Ask JMS #5

Ask JMS #5 Log File
Subj: Re:Bad transliterations
Date: 96-03-06 12:20:37 EDT
From: Its a myth
Posted on: America Online

>>The vowel combination “ei” is very rarely pronounced like a long I sound…usually it’s pronounced eh like in their, ay like in weight, or ee like in conceive. Just about the only time it’s pronounced “igh” is in words of Germanic origin like Fahrenheit.<<

And, of course, in German words themselves. Perhaps the Germans should consider changing the spelling so that they are more consistent with an Anglicized way of looking at language!
Having studied Welsh and Irish for years, I can attest to the vagaries of language; they don’t all follow the same rules, but that doesn’t make them less valid, and it doesn’t mean they should be written to conform to English rules when they are transliterated into the alphabet used for English.

Subj: Hi again, JMS, thanks & a ?
Date: 96-03-06 16:16:01 EDT
From: CrushaTroi
Posted on: America Online

Hi again– I’ve been away for a while (from AOL, not B5!!)… Thank you for a show that’s becoming more and more exciting and enlightening and frightening (a` la Nightwatch and matial law…). Thanks, too, for the time a while back when you answered my question about Talia returning. This leads to my next question. That is, you mentioned that she would return for one of the new eps (the series of new ones that just passed), and that part of what would happen would be some sort of concluding or clarifying conversation or event regarding the relationship between Susan and Talia. I watched all but one of the eps, and the one ep I missed, I checked around info re. the ep, and saw nothing about an appearance by Talia (in a number of folders, including Talia’s). What happened?! Are you going to have her back on for an ep? As you might remember, I was interested in what was going on with the relationship between TW and SI (especially since other sci fi shows don’t bother showing that gays even exist [except for the ONE DS9 episode]). Then when Talia left and people thought there had been nothing between SI and TW, etc…. at any rate, I was wondering if Talia will show up on one of the future new ep runs, and if so, when they will start (actually, when will they start anyway?!), and which one AT will be on. I’m not sure what to make of the small bit of info I have just seen re. this Starlog interview, so I wasn’t asking about that, although if you want to comment, that would be nice… Thanks again for a great show, and for coming on here to answer our questions!

Subj: Names
Date: 96-03-06 17:58:59 EDT
From: StoOdin101
Posted on: America Online

Why are all the villains given names from classic SF writers? The sinister Bester…the autocrat Clarke…and of course the serial killer Charles Dexter, whose name comes not from an author’s name but from an author’s work, along with two other names in that great episode…
but no one would be afraid of a bad guy called Lovecraft, right?

Subj: Shadows/Vorlons
Date: 96-03-06 20:01:10 EDT
From: Lady Heron
Posted on: America Online

Thanks for writing such a marvelous show.
Since the shadow ships are organic and need some to merge with it , does Kosh merge with his ship? Aren’t the Vorlon ship organic too?
Karen

Subj: stuff
Date: 96-03-06 20:08:28 EDT
From: Paul H5218
Posted on: America Online

Mr S Got a few,

First off, hav’nt heard the answer to this one, is it pronounced STAK-Zinzki or stazinski? I would like to know, because I have always had this fear that if I ever got to meet any of the people whose work I admire, I would insult them by mispronouncing their name.(Had that fear for ALIEN creator HR Giger {rhyme with eager})

Second, whet is the name of the third season? I know it says “For I am Become death, Destroyer of worlds.” in the online guide, but does that still stand?

-Paul

Subj: click… *click*… CLICK..
Date: 96-03-06 21:59:32 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

Who are you… going to have killed next on B5? (Don’t answer…)

I have yet more questions; I may top myself! It’s like Mr. Skinner said:
“Why not try to ask as many unanswerable questions in one week as you can,
and then try to beat that record!”

Well, here goes:

1. Now, I’m sure you’re aware that many of DS9’s episodes seem to be
somewhat identical to earlier, original, B5 episodes. Have you talked to any
of their writers about this? Would WB get involved if they knew what was
going on? Can you help them at least make their immitation half as
entertaining as it was on B5? Can you possibly co-opt *them*?

2. Are there going to be any more lightbulb jokes?

3. You recently said that you were involved with Walker Texas Ranger; what
did you write/do?

4. Theron, Wayne, or Randy, (who ever’s turn it is to do this board) could
you please sign me up on the “JMS out of context” newsletter? I wish to have
some assurances that you aren’t butchering anyone’s messages inappropriately
for your own agenda. If I find out that you are taking my messages and
twisting them malevolently for your propaganda, I will be *most* displeased.
Though you act irrationally, I always thought you were just human beings; it
would be a shame to find out that I am wrong about that.

5. When the series is all over, and the real merchandising begins (like
those quality models you predicted that might come out), will there be a
Babearlon 5 spaced teddybear? You could have him frozen, decompressed, or
even half-sublimed. Maybe a few cameos in Hypernauts or Space Cases. No?
How about plush Na’ka’leen feeders?
How about some cool [possibly Halloween] costumes? There could be a lot: a
Kosh encounter suit with internal floodlight; a Minbari bone crest; Narn
masks, and gloves that squirt blood in time to “dead dead dead”; Centauri
wigs and attributes… Is there the slightest possibility of any of those?

6. Though I know that their reign will be over by 2260, will we see any
references to the DNRC? Just a joke, everyone… o-

7. How much does the B5 crew spend monthly on on-line services? I can
imagine Sheridan racking up a lot of hours on EAOL…

8. Will Ivanova kill Draal when/if she finds out that he’s been using the
machine to spy on her? 😉 Or does he spy on Marcus?

That’s about it.
Subj: Bad transliterations part 2
Date: 96-03-06 23:40:55 EDT
From: Mr Cydonia
Posted on: America Online

You’re missing my point. The main trade language on Babylon 5 is apparently English, therefore the alien names should be transliterated using English spelling rules (yes, there are actually a few English spelling rules. Sort of). If the entire station spoke German, then they would be transliterated using German spelling rules…Streib would make sense, but G’Kar would have to be spelled quite differently, especially since German doesn’t have the J sound. I’m sure the Minbari have a different way of spelling G’Kar, as do all the other races, but the English version of their names should use English spelling rules. Why make things harder to pronounce than they need to be? OK, all this doesn’t really matter, but I get tired of goofily spelled alien names. I must admit, however, that when it comes to spelling alien names, B5 does a much better job at it than Star Trek or Star Wars. One of the alien races on Voyager is the Vidiians. It’s pronounced Vidians. Why are there two I’s in a row? For no reason, other than to make the name look more “alien.” The Star Wars sequel books are even worse…here’s a semi-random sample of alien names from them: Qwi Xux, Borsk Fey’lya, Elder Sh’tk’ith, Yarna d’al’ Gargan, Pqweeduk, and my favorite, Jabba Desilijic Tiure. Try pronouncing those suckers.

Subj: Emperor Vir!
Date: 96-03-07 04:03:08 EDT
From: StevenBorn
Posted on: America Online

Really enjoyed the prophecy that Vir will be Emperor. Loved the look on his and Londo’s faces…

Subj: Re:Delenn in PoNR
Date: 96-03-07 04:04:26 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Delenn was taking care of some business on Minbar.

jms
Subj: Re:Great episodes
Date: 96-03-07 04:04:58 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Darla: thanks.

jms
Subj: Re:Hello???????
Date: 96-03-07 04:05:45 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The info came from the Vorlons, and from the last war the Minbari fought against them.

jms
Subj: Re:Why didn’t we see the fig
Date: 96-03-07 04:07:41 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

We could’ve easily played the EFX full-screen, as WB used them in the promos, after all. But it’s a slow tease, a reveal. You do it big in Messages, hold it back just a bit, at arm’s length, in PoNR, then bring it all REAL close again in the next episode. By putting it at some remove in PoNR, it makes the viewer almost like one of those in the Zocalo, fighting for a better look, stranded out far away, trying to figure out what’s going on.

jms
Subj: Re:Religion on B5
Date: 96-03-07 04:11:28 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

We hope to have Harlan’s script for next season.

“I hope that perhaps you have done some searching in areas of your faith as a result of that episode.”

No. Don’t see any reason to do so. I wasn’t *exposed* to that episode, I *wrote* it, the same way I’d write a convincing show about Minbari…I don’t have to believe they exist to write convincingly about them.

I keep being astounded that others are astounded that an atheist can write well about religion without being religious. Writing is writing. Characters is characters. Either you’re honest as a writer, or you ain’t; either you’re telling a story, or you’re using the medium for propaganda.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS:LOTR and the Future
Date: 96-03-07 04:12:27 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

There’s a lot more here than anything like LoTR; the show uses mythic archetypes, so you tend to see whichever myth-cycle you’re most familiar with.

And we do certainly hope to get this story finished, yes.

jms
Subj: Re:Corwin
Date: 96-03-07 04:13:43 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Thanks. Corwin’s question is really one that hits a lot; you see things starting to fly apart, but you keep thinking it’s gonna work out..then it all goes to hell, and you’re standing there trying to figure out how it all slipped away. It’s a very innocent, yet universal question.

jms
Subj: Re:Inquiries from the Rim
Date: 96-03-07 04:15:05 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I’d love to see an Aggy micromachine. As for the rest…why would I tell you what each of her prophecies means, thus defeating the surprise or the impact when they’re shown? That would be absolutely self-defeating.

jms

 

Subj: Re:ISN’s role
Date: 96-03-07 04:15:39 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yes, that’s a very good question. It’ll be answered in *the very next new episode*, in fact.

jms
Subj: Re:B5 on TNT?
Date: 96-03-07 04:16:18 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

TNT starts rerunning the show in 1998. It doesn’t guarantee our renewal, however.

jms
Subj: Re:Equality on B5
Date: 96-03-07 04:21:50 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Cristine: thanks. For what it’s worth, I have always admired/been attracted to strong, capable, intelligent and witty women. I like independence of thought, and nothing delights me more than being surprised, or topped in a verbal exchange. And I’ve seen some women police officers and soldiers who could clear out a bar without even breaking a sweat. Several women friends of mine are very much into the martial arts.

Wimmin iz peoples too. I don’t understand why some folks have such a hard time with that concept.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Narn Religion
Date: 96-03-07 04:24:20 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

G’Quan was the greatest of the Narns, a prophet, a religious figure of great proportions; G’Lan was one of those second-tier types who showed up afterward. (The comparable human analog would be if G’Quan -> Mohammed, G’Lan -> Angel.

(And yes, I know I’ve crossed religious structures there.)

jms
Subj: Re:Bad transliterations
Date: 96-03-07 04:25:37 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yes, and “sure” should be spelled “shoor.”

jms
Subj: Re:Misunderstanding
Date: 96-03-07 04:26:04 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Nope, we did San Diego ourselves.

jms
Subj: Re:Battles as Tales
Date: 96-03-07 04:26:46 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The only comment I would have is, be patient a bit….

jms
Subj: Re:marcus and the link
Date: 96-03-07 04:30:30 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I just summoned up Marcus in my head. Here’s what he said: “Because I won’t wear the bloody thing, that’s why. Bad enough you’ve got those pagers you wear in 1996, no privacy, no chance to get away, always at somebody’s beck and call. Why not just put a leash around your neck and get it over with? It’d be faster and a good deal more honest. I’m down in the bar trying to be inconspicuous, dangerous characters on all sides, trying not to be noticed…and the link goes off, and I’m dead. Or at minimum seriously thumped. No, absolutely not. You’ll never get me to wear one of those.”

(This is btw the reason why I absolutely *refuse* to wear a pager myself.)

jms
Subj: Re:New episodes
Date: 96-03-07 04:30:58 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

April 3rd.

jms
Subj: Re:Just Wondering
Date: 96-03-07 04:31:23 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The good guys *always* get whacked, at some point….

jms
Subj: Re:Hi again, JMS, thanks & a
Date: 96-03-07 04:33:30 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

There are no immediate plans for Talia’s return…but we haven’t heard the last of that relationship, and the reference I promised is in the very next batch of new eps.

jms
Subj: Re:Names
Date: 96-03-07 04:39:29 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Actually, it’s Clark, not Clarke, so that one’s not a tribute; neither is Morden, though it has some of the sounds of Mordred and Mordor and other Murderous names. I’d actually suggest that 90% of the names used have no other reference than their own identity.

jms
Subj: Re:Shadows/Vorlons
Date: 96-03-07 04:39:50 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yes, but only in a manner of speaking.

jms
Subj: Re:stuff
Date: 96-03-07 04:47:35 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

“For I Am Become Death” was a working title; I finally decided that “Point of No Return” was a more apt title for the year.

If one is being accurate in Eastern-European terms, it’s pronounced strah-chin-ski; in general Americanized terms (which is what I go by), it’s strah-zin-ski.

jms
Subj: Re:click… *click*… CLIC
Date: 96-03-07 04:50:55 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I was the Supervising Producer brought on under Executive Producer David Moessinger when “Walker, Texas Ranger” was first being produced for CBS. I left in fairly short order to do B5, which had already been commissioned prior to doing Walker, but David asked for some help, and I never decline a friend. Unfortunately, the studio was Cannon TV, which is not exactly known for its sterling rep, so after a while I was driven mad and ran screaming out into the night. “WTR” was eventually transferred to a different, better studio.

jms
Subj: Re:Bad transliterations part
Date: 96-03-07 04:56:53 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Nope, still don’t buy it. How many versions have we seen of names in Vietnam or China in English? Look at an atlas for China in the 1960s, and now. Notice that now X is used where once Ch was used. (Chou becomes Xiou.) Technically, my name is pronounced strachinski, but it’s got a czy in the middle of it.

There’s also a difference between transLATION and transLITERATION. The latter is often less accurate than the former.

You may choose to take any linguistic position you choose; however, the language as it is used does not reconcile with that stance.

jms
Subj: Re:Misunderstanding
Date: 96-03-07 08:34:29 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

JMS:
Speaking of San Diego…
Was San Diego destroyed as part of the anti-EA movement…before the actual forming of the Earth Alliance?

You also wouldn’t happen to know how BIG it was, do you? Let’s just say I’m a self-educated “aficianado” (not the right word, exactly) about the subject of nuclear weapons. I’ll drop you a line with more details as to WHY, later!

Thanks!

Macker

Subj: Re:marcus and the link
Date: 96-03-07 08:35:36 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

>> …and the link goes off, and I’m dead. Or at minimum seriously thumped. No, absolutely not. You’ll never get me to wear one of those.”

(This is btw the reason why I absolutely *refuse* to wear a pager myself.) <<

Good for you, JMS!

Macker

Subj: Re:marcus and the link
Date: 96-03-07 09:48:39 EDT
From: StoOdin101
Posted on: America Online

>(This is btw the reason why I absolutely *refuse* to wear a pager myself.)

Bravissimo, you _and_ Marcus! “I am not a number, I am a free man!”

Subj: Re:Names
Date: 96-03-07 09:53:15 EDT
From: StoOdin101
Posted on: America Online

>Actually, it’s Clark, not Clarke, so that one’s not a tribute

Oops! Oh well, cant win em all. Actually I halfway suspected that would get no response, since it was more a “trivia” question than something of some import to the ongoing Babylonian mythology. Thanks…
And didnt I read somewhere that Katsulos (have I got his name spelled right?) had a hand in deciding how the word “G’Kar” was pronounced, regardless of phonetics or transliterations?

Subj: Re:translations vs. translit
Date: 96-03-07 10:14:45 EDT
From: DelennV
Posted on: America Online

Why are people getting up in arms about the spelling/pronunciations of G’kar, G’lon, etc. This is fantasy!!! Hasn’t any one ever read the “Dragonriders of Pern”? There you have T’Lar, T’Lessa and so on. Come on folks, enjoy the show and learn to increase your vocabulary.
On the side–JMS, I missed the first two seasons can’t wait to see the reruns. I feel like I’m coming into the middle of a great novel. Keep up the great work.
Karen

Subj: Re:Hi again, JMS, thanks & a
Date: 96-03-07 11:01:58 EDT
From: La Bubble
Posted on: America Online

Hello JMS. I just recently <2 days ago> moved from Brooklyn, NY to Ft. Lauderdale Fl.
Back in NY, B5 is on at 8pm.. So… I called my brother and told him to tape it.. I didn’t know however that in Fl, B5 is on at 6pm.. So I got another really crappy show instead…

My best wish would be if you could send me a vhs copy of “Point of No Return”

Otherwise I would settle for a COMPLETE synopsis of the last episode.. <So I know what’s going on…w/o reading little spoilers here and there…>

IF you can do this, it would be FANTASTIC!
Thank you,
Scott Hollander

Subj: You know the episode…
Date: 96-03-07 12:04:55 EDT
From: Pogo24M
Posted on: America Online

When G’Kar is in prison for assaulting Lando, and Garibaldi goes to visit him??? I can’t remeber the name. Did anyone else feel a hint of a Mein Kampf -ishness, to the way G’Kar was talking about his book he was writing in prison? Just seemed weird to me.
JMS…I love this show!!!!!

Thanks
Pogo

Subj: No, no! Don’t touch…ACK!
Date: 96-03-07 12:14:34 EDT
From: Filops
Posted on: America Online

All right, I have an EDBD nit to pick, from the great episode “Dust of Death.” It’s a nothing, but still a head-scratcher to me and my better 2/3.

Everyone’s all nervous about Bester, right? What if he reads our minds? Everything will be ruined!!! Ahhhhh! Can’t let him near us, can’t let him touch us!

So they come up with this great plan: shoot him up with this medicine that blocks his abilities. Great idea! Oughtta work! Bester even agrees to it.

And then what does Franklin do when he gives Bester the shot? GRABS HIS BARE WRIST WITH HIS BARE HAND!!!

So what am I missing here? The shot will take hours to work, so that’s not it. Why didn’t Bester have an Insta-vision (TM), like Lady Mirella did with a mere brush of Vir’s hand? Do Psi-Corps types only psionicize through their hands? Do those psychic nerves run down their carpal tunnels or something, so that the wrist is “blind,” and only the fingertips work?

I know: Franklin was wearing an invisible surgical glove! No, no…the Minbari were already blocking Bester with their good juju.

Is that it? ;^) (But still, Bester might have sneaked a peek.)

Please don’t blast me; just asking.

Dan

Subj: Re:Re:Religion on B5
Date: 96-03-07 15:54:47 EDT
From: SLV80
Posted on: America Online

That you so much for this great response! I am agnostic, and get very angry when people with strong religious affiliations act like I “just can’t understand.” They talk down to me like I’m either stupid or about five years old, and it gets very annoying. I have gone from Christian to atheist and
back again (don’t ask), and have finally decided that agnostic is the best way to describe myself. Some of my Christian friends just can’t handle this (they don’t seem to realize that atheist and agnostic do not mean the same thing, yes I can believe in God without having any strict religious affiliation, yes I do have morals, no I am not undermining their faith, ect., even though I’ve explained it about fifty zillion times.) I could identify very much with Sheridan when he said that he believes in “. . .a little of everything. “Passage Through Gethsemane was a great episode, that dealt both realistically and compassionately with issues which are very relevant to the world today. I also very much liked Dust to Dust and Exogenesis. Thank you for creating a show that defies steriotypes, and that deals with religious issues without being propagandist hype or politically correct drivil. I am eagerly awaiting the next episode!

Subj: MFE/PONR: Forcing the Pace?
Date: 96-03-07 16:30:51 EDT
From: BKnight255
Posted on: America Online

I just had a hopeful thought when watching the last two episodes on tape.

Now, it seems to me that the declaration of martial law was in large part a direct reaction to the hubbub raised by the White Star and the BattleCrab around Jupiter — that Clark & Co. felt that they had to act *right now* or else their whole intricately crafted plan would blow apart like a flywheel cracking up at speed.

Hence, we see (at least on Babylon 5) that the populace is showing at least some support for the counter-conspirators led by Hague — I’m guessing that the purges hadn’t had time to go through.

So, in effect, Sheridan’s war council may have actually caught a break in the madness we’ve seen — Clark’s overplayed his hand, the populace isn’t ready to blindly follow him, and the Conspiracy of Light is still partially protected (at least, nobody’s figured the whole thing out except those people who are in on it).

Seems to me like it could have gone a *lot* worse.

Or maybe I’m just looking too hard for that silver lining.

Now that’s good storytelling — I’m not sure whether to feel hope or despair…

Subj: Re:B5 on TNT?
Date: 96-03-07 16:54:39 EDT
From: Archer C1
Posted on: America Online

<TNT starts rerunning the show in 1998.>

1998? 1998? ::lower lip trembles::: (sniffle)

two…more….years?

WAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHH!

Subj: Re:JMS. life for B5 after B5
Date: 96-03-07 18:38:22 EDT
From: BPowell170
Posted on: America Online

Slim and none because you don’t want to continue the story past the 5 years, or because you don’t think the network will buy into it?

Subj: To: JMS
Date: 96-03-07 18:52:52 EDT
From: BPowell170
Posted on: America Online

Just in case you miss my previous message (no TO line…), I was wondering if the the chances beyond the slim and none are because you don’t want to continue past that point, or if you don’t think the network will pick it up … certainly, you’ve developed the characters to such a point that the show could go on forever — which all of us fans wouldn’t mind 😉 !

Subj: Re:Harlan Ellison
Date: 96-03-07 19:35:34 EDT
From: MBarnes423
Posted on: America Online

I have seen mr. Ellison on sci fi buzz many times doing commentary on this that and the other thing. He is an accomplished, well respected writer and I respect his opinions (although sometimes I don’t know what the hell he’s talking about) but he almost always seems angry-very angry when he does these commentaries. Is he like that in person? Btw, I’m pleased to hear that you plan to do one of his stories on B5 next season. Otta be a good one but then they are all good episodes as far as I’m concerned.

Subj: random stuff
Date: 96-03-07 20:36:49 EDT
From: R CRANTZ
Posted on: America Online

First things first…
More Marcus! I love what you’re doing with the character and his scenes with Ivanova are way fun!

Next:
I’ve moderately enjoyed the novels, but the fourth one really stunk. I was not at all impressed. I was just wondering how much, if any control you have over the novels. I couldn’t believe that one slipped by. Oh well.

Keep up the good work.

Marc

Subj: Transferred storylines
Date: 96-03-07 21:25:34 EDT
From: DaveShufon
Posted on: America Online

JMS,

I know that in the past, when there have been changes in the cast, you have transferred important upcoming storylines to other characters. Like when you made Talia the “sleeper” spy after Takashima left. I was just wondering, Is Lyta’s new “job” with Kosh something that you were originally going to have Talia do? Then when she asked to leave the show you had to have someone else fill that role? Or is this something you’ve been cooking up all along for Lyta’s return.

I know that Talia was the spy and when she left she was not exactly the sort of person that you would expect to work with Kosh, but you left enough clues that this might not be permanent. Like the ViCaR’s recording of her that Kosh had, and the revalation in “PTG” that the original personality from a mind-wipe victim still exists deep below the surface.

I had hoped to see Talia back in some capacity, but recently heard that it was HER request to leave the show, so that’s not likely. Except maybe in a guest appearance down the road.

Subj: Lennier (mis)information?
Date: 96-03-07 21:57:07 EDT
From: Levinthal
Posted on: America Online

In the Babylon 5 area Season three pictures section on AOL, I noticed the following text next to Lennier’s:


“Lennier is the aide and confidant of Ambassador Delenn. A member of a secret caste of Minbari, Lennier is able to see things in a different way than Delenn, which is why she values his judgment so highly.”

Secret caste?? Did I miss something, or did the WB employee that posted it? I always thought Lennier was just a member of the religious caste. Then again, the Great Maker does seem to love participation in multiple organizations and conspiracies….

 

I’d also like to make a comment about Sinclair in the second season. It might have been nice to have had even one conversations between him and Garibaldi, especially considering Garibaldi’s feelings that people will eventually not be there for him, Sinclair’s compassion, Garibaldi’s almost dying, and all the talk in the our world about a disharmonious parting of the ways between Mr. O’hare and your show.

Besides, I’d think that, even in the millitary, the “new guy” would want to speak at least once with the person he was replacing. Even if there were mostly references of contact off-screen, it might have felt less like we were “supposed” to forget Sinclair, which I’d never thought was your intent, but seemed like it might have been WB’s pressure. It was the human exchange between Garibaldi and Sinclair during the shuttle ride in Babylon Squared that turned me from a lurker, into an evangelist. More than anything, that made me start to understand Sinclair.

Also looking forward to the flip-side of Babylon Squared, and wondering with trepidation exactly why they’re gonna need it. A quote of Ivanova’s comes to mind… “One of theses days….boom!” <shudder>

Oh, if this gets copied to any third party lists, feel free to quote or excerpt me as needed. I give full permission up front.
Steve
Subj: To: JMS Re: Renewal?
Date: 96-03-07 22:15:05 EDT
From: Harokin
Posted on: America Online

Dear JMS,
Now that the February sweeps have passed, and the results are in for at least the first two episodes, what do you think the current odds for renewal are? Will the renewal decision be made before the next batch of episodes and the May sweeps? Thanks for a great show.

Best regards,
Harokin

Subj: Jms/Songo
Date: 96-03-07 22:28:26 EDT
From: RosalindB
Posted on: America Online

Hey Songo!
I also asked about a “Bearbalon” once. One could dress up a bear (using infant sizes) if you really want to create your own Bearbalon.
Great Maker: Loved PoNR! I was wondering if the ‘general populace’ was for or against Clark. That episode answered my question. Also glad to see Zack show some guts. Was starting to worry about that guy.
Rosalind

Subj: Re:JMS: Narn Religion
Date: 96-03-07 23:20:28 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

>> G’Quan was the greatest of the Narns, a prophet, a religious figure of great proportions; G’Lan was one of those second-tier types who showed up afterward. (The comparable human analog would be if G’Quan -> Mohammed, G’Lan -> Angel.

(And yes, I know I’ve crossed religious structures there.) <<

Perhaps the Narn Angels (G’Lan being one of them) may have chosen NOT to reveal themselves until someone of the Narns came along who was especially spiritual: G’Quan. I don’t think you crossed a religious structural boundary in the strictest sense of the word. If one thinks of the situation as I have just described it, the Narn Angels “…have always been there…”

Macker

Subj: Questions, Schmestions!
Date: 96-03-07 23:21:05 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

JMS:
And here are some more…

1) I read somewhere on the Net that B5 is located 25 light-years from Earth; if this is correct, is there a known star that Epsilon III orbits?

2) If B5 is centrally located relative to the homeworlds of the major powers, would this also mean those homeworlds might orbit stars we already know?

3) Are the names Minbari, Vorlon, Narn, Drazi, etc., the names each respective race has for themselves (and the way we read it the English spelling)? I don’t know about the Centauri…unless Centauri Prime orbits Alpha Centauri A. Please say it doesn’t!

Macker

Subj: Babylon Squared
Date: 96-03-08 00:21:01 EDT
From: Esther Dan
Posted on: America Online

Help! I have seen every episode of the series EXCEPT Babylon Squared. Naturally, It is one of the most important single episodes in the series to date. If anyone has it and would copy it if I sent you a tape, PLEASE E-mail. I’m dying to see this one before the follow up episodes later this season.

Subj: Re:Boom Today?
Date: 96-03-08 00:32:02 EDT
From: TimothX
Posted on: America Online

<Boom April 3rd.>

JMS,

Didn’t you also say that new episodes start April 3rd? 😉

Subj: Three quick questions
Date: 96-03-08 02:09:54 EDT
From: BloodyGluv
Posted on: America Online

1st question: What happened to that woman from C&C in “Fall of Night” who snitched about the Narn heavy cruiser? She and Corwin were two of the constants there. Did the actress pull a Foxworth on you?

