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Farscape season 2

May 23, 2013
untitled

John Crichton on a very bad day.

In my attempt to repair my credibility as a genre tv fan, I’m still in the process of going through the series Farscape.  I finished season two a few nights ago but, have been a little late in getting my thoughts down due to an unusually large amount of stress from work.  Again, I would like to thank Kevin Bachelder for his generosity in allowing me to go through the series.  Giant colossal spoilers follow so, if you have not seen this show and have any intention of ever watching it, you might want to stop reading now.

The second season of Farscape opened with the resolution of the first season’s cliffhanger involving the birth of the ship Moya’s child who is named Talyn and his protection from the incoming Peacekeeper forces that are interested in capturing the child.  This season picks up two new regular characters in the form of Crais who is now excommunicated from the Peacekeeper fold like Aeryn and who ultimately takes charge of Talyn.  By charge of, I mean, more specifically, that he has a mental connection to the new ship.  Scorpius also becomes the regular villain of the series by means of a chip that he implanted in John Crichton’s head.  The chip has a copy of Scorpius’ personality that is gradually growing in strength with the intent of taking over John’s mind completely.  Welcome to the new neighborhood John. 

Even with this continuing story line, the season on the story level is still largely episodic with the interesting feature of two three part story lines.  The first is called Look at the Princess that lands John squarely in the middle of court intrigue on a free planet in the Uncharted Region.  This works out for him about as well as you would imagine but, also features Rygel in an unusual helpful roll.  The second one is called Liars, Guns and Money which, being a fan of Warren Zevon, I thought was an awesome name for a story arc.  This involves the crew’s attempt to rob a high end depository (bank) in order to get money for D’Argo to buy his son from a slave auction.  This leads directly into the season’s final episode which ends on one hell of a cliffhanger.  It almost got me to break my one episode per day rule which only Leverage has managed to do to me so far, but being a week night I was forced to wait. 

Even with the episodic stories you still get the standard character story arcs.  Like the first season, the focus is more on relationships and/or sex than action.  Chiana and D’Argo hook up at the beginning of the season which makes for an odd pairing and, of course, we get a continuing development of the Aeryn/John relationship.  I have to agree with Ryesofthegeek’s comment on my first season review that their relationship is one of the most realistic portrayed in a tv series.  One interesting side effect of this is that Zhaan becomes much more isolated as a character until the return of Stark as a more or less permanent character at the end of the season. 

The second season of Farscape is definitely a step up from the first season.  For me personally, the fifth episode of the season, The Way We Weren’t, was the first really great episode of the series and is easily my favorite episode of this season.  The story is a flashback episode triggered by the discovery, by Chiana, of a recording of events earlier in Moya’s life where we learn that Aeryn, back when she was a Peacekeeper, was involved with some unsavory events surrounding Moya and Pilot.  To some extent, it’s an origin episode surrounding those last two characters and a very powerful one at that.  The only real complaint I have with this season involves part of Ben Browder’s performance.  I generally like his acting but, as John is spiraling into insanity thanks to Scorpius’ personality overwriting his own, Browder’s acting would occasionally fall into the scenery chewing category for me.  I would be curious if other people had a similar reaction.  This is, as usual, a minor complaint that is more than made up for by everything else in the series.  I’m already a few episodes into the next season of Farscape and am very much looking forward to the rest as it seems that the show has really found its footing in season three.

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  1. Farscape season 3 | Fantastic Television

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