize that you could write great sci-fi in that fashion and still have it be successful.
If you love great sci-fi (whether you prefer classic or more progressive sci-fi), B5 is definately worth checking out. When it was on TV, it was often hard to keep up with the plot and follow the episodes if you missed a week or two at certain key points, but its a worthwhile show to get or rent on DVD, since obviously you won't have that problem.
The epic multi-layered story of Babylon 5 takes place over the 5 year run of the series. The cast is superb, the writing is generally excellent, and the sense of place is perfect. Sci-fi grew up with "Babylon 5" and it stands a giant above all that went before. There is much more to the whole alien aspect. Never before had I seen something like this. Each episode got more complicated and thrilling by the minute. Almost every episode ended with a twist for things getting worse. The acting on the series is also outstanding. Watching Andreas Katsulas as G'kar and Peter Jurasik as Londo Mollari, work, is sheer joy.
After watching the first season I was hooked, each season seemed to get better and better. Although Commander Sinclair, a great character left after season one Captain Sheridan, who came in at the beginning of season 2 was good too.
The relationship between Ambassador G'Kar (Narn Ambassador) and Ambassador Londo Mollari (Centauri Republic Ambassador) waa great to watch over the five years of the show.
The Shadow War was one of the best story arcs in the show, it was exciting and once the actual fighting was over with; the only thing left to do was clean up the mess afterwards. This included going to Earth and put President Clark under arrest, as he had collaborated with the Shadows and had turned earth literally into a police state. Also the shadows allies the Drakh had to be dealt with, we slowly learn of their plans and what they involve as we go beyond the shadow war.
Also another great point in the series is where Sheridan has to declare independence from Earth; due to the orders of President Clark and his regime back on Earth. We see the difficulties of this move and having to find funding to keep the station running, from other legitimate sources.
The Telepath war was also another interesting point in the series, and the relationship Lyta Alexander with Byron and his group of rogue telepaths. The Psi Corps and espcecially Psi Cop Bester are always interesting villains to see; their conflict with Lyta, Byron and the rogue telepaths was also another good point in the series.
The characters were all interesting including Captain Sheridan, Michael Garibaldi, Susan Ivanova, Delenn, G'Kar, Londo, Lennier and Vir Cotto. I enjoyed learning more about the Mimbari, Narn and Centauri as the series continued.
The series had an exciting final year that did not disappoint, in the final episode it was great to see an appearance of one of my favourite characters Ivanova. It was great to see the story of sheridan and his crew told to completion. I look back on the five years of babylon 5 and it will remain one of my favourite science fiction series.
I used to watch this show religously. I thought all the characters were great. And the relationships between all the chracters were so deep. I did not particularly like Sinclair, but when Sheridan came aboard I really got interested. Sinclair was firey. I also liked Garibaldi. His humorous quipps always brought a some comedic relief to almost every episode. I miss this show. I wish someone would bring it back or at least make a movie or even better continue the story where it left off when the series ended. A Babylon 5 big screen movie would be great. I would go see it. For those who never got to see it, you would never understand.
Incredible writing. You know those television moments that seem fake, artificial and constructed without much coherence? Fear not - you will get almost none of those with B5.
If you like something of substance that honestly tries explore what the near future could look like for humans - this is it. You get to watch it start and you get to watch it end.
The story is so well crafted that the writers have accounted for almost any kind of event to be accommodated by the main plot. You can not understand that when watching the show as everything is running smoothly. The script was so well written that they could have and on occasion they did write off characters and actors out of the film with practically no damage to the series.
Acting is not the one crafted to artificially impress the audience - but the kind where things go naturally.
The series is more about social development than sci-fi. So if you need the constant flashy cgi bits and ludicrous stunts. Its not for you.
It is the finest show I've ever seen in my life. Even people who dislike the substance compliment it on a job well done.
I don't know all that J. Michael Straczynski had to do to produce this epic series but I am glad he did it.
