Installment 14 of the Babylon 5 Viewing Club!
The introductory post was here, The Soul Hunter was covered here, and Born to the Purple was covered right here. After that was Infection. Then came The Parliament of Dreams. Following on its heels was Mind War. Then, RTod covered War Prayer. After that, Sky Full of Stars, then Dman recapped Death Walker! Jaybird hit The Believers. Followed by Survivors, then Dman recapped By Any Means Necessary. Then Signs and Portents, followed by TKO, followed by Grail.
This week, Eyes. You can watch it here.
It’s very difficult to discuss this show without discussing the next one (or the one after that, or the one after that), or referring to the pilot; if you want to discuss something with a major plot point: please rot13 it. That’s a simple encryption that will allow the folks who want to avoid spoilers to avoid them and allow the people who want to argue them to argue them.
We good? We good! Let’s get to the recap!
We open with Lennier visiting Garibaldi on some dumb throwaway pretext whilst Garibaldi is putting together a “vintage” 1992 motorcycle together. This episode aired in 1994… so I’m guessing that this particular bike is the baby of one of the cast members. Or, I suppose, the former baby of one of the cast members who realized that they’d get more by selling it to the show than by trading it in.
Or maybe it’s just a motorcycle.
Anyway, that’s this show’s subplot. Garibaldi likes motorcycles, Lennier likes history, together they fight crime. In this particular subplot, we learn such things as “the last gasoline powered motorcycle was built in 2035.” We also get to see Lennier say, pensively, “Sexual prowess and rebellion.”
This is creepier than it sounds.
Anyway, the payoff of the subplot is that Garibaldi has been trying to put this thing together for a loooong time but the only manual he’s found on Ebay is in Japanese. Lennier has nothing to do so… heck, let *HIM* put it together! Which he does and admirably. It comes out that putting this thing together was Garibaldi’s life purpose… and now it’s done. Alas. Oh, and Lennier modified it by putting in a Minbari power source. The show’s punchline is showing them ride it past Sinclair and Ivanova in a pedestrian zone and having no one care how many people they’re endangering. Ah, the 90’s.
It was the dawn of the something something.
The *MAIN* plot of the show is one that finally feels like the season has decided to pay off. You know how I’ve said like episodes felt like “before I tell you that story, I’ma tell you this one?” Well, they’ve told us enough of “this” ones to, finally, tell us *THAT* story. One of them, anyway.
As it turns out, we haven’t *QUITE* hit The End Of History. There’s unrest on Mars, people are making weapons deals on Babylon 5 and making these deals isn’t even illegal or anything, and Commander Sinclair specifically warns Garibaldi against going in too close on an investigation because, hey, the last thing they need is to get sued.
So “suing” is still a thing.
Anyway, in the middle of all this is two visitors from earth… one a striking baritone and the other a psycop from psycore… and it seems that Sinclair’s sins have found him out. The baritone is one Colonel Ari Ben Zayn who, it turns out, is ticked off that he didn’t get the Babylon 5 position and Sinclair did. The psycop from psycore, on the other hand, is there because Bester is ticked off at Sinclair for Sinclair’s beating of him (otherwise, the psycop, Grey, is a decent enough guy, all things considered).
We hammer out that weird speculation of why Sinclair won the war isn’t limited to the Art Bell types on Earth, but the military and government folks have deep suspicions too… but it’s confirmed. If you were wondering why Sinclair is in charge of Babylon 5, well… it’s because the Minbari wanted him and exercised veto powers over every single other candidate until Sinclair’s name was read off.
Now we get to wonder why the Minbari vetoed every other candidate…
Grey’s part of the story gives a little bit more backstory… not all psycops are jerkwads who hide behind the psycore creed. Sure, a lot of them will do the whole “well, rules are rules” shuffle when confronted with Ivanova’s mother’s story, but a few of them, like Grey, will do the whole “rules are rules” thing to their commanding officers when given an unlawful order. Which is, pretty much, what Grey does.
You’d think Bester would have seen that coming…
Anyway, this was a pretty decent story that (finally) did something to pay off stories from the past (even if only by mentioning them) and answered a question with an answer that left us with an even bigger question.
The show is starting to get really, really good.