Exploring the Uncharted Territories: A Farscape Viewing Experience

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by PsychoPere, Dec 22, 2010.

  1. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I agree with that thoughtout-ness of Scorpio setting everything up, otherwise it is just too silly EVERYTHING happening just that way to set up the events. The writers should have given a bit of a wink into that idea. All we got was "I can break out of my cell any time I want", which is a bit of a hint.
     
  2. Bonzo the Fifth

    Bonzo the Fifth Commander Red Shirt

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    In any case, I think we're all agreed on Scorpius masterminding the last few episodes, as I think it improves the quality of all the episodes involved substantially...

    I'm with you on 'Constellation of Doubt'. It's easily my favorite Earth episode, as I think it really gives you a possible idea as to just how affected (and not) Earth was by the completely not avoidable reality of aliens and extraterrestrial existence... at one point, I'd even outlined a draft of a fanfic exploration of the future history of Earth post 'Terra Firma', exploring the political, technological, and cultural fallout from Chrichton's visit there... the notes and drafts are long gone due to a computer crash, but one thing I remember clearly was the youth culture absolutely glomming onto everything regarding the Moya crew, even co-opting all the swear words and making bad melodramas starring lookalikes of the crew, particularly the ladies (I mean seriously, you know the porn industry would be all over something like this... lol).

    It kind of makes me want to revisit that idea now, and wonder just how Earth was changed by Chrichton's temporary homecoming.... they're pretty isolated from the Uncharted Territories now, but that won't last forever... not to even mention any possible civilizations that may be residing far closer to Earth that we have no idea about....

    Interesting note... the scene with Chiana in the bathroom and the lipstick was the last scene filmed for the series (Constellation was, I believe, the last one in production order), and apparently, the cast was informed about the cancellation just before filming of that scene (though don't quote me on that... but I think it's in the episode commentary)... Regardless, I always found that bit rather haunting, as it hints at some quite possibly serious mental issues for Chiana that have heretofore been hidden from us as viewers.... I wouldn't be at all surprised to find out that Pip has much more going on in her head that the crew of Moya, or even we see...
     
  3. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

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    Absolutely fantastic exchange between the two. This is the scene that finally sold me on Sikozu as a character. People have differing feelings about her, but I think the actress does a phenomenal job with an intentionally unlikable character. That scene gives me chills because as much as we all feel the need to side with Crichton and hope that Aeryn is okay, Sikozu could have easily been right.

    Yay! So few episodes to go. I suggest watching "We're So Screwed" and "Bad Timing" together in one sitting, wait two years, and then watch "The Peacekeeper Wars" like the rest of us had to!
     
  4. Sindatur

    Sindatur Vice Admiral Admiral

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    And the first year of that you're thinking "We're So Screwed Due to Bad Timing [cancellation]"
     
  5. Jeff O'Connor

    Jeff O'Connor Commodore Commodore

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    There is a fire inside me that wishes to burn others so, but I have motioned to ignore it in favor of human decency. :lol:
     
  6. Bonzo the Fifth

    Bonzo the Fifth Commander Red Shirt

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    While Chrichton may not have given a damn about the reality in general, he was certainly horrified at being forced to murder someone in cold blood just to get what he needed to find Aeryn. That Scorpius essentially forced him to pull the trigger didn't help matters any... this was truly traumatic, however necessary it was... and that's what I like about it... The flipside to what you say about most alternate reality attempts by other shows is that often, there's no reason to care about it in anything beyond the abstract. Even in another universe, our characters are still in their protective moral bubble and don't have to make the hard decisions to sacrifice useless duplicate characters to advance the plot--often, the plot does it for them with contrived circumstance and some bizarre cosmic bookkeeping scenario.

    Here, Chrichton did the dirty deed, he pulled the trigger and spilled an innocent's blood, it wasn't death at a distance, or crazy random accident, or just walking away and leaving a mess. He came and destroyed their lives in a willful, intentional way. Seen like this, Chrichton was a monster. yes, Scorpius ultimately forced his hand, but as Scorpius told him (rightfully so), Chrichton knew it would come to this the second he came up with the idea, and putting the blame on Scorpius or abrogating his responsibility for what happen would be intellectually and morally dishonest.

    I love that about Farscape.
     
