July 23rd, 2020

Then Again

Peace Kept on Farscape



Farscape, a Science Fiction series that began as a story about misfits, finding a way to live in a hostile galaxy, concludes with a story about choosing mass destruction over perpetual war. For the most part, the strokes are too broad for this war story to really work but there are still enough moments for characters to provide the Farscape fan with a bittersweet farewell.



The Peacekeeper Wars, Part II

Very quickly, many plot elements from Part I are resolved as our heroes escape from Scarran imprisonment, the baby is transferred from Rygel (Jonathan Hardy) back to Aeryn (Claudia Black), and D'Argo (Anthony Simcoe) and Chiana (Gigi Edgley) return from their apparent deaths along with a team of Luxan commandos headed by none other than D'Argo's son, Jothee, now played by Nathaniel Dean, taking over the role from Matt Newton.



Jothee's former internal conflict about his identity as a Luxan, something that fit well in with the series' general theme of misfits, is totally absent as we find the young man now fully integrated with Luxan culture. The rocky love triangle between D'Argo, Jothee, and Chiana, which dealt with the blurred lines of a family dichotomy, are only briefly touched on here. Instead, we mainly see exchanges between D'Argo and Jothee that resolve their relationship to a seemingly comfortable father and son rapport. Chiana's feelings for Jothee are never discussed, the simplification all apparently being in the interest of bidding D'Argo an uncomplicated farewell when he dies heroically near the end.



Ben Browder and Anthony Simcoe maintain an entertaining chemistry and the two busting balls a little bit while D'Argo's dying does bring a smile to my face. I never really liked the idea of D'Argo and Chiana as a couple though it might have been entertaining to see their plans to become farmers on Hyneria meet with catastrophe. I'd love to see a story about D'Argo getting furious after discovering Chiana's developed a taste for frelling Hynerians.



But I was really disappointed by the conclusion of the relationship between Scorpius (Wayne Pygram) and Sikozu (Raelee Hill). When Scorpius unmasks her as the spy, he has one line where he laments she has ruined something "unique". But despite Sikozu's history with the other characters, particularly Crichton, we never get any hint of internal conflict in her nor are any of the other characters shown reacting to the revelation of her betrayal. That's the kind of thing that should have been the meat of the episode, that would have been in the first three seasons.



Crichton's decision to finally use the wormhole weapon gives the series finale an appropriately spectacular note but one can't help remembering that this very thing was the climax of season three and, in that case, the show did a much better job of trying it to character motives--the Scarrans had to be stopped and suddenly twin Crichton sees his life as not amounting to a hill of beans. In Peacekeeper Wars, the need to forge peace between the Peacekeepers and the Scarrans is never as strongly established. Like many other genre series--as I complained constantly about with Game of Thrones--getting a glimpse of the average civilians affected by the ongoing conflict might have been helpful. Weren't the Peacekeepers supposed to be an evil empire and the Scarrans ruthless killers? I kind of feel like the Yojimbo solution might have been more reasonable. As it is, it's still not clear that Crichton destroying a planet was the best idea.



I'm still not crazy about the pregnancy plot but it is great watching Ben Browder and Claudia Black together. Browder musters his madness wonderfully for one last time, too, and the sight of him stumbling about, bleeding from the head while arguing about his lousy position in life captures one of the essential aspects of the series.

So that's it, for now. There are canon comics which I haven't read. There's always the potential for the show to return, too. When I spoke to Gigi Edgley last year, she seemed certain it would. I find myself hoping she's right.

. . .

Farscape is available now on Amazon Prime.

This entry is part of a series I'm writing on
Farscape for the show's 20th anniversary. My previous reviews can be found here (episodes are in the order intended by the show's creators rather than the broadcast order):

Season One:

Episode 1: Pilot
Episode 2: I, E.T.
Episode 3: Exodus from Genesis
Episode 4: Throne for a Loss
Episode 5: Back and Back and Back to the Future
Episode 6: Thank God It's Friday Again
Episode 7: PK Tech Girl
Episode 8: That Old Black Magic
Episode 9: DNA Mad Scientist
Episode 10: They've Got a Secret
Episode 11: Till the Blood Runs Clear
Episode 12: Rhapsody in Blue
Episode 13: The Flax
Episode 14: Jeremiah Crichton
Episode 15: Durka Returns
Episode 16: A Human Reaction
Episode 17: Through the Looking Glass
Episode 18: A Bug's Life
Episode 19: Nerve
Episode 20: The Hidden Memory
Episode 21: Bone to be Wild
Episode 22: Family Ties


Season Two:

Episode 1: Mind the Baby
Episode 2: Vitas Mortis
Episode 3: Taking the Stone
Episode 4: Crackers Don't Matter
Episode 5: Picture If You Will
Episode 6: The Way We Weren't
Episode 7: Home on the Remains
Episode 8: Dream a Little Dream
Episode 9: Out of Their Minds
Episode 10: My Three Crichtons
Episode 11: Look at the Princess, Part I: A Kiss is But a Kiss
Episode 12: Look at the Princess, Part II: I Do, I Think
Episode 13: Look at the Princess, Part III: The Maltese Crichton
Episode 14: Beware of Dog
Episode 15: Won't Get Fooled Again
Episode 16: The Locket
Episode 17: The Ugly Truth
Episode 18: A Clockwork Nebari
Episode 19: Liars, Guns, and Money, Part I: A Not So Simple Plan
Episode 20: Liars, Guns, and Money, Part II: With Friends Like These . . .
Episode 21: Liars, Guns, and Money, Part III: Plan B
Episode 22: Die Me, Dichotomy


Season Three:

Episode 1: Season of Death
Episode 2: Suns and Lovers
Episode 3: Self-Inflicted Wounds, Part I: Would'a, Could'a, Should'a
Episode 4: Self-Inflicted Wounds, Part II: Wait for the Wheel
Episode 5: . . . Different Destinations
Episode 6: Eat Me
Episode 7: Thanks for Sharing
Episode 8: Green Eyed Monster
Episode 9: Losing Time
Episode 10: Relativity
Episode 11: Incubator
Episode 12: Meltdown
Episode 13: Scratch 'n Sniff
Episode 14: Infinite Possibilities, Part I: Daedalus Demands
Episode 15: Infinite Possibilities, Part II: Icarus Abides
Episode 16: Revenging Angel
Episode 17: The Choice
Episode 18: Fractures
Episode 19: I-Yensch, You-Yensch
Episode 20: Into the Lion's Den, Part I: Lambs to the Slaughter
Episode 21: Into the Lion's Den, Part II: Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
Episode 22: A Dog with Two Bones


Season Four

Episode 1: Crichton Kicks
Episode 2: What was Lost, Part I: Sacrifice
Episode 3: What was Lost, Part II: Resurrection
Episode 4: Lava's a Many Splendoured Thing
Episode 5: Promises
Episode 6: Natural Election
Episode 7: John Quixote
Episode 8: I Shrink Therefore I Am
Episode 9: A Prefect Murder
Episode 10: Coup by Clam
Episode 11: Unrealised Reality
Episode 12: Kansas
Episode 13: Terra Firma
Episode 14: Twice Shy
Episode 15: Mental as Anything
Episode 16: Bringing Home the Beacon
Episode 17: A Constellation of Doubt
Episode 18: Prayer
Episode 19: We're So Screwed: Fetal Attraction
Episode 20: We're So Screwed, Part II: Hot to Katratzi
Episode 21: We're So Screwed, Part III: La Bomba
Episode 22: Bad Timing


The Peacekeeper Wars

Part I