Crusade

Season 1
 (1,616)
6.7199913+
In the late 23rd century, humanity defeats the evil Shadow race. But its allies remain--and they swear revenge. When the mysterious, hateful Drakh unleash a deadly biogenetic plague on Earth…
Starring
Gary ColeTracy ScogginsDaniel Dae Kim
Genres
DramaAdventureScience FictionAction
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
English
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  1. 1. War Zone
    June 8, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    An advanced starship searches for the cure to an alien virus that could kill everyone on Earth.
  2. 2. The Long Road
    June 15, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Gideon mediates between Earth miners and the residents of a planet containing a virus-fighting mineral--and a fire-breathing dragon.
  3. 3. The Well of Forever
    June 22, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Galen persuades Gideon to seek a mystical crossroads. An investigator probes Matheson's mind.
  4. 4. The Path of Sorrows
    June 29, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    A mysterious sphere prompts Gideon and the others to relive traumatic moments from their past.
  5. 5. Patterns of the Soul
    July 6, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Gideon must deport a colony of renegade humans. Dureena finds a lost tribe of her people.
  6. 6. Ruling from the Tomb
    July 13, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Gideon and Lochley must prevent a doomsday cult from killing everyone at a virus conference.
  7. 7. The Rules of the Game
    July 20, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    While negotiating with stubborn aliens, Gideon involves Lochley in danger and romance. Eilerson's ex-wife begs for help with a brutal moneylender.
  8. 8. Appearances and Other Deceits
    July 27, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Gideon must outwit an alien consciousness that takes over the Excalibur's crew.
  9. 9. Racing the Night
    August 3, 1999
    44min
    ALL
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Gideon and crew find themselves trapped by an alien civilization using sinister methods to seek a cure for the same virus that attacked Earth.
  10. 10. The Memory of War
    August 10, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Galen warns Gideon not to explore a planet where the inhabitants were suddenly eradicated.
  11. 11. The Needs of Earth
    August 17, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Gideon conducts an illegal raid to free a fugitive with information that could save Earth.
  12. 12. Visitors from Down the Street
    August 24, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    Two persecuted alien investigators believe that Earth is covertly invading them.
  13. 13. Each Night I Dream of Home
    August 31, 1999
    44min
    13+
    Subtitles
    English [CC]
    Audio languages
    English
    A dangerous experiment takes place aboard the Excalibur. RICHARD BIGGS guest stars.

More details

Directors
Michael VejarTony DowStephen FurstJanet GreekJerry ApoianJohn CopelandJesús Salvador Treviño
Supporting actors
David Allen BrooksPeter WoodwardMarjean HoldenCarrie Dobro
Producers
John Copeland
Season year
1999
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
Available to watch on supported devices

Other formats

Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

1616 global ratings

  1. 70% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 16% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 9% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

Matt GraubnerReviewed in the United States on August 5, 2005
5.0 out of 5 stars
Who do you serve?
Verified purchase
The Drakh have struck Earth. These allies of the Shadows have poisoned the planet with a Shadow plague that will wipe out all life once the virus has fully adapted to Human DNA in five years time. The Excalibur, one of a new battleship design commissioned by Alliance President John Sheridan is pressed into commission to serve as a mobile platform for seeking out information about the plague and how it may be cured.

I really wish this show had gotten the chance to get off the ground properly, there is so much here that begs to be explained. As with Babylon 5 this show obviously has a five year life built in (though regretably it didn't even make it through one of those years). If you go digging around you'll even be able to find out a bit more of what JMS had in mind for the show.

In many ways this series reminds me somewhat of traditional Star Trek, whereas Babylon 5 is more similar to Deep Space Nine. However, of course both shows are quite different, quite good, and not copies of each other. Okay, with that caveat out of the way I can continue. We have one ship visiting many ports, discovering new races and cultures, and going someplace new--very Star Trekian. Now I don't believe this is bad, or truly derivative--I just mention what I see as similar. One thing that definately jars this is JMS's habit of not including every main character in each episode as Star Trek producers are usually wont to do. Like Babylon 5 (where there was only one episode in the entire run to feature each then listed main character) you can go several episodes without seeing certain characters. I like this (and would have liked it more if the series had run for years and it hadn't severely limited our exposure to some characters) it just takes some getting used to. If you like Star Trek look at this as more good sci-fi--if you don't like Star Trek know this is quite different stuff.

