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Recap / Babylon Five S 03 E 12 Sic Transit Vir

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Vir's new bride is a killer.

Sic Transit Vir

Centauri Minister: Oh, I heard a new joke. Hehahaahhh. What is more dangerous than a locked room full of angry Narns?
Vir: Heh, I don't know. What is more dangerous than a locked room full of angry Narns?
Centuari Minister: One angry Narn with the key!
(Vir laughs, turns around, shakes his head and goes to his room, which is full of Narns)

Ivanova shows up in C&C in a bright, chipper mood ready for a new day…except for the fact that she forgot to get dressed. As she realizes this, she startles herself awake.

Vir is on Centauri Prime admiring the throne in the palace when Minister Virini comes to congratulate him on a good report, even though it clearly had Londo’s touch in places, something they found irritating. As Vir goes off to prepare for his trip to Babylon 5, the minister tells a joke about a room full of angry Narns. Vir laughs nervously then goes to his room, which is full of Narns.

Ivanova is venting to Sheridan about the dreams where she shows up to work totally…unprepared. Sheridan tells her it’s just her subconscious trying to make sense of all the changes, and it could be worse, she could be having the kind of dream where she’s naked.

Londo is in his quarters fighting a cunning enemy, an insect that has taken up residence in his kitchen, and since he can’t get an exterminator, he has to deal with it himself. Just as he vanquishes the first of them with a sword a beautiful Centauri girl arrives at his quarters.

Vir arrives on the station and wonders why Londo isn't meeting him. He asks a security guard if he has seen Londo, which he hasn't.

Sheridan finds Delenn and invites her to dinner, since it’s the first quiet time they’ve had in a while and he wants to make the most of it before the next crisis, and Delenn agrees.

Vir arrives at Londo’s quarters, who has just hidden something in his room and nonchalantly lounges on his couch reading a paper. He asks Vir about the royal court, and Vir says it's more or less the same. After a few more coy questions, Londo finally brings out his surprise, the girl from earlier, who somehow knows Vir’s name. Londo introduces her as Lyndisty and tells Vir she is here to become his wife. Vir is…floored.

They spend some time getting to know each other. The marriage was arranged by her mother and his uncle. She says Londo has told her all about him, to which he jokes it only the good parts, “It was a very short conversation!” Vir had wanted to marry for love but Lyndisty assures him when the time comes it will be.

Zack shows up on C&C with some reports of heavier than usual Narn traffic, which was arranged by someone name Abrahamo Lincolni, which is obviously not a Centauri name. When Ivanova checks which office they came from she’s struck speechless.

Vir and Lyndisty take a walk through the zen garden, Lyndisty flirting shamelessly, eventually kissing him, which overpowers Vir’s defenses.

Sometime later, Vir manages to pull himself away to meet with Ivanova. She wants to know about the transit papers. He didn’t have the authority to approve transfers, so he created someone who did. It’s to get the Narns away from Narn and to Centauri Prime, where conditions are generally much better.

In Sheridan’s quarters, he’s showing off his dish, flarn. Delenn is surpised and delighted at first but as she tries it her face changes and she asks about a picture behind him, adding salt while his back is turned.

Lyndisty catches up with Vir and asks him if the meeting went well, Vir says that it went as well as could be expected. A Narn approaches them and draws a knife. Vir tells Lyndisty to get behind him and tries to stop the Narn.

Sheridan gets a call about the attack and rushes off to help. He manages to keep either of them from getting killed, getting his arm sliced for his trouble, but as security shows up, the Narn yells “Shon’Kar”, and tries to attack again. Zack shoots and kills him.

Later Sheridan and Ivanova discuss the implications. The Shon’Kar means it’s personal and Sheridan orders her to look into the Narn attacker.

Lyndisty is giving Vir an After Action Patch Up and telling him how proud she is of him. Vir comments that every time he comes back to the station someone hits him, but he doesn't understand why this Narn attacked them.

Ivanova calls Vir to her office again and says there may be another Narn, the first one’s brother, and since Shon’Kar compels the family to fulfill their revenge, he is probably still in danger. She asks again if there’s anything he can tell her but he’s still clueless. When Ivanova asks about Lyndisty, he tells her that she’s his wife…almost wife, she is but not yet…it’s a long story. He then takes the opportunity to ask what women want. Ivanova flails around for an answer for a while, especially after Vir tells her he’s never gotten past One before.

