6 thoughts on “Zocalo: Spoiler-free Discussion of “GROPOS””

  1. One thing that needs to be mentioned – I completely missed it at the time, but then again maybe it’s a fact commonly remarked on, I dunno – but this episode only has Ken “Dawn of the Dead” Foree in it! As PFC Large.

    Also, what is it with some of the names in this ep? PFC Large? Sergeant-Major Plug? I’m only now realising that “Dodger” is a nickname not her actual surname. Or so IMDb has it anyway.

    The episode itself? It’s a bit pants. Rubbish CGI in the battle scenes.

  2. ‘Grow Pose’ is it? Well, miles better than my thinking of it as gropers!

    DiTillio has some fun stuff happening:
    Lou Welch’s “Quiet here Chief. Everyone is going to bed”, while they cart out drunk gropos.
    Corwin and Ivanova’s little two-line opener.
    Fun seeing Warren Keffer walk into his room and find the cast of HBO’s Oz breaking his Airfix kits.

    The background here is always more interesting than the story. The Franklins love glass, the General with his CSI strategy plates, and he is comfortable around other glass enthusiasts. So much so that “Outside of you three, no-one is to be told of this”, contains the subtext, ‘Just us, and the man pacing around us for the last two minutes. Don’t worry, he loves glass-based layouts and won’t throw stones.’ In Stephen Franklin’s quarters we see he has amassed a stupendous collection of coloured vases, as well as a lot of sports trophies.

    Actually , Gropos isn’t so much a story but tropes on a theme which dominantly sways most scenes it encounters. Gen. Franklin chose B5 in-part for Sheridan’s strategical skills, but that thread seemed more or less dropped. We know strategy to be one of Sheridan’s strengths, but he really screws up here. There’s something in the paradox that most of B5 wants rid of the GROPOS, and the few that do not, know the soldiers are going to die. It’s not enough to make something from when it’s hostage to Mike and the Mechanics’ ‘Living Years’.

    And yes, the scene on Matok is dreadful. I’ll quote Dead Ringers saying, “”Now that’s bang out of order! You know all his villains were made of tinfoil!”

    1. Shmoopy? Is that slang for Keffer?
    2. Ozone, got any single female friends in Ireland? I promise not to dangle from light-bulbs.

  3. OK. I know he’s supposed to be the 30 year guy, but if I saw a soldier who was a PFC after 30 years? Yeah, I’d be worried.

    The NCO over the unit was poorly, poorly written. That was more drill instructor- and bad drill instructor than anything else.

  4. I am not a military member, but I know stereotyped presentations of the military when I see them, and this episode has every military cliche in the book. It seems like the only research done was to watch several episodes of “M*A*S*H.” I do think Paul Winfield is a fine actor, however, and appreciate the gravitas and humanity he brings to the rather shallowly written role of Gen. Franklin.

  5. When Garabaldi and the GROPOS are getting it on, just before they move to the bed he almost *almost* cups her breasts. Have to wonder if he almost did it by accident/automatically in the moment or if they wanted to push it as far as the censor would allow. Still, laugh-out-loud moment for me!

  6. There’s lots of unsubtle poorly written stuff in this episode. But one thing I really appreciate, that is incredibly subtle. Is the conversation between Ivanova and Dr. Franklin about Fathers. It isn’t pointed out, but Ivanova’s father was a Pacifist, and she joined the Military; Franklin’s father is a General, and he’s devoted his life to Healing. It’s an amazing juxtaposition, but also an amazing juncture for these two characters to relate.

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