The firth and sixth episodes of Season 1 are, to be perfectly honest, not very good and do not give us much new information or depth of our characters or further the grand story arc. So I will treat them together in this Deep Dive.
“Back and Back and Back to the Future” and “Thank God It’s Friday, Again” are perhaps the most Star Trekian of the Farscape episodes. The plot of BBBF rests on the trope of Crichton having hallucinations about the future. The episode has always reminded me of the Star Trek Next Generation episode, “Frame of Mind” which used a similar trope. TGIFA is Trekian in its shortcut of a planet on which everyone and everything exists within a couple of city blocks, and its rather unimaginatively drawn aliens.
Both episodes more or less revolve around D’Argo. In BBBF we meet a new species, the Ilanics, who are
We don’t learn much more about the Ilanics, but we do learn a little about D’Argo’s background.
Unfortunately, the episode spends most of its time with Crichton being confused by his hallucinations. It’s not clear how much of his visions are being caused by Matala and how much by the singularity that zaps Crichton. In any event, or recurring events in this case, Crichton has flashes of the future which reveal that Matala isn’t an Ilanic but a Scorvian, who must be stopped, and of course it is Crichton who stops her.
Okay, a little enjoyable to see her torn apart by a black hole. Mostly, though, BBBF is watching Crichton annoy everyone else and D’Argo again being ineffectual.
Yes, we do get that tease about D’Argo’s true crime.
In TGIFA, D’Argo creates a problem for the others. We learn about Luxan hyperrage.
So, everyone chases after D’Argo, who has escaped to a planet that has escaped from a Star Trek episode. And the red-orange cult planet has a strange effect on D’Argo.
Now, that scene is actually significant in that we get our first look beneath D’Argo’s front of acting the big tough warrior. We shall see the importance of that line about lying to himself about who he really is.
The planet and its inhabitants are uninspired, especially their apparent leader, Volmae. The real interest unfolds back on Moya where Aeryn has to save Rygel who, unwittingly has become a danger.
Rygel, who eats anything and everything, has consumed enough of the local produce to become combustible.
You have to feel for the little guy, just as you have to feel for Aeryn, who is out of her element.
What are we going to do now? Freeze Rygel of course. But that leaves it to Aeryn to solve the mystery of the exploding Rygel.
But with Pilot’s help, she does it.
It is only because of Volmae’s delusional greed that it is revealed that this planet is a source of Peacekeepers’ ammunition.
<”Rygel Now” clip>
Winning the pissing match, our heroes do the Star Trek thing of interfering with the natives only enough to leave them on their own. Oh, so convenient.
What do we learn in these episode?
Not much in “Back and Back and Back to the Future” other than that the Ilanics exist and that D’Argo was accused of a yet to be revealed crime.
“Thank God It’s Friday, Again” shows us another side of Aeryn, not that we ever thought of her as unintelligent. Her success in the lab diagnosing Rygel is a big step in her becoming more than a Peacekeeper infantry grunt.
Most revealing in the episode is the other side of D’Argo, the side that doesn’t want to be a warrior.
D’Argo’s other dream becomes very significant, as we shall see.
Finally, we do get one of the best lines in Farscape.
It’s a cold spring where I am as I record this, but our next deep dive will heat things up—as Crichton clicks with someone, well, two someones.
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