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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5 Responses

  1. Avatar James K says:

    Plague falls, everyone dies 🙁

    It’s quite remarkable that a downer episode that’s this much of a downer was on screens as early as the mind-90s.Report

  2. Avatar Damon says:


    I can’t imagine being in a cargo hold a few thousand folks that all die around you. Jeebus, what would that be like?Report

  3. Avatar Pinky says:

    Those aren’t Star Fleet uniforms.

    You know that if this was a Star Trek episode, the doctor would cure the disease at the last moment. Or there would be time travel that would let them cure it. Or this was a 105-year natural sleep cycle for the species that no one had ever written down before, and they’d all wake up fine. The episode even seems to mock the Star Trek-type climax, with the doctor arriving in time to save…no one. This episode is where Babylon 5 became the bad boy of TV sci-fi, the Rolling Stones to Star Trek’s Beatles. It’s like the old ratings ploy, “on tonight’s episode, no one is safe”. This show is willing to wipe out entire species.Report

    • Avatar KatherineMW in reply to Pinky says:

      And yet, it still feels more idealistic than this week’s episode of Game of Thrones, because kindness and compassion are regarded by the show as virtues rather than weaknesses. And Franklin at least found the cure soon enough to save the Pak’ma’ra. And Delenn and Lennier were able to provide comfort to some people as they died.

      Yes, it’s still one of the show’s darkest episodes. But even at its darkest, B5 doesn’t fall into complete cynicism (which seems like the default for today’s “golden age” of TV – GoT, Breaking Bad, etc.).Report

      • Avatar James K in reply to KatherineMW says:

        In many ways B5 was more idealistic than Star Trek. Star Trek had an uncomfortable element of essentialism to it: Humans are like X, Vulcans are like Y, Klingons are like Z. And there was a massive quotient of smugness in early TNG in particular.

        But B5 was prepared to show the evils of the universe, while simultaneously showing that it was worthwhile to fight against them – Franklin’s struggle to save the Markab may have failed, but the show didn’t chide him for trying. The episode depicted xenophobia, prejudice and superstition while showing the dangers of succumbing to them and the potential to rise above them.

        Game of Thrones is a different animal – it is a deconstructive work and it tells its moral lesson entirely in negative space. It speaks to the virtue of feminism by showing a world where almost all women are powerless, it shows the importance of rule of law by showing a world where justice is dispensed at the whim of the powerful and it shows the importance of democracy by showing a world imploding under wars of dynastic succession.Report