A large number of science fiction series these days suffer from the 'reset button' complex. This means that, while an individual episode might be interesting, it will rarely ever have any effect on any future episodes. A perfect example of this is Star Trek: The Next Generation. In 90+% of the episodes the actions of one episode are completly independant of any other episode. Yes, there are some exceptions (Q episodes etc.) but they are in the minority.
When they moved onto ST:DS9 they improved this significantly but it was never even close to the continuity of Babylon 5.
In Babylon 5 the entire series was a continuous story with only a handfull of episodes that did not have at least some effect on others. The fact that J. Michael Straczynski wrote the whole series beforehand meant he was able to tell the story continuously with few "unconnected" episodes.
Babylon 5 was a 110 episode long story that kept you entertained with fascinating characters who evolved throughout the series. They did not just play a character that had certain traits and repeated them in each episode. G'Kar (Andreas Katsulas) and Londo Mollari (Peter Jurasik) are perfect examples of this. G'Kar goes from the "bad guy" in the beginning and transforms almost spiritually to the selfless "good guy" in the end whereas Londo travels in the opposite direction.
Over all I would give this series a 10 out of 10 with all but 3 or 4 episodes getting a 9 or better out of 10.
"I'll be in the car" Commander Susan Ivanova (War without End)
"Ivanova:Find what you need and lets get out of here, we are running out of time.
Zathras:Cannot run out of time. There is infinite time. You are finite. Zathras is finite. This is wrong tool" (War without End II)
Babylon 5 is one of the Best Sci-Fi series ever. One of few series to have a full run from start to finish plus some movies, Babylon 5 is also one of the most successful in its own right. I love this show and view it every year.
Babylon 5 is one of the most original Sci-Fi shows to air on television, it had creative writing, great stories, it had a perfect cast, great characters, it had a complex and engaging mythology, and easily connected with viewers. I thought the characters were portrayed brilliantly, the plot lines flowed smoothly and revealed answers in a timely fashion. There was so much depth to this series. I enjoyed all the different types of aliens, especially the Vorlons and Shadows, two ancient races. I thought it was interesting how the Vorlons portrayed themselves to others. I think this show touched upon many human curiousities, questions of the soul, and moral matters relevant through out time and space. I will enjoy this show for all time and hope others will come to find the value of this show in the future as well. By far a unique and legendary series. It has entertained me and given insight into our own nature.
This episode is where we see the Narns being sorta the bad guy in the show. It show's just how kniving the Narns can be, to be more blunt, how revengful they are. I understand that they had been conquered at one point. In this episode they shows ya how greedy they are, with selling of a Command and Control base for the raiders. As a side note it shows why Lt. Commander Ivonova does not like Psi-Corp very much due to what they did to there mother. I imagine we will be seeing more of the Raiders storyline and information about Cmdr. Sinclairs memory. I don't think we'll see that much of it, but enough to get our curiosity peeked. BTW, the graphics were great again. Can't wait to see more again. It has been a long time since I last saw B5 and seeing the show takes me reminds me how good it really was.
Babylon 5 was, to me, and others, well ahead of its time. The storylines were great, the actors were good, and the CGI (for its time) was second to none. Even shows such as TNG & DS9 (Star Trek) weren't keeping up in regards to CGI. Babylon 5 handled that aspect of it quite well.
It is no secret that the main aspect of Babylon 5 was the Shadow War. Those guys were indeed evil, and the Minbari were an awesome race to go up against. Even in the film "The Beginning" the Minbari stood true to their word, and were a force to be reckoned with.
I no doubt stand alone when I say it would be nice to see a remake, or at the very least, a re-animation, doing up the CGI aspects of the show, much alike paramount are doing with TOS (again, Star Trek). Whether we ever see this or not wont have any huge difference, as this show will continue to be a classic, nomatter what.
