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  • #16
    Re: Newbie question

    Originally posted by Joe Nazzaro
    I don't want to give anything away for our Newbie friend who started this thread, so maybe he'd better skip over this post, but I can't help wondering how much of that is 'loaded gun' and how much is actually revisionist history. Would Talia have become a part of the five-year arc if Pat Tallman had been brought back in the first place to reprise the role of Lyta? Would JMS have needed Sheridan if not for Michael O'Hare's departure, and how would that affected big chunks of his arc, particularly World without End? What would season five have been like with Ivanova instead of Lochley?
    He's seen up to Season 4 so we're good.

    Basically, here's how I would distribute all cast-changes (of regular players) in B5.

    Real Life Factors
    Lyta (originally)
    Takishima
    Talia
    Ivanova
    Na'Toth (v.1)

    Loaded Gun
    Benjamin Kyle
    Carolyn Skyes
    Sinclair
    Keffer
    Na'Toth (v.2)
    Marcus

    From my above post we can see that Talia was intended to be a 5-year person... Lyta only got brought in to replace her replacement, for lack of better words (Patricia Tallman was quite let down about not being in the series after she took bad management device and turned down the chance, and made it no secret to con-goers at the time that she wish she'd get a chance to get back in, so we can imagine JMS was thrilled at the thought to be able to bring his original teep back into play with a willing actress)

    As for Ivanova...

    Subject: UK Showing - ep 517
    From: J. Michael Straczynski <[email protected]>
    Date: 08/05/1998 09:40 AM
    Forum: Compuserve

    It's no secret that I would've had Ivanova becoming somewhat
    linked to Byron romantically (she would see him as a character like
    Marcus, which is why there are certain similarities, and she would take
    a chance only to find it wrong this time, underlining that she'd missed
    her one major opportunity thus far for a good relationship). This was
    expressed to Claudia toward the last part of S4, so she knew at that
    time that her latent ability would be coming out, and that she'd have a
    big part in S5.

    In this scenario, Lyta would have become a devoted follower of
    Byron's, much as she has, but it would have been more love from afar:
    protective, somewhat unrequited but hoping for more...so that when he
    met his fate, Lyta would end up right where she is now, just by a
    different road.

    jms
    As for the rest, I have a feeling that her character would have gone buisness-as-usual as Lochley did in Season 5. Though we might have gotten a Marcus/Ivanova Day of the Dead event, which would have been rather neat

    Now onto the final one... the one most of my intrest. If you couldn't tell by now, I've always been a bit... obsessed with the character "what ifs" B5... all of which these are examples of. But none so greater then this one in paticular... the Sinclair/Sheridan question. The reason why it's difficult is because for all intents and purposes, Sinclair was a 5-year arc character. He was billed as the main character in everything, and indeed, was. But yet the Valen thing was set up from the beginning, supposedly. So how would War Without End work?

    First off, I'm a bit doubtful of assurances JMS has made since then that the Valen thing was always set up due to this little gem of info...

    Subject: Obviously I can't say much about...
    From: STRACZYNSKI [Joe]
    Date: 05/20/1994 02:22 PM
    Forum: Genie

    Obviously I can't say much about season two plans at this time, since
    doing so would destroy the intent of doing some things folks may not expect.
    All I can say is that the deeper we got into the series, and the more I *saw*
    the dynamics of the characters, the more I kept looking back and forth, from
    the Minbari to Sinclair, Sinclair to Minbari, and thinking...hmmm...y'know
    what'd be *real* neat...?

    Which is all I can say on that for now...except to add that in any novel,
    there's always some surprises that the author didn't plan for, and the key is
    to be open to that.

    jms


    So that's something to consider.

    Some have suggested that WWE was the original Series Finale. I have a hard time accepting this for one simple reason: No motivation without the Shadows around anymore. The motivation behind going back in time to steal B4 is to save the station from an alternate reality where B5 is destroyed by a Shadow attack. But in any year after 2261, there would be no more Shadows. No more motivation for an attack. So, it would have to happen in Year 3... but if that was the case, how could Sinclair eventually become Valen if he was intended to be there for 5 years?

