Babylon 5: Season 1, Episode 13

Signs and Portents (18 May 1994)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Drama
8.3
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 290 users  
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Londo obtains a priceless Centauri artifact and a stranger visits each alien ambassador asking only one question.

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Title: Signs and Portents (18 May 1994)

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Michael O'Hare ...
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Richard Biggs ...
Dr. Stephen Franklin (credit only)
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Talia Winters (credit only)
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Vir Cotto (credit only)
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Lennier (credit only)
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Na'Toth (as Caitlin Brown) (credit only)
...
...
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Lord Kiro
Fredi Olster ...
...
Raider #1
Anita Brabec ...
Dome Tech #3
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Storyline

Londo obtains a priceless Centauri artifact and a stranger visits each alien ambassador asking only one question.

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23rd century | See All (1) »


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18 May 1994 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Throughout his appearances in the series, Morden wears a black stone on a silver chain around his neck. According to the Babylon 5 novel, The Shadow Within, the stone was a gift from Morden's wife, who was lost in a hyperspace accident. The Shadows bought Morden's cooperation by promising to rescue his wife's damaged ship in hyperspace. See more »

Goofs

In episode "Signs and Portents" near the end, Garibaldi and Sinclair are using the restroom. They sterilize their hands, and start to walk out. Once they reach the part of the hallway that has an obvious "mens room" sign, they stop for a second when a female pushes past them, when clearly the only place she could get to by going that direction, is into the men's room. Neither Garibaldi or Sinlair stop her, or even question her passing. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Computer: Good morning. The time is 04:30 Earth Standard, Wednesday, August 3, 2258. Personal log shows no outstanding appointments. Shall I download station logs for past six hours?
Lt. Cmdr. Susan Ivanova: [sighs] Sure. Grab it, store it, shove it.
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User Reviews

 
Signs and Portents
17 June 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Signs and Portents" is an episode integral to the future of the show. It contains important characters and moments that return time and again as it pertains to the future of the station and its people. Londo Mollari (Peter Jurasik) retrieves illegally "the eye", an important Centauri artifact that has been missing for quite some time, notable for its symbolism of power and nobility. Lord Kiro (Gerrit Graham; scene-stealer extraordinaire, known for being memorable in movies that don't necessarily deserve his talent) comes to Babylon 5 station to take the eye (a family heirloom) back to Centauri Homeworld to give it to the little-seen emperor. The Centauri Homeworld has lost some of its credibility as a major force to be reckoned with, so it is believed the eye will restore some of the missing prominence. A mysterious visitor to Babylon 5 station, Morden (Ed Wasser), asks a question to each ambassador, "What do you want?" Each ambassador reveals a real desire, whether it be G'Kar (Andreas Katsulas) wanting revenge against Centauri for their treatment of his world, or Londo wanting his world to reclaim their rightful place as a formidable alien species to be feared. But Delenn (Mira Furlan) can visualize what Morden is and who he represents…the sinister Shadows. We see in this scene a triangle appear on Delenn's forehead, perhaps a physiological tool granted to her race that can sense deception and see what really hides behind the mask. Raiders have been attacking ships set on a course directly for Babylon 5 station, seemingly able to escape from the area quicker than allotted time would permit, later determined to be associated with a ship capable of creating its own jumpgate. So Babylon station comes under attack from Raider ships (after a diversionary potential attack on a ship named Achilles (unique title for a ship, eh?) suckers Sinclair into sending his attack cruisers to intercept) as Lord Kiro is kidnapped carrying the eye in his possession, the cargo ship boarding onto the pirate ship equipped with the jumpgate function. Morden seems to have a fixation with Ambassador Kosh (we later hear that Kosh's protective suit was damaged, a development certain to have merit as the show continues), and after the Shadows decimate the pirate ship carrying Kiro, Morden has a surprise for Londo that officially establishes just who this man really is. Morden's motives, however, are still unclear. Also extremely important is a Centauri character who arrived with Kiro, a Seer named Lady Ladira (Fredi Olster) who has a vision that the station will be destroyed unless future events prevent this from happening. The episode actually has Ladira "showing" this vision to Sinclair who asks her how he can stop this from happening. So much happens in this episode, including Sinclair appealing to Garibaldi to investigate the "lost 24 hours" focused on during the episode, "And the Sky Full of Stars". Garibaldi learns that despite the many number of more suitable candidates (Sinclair was far down the list), it was determined that the Minbari insisted that he be chosen as Commander of the Babylon station. So the question is—why do the Minbari want Sinclair positioned so high and for what reasons was he so special to them in having such authority? Ed Wasser as Morden will make his presence known/felt on Babylon station…the Shadows are only getting started. We are starting to see a confident storyteller, J. Michael Straczynski, take what could have been a minor substitute for Star Trek and craft a series that has a solid footing in sci-fi television, building what would be a certified cult phenomenon.


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