Earhart’s: Spoiler Space for “Soul Mates”

You might be forgiven for overlooking that “Soul Mates” isn’t just about Pestilence, Famine and Death–it’s also the conclusion to what Chip has decided to call the Talia Trilogy. What did you think about both plots and what they revealed about the future? It is a pleasure to host your spoilers here…

19 thoughts on “Earhart’s: Spoiler Space for “Soul Mates””

  1. With the emphasis you put on Peter David’s authorship in the Zocalo, it’s probably worth mentioning his Centauri Prime trilogy of books which reveal what happened to Daggair, Mariel and Timov. Daggair seems to drop from history altogether, being referenced but no further detail given. Mariel and Timov remain in Londo’s orbit in various ways…

    1. Glad to hear that Timov is in the books, and looking forward to encountering her again when I get around to them. It’s a shame that JMS didn’t bring her back for the storyline set on Centauri Prime in the first part of S4, where she would have fit nicely.

  2. It’s a pity David didn’t get a Season 5 script job. ‘View from the Gallery’ and ‘The Corps is Mother..’ are both very David-like in structure, but I feel he’d have done a much better job with either.

    1. A View from the Gallery could have used anyone other than JMS writing it, since it is quite ridiculously over-the-top about being the story of how the little ordinary people worship and admire these great heroes. But if you take that out, there’s basically nothing left of AVftG. I think Peter David could have done an excellent job of writing an episode that shared the same basic premise, but was otherwise completely different.

      Not so sure about The Corps is Mother, the Corps is Father. I tend to think that David is best when he can exercise his gift for comedy, or at least being tongue-in-cheek, and the effect of TCiM, tCiF depends on it being utterly serious. Would you care to expand?

      1. Not really, no.

        PAD does tend to use humour or light in most stories, and might not have achieved the dark tone that I recall pervading TCiM, tCiF. You make a good case.

        I suppose I’ll give it a shot as to where I was coming from. One of David’s earliest, Points of View, had some really fantastic dialogue where a thoroughly persecuted and hunted Spidey (in his black costume phase), confronts Jonah J. with the inference he’s about to kick all the colours of the rainbow out of him. He’s gone completely Howard Beale. Jameson’s response is something like, ‘Maybe you are the menace we claim you are, maybe our outing you is a warning to anyone else wanting to don a mask.’ We got it wrong about you when we printed these stories, but ‘did it ever occur I never had to run all those retractions I did over the years? It’s a wonderful scene. We’ve been following Spidey’s pain throughout the story, and we’re on side, then David and his artist close it with Jameson smelling of roses. A very convincing read. Web of Spider-Man #13.

        Hulk #420, the tale of Jim Wilson’s death from AIDS also occurred to me. I recall it being quite, I suppose, unlike PAD’s usual, in that it struck a funereal tone. Those aren’t the right words. It’s about Jim’s life, how people around him are reacting: there is humour, but I recall it as a very subdued, intimate type, surrounded by the cruelty of the disease. I guess this is the crux of what I’m arguing. David has a good record of tackling weighty social issues and activism: abortion, domestic violence, gun control. It might have been interesting to see what he did with TCiM, tCiF. By the same token, am I short-changing JMS? Am I looking at this more through the lens of Season 5’s part-filler context and not the merits of the story on it’s own? Do we have to re-watch AVftG?

      2. Remember where A View from the Gallery came from : “Harlan is working on something now, and suggested something that I then based an episode on, so we share story credit on “A View from the Gallery.”

        1. Oh dear. That actually makes me more critical of JMS in connection with AVftG, because there’s nothing wrong (for me) with the premise or the overall story , just the specifics of the execution. And it looks like JMS shares credit on the former, but has all the blame for the latter…

          Disclaimer: AVftG is my single least favorite episode of B5, but I’m sure that it’s somebody’s favorite episode. Even for me, it’s not without redeeming features. (It contains one of the best uses of Byron and his followers in all of S5.) One of the strengths of B5 as a whole is that even the weaker episodes aren’t *that* bad. This is not something that one can say about ’90s SF TV in general…

  3. *Londo, not London (sure I’m not the first)

    It’s remarkable that both main plots, are wide open to continuities: Londo’s assassin is never caught, the true nature of the relationship between the Corps, Stoner and Talia is never revealed. Yet somehow, this episode feels perfectly complete. Peter David is a technomage.

  4. Another good podcast Durham and Edmonton.
    I feel the ‘sitcom’ elements really do add to back-light Londo, ‘the life and soul’, and how far he does fall. Yes, like Delenn’s hair, out of continuity, but it works for me, inverted ferengi he is.

    Lou Welch will return in GROPOS! and I’ll see if I can manage a double-bill before my 12th July week holiday.

  5. Yes, a good episode. I find myself waiting in eager anticipation of what Stephen’s reaction to each episode will be. I assume the next one will be a doozy!

    Also, is the graphic you are using for the podcast with the stars and cloud supposed to look like G’Kar’s face? I assume this is deliberate but…. thought I would ask

  6. No mention of the truly bizarre grape-toss from G’Kar to Marielle and the sexual subtext of their ‘meeting’?!

      1. According to JMS on the Lurker’s Guide (I think), it was a grape and it was supposed to be part of a Narn courting ritual, which would fit in with them meeting in G’Kar’s quarters. And even having read that before, I totally missed it when watching the episode and didn’t write anything in my notes. Part of the occasional disjointed feeling I had from the story, as if it needed 5-10 more minutes of screentime.

        1. OK I didn’t see that about the Narn mating ritual. I wonder if G’Kar and Mariel doing that right in front of Londo was supposed to be rubbing his nose in it?

  7. CHIP!!!!!

    I hope it was the beer talking when you referred to Andrea Thompson as a “good actress”. IMHO, she’s a HORRIBLE actress and I only wish she had decided to leave earlier.

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