Babylon Podcast #235: Interview with Marjean Holden

Welcome to Show #235!

Marjean Holden

Interview: Tim and Summer chat with Marjean Holden, our honorary co-host for this episode!

Marjean talks with us about the atmosphere on the Crusade sets, the change in pace from action roles to a more cerebral doctor role, how quickly the small cast gelled, and the disappointment at finding out about the show’s early cancellation.

She also talks about her ventures into writing for television and film, her love of the science fiction genre, the anticipation of experiencing Crusade‘s story shift after they’d found the cure but would be chased down to prevent them from distributing it, and the loss of not being able to follow and finish that story.

Marjean also touches on casting games with Star Trek franchises, black actors in scifi back then and how diversification has improved things over the past 10 years, and her transition out of acting into motivational speaking which has led her back into writing and producing her own projects with her own company.

And yes, we are seeing if any old Crusade Babes products can be dug up.

Let’s start the rumor mill ourselves: Marjean Holden is on board for that secret Crusade miniseries project!

POLL: Pat Tallman asks us to run a poll on what the fans say their favorite Lyta episodes are, so go vote!

Lurker’s Guide 2.0: Summer is expanding the documentation to be covered at Lurker’s Guide 2.0, the major change being converting the episode guide into a full Wiki with cross-referenced topics, tidbits and everything you’d want in a Wiki. She’s also still searching for pictures of rare collectibles, photos of magazine covers and toys, and all sorts of other B5 goodies that didn’t get included in the original guide during the years after Crusade. Let her know if you want to lend a hand.

More Parody/Filk Songs Wanted: If you know of any more B5-related fan songs out there, definitely let us know, so we can let other B5 fans know where to buy them! And if those CDs are out of print, let’s brainstorm on ways to get those songs back out there for fans!

Babylon Podcast Social Communities:
Twitter: @babylonpodcast

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: Slice of SciFi
Promo: Technorama


  1. I just got done listening to this podcast and liked most of it, but I thought the two things you missed an opportunity to ask and/or talk about was the Pak’ma’ra porn scene with Marjean and Gary Cole and the real reason TNT-Atlanta executives interferred with the show. If she does come back for a Deep Geeking episode, I hope you will ask her at least the 1st question. I still love her delivery of the line, “as a doctor, I know that is not anatomically possible” with her and Gary tilting their heads in unison. LOL!

    As much as I would love to see a mini-series to end Crusade, I don’t know if that would be enough time to be satisfying. I still wonder why JMS hasn’t allowed a writer to finish the series in book format?

    Keep up the great work getting interviews with Crusade actors!

    Rob in MI

  2. One thing I forgot to talk about in my previous comment. I am not convinced that JMS should have allowed Dr. Chambers be someone who was a good one on one fighter/martial arts person. It seemed too cliche to me given Marjean’s Amazonian build. I know she said she pushed for it and had done more physical stuff in her other acting work, but I thought it would have been better if she was more cerebral and let Dureena do all fighting given their difference in size. The contrast would have been interesting to me.

    At least there should have been an explanation why Dr. Chambers was a good martial artist. If we had gotten more episodes we may have, but I never bought that Max would ask Dr. Chambers to guard/watch his ex-wife in one of the episodes.

    It is sad that over a decade ago two African-American actors couldn’t both be regulars on a Sci-Fi show unless they were family or romantically involved. Too bad her friend couldn’t have gotten a recurring role as an EarthForce officer liason/contact for the ship or even a Ranger that regularly brought news and info to the Excalibur. Maybe if the show had lasted?

    Rob in MI

  3. Wow, what an amazing interview. Marjean is so energetic, classy, well-spoken, and sounds like a generally fun and cool person. Keep up the great work!

  4. Excellent episode all ’round. I made my suggestion before knowing about this — what a surprise!

    I do hope she’ll come back for follow ups on the some of the topics y’all covered. Not all doctors are physically weak or even restrained, though that does seem to be the genre stereotype. So, I liked her attitude on that.

