Endgame (Babylon 5)
|Babylon 5 episode|
|Episode no.||Season 4
|Directed by||John Copeland|
|Written by||J. Michael Straczynski|
|Original air date||12 October 1997|
"Endgame" is an episode from the fourth season of the science fiction television series Babylon 5.
John Sheridan launches a final battle to liberate Earth.
The episode opens with Marcus watching over the terminally injured Ivanova who is about to be transferred back to Babylon 5 before the final battle against Earth. Though Marcus protests, arguing that Ivanova would want to be present for the final battle, Delenn tells him that she will be more comfortable and safe on the station. Meanwhile, on Mars, Franklin and Lyta oversee the mission to transfer thirty Shadow-modified telepaths on an Earth fleet orbiting Mars while Garibaldi leads a strike team to secure the storage depot supplying the fleet.
Onboard his former ship, the EAS Agamemnon, Sheridan prepares his forces to attack the fleet orbiting Mars so that he will not be outflanked when attacking Earth. Aboard the EAS Apollo, General Robert Lefcourt commands the Earth-loyalist fleet. In a discussion with the Apollo's captain, he reveals that he fights out of duty to Earth, not out of personal loyalty to President Clark, and because he taught Sheridan and understands his tactical style.
In a coordinated attack, Garibaldi transmits jump coordinates to Marcus' White Star which jumps into the Martian atmosphere to attack ground targets. The loyalist fleet initially turns to attack Mars, but Lefcourt recognizes this as a diversionary tactic and orders the fleet to hold position. Sheridan's fleet jumps into Mars-space with instructions for only the Earth ships and White Stars to engage the loyalist fleet, while ships from the League of Non-Aligned Worlds, Minbari, Centauri, and Narn fleets provide tactical support without taking the offensive. The loyalist fleet prepares to engage, but many of the ships are suddenly disabled and dead in space. Lyta has telepathically awakened the telepaths that have been smuggled onto the fleet which have merged with the computer systems of the ships, disabling them. Sheridan engages those ships not disabled by the telepaths, destroying engines and weapons systems to avoid killing their crews. He orders the White Stars and his Earth ships to jump to Earth while the remainder of the fleet stays behind to secure the disabled destroyers and assist with repair and recovery as needed. On board the Apollo, Lefcourt determines that they must be the victim of sabotage. They quickly discover the telepath disrupting their systems, kill him, and begin repairs.
While en route to Earth, Marcus examines medical records from Babylon 5 to try and determine if there has been any discovery which might help save Ivanova's life. He discovers a record of the alien healing machine discovered in "The Quality of Mercy". He abandons the fleet and sets course for Babylon 5.
Sheridan cannot divert his attention from the mission at hand, and proceeds to jump into Earth-space. He broadcasts a stirring speech calling for the people to rise up and arrest President Clark, disband Nightwatch, and restore democracy.
Here's the speech as it follows:
|“||This is Captain John Sheridan. We are here on the authority of a multi-planetary force that can no longer stand by and watch one of their greatest allies falling into darkness and despair. We are here on behalf of the thousands of civilians murdered under orders from the current administration, who have no one else to speak for them. And on behalf of the Earthforce units that have joined us to oppose the tyranny that has darkened Earth ever since President Santiago was assassinated three years ago. We are here to place President Clark under arrest, to disband Nightwatch, and return our Government to the hands of her people. We know that many in the Government have wanted to act, but have been intimidated by threats of retaliation against your families, your friends, you are not alone anymore. We call upon you to rise up and do what's right. We have drawn their forces away from Earth, and disabled them. The time to act is now! This is not the voice of treason, these are your sons, your daughters, whose loyalties have never wavered. Whose belief in the Alliance has forced us to take extraordinary means. For justice... for peace... for the future... WE HAVE COME HOME!||”|
Emboldened, people led by Earth Senator Crosby walk to President Clark's office. Clark activates the planetary defense grid which begins to engage Sheridan's fleet. As people begin beating at his door, Clark commits suicide using a PPG, leaving behind a cryptic suicide note that eventually translates as "scorched earth". Before killing himself, Clark had turned the defense platforms towards Earth. The platforms are capable of destroying 40% of the planet's surface. When relayed the information, Sheridan quickly orders all ships to destroy the platforms. He calls in Delenn, who arrives with the combined fleet to assist.
Ships of every race engage the defense platforms, destroying many but taking significant casualties. The Agamemnon is severely damaged in the attack, losing weapons capability. One of the few remaining platforms begins to power up, targeting the eastern seaboard of the United States. With no nearby ship capable of destroying the platform, Sheridan orders ramming speed. The Agamemnon speeds towards the platform when at the last moment the Apollo emerges from hyperspace and destroys the platform. Having seen Clark turn the defense platforms against Earth, Lefcourt welcomes Sheridan home.
Interstellar Network News resumes normal transmissions with the reporter last seen on the air when ISN was taken over by forces loyal to Pres. Clark. ISN has been stuck for years as a propaganda machine; overcome with emotion, the reporter welcomes back ISN's viewers and reports on the events of the past hours, alluding as well to her imprisonment and those of other colleagues.
While Sheridan prepares to meet with members of the restored Earth Alliance government, Franklin commands a White Star returning to Babylon 5. He has learned of Marcus' discovery of the alien healing device and is attempting to stop him. In fact, he is too late. Marcus uses the machine to transfer his life energy to Ivanova. Close to death, he tells an unconscious Ivanova that he loves her.
- Sheridan's forces attack Mars and Earth, disabling the fleet and preventing Clark from destroying Earth.
- The Earth Civil War has ended with President Clark committing suicide before he can be arrested.
- Marcus has returned to Babylon 5 after learning of the Alien Healing Device.
- Ivanova's life is saved as a result of Marcus' sacrifice.