Connect the Dots -- Stern , Jarvis, and Babylon 5
Connect the Dots -- Stern, Jarvis, and Babylon 5 -- One of the local New Jersey bloggers I read regularly, who has had an excellent collection of posting on the FCC, the American Taliban, and Howard Stern (and on media in general), is Jeff Jarvis. I recently came across Jeff's name again, in series creator J. Michael Straczynski's liner notes of the new Babylon 5 Season 5 DVD set...
For five years, as we struggled to find a home for Babylon 5, we were told that there was no market for a science fiction show of this nature, that the audience couldn't handle a five-year arc, that you couldn't compete with the juggernaut that was Star Trek.I'm glad Jeff was wrong. B5 is one of the best works for any screen -- big or small -- that's been produced.
We sold the pilot.
After we produced the pilot, everyone said there was no way we could afford to make the show on the scale necessary for the story, that television EFX weren't up to that level yet, that the market couldn't sustain more than one series about a space station. TV Guide critic Jeff Jarvis, weighing in on the odds of us making it to series, said simply, "fat chance."
We got the series...We continued to get renewed...We got the fifth season. We told the story we wanted to tell, and we told it to completion....
Here endeth the lesson.