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Babylon 5: The Road Home

In 2007, I purchased an iPod Video. I wasn’t really interested in the games or movies, I just needed something to play my music. Still, the novelty of watching videos on such a small portable screen intrigued me, so I made a single purchase from iTunes: the pilot episode of Babylon 5.

I vaguely remembered Babylon 5 airing in the 90’s, but I didn’t know much about it. I just knew that the pilot episode was cheap, (maybe $1.99?) and I liked 90’s sci-fi and I just needed something to test how good the video looked on the iPod.

I accompanied someone to a doctor’s appointment one afternoon, and I decided that it would be as good of time as any to give this video a watch. I sat, in the lobby of this doctor’s office, looking at a tiny 2.5-inch screen and watching a beautiful sci-fi world appear before my eyes.

The irony of watching a sci-fi show, on a tiny portable device, while away from home was not lost on me. What is now considered quite normal, was extremely foreign and it felt like I was living the future.

That was my introduction to Babylon 5, a show that admittedly starts off quite slow and features some CGI that is dated due to some production issues. I’ve written about Babylon 5 over at Middle-Aged Fat Kids and at Retro-Daze before, so I won’t rehash everything there, but I wanted to take a minute and talk about the future.

In 2007, when I started Babylon 5, a direct-to-DVD movie called Lost Tales was released. I remember going to Best Buy and buying it, but I wasn’t finished with the show yet, so I didn’t watch it for a couple of years. Sadly, the movie was well… not my cup of tea. Shot almost entirely on green screen, it just wasn’t up to the standard of the TV show. That was the last piece of Babylon 5 media to come out.

In August 2023, a full-length animated Babylon 5 movie titled The Road Home is being released and I’m beyond thrilled. The trailer was recently released, and it looks better than I expected. I was a bit worried with the animation style they chose to use, but it looks much better in motion than it does in stills.

Not hindered by a budget or the need to tell a long story, The Road Home has the potential to be a fantastic entry in the mythology of Babylon 5. Most of the remaining cast returned to voice their characters, but unfortunately, the show was plagued by the passing of many of its stars. They’ve been recast and the new talented voice actors seem to do them justice.

A year or so ago, it was announced that the CW was developing a reboot of Babylon 5. It looks like that reboot is on hold at the moment, as the CW shifts away from spending money on quality programming. I’m still hopeful it’ll find its way onto Max, but even if it doesn’t, I’m thrilled something new is coming down the pipeline in the world of Babylon 5. I’ll be pre-ordering the 4K as soon as I can.

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