Babylon 5 is the most intelligent and groundbreaking show I have ever seen in my life. Nothing else on television offers the same scope and quality of thought. I recommend this show to any fan of science fiction. Non-genre fans will likely not have the endurance to make it through due to its complexity, but we don't care about them. If you love SciFi though, you owe it to yourself to check B5 out. The first season is a bit sluggish, but it immediately picks up in season 2 and does not let go. On future viewings, episodes that you had previously thought were unimportant will suddenly become more interesting to you as well. Remember, this is a show meant to resemble a novel. There is a clearly defined beginning, middle and end. It will not disappoint!
There are no words I could say about this show. It is just the BEST I have ever seen.
I am so happy for that one night when I got tv program, saw that show there and decided to watch. They aired it here in midnight, so my recorder became my best friend and I have no second thoughts - the thing that I started to watch that show was the best I could do! (+ I learned English by that show.. before that I rarely understand nothing, after that... I spoke like I had knew it all my life)
What is so great in this serie? - the story. I think this is the first Sci-fi serie what started to have one storyline from episode to episode not like most what had problem, at the end of the episode, they solved it.. and next time all over again. And the story is not only continues but attractive, striking, emotional, thoughtful. There are so many dilemmas, so many thoughts, questions, so much philosophy, moral... It is all so big that I cannot express myself.
Another great plus of this serie - characters. Most of them are alien but they are so "humane". They are colorful, difficulty, with great back stories, challenging, changing. There cannot be better example than Londo Mollari - I just adore the back look at the end of the serie to his life.
And after all those great things, this serie has all needed for great sci-fi serie - adventure, action, shooting and still has drama, tragic..
A fantastic show with an equally fabulous ensemble cast. Gritty characters enhance this story-driven show about a space station in deep space far from Earth. How its inhabitants work through its many problems is unique and refreshing and very dramatic. Each show is able to stand alone, but it helps to see as many episodes as possible to get the whole picture as the first pilot movie is equally as important as the finale. Great writing, great mix of characters and plot and action, this series is a treasure of American television that surpasses even Star Trek on many levels.
A show long before its time. The storyline was so complex and wonderfully done. The characters were, and probably still are, some of the most complex in the history of sci-fis. The creation of this show was sheer genious on the part of Joe. Each season just kept getting better and better, keeping me on the edge of my seat, wanting to know what was going to happen next. The religious aspect of some of the stories was just completely fascinating to me. I loved every episode of this show, and wish it had not ended as it had, going out slowly with the creation of several movies that were meant to be the pilots they never got the chance to be.
Babylon 5 is one of the best character driven sci-fi epics I've ever had the pleasure of watching. It has action, romance, drama, humor, and plots that make you think. The story and characters evolve with each episode, keeping your interest and imagination constantly engaged.
The romantic relationship between Delenn and Sheridan is a delight to watch. A Sci Fi channel web poll placed them among the five best couples in sci-fi history.
The war between the Vorlons and the Shadows is much more than a battle between good and evil. Both aliens pull the strings from one episode to the next as they try to make the galaxy choose one side or the other like parents going through a bad divorce.
If you liked Blake's 7, Star Trek and ST incarnations, you'll probably like Babylon 5.
Babylon 5 in some ways is better than the Star Treks....
It had a set amount of time/series, they knew it would only go on for 5 years and they stook to that.
It is also more realistic, rather than everybody having various types of shields and cloaking devices, if you get one direct hit on babylon 5 you have basically had, which is what would happen in reality, if humans got into space
Also no warp engines, simply a few jump gates that link different sections of space together, like motorways, although depending on your view, that could me more unrealistic that warp engines
I have the complete Babylon 5 box set, with all the films and every single episode.
All of the characters were great, the costumes their attitudes towards each other and their difference in superiority!!
Actually having some species that have also not long ventured into space like the humans was a good idea and a breath of fresh air, as usually we seem to be the only noob species in the galaxy.
Every character apperas to have it's enemies and my personal favourite was embassador Kosh, the way he always speaks in riddles due to his species being so old and wise
Then in the later episodes where the two old giants meet, when the shadows appear is just amazing some of the battles there with the shadows nearly always winning.....
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