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    Paeter
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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on August 22nd 2014, 2:09 pm

    119, Nerve-

    Love this ep. You can feel the higher stakes through Claudia Black's performance.

    Looks like Chiana is Australian again!

    A nice return to Gelina. Don't like the character but I like the growing use of past continuity in current storytelling.

    Chiana is dangerous! I like that we still don't have a sense of what darkness might be inside of her.

    Hmm. Is being smart the same as being wise? I think there is an important distinction to acknowledge there.

    The CHAIR!!!!!!! Torture, tears and drool. As groundbreaking as Picard's "Four Lights" was, I had NEVER seen geek fiction go this intense on TV before. Holy crap!!


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Dunadwarf on August 26th 2014, 4:38 pm

    I agree that John looked far more broken than any other torture victim I can think of in sci-fi, certainly television sci-fi. Excellent all around.
    The chair itself, however, I always felt was to subjective to really identify with. Again, we see the brokenness and have no doubt the horror of the not-so-comfy chair (to use sfdebris' term), and I can't think of a better example either, but the idea of basically pulling images and memories from your mind is too...impossible. I guess it's better than Scorpius just skinning John or something until he talked, and it allowed for "The Hidden Memory", but we haven't had technology forcibly remove information from our minds. It's the best I've seen, but I'm hoping to find more somewhere down the line.
    Again, though, we do know what it's like to be driven to our breaking point, and in that, Farscape outshines even TNG's "Chain of Command" in showing that.

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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on August 27th 2014, 2:15 pm

    Dunadwarf wrote:I agree that John looked far more broken than any other torture victim I can think of in sci-fi, certainly television sci-fi. Excellent all around.
    The chair itself, however, I always felt was to subjective to really identify with. Again, we see the brokenness and have no doubt the horror of the not-so-comfy chair (to use sfdebris' term), and I can't think of a better example either, but the idea of basically pulling images and memories from your mind is too...impossible. I guess it's better than Scorpius just skinning John or something until he talked, and it allowed for "The Hidden Memory", but we haven't had technology forcibly remove information from our minds. It's the best I've seen, but I'm hoping to find more somewhere down the line.
    Again, though, we do know what it's like to be driven to our breaking point, and in that, Farscape outshines even TNG's "Chain of Command" in showing that.

    It actually resonates with me BECAUSE it is not explained. Either my imagination or fear of the unknown kicks in to enhance the experience. For my tastes, Farscape concepts are often at their best when they are not explained.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on August 27th 2014, 2:24 pm

    Here are some thoughts that Greg From Tulsa sent me via e-mail to add to the discussion here:

    the episode where Moria (I guess how that spelled) was stuck in three different dimensions. I believe the three Moria images was a good visual representation of what it meant to be. Same as drawing a cube on a flat piece of paper. It was a three-dimensional representation of a six dimensional space (guessing on the number of dimensions). So I thought it worked out well for the limitations of the dimensionality of the media. For additional examples look up four dimensional cubes. (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/55/8-cell-simple.gif http://jila.colorado.edu/~ajsh/insidebh/relrot_640x480.gif )

    When the wormhole aliens told Crighten that if he was not smart enough to figure it out he was not smart enough to use it wisely. I always took it as if he (everyone) was not smart enough they would not have the potential wisdom to use it properly.
    Mr. Fantastic or any smart person has a greater ability/expectation for wisdom. Which make stories where they lack wisdom that much more compelling.
    To further the example, is it more compelling to hear wisdom from a PhD or a street urchin. It is cliché but it is for a reason.
    Now whether the writers meant it that way or even if the show contradicted that, this is what I remember.

    ( Please forgive any miss understandings, spellings and confusing stuff. I was writing this email off and on for 6 hr and it is 2:30 am)


    Paeter Response:

    I agree that the 3 Moya's was about as good as they could probably do to represent the concept. I would have been game for a different approach, though.