    Another intresting WWE problem is the question of "The One". It's quite possible that The One would have been handled in the same way, only with a different character... I tend to lean this way and towards Ivanova, who does become En'Til'Zha at the end of SiL, which seems like a smoother transition then Sheridan occupying the role over the past 2 years because Delenn became two busy with work as ISA President.

    Just some food for thought. This is quite an intresting subject matter, and truth be told if I could ask JMS *any* question, I'd do anything to hear him answer this: "How would the series arc have been had Sinclair remained and Sheridan never came into play?"

    While I have every confidence that the story was better for Sheridan's addition (even though I'm a much bigger Sinclair fan personally), I'd still love to know desperately... but I don't see jms answering that one anytime soon

    Comment


    • #17
      Newbie question

      Kevin:
      Some fascinating food for thought, which should hopefully provoke some interesting discussion. The only one I would move from your 'Loaded Gun' to 'Real Life' category is Sinclair. My impression was that the studio wanted a major change there, and Joe had to go along with it. According to Greg Maday, the former PTEN liason (and somebody in a position to speak with some authority), who I interviewed for the B5 Magazine in 1999, 'As much as we liked Michael and felt he was doing a good job, we felt if we brought in somebody of recognizability, who had some stature in the business, people who knew of his accomplishments and liked the other series that he had done, might sample the show. So the decision was really based on programming, it wasnÆt based on talent or the job somebody was doing, it was based on how can we potentially expand this show and bring more people into it?'

      As for Pat Tallman, you're partly right. As Pat recalled, when I spoke to her in January of '98, 'They basically waited until Joe had to go for New York for something and made me an offer I couldn't accept.' By the time she got word to JMS, the deal was already off the table. To Joe's credit, when he discovered that Thompson wanted to leave the series, he called Pat, who came back for more than twice what they'd originally offered for the series!

      Finally, I totally agree with your comment that WWE is the better for Sheridan's addition, but no, I don't think we'll ever know how it would have originally played out with just Sinclair. But it sure is fun to speculate, isn't it?

      Comment


      • #18
        B5 CASTING

        GRUMBLER,

        Thank you for that JMS response to casting/plotting queries; it was most enlightening.

        &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

        KEVIN,

        Likewise, as I had not been aware of the likelihood that SUSAN was to be involved with BYRON.

        &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

        JOE NAZZARO,

        Your intel has finally provided me with the answers to question I had been seeking, for which I thank you.
        ôàBe seeing you!ö
        MALCOLM XERXES
        Stuntman/Actor FINNEGANÆS SQUADÖ

        Comment


        • #19
          My suspicion is that Sinclair was meant to leave half way through Season 4 and to be replaced by General Hague. (Although Hague may have been called Sheridan.)

          Hague fights the Shadow War with Sinclair as his field commander. Sinclair negotiates the end of the Shadow War and takes Babylon 4 back 1000 years to weaken the Shadows. General Hague then fights the Earth Civil War and becomes the ISA President.

          There would have been a troubled relationship between Sinclair and Hague as they argue about who is boss. This also explains why two spacestations are needed.
          Andrew Swallow

          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by Andrew_Swallow
            My suspicion is that Sinclair was meant to leave half way through Season 4 and to be replaced by General Hague. (Although Hague may have been called Sheridan.)

            Hague fights the Shadow War with Sinclair as his field commander. Sinclair negotiates the end of the Shadow War and takes Babylon 4 back 1000 years to weaken the Shadows. General Hague then fights the Earth Civil War and becomes the ISA President.

            There would have been a troubled relationship between Sinclair and Hague as they argue about who is boss. This also explains why two spacestations are needed.
            *scratches head*

            Huh?

            Wild - and that term definitely applies here - speculation aside, I don't really put any merit into the whole Sinclair-would-have-stayed theories. For one simple reason - there's waaaay too much story, between Sheridan and Sinclair, for one character to have handled all of it (or even most, in the... *shudder* Hague example here) and not come off as either severely unlucky or drastically overacted.

            I could see Sinclair maybe staying on through the seasons, but never serving the same role Sheridan did.
            Radhil Trebors
            Persona Under Construction

            Comment


            • #21
              Originally posted by Radhil
              *scratches head*

              Huh?