Ivanova: You mean first base.
Vir: No, no, I mean one. You see, we have six. . . We have six, you see, and each one is a different level of intimacy and pleasure. So, you know, first you have one and that's eh-ngh. And then there's two, and then by the time you get to five, it's *pant, pant*...
Ivanova: Vir, I got it, I got it, I got it, I got it! I really don't know what to tell you, Vir. I've never really gotten this relationship thing down myself, okay? So I'm the last person in the world that should be giving out advice on this sort of thing. All I can say is enthusiasm, sincerity, genuine compassion and humor can carry you through any lack of experience with…high numerical value.
Vir: Oh, I’m going to remember that!

As he leaves she muses to herself, “Six, whoo!”

Delenn comes to see how Sheridan is doing, and starts helping him dress since his arm is still hurting. As they gaze at each other they start to move closer together, closing their eyes for

She tells him they have a serious problem, and asks him to meet her in Londo’s quarters, while Delenn hastily leaves. There Ivanova presents her findings. Vir had forged the transit papers, which Londo is surprised by, but the worst is that all of them, two thousand, are dead!

Ivanova: No wonder the Narns are after you, and anyone close to you!

Meanwhile, Lyndisty walks through a corridor, with a Narn following closely.

Londo is actually quite impressed, much to Sheridan and Ivanova’s disgust, but Vir protests that they’re not dead. He faked the deaths to allow them to go into hiding, since no one cared about dead Narns. He had them sent to colony worlds where they could get medical care and then return to Babylon 5 or other friendly ports. Londo is not happy, especially since he’s the one who sponsored Vir’s appointment. And there’s still one problem: Why is there a blood-oath on him?

Lyndisty finds Vir in the Zen Garden. She takes him to a “surprise”, the Narn who was stalking her earlier. She hasn’t killed him, she saved him for Vir. She tells him how her father worked on Narn essentially as an executioner, and trained her as well. This Narn came from a village they burned to the ground, and she presents Vir with the dagger he was going to use on her, encouraging him to kill the Narn with his own weapon.

Later, Vir is with Londo who has arranged for the closing of the Minbar mission. He’s making sure the records are purged and forbids Vir to speak of it ever again, and he will stay on Babylon 5 under Londo’s tutelage. It also puts the marriage on hold for the time being.

It isn’t the end of it, as Ivanova has usurped Abrahamo Lincolni, who still has the authority Vir gave him and isn’t known to Londo, to continue helping Narns escape to safety. She feels a little more complete now that she has another purpose beyond parking ships.

Vir is bidding farewell to Lyndisty, and each expresses the hope that the other will be able to change and get over their “backwards” ideas. She gives him one final kiss then heads off.

Vir: Well, what relationships don’t have their ups and downs?

This episode contains examples of:

