Saturday, August 28, 2010

"No Hiding Place Down Here" on Babylon 5

We're watching the entire Babylon 5 series on Netflix's instant viewing. Episode 20 of season three is named after the Gospel song, "And The Rock Cried Out, No Hiding Place Down Here." You can listen to the entire song here.

In an jarring juxtaposition, interspersed with a Gospel singer singing the song on B5 itself (as a result of another part of the story), we see Lord Refa being beaten to death by a group of Narns on Narn, led by G'Kar -- there is "no hiding place down there" for Refa. (Refa was set up by Londo, but I won't recap that aspect of the story.)

The title verse is, "I went to the rock to hide my face, but the rock cried out, 'no hiding place.'" It's apparently a reference to passages such as Rev 6.6, "they said to the mountains and to the rocks, 'Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb.'" The threat of judgment in the song sits oddly to my ear with the joyful music. This seems to happen a lot in "Gospel" music, however. In any event, it is a toe tapping tune.

The juxtaposition of the Gospel song with the vicious beating death of Lord Refa did remind me a bit of the brutal scene in The Godfather, where the Corleone family makes its move by killing a bunch of competitors, all interspersed with a baptism scene in which Michael "renounces the devil and all his works." Chilling stuff.


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