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Babylon 5.1
by Rick Norwood

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Other Babylon 5.1 Columns
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Ratings are based on a four star system.
One star means that the commercials are more entertaining than the program.
Two stars watch if you have nothing better to do.
Three stars is good solid entertainment.
Four stars means you never dreamed television could be this good.

May is the cruelest month, with the end (sniffle, sniffle) the (blows nose) the... I can't say it... the end of Star Trek.

I'll miss it. But I'm glad it is ending with some of the best episodes of all time.

SF on TV in May

Wednesday, May 4
Smallville, "Ageless"

Friday, May 6
Andromeda, "The Heart of the Journey I"
Star Trek Enterprise, "Demons" (part I of III), by Manny Coto

Wednesday, May 11
Smallville, "Forever"

Friday, May 13
Andromeda, "The Heart of the Journey II", series finale
Star Trek Enterprise, "Terra Prime" (part II of III)
Star Trek Enterprise, "These Are the Voyages..." (Part III of III) by Rick Berman and Brannon Braga, series finale.

Wednesday, May 18
Smallville, "Commencement", season finale, major surprises (if you've managed not to read spoilers).

I tried very hard not to hear anything about the last episode of Star Trek, but of course somebody on-line had to shout it out and I was not able to avert my eyes in time. You won't learn it here. On the other hand, the fact that B&B did not let Manny Coto, who has done such an excellent job, write the last episode is itself a bad sign.

Star Trek Enterprise Star Trek Enterprise, "In a Mirror, Darkly" (****)
by Mike Sussman and Manny Coto

I have been tempted to give several recent Star Trek episodes four stars. I'm glad I waited, since this two-part origin of the Mirror Universe is the best Trek since the Next Gen "The Best of Both Worlds." It is nothing like what I expected -- much better. I don't want to say too much about it, because it is best experienced, but I'll offer a few notes. The ending -- well the ending is logical, but I consider it a three star ending to an otherwise four star drama. And there was an episode just a bit like it on Babylon 5. There. That's all I'm going to say. If you haven't seen it, catch it on reruns.

Smallville Smallville, "Blank" (***) by Kelly Souders and Brian Peterson
Clark gets amnesia. But what could be a really hokey idea is redeemed by a clever script. We have seen several good Smallville episodes in a row, ending the mid-season slump and culminating last week with a touching senior prom. This episode has a good plot but, more important, it is character driven, as we see how each of Clark's friends reacts differently to his emotional vulnerability. Lex Luthor's reaction is of particular interest. The actors in this series are among the best of their generation.

Copyright © 2005 Rick Norwood

Rick Norwood is a mathematician and writer whose small press publishing house, Manuscript Press, has published books by Hal Clement, R.A. Lafferty, and Hal Foster. He is also the editor of Comics Revue Monthly, which publishes such classic comic strips as Flash Gordon, Sky Masters, Modesty Blaise, Tarzan, Odd Bodkins, Casey Ruggles, The Phantom, Gasoline Alley, Krazy Kat, Alley Oop, Little Orphan Annie, Barnaby, Buz Sawyer, and Steve Canyon.

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