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Farscape - Season 4

Farscape - 4x01 - Crichton Kicks - Originally Aired: 2002-6-7

My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 3.95

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# Votes: 48 3 7 9 9 24 9 9 13 12 6

Synopsis
Continuing work on his theories of wormhole technology, Crichton ekes out an existence on board Elack - an old, dying Leviathan. The peace is shattered by the intrusion of a female alien, Sikozu, and a squad of Grudek mercenaries intent on harvesting Elack's neural tissue. Crichton fights to save his new home, his struggle hindered by the Grudeks' pet: a vicious and deadly alien canine called the Brindz Hound. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
- The leviathan Elack and its pilot have lived for over 350 cycles.
- This is the first episode of Farscape in widescreen.
- The opening theme changed again in this episode. It is now comprised of clips from the previous three seasons and has a new opening monologue from John. Since the prior material was all not in widescreen, in order to make the opening theme widescreen as well, they simply zoomed in on the old shots and cropped them. To see what I mean, compare this still from season 3's opening theme with this still from season 4's opening theme, both of the same frame.
- Sikozu cannot accept translator microbes. She has to learn languages by hearing them. However, she learns languages fast. She can also reattach limbs with relative ease and shift her center of gravity such that she can walk on walls.
- John's beard in this episode is real, unlike the fake that was used in Jeremiah Crichton.
- This episode has a very significant deleted scene in which Braca openly defies Scorpius because he's pledged his allegiance to Grayza. There's also a longer conversation between John and Sikozu shortly after they first meet. Both deleted scenes are quite good and I highly recommend them.

Remarkable Scenes
- A heavily disheveled John hanging out with an old, similarly disheveled leviathan, a considerable time after Moya's disappearance.
- John's pet DRD, painted with the French flag, labeled 1812, singing the 1812 Overture, midi style.
- John encountering an alien who, unusually, takes a little bit of time to acquire the ability to translate his language.
- John to Elack's pilot: "We got bad guys on board. Can you space'em?"
- John yelling a Klingon phrase to the aliens.
- John: "It's a show of force! It's the only thing that Klingons understand!"
- John and "Sputnick" having a near miss with the blood tracker.
- John reuniting with Chiana and Rygel only to be told that Grayza is hunting everyone from Moya's crew who was involved in the attack on Scorpius' command carrier.
- John: "I've finally figured out wormholes."
- John imitating a goat and luring the blood tracker to the fake airlock.

My Review
That's it. John's finally gone crazy. And in the most delightful way. Riffing amazingly well off of the absurdity of the third season's cliffhanger, John's figuratively thrown his hands in the air and nearly given up on sanity after thanking his lucky stars for being rescued by another leviathan. He stayed just sane and coherent enough to focus on the only worthwhile thing he had left to focus on throughout all this time: cracking wormholes. But what's even more interesting is he seems to have made a breakthrough. Given a little more time, John seems confident he'll master wormholes.

But John's time on Elack isn't all Nobel Prize winning physics research, he has become an even more whimsical and reckless person than before. The non sequitur references to Earth have become an even greater crutch for him. So much so that he adopted a pet DRD, named it 1812, painted it with the French flag, and taught it how to sing the 1812 Overture. Not only that, but it actually seems to like singing the 1812 Overture. I love the cute little scene at the end where it nearly begs John to sing it with him. Him? Golly. Now I'm anthropomorphizing a DRD.

Indeed the charms of this episode are boundless. Elack, the 1812 DRD, John's burly beard, his erratic behavior, his surprisingly touching regard for Elack and Elack's pilot, and most of all his unwavering competence for survival in the utterly strange circumstances in which he lives. His increased whimsies and confidence seem like borderline hubris. Or maybe he just gets lucky all the time like Captain Kirk. Regardless, John's ever-deepening theatrical behavior is his own attempt to trivialize the farce he sees his life as and it plays out as both an incredibly good drama as well as an incredibly good comedy.

What works less well in this episode is Sikozu and her dizzying array of alien abilities. She learns languages super fast without translator microbes, can reattach limbs without much effort, and can walk on walls. There are ways to rationalize all this, but it seemed like the writers were just pulling new abilities for her out of their hat whenever they needed one. Likewise, Chiana's abilities seem to have... evolved somewhat. This is less annoying, but I similarly think giving Chiana mystical premonition abilities to use as a plot device is not the most terribly interesting development.

I am glad Moya is still nowhere to be found and that not all the characters have been reunited yet. It shows that the series is willing to take the cliffhanger's implications at least somewhat seriously. I'm a little annoyed that Rygel and Chiana appear to have come out of nowhere; it's not explained terribly well why they were able to locate John, but it's easy to fill in the blanks with something plausible. In any case overall this is Farscape's best season opener so far.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Hugo on 2016-05-23 at 5:34am:
    Something that Farscape suffers from, which I don't see in other sci-fi shows (e.g. BSG, Star Trek, Babylon 5 etc) - the direction and editing is a bit confusing, especially in that sequence in the end where Chrichton is going up and down through that shaft... I have no idea what he needs to do and what is really happening... !

    Also - how long has he been sitting in the module in the beginning? Long enough for him to grow a thick beard - like two weeks? I was under the impression that the module only had life support for short trips...

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My Rating - 7

Fan Rating Average - 5.2

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 18 12 7 2 7 11 7 5 20 24 4

Synopsis
Crichton, Chiana and Rygel are reunited with D'Argo and Jool at an archaeological site run by Jool's people, the Interions. The purpose of the dig is to find a missing probe that might reverse the planet's dangerous atmospheric conditions. Peacekeepers led by Grayza land and capture the crew, and Crichton finds himself unable to fight back, mysteriously compelled to do Grayza's bidding. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
- The recap of this episode features a scene which was never aired in which Braca threatens to execute Grayza were he ordered to by one of her superiors, an act of loyalty to the Peacekeepers for which she promotes him to captain.

Factoids
- D'Argo named his ship Lo'La, after his murdered wife Lo'Laan.
- "Grandma" is 293 cycles old.
- There's another deleted scene of unusual importance in this episode. Shortly after D'Argo reveals his ship's cloaking ability to Chiana, the scene continues. Chiana asks why D'Argo stopped hunting Macton. He says that he no longer has any desire to kill him, believing that it would bring him no happiness. He instead sent him a message threatening to do so to terrorize him, believing that making Macton live in fear would be more satisfying.

Remarkable Scenes
- Alien to John: "Peacekeeper, drop your weapon." John: "That's a common mistake. I'm not a Peacekeeper."
- John stumbling on D'Argo, Jool, and the old woman.
- Grayza torturing Scorpius.
- Grayza manipulating Braca with some kind of pheromones.
- The old woman drugging Crichton again.
- D'Argo confronting Jool and asking her what she thinks of Luxans. Jool's reluctant response: "I think that you're unusual for a Luxan."
- Grayza capturing John and Chiana and dragging out a collared Scorpius walking on his hands and knees to amuse John.
- Grayza: "Do anything you want to him. Do anything at all." John: "No thanks. I don't think I can come up with anything better than that."
- Grayza using her pheromones on John.
- The old woman drugging John and making him leap to his presumed death.

My Review
This rather strange episode ranges from incoherent, to fascinating, to profound at various times. The notion of yet another super weapon of mass destruction that must be kept out of the hands of the bad guys is obnoxious, but the plot finally beginning to seriously explore the idea that the most human-like races in the Farscape universe may have an actual genetic connection with humans is fascinating. Apparently the ancient Egyptians are somehow related to the Sebaceans and Interions.

Other nice details included Scorpius' clear fall from grace. The way Grayza controls him with those green corrupted cooling rods is a fantastic way to make this old nemesis seem more sympathetic. Grayza's preying on his weak spot. Couple that with Braca switching sides without hesitation and we've got the makings of a lovely predicament for Scorpy. Another minor detail I liked was that in John's visions the priests were singing the Farscape theme.

Finally, the old woman's character, while sometimes annoying, is rapidly starting to captivate me. She'd be more compelling if her actions didn't always seem so random, but for the most part she seems to work quite well as an unstable but probably good natured ally. I'm also continuing to enjoy Moya's lack of a presence. Even though we now know roughly where she is, it's still nice that it's taking a while for the crew to reassemble. Overall while the episode could have used a more solid narrative, it still comes off as a fairly strong piece.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Hugo on 2016-05-24 at 5:04pm:
    Yet another episode which I found had poor editing/direction - some things are really confusing.
    * So how did they get out of that cell towards the end?
    * The colorful creature/alien was never really introduced properly, and I find it odd that e.g. Chrichton is wondering more what that is...
    * I didn't get how Chrichton was suddenly swimming with that creature...

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My Rating - 8

Fan Rating Average - 3.7

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 27 14 3 4 15 6 12 4 6 9 3

Synopsis
D'Argo and Sikozu come up with a plan to crash Elack onto the Peacekeeper pursuit craft, facilitating their escape. Crichton is forced to consort further with Grayza to ensure success. When the plan goes awry, the crew begins a search for the probe that will reverse the planet's deadly atmospheric conditions, but a most unexpected enemy stops them in their tracks. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
- Sikozu revealed that she's faking her status as a Peacekeeper to Jool and Chiana right in front of two Peacekeeper soldiers easily in earshot. They just stood there while the three of them exchanged information and broke through Chiana's handcuffs. WTF? They deserved to get their asses kicked for their incompetence.

