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Group Watch: Passing Through Gethsemane

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  • Group Watch: Passing Through Gethsemane

    You're traveling through another dimension -- a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That's a signpost up ahead: your next stop: the Twilight Zone!

    In this episode of the twilight zone...we find out what it would be like in a world with telepaths...and if capital punishment was replaced by "mind wiping" - erasing the personality and memories that committed crimes, bound to do community service for the rest of your life!!

    JMS was getting back to his roots on this one.

    In all seriousness, this episode is a simply heartwrenching character piece, revolving around a previously unknown one off guest actor. And the thing is...JMS still makes you really care about that character in the span of 42 minutes. Really brilliant.

    He hammers us with the Christ metaphor from all sides, which gives you a weird feeling inside as you relate to the former killer as an innocent, sinless person as the episode goes on. Very nicely done, I'll say again. I think maybe he goes a little far with it when he hangs Brother Edward up to be crucified, but hey...it made sure you didn't miss the metaphor.

    It's also interesting that Sheridan really connects with Edwards in this episode, because Sheridan is about to embark upon his own Christ-arc (dying and rising again...becoming divine and fighting off conventions for "light"), and I really like how Brother Theo hammers it in at the end when he asks Sheridan to forgive Edward, mentioning that it is one of the hardest things to do. There is truth in that, and, very Christ-like, Sheridan does extend his forgiveness.

    Here's another JMS archetype...very blatant Biblical references. I remember a Jeremiah scene which is very in your face "THE LAST SUPPER".

    And...less importantly, Lyta comes back, moving the arc along. Is it just me, or does Patricia keep getting hotter as the series goes along. Maybe I just like strong women...
    Flying Sparks Web Comic - A Hero and Villain In Love. Updates on Wednesdays
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  • #2
    I love, love LOVE this episode! It took a few watchings before I caught another couple of JMS's repeated memes (a better word than archetype, I think): That of the universe being sentient, in search of meaning and the soul being a non-localized phenomenon. Delenn and Lennier tell Brother Edward about their beliefs here, and Ezekiel tells the *same* thing to Garibaldi. As for the non-localized phenomenon...that's exactly how Corwin described the event of the two Koshes battling and leaving the station.

    Oh, and did you notice that the music playing while Brother Edward awaits his executioners is the same 'beauty in the dark' music as Kosh took Sheridan to experience?

    Lovely episode.

    Jan
    "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Jan View Post
      I love, love LOVE this episode! It took a few watchings before I caught another couple of JMS's repeated memes (a better word than archetype, I think): That of the universe being sentient, in search of meaning and the soul being a non-localized phenomenon. Delenn and Lennier tell Brother Edward about their beliefs here, and Ezekiel tells the *same* thing to Garibaldi. As for the non-localized phenomenon...that's exactly how Corwin described the event of the two Koshes battling and leaving the station.

      Oh, and did you notice that the music playing while Brother Edward awaits his executioners is the same 'beauty in the dark' music as Kosh took Sheridan to experience?

      Lovely episode.

      Mm hmm...he does seem to like that idea. A cool idea at that.

      And I didn't notice that music. thanks for pointing that out. So much symetry in this show. This season's so filled with wonderful moments. Every episode I keep thinking "this is my favorite ep this season...no, this one is....no...this one is!" Hard to pick. On a more "stand alone" basis I might have to go for Gethsemane though.
      Flying Sparks Web Comic - A Hero and Villain In Love. Updates on Wednesdays
      True Believer Reviews: Comic Reviews and Interviews on Wednesdays and Fridays - Or Your Money Back!

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      • #4
        This is the teaser episode I show to people who don't know if they want to get into the show or not. It is pretty standalone, but has enough reverberation from other episodes that the target audience will ask lots of questions (the answer to which is generally "you have to watch it to understand, of course, which they almost always do). Acting and directing is excellent.

        The moral issue for me is whether or not the shift from capital punishment to 'death of the personality" is done simply to salve to conscience of the public, despie the fact that it creates an innocent person who then has to suffer for being crated in the body of a murderer.

        The only flaw in the show, IMO, is that the tilty-cam stuff is a little too obtrusive (though not nearly as bad as The Last Delivery from Avalon).
        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.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Jan View Post
          I love, love LOVE this episode! It took a few watchings before I caught another couple of JMS's repeated memes (a better word than archetype, I think): That of the universe being sentient, in search of meaning and the soul being a non-localized phenomenon. Delenn and Lennier tell Brother Edward about their beliefs here, and Ezekiel tells the *same* thing to Garibaldi. As for the non-localized phenomenon...that's exactly how Corwin described the event of the two Koshes battling and leaving the station.
          The metaphor Lennier uses in this episode about projecting a light onto a wall is exactly the same as G'Kar's in Meditations on the Abyss, although the interpretation is different. For Lennier, the light on the wall represents the soul projected from somewhere else (though not a specific locality). For G'Kar, the light on the wall is the result of our search for God projected from ourselves, though frequently not recognised for what it is. The brighter the light is, the more intense the search, the greater the sense of revelation. The Minbari view of the universe as sentient and trying to figure itself out resembles some variants of gnosticism, G'Kar's outlook seems more humanist / atheist.

          Come to think of it, Franklin's foundationist thinking also resembles the Minbari view (What if God could create a puzzle so complex that even he couldn't solve it? What if that's us?)

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          • #6
            Great

            Originally posted by SmileOfTheShadow View Post
            And...less importantly, Lyta comes back, moving the arc along. Is it just me, or does Patricia keep getting hotter as the series goes along. Maybe I just like strong women...
            It's not just you

            The highlight of this episode is Brad Dourif's understated performance. Contrast this against his high-voltage turn as Luther Lee Boggs in the X-files or the sliminess of Wormtongue in LOTR. He just disappears into the character.

            This also has one of my favorite lines, which I again quote from memory, when Edward asks how he can ask forgiveness when he doesn't know his sins.

            Brother Theo: You may not know what your sins, but God does. Put your faith in him.

            Just beautiful. I wish they'd used Brother Theo more. Louis Turenne was marvelous. I also like the flip-side - Lyta's brutal interrogation of the centauri telepath. It shows you just how important those psi-corps rules were to the series

            Fianlly, I like how this sets up Kosh's fate later on, when we will see a similar situation. Like so many episode, it seems to stand alone but resonates later on.

            Gethsemane is one of the most powerful parts of the New Testament and JMS doesn't disappoint.

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            • #7
              The Christ myth is most definitely a recurring theme in B5, I forgot how many examples we see, but apart from Kosh and Sheridan I can think of Delenn, G'Kar (of course). Any more ?
              Jan from Denmark

              My blog :

              http://www.babylonlurker.dk

              "Our thoughts form the Universe - they *always* matter"

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by babylonlurker View Post
                The Christ myth is most definitely a recurring theme in B5, I forgot how many examples we see, but apart from Kosh and Sheridan I can think of Delenn, G'Kar (of course). Any more ?
                I don't see the Delenn link?

                Jan
                "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Jan View Post
                  I don't see the Delenn link?

                  Jan
                  The Starfire episode , where Neroon takes her place, slightly different, but perhaps less obvious than the others

                  and she - reluctantly - takes the position of Ranger 1

                  and she (sort of) voluntarily goes to the inquisitor

                  And - of course the Sinclair/Valen

                  OK this more the Messias-link Delenn - Sinclair/Valen , but that's how I see it
                  Jan from Denmark

                  My blog :

                  http://www.babylonlurker.dk

                  "Our thoughts form the Universe - they *always* matter"

                  Comment

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