Zocalo: Spoiler-free discussion of “Acts of Sacrifice”

If you have never seenΒ Babylon 5 before, you may be wondering what the heck was up with the Ivanova Dance. Rest assured, people who haven’t seen “Acts of Sacrifice” in years may be wondering that as well. But, hey! How about that G’Kar guy, huh? No spoilers for future episodes, please.

11 thoughts on “Zocalo: Spoiler-free discussion of “Acts of Sacrifice””

  1. You were all spot on in saying that the dance distracts from the rest of the episode. When I sat down to watch it I was “oh boy here’s that dance, lets get through it” and was surprised at the rest! And then even before I listened to the podcast and went to write something here, all I could remember was the damn dance!

    Back on my first watching of this when I was in my late teens, I remember enjoying the hilarity of the dance. Each subsequent viewing had me looking on it less favourably – and this time I was “this is such BS – those people can’t be COMPLETELY STUPID” – they know that sex is a reproductive act and so how the hell was what Ivanova did reproductive in any way? It would insult their intelligence – and it insults mine. Ridiculous and maybe the worst thing JMS has ever written.

    1. I just assumed they KNEW it wasn’t actually sex but being a ‘superior species’ that doesn’t demonstrate the ‘inferior trait’ of ignorance, that Correlilmerzon was so embarrassed he didn’t want to admit it.. Anyway Taq sure knew, the way he snickered he knew. I can’t imagine seriously suggesting that it was actually a reproductive act.

      1. I nearly accepted this ‘head canon’ πŸ˜‰ But I think *especially* due to their superiority complex, they wouldn’t show ignorance by angrily accusing her “How dare you insult us with this charade of reproduction!” and call the whole thing off. πŸ˜‰

        1. I always figured she is making it out to be the hand contact. Not only is she technically “shaking hands” the human gesture of an agreement, but she is gripping his hand very tightly when she “climaxes.”

          That’s my head cannon.

          And yes, I liked it as a teen, and yes the juvenile teen part of me still gets a kick out of it. But I agree, it is incongruous with the somber tone of the rest of the episode. However it doesn’t completely override it for me. G’kars’ laugh/cry has alwasy stuck with me as well as a very powerful moment for the character, and so also the motivations behind it.

  2. What I always wondered about this episode is… Are the Lumati telepathic or was the translator just very well briefed by his boss?

  3. Maybe it was the dance, maybe not, but I was less interested in this episode than others around. The podcast sure changed that and I might rewatch it soon if I find time. Thanks guys. Utterly analytical prime!

    OT: Maybe it was my energy levels informed my attitude. At the start of August I went self-employed as an author and began 6 weeks working at a hostel on Rathlin, a remote rim spot, the only inhabited island off Northern Ireland, amid 6 turbulent sea currents off the Wild Atlantic Way. Besides having only a populace of 120 I can’t help think of it in terms of B5. The hostel and bar down the road get a mix of Germans (v.popular), Irish, Belgians, Swedes and other races and there’s an animal life that’s varied and rare. It’s so divorced from N.I. in terms of politics and pressure and we’ve had in oddballs, friends, lovers and jerks. Street-lights are rare (we’re all alone in the night), and though there’s next to no animosity here, some of those clouds look like Shadow vessels, and seals look like Vorlons! Anyhoo, I listened to the podcast tonight while clearing the large back-log in the laundry room and it helped a great deal in getting me back to this slice of heaven. x

    1. A pub full of Germans.. Oh dear!

      We have a similar place here in New Zealand – it’s called Great Barrier Island which is quite far from the mainland, and it also has very few people and no mains power so no streetlights at night, and when you have had a bit too much to drink and lie back on the grass, it’s unbelieveable what the night sky looks like compared to in the city. It’s not hard to believe that intelligent life is out there when you see the enormous numbers of stars in the sky…

      1. (Hello to) Francoise, Pia and Sarah sat beside me watching the meteor shower/shooting stars til 6am.

        I might have to make up names for some of these stars so will keep yous in mind.

  4. I realize I’m pretty late to the party, but we just listened to this podcast last night, and the debate about whether it was out of character for Ivanova to argue with the Lumati ambassador regarding the conclusions he was drawing from Down Below was missing an important element:

    Ivanova is Jewish.

    Based on the dialogue, the Lumati ambassador is going to go back home and institute a system of forcing their “undesirables” into what sound like ghettos at best and concentration camps at worst. If anything, I thought she’d be *more* vehement.

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