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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Things Really Heat Up This Year
Following the assassination of President Santiago, Commander Sinclair is recalled to earth and given a new assignment as ambassador to Minbar. To take his place, Earthforce assigns Captain John Sheridan, an unpopular choice with the Minbari because of his actions during the Earth-Minbari war. But getting along with the Minbari is only the start. Ambassador Delenn...
Published on 22 May 2003 by Mark Baker

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor Quality
This is not a comment on the series Babylon 5. It is a comment on the quality of the video image itself. I purchased this and the other series in expectation of moving from my VHS home recorded copies of these episodes to the quality we all expect to find on a DVD.

In parts the episodes on this DVD are a lower quality than the episodes I recorded myself several...
Published on 2 Sep 2008 by J. Kelly


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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Things Really Heat Up This Year, 22 May 2003
By 
Mark Baker (Santa Clarita, CA United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
Following the assassination of President Santiago, Commander Sinclair is recalled to earth and given a new assignment as ambassador to Minbar. To take his place, Earthforce assigns Captain John Sheridan, an unpopular choice with the Minbari because of his actions during the Earth-Minbari war. But getting along with the Minbari is only the start. Ambassador Delenn emerges from her cocoon and rumors of an ancient race begin to gain momentum. Not to mention the rumors about things back on earth. Meanwhile, Londo starts a war to reclaim the Centauri place in the galaxy, and the first target is the Narn.
Season 2 finally picks up the pace and begins to show the promise of what this series could do. While many of the stories are still stand alones, things begin to heat up and the arc gets moving. While some of the mysteries of season one are finally revealed, they only leave more questions. And the power of the writing and performances steps up a notch. In fact, it was the first time I watched the season’s title episode, “The Coming of Shadows,” that I knew I would be a fan for a long time to come. Yet there are still some very fun character stories and moments, like “Soul Mates” and Ivanova’s storyline in “Acts of Sacrifice.”
Once again, this set has all 22 episodes from the season on 6 discs. Picture quality could still use a little improvement, but it’s a minor complaint and the programs sound fine. The data files are helpful to newbies, but I found them a little redundant. What I did find interesting was the timeline. Covering events through the end of this season (2259), it helped me place in “history” various events only talked about during the show.
The other features are intended for the fans because they spoil much of this season and some of the rest of the show. The feature on the making of an episode was interesting to this entertainment junkie. But the best part was the commentaries. Jerry Doyle, Bruce Boxleitner, and Claudia Christian provide a hilarious if not very informative commentary on one episode. For those wanting a bit more behind the scenes information, J. Michael Straczynski provides plenty of it on his commentary on two episodes.
This is the year that things start to get good. With the background of season 1, this set will be enjoyed for years to come.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent show but there are quality issues., 4 Feb 2004
By 
"matthewpinto" (Basingstoke, Hampshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