              Wild - and that term definitely applies here - speculation aside, I don't really put any merit into the whole Sinclair-would-have-stayed theories. For one simple reason - there's waaaay too much story, between Sheridan and Sinclair, for one character to have handled all of it (or even most, in the... *shudder* Hague example here) and not come off as either severely unlucky or drastically overacted.

              I could see Sinclair maybe staying on through the seasons, but never serving the same role Sheridan did.
              Sinclair was intended to stay throughout the entire series. All of JMS's early notes concerning the series confirms that. This is irrefutable.

              But you make the absolute perfect point for *why* Sinclair didn't stay the entire series. There's way too much story for one character to have it, and this is really what JMS realized by the end of the first season. His messages at the time say as much, and now, knowing all the story, it's really easy to see that.

              Comment


              • #22
                COMM. SINCLAIR versus CAPT. SHERIDAN

                "Fascinating!"
                ôàBe seeing you!ö
                MALCOLM XERXES
                Stuntman/Actor FINNEGANÆS SQUADÖ

                Comment


                • #23
                  Originally posted by Kevin
                  Sinclair was intended to stay throughout the entire series. All of JMS's early notes concerning the series confirms that. This is irrefutable.
                  Were they? I'll take your word for it - haven't quite gone that far in researching it. Sincerely glad he changed his mind then.
                  Radhil Trebors
                  Persona Under Construction

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Ooh, A Sinclair thread! It's been a while.

                    There were a whole host of issues with Sinclair and O'Hare, beyond the one mentioned (that he had "too much to do"):

                    1. JMS realized after the first season that Sinclair was "too complete" - that he had arrived at the point where JMS had intended him to go over the course of the series. See his commentary on the season 2 DVD for this angle.

                    2. There was the "we need a star" angle that Joe N. referred to.

                    3. There were apparently some cast/crew issues with , per Stephan Furst
                    IGNFF: Were tensions high at the beginning of the series?

                    FURST: I didn't notice it. I just had a good time. It was always a laid-back cast. The big guy, who was originally the lead in it ... He was not laid-back. Very tense, very nervous; had a personal dialogue coach with him at all times. Once he was out and Bruce was in, another kind of Jerry Doyle type guy, a lot of fun.

                    IGNFF: Well, to make it easier, instead of hopping around ... I thought the best way to do it was I'll go through and just run down the cast, and you can just say whatever you'd like about them. I'll just go by the list here. First of all, Michael O'Hare û anything else besides being tense?

                    FURST: Just a real strange guy, kind of quiet. I think very insecure.

                    IGNFF: Was there a feeling that he wasn't meshing well with the rest of the cast?

                    FURST: Yes.
                    And Peter Jurasik seemed to agree:
                    IGNFF: ...Michael O'Hare.

                    JURASIK: Oh boy, what a place to start. Difficult, miscast û miscasting; probably more painful for him than for anybody else ... I found him horribly miscast in the role of trying to be a leader. A young actor, an actor who'd never done a television, to try to step in and become "number one on the call sheet"... try to be the leader... you need someone like Bruce Boxleitner, who's done it before and has the personality for it. Michael O'Hare was way too insecure ... I will leave mine in saying, horribly miscast and probably more painful for him than anybody else.
                    I didn't find him "miscast" from the charactor point of view, but understand that from the "leading man" point of view, the "leader of the cast" so to speak, he could easily have been a liability. He was a stage actor, used to more rehersals and more chances to learn the line and the role as he played it repeatedly, and this isn't how TV works.

