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  • The Man in Between

    Ok, something I've never fully understood. We all know of Lorien and the other first ones, which inlude the Vorlons and Shadows.

    We also know of the oldest of the younger races like the Minbari and Drakh.

    And of course the rest of the younger races.

    But who, or what is Justin. We know he is the man in between, or the middle man, as he calls himself. He also speaks of the ones that decide the working day being 9 till 5, or hemlines etc, and he says he's with them. Same group, different department.

    This implies to me that there are other forces at work in the B5 universe that we have yet to see.
    Originally I thought these would be superior forces working for the universe itself, but JMS agreed with someones interpretation that he is to the Shadows, as Sebastian is to the Vorlon.

    Well who precisely is he ?. Even JMS seems to contradict himself when approaching the subject.

    Per the B5 Chronology by Terry Jones:

    2257

    "Sunday January 3rd. The Icarus lands on Z'ha'dum and the survey teams which
    include Anna Sheridan, Morden and Justin, begin to explore.

    jms
    Question: I don't know whether anyone has already asked this but
    > was Justin a crew member of the Icarus ?

    No, he was assigned there later.

    jms
    *Den-Sha*

  • #2
    Since jms says ''He was assigned there later'', he would have to have been on board the Icarus before it was scrapped on Z ha dum.

    Anne Sheridan wasn't a crew member aboard the ship either; its my understanding she was a civilian guest aboard the ship, under IPX.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by nanorc
      Since jms says ''He was assigned there later'', he would have to have been on board the Icarus before it was scrapped on Z ha dum.
      I got the impression he ment assigned to Z'ha'dum, not the Icarus. But assigned by whom ?

      Perhaps the Strieb amongst others were doing more than just gathering info on other races, but supplying humanoids for the shadows to use.

      For that matter was he even human at all?

      Another thought, if he was Sherridans equal and opposite, was he the leader of the Shadows or just their servant ?
      *Den-Sha*

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Bonehead For that matter was he even human at all?
        Yeah, he was human. Nothing other than his speechifying to suggest otherwise.

        Another thought, if he was Sherridans equal and opposite, was he the leader of the Shadows or just their servant ?
        I think JMS actually did post on exactly that, and his answer was along the lines of: Justin probably thought he was well regarded and well positioned by the Shadows, but thought and reality are often at odds.

        Which makes me think it's much like Sheridan thought he was a war leader for the side of light, when aside from Kosh, the Vorlon probably regarded him as a pawn. Of course, he turned that around in the end.
        Radhil Trebors
        Persona Under Construction

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        • #5
          Re: The Man in Between

          Originally posted by Bonehead
          But who, or what is Justin. We know he is the man in between, or the middle man, as he calls himself. He also speaks of the ones that decide the working day being 9 till 5, or hemlines etc, and he says he's with them. Same group, different department.
          My impression had always been that he was the leader of the humans working for the Shadows, as Sheridan was the leader of the humans "working for" the Vorlons. He is clearly from earth, as he uses Earth idioms. My guess would be that his wasn't sent by the EA at all, but rather from one of the groups using the EA and the Shadows to pursue their own ends - perhaps by the same group that arranged for the Icarus to be sent to begin with.

          Even JMS seems to contradict himself when approaching the subject.
          JMS quotes an apparently inaccurate statement by Terry Jones, and makes an absolute statement of his own. I don't think this is a confusion on JMS's part. I think he simply didn't notice that Jones had included Justin in the crew of the Icarus when he posted that lengthy extract. I think JMS's own words should be considered definitive.
          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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          • #6
            For one, Justin seems to have a lot in common with William Edgars. The whole behind-the-scenes thing, manipulating the goverment, and I'd bet good money, given that Edgars' telepath virus was left-over Shadowtech, that he too had been meddling with the Shadows. And IPX certainly seems to fit the Megacorp margin, just like Edgars Industries.

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            • #7
              that Edgars' telepath virus was left-over Shadowtech
              We don't know Where that Virus came from. Just that Edgars went to an inordinate amount of trouble to smuggle it through B5.

              A fact that Garibaldi had problems with. The fact that Edgars Smuggled it was certain to attract Attention. If it was the Real Telepath virus Edgars was smuggling. It could very well have been a Decoy. Which is what Garibaldi seemed to be hinting. Edgars sidestepped the question and changed the subject rather neatly.

              It's practically a certainty the virus came from one or another of the Shadows' servant races, but whether the Shadows themselves provided it or not is open to argument.

              Given a Choice, we saw that the Shadows would prefer to convert their enemies to Chaos, one way or another. A sort of "Waste Not, Want Not" philosophy.

              Some of the servant races, OTOH, might just prefer to eliminate the upstart Competition from Humans.

              Comment


              • #8
                And IPX certainly seems to fit the Megacorp margin, just like Edgars Industries.
                I agree. Wasn't it in the first season that IPX was mentioned as a clandestine organization, and that no one knew much of anything about them?