Season 2 is when Babylon 5 kicked up a gear. The replacement of Commander Sinclair by Captain Sheridan (Bruce Boxleitner) was greeted with guarded reactions by the fans but introduced a more dynamic element to the series that would ultimately prove a success. This season saw the show slowly moving away from the episodic nature of the first season as it became clear that the show was following an ongoing storyline.
Other have spoken at length about the season's storylines so I will concentrate on the technical aspects of the DVDs themselves. The picture quality in this season is a marked improvement over the first season DVDs but is still very variable. Certain shots are nice and crisp while others are distinctly fuzzy. The special effects shots however are much better this season. Unlike the first season, they were done on PC rather than an Amiga and were created in 16:9 format meaning they transfer to DVD without additional cropping and zooming which resulted in very pixelated effects in the first season DVDs. Like the first season, there is a decent range of extras including commentaries on certain episodes.
One thing that has not been improved sadly is the packaging. The DVDs come in a plastic case that is surrounded by a very thin cardboard sleave. The manufacturers really need to look at how Buffy/Angel package their season DVD sets and come up with something more robust. Overall I give this release 4 stars. It is an excellent show only let down by the patchy picture quality and poor packaging.
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42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is how it should be done., 3 April 2003
By 
Bil (Stockport, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
This is where, as they say, the plot thickens. With the advent of season 2, which begins with a significant cast-member change, stories which were hinted at in season 1 start to bear some fruit. For instance, right at the start of the season in "Points of Departure" and "Revelations", we finally find out what happened to Sinclair at the epic Battle of the Line, why the Minbari surrendered, but in true Babylon-5 tradition, the ramifications of this are left neccessarily vague until much later.
The season title is 'The Coming of Shadows'. We see Londo's agonising descent into darkness as his ambition, with the aid of the mysterious Shadows, starts to become terrifying reality. Earth is in turmoil due to events at the end of the last season, and some very sinister things start to happen there. We learn what a Vorlon looks like under his encounter suit. In short, the arc moves up a couple of gears, until by the end of the season you're left gasping, desperate to see the continuation.
There are some truly magnificent (never bettered) episodes in this season. The Hugo award winning "The Coming of Shadows" episode is the obvious first WHAM! episode, and stands out. With audio commentary by series creator J. Michael Straczynski this will be interesting even if you've seen it dozens of times. Other highlights include: "The Long Twilight Struggle" (with cast commentary), "The Fall of Night" (with JMS commentary), "In the Shadow of Z'ha'dum", "And Now For A Word", "Comes The Inquisitor", "Acts of Sacrifice" and many more. Basically, the quality just jumps up a few notches with this season, and if you've only ever experienced Star Trek before, this season will show you just what TV SF can be and should be.
Enjoy!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor Quality, 2 Sep 2008
By 
J. Kelly (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
This is not a comment on the series Babylon 5. It is a comment on the quality of the video image itself. I purchased this and the other series in expectation of moving from my VHS home recorded copies of these episodes to the quality we all expect to find on a DVD.

