"A fellow of infinite jest. I knew him, Horatio." "It's Mack, actually. This is Bo."
ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WORMHOLE: It's Lower Decks, just not as well done.
REVIEW: An episode from the point of view of "the little people"? It's been done, and far better than this. Lower Decks used old AND new characters; Gallery gives only two guys, both with a similar POV, that we've never met before. Lower Decks used its structure to create a puzzle for the audience to figure out; Gallery doesn't even respect its own conceit, taking us out into CG sequences the characters shouldn't be aware of. There was room for a twist, given that Lochley seems to know entirely too much about the unknown raiders' motives and information from the Gaim could have been interpreted as "the game", we could have had a drill the shlubs think is real, until revealed it's not. But once you Starfuries exploding, there's just no room for confusion. The episode's timing isn't great either. Lochley, the new character that needs some quick development, has been absent for the past two episodes (of 3 this season), and finally appears only to have the spotlight taken from her by Mack and Bo. I think they have more character development at this point than she's had!
When you're doing something like this, you need your guest characters to be extra interesting. Unfortunately, that comes and goes (mostly goes). As far as comic double acts go, JMS isn't exactly Bob Holmes. Nor Shakespeare, though he tries very hard to make us think of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, especially with yet more gratuitous Hamlet quotes from Byron (and I though Marcus was annoying!). As "floaters" (double meaning?), Mack and Bo get to visit every set and meet/overhear every character, and while we do learn some worthwhile things, the two guys tend to irritatingly act as the author's mouthpiece. The characters, of the type you'd usually see as extras in the background, don't really know what their tasks are for, and that's mildly amusing meta-text (only mildly, it's also stupidly unrealistic). But there are also some real eye-rolling moments, including a discussion of rumors about Ivanova's departure (cringe-inducing commentary on Claudia Christian's) and JMS having Mack say White Stars look liked plucked chickens, which is a crappy thing to air about your CG guys' work, and if you think it's a flaw in the program, DON'T ATTRACT ATTENTION TO IT, JOE!
There are still some good things. The secret origin of Doc Franklin is a worthy speech (please stand there and blink, Bo) and his last, silent scene is a good reminder of the toll represented by all those dead unnamed characters, just like Mack and Bo used to be. The married joke directed at G'Kar and Londo. Delenn remembering their names and the romantic feelings she evokes in them. JMS uses the two techs to answer some commonly asked (probably) questions, like who cleans up all the debris after a battle, though the way the telepaths' powers are being presented - as varied as any random team of X-Men - is a little more questionable. Bo, at least, becomes an endearing character, feeling it when pilots die out in space, and perhaps had that ambition once. Byron allows him to telepathically experience the battle, which fills him with both joy and sadness. When Mack gets sincere or philosophical, I don't quite buy it. The good adds a grace note to something that's otherwise a mess. Garibaldi screwing up the intel... I don't know how he's still employed. The raiders' giant red helmets somehow evoke Monty Python and the Holy Grail (though they're really stolen from the Micronauts). The scene where Mack and Bo crawl under laser fire because Zack doesn't appreciate their help is just embarrassing. And what the hell is with Lochley thinking the President and Delenn are safer in a life pod, in space, during a battle, than they would be at the core of a giant station? Delenn makes the point later, which makes the other scenes even more absurd coming from career officers.
REWATCHABILITY: Medium-Low - Only JUST Medium-Low, mostly thanks to the soulful Bo. Much of this is crass, irrelevant or annoying.