  • Accidental Pun: Londo clarifies that the bug is an insect.
  • Acting Unnatural:
    • Subverted when Londo has just hidden Lyndisty and Vir arrives. Londo has time to sit down and pretend to have been reading a paper.
    • Played straight for about a second and then subverted when Lyndisty arrives in Londo's quarters. He stands there with a bug on a sword point for a moment before he quickly puts it down and greets her.
  • Actually, I Am Him: Inverted. Ivanova already knows that Vir is Lincolni.
  • Affably Evil: Lyndisty is impeccably polite and genial even while discussing the mass slaughter of Narns. This was inspired by an old news report JMS had seen with a bunch of ingratiatingly sweet old ladies...who suddenly started talking about how black people shouldn't be educated in the exact same tone.
  • After Action Patch Up: Lyndisty does this when she and Vir have been attacked.
  • All There in the Manual: The "flarn" looks a lot like tofu. In Dining On Babylon 5 it is recommended that humans who can't get ingredients from outside the homeworld use tofu when making flarn.
  • Almost Kiss: Sheridan and Delenn (damn you, Ivanova!)
  • Ambadassador: Vir
  • A Nazi by Any Other Name: The Centauri. Complete with resistance from within in the form of Vir Cotto.
  • Answer Cut: Ivanova asks who's office Lincolni's papers came through. Cut to Vir.
  • The Apocalypse Brings Out the Best in People: The genocide on Narn brought out the best in the former buffoon Vir.
  • Arranged Marriage: Vir has become important enough for noble families to start trying to match him up with their daughters.
  • Assurance Backfire: Without knowing Vir's situation Lyndisty tries to assure him that it can't be his fault. Vir asks her how she can say that without knowing the situation. Lyndisty's response is to blame the Narn for everything, which backfires further since Vir's situation is that his Underground Railroad that he used to help the Narn has been discovered.
  • Badass Bureaucrat: Through recordkeeping, Vir has freed thousands of Narns. How? By concocting a false identity and declaring them dead in Centauri databases, then smuggling them offworld. Although Vir got caught, his clean work creating the false identity meant its cover was still intact so Ivanova acquired it, embellished it a bit more with an altered photo of Captain Sheridan as a Centauri and continued the work.
  • Believing Their Own Lies: Lyndisty acts like she genuinely believes everything she says about the Narn. And she has probably been met with a lot of aggression. It's not like getting your planet bombed back to the stone age would make anyone angry.
  • Beneath the Mask: Vir spends most of the episode acting like everything is fine. When he is alone after his first meeting with Ivanova he looks worried until Lyndisty catches up with him. Then he spins around as he is putting the mask back on. The mask slips a bit when Lyndisty asks about his meeting.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Sheridan and station security when Vir and Lyndisty are being attacked.
  • Big Secret: Vir has been smuggling Narns to safety while registering them as dead in Centauri databases. He seems to think that the fewer people who know about it, the better (and is justified when you remember who the Centauri Emperor is). This gets him suspected for actually killing them.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Vir's Underground Railroad is exposed and he is demoted from his position on Minbar. His bride turns out to be Cute and Psycho. Nonetheless, he did lead 2000 Narns to safety and Ivanova is taking over as Lincolni.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology: Vir explains to Ivanova that the Centauri have six... Well, they have six.
  • Blatant Lies: No, Vir, the meeting with the commander did not go as well as could be expected. Whatever the plan was, it didn't involve Ivanova already knowing about Lincolni.
  • Breather Episode: After the heavy events of the last few episodes, this one has some much lighter material. Lampshaded by Sheridan when inviting Delenn to dinner.
  • Bright Is Not Good: Lyndisty likes to wear bright colors. She also likes to kill Narns.
  • Bug War:
    • Londo finds himself having to deal with the insects that have invaded his quarters since he can't get an exterminator in.
    • Vir uses this trope as an excuse when he had been touching the throne. He says that he may have touched the drapes a bit, but there was this large flying thing that he tried to swat. Bonus points for nothing being there (see Does This Remind You of Anything? below).
  • The Bus Came Back: Vir is back on the station.
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Played with. Lyndisty is first clueless about why the Narns are attacking her, then she studies one of them when he is unconscious and remembers that he and his brother escaped from a village her family "purified".
  • Call-Back:
  • Carpe Diem:
    • "Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die."
    • Lyndisty gives a speech about how we are given time in tiny boxes and can't find any when we need them.
  • Cassandra Truth: The Narns went voluntarily. Granted, they didn't go to "work camps".
  • Catapult Nightmare: Ivanova has one in the beginning of the episode.
  • Central Theme: Vir embodies the morality of the whole series in this episode.
