Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Question about B5 military rankings...

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Question about B5 military rankings...

    Obviously the military structure in the B5 universe has always been a tad hazy. So I will appeal to the opinions of the biggest and brightest B5 brainiacs...

    On an Earth Alliance ship, what do you call the third in command? And can you have an XO that is NOT the second in command? My research in real life military has left me a little confused about it because in some circumstances you can, some you can't. For example, I think in british navy there can be an XO who just is in charge of the paperwork...

  • #2
    I don't know what it can shed on the topic of command structure and rank, but there is one point -- I don't remember which episode -- that Ivanova instructs the C&C staff to have Major Atumbe take over command of C&C while she goes elsewhere to deal with something. I imagine that he would have some position in the progression of the command structure, I don't know if it'd be 3rd or what though.

    Comment


    • #3
      The next in charge after the XO? That's the Zog.
      "Jan Schroeder is insane" - J. Michael Straczynski, March 2008

      The Station: A Babylon 5 Podcast

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by vacantlook View Post
        I don't know what it can shed on the topic of command structure and rank, but there is one point -- I don't remember which episode -- that Ivanova instructs the C&C staff to have Major Atumbe take over command of C&C while she goes elsewhere to deal with something. I imagine that he would have some position in the progression of the command structure, I don't know if it'd be 3rd or what though.
        Right, it is assumed that Major Atumbe is the 3rd on the station. But what's his position? And I think ship structure is a little different.

        Zog... right...

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by OmahaStar View Post
          The next in charge after the XO? That's the Zog.
          Zog what? Zog yes? Zog no?
          ---
          Co-host of The Second Time Around podcast
          www.benedictfamily.org/podcast

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by AaronB View Post
            Zog what? Zog yes? Zog no?
            It made people laugh. That's all that matters.
            "Jan Schroeder is insane" - J. Michael Straczynski, March 2008

            The Station: A Babylon 5 Podcast

            Comment


            • #7
              I've stopped thinking about such questions since I watched Dr. Beverly Crusher command the Enterprise-D in a ST:TNG-episode...!

              As for B5, the structure might be something like:

              General
              Colonel
              Captain
              Commander
              Lieutenant Commander
              Lieutenant
              Major
              ... and so on.

              I assume that JMS didn't spend much of a thought on the military ranking structure during the beginning of B5, so he adjusted some things during the story progress. That leads to the assumption that Earth Force uses a kind of a blended, combined rank system which cannot be compared 1:1 with any of today's military.

              Oh, one thing: Can we please avoid another "where do the once-mentioned Admirals fit in here?"-discussion...?

              Comment


              • #8
                Run a search for an older thread on this topic. Tons of discussion there.

                General
                Colonel
                Captain
                Commander
                Lieutenant Commander
                Lieutenant
                Major
                Move major to the same level as commander.

                I've stopped thinking about such questions since I watched Dr. Beverly Crusher command the Enterprise-D in a ST:TNG-episode...!
                She is more than a staff officer with the commander rank. She is a combat officer.

                Now, what didn't make sense was when Chief O'Brien, Ensign Ro and others put Deanna Troi in charge in "Disaster," as she was only a staff lieutenant-commander at the time. She got combat certified and promoted later in the series.

                And yes, a lot of the times an executive officer is a paperwork person.
                Recently, there was a reckoning. It occurred on November 4, 2014 across the United States. Voters, recognizing the failures of the current leadership and fearing their unchecked abuses of power, elected another party as the new majority. This is a first step toward preventing more damage and undoing some of the damage already done. Hopefully, this is as much as will be required.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Okay guys, you're kind of missing my question for the most part.

                  Captain, Commander, Major... none of that matters to me. I'm talking about Commanding Officer, Executive Officer, Nav Officer, Head of Security, etc. etc. I'm not talking about RANK necessarily. I'm asking, what's their job? On a ship not a station so Major Atumbe being the off shift commander doesn't really count.

                  I'm thinking a captain, a first officer, and an executive officer would probably work if the exec is just the paperwork person.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I don't think there's much to go on in the series, unfortunately, even if you look at an episode like No Surrender No Retreat you generally just see a Captain and a second in command (in that episode Levitt and Filby are both Commanders).

                    I think Lieutenant Patrick in A Distant Star is described as both the XO and the navigation officer of the Cortez, so maybe this is something that's unique to Explorer ships. It's not stated whether he's also second in command, but he's the one the Captain talks to during the emergency.