2nd: This is a phenomenon I’ve noticed in almost all science fiction…Why do so many alien names have apostrophes in them? They rarely serve any purpose, e.g. Jem ‘Hadar. The apostrophe in G’Kar makes sense, but the two in Pak’La’Mar (or however that goes), not so much.

3rd: Do you ever watch Star Trek: Voyager and just laugh at how pathetic it is?

Subj: Just Thinking
Date: 96-03-08 10:31:30 EDT
From: Marc112345
Posted on: America Online

JMS:

It must be gratifying to hear the devotion your viewers have to B5 and to you. All the praise is well deserved!

Since Warner Brothers does not seem to have an understanding of what they have on their hands, (Don’t they realize the cash potential they have?!) Would you object to us, (loyal following) writing to them (Snail or E-Mail) and expressing more promotions or recognition be given the show? If so, can you publish the CEO’s name and address here? (preferably, E-Mail address)

It has been said repeatedly, the writing, storyline, acting, etc is superb. I feel this show would be recognized as a mega-hit if only more people were aware of it. It has appeal to people whom aren’t normally interested in Science Fiction.

Thank you for giving to all of us, something that excites, challanges & grips us each week.

This is quality Television!

May your inspiration continue…

Subj: Att’n JMS: The Equalizer
Date: 96-03-08 11:51:04 EDT
From: DaryllF
Posted on: America Online

Hi Joe:

I originally posted this to you at CIS – without being a subscriber. I’m not sure whether you got the message or not, but I did read that you felt compelled to not answer those from outside Compuserve. That’s cool.

May I ask again here?

A&E has been playing the Equalizer, a show that I think is better than many give it credit for. I’ve noticed a lot of subtle similarities between it and B5. The actor who played Talia’s first husband was a regular. There was an episode where a priest had to face his comeuppance and pined about ‘Passing through Gesthemene’. There was a two part episode called Chrysalis. The overall tone seems to regret violence, even if it is frequently required. More often though, the Equalizer will come up with a solution reminiscent of the one we just saw in PoNR. The characters all seem to have interesting back histories which were developed substantially from the first episode.

Here’s my questions. Are you a fan of The Equalizer? You’ve stated often that your show is a synthesis of many ideas, mostly original, some derived with intentional nods to other shows. Was the Equalizer one of the influences?

Your characters are interesting because they seem three dimensional. Each has their own motivations, modes of speech, back story and even body language. This is why I also enjoy The Equalizer – Robert McCall seems real.

TTYL,

Daryll.

 

Subj: Other aliens in background
Date: 96-03-08 13:25:27 EDT
From: AmberH
Posted on: America Online

Jms –

I’ve been meaning to ask you this since the first showing of “Confessions and Lamentations” but it kept slipping my mind until a recent episode where I noticed the same type beings again. Ok, in C&L, there is an alien (aliens?) who walks behind Delenn while she’s talking to the small child and then again at the end. The reason I noticed him/her/it is that he/she/it looked just like Neil Gaiman’s Sandman (aka Dream) in full regalia including his mask/helmet! I know Neil is not unknown to you so I thought it might be a passing homage (i.e. the name of the technomage was supposed to be a Cerebus homage) but in a more recent episode (one of the last new batch) there were *two* of these creatures sitting at a table in the background somewhere. So is this a specific race (if so, who?!), just a continuing Sandman kinda joke (I suppose Dream or any of the other Endless might come to B5 on occassion, obviously Death has turned it into a vacation spot!) or someones/things we’re supposed to noticed in background — not unlike all the Rangers floating around in the background last season. Thanks!

Subj: Re:marcus and the link
Date: 96-03-08 14:12:06 EDT
From: CrushaTroi
Posted on: America Online
(This is btw the reason why I absolutely *refuse* to wear a pager myself.)

jms\\\

You GO, J!!!! Throw off those shackles of modern society!!! (-;

Subj: Re:Susan’s revelation- a ?
Date: 96-03-08 14:19:04 EDT
From: CrushaTroi
Posted on: America Online

Hey JMS– thanks for answering my last question– I appreciate it!! Here’s another. Whatever happened to Susan’s vision in that weird contraption, where she saw Clark actually admitting his part in the destruction of Air Force One?! I thought it had somehow been transferred to a medium where people could see it and that it had at least been publicized to people like senators and other (formerly) powerful folks. What happened with that bit of info?! And also, what happened to the woman who served as the messenger between the captain and General Haig? (She’s on some fictional news show with David Birney now…)? Thanks! Love the show!!

Subj: Z’ha’dum
Date: 96-03-08 18:06:42 EDT
From: CBergen253
Posted on: America Online

This is something that has been bothering me about the shadows.
In the episode In the Shadow of Z’ha’dum it is said to Sheriden if I remember
correctly that his wife’s expedition to that planet uncovered and woke up the shadows
who then killed those who would not join and made cool characters out of the rest
(Morden). My Question is that Z’ha’dum appeared to be the home planet of the shadows
or at least that was what I thought, thus why didn’t the vorlons, minbari and the rest destroy the shadows completely at the end of the last war and at least why did they not wipe out the shadows who lived at Z’ha’dum?

Subj: Re:Finally, Zack comes aroun
Date: 96-03-08 20:14:44 EDT
From: Jerusha000
Posted on: America Online

I don’t know if Zack has been invited into the ‘circle.’ Both he and G’Kar know something is going on. Zack tried to be Garibaldi to confide in him, G’Kar’s gone after both Sheridan and Garibaldi. PoNR has Sheridan saying he’d have to talk to the others about letting G’Kar in. Since G’Kar was in Zack’s quarters too, I suspect Zack’s not in the fold. Yet.

Rue.

Subj: Re:Religion on B5
Date: 96-03-08 21:46:10 EDT
From: Dastari
Posted on: America Online

>”I hope that perhaps you have done some searching in areas of your faith as a result of that episode.”

No. Don’t see any reason to do so. I wasn’t *exposed* to that episode, I *wrote* it, the same way I’d write a convincing show about Minbari…I don’t have to believe they exist to write convincingly about them.

I keep being astounded that others are astounded that an atheist can write well about religion without being religious. Writing is writing. Characters is characters. Either you’re honest as a writer, or you ain’t; either you’re telling a story, or you’re using the medium for propaganda.

jms<

Well said! You have a gift for eloquent self-expressionism JMS! I will now ask a personal question, answer if you wish: has writing always just “come to you”, or did you have an interest and then get training/take classes to write or some mix there in? Just curious :)

-Damon

Subj: Levels we haven’t considered
Date: 96-03-08 21:51:49 EDT
From: Dastari
Posted on: America Online

JMS, you have said something to the effect that, at the end of the season, we’ll think we’ll know what’s going on, but we won’t. Are their higher levels we(viewers) aren’t considering? Could there be more powerful races than even the Shadows and the Vorlons? Is there more at stake than what we think? Thanx.

-Damon

Subj: JMS: Icarus? The Icarus?
Date: 96-03-08 22:43:52 EDT
From: ATKokmen
Posted on: America Online

Just wanted to say, “Thanks for the ride!” and to let you know that I have, after much cajoling, converted a friend to the glories that are Babylon 5. My continuous praise, coupled with the cancellation of Reboot which left a gap in my pal’s TV science-ficiton intake, finally paid off!

But here’s one comment I just have to get off my chest, and apologies if others have brought it up before. The Icarus. You named a spaceship “The Icarus” Though the mythological parallels for the story are pleasant, it kinda breaks the verismillitude, no? I mean, why would *any* organization in charge of naming ships name one after the stupid guy who crashed and died his first time out? Seems like a bad choice of names to me. Send a memo to the shipyard! Who’s coming up with these? I’m writing my congressman! Whaddaya mean he’s a Nightwatch dupe.

Sorry, got carried away on a tirade there. I’m better now. Thanks again for the best hour on TV.

Subj: Apostrophes & Translits
Date: 96-03-08 23:30:51 EDT
From: Filops
Posted on: America Online

Well, I can tell you that apostrophes are used in technical transliterations of Hebrew because a couple of Hebrew consonants simply have no English equivalent. So the ‘ayin gets a “rough-breathing” apostrophe, whilst the ‘aleph gets the “smooth breathing” apostrophe.

And NOW you know THAT!!!

Semitically,

Dan

Subj: February Sweeps and Season 4
Date: 96-03-08 23:50:20 EDT
From: ScotDailey
Posted on: America Online

I want to see Severed Dreams and I want to see it NOW!
Oh, um, sorry. Did I write that out loud? It must be
B5 withdrawal symptons.

I have looked on the internet for some place with the
syndicated television ratings. Neilson only shows the
network ratings. Any suggestions on where to look?
How did B5 do during the Sweeps period? I was also
curious when you expect to learn that you will be
picked up for season 4?
Scott
=====================================
“This conversation, it makes you uncomfortable?”
‘Yes, yes it does.’
“Then for once we have something in common.”
— Londo and Vir, “The Coming of Shadows”

 

Subj: February Sweeps and Season 4
Date: 96-03-08 23:50:42 EDT
From: ScotDailey
Posted on: America Online

I want to see Severed Dreams and I want to see it NOW!
Oh, um, sorry. Did I write that out loud? It must be
B5 withdrawal symptons.

I have looked on the internet for some place with the
syndicated television ratings. Neilson only shows the
network ratings. Any suggestions on where to look?
How did B5 do during the Sweeps period? I was also
curious when you expect to learn that you will be
picked up for season 4?
Scott
=====================================
“This conversation, it makes you uncomfortable?”
‘Yes, yes it does.’
“Then for once we have something in common.”
— Londo and Vir, “The Coming of Shadows”

 

Subj: To: JMS:Thanks for the Wows!
Date: 96-03-09 00:24:07 EDT
From: Theodosial
Posted on: America Online

JMS –

I just wanted to thank you for such a great show!
My method for rating various episode, is to count the number of Wows! they had in them.
(A Wow! is when something happens or someone says something and I say Wow!)
Dust to Dust had a lot of Wows!
The last 2 episodes, I would wait until the commercials came on and then just sit there with glazed eyes going wow!, wow!, wow! until the show came back on.
Anyway many thanks for the Wows! and I’m sure there will be many more to come!

Subj: JMS: Question for a friend
Date: 96-03-09 01:46:54 EDT
From: Thorans
Posted on: America Online

I have a friend who is VERY into the New Age movement, and claims to have experienced Channeling and conversations with other-worldly beings. I want to stress that she is very sincere in her beliefs.

She claims these conversations have revealed to her that Earth will, in the not too distant future, become a battleground for the forces of light and darkness. She has noticed that the storyline of B5 parallels this future history, and she believes that many shows (B5, Space: A&B, X-files, etc.) are helping to prepare Earth’s populace for this coming conflict by making us more aware of our spirituality. She wonders if you have some “inside information” about this; i.e., a friend or acquaintance that has shared some of these predictions with you. She seems pretty convinced that you know alot about this. We discuss your show often, and she wondered if I would mind asking you if her suspicions had any merit. Because she’s my friend, I said I would pass it along. Is she on to something?

By the way, April 3rd. will be my 42nd. birthday, so I have two excellent reasons for looking forward to that date.

Thanks for the great ride!

Ken S.

Subj: Here’s another one
Date: 96-03-09 02:54:52 EDT
From: AmberH
Posted on: America Online

Now that Talia is out of the picture, will there ever be any follow up to the Lazarus Project and the other nastiness that we found out about in “A Spider in the Web”? And *was* Talia the Control in that story or do we still have another Psi Corp operative hiding in the shadows?

Subj: Re:Misunderstanding
Date: 96-03-09 06:15:12 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

How big was the San Diego Nuke? Big enough, and dirty enough, to make the area officially uninhabitable for a long time.

jms
Subj: Re:Hi again, JMS, thanks & a
Date: 96-03-09 06:16:44 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I can’t send you a copy of the ep; but if you use the www jumpgate at the top of the B5 area here, it will take you to the Lurker’s Guide at hyperion.com, and you’ll find all you need there.

jms
Subj: Re:No, no! Don’t touch…ACK
Date: 96-03-09 06:18:09 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I think you’re misremembering; Bester nudged up his right sleeve with his left hand and held it out; Franklin stuck the needle in. I don’t believe he held his hand (which was gloved in any event).

jms
Subj: Re:To: JMS
Date: 96-03-09 06:19:56 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The syndicated market is changing so much I don’t think it’d be feasible in anothr year or two.

jms
Subj: Re:Harlan Ellison
Date: 96-03-09 06:20:50 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Harlan is generally quite jovial and funny in person; but he feels outrage deeply when it takes place, and isn’t afraid to do a deserved Jeremiad when necessary….

jms
Subj: Re:Lennier (mis)information?
Date: 96-03-09 06:22:35 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I have no idea where that came from; not from me (re: Lennier). As for Sinclair, I think you’ll get what you’re asking for in the two-parter.

jms
Subj: Re:To: JMS Re: Renewal?
Date: 96-03-09 06:24:33 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I won’t know until April/May. The main issue, I think, is going to be the second-runs in most markets. It wasn’t a problem the first two years, but now with so much new syndicated product on the market, the logical and understandable reaction is, “Why should I rerun an episode of one show when I can put on a *new* episode of *another* show and make *more money*?” But the advertising is sold based on double-runs in some cases, or at least a certain percentage of double runs. So we’ll have to see. I am, for now, cautiously optimistic.

jms
Subj: Re:Questions, Schmestions!
Date: 96-03-09 06:25:22 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

B5 orbits Epsilon Eridani.

jms
Subj: Re:Just Thinking
Date: 96-03-09 06:26:59 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

“Since Warner Brothers does not seem to have an understanding of what
they have on their hands, (Don’t they realize the cash potential they have?!) Would you object to us, (loyal following) writing to them (Snail or E-Mail) and expressing more promotions or recognition be given the show? If so, can you publish the CEO’s name and address here? (preferably, E-Mail address)”

That would be Robert Daly, at WB in New York; don’t have his address at hand.

jms
Subj: Re:Att’n JMS: The Equalizer
Date: 96-03-09 06:28:47 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I enjoyed the Equalizer, though I didn’t see all the episodes, and it wasn’t anywhere in my head when I was coming up with the show.

The key to *any* good character is to make them real. You have to invest a lot of yourself into that process, differentiating how they move, walk, talk, think, believe. It’s a lot of work, but the result is worth it.

jms
Subj: Re:Other aliens in backgroun
Date: 96-03-09 06:29:30 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

It does sorta look like that, on reflection, but it ain’t Sandman-esque.

jms
Subj: Re:Susan’s revelation- a ?
Date: 96-03-09 06:30:29 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

That information was sent to Earth, where it’s led directly to the series of current investigations that were launched…and which forced Clark’s hand into declaring martial law to distract from all that.

jms
Subj: Re:Z’ha’dum
Date: 96-03-09 06:30:56 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

It’s not that easy; you’ll figure out why soon.

jms
Subj: Re:Religion on B5
Date: 96-03-09 06:39:46 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I’ve always been a writer. Even when I was just a kid, I was “preparing,” always checking out different kinds of writing instruments, collecting the artifacts of writing…took 3 years of typing in high school until I got to 120 wpm…but I didn’t start writing until mid-high school, when I finally decided I had read enough, thought enough about it, and was *ready*.

That day, I started writing finally. I wrote a story I placed with the school magazine done out of one of the writing classes. The next thing I wrote ended up in a small outside magazine. Then I began writing and placing articles and plays and stories….

I took some writing classes in college, but the only ones of value were the workshops, not the ones where you’re taught to write the way the teacher *wants* you to write. The whole theory of writing is to find your unique voice; if you surrender that by writing the way somebody else writes, you’ve sacrificed the only commodity you had to offer: your unique vision of the world. In any event, as stated, I was writing and selling long before I took my first writing class.

Since 1971, I have written 5-10 pages per day (the last 12+ years generally 10 or better) every day of the week, 52 weeks a year, except for my birthday, christmas, new year’s, and my spouse’s birthday. On my first trip to England, I swore I wouldn’t write, I’d take some time off; I ended up sneak-buying a small notepad and, by the time I got back, had outlined my first novel, later published by Dutton.

I’ve written over 500 published articles, dozens of published short stories, 12 produced plays, a number of songs recorded here and there (including two for a prime time ABC special), 2 published novels, 1 published anthology, a number of screenplays (some made as TV stuff, some not produced), and 145+ produced TV scripts, among other stuff.

I write all the time. It’s not what I do, it’s what I *am*.

jms
Subj: Re:Levels we haven’t conside
Date: 96-03-09 06:40:20 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

There aren’t higher levels per se….but different levels. You’ll see.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Question for a frie
Date: 96-03-09 06:42:03 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Your friend needs to switch to a decaffeinated coffee.

jms
Subj: .BMPs and reruns
Date: 96-03-09 10:30:04 EDT
From: NEXTTREK
Posted on: America Online

Can we have some backround files posted from MFE & PoNR. The visuals from Mars and Ganymede are great. They would excellent windows backrounds!

Thank you for picking some exciting reruns; I am looking forward to seeing these shows again. Would it be possible to rerun “The Coming of Shadows” at some point?

I am disappointed that B^2 could not be rerun. I know you tried your hardest to get out there for us. I understand that to become a “suit” one must be indoctrinated to “conform like a good executive”. I also understand that if this fails, minor brain surgery will be used to get the desired result.

Unfortunately, they missed an opportunity to hype the two-parter!

 

Subj: Re:Z’ha’dum
Date: 96-03-09 10:42:14 EDT
From: CBergen253
Posted on: America Online

Okay I was just wondering. Another question did Sheridan’s wife really wake up the
shadows on Z’ha’dum or did Delenn and Kosh just tell Sheridan that or is it possible they
are not as well informed as they would like us to believe? And while I’m feeling brave
enough to ask questions is it possible to get the preview for severed dreams uploaded
on AOL in the next few days to give us something to be teased with as we wait for the new
episodes in april?

Subj: Actors imput
Date: 96-03-09 10:54:59 EDT
From: Rick9719
Posted on: America Online

One unique experience you’ve had as a writer (compaired to us peons who slave away at home pc’s) is that you’ve had the chance to work with professional actors. An actors job is to breath life into a character for the stage or whatever. I’m curious what is the strongest impact an actor has had on one of your creations? Have there been times that they’ve brought aspects to the character that suprised you? Have any of your characters changed or deepened as a result of your seeing an actor work with the character?

Subj: Re:Here’s another one
Date: 96-03-09 13:21:05 EDT
From: RedQueen5
Posted on: America Online

Spoilers
*
*
*
*
*
*
**
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
*
enuff?

According to what I’ve read both in the Zocalo and in the WWW Episode guide, JMS has stated that Talia was control….and that Bester was about to slip and say “dissected”….and not because he wanted to provoke Garibaldi.

Later,
Red

Subj: Re:Religion on B5
Date: 96-03-09 13:32:01 EDT
From: Dastari
Posted on: America Online
>I write all the time. It’s not what I do, it’s what I *am*.

jms<

:) Thanx. Very interesting :)

-Damon

Subj: Minbari Bone Ridges
Date: 96-03-09 14:06:07 EDT
From: Temek
Posted on: America Online

Joe, we’ve seen the Religious Caste and the Warrior Caste have very different bone structures on their heads. Is the crest of the Worker class a third variation or do they resemble the Religious Caste’s? Also, have we seen anyone of the worker caste and not realised it?

Subj: That Psi Cop in MOH
Date: 96-03-09 15:50:59 EDT
From: Psi Cop966
Posted on: America Online

Now that we’re in reruns, and I’m a nitpicky completionist about certain things, JMS, does that Psi Cop that Morden and the Senator meet with at the end of Matters of Honor actually have a name? What is it?

Subj: Re:Religion on B5
Date: 96-03-09 16:51:56 EDT
From: AcDec
Posted on: America Online

<<Since 1971, I have written 5-10 pages per day (the last 12+ years generally 10 or better) every day of the week, 52 weeks a year, except for my birthday, christmas, new year’s, and my spouse’s birthday. On my first trip to England, I swore I wouldn’t write, I’d take some time off; I ended up sneak-buying a small notepad and, by the time I got back, had outlined my first novel, later published by Dutton.

I’ve written over 500 published articles, dozens of published short stories, 12 produced plays, a number of songs recorded here and there (including two for a prime time ABC special), 2 published novels, 1 published anthology, a number of screenplays (some made as TV stuff, some not produced), and 145+ produced TV scripts, among other stuff.

I write all the time. It’s not what I do, it’s what I *am*.

jms>>
You are starting to sound like Asimov JMS. :)
That is alot of writing.

Subj: Re:Bad transliterations part
Date: 96-03-09 18:40:25 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>> Qwi Xux, Borsk Fey’lya, Elder Sh’tk’ith, Yarna d’al’ Gargan, Pqweeduk, and my favorite, Jabba Desilijic Tiure. Try pronouncing those suckers.<<
Isn’t it Borssk? And what of the Nohgri?
You want some weird-but-transliterally-true names, check out StarBridge. Dhuurrrkk’ (the ‘ sounds like that tongue-click that bushmen use), Shhizazzisss (obviously a Mizari..), Erin, Mahree (actually a human!), etc. Then there’s Enemy Mine with the Draak (or whatever) who always mispronounce English. (“Yoouur Mick-hey Mouussssse iss a biggg stupiiid Doooohooope!”)
And there is a comic book (I’ve heard) with a character named Xian Chi Xan. Try pronouncing that three times fast.

Subj: Re:Inquiries from the Rim
Date: 96-03-09 18:45:15 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>I’d love to see an Aggy micromachine.<<

Of course, if the Earthforce 1 micros all explode and the Schwartzkof micros annihilate the Alexander micros while the starfury micros fire on each other, then you could have some really interesting problems…
>> As for the rest…why would I tell you what each of her prophecies means, thus defeating the surprise or the impact when they’re shown? That would be absolutely self-defeating.<<

Because I said please? 😉
OK, so I knew you wouldn’t answer; I just wanted to post them here so that anyone who might have any comments could make them, and you would be there to correct any mistakes in our speculative proofs (such as the Sinclair/Delenn “wedding” really being a rebirth ceremony).

Subj: Re:Jms/Songo
Date: 96-03-09 18:54:54 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>Hey Songo!
I also asked about a “Bearbalon” once. One could dress up a bear (using infant sizes) if you really want to create your own Bearbalon. <<

But the standard, run-of-the-mill teddybear just isn’t the right quality to simulate decompression…

Subj: Re:JMS: Narn Religion
Date: 96-03-09 18:58:04 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online
Don’t tell me…

The next winner of the mutai will be G’Quon A’Li
Who dances like a butterfly and stings like a G’Bee
The greatest champion of the century
who beats to a pulp those darn Centauri

Subj: Re:Questions, Schmestions!
Date: 96-03-09 19:00:12 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>> Are the names Minbari, Vorlon, Narn, Drazi, etc., the names each respective race has for themselves (and the way we read it the English spelling)?<<

I’m just guessing here, but I’d say that, from what we know of their language, Vorlons do not call themselves Vorlons in their native …song.

Subj: Re:Other aliens in backgroun
Date: 96-03-09 19:07:53 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>So is this a specific race (if so, who?!), just a continuing Sandman kinda joke (I suppose Dream or any of the other Endless might come to B5 on occassion, obviously Death has turned it into a vacation spot!) or someones/things we’re supposed to noticed in background — not unlike all the Rangers floating around in the background last season. Thanks!<<

That reminds me: Though I know what they’re talking about, I’ve seen an even more obscure/homage-ish alien. In MOH, there is a being in the background, briefly, that I recognized immediately from one of those Extra-terrestial Encyclopedia books that are always in the sci-fi section of book stores. It was a pretty famous alien, but I forgot whose it was. I think that it might be Larry Niven’s, Anne McCaffery’s, or (I forgot the name) a painter who does fantasy/sci-fi work (not Michael Whelan). I think it was in the scene where Endowi is talking to either Sheridan or Garibaldi.

Subj: names
Date: 96-03-09 19:11:37 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

You said that Morden wasn’t an obscure reference, but did you know that there was a wizard named Mordenkainen (or something like that-it began with Mordenkain) in an rpg?

And does Khazad-dum have anything to do with Z’Ha’Dum?

Subj: Re:Apostrophes & Translits
Date: 96-03-09 19:18:53 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>Well, I can tell you that apostrophes are used in technical transliterations of Hebrew because a couple of Hebrew consonants simply have no English equivalent. So the ‘ayin gets a “rough-breathing” apostrophe, whilst the ‘aleph gets the “smooth breathing” apostrophe.<<

So what about that choking-sound. In the Hebrew alphabet it is much like Hay (and there is another like Ket[?]), but it is Chay or HHHay or (ahem.. snort inhale wheeze) GGCGHGCGGKHHHCHKHAY. If you know Hebrew, you know what I’m talking about. How in the CKHHGHKHECHHCKGK can that sound be transliterated? It’s not like zh or jh or szh, which can be written with English, so how do you write it?

Subj: Re:JMS: Question for a frie
Date: 96-03-09 19:21:52 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>She claims these conversations have revealed to her that Earth will, in the not too distant future, become a battleground for the forces of light and darkness. She has noticed that the storyline of B5 parallels this future history, and she believes that many shows (B5, Space: A&B, X-files, etc.) are helping to prepare Earth’s populace for this coming conflict by making us more aware of our spirituality. She wonders if you have some “inside information” about this; i.e., a friend or acquaintance that has shared some of these predictions with you. She seems pretty convinced that you know alot about this. We discuss your show often, and she wondered if I would mind asking you if her suspicions had any merit. Because she’s my friend, I said I would pass it along. Is she on to something?<<

I’ve read a lot about this kind of thing. I have friends who have had experiences like that or are on the Kaballah (sp?). Ask if she’s heard the term “container” before…

Subj: Re:Bad transliterations part
Date: 96-03-09 19:29:22 EDT
From: Mr Cydonia
Posted on: America Online

> Qwi Xux, Borsk Fey’lya, Elder Sh’tk’ith, Yarna d’al’ Gargan, Pqweeduk, and my favorite, Jabba Desilijic Tiure. Try pronouncing those suckers.<<
>>Isn’t it Borssk? And what of the Nohgri?
You want some weird-but-transliterally-true names, check out StarBridge. Dhuurrrkk’ (the ‘ sounds like that tongue-click that bushmen use), Shhizazzisss (obviously a Mizari..), Erin, Mahree (actually a human!), etc. Then there’s Enemy Mine with the Draak (or whatever) who always mispronounce English. (“Yoouur Mick-hey Mouussssse iss a biggg stupiiid Doooohooope!”)
And there is a comic book (I’ve heard) with a character named Xian Chi Xan. Try pronouncing that three times fast.<<

My book says Borsk. Maybe you’re thinking of Bossk, a different Star Wars character. I guess one of the hazards of science fiction will always be the risk of damaging your tongue trying to pronounce alien names. I’ve always been against bizarrely spelled names for the same reason Orson Scott Card is; each time you come across a character named Grak’th M’x’w’q’lttlf or Sqwxty R. Sssssssssssspo’ds it yanks you out of the story because you have to figure out how to pronounce them.

Subj: Re:writer’s block
Date: 96-03-09 19:36:33 EDT
From: MBarnes423
Posted on: America Online

Jms since you write so much so often (and very high quality stuff I might add) you obviously don’t suffer from writer’s block very often. Any advice for those of us who do?