    I'd argue that it's actually more compelling to hear wisdom from someone who has lived life well. I value teaching on technical issues of scripture from those who have studied and been educated in that regard. But I personally know some pastors who I would go to for scripture/study issues that would not be close to my first choice when seeking wisdom.

    PHd's and street urchin's may be comparing apples and oranges. Both types could be where they are because they have made very foolish choices in life. I tend to connect age or life experience with wisdom more quickly than status on paper.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on August 29th 2014, 3:33 pm

    120- The Hidden Memory

    Melrose Place reference!! Awesome because Ben Browder was ON an Ep of Melrose!

    Interesting sentence: "Do what you know in your heart is the right thing".

    Wow. Stark comforting John in cell was tender and moving. Never seen that kind of moment in sci-fi TV before. (Maybe not since, either!)

    Crais(Lani Tupu) in the chair! Holy crap! So intense!

    Great Aeryn/Crais moment.

    They blew a guys arm off!!!


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on September 5th 2014, 9:12 am

    121, Bone To Be Wild-

    It's a DOUBLE plot twist!!
    the "Luxan Poetry" joke got a good laugh out of me.
    What's up with Zhaan's camo powers? Out of left field. I'm not a fan. This is an example of one of Zhaan's powers that seem to come and go as the story demands.
    Interesting environmentalist/naturalist themes running through Zhaan's defense of plants in this ep.
    Does Zhaan truly not understand that there is a difference between herself and the moss on a rock?

    I love the two different voice modes that Wayne Pigrim employs as Scorpious. great range for that character.

    The "Zhaan doll" was a bit lame. Guess the creature shop or the digita;l effects department ran out of time.

    I like the Tron-inspired shrinking laser!


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on September 5th 2014, 4:40 pm

    Took me a while, but I'm caught up again.

    Scorpius is going to make a much better villain than Crais. His motivations are more clear and more logical, plus he works within the system rather than being a rouge and a rebel. We kind of got the vibe from the Peacekeepers early in the season that they are a human-supremacist type group. With the way Chiana gets treated and the fact that Scorpius is in a highly ranked position, it seems this is not the case. That's good. Granted that the oldest sci-fi trope is one of race-relations, but it's tired and I'm tired of seeing it.

    With Paeter calling attention to the cinematography, I'm really noticing the difference between Farscape and many shows of its type. It means extra time spent shooting the show, but with the detailed and fabricated sets they really need to pay attention to the lighting.

    The recurring writing staff is really starting to make a difference. I'm seeing greater consistency not only in character presentation, but in the use of themes between episodes. We're also getting some actual sci-fi now instead of "space drama" or "space action".


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Dunadwarf on September 5th 2014, 5:49 pm

    Paeter wrote:Does Zhaan truly not understand that there is a difference between herself and the moss on a rock?
    I know I keep pimping this guy, but he's really a great reviewer and often makes similar points as you do, Paeter!
    SF Debris' Review of "Bone to be Wild"

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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on September 12th 2014, 6:11 pm

    122- Family Ties

    Crais onboard Moya???? Love Crichton's reaction to first seeing Crais come onboard. He's been through so much its almost an insane laugh.

    Hmmm. I wonder what Zhaan means in her "blessing" that "in the eyes of the godess, all are equal, all are worthy". Worthy of what? What does this say or imply, if anything, about the morality system of her faith?

    "Fear accompanies the possibility of death, calm shepherds its certainty." Wow! LOVE that!

    This ep, lik so many, is shot like a movie and the aesthetic payoff is SOOO worth it!

    This ep reminds me why I love this show.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on September 16th 2014, 9:37 pm

    Now we're starting to shake things up! Much of this season was a struggle to get through, but things are starting to hot up and we've settled into a recurring cast of writers and directors. I'm looking forward to season two!

    Paeter has some interesting points about the attitudes of the characters, but one in particular has caught me.