In parts the episodes on this DVD are a lower quality than the episodes I recorded myself several years ago. Where the quality is not less it can only be said to be equal to the old VHS tapes.

In addition, it looks as though the image has been zoomed in a very small amount to the extent that peoples heads occasionally slide off the top of the picture.

It also looks as though some tinkering has occured with the brightness and contrast. Frequently the picture is way darker than it should be and every now and then the picture is very badly granulated, a clear indication of poor quality over processing of the video stream.

And if thats not bad enough....over time VHS tapes degrade and this results in artifacts apearing on screen...the equivelant of scratches in film. These DVD's display all those artifacts that you might expect to see on an older vhs tape.

It therefore seems to me that these disks are no more than a badly engineered copy of a load grade VHS tape or equivelant.

Very disapointing indeed.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best TV Show in the world, EVER!, 9 April 2005
By 
Fantasy Lore - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
Listening to J. Michael Straczynski (creator) find fault with various aspects of this season in his commentary on the DVD, I was aghast. This season has NO faults Mr Straczynski! Even at his more light-hearted jibes I found myself strongly disagreeing and through no sense of loyalty to this series, but simply because this is incredibly well made television that has weathered the past decade extremely well. I guess this is the creator's prerogative, but my honest opinion on this second season is that the make-up/set-design/storyline/special-effects, all aspects that he expressed the desire to improve on, I believe...cannot be bettered.
Having now collected all the other DVD season box-sets of Babylon 5, I'm now pretty sure (even though it's torture to decide) that season 2 is my favourite- the quality of all the episodes is incredibly high, which might explain how a couple of storylines are reminiscent of later episodes in later seasons.
The season finale is the pinnacle, because it marks that now familiar point in the Babylon 5 universe when the viewer suddenly learns a whole lot more than he or she knew before, but still is blissfully unaware of this being only the tip of the Babylon 5 ice-burg. And that's the particular beauty of this season- revelation.
Even though there were radical character changes at the beginning of season 2, you can still relive them and not be bored by these transitory moments, Sheridan's arrival is still fresh and intriguing, just as the various developments from the first season remain to this day.
I'm not writing this review to convert non-believers, because I've found that an almost impossible task (even though new-comers would have no trouble watching season 2, as an introduction to the B5 world), but for all B5 fans wondering which DVD box-set should be their principle purchase- I'm telling you that this is it!!
P.S. Episode "Comes the Inquisitor" - is one of my all-time favourite episodes of Babylon 5 and of television in general- you will be glued to your seat!!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars babylon 5 - series 2, 20 April 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
what can be said about babylon 5 that will be heard by one who isn't familiar with the series. This is the second series of 5, each series is like a chapter in a book. The first t.v series to pull off an arc plot.It deals with large issues politics, morality, duty but somehow manages to combine it with a humour and human touch that is missing from something like star trek. This show is grounded in reality despite it's fantastical setting.
This series itself really starts to advance the plot, and introduces john sherriden as the new station commander. He find's himself joining the station amidst the events of the previous season. The show is fantastically written and the characters beautifully realised. I can't recomend this series highly enough and now it's on the dvd format, and with this dvd package having many more extras than the last there's no excuse buy it buy it now
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars And so it begins.., 9 Jun 2006
By 
R. McDonald "rossmcdonald2" (Southampton) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
Season two of Babylon 5 begins with a shock: the station's brooding Commander, Sinclair, is reassigned and replaced with the charismatic and gung-ho Captain Sheridan as portrayed by Bruce Boxleitner in full charm mode. This change proved amazingly fortuitous and well-judged, helping to ease new viewers into the show without burying them under the weight of the series' mythology (in reality Michael O'Hare's departure was amicable, and he would make two further guest appearances). This almost doesn't feel like the same show at all: costumes have been subtly redesigned, sets have been redressed and expanded, and B5 as a series suddenly seems to exude a confidence and self-belief that was never present in season one.

This is also the year when things begin to happen, with the slow build up in the plot culminating in the premise-altering and award-winning episode The Coming of Shadows, and the second half of the season dominated by the first of the many major wars to occur in the B5 universe during the series' run. We begin to see big changes in the characters, with Londo completely abandoning his drunken persona as he takes the first steps along his dark and fateful path, and the previously scheming G'Kar's transformation into a noble, spiritual and persecuted individual. We also see the first hints that all is not well with the Earth Alliance. The dialogue and humour are sharper, there are not so many dud episodes (though there are still a few, especially early on), and the established universe we know and love suddenly becomes truly engrossing. The series finale demonstrates just how much B5 has matured and changed in a single year, and is genuinely jaw-dropping. It also promises great things to come.