  7. PsychoPere

    PsychoPere Vice Admiral Admiral

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    You gave me a hard time not that long ago about you passing me in your own rewatch, yet now you're suggesting I wait two years for PKW? I have to assume that's tongue-in-cheek, sir! :p

    Thank you for adding your thoughts on this; they do line up with what I wanted to express about that situation, but I had to cut short my typing to make sure I was prepared for The Chicago Code. In any event, yes, Crichton was rightly disturbed at needing to kill Chiana/Aeryn, even though he knew the entire crew was going to be killed by Crais in half an arn anyways. At least the latter wouldn't be by his hands, but he also had no choice if he wanted to save Aeryn and their baby. It's another well-done piece in the new, changing puzzle that is John Crichton, formed by that fateful, accidental trip through a wormhole. It's "refreshing" (to use my previous description again) because it feels more honest than the "cosmic bookkeeping scenario" (to borrow your phrase) that other shows (i.e., Trek) have employed.

    (I'm also curious about that particular reality, namely in what sense the Crichton of that reality came to apparently be working with Crais, since Crais embraced Crichton in "Unrealized Reality." It seems like two of the unrealized realities Crichton saw in that episode had events that played out so that he was either allied with PKs or a PK himself. Thanks also for that fanfic link; I plan to take a look at it at some point. Your fanfic idea sounds intriguing as well.)


    We're So Screwed Part I: Fetal Attraction
    - When I briefly mentioned Aeryn's prayers in "Prayer," I neglected to also say how strange it was to see Aeryn praying. She's never come across as a spiritual/religious individual; quite the opposite, in fact, and she of course would be the first to assert that herself. Strange indeed, but it also felt quite appropriate for the situation.

    - Just got to love Rygel contributing to the rescue plan in his own inimitable way with the projectile vomit. Only on Farscape...

    - In fact, this episode in general provided good showcases of the strengths of the various characters. Rygel impressed me again, as well, considering how little he complained about Noranti reactivating his disease (although, granted, he ended up unconscious and off-screen for most of the episode afterward).

    - Speaking of contributions to the rescue plan, this is the first episode where Noranti finally feels to me like a genuine part of this crew, rather than some random stowaway. Reactivating Rygel's illness to buy time was insane, but it was also inspired and she showed remarkable resolve when Chiana confronted her, especially when Chiana expressed concern that Aeryn could be killed before she could be rescued.

    - Best individual scene: Noranti and Rygel's joint confessions near the end of the episode. "By my actions, I have taken innocent lives." "Welcome to Moya." This scene ties in with my above comments re: Noranti's integration into the crew, as well as providing another great moment for Rygel to exhibit the wise, thoughtful personage one would want in a Dominar.

    - I may still not trust Scorpius and view him as a grudging, situational ally only in his best moments, yet I still can't help but feel that it's unfortunate he was left behind in Jenek's custody. I am simultaneously surprised and yet not surprised that Harvey still exists in John's head; his depiction as Nosferatu for his re-introduction was so spot-on. That Harvey had found a way to communicate with Scorpius without John's knowledge, and that Scorpius already knows everything John knows about wormholes, did surprise me, however - and make me very worried, of course. I am puzzled, though, as to why Scorpius would agree to help John rescue Aeryn if he already has the wormhole knowledge he seeks.

    - In conclusion on this episode, I'm sad that this is my last Farscape trilogy, because this was such a strong part one.


    We're So Screwed Part II: Hot to Katratzi
    - It was shown in a rather low-key manner, but Sikozu's use of the phrase "we are escorting John Crichton" because he wants to join the negotiations at Katratzi and the subsequent landing authorization is impressive in its display that Crichton has become an important figure in the Territories. Three years ago, he was just a lost astronaut from a galactic backwater; now he's a legendary and dangerous free agent. "Generations will know that name," indeed.

    - I love Aeryn's smile during Crichton's "presentation" before the assembled negotiation parties at the beginning of the episode. It sealed the deal on how perfect he was during that scene. In fact, it's such a joy to watch the two of them interacting together as a team in this episode because, while they've been good in the past, they're now pitch-perfect.

    - I praised the performances of the team in their respective roles during the rescue plan in the previous episode, but this one showed them operating at an even more efficient, even more devious level. They've never been better, which is fitting since there's only two episodes left. Favorite part with these two in this episode: the "dance" in the elevator.