    When Crichton wonders why he's not afraid, D'Argo replies, "Fear accompanies the possibility of death, calm shepherds its certainty." Paeter liked this response. Me? I'm not so sure. To me it smacks of the same kind of pop-spirituality that Zhaan practically oozes. It's also not consistent with the plot of the show at that point. D'Argo and Crichton aren't planning to die unless their plan goes wrong. But that's beside the point.

    I wonder if this is a valid point of view? More importantly, is it in line with scripture? I confess to being a bit fuzzy on this particular point. None of the apostles feared death, either its possibility or its certainty. But their confidence was based on the promise of eternal life. Crichton's response seems to based on the entirely reasonable response that after you've done all you can, worrying about the outcome is futile. On what does D'Argo base his philosophy? Thoughts?


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on September 16th 2014, 9:42 pm

    Another point of innovation for Farscape is the way they treated their season finale. Up to this point, it was common for shows to either be self-contained, or to wrap up season-long metaplots with the finale. X-Files is a good example of the former, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer of the latter. Farscape deliberately ends on a cliff-hanger. A highly unusual move in the tv environment of the time.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on September 17th 2014, 8:03 pm

    mindspike wrote:
    When Crichton wonders why he's not afraid, D'Argo replies, "Fear accompanies the possibility of death, calm shepherds its certainty." Paeter liked this response. Me? I'm not so sure. To me it smacks of the same kind of pop-spirituality that Zhaan practically oozes. It's also not consistent with the plot of the show at that point. D'Argo and Crichton aren't planning to die unless their plan goes wrong. But that's beside the point.

    I wonder if this is a valid point of view? More importantly, is it in line with scripture? I confess to being a bit fuzzy on this particular point. None of the apostles feared death, either its possibility or its certainty. But their confidence was based on the promise of eternal life. Crichton's response seems to based on the entirely reasonable response that after you've done all you can, worrying about the outcome is futile. On what does D'Argo base his philosophy? Thoughts?

    Yeah I hear you on this. The validity of the phrase all hangs on WHY you feel the calm you do in the face of death. That sense of calm can be based in truth, or based on a lie.

    My enjoyment of the "Luxan Proverb" really isn't based on how it's words in and of themselves represent John and D'Argo. Again, for me, I think its about the subtext, which in this case leaves PLENTY of room for us to imagine what they are thinking and why.

    I don't feel like I know enough about Luxan culture to guess at why D'Argo quotes the proverb. But I assume at least that the state after death is something a Luxan looks forward to. (Maybe more so if they've done lots of fighting and been really honorable and all that Klingon stuff.)


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on September 26th 2014, 1:25 am

    201- Mind The Baby

    Not a lot happens in this ep, but it still has a nice change in statis quo with Crais taking off with Talyn.
    Not a memorable ep for me, but not a bad one either.

    202- Vitas Mortis

    Not a favorite of mine. Very "Fartrekky". Go down to planet. Alien of the week screws with everybody. Solve problem and move on.

    VEERRY annoying dub work on the young version of the Luxan woman. Wish they would have just used the young actresses voice.

    DID like the crazy "reach into D'Argo's chest" gag!

    Despite the material falling short for me, Anthony Simcoe does great work as D'Argo in this ep.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on October 5th 2014, 1:46 pm

    Paeter wrote:VEERRY annoying dub work on the young version of the Luxan woman. Wish they would have just used the young actresses voice.

    DID like the crazy "reach into D'Argo's chest" gag!

    I didn't notice any dubbing issues, but of course you have a better ear. This episode does seem to be all over the place in terms of plot and character. I'm also not a fan of the psuedo-mystical episodes, and this one has that in spades. I can't get over the fact that they use Moya's emissions as their laundry. Ick! Great worldbuilding, but ick!


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on October 15th 2014, 10:18 pm

    203- Taking The Stone

    Eeew! Cutting out the disc!

    I like Zhaan's "Egyptian" wardrobe better than her "fur coat".