Subj: Re:Bad transliterations part
Date: 96-03-09 19:41:03 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>My book says Borsk. Maybe you’re thinking of Bossk, a different Star Wars character.<<

Yep… I guess that’s an oops.

>> I guess one of the hazards of science fiction will always be the risk of damaging your tongue trying to pronounce alien names. I’ve always been against bizarrely spelled names for the same reason Orson Scott Card is; each time you come across a character named Grak’th M’x’w’q’lttlf or Sqwxty R. Sssssssssssspo’ds it yanks you out of the story because you have to figure out how to pronounce them<<

True. I remember reading a book where the alien’s name had no vowels. Ouch. I can imagine their conversations: “Vxxdtklbg’xfsdwqtj-kkft, please pass the Vbrgujnian bblaood-varmyrzst.” “Sure, Quetzlecotl (sorry), when I’m done with the hfdshvfhgnlhvchngh.”
Of course, writers wouldn’t do that if the alternatives weren’t Gort, Ra, Zeebo, etc.. Of course, I don’t think I’ve ever seen aliens with a binary language…

“101101001101010101110111000101-1101010101010’10110101’10110001010 110101010101001 11010001001010111010100110100101010″ (Translation: “Hi, J-G’o’n!”)

Subj: Re:Questions…
Date: 96-03-09 20:12:45 EDT
From: JoyBoy23
Posted on: America Online

First off, thanks for answering us!! 1. Corwin!(oops, not a question) 2. does’nt Sheridan have access to Mordens travel history, and would’nt it worry him that Morden goes to Earth?(or does he switch ids along the way..?) -and tell Mr Wasser he is wonderfully vile!!(as Morden, not as person!!! :D) 3. How did Clark, under suspicion for assassinating Santiago, declare martial law?(this politics thing which always confuses me!) Cannot wait until April!!! Thanks!!!

Subj: Songostrophes
Date: 96-03-09 20:16:30 EDT
From: Filops
Posted on: America Online

Songo,

If you mean *he* (fifth letter), it’s a simple “h” in transliteration. If *cheth* (8th etter), it is *ch* if you don’t have fancy typesetting, or an “h” with a dot under it if you do.

Thanks for privileging this goy with a question about Hebrew! 8^)

Dan

Subj: Re:re wrists and stuff
Date: 96-03-09 20:46:47 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Hey Joe- IBM pushes their Aptiva brand of computers, the top end of which is supposed to respond to the user’s voice. Maybe you can nudge the powers that be to get you one. Thus saving your wrists.

Subj: Conventions
Date: 96-03-09 20:56:52 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Just saw a notice that says you are scheduled for Necronomicon in Tampa.

Moreover, you get to share billing with Brinke Stevens. What a concept- I can see it now…

Brinke Stevens as Ivanova in Broadway’s Za’Ha’Dum Follies!

Subj: Re:Questions, questions
Date: 96-03-09 21:06:28 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Howard Stern endorses B5?

OK, then, ya gotta pay him back. Maybe the rebel EA ship Stern can kick some ass before being destroyed.

Subj: Re:JMS:HDTV Question
Date: 96-03-09 21:12:51 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Holy cow- you mean when all is said and done, when the shows over and Ivanova’s babushka has sung, there will still be more?

May all of fandom prostrate before a visionary such as yourself.

Subj: Re:ISN’s role
Date: 96-03-09 21:38:22 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Don’t forget-
During the Soviet coup in August 1990, there were live feeds via the Internet. While the battle was raging, the fax machine and a computer were constantly operating. I’ve heard, but not confirmed, that there was even a video feed, likely some sort of slow-scan TV.

If ships as small as Star Furies can have FTL communicators, then there’s no reason a video drone couldnt, either.

On Nightline a few days ago, they discussed new weapons for the next century. One general in the advanced thinking deparetment displayed a life sized model of a spy drone, to be carried by nearly every soldier. It was smaller than a paperback book, and had a small jet engine and TV camera. I have no doubt that ISN uses video drones the size of couches, which would be extremely maneuverable (far more maneuverable than a Star Fury, with no body inside), though not capable of carrying a jump drive.

And in anticipation, the reason such a signal wouldnt have been jammed is that the people who would do the jamming were rather busy at the time.

Subj: Re:JMS: Londo Question
Date: 96-03-09 21:43:40 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Does that mean that an old Centauri male that goes bald becomes a slave?

Subj: Janet Greek
Date: 96-03-09 21:48:59 EDT
From: BigWig27
Posted on: America Online

JMS,
I recently read that Janet Greek was going to stop directing to do more writing. Since she directed some of my favorite B5 episodes, I was wondering what kinds of things she’ll be writing — novels, teleplays, etc? And, are there any episodes left that we haven’t seen that she directed?
If you see her, tell her BigWig27 said good luck in her new endeavors, but I for one will miss her excellent directing.

Later,
BigWig27

Subj: Re:Religion on B5
Date: 96-03-09 22:01:20 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Thank you for answering a lot of questions that could be answered if people would just go back and review the show. A lot of forums have FAQ files that would answer such questions, and people who persist in asking questions that are answered in the file deservedly get flamed. On the other hand, television being what it is, we CAN’T simply review the shows, particularly those from previous seasons. So again, thank you for your patience.

Subj: Re: Things Look Bad
Date: 96-03-09 22:14:45 EDT
From: Harokin
Posted on: America Online

Dear JMS,

>>The main issue, I think, is going to be the second-runs in most markets. It wasn’t a problem the first two years, but now with so much new syndicated product on the market, the logical and understandable reaction is, “Why should I rerun an episode of one show when I can put on a *new* episode of *another* show and make *more money*?” But the advertising is sold based on double-runs in some cases, or at least a certain percentage of double runs. So we’ll have to see. I am, for now, cautiously optimistic. <<

>>Stu (General Manager) spent well over half the episode discussing the history of B5 on
the station, PTEN’s slow demise, and repeating that the show does get a lack of ratings.
He does acknowledge the “small but vocal fan base” that B5 has.<<

Subj: Re: Things Look Bad
Date: 96-03-09 22:19:34 EDT
From: Harokin
Posted on: America Online

Dear JMS,

Based upon your response:
>>The main issue, I think, is going to be the second-runs in most markets. It wasn’t a problem the first two years, but now with so much new syndicated product on the market, the logical and understandable reaction is, “Why should I rerun an episode of one show when I can put on a *new* episode of *another* show and make *more money*?” But the advertising is sold based on double-runs in some cases, or at least a certain percentage of double runs. So we’ll have to see. I am, for now, cautiously optimistic. <<

And this one from the E.A.S.O.S. folder:
>>Stu (General Manager) spent well over half the episode discussing the history of B5 on
the station, PTEN’s slow demise, and repeating that the show does get a lack of ratings.
He does acknowledge the “small but vocal fan base” that B5 has.<<

Things seem pretty grim for renewal. What can we fans do to further support the show? I have, so far, personally written to my local stations and WB in support of the show. Is it time now for a mass, organized push to save the show? The show, and its story, are just to good to remain unfinished. Tell all of us concerned fans what we need to do. Thanks.

Subj: Re:Space Potatoes?
Date: 96-03-09 23:03:35 EDT
From: Charger MB
Posted on: America Online

Re: << May or may not see General Franklin again anytime soon. >>

That could be a really dramatic and potentially extremely sad episode. The General would be honor bound to defend the duely elected government of earth and his son would naturally side with Sinclair and Sheridan.

It would be “Civil War Time” all over again and just having visited Gettysburg on a balmy February winter’s day for the first time and walked with a friend through our national cemetery, I witnessed the effects of a war that pitted “fathers against sons”.

But that is what war is all about and if I have begun to understand what you have been trying to show over the last few years, I know that you would never back down from the logical consequences of such an eventuality.

Thank you and your great staff for the last few years of joy and your continuing remarks and insights about “the human condition” posted here and elsewhere.

Regards, Mike Babiuk

 

Subj: B5 the Series
Date: 96-03-09 23:17:56 EDT
From: MarkF1955
Posted on: America Online

I have got to rave bout this series. This is better than sex!! It is very refreshing to see a continued development of Sci-Fi with a long term plot. PLEASE GOD let this creation live. Give his creation life!!!

Subj: Re:Z’ha’dum
Date: 96-03-10 05:01:36 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Delenn and Kosh told the truth as they knew it. And the trailer for Severed Dreams won’t be available until closer to airtime.

jms
Subj: Re:Actors imput
Date: 96-03-10 05:06:17 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

This is a hard question to answer. When you create a character in your head, you always hear them a certain way. Sometimes, when you bring in an actor, you hear it a different way, and you have to adjust. Sometimes the actor sounds just like what you had in mind (as with Jason Carter and Claudia).

For me, what’s interesting is when an actor finds something in the text that was there, that I didn’t recognize even though I’d written it, and illuminates a corner of the character. (And sometimes I discover I’ve revealed more about myself than I’d intended in a scene, only finding this out when I see the actor saying the words.)

Probably the biggest impact in B5 terms was in seeing the humor that Claudia could bring to the part, and the vulnerability that Peter summoned up. The scene in the pilot movie where Londo goes to Garibaldi and says, basically, yes, I messed up, and yes, I’d do it again, showed a great depth of feeling, of conflicting emotions that lifted that scene way beyond what was on the page, and showed me that I could take Londo anywhere I wanted, and the actor behind the character could and would take it all the way without ever stumbling.

jms
Subj: Re:Minbari Bone Ridges
Date: 96-03-10 05:07:36 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Worker caste tend to fade into the background; we’ve seen them here and there; pilots and traders (visible in “Strife”) are worker caste, and others. They don’t have as much a stylized manner of bone-carving as the other castes.

jms
Subj: Re:writer’s block
Date: 96-03-10 05:11:23 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

No, I’ve never had writer’s block. (I hate saying that; it’s like saying out loud at the top of the 9th inning that you’ve got a no-hitter going…the universe loves to trip you up.)

I think it comes from being a generalist; if I don’t have a script at hand to think about, I flip over to writing a short story, a novel, an article, something else. Also, I never sit down to write out a scene or a section until I’ve “seen” it in my head so many times that it’s practically transcription at that point.

jms
Subj: Re:re wrists and stuff
Date: 96-03-10 05:12:03 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Won’t work. I’ve tried dictating, didn’t work (despite allegations that I’m a dictator). I write out of my fingers; I can’t dictate the stuff.

jms
Subj: Re:Janet Greek
Date: 96-03-10 05:13:36 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Janet just signed onto a series — jeez, I just forgot the name, it fell out of my head — as a writer and director. If I can drag it out of my brain, I’ll post the name.

jms
Subj: Re:B5 the Series
Date: 96-03-10 05:16:14 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

“This is better than sex!”

Thank you.

Now keep those hands to yourself, mister.

jms
Subj: Re:B5 the Series
Date: 96-03-10 10:56:57 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

>> “This is better than sex!”

Thank you.

Now keep those hands to yourself, mister.

Joe:
ROTFLMAO!!

Macker

Subj: Re:Janet Greek
Date: 96-03-10 11:25:23 EDT
From: StarFuryD4
Posted on: America Online

Joe,

Mayhaps was it Hypernauts?
And does this mean that Mr. Cremin will be absent from the B5 director’s chair also?

Dave
Delta4 out

Subj: Lot’s O Q’s
Date: 96-03-10 13:21:17 EDT
From: Kamin5
Posted on: America Online

Okay, JMS…rewatching “Fall of Night”(and actually *taping* it this time) raised as many questions as it answered…

Answer as many as you will…<begging> please..

1) Okay, I finally figured out that B5 is set up inside a HUGE cylinder…What is the diameter and length of the cylinder?(I’m trying to figure out the surface area inside the station)

2)Now that I’ve established that, why is it that you’re able to see the other half of the station from places like the Zen Garden, but not from the living quaters, Zocalo, or Down Below.

3)In relation to the rest of the station, where is C-and-C? The Zocalo? Down Below?

4)Does anyone in the Alliance know that it was Morden talking to Clarke in the transmission?

5)Did you mean to draw parrellels to Neville Chamberlain’s speech after he met with Hitler in 1936 with in announcement of the peace accords with the Centauri?

6)And finally, why if he is a commmander of a warship, is Hague’s rank General, and not Admiral? I’m just assuming that particular segment of Earth Force is modeled after the Navy…

Keep up the good work…can’t wait ’til April…

Subj: Re:Jms/Songo
Date: 96-03-10 13:50:49 EDT
From: JVibber
Posted on: America Online

If you ever authorize a Bearbalon 5, maybe it could be packaged like the “Astronaut Ice Cream” that I see at every museum and science gift shop. Better yet, it could be the same size and shape. The teddy bear of the astronauts!
Subj: Re:Three quick questions
Date: 96-03-10 13:56:01 EDT
From: JVibber
Posted on: America Online

<< ..Why do so many alien names have apostrophes in them? They rarely serve any purpose, e.g. Jem ‘Hadar. The apostrophe in G’Kar makes sense, but the two in Pak’La’Mar (or however that goes), not so much. >>

Hey, don’t sweat it. Consider the names from “Voyager in Night” by C.J. Cherryh:

<> <^> </> </> <<<^/they++>>> <<^they>> <<^>> ((()))

Now for the kicker: these are the names of characters in the book (essentially, I refuse to go into more detail — read it yourself), and for all these names spelling is significant (which is why I separated them with spaces instead of commas).

Er, uh, and don’t ask me to pronounce any of THEM, either.
Subj: Re:JMS: Londo Question
Date: 96-03-10 14:07:21 EDT
From: JVibber
Posted on: America Online

<< Does that mean that an old Centauri male that goes bald becomes a slave? >>

Nope. He just wears a wig. Like Emperor Turhan.
Subj: PoNR – Fixed Stars!
Date: 96-03-10 17:03:35 EDT
From: NEXTTREK
Posted on: America Online

Shouldn’t the stars be moving in a circular mannar behind Sheridan and Ivanova when they are giving thier speech in C&C at the beginning of PoNR?

I realize that CGI would be expensive, but couldn’t something be rigged up “outside” the “window”?
Subj: The creative process
Date: 96-03-10 17:18:00 EDT
From: BlairLwood
Posted on: America Online

Just out of curiousity–what was it that made this a TV series (as opposed to another format)?

Subj: Re:Janet Greek
Date: 96-03-10 19:02:41 EDT
From: ThatTree
Posted on: America Online

She directed a recent episode of “Melrose Place”– could that be the series she’s signed onto?

Subj: Re:Songostrophes
Date: 96-03-10 23:09:22 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>Songo,If you mean *he* (fifth letter), it’s a simple “h” in transliteration. If *cheth* (8th etter), it is *ch* if you don’t have fancy typesetting, or an “h” with a dot under it if you do.<<

Ach, I get it now. Like Chanuka, Hanuka, or .H.anukah. Hebrew is definitely fun to pronounce after a big glass of orange juice. Oy, now if I could just remember how to write block-style Hebrew. (My script is unreadable)
>>Thanks for privileging this goy with a question about Hebrew! 8^)<<

Don’t menion it. ;c]

Subj: Re:Jms/Songo
Date: 96-03-10 23:20:21 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>If you ever authorize a Bearbalon 5, maybe it could be packaged like the “Astronaut Ice Cream” that I see at every museum and science gift shop. Better yet, it could be the same size and shape. The teddy bear of the astronauts!<<

Just add water, heat, and serve, for a soft, cuddly friend. (Don’t miss our other releases: Londo dolls that talk; Attributes In A Can; Space Duck; Lightbulbs of all sizes and shapes; and much more!)

Subj: Re:Other aliens in backgroun
Date: 96-03-11 01:15:44 EDT
From: Ttocs1000
Posted on: America Online

I noticed a couple of times that one of the two alien races (forgive me for not knowing who thery are) who got invaded by the Centauri looked kind of like an AD&D mind flayer. Any connection?

Subj: Old Question
Date: 96-03-11 02:09:41 EDT
From: HenrichWst
Posted on: America Online

I’m sure this is an old question but when is SHeridan returning? While I like SInclair I miss Sheridan.

Also what happened to Natooth? I haven’t seen her in awhile.
Subj: You know the episode……
Date: 96-03-11 02:29:54 EDT
From: DCarlson24
Posted on: America Online

…. where that telepath who was good friends of Talia Winters was mistreated with telepathic drugs and became a god-like being and left Talia with the ability to telekinetically move objects. Anybody remember? She moves the penny across the table? JMS… will Talia come back using this power and will that god-like telepath come back? Can the Vorlons beat the Shadows? (I always wanted to know this… kinda like “can Superman beat the Hulk!” [laughter] )

Subj: Re:Old Question
Date: 96-03-11 14:44:44 EDT
From: Archer C1
Posted on: America Online

<<<I’m sure this is an old question but when is SHeridan returning? While I like SInclair I miss Sheridan.>>

You’ve got your commanders bass-ackwards…but Sinclair returns toward the end of May…

Subj: Re:PoNR – Fixed Stars!
Date: 96-03-11 14:49:33 EDT
From: Archer C1
Posted on: America Online

<Shouldn’t the stars be moving in a circular mannar behind Sheridan and Ivanova when they are giving thier speech in C&C at the beginning of PoNR?

I realize that CGI would be expensive, but couldn’t something be rigged up “outside” the “window”?>

But they were in MfE (Delenn and Sheriden on the observation deck) and CoS (Sheridan and Emperor on same set)…When I saw it, I was duly impressed by the attention to detail. Actually more to the point…C&C appears stationary with relation to the rest of station. If it’s not rotating, why is there gravity in C&C?

Subj: Re:PoNR – Fixed Stars!
Date: 96-03-11 20:42:21 EDT
From: NEXTTREK
Posted on: America Online

My two cents: if C&C were stationary then how is gravity being generated in there? I thought that C&C was under the docking bay at the front of the station — in the rotating section.

Subj: JMS: What about Catherine?
Date: 96-03-11 21:40:33 EDT
From: Chirurgeon
Posted on: America Online

I know we will be seeing Sinclair this season, but will we find out what happened to his fiancee? Also, that young telepath that went to Minbar, will we see her again?

Subj: Re:JMS: What about Catherine?
Date: 96-03-11 23:54:17 EDT
From: WSudderth
Posted on: America Online

For some silly reason, I fancied her following Sinclair to Minbar, possibly even as a Ranger. In line with her character, Joe?

Subj: Uniform Question
Date: 96-03-12 00:25:41 EDT
From: MAKagle
Posted on: America Online

Our local B5 station has Dr. Franklin (I forget the actor’s name) on a brief promo spot for the show. In that spot, where he lists the time of the show, he is wearing an Earthforce-like uniform I have never seen before. The uniform is black with a lot of white piping.

Anyway, where did this uniform come from and why haven’t we seen it?

Subj: Those pesky aliens
Date: 96-03-12 01:00:41 EDT
From: AmberH
Posted on: America Online

jms–

Thanks for the, er, elucidation. So, since they are not a Sandman homage, just *who* or what are they? And are we supposed to be noticing them?

Subj: Re:JMS: What about Catherine
Date: 96-03-12 01:02:13 EDT
From: MythoPhile
Posted on: America Online

<<I know we will be seeing Sinclair this season, but will we find out what happened to his fiancee?>>
“Hi, Na’toth, remember me? Catherine from B5? I came all the way to Narn to -… say, is the sky getting dark?”
*** sigh *** Well, we can dream, can’t we?

Subj: Re:Na’Toth
Date: 96-03-12 01:14:43 EDT
From: NecRon 01
Posted on: America Online

I know this question was just asked a couple of posts ago, but, what happened to Na”Toth and are we going to see her again? She was the most intruiging attache and my favorite.
My regards-

Salamander.

Subj: World Con…
Date: 96-03-12 01:33:53 EDT
From: CapNemo278
Posted on: America Online

Will there be any B5 presence at the World Con this year? Harry

Subj: No Free Will?
Date: 96-03-12 02:10:49 EDT
From: ExCretan
Posted on: America Online

Joe,
I’ve picked up a rather disgusting habit lately: reading your old Usenet
posts as archived at the Lurker’s Guide. The worst part about it is that I
end up with about a dozen new questions after reading a month’s worth of
posts, most of which are so out of date as to be not worth asking…but today
I ran across one that I’m really wondering about.

Someone complained that, since the arc was all planned out, the characters
lives were predestined, and they had no free will. You replied that no
fictional characters have free will, that Scrooge (for example) didn’t have a
choice about meeting the three spirits, or even about being redeemed.

I found this surprising in light of your recent (and some not-so-recent)
comments about how Ivanova and Marcus and everyone are inside your head, how
to some extent you just look in on the station to see what sort of trouble
they’re all in *this* time. Don’t the characters ever surprise you, do
something that you didn’t expect or ask them to do? And if they do, if they
can react in ways that you hadn’t planned or expected or requested, then
don’t they have free will?

Heck, assuming that Dickens wrote the same way you do, maybe Scrooge *did*
have a choice at first – perhaps Dickens originally planned for the old man
to fail, but as the character took form, he changed Charles’ mind, convinced
him that a story about redemption would work better than one about failure…

Is this making sense?Or should I switch to decaf myself?

Patrick A. Bowman
And I don’t even *drink* coffee…
Subj: Messages to WB
Date: 96-03-12 07:46:34 EDT
From: JOHN DANT
Posted on: America Online

If anyone has the address/protocol for sending B5 support to Warner Brothers, both snail-mail and/or E-mail, Please post it. Also, I’m looking for a copy of Babylon Squared episode, any help appreciated.
John

Subj: The Known Galaxy
Date: 96-03-12 11:44:48 EDT
From: Voltayre I
Posted on: America Online

How much of the B5 Galaxy is known (%)? More specifically, how large a part of the galaxy is taken up by the Narn, Centauri, Minbari, Human and the 12 or so Non-Aligned Worlds?

Thank you,
Voltayre

Subj: Book stuff
Date: 96-03-12 11:53:48 EDT
From: Rushylon 5
Posted on: America Online

Is Book #4 still part of the canon? I haven’t read the whole thing yet, but G’Kar does some stuff to Londo and another Centauri that should have lasting reprecussions. There is no historical note like in the other three books, though, so I was wondering if this one was still part of the “whole” story.

Thanks for B5,

Rushylon 5

Subj: Re:click… *click*… CLIC
Date: 96-03-12 13:48:19 EDT
From: Deanna947
Posted on: America Online

<<6. Though I know that their reign will be over by 2260, will we see any
references to the DNRC? Just a joke, everyone… o->>

Why not? I just received mail from Scott Adams. He says he is a big fan of B5. Now we have (at least) two of my favorite writers on AOL.

<*> O- <– Dogbert approaching a jumpgate!

D.

Subj: Re:JMS: Narn Religion
Date: 96-03-12 13:51:11 EDT
From: Deanna947
Posted on: America Online

Not meaning to cross religious structures perse, but does the same apply to Valen and Valeria within the Minbari religion?

D.

Subj: Re:Hi again, JMS, thanks & a
Date: 96-03-12 13:54:16 EDT
From: Deanna947
Posted on: America Online

Scott, try the Lurker’s Guide on the web.

D.
Subj: Re:Messages to WB
Date: 96-03-12 14:05:37 EDT
From: Deanna947
Posted on: America Online

It’s on the web, again at Hyperion (the Lurker’s Guide) It is best to write your local station by snail mail, since they keep the correspondence.

D.

Subj: Re:World Con…
Date: 96-03-12 15:03:56 EDT
From: Archer C1
Posted on: America Online

<Will there be any B5 presence at the World Con this year?>

JMS is listed by the Con’s e-mail newsletter….

Subj: Dear JMS: Khazad-dum, etc
Date: 96-03-12 19:49:02 EDT
From: RuaxKodesh
Posted on: America Online

Has anyone noticed that B5 isn’t on the list of clubs on AOL’s communities window? Its nothing to me, B5 is on my list of jump points (#8), but it means a lot of new people won’t be able to find their way in.

Subj: Re:click… *click*… CLIC
Date: 96-03-12 20:56:34 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>><<6. Though I know that their reign will be over by 2260, will we see any
references to the DNRC? Just a joke, everyone… o->>
Why not? I just received mail from Scott Adams. He says he is a big fan of B5. Now we have (at least) two of my favorite writers on AOL. <<

I didn’t know he was a big B5 fan! I never heard mention of it; what mail was this? Was it in a DNRC newsletter? AOL certainly has some great writers on board… If it gets anymore, the reputation of AOL will have to change.

>> <*> O- <– Dogbert approaching a jumpgate!<<

LOL o- O~ ( ) = (from left to right) Dogbert depressurizing.

D.<<

Subj: JMS: Delenn’s bonehead
Date: 96-03-12 22:57:09 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

Joe,
I was wondering , does Delenn have to polish her bone so it won’t crack?
If she fell , would it break?
Or is it super hard?
Ro

Subj: B5 distance from Earth
Date: 96-03-13 00:15:05 EDT
From: Voltayre I
Posted on: America Online

I read somewhere that B5 is 25 light years from Earth. Is that true?

Thanks,
Voltayre I

Subj: Spoo, and wine
Date: 96-03-13 10:15:02 EDT
From: Shafers692
Posted on: America Online

I went back and looked into the spoo archive at the lurker’s guide; I found there a quote from you saying that Spoo goes best witha chablis or white zinfandel.

Not to put too fine apoint on it, but do mean chablis as in a white from the Chablis region of France, or just in the general sense of a white wine? Cuz ya know, a white from Chablis is essentially the same (in content, if not in style) as a California Chardonnay – dry, fruity, great for poultry and fish. As compared with a white zin, which is basically more of a general purpose wine. I mean, Chablis fits, since it sounds like spoo is all white meat (VERY white), but I have to wonder if a sweeter wine, perhaps something like a late-harvest Riesling, wouldn’t do the job very nicely.

Your thoughts?

Subj: Hot Jalla
Date: 96-03-13 12:40:19 EDT
From: ExCretan
Posted on: America Online

In Dust to Dust, G’Kar has a vision of his father, who was killed after an incident involving spilled hot jalla.

And soon after, while Vir and Londo are recuperating, Vir brings Londo…some hot jalla.

Is this meant to imply a subtle connection between G’kar and Londo? Londo has now been affected by that incident- and by extension, his people’s treatment of the Narn in general – in a very personal way, just as G’kar was. It’s also, perhaps, a contrast between similar situations – the jalla was a cause of death in the former case, a means of healing in the latter.

Or is there something more insidious going on?

Pat Bowman
And Vir’s shirt…ALOHA…that’s great…

Subj: Name that tune
Date: 96-03-13 13:41:35 EDT
From: Dbc106
Posted on: America Online

Thank you for a wonderful show I haven’t missed a second.
I just got my reply from the local station thanking me for my letter about Babylon 5.
They are commited to it (WPTT- Pittsburgh).
My question to you is sometimes when you write do you have any music playing,
such as Steve Roach’s “Artifacts” or “Suspended Memories Forgotten Gods”?
Keep up the great work.
Dave

Subj: Re:Lot’s O Q’s
Date: 96-03-13 18:46:20 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The station is about 5 miles long, so the rest you can work from there.

You *can* see the length of the station from some of the living quarters, such as Londo’s, and from Sheridan’s office.

