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Farscape - Season 1 - Episode 12

Farscape - 1x12 - Rhapsody In Blue - Originally Aired: 1999-7-16

My Rating - 3

Fan Rating Average - 4.37

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Synopsis
A false distress signal brings Moya to the home of a young Delvian Priestess, Tahleen, who sent out the signal in order to summon Zhaan. While the crew is made welcome, Zhaan is puzzled by Tahleen's motivations; it seems the young but powerful Delvian wants to join in 'Unity' with Zhaan in order to curb her dark side. In the process, Zhaan is forced to confront her own insidious past, and when the Unity goes horribly wrong, Crichton must come to Zhaan's aid, and risk his very sanity to save her. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Despite being a lame episode, this story has essential exposition about Zhaan's past.

Problems
None

Factoids
- There are over a billion Delvians on Delvia.
- Zhaan gained a level in her Pa'u skill in this episode, becoming a level 10.

Remarkable Scenes
- John's flashback to Alex.
- Moya being lured to a colony of Delvians with Zhaan suspicious of their intent.
- Tahleen altering one of John's memories.
- John being mistaken for a Peacekeeper by Tuzak.
- John experiencing Zhaan's memory of murdering her lover.
- Zhaan revealing that she murdered her lover because he seized power illegally and brought in the Peacekeepers to enforce his rule.
- John being planted with a false memory of Alex coming with him on the Farscape module.
- Tahleen taking Zhaan's knowledge by force, diminishing Zhaan's ability to control her dark impulses.
- John arguing with his fictitious, figment wife.
- John and Zhaan sharing unity.

My Review
We finally learn in this episode precisely what Zhaan was imprisoned for. She assassinated her lover, who was the leader of Delvia and illegally held onto power by force using the Peacekeepers after his term ended. After this, many Delvians were driven from their home, probably fleeing tyranny and set up colonies far away from Delvia, such as the one featured in this episode.

The telepathic powers of the Delvians becomes a central plot point once again, which is quite appropriate for an episode all about Delvian culture. But unfortunately the presentation comes off as little more than kooky mystical voodoo. The pace of the episode is also considerably slow, as it spends so much time "acid tripping" (as John called it) all over the Delvian telepathic powers.

A better episode would have spent more time exploring the politics of Delvia and the moral implications of Zhaan's ends-justify-the-means murder of her tyrannical lover. Instead, most of the episode just stumbles around in a murky stupor, failing to make a coherent point by the end of any more complexity than "use your powers for good, not evil."

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Hugo on 2015-01-11 at 2:16am:
    This series continues to impress me with the elaborate sets!

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