j. michael straczynski
During our Buffy the Vampire Slayer Retro Squad week, I put out a call for an episode of Buffy a newbie could watch to get a feel for the show. And you guys came through in a big way. Most insisted it was a show that needed to be watched from the beginning, but at the same time warned that there was some cheese-factor in those early episodes. Your votes pushed me to "Hush," which I found to be incredibly enjoyable and a perfect introduction to the cleverness and tone of the show. Even better, it made me that much more eager to go back and watch the entire run of the show.
In the comments to that piece Doug Nelson asked if someone could do something similar for Babylon 5. That got me thinking about other serialized shows of this nature like The X-Files, The West Wing and to an extent Doctor Who and Quantum Leap. We're a community of TV-lovers here, so we should help each other out. Thus, the TVS Starter Kits. And for Doug Nelson, it starts with Babylon 5.
In short, he's against it. He feels that offerings like the TV movie, Babylon 5: The Legend of the Rangers, and the straight-to-DVD story, Babylon 5: The Lost Tales, take away from the strength of the original TV series.
He writes that The Lost Tales was commissioned at a $2 million budget, and they did the best they could with it. Apparently, the studio wasn't sure there was an audience for Babylon 5. Silly studio.
That's a direct-to-DVD movie, not a TV movie or one for the theaters.
The movie was announced in 2005, and now Babylon 5 creator/writer J. Michael Straczynski confirms that not only is there a movie coming this year but it's just about done. The film has been shot and now they're just working on post-production stuff (title sequence, music, special effects, etc). He tells the Babylon 5 newsgroup that the DVD will be released around July 27.
I never watched Babylon 5, and I always thought I missed out on something good. Straczynski is a good writer, and I know that Harlan Ellison was involved in the show too, so I should really get the DVDs. The movie will star Bruce Boxleitner, Tracy Scoggins, and Peter Woodward.
Take a look and let us know what you think of it (click the above link and scroll down to the PDF file).
[via Lee Goldberg]