Monday, October 07, 2019

The Treachery of Trustworthy Faces

Simply acquiring supplies is seemingly never easy for the people on Farscape. When the supplies happen to be urgently needed, getting them might involve political intrigue, violent sabotage, and wearing a lobster as a hat.

Season Three, Episode Seven: Thanks for Sharing

And there's still a leftover Crichton (Ben Browder) from the events of the previous episode. Aeryn (Claudia Black) compels one of them to wear what looks like a grey shirt to me (the Farscape wiki says it's green) so they can be told apart. Jool (Tammy MacIntosh), serving as a more ornery and selfish medical officer in Zhaan's absence, runs tests and, as far as she can tell, the two humans are perfectly identical.

That is until one of them is badly wounded by a bomb during a clandestine meeting with the impeccably dressed Sarova (Rebecca Gibney), daughter of the planet's ruler, Pralanoth (Robert Bruning). Having a bonus Crichton comes in handy when it becomes inconvenient for knowledge of the meeting to pass to the rest of the ruling family. A deadly lobster spider thing, which kills anyone for lying while it's sitting on their head, supports the other Crichton's statement that he was never at the meeting.

I love how it seems to be raining all the time on this planet. There's a vaguely Blade Runner vibe to the place (though this makes more dubious the idea that Aeryn didn't know what rain was in "A Human Reaction"). I also love that Rygel (Jonathan Hardy) is utilised for his negotiating skills again though he's undermined repeatedly, first when D'Argo (Anthony Simcoe) roughs up the security chief (Sandy Winton) for trying to molest Chiana (Gigi Edgley), then later when trying to negotiate directly with Pralanoth. Crichton mostly gets things done by force, at one point pointing Talyn's cannon right at the capital building.

The clear theme for this episode is trust. Crichton can hardly believe Aeryn is starting to trust Crais (Lani Tupu); Pralanoth learns he can't trust his son when the young man gets the lobster on his head (and consequences are swift and final for that); Crichton isn't sure he can trust his other self; Aeryn's mother (Linda Cropper) is in charge of the Peacekeeper squad hunting them, assigned with the idea of dividing Aeryn's loyalties; and no-one's quite sure yet if they trust Jool with a needle. The episode ends with an impressively horrific sequence of special effects and outstanding creature shop work, all to the purpose of showing one person was a shape shifter all along and definitely not to be trusted.

. . .

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

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