You'll find the serious mixed with the lighthearted. When talking about episodes I must include the JMS recomended viewing order. I defied this at first and watched the episode the case said should be first (War Zone)--and it was indeed an introduction, a very traditional pilot. However, I found out later that it was only produced later when the producers said they didn't like Racing the Night as an introduction. Furthermore, there were certain elements that didn't fit so well--such as a fistfight and crazy airing order that TNT producers insisted on--so don't blame everything wrong on JMS. Really this all reminds me of Firefly (which came later) and the trouble Joss Wheedon had with producers at Fox who disliked his excellent pilot and made him redo the second episode Train Job to serve as a new pilot. However unlike JMS Wheedon was able to make Train Job a new pilot and yet remain as a consistant second episode. Unfortunately for Crusade, the episode War Zone is somewhat of a continuity orphan, especially if you watch in the JMS order, which I would strongly suggest. I also enjoy reading the Lurker's Guide to each episode after viewing it. You'll find this at [...] Here is the order, the only problems you'll find with it are some out of place uniform changes (that flow in the original airing order) and a couple minor errors (such as Lockley and Gideon meeting for the first time twice ;-)).

Racing the Night

The Needs of Earth

The Memory of War

The Long Road

Visitors from Down the Street

The Well of Forever

Each Night I Dream of Home

Patterns of the Soul

The Path of Sorrows

Ruling from the Tomb

The Rules of the Game

War Zone

Appearances and Other Deceits

Racing the Night is a very good pilot, introducing us to each character in a gradual manner on JMS's terms. Additionally we join the crew in the middle of their quest and only gradually find out exactly what is happening--it isn't all just thrust upon us. We not only get a pilot, but a darn good episode.

Visitors from Down the Street is definately an episode in a lighthearted vein, it being a definate mock/tribute/mimic of the X-Files. However, this time it is aliens believing that humans are interfering in their culture. :-) Try to spot as many X-Files references as you can.

Galen is a remarkable character. First introduced in the Babylon 5 movie A call to Arms he is a technomage. However, unlike the rest of his brethern he has decided not to retreat from Known Space, but to return to help the crew of the Excalibur fight for humanity. JMS has called him the traditional fantasy RPG magician of the group. Really the whole cast is a collection of eccentric, but fun characters. What little we get to see of them is quite revealing.

A note about special effects. Please keep in mind that just as on Babylon 5 effects shots are computer generated, and it is noticable. They aren't horrible, they just aren't as flawless as a big-budget blockbuster. However, if this is a problem then you shouldn't even be looking at Crusade or B-5. The stories are what make the show, the special effects just help them along.

The music and shooting style are by design very different from Babylon 5, so don't go in expecting to just see and hear more of the same.

Now there aren't many special features, only four in fact. You'll get a featurette on the production of the series, and a five minute one on the design of the Excalibur. Additionall JMS has commentary on Racing the Night, and two of the actors, the director, and writer comment on The Path of Shadows. The JMS commentary goes into more depth not on just the episode but the series, and what it might have been.

If you enjoyed Babylon 5 then I would definately suggest that you check out this partial series. You'll get some fun episodes and the chance to see what might have been. I always enjoy learning more about my favourite universes, and this is no exception! You get a whole new look at the world of Babylon 5.
7 people found this helpful
Mac BreckReviewed in the United States on November 24, 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars
Could Have Been Great, If Only TNT Hadn't Found A Way To...
Verified purchase
...Kill it, *and* prevent anybody else from picking it up.
The above sentence refers to a jmsnews post. To find the post, go to jmsnewsDOTcom and do a search on "survey"...and you'll find the post:
"Subject: ATTN JMS:IGN (Filmforce) Interview
Date: 9/10/2000 12:02:00 PM"
****************************************

While I essentially agree with what others have said about Crusade being a great series that showed a lot of promise, the following info. should be presented:

1. TNT cancelled Crusade months before it was even aired. Hence Crusade was NOT cancelled because of Crusade's ratings numbers, but because TNT had found out that "Babylon 5" itself was a bad fit for their core audience. Crusade's cancellation had little or nothing to do with Crusade itself. It just had the misfortune to start out on the WRONG channel, a sci-fi unfriendly channel.

