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Babylon 5.1
by Rick Norwood

What to Watch in February or Whatever Happened to Fox Mulder
Other Babylon 5.1 Columns
For more information, you can try the following sites:
Rick Norwood's Website
Worldwide TV Schedule
The Official Babylon 5 Website
The X-Files
Pocket Books: Star Trek
Paramount Star Trek

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.

The big news for February is a four part X-Files mythos story, one part every Sunday in February, explaining what really happened to Fox Mulder when he fell into a Black Hole (figuratively speaking, that is).

Sunday, Feb. 4
The X-Files, "The Gift", by Frank Spotnitz.
Part 1 of 4.

Wednesday, Feb. 7
Star Trek Voyager, "Prophecy", by Kenneth Biller, J. Kieley Burke, Raf Green, Larry Nemecek, Phyllis Strong, and Michael Sussman.

Wednesday, Feb. 7
Star Trek Voyager, "Bride of Chaotica".
After "Prophecy" is a must-see rerun for anyone who ever loved the Saturday afternoon movie serials.

Sunday, Feb. 11
The X-Files, "Medusa", by Frank Spotnitz.
Part 2 of 4.

Wednesday, Feb. 14
Star Trek Voyager, "The Void", by Kenneth Biller, Raf Green, and James Kahn.
Voyager gets lost!

Sunday, Feb. 18
The X-Files
Part 3 of 4.

Wednesday, Feb. 21
Star Trek Voyager, "Workforce", by Kenneth Biller and Bryan Fuller.
Part 1 of 2.

Sunday, Feb. 25
The X-Files
Part 4 of 4.

Wednesday, Feb. 28
Star Trek Voyager, "Workforce", by Kenneth Biller, Bryan Fuller, and Michael Taylor.
Part 2 of 2.

I've written a bit of verse, which I publish here in honor of the Sci-Fi Channel Dune mini-series. I call it:

Desert Song
by Rick Norwood

What planet is as dusty as the inside of an ashtray in a car?
What planet is so arid that you're glad to order water in a bar?
What planet is as barren as a campsite on the backside of the moon?

The men there are a hardy race, brave warriors, and hardy are their women.
Rough nature's men, to hardship bred, they know no fear, no sissies are the Fremen.
They save water like a miser saves his gold, like a Norstrillian guards his stroon,
On Dune.

The Emperor said, "Duke Leto go to Dune and rule, you'll find it very nice."
The Duke felt like old Adam felt when God said he must vacate paradise.
And with the Lady Jessica, young Paul, and all they packed to leave at noon
For Dune.

The time had come for testing Paul to see if he was worthy of his breeding.
"You'll die if you remove your hand from this machine that leaves it burned and bleeding.
Before you go we need to know if you'll behave like human or baboon,
On Dune."

The witch held at Paul's neck the poison needle known to all as gom jabbar.
Your death's a fitting fate because your mother plotted all our plans to mar.
Is anything more deadly than gom jabbar when it gives its fatal black kiss?
A rack is.

Paul passed his test his hand intact. The pain was real, all else was an illusion.
They go to Dune, hold court and soon bring order out of primitive confusion,
Make gifts of water to the poor, take oaths alike from chieftain and poltroon,
On Dune.

Their new home is no apple but it does have one thing apples have, that's worms.
Said Leto, "With this planet and its people I think we can come to terms.
"For worms make spice and spice makes spaceships fly and teaches death to come not soon
On Dune."

The spice is geriatric and addictive and psionic and a blast.
It's called melange, is good for orgies, lets you see the future like the past.
The Fremen all are addicts and it makes their eyes turn bluer than the moon
Of Dune.

Assassination, chaos, treason, murder, arson, maybe even rape!
Duke Leto dead, the palace burned, Paul and his mom in not much better shape.
They flee across the desert like John Carter fled from crumbling Warhoon,
On Dune.

Paul goes to live with Fremen and he soon becomes a first class sandworm rider.
He falls in love with Chani and he vows that he will live his life beside her.
But Harkonnen has decided to make Dune his plum and make that plum a prune,
On Dune.

So Paul must go, lead Fremen into battle and rout out the dread Harkonnen.
It's time for him to fight though he is more a young Gray Mouser than a Conan.
The Emperor's troops are coming. Paul has vowed they soon will sing a different tune,
On Dune.

The child of Paul and Chani killed! (But that event somehow takes place offstage.)
Paul breaks the shield wall, lets the sandworm in to show Harkonnen troops its rage.
Paul marries well for politics but of his love for Chani poets croon,
On Dune.

There are more books, some bad, some good, but every one a certified best seller.
(I still think Herbert's first book Under Pressure was, while not so dry, much sweller.)
Now more Dune books will someday tell of a creature there more deadly than a thuggee:
Dune buggy.

(Non-profit reproduction permitted provided this copyright notice and a credit "reprinted from" is included in any reproduction.)

Copyright © 2001 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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