                    I don't think it's ever stated whether Major Ryan, who takes command of General Hague's ship in Severed Dreams, was originally its second in command or just a ranking officer who happened to be along for the ride when Hague was killed. The guy under him is a Lieutenant, I think, but like everyone else on the ship he could just have received an instant promotion..

                    I don't think it's ever made clear who the third in command of the Excalibur is.

                    I appreciate that isn't getting to the root of your question. I suspect there might be more on this in the novels, as I remember, the B-plot of the Shadow Within is about Sheridan's first getting to grips with being Captain of the Agammemnon and having trouble with the officers under him, but I haven't read it for a long time..
                    Last edited by RMcD; 08-09-2007, 09:32 AM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Watch out for Captain being 3 things
                      a. A medium rank army officer.
                      b. A senior naval officer equal in rank to a Colonel, who may control more than one ship.
                      c. The commanding officer of a ship, whose rank can be anything from lieutenant to admiral.

                      Lochley seams to have been moved sideways rather than up.
                      Andrew Swallow

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by RMcD View Post
                        .

                        I appreciate that isn't getting to the root of your question. I suspect there might be more on this in the novels, as I remember, the B-plot of the Shadow Within is about Sheridan's first getting to grips with being Captain of the Agammemnon and having trouble with the officers under him, but I haven't read it for a long time..

                        You're right! You're right! I forgot about Shadow Within... I own it. I should go back through it. I think the major point of confusion for me is that Ivanova is introduced both as the First Officer AND the Executive officer and in regular US navy... there is the CO and the XO and it doesn't really matter what rank they are ( they may have others with higher rank on the ship that are not in command).

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Andrew_Swallow View Post
                          Lochley seams to have been moved sideways rather than up.
                          Nope, Tracy herself mentioned in an interview that she wanted a promotion for her character, so we should assume that an Earthforce Colonel ranks above an earthforce Captain (we've also seen another Colonel with Ari Ben Zayn). All hints we get are leaving only one conclusion for me, as I mentioned above: The Earthforce ranking system is a combined, blended one, not really in detail comparable to any of today's military ranking systems.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by AaronB View Post
                            Zog what? Zog yes? Zog no?
                            Zog is in the TV.
                            I have the wings for Bingo.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Not having seen TLT yet (but IÆm a sucker for spoilers), I canÆt address the æCaptain vs. ColonelÆ reasoning regarding LochleyÆs change with any authority, but I can address the present-day rank structure in the US military so hopefully this will be helpful.

                              In the present-day US military, a naval Captain and a Air Force, Army or Marine Colonel are equivalent ranks; they're all pay grade O-6 - one level below flag (or General) officer rank. Similarly, a naval Commander and an AF, Army or Marine Lieutenant Colonel are equivalents - pay grade O-5. Naval Lieutenant Commanders and AF, Army or Marine Majors are all O-4s; naval Lieutenants and Air Force, Army or Marine Captains are O-3s; Naval Lieutenants (Junior Grade) are the same as AF, Army or Marine First Lieutenants - pay grade O-2 and naval Ensigns are the same as Second Lieutenants in the other services - pay grade O-1.

                              In the original series, Sheridan is the equivalent of a present-day naval Captain; an O-6. Ivanova starts off as a Lieutenant Commander - an O-4 - but is later promoted to full Commander - an O-5. As Sheridan's Executive Officer she does just what the duty title states - she's in charge of seeing that Sheridan's decisions and Earthforce policy are 'executed'. In other words, she oversees the day-to-day activities aboard B5 and is the Chief of Staff. Major Atumbe - an O-4 - is likely the station's Operations Officer.

                              I think itÆs possible that some time in the intervening years between the end of the series and the TLT timeframe EarthGov made a policy determination that the B5 station (which isnÆt a ship) no longer fell under the ænavalÆ arm of Earthforce but wanted to keep Lochley in command. In such a case, they mightÆve offered her a choice between being laterally redesignated a Colonel or being reassigned. B5 was never a Flag officer command û Earthforce wasnÆt going to promote Lochley to Commanding General of a facility previously deemed appropriate for an O-6, particularly since the station was of lesser importance after the ISA took most of the diplomatic purpose of the station to Minbar.

                              V/R
                              John

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X