Yes, the Neville Chamberlain parallel was intentional.

jms
Subj: Re:PoNR – Fixed Stars!
Date: 96-03-13 18:47:26 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

We’ve gone over this a lot; because the station rotates, you’d need a circular, rotating starfield that would be twice as tall as our stage ceiling to make it work, and it’d be hideously loud.

jms
Subj: Re:The creative process
Date: 96-03-13 18:48:36 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Because I knew it’d have to be a multi-year format, which limits you to either books or TV, since you couldn’t do all of this stuff in films. (You’d need 55 movies.) So…TV.

jms
Subj: Re:PoNR – Fixed Stars!
Date: 96-03-13 18:50:30 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

C&C is *not* in the center of the station, which is the zero-g docking bay; it’s 1/3rd of the way down, so it has about 1/3rd gravity. That means a 200 pound person weights 67 pounds, so you’re not exactly going to be bouncing around or anything.

jms
Subj: Re:Uniform Question
Date: 96-03-13 18:51:24 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Only time will tell.

jms
Subj: Re:World Con…
Date: 96-03-13 18:51:49 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Well, I’ll be there; we’ll see about the rest.

jms
Subj: Re:No Free Will?
Date: 96-03-13 18:53:14 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yes, the characters surprise me…but the characters aren’t real, and “they’re” not surprising me, it’s something that burbles out of my subconscious. Only living beings can truly have free will. Fictional characters don’t.

jms
Subj: Re:Hot Jalla
Date: 96-03-13 18:55:32 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

It’s not a connection, but a resonance; jalla is made from the jalwah tree, and yes, G’Kar’s father was hung from a jalwah tree. But I wouldn’t read too much more into that.

jms
Subj: Re:Name that tune
Date: 96-03-13 19:04:47 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I listen to just about every kind of music there is, except for hard country music. It just grates; not to say it’s bad, lots of folks like it, it just gets my teeth grinding like tectonic plates. (The closest I get is bluegrass and folk, with the Red Clay Ramblers being a favorite there.)

When I work, I tend to listen to different things as the mood strikes me. Everything from rock to jazz to big band to “new age” to classical to Irish music to Japanese music to Australian aboriginal music to Gregorian chants…you name it. I was heavily into Japanese KODO music for a while, but because I was playing it all the time I kinda got KODO’d out after a while.

Among the stuff that turns up most often on the stereo while I’m working these days: Meatloaf, Slade, Enya, Alice Cooper, Melissa Etheridge, Sarah MacLachlan, Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Red Clay Ramblers. I’ll probably cycle through into more orchestral/instrumental stuff soon.

jms
Subj: Beginnings
Date: 96-03-13 19:56:33 EDT
From: Its a myth
Posted on: America Online

Ah, JMS, I knew there was something I liked about your tastes. The Red Clay Ramblers are TERRIFIC, if not to say quirky. “Daniel Prayed” is my absolute favorite. Many’s the time I’ve made it across the Sepulveda Pass singing along with the Red Clay Ramblers!
So here’s my non-Ramblers question: Where did B5 start? What was the germ of the whole idea? Who were the first characters? Were any characters conceived as men that ended up as women and vice versa?

Subj: JMS: Fan Clubs
Date: 96-03-13 20:58:05 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

Joe,
You didn’t answer my Majel question or my Delenn question , so here’s hoping
that you will answer this question.
Are the various fan clubs( Furlan , O’Hara , Doyle) sanctioned by the actors?
And is there one for Claudia?
Thanks,
Ro

Subj: Re:JMS: Fan Clubs
Date: 96-03-13 21:18:18 EDT
From: RosalindB
Posted on: America Online

Maybe I can help with this one:
<<Are the fan clubs sanctioned by the actors?>>
Some of them are. Friends of Michael O’Hare is sanctioned by Mr. O’Hare. Our group has raised money for a few charities with his participation.
A fan club for Ms. Furlan just started. If you go to the “Delenn” folder here, and look back a week or two, the address is there.
“Garibaldi & Co” is Jerry Doyle’s club, and he has endorsed them.
A good place to check is Starlog Magazine. They publish monthly list of clubs with addresses and other information.
<<Is there one for Claudia?>>
I haven’t seen any listed for her. Post your question in the “Fan Events” folder. Maybe someone there will know for sure.

-Rosalind- trying to save the Great Maker some typing :)
Subj: Re: Name That Tune
Date: 96-03-13 22:39:10 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

>>I’ll probably cycle through into more orchestral/instrumental stuff soon.<<

Joe:
May I suggest one of the greatest film scores ever written…too bad it was recorded in 1938 by the Soviets, whose tech level stank…5000 Hz range!
“Alexander Nevsky” by Sergei Prokofiev. It’s on RCA Red Label; this version was recorded by the St. Petersburg Philharmonic in 1991. Perhaps something right up Ivanova’s alley too! It was used in the video release of Sergei Eisenstein’s classic.
Imagine G’Kar watching this flick in the archives! Wouldn’t THAT give him some inspiration!

Macker

Subj: Re: Ships
Date: 96-03-13 22:59:17 EDT
From: Harokin
Posted on: America Online

JMS,
Babylon 5 has gone along way towards providing a variety of ships. Will we be seeing some larger Earth ships soon? Is the Agamemnon the largest class of Earth warships or do battleships exist as well? I know the CGI work is expensive, but are there any plans to show a greater variety of ships for each of the major races? Thanks.

Bests,
Harokin

Subj: JMS:88 notes in your music
Date: 96-03-13 22:59:58 EDT
From: DaryllF
Posted on: America Online

Hi Joe:

I read (purely second hand stuff – from the CIS summary) that Kung Fu is not being renewed – 88 episodes is an optimal number for syndication.

1) Can you negotiate for a two year renewal for B5 rather than a one year renewal? That would ensure you’ll have time to finish your 110 episodes.

2) If you can’t negotiate for two years, can you find out whether PTEN’s intention is to stop B5 after 88 episodes? This information would allow you to write the minute waltz with a forty-eight second time constraint. Would this be something you would even be willing to do (rush I mean).

3) What happens if they give you the “we’ll see” routine. Do you write the fourth season believing there will be a fifth?

Maybe I’ll sell my Netscape stock, buy Warner Bros. and seven major tv stations in big markets and ensure Babylon-5’s survival. Oh yeah … what was that my psychiatrist said about reality and fantasy again?

Thanks,

Daryll.

Subj: Re:Lot’s O Q’s
Date: 96-03-13 23:18:52 EDT
From: Kamin5
Posted on: America Online

>>The station is about 5 miles long, so the rest you can work from there.

You *can* see the length of the station from some of the living quarters, such as Londo’s, and from Sheridan’s office.

Yes, the Neville Chamberlain parallel was intentional.<<

Thank you for taking the time to do ’em…I know I seem like the biggest idiot…

Subj: Station Interior
Date: 96-03-14 00:36:37 EDT
From: JOHN DANT
Posted on: America Online

JMS:
It is in the details and consistency that B5 reveals itself to be superior to any other series, TV or big screen. I enjoy it like no other.
My Question is this: While watching the freefall scene if Fall of Night, I realized that the CGI guys, at least, must have mapped out the interior surface of the station. Different CGI shots showed different angles of view of ground features as Sheridan fell outward. Is there an established map of the interior surface with perhaps some thought to what went where and why? Could we ever get to see a copy or perhaps download it? I realize the interior probably doesn’t play much in the story arc, but it would be facinating to examine it like a ST:TNG tech manual.
Thanks for bringing us this show, its the best sci-fi ever brought to any size screen.

John

Subj: Warner Store
Date: 96-03-14 01:44:53 EDT
From: Hologhost
Posted on: America Online

It seems kind of deceptive to jump from this forum to the Warner store, since they don’t carry B5 stuff. Even the X-Files forum has an area to buy merchandise. Is it possible to set up a similar deal in this forum. (For licensed stuff, of course.)

Thank you.

Subj: G’Kar and G’Lan
Date: 96-03-14 02:36:46 EDT
From: Gary1024
Posted on: America Online

Jms,

It seems that GKar has been redeemed, to some degree, by his vision of GLan and the path that GLan has laid out for him. GKar strength of faith is based on the fact that he is now closer to the source(of the book of GQuan). GKar has been visited by a narn religious figure and is extremely motivated to take advatage of this opportunity.

But as we, the B5 viewers, know from Fall of Night and D2D, GLan is actually kosh in narns clothing. It seems that only a few characters on B5(sheridan, delann, maybe some others) actually know that GLan( or the christian/drazi/narn/minbari angel/prophet) is actaully kosh. Now the orginal GLan may or may not be kosh, it doesnt matter to me, but it was a vorlon.

My question is, if GKar finds out that GLan is actually Kosh, would it effect his belief in the path laid out for him, or his belief in the Book of GKar?

And now for something comletely different. In the season two ep Soul Mates, the post-cocoon Delann asks Ivanova: “Do you have any idea why I suddenly started getting these… odd cramps?” Is it safe to assume that Delann is fertile and could have a human baby? Hmmmmm…..

In any event, thanks for the great on-line support. To be able to interact with the writer of such a great show is wonderful and amazing.

Sincerly,
Gary1024
Subj: Re:World Con…
Date: 96-03-14 02:44:56 EDT
From: ReddGator
Posted on: America Online

When and where is World Con this year?

Subj: Re:zine article
Date: 96-03-14 02:47:07 EDT
From: MBarnes423
Posted on: America Online

I just picked up the april issue of scifi Entertainment because it has an article about Bruce and your show but they did a crummy job with it. First off the station is pictured upside down not once but twice. and there’s an aside that reads “The “last best hope” for peace has failed. The name of the place is Babylon-5.” (they left off the rest of it). Fortunately the article consisted mostly of Bruce talking so the writer of the article didn’t have much opportunity to put his foot in his mouth. These people are in the sci fi business and should know better. I called and asked them why they didn’t do a better job of presenting this article and the man said that the ratings were bad and PTEN doesn’t make it worth their while-no wait that’s what the program director at WATL 36 said…my mistake. I should stop myself here because I don’t have a question to ask; I’m just bitching for no apparent reason.

Subj: Re:World Con…
Date: 96-03-14 03:18:21 EDT
From: La Bubble
Posted on: America Online

Where is world Con to be held, and when?
Subj: Re: Name That Tune
Date: 96-03-14 03:20:27 EDT
From: La Bubble
Posted on: America Online

If you want inspiration while writing.. listen to John Barry’s Dances With Wolves soundtrack..

 

Subj: Re:Name that tune
Date: 96-03-14 03:43:40 EDT
From: Moon2river
Posted on: America Online

I called WPTT in pittsburgh,and they are backing it-twice a day on sat at 8:00pm and again at 1:oo AM.I’m also one of the Neilsons tv thing-and all four of us place B5 no 1.

Subj: ReddGator, LaBubble…
Date: 96-03-14 03:54:56 EDT
From: Archer C1
Posted on: America Online

The World Con is Labor Day Weekend, Aug 29-Sep 2, at the Convention Center in Anaheim, Ca
Their web site: http://lacon3.worldcon.org/

Among those scheduled to appear: Forrest J Ackerman, Marion Zimmer Bradley, David Brin, C.J. Cherryh. Hal Clement, Roger Corman, Stephen R. Donaldson, Bob Eggleton, David Gerrold, Larry Niven, Frederik Pohl, Tim Powers, Mike Resnick, Jennifer Roberson, Robert Silverberg, Melinda M. Snodgrass, A.E. van Vogt, Toni Weisskopf, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro and…J. Michael Straczynski

This is only a very select list (the people I’ve heard of).

Registration is $130.00 for all five days… see ya there…and no, I don’t work for the convention…

Subj: JMS
Date: 96-03-14 03:57:06 EDT
From: Moon2river
Posted on: America Online

Could you please look into the peoms.I think we all tried to do our best .Thankyou
for your time and answering our questions.But you done such excellent work that I’ll just wait
for the new ep. to come out.Thank you for sharing B5 and you with us.And this is no kissing anything-cause I wasn’t to thrilled with the murdering monk story line.Sheridan wanted to kill the person or things that destoried his wife,whats the difference.I also notice that Sheridan refers to the White Star as a Minbari ship.But its his.His ship and crew must come frist.His old ship might be nothing but nightwatch personnel who could kill Haig or go after B5.

Subj: Re:JMS
Date: 96-03-14 04:43:53 EDT
From: McBri911
Posted on: America Online

First, JMS I have been watching this show since the beginning and didnt think that it would be where its at now–from that first episode—keep up the good work and surprising us!!!

Vir as Emperor?!?!?! although I have this sick feeling about that.

Two–since there appear to be shadow ships that are just lying around to be found by anyone can one assume that there are others elsewhere abandoned??? also I liked the way Jupiter got shown — and is someone from the A. C. Clarke station on Iapetus going to find one??

Three–since a life force [properly prepared] can “start” a shadow ship–does that mean the shadow ship is neutral and the force uses it in whatever fashion or is more like Sauron’s Ring and that you can use for good purposes first but eventually you get corrupted–or is it whoever enters the thing thats it and you are a shadow thing???

Four–YEAH the shadows are like Dune’s Honored Matres!!! They have intelligence–they are taking their time at taking over the universe.

Five–lets see more of Corwin–at last he got a name–did that come from Zelazny or just coincidence????

yeah yeah yeah lots of questions–but its your own fault by making a thinking persons TV show
that makes you want MORE!!!

Subj: JMS: Reaction to Earthwatch
Date: 96-03-14 05:02:43 EDT
From: JeffLanam
Posted on: America Online

Since there have been numerous postings about Earthwatch being “heavy-handed”
or “transparent”, I thought I would share a reaction that a co-worker of mine had.
He said that the Earthwatch scenes were very hard for him to watch. No, he
wasn’t in Nazi Germany or Stalinist Russia. He grew up in Orange County
during the fifties as a child of Socialist parents. I don’t know how directly
affected they were, but the paranoia and divisiveness rang true with him.

He agreed with me that that was a complement to your work (and your associates.)
Jeff

Subj: Re:Warner Store
Date: 96-03-14 12:38:26 EDT
From: B5 Online
Posted on: America Online

>>It seems kind of deceptive to jump from this forum to the Warner store, since they don’t carry B5 stuff.

The Warner Bros. Studio Store (It’s a big company, remember, many branches) has informed us they do not have room to stock the merchandise for ordering, online or otherwise.

The Official Fan Club will contain ordering information for many items.

NOTE: Thats the ‘Official Fan Club’ and NOT the “Official Online Fan Club.”

😀

Subj: Musical Inspiration
Date: 96-03-14 12:42:55 EDT
From: Filops
Posted on: America Online

Jms,

If you like jazz, Big Band, and rock, you should get Chicago’s recent release “Night & Day,” and get all three in one package. Excellent album; excellent group.

Dan

Subj: Re:questions
Date: 96-03-14 12:48:29 EDT
From: Del Kimry
Posted on: America Online

Dear JMS –
First, thanks again for the coolest, most thought-provoking show on TV. I’m going through withdrawal waiting for the BOOM!!!
Second — just got the B5 Entertainment CD — man is this GREAT!!! I turn on the computer just to watch the screensaver. :)
Question, regarding the little PPG handguns: What does PPG stand for, and what exactly do they shoot? Is it like a phaser or a blaster?

Thanks again for such a great show.
-Del Kimry
PS – Please, more on Ivanova’s psy talents!!!

Subj: Sedition in Canada
Date: 96-03-14 14:43:54 EDT
From: DaryllF
Posted on: America Online

Hi Joe:

Life imitates art. The right wing party in Canada – The Reform Party – has brought up charges of sedition against a member of the Bloq Quebecois (the separatist party). Given that the Reformers wear jack boots, have secret little salutes and glue on moustaches, I thought it was interesting that they would use Sedition as a weapon.

Thankfully, the charge appears to be going no where fast.

Next time I’m out in the badlands of Alberta, I’m going to do a little digging around for big spider ships. It would explain a lot.

Daryll.

 

Subj: Re:Shadows/Vorlons
Date: 96-03-14 18:23:10 EDT
From: Lady Heron
Posted on: America Online

>Since the shadow ships are organic and need someone to merge with it , does Kosh merge with his ship? Aren’t the Vorlon ship organic too?<

JMS replies> Yes, but only in a manner of speaking.<

Thanks Kosh! :)

Subj: Stuff
Date: 96-03-14 19:00:38 EDT
From: Paul H5218
Posted on: America Online

Watched “The Gathering” the other day. Holy tomato!! Morden is in C&C at the end!!

(Okay, it WASNT Morden, but man did that guy look EXACTLY like him.)

Then I watched “Signs and Portents”, What was that thing on Delenn’s forehead that tipped her off about who Morden was representing?

-Paul

Subj: Re:Lot’s O Q’s
Date: 96-03-14 19:04:26 EDT
From: Orange5193
Posted on: America Online

“I know I seem like the biggest idiot…”

No, the biggest idiots:
1. Ask no questions.
2. Have all the answers.

:) James
Subj: Cancellation of B5!?
Date: 96-03-14 20:15:09 EDT
From: DTuloJr
Posted on: America Online

There’s been a report of B5 being cancelled at the end of this season in one of the other message folders here. What’s the situation?

-David

Subj: Character Loss?
Date: 96-03-14 21:11:11 EDT
From: NEXTTREK
Posted on: America Online

I don’t want to start an unfounded rumor, but I believe I read/heard somewhere?! that a character wasn’t going to make it to the end of the season.

It is true that a character is going to be killed off?

If I just imagined it, let me know; it’s been a loooooong week.

 

Subj: Dear JMS:Starfury “Nose Art”
Date: 96-03-14 23:13:44 EDT
From: MWFSlover
Posted on: America Online

A question regarding the Starfuries and pilot individualization. It seems that the ‘Furies that I have seen have “Nose Art”, ala WWII aircraft – topside above and behind the pilot’s compartment, according to each pilot’s individual taste. Case in point – what I thought to be the Russian Imperial Eagle on Ivanova’s fighter. In addition, I thought I noticed the Flying Tiger symbol on the side of Capt. Sheridan’s helmet. Is this indeed the case? If so, could you elaborate as to the artwork for
Sheridan’s, Ivanova’s, Garibaldi’s, Sinclair’s, and the Keffer who ceased to be’s “Nose Art”?

Thanks. If this is the case, nice touch. The little things are what help make B5 so “believable”.

P.S. Is there any chance that as the Shadow War progresses we will see a ship named the “Kagemusha” opposing the Shadow’s?

Subj: Comics
Date: 96-03-14 23:22:38 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

JMS:
How “official” are the novels compared to the comics? Apparently, more stuff from the comics made it onto the series (MFE)…

Macker

Subj: Micro Machines
Date: 96-03-15 00:15:25 EDT
From: MAKagle
Posted on: America Online

I finally got the B5 Micro Machines and, on the back of the package, it says things about Babylon 5 that suggests that it is not a unique station. Are there other B5-like stations out there?

Subj: Re:No Free Will?
Date: 96-03-15 01:08:06 EDT
From: Rick9719
Posted on: America Online

“Only living beings can truly have free will. Fictional characters don’t.”

I wouldn’t be that sure. Connan Doyle’s attempt to kill off his own character was a misrable failure. Besides, who’s to say that fiction isn’t the beginning process in the creation of a Universe. Technology is slowly heading in that direction. First stories, then TV, then interactive adventures, then holodecks, then …?

 

Subj: Connection?
Date: 96-03-15 01:08:44 EDT
From: DaveShufon
Posted on: America Online

In the episode “In the Shadow of Za’ha’dum”, Kosh told Sheridan “If you go to Z’ha’dum, you will die”. Now in “Point of No Return”, Lady Morella tells Londo that he “must not kill the one who is already dead”. Hhmmm… Is there a connection between these two statements?

Subj: Artwork from Atlanta
Date: 96-03-15 01:12:36 EDT
From: Hoglaz
Posted on: America Online

Hi JMS,

The Stained Glass suncatcher is finally complete. I was wondering are you planning on doing any conventions on the East Coast or will you be at fantasicon in August at the LA Airport ? I’ve heard some B5 Stars will be there and was wondering if you were one of them. We’d like to give this to you in person if possibe. But, if its not in the cards then we’ll mail it off to the address I received from you last time. Thanks again for a great show. Looking forward to the new ephisodes.

Holly

Subj: JMS: Couple’a Questions
Date: 96-03-15 02:37:29 EDT
From: Grimjack4
Posted on: America Online

1) You’re being so close lipped about the Season finale title that I’m guessing it’s something like” Assault on Z’hadumm (still can’t spell that) Of course you like more lyrical / poetic titles and I doubt you would be THAT blatant. (If memory serves you DID imply we were going back there this year…)

2) How’s Grim Jack coming along? I could see Mel Gibson as Gaunt (he can be uglied up and he can play the burt out warrior – but he may be too much of a pretty boy.) Avery Brooks as ….what’s his name.The rest kind of defeat me. And you can’t forget BOB!

3) Who are the Hall brothers> I just started noticing references to them. Part of Theoren’s crew?

Ken Boechler

Weird story- I was in a record store and there was a disk of the Complete musical score from T1 – hey my girlfiend’ll love that!” I thought. Gave it to her for Christmas. Reading the liner notes…Ford Thaxton..was producer or somesuch. I almost took the thing back (but she liked it…..)

Subj: Apologies are in order…
Date: 96-03-15 03:07:09 EDT
From: Voidnaut
Posted on: America Online

JMS:

As the subject header says, I owe you a huge apology. I used to be on GEnie, way back when, around the time the pilot was released. I recall that after it aired, I fairly well savaged it, and wrote B5 off as a lost cause. Well, GEnie switched over to the per hour system not long after, and I had to leave. Then the series started, and I was so incredibly blown away by how good it was. The first episode was a thousandfold improvement (in my mind, at least) over the pilot. And it’s gotten even better. So I’m sorry I jumped the gun, there. I got better. :)

And now, a few questions…

I’ve noticed that you’ve written every episode this season (I believe). Does that mean that outside writers are a thing of the past? I wouldn’t mind this, as you obviously have the best idea of what’s going on with the big picture. But I’ve really enjoyed some of the smaller stories, too. Especially the Peter David episodes. If Peter’s not writing any more eps, how about cudgelling him into writing a few of the novels, eh? Or do you even deal with the alternate media to a great extent?

BTW, you had a Prisoner reference, and you made me enjoy a Stephen Furst character. Atheist or not, one more miracle, and I’m nominating you for sainthood. Just have to work on that martyrdom. :)

Be seeing you.
Brian.

Subj: Re:Beginnings
Date: 96-03-15 05:07:25 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I first discovered the Red Clay Ramblers when they were the musical accompaniment for the Broadway show (then touring) FOOL MOON. I thought they were absolutely terrific, and still do. (And the show’s terrific too; if it comes to your town SEE IT.)

“Where did B5 start? What was the germ of the whole idea? Who were the first characters? Were any characters conceived as men that ended up as women and vice versa?”

No, the men were men and the women were women (and they LIKED it that way). The primary “germ” of the notion was the setting in this case, a locale where the stories would come to us rathre than chasing new worlds every week. Obviously you need a command staff, and I began filling it out from there. Then, one day, the whole story just sorta unfolded in my head in a moment of total clarity. That happens sometimes….

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Fan Clubs
Date: 96-03-15 05:08:03 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yes, I do believe the various actors fan clubs are sanctioned by the actors (at least, the ones we know of; not every fan club is sanctioned, obviously.)

jms
Subj: Re:JMS:88 notes in your musi
Date: 96-03-15 05:09:29 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

We never know from year to year on the B5 status, same as with every other TV series. No studio will give you a 2-year buy unless you’re Spielberg. We’ll have to see….

jms
Subj: Re:Station Interior
Date: 96-03-15 05:10:31 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yes, the interior has been mapped to great detail; as Sheridan falls, you can see perspective on many of the structures, due to the 3d mapping. Don’t know if we’ll ever make a map available, at least in the short run.

jms
Subj: Re:Cancellation of B5!?
Date: 96-03-15 05:15:33 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

This happens every season. People with too much free time on their hands start posting rumors long before anything has even been *discussed*. This happened after the pilot (“I just heard from a VERY reliable source that it’s never gonna make it to series”) after the first season (“a guy I know at WB says the first season was just a fluke, they got pressured, there won’t be a second season”), after the second….

Nothing is ever decided on these things until the execs meet to go over it, and that won’t happen until late April/early May. Anyone who says he’s heard anything definitive before then is simply full of it.

jms
Subj: Re:Dear JMS:Starfury “Nose A
Date: 96-03-15 05:16:56 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yes, there’s nose art for most (though not all) of the furies. Ivanova’s is traditionally Russian, and Sheridan’s is the Flying Tigers (we actually got permission from them to use the symbol).

jms
Subj: Re:No Free Will?
Date: 96-03-15 05:17:50 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Ah, but it wasn’t Holmes who forced himself back into the writings of Doyle; it was pressure from readers (real people) who refused to let it go away.

jms
Subj: Re:Artwork from Atlanta
Date: 96-03-15 05:18:49 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Unfortunately, the answer to both is no, unless you want to give it to one of the actors at Fantasticon to pass along….

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Couple’a Questions
Date: 96-03-15 05:20:01 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Now that S3 of B5 is almost done, I can finish the deal to write the Grimjack movie, which will take me through the next few months to finish.

jms
Subj: Re:Apologies are in order…
Date: 96-03-15 05:23:35 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

This season is an unintended aberration re: writers; I hope to use others next season.

As for your story…apology not accepted because it is unnecessary. As it happens, I remember your comments, and yes, at the time, they were hurtful. But they came from honest criticisms of the show, rather than any particular agenda, and I never have a problem with honest, fair criticism. Hell, I had my own problems with the pilot, which I was determined to fix in the series.

What you did that counts is that you were sufficiently open-minded and fair to give the show a chance when it hit series, and you found that the promises were true. And now have said as much. What more can anyone ask of one?

jms
Subj: Re:JMS:88 notes in your …
Date: 96-03-15 12:37:14 EDT
From: B5 Online
Posted on: America Online

JMS Wrote:

>>No studio will give you a 2-year buy unless you’re Spielberg. We’ll have to see….<<

Actually, The WB gave the sitcom “Sister Sister” a 2 year renewal.

Some things never cease to amaze me…
Subj: Re:JMS:88 notes in your …
Date: 96-03-15 13:20:53 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

But ‘Sister , Sister’ is SO good!!!! HA HA
Really , before anyone jumps down my throat—I AM kidding.
Ro

Subj: some questions…
Date: 96-03-15 14:29:30 EDT
From: Melbella
Posted on: America Online

Don’t know if these have been asked and answered already, but I’ll ask anyway.

First, is there a Shadow ship buried on the Narn homeworld? Was there?
Second, how long prior to the ship found on Mars has Psi Corps been in league with the Shadows? Is that why the Corps is involved in all those experiments (sleeper personality, dust, forced breeding, etc) or are they just trying to make themselves more powerful? Or both?

Thanks in advance

–Mel

Subj: Re:Artwork from Atlanta
Date: 96-03-15 15:45:21 EDT
From: Hoglaz
Posted on: America Online

Hi JMS,

Thanks again for responding so quickly. It’s not that I don’t trust the mail system, I just don’t want this piece to get lost in the shuffle. I’ve heard Peter Jurasik will be attending that convention so we’ll pass it along to him. In the mean time, I’ll take a picture of it, scan it into my computer and see if I can turn it into a gif file and send it to you on AOL. Thanks again…….

