"I'm caught in a web of my own good intentions." "Well, the road to hell is paved with them, sir." "know. But why does it have to go through this office?"
REVIEW: I understand how gossip would undermine her authority, but I find it rather hard to believe something like the President of the Alliance assigning a former spouse - which would be a matter of public record - to Babylon 5 wouldn't be plastered all over the news. ISN fail! It's not even a secret worth keeping from a guy like Garibaldi, or from Delenn initially, so the whole subplot feels contrived. But then there's a lot about Lochley that feels contrived. There's the fact Sheridan could have said "my second wife" about Anna, but never did. There's her by-the-book attitude, which is almost robotically calibrated so that she can't break any rule, so she can be an antagonist to characters of longer standing (and yet, you want us to like her and not resent her, Joe?). Truth be told, despite all this, I do like her. She gets some good barbs in, puts Garibaldi in his place (for longer than required), knows what's what when it comes to Bester but doesn't come with the same baggage everyone else does, and pulls a Sinclair at the end by loopholing the PsiCops. She'll follow any rule to the letter, see, even a rule that's just been written. At her urging. That's a good solution, and shows she can at least think outside the box, if not exactly act outside of it.
The telepath story proceeds apace, with a definite romantic direction for Lyta and Byron - the only Marcus-like blowhard in a colony of mutes, apparently, though they can sing like the filthy hippies they are. Frankly, I'm more interested in finding out if there's a personal connection between Bester and Byron, as they seem to know each other, and Bester is extra creepy about bringing blondie in. Not so long ago, Bryon was psycho-analyzing Lyta and telling her she was empty vessel for others, not her own person, so trying to lure her into a relationship where she's subservient to him could be seen in a negative light (not that he's doing that exactly); but now he calls her a resilient willow. I guess that's the other side of the coin. (Not sure if JMS is tapping into the same symbology, but in Tarot terms, Lyta's sign would be the Wheel of Fortune, on the one hand incapable of taking control of her own life, but on the other, having the ability to go with the flow with the least resistance - the season does have a Wheel in its title. Of all the characters of destiny on this show, she's probably the one whose fate is least in her control, the one we'll least see coming.)
Speaking of destiny, Londo is having the hardest time getting off the station to take his place on Centauri Prime's throne. All the ships going there get blown up. It's an odd subplot, because it seems really important, but gets glossed over. It's more or less a reason to show CG sequences in an interior episode. It doesn't help that Londo doesn't seem to mind, since what's waiting for him on Centauri (his destiny and the dreams of his death) fill him with dread. To put another piece of the puzzle in place, G'Kar, looking to contribute more to the Alliance, will accompany him as bodyguard and as a symbol of the Alliance healing the deep wounds between their two peoples. Well, we want these two guys together, if not on the station then elsewhere, so this is good, even if a lot of Season 5 seems to be focused on just moving the pieces to where we know they should be by the already seen end.
REWATCHABILITY: Medium - Not a bad episode. If things fall a little flat, it's perhaps because there are so few surprises left, and the ones there are don't feel natural.