The Babylon Project

"You and your attitude. You know what you are?"
"Ruggedly handsome?"
"A control freak."
"Can't I be both?"

Elizabeth Lochley to Matthew Gideon, 2267.

Matthew Gideon was an Earthforce officer and the Captain of the Excalibur.


Gideon is a man with a chequered past, known for his unorthodox and often risky approaches. Though he takes personal responsibility for the safety of all under his command, Matthew has demonstrated a willingness to take risks, not allowing diplomacy or politics to obstruct or deter him from completing the mission. It was this trait that lead ISA President John Sheridan to hand pick Gideon as the leader of the Excalibur's mission.

He is a known gambler and player of just about every game of chance in the known universe, balancing luck with skill and an knack for knowing good odds when they present themselves. Not afraid to make the 'wrong kind' of friends in order to gain an advantage, he has befriended people in both high and low places and is not adverse to calling in a marker when the need arises. An experienced tactician, Gideon was reputed to have been in more battles during peacetime than most officers face in a major war.[2]

Gideon has a profound respect for high achievers, including John Sheridan whom he claims is a personal hero and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Gideon once remarked that when he finds himself getting too smug, he reminds himself that when Mozart was his age, he'd been dead for 6 years.[1]

As a career officer, Matthew has had difficulty forming long-term and long-distance relationships, describing them as "sporadic at best". Though he eventually makes a connection with kindred control freak Elizabeth Lochley, the pair agree that their responsibilities leave no room for a committed relationship.[3]


EAS Cerberus[]


Ensign Gideon

In 2259, Ensign Gideon's first posting was on the EAS Cerberus. He was sent out in an EVA suit to fix the engines when the ship was attacked and destroyed by a Shadow Hybrid vessel. However, Gideon let it slip on one occasion that he believed that the Cerberus wasn't attacked by accident, insinuating a conspiracy. Gideon was the sole survivor and was left floating in Space. Gideon was picked up by the techno-mage Galen, who later dropped him off at Omega VII.[4] Galen along with his fellow techno-mages were not in that region of space by coincidence, they were tracking the moments of the unknown Shadow tech vessel.[1][4][5] Following that incident, Gideon was promoted to Lieutenant and assigned to the EAS Hyperion.[6]

Apocalypse Box

The Apocalypse Box

In 2265, while playing a game of poker in some dive bar, Gideon won a mysterious object called an Apocalypse Box from a man called Jenson. Its former owner claimed "It gives you an edge. It knows things no one else knows." though he later warned "you have to be very careful because... it lies. Not all the time. Just enough." before stopping mid-sentence as if hearing something, and running out into the street where he was hit and killed by an oncoming skimmer.

Drakh Attack[]

By 2267, Captain Gideon was the commanding officer of an Explorer class ship. When an emergency call went out to all Earthforce ships he rushed back to Earth only to find that the fleet of ships that protected the Earth against the Drakh were all either damaged or destroyed. He also found out that the Drakh had released a plague on the Earth.

He was then called to Mars where he was reassigned to the Excalibur. He was going to receive a whole new crew with the best Scientists and Archaeologists available. When he demanded that Lt. John Matheson be on board too, he faced resistance from Senator McQuate, because Matheson was a Telepath. Then he met Dureena Nafeel, who was demanding to come along. He told Senator McQuate that he wants her on his team or else he can find another CO for the Excalibur. Senator McQuate allowed Dureena to join the crew, although in truth he had no choice in the matter since ISA President John Sheridan personally selected Matthew Gideon to lead the mission when he gave the Excalibur to the Earth Alliance.[7]

Shortly thereafter he traveled to Babylon 5 where he met with General Miller and the Drazi and Brakiri Ambassadors. Miller urged Gideon not to take a bet that if no cure was found by their fourth year searching, that the Excalibur would travel to Earth and destroy any escaping vessels. He likened it to making a deal with "the devil himself."[2]


On their first mission, they received a distress call from a colony that was under attack by the Drakh. Gideon and Dureena traveled down to the planet with a rescue team and saved a team of Archaeologists who worked for IPX. Their lead Archaeologist Max Eilerson, had a knack for figuring out languages and how to work alien technologies, so Gideon asked him to join the crew of the Excalibur to save Earth from the Drakh Plague.

