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This is my favourite season of Babylon 5 – the strangeness of the universe, the fascinating hints of more to come, the passion that everyone involved obviously had for the show.
Babylon 5 is a space station, as the voiceover says, located in neutral space, after an interstellar, inter-species war, which humanity was on the brink of losing before a sudden ceasefire saved us. And the hints are to do with that ceasefire, that there is a connection between the race that was about to annihilate us (the Minbari, represented by Ambassador Delenn, played by Mira Furlan) the space station (run by humans) and the commander of the space station (Commander Sinclair in this season, played by Michael O'Hare).
There are a couple of human sidekicks, there are hints about Psi Corps, a Earth-centred organisation which uses and controls humans who are telepathic and have other ESP skills, there's a wonderful setup for future seasons with two other alien races that have their own quarrel (the Narn and the Centauri), there are unions going on strike, odd discoveries constantly coming in, its wonderful.
There's also one episode that starts to explore the main issue of this world, the relationship between the space station and its people, and the war that humanity narrowly avoided losing – and in that, it becomes obvious that human potential on many levels is what's most important of all.
The writing is also excellent – the whole thing is the brainchild and passion of Joe Stracyzinski, writer and producer. In later seasons, he needed an editor, badly, someone to bounce off, but in this first season, because it was such an unknown quantity, he had that, other behind the scenes people who'd give him feedback.
DVDs produced later on, rather than just after the show, have extensive special features – introductions by the writer and the producers, and also by Walter Koenig, who plays a PsiCop: he's introduced in Season 1, but he has a greater role in later seasons.
The special effects stand up to the test of time pretty well, too. At the time, they set a benchmark for interest and complexity.
Buy it if you can! It's great viewing in its own right, and it sets up a fascinating premise for future seasons.