                I see Justin as one of those great and wondrous mysteries that serves to provide yet another example of what makes B5 such a work of art. Did that make any sense? The fact that we DON'T know anything about him makes the character so compelling, and it augments the series.
                "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

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                • #9
                  As best anyone was ever able to tell, IPX is the Earthforce equivalent of a "CIA Front company" dedicated to gathering as much alien tech as possible.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Ben-Thayer Dunnthaedt
                    The fact that we DON'T know anything about him makes the character so compelling, and it augments the series.

                    So we can probably look forward to TMoS being a prequel: "Young Justin - the Man in the Middle".

                    I hate prequels!

                    /IamS
                    Interstellar Alliance - Sweden's largest Babylon 5-club
                    http://www.babcon.org/

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                    • #11
                      Ummm, if IPX placed a homing device on the Shadow vessel that was rescued from Mars. Perhaps the Icarus was sent to the location of the homing beacon. Justin could have been assigned to the crew just as Anna had. Except he could have been briefed on the true reason of the trip, therebye enabling his position with the Shadows. It then follows that IPX could have been given enough knowledge to safely study the physical structure of a shadow vessel, but not the knowledge of how to safely merge with one and control it's awesome power.
                      I had the dagger in my hand! And he has the indecency to start dying on his own.

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                      • #12
                        Yes, Justin is the man in the middle, but the middle of what? Someones digestive track?

                        Boy, did that guy hit every single leaf and branch on his way down from the ugly tree. What a redneck.

                        Too bad jms couldn't have picked a different actor to play the part.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by nanorc
                          Too bad jms couldn't have picked a different actor to play the part.
                          Actually, I would imagine that JMS was quite pleased to have Jeff Corey on the show. The actor was black listed during the hearings on Un-American Activity for refusing to name names. Afterward he became a teacher since he couldn't work. His students inluded some notables. Check him out on IMDB.

                          JMS was asked about having him in Zahadum and responded:
                          http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-454&query=corey
                          That, plus his other body of work, which is substantial. He's also served as an acting coach for many people I know. I have a great deal of respect for him, especially given how unfairly he was blown out of work in the days of the blacklist.
                          "That was the law, as set down by Valen. Three castes: worker, religious, warrior."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            WorkerCaste - Excellent post. And....
                            Originally posted by nanorc
                            What a redneck.
                            The man was from Brooklyn, NY. Before you rip someone at least take a moment to get your demographics straight.

                            I can help you with the big words if you need it.

                            I was gonna use that one in the quote thread but it's a helluva lot more appropriate here. Do we have a smiley that flips off someone?
                            Last edited by Ben-Thayer Dunnthaedt; 07-27-2004, 11:04 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


                            • #15
                              I think the comment of "the ones that decide the working day, hemlines, etc." from Justin was just a fancy way of saying that a few people take decisions that affect everyone and the general public follows them unquestioning.
                              Here's a comment from JMS about those words, from the Lurker's Guide:
                              Was Justin's description of who he was and who he worked for a reference to anything?
                              No, it's not from anything I'm aware of, though it's a concept that seems very natural.
                              I can't remember if Justin was in the Icarus... I suspect that the novel "The Shadow Within" would mention him if that was the case.
                              He may have been assigned by Clark's government...

                              I think the actor that portrayed him did a good job... maybe he didn't act the way some imagined he should, but that's a viewer interpretation problem in my opinion.
                              I agree that the mistery about Justin adds to his appeal.

                              Here are some quotes that relate to some speculations above:
                              > What, if anything, happened to the ship that originally
                              > discovered the ruins of Z'ha'dum?

                              As will be explained later this season, the ruins at Z'ha'dum
                              were detected by a long-range probe; same as the kind of probe IPX used
                              to find the other planet in "Mind War."
                              http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-4499
                              This "long range probe" may have been the beacon mentioned in Z'ha'dum.
                              Two different things...the allies of the shadows can know about
                              us, can have used influence to start infiltrating the Psi Corps, long
                              before we found out about them. And bear in mind that Earth is not
                              monolithic; the FBI may not know what the CIA is doing. That some in
                              the Psi Corps may have had something going on there doesn't mean anyone
                              from IPX knew about it.
                              http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-6224

                              IPX did seem to be heavily involved with Earthforce, but not so much as to be just a "front company" in my opinion. They also made lots of archaeological expeditions to profit from selling the artifacts, even if those weren't weapons. It certainly was secretive and involved in some shady dealings...

                              Note: for additional smilies (including flippant ones) you can check here BTD:
                              http://www.clicksmilies.com/
                              (just post them as an image)
                              Such... is the respect paid to science that the most absurd opinions may become current, provided they are expressed in language, the sound of which recalls some well-known scientific phrase
                              James Clerk Maxwell (1831-79)

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