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Babylon 5: Season 2

4.6 out of 5 stars 355 customer reviews

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(Apr 29, 2003)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

This 6-DVD set includes all 22 episodes from The Complete Second Season of the cult science-fiction favorite Babylon 5.

DVD Features:
Audio Commentary:Audio commentary on two key episodes by Straczynski and another key episode by three of the series stars
Documentaries:Building Babylon: Blueprint of an Episode; Shadows and Dreams: Honors of Babylon
Episodic Previews
Interactive Menus
Introduction:All-new introduction by series creator J. Michael Straczynski and cast, including Bruce Boxleitner
Other:From the Universe of Babylon 5 Audiovisual Archive - access data files, personnel files, tech files and a Babylon 5 historical timeline
Scene Access


Delenn's future love interest, Captain John Sheridan (Bruce Boxleitner) arrived on Babylon 5 in the first episode of season 2, "Points of Departure." The show marked the handing over of command of B5 to Sheridan from Commander Jeffery Sinclair, actor Michael O'Hare becoming a victim of studio politicians who wanted a bigger star in the leading role. This excellent installment also revealed more about why the Minbari surrendered to Earth at the Battle of the Line when they were on the verge of victory. "Revelations" explains that Sheridan's wife, Anna, died during an archaeological survey of the world Z'ha'dum, the name being just one of many references to Tolkien's the Lord of the Rings (the bridge at Khazad-Dum). "The Geometry of Shadows" introduced the Technomages, characters who featured more significantly in the ill-fated spinoff series Crusade (1999), while "The Coming of Shadows" proved to be Babylon 5's finest hour to date. The story of political intrigue foreshadowing the fate of two of the major characters beat Apollo 13, Toy Story, 12 Monkeys, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "The Visitor" to win the Hugo award for Best Dramatic Presentation at the 1996 World Science Fiction Convention and proved so powerful that J. Michael Straczynski included it in his Complete Book of Scriptwriting.

"And Now for a Word" took the unusual step of presenting a day-in-the-life of B5 seen through the eyes of a TV news crew, just as the Narn declared war on the Centauri. The inclusion of a PSI-Corps commercial paid homage to Paul Verhoeven's satirical ads in Robocop (1987), while his later Starship Troopers (1997) seemed at times like a spoof of B5's earnest space opera. In "In the Shadow of Z'ha'dum," Sheridan learns that Morden was on the ship on which Anna died; the episode sees the captain pushed to his limits by grief and determination to discover why Morden survived. Three exceptional shows conclude the season. The Narn-Centauri war escalates in "The Long, Twilight Struggle," Sheridan faces a most unusual ordeal in "Comes the Inquisitor," and in "The Fall of Night" all hope of peace is shattered as a nerve-racking assassination attempt reveals a startling secret about Ambassador Kosh. --Gary S. Dalkin

Special Features

  • All-new introduction by J. Michael Straczynski and cast including Bruce Boxleitner
  • "Building Babylon: Blueprint of an Episode" featurette
  • "Shadows and Dreams: Honors of Babylon" featurette, including coverage of the Hugo Award
  • 10 personnel files
  • 10 data files
  • 5 tech files
  • Historical timeline
  • Gag reel
  • Original episode previews