    Not a favorite ep of mine. Pretty "meh", but gives us a little extra reason to sympathize with Chiana.\


    204- Crackers Don't Matter

    A great example of how off the wall Farscape can get and how different John is from all the other characters. His natural inferiority and "fish out of water" nature are put to wonderful comedic use. One of the most memorable episodes for me, and also one of the most quotable...

    "Humans are ...superioooooor!!!!!"


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on October 16th 2014, 11:34 am

    Interesting that I had exactly the opposite reactions to these two episodes.

    203 - Taking the Stone
    I thought the physical acting was weird and distracting, but the episode presented us with a moral quandry and a clash of cultural values. I found it to be engaging and interesting. Gave me something to think about. I do like the Egyptian look on Zhaan.

    204 - Crackers Don't Matter
    I just didn't get the comedy in this one. The antics were more annoying to me than entertaining, and John's self-referential "I know I'm crazy" didn't work for me. I would have liked some explanation of T'raltixx's actions and why the crew was crazy. This episode is a good example of the kind of restrictions imposed by a limited cast budget. I did like the guest alien's visual design, especially when the skin lit up. That was cool.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on October 17th 2014, 6:46 pm

    205- The Way We Weren't

    GREAT farscape, because it's so character driven. The characters have come a long way in their relationships with each other and this reminds us that even good relationships aren't always easy or safe.

    A great Crais episode. Loved how driven he was and how dismissive he was of Aeryn. He's no Scorpious, but this is one of his strongest "villain" episodes.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on October 20th 2014, 3:03 pm

    206- Picture if you will.

    HATE.... this episode. Hate Mauldus. Silly clothes. Not scary. Not funny. Bleh.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Drew.Rub on October 24th 2014, 2:35 pm

    Getting caught back up. Watching 203(?)-Taking the stone. Man, so boring that I'm doing Mando armor crafting while it's on because I just don't care about this ep. But somehow I feel the need to have it on while working....is there something wrong with me?


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on October 24th 2014, 3:25 pm

    205 - The Way We Weren't

    This is a good character study focused on Aeryn and Pilot. This particular episode should have come much earlier in the series. My only complaint here is that the stakes of the episode were so passive. Once the characters aired their drama and put things out in the open, everything is magically resolved. They missed a huge opportunity to turn the drama into subtext for a primary story, as the character interaction works well for audience involvement but is a poor vehicle when it's the sole basis for plot construction.

    I love Chiana in this, "Did you think she was off with the *nice* Peacekeepers?" This is also not the first time Zhaan has climbed her high horse, but it's the first time someone knocked her off of it. D'Argo and Rygel continue to annoy me.

    This one compares well to the Firefly episode "Out of Gas".


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on November 4th 2014, 12:54 pm

    207 - Home on the Remains

    One part Gunsmoke and one part Star Trek, and not the best parts of either. I freaking love the concept of living inside and mining a huge alien beast, but most of the rest of this episode just doesn't hold together well. For one thing, why don't D'Argo and John simply gear up and go hunting the kreega (bundolo!) in the first place?

    On a side note, Virginia Hey's outfits this season tend toward full body coverage, even to where she is wearing gloves. I seem to remember that she eventually left the show because of health issues with the makeup, and I wonder if we're seeing some early attempts to alleviate that.

    In Guardians of the Galaxy (both movie and comic book), the Guardians spend time on Knowhere Station, which is the severed head of a Celestial. Inhabitants on the station are mining the head for valuable raw material. Homage to Farscape? I can't find an earlier reference to this sort of thing.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Paeter on November 6th 2014, 8:33 pm

    mindspike wrote:

    On a side note, Virginia Hey's outfits this season tend toward full body coverage, even to where she is wearing gloves. I seem to remember that she eventually left the show because of health issues with the makeup, and I wonder if we're seeing some early attempts to alleviate that.

    DGAHH! Spoilers!!

    Anyway, I mostly hate this ep. Especially Cookie Monster. Why they cast him to be on this show is beyond me.