  • Change the Uncomfortable Subject: Zack is enjoying the view and comments about feeling naked in front of the universe. Ivanova goes from commenting on the view right along with him to asking about why he came to C&C.
  • Character Development: An important episode in Vir's story.
  • Compliment Backfire: Londo compliments Vir on his initiative to kill 2000 Narns. Vir ducks out of the way.
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Conveniently Placed Sharp Thing: Downplayed. Londo jumps backwards and discovers his sword during the Bug War.
  • Cute and Psycho: Lyndisty.
  • Daddy's Little Villain: Lyndisty.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Vir likes to wear dark colors. He also likes to save Narns.
  • Deadly Euphemism:
    • The Narn are being "put to sleep" by Lyndisty and her family.
    • Earlier in the episode Vir is the first to acknowledge that the "work camps" are forced labor camps.
  • Death Faked for You: Vir is able to smuggle Narns offworld by officially declaring them dead, as no one on Centauri Prime cares about a dead Narn.
  • Decadent Court: According to Vir everything is status quo in the Centauri royal court.
  • Declaration of Protection: Vir gives this to Lyndisty after they have been attacked.
  • Defector from Decadence: Being sent to Minbar seems to have this effect on the Centauri. Vir found a way to help the Narn and according to Word of the Great Maker the last envoy dropped his Centauri citizenship and was last heard of trying to grow a bone.invoked
  • Defends Against Their Own Kind: Vir saving Narns from other Centauri.
  • Derailed for Details: Londo is complaining about a bug in his quarters. Then he is talking about an alien race he likes because they are terrible at cards because of their compound eyes.
  • Description Cut: Played with. Right after Ivanova says that it's no wonder the Narn are after Vir and anyone close to him we see a Narn following Lyndisty. She is their real target, Vir just got in the way earlier.
  • Dehumanization: Desentienzation: Lyndisty comments that the Narn she's captured isn't really aware.
  • Disappointed in You:
    • Londo tells Vir that he had expected better.
    • Earlier in the episode Ivanova looks disappointed when she hears that Vir has been transporting Narns to "work camps".
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?:
    • In-universe example: Londo's Bug War resembles the Centauri view of the Narn. Bugs look bigger if you're scared of them, and Londo's estimation of how big they were was quite off. He also said that they are evolving right before his eyes, and the Narn are now working for station security.
    • Vir's work against his own government on behalf of the Narn has led to some fans referring to the episode as Vir's list.
    • The general attitude of the Centauri towards the Narn (particularly Lyndisty's statement about Narns while she and Vir were in the stone garden), reminds one of the opinion of white supremacists towards people of color.
  • Don't Explain the Joke: The Centauri Minister in the cold open appears to be attempting one for his "room full of angry Narn" joke since all that Vir could manage was polite laughter. Still, the Minister enjoyed his own joke anyway.
  • Dude, Not Funny!: Vir pretends to be amused at Virini's joke, but then turns around and shakes his head.
  • Evilutionary Biologist: Lyndisty talks about rooting out the aggression by killing "aggressive" Narns.
  • Facial Dialogue:
    • Ivanova dreams that the rest of C&C does this.
    • Vir spends much of the episode doing this, notably when he is introduced to Lyndisty and they get to know each other in Londo's quarters and later when she tells him about killing whole villages on Narn.
    • Ivanova and Zack do this when Zack shows her who's office Lincolni's papers came through.
  • Fan of the Past: Word of the Great Maker is that Sheridan is this. When he arrived on the station he quoted Lincoln, which may have inspired Vir's name for his fake bureaucrat.invoked
  • Fantastic Racism: Lyndisty
  • Foreshadowing:
    • When Vir first meets Lyndisty he gives her the same wave he gave Morden.
    • We first see Vir in a subtle reminder that he will one day become emperor.
    • Ivanova's advise to Vir is that "enthusiasm, sincerity, genuine compassion and humor can carry you through any lack of prior experience with high numerical value". This is a description of Marcus.
    • The minister makes a joke about one angry Narn with a key being dangerous. A few episodes ago G'Kar called the humans "the key".
    • Lyndisty's comment to Vir that they don't have a lot of time (before security gets involved) foreshadows that she's captured the Narn. That, and she was last seen being followed by one angry Narn.
    • At the end of the teaser some of the Narns are actually smiling at Vir.
    • Vir says that the conditions on Narn are very bad. We will see just how bad later in the season.
    • The plot of a Centauri freeing 2000 Narns will come back around when Londo makes a deal with G'Kar to have Refa abandoned with the Narn resistance.
    • Lyndisty's answer when Vir doesn't understand why they were attacked is "With the Narn, who can say? You know how they are."
    • Vir talks about Lyndisty's kiss leveling several small towns.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus:
    • When Sheridan says that the break from the wars will be short there's a woman who gets extremely wide eyes when examining something. Doubles as Funny Background Event.
