103: Midnight on the Firing Line

Written by
J. Michael Straczynski

Directed by
Richard Compton

First broadcast week of
24 January 1994

Londo and G'Kar at oddsThe Narn capture Ragesh 3, a Centauri agricultural colony, and Londo Mollari is furious.  But negotiating peace between the Centauri and the Narn is the least of Sinclair's worries when space pirate attacks appear to be becoming more frequent and increasingly violent.  The Centauri Government refuses to take action against the Narn, and when Londo tries to make a stand in a Council meeting, G'Kar says that the Ragesh 3 colonists have allied with themselves to the Narn and presents a recording of Londo's colonist nephew, Carn, to back up the claim.

The new telepath assigned to Babylon 5, Talia Winters, tries to register her arrival with Lieutenant Commander Susan Ivanova, but Ivanova appears to be avoiding her.  Sinclair discovers a Narn command ship behind the Raider attacks, and also gains evidence that the attack on the colony was unprovoked - leading G'Kar to agree to withdraw their forces.  When Talia finally confronts Ivanova, she learns that Ivanova's mother had been a telepath; but rather than register with Psi Corps or face imprisonment, she was given weekly doses of a telepathy-suppressing drug which eventually drove her to suicide.  Meanwhile, back on Earth, Louis Santiago is re-elected President ahead of opponent Marie Crane.

Notes: Londo recalls a dream of his death at the hands of G'Kar (see The Coming of Shadows and War Without End, Part II).   Ivanova's unease with telepaths is seen again in Eyes, and her real reasons why revealed in Divided LoyaltiesPresident Santiago is due to visit Babylon 5 in Survivors, and is also instrumental to events in Chrysalis.  Kosh is out of his encounter suit in this episode, but is seen only as a light behind a screen. We first see him fully out of his suit in The Fall of Night, but learn exactly what he really is in Falling Toward Apotheosis.  Delenn is seen constructing something in her quarters (we learn what it is in Chrysalis).  It is mentioned that San Diego was destroyed by terrorists in a nuclear explosion (see also A Spider in the Web).

This episode was originally entitled Blood and Thunder.

Guest Cast: Paul Hampton (Senator); Peter Trencher (Carn Mollari); Mark Hendrickson (Narn Captain).

The photograph of President Louis Santiago was of series co-Executive Producer Douglas Netter, and costume designer Anne Bruice was Marie Crane.