Babylon 5 now available to stream for free in the US

Babylon 5, even during its original run, was never particularly easy to watch when it first aired. The changing TV landscape of the time, as well as the failure of B5's original network PTEN and subsequent re-emergence on the TNT network, meant that timeslots and airdates shifted several times during the show's original five-year run.

Show creator Joe Michael Sraczynski's "B5 books" site is reporting that now has the entire show available to stream for free for the first time, along with several other recent series.

I've always believed that B5 represented one of the better Sci-Fi "space opera" TV shows in history, and one that many people were never able to watch during its run on television. The story and effects hold up extremely well for a show that recently celebrated its 20th anniversary. Now's your chance to see it in its entirety, for free, on your own terms.

Unfortunately, the site is US-only. Read the rest

Sci-Fi Sundays: Analog, March 1969

As usual, Analog always shines when it comes to cover art. They've got the fantastic Kelly Freas who supplied rich and colorful depictions for many years. On top of that, the actual printing itself is of decent quality. If you compare this to the issue from the last article, you'll see that having your print lined up perfectly wasn't always the case for magazines like this.

I noticed that the pants on the illustration are tailored with a bit of detail around the tail. There's a snap and a zipper. I can't help but wonder if this was outlined explicitly in the story or if Freas, while illustrating, stopped to ponder how a pair of pants for a creature with a tail would work.

For the issues from my collection that happen to fall in the 60's through mid 70's, I really enjoy seeing what was actually going in the space program during the same period. For example, this issue was published in March of 1969. Readers would be enjoying this issue while also hearing about the Apolo 9 mission on the radio and TV. This was a period of firsts. Many of the flights were presenting large tasks, being done for the first time in space. Apallo 9 was the first space docking, which included transferring people between the modules. That's pretty wild. I can only imagine the wonder and excitement in the minds of the Sci-Fi community during this time.

Publication: Analog, Science Fiction Science Fact

Issue: March 1969, volume: LXXXII No. Read the rest

Sci-Fi Sundays: Galaxy, February 1965

Looking at the cover above, you might be tempted to assume that my scanning skills are waning. While it is true that sometimes an edge lifts, or the warped pages produce a muddy scan (especially when I'm worried about completely destroying the spine), this is not one of those cases. The little halos that you can see particularly well around the tiny astronauts, are actually there in the print. This is fairly common for this era of magazine, and a good reminder that these weren't very costly, or at least the printer didn't spend for high quality printing.

I really like the design of the ship on this cover, it is a bit different that what we usually see in this time period. The alluring poses of the obviously feminine tentacle creatures seems like a fairly clever way of using sex to sell the issue while skirting the stigma of having naked women on the cover.


Issue: February 1965, volume: 23 No. 3

Cover art:Wright from Planet of Forgetting

The inside cover advertisement. Interesting to me that even in 1965 cheap cameras were not as valued as the film itself.

Finlay for On The Storm Planet

Finlay for On The Storm Planet

This is probably my favorite from this issue. The submarine, on treads, but also having oars, is an odd vehicle, but I'd drive it.

Finlay for On The Storm Planet

Finlay for On The Storm Planet

This art work is a somewhat generic collage of "science" items. Read the rest

The science of ever-larger Godzillas

TIL: A 55,000-ton, city-destroying lizard beast could pee 151,436,928 gallons per day. They never show you all the people who died, drowned in Godzilla's urine. Read the rest

Check out this sweet flying saucer

Ooooh. Wired Danger Room has some neat, recently declassified schematics of a "flying saucer" that the Air Force wanted to build (but didn't) in the 1960s. Also included: Video showing why the proposal probably never made it to reality (Warning: Video contains a bad techno soundtrack!). Read the rest

#OccupyWallSt: Luke Skywalker is the 99%

Photoshopper unknown. Via Brandon Neely. Read the rest

Spock is Not Impressed

A Tumblog of Greatness: Spock is Not Impressed

(thanks, Sean Bonner) Read the rest