Do ships in the Farscape universe have FTL?

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Brent, Aug 25, 2010.

  1. JonathonWally

    JonathonWally Admiral Admiral


    Trek would be better if they dumped all the technobabble

    "Captain: Get us out of here"
    Some guy: Something's malfunctioning
    Captain: I don't care, make it work and get us out of here"

    "Captain: we're under attack, fire back, hurt them
    Some guy: their shields are up
    Captain: improvise
    Some guy: I could try manually teching the tech right after I tech the tech
    Captain: less talking, more doing"
     
  2. The Mirrorball Man

    The Mirrorball Man Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think we should strip it down and keep only the narrative beats:
    CAPTAIN: Exposition.
    SOME GUY: Problem!
    CAPTAIN: Resolution!
    SOME GUY: Conflict.
    CAPTAIN: Emotional appeal.
    SOME GUY: Action.
     
  3. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Some people would consider that bare bones stuff to be poor writing, which shows how subjective any babble can be. I mean, look at how people keep criticizing District 9 for not explaining how that alien fluid stuff worked.

    I mean, lawyer shows and medical shows are full of legibabble and medibabble but no one cares.
     
  4. Lindley

    Lindley Moderator with a Soul Moderator

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    Courtesy of bash.org....
     
  5. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  6. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Personally I think so long as a given project is internally consistent and at least have a vague notion of how things are supposed to work (but not necessarily *why* they work) and work in accordance with an established tone of the subject matter then you can get away with pretty much anything. All science fictions shows/films/books/etc. establish a certain envelope of how far "real" science, how much speculative science and how much pure inventive (read: "magic") science figures into their fictional world,.

    Farscape was often about really crazy, insane stuff happening to people who had little or no idea what the hell was going on and mostly didn't care so long as they could run away from it as fast as possible. As a result, beyond some very basic precepts they were free to pretty much do what they want and that really worked to it's credit because they didn't have to waste time trying to explain things that really didn't matter. In that regard it's very much in a similar vein as Red Dwarf that treated the bug-eyed monsters and the "big swirly things" with a wink and a nod.
    Two prominent examples in Farscape I can think of that exemplify Farscape's attitude and tone come from a episode where Talyn is swallowed by a boodong and the episode where everyone gets shrunk down and put inside jars by some bounty hunters.

    In the first instance there's an exchange between Crichton and Crais: -
    Crichton: "Down, do we want to be going down?"
    Crais: "We have no notion of which way is up and which way is down."
    Crichton: "Yo, Jonah, we are been swallowed that is
    down!"
    And in the latter you have an exchange between Rygel and Sikozu where Sikozu reasons that it's not physically possible to be shrunk.: -
    Sikozu: "This isn't happening because it is not possible . . . I simply cannot comprehend how-"
    Rygel: "-Neither can I. Who cares? We're here, they did it, and that's that . . . I've been around long enough to know how ignorant I am. I don't assume the universe obeys my preconceptions.
    But I know a frelling fact when it hits me in the face!"
    Star Trek suffered because it tried to rationalise and explain how and why something worked when it really didn't matter. From what I gather, people like Sternbach did their best to steer things towards more relatable science concepts but most of the time I don't think many of the writers or producers understood or cared, so we mostly ended up with a bunch of gibberish with the words "trans", "meta" and "phase" tacked on the front or back of it.

    Red Dwarf was very good at poking fun at this kind of thing. ;)
     
  7. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

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    :techman:

    One of my favorite Farscape quotes

    Sikozu in general was kind of a slap in the face to people who actually care about technobabble and the science behind everything. Anytime she'd try to explain how and why something was happening, the only reaction she'd get is Crichton saying "She's too smart" or other characters (Chiana, mostly) punching her in the face. :lol:
     
  8. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Sometimes they didn't. I remember at the beginning of "Best of both Worlds" they were talking about how the Borg could reach them so fast. All the said was "I guess they must have better engines" basically, and nothing else comes of it.

    Is that what you mean by not explaining stuff, but it doesn't matter if they do or don't?
     
  9. JonathonWally

    JonathonWally Admiral Admiral

    I would hope more people would consider made up technobabble solution to made up technobabble problem to be bad writing.


    "Captain, if I reverse the polarity on the spinning whirlizer on the delphic hydrogenator I can fix the problem we spent the last 41 minutes worrying about in 15 seconds with a shallow, meaningless resolution"
     
  10. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    What I mean is, if they had a story where someone took over the ship's transporters and were using them to teleport the crew off the ship and we had this;

    Captain: Cut the power to the transporters!

    Officer: I can't! (Beamed away)

    Then it would probably be considered bad writing that they just "can't".
     
  11. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^I wouldn't say so in that instance. In fact I'd say it'd be bad writing for that officer to go into a detailed technical explanation of why he can't, right in the middle of a tense, dramatic scene. In terms of dramatic storytelling "I can't" is literally all you need. Of course the writer should know why he can't and should make sure that the rest of the episode is written with that in mind but the audience doesn't need to know.

    B5 is I think a fair example of a show that had the science clearly thought out (as Earth tech was concerned) and was adhered to, but rarely, if ever was anything explained in anything other than in general terms. Most of the time it simply wasn't important or even relevant to the story.
    Just like if you had a cop show, you don't have to explain how in internal combustion engine works every time they get into a car or what the inner workings of a semi-automatic pistol are every time they fire a gun. It's not relevant so you don't explain it, but (assuming the show is grounded in reality) you still have to portray those things as acting within certain parameters. The fact that those two machines are real while fusion reactors and PPGs are not is besides the point; I doubt a large proportion of average viewers have a clue why either of those things work anymore than they really understand how a computer works. All that matters is they know how it works (a more important distinction than you might think.)
    In both cases that technology is part of the background fabric and has to be portrayed in a consistent fashion. What you don't have to do is constantly call attention to it but instead just allow it to be a part of the reality of the show. Cars go "vroom", guns go "bang", PPGs go "Vrrrrrrrrr" and cats go "quack." ;)
     
  12. JonathonWally

    JonathonWally Admiral Admiral


    Actually, that would make a good dramatic beat.

    Seriously, that's why on TNG, Q episodes are some of the best. He's presented as an omnipotent being who can do whatever he wants, and the viewer just accepts it.

    I'm Q, if i snap my fingers, I can create a magic space fence. If I snap my fingers again, I can summon a mariachi band.