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Patrick

Patrick is a mid-40 year old geek with an undergraduate degree in mathematics and a master's degree in Information Systems. Nothing he says here has anything to do with the official position of his employer or any other institution.

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17 Responses

  1. Avatar James K says:

    So, still milking the X-Files joke are we 🙂

    I thought this episode was an interesting way to tie what’s essentially a Monster of the Week episode into an underlying arc of the show.Report

    • Avatar Patrick in reply to James K says:

      Vg’f shaal, vg’f orra fb ybat fvapr V jngpurq gur fubj (naq V arire jngpurq vg yvxr guvf, onfvpnyyl sverubfvat vg)… V pna’g erzrzore jura jr fjvgpu sebz “fghss vf nobhg gb unccra” gb “ubyl penc, FGHSS VF ERNYYL UNCCRAVAT NYY GUR GVZR ABJ”.

      Ohg VVEP, guvf frnfba qbrf n ybg bs “fghss vf nobhg gb unccra” cynprfrggvat. Nf V erpnyy gur grafvba jnf xvyyvat zr onpx jura gur fubj jnf svefg ba, fb V guvax gurl tbg gur cnpvat evtug.Report

      • Avatar KatherineMW in reply to Patrick says:

        V oryvrir gur cbvag jura jr fuvsg sebz “fghss vf tbvat gb unccra” gb “fghss vf unccravat nyy gur gvzr abj” vf “Gur Ybat Gjvyvtug Fgehttyr”; orgjrra abj naq gung rcvfbqr, gurer’f n zvk bs rcvfbqrf jurer ovt fghss vf unccravat (Gur Pbzvat bs Funqbjf, Va Gur Funqbj bs M’Un’Qhz, Qvivqrq Yblnygvrf) naq rcvfbqrf gung nera’g bireyl cybg-pehpvny (r.t., Tebcbf, Xavirf).

        Ng nal engr, ol gur gvzr Frnfba 3 fgnegf jr’er qrsvavgryl va “fghss vf unccravat nyy gur gvzr” greevgbel.Report

  2. Avatar Patrick says:

    To be fair to Sheridan, I collect conspiracies myself, so I get it. They’re fascinating.Report

  3. Avatar KatherineMW says:

    I like this episode a lot. Not only its main plot, but little things like Sheridan’s conversation with Ivanova about making first contact with a new species, expand the universe of B5 and introduce us to a wider galaxy. The introduction of Mars politics and negotiations surrounding that – as well as a terrorist group – add to our understanding of the Earth Alliance and its internal problems. (Side note – Talia’s comment of “Why would a radical terrorist group be opposed to a peaceful long-term, moderate solution to their complaints?” strikes me as rather naive. Amanda says something similar, but she’s far from unbiased.) The episode also takes the opportunity to show advancements in small subplots – Ivanova’s settling into her role as Commander and her diplomatic responsibilities. In the main plot, there’s some good gradual development of Talia – her early memories of PsiCorps that she discusses with Garibaldi, and the beginning of her doubts about the organization: she’s still too loyal to mention what she saw in Horn’s mind to the B5 command staff, but not too loyal to do some digging of her own.

    What bothers me is the end. Sheridan was chosen because he was a good soldier, because he defeated the Minbari in combat during the war, and centrally, because these attributes were presumed to indicate that he would be more obedient and reliable than Sinclair. He can’t have done the amount of digging for secrets that he’s done without anyone being aware of it. Which means that people in Earthforce’s “deep state”, people involved in the conspiracy and capable of influencing the government, ought to have known he was a terrible choice for B5 (relative to their interests) and ensured someone else was chosen.

    Not to mention that someone as conspiracy-minded and mistrustful of authority as Sheridan – not to mention the kind of person who’d be willing to let a former member of a terrorist group walk without even exposing her – doesn’t seem like the type of person who would achieving a high military position in the first place.

    It makes him a good character, but it just doesn’t fit together with what his position is and who put him there. Both Sinclair and Sheridan are, as a central part of their personality, rebels. It works okay for Sinclair, because he’s there at the Minbari’s assistance rather than at Earth’s discretion. But for Sheridan? It doesn’t make sense.Report

    • Avatar Patrick in reply to KatherineMW says:

      It makes him a good character, but it just doesn’t fit together with what his position is and who put him there. Both Sinclair and Sheridan are, as a central part of their personality, rebels. It works okay for Sinclair, because he’s there at the Minbari’s assistance rather than at Earth’s discretion. But for Sheridan? It doesn’t make sense.

      Yeah, I think that’s a relatively fair critique of the transition between the two. Part of this is explicable by the fact that Sinclair was supposed to still be here. Having to swap the commander without breaking and re-writing the plot threads and the character interactions requires a bit of stretching.Report

      • Avatar KatherineMW in reply to Patrick says:

        Ah, it’s another one of JMS’s contingencies. Well, it’s certainly good that he made contingency plans, and aside from that logical disconnect (and related ones about how well Sheridan gets along with the Minbari) it works well enough. Situations where a show has to replace actors can certainly go a lot worse.Report

    • Avatar daveNYC in reply to KatherineMW says:

      You can gloss over some of that with his actions in the Minbari war. It’s possible that he was chosen specifically to piss off the Minbari. The Minbari ruffled a lot of feathers by picking Sinclair, and picking Sheridan might be some payback.

      The collecting secrets hobby though, that’s just crazy.Report

    • Avatar Pinky in reply to KatherineMW says:

      I disagree about hiding the identity of the former Mars terrorist. Military men can be very pragmatic about past associations. You nailed it about Sheridan’s conspiracy hobby, though. It doesn’t fit anything we know about him. The only reason for it being in the story is that it’s convenient. And – there’s a difference between being intrigued by conspiracy theories, enjoying the history of old conspiracies or conspiracy theories, and snooping around to find information about ongoing conspiracies. The latter wouldn’t describe himself as interested in conspiracies any more than a truck driver is interested in roads – he’s only looking to find out where they go.

      But if Sheridan did have this side to his personality, do you know who the last person is he’d confide it to? The shoot-from-the-hip boozing security officer who is loyal to the previous commander, but doesn’t particularly trust Sheridan.Report

  4. Avatar KatherineMW says:

    Oh, also, I can do the write-up for “A Race Through Dark Places”, if you like, Patrick. And/or “The Coming of Shadows”, which comes right after that and is one of my favourite episodes.Report

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