Earhart’s: “Shadow Dancing” Spoiler Space

Anna’s back and just how much is Sheridan’s life going to turn upside down? Now that the League has started something, can they keep it together? And how long before Ivanova picks up the Minbari language? Talk about future events here!

8 thoughts on “Earhart’s: “Shadow Dancing” Spoiler Space”

  1. Casting spoiler comment and potential topic of discussion.

    For the future.

    Posting after an odd recollection and brief Lurker’s Guide search for “confirmation.”

    At this episode Jerry Doyle has appeared in each and every episode as Garabaldi, save (according to the LG) for 2: Sic Transit Vir, and The Rock Cried Out…

    No other character in the series has appeared in as many episodes as Meester Garabaldi.

    1. I believe Garibaldi was in Rock, and Sic Transit Vir is the only episode in the first three seasons where he doesn’t appear. And in the end Garibaldi has most episodes probably only because Ivanova isn’t there all the way. One of the only four characters who are there from the pilot to the end of the fifth season, and one of two characters who are in both The Gathering and Sleeping in Light.

      As for Shadow Dancing… There’s not that much for the future. Novel #7, The Shadow Within was mentioned as the backstory of Icarus and Anna. For those who haven’t read the Technomage Trilogy, also written by Jeanne Cavelos, it acts partly as a sort of sequel to The Shadow Within, continuing Anna’s story to some extent, from being the core of a Shadow ship to returning to Sheridan and Z’ha’dum. There’s also what happens between Sheridan pulling the gun and later backing to the balcony, the part which many people wanted to see in the episode. But that’s all about next episode.

  2. Zog! (No day)

    When I watched this for the first time, I really thought that the Shadows might win. It’s common in heroic saga type fiction for the “good guys” to suffer initial defeat and be driven into exile. And here we’d seen the flashforward hints that the station itself might be destroyed by the Shadows.

    Just me? Did the new viewers this time around wonder who was going to win?

    (From the Mods: We moved this thread to spoiler space because of the implication that the Shadows would lose, which is true in a sense.)

    1. That’s interesting. I’m not a new viewer, but I’m fairly sure that at the time I didn’t have any expectation that the heroes would lose. This may have been because I hadn’t seen Season 1, so my viewing wasn’t informed by those prophecies of the station’s destruction.

      I have more to say (I know, it’s surprising), but it’s spoilery, so I’ll put it in the other thread.

  3. This post continues my reply to Hugh from the non-spoiler thread.

    But I think the other factor that affected my assumption that our heroes would defeat the Shadows in this episode was as follows: this episode turns on Sheridan having figured out the Shadows’ plan.

    A different show might have had that be a feint (“The Shadows wanted me to think that I’d figured out their plan!”). But according to the rules of Babylon 5 storytelling, other people can make those kinds of mistakes, but one of the things that defines Sheridan is that he’s never outwitted like that. He can only be outwitted by exploiting personal trust (as Garibaldi does). But someone he views as an enemy can never defeat him.

    Which is sort of the point, or part of it. The next episode removes Sheridan and that does seem to put the station in genuine danger. Because no-one else in the story has this privileged position of always being able to find a solution, no matter what.

  4. Mods, would you consider copying my question back to non-spoiler with “…the Shadows might win” clarified as “…Shadows might win the big space battle” ? That was my intention.

  5. Sheridan might have figured out the Shadow plan, but that wouldn’t necessarily mean he would win the battle. There was a podcast a few episodes back where one of the hosts pointed out that Sheridan got everything wrong throughout.

    There was also Severed Dreams, where Sheridan had to be saved by Delenn and the Minbari.

    1. Severed Dreams is a fair point, although he’s not outwitted there – just about to be overwhelmed by massively superior numbers. But yes, it’s a definite exception to the Sheridan norm. Hmm. I think that’s another reason why I like that moment so much.

      I’d need to be reminded where it was that Sheridan got everything wrong throughout, I’m afraid.

      But anyway, I think once you have Sheridan figure out the plan, Chekhov’s Gun comes into play: rules of storytelling mean that has to matter. It may matter because it enables Sheridan to win, or there may be a twist in which it’s all a trick – but it must play a role in the plot. And, if anything, the fact that JMS had Sheridan atypically appear at a loss and helpless in Severed Dreams means that now, almost at the end of the season, he’s likely to correct that by showing Sheridan in his more usual victorious mode.

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