|Babylon 5 character|
|First appearance||Babylon 5: The Gathering|
|Last appearance||Babylon 5: The Gathering|
|Portrayed by||Tamlyn Tomita|
|Affiliated with||Babylon 5, EarthForce|
Laurel Takashima met Commander Jeffrey Sinclair while working at Mars Colony Security. She had been stationed at a corrupt mining station where it was common to go on the take in order to get a better job. Not succumbing to the culture of graft, but unable to receive a promotion as a result, she became disengaged from her work. She eventually began to get into trouble with the Earth Alliance for breaking rules. When Sinclair became her commanding officer on Mars, he agreed to seek a promotion for Takashima, if she brought her behavior in line.
Sinclair asked for Takashima when he was posted to Babylon 5 in 2257, and she became Babylon 5's original first officer.
However, following the assassination attempt on Ambassador Kosh, Takashima was recalled to Earth where she was assigned to a classified mission to the Rim by EarthForce. She was replaced as Executive Officer by Lieutenant Commander Susan Ivanova in 2258.
Conception and casting
Takashima was originally intended to be a main character in the Babylon 5 TV series. Because series creator J. Michael Straczynski knew that Tamlyn Tomita would want to leave the show eventually and pursue a film career, he planned a character arc which would remove Takashima during the second season: originally, she "would have been revealed as having been in on the Vorlon assassination attempt by season's end", was the one who would be harbouring the "Control" personality for the Psi Corps, and under the control of this personality it would be her that shot Michael Garibaldi in the back in the season 1 finale cliffhanger. When Tomita did not sign on for the TV series after all, the "Control" personality was given to Talia Winters and the shooting of Garibaldi was done by his second-in-command.
Takashima would have also been in an intimate relationship with the second officer, Susan Ivanova. Ivanova was made the executive officer in place of Takashima, and the intimate relationship was again transferred to Talia Winters.
Straczynski found the loss of Tomita particularly frustrating, as the Warner Brothers executives felt she was not convincing as a military officer, a result of their own earlier request to make her performance more feminine and relatable.
- "The Gathering", Babylon 5
- "Soul Hunter", Babylon 5
- "Midnight on the Firing Line", Babylon 5
- http://www.midwinter.com/lurk/guide/041.html#JS "This was planned because we knew going in that Tamlyn Tomita had a growing film career, and we probably could've only kept her for a couple of years in the best of circumstances."
- Guide page: "Revelations"
- http://www.midwinter.com/lurk/guide/041.html#JS "Takashima would have been the one to be Control."
- "jms speaks". Midwinter. July 13, 2004. "Originally, it was Laurel Takashima who would have betrayed those around her"
- Ryan, Matthew (July 13, 2004). "jms speaks". Midwinter. "They wanted her to loop her lines, soften their (her) delivery."