Babylon 5: Thirdspace (1998)

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Thirdspace is one of the television movies that were made for Babylon 5, taking place between the 8th and 9th episode of season 4.

I really liked it, there’s this big dumb object that’s been drifting in hyperspace for a very long time and now that it’s been found everyone wants a piece of it. It takes place after the Vorlons and the Shadows left our galaxy but before the fall of president Santiago. As expected, things turn ugly when it turns out that the big dumb object is a gate to another universe besides our own and hyperspace, hence the title, where aliens dwell that even the Vorlons couldn’t take on in the past.

It’s all very neat on a purely action and adventure level, but the thing that irked me was that the movie tried to integrate rather unsubtly a stupid moral about the Vorlons trying to become gods by reaching thirdspace. The movie tried to tell us this was a terrible mistake on their part, but the only thing I can see they were mistaken about was the size of their guns. Instead of merely closing the gate and hoping the problem would go away, they should have developed newer technology to take on the misfits from thirdspace. These aliens were just more advanced, nothing else.

It’s also been implied that the aliens from thirdspace had been on a genocidal rage in their own universe for quite some time and the reaction of the Babylon 5 crew mirrored exactly the reaction of the Vorlons: close the gate and forget about it. Trying to act as if that universe’s problems aren’t our own is both morally questionable but also dangerous. A door once open is never completely closed. A better course of action would have been to prepare and research how to solve the problem. Sticking your head in the sand never works in the long run.