Regula VI[]

The Excalibur proceeded to a colony of people who had been living without any modern advancements for about 80 years. They found out that a mineral in the ground was keeping them unusually healthy. Earthforce was trying to harvest the mineral, but the workers kept on seeing and experiencing strange phenomena. One such example of that is the engine on a shuttle being replaced with a substance resembling peanut butter. Gideon and Galen went down to the planet to investigate and found a techno-mage named Alwyn who Galen knew. They tried to convince Earth Force to stop mining, to no avail. Then some of the towns' people began getting sick. They figured out that the mining was releasing the mineral into the atmosphere which was overexposing them to the antiviral toxin. This did not convince Earthforce to stop, so the techno-mage created an illusion of him trying to destroy the ships in orbit. Earthforce told Gideon to kill the techno-mage and it appeared that he had, but instead the mining operation was destroyed. The techno-mage left the planet and Earthforce was forced to mine elsewhere on the planet, this time with the help of the locals.[8]

Mars Conference[]


Gideon, Lochley and Trace

Gideon was then ordered to Mars to attend a conference set up by Dr. Stephen Franklin, where the Dr. Chambers was the keynote speaker. When he got there he met with Lochley who happened to be in charge of the conference, where they argued about how to run security. Then a man who was supposed to attend the conference was killed. Giedon and Lochley figured out it was done by Sacred Omega, a doomsday cult. When they took the body up to be autopsied by Dr. Chambers, crew member Trace Miller said he knows the man from his days back as a Foundationist. Lochley tried to question him further but Gideon didn't let her.

Gideon asked to have dinner with Lochley, who agrees. While having dinner, they talked a little about John Sheridan, who Lochley figured out is Gideon's hero. She told him that she was married before. Gideon believed that anyone who would marry Lochley is crazy. She broke the news to him that she was married to Sheridan at one time, and Gideon is slightly stunned.

Later, Lochley found out who the man from the cult was and told Gideon. Gideon found a way to deter any potential death and destruction by interrupting Dr. Chambers' speech. Knowing that the doomsday cult believes that the Human race must be punished, Gideon said that the scientists back home miscalculated the danger and instead of five years, they had a few months, and that this was brought upon them by God for their lack of faith. The man who was going to detonate a bomb to blow up the conference deactivated the weapon.

When he went back to their hiding place, Gideon, Lochley, and Mars Pol jumped them and killed all the members present in the hiding place. When Gideon left he said that he would swing by Babylon 5 sometime just to stop in.[3]

Alien Derelict[]

Not far into their mission, and against the advice of Gideon, the Excalibur took on Mr. Welles and Kevin Sprach to attempt to make the Excalibur's mission more popular back home. Three days in they ran into an alien ship. Gideon sent Matheson aboard to check it out. They found the entire crew dead and one being alive in a life pod. They brought it aboard the Excalibur and tried to save it. The creature started to die and a member of the medlab team, Janey, entered the isolation lab to try and save it.

The creature died but before it did, it was able to infect Janey and transferred its race consciousness into her. Janey then began to transfer the being to other people so that it could take over the ship. During this time, Eilerson was able to crack the alien's language and learned of the energy being. The infected crewmen began to descend on Max, who was able to escape from harm, but not before crewman Stewart Greenberg was rendered brain dead. He showed his results to Gideon, who then locked down the sectors that the energy being was in. Eventually a large portion of the crew was infected, with Welles taking the role as their leader.

Gideon then met with "Welles" who told Gideon to drop all the infected crew off at a nearby planet so that they could colonize it. Gideon declined to do so; he then lowered the temperature in those sections. The alien then killed David Arkham in a show of force, and told Gideon that if he didn't come down to them that he would kill more of the crew. Gideon went down to the sealed off decks in an EVA suit because he knew that the alien entered via physical contact. He then talked with them and said "As Mr. Eilerson always says: the air is human." He was hoping to get the rest of the crew to depressurize the sectors that the alien were in. They did and managed to bottle the alien in Greenberg's body which could not move. They then ejected the body and destroyed it. Welles and Sprach then left the ship, but not before giving them new uniforms that Gideon likened to a bellhop uniform.

Dead Worlds[]

At the end of March, the ship reached a dead planet where the crew believed the Drakh plague had been. Galen warned the crew not to go down to the planet's surface because none of his order had ever gone there and the one who did was killed by what he called a spirit. Gideon ordered an expedition anyway. They discovered that the entire population was killed by a nano-virus, which Galen immediately identifies as a work of technomancy, created by another techno-mage.