    And I’m sure you don’t want to trample on Pat’s question, but at some future time you might ask us what was our favorite Chambers episode…. uh, other than the one with the Pak’ma’ra porn.


  5. Neil Ottenstein says

    It was a great interview. I’m looking forward to hearing her again on a future podcast.

  6. You know, it’s weird, but Summer and I have also “d’oh”ed that we didn’t ask either Marjean or David Allan Brooks about that scene. It’s like there’s some compulsion that prevents us from bringing it up. You’d think there was a Drahk keeper involved, or something…

  7. This comment is for episode #237 which I just heard on the recorded live feed. I agree with Tim’s assessment of the Ruling From The Tomb episode that the parts dealing with the character development/interaction aspect were much better than the main storyline line of the ex-Foundationist’s hearing voices. I agree also with Summer in wanting to know how the script changed from the initial concept for a show before TNT got involved demanding a new “premiere” episode/pilot.

    I wanted know if anyone else heard the rumor I heard last summer that the same executive(s) who harassed and cancelled Crusade on TNT moved on to FOX and were responsiblity for Firefly’s cancellation? I looked for any conformation in news articles, but could not find any.

    This comment is for episode #238 which I just heard on the recorded live feed. Not a bad show before and after the WAY TOO LONG rant on difference between the Ron Moore nuBSG show and Babylon 5. I despise what was done to the original BSG’s universe to make a “grittier, darker” show. I call shenanigans on the thought it was better than B5!! While both B5 and nuBSG dealt more with character interactions than technobabble stuff, B5 was way better to me BECAUSE it didn’t need to resort to shock values in its storyline to put “drama” in the show. The only thing the nuBSG did better than B5 was its effects and that was more to do with airing 6 to 10 years after B5 did when better and faster computers allowed much more detailed CGI.

    Rob in MI

  8. So I finally got round to listening to the interview – what a treat! And I want to thank you for having Marjean Holden, and her for her enthusiasm, that I found at once delightful and saddening – saddening for what could have been. Indeed, I think it’s remarkable that first David Allen Brooks, and now Marjean Holden, have so much to say about a show that’s been cancelled for eleven years, and that was only about a half season in the first place. I think that says a lot.

    As I said, I only saw Crusade last year (though I’ve been a B5 fan for longer – and I did see B5 on TV – only it was Swedish tv 🙂 ) last year, so I have NOT reached a place of acceptance – nor have I any intention to reach such a place! I think it’s a disaster and a scandal and… It was a really good show, with interesting characters – the tragedy is that it could have been a great show, but was never allowed to reach its full potential.

    But, anyway. I would love it if Ms Holden was back again for other installments of the podcast! And I would love it even more if she could one day return as Dr Sarah Chambers…. 🙂

  9. Eugene M from Greenville says

    Summer how are you gooing to handle the unfilmed scripts and the suggested ideas for episodes that were released online or in the scriptbooks? Are you gooing to deepgeek them like full episodes or maybe do one or two eps where you discuss them or brainstorm how they may have turned or furthered the various subplots?

    Does anyone know where detailed info on To the Ends of the Earth, Value Judgements and End of the Line can be found?

    • I believe Jason said those scripts would be included in the Crusade script books, I just don’t know if we’ll have them all by the time we get there. Guess I’ll just have to delay when we get there by scheduling more interviews! 🙂

      But yes, we do plan to talk about the official scripts and story ideas (the ones we can get our hands on). We’ve already planned to talk about Peter Woodward’s script, which was in Vol 1 of Crusade: Other Voices, and we should probably list out what’s canon amongst the unpublished stuff, and see if we can still get our hands on it to talk about them.

      scribbles on mondo To Do list

  10. I have been thinking it would be nice if we could get the original cast together to do read throughs of the unfilmed scripts, Great Maker willing.

  11. Crusade Babes… I don’t know about products, but the front page for the site is available through the WayBack machine

    • Neil Ottenstein says

      I grabbed as much as I could from the WayBack Machine and I might try to upload it somewhere. I think that Carrie Dobro has most of her photos from Crusade Babes on her new website.

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