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Farscape - Season 2 - Episode 03

Farscape - 2x03 - Taking the Stone - Originally Aired: 2000-3-31

My Rating - 1

Fan Rating Average - 3.03

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# Votes: 36 19 6 28 5 5 2 7 5 9 4

Synopsis
Distraught at the death of her brother Nerri, Chiana blasts down to a royal cemetery planet and joins a gang of nihilistic young aliens. Crichton, Aeryn and Rygel fly down to the planet to try to talk Chiana into coming back to Moya, but she insists on taking part in a potentially deadly local ritual called "Taking the Stone", a leap into a chasm using sound waves to slow the fall. Crichton tries to intercede, but must realize that this new, aberrant behavior is something Chiana has to work through herself. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 3, bad filler, totally skippable.
- No significant exposition, events, or consequences. And a lame episode on top of that. The exposition about Chiana's brother will become relevant later, but it isn't necessary to watch this episode to understand that plot arc later.

Problems
None

Factoids
- Chiana had a brother named Nerri who is believed to be dead as of this episode.

Remarkable Scenes
- Chiana taking off and stealing Aeryn's prowler because her "life disk" went dark, indicating that someone close to her had died.
- Chiana revealing that it was in fact her brother who died.
- The weird cult jumping into the sonic net and one of them dying in the process.
- Zhaan torturing Rygel with her prayers in an attempt to compensate for his grave robbing.
- John taking the mushrooms.
- John attempting to drug and drag Chiana back to Moya and Aeryn stopping him from doing so; telling him that it won't help her after all because she'll just find another way to kill herself.
- Crichton punching Molnon.
- Chiana jumping and surviving.

My Review
The idea of doing a story where one of our characters discovers that a close relative has died then having that character forced to grieve the loss is a decent notion. Such a premise offers the possibility for some solid character development. But this episode mostly erodes any of that potential by delivering a story that is largely incoherent and annoying.

Firstly the danger posed to Chiana in this episode is wholly manufactured; she did it to herself. The whole episode is focused on talking her down from her death wish. Perhaps a realistic happenstance, but it manifests itself in largely petty ways. Crichton doesn't have time for Chiana, so a temper tantrum ensues amidst trippy nonsense, almost no scoring, a dreary looking set, and a bunch of annoying lightning flashes. The end result is a rather boring episode that tells us almost nothing about Chiana's brother and what he meant to her.

On top of that, John takes an irrationally extreme and unnecessary risk taking those mushrooms to try and help Chiana and the whole idea of an entire planet being dedicated to being a graveyard seems like an obnoxious waste. As for the Rygel "curse" plot, perhaps the less said, the better. Overall, this is the worst episode of Farscape so far.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From DK on 2013-04-14 at 11:54pm:
    "Taking the Stone"? A better title would have been "Jumping the Shark".

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