2. In the "A Call to Arms" (B5 Movie Collection DVD Set), JMS mentions that the plague was a hook (Earth in jeopardy) that Warner Brothers and TNT felt that the Crusade series needed to start off with. The plague was something that they needed to get INTO the Crusade storyline (politically, with what the Shadows left behind, and the conspiracy back on Earth, Galen and the Technomage connection to Shadowtech that's expounded upon in the Technomage trilogy of novels, etc.).

****************************************

"Good Show and I Will DEFINITELY Buy It." (added Dec. 2, 2004)

I will buy it BECAUSE I enjoyed the episodes that WERE produced (ditto for Brimstone, Strange Luck, The Ellen Show, Special Unit 2, Firefly, Keen Eddie, Wonderfalls, Boomtown, The Tick, etc.). I already have Firefly and The Tick, will be buying Keen Eddie, Wonderfalls, and Boomtown, shortly, and will buy the rest when they become available.

I will buy it BECAUSE I want to show support for a good show that was mishandled and prematurely cancelled (just like most of the other shows listed above.).

I will also buy it because there is a chance that the Crusade story will be continued (theatrical release, novels, etc.).

**********
From jmsnewsDOTcom
"Transcript
Speaker: Joe Michael Straczynski
Location: Hawthorne High School Comic Con
Date: 5/8/2004"

Q&A session

Room 120 - Fans begin gathering and taking their places in traditional school desks. Some of us haven't seen the like for...a long time. Before us is a perfectly clean blackboard. While we wait for JMS, somebody (okay, I did it) writes in large letters " MR. STRACZYNSKI" and below it, "T M o S 101"

3:00 PM. JMS arrives and, without a word, goes to the board and erases the "TMOS 101" part amid much laughter.
....
Audience: Any (plans?) to address the Crusade story?

JMS: Uh....(gestures toward the erased blackboard) Other questions.

....

Audience: Out of all your cancelled projects, which one would you like to resume first?

JMS: There's only been a couple. (laughter) He's being mean to me! Umm...Crusade. That's the obvious choice because that one was cut short...it was shot in it's cradle by unfair means and that pisses me off. So I will fix that one way or the other.
**********

And given what JMS said immediately above, it's likely that at least some of the upcoming new novels...

**********
From jmsnewsDOTcom
"Subject: re: various from jms
Date: 6/15/2004 5:58:58 AM"

"Also, expect word fairly soon-ish about a new series of B5 novels."
**********

... will likely continue the Crusade story. Given the high quality of the Psi Corps, Centauri Prime, and Technomage trilogies (nine novels)...

Dark Genesis - The Birth of the Psi Corps, ISBN: 0-345-42715-7
Deadly Relations - Bester Ascendant, ISBN: 0-345-42716-5
Final Reckoning - The Fate of Bester, ISBN: 0-345-42717-3

Legions of Fire - Book I - The Long Night of Centauri Prime, ISBN: 0-345-42718-1
Legions of Fire - Book II - Armies of Light and Dark, ISBN: 0-345-42719-X
Legions of Fire - Book III - Out of the Darkness, ISBN: 0-345-42720-3

The Passing of the Techno-Mages - Book I - Casting Shadows, ISBN: 0-345-42721-1
The Passing of the Techno-Mages - Book II - Summoning Light, ISBN: 0-345-42722-X
The Passing of the Techno-Mages - Book III - Invoking Darkness, ISBN: 0-345-43833-7

... published by Del Rey, I'd go for the new novels in a heartbeat.

Without the Crusade DVD set, you'll be missing the first part of the Crusade story. I wouldn't buy a novel with the FRONT 50 pages missing. Also, with the television performances to draw upon, I can better "see" the story unfold in a novel as I read it. I enjoyed the last three trilogies of novels more, for that very reason.

With all of the above in mind, I will DEFINITELY be buying the Crusade DVD Set.
****************************************

FINALLY, 4:3 (FULL FRAME) **AS IT SHOULD BE**. (added Dec. 17, 2004)

Unlike all of the Babylon 5 series, this DVD set is not widescreen - WHEW! FINALLY, they do the RIGHT thing!!! The CGI, like Babylon 5's CGI was only rendered 4:3, SO, by being full frame (4:3) instead of widescreen 16:9, what we get with the Crusade set is 100% of the CGI, not top & bottom cropped and enlarged CGI, with the artifacts the cropping and enlarging introduces. I WISH they'd have done the Babylon 5 Season Sets this way.

With the Crusade DVDs, they FINALLY did the RIGHT thing, and didn't crop every frame that had any amount of CGI in it (e.g. even a monitor being seen in the frame).

