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60 votes

How much did JMS change the Babylon 5 storyline to accommodate changing cast members?

JMS always planned to accommodate cast members being unavailable by having "trap doors" planned for every character The trouble, of course, is that unlike writing a novel, where the characters ...
Thunderforge's user avatar
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54 votes

If PPGs don't penetrate metal, why didn't people use armour in Babylon 5?

They did. In the very first pilot episode, The Gathering, Sinclair and Garibaldi suit up in black padded vests when going after the changeling net assassin. Garibaldi takes a PPG hit directly to the ...
Radhil's user avatar
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46 votes
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How did Sheridan keep Babylon 5 afloat without funding and any support from Earth after his rebellion?

This was addressed in B5: Racing Mars. In short, they have some supplies and financial reserves, sufficient to allow them to set up alternative supply routes. They also mention growing food in the ...
Valorum's user avatar
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44 votes

Why do the Shadows ships look similar after several thousand years, given that technological advancement should have made ships look very different?

The Shadows effectively lay dormant for the thousands of years between wars. It is revealed that So there wouldn’t have been any technological advancement in the intervening years.
Darren's user avatar
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42 votes
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Why do Vorlons live in special gaseous rooms in Babylon 5, given that Kosh can be seen walking around the station with ease?

The official line from the Vorlons is that Kosh's encounter suit allows him to move around the station with his protective atmosphere inside it. They are Vorlon tech, and thus near magical in nature. ...
Christi's user avatar
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40 votes
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If PPGs don't penetrate metal, why didn't people use armour in Babylon 5?

PPGs aren't common, which is why people don't wear body armor that often. As the audience, we often see them, but that's because our perspective follows the staff and crew of Babylon 5 around. They ...
Dranon's user avatar
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35 votes
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Why do the Shadows ships look similar after several thousand years, given that technological advancement should have made ships look very different?

In addition to Darren's correct answer, one of the themes of Babylon 5 is that the societies of the Vorlons and the Shadows have stagnated. They have spent so long concentrating on winning the galaxy ...
Dranon's user avatar
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34 votes
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Why did the Shadows help Centauris fight the Narns and not the other way round?

Because Londo answered Morden's question to their satisfaction. The Shadow could indeed have gone with any race. As we see later in the series, the Centauri weren't even their only angle - the Earth ...
Radhil's user avatar
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32 votes

Power sources on Babylon 5

Those gigantic panels aren't solar panels, they're there to help cool the station. Showrunner JMS refers to them as 'heat dissipators' or 'heat radiators'. ...those solar panels are wayyyyyyy to ...
Valorum's user avatar
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31 votes
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Why didn't the Shadows ask the humans "What do you want?" on Babylon 5, given that other species were asked and humans were an important species?

Because in the episode where Morden goes around asking the ambassadors what they want he is intercepted by Kosh before Morden gets to Sinclair and Kosh tells Morden, "They are not for you." JMS ...
Smartybartfast's user avatar
30 votes
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What is Babylon 5 cylinder's diameter and gravity on each deck?

TLDR: Ivanova's statement is consistent both with believable gravity and with the pictures of the garden. The gardens do NOT span the length of the station The quote is correct and can be viewed ...
Abulafia's user avatar
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29 votes
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So what are technomages?

This is all drawn from the mostly canon tie in novel trilogy, The Passing of the Techno-mages. Much of this would have been part of the sequel series Crusade, if that show had continued. There's the ...
Radhil's user avatar
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29 votes
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Did J. Michael Straczynski (JMS) always plan for these scenes to happen as they did in B5?

Signs point to yes. Creator JMS replied on Usenet and mentioned this regarding the first time this particular portion of the vision is shown (Londo talks about it earlier, but the audience first sees ...
Radhil's user avatar
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27 votes
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Is there a canonical map of Babylon 5?

Babylon 5's Art Director Ted Haigh was kind enough to provide a map in the Feb 1993 edition of Cinefantastique. This shows each of the major sections and their functions. From the show itself (and ...
Valorum's user avatar
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25 votes

Why so many character cliffhangers in the last episode of season one, "Chrysalis", and why wait one episode to resolve them?

Unplanned change of major character For reasons that you can read about here, Michael O'Hare was tragically unable to continue playing the lead character in Babylon 5 and a replacement was needed. ...
KerrAvon2055's user avatar
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24 votes
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Has JMS ever detailed the origin of the name or term “Babylon 5” used in his works?

