24 thoughts on “Earhart’s: “Knives” Spoiler Space”

  1. I remembered the A plot with Londo really well and still enjoyed it even after all these years. The B plot on the otherhand I had completed forgotten about, and in hindsight I can see why. It’s rubbish. Another mention of the Markab and the Markab Doctor was nice. I can’t help but think that this plot is only there to set up the next episode with Sheriden and Morden.

    1. Me too. I had completely forgotten about the Sheridan story, which is throwaway even by the standards of “B5 does TNG” stories.

      As for the Londo plot, it’s one of those things that I find more important than good. It’s a really significant story in terms of Londo’s overall arc, and Peter Jurasik does his usual excellent job of playing the role. It shows effectively how even though Londo’s star is on the rise, he’s still cut off on B5 from the real levers of power back home. Urza is a compelling character, a better Londo, Londi as he might have been if Londo interpreted his patriotic ideals just a little differently.

      Somehow, though, it doesn’t quite come together for me.

      1. I especially dislike the Londo / Vir conversation at the end, “oh I know my choices have been terrible and I can finally see the personal cost of those choices, but I have to continue on because JMS needs me to descend into hell regardless of whether it makes sense”

        1. There’s a lot to be wrankled/grumpy about. One that got me was when Londo’s mate outlines that his house will be destroyed, makes a really good case, and Londo asks, what do you want me to do? It felt a bit clunky, even given Londo is drunk on power, that he would have to ask.

          See also, Londo’s promise to guard Tura’s family as if they were his own: again, another case of characters promised never re-appearing, and on tune this time. Just like Londo not to devote too much time to keeping those promises on things near to his heart.

          The Centauri strand is something of a tired trope made durable by some brilliant acting and the first two thirds. As for Sheridan’s latest X-Files investigation seemed a bit pointless.

  2. So Sheridan loves creepy places. Another facet of his personality that comes out of nowhere and disappears back into the nothingness from whence it sprang.

    1. Well, he embraces the new and alien Delenn, big weirdo Kosh, and Z’ha’daum, which I suspect he would visit irregardless of what transpires next episode.

      I like that he’s a conspiracy theorist, but it’s almost as if DiTillio and JMS got confused over cliff notes. “He’s into a conspiracy”, “Gotcha, gotcha. He has the Zeebrugge film.” Yeah, though, some poor development. “The triangle” is a marking on the baseball pitch, it doesn’t present itself very strongly

  3. I thought the performance by the guest actor was great. He’s believable as an alt.political spokesperson. One gets the feeling Urza was one of these Turhan truthers, we hear about them always warning us about chem shadow trails, and insisting coverage of the Narn-Centauri conflict is a false left-right paradigm. I was sat thinking, ‘he really doesn’t like Refa does he’, until the reveal that Refa is behind it all. On an aside, isn’t it curious that Refa is having a go at a house linked with Mollari’s? I’m sure a good few of you have picked up on that. Can’t let ‘the silent beast’ get too powerful, he probably reckons.Urza is Refa’s betrayal that Londo doesn’t see until Adira dies. We get shots of Londo’s quarters this episode, with the portrait of Adira (perhaps), displayed.

    The strange effects when Garibaldi was staring at Sheridan reminded me of the Bester wipe put on the former. Musical editing coincidence masquerading as time travel head canon?
    Well, the blades we later see in Sheridan’s eyes as he witnesses B4 vanish are quite, quite mental – and – a symbol of time travel to come; mum and dad appear as the flitting, perhaps of an alternate world where he thinks they’re perfectly okay, because he didn’t oppose Clark? What were the real points of the alien mind stowing on Sheridan…because we have to find those!*

    *assuming you can follow any of this and don’t think i’m a great bloody mentalist.

