Just for the record, I didnít start watching Babylon 5 of my own accord.
(i.e. my very persuasive friend Nina) kept pestering me to watch the series
until I finally succumbed and started watching. Not that the show is terrible
or anything (itís bloody terrific!) but I can get obsessed with only so
many things before I tip over the edge and fall into the pit of insanity.
(I think Iím still teetering over the brink, hanging by a very thin and
frail piece of rope.)
Luckily for me, I was able to withstand the temptation to get obsessed
with B5, mostly because Nina got obsessed first, and so the quota of obsessed-with-B5
chicks among my friends had been satisfied. What I really feel for Babylon
5 is somewhere between Fascination and Massive Interest, but itís a safe
distance away from Obsession.
Malaysian tv is really slow when it comes to actually airing Babylon
5, but theyíre considerate enough to keep the episodes in order, and to
show one season immediately after another. Right now weíre in the middle
of Season 4, and while Nina is Queen of Spoilers (and also Queen of Useless
Information, with me as a neat second), I remain blissfully ignorant about
whatís going to happen next.
But (oh, thereís always a but now, isnít there) I have developed
a somewhat Mild Obsession with one of the regular B5 guest characters,
a dude named Mr. Bester. And since Nina canít stand the guy, I am left
with the obligation of becoming a Bester groupie (or Besterette, however
extremely gross a term that may be), and I am perfectly happy with that
I honestly cannot sat why Iím fascinated with Bester so much. Heís a
really nasty bugger. All the good guys (Sheridan, Garibaldi, Ivanova etc)
hate him. He looks down on non-telepaths. Heís an egoistical snot with
nothing better to do than screw up with other peopleís lives (and minds).
He is (in Ninaís own words) : "a lecherous smarmy cheeky bastard". And
I heartily agree.
Then why him of all people?? My reply would be... why not???
all this, I really and truly do not understand why people can
him. In a strange way I find him extremely adorable, although my brain
keeps insisting that Iím supposed to hate the guy. And for the life of
me I cannot figure out why the good guys on B5 hate him so much. Well,
other than he likes to screw up their lives, of course.
The first time I saw Bester was somewhere in Season 2. My immediate
reaction was to get visions of Luke Skywalker from Return of the Jedi,
and while Nina told me Walter K[eonig] who plays Bester was also Chekov
of the Original Star Trek, I didnít really care because I never paid attention
to the original Star Trek, anyway. Itís hard to pinpoint exactly where
Besterfication became a part of my obessions, but it has happened, and
it successfully grosses out everyone I know (who has watched B5), especially
when I start announcing how cute Bester is. (Well, he is!)
His dialogue (esp with Garibaldi, and just about everyone who hates
him) are so tremendously cheeky, you either want to slap him or laugh with
him. I settle for giggling. (For people who don't know me, I'm a chronic
giggler.) I've even got what I now call a Bester Scar on my right knee,
obtained when I fell off the coffee table in the middle of the B5 episode
"Epiphanies" when I was leaning too close to the tv screen (because of
a particularly lovely Bester scene) and neatly toppled over. Nina calls
him a randy old man. I call him a lonely misundestood sod.
Itís not Besterís fault heís such a bugger. Heís really an old softie
(like Greebo of Terry Pratchettís Discworld books) who just has some issues
about his life and the people around him. He doesnít know how to be anything
else other than a quintessential villain, and he does his job perfectly.
I mean, if it werenít for him causing havoc around B5, the heroes wouldnít
appreciate what they have, right? (RIGHT?) And he isn't as nasty as Clarke,
who stoops far too low (actually Bester really does stoop quite low, but
at least he gloats about it so people know it was him that did it the first
And - and - and heís not that short. Amidst the cast of B5 Walter K
looks really vertically challenged, but heís four inches taller than me
(and five inches taller than Nina), which says a lot. (And it says that
I'm short. Well, so what?)
And ~ since I am now a Bester groupie, I have gone around looking for
stuff on Chekov, Walter K's other famous character, who has piqued my interest.
I have to say, looking back at Walter Kís work in the Star Trek (the original
series) days, itís just plain freaky to see how his features evolved over
the years. (Isnít that amazing?!) Walter K is really such a terrific actorÖ
Come on, Walter Kís such a sweetheart in real life, as Chekov heís just
a really sad dude who doesnít do much other than hanging around and looking
young, and as Bester heís a "lecherous smarmy cheeky bastard". How amazing
Just wondering about the most useless things can really stimulate the
imagination. I was just wondering what I would be like if I were a Bester
groupie in the B5 world (Nina tells me that a Bester groupie will make
an appearance somewhere in Season 5), and how I would react if I were to
meet the dude in person. I have absolutely no idea. I might start gurggling
and ask for his autograph. If I were lucky I might become his lackey or
something... if I wasn't lucky (eg I caught him on a bad day when Sheridan
and gang were giving him a particularly bad time) I'd probably be mind-wiped
or something. Well.... that's Bester for you. (ooooo, isn't he adorable!)
And I think that limp left hand of his is extremely sexy. (heeheehee ^_^)
So what if he's a baddie? So what if he's 70 years old (and Walter K
is 63 this year)? So what if all the good guys on B5 hate him? That doesn't
make him any less a cutie than he is. (Feel free to disagree. Evryone I've
Sites with stuff on
Mr. Bester (and the Psi Corps):
Bester Picture Site
Psi Corps Homepage
Psi Corps and You
Sites with stuff on
Koenig's Official Site ~ Just as it says... The Official Site. Has
the usual biography, stuff on his book and some interesting pics.
Neurotic Universe ~ A nice and comfortably large Walter K page, with
stuff on his book Warped Factors, Chekov and Bester and some lovely ramblings.
of Koenig ~ The obsessiveness of this site's webmistress might freak
out other people, but she's a kindred spirit (do you know how few freakily
obsessive people there are in this world?). I especially like one of the
lines in the opening paragraph: "..he is most beloved for his menacing
and strangely captivating Alfred Bester of Babylon 5." Heehee.
Official Walter Koenig Fan Club ~ If Walter K didn't have a fan club,
then something is seriously wrong with the world.
Sites with stuff on Chekov
Taylor's Mr. Chekov Page ~ The most fun Chekov page I've seen so far,
even though I haven't actually seen Chekov in action. I got to know him
better via reading "nerdishly obsessive" stuff about him at this site,
Log ~ A site done from Chekov's point of view, also very cute.
World of Star Trek : TOS
Inventions : An Ensign Chekov Page
Things Come in Small (and rarely updated) Packages : A Pav Page