    - I always liked Stark, even at his most inane and despite the constant will-he-stay-or-will-he-go back-and-forth, but now that he's working for the Scarrans, I'm ready to write him off. I don't blame him for wanting revenge against Scorpius by any means (I do think Scorpius deserves anything Stark could do to him), but I can't agree with his willingness to pass along Scorpy's wormhole knowledge to the Scarrans. I hope that he actually had a plan of his own to throw a wrench into the Scarran's schemes or that he somehow comes to the crew's aid in part three, because I prefer liking him as an ally rather than an enemy.

    - I did not anticipate the revelation that Scorpius was a spy for Staleek. I was genuinely surprised by that. And go figure that Scorpy, the entire reason for the Katratzi plan in the first place, would be the one to torpedo the plan; it's amusingly ironic from an outsider's perspective.

    - Part two was even better than part one.


    We're So Screwed Part III: La Bomba
    - Damn, I love how this episode is tying together pieces of series history and answering some of my questions. Harvey lied about Scorpy knowing what John knows in order to convince John to rescue him; Stark used to live on Katratzi and knows the secrets of the greatest resource the Scarrans have; due to that Scorpius wanted to learn the location of Katratzi long before Crichton had ever heard of the place; Harvey's back in the first place because John was willing to renege on his wormholes for Aeryn deal by leaving Scorpy with the Scarrans. That it all feels natural, and not at all contrived, speaks well to the masterful writing of this series.

    - I have to echo Noranti in admiring Scorpius's duplicity - he doesn't actually work for Staleek after all, and the Stark in part two was a bioloid. I continue to love this series throwing curveballs at me, though at some points I feel a little silly for not seeing the twists coming. On the other hand, maybe it's a good thing I don't, since it might lessen my enjoyment of the show and that would be a damn shame indeed.

    - I think there are three lines in this episode that compete for "best line of the episode": "We couldn't override their override of our override." & "I cannot believe I left a nuclear bomb in an elevator." & "Are we cursed? Could we be cursed?!" On that last one, it's about time someone actually voiced that question, and my answer would be "you sure are."

    - At first glance, Sikozu's ability to emit radiation to destroy the heat-producing glands of Scarrans feels like a deus ex machina, but I suppose I can accept it in light of her other, previously-mentioned genetic modifications.

    - I must admit some admiration for him that Braca stood up to Grayza here. He finally appears to be coming into his own, rather than simply being a toady for others.

    - Favorite scene: Everyone in the elevator preparing for the explosion of the nuclear bomb, in their romantic pairings - Aeryn and John, Chiana and D'Argo, Sikozu and Scorpius. Alternate option: John discussing with Aeryn his remorse over the people he's killed and the people he may have to kill in the future.

    - John really likes to blow dren up, doesn't he? Gammak base, Shadow Depository, Scarran Dreadnought, Katratzi... No wonder he's gained legendary status in the Territories.

    - It's nice to see Stark rejoin the crew in time for the finale. Also glad to see Chiana and D'Argo back together.

    - Great trilogy and great way to lead up to the series finale.


    Bad Timing
    - I love the non-linear opening here, especially with the split John/D'Argo & Chiana/Aeryn discussions regarding the prior John/Aeryn conversation coming together as the four meet up to move the episode forward.

    - Also gotta love Scorpius demanding to know the logic in attempting to resist the Scarrans without allies... and how no one is able to provide an answer. Sometimes the right choice isn't logical, after all.

    - That the flowers the Scarrans desire grow on Earth is another nice way of tying elements together and making Earth relevant to the larger galaxy, apart from any revenge one faction might wish to exact on Crichton by attacking the planet.

    - I really can't get enough of seeing Aeryn smiling often and easily. It's a very welcome evolution in her character. Speaking of character evolutions, Rygel was the right choice to be the one to convince Pilot to help Crichton attempt to close the wormhole to Earth; at the beginning of the series, he wouldn't have seemed like the right choice, but at this point I don't think anyone else could have - Zhaan is dead, and Aeryn is too biased with her love for John.

    - Due to his decision to risk his life for John's plan to close the wormhole, I am even more admiring of Pilot than I previously was. He is truly the anchor for this crew, and may be the single bravest soul onboard Moya.