KoshN
16 people found this helpful
mhwReviewed in the United States on November 1, 2022
5.0 out of 5 stars
The end of it all
Verified purchase
I am really enjoying all episodes of the "Babylon 5" collection. It's gonna take me a while to complete watching the collection in it's entirety, but I'm sure having fun. It's quite interesting and exciting! Bringing it to a close - necessary ending.
JRRReviewed in the United States on September 1, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Enjoyable to watch, too bad it wasn't given a chance to grow into something more.
Verified purchase
This was a fun follow up to Babylon 5. If you've seen Babylon 5 you'll certainly get more out of this show's mythology. For example the technomages which were first introduced in Babylon 5 season 2's The Geometry of Shadows and expanded on greatly in Crusade. This show also gives us an update on what's been going on with the telepaths.

Even if you haven't seen Babylon 5 the characters and their galactic adventures are still fun to watch. There are guest stars that you'll recognize too.

As for the viewing order I recommend watching the show in what's called the 'All-Inclusive Episode Viewing Order'. You can look it up online for more info. It keeps everything mostly in chronological order and the episode's stories progress together much better than their original broadcast order (as Amazon has them listed in).

Start With:

2266: A Call to Arms

This is a Babylon 5 movie that acts as a prologue/pilot for Crusade. It sets up the circumstances that launches the series of events of the show aka they have five years to (spoilers). It is available as a separate purchase on Amazon.

Episode Viewing Order:

2267: Crusade
1 - War Zone
6 - Ruling from the Tomb
2 - The Long Road
4 - The Path of Sorrows
8 - Appearances and Other Deceits
9 - Racing the Night
11 - The Needs of Earth
10 - The Memory of War
12 - Visitors from Down the Street (Mulder and Scully as aliens, hahaha)
13 - Each Night I Dream of Home
7 - The Rules of the Game
5 - Patterns of the Soul
3 - The Well of Forever

End With:

2271: The Lost Tales (aka Voices in the Dark).

This is a Babylon 5 movie and in my mind acts like an epilogue for Crusade. A Call to Arms started with Galen (the technomage) contacting President Sheridan and events of that movie take place on Babylon 5 with Captain Elizabeth Lochley in command.

Galen is a main character of Crusade. The crew stops off at Babylon 5. Captain Elizabeth Lockley is in a few episodes. President Sheridan is mentioned several times throughout the episodes.

The Lost Tales takes place at the end of the five years to (spoilers) and Galen again contacts President Sheridan and events of this movie again take place on Babylon 5 with now Colonel Elizabeth Lochley still in command (fyi: the first half of this movie can be hard to get through for some people, but the second half is wonderful).

While this movie doesn't exactly resolve the events of Crusade, it infers that they were resolved. This movie is also available as a separate purchase on Amazon.

Crusade's production was stopped half way through season one. With what was produced it still is worth watching if you enjoy the Babylon 5 universe. My above movie bookends and episode order suggestions is how I enjoyed watching the show leaving me feeling fulfilled.

Cheers!
22 people found this helpful
Duke WallsReviewed in the United States on November 28, 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars
Tragedy in 13 parts
Verified purchase
There may be three or four of you who didn't watch all of Babylon 5, and so don't understand all the mysterious aliens so wonderfully set forth in this unique universe. Forthwith, a primer:

Earth Alliance: military forces of a sometimes uneasy "one world" government, an interesting blend of Army, Navy, and Air Force drawing from all nations (and, interestingly, from colonies like Mars, Io, and others). Basically, us Humans.

Minbari: mysterious elder race that nearly wiped out the human race before discovering we are the "other half" of their souls. Together, the two races kicked the ancient races out of the galaxy and formed the Interstellar Alliance from the former League of Nonaligned Worlds. Empire building ensues.

Rangers: part Minbari, part Human (and soon from other IA races) elite forces. They don't create the peace, they just help enforce it. They go where no one else will; when they guard the bridge, none shall pass -- you get the idea.

Vorlons: mysterious elder race (hmm, sounds vaguely familiar) that acted as a guide for the younger races until we basically outgrew their help. They're big into Order. Thousands of years more advanced than us, their technology is the only real bulwark against the Shadows.

Shadows: mysterious elder race (sheesh) that are agents of Chaos. After a climactic battle, they leave our galaxy along with the Vorlons and the remaining First Ones (mysterious elder--oh, never mind), leaving their former servants in the lurch, holding some really nasty leftover technology.

