Recap / Babylon Five S 03 E 02 Convictions


Not many fishes left in the sea. Not many fishes, just Londo and me. Not many fishes left in the sea. Not many fishes, just Londo and me.

Garibaldi is in the customs area dealing with some Drazi pilgrims who have come to visit the place where Droshalla was seen, when Ivanova comes up with an issue with some strange call promising chaos in a few hours. The chaos occurs when an explosion suddenly goes off. An investigation is launched, and the focal point of the blast is located, which is nowhere near anything that could have done it accidentally. A bomb.

Meanwhile, a group of monks come aboard, led by one named Brother Theo. He meets with Ivanova and assures her that they will not impose themselves on anyone, and they are all highly skilled in many fields, but they also believe.

Back in the customs area, Lennier greets Delenn, with Londo nearby, when another bomb goes off. Lennier pulls Londo to safety, but gets caught in the explosion himself. It is now clear that the bombs, which have gone off in highly traversed areas, are targeting people. Sheridan orders the station on lockdown, keeping people out of sight and in small groups that are less likely to be targeted.

Later, Londo goes down to Medlab to keep Lennier company for a while, since he feels indebted to the Minbari, talking and telling bad jokes.

A small break comes when another bomb goes off, but someone got a look at it before it exploded, and it looked pretty amateurish. They still don't know why, and Sheridan thinks the bomber might just be lashing out at people. They also manage to find the source, and Sheridan orders a check on everything from there. Then Ivanova has the idea that if the bomber wants to cause chaos, he might be coming around to see the aftermath, and might be on the security footage. Garibaldi doesn't have the time or resources for a check like that, but Ivanova has an idea who might. She has Brother Theo's people go over the footage and see if they can find anything.

Garibaldi: May I be the first to say that this is the nuttiest idea you've ever had?
Ivanova: (Beat) Thank you.

Back with Lennier, Londo has to go do some things, but finds the transport tube with G'Kar already in it. He intends to wait for another one, but another bomb goes off, and he jumps in, trapping himself inside with the Narn who hates his guts. The explosion blows out most of Red 15, and leaves rescuers unable to reach anyone who might be trapped there. Bad news for Londo, who wakes up in the darkened tube car to find it's two hours later and G'Kar has just been sitting there. Londo points out that the door is hot, most likely from a fire on the other side; G'Kar look mildly interested. Either the fire will get in, or the smoke and heat will eventually suffocate them; G'Kar just chuckles. Perplexed Londo reminds him that there is no telling when help will come; G'Kar shrugs. If they are to survive, they must work together...

G'Kar: No.
Londo: No? What do you mean "no"?
G'Kar: No. (laughter)

G'Kar admits he wants to live, but would rather see Londo dead, and this way he can do it without actually having to kill him, and invoke the five hundred Narns executed penalty for murdering a Centauri, something he finds most appealing. Londo tries calling out for anyone who hears him.

G'Kar: I hear you! Hahaha!

Meanwhile, the monks have found someone, a man standing around, watching. Cross-reference identifies him as Robert Carlson, hired as part of the station's maintenance department in January, which means he's had access to Babylon 5's vital systems. Garibaldi mobilizes a team and head to find him. Sheridan meets them outside Carlson's quarters, only to find that he's ready for them. Carlson contacts them over the PA, informing them he's holding a Dead Man Switch and demands the captain inside before he releases it. Sheridan puts his link in his back pocket and has Garibaldi listen in on it as he goes to confront the bomber.

Sheridan: Find that bomb, Michael.
Garibaldi: I will. Just don't do anything stupid.
Sheridan: Too late.

After making sure Sheridan isn't wearing his link in his shirt, Carlson comes out. He demands passage off station, otherwise the station will go up in an explosion as bright as the sun. Garibaldi gets a hunch that the bomb's in the fusion reactor, and sends a team to investigate. Sheridan asks why he's doing it, and Carlson begins to become unhinged, talking about how he's suffered so why shouldn't anyone else?

In the reactor core, the team begins their search, while Sheridan notices that Carlson's pretty nervous. The bomb is located, and Garibaldi orders them to chance moving it. Sheridan asks where Carlson intends to go, he's been flagged for thirty light-years in every direction. Carlson demands Sheridan sit down, and the captain does, rather than risk setting him off, and turns off his link, which beeps, alerting Carlson.