    - Favorite scenes: John's goodbye conversation with his father. John & Aeryn's exchange before popping the "bubble" of the wormhole. Obviously I would be a fool if I didn't include Crichton proposing to Aeryn on this list; after all, the entire series has built to this point, and they both deserve to be happy.

    - Of course, happiness on this show is so fleeting... Holy shit, I cannot believe that was how the series would have ended without PKW. That's frelling depressing as hell.
     
  8. Can

    Can Commander Red Shirt

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    What I love about Farscape characters : Everyone has its limits....John , Dargo , Chiana and even Aeryn. In this episode she was barely hanging out against terrible real/imagined threats. In that situation it is only natural that she seeks refuge in prayers....

    -Rygel a deposed ruler and usually comic relief can be so wise and contributing team member sometimes when he wants to !

    -Noranti is one of the real stars in this episode. With her contagious disease trick , her buying time while rescue is on , her guilt and soul search while seeking apology from Rygel.....Other secret player was Scorpius while holding Janek. These funny looking aliens with make up and costumes and animeotric creatures are most developed and 3D characters I have ever seen in any sci-fi series !

    - I agree about team perfection. After all problems among Moya crew resolved everyone is back together as they should be they have a huge image of confidence together when walking to Katratzi...Insane....But so Farscape. Who can stand against them now ?

    -Just like in Babylon 5....Nothing is ever forgotten by writers. Everything small or unimportant might be an huge meaning or theme in the future arcs......

    -Don't forget the destruction of Scopius' command carrier. That is also another souvenir in Crichton's belt though it was largely Talyn's work....

    -Scorpy/Harvey is the master manipulator....

    -Stark the bioloid had an aura of danger around him

    -When everything is settled I loved Crichton's haunted look and his seek for consolance at Aeryn. The idealistic earth astronout who came to Uncharted Territories five cycles ago is gone. He slayed so many. And still capable of so much more destruction. He is aware of it. And he can not escape from it. It is really a curse



    What else can be said ? Perfect finale if not last 60 seconds. I hope you have the Peacekeeper Wars at hand PschoPere I am awaiting your reviw of that as well
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2011
  9. Jeff O'Connor

    Jeff O'Connor Commodore Commodore

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    I know, right..?
     
  10. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

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    Exactly. Honestly, were it not for that very last crazy scene of John and Aeryn being attacked, "Bad Timing" would have been a great finale for the series.

    That said, "The Peacekeeper Wars" is really awesome, too, though there is one particular character "twist" that really bothers me (if you've seen it, you know what I'm talking about). Sadly, it's one of those instances where real life demanded that they re-write parts of the story, and the result is a scene that makes you go, "Huh? :wtf: "
     
  11. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^ As long as it's not as bad as the disaster of the mess that the Dead Like Me DVD movie is PW will be fine.

    I have three episodes left, I have completely slowed down. There is more on TV now, no more reruns, and I don't have PKW yet so I figured there is no rush. Plus the first few seasons really drew me in, and season 4 hasn't done that. It's good, I was amazed they made it to Earth, and the wormhole thing was amazing, but it didn't feel connected or flowed as much as seasons 2 and 3 where you just need to watch it.

    So I'm savoring the moments. :)
     
  12. Emh

    Emh The Doctor Premium Member

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    Not only that, but is should be noted that having Aeryn pray doesn't compromise her character. I've seen situations where a show makes a character do something unfamiliar that ultimately damages the character.

    It gets even better. In Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars, Chiana says "We're cursed, D'Argo. Everything we touch." These two quotes were my signature for a long time.

    The show not only remembers small moments and character histories, it also remembers quotes. Compare the "Time" quotes between "Unrealized Reality" and The Peacekeeper Wars or Crichton remarking on fate when he and Aeryn crash in between two ridges on Moya in The Peacekeeper Wars, referring back to a moment early in season 1 (I don't recall which episode).

    I love how each season's ending (although not finale) escalates the level of destruction Crichton and company commits. Naturally, the mini-series takes it to a whole new level.

    You can't begin to imagine the level of pain us fans felt at the time. We knew when the episode aired that the series was canceled. D'Argo's shrill was a mere echo of my own.
     
