The Parliament of Dreams
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|"The Parliament of Dreams"|
|Babylon 5 episode|
|Episode no.||Season 1
|Directed by||Jim Johnston|
|Written by||J. Michael Straczynski|
|Original air date||February 23, 1994|
"The Parliament of Dreams" is an episode from the first season of the science-fiction television series Babylon 5.
The Earth Alliance arranges a week-long festival of religious and cultural exchange on the station. The Centauri celebrate with a lavish party, commemorating the victory of the Centauri over the other sentient life on their world, the Xon. At the end of each year, they look around and count how many of them survived and they celebrate their good fortune (rather than mourn those who have been killed, an unusually positive outlook in life which perhaps describes the Centauri, in contrast to the bitter and perpetually angry Narn). In the party Londo Mollari gets extremely drunk and passes out, which is described euphemistically as becoming "at one with his inner self". The Minbari host a session of prayers, a rebirth ceremony wherein the "old" self is "killed" and a new and better one is reborn. (This is mirrored some two years later when Delenn hosts another ritual in "Ceremonies of Light and Dark".)
G'Kar's enjoyment of the festival is tempered when a courier brings word that an old political rival of his, Du'Rog, is arranging to have him assassinated. A paranoid G'Kar first suspects his new diplomatic attache, Na'Toth, but learns too late that the true assassin is the courier himself, the Thenta Makur member Tu'Pari. Shortly after Tu'Pari begins subjecting G'Kar to a torture session mandated by terms of the assassination contract, Na'Toth intervenes, beating G'Kar in order to appear allied with Tu'Pari, but in actuality, deactivating the torture-inducing binds. G'Kar then easily disables Tu'Pari and then arranges for him to remain unconscious until his commission's deadline has passed, and depositing a large sum of money in his account to make it look like he was bribed into violating his commitment. Since the guild penalty for that is death (and then some), G'Kar and Na'Toth encourage him to flee.
Jeffrey Sinclair meets an old flame, Catherine Sakai, and rekindles their on-off romantic relationship, before hosting a celebration of Earth religion in which he introduces the major station personnel to a line of people, all of different faiths—the line extends some distance all the way to the final credits.
- Introduces Catherine Sakai as Sinclair's love interest.
- Introduces Na'Toth, G'Kar's personal aide.
- Introduces Lennier, Delenn's personal aide.
- Introduces the phrase "And so it begins," which is later mentioned in season 5’s title sequence.
- "The Parliament of Dreams" was originally titled "Carnival!"
- This episode marks the first appearance of Na'Toth, G'Kar's diplomatic attache, played by Caitlin Brown. She replaced Ko'Dath, who appeared only in "Born to the Purple," and was played by Mary Woronov. Woronov left the show after encountering problems with the extensive makeup process; Brown was called in at the last minute to replace her. In the second season, Na'Toth was played by Mary Kay Adams.
- Lennier also makes his first appearance, despite being named in the credits in each of the previous four episodes.
- Won Emmy Award for "Outstanding Individual Achievement in Makeup for a Series" 1994.