Babylon Podcast #5: Kurt DeFilipps / The Gathering

Welcome to Show #5!

(L to R) Peter Jurasik, Kurt DeFilipps, Andreas Katsulas

Interview: Kurt DeFilipps, Assistant Prop Master (that’s Kurt, in the middle there).

Kurt talks with us about his time as a prop wrangler, making sure all of those props were operational and on set on time, that the food used on screen was in the right place and the right time, and the secret recipe behind the Zocalo’s spare drink collector. Kurt’s also sent us some great B5 photos that he’s letting us post here on the website later.

Then, Tim and Summer finish up their discussion and the picking of nits of “The Gathering” (Pilot), including playing the opening sequence from the original version of the pilot, with music by Stewart Copeland.

Don’t forget to send us feedback! You can call and tell us what you think… and likely hear it played on the show.

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Promo: Treks in SciFi Podcast


  1. Hi guys. First off let me say my wife and I are big fans of the podcasts. We really enjoy hearing from the cast and crew, as well as your insights on the show.
    I just wanted to make a quick point on this episode. In discussing the original music from The Gathering, you guys kinda ripped into Stewart Copeland’s score pretty hard. I definitely agree with you that it wasn’t right for this film, but I enjoyed getting to hear it on your show, as taken on its own I found it entertaining. If you aren’t aware he was the drummer for The Police, and has also done many other film scores. I find it interesting that the musician chosen to replace him for the series (Franke) was also a drummer, in the group Tangerine Dream. And of course I love Franke’s music; Babylon 5 has to be the best TV soundtrack by far.
    Anyway, great work on the podcasts, we will be looking forward to future episodes.

  2. I have to agree with Greg. The score wasn’t so bad. I still like Franke’s music, but Copeland had an interesting approach. And hey, he was in The Police!

  3. yes, I was aware of Copeland’s pedigree ( I also like his Klark Kent stuff). And the Police recorded “Walking On The Moon”, so I suppose there’s an SF connection in there somewhere ๐Ÿ™‚

    As for TV soundtracks, Franke’s work tops the list, but the work Alexander Courage and Sol Kaplan did for TOS era Trek runs a pretty close second. Where do you guys stand on the music Evan Chen created for “Crusade”?

  4. Ben Hall (UK) says

    Another cracking ep. To be honest after the marathon of last weeks I was hoping for more, but hey, im happy with what we got!

    It was interesting to hear the original musical score from The Gathering, while it wasn’t technically that bad, it really didn’t have the gravitas that Frankes score brought to the show. I think light wait and generic sums it up quit well.

    In regards to the Chen score of Crusade, well that’s a contentious point isn’t it. I remember at the time the fans would have liked nothing more than to hear Franke again, but I can see why JMS felt that a change in style and feel was needed. He wanted to set the show apart but still keep it in the universe, perhaps its difference and the changes made was one of the problems for it. Though as we all know and im sure will be discussed further by you guys the politics surrounding the cancellation of Crusade are legendary amongst the fans.

    The interview as ever was interesting and fun, with the behind the scenes stuff always keeping my attention and my ears pricked up. ๐Ÿ™‚

    So thanks again for another great show. As always, Looking forward to next week.

  5. Chen’s music is awesome too. I have to say that when I pop Call to Arms or Crusade in the DVD player, following B5 especially, I’m still expecting to hear Franke and it always throws me for a loop. But I’m always surprised that, following the moment of disappointment that I’m not about to hear a Franke score, Chen’s music really fits well with the mood of Crusade.

    Love the podcasts – can’t wait for more!

  6. I didn’t think I ripped Copeland’s score at all… I just thought that the music changed the tone being set for the story. I also think that’s something JMS had in mind as well.

    It’s not bad music… but I can’t imagine how it would have worked in the series. What kind of theme would there have been during Shadow attacks? What kind of pace would there have been during any of G’Kar’s speeches?

    It’s probably not entirely fair to compare powerful scenes we have set in DVD now with music that was only available for one particular pilot movie, but sometimes my mind goes places like that.