Factoids
- According to Sikozu, Grayza's ability to seduce men with those pheromones is a surgically implanted enhancement that will rapidly reduce her lifespan.

Remarkable Scenes
- Rygel predicting that Sikozu will betray them again.
- John to Grayza regarding Braca interrupting the interrogation session: "Bad news from Smithers?"
- John attempting to kill Grayza but being unable to will himself to do so.
- Braca shooting Scorpius.
- John overcoming Grayza's pheromones and restraining her.
- Elack crashing into the planet.
- The old woman throwing Winona over the cliff to motivate John to go after the probe hunter alien.
- The reassembling of the probe blocking the magnetic summer and unfreezing a group of priests from 12,000 cycles ago at the moment they were frozen.
- Jool staying on the planet to shepherd the resurrected priests.
- The old woman revealing her name as Noranti.

My Review
While the weird looking aquatic alien plot twist toward the end was an annoying red herring, the rest of the episode achieved a much more solid focus which part one lacked somewhat. I greatly enjoyed John's clever, temporary ability to overcome Grayza's wiles and Elack's heroic death was also most fitting. I'm a bit sad to see Jool left behind; she's leaving right when I was starting to like her. Or at least not hate her.

I also rather enjoyed the ambiguous fate of Scorpius in this episode. By now the series has certainly earned this. I have no doubt that Scorpius survived being buried alive, despite his pleas in vain to Sikozu to save him. I certainly hope this isn't the last we see of Jool and especially the plot exploring the link between her species, John's, and Sebaceans. Overall this episode was a solid improvement over part one.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From John Meacham on 2016-04-04 at 10:40pm:
    Sikozu's statements in front of the peacekeepers seem so odd I think it must be a production error of some sort. Either the actual set ended up being much smaller than was thought during story boarding for whatever reason, or the scenes were originally designed with the old aspect ratio/cameras in mind, and when they switched to widescreen with the larger field of view and better cameras it made the peacekeepers seem much closer than intended and it couldn't be fixed in post. They were also playing games with color saturation at that point to indicate the magnetic flux so may not have been able to also pull off the normal narrow depth of view tricks used to indicate distances.
  • From hugo on 2016-06-03 at 7:37am:
    So what prevents Scarrans/Peacekeepers from retrieving the probes now?

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My Rating - 2

Fan Rating Average - 4.53

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 21 8 8 12 12 16 15 7 9 8 10

Synopsis
After a forced landing, the crew is divided by an elaborate trap that leaves Crichton, D'Argo, Noranti and Rygel underground in a lava-filled system of caves. Chiana and Sikozu are left outside, trying to re-activate D'Argo's ship. Inside, Crichton and the others are hunted down by mercenaries who are not only protected by energy shield belts, but are led by a monster impervious to the fiery lava. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 3, bad filler, totally skippable.
- No significant exposition, events, or consequences. And a lame episode on top of that. Making contact with Moya at the end of the episode is trivial continuity that can be understood in context later and it's not important to watch this episode just to know how they acquired the body armor.

Problems
- When D'Argo wrapped his tongue around Noranti for leverage, why didn't it just drag both of them into the lava?

Factoids
- Sikozu can go for days without eating.
- John Adam, the actor who played the lead bad guy in this episode also played Bekhesh from Throne for a Loss and Liars, Guns and Money.

Remarkable Scenes
- D'Argo: "They're shielded!" John: "They have body armor? That's a hell of an invention. How come we don't have that?"
- Noranti: "Let me mediate!" D'Argo: "You don't think we should let her try?" John: "No, she's gonna get shot!" D'Argo: "And that would be bad?"
- D'Argo throwing Noranti and John over the lava.
- D'Argo jumping over the lava, slipping, then wrapping his tongue around Noranti's neck for leverage.
- John and D'Argo debating whether or not hitting the guys with the shields with a rock would work.
- Chiana and Sikozu covering D'Argo's ship in his vomit so they can activate the controls sensitive to his DNA.
- John's conversation with Harvey.
- John attempting to rescue Rygel by using the shield to go into the lava.

My Review
Noranti feeds the tired and hungry crew of Lo'La poison, so they all have to land on hostile planet of the week to go throw up, getting themselves into trouble with some bad guys in the process. There's some very effective humor in some scenes, but aside from that this episode is largely just a waste of time.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Lennier on 2010-07-18 at 8:45pm:
    This episode contains one of the very few moments in the series when I was slightly distracted by Rygel's status as a puppet.

    It's when he's reacting to a figure that turns out to be John Adam's character; Rygel's ears are moving independently of each other and for some reason that looks too "animatronic-like" for me.

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Farscape - 4x05 - Promises - Originally Aired: 2002-7-12

My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 3.85

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 37 2 25 0 5 24 4 6 6 21 1

Synopsis
Crichton and the crew are reunited on Moya. Crichton finds Aeryn suffering from Heat Delirium and under the care of Scorpius, who wants asylum aboard Moya. Soon after, a giant Lukythian ship appears nearby, and its Captain, Ullom, claims that Aeryn was recently part of a team that assassinated an important Lukythian leader. Ullom offers to heal Aeryn in return for information about the plot. While battling with the notion of trusting Scorpius, Crichton remains unaware that neither Aeryn nor Ullom is telling the whole truth. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Aeryn greeting John as he lands on Moya only to reveal she's suffering from heat delirium and that Scorpius is with her and wants asylum from the Peacekeepers.
- John: "You will never get the wormhole tech from me." Scorpius: "I could not use it even if I had it! I merely want to safeguard it and hope that when the inevitable Scarran bloodbath begins, you make the appropriate choices."
- John: "Damn it Harvey, guns are dangerous man and there ain't no smokin' in my head!"
- Harvey recommending killing Scorpius.
- Rygel breaking the cooling rods.
- Rygel saving Aeryn from killing herself.
- Scorpius removing Harvey from John's head.
- Scorpius revealing that Grayza is planning to kill Moya with an experimental leviathan killing weapon.
- Scorpius revealing that he has a spy aboard the command carrier.
- Sikozu making the alien ship look like Moya to Braca's scans.
- Scorpius revealing that he really does know where Earth is and that he's the only Peacekeeper who does.
- Moya and Pilot deciding that they want the crew to elect a captain.
- John confronting Aeryn about her keeping her pregnancy from him.

My Review
A fantastic episode that draws well on the time honored Farscape cliche of turning old enemies into ambiguous allies. Scorpius fits surprisingly well into Moya's crew given the carefully crafted circumstances for his arrival. In many ways this is his episode as each step of the plot is designed to redeem him further and further. First he saves Aeryn, then he removes Harvey. Both events a delightful counterpoint to Die Me, Dichotomy. Finally he divulges critical Peacekeeper intelligence to save Moya. Way to go Scorpy!

The only wrinkle in the plot is Aeryn's behavior. She spent the first half of the story actively working against John's efforts to save her. Then, even after John goes the last mile to protect whatever it is Aeryn felt she needed to go this far to protect, she still refuses to reveal her pregnancy to him. At this point John's had enough, and I don't blame him. He gave her the perfect opportunity to come clean and she wasted it.

A final point of significant interest is Scorpius revealing to John that he really does know where Earth is and that it wasn't a bluff. Combine that with John's budding wormhole knowledge and I'm not exactly sure what stands between John and going home now! Obviously he might want to not drag characters like Scorpius along with him to Earth, even despite Scorpy's newfound trustworthiness, so this could be a good reason that John's not chomping at the bit to go home right this second. However, the complete sum of this episode works out to another outstanding chapter in Farscape's long term story while setting up nice possibilities for more great stuff to come.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From David on 2011-06-12 at 4:32am:
    My favorite episode because John finally gets a clue and dumps Aeryn. To be frank I would have dumped her butt about 6 seasons back:p
    There's a point in the start when Areyn forces John to promise not to hurt Scorpious.
    "If you love me you won't hurt him or I'll leave Moya" something like that. Perfect manipulation from her there. I doubt she even knows what love is because the first thing she reverted to was to manipulate John into not hurting Scorpious. Obviously Areyn hasn't learned a thing in her time away and she never learned that people can change from better to worse. (Goes to her comments "People can change can't they John?")
    Having Scorpious on board Moya would have been great for 2-3 eps but I was always against him being on board for a whole season. Personally I would have rather John shoot Scorpy in the head 9 or 10 times and resolve 99% of his problems right there on the spot. And if Areyn wanted to leave, well good luck see how far you get with maxed out heat delirium. I guess the writers had to write Scorpious on board somehow.....I stopped watching this series at S3 with the whole "I love you but we can never act on it" crapola. Pure soap opera.Am am now finally getting to watch Farscape after snagging the entire series for a song..

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Farscape - 4x06 - Natural Election - Originally Aired: 2002-7-19

My Rating - 6

Fan Rating Average - 4.99

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 13 1 5 13 4 2 8 3 3 20 2

Synopsis
Crichton correctly predicts a wormhole's appearance near Moya, but simultaneously a giant space plant captures the Leviathan. An attack with D'Argo's ship only succeeds in sending the plant into Moya's conduits, making it even more difficult to kill. Eventually, an agent is found that will repel the plant, but it only exists in Scorpius' cooling rods. In order to save Moya, Crichton will have to place trust in his arch nemesis. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
- The votes tallied for captain: Rygel voted for himself. Noranti voted for "the divine eternal." Sikozu voted for Scorpius. Someone voted for Aeryn, my guess is probably D'Argo. That leaves John, Aeryn, Chiana, and Pilot casting the winning four votes for D'Argo.
- Sebacean females can retain an embryonic fetus for up to seven cycles without it growing further. Only a surgeon can release the stasis to allow the baby to grow.