Gideon followed Galen to help him eliminate the techno-mage threat. When he got down to where Galen was he found Dureena trying to kill Galen. When Dureena charged at Galen, Gideon blew the bridge out from under her. She made it across and Galen threw his staff at the machine. It blows up and they returned to the ship.[9]

The Needs of Earth[]

The Excalibur came across some information that indicated that a fugitive by the name of Natchok Var was in the possession of state secrets, some of which would be medical files that could potentially help in finding a cure. Var had been captured on Praxis IX, a world outside the Interstellar Alliance's jurisdiction, but a rescue attempt was made by Gideon and Dureena. Var was not willing to part with the information until he found someone worthy of giving the information to. Var was later killed by his own people, but not before giving the crew the data crystals that contained all his planet's cultural information.

It turned out that his race had decided that all its art, literature, and music was decadent and unpure, so an edict was sent down calling for the destruction of it all. Var was able to save one final copy of all their society's musical and literary accomplishments. He smuggled this information off his homeworld, and set out to find someone worthy of giving this information to. Galen was initially miffed about how they spent time chasing information that was not valuable to their mission, though Dr. Chambers believed that they did what was right.[1]

Shadows of the Past[]

The Excalibur arrived at a planet which appears abandoned. Eilerson finds hieroglyphs that are the beginning of formulas for advancements such as technologies and light alloys, which Gideon is not interested in.

Excalibur Skimmer 01

Exploring an empty city.

Then when they found one of the crew dead, Gideon ordered the rest of the landing party back to the ship while he distracted a group of incoming enemies. He almost got himself killed but Galen was able to save him in the nick of time. They figure out that there are underground passageways and what is essentially a graveyard containing ships from other races. The ship is held by a gravimetric beam, which keeps them from being able to escape, though they are quickly freed when the Excalibur's main gun is used to destroy the beam station.

Then a hologram appeared on the bridge to explain that the Shadows had come to the planet a thousand years ago to build a base. When the race declined, the Shadows released the plague on them. Over the centuries they had been studying different species by dissecting them to find a cure. Gideon was disgusted by what this race had done, but said that if the Excalibur found a cure that they would bring it back to the planet.[2]


In mid-May of 2267, the Excalibur ran into a life pod with two lifeforms, Durkani and Lyssa, inside. When the pod was brought on board, the crew found aliens that dressed similarly to humans and spoke English fluently. The aliens thought they are being abducted, but before further explanations were given, Gideon asked them how they knew English, which was answered with a statement that their government was plotting with his government to take over the planet.

Gideon didn't know about this for which the alien provided him with them with proof that they had in the possession which consisted of a picture of a blimp, a picture of Mount Rushmore, and a golf club. Soon afterward, the ship encountered Kendarr, who arrived on the vessel to try to bring Durkani and Lyssa back home, but before they could do so, the escaped into the bowels of the Excalibur. They managed to get to the ship's bullet cars but were captured.

In private, Kendarr told Gideon that there really wasn't a conspiracy, the entire plot was devised to made it look like Earth was interfering because they wanted the blame for all their problems put on someone else. The aliens departed, but before the Excalibur left the system, Gideon ordered that 20 probes be dropped into the atmosphere which would uncover the conspiracy and contain an interstellar encyclopedia.[10]

Return to Earth[]

In late May, Senator Jacob Redway came aboard the ship and told Gideon that the ship was under orders to travel back to Earth immediately. On their journey back to Earth, the ship detected at distress beacon. Under orders not to stop for anything, Gideon ordered the ship to drop out of hyperspace and slow down enough to scoop up the Starfury and continue on their journey. The ship was successfully picked up, upon they discovered that the vessel was being captained by Elizabeth Lochley, who was badly injured.

When the ship arrived at Earth, they were met by a shuttle with Dr. Stephen Franklin on board. Gideon eventually discovered that the mission was to infect a volunteer, David Williams to track the infection of the virus from the very beginning. Because Mr. Williams broke communications silence, a Drakh vessel was able to pinpoint their location and attack.

