Season 1 Episode 1

War Zone

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Jun 09, 1999 on TNT

Episode Fan Reviews (2)

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out of 10
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  • A more appropriate classification would have been "Unnecessary Episode."

    TNT was supposed to air the Babylon 5 movie "A Call to Arms" and then start Crusade with "Racing the Night." So, "War Zone," an introduce the characters episode, would have been unnecessary. Then, TNT airs "A Call to Arms" six months *before* and then immediately *after* "War Zone" which, as JMS said, makes no kind of sense.

    Anyway, regarding "War Zone," I thought it was an OK episode, except for the fight scenes at the beginning (no real reason for the crew to think they were being taken back to Earth **where they might be infected**), the Ensign *James*/Mr. *Ames* name mixup, Sen. McQuate/Tim Thomerson who obviously had trouble getting through his lines, the shuttle pilot Jensen who wouldn't know evasive maneuvers if they bit him on the backside, and the exposition heavy, connect-the-dots ending.

    Max Eilerson/David Allen Brooks steals the show, and the episode is best whenever he's in a scene. Most of the other actors also turn in fine performances, although Dr. Sarah Chambers/Marjean Holden definitely has some wooden lines which sound like they shouldn't be coming from the doctor character (e.g. re. the type of fire during the shootout on the Drakh ship).

    Enjoy for the Max Eilerson scenes and the CGI, but remember this episode was done at TNT's behest, and a lot of the not so great stuff in this episode was a direct result of TNT-Atlanta's hands-on approach and notes.
  • When the creator, J. Michael Straczynski, calls an episode the worst; you had better listen.

    The episode "War Zone" was written at the network's (TNT's) request. JMS calls it "probably the weakest one, certainly the one I find least interesting. It's lumbered with buckets of exposition, explaining things that don't need explaining, too many fights, too many explosions, too much swaggering around, all stuff the net wanted."


    He goes on to say, "it's exposition heavy, too much swaggering macho stuff, no real depth, just stuff blowing up. The ones that follow are much better."

    I have to agree.

    The mutiny scene was ill planned and not useful to the plot line.

    The introduction of the ship telepath is poor.

    Still this is the continuation of Babylon 5. We all waited patiently and hopefully for this to air. It would have been difficult for us to see much fault in it back then.

    As a "Crusade" episode and a script by the master JMS it may be lacking, but it is still a pleasure to watch.