    208- Dream A Little Dream

    Guess I'm not out of the bad-ep woods yet. At least for my tastes. A heavy Zhaan-focused ep and the characters that are easiest to invest in(John, Aeryn, D'Argo) are nowhere to be found. Guess they felt they needed to keep this ep to fill out the season, but it's TOTALLY skippable. Bummer.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on November 7th 2014, 1:28 pm

    Um, spoilers? If so, it's unintentional.

    Ep 208 stood out in a number of ways. I think this is the first time we've seen the crew in a major metropolitan area. It looks a bit like Blade Runner. Also, for a show that deliberately steers clear of the social commentary that is endemic to sci-fi, this is pretty clearly an episode about religion.
    • The lawyers are the ruling class of educated elite.
    • Their costuming strongly recalls religious vestments.
    • The book of the law has been expanded in order to justify their existence.
    • The leaders are blatantly hypocritical.
    • They martyr people who try to change the system from within.

    Criminy, if that weren't enough look at all the nonsense with the "Torch of Truth". Zhaan's melodramatics get very old very fast, and this episode adds nothing to the metaplot, but it does have something to say about the popular secular perception of religion as just a list of rules.


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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  Drew.Rub on November 25th 2014, 10:38 am

    Ep 209: Out of their minds
    While this was an interesting episode with the chance of watching the cast try to portray other members of the cast, I really hated this episode. Sorry Paeter, there must be something wrong with me. Yes, it was good seeing each member's acting abilities stretched, and I can only imaging how this story line came about (I can see Ben or Anthony sitting in with production/writing staff one day and impersonating each other (or someone else) and voila). but for me, since this episode didn't really seem to move the plot forward and didn't really enhance the storyline, I was somewhat bored.

    Ep 210: My 3 Critons
    I had originally thought this episode had spit out the Id, Ego, and Superego versions of John, but remembered as it went that it was an evolutionary story. Again, since it wasn't a meta-plot story, I was ho hum. that's just he way I am, I like meta-plots. However, the conversation this one might bring up about creation/evolution/moralism(?) makes it worth watching. I think one thing I definitely didn't like is that evolved John seems to have lost his emotions. Okay, technically in the ep he said he did feel, he just accepted a decision quicker. I'm not sure if I like the idea of us "evolving" and becoming in essence Vulcans. If anything, I would think that with increased intelligence would come an increase capacity and desire for emotional connection. but maybe that's hopeful thinking.

    Ep 211: A Kiss is but a kiss
    I'll wait till Paeter catches up and posts on this ep.

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    Re: Farscape Shawarma

    Post  mindspike on December 3rd 2014, 2:13 pm

    I'm with Drew on both 209 and 210.

    209 - Out of Their Minds
    I *really* hate body switching episodes. But all that aside, this episode embodies all of the goofiness and body-humor that turns me away from this series. If the whole series was like this, I wouldn't watch it.

    210 - My 3 Crichtons
    Is Future-Crichton channeling Nicholas Cage? LOL. This is the kind of television in general and Farscape in particular that I like. There is a problem to be solved, a clash of cultures, an ethical question, and plenty of subtext in the performances and even in the costuming. Good stuff. On a side note, this crew is so reluctant to "sacrifice" a complete stranger, but they hacked off one of Pilot's arms in "DNA Mad Scientist"? This is both good character development and poor storytelling form. Very frustrating.

    I'm very amused that Paeter and I seem to gravitate towards completely opposite aspects of this show. He made the statement on this podcast that if you don't like "Out of Their Minds" he doesn't understand why you suffer through this show. Well, I really hated that episode. But I like this show. It looks great. It reminds me of favorite Saturday morning television; it's approachable, intelligent (mostly), and willing to try new things, even if they don't always work.

    So what's better? Funscape? or Fartrek? The really good episodes have elements of both in them. It's the blending of the two extremes that *really* makes the show interesting.


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      Current date/time is December 4th 2016, 1:19 pm