Voices of Authority

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"Voices of Authority"
Babylon 5 episode
Episode no.Season 3
Episode 5
Directed byMenachem Binitsky
Written byJ. Michael Straczynski
Production code304
Original air dateJanuary 29, 1996
Guest appearance(s)

John Schuck (Draal)
Shari Shattuck (Julie Musante)

Episode chronology
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"Passing Through Gethsemane"
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"Dust to Dust"
List of Babylon 5 episodes

"Voices of Authority" is the fifth episode from the third season of the science-fiction television series Babylon 5.


While Garibaldi and Zack are talking about station security, Garibaldi is called off, reporting it as an obscure code which piques Zack's curiosity. Garibaldi joins Sheridan and the other war council members where Draal reveals himself to them. He knows of their war with the Shadows, and that there are other First Ones besides the Vorlons that may be able to help, and suggests Sheridan come to the planet Epsilon III to get information from the Great Machine.

Around the same time, a new political officier, Julie Musante from the Ministry of Peace arrives. She demands that Sheridan join her for dinner to review station operations. Sheridan tells Ivanova to go in his place to visit Draal instead. Musante shows concern of how Sheridan has been running the station in manners that question EarthGov's authority, but Sheridan asserts he has full support of the government. Musante downplays the governments concerns and follows back to his quarters, where she tries to get romantically involved with him.

On the planet, Ivanova meets Draal, who takes a liking to her style. He helps her use the Great Machine to find the First Ones with her mind. While she locates the planet they are hiding at, a malevolent force tries to grab her, and Draal quickly guides Ivanova's mind back, but en route, she discovers a signal that she follows. It turns out to be a signal from the past, just prior to the destruction of Earth Force One and the death of President Santiago, where she hears Morden affirm to Vice President Clark that he will soon be President. Returning to her body, Ivanova tells Draal to record that message, and then uses the Machine to try to warn Sheridan, just as Musante has undressed in front of him. Sheridan steps away long enough to order Ivanova to send the recording to Garibaldi, and then to use the White Star to track down the First Ones.

Ivanova is joined by Marcus to help translate for the Minbari crew, and travel to the planet she saw. There, they do discover a ship but it appears to ignore them. Ivanova begs for their help against the Shadows, but they appear only bring to give a curt, untranslatable answer. She tricks them into believing that the Vorlons had felt their help would be completely unnecessary as they were useless; the First Ones reappear and affirm they will be ready to help when the time comes.

On the station, Sheridan finally gets away from Musante and affirms the footage Garibaldi got from Draal. Knowing it is the evidence they need to prove that there was a conspiracy to kill Santiago, Sheridan decides to route the message to General Hauge, who will know how to disseminate it to harm Clark's position. Meanwhile, Musante meets with the members of Night Watch, including Zack , and instructs them to step up efforts on reporting any potentially conspiratorial elements to the Ministry. Zack, still uncomfortable with this, approaches Garibaldi about his earlier disappearance, and realizes Garibaldi is withholding information from him.

Word of the footage related to the destruction of Earth Force One starts to spread, with EarthGov downplaying it as a forgery. Despite this, Musante is forced to return to Earth immediately but promises she will be back. Throughout the episode G'Kar knows that the station's staff and Delenn are up to something, but even approaching Garibaldi, his closest friend, reveals no information. At the end, G'Kar wakes Garibaldi up in the middle of the night and gives him the Narn's holy text to read.

Arc significance[edit]

  • Musante arrives at Babylon 5 to serve as the political officer. She seeks to extend and expand the scope of the Nightwatch force, while attempting to impose political oversight over the staff.
  • Draal (John Schuck), the Minbari custodian of The Great Machine on Epsilon 3, reappears to help Ivanova locate the First Ones (whose ship previously appeared in Season One in "Mind War"), the Walkers at Sigma 957, recruiting them in the war against the Shadows. During this endeavor, Ivanova inadvertently discovers video of Mr. Morden speaking to President Clark, implicating them both in President Santiago's assassination. This video evidence is made public.
  • After Ivanova finds the aforementioned evidence, Draal states that "A normal human mind should not have been able to do that", confirming that she does have some latent telepathic ability.

Production details[edit]

In the episode notes on the Lurker's Guide to Babylon 5, Straczynski says that the best translation of the word "ZOG" (which the Walkers of Sigma-957 say to Ivanova when she first mentions the Vorlons) is basically "The Vorlons can kiss my ***".[1]


  1. ^ "Guide Page: 'Voices of Authority'". Lurker's Guide to Babylon 5. Retrieved April 12, 2018.

External links[edit]