                    Now, as to the question of what would have happened to the charactor had he stayed in the series, I think that WWE would have been in Season 5, and that (rather than "going beyond the rim) would have ben the sacrifice paid for winning the war. I don't see any reason why they should not find out that they would have lost the war had Valen not take the Shadows down a peg 1,000 years ago, and then find out that Sinclair had to be Valen. Plus, it would have continued the mystery of what the "Not-So-Great Machine" on Epsilon Three was really for. that last angle was always played out particularly badly after WWE when there was nothing left for it to do.
                    I believe that when we leave a place, part of it goes with us and part of us remains. Go anywhere in the station, when it is quiet, and just listen. After a while, you will hear the echoes of all our conversations, every thought and word we've exchanged. Long after we are gone .. our voices will linger in these walls for as long as this place remains. But I will admit .. that the part of me that is going .. will very much miss the part of you that is staying.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by grumbler

                      Now, as to the question of what would have happened to the charactor had he stayed in the series, I think that WWE would have been in Season 5, and that (rather than "going beyond the rim) would have ben the sacrifice paid for winning the war. I don't see any reason why they should not find out that they would have lost the war had Valen not take the Shadows down a peg 1,000 years ago, and then find out that Sinclair had to be Valen. Plus, it would have continued the mystery of what the "Not-So-Great Machine" on Epsilon Three was really for. that last angle was always played out particularly badly after WWE when there was nothing left for it to do.
                      Except give power for Voice of the Resistance to get a decent transmission But you're right, it's not as apparant as it should be considering the build-up it's given in Seasons 1 and 3. There could be a number of reasons for it... one being JMS simply felt it to be too powerful and a plot device that felt almost like a "cheat" if he was to use it too often. Which is partially true to be honest... I think the story was probably better for using it less, especially since it's only real purpose is the creation of the triluminary and control of the time rift in Sector 14 that would allow for Babylon 4 to go back in time.

                      As for being in a different season... I do remember someone asking JMS whether or not it would have been in Season 5 if Sinclair had stayed... and I remember him saying that he'd rather not answer that question I suppose it'll be quite some time before we know for sure. Might be mentioned in the Season 5 commentaries.

                      As for the cast interviews.. I actually hadn't seen those before, thanks for submitting them I agree, I don't think he was miscast... but I guess he felt an awful lot was riding on him. I know Michael O'Hare has made the comment several times that he felt that Sinclair was his favourite role he ever had the chance to play... in some ways I wonder if he was overburdened with the responsibility of being given a role like that in unfamiliar territory.

                      But that being said... I really thought Michael O'Hare did a fantastic job in the role of Sinclair, and as Season 1 is my favourite season to sit down and watch, I do think he did rather well in the role. But it definetly came with a lot of work, no argument there.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Kevin
                        But that being said... I really thought Michael O'Hare did a fantastic job in the role of Sinclair, and as Season 1 is my favourite season to sit down and watch, I do think he did rather well in the role. But it definetly came with a lot of work, no argument there.
                        Yep, I enjoyed him as well. I think the big problem was the #1 reason I posted above - that he STARTED as "Valen" so to speak, and so there was nowhere JMS could take him once the Battle of the Line issue was resolved. That was Joe's fault, not Michael's and the fact that JMS brought him back for such a sendoff indicates that there was not a great deal of bad blood there.

                        But I never ever bought JMS's "it was a mutual decision" story. O'Hare, I think, would have stayed if he could have.
                        I believe that when we leave a place, part of it goes with us and part of us remains. Go anywhere in the station, when it is quiet, and just listen. After a while, you will hear the echoes of all our conversations, every thought and word we've exchanged. Long after we are gone .. our voices will linger in these walls for as long as this place remains. But I will admit .. that the part of me that is going .. will very much miss the part of you that is staying.

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Greetings all.

                          Newbie to the boards, but not the series. And, as I just finished To Dream in the City of Sorrows (first time) I had many of the exact questions that have been asked in this thread, specifically the questions about O'Hare.

                          Lucky me!

                          First off, I'll apologize if I missed something important that someone posted above or in another thread related to my comments. It's hard to find time at work to read the entire board - but I'm trying!

                          I love puzzling over the available clues from S1 (I keep seeing new ones), and wondering about the various reasons that caused JMS to make the decisions he made in relation to the characters. This thread has some great stuff in it. But I'll go on record and say that Sinclair has grown on me over the years, especially after reading the novel. A great character, and I think O'Hare played it exceptionally well. I was one who initially did not see the bulk of S1, so in some ways this season still fascinates me greatly.

                          I also find it interesting that many of the extremely important devolopments were still in flux throughout S1. For example, the two Minbari castes vs. three castes issue (where did they discuss it- Grail?) This issue had not yet been nailed down well into S1, even though the relation to the number 3 became a very important factor later on.