Once again this is a great DVD set, with documentaries, a hidden gag-reel, and a further two commentaries by JMS. Best of all is the cast commentary on the classic episode Geometry of Shadows - the camaraderie and fun experienced by all involved in making the series is one of the things that most helps endear it to fans. Season 2 is where B5 began to garner viewers and accolades, and looking back on it it's not all that difficult to see why..
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Comin of Shadows, 12 Feb 2004
By 
Red Wedge - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
Season two of B5 is when things start to get serious. Gone are the trivial episodes and there is less of the portentious scene setting. By the end of the season everything has changed. Even the lighting on the sets seems more ominous.
You'll find other comments on the Hugo winning 'Coming of Shadows', but for me the best episode was the dark 'The Long. Twilight Struggle'. Straczynsky elevates the level of writing considerably in season 2. We even get two significant dream sequences to ponder the significance of. Character's personalities change, and the stage is set for many future events.
The effects in the latter half of the season are exceptional, and again, 'the Long, Twilight Struggle' makes brilliant use of CGI - it's rare that you feel emotionally moved by computer graphics, but in combination with the script and some actually very good acting (from Jurasik/Molari and Katsulas/G'Kar) you really feel pulled into the terrible conflict between the NArn and Centauri.
Series 2 is where B5 gets seious. If you don't buy season 1, this is a good place to start.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best B5 Season, 21 April 2003
By 
A. Whitehead "Werthead" (Colchester, Essex United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
Babylon 5's first season, Signs and Portents, introduced the world of the mid-23rd Century, unveiled a host of new alien races and characters, and hinted at something more momentous to come. The first season was patchy, but towards the end gathered momentum until it reached the season finale, Chrysalis, in which the destinies of several major characters and the entire B5 universe underwent radical transformations. The first half of Season 2 picks up on the aftermath of these events. B5's security chief is in a coma, Narn Ambassador G'Kar has vanished and, most bizarrely, Minbari Ambassador Delenn is in a cocoon. A new station commander, Captain Sheridan, arrives on board under murky circumstances and at first no-one know whether he can be trusted. However, after putting his life and his career on the line for his new friends, he becomes a trusted leader for the crew. Early Season 2 episodes concentrate on building an atmosphere of dread and foreboding, with even 'typical' B5 stories like The Long Dark and Spider in the Web having dark undercurrents running through them. An early break is the semi-comical Soul Mates, but even this has a few murky subplots drumming up more paranoia and fear for both the station crew and the viewer. Then the season really kicks off with The Coming of Shadows, probably the finest episode of Babylon 5 and one of the finest episodes of SF TV ever made (and its got the awards to prove it): an almost Shakespearean tale of redemption, honour, betrayal and war, sporting still-impressive special effects and Emmy-worthy performances from Andreas Katsulas and Peter Jurasik. After that comes the disappointing war tale GROPOS, despite its twist ending, before All Alone in the Night shows us a new side to Captain Sheridan. The season hits a new stride in its final few episodes: In the Shadow of Z'ha'dum, which reveals a lot of essential background to the series' main storylines; the truly shocking Confessions and Lamentations, the best non-arc episode of the series by some distance; Divided Loyalties, with the twist ending to top all twist endings; The Long Twilight Struggle, an even darker sequel to Coming of Shadows with a stunning performance by Jurasik and one of the best CGI shots ever filmed (Londo's face reflected in the window of a battlecruiser as it rains fire down on the Narn homeworld); and The Fall of Night, the season finale which ditches Chrysalis' cliffhanger approach for a darker, more sombre end to the series, albeit with a series of new character revelations and a suicidal assault on B5 by a Centauri warship, paving the way for the more action-driven third season. B5's second season is probably the best, with even the weakest episodes worthy of watching at least once (more than can be said for Season 3 or 4's nadirs), far superior CGI to the first and sound performances from all the cast. Bruce Boxleitner lacks some of Michael O'Hare's subtlety, but he is also far more charasmatic and believable as a leading man, whilst it remains a crime that Katsulars and Jurasik went without awards for their work on this series and this season in particular. A classic season of a classic series and very highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The year 2259, 5 Feb 2014
By 
Sussman "Sussman" (London CA) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
We see the introduction of Captain John Sheridan, who replaces Sinclair as the military governor of the station. The former captain, Sinclair is reassigned as ambassador to Minbar. The new Captain and his inner circle of staff officers learn that the death of President Santiago was arranged by his then-Vice President, Morgan Clark, who has now become president with a an autocratic style. The Psi also come the fore. For me this is the season that sows the seeds for the story to come. Our unwitting Centauri Ambassador Londo Mollari naively recruits their aid through his association with the shadowy Mr. Morden in the ongoing conflict with the Narn, which eventually turns to full blown war.
The Shadows, an ancient and tremendously controlling race who have newly arose from ‘sleep’, and are shown to be the reason of an assortment of covert and alarming actions. The Vorlons are shown to be the origin of folklores about ‘angels’ on various worlds, including that of Earth, and are the ancient enemies of the Shadows. They recruit the support of Sheridan and the Babylon 5 command staff in the fight against the Shadows.
The series overall concentrated on character-driven space opera. They also continued wide-ranging use of CGI for its special effects. While the use of CGI was probably a cost cutting exercise, but looking back some may say these effects are rudimentary. However, I believe what it attained was remarkable and really enhanced the show. From the get go, the producers went for prominence on realism. The science is credible, the characters are well rounded.
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Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD]
Babylon 5: Season 2 [DVD] by Bruce Boxleitner (DVD - 2003)
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