  13. label

    label Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah......I remember watching that and feeling torn between thinking that that was an incredibly unsatisfying place to leave the characters in the series, but at the same time kind of a perfect Farscape ending if that's what we ended up getting. While I'm really glad we got the PK wars, I could have probably lived with that finale as it was.

    I had a similar reaction to Angel's finale too, though I think Angel's ending was a bit more intentional and sent a specific message with how it ended.
     
  14. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The thing was, Aeryn praying was a way of showing just how bad things were for her. If Aeryn of all people was reduced for praying for someone to rescue her, then that's some deep shit.
     
  15. TiberiusMaximus

    TiberiusMaximus Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    I'd forgotten about this thread. Season 4, especially where you are, PsychoPere, is intensely intense.

    I think one of the most powerful emotional scenes in the entire series is

    Scorpius' execution of Aeryn!Chiana and Crichton's reaction. It's really a heart-wrenching scene, and the look on Crichton's face after it happens says it all. "What have I done?" I guess he probably rationalized it afterward that it didn't actually happen because it was an UNREALIZED Reality, but it's still horrific. Very poignant.

    One of my favorite quotes is in Hot To Katratzi, I think Part II but I'm not sure...

    Staleek (to Crichton):
    You're insane!
    Aeryn: Isn't it fun?
     
  16. Jeff O'Connor

    Jeff O'Connor Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, I rewatched the series a couple of times while we were all awaiting word on if anything more would come for Farscape and I'd gotten into the habit of embracing D'Argo's outburst as something almost cathartic in its depression.
     
  17. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'm at the last episode....

    I like how they were terrorist in the final trilogy, a suicide nuke bomb!? Wow. And his reaction to everything. Wow.

    So I finished the show up. I have a bit of a head ache so I'll be short.

    The finale episode was interesting. Except for the last minute it felt like they knew the show was ending. The beginning felt like I missed an episode or two again, and then the rest of the episode felt like they had warning... right until the end... that the show was ending. It would have been a fine ending.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2011
  18. chrisspringob

    chrisspringob Commodore Commodore

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    I know I'm in a fringe minority on this, but I thought "Bad Timing" was the perfect Farscape ending. So utterly random.

    PK Wars, OTOH, I was not a fan of. It was all so by the book. I could see how the main story was going to be resolved from a mile away.
     
  19. Bonzo the Fifth

    Bonzo the Fifth Commander Red Shirt

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    Yeah, I still remember watching Bad Timing for the first time.... I was elated with the ending until the shocking swerve that happened in the last scene... I was still literally howling from the injustice of it all when my roommates came in on me tearing at the walls over that horrific ending...

    Yeah, the wait until the miniseries was maddening...

    Really, the series has a gift for taking tried and true storytelling devices that, with many lesser series, would have fell flat or failed miserably and managing to make it work. Farscape has a real talent for that that I've seen in very few series not touched by Joss Whedon (though to be fair, I love Farscape more than I even love Firefly... now there's a fantasy crossover I'd kill to see done well).

    As for Aeryn's prayer... you're right, it's something that might have been a real OOC moment, given her self-sufficiency, but in this case, I agree, it's a moment for her character... especially since her motivation even in this extremity was not at all selfish. her concern was for her child and for John. I can't imagine Aeryn would ever pray for herself, but find it completely believable that she would for her offspring and her love...

    The only thing about that that kind of threw me was the 'genetic memory' business regarding Aeryn's baby. So we're supposed to believe that Chrichton Jr.'s going to have all of John's wormhole knowledge in his head? That I found a little hard to swallow. Other than that, though, I found the series ending arc quite satisfying.

    Harvey's return was rather epic, I have to say. I've really come to love him as a character in his own right, and, frankly, the Nosferatu reference was long, long, LONG overdue, and done masterfully... though my favorite has to be the Easter Bunny fight in 'Bad Timing'.

     
  20. Bonzo the Fifth

    Bonzo the Fifth Commander Red Shirt

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    Speaking of this, on my recent rewatch, I realized for the first time that those flowers have been a recurring motif around Scorpius almost from the beginning. Somehow I completely managed to miss this before, but, especially on the scenes on the command carrier, you see them rotating around in his private quarters...

    I wonder if that was the plan all along, to have these Earth plants be so important to the Scarrans....
     

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