                          This leads to another point. In the book, it was interesting in the way Rathenn (think it was him) informed Sinclair that he was the prophecy fulfilled, saying he embodied factors related to all 3 castes: He went to Jesuit school, thus he had a Religious background. He was career military, thus he had a Warrior background. And third, he had a history of settling work-related issues, thus he had a Worker backround. But pretty much during the whole run of S1, there were only 2 castes. Very interesting.

                          One thing JMS can do well, he can roll with the changes!

                          Once again I apologize if I'm incorrect or misinformed.

                          I also found it interesting that in To Dream, the Warrior caste was referred to as the Military caste, even by other Minbari.

                          One or two other comments, and I'm off to read some more!

                          Did the great machine create the Triluminaries? I don't remember that point, where is that stated? I'd like to find more info on that one.

                          However, I like to view the Great Machine as another of JMS' open-ended mysteries, and there were many! Didn't he razz a user for fussing about not following up on some issues, by saying that Tom Bombadil wasn't a valid character because Tolkein didn't write anything further on him?

                          You gotta love JMS' righteous indignation!

                          BTD out for now.
                          Last edited by Ben-Thayer Dunnthaedt; 03-26-2004, 10:28 AM.
                          "The cat is not evil for killing the rat, nor is the rat evil for stealing the grain. Each acts according to its nature." Master Po - Kung Fu:TOS

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Originally posted by grumbler
                            Yep, I enjoyed him as well. I think the big problem was the #1 reason I posted above - that he STARTED as "Valen" so to speak, and so there was nowhere JMS could take him once the Battle of the Line issue was resolved. That was Joe's fault, not Michael's and the fact that JMS brought him back for such a sendoff indicates that there was not a great deal of bad blood there.

                            But I never ever bought JMS's "it was a mutual decision" story. O'Hare, I think, would have stayed if he could have.
                            Actually, part of the problem was also that O'Hare was a New Yorker (this the stage thing) and we commuting to film the show. This was not to O'Hare's liking and he wasn't comfortable in LA.

                            Everything I've read indicates that while JMS and the suits may have approached O'Hare about leaving the show, O'Hare didn't hesitate to say "Whew!" So in that sense it was mutual in that it made both parties happy.

                            CE

                            Oh and BTD...welcome to the fray I don't think it's specifically stated that "the great machine made the triluminaries," but it is insinuated since it was Zathras who brought the time stabalizers from Epsilon and that it was Sinclair's device that eventually became the triluminaries. So, in essence, yes the great machine made them.

                            Last edited by colonyearth; 03-26-2004, 10:32 AM.
                            Anthony Flessas
                            Writer/Producer/Director,
                            SP Pictures


                            I have no avatar! I walk in mystery and need nothing to represent who and what I am!

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              An interesting discussion concerning the Triluminaries. Can I add a couple more points to ponder?

                              I seem to remember Delenn saying something like the T's were passed down from an ealier age. That's not exactly correct, but similar.

                              Also, Rathenn gives Sinclair one of the T's as he is leaving Minbar, saying he will have need of it and that the Grey Council still have two remaining.

                              If I seem to be lacking a point, it's that the T's are deeply entrenched in the Valen/Sinclair temporal "loop".

                              Ah, another one of JMS' mysteries!

                              I've always seen it as one of those "which came first, the chicken or the egg" things, which only endears me that much more to the series! It reminds me of a Heinlein short story called 'By His Bootstraps', where a man is pulled into the future by a stranger, only to find later that HE is the stranger. He then begins to wonder how the loop got started.

                              I would love to hear more from JMS himself on the Great Machine. It's obviously part of the Valen/Sinclair "loop". Does anyone know how long it had been on E3? I can't exactly remember, but I seem to recall Delenn saying 500 yrs in War Without End, but I may be wrong on that.

                              In A Voice in the Wilderness, the caretaker claims to have been there for 500 yrs. The outcasts also state they've been seeking the GM for the same amount of time.

                              So my question is, did it come from a time earlier than Valen? If not, did Sinclair/Valen set it's creation in motion? Or did the Vorlons?

