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The Birth of the Babylon 5 Story

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  • The Birth of the Babylon 5 Story

    http://www.cafepress.com/thejoestore/6587738

    In 1999, J. Michael Straczynski allowed his original notes on Babylon 5 to be released via his Last Word column in the Babylon 5 Magazine (Vol. 2, Issue 9). These notes were the first written record of Babylon 5, made moments after he had his inspiration for the series while taking a shower.

    Though the magazine is long gone, on this, the 10th anniversary of this column's publication, he wanted to share the origins of Babylon 5 again. While many fans saw them when they were originally published, he realizes that many more have not.
    The site may be experiencing intermittent issues so please have patience.

    I got the link from a thread at Beyond3d, Bludd was the poster.

  • #2
    Thanks for posting the link up here, Babel-17.

    It originally was sent out by the Babylon 5 Scripts Team to the mailing list of people who like to get notified of the next book coming out. Anybody who wants to can scroll down to the bottom of that page and sign up for the newsletter. I guarantee, they won't sell your info to anybody!

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

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    • #3
      What's awesome is just how close that is to the actual story.
      Jonas Kyratzes | Lands of Dream

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      • #4
        It really, really is! With all the more detailed notes for different story versions I've read in the script books and so on, I never quite got it when JMS said he got 90% of his original intentions on screen. But based one those notes, I see it now. It's amazing how much of the tone, theme and character work he came up with right there, and how it all played out just like he first imagined it.

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        • #5
          wow thank you for sharing Jan. Just goes to show it is not just us mere mortals that have revelations in the shower
          "I cleave the heavens, and soar to the infinite. What others see from afar, I leave far behind me." Giordano Bruno

          "May the Gods always stand between you and harm in all the empty places you must walk"

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          • #6
            This was really cool for me to read since I started watching Babylon 5 long after the magazine ceased publication.

            My random thoughts on this document:

            I thought it was interesting that he had the whole ISN documentary idea from the start. Also, I thought it was interesting that one of his ideas for the way Babylon falls (redundant) was the one that ended up getting used in Sleeping in Light. Perhaps that was what he meant when he envisioned the final scene from the beginning and the iteration we got to read in V15 with the Minbari destroying the station was just a thought about a good lead into the sequel he was thinking about at the time.

            Five year arc from the beginning! I read a post somewhere (I think it was on trekbbs) where someone didn't believe it was jms' plan to have season 5 as a season-long denouement, but there it is from the original notes. Intro (1), Rising Action (2), Complication (3), Climax (4), Denouement (5). The show in the end sticks very close to this structure.

            It's cool to see the genesis of Londo and G'Kar here, and their planned arcs around each other. Also neat to see the thoughts leading to Psi Corps here and that the Shadow / Vorlon conflict and its end was set up from the start here: "Two forces pushing from either side, our characters in the middle, have to find their own way. Break the pattern."

            Here's a thought I had about the whole Sinclair / Sheridan dynamic when I was reading this document. jms says "War hero? Or war survivor? Difference." He picked the war survivor route with Sinclair and went for war hero with Sheridan; this is perhaps what he referred to when he said he needed a character that would do things a different way when Sheridan was brought aboard. I guess the civil war was always part of the plan, since he references Gone with the Wind and Civil War as similar in tone, and then he decided a war hero would work better.

            Reading this you can really see the connection between his original vision and the show.

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            • #7
              i could swear I read that somewhere before, is it possibly in the archives?

              oh wonderful mistress of memory and all things B5y Jan, care to comment?

              Phaze
              on the "and yes I still has he lovely B5 key ring you sent me oh so long ago, just need the complete techno mage trilogy now" ID
              "There are no good wars. War is always the worst possible way to resolve differences. It degenerates and corrupts both sides to ever more sordid levels of existence, in their need to gain an advantage over the enemy. Those actively involved in combat are almost always damaged goods for the rest of their lives. If their bodies don't bear scars, their minds do, ofttimes both. Many have said it before, but it can't be said to enough, war is hell. "

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              • #8
                Phaze,

                The only official place I know of was in the B5 magazine. It's definitely not in the archives. I *think* it may have been posted online at one time, albeit briefly and not legitimately.

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

                Comment


                • #9
                  thank you oh wise and munificent one, long have i lurked in the shadows but now have once again emerged to bathe in the light of your wisdom on all things B5.
                  Phaze
                  on the "feeling quite thoughtful today , can ye tell at all? strange for a Sunday" ID
                  "There are no good wars. War is always the worst possible way to resolve differences. It degenerates and corrupts both sides to ever more sordid levels of existence, in their need to gain an advantage over the enemy. Those actively involved in combat are almost always damaged goods for the rest of their lives. If their bodies don't bear scars, their minds do, ofttimes both. Many have said it before, but it can't be said to enough, war is hell. "

                  Comment

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