Monday, January 17, 2011

Classics: Farscape 1:11 - 'Til the Blood Runs Clear

Overall: 7.3

The scenes between Crichton and D'Argo form, for me, the true emotional core of this episode. The rest is merely window dressing.

Plot Synopsis:

Farscape World has a recap here.

The Skinny:

The first twenty minutes of this episode are not all that impressive. Furlow proves that dishonest mechanics are truly universal, Zhaan soaks up some rays and gets lost in her "photogasms", Crichton is forced to put on an act to get a couple of blood trackers off their backs -- these are all elements of an average episode. Things take a turn for the interesting, however, when D'Argo finally loses patience and decides to go down to the planet to give Crichton a piece of his mind. As you might expect, D'Argo promptly gets captured by the aforementioned blood trackers, and Crichton is forced to torture D'Argo in order to maintain his alpha male ruse. Very nice. Very dark.

Here, Crichton and D'Argo launch what will become one of Farscape's best male-male friendships (I also like the relationship between Crichton and Stark, but I'll save that discussion for Nerve/The Hidden Memory). Finally, all the disagreements and misunderstandings that have been festering between Crichton and D'Argo explode into the open where they can be confronted and resolved. Crichton points out that D'Argo has attacked him more than once, D'Argo complains that Crichton constantly disappoints him, and then the two men shake hands and make up. LOL! Yes, that's pretty much how men work, isn't it? They "take it outside," bloody each other's noses, and then put their differences aside.

Besides the detente between D'Argo and Crichton, is there anything else in this episode that stands out? Not really. Aeryn's temporary blindness does force her to confront her inner vulnerability once again, but I don't think the writers really capitalize on the potential of that storyline; the blindness, in other words, feels like it was added as an afterthought. I also feel that Crais' secret message to Aeryn could've been better utilized. That Aeryn knows from the get-go that Crais means to subject her to the living death sucks all the conflict and temptation out of that particular plot device.

Writing: 7.0

Again, there are several very good scenes between D'Argo and Crichton (and a few funny ones between Zhaan and Rygel), but ultimately, I think there's too much going on in this script -- and the pieces don't always fit together.

Acting: 8.0

I don't care for the blood trackers, really, but everyone else puts in a very good performance.

Message: 7.0

I like that D'Argo takes his eventual alliance with Crichton very seriously, but otherwise, this episode is pretty light on the message front.


Will be added once the server comes back up at my usual resource for quotes.

Zhaan: Ah! Rygel - I feel renewed!
Rygel: (jumping) Dah! Zhaan, are you fully clothed?
(He covers his eyes just in case.)
Zhaan: (teasing) I'm not wearing a scrap. I'm as nude as a newborn baby.
Rygel: Then go away! And don't insult my eyes with your naked blue extremities. (Zhaan chuckles.)
Zhaan: Ah... Which ones in particular don't you like? Show them to me.
Rygel: No, thank you! (Zhaan pulls his hands away from his eyes, but he has them shut.) Help! Help! A mad Delvian exhibitionist is forcing herself on me! Visually! (LOL! Cute.)

D'Argo: (picking up his Qualta blade) You brought it! Good! Now I can start working on your sensitive appendages.
John: (as he attempts to escape D'Argo's wrath) Look! We don't have time for this! This isn't supposed to be happening! You're not even supposed to be down here!
D'Argo: Neither are you.
John: I just wanted to go home!
D'Argo: With no matter to the cost to the rest of us.
John: What? Oh sh - Right! Remind me - who chopped off Pilot's arm so he could get a return ticket? (He scrambles up a ladder.) Huh? No, it wasn't me! I was too busy saving your ass! Too busy keeping your deepest family secrets!
D'Argo: Shall I chronicle the rest of that relationship?
John: Relationship? We have a relationship? No wonder you want to kill me.
D'Argo: I once thought!
John: Thought what? huh? No-no-no-no-no. Y'know - thank me tomorrow! I saved your ass today!
D'Argo: You tortured me!
John: I saved you! You know what, I have no idea what goes on in that tiny, little brain of yours, D'Argo!
D'Argo: I have no idea why you do anything that you do.
John: Catch a clue, pal! 'Cos I'm tired of sticking my hand out only to have you snap at it!
D'Argo: Every time I let down my guard, you disappoint me.
John: Sorry, I'm only human.
D'Argo: You look so much like a Peacekeeper, I often forget.
(That stops Crichton cold.)
John: (climbing down) Is that it? Or do you always have to be the alpha male?
D'Argo: Alpha male?
John: Yeah, the big shot. The one with the big britches. The leader. You are so - childish!
D'Argo: You - are selfish.
John: Can be. What about you - selfish?
D'Argo: Sometimes.
John: I ever come after you with a weapon? (D'Argo eyes John silently.) This isn't gonna work, is it? We're never going be friends.
D'Argo: Friendship is a lot to ask.
John: Then how about respect? We can be allies.

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