13 April 2016

Crusade Review: Ruling from the Tomb & Appearances and Other Deceits

The Excalibur continues its mission to explore and find a cure for the Drakh plague on Earth with its responsibilities bringing it back to Mars and discovering a highly dangerous alien entity.
I have decided to watch Crusade in the intended chronological order this time around - to see if things make a bit more sense in this order. As a result, Ruling from the Tomb becomes episode 3 instead of The Well of Forever.
Ruling from the Tomb
Gideon and Lochley look after security arrangements for a conference on Mars about the Drakh plague. 

With the Excalibur back at Mars, Gideon works with Lochley to make sure the conference guests, including Dr Chambers are all secure at the venue. Max, Trace and Dureena choose to explore Mars and make some unusual friends in the process.

Meanwhile, a number of murders heighten security concerns at the conference where a Doomsday cult called Sacred Omega appears to be responsible - planting a bomb in order to bring about the end of the human race, or at least, slowing down the search for a cure.

This episode is notable for the interactions between Lochley and Gideon who appear to be at each others throats in almost every meeting they have. The dinner scene between them is especially funny when Gideon talks about John Sheridan and realises Lochley's past relationship with the now ISA President. There are also some good moments between Max, Trace and Dureena, so overall, even with the serious tone of the Doomsday cult, this is a bit of a fun episode too.

Rating: 7/10
Appearances and Other Deceits 
The Excalibur discovers an unknown alien ship that could provide information about the Drakh plague.
We are reintroduced to Mr Welles (who last appeared in the B5 episode Fall of Night) who is part of a team designed to spruce up the image of the Excalibur's mission for the 'folks back home'.  

Meanwhile, they are investigating a mysterious alien ship and the fate of its crew who all perished. Max works to solve the problem by deciphering their language as a medlab officer is unknowingly infected by the last survivor that is brought aboard the Excalibur. A mysterious alien lifeforce that transfers by touch soon begins taking over crew members on the ship and Gideon must figure out how to stop it.

While the scenes with the dress coordinator were slightly painful, this episode is again an interesting watch. The return of Mr Welles brings continuity and the alien lifeforce feels like a new concept that is tackled quite well by Gideon and the crew. The last moments where we realise the cure might indeed exist, is a scene that I always remember - and that Max really hates hangnails, almost as much as he hates contradictions.

Rating: 7.5/10