Holly

Subj: Temporal Clarification- JMS
Date: 96-03-15 15:48:08 EDT
From: StarFuryD4
Posted on: America Online

Hey Joe,

I seem to be missing a few weeks of time in regards to G’Kar’s imprisonment.
At the end of “Dust”, He was sentenced to “no less than 60 days”; in “Messages”, Garibaldi visits, and G’Kar remarks “two down, 6 weeks to go” (approx. quote). Then, in “Point”, which, in your own words, “begins one frame after the other leaves off” (approx. quote), G’Kar is set free, commenting on the remaining three weeks of his sentence.

If I am correct in my temporal equation, there are three weeks unaccounted for, or at least more than several days, but less than a month, which must be reckoned with.

Is there some temporal hint that we(I) missed from the show?

Thanks in advance,

Dave
Delta4 out

Subj: Re:Temporal Clarification- J
Date: 96-03-15 17:20:13 EDT
From: YaxPac
Posted on: America Online

Dave,

Recall that in Messages, Sheridan had a 2 day journey either way from B5 to earth. One day for the council to meet, 4 days both ways, one day to digest the declaration of martial law … 6 days. Start with 2 down, go from there 6 days, looks like only 3 weeks to go.

I only know this cuz it bothered me too.

Evan

Subj: Re:Name that tune
Date: 96-03-15 17:46:24 EDT
From: Dastari
Posted on: America Online

>
Among the stuff that turns up most often on the stereo while I’m working these days: Meatloaf, Slade, Enya, Alice Cooper, Melissa Etheridge, Sarah MacLachlan, Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Red Clay Ramblers. I’ll probably cycle through into more orchestral/instrumental stuff soon.

jms<

Ah, good to see you listen to Enya, I love her new album. I would recommend Everything But the Girl: Amplified Heart. I just got it and I can’t turn it off. Great stuff, really emotional :)

-Damon

Subj: Re:JMS:88 notes in your …
Date: 96-03-15 17:51:43 EDT
From: Dastari
Posted on: America Online

>Actually, The WB gave the sitcom “Sister Sister” a 2 year renewal.

Some things never cease to amaze me…<

What do you expect? They had to give one renewal for each sister! 1×2=2 :)

-Damon

Subj: ATTN: JMS
Date: 96-03-15 18:28:47 EDT
From: MPascall
Posted on: America Online

First a comment: Point of No Return was very impressive. I have this uncontrollable habit of critically ripping apart every piece of fiction I find, and I need to tell you that your writing in PoNR was bulletproof. I couldn’t analyze; only enjoy. I am amazed. The list of authors who really inspire me is pretty short, but its now a little longer.

Now a question: Are we ever going to see the “praying mantis”-type alien again? Apart from the Narn and Vorlons they are the most realisticly alien characters I’ve seen on t.v.

-Marcus

 

Subj: Cancellation
Date: 96-03-15 18:28:56 EDT
From: Paul H5218
Posted on: America Online

I read in an article recently that you’ve kept B5 UNDER Budget on a weekly basis, IE every show, why Would’nt they renew it?

Then again, we are talking about Studio execs.
-Paul <—waiting with crossed fingers

Subj: Re:No Free Will?
Date: 96-03-15 20:17:01 EDT
From: VSeidel220
Posted on: America Online

Consider a come to life fictional universe; read Robert Heinlein’s “The Number of the Beast”.
Interesting concept and well developed.
Victoria

Subj: Re:JMS: Couple’a Questions
Date: 96-03-15 20:43:15 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Its a little frustrating, some of the show titles, because I made a list of titles I intended to use for short stories, and so far at least five of them have been used by JMS.

Which I take to mean genius thinks alike. :)

Subj: Compare
Date: 96-03-15 21:00:57 EDT
From: WifeAgain
Posted on: America Online

When the B5 story has completed its 5 year story, it would be very interesting to compare your original story idea to what finally was produced. I mean, actors changing, causing story line changes. Could this ever be possible? I, for one, would love to see what was to be and what came to be.

Subj: JMS – Voices of Authority
Date: 96-03-15 21:34:13 EDT
From: B5SENTINEL
Posted on: America Online

Joe,

What exactly does “Vorlon tavutna chogg!!” mean?

please answer.

Tom

Subj: Robert Foxworth
Date: 96-03-15 22:04:29 EDT
From: BDuff1700
Posted on: America Online

Hi, this is my first message here, so first: Great Story. Recently, someone told me he had heard that Foxworth (Gen Hague) was committed to DS9. Given that he was in a two-parter, and his character jailed, this didn’t make much sense.

If you could provide some info on his availability without risking the storyline, would appreciate it. Thanks again,

Brian

Subj: Dawn of third age
Date: 96-03-15 23:09:16 EDT
From: ScotDailey
Posted on: America Online

I know you won’t tell us what the third age of mankind is, but
can you tell us what season we will learn what the dawn
of the third age of mankind is?

Subj: B5 Cast in the UK
Date: 96-03-15 23:13:01 EDT
From: ScotDailey
Posted on: America Online

I notice a large portion of the cast will be in the UK in June
for the Wolf 359 and Babcom 96 cons. Do you and the rest
of the cast do anything else together while you are in the
UK or are you pretty much sick of each other after filming
a whole season together?

I was also curious if the B5 following overseas has any affect
on WB renewal decisions?

Subj: Tom Baker
Date: 96-03-16 00:28:35 EDT
From: Terrell J
Posted on: America Online

I would like to nominate Tom Baker for a guest role on B5. Terry

Subj: protecting your work
Date: 96-03-16 00:55:49 EDT
From: VEGAN MAN1
Posted on: America Online

Hi!

I was wondering what a writer can do to protect his/her work when you are showing it around.

When you started out shopping B5 to studios, did you copyright it? Is that the way to go, and if so, at what point should you do this? And, how do you do this?

Thanks for your help!

Stu

Subj: Re:Weird ? II
Date: 96-03-16 02:06:58 EDT
From: Xebecian
Posted on: America Online

They just put B-5 upside down agian in SCI-FI Magizine(I think that was it), any ways the one with the Interview with Bruce Box. Agian I know its space, and there is no upside down, but I’m tired of turning the Magazine upside down here on Earth.
-Xebecian

Subj: The Shadow Wars
Date: 96-03-16 02:15:14 EDT
From: Xebecian
Posted on: America Online

By any chance would you be disappionted if people started to guess the out come, and guessed right? I hope not, because I just came up with an intresting theory under the Shadow wars message box, and it fits what has happened in B-5 pretty close.

Subj: Maybe
Date: 96-03-16 02:33:50 EDT
From: Xebecian
Posted on: America Online

Sorry, if I sound a little Cocky, I trying not to be, but just maybe, on one these boards some one will guess something right.

Subj: Vir and Sinclair
Date: 96-03-16 03:12:07 EDT
From: Thorans
Posted on: America Online

JMS,

Now that Vir and Sinclair share ambassadorial duties on Minbar, how safe is it for us to look for some sort of connecting “Ranging” back and forth between them in the future? (Or, should I just be quiet and keep watching?)

BTW, per your suggestion, my friend has switched to decaf coffee…which she still shares from time to time with her alien friends.

Go figure.

Oh, yeah. A couple of clues have been dropped.

1) “Imagine that the Enterprise were taken over by the Klingons, and it stayed that way.” (your quote).

2) Franklin appears in station promos wearing a heretofore unseen uniform.
Hmmmmmm?
Subj: OtherSyde
Date: 96-03-16 10:04:08 EDT
From: Rjler
Posted on: America Online

Ooooooooo. And I thought the shadows were scarey. Would there be a connection of some sort between it and them? That’s an even scarier thought…..

Subj: bad copies of b5
Date: 96-03-16 12:59:52 EDT
From: Fscx98
Posted on: America Online

I am asking this one question. how can a unwatchable copy of b5 get out to a station? for a station in my area said they recived a bad copy of the last new episode before the reruns. so they only showed it once and that was on sunday morning at 2am. the exuse that was used was that we recived a bad tape.

disgruntled at tv station
X

Subj: Black uniform clues/hints
Date: 96-03-16 14:38:04 EDT
From: JC of LKS
Posted on: America Online

franklyn has reportedly been seen in a new black uniform in station promos…
in sheriden’s dream in “all alone in the night” he is seen in a black (at the time i thought psi-corp) uniform….
was it the same?

Subj: Re:Apologies are in order…
Date: 96-03-16 17:44:12 EDT
From: Voidnaut
Posted on: America Online

Well, thank you for being so gracious, JMS, but I think you’re a bit more forgiving of my motives than I am. While the criticisms I offered were true (at least in my mind), I think I might have been a bit less insistent about it if there had been anyone on GEnie who had already rasied an objection or two. It seemed to me that you were looking for honest opinions of the show, and you were getting a lot of raving and fawning. That you actually REMEMBER my post, while a bit mortifying, kind of confirms what I was thinking, eh? At any rate, you did make the vast improvement in the show, and now I can comfortably rave right along with everyone else. *chuckle*

Okay, here’s something that’s been bugging me for the first season. Sorry if this is well covered ground for you. How much of the characterization on B5 is your vision, and how much is the actors? I’m thinking specifically of Sinclair. I had heard from several people that Sinclair was wooden and annoying. But he was my favorite character at first. He always struck me as the quinessential 50’s sci-fi movie rocketship captain. The square jaw, the serious demeanor, the drive to succeed, to survive…it was like you’d given life to what had been a science fiction cliche. Of course, I’m the only person I know who sees this, so I wonder how much of that (if any) was you, how much was Michael O’Hare, and how much was me being delusional. :) Maybe I’ve just read too many Robert Heinlein novels, if such a thing is possible.

Thanks again,

Brian.

Subj: Re:Maybe
Date: 96-03-16 20:19:42 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>> Sorry, if I sound a little Cocky, I trying not to be, but just maybe, on one these boards some one will guess something right.<<

It’s ok. People have been right before. I remember I got cocky when I “figured out” Kosh. It was just before summer, and my first guess was that he was an angel. I was sure that I had a good chance of being right, but, being new to the boards, never saw anyone else post this theory. Well, many of the long-time AOL-B5-ers told me right out that that theory was as old as Neelix’s cheese (sorry), and that it seemed so unlikely after close scrutiny and many of PigDog’s and JMS’s comments. We all looked harder. We came up with wild, flipped-out theories (everything from tinkerbell and Chicken Boo to the inter-dimensional mirror and a glowing Cthulhu). In the end, though, Kosh turned out to look like an angel (though that is not what he *is*), and we all felt darn cocky for a while.
I won’t even get into the Third age or Valen speculations!

Subj: JMS: Broken Limbs…
Date: 96-03-16 20:59:31 EDT
From: Plblock
Posted on: America Online

Just read a report from a Con stating that Jerry Doyle broke his arm on the set… I know you have “escape hatches” for characters, but how do you deal with unexpected events like this? Your solution to Claudia’s broken foot last year was first rate, so anything equally interesting in store for Garibaldi?

When you are in England this year you should check on the odds for who they think will get tagged next season : )

Subj: JMS: Game Time
Date: 96-03-16 21:21:02 EDT
From: Plblock
Posted on: America Online

I have noticed from several of your posts that you are a Wing Commander fan, so here is my observation / request: With the new trend toward “movie” type games there seems to be even less gender diversity than before for those of us who would prefer a female avatar. Has anyone approached you on using Ivanova as the hero of a game? Perhaps something like Space Commander – where we get to see Ivanova in action against the raiders, etc? Or SimStation – How does she know everything that goes on? Or my favorite idea… BOOM! then BOOM, TOO! followed by Thy Flesh Goes BOOM!

While this might be a little tongue in cheek, the problem is real and I hate to see such back sliding in an area in which girls and women are finally taking an active interest. Ivanova is such a popular and powerful character that she could draw players from both genders. So, any plans in this arena?

Subj: Re:Tom Baker
Date: 96-03-16 21:29:18 EDT
From: MythoPhile
Posted on: America Online

<<i would like to nominate Tom Baker for a guest role on B5. Terry>>
Yeah! He can play a rogue Vorlon who goes around talking common sense and pitching in.
(Hey, it makes more sense than Majel’s useless appearance)

Subj: Mr. Morden
Date: 96-03-16 22:37:01 EDT
From: CapNemo278
Posted on: America Online

We were watching “Chrysalis” recently and in the last scene Mr Morden was addressing his “Associates” as an equal. Is this a case of possession or a Faustian bargain? This is one of our favorite threads and we were wondering if his status will be made clear any time soon? Harry

Subj: JMS: Shadows ships & beings
Date: 96-03-17 00:04:04 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

Joe,
Do the ‘Shadows’ beings look like their ships? I remember when Morden was in jail
and there were two little spiders with him.
Ro

Subj: JMS: B5 Screen Saver
Date: 96-03-17 00:12:17 EDT
From: Podglaze
Posted on: America Online

Joe, can you (or anyone) tell me a mail order source for the B5 screensaver? I simply can;t find it in any of the stores that have computer software here in bucolic Rocky Mount, North Carolina. I’m quite eager to get hold of a copy, so would appreciate any help in obtaining one.

BTW, did you know that there was a third Wallace & Gromit film on British TV at Christmas? I know you’re a fan! It’s called “A Close Shave” and is every bit as wonderful as the first two. I’m fortunate enough to have it, but I’m sure there’ll be a release here eventually.

Mark
Subj: religion vs new age
Date: 96-03-17 01:57:25 EDT
From: SteveA2980
Posted on: America Online

Dear Jms
I am 45 with a family and have been an avid science fiction reader and watcher since my father gave me my first ANALOG.

I love the trek shows also, but there was one thing that has been bugging me for years but I never never wrote anyone about it.

In the old trek shows every now and then there would be episode with a positive STORYLINE towards God. I am Catholic along with a Billion others, and I thought that these were from a pretty positive bent. In TNG it seemed that the first few years they were hell bent on disproving the existence of a creator and pushing all kinds of new age BS that we see so much of in our society too day onto the viewers.

Too the point>>I am greatly appreciative of the introduction of story line that involves the Franciscans ( Maybe they were the Jesuits????) in a positive light.

As for my self I am not a radical but just a normal Family man with 3 young boys, 8, 10, and 12 who watch your show and love it.

Keep up the good work
P.S. do you let people know your email address( probably not) you would get overloaded I would bet. If so drop me a line I like mail every now and then.

Yours in Christ
SteveA2980@aol.com

Subj: Fan Club
Date: 96-03-17 02:54:32 EDT
From: MDI Bergen
Posted on: America Online

Greetings!

I have seen a PO Box address for the Official B5 Fan Club. Is this up and running now?

Peace,
Mike

Subj: jms: derivation of word arc?
Date: 96-03-17 04:56:37 EDT
From: Joe 1941
Posted on: America Online
jms;

Please explain the derivation of the often used word: “arc”.

Your useage of it is common; as in story arc and character arc, ect..

I have searched the dictionary to see what it might relate too, but nothing that starts with the
letter ‘”a” seems to relate to “rc” in the literature sense.

I have asked 6 other people its origins, but they have figured it pointed to the development or
curve (as in arc) of the story or character. Nobody has gotten back with me, so sorry if it was
covered somewhere sometime.

-Thanks for your hard work, it shows,

joe1941

 

Subj: Any Comment on Hypernauts?
Date: 96-03-17 06:46:10 EDT
From: BuffBuildr
Posted on: America Online

I caught the new kiddie show “Hypernauts”… if you ignore the dialogue (and I try to ignore the dialogue)… and just watch the graphics, make-up and music… you’d swear it was B5. And with so many familiar names in the credits (except yours). Have you had any involvement? Are the folks working on the show “defectors” or “neighbors”?

Subj: JMS: complex show
Date: 96-03-17 13:52:48 EDT
From: Swampmyst
Posted on: America Online

JMS…….this 41 yr.old female electrical engineer thanks you for an intelligent, riveting show. B5 is a fascinating blend of history, psychology, and science fiction. I appreciate the depth of development of the characters on B5, their personal histories, religeons, personality. Too much sci fi is top heavy with 1 dimensional characters and shallow plots, relying on special effcets and the actors own personalities to make the show interesting. It is fascinating to see how Londo has developed from a fumbling “loser” to a tyrant. You give a fascinating portraight of hoiw such a development can take place. The parallels to Neville Chaimberlin, W W II era history, etc. does one of the things that good sci-fi does best, i.e. by taking issues and history that we are complacent about or ignorant of and putting into a “futuristic” setting you make us think and gain a new perspective!

Some thoughts… Marcus: seems like a bad fit for the show, the English Robin Hood routine, etc.

Ivanova.. terrifffic character. Why not let her get involved with another woman? You can see by the bulletin boards how you captivated the fans with the Talia/Susan thing. I hope B5 doesn’t feel compelled to put her into a straight relationship just to placate the middle of the road types! DS9 has been emabarrassing itself with those antics.
wonders show and brilliant writing! it must feel strange to have all of us on-liners breathing down the neck of your creative vision! tanks for listening

Subj: Re:protecting your work
Date: 96-03-17 15:20:08 EDT
From: JVibber
Posted on: America Online

<< I was wondering what a writer can do to protect his/her work when you are showing it around. >>

One possible way that is frequently used is to write down your story in as much detail as you think is necessary to identify it uniquely. This may be just a one-sentence description of the story idea, an outline of the story, or the complete story itself — that’s up to you. Then seal it into an envelope, write the date on the edge of the backflap (so it is clear that you sealed the envelope and THEN wrote the date). Then put a stamp on the envelope and mail it to YOURSELF. When you get the letter to yourself, DON’T OPEN IT!!! Put it in a safe place, and if you ever need to prove in court that the idea came to you by the date indicated and no later, you can present the sealed envelope as evidence.

It’s easy, it’s cheap, and I’ve heard it suggested by many professional writers.
Subj: Re:bad copies of b5
Date: 96-03-17 15:22:48 EDT
From: JVibber
Posted on: America Online

<< How can a unwatchable copy of b5 get out to a station? for a station in my area said they recived a bad copy of the last new episode before the reruns. so they only showed it once and that was on sunday morning at 2am. the exuse that was used was that we recived a bad tape. >>

They probably got it in the same bin of mail that included one of those refrigerator magnets advertising a local dentist, doctor, or real-estate broker.

Has any of those people considered what those magnets could do to credit cards, floppy disks, audio tapes, video tapes, etc.?
Subj: Re:JMS: B5 Screen Saver
Date: 96-03-17 21:11:08 EDT
From: JoellynC
Posted on: America Online

I got mine directly from Sound Source Interactive, 1-800-877-4778. I hear they have a
few copies left.

Jo-el

Subj: Re:JMS:88 notes in your …
Date: 96-03-17 22:05:25 EDT
From: BBOvenGuy
Posted on: America Online

>>>No studio will give you a 2-year buy unless you’re Spielberg. We’ll have to see….<<

>Actually, The WB gave the sitcom “Sister Sister” a 2 year renewal.

>Some things never cease to amaze me…

I was going to point out that NBC gave Dick Wolf a 2-year renewal for “Law & Order.” This, however, was intended to confirm JMS’s point that you have to be a really big gun to get that kind of deal.

I guess you either have to be a really big gun or be on a network that’s really, really desperate…

Subj: The Psi Corps
Date: 96-03-17 22:48:06 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

Hello JMS!
Regarding the Psi Corps:
1) When a possible telepath is brought to a Psi Corps testing center, are the P-levels assigned based on the results of the initial tests, or do all telepaths start out at P1 and work their way up based on the training they receive in the Corps?
2) How are P11s and P12s (Psi-Cops) made?

3) That Psi Corps commercial was funny. You didn’t think of submitting it to the Clio award committee for the Best Fictional PSA category, did you?

Still gotta write that letter I promised you…now that the term is done!

Thanks,
Macker

Subj: Re:No Free Will?
Date: 96-03-17 23:26:02 EDT
From: Rick9719
Posted on: America Online

“Ah, but it wasn’t Holmes who forced himself back into the writings of Doyle; it was pressure from readers (real people) who refused to let it go away.”

But the reason the pressure existed was because the character had such substance. The public needed to learn more of his exploits.

 

Subj: Open letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-18 02:48:56 EDT
From: HelenRoseA
Posted on: America Online

My agent recently found out I am a fan of your show and said, “Darn if i had known I would have got you an audition for that new character.” I said. “What character?” he said, “Oh some ranger guy.” I said “Why didn’t you?” He said. “Well since it’s a military show i figured they wouldn’t want some swarthy guy with long hair and a beard.”
I’ve fired my agent.

Subj: Museum of TV and Radio
Date: 96-03-18 14:55:54 EDT
From: LOlson7738
Posted on: America Online

There’s an article in the NY times today about the new branch of the Museum of TV and Radio that is opening in Beverly Hills. I was at the NY location a couple of months ago and they don’t have *any* B5 episodes. If ever there was a show that belonged in their collection, this is it. Maybe someone from the production company could approach them about giving them some tapes.

Subj: Re:Open letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-18 18:10:44 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>My agent recently found out I am a fan of your show and said, “Darn if i had known I would have got you an audition for that new character.” I said. “What character?” he said, “Oh some ranger guy.” I said “Why didn’t you?” He said. “Well since it’s a military show i figured they wouldn’t want some swarthy guy with long hair and a beard.”
I’ve fired my agent.<<

Good choice!

Subj: Just some questions
Date: 96-03-18 22:40:07 EDT
From: ZanaxSys1
Posted on: America Online

I would like to ask some questions to you about the Vorlons and not spoil anything if I am on the right track. How can I send you a message without everyone seeing what we discuss. I also would like to know if past eppisodes will be available on tape since I missed the end of last year and the begining of the current season. The station dropped it for a while and after a few months there it was only at 11:00 instead of 8:00. I appriciate your time and will be greatfull to discuss my guess about all of this to you. Thank you for your time.
Subj: Question going Waaay Back
Date: 96-03-19 00:54:24 EDT
From: BKnight255
Posted on: America Online

This is probably going to be a little loopy, it’s going way back to “A Distant Star”, and it’s pure technobabble, I’m afraid.

When the Cortez got lost in hyperspace … what was preventing the ship from just opening its own jump point back into realspace and ducking out of hyperspace — if and when they got their jump drive back up?

I know they’d have a chance of ending up light-years from anything larger than a beer can, and a somewhat smaller chance of plowing into the odd planet, but it might be worth the risk if the alternative was loss forever — at least they could get their bearings…

I don’t know, maybe it was just plot necessity that demanded the situation be so dire — and I know it leads to Keffer’s obsession with the Shadows — but is there something else about hyperspace — say, that there’s only certain points where you can dump into realspace?

Feel free to ignore this message — I think I may be getting B5 on the brain. I’m sitting on my hands waiting for “Severed Dreams”, and it’s hard to drive to work when you’re sitting on your hands.

Confusing enough?

Subj: JMS: Casting Question
Date: 96-03-19 04:19:47 EDT
From: Grimjack4
Posted on: America Online

Joe:

I just remembered something from a con a long time ago. It was Rene Auberjonois’ (you know, – ODO – can’t spell his name worth poop…) first con ever and he happened to mention he was offered a part on B5 – at the time I guessed it was for G’Kar (if memory serves I BELIEVE he said it was also a heavy make-up part.) My question – was he ever up for one of the main character rolesor did you just send him a script for consideration.

THANKS!

KMB
Subj: Who are you/What do you want
Date: 96-03-19 18:52:29 EDT
From: Zac666
Posted on: America Online
In the March issue of Sci-Fi Universe your quoted as saying “There are two fundamental questions…’What do you want?’…[and]’Who are you?’…The Shadows are there to ask the questions in the wrong order. The Vorlons are there to ask the questions in the right order.”

My question is:
Since it is a purely subjective question how can there be a correct answer? In “Comes the Inquisator?” it was treated as something that had a singular answer, but that seems to me a bit presumptuous. Can’t one come to the conclusion that he is put on Earth to cause pain or death, and how is that a less legitimate answer than any other?(I’m ignoring the “morality” of this decision, of course.) And if someone did come to this conclusion, how could it possibly been anymore detrimental that answering the questions in the wrong order?

I apologize if all my comments seem to be critical of the show, but I only do this because it seems no one else is willing to. The bulk of the posts here are merely congratulatory and I think a little criticism is healthy and can serve to improve an already excellent show.

Subj: Re:Museum of TV and Radio
Date: 96-03-19 20:23:20 EDT
From: CrushaTroi
Posted on: America Online

ACK!! I’m glad I read that!! I initially joined the museum because of a whole Trek exhibit they had going the summer before last. I haven’t been there in months, but have always figured I could go to see B5 episodes I missed (at least ones from the first two seasons…). I canNOT believe they don’t have B5!!! JMS, what is UP here!!!!???!!! I vote to have all of B5’s eps sent to the museum– not only so I can see them (-:, but also because B5 deserves to be there…

Subj: Re:Question going Waaay Back
Date: 96-03-19 21:45:42 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>When the Cortez got lost in hyperspace … what was preventing the ship from just opening its own jump point back into realspace and ducking out of hyperspace — if and when they got their jump drive back up?<<

They were trapped by a gratitational field which distorts hyperspace (apparently all big gravitational feilds do this except Centauri and Minbari ships), and the Cortez was drifting to its doom. They had lost their beacon and became lost, as well. The might have jumped back inside a planet, a ship, or even a star (if that’s what was causing the distortion); they had no way of knowing where they were.

>>I know they’d have a chance of ending up light-years from anything larger than a beer can, and a somewhat smaller chance of plowing into the odd planet, but it might be worth the risk if the alternative was loss forever — at least they could get their bearings…<<

I don’t think they could jump. Maybe their jump engines were damaged or the distortion was hampering their Heisenberg-compensating resonance tachyon-wave-pulse quasi-macintosh pendactyl-calibrated Tycho-Jovian-LaGrange-sending Langston-emulated Gismonics-launched deus ex machina… I’ve started Trecknobabbling haven’t I? Sorry.

>>I don’t know, maybe it was just plot necessity that demanded the situation be so dire — and I know it leads to Keffer’s obsession with the Shadows — but is there something else about hyperspace — say, that there’s only certain points where you can dump into realspace?<<

No! That’s just Crazy Eddie! (sorry) I don’t think that’s how it works, but it *is* JMS’ universe.

Subj: 1st Star to the Right….
Date: 96-03-19 21:45:47 EDT
From: EQRIS
Posted on: America Online

To JMS and all the wonderful B5 fans:
In case you haven’t heard about it yet, there is a new comet in the night sky. (Actually, it’s probably pretty old.) It will make its closest pass to the Earth on March 24th. You can find it by looking for the Big Dipper and watching the area above the “handle”. There is more info about this on the Web; (of course) and the comet’s name is “Hyakutake”. It will be visible until the end of April, and as an added bonus, there will be an eclipse of the moon on April 4th.

Many thanks to my friends at the Hubble Space Telescope Center for letting me know about this!

JMS, what kind of inspiration could you get from comet and eclipse on the same night?

Subj: RPG stuff
Date: 96-03-19 21:47:58 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

Some questions… (HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!)
…about the B5 RPG… Just how involved are you going to be? I know
you’ll give as much information as possible, but will you regulate the die
codes? Do you say, “If the Aggamemnon’s hull strength is 2d [two
six-sided-dice], then the Shadow’s hull strength must be 42d+2 [42
six-sided-dice rolls plus two points]”? Or do you just say, “The Shadow ship
is at least twenty times stronger than the Narn ship”?

Also, how will you deal with the whole gamemaster/story ideas problem? Do
you intend to give hints for what might or might not happen so that the
Gamemaster’s story isn’t suddenly trashed by two lines from Lennier or
something?