Remarkable Scenes
- Moya's crew rotating the role of captain every couple hours.
- John correctly predicting a wormhole.
- Aeryn to Chiana regarding John's knowledge of her baby: "What he doesn't know is that it may not be his." And she wasn't talking about the other John, either!
- D'Argo: "I love shooting things."
- Noranti: "I know lots of poisons." Sikozu: "Yes. I'm sure you do."
- Scorpius' cooling rods repelling the plant.
- D'Argo revealing Aeryn's secret to John.
- D'Argo's response to Rygel beating himself up for being in command while Moya was attacked by the plant: "There are so many other reasons why you should hate yourself at the moment."
- The fan room exploding.
- John: "Does it hurt?" Aeryn: "Mmm-hmm." John: "Where?" Aeryn: "Where it's bleeding."
- Scorpius breaking free of his restraints and saving the day.
- Chiana's near miss with the fans.
- D'Argo getting elected captain.
- Aeryn revealing the nature of her pregnancy to John.

My Review
Space plant monster of the week juxtaposed with some real progress being made in the John and Aeryn relationship plot. The space plant monster was certainly annoying and not necessary, but the plot advancement concerning the relationship makes up for it quite well along with a few other nice details such as John demonstrating an ability to correctly predict wormhole appearances and the crew electing D'Argo as captain.

One of my favorite details of this episode is Aeryn noting that she no longer sees any distinction between the two Johns from season 3. This means the principal issue of the season 3 finale for her has been overcome. Now they just need to get over their trust issues brought on by this withheld pregnancy along with, of course, determine who the father is. Sadly though there is little depth beyond this to explore as the space plant monster dominated most of the story. As such, this episode only works out to being slightly above average.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Roger on 2011-10-09 at 9:10am:
    You really think D'Argo voted Aeryn for captain just after Aeryn revealed she had taken the liberty to give Scorpius asylum on Moya and had promised him the others wouldn't harm him, and expected to uphold to the promise she made on their behalf?
    D'Argo and Aeryn most likely voted for themselves.
  • From DK on 2012-08-08 at 1:58am:
    Ka Dargo is no where near as angry as he used to be.  He's practically a team player now.   Wish they would have fixed him long ago.  That would have saved me a few headaches from gritting my teeth whenever he was yelling illogically, and babbling intelligibly in all those episodes.
  • From Roger 2 on 2015-10-28 at 5:31pm:
    I think Pilot voted for Aeryn due to the historical bond between Moya and Aeryn. This means as much as I hate to say it, D'Argo voted for himself.

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Farscape - 4x07 - John Quixote - Originally Aired: 2002-7-26

My Rating - 1

Fan Rating Average - 4.69

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 23 10 11 3 2 6 11 12 4 14 12

Synopsis
Chiana and Crichton are sucked into a game world ruled over by a virtual Stark, who sends Crichton on a quest to 'Kiss the Princess'. To escape the game, they are forced to battle old friends and enemies in fantastic guises. Meanwhile, aboard Moya, Scorpius escapes and brings the crew under his control. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 3, bad filler, totally skippable.
- No significant exposition, events, or consequences. And a lame episode on top of that. The final scene where Noranti gives John the drug to help forget about Aeryn is plot relevant later but can be picked up context, especially since the scene is recapped.

Problems
None

Factoids
- Male Zhaan was played by Rowan Woods, who's directed many Farscape episodes. He shaved his head for the role.
- Ben Browder, the actor who plays John, wrote this episode.
- The ogre was played by Lani Tupu, who also played Crais.

Remarkable Scenes
- Chiana dragging John into her virtual reality game and getting them stuck in there.
- John uncovering the real princess, Zhaan.
- John: "I'm not a warrior." Noranti: "You carry a weapon." John: "Second amendment."

My Review
This whole episode is like a bad acid trip and is almost completely pointless. Cameos like Gilina, Stark, Jool, and Zhaan are fun for long time fans but serve no real purpose as the episode concludes with the lovely cliched classic "it was all a dream" ending. The relationship issues this episode was supposed to explore were barely even touched on; the episode preferring instead to waste most of its time in the whimsical virtual reality, making jokes and vomiting as much Farscape continuity for the fans as possible. Unless you're into episodes like Scratch 'n' Sniff or Taking the Stone for some reason, do yourself a favor and skip this one.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Lennier on 2010-07-20 at 10:38pm:
    This episode was so... haphazard, like a badly coordinated attack on the senses. Subtlety and coherence are lost: Crais the ogre, the D'Argo/Chiana/Jool scenes... the list goes on and on.

    There were a few good moments; most notably, Zhaan's return, which was rather lovely (even if Virginia Hey was obviously wearing a bald cap!).

    As for your last comment... I did like "Scratch 'n' Sniff" but the very sight of those three words "Taking the Stone" makes me cringe. I frelling hate that episode.
  • From Ben on 2010-07-21 at 11:27am:
    Like Lennier I didn't care for Taking the Stone but am a fan of Scratch 'n' Sniff. Farscape does fantastic 'acid trip episodes' imo - Won't Get Fooled Again, Crackers Don't Matter, and this. I agree with a lot of your criticisms and don't think this is a great episode by any means, but it does say a lot about Crichton - how he still cares about Gilina and his paranoia towards Scorpius, for instance.

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Farscape - 4x08 - I Shrink Therefore I Am - Originally Aired: 2002-8-2

My Rating - 5

Fan Rating Average - 4.3

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 16 17 17 21 3 10 3 10 11 13 9

Synopsis
When Moya is raided by bounty hunters working for the Peacekeepers, every crew member is captured except for Crichton and Noranti. The armored intruders shrink the captives and imprison them inside holding cavities in their torsos - if Crichton harms them, he endangers his friends as well. Finding that Scorpius is also free and on the run, Crichton teams up with him to fight off the menace, unaware that the leader of the bounty hunters has a hidden agenda. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 1, partial filler, but has important continuity. I recommend against skipping this one.
- This episode contains plot relevant bits concerning John's drug use and Moya entering tormented space. This is also the first episode to depict a ruling-class Scarran and the first episode where the crew starts to go a bit easier on Scorpius, largely due to the fact that they learn that Scorpius can break out of the jail cells at will but has simply chosen not to up until now. But these plot points are not essential. You could skip this episode and pick up the important parts in context later.

Problems
- Despite Rygel's objections to the technical problem, Sikozu is right. They were too small to breathe the air. The only way to rationalize this is to assume the technology is capable of restructuring their anatomy so as to overcome this issue somehow.

Factoids
- Sikozu designed replacement cooling rods for Scorpius, but they don't function as well. As such, Scorpius gets overheated in times of stress.

Remarkable Scenes
- John: "Let me talk to Captain James T. D'Argo." Then Noranti laughing at the joke as if she somehow gets it.
- Pilot tipping off John that something's wrong by describing very unusual behavior in the crew as to why they're unable to receive him when he arrives in the pod.
- John evacuating the pod with Noranti and slamming it into the boarding party's docked craft.
- John encountering Scorpius and Scorpius revealing that he had a means of escape at his disposal the whole time he was on Moya but never chose to use it until now, when he needed to to avoid the bounty hunter boarding party.
- John teaming up with Scorpius to go after the bounty hunters.
- John: "This is John Crichton paging the head Cylon. Pick up the phone, Imperious Leader!"
- The bounty hunter aliens shrinking some of Moya's crew.
- John's bear trap.
- Scorpius saving John.
- The head bounty hunter revealing himself to Scorpius as a Scarran.
- John revealing to the bounty hunters that their leader is a Scarran in disguise.
- The Scarran executing all his officers once they discovered he was a Scarran.
- Shrunken Aeryn riding 1812.
- John shrinking the Scarran and then stepping on him. John: "One small step for man..."
- John forgetting that Noranti was outside the ship and asking D'Argo to take care of that.

My Review
This episode is kind of a mixed bag. It's a delightfully fun story for the most part, containing such memorable scenes as shrunken Aeryn riding DRD 1812, John singing the episode score to himself while going bad guy hunting, John ramming the pod into the bounty hunter ship, and John squishing the shrunken Scarran, but there's a number of wrinkles in the plot that wreck some of the potential for the episode to rise above merely average. For one, the science behind the shrunken people is a wee bit dicey, but most importantly the ending's silly, half-hearted cliffhanger concerning "tormented space" was just lame.

Honestly, tormented space? Really? What a groan-inducing line. Anyone else getting bad memories of Star Trek Voyager's episode The Fight, which focused on the similarly bizarre concept of the so called chaotic space? Or how about the fact that Pilot says tormented space is filled with wormholes? Or the fact that everyone on the ship already seems to have known about this region of space for some time, including John? If it's so commonly known, why didn't Scorpius do his wormhole research in the vicinity? The whole bit of exposition is just sloppy and annoying. Oh well. Decently fun ride of an episode otherwise.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Simon on 2015-11-19 at 8:34pm:
    Reconstruction their anatomy would leave their brains to fable to function properly.

