Rants, religion, money, sex and Star Trek...just a few
of the topics covered in the most volatile release of the entire Asked
& Answered series.
Part 3 (pages
779-1,183) includes more than 1,100 missives grouped into the following
– often heated – topics:
This is JMS unplugged. He shares his thoughts – unfiltered and often
exasperated – on a breadth of topics including: the sound in space
issue, comparisons of Babylon 5 to Shakespeare, Lord of the Rings, Dune
and every other saga of any import, atheism, language and culture, the
idea that a five-year arc prohibits the organic development of a story,
the perils of being the topic of an online forum, religion in Babylon
5, predictability of stories, why he almost quit the online community
forever, why the tone of his online posts changed over the years, and
how he really feels about people expressing an opinion that conflicts
This section covers a wide range of religion related questions including:
What are the religions of each alien species? What are the spiritual convictions
of the principal human characters? Why is religion in the 23rd century
a valid premise? How did Earth's religions deal with the existence of
aliens? Why do B5’s alien races have more than one religion? Why
did JMS showcase religion when most TV shows avoid it? What happened when
the topic of Babylon 5 was raised at a multi-faith meeting of interdenominational
leaders? What are JMS’s thoughts on the pagan group that makes its
new members watch B5 in its entirety?
How much was JMS paid for Babylon 5? How much does money matters to JMS?
Could JMS have gotten a better deal for the show? What does JMS spend
money on? Why has he never gotten a cent of residuals on the DVD sales?
What are the hookers are like on Babylon 5? Why does prostitution still
exists in the 23rd century? Can different species breed with each other?
PLUS JMS’s thoughts on bi, gay and lesbian characters.
How does CGI impact the script? Why did JMS choose CGI over models? How
did B5’s space shots differ from what came before? What happened
when California wildfires threatened the visual effects facility? PLUS
over 30 questions and answers detailing the show’s pioneering use
of computer generated imagery.
How did JMS design the Vorlon ships? Which ships can enter B5's space?
Who can use the station's facilities? How do Starfuries launch? PLUS details
of the unused Northrodyne C31-03 Patriot, details of Starfury design down
to their engine parts, and the facts about White Stars and other alien
What is "walla?" How was B5’s soundtrack different from
those of other shows? What was JMS's fresh approach to the sound of weaponry?
Which of the unique sounds on the show were original creations (and which
where not)? What are "wild tracks?" PLUS the truth about Kosh's
Everything you ever wanted to know but were afraid to ask in 256 questions
about: Centauri, Drazi, Humans, Minbari, Narn, pak'ma'ra, Shadows, Vorlons
and other First Ones. PLUS detailed explanations about their characteristics
and their histories (don't miss JMS's note comparing and contrasting Narn
and Centauri history or his detailed list of the which races were at war
or allied at the time of the pilot) as well as the theories behind the
design of each race.
Did the Babylon 5 crew ever socialize with any of the Star Trek crews?
How did Babylon 5's budget compare to that of the various Star Trek series?
How did JMS fight allegations that this concept or that idea was originated
by Star Trek? Is JMS "the next Gene Roddenberry?" Does it make
JMS crazy when every article compares Babylon 5 to Star Trek? Did Paramount
use JMS’s concept to create Star Trek: Deep Space Nine? How did
Deep Space Nine most impact Babylon 5?
Four categories highlight the technology of the 23rd century: GENERAL
(medicine, space suits, time travel and transporters), COMMUNICATIONS
(links, BabCom, ISN and Universe Today), TRANSPORTATION (hyperspace, jumpgates,
the core shuttle, and the transport tubes) and WEAPONRY (mass drivers,
PPGs, projectiles and stealth tech).
AS WELL AS SECTIONS COVERING: THE TITLE SEQUENCE (JMS
offers insights and anecdotes about the show’s varied title sequences,
including the concept, the visuals and the narration), THE UNIVERSE
OF BABYLON 5 (Featuring detailed histories and background including
the Earth/Minbari War, Earth’s first contact with alien life, and
the funding of the Babylon Project despite four failures), THE SHOW’S
VISUAL AESTHETIC (Including logos, graphics and cinematography),
THE WARDROBE (Highlighting costumes, makeup and prosthetics)
but not least —
A comprehensive section with thorough discussions of the cast, the characters,
the episode titles, the origins of the story, the planning of the series,
the process of writing the scripts, story structure, themes, JMS’s
personal dedication, the achievement and the reactions gathered along