    • The papers that Zack gives to Ivanova in C&C have the Centauri symbol resembling their hair on the back and pictures of Narns on the front.
  • Fourth-Date Marriage: Lyndisty is convinced that Vir will want this.
  • Gender-Neutral Writing: "I knew if I followed you long enough I would find the murderer."
  • Good Running Evil: We find out how Vir handled being in charge of a Centauri embassy.
  • Go Through Me: Vir gets between Lyndisty and an angry Narn.
  • Got Me Doing It: When Vir asks Ivanova what women want when they're "intimate", Vir uses a clasping hand gesture (with the fingers sticking out, like the six Centauri....uhm.... "attributes"). After they finish talking, Ivanova bids Vir farewell, looks down and notices that she's doing the same clasping gesture. She promptly stops.
  • Hahaha No: Downplayed. Vir can't protest openly, just shake his head at Virini's joke as he leaves. This is after several attempts at walking out of the throne room.
  • Heroic BSoD: Causes Vir to blurt out the truth in front of Londo.
  • Hero of Another Story: Vir has been the hero of 2000 Narns' stories for the first half of this season.
  • He's Dead, Jim: Zack instantly knows that the Narn he just shot is dead.
  • Hidden Depths: In-universe. Ivanova underestimates Vir and one could argue that Londo's conversation where he told Lyndisty about Vir's good parts was so short because Vir was hiding his best parts. Of course Londo doesn't consider saving 2000 Narns a good thing.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: At least ironic in hindsight. After they had been attacked by G'Kar Londo told Vir not to let anyone in the royal court think of his position as a joke.
  • Humble Hero: Vir "I've never been a hero before" Cotto doesn't think he did anything heroic when he saved 2000 Narns. His uncle told Lyndisty that he is capable of a "quite enchanting and well deserved humility". Lyndisty notes that she's not quite sure what he meant with that, but she's sure it is good.
  • The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: Lyndisty manages to capture the Narn that was stalking her.
  • I Can Change My Beloved: Both Vir and Lyndisty think the other one can change. Vir hopes that he doesn't.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: In an unusual good example Vir says that he had to do something to help the Narn. Londo's response is that he in turn will have to deal with Vir.
  • Improvised Weapon: Londo throws anything he can find at the bugs before he finds himself backed up against the wall his sword is on. The next time he hears the bugs he start improvising again.
  • Invented Individual: Abrahamo Lincolni.
  • I Regret Nothing: A variant is used. Vir doesn't regret that he smuggled Narns to safety, only that he wasn't able to save more of them.
  • Ironic Echo: Lyndisty says that Vir's star is rising. That's what everyone was saying about Londo not that long ago.
  • I Should Have Been Better: Vir's reaction in the Zen Garden after his Underground Railroad has been exposed. He doesn't actually say it; he doesn't need to. His face says it all.
  • It Gets Easier: According to Lyndisty it's really quite easy to kill Narns after the first few.
  • It's All About Me: Londo's reaction when hearing about Vir's Underground Railroad is to ask if Vir realizes what he has done to him.
  • It's a Long Story:
    • And it has to do with the Narns. Vir sure can be vague when he tries, this is after he has told Lyndisty that he was doing something good, only now it's something quite bad. For him at least.
    • Vir also says this when he explains that Lyndisty is his soon to be wife to Ivanova.
  • It's Personal: The Shon'Kar.
  • It's What They Do: Both Lyndisty and Londo use this as an explanation for why a Narn would attack Vir and Lyndisty.
  • Jumped at the Call: Vir took his chance to smuggle Narns to safety even if he was far removed from the situation on Narn (especially after getting Reassigned to Antarctica) and no one would have thought anything of it if he just did his job.
  • Karma Houdini: Lyndisty
  • Karmic Death: The Narns attempt to give Lyndisty this. It doesn't work.
  • Kill It with Fire: Lyndisty mentions burning villages on Narn.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Downplayed. The bugs make their second appearance right after Londo insults Vir.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: Ivanova smoothly covers over her embarrassing dream while still getting the point across by saying she was completely unprepared for work (ie, naked). She then turns around with the "that was close" expression, but manages to keep the act up when Sheridan tells her that it would have been worse if she had been naked.
  • Lesser of Two Evils: Subverted. Vir first tells Ivanova that being sent to work close to Centauri Prime is preferential to being left on Narn. We later find out that the Narns who have been sent to work have actually been sent to safety and registered as dead in Centauri databases.
  • Let Us Never Speak of This Again: In an unusually dark example of this trope, Londo tells Vir that he's not to speak about what he did on Minbar to anyone. It may indeed be a good idea not to tell other Centauri, but Londo made it clear that he was more worried about the "scandal".