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Farscape - 4x09 - A Prefect Murder - Originally Aired: 2002-8-9

My Rating - 2

Fan Rating Average - 4.21

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 6 4 10 5 5 6 3 2 3 6 2

Synopsis
The crew lands on a planet divided by generations of clan war. After experiencing strange hallucinations, Aeryn is subliminally coerced into assassinating a clan leader. When Crichton also starts having hallucinations, they must uncover the planet's political machinations in order to prevent more killings. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 3, bad filler, totally skippable.
- No significant exposition, events, or consequences. And a lame episode on top of that.

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Falaak regarding Aeryn: "Seems a bit moody." John: "Man you should have met her mother."
- John imitating Scotty from Star Trek.
- Aeryn revealing that she has no memory of the assassinations.
- John realizing he was programmed to be the next assassin.
- The bugs programming John and Aeryn to assassinate each other.

My Review
A terribly slow paced episode on alien planet of the week in which our heroes become embroiled in their screwed up politics. As if the dimly executed unoriginal plot wasn't bad enough, add to that almost nothing happens in the entire first half of the episode because the story simply replays the events of the teaser but with more detail. Lame.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Barry Tikkanen on 2015-08-30 at 11:35am:
    Problem: This John never met Aeryn's mother either. Sure he has probably heard the stories, but Talyn's Chrichton was the one that interacted with Aeryn's mother.

    The priest animatronics and usage were more distracting than some of the gaffs with Rygel over the series.

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Farscape - 4x10 - Coup By Clam - Originally Aired: 2002-8-16

My Rating - 4

Fan Rating Average - 3.9

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 16 15 5 8 16 10 5 7 4 6 5

Synopsis
While in quarantine high above the patriarchal planet Khurtanan, the crew shares a meal of alien mollusks and almost instantaneously suffers a violent physical reaction. Each crew member becomes bodily linked to one of the others, Crichton to Sikozu, Aeryn to Rygel, and so on. It soon becomes clear they have been deliberately poisoned by the local doctor and are being blackmailed in exchange for the cure. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 2, filler, but an enjoyable episode nevertheless. You can skip this one, but you'd miss out on some fun.
- No significant exposition, events, or consequences. A fairly enjoyable episode, but completely arc-irrelevant.

Problems
None

Factoids
- The milking chair from Scratch 'n' Sniff is visible in the elite club as a decoration in this episode.

Remarkable Scenes
- The doctor fatally poisoning Moya's crew and demanding money for the cure.
- D'Argo and Noranti sharing the sensation of an orgasm.
- The doctor getting shot.
- John and Rygel flailing about as Aeryn and Sikozu get beat up.
- John and Rygel crossdressing.
- Sikozu getting her finger cut off and John experiencing it.
- Scorpius consuming the poison to lessen the burden on the others.
- Rygel biting off the tip of the doctor's nose.

My Review
An episode surprisingly similar to Star Trek DS9's dreadful Profit and Lace episode but far, far better executed. Unlike the DS9 episode, this story's crossdressing is a subplot and the joke subtler rather than overplayed to the point of being embarrassing. Instead, what steals the show in this episode is the poison primary plot, which, while it is complete filler, it is quite funny nevertheless. The success of the comedy is achieved by repeating the very successful gag from season three of having two characters neurologically linked so that they feel each others pain. It was most amusing with Braca and D'Argo and even funnier with John and Scorpius last season and it was nicely used here as well. Overall, while still filler, this episode is much more enjoyable than the last one.

No fan commentary yet.

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Farscape - 4x11 - Unrealized Reality - Originally Aired: 2002-8-23

My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 5.39

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 18 17 5 7 7 13 1 7 14 26 17

Synopsis
Crichton is sucked down a wormhole he correctly senses will appear near Moya. Within "wormhole limbo" he is confronted by an interdimensional being who is intent on discovering why Crichton was entrusted with this knowledge. The alien sends Crichton through various "realities" of past events to illustrate how dangerous it can be if wormhole knowledge is misused. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Chiana regarding humans: "They can barely escape their own gravity."
- Rygel: "I wouldn't have risen to Dominar if I wasn't good at recognizing things before they happen." Pilot, annoyed: "You were deposed in a coup led by your own cousin."
- John getting shot through a wormhole in nothing but his space suit.
- John encountering an alien in the wormhole(?) and then suddenly being transported back to the moment he entered this part of the galaxy, refusing to take it terribly seriously.
- The alien revealing that he targeted Moya with the wormhole Moya disappeared into at the end of the third season.
- The alien revealing that the vision John experienced was real; an unrealized reality and that wormhole technology can make those realities real.
- The unrealized reality in which all the alien characters on Moya are strangely mixed up.
- John exiting the wormhole targeting Moya, but arriving at Earth instead.

My Review
This trippy episode is some pretty hardcore science fiction, diving deep into Farscape's fictional wormhole physics. As a result we get a very heady episode exploring the what-if physics consequences for what sort of reality we'd live in if wormholes, as depicted on Farscape, were really real. Basing this thought experiment on the real physics of relativity and the fictional physics of the instantaneous nature of wormhole travel, the episode deliberately fails to resolve the time travel paradoxes inherent in the idea, choosing instead to go in the direction of using this nature of wormholes to create yet another way in which developing a technology to harness them could result in a terrifying amount of power in the wrong hands.

Not only could wormholes destroy a planet or perhaps a whole planetary system itself as depicted in prior episodes, but now it's revealed that they can be used for time travel and also to fundamentally alter reality itself, except for the person wielding the technology who seems to maintain an immutable frame of reference. The ancients who currently are in sole control this technology appear afraid of their own knowledge, which is confirmed by their "test" of John's demeanor, stating that fear is the correct answer. It's almost as if they consider their own very existence to be as overwrought as the power they possess. Their obsession with keeping this knowledge a secret seems to stop just shy of their own willful self destruction.

Aside from big exposition and the fun exploration of fantasy physics, this episode has much to offer in simple storytelling as well. This episode does much to redeem the third season's lame cliffhanger, revealing that our ancient alien friend was behind the suspiciously sudden appearance of the wormhole which devoured Moya. It's also fun watching all the silly unrealized realities. My only real complaint, aside from the wonky cliffhanger leading us into the next episode being yet another Earth-but-not-really episode, is that the directing of this episode is at times too trippy and can be at times hard to follow. Overall though I find this episode's unusual style and tone to be quite bold and refreshing.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Hugo on 2016-09-09 at 4:33am:
    I liked the wormhole alien, great acting - all in all a decent episode!

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Farscape - 4x12 - Kansas - Originally Aired: 2002-12-30

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 5.01

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 21 1 5 5 5 3 4 4 5 7 17

Synopsis
The crew travels through a wormhole to Earth, 1985, and Crichton finds he has somehow disastrously changed the course of time - his father Jack is now slated to fly the doomed Challenger mission. Lying low in Crichton's home town, the 'aliens' use the timely Halloween celebrations to remain (almost) anonymous, while Crichton tries to revert the timeline - in the process putting his younger self in mortal danger. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
- How did Chiana interact with young John? Did she learn English too?

Factoids
- When Chiana met young John, she accidentally identified herself as Karen Shaw, the girl Crichton claimed in Losing Time to have lost his virginity to at the age of 16. This means that John lost his virginity to Chiana before he even met her. I wonder why John didn't recognize Chiana when he first met her in season one then? ;)

Remarkable Scenes
- John, in orbit of Earth in nothing but his space suit: "I can't believe I'm gonna die here. This is the most beautiful thing I've ever seen."
- John asking D'Argo to follow John through the wormhole.
- John discovering that he's traveled to Earth, but it's in the 1980s.
- John observing his younger self.
- John discovering that his dad will be on the doomed Challenger shuttle.
- John confronting his younger self.
- Aeryn watching Sesame Street.
- Chiana flipping off an Earth woman.
- Rygel accidentally being exposed to an Earth woman.
- Grayza locating Moya.
- Aeryn referring to Rygel as Kermit. ;)
- Noranti drugging the cop.
- John confronting his mom, telling her to stop Jack from going up on the Challenger.
- D'Argo attempting to drive the cop car.
- Rygel on a sugar high.
- Scorpius meeting with Braca, who is revealed to be secretly still loyal to Scorpius.
- Rygel scaring kids to get more sugar.
- John using his semi-corporeality to his advantage to convince his mother to prevent Jack from boarding Challenger.
- The single cop who remembered everything being perceived as crazy.
- John returning to Moya only to discover that Moya is in orbit of Earth and it's also the correct year.
- John seeing his father aboard Moya and acting with immediate disbelief.

My Review
Having John return to Earth for real but in the wrong year would have been good enough for a fantastic story by itself, but the amazing twist at the end of having John return to Earth at the correct year along with Moya and with his dad having already boarded Moya is an absolutely fantastic development. One of the greatest fascinations of Farscape's ongoing story is to explore the idea of what would happen if John did some day return to Earth with all the knowledge and technology he had gained out in space. They touched on this way back in A Human Reaction, but it was deliberately exaggerated and I rightfully never believed it was a realistic portrayal of what would really happen.