Yes, I do play RPGs (or used to). I played the SW one mostly (as evidenced
by my die-codes), but I’ve tried a lot of them. The SW RPG has (had?) the
easiest codes to follow; will the B5 have easy ones? Or will it involve
percentages, ratings, die to HP standards, etc.?

Of course, no one plays these games honestly (that I know). Me and my
friends cheated a little at first, but unfamiliar with the rules, a little
cheating makes a *big* difference. An example would be in me and my
brother’s first game. He had to kill a stormtrooper but keep the armor
intact (for a disguise), while using a lighsaber (a blaster would ruin the
hull’s integrity). Well, the difficulty was five points, and the
stormtrooper has 2d strength; it wouldn’t be a huge challenge for Yoda even!
But, the way we set things up, my brother was a skilled lightsaber wielder,
and it was literally impossible to miss (even with all ones). So we skipped
to damage: the stormtrooper had 2d strength; the lighsaber does *5d plus
lightsaber skill* damage. If the damage is two times the victim’s strength,
he’s knocked out; three times and the guy’s dead. My brother rolled about
half his die to be tallied (we didn’t have enough to roll all at once), and
he got *more* than **13** times the stormtrooper’s strength! And the trooper
had rolled high! We concluded that, not only was he liquified, but that the
suit was still in mint condition as well!

Just looking forward to the B5 RPG……
Subj: Re:RPG stuff
Date: 96-03-19 22:26:26 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

I, too, am also looking forward to the RPG. I used to work with Star Fleet Battles and the Star Trek systems in the 80s…

and now, for a REAL return to REAL role-playing!

Macker

Subj: Vir’s family
Date: 96-03-20 02:14:59 EDT
From: Riv Evol
Posted on: America Online

I hope this hasn’t been recently asked, but after clicking through about 50 postings from one day alone I gave up on attempting to avoid being redundant…
I would like to know more about Vir’s family — I know he was sent away to B5 to get rid of him, but it would have to be a pretty powerful family to ‘get rid’ of a non sequitur nephew by dumping them in a diplomatic post. Can you tell me more, please?

Subj: Re:RPG stuff
Date: 96-03-20 06:22:53 EDT
From: MythoPhile
Posted on: America Online

If we have to buy the role playing game to follow the series, that’d really be too much! I’m still reeling from not being able to follow the whole story in MFE without reading the comic.

Subj: Re:RPG stuff
Date: 96-03-20 12:28:52 EDT
From: Archer C1
Posted on: America Online

<If we have to buy the role playing game to follow the series, that’d really be too much! I’m still reeling from not being able to follow the whole story in MFE without reading the comic>

I haven’t read the comics and I didn’t have any trouble following MfE. I don’t think the RPG will be absolutely necessary for anyone.

Subj: B5 in the real world
Date: 96-03-20 21:16:10 EDT
From: RosalindB
Posted on: America Online

Hello everyone!
I just have to mention this. I think the Great Maker will get a kick out of it.
My beau and I are planning a trip to DisneyWorld this June. We bought the Fodor’s Guide to Disney for Adults. (Great book, by the way.) To make this short, one of the restaurants soon to open at the new Boardwalk Resort is named…..(drumroll please)
“Spoodles”
Yep. That’s not a typo. Why do I get the feeling *someone* at Disney watches B5? :)
Rosalind

Subj: Re:B5 in the real world
Date: 96-03-20 21:46:26 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

Some questions

1. Is the new “ofiicial Babylon5 online newsletter” written by some
commercial writer who hasn’t seen one episode, a propaganda specialist, or
just a dim, overly-perky WB fanclub president? I only ask because the actual
stories, entertainment, updates, and articles, were done with as few
sentences as possible, while the product alerts were given tremendous detail
and precision advertizing tactics. Of course, that’s all IMHO…

2. You recently said that you learned stealth by studying with the
Vorlons… hope you taught them human psychology; it would be very likely
that, as soon as they tell us not to enter their space, a thousand ships
piloted by thrillseekers, crooked merchants, and deranged telepaths, would be
instantly underway toward their home world at about 6 gees or so. If the
Vorlons plan to stop them, it could be a very messy roadblock. And just what
kind of stealth can they know when a mere appearance by Kosh causes everyone
in the room to turn and stare?

3. You also said that Kosh’s >>name is less a *name* and more of a
description.<<. Does this mean that Vorlons don’t have a big concept of
individuality? Is it status; does Kosh mean (in Vorlonese) “One who never
gives straight answers” or “Ambassador” or “Mediator” (sorry), etc.? Or is
it like “that portion of the collective that is currently talking in this
suit”? Maybe “The flight-less poultry of great size”?

4. Earthers come from Earth; Narns come from Narn; Centauri come from
Centauri Prime; Vorlons come from ‘Vorlon'; Minbari come from Minbar: so
where do the Drazi come from? 😉 Draz? Drazan? Drazi Prime? How about
the Markab? Marka? Marki? Markabo?
Markabark’abobark’bna’na’fana’fofark’memymomark?
Could the Shadows (we have no other name for them) really be the
Z’Ha’Dummies? The Z’Ha’Dim? The Z’Ha’Dumers? The Z’Ha’Dumani? The
Paramount-employees-who-stole-Hague?

Subj: Re:B5 in the real world
Date: 96-03-20 22:59:59 EDT
From: HFMoon
Posted on: America Online

>> How about
the Markab?<<

There’s a star about 60 lightyears(something like that) from us, called(believe it or not!) Markab.

When I noticed this on one of my starcharts I was pleasantly surprised. Hey, Joe, Is This where that Markab come from?

Subj: An Open Letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-20 23:18:16 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

I would just like to share this with everyone. Thanks.

JMS:
As promised.

One of the best elements I’ve seen on Babylon 5 is its portrayal of patriotism. The saying usually goes: “My Country, Right or Wrong.” For those citizens who give a damn about their country and where their leaders are taking it is: “My Country, Right or Wrong. When Right, may she never be wrong; when Wrong, to set her right.”
This is the type of patriotism I see in Sheridan, Ivanova, Garibaldi and Franklin (I’ll leave Delenn and the other aliens out of this for now), as well as General Hague (please bring him back!). They have all been forced to take a stand against their own government because that government has abused its powers. Yet they still hold the ideals of the Earth Alliance in highest regard.
We all know something’s gonna happen in “Severed Dreams” and we can’t wait to see it. I certainly can’t, but I will anyway. But I do hope that sometime soon, General Hague can establish a government-in-exile and more EarthForce ships, men and women will come to its aid.

Now, you’re all probably wondering why this strikes a nerve in me? Well, I’m 35, and until five years ago, while my father was laying on his deathbed, I loved my country unswervingly. Then he told me that he was involved in more nuclear weapons tests in 1958 at Eniwetok Atoll (he was in the Navy). For many years he told us (my mom, siblings and myself) that he witnessed only three. Then he told us that he was in almost two dozen.
His oncologist concluded that those long-term effects of radiation exposure were responsible for the manifestation of the metastatic carcinoma which took his life in only three weeks. I saw him wither away to skin and bones, and near the end I could lift him up as if he were as light as a feather.
Imagine then, if you will, my reaction when seeing dozens of Centauri battlecruisers surround the Narn homeworld and playing Asteroids with it, bombing it back into the Stone Age.
This experience made me question my government for the first time in my life: Why? Why did you endanger the lives of thousands of Americans? To show the Soviets we were better than they were at playing “Can You Top This”? Because the men and women of our armed forces would follow orders to a T? Or…as G’Kar would put it…”simply because they can”? And for what? It turns out we were no better than the Soviets.
So while I still love my country, I will always remember the government’s actions. I, like Ronald Reagan, have taken to heart the Russian maxim “Trust, but Verify.”

My Country, Right or Wrong. When Right, may she never be wrong; when Wrong, to set her right.

Thanks Joe, and thanks everyone…just for lending your ear.

Josh W. Spencer (MacManJWS)

Subj: Re:B5 in the real world
Date: 96-03-20 23:21:20 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

>> Earthers come from Earth; Narns come from Narn; Centauri come from
Centauri Prime; Vorlons come from ‘Vorlon'; Minbari come from Minbar: so
where do the Drazi come from? 😉 Draz? Drazan? Drazi Prime? How about
the Markab? Marka? Marki? Markabo?
Markabark’abobark’bna’na’fana’fofark’memymomark?
Could the Shadows (we have no other name for them) really be the
Z’Ha’Dummies? The Z’Ha’Dim? The Z’Ha’Dumers? The Z’Ha’Dumani? The
Paramount-employees-who-stole-Hague? <<

AAAAAUUUUUUUGGGGGGHHHHHH!!!!

Macker

BTW…thanks for making me laugh…yes, that was a laugh…

Subj: More B5 Questions…
Date: 96-03-20 23:25:13 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

JMS:
1) What might be the average life spans of the major (Human, Minbari, Centauri, Narn) and minor (Drazi, Pak’Ma’Ra, Markab…at least till they were killed off, etc.) races? Notice I didn’t even bother with the Vorlons.

2) Maybe I’m misinterpreting this. I thought fusion reactors in and of themselves just QUIT COLD when a fusion reaction goes awry. How can they go critical?

3) Do all interstellar communications channels use tachyons (and of course only The Gold Channel is scrambled/encrypted)?

Thanks.

Macker

Subj: Re:B5 Online Newsletter
Date: 96-03-21 01:53:26 EDT
From: MDI Bergen
Posted on: America Online

Songokuten writes:

>>>>
1. Is the new “ofiicial Babylon5 online newsletter” written by some
commercial writer who hasn’t seen one episode, a propaganda specialist, or
just a dim, overly-perky WB fanclub president? I only ask because the actual
stories, entertainment, updates, and articles, were done with as few
sentences as possible, while the product alerts were given tremendous detail
and precision advertizing tactics. Of course, that’s all IMHO…
<<<<

I haven’t received it yet. Has everyone else? I signed up 3 or 4 times.

Peace,
Mike

Subj: Re:some questions…
Date: 96-03-21 04:23:59 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

There are no shadow vessels buried on Narn, no. The shadow influence on the Psi Corps has been growing for about 7 years now.

jms
Subj: Re:ATTN: JMS
Date: 96-03-21 04:25:52 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I wasn’t really happy with what we did with n’grath; it’s not any fault of Optic Nerve, they did a bang up job, it’s just…it’s a subjective opinion, and when I looked at it, it never really worked for me. So we may not see that group again.

jms
Subj: Re:Cancellation
Date: 96-03-21 04:27:26 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

At this point, we’re still assuming we’ll be renewed, so it’s a moot question.

The larger issue comes down to commercials, though. To get national advertisers, you need X number of stations, in Y markets, carrying Z commercials, preferably on two nights (first run and rerun). If you can’t get national sponsors, paying enough money, it doesn’t matter if the show is over, on, or under budget…you’re a dead duck.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS – Voices of Authority
Date: 96-03-21 04:28:45 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Well, this isn’t a *literal* translation, because some words don’t translate, but the *sense* of the sentence would be “the vorlons can kiss my ____.”

jms
Subj: Re:Dawn of third age
Date: 96-03-21 04:29:39 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The dawning of the third age really happens over the course of the B5 saga.

jms
Subj: Re:B5 Cast in the UK
Date: 96-03-21 04:31:24 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I don’t think the overseas audience numbers will overly affect the decision either way; studios tend to look at domestic as the primary market, and everything else as ancillary, despite the fact that we are now a global electronic community.

I think a few of the cast will hang about the UK for a bit while they’re over for the cons; in general, many of our cast and crew hang out together and do things while on vacation…they like each other, and getting them apart is tough.

jms
Subj: Re:Tom Baker
Date: 96-03-21 04:31:47 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I’d love nothing more than to use Tom Baker on the show at some point.

jms
Subj: Re:protecting your work
Date: 96-03-21 04:32:45 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

No, there’s not much point to copyrighting the work; if you’re really concerned, you can always register it with the Writers Guild, but frankly, stealing is not as common as one might think.

jms
Subj: Re:The Shadow Wars
Date: 96-03-21 04:34:07 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

No, the whole point of a mystery done *right* is that some folks won’t ever figure it out, a majority of them will have some vague ideas, and some *will* figure it out. That’s the only outcome — a bell-shaped curve — if you’re playing fair with the audience. The clues have to be out there, and if they are, some will notice. If nobody gets it, you didn’t play fair. This was one of the lessons I learned working on MURDER, SHE WROTE.

jms
Subj: Re:bad copies of b5
Date: 96-03-21 04:35:35 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I have no idea, unless when the tape was duped en masse, they just got a bad copy and nobody QC’d it to find out. But 90% of all stations pick up the downlink, so this shouldn’t be a problem.

jms
Subj: Re:Black uniform clues/hints
Date: 96-03-21 04:35:58 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

No, the black uniform you’ve seen here and there isn’t a Psi Cop uniform.

jms
Subj: Re:Apologies are in order…
Date: 96-03-21 04:38:22 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Every line an actor speaks is written down in a script; the actor’s task is to find the character in that, and breathe life into it via the performance. So when someone asks, “who creates the character?” one can say the writer creates, and the actor interprets…but at the same time, that really isn’t indicative of the vast contribution brought by the performer. Londo in the hands of any other actor but Peter wouldn’t be *Londo*.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Broken Limbs…
Date: 96-03-21 04:44:09 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Oddly enough, Jerry’s broken arm tied *beautifully* into something that had happened in the course of the episode we were filming, so all it took was a line or two to sell it.

The funny thing is…in the very next episode after the incident, there was a line in the script I’d written *weeks* earlier, and it freaked everybody out…when Garibaldi asks someone to do something, and the person responds, “What, you’ve got a broken arm or something?” At first some people thought I’d put it in there to pink Jerry, but it’d been there the whole time.

Similarly, in the Claudia incident, there was a line (cut for time) where Sheridan says talking to the Drazi is like trying to talk to your right foot…and Ivanova replies “I’ll have you know I have a sublime relationship with my right foot.” Yep, the next day…that’s the foot she broke.

Just recently, I was trying to explain time travel to one of the actors. I used the analogy, over lunch, “Suppose you finished eating your chicken here, then got sick as a dog a few hours later, then got in a time machine to go back in time and warn yourself not to eat the chicken.” Well, a few hours after that…the actor got sick as a dog from the chicken.

I have been asked, expressly, not to make any further mention of actors’ body parts in scripts….

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Game Time
Date: 96-03-21 04:44:44 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

No, nobody’s approached us about an Ivanova-based game, but it’s a great idea.

jms
Subj: Re:Mr. Morden
Date: 96-03-21 04:45:32 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Well, he may sometimes *think* of his associates as equals…and my cat thinks he actually owns this house….

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Shadows ships & bein
Date: 96-03-21 04:45:58 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

You can see one of the shadows in the main titles; not too much like their ships.

jms
Subj: Re:Fan Club
Date: 96-03-21 04:47:04 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

We have an address for the fan club, but haven’t finalized details of price and material yet.

jms
Subj: Re:jms: derivation of word a
Date: 96-03-21 04:48:10 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

An arc is simply a geometry; it starts at an angle, goes up, and then comes down, like the arc of a flare fired by a flare gun. Similarly, a story has its own dramatic arc.

jms
Subj: Re:Any Comment on Hypernauts
Date: 96-03-21 04:49:10 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

No, I had nothing to do with Hypernauts beyond recommending Christy; it’s entirely their work. It’s good to see our methods and techniques used to bring more SF shows around; that was what we were hoping for.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: complex show
Date: 96-03-21 04:50:49 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Thanks. I think you’ll warm to Marcus as we go deeper in; he’s a great character, and Jason does a terrific job of it.

Not backing away from anything re: Ivanova’s diversity…we clarify something about her relationship with Talia very soon, in fact.

jms
Subj: Re:The Psi Corps
Date: 96-03-21 04:51:40 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The initial tests can indicate if the teep is a P1 to P12, they don’t generally start at the same level.

jms
Subj: Re:Open letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-21 04:52:24 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Fired? I’m surprised you let him live.

Next time….

jms
Subj: Re:Question going Waaay Back
Date: 96-03-21 04:53:55 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

They could’ve punched their way out, but been even less able to get a direct location in real space because their new position, unpredictable, could be hundreds of light years away, and they couldn’t pinpoint exactly where they are. They could then jump back, and because of the math, gotten even further lost.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Casting Question
Date: 96-03-21 04:54:23 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I honestly don’t remember what happened with that, or even if we considered him.

jms
Subj: Re:Who are you/What do you w
Date: 96-03-21 04:55:34 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

You miss the point. It’s not that there’s a *correct* answer, but that there’s an *informed* answer. If you decide what you want, before you know who you are, you’re likely to get something that will destroy you; if you know who you are, you can then ask for something that will be of greater use to you.

jms
Subj: Re:Vir’s family
Date: 96-03-21 04:56:30 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I can, but I’d rather show it; you’ll find out a lot more about Vir and family relations in “Sic Transit Vir” in mid-april.

jms
Subj: 4th Season Status
Date: 96-03-21 16:07:55 EDT
From: Esther Dan
Posted on: America Online

JMS:
On 03-15-96 in the B5 Ratings folder PigDog13 (John Copeland) stated that he was meeting with WB and PTEN in regard to the 4th season and that advertising space was already being sold in it. I thought this would put to rest any fears of cancellation, however, I noticed that you are still talking about it. What gives?
Subj: JMS: Contest
Date: 96-03-21 16:12:56 EDT
From: DaryllF
Posted on: America Online

Hi Joe:

I was pouting about the contest – it requires entrants to be US citizens inside the US. This made me think about two questions.

1) Does Canada count in as part of the domestic market. You said something like ‘foreign markets don’t really play into the decision for renewal’ in a previous message.

2) What is the current contribution of foreign viewers to the B5 total. I remember reading that the BBC has given B5 a good consistent slot, allowing it to build an audience. I would be interested in hearing the foreign contributions in bodies and $$$ if possible.

Thanks (as always),

Daryll.
Subj: JMS: Slade?!?!?!?!?
Date: 96-03-21 19:29:44 EDT
From: ShadowAtB5
Posted on: America Online

No way! Too cool! Just one thing, Joe… “Keep your hands off my power supply.” 😀

How’s this?
See Ivanova
In a state of undress
All thanks to JMS
Run runaway
Ho!

Hee hee! :) ::sensing a hoarde of Narns wielding various and sundry blunt objects, he dashes off into the night (well, afternoon, really), on his way to take his physics final (though, upon further reflection, he thinks maybe he’d prefer being beaten to a pulp by the Narns. It would be less painful).::

Subj: Re:An Open Letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-21 19:45:15 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Good points. I’d point you, incidentally, to an essay by Mark Twain on, I believe, the Boxer rebellion, in which he dissects the phrase “my country right or wrong,” the earliest use I’ve ever seen of that phrase. Also A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, which has some very serious commentary on what *is* patriotism, what what *is* the Nation?

Uncritical jingoism is as inherently unpatriotic as uncritical attacks. It’s important to see what a goverment does that is good, by our ability to perceive the good, and support it…and to find what is in need of redress, and fix it. But either way, we have to be honest about what we see, and ask ourselves if it’s right. Even if we come back toward saying yes, it *is* right, at least we’ve thought about it, and now have reasons and objective criteria for *why* it’s right. Or why it’s wrong.

jms
Subj: Re:4th Season Status
Date: 96-03-21 19:46:21 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

What gives is that it’s a long process, always is, every year. We’ll know for sure when they finally tell us.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Contest
Date: 96-03-21 19:47:55 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I believe Canada is considered part of foreign distribution; I don’t know the figures on income from foreign runs, ’cause by the time any of that info gets to us, it’s been…fixed…in the books to keep any possible profit from showing, so I have no real idea.

jms
Subj: Re:JMS: Slade?!?!?!?!?
Date: 96-03-21 19:48:52 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yeah, I confess I enjoy Slade quite a bit; have most of their CDs. Wish they had more currency here in the US.

jms
Subj: Re:religion vs new age
Date: 96-03-21 21:53:34 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

SteveA- don’t give up hope.

I myself am somewhat biased against the Catholic religion, but in a series of short stories I am working on a Jesuit is one of the heros. Knowing my views, a good Catholic friend of mine was very surprised.

JMS has already explained it- good stories and good characters can overcome the bias of the writer, if they are allowed freedom.

Subj: Re:protecting your work
Date: 96-03-21 21:54:30 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

The unions also have registry services.

Subj: Re:Question going Waaay Back
Date: 96-03-21 22:11:47 EDT
From: SHedr24734
Posted on: America Online

Asimov did a story about a pair of thieves…

One guy was a scientist, the other a pro thief. The pro got the idea to steal something valuable, the exact nature of which escapes me at the moment, but needed the scientist to carry it off. You see, in order to escape the cops they were going to randomly jump several times. The thief kills the scientist and escapes with the goods. The ship jumps, then uses spectral scans of the stars to plot its location- every star and its spectrum within several potential jump distances had been programmed into the computer. After a few more jumps, the ship stops- because a star had gone nova, and the data bank didnt show it, so the ship sat there while the ship continued to match patterns until it ran out of power- the thief didnt know how to pilot the thing, or even how to tell the computer to ignore the nova.

Subj: Re:B5 in the real world
Date: 96-03-21 22:15:57 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>BTW…thanks for making me laugh…yes, that was a laugh…<<

You’re welcome. (that *is* an unusuall laugh…)

Subj: Hey!
Date: 96-03-21 22:49:23 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

Were you deliberately avoiding my questions? I don’t think you answered any of them at all…

Subj: Re:An Open Letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-21 23:44:02 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

Thanks, Joe!

Macker

Subj: Re:JMS: complex show
Date: 96-03-22 00:20:50 EDT
From: BBOvenGuy
Posted on: America Online

>>I think you’ll warm to Marcus as we go deeper in; he’s a great character, and Jason does a terrific job of it.<<

Jason strikes me as someone who could have a stint as Doctor Who in his future. He’d be good at it.

Subj: The Screen Aliens Guild
Date: 96-03-22 00:43:53 EDT
From: B5SENTINEL
Posted on: America Online

Joe,

I love the fact that you use actors who have appeared previously in the show in different roles.
John Vickery (as Neroon and Mr. Welles), Robin Sachs (as Hedronn and Na’Kal) and especially
Jim Norton, who began as Ombuds Wellington in Season 1 and gave two moving performances,
first as the Markab Doctor Lazaren and then as the Narn Image in “Dust to Dust”. I hope you will
continue this practice. I want to put in a vote for Christopher Neame (the interrogator Knight One
in “And the Sky Full of Stars”), he was FANTASTIC! (I see boneheaded warrior written all over him).

Tom

Subj: Londo’s wasted opportunities
Date: 96-03-22 01:48:39 EDT
From: B5SENTINEL
Posted on: America Online

Joe,

Could you please settle a point of contention between my friends and I. What were Londo’s two
previous squandered opportunities for redemption?

A. Londo talking with Morden in “Signs and Portents” about what he wants.

B. Londo not sacrificing himself to take control of the Great Machine.
(A Voice in the Wilderness)

C. Londo agreeing to Morden’s offer in “Chrysalis” resulting in the destruction of the Narn
colony in Quadrant 37.

D. Londo calling on the Shadows to attack the Narn colony at Quadrant 14, thus starting the war.
(The Coming of Shadows)

E. Londo calling on the Shadows to destroy the Narn fleet at Gorash 7, thus ending the war.
(The Long, Twilight Struggle)

My vote is for D and E, because Londo knew EXACTLY what he was doing, but he went and did
it anyway. Can you settle this?

Thanks,
Tom
Subj: Novels & Comics
Date: 96-03-22 02:35:43 EDT
From: EuroTvlr
Posted on: America Online

While we’re watiing for the next batch of new episodes, I thought I’d ask about the Novels and Comics. i understand that you want to keep them within the framework of the series (not just incidential stories about the same characters). Any word on future issues of the comics (now in “hiatus”). How are you invovled in okaying the novel story lines? How the novels can be “beefed” up?
For what it’s worth, here are my thoughts on the comics/novels. I may sound overly critical but I was “hoping” for the same or similar high caliber as your scripts (trying not to reveal too many spoilers):
> Comics: The art got pretty cartoony towards the end of the run but plot elements like Talia on Mars, and the buried Shadow ship added to the “subtext” of the series.
> Novel 1: Voices – a murder mystery; the characters just did not ring true… only saving grace (after the fact) was “Invisible Isabel” as a possible reference to Talia’s other self.
>2 Accusations: Another murder plot but the best written so far.
> 3 Blood Oath: Yet another “murder” investigation. The Narn assasination story line is getting pretty thin by now (a TV episode and a comic story as well). I sorta gave up on it half way thru.
> 4 Clark’s Law: The first 10 pages are worth the price of the book (adding to the overall understanding of the B5 universe) but the “murder plot” caves in on itself with too many characters and sub-plots.
> 5 The Touch of Your Shadow – reads like a bad Star Trek novel…
(Hey! – with all the murder mysteries, maybe Jessica Fletcher is ghost writing the novels!!!!)

Subj: Re:Hey!
Date: 96-03-22 04:50:10 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Songu, I answered something like 16 or 20 questions in a row; it’s not possible for me to answer every single question or I’ll never get the show made. I’m not avoiding anyone’s questions, and don’t yell “HEY!” if I don’t. It’s rude.

jms
Subj: Re:Novels & Comics
Date: 96-03-22 04:52:33 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I’m involved in the comics and novels, but the problem with the novels is that I get only a few days to review the manuscript before it has to go back, and given everything else I’m doing, sometimes I miss things. I try to keep it as close to the show as I can, but there are always going to be glitches when you let it out of your direct supervision and into the hands of others.

jms
Subj: JMS: G’Kar’s Writing
Date: 96-03-22 12:22:38 EDT
From: DaryllF
Posted on: America Online

Hi Joe:

I just rewatched The Coming of Shadows, to my tastes, it’s the best B5 episode so far. I loved the way Londo snatched defeat out of the jaws of victory. I loved the CGI. I love knowing that the scene with the Emperor and Boxleitner was composited ito place.

While watching it, I noticed that when G’Kar was dictating his will, the computer wrote it down from left to right. In a recent episode, we saw G’Kar writing from right to left. Was this a continuity problem? What do you do on the set to avoid long term (almost a year) continuity problems?

Thanks for everything,

Daryll.
Subj: Re:JMS: thank you
Date: 96-03-22 12:47:09 EDT
From: H2O HI
Posted on: America Online

Dear JMS:

Thank you for providing great SF, and for generously responding to the many queries left by fans in this chatroom.

I did want to complain about the local (Sacramento) affiliate carrying your show–B5 seems to hop around the scchedullle erratically, someetimes showing on thurs. p.m., and mostly on Sat. p.m. Preeeviews and trailers do not specify if the show will be nnew or a repeaaat, and the local newspaper coverage is minimal.

Good luck!

Sincerely,

Freya S. @ H2O HI.

Subj: Marcus
Date: 96-03-22 13:43:45 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

Joe,
I look forward to more Marcus , he’s a fabulous character and I don’t understand why some people don’t like him.
Whatever he may turn up being to Ivanova is fine , I really just like the flavor he adds to
the show.
Ro

Subj: Books?
Date: 96-03-22 17:43:34 EDT
From: Zac666
Posted on: America Online
I seem to remember reading somewhere that you have written several books. If this is the case, are they still in publication, and what are their titles? Additionally, I’m curious to know who your favorite authors are, SF or otherwise, and why. Thanks.