  • Literal-Minded: Delenn's reaction when Sheridan asks if he can "see her tonight" is to ask if he's not seeing her now and joke about being invisible.
  • Longing Look:
    • Sheridan directs one of the wistful, "I can't believe I'm that lucky" type toward Delenn after she accepts his dinner invitation, in a lighter example of the trope. That man is besotted and it is adorable.
    • Vir keeps giving Lyndisty these looks in the zen garden.
  • Look, a Distraction!: Delenn does this to get Sheridan to turn around so she can put more salt on the flarn.
  • Makes Sense In Context: "I'm sorry, I was otherwise engaged. Engaged and married as it is. Not that I knew about it..."
  • Marry for Love: Vir wants to do this. Lyndisty assures him that if he gives her a chance they will marry for love.
  • Meaningful Echo: Both Sheridan and Vir say that they "had to do something". Sheridan about Vir and Lyndisty being attacked, Vir to help the Narn.
  • Mercy Kill: Lyndisty claims the her family has been more humane than the Narn deserved.
  • Moment Killer:
    • Ivanova's video call is automatically answered when Sheridan and Delenn are having a moment.
    • The attack on Vir and Lyndisty interrupted their date earlier in the episode.
  • Mood Whiplash: One minute you have Sheridan and Delenn flirting before they get interrupted. Then Ivanova is confronting Londo about Vir having killed 2000 Narns. But wait, they're not dead, Vir saved them. And now he wishes that he had saved more of them and Londo is disappointed that he was helping them in the first place. All this in two scenes.
  • Mundane Made Awesome:
    • Londo's Bug War (see above).
    • The moment where Sheridan officially declares Ivanova the official Babylon 5 Sneak in residence, complete with swelling music. He then tells her to get away from his workstation.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Ivanova's face when she realizes that she had just confronted Londo about what turned out to be Vir's Underground Railroad.
  • My God, You Are Serious!: Vir realizes that Lyndisty means everything she just said about the Narn.
  • Never Our Fault: Lyndisty tries to explain how it can't be a Centauri's fault when she hears that Vir's problems has to do with the Narn after Vir has told her that she doesn't even know what the situation is. Vir looked like he wanted to believe her until she started blaming the Narn for everything that they come in contact with falling apart.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Save 2000 Narns, get accused of killing them and demoted when it's discovered that you saved them. Way to go, karma.
  • No Kill like Overkill: Resulting in a bug on a sword point.
  • No One Gets Left Behind: When they are attacked Lyndisty refuses to leave without Vir.
  • Not in My Backyard!: Vir claims that there are many Centauri who would rather see the Narn suffer back home than be given "comfortable quarters" in "work camps" too close to Centauri prime, even if that would mean that they were working for the Centauri and would be too far away from Narn to rebuild anything.
  • Not Me This Time: Londo is honestly clueless when Ivanova and Sheridan confront him about those 2000 Narns his former attaché had killed.
  • Not Now, Kiddo: Vir attempts to interrupt Ivanova when she is confronting Londo. They continue to argue about the "mass-murder".
  • "Not Wearing Pants" Dream: Ivanova has the fully naked kind in the beginning.
    • Claudia Christian apparently had the option of doing it naked or in her nightgown. She opted for naked because it was funnier that way.
    • Interestingly, the fact that she's short on clothing is only the second thing we notice wrong with the scene. The first? Ivanova is actually chipper in the morning.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: However the details of Vir's rescue operations happened it's likely to fit this trope.
  • One Dialogue, Two Conversations: Londo asks Vir if anything interesting happened and Vir looks like he wonders why he is in trouble. On rewatch it's clear that he's worried that Londo has discovered his Underground Railroad. Londo knows that Vir is to be married and is getting ready to introduce Lyndisty to him.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Played for laughs when Londo realizes that there was more than one bug.
    • Vir has this reaction when Ivanova asks him about Lincolni.
  • Ordered Apology: Londo sends Vir to make up to Lyndisty as best as he can. Vir defies this by telling her that he thinks she can change.
  • Out of Focus:
    • This is the first episode that Garibaldi isn't in.
    • Despite the focus on Narn-Centauri relations G'Kar is nowhere to be seen.
  • Out of Order: This episode and "A Late Delivery from Avalon" were swapped. This explains why there are Drazi, Vree and Minbari ships outside the station in both Ivanova's dream and reality; they were supposed to have signed up to protect the station in the previous episode.
  • Palette-Swapped Alien Food: Ivanova and Sheridan drink something that's dark green with their breakfast.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Played with. The Centauri don't realize that Abrahamo Lincolni isn't a Centauri name. The humans laugh at it.
  • Pest Episode: An insect takes up residence in Londo's quarters.
  • Poor Communication Kills:
    • Ivanova doesn't tell Vir that she's taking up the mantel as Lincolni.
    • Vir had a chance to tell Ivanova the truth when she first asked him about Lincolni.