This time though it's real. No illusions, no smoke and mirrors, real. I loved John's disbelief at the end of the episode. Even though there's absolutely no reason to think any of this is a fake this time, John doesn't buy it. He thinks it it just has to be a fake. He's become paranoid. And can you blame him? I certainly can't. The best part about all this for me is it's not even the end of the series yet. They didn't even save this big moment for the big finale. If the follow-through of this plot arc is as bold as the setup, we've got the makings for perhaps the best storytelling ever depicted on Farscape.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Lennier on 2010-07-26 at 1:36pm:
    Quite an effective episode. I once read on a forum that Farscape has amazing stingers-great revelations and events on which to end episodes. "Kansas" has one of the best of the series.

    The Moyans on Earth thread was mostly played to perfection, and the story was quite strong. However, what was with Mulder and Scully in 1985, though? :-)
  • From Hugo on 2016-09-09 at 1:00am:
    Sorry, not too impressed, found it mostly boring and dull - and this has been done many times on Star Trek and also e.g. Back to the Future. The whole setup is not very impressive - and the plot mostly so-so.

    Thumbs down. Next ep is AMAZING though!

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Farscape - 4x13 - Terra Firma - Originally Aired: 2003-1-6

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 5.84

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 24 5 4 0 4 4 6 12 5 10 32

Synopsis
The crew returns to Moya - in orbit around modern-day Earth - to find Jack and a contingent of Earth dignitaries waiting for them. The aliens are introduced to an amazed and apprehensive public, but soon find life in the public eye difficult. As Crichton tries to readjust to life on Earth, his relationships become strained, especially with Aeryn. Meanwhile, a monstrous assassin sent by Grayza hunts for Crichton, and will stop at nothing to accomplish its mission. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Jack revealing that Sikozu made first contact with Earth, in English, when IASA detected Moya in orbit 42 days ago.
- John being reunited with his friends and family.
- Earth officials examining the technology John brought back.
- Aeryn regarding John's pet cat: "Does he talk?"
- Jack: "Every nation's demanding equal access to the aliens and all the information we get from them." John: "Of course they are. We're gonna give it to them." Jack: "I don't see why. Why should we give them access to technology they can use against us?" John: "Because it's the right thing to do. Wouldn't worry about it, dad. Subcommittee will tie it up for years and load it down with a ton of guidelines." Jack: "Now you're being naive, son. The best and safest thing to do is keep it to ourselves." John: "Space travel was your dream to unite mankind. When did that change?" Jack: "September the 11th."
- Grayza communicating with her agent aboard Moya.
- Aeryn taking Jack on a trip to Saturn in her prowler.
- The alien monster attacking John's friends.
- Scorpius revealing to Sikozu that he is planning to kamikaze the wormhole if Grayza locates it and comes through.
- Jack doing as John asks and inviting all nations to participate in the ongoing Farscape mission.
- The alien monster attacking John's family.
- D'Argo taking out the alien.
- Aeryn: "Merry frelling Christmas."
- Aeryn pressing Noranti on the drugs John's taking.
- John resolving to leave Earth again, to protect it from alien attacks.

My Review
The setup pays off perfectly. John returns to Earth and the political consequences are explored with sufficient depth and nuance to make the climax of this arc well worth the buildup. I loved the detail that the September 11th terrorist attacks changed John's dad in a fundamental way, making him less idealistic and more predisposed to hoard any and all information and technology John has brought back with him so as to protect the United States against its enemies.

John, on the other hand, both lacking the experience of having lived through the event and being the only human to have lived through his perhaps worse experiences on the other side of the galaxy possesses a much different perspective. From John's point of view, the enemies of America are the Peacekeepers and the Scarrans. It's obvious to John from the very first moment that what he brings Earth is terrors beyond their imagination and that the best way to protect America, along with the rest of Earth, is to "get the hell out of Dodge" and get Earth off the radar of the Peacekeepers and Scarrans as quickly as possible.

John's decision to leave is a fateful one. John's no longer a man running away from his enemies. He's a man with a greater purpose. The only way he'll ever be able to return home again is if he finds a way to end the conflict between the Peacekeepers and the Scarrans, or at least end their lust over wormhole technology. John's immediate feelings over having to leave I'm sure are quite confused. The Peacekeepers killed off his best friend DK and DK's new wife. And his homecoming while not as absurd as A Human Reaction predicted was certainly bittersweet.

Meanwhile John's and Aeryn's confused relationship mirrors John's ambivalence regarding his homecoming. The two even after all this time still can't sort out their feelings for each other. But real progress has been made on both fronts. Aeryn's finally starting to understand why John acts the way he does by discovering his drug use and getting a grip on his cultural contexts first hand. As for John, his decision to leave Earth was the right call, even if it was a hard one. Both characters have begun a journey to regain their focuses on the things that matter to them most. An absolutely fantastic episode.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Ben on 2011-12-11 at 1:40pm:
    Why is the fan rating so low? This is one of the best episodes from season 4.
  • From Rob UK on 2015-01-27 at 11:57pm:
    Between Kansas and Terra Firma this is Farscape at it's finest, the human reaction is in my opinion highly accurate as we bicker between each other not knowing the bigger picture, that being we are ant's to the rest of the universe who are all wearing very big boots and they wouldn't even need to use more than a single ship to destroy our entire planet yet we squabble over the few trinkets presented by our visitors and hoard our little secrets like they are worth something in this bigger picture, Chianna said it perfectly talking with Dargo as they left the big wigs party about maybe the reason we haven't left our planet is we are too busy fighting each other.

    When we look at the non fiction of our world today, the racism, bigotry, religions and wars and the idiots we have running our countries, the frantic dog eat dog of capitalism, the consumer machine chewing us all up and turning us all on each other over meagre possessions, if a real force from outside this planet came with intentions to destroy us we wouldn't have a leg to stand on, we'd bicker and squabble over who does what and why hoarding our secret tech that needed shared to put up any sort of fight back, more than likely turn on each other and try and form some sort of collaboration with the attackers protecting the people of one nation in trade for the people of another, we'd do the job for them.

    Like John said to Dargo in apology for the way he'd been treat, "We don't like anybody" when i was a kid i used to think we were getting better as a people and slowly but surely evolving but i was sadly deluded by my desires from seeing the big picture.

    My apologies I am normally much more positive in my postings on this site
  • From Hugo on 2016-09-08 at 4:54pm:
    This is the very first episode this season that I feel really excited about - in comparison all the others were quite a yawnfest. A kick-ass view to end it with too, John marching on looking badass...

    One thing though - Braca with the device on his forehead, poor actor having to go through that.

    I think Kent McCord is doing a great job, and the chemistry between him and Browder is great - and Aeryn is great in this ep.

    Whoa! Loved most of it!

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Farscape - 4x14 - Twice Shy - Originally Aired: 2003-1-13

My Rating - 2

Fan Rating Average - 3.84

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 20 6 8 12 21 8 6 4 4 10 2

Synopsis
Chiana purchases Talikaa, an abused slave girl from a passing Trading Ship. When the crew starts acting strangely and Talikaa goes missing, they realize she may not be as innocent as she first seemed. The crew tracks down the Trading Ship only to find its occupants have succumbed to a painful death, the result of neural harvesting by an alien arachnid. When it is revealed that the arachnid is Talikaa's true form, Moya's crew must hunt down Talikaa before they suffer the same fate. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 3, bad filler, totally skippable.
- No significant exposition, events, or consequences. And a lame episode on top of that. The stuff about Scorpius allegedly monitoring the comms is not followed up on later in any significant way and the relationship progress (or lack thereof?) is not terribly relevant to future episodes either.

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Sikozu tending to Scorpius' cooling rods.
- Talikaa suddenly becoming a giant spider.
- Chiana trying to make D'Argo angry by repeatedly assaulting him and D'Argo just taking it, calmly.
- John: "My plans suck. People die. It's always a mess."
- John blowing up the spider girl.
- Noranti cooking up the spider's corpse for food.
- John telling Aeryn that what he's afraid of is Scorpius discovering the true nature of John's and Aeryn's relationship and that he'll use that to get the wormhole knowledge he seeks.

My Review
Alien monster of the week boards Moya and causes a ruckus. The crew bickers. John and Aeryn have relationship problems. And nothing significant actually happens. Typical formulaic Farscape filler and all this right after the most epic and amazing story arc so far. They go from that to this. On top of that the notion that John is denying his relationship with Aeryn to protect her from Scorpius is vaguely ridiculous. Scorpius couldn't possibly not know about that relationship by now. If he wanted to exploit it he would have by now. So I'm really not sure just what John is on about.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Hugo on 2016-09-22 at 3:50pm:
    This ep was so dull and stupid it makes my head hurt! Follows the Farscape template a), but it doesn't implement it very well. Weird alien loose aboard Moya, personality changes, some mumbo-jumbo and reset button at the end. I find the whole set up of traits enhanced, then stolen and put into glowing orbs very stupid and it is soo convenient that they can get their personality back in the end. I liked the traders though.

    Oh, and was it only me that found first scene with Talikaa and Chiana (the sexy/seduction scene) disturbing? T is presented as a (former) sex-slave, and all China wants to do is sexy talk with her?