Subj: More silly questions
Date: 96-03-22 18:39:43 EDT
From: PCA Jon
Posted on: America Online

With everything falling apart in the show now, with the war and all, there’s lots of guessing as to what’s going to happen. The only two questions I have are:

1) Is the main battle with the shadows supposed to start this season and end early in the next?

2) Is the name of the show going to be changed to Babylon 4 after that? :)

Subj: Re:Hey!
Date: 96-03-22 22:50:43 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>Songu, I answered something like 16 or 20 questions in a row; it’s not possible for me to answer every single question or I’ll never get the show made. I’m not avoiding anyone’s questions, and don’t yell “HEY!” if I don’t. It’s rude.<<
Ok, I’m sorry….
I didn’t mean to burst out like that…

(I guess me and my brother will never know who wins the bet… or maybe just I won’t tell him that I don’t know it… What he doesn’t know is worth five bucks.)

Subj: New B5 book
Date: 96-03-22 22:58:27 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

Well, I just bought the new one (The Touch Of Your Shadow, The Whisper Of Your Name), and has it got a long title!
Did you influence that? This seems like your type of title (such as “And the Rock Cried Out, No Hiding Place” or “The Long Twilight Struggle” or “[22]”)….

Of course, I’ll have to finish my just-bought-the-day-before book by Niven and Pournelle first.
On one hand, I can’t wait to read the B5 book. On the other hand, the book I’m reading is very good. On the gripping hand, it doesn’t matter because the best B5 is the show, not the books.

Subj: Re:JMS: G’Kar’s Writing
Date: 96-03-23 05:19:16 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Sometimes things slip through; the on-screen writing was done at Foundation, since we don’t have that capability, and they did it left to right. I wasn’t able to be on set at the moment we shot that to check (and, likely, wouldn’t have been able to change it if I had been there, since we had to go and it takes time to re-do that stuff). Normally, however, Narns write right to left.

jms
Subj: Re:More silly questions
Date: 96-03-23 05:20:08 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I think both those questions are better answered in the series than blown off here.

jms
Subj: Re:New B5 book
Date: 96-03-23 05:20:57 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yeah, initially Dell kept going for one-word titles, and I generally don’t like that, so I told them to have the writers come up with more interesting titles.

jms
Subj: Demographics?
Date: 96-03-23 12:22:27 EDT
From: Way Zim
Posted on: America Online
For several weeks now, I( along with many others) have been asking people to send cards and letters to TV stations, entertainment mags and other media sources. We have tried to give a proper format for writing such letters( no profanity or negativity, be polite, praise those who carry the show or ask nicely for the show to be put on those affiliates who don’t.)
One of the things I’ve tried to bring across is that advertisers and station managers like their demographics. It gives them a feel for where shows like B-5 might be placed to catch that type of audience. In Philadelphia we had the series moved to noon on Saturday because the programming staff somehow got the idea it was a childrens SF show. We changed that notion pretty quick.
To make a short story long I have one question( One? ) I don’t want to pigeon hole the show( It should have mass audience appeal). I just want to know if the bean-counters have come up with a deomgraphic profile on the type of audience that watches B-5 and can you spill the specs on-line?
I understand if you can’t but I am understandably curious. For the record..I’m a male/35/working stiff(sometimes stiff from all those hours I put in… :) If you or one of your associates could give us a general idea, it would be interesting to see. Thanks for your attention.

South Jersey BAB COM…..Way Zim

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-23 13:27:33 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

WayZim,
I feel the most ignored faction when it comes to B5 (sci-fi in general , really) are
women!
The boards on the B5 message center prove my point. Look at the Garibaldi
folder–something like 86 messages in 4 months.
G’Kar? That folder has about 84 in 5 months!
Then go check out the ‘Ivanova’ folder, 125 messages in 1 month!!!!!
She’s very popular , I wish they would feature her more on B5.
But to the beancounters I say, “Hey , remember women watch sci-fi too! It is not
solely a 17 to 34 male age group out there watching: B5 , DS9 , X-Files , Sliders.”
Ro

Subj: Surprise!
Date: 96-03-23 14:41:09 EDT
From: WifeAgain
Posted on: America Online

Just another thank you note. It seems everytime I sit back & get comfortable with B5, feel I know the arc, the characters, the actors, you throw in a Surprise! that knocks me back. Thanks. I needed that.

Subj: Re:An Open Letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-23 15:24:21 EDT
From: Ttocs1000
Posted on: America Online

<<My Country, Right or Wrong. When Right, may she never be wrong; when Wrong, to set her right.>>

This is about as good a definition of real patriotism as I can think of.

Subj: Re:New B5 book
Date: 96-03-23 18:21:01 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>Yeah, initially Dell kept going for one-word titles, and I generally don’t like that, so I told them to have the writers come up with more interesting titles.<<

Just as long as the title can fit on one page, eh?

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-23 18:23:10 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>Then go check out the ‘Ivanova’ folder, 125 messages in 1 month!!!!!
She’s very popular , I wish they would feature her more on B5.
But to the beancounters I say, “Hey , remember women watch sci-fi too! It is not
solely a 17 to 34 male age group out there watching: B5 , DS9 , X-Files , Sliders.”
Ro<<

The 17 to 34 males were the ones responsible for the 125 Ivanova posts in the first place…

Subj: Re:JMS: Londo Question
Date: 96-03-23 23:43:58 EDT
From: RPillow
Posted on: America Online

JimMcM,

Yeah, I noticed that Londo’s hair seems to be getting shorter also. A bit of visual foreshadowing? Hmmmm…..I guess we’ll just have to wait and see, won’t we?

RPillow

Subj: Re:Night Watch
Date: 96-03-23 23:49:18 EDT
From: RPillow
Posted on: America Online

ScotDailey,

There is at least one tech from C&C in the Nightwatch. If you recorded “The Fall of Night”, go back and watch the scene where Mr. Lantze first comes into the observation dome and confronts Sheridan about using Centauri combat models in his squadron fighting maneuvers. A dark haired woman turns around and gives a suspicious look, and later she meets with Mr. Welles as he is getting on one of the elevators. At that point a Nightwatch armband is visible on her arm. Just wanted to point that out.

RPillow

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-24 01:50:05 EDT
From: Its a myth
Posted on: America Online

About your comments about women viewers, Ro:
The advertisers should also know well that women are the main consumers in this country.
Frankly, I’m amazed that Star Trek can still get such a good advertiser base when the viewers seem to be leaving in droves (I don’t have figures on this, but it just seems to be how things are going). Oh, B5, you are SO underappreciated. But then, it’s probably hard to sell a 1:00am ad slot to a major advertiser.

Subj: Re:Hey!
Date: 96-03-24 12:49:24 EDT
From: ScotDailey
Posted on: America Online

> Songu, I answered something like 16 or 20 questions in a row; it’s not possible for me to > answer every single question or I’ll never get the show made. I’m not avoiding anyone’s > questions, and don’t yell “HEY!” if I don’t. It’s rude.
>
> jms

Just wanted to say Thank You for the time you take to answer our questions.
I realize the effort you put in to keeping in touch with your fans and hope you
feel you get something back in return. Keep up the excellent work.

Scott Dailey

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-24 13:44:46 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

I don’t think so , I’ve posted in there and so have a lot of other women—you
can’t tell who’s writing by their screen name , don’t be so sexist.

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-24 13:47:04 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

Carol,
See , we’re out here and no one notices–typical.
Ro

Subj: Re:Tom Baker
Date: 96-03-24 15:40:35 EDT
From: TiMorgan
Posted on: America Online

If you _could_ get Tom Baker, he is about the right age and has about the right presence to play a “Don Quioxte” type character.

Tim

Subj: B5 Role Playing Game
Date: 96-03-24 17:25:50 EDT
From: AAY66
Posted on: America Online

JMS,

I just heard about the Babyon 5 role playing game. This is great news as I am an old RPGer. I have one request. I don’t know what level of involvement you will have in this project, but I ask that you keep an eye on this. A good role playing game will not only be a good game, but an excellent reference source on the B5 “Universe” and all of the races and planets therein.

-Andy

Subj: If
Date: 96-03-24 17:26:39 EDT
From: HenrichWst
Posted on: America Online

If the show does not get renewed (God forbid) will you continue the story in the novels?
Subj: Reminder
Date: 96-03-24 18:01:33 EDT
From: B5 Online
Posted on: America Online

Just a reminder that Patricia Tallman will be our featured guest tonight in the Globe at 8PM ET. There will also be a chance to win a prize from Patricia! To get to the Globe, click on the Meet Patricia Tallman item on the main screen!

Subj: JMS: Kabalistic themes
Date: 96-03-24 23:15:06 EDT
From: Frumple
Posted on: America Online

JMS,
Let me add my voice into the chorus of those congratulated on one of the most intelligently thought out and written shows on television.
I was wondering about allot of the Kabalistic and Talmudic references in the show. I guessed fairly early on that the Vorlons would look like Seraphim. After all they are described as speaking with one voice that is many (or something like that). I was also surprised my the “Tiki old ones aliens” i.e. the ones who Ivonova and Marcus opened a dialog with. If I remember correctly there are other angels that have four faces, each one facing away from the other.
To get to the point, I was wondering if you intentionally set out to put strong Old/New Testament references in the show, or was it something that developed with the show?
Either way, I have to say my friends and I spend enjoyable hours talking about the themes in the show as well as what we think you are saying on the questions of faith, redemption, spirituality, patriotism and fate.

Jeff

Subj: Re:JMS: Kabalistic themes
Date: 96-03-25 03:50:26 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Thanks. The job of the show is to ask questions and pose scenarios for discussion, while at the same time entertaining, which is our primary responsibility.

I wouldn’t say there’s any one dominant area here, whether Kabalistic or strictly Judaeo/Christian or otherwise…it’s a hodgepodge of elements. You can find historical, religious, social and political echoes to a lot of things. In the area you mentioned, there’s bits and pieces of the two areas you singled out, plus buddhism, moslemism, zoroastrianism, Zen, catholicism, you name it, because it helps to create an authentic feel to the alien cultures and other aspects of the show. Similarly, there are aspects of WW 2, WW 1, Korea, Vietnam, JFK…I try to grab from lots of different areas so that it avoids being about The One Thing and becomes a synthesis that is about *us* in all our various permutations.

jms
Subj: Mumy on Sci-Fi Buzz
Date: 96-03-25 12:44:24 EDT
From: Orange5193
Posted on: America Online

A Plethora of Praise and Precious Petals on your Path, Oh, Great Maker!
(Alternate greeting:) Hiya!

Just out of curiosity, from which (presumably) upcoming episode is the Marcus/ Lennier clip shown during the Bill Mumy interview on Sci-Fi Channel’s “Sci-Fi Buzz”? Without creating a spoiler here, let’s just say it was very intriguing!
James

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-25 14:48:30 EDT
From: Its a myth
Posted on: America Online

Ro writes:
>>Then go check out the ‘Ivanova’ folder, 125 messages in 1 month!!!!!
She’s very popular , I wish they would feature her more on B5.
But to the beancounters I say, “Hey , remember women watch sci-fi too! It is not
solely a 17 to 34 male age group out there watching: B5 , DS9 , X-Files , Sliders.”
Ro<<
Songo responds:
>> The 17 to 34 males were the ones responsible for the 125 Ivanova posts in the first place…<<
Although you usually make me laugh, Songo, you incensed me with this one…enough to make me go and count up just who was posting in the Ivanova folder. The results:
Female: 20 individuals posting
Male: 5 individuals posting
Unable to determine from profile: 19 individuals posting
B5 DOES have a major following among women, and JMS’ writing (as well as Claudia’s acting) are probably the biggest reasons. Ivanova is the first character I can remember on TV that is a person first, not a woman “trying to prove she’s as good as a man” (puhleeze). Ivanova doesn’t have to prove anything, and it’s so refreshing to see it. The characters on B5 have their hands full just being humans (or Narns, or Centauri)–they simply don’t have time to mess with this gender nonsense! I’m climbing down from my soapbox now, but really, this just gets so ridiculous…

Subj: Lincoln
Date: 96-03-25 17:29:46 EDT
From: MAKagle
Posted on: America Online

I heard that “Our last, best hope for peace” is a quote from Abraham Lincoln. Is this true?

Subj: Pilots
Date: 96-03-25 19:46:28 EDT
From: Valor NHS
Posted on: America Online

JMS Just wondering why you decided to drop the interaction with the pilots?

Subj: Re:Tom Baker
Date: 96-03-25 22:00:24 EDT
From: Dastari
Posted on: America Online

>I’d love nothing more than to use Tom Baker on the show at some point.

jms<

! :) Well, then, what about Colin(Baker)? And, will you be watching the new Doctor Who tv movie this may?

-Damon

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-25 22:54:44 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>B5 DOES have a major following among women, and JMS’ writing (as well as Claudia’s acting) are probably the biggest reasons.<<

I know… What I meant was that there were an awfull lot of “Ivanova is God!” posts…

>> Ivanova is the first character I can remember on TV that is a person first, not a woman “trying to prove she’s as good as a man” (puhleeze).<<

I like her, too. She’s strong, and not always trying to please everyone (unlike other female command characters on other shows).

>> Ivanova doesn’t have to prove anything, and it’s so refreshing to see it. The characters on B5 have their hands full just being humans (or Narns, or Centauri)–they simply don’t have time to mess with this gender nonsense!<<

I know… But it still does not usually cancell out the gender-based reactions (Like the gropo’s comment to Garibaldi, “Nice Butt”. I’ve never heard that said about any other character– and no one would *dare* think that near Ivanova).

>> I’m climbing down from my soapbox now, but really, this just gets so ridiculous.<<

I’m not disagreeing. I personally think Ivanova is one of the most interesting, strong characters. (her, Londo, and G’Kar, with JS and MG more the softies) I was just trying to show that usually the responses on a board have nothing to do with who supports which characters. The reason Ivanova gets the most is because she’s tough, funny, sarcastic/pessimistic, sympathetic, romantic/anti-emotionally dependent, etc. There’s just more to say. And, yes, she is God, too.)

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-25 23:29:02 EDT
From: Its a myth
Posted on: America Online

OK, Songo, you’ve restored my faith in you.

Subj: Re:Tom Baker
Date: 96-03-25 23:31:36 EDT
From: MythoPhile
Posted on: America Online

<<Well, then, what about Colin(Baker)?>>
Yeah, Colin Baker can play the new host of ISN’s “36 Hours” who drives the show to cancellation!

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-26 00:21:52 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

>> Ivanova is the first character I can remember on TV that is a person first, not a woman “trying to prove she’s as good as a man” (puhleeze). Ivanova doesn’t have to prove anything, and it’s so refreshing to see it. The characters on B5 have their hands full just being humans (or Narns, or Centauri)–they simply don’t have time to mess with this gender nonsense! I’m climbing down from my soapbox now, but really, this just gets so ridiculous… <<

Hear Hear!

Macker

Subj: West/East End of London
Date: 96-03-26 00:32:20 EDT
From: BloodyGluv
Posted on: America Online

I was looking through the Lurker’s Guide to B5, and in the discussion of “Comes the Inquisitor” you talked about how you made a mistake by having Sheridan say Jack the Ripper committed murders in the West End of London, instead of the East, but said that it was a problem that wouldn’t be fixed because, firstly, it would be hard to get Boxleitner to match his performance in that scene during a reshoot (debatable…I’m sure he could pull it off) and secondly, it would look odd to have his mouth pronounce “west” but say “east.” But then in the rerun of this episode, there it was, “east” overdubbed over “west” and looking kinda silly. Although historically correct. What made you change your mind about overdubbing that word? Did it keep you up at night knowing that 1000’s of years from now when humankind is destroyed and the Raccoon People dig up old tapes of B5, they’d laugh and say “How foolish those Greqqqqzxz [for that’s what the Raccoon people call humans] were. They didn’t even know which end of London that Jack the Ripper committed his murders. No wonder they’re all dead.” Just then a comet hit the earth and the earth blew up. The End.

Subj: Odd Questions
Date: 96-03-26 01:09:31 EDT
From: BKnight255
Posted on: America Online

A few things I’m wondering about.

Was that Ranger outpost in Drazi space supported by the Drazi government per se, or was it private Drazi in their own sub-Conspiracy of Light? (If it’s the former, that’d seem to make the Drazi the only government actually supporting the Conspiracy of Light.)

Also: it seems that every other race on B5 sees something special in the humans. The Centauri saw some importance to allying themselves with the EA, the Minbari are still hung up on that soul thing, G’Kar sees the humans as the key to the salvation of the galaxy, the League of Non-Aligned Worlds seems to still hold Earth in some respect after the Dilgar war … and when Morden first showed up on B5, I seem to recall Kosh actually getting … emotional? He definitely did not seem pleased to see the Shadows mucking around with the humans. “They are not for you” — that refers to the humans, as I recall; and Kosh wasn’t being his usual cool, mysterious self when he said it.

Might that last point have something to do with the Dawn of the Third Age of Mankind?

 

 

Subj: Ask not.
Date: 96-03-26 04:01:57 EDT
From: PDP ModTV
Posted on: America Online

I watch it for the stories. I watch it for the entertainment. I watch it for the production (being an editor). I watch it for the evolution. I watch it for the messages and parables. It satisfies on all counts, and it’s not just sci-fi after all, is it. It is the one program, out of 50 channels 24 hours a day, that I will make it a point to watch. It’s WW2, “Triumph of the Will”, the bible, “Lifeboat”, Wagner, all rolled into one… and, it seems lately, just a hint of “Bridget Loves Bernie”, yes?

It’s history; it’s the 20th century. It’s a warning.

As a child of the original Trek, and still respectful of that whole scene, it still lost something when it became resurrected as The Franchise it now is. And so many management seminars, so little Romanticism… so Formula now. By the way, nice touch (and poignant storyline) getting Mrs. Great Bird onto B5.

“And Now For a Word”, in particular, was brilliant media parody (also the battle scene in “Gropos”). A man after mine own heart (being a media deconstructionist as well).

Thanks, J. Michael, to you and your crew for your masterful craft and creativity, and for presenting the Ultimate Apocalypse. It’s a good story, told well, simple as that. I hope that, despite the frustrating constriction of the deadlines, you’re suitably proud of your baby.

Phil Patiris

PS: OK, one question… whatever happened to that intriguing idea of somehow getting Trent into the mix? Unworkable story, or unavailable Culp? (child of the Outer Limits, too)

god i hate being a “fan”

Subj: Re:Questions, Schmestions!
Date: 96-03-26 04:48:31 EDT
From: PDP ModTV
Posted on: America Online

Now that I am sllllooowwwly working my way through these postings…

Epsilon Eridani is the Vulcan star system, at least according to early Trek paraphernalia. Coincidence?

Subj: So many can’t understand it.
Date: 96-03-26 04:56:41 EDT
From: PDP ModTV
Posted on: America Online

>> It’s not what I do, it’s what I *am*.

Precisely.

BTW, pardon my message glut tonight, but this is my self-treat (given AOL rates) of the week, my first night here… and you’re *accessible*, by golly!

Subj: Re:Who are you/Whaddya want
Date: 96-03-26 07:22:33 EDT
From: PDP ModTV
Posted on: America Online

First of all, AOL certainly ain’t no literary medium – and I seem to be writing a fragmented letter to you (apologies to those of you scrolling, hitting my little bottleneck here – I’ll make it up to you someday).

Ah, yes, JMS, gotta say it, you speak to me (I hate that phrase, but…), and not just thru the show; before video, I did accounting, and that was precisely the issue, personally, when I dismantled a life and went for the dream – what I do (want) is best based on who I am, not the converse. Glad to hear your clarification of that theme. I’ve had a rough and uncertain week, free-lance wise – the dream always has its price – so thanks for these nuggets of inspiration and unknowing (till now) encouragement as I pick those out here and there. Well-timed; guess I was meant to get here tonight. Or maybe – ahem – I have always been here.

I must say, I’ve seen some fairly frightening Nightwatch types in some of the AOL forums, having been online for a mere week now. Not so here – enjoying the posts, folks. JMS, you preside over a special part of the cyberreich (as I call it). Thanks for taking the time.

One last comment on the show (that’s what we’re here for): smart choice on N’Graath; it was well-executed, yes, but puppets belong on Lost in Space or in the Star Wars bar (sick of that stuff); even in the midst of a fantasy, B5 is realistic. In your 2260 people are still real people (screwed up), and history repeats itself, until we finally get it right (I figure this is where you’re heading, on one level at least). Trek (which began its storyline close to that same year) started with perfect society and backslid from that, starting w/TNG, making it disappointing. You start with imperfect society and struggle upward, making it aspirational. You’re just as idealistic, but not on the basis of (sixties) naivete, making B5 far more useful to present-day earthers.

We’re all tired of the B5/Trek comparisons, and this will be my last… because there is no comparison. On that note, gotta split (got my own deadlines, heretofore avoided)… keep it up, JMS, what you’re really doing is beyond the comprehension of those who run television and most everything else.

Subj: Oh hell, just one more.
Date: 96-03-26 08:11:12 EDT
From: PDP ModTV
Posted on: America Online

Now that I’ve finally finished this marathon read (mine gott, is that what time it is?)…

Can’t let the Ivanova exchange go by. I am not an Ivanova groupie, she’s not god… even if she is a nice jewish goil (well, I’m no longer 17-34 either – thank goodness). However, I thoroughly enjoy her character, for all the qualities I’ve read here… mainly because in those she reminds me of my favorite producer, and says exactly the same things, in the same (exasperated/threatening) way, same mannerisms, when it’s crunch time. JMS, how did you know.

Hmmm, then again, all producers are god (according to all producers)(present company excluded)(you’re a writer first, right?)(guess I won’t be moving to LA anytime soon)

Good night and good luck.

Subj: dolls
Date: 96-03-26 10:42:49 EDT
From: Moon2river
Posted on: America Online

JMS I have spent all day calling every state and ToyCo.to find the dolls you persented on B5
I have two sons and a niece .thats all they want as their easter present.One one of the kids at Cords school told him that their was no easter or Santa.While calling around they ToyCo said that there was no call for them.So I have a signature gathering of 100’s of names.Where should I send them to?

Subj: Renewal Process
Date: 96-03-26 13:00:56 EDT
From: JOHN DANT
Posted on: America Online

Joe,
Could you explain/describe the process of meetings that occur for a series renewal? You have referred to a process that will apparently be going on in april/may. How does ot work?
Thanks

John

Subj: Re:Mumy on Sci-Fi Buzz
Date: 96-03-26 17:37:56 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I believe the clip in question was from “Ceremonies of Light and Dark.”

jms
Subj: Re:Lincoln
Date: 96-03-26 17:40:35 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

“the last, best hope of Earth” was from Lincoln, yes. We quoted it in “Points of Departure.”

jms
Subj: Re:Pilots
Date: 96-03-26 17:42:16 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The story just kinda shifted away from that for a while; I try not to stay too long with any one thread. They sorta come in waves; as with this season, we emphasized Earth stuff for the first 11 or so episodes; then we slide back into the Centauri stuff, then the Minbari, then the Narn. Aspects of the show rise and fall in prominence as needed for the story. We’ll get back to the pilots in the fullness of time.

jms
Subj: Re:West/East End of London
Date: 96-03-26 17:46:39 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

What I’d said, and maybe I wasn’t sufficiently clear, but my sense was that I wasn’t going to change it *prior to the first US airing.* I found out about the mistake — it was a typo, I knew the difference, I just became momentarily stupid and wrote west when I meant to type east — after the show aired in the UK, and had a couple of months in which I could’ve chosen to make the change. But I was concerned that the dub wouldn’t have the same power as the original performance, so I was willing to let it go until after it aired, so it would’ve had that impact, then make the change later. Happily, the loop came out *very* well, so it worked out.

jms
Subj: Re:Odd Questions
Date: 96-03-26 17:48:44 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The Ranger colony was financially supported by the Minbari; the Drazi allowed them to use one of their colony worlds as a base.

If humans are special, and in some measure we are or we wouldn’t be in the story, I should think it’s more for what we *do* than what we *are*. There is something very unique about us which comes in handily in the series. Delenn’s already pointed this out.

jms
Subj: Re:Ask not.
Date: 96-03-26 17:52:47 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Phil: thanks. A wonderful and very encouraging analysis. Sometimes I forget how much we’re really packing into this show until I see it broken down like that. Then suddenly I’m tired…but vastly pleased.

As for Trent, we still plan to do that story at some point.

jms

Subj: Re:Who are you/Whaddya want
Date: 96-03-26 17:56:42 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Exactly. I think the process of transcending is much more interesting than *having* transcended. The struggle is what’s dramatic.

Re: n’grath…while that didn’t work as well as I’d’ve liked, I’m still looking to explore some alternate ways of showing alien (non-humanoid) life forms. We’ll get there.

BTW, I note that you use semi-colons correctly in your messages…it’s a tiny thing, but it’s the sort of thing rarely done anymore; the semi-colon seems to have become a form of vestigal punctuation.

jms
Subj: Re:dolls
Date: 96-03-26 17:58:35 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

If you’ve got a petition, then a place like Playmates, which tends to make action figure license deals, would be a good place to start.

Otherwise, there aren’t any character dolls at the time; eventually we’ll get to it.

jms
Subj: Re:Renewal Process
Date: 96-03-26 18:10:05 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The renewal process for B5 is a little different than the norm, due to the PTEN structure. It works in two parts, as I understand it. (If I’m incorrect on any of this, I hope that any of the onlooking WB folks will set me straight.)

Part one comes from the stations. Each market looks at the show, and how it’s doing in their area, which is a combination of ratings and demographics, and sometimes audience support for a show, though the first two always take precedence over the third. They then decide whether or not to offer to take the show for another season.

Part two comes from WB and the national advertisers. As the stations line up yea or nay, you keep a running tally of how *many* stations, when they want to air it, and if they want to do a double run or not. You need a certain percentage of major markets, national coverage, to get national sponsors; and you need to guarantee them a certain number of viewers. Best if you can deliver a certain *kind* of viewer, the kind advertisers look for.

The last part of WB’s decision is if the show is profitable for the company given all of these elements. (WB gets the advertising money for national spots in general, while local stations can sell other spots for local sponsors, generating their income.) Unlike most TV shows, which can run at a deficit for a number of years, on the theory that they’ll make it up in long-term syndication, our show and Kung Fu have to show a profit *from the word go*. So the bear is much closer to us at all times.

The problem that all syndicated shows are currently running into is that of diminishing berths for their programs. Most communities have, at most, 1 or 2 local independent stations. When B5 went on the air, these were all available to us. Since then, the Warners Network and UPN have come into existence, with contractual requirements mandating x-hours per week for their programs. And Fox stations have grown, expanded their range of programming. So now you find that there are fewer and fewer available timeslots for syndicated shows not affiliated with one of these weblets. A number of new syndicated shows announced recently have been pulled for the simple reason that they can’t find enough stations that have available slots.

It’s a noose around our neck that we’re definitely aware of, particularly given the importance of double runs for the national sponsors, which is even *more* difficult given the current glut of programs and the few slots remaining. The game is trying to finish the story and get out before the noose closes around our neck.

It’s going to be tight….

jms
Subj: JMS: Which Episode does….
Date: 96-03-26 19:19:41 EDT
From: Grimjack4
Posted on: America Online

You’ve written that one of the characters did something in an episode that surprised you. Which episode should we be looking for this “event”?

Thanks.

KMB

Subj: Re:Who are you/Whaddya want
Date: 96-03-26 20:58:47 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

What an odd thing; someone still uses semi-colons….