Lochley let Gideon know that she was capable of telling Starfuries what to do. Gideon then got an idea and decided to try to ram the mother ship, which caused the Drakh mother ship to jump into hyperspace. When the ship was traveling into hyperspace, the Excalibur destroyed it. Pleased with their encounter, Gideon dropped Lochley off at Babylon 5 hoping to see her again.[11]

Theta 49[]

In June 2267, Gideon was ordered to a planet that apparently had no value of any kind to retrieve some colonists who reportedly had left the planet around the time that Earth was infected by the plague. When they got there they find the colonist's ship and the crew, and take a blood sample from their leader. They find out that they infected with the plague.

Gideon read up on the colonists in Top Secret Earthforce files and found out that they had cybernetic implants installed. Chambers calls back and says that she had found that the food the colonists were eating had been contaminated with the plague. Gideon realized that they had escaped Earth in time, but their food supply had been contaminated with the plague, by General Thompson.

Some of the colonists took Chambers as a hostage in an attempt to escape. Gideon stops them, and has them get out of their ship before he destroys it. He then allows the people to stay on the planet just as long as they don't leave. He places a beacon in orbit informing ships that the planet is infected with the Drakh plague, and the leaves in the Excalibur.[12]

The Well of Forever[]

In July, the Excalibur took on a telepathic monitor that was assigned to check up on Lt. Matheson. Meanwhile Galen convinced Gideon to go off the beacon in Hyperspace, in search of the Well of Forever. To achieve this Galen patched his guidance system into the Excalibur's system to boost the power of the sensors in Hyperspace. Meanwhile the telepathic observer told Gideon that Lt. Mattheson will have to go back to Earth for an inquiry. Gideon didn't like this and tried to get the monitor to change his mind but he will not.


The Well of Forever.

When they got to the supposed location of the Well of Forever it wasn't there. From this point on, Galen took control of the ship and went deeper into Hyperspace without Gideon's permission. They eventually find the Well, which Galen travels out to land on it. Gideon followed and found out that Galen was burying his lover. They travel back to the ship where Galen says he will never betray Gideon's trust again.

Gideon told Dureena to go and think about planting a bomb when she is near the telepathic monitor. The observer notices her thoughts and briefly scans here, and rushes to tell Gideon about this. The monitor soon realizes that the entire thing was a ruse, after which Gideon told him that if he forgot about Mattheson he will forget that he violated someone's privacy. So Matheson is allowed to stay on board and doesn't have to go back to Earth.[13]

Diplomacy on Babylon 5[]


"There are exceptions to every rule, Captain..."

Earthforce believes that the planet, Lorka VII, may hold medical secrets useful to Earth, if Gideon can gain access. He came to Babylon 5 to negotiate rights to land on the planet. Unfortunately the self-righteous Lorkans' claim that Earthlings will taint their world, and refuse this with the Brakiri Ambassador Lethke Zum Bartrado backing them up. The Lorkans become suspecious and attempt to kill Gideon while traveling the station with Lochley. They are able to stop there would be assassins unharmed. They travel back to Lochley's apartment, where he discovers a real honest to goodness shower, and the two eventually make love.[14]


Lochley and Gideon

To the Ends of The Earth[]

Gideon's Apocalypse Box eventually gave him a lead on the ship that destroyed the Cerberus. Gideon immediately recalled the team that is searching an alien ruin for a cure to the Drakh plague and takes the Excalibur in pursuit of the Shadow hybrid. This odd behavior is noted by the crew as finding a cure for the Drakh plague is supposed to be their top priority.[5]

Gideon's crew go to a colony to inspect an archeological dig. They discover that a local telepath was none other than Alfred Bester. Gideon was left to make a decision that many of his crew would not agree with.[15]

Gideon discovers that the ship that destroyed the Cerberus came from a secret Earthforce base. There was a widespread conspiracy in the Earthforce surrounding the use of technology that has been forbidden by the Interstellar Alliance.[16]


  • Because of the ordering of Crusade's episodes, the chronological order has some discrepancies. In Ruling from the Tomb, Gideon and Lochley appear to be meeting for the first time, even though they had previously met in Each Night I Dream of Home. In Each Night I Dream of Home there is dialogue that indicates that Gideon and Lochley are familiar with each other, because that episode was originally the last to air. However, taking the chronological order as the official order, they may have met before since Gideon had been on Babylon 5 near the start of his mission in Racing the Night when he met with General Miller and the Drazi and Brakiri ambassadors.



External links[]