    And yes, I know his work with The Police very well, from the albums and the many concerts I used to go to back in the day. I was excited when I saw in the credits that he’d done the music (back when I originally watched it), but honestly, does it stick in your soul like Franke’s theme does?

  7. Hi all,

    Just wanted to add my support to your cast. Major fan of B5 from the very first time it aired on Channel 4 in the UK all those years ago, have all the DVDs etc and adding to the book and music collections as I go, so hearing from the Signal podcast that you were doing a B5 I was really excited. The B5 verse is so vast theres tons of different aspects you can explore.

    A few suggestions if I may: first, with regards to the Gathering music, I have from various sources the original Copeland and Franke scores which you may want to use for comparison. Also I know this is early days yet, but i hope that future casts will expand beyond just a review of a particular episode. For example there are the novelisations, short stories, comic books, soundtracks, plus the new JMS scriptbooks which provide gems of information on the creation of the series and on the development of each episode, plus the insight into working in the TV industry at that time. I’ve got the first three but need to clear some illustration committments before I get time to read them properly. If you’d like I can do reviews of each book as they are released, which you may want to include in the cast at some point. A friend of mine is a massive Franke fan and again may be able to provide some interesting comments.

    I may also be able to contact some of the original artists on the B5 comic, some of whom are still working.

    All this before even looking at JMS other work, CRUSADE, LEGEND OF THE RANGERS, or any of the many fan projects!

    Like a giant in the playground, JMS has left his toys behind. And there’s plenty of them to play with!

    All the best


  8. Philip Lazenby, Carol Hopwood says

    It’s wonderful to hear the voices of the stars of Babylon 5, discussing their roles and sharing other ‘tidbits’ about not only the making of, but also of the program itself – we’re starved of that contact here in the UK – long may these podcasts continue!

    Philip and Carol
    King’s Lynn
    United Kingdom

  9. Great episode guys! Keep it up. It is nice to have some more fuel to feed the B5 fire.

    I don’t think Chen’s music is that bad for the most part. There were a few instances in Crusade where it made my skin crawl. I do know that he really upset some fans to the point where that is all they will comment on when I mention Crusade. I do think it is interesting to note how other series have followed in the footsteps of jms by going with the non traditional route as far as music. Firefly and Battlestar Galactica are the ones that leap out at me. I’m sure there are others.

    I would love to hear what you had to contribute baz! I say go for it!!


  10. Yes, BSG is certainly different when it comes to music. You won’t hear any big orchestral, typical Science Fiction score in that series! I think it’s because they wanted BSG to be more about people & not “hardware”. As for Chen’s Crusade score, it was interesting but never quite fit the series.

  11. I think Crusade’s opening theme fits, but some of the incidentals didn’t quite work for me.

    But I have to admit that the music used in the alien porno film (from “The Needs of Earth”) always gets me giggling, just from remembering how Gideon and Dr Chambers were commenting while watching it.

    Stylistically, I think there are parts of the new BSG themes that would have fit Crusade quite nicely.

  12. Hi all,

    I’ve spoke to my friend Karl who is a major Franke fan and he was already considering putting together a soundtrack discussion podcast. He’s also ordering Frankes back catalogue from Amazon so he’ll be putting a pitch together and I’ll make sure it’s up to scratch before submitting it for the B5Cast crew to review.

    Any thoughts on the scriptbooks/comics/novels etc?



  13. Hi!
    First of all, thank yo ufor the B5 Podcast – it’s a great idea nad I’ve been listening enthusiastically to if as I cycle home from work!

    On”The Gathering”, I’ll have to dig it out to doublecheck this , but I’m pretty sure the original VHS tape I have (the one released by Warners here in the UK) contains the original pilot – certainly the cover doesn’t mention the title being “The Gathering”.
    Anyone in the UK who hasn’t got it might have a look around in the charity shops or on eBay if they want to see the original!
    Au Res.,

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