Subj: Re:Who are you/Whaddya want
Date: 96-03-26 21:01:02 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

Ok, that was improper (should have been a comma), but I just had to use a semi-colon (damn that urge to be a wise—).

Now that I’ve had time to dwell on it, I think I should have done something like this:

That is an odd event; someone used a semi-colon… (don’t tell me, I screwed up on the hyphen, too…)

Subj: Re:Renewal Process
Date: 96-03-26 21:02:16 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>. (If I’m incorrect on any of this, I hope that any of the onlooking WB folks will set me straight.)<<

Big [Warner] Brother is watching us?

Subj: Re:Renewal/alternatives
Date: 96-03-26 22:28:42 EDT
From: Ttocs1000
Posted on: America Online

<<It’s a noose around our neck that we’re definitely aware of, particularly given the importance of double runs for the national sponsors, which is even *more* difficult given the current glut of programs and the few slots remaining. The game is trying to finish the story and get out before the noose closes around our neck.

It’s going to be tight….>>

Joe, One admittedly naieve question: Is it possible that one of the weblets would pick B5 up if it was cancelled as a syndicated show? Surely it would do better than the pathetic WB offerings, although I doubt UPN would give it a crack. It makes sense–WB needs a sci-fi series, and this one has a built-in core audience. It would certainly outrate most of the drivel on cable networks, so could one of them become interested? Doesn’t Turner have the rerun rights already, so wouldn’t a first run make some kind of sense? There has to be a place for a great show like B5 in a television world with so many outlets. Didn’t we hear about the 500-channel universe not so long ago? All I ask for is an hour a week so I can finish this novel for TV.

BTW, it’s syndicated on both Fox and UPN outlets in my market (Tulsa, OK, although it doesn’t repeat on either of them that I’m aware of. They do give it a great 9:00 time slot on UPN, so it must be doing some good).

Subj: Semicolonoscopy for Songo
Date: 96-03-26 22:35:12 EDT
From: PDP ModTV
Posted on: America Online

To use a musical analogy (I did bassoon before accounting before video), the semicolon is a sort of “half-breath” between phrases… less strident than a period, less rushed and more separating than a comma. It fine-tunes the written reflection of verbal cadence. It’s a genteel punctuation mark, therefore becoming endangered as the mother tongue reverts to ad copy. Like this.

Subj: Five MILES long?!
Date: 96-03-26 23:23:27 EDT
From: GojiraDesu
Posted on: America Online

This is just a silly little question, and I’m sure you’ve been asked it before, but I’ve always wondered…in one of the B5 opening narrations, the station is referred to as “five MILES long.” Haven’t they converted to metrics yet? Although, if you described it in kilometers I’d probably be scratching my head trying to figure out how big that really is.

Subj: Re:Five MILES long?!
Date: 96-03-26 23:55:51 EDT
From: YaxPac
Posted on: America Online

They’ve converted … we just haven’t yet. Dr. Franklin always gives his doses in metric. Well … I think he does anyway … since nobody uses drams anymore and the last time I heard grains used was in 1987. Jms has to make a few concessions to the public ya know. He’s translating their kms into our miles the same way he translates Minbari and Narn when they talk amongst themselves (that Delenn … like butter).

Evan

Subj: Minbari rings
Date: 96-03-27 00:01:56 EDT
From: Temek
Posted on: America Online

JMS may have answered this, if so, please relay — I don’t want him to waste time answering again — whatever happened to the Minbari Rings Delenn used in the pilot?

Subj: Why Io?
Date: 96-03-27 01:00:02 EDT
From: HarleyHG
Posted on: America Online

Joe,

I’ve read much of what’s here, but forgive me if this has been mentioned and I missed it.

In all the solar system there aren’t many places less habitable the Io. It’s deep in Jupiter’s radiation belt and so close that gravitic forces make it the most unstable body in the solar system. it has more active volcanoes than any where else, including earth. (As far as we know….) With this in mind, why did you pick that world for the “Transfer point” and what exactly do you mean by transfer point? Is this the closest jumpgate to earth?

Thanks for any info and keep up the good work.

Subj: Re:Five MILES long?!
Date: 96-03-27 01:49:23 EDT
From: MacManJWS
Posted on: America Online

>> This is just a silly little question, and I’m sure you’ve been asked it before, but I’ve always wondered…in one of the B5 opening narrations, the station is referred to as “five MILES long.” Haven’t they converted to metrics yet? Although, if you described it in kilometers I’d probably be scratching my head trying to figure out how big that really is. <<

The ISN hypertext caption in “And Now for a Word” gives the metric equivalent. Joe…I don’t have the info in front of me! What is it?

Macker

Subj: Re:Renewal Process
Date: 96-03-27 03:18:08 EDT
From: AmberH
Posted on: America Online

>> Big [Warner] Brother is watching us?<<

I would like to think that maybe it’s just Wakko ‘n Yakko he’s referring to.

Subj: Re:JMS: Which Episode does
Date: 96-03-27 05:13:37 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I’ll tell you that *after* the episode airs…if I tell you before, you’ll be looking for it, and prepared for it, rather than being surprised.

jms
Subj: Re:Renewal/alternatives
Date: 96-03-27 05:15:35 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I think the WB net would be very doubtful, since they’re trying to create their own identity as a network, and taking a syndicated show would likely work against that; UPN is Paramount and I think they’d cut off their own…er…noses before taking on B5, given our relative histories.

jms
Subj: Re:Five MILES long?!
Date: 96-03-27 05:17:50 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Well, I suppose he could’ve said six-point-one kilometers (or whatever the figure would be, I’m too tired and it’s too late in the evening to do the math), but it’d kinda spoil the flow of the sentence; and if it’s total length works out to five miles, give or take a bit, that seems the way to go.

jms
Subj: Re:Minbari rings
Date: 96-03-27 05:18:16 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

The rings are still there; we just haven’t yet had cause to use them.

jms
Subj: Re:Why Io?
Date: 96-03-27 05:20:09 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Yes, this is the primary jumpgate for Earth. It’s positioned at Io (most of the base is actually in orbit outside Io, some of it on the surface, as we showed in “Chrysalis”) to keep Earth a bit safer by removing it some distance, and because putting it near the huge energy field of Jupiter makes it more difficult for weapons to target it from a distance. It’s mainly a tactical decision.

jms
Subj: Renewal & Howard Stern
Date: 96-03-27 09:00:47 EDT
From: JJ KEATS
Posted on: America Online

On his show today Howard said that he heard that the show was going to cancelled, I hope that this is not true. Is there any information that you can give us?

Subj: Poetry
Date: 96-03-27 10:40:03 EDT
From: Moon2river
Posted on: America Online

JMS have you ever had time to read the poetry boards?There quite good.It shows our devotion to B5.Please their are three or four who do not follow the rules of conduct and have hurt others who wrote.But must are lovly and Its a gift to you and the others who make B5 come to life for us.

Subj: Re:An Open Letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-27 13:30:19 EDT
From: WillmoreRv
Posted on: America Online

I no longer remember the precise origin of “My country, right or wrong,” but
it antedates Twain somewhat. It was of roughly the Napoleonic period, and
the full original is: “Our country! In her intercourse with foreign nations, may
she always be in the right, but our country, right or wrong!”

And it was a toast, made among naval officers.

So it wasn’t really anywhere as stupid or nasty as it seems….

Subj: Night Watch and Home Guard
Date: 96-03-27 13:33:42 EDT
From: WillmoreRv
Posted on: America Online

Errr…. When you said that the Night Watch absorbed the Home Guard, does
that mean that the latter was not a bunch of yahoos acting on their own, but
actually a black op in the government, or merely that the Home Guard kinda
fell apart, and most of its members ended up in the Night Watch?

Subj: Re:West/East End of London
Date: 96-03-27 13:49:43 EDT
From: NealKlein
Posted on: America Online

What I’m surprised by is the fact that most people who spotted this have assumed you made a researching error. The E and W keys on the typewriter are right next to one another!

Neal
Subj: Re:Renewal Process
Date: 96-03-27 14:26:16 EDT
From: Archer C1
Posted on: America Online

Have you thought of going to TNT to complete the first run if PTEN does renew for the fourth or fifth seasons? Since you have deal to rerun the episodes, they have a somewhat vested interest in helping you tell the whole story.

Just wondering…

Subj: Sweepstake form defect
Date: 96-03-27 16:12:14 EDT
From: I am Bob
Posted on: America Online

Ive been trying to enter the “Mystery Alien Sweepstakes” using the online entry from available in this area of aol. But its broke. So this morning I checked in to tech help and was told its broke. So now “they” know.

Its been broke since sunday, as thats when I first tried to use it (Im assuming that it has not worked since then). So JMS, if anyone at your end has been wondering why no one has entered via this method…

The official B5 website’s entry form is working, and I’ve been entering via that method for online entry.

Now my fellow Earthers…how come no one else has noticed this defect?! Why have you (yes YOU!) not been entering the sweepstakes? It’s fun, it’s easy, it’s good for earth. JMS correct me if Im wrong but isn’t PTEN,WB and the CIA using the sweepstake to help access viewership? (Im guessing thats why they want your age on the entry form to determine demographics.)

Any way…please enter every day. And enter using post cards too :)

Send post cards to:
Babylon 5 Mystery Alien Sweepstaks
P.O. Box 4334
Hollywood, CA 90078

Include your name,address,phone,age, and the alien’s name.

Bob

Subj: Use Subject
Date: 96-03-27 16:14:25 EDT
From: I am Bob
Posted on: America Online

Fellow earthers can I ask a favor?
JMS is a great good executive producer to stop by and answer all our posts. But I frequently have dificulty figuring out whats he’s responding to. Most of us cut and paste a portion of a prior post we are responding to, so that the reader can follow. But JMS has way too many posts to answer, to waste his time doing this.

So the favor I ask is that you use the subject line more meaningfully, so when I see JMS’s responses I can get a clue as to the original post’s meaning.

Exampel of a bad subject: “Open letter to Jms”.
What would have been better: “Actor fires agent”

(sorry to whoever wrote the open letter, Im not singnaling you out. I just found that post and subject heading memorable.)

Bob

Subj: *Where* Jms Learned *?*
Date: 96-03-27 16:14:58 EDT
From: I am Bob
Posted on: America Online

Where did JMS learn the asterisk *thing*? Is that a Genie *thing*? I know its not a compuserve *thing*. Or is it a hollywood *thing*. Im not objecting or any *thing*, just wondering where he picked that *thing* up.

Bob

Subj: Re:An Open Letter to JMS
Date: 96-03-27 16:55:53 EDT
From: KNAC Lives
Posted on: America Online

JMS: Have you read “Lies My Teacher Told Me” by Loewen? I think you of all people would find it a facsinating glimpse into how the typical American high school history course indoctornates the masses (i.e. your “target” market)

Subj: Re:transliteration, et al.
Date: 96-03-27 17:36:35 EDT
From: Khundawit
Posted on: America Online

Just some of my own thoughts. I recently returned from the Peace Corps (not the Psi Corps or the Minipax) in Thailand. Thai uses an “alphabet” derived from Sanskrit, and many of the characters don’t have exact analogs to English. For example- HRH King Bhomipol is commonly spelt this way. However, by my Hudson Valley ears, it sounds more like Poam-ee-Poan. And if Thais were to transliterate American English, Virginian would be different from Californian. So we must forgive this minor differences between what we hear and what we see spelt.

By the way, I came back from Thailand, June 1995, and began watching during the middle of the 2nd season. The pilot aired the night before my group left from San Francisco. I caught some of it but didn’t see the whole episode. Is there any way I can catch the pilot or the first season and first half of the second season (I think the earliest episode I saw was when Sheridan was accused of killing a member of the Mimbari warrior caste).

Subj: B5 Fan Club and Newsletter
Date: 96-03-27 18:26:20 EDT
From: WmBarrett6
Posted on: America Online

Joe
Is there any word on the Fan Club ,I’m afraid I will be reading the wrong message at the wrong time in the wrong place and miss the announcement. Hopefully you might post the web site so we can rush over and join. Thank you !
william

Subj: Re:Why Io?
Date: 96-03-27 20:44:42 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>In all the solar system there aren’t many places less habitable the Io. It’s deep in Jupiter’s radiation belt and so close that gravitic forces make it the most unstable body in the solar system. it has more active volcanoes than any where else, including earth. (As far as we know….) With this in mind, why did you pick that world for the “Transfer point” and what exactly do you mean by transfer point?<<

As JMS has said before, the transfer point is that station orbiting Io, not the planet itself. I’m not sure why Io is the place, unless maybe it’s near a LaGrange (sp?) point or something (Solar gravitational feilds not Songo’s skill). Maybe it is a good fuel stop (near Europa and other icy places), or it might be just close enough to Earth (Pluto would not be a premium transfer point, to the best of my knowledge).

>> Is this the closest jumpgate to earth?<<

I think it’s the only one in the Terran (? Earther?) system. When it was built, it was probably considered a bad idea to put one near Earth or Mars for strategic reasons. Although, now that we know that Minbari (or any other possible threats) don’t need jumpgates, why haven’t there been more built?

Or maybe…(I’m obligated to say this just to say it) jump points are like Crazy Eddie points when close to stars. Perhaps Earth is too close, and any jump points opened there would be limited in safety and range of destinations. There might be problems with entering hyperspace from too close to the sun… Or maybe the Alderson ‘tram lines’ just don’t go anywhere but into a star…

Subj: Re:Renewal Process
Date: 96-03-27 20:59:35 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

>>I would like to think that maybe it’s just Wakko ‘n Yakko he’s referring to.<<

Or other Animaniacs characters? Hmmm… Are you pondering what I’m pondering?

Or…
Mindy: “Mr. Writer Man, why do you go online?”
JMS: “Because I enjoy it, usually, and it is a privaledge ti interact with [most of] the fans.”
Mindy: “Why?”
JMS: “Because they are intelligent and their feedback is invaluable.”
Mindy: “Why?”
JMS: “Because I learn from my mistakes and it has allowed me to make the show with such high quality.”
Mindy: “Why?”
JMS: “Because I know people care and support the show, and they will keep me focused, sharp, and in a humorous mindset sometimes.”
Mindy: “Why?”
JMS: “They support the show because they feel as I do about the story. I am focused because I must be sure to deliver that story as well as I can; it deserves to be told well.”
Mindy: “Why?”
JMS: “It is an important story. I need to tell it; I need to explore the future and the third age of mankind.”
Mindy: “Why?”
JMS: “Because the process that brings it about is so fundamentally essential. Man must achieve greatness. The Third Age is just dawning.”
Mindy: “Why?”
JMS: “…. You haven’t heard a word I’ve said have you… I guess it won’t hurt if I tell you what causes the third age…”
Mindy: “Why?”
JMS: “Because you’ve got the neuron activity of a block of frozen helium.”
Mindy: “Ok, love you, bye bye.”
JMS: “……. Hey, wait a second… Let me introduce you to a friend of mine… Mindy, meet Harlan Ellison. He writes good stories, too…”
Subj: Re:Sweepstake form defect
Date: 96-03-27 21:02:29 EDT
From: Songokuten
Posted on: America Online

My local station hasn’t had one commercial about the Alien Makeover Contest. How do I enter if they don’t show an “Alien Of The Week”?

Subj: Re:Five MILES long?!
Date: 96-03-27 21:55:15 EDT
From: TGreen1641
Posted on: America Online

The length in kilometers is 8.045

Subj: Morden and Bester
Date: 96-03-27 21:59:29 EDT
From: TGreen1641
Posted on: America Online

Just 2 quick questions for you JMS:
1. Will Sheridan get the privilege of dealing with Morden?
2. Is Bester ever going to be shown the error of his ways?

Subj: Re: Renewal
Date: 96-03-27 22:14:20 EDT
From: RJKnapp
Posted on: America Online

Dear JMS,
Your responses to the last few posts regarding renewal has seemed pretty pessimistic. Is Babylon 5 really in that much trouble? I had seen some earlier posts of the February ratings and they looked pretty respectable. I am concerned, however, about stations moving the show around.
Do you feel that a major fan effort is required to get the show renewed or is it already to late? The show is fantastic, with some of the best yet to come. It would be a shame to see it end uncompleted. Thanks.

RJKnapp

Subj: New Book #5:Bailed out Early
Date: 96-03-27 22:34:22 EDT
From: JRDavis711
Posted on: America Online

JMS,
I bought it today, read eight chapters, and my suspension of disbelief is already shot. Do you have any approval over the writer selection process. The writing is not very good and the most basic science is wrong.
What killed the story for me was the following:
A “worm” of energy nine million miles long is visible to the naked eye from twenty lightyears away. NOT POSSIBLE. The equivalent feat would be to see a toothpick at a distance of over two hundred miles. This is not a difficult calculation.
I love the show and managed to enjoy the first two books. Not great, but readable. I skipped to #5 because it sounded interesting. Now I’m afraid to try another.
But I will definitely continue viewing. It is one of the best television shows I have seen, of any category.
** JRD **
Subj: Re:Five MILES long?!
Date: 96-03-27 22:56:43 EDT
From: BitterDreg
Posted on: America Online

I have to agree. “Five miles long” just sounds cooler than 8.0whatever kilometers. I think miles are going to be with us for a long time. Just think, without our wonderful measuring system, Deep Space Nine would have a character named Kilometers O’Brien, Frost’s poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” would feature the line “and kilometers to go before I sleep,” and Harry Chapin would have sung about 30,000 kilograms of bananas.

 

Subj: WB commentary
Date: 96-03-28 00:10:27 EDT
From: Janatjaime
Posted on: America Online

“That’s ok, Harlan. You’re my favoritist writer.”

(But does this mean Fanboy is going to come and try to claim his own personal Harlan Ellison again?)

“And, some day, Fanboy, women may even come to find you attractive.”

Subj: New Folder
Date: 96-03-28 00:59:58 EDT
From: B5 Online
Posted on: America Online

Please continue this conversation in the new folder – messages have begun to scroll off. The more this folder is used, the more messages will be lost.

-B5 Online

Subj: Re:Misunderstanding
Date: 96-03-28 01:38:28 EDT
From: Dj steveb
Posted on: America Online

Uh, I just moved to San Diego from Houston, TX and in spite of your “nuke” comments, I’m a BIG fan of B5!!

Subj: Continue
Date: 96-03-28 14:18:24 EDT
From: B5 Online
Posted on: America Online

Please continue this discussion in the new folder. :)

Subj: Re:Renewal & Howard Stern
Date: 96-03-28 16:30:41 EDT
From: SharlsKdy
Posted on: America Online

Take ANYTHING Howard Stern says with a large salt lick.

-= Scott =-
Subj: Re:Renewal & Howard Stern
Date: 96-03-29 01:55:27 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Howard, who is a big fan of the show, spoke a bit out of turn, and WB has since been in contact with him about it; he’ll correct the statement soon, I’m told.

jms
Subj: Re:*Where* Jms Learned *?*
Date: 96-03-29 01:57:13 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I learned proper use of the * at a Shao-lin monastary after years of silent meditation upon a drawing of * set before me on a wall.

jms
Subj: Re:B5 Fan Club and Newslette
Date: 96-03-29 01:57:57 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Hang tight, we’ll get out the word on this soon.

jms
Subj: Re:Morden and Bester
Date: 96-03-29 01:58:38 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

That would be telling, wouldn’t it?

jms
Subj: Re:Continue
Date: 96-03-29 01:59:46 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

Just noticed the new folder after answering stuff here; can you either leave it for a bit or move the stuff over?

jms
Subj: Lord of the Rings & B5?
Date: 96-03-29 15:55:32 EDT
From: GTolwyn
Posted on: America Online

I have just finished reading the first part of the Lord of the Rings trilogy and I’ve already seen many close parallels between it and B5.

Is it possible that The One is not Sinclair, or for that matter anyone else, but the Triluminary? It makes sense if the Triluminary was a device that was given to the Minbari by someone else- the Vorlons, for safeguarding. The Vorlons, however, recieved (or possibly stole) the Triluminary/ies from the Shadows. Perhaps that is the reason the Shadows were only defeated in the last great war- the Vorlons only stole the Triluminary and kept it to themselves instead of using it against the Shadows. That would explain why the Shadows are only interested in just half the galaxy and don’t care (yet for all we know!) about the other half. It also follows that in Middle-Earth there are 3 rings of power. Are there 3 Triluminaries of Power; is there the One Triluminary that was made by the Shadows and is the only power that can stop them? Perhaps the message the future Sinclair tired to deliver was that the Triluminary is the only power capable of destroying the Shadows forever. And the reason he wanted to tell someone this is because something goes wrong when B4 is moved through time and the Triluminary is lost (or trapped with Zathrus on B4!) and without it the Army of Light begins to suffer defeat. That could also be why Zathrus said the present Sinclair wasn’t the One, because the One is also in reference to the sole person who is charged with protecting the One Triluminary, a ring-bearer of sorts.

Do the Shadows need the Triluminary to completly conquer the forces of light? Is that why they have been fighting for so long- to try to take back that which was lost? Can the Triluminary be the sole power that can defeat the Shadows? Is it possible that if there is the One Triluminary, can it be taken to Za-had-dum and be destroyed (taking the Shadows with it)? These are just a few questions that came to mind, and I thought I’d share them. Thank you for Babylon 5 and good luck with the coming seasons!

-Jason

Subj: Valen and G’Quon
Date: 96-03-29 17:32:04 EDT
From: BKnight255
Posted on: America Online

Were Valen on Minbar and G’Quon on Narn contemporaries, or was there a span of some number of years between the two of them?

I’m working on the utterly loony hypothesis that Valen and G’Quon may have been the same individual, and if they were around at the same time, that theory is shot.

Just curious.

Oh, one other note: I don’t know if I’m alone on this, but when I see the words “That would be telling” in this forum, I get the urge to start trying to dig a foxhole. Very inconvenient for those of us who live above the ground floor.

Subj: Re:Demographics?
Date: 96-03-30 22:36:33 EDT
From: VBS
Posted on: America Online

Hmmm. I’m another woman and another Ivanova fan, for what that’s worth. One of the things I appreciate about this show is that the women are so well-written (and performed) and that male/female relations are so realistically portrayed (AND that JMS chose to give lesbians a little visibility without icepicks or sensationalism — bless you!).

I know a number of women in the military and Susan Ivanova reminds me of each of them in a different way: lovely multifaceted character. Yeah, it would be reassuring to see *more* women in high-level positions, but that tangoes nicely with my suspicion that sexism will probably be with us for a long time to come — a bit more of that realism about women and their lives.

So thanks, JMS, for all the above. And for the cool story; mostly for the cool story. It’s a blast.

Val

Subj: When to Bring in New People?
Date: 96-04-01 21:00:26 EDT
From: JSoltysiak
Posted on: America Online

I have been watching B5 since the first season. I have some friends that are big Sci-fi fans but could never get into B5 since they always seemed to watch the episodes that didn’t make much sense if you didn’t watch the entire series. What would be a good episode for them to watch before the current season runs out for them to start watching B5? I can’t stand reading spoiler messages on the USENET and paid services since I like to watch an episode without hearing anything about it. Could you just tell me an episode and air week for a good newbie episode?
I know you have heard it before but I will say it again, I love B5. This is the first series that I have always watched faithfully no matter what. If I’m not home, I tape it. Keep up the good work.

Jim Soltysiak

Subj: Poetry
Date: 96-04-01 21:38:54 EDT
From: Moon2river
Posted on: America Online

JMS we have started a good poetry section but their are some out to ruin the B5 poetry board.Please it would take only a little of your time to check us out.From one writer to other.
Good writers are being scared off the board by nasty insults which isn’t fair.I wouldn’t be because one never gives into evil.And some placed their hearts and souls into this poetry board.and I won’t stop just because the shodows have invaded.

Subj: JMS has one Great Damn Show
Date: 96-04-02 00:49:33 EDT
From: MWaxman711
Posted on: America Online

to JMS:
“I have always been here”, do we finally get to find out what Kosh means in War without end?
Mitch

Subj: Re:When to Bring in New Peop
Date: 96-04-02 02:34:32 EDT
From: Jms at B5
Posted on: America Online

I strongly suggest you try this week’s episode, “Severed Dreams.” I showed it at a small con/fan gathering here in LA on Saturday, before the uplink, and there were several folks there who hadn’t seen or been moved to check out B5…and by the time it was over, they’d turned around.

jms
Subj: B5 in Boston Market
Date: 96-04-02 11:06:20 EDT
From: TGiarrosso
Posted on: America Online

I’m new to the B5 area… looks like a very cool place to keep in contact with friends and fans of the show.

I sympathize with your plight on syndication space. The Boston Affiliate, WSBK, is a UPN station, and has pre-empted B5 and Voyager so many times It makes my head spin, beacuse of contracts with the Celtics, Bruins, and Red Sox. I bellieve they had to lose all of the sports programs because of UPN committments, but that still leaves B5 at 10:30pm on a Sunday.. fine to tape, lousy for ratings.

Because of the ping ponging, I’ve missed the show since seeing the pilot and first few episodes… and I must admit, I’m very impressed with the changes since those first few I saw. Better storyline, drama, a dash of action, and role reversals <Peter is much less a buffoon, and less one dimentional>

Thanks for producing a quality show, and good luck in the renewal process. I’d yell at WSBK, but I’m sure they already have several earfuls from the moving around of programs… you can tell when they have to put on things like ‘Voyager will be shown on Friday at 8:00 pm’ over a Bruins game!

Tom Giarrosso
Subj: Re:B5 in Boston Market
Date: 96-04-03 00:06:39 EDT
From: REBinAZ
Posted on: America Online

I guess we’re lucky here in Arizona(B5 is on at 8:00p.m Sunday nights) because
B5 never gets moved to weird timeslots. I have heard so many complaints from
other states about having to tape B5 because it’s on at three a.m!!!! I can’t even
imagine that.
Here it’s ‘Voyager’ at seven(I skip it , it sucks! Too bad because Mulgrew is one hell
of an actress) then B5 at eight(Never miss it!)and DS9 at nine(It’s pretty good this season).
Ro

Subj: Captain Power
Date: 96-04-05 11:36:54 EDT
From: Servo 1233
Posted on: America Online

If anyone has copies of Captain power, please send!!!!!!!!!Will pay!!!!!!!!!!!!

Subj: Severed Dreams
Date: 96-04-05 17:14:59 EDT
From: VBS
Posted on: America Online

Thanks, JMS, for the clear thinking and writing in this episode, especially the bits in Sheridan’s speech about his criteria for deciding that an order is “illegal.”

I’ve been watching the show with my sons (one teen, one just pre-teen) and we’ve been talking a lot about how one decides these things, and how serious it is for a military person to disregard an order that comes through the chain of command. We’ve even been talking a bit about the nature of authority: where it comes from, how we decide who gets it, and how important it is to pay attention to how it is used.

These are very important ethical concerns, and I don’t know of any other TV shows raising them as provocatively as does B5. In this age of our own “shadow wars,” with racism and anti-Semitism on the rise, I think more families should be talking about this stuff. Thanks for giving us some great food for conversation.
Subj: starfuries
Date: 96-04-05 21:31:21 EDT
From: JOKERr808
Posted on: America Online

3 things:

1) how many fighters in a squadron, and how many squadrons does B5 have?
2) hom many fighters does an Earth Heavy Crusier have?
3) What can the new Thunderbolts do that the old Starfuries couldn’t?

by the way great job with ‘Severed Dreams’

TNX

 

 

 

 

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