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Farscape - 4x15 - Mental as Anything - Originally Aired: 2003-1-20

My Rating - 5

Fan Rating Average - 4.45

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 13 1 2 5 7 4 4 4 4 6 3

Synopsis
Scorpius takes Crichton, D'Argo and Rygel into an advanced training camp where students learn mental discipline. D'Argo is confronted with the arrival of Macton, the Peacekeeper who murdered D'Argo's wife, Lo'Laan, then framed him for the crime. When Scorpius forces Crichton into torturous anti-Scarran training, D'Argo must face the demons from his past... alone. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 1, partial filler, but has important continuity. I recommend against skipping this one.
- This is a must-see episode for fans of D'Argo and John's mental training is definitely interesting in the context of the final arc of season four, but nothing here is essential.

Problems
- D'Argo had the wrong makeup in his flashbacks.
- A single frame in a closeup of the hot coals in John's heat hole is inappropriately edited as follows: this is the bad frame and this is the good frame that follows.

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- D'Argo encountering Macton at the training camp.
- Macton contending that D'Argo may really have killed his wife but simply may not remember doing it because Luxan hyper rage causes blackouts.
- John referring to the instructor as "Master Jedi."
- John in the heat hole.
- Macton taking out the instructor.
- Macton insinuating that Lo'Laan killed herself rather than be beaten by D'Argo over and over.
- Macton finally revealing the truth: that he accidentally killed his sister during an argument with her over D'Argo, then used the accident as a means to get D'Argo incarcerated.

My Review
D'Argo finally confronts Macton and John undergoes anti-Scarran training. This episode was a bit slow and a little too hokey for my tastes at times. Despite the many endorsements from main characters, the tactics employed by the "Master Jedi" as John called him seem questionably effective at achieving their stated goals. Much of this episode felt too much like mystic voodoo to me. However, this theme was toned down just enough that there's plenty of worthwhile story to extract from these events.

D'Argo's confrontation with Macton is the centerpiece of the episode. It was executed such that it was wholly true to his character in every way, which is saying a lot for a character as well developed as D'Argo. John's training was less interesting, though amusing. Obviously it remains to be seen whether or not there will be any kind of payoff from John learning how to resist heat in this fashion, as the inevitable Scarran confrontation Scorpius expects has yet to come to pass. Overall though a decent story.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Lennier on 2010-07-28 at 2:20am:
    I sometimes like to predict your ratings, and it turns out I was spot on this time. A very average offering.

    I must also say that the scene between Scorpius and Katoya, in which they play catch with a metaphysical energy ball, was a waste of screen time.

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Farscape - 4x16 - Bringing Home The Beacon - Originally Aired: 2003-1-27

My Rating - 8

Fan Rating Average - 4.67

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 24 2 22 18 0 8 24 4 13 23 4

Synopsis
While purchasing a camouflage device for Moya, Aeryn and Sikozu witness the nearby landing of a Peacekeeper squad led by Grayza and Braca. Chiana and Noranti choose to undergo genetic manipulation to elude the searching Peacekeepers. Aeryn and Sikozu spy on Grayza who has convened a secret meeting with Scarran emissaries. Aware that the meeting could have catastrophic consequences, Aeryn decides to assassinate Grayza. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
- Chiana's disguise doesn't seem like it should have been terribly effective. It's basically just different hair and clothes. Noranti's wasn't much better.
- Why were the translator microbes unable to translate the Scarran language? And if the translator microbes cannot translate the Scarran language, why are the Scarrans able to communicate routinely with other species? Do the Scarrans speak two languages? One which is translatable by the microbes and one which is not?

Factoids
- Noranti seems immune to poisons.
- Grayza has been conditioned to resist the Scarran heat mind probing. Grayza also indicated that, at the very least, everyone else in her entourage had been conditioned with this training as well.
- War Minister Ahkna's father used to rule the Scarrans, but he was deposed.
- Francesca Buller, the wife of lead actor Ben Browder (who plays John Crichton) plays War Minister Ahkna in this episode. This is her fourth role in the series. She previously played M'Lee from Bone To Be Wild, ro-NA from Look at the Princess, and Raxil from Scratch 'n' Sniff. Buller has stated that she based her performance for this role on Alice Krige's performance as the Borg Queen in Star Trek VIII: First Contact and Cate Blanchett's performance as Queen Elizabeth I in the film Elizabeth.

Remarkable Scenes
- Noranti determining that the free drinks were actually a drug cocktail and warning the others not to drink it.
- Peacekeepers and Scarrans arriving at the trading outpost.
- Grayza offering War Minister Ahkna the Luxan territories in exchange for peace.
- Ahkna betraying Grayza, capturing her and Braca, and taking them away to be interrogated.
- Noranti drugging the Charrid and making him turn on his comrade.
- Chiana being mistaken for a transport pod thief because of her disguise.
- John figuring out Aeryn is an impostor.

My Review
This skillfully written episode is a much better executed counterpoint to the previous episode. The girls go on a quest to procure an equally mundane objective as the guys were tasked with in the last episode, but in the process the girls are swept into some epic developments with regards to the political machinations of the Peacekeepers and the Scarrans and the cliffhanger surrounding Aeryn's capture by the Scarrans seals the deal.

Along the way there are a number of nice touches. Having just the girls as the primary protagonists of the story is an unusual choice and leads to some interesting character dynamics. Of particular note is the disproportionately important roles that Sikozu and Noranti played in the episode, which was a nice change of pace. I especially enjoyed Noranti detecting that the free drinks were poison. This nice touch of a scene is a fantastic parallel to a similar scene in Star Trek DS9's episode Ties of Blood and Water in which Weyoun similarly identifies poison by drinking it and then exhibiting immunity.

Continuing the trend of well executed female characters, Grayza of course makes a prominent appearance in this episode acting opposite to the awesome new villain: War Minister Ahkna. This Ahkna is the best offering from the Scarrans yet, as she adds a great deal of texture and subtlety to their interactions. Ahkna is not the blunt instrument that her minions and lackeys are. She truly is Grayza's Scarran counterpart in every way.

I greatly enjoyed that she saw fit to reference the recent destruction of one of their dreadnoughts and that she was keen enough to suggest that it may have been a lucky shot with an experimental weapon or possibly not even a Peacekeeper achievement at all. The whole series of negotiations was indeed a lot of fun. Ahkna played Grayza like a fiddle. Overall while this episode is mostly setup for what's likely to be cooler stuff to come later it manages to stand well on its own as quite an entertaining piece.

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Farscape - 4x17 - A Constellation of Doubt - Originally Aired: 2003-2-10

My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 4.71

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# Votes: 23 4 6 9 2 8 3 6 4 14 12

Synopsis
Having overheard Ahkna, the Scarran Minister of War, mention the secret Scarran base known as Katratzi, Sikozu is sure this is where the Scarrans intend to take their captive, Aeryn Sun. Though Moya's data banks have no record of Katratzi, Crichton's sure he's heard the word "Katratzi" somewhere before, if only he could remember where. Unable to sleep, Crichton pores over a documentary intercepted from Earth that examines the visit by "aliens" - Moya's crew - and discovers that the documentary just might hold the key to locating Katratzi - and Aeryn. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
- Don't skip the end credits! There's more material from this episode's documentary in the end credits.
- This episode has a large number of interesting deleted scenes available on the DVD.
- Both Executive Producer David Kemper and Brian Henson played cameo roles as humans being interviewed in this episode. Kemper played the man whose face was masked and Henson played Professor Edmund Johnston.

Remarkable Scenes
- John watching a documentary from Earth about the fallout caused by his return with aliens and alien technology in tow.
- Bobby: "I'm like the coolest kid in school because of you guys."
- John: "I'll bet this son of a bitch wins an Emmy."
- D'Argo tongue whipping Bobby at his request.
- Rygel boasting about Earth offering him many opportunities to indulge his gluttonous, vulgar, and perverted appetites.
- The documentary host interviewing the sheriff who filed a report about having observed Moya's crew in 1985.
- Chiana unable to reconcile why little girls on Earth would wear sexy clothes if they're not allowed to have sex.
- John pulling a gun on Sikozu and freaking out because no one can remember the name Katratzi except for him.
- John realizing that he heard the name Katratzi in the unrealized reality whilst in the wormhole.
- John offering Scorpius wormhole technology in exchange for help rescuing Aeryn from the Scarrans.

My Review
This delightful episode is just the sort of sequel I was looking for to Terra Firma's exploration of what aliens arriving to Earth would be like. If we had never seen Earth again after the events of Terra Firma, the series would have suffered. Obviously John's not ready to go back, so to continue exploring the fallout of his homecoming I greatly appreciate the documentary style storytelling choice because it takes John entirely out of the context of these events; it forces him to simply watch as a helpless observer. As such, watching John watch TV all episode is strangely compelling because the subject matter is so rich.

Indeed, almost nothing happens in this episode and yet it manages to be such a deep and essential exploration of each of the main characters, especially John. The only actual plot is John trying to remember where he heard the name Katratzi and for once the plot device isn't some mystical science fiction voodoo but simply a highly distraught man having a hard time remembering something that he is certain he experienced. The story is of course resolved when John simply remembers what he saw and heard in Unrealized Reality, but I enjoy that he didn't remember right off. That's very realistic. Memory is never instant recall and when you're distracted by a painful loss it can be even harder to remember even the most crucial things. Especially for someone who's experienced as many strange things as John.

