Farscape - Season 3 - Episode 11
Farscape - 3x11 - Incubator - Originally Aired: 2001-7-13
With his wormhole research stalling and his situation desperate, Scorpius inserts the original 'neurochip' into his own brain. He hopes to make contact with the clone of John's personality that spilled into the chip when it was in Crichton's brain. When they meet, Scorpius shows the 'Crichton Clone' his terrible, brutal upbringing at the hands of the Scarrans, hoping to persuade him to decode the wormhole equations. Meanwhile, a defecting Peacekeeper scientist offers the real Crichton the secret of wormhole travel in exchange for Moya. [DVD]
0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Major exposition about Scorpius and the wormhole research project.
- Ninety other attempts were made to create a Sebacean-Scarran hybrid. In each attempt, both the Sebacean mother and the hybrid child died. Scorpius was lucky to have survived his birthing.
- Scorpius was exempted from Peacekeeper racial purity regulations due to his unique status and his clear demonstrations of loyalty in assisting the Peacekeepers destroy a Scarran dreadnought.
- Scorpius introducing himself to the neural clone of John by interfacing with it directly.
- Scorpius showing his early childhood to neural John.
- John to D'Argo in response to D'Argo's objections to John's obsession with finding his suspected nearby wormhole: "You wanna push this mister let's go find my son?"
- Linfer coming to Moya and allegedly offering John the secret to wormhole travel.
- Linfer telling John that Scorpius is still alive.
- Scorpius revealing to John that he was the product of a male Scarran's rape of his Sebacean mother.
- Linfer starting to liquefy.
- Linfer committing suicide in her prowler.
- Scorpius making the case to neural John that the Scarrans are malevolent and genocidal and won't stop until theirs is the only sentient race left in the galaxy. A threat so pronounced that it could one day spell the destruction of Earth as well.
- John to Scorpius about discovering wormholes: "Remember what the ancients told me? If you're not smart enough to discover it for yourself, you're not smart enough to use it wisely."
- Braca abruptly changing Scorpius' cooling rod.
This episode is like Losing Time except without most of its problems. Like that story we have a plot on Scorpius' command carrier and a plot aboard Moya. But this time, the focus was on the much more interesting story of Scorpius' wormhole research, which moves in an even more interesting direction now that Scorpius has enlisted neural clone John's assistance in his research.
The idea behind neural clone John was woefully poorly explored in Losing Time when he was first introduced, but this time he's used as a delightful pawn in Scorpius' obsession with wormhole research. Likewise, the Moya story is much better executed this time around with the theme of John on Moya being equally obsessed with wormholes being well played.
The subplot concerning Linfer's defection from Scorpius could have been better. In particular Pilot's unconditional trust of her struck me as uncharacteristically reckless and the story's inference that Pilot was right to trust her all along was bit too sanctimonious for my tastes. However, on the whole the Moya story worked pretty well for once and nicely complimented the Scorpius A plot.
As for Scorpius, devoting an episode to his backstory was a delightful idea. I enjoyed getting to see all the details of his horrific childhood along with why he ultimately sided with the Peacekeepers and how he rose through the ranks so well. I was impressed that even after the whole song and dance John was still unwilling to help Scorpius, though I enjoyed his clear moment of temptation and indecision. Overall this is the best episode of the season so far.
The following are comments submitted by my readers.
- From Stella on 2012-12-26 at 5:52am:
This was such a magnificent episode. I loved every bit of it.