According to JMS, the name came from the influence of ancient Babylon on the show's plot. It's likely he had the name in mind before writing that Captain Power episode. Evidence for the ancient ...
Withad's user avatar
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23 votes
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Why are there so many oranges in Sheridan's quarters?

John's obsession with oranges seems to stem from his childhood, eating oranges from his family's orchard. When I was 12, I used to sit in my dad's garden the air full of the smell of orange blossoms ...
Valorum's user avatar
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22 votes
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How could Talia Winters help the rogue telepaths against Bester?

This was addressed by Babylon 5 showrunner J. Michael Straczynski. In short, burrowing into the 'underground railroad' and potentially compromising their entire network was a dream opportunity, even ...
Valorum's user avatar
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22 votes

How would anybody know how to poison a Vorlon?

Yes, only two humans ever returned from the Vorlon homeworld. But the Vorlons were fairly active with the Minbari. They were there when They were on Delenn's ship, especially when Delenn even knows ...
Machavity's user avatar
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21 votes
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How did Kosh know to tell Sheridan to jump into the abyss on Z'ha'dum?

Because Kosh knows that Lorien is there. The Shadows certainly do. From Season 4 Episode 2 "Whatever Happened to Mr. Garibaldi": Lorien: You're the first to make it this far. Sheridan: Do ...
Dranon's user avatar
  • 4,186
21 votes

Why do the Shadows ships look similar after several thousand years, given that technological advancement should have made ships look very different?

I was going to just comment, but I can't yet... In his comment, Valorum mentions the concept of technological plateau. Dranon further notes that one of the themes of B5 is that the Vorlons and ...
RmxPatrick's user avatar
21 votes
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How was Babylon 5 able to wage war against Earth, given that Babylon 5 was grossly outnumbered in terms of resources?

Sheridan has a fleet of White Stars and enough humans to crew them. The logistics of the war will play out over the course of the season, but effectively, Sheridan uses his advanced tech for the edge ...
Radhil's user avatar
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21 votes
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Was Sheridan and Franklin's mission in "In the Beginning" ever referenced elsewhere?

No, this isn't referenced elsewhere. When Captain Sheridan takes command of Babylon 5 in Points of Departure, Ivanova mentions that she served with him on the transfer point off Io. When Garibaldi ...
Radhil's user avatar
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20 votes
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What is Londo Mollari's accent?

Per this interview, it's a mix of Czechoslovakian and the parole officer (Mr Deltoid) from the film 'A Clockwork Orange'. It's supposed to convey a sort of "courtly" tone. Jurasik: The quick story ...
Valorum's user avatar
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20 votes

How did Sheridan keep Babylon 5 afloat without funding and any support from Earth after his rebellion?

This is not an exhaustive list, but here are some ways in which Babylon 5 could have been supported: B5 is "a centre for commerce and diplomacy". Docking fees, tolls, and taxes would have raised ...
Royal Canadian Bandit's user avatar
19 votes
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Why was the episode called "Born to the Purple"?

To quote Wikipedia about this episode, "This episode is named after the Greek word porphyrogennetos, referring to special birthright or privileged heritage, royal birth." In the context of the story, ...
gowenfawr's user avatar
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18 votes
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Did the Minbari ever tell anyone who declared war against the humans?

The creator of the show had this to say about the subject Won't Sheridan be upset when he finds out Delenn ordered the war? "Listen, honey, while you were out I went to the store and I bought ...
Radhil's user avatar
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18 votes
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Why did this Babylon-5 character turn against the Vorlons?

Kosh had, in Vorlon eyes, gone native. From Invoking Darkness, right before Kosh's death... They said that Kosh spent too much time among the younger races. They said that he allowed ...
Radhil's user avatar
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18 votes
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How would anybody know how to poison a Vorlon?

Sinclair wondered this too, but never got an answer In "The War Prayer", Sinclair wondered how someone could possibly administer a poison on a Vorlon. And not just what kind of poison, but ...
Thunderforge's user avatar
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18 votes
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How can a bright blue spaceship have "Stealth technology"?

This was addressed by JMS. Yes, you can go in and shoot at a Minbari cruiser visually...but the reality is that any long-range weapon will be intercepted by targeting fire, and if you get up real ...
Valorum's user avatar
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