Product Details

  • Actors: Bruce Boxleitner, Claudia Christian, Jerry Doyle, Mira Furlan, Richard Biggs
  • Directors: David J. Eagle, Janet Greek, Jesús Salvador Treviño, Jim Johnston, John C. Flinn III
  • Format: Anamorphic, Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 6
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: April 29, 2003
  • Run Time: 960 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (355 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000087EYB
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,032 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Babylon 5: Season 2" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Lance Falk on January 10, 2003
Format: DVD
This is the year things really started to heat up and the overall story arc of this series' five-year plan began to edge out the more stand-alone episodes. About halfway into the season, Babylon 5 becomes a true chapter-by-chapter affair.
In fact, series creator, J. Michael Straczynski's saga became so continuity driven, that by the last third of this season, he went from the show's most prolific writer to its ONLY writer. This Herculean task would challenge him for the next two and a half seasons (and three B5 movie specials) without a break.
Amazingly, this staggering amount of work didn't decrease the quality of writing; Just the opposite. I'd go so far as to say that jms' unbroken marathon of scripts running from late Season Two through the end of Season Four is an unmatched body of work in all of science fiction television (perhaps ANY television, period).
Like Buffy and The X-Files, Babylon 5's Season Two pulled in casual viewers and Season One viewers became unmitigated addicts with no turning back.
Here's a SPOILER-FREE smattering of the some of the better Season Two Babylon 5 entries (as small a list as I could bring myself to provide!):
REVELATIONS: Without fanfare or preamble, one of the central mysteries of this saga is revealed and a major character will never be the same again after a certain "change".
AND NOW FOR A WORD: The first (but not last) of Babylon 5's refreshing experiments in format. This episode is done entirely as a futuristic "60 Minutes" or "24 Hours" type program, which visits Space Station Babylon 5 and digs deep with hard hitting, exploitive journalism, bringing one character to tears and also illuminating the seemingly dark motivations of another.
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Format: DVD
Now that most of the characters had a backstory, the second season of B5 ventured further into it's 5 year story arc involving the war with the Shadows. Although I never really bought the romantic subplot involving Sheridan (I never felt that Boxleitter and Mira Furlan had much chemistry as a couple), it does work well within the context of the story. The political intrigue of season one expands to include Mars colony, the Psicorp and the usual suspects.
Boxleitter is a better actor than Michael O'Hare and he manages to bring considerable power to the role. The change in the guard (due to studio politics amongst many other things)also allowed for a richer, more indepth back story for the series. Although there are a fair share of clunkers during this season, overall the quality is high. The third season would be where the series really hit its stride.
There are a number of very cool extras on the second set. Once again JMS does a color commentary on a couple of episodes but, more important, Bruce Boxleitner, Jerry Doyle and Claudia Christian provide a color commentary that is quite funny and glib on 1 key episode. I had forgotten that Melissa Gilbert did not play Sheridan's wife in the brief footage we see of her. Amazing how time will adjust your memory. The special features include a couple of documentaries and are of pretty good quality. There's a new introduction by J. Michael Straczynski and Bruce Boxleitner that is interesting as well.
The transfer is an improvement over the first season box set Signs and Portents. There's still quite a bit of scratches and analog artifacts. Most noticable, though is the occasional fuzzy picture quality. This is probably due to the low level lighting in some key scenes and a lack of QC when the digital compression was done.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
With the second season we finally see some payoff to some of what the brilliant writers and producers set up in the first season and of course, upon answering some earlier questions, new ones are raised. This is one of the reasons this show is so appealing as J. Michael Straczynski set up the five year plot and this is but the second chapter and there are so many layers that one cannot help but get caught up in this extraordinarily intriguing epic.
Of the many DVD Boxed sets that I've purchased, the B5 sets seem to stand out above the rest as far as quality goes to include Dolby Digital 5.1 sound and widescreen presentation, episode previews right there with the episode and the overall quality of the transfer.
Stand out episodes:
Points of Departure - This is a wonderfully well written and played episode that serves well to lead off the new season and bring some closure to the incredible first season's cliffhanger and introducing the new and much stronger commanding officer, Captain John Sheridan. It's easily discernable up front to see the different leadership style that he brings into the role and you can readily see that the writers are now beginning to ramp up the war with the shadows in these early beginnings.
Revelations - In a continuance from the season opener, we finally see G'Kar after his search for what destroyed the Narn outpost and his run in with the shadows. Delenn makes her dramatic "return" in this well written episode.
The Geometry of Shadows - In this outstanding Londo Mollari episode we begin to see the furtherance of his unknowing relationship with the shadows, his rising value in the politics of Centauri Prime and his mistaken attempt to meet with the Techno Mages.
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