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Farscape - Season 4 - Episode 22

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

My Rating - 9

Fan Rating Average - 4.48

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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.


- 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 3:28pm:
    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 2012-08-08 at 3:35am:
    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.
  • From Margaret J on 2019-08-12 at 1:24am:
    While I realize that they had little choice as from what I understand they were given short notice of the cancellation, I feel that there was just too much packed into one episode. Also I think I would have hated the ending back in the day knowing it was a series finale and not knowing about the eventual Peacekeeper Wars. I rated this one a nine(9)
  • From Jon Reremy on 2021-01-05 at 6:13pm:
    I'm the outlier here, I loved that ridiculous cliffhanger lol and kinda wish I was there to know what it was like for people who assumed that's how the series ended. It was almost beautiful, on top of coming out of nowhere. Even the lack of main character-designated overwroughtedness (?) worked for me. John (the 1st or 2nd?) and Aeryn both have already died on the show with those segments treated with lingering respect. If they did that again I would've definitely gotten impatient. I don't know, this was new, and maybe my standards were lowered by that lame/confusing season 3 ending but I was perfectly satisfied with this shocker. It's just a cool romantic image, seeing them both just freaking disintegrate like that.
    And I really liked D'Argo's keening at the sight of it. Even if it's a fake-out, his pure outpouring of grief still got to me. I would've defended this even if the situation wasn't that there's still a tie-up movie ahead. Not that I would've considered it an appropriate way to finish a series, but I can forgive it... it made me feel, and generally even 'good' finales tend to make me feel bored long before the last scene no matter how professionally tidy it was. Closure's overrated if you ask me, not only is it not how the natural world works it ruins my immersion when I see it in fiction. I'd rather things just.. end.

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