Last weekend was a good one for Babylon 5 fans, as show creator J. Michael Straczynski and much of the surviving cast gathered at the Phoenix Comicon to celebrate the show’s 20th anniversary. Unfortunately, the word “surviving” in that last sentence highlights one of the series’ tragic footnotes: far too many of the people who helped make Babylon 5 a sci-fi classic have passed away in those two decades. Andreas Katsulas (G’Kar), Richard Biggs (Dr. Franklin), and Jeff Conaway (Zack Allan) may have gotten the most press, but they’re far from the only ones. That loss is felt powerfully in the video above, a memorial to those gone beyond the Rim, created specifically for the con. You’re going to need some tissues.
The video was put together by John E. Hudgens, and it’s really well done and powerful. Joe’s poetic dialogue, especially when delivered by Andreas’ masterful performance as G’Kar, reminds of just how brilliant this show was at its best, and the video beautifully honors the people who helped Straczynski’s five-year “novel for television” come to life.
The many losses meant the anniversary reunion was a somewhat somber affair, with the B5 vets remembering their friends and talking about how important it is to truly live and appreciate your life. It’s an entirely appropriate message since, if Babylon 5 was about anything, it was about the power of an individual to make a difference, to truly change the universe for the better. In the words of one Citizen G’Kar, “Our thoughts form the universe. They are always important.” A lesson to take to heart now, while we can, before it’s our turn to travel beyond the Rim.