  • Pun-Based Title:
    • "Sic Transit Vir" could be translated from Latin as "So Goes Man" or "So Goes Vir", referring to Vir Cotto.
    • The phrase "Sic transit" is often used in the phrase "Sic transit gloria mundi" which translates to "Thus passes the glory of the world".
    • In addition to that [sic] is used when you quote something with an error to say that you're quoting it directly. This is averted in the episode since the transit papers had Abrahamo Lincolni's name on them and not Vir Cotto's.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: "I. Want. This. Thing. Dead!"
  • Punished for Sympathy: Vir's efforts gets him demoted.
  • Rage Within the Machine: Vir has been working against his own government while officially representing them.
  • Reaction Shot:
    • Ivanova gets a few of these. Notable examples are when Sheridan notes that her dream could've been worse and during Vir's explanation of the Centauri's Bizarre Alien Biology.
    • Vir gets one when Ivanova walks past him after revealing that she knows about Lincolni.
    • Vir gets the "I want to believe you" kind when Lyndisty tells him that whatever the problem is it can't be his fault.
  • Reassignment Backfire: Sending Vir to Minbar really didn't work in favor for the Centauri.
  • Red Herring: The Narn wasn't trying to kill Vir.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Creating a fake bureaucrat and having him approve of transit papers for those your government want broken/dead and officially declaring them dead while smuggling them to safety. And if that wasn't enough Vir was meeting with Narns. In the Centauri royal palace.
  • Restricted Rescue Operation: Heavily implied. Vir was stationed on Minbar and set up a secret identity to smuggle Narn refugees there while declaring them dead in Centauri databases. He would've had to smuggle a few at a time to avoid suspicion without knowing how many he could get away with while spending time on the bureaucracy of it. Whatever ships he used had a limited size. He talks as if he was making decisions on whom to get out.
    Vir: They were females and children, some of the local leaders, the ones who kept their language and their beliefs. Most of them were injured from us bombing their world and sending them to forced labor camps. They weren't getting proper treatment. If I hadn't gotten them out they would've died.
  • Right Under Their Noses: Whatever those Narns were doing in Vir's room it's fairly certain that other Centauri would not approve. Word of the Great Maker is that the minister who joked about a room full of Narns didn't know about Vir's Underground Railroad.invoked
  • Rudely Hanging Up: The end of a phone call in which Londo has gotten increasingly freaked out at the idea of having the wait for an exterminator.
    Londo: Don't hang up on me. Don't hang up on me! [beep] He hang up on me.
  • Running Gag: Everyone except Londo reminds Ivanova of her "Not Wearing Pants" Dream.
  • Samaritan Syndrome: Vir has been chomping at the bit to help the Narns ever since the war ended. With his posting to Minbar he finally has a chance and takes it. Unfortunately, he's forced to reveal the details in front of Londo who promptly shuts the whole thing down, which is probably fortunate for Vir in that Londo just confines him to B5. Anyone else would have probably had him for treason, and then tried to use it against Londo. All this, and Vir's final comment about his rescue operation is still that his only regret is that he wasn't able to save more of them.
  • Saying Too Much: Vir reveals that he saved 2000 Narns... in front of Londo.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: The Centauri policies don't stop Vir.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: The pak'ma'ra takes one look at the Narn, Vir and Lyndisty before turning around and walking away.
  • Script-Reading Doors: Or lights in this case. The lights wait for Lyndisty to add "gently please" before doing anything.
  • Shipper on Deck: Londo is excited about the idea of Vir and Lyndisty getting married.
  • "Shut Up" Kiss: Lyndisty figures out how to stop Vir from rambling.
  • Sigil Spam: The symbol of the Centauri republic resembles their hair and is quite appropriately on the back of their official papers. If you look closely you can also see a whole wall and a door decorated with the shape when Vir is leaving the throne room.
  • The So-Called Coward: Played with. The humans on the station thought that Vir had turned into a deadly paperpusher and were proven wrong. The Centauri don't consider saving 2000 Narns a good thing.
  • Social Climber: Implied with Lyndisty. When Vir points out that they don't know anything about each other Lyndisty demonstrates that she knows what his title is.
  • Soft-Spoken Sadist: Lyndisty sounds like she's describing a nice and sunny day with lots of flowers when she's talking about killing whole villages on Narn. In fact, she compares the fires burning everything to "brilliant flowers, embracing the spring; bright buds, opening and spreading wider". This is right after she was polite to the lightbulbs.
  • So Proud of You:
    • Blink and you'll miss it, but when Vir explains that he had the Lincolninarns sent to other worlds and got them medical care Sheridan smiles at him before the camera cuts away.
    • Lyndisty says this to Vir during the After Action Patch Up.