Drakh: former thralls of the Shadows, they learned well at the (insectoid) knees of their former masters. After causing some serious trouble at the outskirts of the IA, they come after Earth to settle the score. After their leftover Shadow toy fails, they dump a biogenetic plague on Earth on the way out. Hey, not fair!

Vastly over-simplified, that's the universe Crusade happens in. The Excalibur, only surviving prototype of a new melding of Human, Minbari, and Vorlon technologies, is turned into a research and exploration vessel, and sent off to find a cure with the help of the Rangers. We get a Captain who's an inveterate gambler (in more than one sense), a telepathic first officer, a Techno-Mage (one who uses technology to simulate magic), an eccentric, asocial genius (have to have one of those), a noble doctor bravely searching for the cure, an alien Thief (supposedly the last survivor of another race destroyed by the Drakh -- or is she?), and other characters you'll love.

Others have waxed eloquest about the bottom-feeding mouth-breathers at TNT and their moral/ethical shortcomings (beyond recto-cranial inversion -- child molesters look down upon these bozos), so I won't waste your time further. If you loved B5 and feel the need to pick up every piece of video ever produced in that universe, this would be a wonderful purchase. If you never got the chance to see it on TNT (I haven't been back on that channel since the departure of B5), and missed it on the Sci-Fi Channel, this would be a convenient way to pick up the whole shooting match at once. Overlooking the bizarre changes in costuming, the sometimes uneven effects, and the simple fact there were only 13 shows made, this show could be a primer on how to do thought-provoking drama while telling a thumping good story at the same time. Recommended at the price.
19 people found this helpful
Eric ChristensenReviewed in the United States on September 15, 2022
5.0 out of 5 stars
Great series
Verified purchase
If you were a fan of Babylon 5 this is a great addition for your collection.
49ers Reviewed in the United States on November 17, 2022
3.0 out of 5 stars
Cruade
Verified purchase
just to kill time
Esther SchindlerReviewed in the United States on December 11, 2005
4.0 out of 5 stars
5 for potential, 3 for workmanship
Verified purchase
If you're a fan of Babylon 5, you're probably tempted to buy Crusade. After all, it was the short-lived follow-on to B5, put together by the B5 creator and with a few of the same cast members.

DO buy it. Just don't come to the Crusade series with the same set of expectations, because you're going to be disappointed.

Crusade is a too-perfect example of "creation by committee." The REAL main premise of Crusade works, particularly if you followed B5: the servants of the shadows had dropped a plague on the Earth, and the Crusade crew are traveling the universe to find a cure. Unfortunately, the "creative" people at TNT, which was better at putting together smack-down wrestling, insisted on making changes to the Crusade premise, characters (they wanted one alien whose main purpose was to have sex with as many races as possible), and even uniforms (which is why JMS had to come up with a hokey episode to change the uniforms).

The result is moments of brilliance, mixed with irritating situations. And, because the TNT people claimed that new watchers wouldn't have a context for the show (although they ended up showing the B5 movie that introduced the plague, right before the season premiere aired), they insisted that the scripts bring everybody up to date. So, Crusade wastes a lot of time telling you what you already know. And, since the story sort-of starts twice, it wastes a lot of time on that. If you're a B5 fan, you know that JMS tends to trust the audience to figure it out as you go along, and he doesn't do that here.

I recently re-watched the whole season. There are just enough episodes to really *introduce* each of the characters. And I have the sense that the story was just about to get underway when it was cancelled. It's as though JMS put a whole bunch of interesting questions on the table, right before the lights went out.

Nonetheless, I do recommend that B5 fans get and watch the series. First, you'll enjoy seeing that JMS did have an idea of where things were headed. (And he did say in the usenet newsgroups that finding the cure to the plague was only the beginning of the story, which had a multi-year arc.) You'll enjoy a visit to a well-crafted universe you remember. You'll enjoy seeing a new batch of interesting new characters who, darnit, I want to learn what happened to. And you'll have a too-painful example of TNT corporate politics gone wrong, horribly wrong.

If you aren't a fan of Babylon 5, I'd skip Crusade. I think it *does* require knowledge of the B5 universe; otherwise you'd see the flaws and not the best-of-B5. There's plenty of B5 material -- start there, instead.
15 people found this helpful
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