                              Oh, do I have questions. Again, please excuse me if these questions have long been answered in other topics, or perhaps in a novel I haven't read.

                              As I said, good discussion in this thread!
                              "The cat is not evil for killing the rat, nor is the rat evil for stealing the grain. Each acts according to its nature." Master Po - Kung Fu:TOS

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Ben-Thayer Dunnthaedt
                                An interesting discussion concerning the Triluminaries. Can I add a couple more points to ponder?

                                I seem to remember Delenn saying something like the T's were passed down from an ealier age. That's not exactly correct, but similar.

                                Also, Rathenn gives Sinclair one of the T's as he is leaving Minbar, saying he will have need of it and that the Grey Council still have two remaining.

                                If I seem to be lacking a point, it's that the T's are deeply entrenched in the Valen/Sinclair temporal "loop".

                                Ah, another one of JMS' mysteries!

                                I would love to hear more from JMS himself on the Great Machine. It's obviously part of the Valen/Sinclair "loop". Does anyone know how long it had been on E3? I can't exactly remember, but I seem to recall Delenn saying 500 yrs in War Without End, but I may be wrong on that.


                                Not exactly... it's really not a mystery. JMS has said on repeated times that the triluminary originated from Episilon 3 then given to Sinclair, who took them back with him a 1000 years to live them in the care of the Grey Council, who would hold on to all three until 2258, when one was given to Delenn, who still has it. You mixed up your scenes a bit there, Rathenn didn't give a triluminary to Sinclair, Zatharas brought it onboard the White Star in WWE (if you look closely on the boxes he's carrying you can see the triluminary symbol on one of them)

                                Here's a couple JMS quotes to satisfy your curosity:

                                ----
                                Subject: <WWE 2 Paradox>
                                From: J. Michael Straczynski <[email protected]>
                                Date: 05/19/1996 12:38 AM
                                Forum: Compuserve
                                Daniel M. Upton <[email protected]> asks:
                                > Even if the machine that Sinclare used was a copy where did the
                                > knowledge come from to build it originally?

                                Nope. The machine came up with Zathras from Epsilon 3. It
                                first appeared with Sinclair, then later got into Delenn's hands. So
                                she still has that version of it.

                                jms
                                ---

                                Subject:Re: Triluminary WAS NEVER CREATED??!? (JMS, what have you done?)
                                From:Jms at B5
                                Date: 12/10/1996 08:16 AM
                                Forum: Usenet

                                As will be noted in an upcoming episode, the Triluminaries originally came
                                from Epsilon 3 with the other equipment brought aboard by Zathras.
                                ----

                                In A Voice in the Wilderness, the caretaker claims to have been there for 500 yrs. The outcasts also state they've been seeking the GM for the same amount of time.

                                So my question is, did it come from a time earlier than Valen? If not, did Sinclair/Valen set it's creation in motion? Or did the Vorlons?

                                Oh, do I have questions. Again, please excuse me if these questions have long been answered in other topics, or perhaps in a novel I haven't read.

                                As I said, good discussion in this thread!
                                Something important to be aware of is that Varn was not the original caretaker of the Great Machine. As he says in the episode, it belongs to no one, and while he may have been there for over 500 years, JMS has indicated that the machine most likely has been there even longer. Chances are Varn's race discovered 500 years ago, but probably went through the same process Draal of placing a new replacement in (although the race as a whole were probably involved in the desicion, as obviously a renegade group of that race disagreed that it should be kept neutral; They had found it, and thus believed they were entitled to keep it for their own selfish good.)

                                Of course even if it wasn't it's a moot point, as the triluminaries the Minbari have come from Sinclair who got them from present-day Great Machine, so the age of the Great Machine really dosen't matter

                                And don't worry about questions and stuff... a *lot* of little B5 info is given out not so much in books, but in JMS posts, which have given quite a bit of insight into other angles of the series not usually shown. So if you have questions... feel free to ask em We'll all do the best we can to answer them.

                                btw and on another subject, I completely agree with CE's post about O'Hare... not exactly mutual, but all I've heard as well indicated that he was quite relieved to be let off the hook.

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