  • The Spymaster: Ivanova spends a great deal of the episode trying to figure out what her role is now that the station's no longer under EarthForce. She eventually decides that she's the station's resident "sneak".
  • Stealth Insult:
    • Oh, don't worry, Vir. I only told her the good parts. It was a very short conversation.
    • Later in the episode Vir agrees with Londo that Lyndisty is a true Centauri.
  • Stepford Smiler: Lyndisty is Ax-Crazy hidden behind a smile.
  • Stunned Silence: Vir is uncharacteristically silent during Lyndisty's explanation of her visits to Narn.
  • Sue Donym: Sheridan and Ivanova are investigating reports of a Centauri who apparently has ordered the deaths of thousands of Narns. The name? Abrahamo Lincolni. Granted, the Centauri probably wouldn't recognize the name of a major Earth historical figure, but to humans, especially a Fan of the Past like Sheridan, it's a very obvious case of an assumed name.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Vir quickly insists that he didn't touch a thing in the throne room. He also quickly backs away from the throne despite Virini's POV shot clearly showing him examining that chair.
  • Take Up My Sword:
    • The Narn Shon'Kar is basically an oath for anyone in the family to take revenge on a particular target when the opportunity presents itself, whether or not the original oath maker has failed. In this case he has, and his brother picks up the hunt.
    • In a more figurative version of this, Ivanova decides to continue Vir's ruse of "killing" Narns in order to lead them to safety, as the "Abrahamo Lincolni" fake identity was never compromised.
  • The Talk: Once Vir realizes he's been shafted into an arranged marriage, he takes the opportunity to ask Ivanova for advise about courting women.
  • Tempting Fate: Played with in the beginning of the episode. The minister tells a joke that involved a locked room full of angry Narns and Vir walks into a room full of Narns. Later we find out that they don't have any reason to be angry at him.
  • This Is My Chair: Sheridan tells Ivanova to get out of his chair.
  • Through Her Stomach: Sheridan attempts to impress Delenn by making flarn. His cooking leaves something to be desired, but Delenn isn't going to tell him that!
  • Title Drop: The German title for the episode is "Eine wahre Centauri", a true Centauri.
  • Token Good Teammate: Vir establishes himself as this and agrees with Londo that Lyndisty is a true Centauri.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The ads made no bones about Lyndisty's actions, prompting JMS to warn the fans on message boards to avoid them if they could.
  • Trash of the Titans: Sheridan's kitchen is quite the mess when he's been making flarn.
  • Uncanny Valley: Lyndisty's eyes are always wide open and she rarely blinks except for when she's flirting with Vir in the zen garden, and even then it's mostly when she's seen in profile or at a distance. Or both.
  • Underground Railroad: Vir has been running one to smuggle Narns to safety.
  • Unwanted Gift Plot: Vir doesn't like being given a Narn to kill, Lyndisty considers it the perfect wedding gift. We don't see how the scene is resolved.
  • Villain of Another Story: This is the only time we see Lyndisty.
  • Wham Line: "They're not dead!"
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: After Lyndisty has captured the Narn she offers Vir the honor of killing him. Vir is obviously reluctant, but to refuse might expose his true sentiments... and we never see how the scene is resolved. Word of the Great Maker is that a deleted scene included a line about the Narn being in Medlab. Or, rather, the next scene was trimmed by one line...that one. His defense is that it was a late editing session. invoked
  • What You Are in the Dark:
    • Vir was representing the Centauri on Minbar. Minbar was officially neutral in the war between Centauri and Narn. Therefore no one would have thought anything of it if Vir just did his job. Instead he found the time to set up an Underground Railroad for the Narn, proving that he was the right person in the right place at the right time.
    • To a lesser extent (since some of her allies already knew of the situation) Ivanova when she decided to take over as Lincolni, noting that getting even one Narn out of danger would be a victory.
  • With Friends Like These...: Londo is at his nicest when Lyndisty tells Vir that he told her everything about him while they were waiting and Vir looks worried.
    Londo: Oh, don't worry, Vir. I only told her the good parts. It was a very short conversation.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are:
    • Some fans' reaction to Vir lamenting that no one would ever think him a hero for his efforts. They point out that the Narns he smuggled to safety must surely appreciate his efforts.
    • In-universe, Virini tells Vir that he should follow his own judgement in the future when making reports instead of letting Londo rewrite them. Vir looks happy.
  • You Are Not My Type: Inverted. Vir is worried that he is not Lyndisty's type.
  • Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: Both played straight and inverted. Vir is clearly not happy when Londo approves of his "mass-murder" and even less happy when Londo's berating him for actually saving the Narns he declared killed. In both cases the shame seems more directed at Londo, since Vir does not regret what he did.