Beyond that, this episode offers many fascinating tidbits. The psychologist may have overreacted throughout most of the episode, but she was quite right that John stating that he's always waiting for something bad to happen is a sign of his being constantly subjected to high stress. He's become paranoid, jumpy, and trigger happy. Ever notice how many times he pulls guns on people? Even in this episode he pulled on a gun on Sikozu for no good reason. And at the end of the episode, despite still having no evidence, paranoid old John once again accused Scorpius of setting him up to extract wormhole knowledge before caving and giving Scorpy what he wants in exchange for help freeing Aeryn.

Another prominent theme of the episode is the disconnect between the aliens and the humans in their reactions to the fact that the rest of the galaxy possesses the capability to wipe out Earth easily. To people like Aeryn and D'Argo this is a harmless fact because Earth is so irrelevant no one would ever visit it. But to the human characters featured in the documentary this is the most terrifying threat in human history. The culture shock is well explored. I especially enjoyed D'Argo's observations about aliens in human movies and his warning that humans won't always win like they do in the movies. ;) All in all this is a fantastic episode that favors depth and nuance over the speed of plot which is sometimes too rare on Farscape.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Hugo on 2016-10-09 at 3:58pm:
    Hmm... Everyone masters English
    ...?

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Farscape - 4x18 - Prayer - Originally Aired: 2003-2-17

My Rating - 5

Fan Rating Average - 5.82

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 5 5 4 4 9 12 11 11 6 10 11

Synopsis
Aeryn is being held captive aboard a Scarran freighter captained by Jenek, who's determined to find out if Aeryn's carrying Crichton's child. To discover the location of the Scarran base where Aeryn is being taken, Crichton and Scorpius travel through a wormhole to a mixed-up "unrealized reality" version of Moya. As the others wait for their return, pursuing Peacekeepers draw closer. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Scorpius agreeing to John's terms by means of a mutual blood tasting.
- The old Sebacean woman under the employ of the Scarrans introducing herself to Aeryn and explaining that she has no loyalty to either side because no matter who rules she'll never have power so it makes no difference to her.
- The old Sebacean woman determining that Aeryn is pregnant and revealing it to the Scarran.
- The Scarran deducing that it's possible that Aeryn's child may have inherited John's wormhole knowledge.
- The Scarran using the heat probe to forcibly abort the alien woman's fetus.
- Scorpius killing bizarro Rygel so that bizarro Stark can cross him over and learn the location of Katratzi.
- John shooting bizarro Jool.
- Scorpius killing bizarro Chiana.

My Review
Aeryn's interrogation aboard the freighter was a gripping story but it could have been better. What worked well was seeing the progression of her will slowly being broken down until she divulged the truth that Crichton is the father of her child. But the side plot concerning the other alien mother who actually turned out to be a spy was completely unnecessary; annoyingly climaxing at the scene where Aeryn kills her and then appears to suffer no consequences for doing so. Nor does she make any attempt to escape further after her hands had been freed.

The bizarro-Moya plot was about roughly what I expected from last episode's cliffhanger. It was good for a few laughs, especially with regards to Scorpius' complete disregard for all of the bizarro characters, killing them at will without hesitation. It's not explained why they were never met with any kind of resistance, but honestly, who cares? The bizarro world wasn't supposed to make much sense anyway. Presumably it operates on different rules. All things considered this episode wasn't bad at all, but it certainly didn't live up to the full potential of its premise.

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My Rating - 8

Fan Rating Average - 5.39

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 1 18 3 1 1 27 13 4 9 12 6

Synopsis
Moya's crew tracks Aeryn to a Scarran Border Station, where the freighter she is imprisoned upon is about to leave for Katratzi, a Scarran base. To keep the ship docked and under quarantine, Noranti gives Rygel a deadly, contagious disease. Though this gives the crew time to come up with a plan to rescue Aeryn, they do not figure on the cunning and ruthlessness of Aeryn's Scarran captor, Jenek. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Moya arriving at a Scarran border station.
- Rygel projectile vomiting everywhere to cause a medical quarantine of all ships.
- Noranti infecting Rygel with a real disease to keep up the ruse.
- John taking out the nurse and locating Aeryn.
- John getting captured and interrogated by the Scarran only to be saved by Scorpius.
- The nurse dying of the disease.
- Chiana being abducted so that Aeryn's baby can be transferred to her because Chiana is immune to the disease.
- Sikozu disabling the power grid on the station and on the Scarran freighter.
- Scorpius fighting the Scarran captain and getting captured in the process.
- John bringing Aeryn back to Moya.
- Harvey showing back up in John's head compelling him to go back and rescue Scorpius.

My Review
This skillfully written action story has a number of bold plot points that really make it shine. The first is Noranti actually infecting Rygel with a highly contagious disease in order to prolong the ruse. I loved that the implications of this were fully explored. Not only was it actually useful, but it we got to see people get infected and die as a result of Noranti's actions. On top of that she takes time at the end of the episode to reflect on this. Good writing there.

The second most remarkable bold plotting of the story was the horrific idea of killing Aeryn, taking the baby and transferring it to Chiana as a surrogate mother. It was obvious that this wasn't actually going to happen, but it was a fantastic way to ratchet up the intensity just prior to John boarding the Scarran freighter and taking Aeryn back by force. Finally, having John compelled to rescue Scorpius was a fantastic ending.

My one quibble with the plotting is that while I love the return of Harvey, I think the series has earned the concept of John desiring to rescue Scorpius on his own, without intervention from Harvey. For instance, Aeryn may have felt honor-bound to rescue Scorpius for his many roles in saving her life and the baby. I believe even John may have been able to concede this on his own and stick his neck out for Grasshopper. Whatever the reason though it's still good plotting.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From jeremy grego on 2012-11-12 at 7:35pm:
    Agreed. To much effort put into humanizing scorpius for everyone to still utterly revile him.

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My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 4.02

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 9 25 8 34 0 6 1 5 4 8 14

Synopsis
Moya's crew travels to Katratzi, a Scarran base where Scorpius is being tortured for wormhole information. The base is home to both Kalish and Charrid forces - underlings for the Scarrans. The crew plans to incite a confrontation between these two contingents, hoping this diversion will allow them to free Scorpius, and prevent wormhole knowledge from falling into Scarran hands. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Scorpius being interrogated by Ahkna.
- John walking right into the negotiations between the Scarrans and the Peacekeepers (represented by Grayza) and bringing a thermonuclear bomb with him.
- John demanding large sums of cash for his wormhole knowledge.
- John recognizing the flower that the Scarrans eat as one from Earth.
- Ahkna employing Stark to torture Scorpius for the Scarrans.
- John: "Guys, listen up. One riot, well done, hold the mayo, now."
- John to the Scarran emperor: "Bill Gates can't guarantee Windows, how you gonna guarantee my safety?"
- John asking Aeryn to kill Scorpius as soon as he was sure Scorpius did not reveal any information to the Scarrans.
- John abruptly changing his mind about killing Scorpius.
- Rygel: "Now, Crichton! Leave now! And never doubt your dominar again!"
- Scorpius betraying John just as they were about to escape together, putting the bomb at serious risk of exploding.

My Review
Now we've come full circle from Nerve, with Scorpius being tortured for wormhole information. By Stark no less! Stark's cameo is an odd one. How did the Scarrans find him? How did they know he would enjoy a run at torturing Scorpius? I suppose knowing these details isn't terribly important but they were ringing in my head since the moment he showed up on screen. I'd also like to know why he grew out his hair. It ain't a good look on you, old Starky boy! In any case this episode is fraught with interesting tidbits here and there.

It's revealed in this episode that Sikozu is actually a bioloid herself, like the fake Aeryn. On top of that, the Scarrans are revealed to enjoy a flower commonly found on Earth called Strelitzia. Though enjoy seems to be an understatement. They've got a whole underground compound dedicated to growing the stuff and an army to protect it. The significance of this remains to be seen, but it's certainly fascinating that there's some kind of a link between the Scarrans and Earth. Scorpius of course is the man of the hour. Is he really a spy for the Scarrans? I find that exceedingly hard to believe.

On top of that, no matter whose side he's on, it's rather incredible he's managed to be a double agent for so long. Aside from John's delightfully amusing negotiations with the Peacekeepers and Scarrans, probably the best moment of the episode is John toying with killing Scorpius. Did John really want to kill Scorpy? Did Harvey stop him from doing it? Or were John's actions all a ruse to see if Scorpius broke under interrogation? For once I don't care about the answer. I love the ambiguity. On the whole another outstanding episode. The threats, the games of chicken, the double crosses. It's all so entertaining.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From DK on 2012-08-07 at 3:49pm:
    Why does daddy Scarren have boobies?  Staleek is wearing the biggest bra (bro?) I've ever seen.  That is, of course, if one can be worn riveted to the outside of his emperor suit.

    John and Aeryn make one of the best on-screen pairs since Fred and Ginger, or even Ginger and Mary Ann. They also seem to get better and more comfortable with one another as the series goes along. Makes every story much stronger.

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My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 5.58

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# Votes: 11 15 2 15 9 4 6 24 5 15 21

Synopsis
After thwarting Crichton's escape plan, Scorpius denies that he's a Scarran spy, and demands Crichton's help to destroy a cavern of vital Scarran flora - claiming it will also provide them with a better means of escape. And while Rygel and Noranti fight an evil Stark, Sikozu must reveal her true colors if they are all to survive. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
- Some members of Sikozu's anti-Scarran resistance group are outfitted with a biological enhancement designed to kill Scarrans when activated.
- Braca's first name is stated to be Miklo in this episode.

