Babylon Podcast #160: Learning Curve (Season 5)

Welcome to Show #160!

The real Summer is back in the saddle, and disagreements about flying kites ensue. But seriously, Happy Father’s Day to all you father types out there.

Jeffrey also shares some info about more goodies from the secret Vorlon memorabilia stash.

Deep Geeking: This week, Tim and Summer delve into “Learning Curve”, and Tim admits that while he likes this episode, there are a few dramatic elements throughout the story where the cliches fell flat for him.

Was it pacing? Timing? Something else entirely?

Discussion: Listener Mike Y throws out the suggestion that Crusade might be able to continue in audio dramas; Sean admires the B5 related in-jokes that Jeffrey has been incorporating into the Go To Meeting ads, and would desperately love it if JMS could join Tim and Summer in Deep Geeking on “Sleeping in Light”.

Summer recounts the story of discovering some items of interest on her final stash of VHS tapes, including the Sciography episode for the original Battlestar Galactica, and an episode of SF Vortex featuring JMS, Harlan Ellison, and Herb and Yvonne Solow.

Enter the contest to win a free iTunes copy of the Harlan Ellison documentary Dreams with Sharp Teeth

Mike from Charlotte tries to defend Zima. We don’t know why.

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Babylon 5 Information Gathering: If you know of a dead or abandoned B5 related website that may be in need of a new home, let Summer know! Maybe we can mirror it here or house it on a sister site.

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Promo: The Gmail Podcast
Promo: Dragon Page “Cover to Cover”


  1. Steve Wynne says

    Another great show this week, but after seeing the tweet regarding your next guest, I only have one question to ask “is it next week yet?”

    Way to go Jeffrey, you really came through.

  2. Jim Stiles says

    Correct information on Juneteenth:

  3. GaryTheGreat says

    This episode really felt tacked on to the series. It would have made a great episode for Legend of the Rangers, but as a B5 episode it seemed out of place. Other than some small development for Lochley, and a too staged exchange between her and Garabaldi, I don’t think this episode did much to advance the storyline, or the primary characters.

  4. Tacked on? Wow… and here I thought I was going to be harshly treated this year for my disappointment with Season 5 as a whole 🙂

  5. Re: the “Adventures of Apocalypse Al”, the radio drama was completed but it never was put on the air.

  6. That might be difficult since it’s an odd format – Twenty 5-minute episodes. It’d be great to get on CD, though.

  7. Gary The Great says

    As Tim explains it, the post happily ever after aspect of Season 5 has begun to intrigue me, but this episode falls short. I can’t help but wonder what type of episode would have filled its place had Claudia not left.

  8. manynote says

    I was a little surprised Summer couldn’t (or at least didn’t) fill folks in on Juneteenth. Understandably, it’s a bigger deal among African-Americans than among Caucasian-Americans.

    BTW, a few episodes ago (don’t remember which one anymore) Tim (I think) mentioned that orbital mechanics was rather counter-intuitive–but what he described was even weirder than reality. To achieve a higher orbit you *don’t* slow down, you speed up. Once you get to the higher orbit your orbital velocity is slower than it was in the lower orbit, but you don’t slow down to get there. Niven has a succinct description of it that the characters in _The Integral Trees/The Smoke Ring_ have to learn to survive: “East takes you out, out takes you west, west takes you in, in takes you east, north and south bring you back.”

  9. Season 5 is my least favorite year as it is I think with most fans. This is to me one of the best of the season. Mostly, we see what happens to and the results of the actions by the mature, experienced people in charge. This story breaks that and presents things from a different perspective, so that by itself, whether you love the story or not, is enough to set it apart. Isn’t it in the same mold as the one about the maintenance guys?

    Cheers! Michael

  10. Huh… I suddenly feel undereducated.

    I honestly don’t ever recall coming across Juneteenth in my history studies (and I did a lot of independent study on lots of esoteric ethnic subjects of personal interest to me, ranging from African-Americans in the Old West to the African-American/Native-American connections amongst the Southeastern Tribes).

    If I’d known when Jeffrey mentioned it, I would have said something!

  11. GaryTheGreat says

    I had never heard of Juneteenth even existing before the reference here. I would have thought that the date of the Emancipation Proclaimation would have been celebrated more so than Texas’ repudiation of slavery, but it does make for an interesting history lesson.

  12. Okay, you guys are not allowed to do any more shows until I catch up! I am up to #93 right now. Have had to skip a few because I am trying to coordinate the Deep Geeking with my series rewatch. Good thing I have been unemployed for what seems like forever, and will never find a job again…

  13. Mo – hurry up! The shuttle is leaving without you!!

  14. GaryTheGreat says

    Mo are you including the live feed in your listening, or just the finished podcasts? I’d start catching up, Season 5 is almost half way over!

  15. I’m almost current now! Up to this one, 160.

    I have to also agree with Tim. I’m a newbie to the show and when I heard the ‘Sheridan & Lochley were married’ routine I think I screamed out loud. Way too soap opera for me.

    Gary, I’ve never had time to figure out how to do the live feed because I’ve been trying so desperately to catch up. But I’m almost there!

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