In the twentieth episode of the fourth season of Farscape, no show should be able to stick this many plot twists in a single episode. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Farscape.
Trigger Warning: For torture and body horror.
How? Why? WHAT DID I JUST WATCH?
You know, this show does chaos incredibly well. The last episode is a fine example of that, given how Noranti’s actions create a goddamn nightmare. But it’s something that’s appeared over all four seasons of Farscape: this show really knows how to convey the sensation of everything falling apart magnificently. And as the crew heads to Katratzi in order to rescue Scorpius, the chaos bred here is actually intentional for once. It’s perhaps one of the best plans the Moya crew has ever come up with, despite that it appears like it’s not going to work either. THEY COULDN’T HAVE KNOWN ABOUT SCORPIUS I’M STILL UPSET BY THE WAY.
But let’s talk about this plan, because holy shit, it’s so good. Crichton and Aeryn team up to offer wormhole technology to whichever party can provide them with the best offer. Crichton gets to do his terrible I AM AN AMERICAN speech that I loved so much (and was far better executed than the same speech given by Captain Kirk in “The Omega Glory,” which I should also note that I watched before I watched this week’s Farscape episodes). And really, it’s a believable offer: Crichton wants money and safety for his friends, and he can achieve that by giving up what he knows. That’s not to say that this is a simple transaction. I think that “Hot to Katratzi” demonstrates the complex number of layers at work here in terms of political bluffing. First of all, Crichton’s got that bomb strapped to him that regulates his heartbeat, temperature, and a number of other things, and it acts as a form of security prior to any deal being made. (Well, it’s also ridiculously tense. THERE’S THAT, TOO.) Then we’ve got the different approaches of the Scarrans and the Peacekeepers. Grazya is well aware that Crichton isn’t really bluffing at all, and she desperately needs that information. But the Scarrans have no reason to believe that Crichton is offering anything at all.
While this is all unfolding, the rest of the crew is busy sowing the seeds for mutiny and riot, all in the hopes of providing one of the biggest distractions ever. Creating a miniature civil war of sorts is no easy task. But it was amazing to watch Rygel, D’Argo, and Sizoku begin to manipulate all the parties so perfectly, all of which ends in exactly what they wanted.
SO I NEED TO TALK ABOUT THE FIRST OF MANY THINGS THAT IS UPSETTING ME.
She gets what she wants on two levels; obviously, she helps start the riot. But she’s also part of some secret Kalish resistance organization that’s seeking freedom from Scarran rule and OH, HELLO, LET’S JUST CASUALLY REVEAL THAT SHE’S A BIOLOID, NO BIG DEAL. What the fuck? WHAT THE FUCK, Y’ALL??? HAS SHE ALWAYS BEEN ONE? WAS THIS ONLY SINCE AERYN WAS COPIED? OH GOD, NO, THAT’S NOT THE CASE, IS IT? SHE WAS ALWAYS A BIOLOID. THAT’S WHY SHE COULD DO THAT WEIRD MELTING THING, RIGHT?
I’M SO FCUKED UP AND I CAN’T AND WHAT THE FUCK WHAT THE FUCK.
An Old Friend
This episode misdirects the audience constantly, and I’m only now beginning to appreciate all the ways in which it messed with me. Scorpius’s torture seems genuinely terrifying. He’s encased in some weird futuristic iron maiden thing, he looks like shit, and even with all his mental training against Scarrans, his physical body is near the breaking point. So things are made even worse when Ahkna brings an “old friend” of Scorpius’s into the room to finish things off, and
WHERE HAS HE BEEN
WHERE DID HE COME FROM
HOW IS THIS EVEN POSSIBLE
DO YOU REALIZE HOW FUCKED UP THIS IS. Stark has every reason to hate Scorpius for what he did to him in the Aurora Chair, he has no context for the current state of things, he doesn’t know that his friends are there, AND IT’S SO WEIRD AND UPSETTING AND HI STARK, I MISSED YOU.
My god, the things this show does to me.
Hey, cool, I spent this episode feeling bad about Scorpius, only to have the rug pulled out from under me a third time. Guess who is Scorpius’s best friend? THE SCARRAN EMPEROR. Y’all. Y’ALL. Are you seriously telling me that this single episode is expecting me to cope with the Sikozu reveal and Stark’s return and the truth of Scorpius’s allegiance with the Scarrans? BECAUSE HE TOTALLY SAYS HE HAS BEEN STALEEK’S SPY FOR TEN GODDAMN CYCLES.
I can’t do this, y’all. Is there a double cross here? Is Scorpius truly so concerned with power that he’ll betray the Peacekeepers and align with… with an entire race that he’s despised??? HOW MUCH OF HIS PERFORMANCE HAS BEEN A LIE? Does Braca know? Does anyone know? WHAT HAS BECOME OF MY LIFE AND MY SENSE OF SELF?
I feel like this would be easier to figure out if Scorpius hadn’t told Staleek that Crichton trusts him more than he knows. There’s nothing that I can see here that would give me hope that Scorpius is actually trying to double cross the Scarrans. As far as I can tell, he’s truly trying to separate the bomb from Crichton, and this is the worst. THE WORST. Hey, remember when I thought that Aeryn and Crichton were genuinely going to kill Scorpius? Ah, those were the days.
is too fucked up. I have no clue how this current plot will be resolved, and I have no godly idea how this show is going to end. I feel like I’m neck-deep in chaos and violence and betrayal and I am frightened.
The video for “Hot to Katratzi” can be downloaded here for $0.99.
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