Remarkable Scenes
- Scorpius denying that he's a Scarran spy, arguing that had John been able to get off the base, he and his entourage would have surely been killed shortly thereafter.
- Scorpius telling John that they need to destroy the Scarrans' Strelitzia flowers.
- Scorpius revealing that he has no wormhole knowledge and that he reprogrammed Harvey as a failsafe just in case John ever betrayed Scorpius.
- John: "You tryin' to say Harvey's back because of me?" Scorpius: "You should honor your contracts, John."
- Noranti to Scorpius: "Oh I do admire your compartmentalization of duplicity."
- Scorpius revealing that Stark is really a bioloid and that the real Stark is probably a prisoner somewhere on the base.
- Sikozu's contact in the underground getting himself killed delivering the elevator key.
- Scorpius attempting to destroy the Strelitzia flowers but being thwarted by a shield.
- D'Argo: "We couldn't override their override of our override!"
- John: "I can't believe it. I left a nuclear bomb in an elevator."
- Sikozu taking out the Scarrans.
- Noranti taking out bioloid Stark.
- Braca seizing control of Grayza's command.
- D'Argo reactivating his ship and shooting the Scarrans guarding it.
- Scorpius offering to rescind John's wormhole debt if John helps him destroy the Strelitzia flowers.
- John dropping his nuclear bomb down the elevator shaft with a timer of only 60 microts.
- The bomb destroying the Scarrans' Strelitzia flowers along with the guards preventing Moya's crew from fleeing the base.

My Review
An outstanding climax to this arc of episodes. It would easily be worth a perfect score were it not for the surprisingly anticlimactic ending. The bomb goes off and all of a sudden all problems are solved. The guards are vaporized, but our heroes are perfectly protected. No one tries to shoot them down as they trot away in Lo'Laa and we skip straight to John philosophizing about his body count. Though I certainly do love John's profoundly disturbed reflections on the number of people he's killed since he embarked on his Farscape mission.

Of particular note was his rather poetic line about having worn a nuclear bomb in a field of flowers which is a nice reference to Lyndon B. Johnson's "Daisy" presidential campaign ad, but I felt like they only partially earned the scene. The epic climax could have been more suitably epic. Instead the routine nature of these adventures sets in before the bomb even goes off. The mood gets sucked out of an otherwise exciting action episode by a sort of deflated apathy in the characters. Thus the episode turns brooding and reflective before the ideal point in the plot.

In any case, the story has much to offer. I loved the backstory on Stark. It's still not explained just how he ended up in Scarran hands, but we learn more about his historical relationship with the Scarrans as well as the original reason why Scorpius was torturing him in the Aurora Chair. It's all borderline trivia, but enjoyable for fans. Though I could have done without yet another surprise super power for Sikozu.

Moreover, we learn that the Scarrans are dependent on the Strelitzia flowers for their intelligence. Now without the flowers, the Scarrans will presumably be unable to maintain their military superiority over the Peacekeepers. A prize so valuable that Scorpius gave up on wormholes for it! Indeed a lot of plot threads are wrapped up here. It would seem that pretty much all that's left is for John's and Aeryn's relationship to be clarified, to find exactly what links Earth to the Peacekeepers and the Scarrans, and to reunite Moya's crew with their homeworlds.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Frängers on 2011-11-08 at 12:59am:
    I had one opportunity for the Scarrans left in my mind. If the flowers are somehow linked with earth maybe the scarrans know that and with the wormehole tech they could get it aswell.
  • From DK on 2012-08-07 at 1:29pm:
    I loved the show but... lemme get this straight.  Sikozu is an engineered bioloid (I thought Scorpy could sense people's auras) who is one of just a few super secret agents of the Kalish underground who took a job as a pirate to hunt old leviathan flesh?  And she then switches sides at every turn (I counted at least 6 betrayals) with no apparent overall goal.  If she really was on *anyone's* side all along why take a pirate job and waste a bunch of time hanging out on Moya in the first place? The only 'person' she was ever straight with was the other bioloid she met. But why would *he* want to help *her*?  Bioloid unity?  In any event, the Kalish need to re-engineer their bioloid making process or get their money back cuz it ain't working out so well.  
    The only side she hasn't defected to yet is the Scarrens. Um, wait a minute... would that make any more sense?

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Farscape - 4x22 - Bad Timing - Originally Aired: 2003-3-10

My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 5.41

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Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 14 1 5 14 3 7 11 7 4 18 10

Synopsis
Now safely back on Moya, Crichton learns of the Scarrans' intention to invade Earth. He feverishly analyzes his wormhole data and comes up with a way to collapse the wormhole to Earth - but the method is not one that he can implement alone. Meanwhile, Braca demands Scorpius be released from Moya and returned safely to his Command Carrier - and Aeryn has a few surprises of her own, including the identity of her baby's father. [DVD]

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.

Problems
None

Factoids
- The recap of this episode was altered because this episode had to serve as the series finale rather than the season finale. The opening recap contains clips from every episode of the entire series and ends with the line "and finally on Farscape" to signify the finality of the episode.
- The Farscape series was canceled late in season four and unfortunately the producers were not able to wrap up the plot by the end of the season so the television series ended quite infuriatingly on this cliffhanger.

Remarkable Scenes
- The recap. Now I'm dizzy.
- Scorpius leading Braca and his command carrier to Moya.
- John receiving a message that the Scarrans are planning to attack Earth to get more of their Strelitzia flowers.
- Moya's crew blowing Scorpius and Sikozu into space for the Peacekeepers to retrieve, then starbursting away.
- John regarding wormholes: "Immediately before it opens, a pressure bubble forms. You can't see it, but it's there." Pilot: "I can see it." John, incredibly surprised: "You can see the bubble?" Pilot: "Yes. Can't you?"
- John, recording a message on his tape recorder: "My name is John Crichton. An astronaut. Four years ago I got shot through a wormhole to a distant part of the galaxy. I ended up on this ship, this living ship, populated by escaping prisoners who became my friends. [...] I've made enemies."
- Chiana: "Pop the frelling bubble. Make the wormhole collapse!" John: "Pip, I can't do it." Chiana: "Yes you can!" John: "I'm not smart enough, I'm not fast enough, I'm not alien enough. And you know what? There are people in the universe who don't like me."
- Pilot proposing that he be transferred to a transport pod to collapse the wormhole himself.
- John landing the transport pod on Earth's moon and walking around.
- John calling his dad from the moon.
- John leaving technology and information on the moon for his people to retrieve.
- The Scarrans shooting at Moya.
- The transport pod colliding with the Scarran ship inside the wormhole and passing right through it.
- Pilot popping the wormhole.
- Aeryn informing John that the baby was released from stasis and that it is, in fact, John's.
- John proposing to Aeryn and Aeryn accepting shortly before they're blown to bits by a random spacecraft attack.

My Review
Farscape's running out of good cliffhangers. Once again, just like season three having Moya sucked down a wormhole completely at random, this time around we've got a random attacker from space blowing John and Aeryn to bits coming completely out of nowhere for no reason. They're obviously not dead because the series would never kill off its two leads. At least not this unceremoniously. Leads deserve overwrought deaths, like Zhaan's. That, and the alien attacker said he was "neutralizing" them for "analysis." I suppose you could analyze bitty little bits of dead remains, but I didn't get the impression that the weapon was supposed to be lethal. That said, despite the lame cliffhanger, this episode has lots of great plot points.

This is easily Pilot's episode as much as it's John's and Aeryn's. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy John and Aeryn finally got their relationship sorted out, but there wasn't anything surprising or novel about that. What's surprising is that it took four years to get them this far. Sure the time it took makes it somewhat more rewarding when it finally happened, but it was a foregone conclusion from day one. Pilot on the other hand got to do something truly unique. He got to leave Moya for the first time ever and fly a different ship, greatly risking his life in the process to save Earth from the Scarran threat. Speaking of which, the Scarran threat was awesome.

I'm glad the Scarrans were keen enough to pick up on the detail that their precious flower grows on Earth and I'm glad it was John's casual remark that sicked the Scarrans onto Earth rather than some complicated nonsense like the Scarrans hacking a Peacekeeper database where they found info from Scorpius' research or some other convoluted crap like that. As for Scorpius, I'm sort of glad he's back into the Peacekeeper fold again. He earned it! Finally John's quick phone call to Earth while he was in the vicinity was an absolutely delightful and essential detail. It got across so much in so little screen time. Overall while the cliffhanger was kind of lame this was a fantastic season finale for the best season Farscape's ever had. If the story ended here it'd be a damn shame.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Ben on 2010-07-31 at 11:28am:
    I agree completely. A fast-paced, terrific episode with excellent acting, dialogue, editing, and special effects. I loved John's call back to Earth. He and his father shared precious little screen time over the show's four seasons but their relationship was touching and completely convincing. Bad Timing essentially resolved the conflict between going back to Earth or staying where he is introduced in Dog With Two Bones and central to Terra Firma. I give it a ten even though the cliffhanger was so incredibly incredibly lame.
  • From DK on 2012-08-07 at 11:35pm:
    When did Pilot and Moya learn to starburst in a particular direction?  That inability was a major plot point in several episodes.

    I thought the writing, and the chemistry between John and his dad made for the best father-son scene (the phone call from the mon) in sci- fi.

    The Easter bunny fight was epic.

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