  4. Loving the podcast.
    I slightly disagree with the characterization of Londo’s thirst for power. Londo has not and will not seek power for power’s sake. He has always done what he felt he needed to do to restore the Empire to it’s former glory. He has never been, at his true heart, or in the case of Centauri, hearts, a bad person.
    Throughout his entire arc, even including his acceptance of his “keeper”, he has always done what he felt he needed to do help his people.
    That explains his drunken, gambling buffoonery in the first season. He sought out these pleasures to dull the pain of his inability to raise the Centauri from their fallen gods given glory. Given, what was seen as, a dead end Ambassadorial job, he knew he could never make the changes he wished to see and fell into despair. Until the space mob showed up. He saw the opportunity, but didn’t see the cost. Knives was a great episode to emphasize the kernel of understanding.

    1. Things have gotten in the way of me listening to the podcast as of yet, so this is just a reply to Brian.

      I basically agree with you about Londo’s motives, but I think it’s complicated by a couple of factors.

      The first is that scheming and maneuvering for influence is part of being a proper aristocratic Centauri. (We never really get to know any Centauri who aren’t aristocrats, which is a flaw in the series.) So part of Londo’s patriotic devotion to being a true Centauri involves this kind of behavior, just as it involves hedonism.

      The other is that the first season does a good job of showing that Londo’s desire to restore the glory of the Centauri is parallel to his own sense of himself as a washed-up, marginalized, failure whose status isn’t what his younger self wanted or expected. This suggests that, on some level, his desire to make the Centauri respected and feared once again is connected to his own desire to be respected and feared.

      I don’t think it’s about power, though: it’s about status. That both requires and gives power, but I don’t think it’s the power itself that Londo really wants.

  5. Urza’s entrance : Looking past the clumsiness, is this consistent with Urza’s character? Someone might have killed him for his extreme peekaboo stunt, but even in joking, he’s hell bent on confrontation no matter what it brings. That said, the prelude damages the great character DiTillio wrote for him.

    Over-sized bravari glasses:
    Yes, these seemed to be the the biggest goblets they could find, reminds me of Turf Tavern in Oxford, a spot for dons, with yard glasses of booze which many famous people have drunk from Wilde, Thatcher, Liz Taylor, Stephen Hawkin
    Australian PM, ludicrously over-sized yard glasses of ale
    According to Wikipedia, it’s rumoured also to be the place where Clinton “did not inhale”. Anyway, it’s entirely likely Londo’s new alliance has got him a stack of new cash which he might blow on such extravagances as embarrassing-size drinks glasses.

  6. I’ve long assumed that the Sheridan story existed to establish that humans can carry the consciousness of other beings as a set up for when this becomes important with respect to the Vorlons. B5 is pretty good about setting these sorts of things up before they become important to the plot — see also Exogenesis as a benign form of the keepers.

  7. Something no one seems to have mentioned is that looking ahead, the Centarui woman in “In the Beginning” is Urza Jaddo’s daughter, and the two kids Londo tells the story to are Urza’s grandkids.

    So hey, Londo killed the guy but he kept his promise to take care of the man’s family!

      1. Granted, but there’s no competing information anywhere, it makes logical sense (in that we’re pretty sure Londo himself hasn’t got any offspring) and the books are mostly considered canon…so why not go with it?

  8. So, two things:

    1. In previous episodes, it was noted as being very out of character for Sherridan to go out exploring, but in this episode it was ok because of the previous episodes setting it up. You can’t have it both ways! 🙂

    Either it’s not part of his character and each instance is then not part of his character, or it is part of his character and maybe it wasn’t introduced naturally enough at the outset.

    2. The bit where there is an alien residing in Sherridan’s head and communicating with him is Checkhov’s gun for later when a piece of Kosh sets up shop in Sherridan’s head down the line.

  9. I love your podcast, I’m into Season 3 on my rewatch, so catching up to the podcasts. One thing I thought was interesting this time re> Sheridan story is the alien that inhabited his brain. A little piece of Kosh does this later and also we see the Vorlon’s using Lita as a human “travel machine”. So, I thought that was an interesting bit of Spoiler space.

    Keep up the good work, it’s crazy how I feel like you three are friends.

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