Realizing he's been set up, Carlson tries to set off the bomb, but Sheridan tackles him, keeping him from dropping it, while the bomb is moved and then rocketed away from the station, right before Carlson manages to drop the switch. The bomb explodes, but the station is out of danger.

Carlson: No... it didn't. It's not fair! It's not fair!
Sheridan: (knocks Carlson out) What can I say? Life's tough sometimes.

He goes and lets Garibaldi in to take Carlson into custody. When Sheridan asks about everything else, Garibaldi mentions he thinks they found everyone from the last bomb. In the transport tube, Londo and G'Kar are at death's door.

In Medlab, Delenn comes to check on Lennier, who wakes up soon after. He doesn't seem happy at the prospect of having the Centauri's gratitude. Speaking of whom, a team finally manages to locate Londo and G'Kar. Londo is delighted, but G'Kar is resigned to not being rid of his nemesis yet, which annoys Londo.

Londo: Bastard!
G'Kar: Monster!
Londo: Fanatic!
G'Kar: Murderer!
Londo: You are insane!
G'Kar: And that is why we'll win!
Londo: Go and be the ambassador to Babylon 5, they say, it will be an easy assignment. Oh, I hate my life.
G'Kar: So do I.
Londo: SHUT UP!

This episode contains examples of:

  • Ass Shove: Where Sheridan hides his open commlink before talking to the bomber.
  • Big "NO!": G'Kar when the station crew rescues him and Londo.
  • Big "SHUT UP!": And Londo gets the last word this episode.
  • Bomb Disposal: Garibaldi's men find the final bomb and rig it to a jetpack to get it clear of the station Just in Time.
  • Brick Joke: The joke Londo tells to the comatose Lennier is repeated by Dr. Franklin and finished by Lennier as he wakes up.
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Contrived Coincidence: A completely random bombing spree manages to get Londo twice. The first instance was originally written with a random Centauri woman, but JMS decided Lennier saving a main character would have more impact.
  • Dead Man Switch: While Sheridan confronts Carlson.
  • Double Entendre: Before going off with Ivanova, Garibaldi asks Zack to explain the missionary position to the Drazi.
  • Freudian Excuse: Carlson lists the misfortunes he's had in recent months, but Sheridan puts him down anyway.
  • Hates Being Touched: Zack doesn't want to share his blessing.
  • Laughing Mad: G'Kar seems to stray into this for a while.
  • Lightbulb Joke: The afore-mentioned joke from Londo, which references the Centauri's obsession with the golden days of glory.
    How many Centauri does it take to change a lightbulb? Only one. But in the old days of the Centauri Republic, hundreds of servants would change thousands of lightbulbs at our slightest whim!
  • Locked in a Freezer: Londo and G'Kar get trapped in a transport tube by one of the bombs. Rather than help each other escape, G'Kar would rather watch Londo die.
  • Mad Bomber: Carlson.
  • Murder by Inaction: What G'Kar tries to do to Londo when they're trapped in the elevator, since killing him directly would result in the Centauri executing 500 Narns in reprisal. He's quite upset when they're both rescued at the end of the episode.
    G'Kar: But I don't have to kill you. I don't have to do anything, and I still get to watch you die! I find this most appealing!
  • Nothing Personal, it's just the times.
  • Oh, Crap!: When Sheridan is forced to sit down, causing his link to chirp audibly, both he and Carlson share one.
    Carlson: [beat] WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT!?
  • Pet the Dog: Londo's bedside vigil for Lennier.
  • Taking You with Me: The final bomb—placed near the station's fusion reactor—is rigged to a Dead Man Switch in Carlson's hand.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Carlson isn't very stable to begin with, but he becomes steadily less so while talking to Sheridan.
  • Volleying Insults: The last scene of the episode.
  • You're Insane!: Londo shouts this at G'Kar, who just retorts that that is why they'll win.
  • Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: Lennier is unhappy with the idea of the Centauri giving him a medal for saving Londo's life. It's not that Lennier is upset by Londo's gratitude and approval, but rather the fact that he fears the consequences of saving Londo's life, given the harm that Londo has caused and will cause. That, and Centauri ceremonies can probably be rather wearing to non-Centauri.
    Lennier: I did what I did because I believe all life is sacred. But when the object of your actions does not share that belief... I fear I have saved the present by sacrificing the future.