Into the Fire (Babylon 5)
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|"Into the Fire"|
|Babylon 5 episode|
|Directed by||Kevin Dobson|
|Written by||J. Michael Straczynski|
|Original air date||February 3, 1997|
"Into the Fire" is an episode from the fourth season of the science fiction television series Babylon 5.
It marks the end of the "Shadow War" story arc.
This episode uses a massive amount of CGI effects to show the strength of the fleet that Sheridan has amassed to confront the Vorlons and the Shadows. In one sense, it is similar to the Battle of the Line in the Earth-Minbari War–a desperate attempt to stop a seemingly unstoppable enemy.
Sheridan praises Delenn for being able to assemble a fleet from so many diverse worlds, many of whom are historical enemies of one another, now united against common enemies.
Meanwhile, Londo commences plans to evict the Shadows from Centauri Prime. While doing so, he is given the upsetting news that the assassination of his beloved Adira had been orchestrated by none other than Morden, who then pinned the blame on Lord Refa so as to convince Londo to ask for his aid again. This gives Londo even more reason to confront Morden with his ultimatum: remove the Shadow vessels or else. When Morden refuses, Londo destroys the entire island upon which the ships were based and then orders Morden executed. He thinks he has removed the last reason for the Vorlons to attack Centauri Prime but Vir remarks Londo that he himself was once a Shadow associate and reason enough for the Vorlons to attack. He begs Vir to kill him - to remove the last trace of Shadow influence from Centauri Prime - and then tell the Vorlons that Londo is dead. The planet and Londo are spared when Sheridan's assault at Coriana 6 forces the Vorlons to summon away their remaining ships. Centauri Prime is safe, as is Londo, but Londo still has his future to consider.
The Vorlons and the Shadows make one last attempt to sway the younger races to follow them by explaining to Sheridan and Delenn their different viewpoints. Lorien secretly broadcasts these conversations to the entire assembled fleet. It is clear that the Vorlons and the Shadows have become so consumed in their own philosophies, they have forgotten that their original purpose was to help the younger races develop. The Vorlons and Shadows attempt to end the younger races' rebellion by destroying Sheridan and Delenn (and possibly Lorien), but allied ships sacrifice themselves to stop the resulting missiles, thereby establishing that Sheridan and Delenn speak for all of them. In the end Sheridan concludes the confrontation by telling them "Now get the hell out of our galaxy, the both of you!"
Lorien then tells the Vorlons and the Shadows, as well as the remaining First Ones that have been assembled, that their time is over and they must all go "beyond the rim." He assures them that he is going with them. This will leave the younger races to define their own history without interference.
The "Third Age of Mankind" has begun.
- Morden is dead, fulfilling Vir's sarcastic wish from "In the Shadow of Z'ha'dum" when Morden asked what he wanted.
- The Vorlons, Shadows and other First Ones have left the galaxy, leaving the younger races to fend for themselves, and marking the beginning of the "Third Age of Mankind".
"It's over because we've decided it's over! Now GET THE HELL OUT OF OUR GALAXY, both of you!"
-- Sheridan to the Vorlons and the Shadows
"To live on as we have is to leave behind joy, and love, and companionship, because we know it to be transitory, of the moment. We know it will turn to ash. Only those whose lives are brief can imagine that love is eternal. You should embrace that remarkable illusion. It may be the greatest gift your race has ever received."
-- Lorien to Ivanova
"You just made a mistake, Londo! Even if my associates lose this war, they have allies! They'll make sure Centauri Prime pays the price for what you've done here today!"
"What I've done? Oh, Mr. Morden, I haven't even started with you yet..."
-- Morden and Londo
"Will you come with us?"
"I have been here since the beginning. I will not leave you now. I will go with you beyond the rim. And we will see again all those who went ahead of us, all those who we have missed for so long."
"Then we will not be alone?"
"No, never alone."
-- Vorlons, Lorien, and the Shadows
"Strange. The galaxy seems somehow smaller now that the First Ones are gone forever. It feels like the magic's gone now."
"No, not gone. Now we make our own magic. Now we create our own legends. Now we build the future. Now we stop--"
"--being afraid of shadows."
-- Sheridan and Delenn