The inter-relationships between...

 Posted on 1/14/1993 by STRACZYNSKI [Joe] to GENIE

The inter-relationships between FOX, PTEN, the FCC and any and all other
acronymical organizations is utterly beyond my ken, and I would no sooner try
to explain it or understand it than I would attempt to build a tesseract in
the back yard.

In what I *hope* will be a relatively definitive word on this kid
topic...yes, I can write a story with kids. I've done it...I did it for the
Twilight Zone and other shows. The question is still one of making choices.
Is that what this series is ABOUT? You could drop in a chapter on badminton
techiques into The Lord of the Rings or Debbie Does Cleveland, the question
is, does it BELONG there? Is that what the show or the story is attempting to

If there were no other shows with kids around, then I would be more
inclined to do one with kids at the center. But there are plenty of them
around, particularly in've got kids aplenty on TNG, on DS9, I just
saw a kid story on Space Rangers...this is simply a different kind of show.

My point is simply this: B5 is meant, in a very real sense, as noted in
my message on 2, to be an SF novel for television. If it were just random
stories skittering hither, thither and yawn, that would be one thing. But as
any novelist can tell you, you have to ask, "Whose story is it?" and stick
pretty close to that, even though you may swerve in and out of other POVs and
indulge in omniscient narrative. That requires certain choices about tone and
attitude and what you include, and what you choose to exclude. Doesn't
invalidate one type of story or another, it only says "THIS is what my story's

There are plenty of other SF shows with kids. Let's have something a
little different.

(That's one of the ironies that crops up about this show...often people
say "We want innovation," and when asked for specifics, they ask to make it
more like other shows. "Well, TNG does this kind of story, why can't you?"
We can, but we're not. Because we're not TNG. Just as we will do some
stories that I *guarantee* you ST wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole.)