10 thoughts on “Zocalo: Spoiler-free Discussion of “Shadow Dancing””

  1. Zebra Minus 7 Days
    In Downbelow, what does Dr. Franklin have in his coat collar that he’s huffing it so?
    Although the Zees are front of stage culminating in the season finale, this is a greatly understated multi-parter about refugee ambushes mini-story. It’s really good, isn’t it?

    Zen Minus 6 Days
    That was a freaking big space battle.
    Some great chemistry between Carter and Christian with JMS trying everything he can to find the funny, and fair play to him. Her triangular pillow fort is a tickler.
    I loved Biggs depiction of Ranklin’ Franklin (ahem) In uniform, getting testy, just like the Franklin we’re used to on stims. Yet talking a lot of sense and he’s bringing a certain Twin Peaks quality to the proceedings. And the Franklin on the floor (with a lot of blood) just looks so vulnerable, something we’re not used to seeing.

    Ziggurat Minus 4 Days/3 Days
    Love that shot where Franklin cranes his head up from bed and sees the injured packing medbay. It only lasts 3 seconds but Voomf!
    ProphecyWatch: You are the hand…could Kosh have been quoting Frank Miller? Laurie Anderson?
    I really like Franklin’s shirt but I couldn’t describe it to a shopkeeper.

    (The next person commenting on Z Minus is not allowed to use Zebra, Zen or Ziggurat)

    1. Zeno of Elea minus 7 days:

      The fatal mistake that the Shadows are making in trying to lure everyone into one place is that they will get halfway there. Then they will arrive at half of the remaining distance. Then half the remaining distance. And so on. But they will never get there. The Shadows need to realize that motion is an illusion.

      Zeno of Citium minus 7 days:

      Oh, for Zeus’ sake, Franklin, you will either die or you won’t. Whatever is going to happen, will happen. Stop being so emotional about it.

      Sorry for being so exasperated. I should control my feeling better.

      Baron Zemo minus 7 days:

      I really like that new Vorlon’s dress sense. Oh wait, is he in this episode?

      Also, I’m German. It’s pronounced “Tsaymo.”

    2. Also, Andy: sorry for not managing to get in a comment on the Downbelow podcast this weekend. I was going to say “hello,” but things got ahead of me.

  2. A question I’ve always had about this ep. When the Shadows appear, they are, what was it, 3 hours from their target. Why did they not just appear *at* the target, they have never seemed to have trouble appearing right by a target in the past?

    1. I always figured the “three hours from the target” was a producer’s cheat so they didn’t have to have both the combat ships AND the civilian ships in the same scenes. And story-wise, it’s a much simpler setup when the Army of Light only has to fight back against the Shadows, and not simultaneously protect the civilians from getting destroyed.

      Having civilian ships getting destroyed in the crossfire would’ve been a bit too dark for 90’s-era network TV. That had to wait until Battlestar Galactica.

    2. JMS was asked this at the time:

      “Why didn’t the Shadows emerge right next to their targets?
      So they could drive any other ships toward the center, into the killing zone. If they come in into the center, everybody splits in every possible direction, and that makes running ’em all down harder.
      If the shadows were to materialize in the midst of the refugee ships, they’d just scatter in every direction. The purpose is to wipe out all those ships quickly and efficiently…so you start at the outer fringe, drive everyone inward, and then wipe them all out. To jump into the middle of them makes it very hard to do this…it’s like herding kittens.”

  3. Something odd I just noticed in the production.

    Towards the end we’re cutting back and forth between Franklin and the big space battle. There’s the sequence where Franklin stumbles through a door into a crowd, gasping “Help me”.

    Straight after that there’s a quick montage of Delenn and Sheridan on the command deck, Ivanova and Marcus on the White Star, and the Shadows fleeing into hyperspace.

    On my DVD, I see Delenn and the others move their mouths in those two shots, but there’s no actual dialogue, just music. According to my memory that’s how it was on the live broadcast too. But that was two decades ago, and my DVDs are nearly as old.

    This time around though, I’m learning French so am watching the DVDs first in English then in French. And in the French version, Delenn and the others *are* speaking. (Nothing particularly important.)

    So, is my memory faulty? Was there a production glitch that lost the dialogue from those two shots in the original broadcast? Do more recent DVDs have dialogue in English?

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