i just watched Farscape for the first time, and oh boy...

UPDATED: Sunday, October 30, 2005 19:30
VIEWED: 5220
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Sunday, October 30, 2005 7:59 AM


...was it terrible! people actually like this? it's worse than Andromeda in my opinion.

i can't believe this show got to live on for 4 seasons and Firefly didn't. what the heck?


Sunday, October 30, 2005 8:12 AM


A friend of mine made me watch a few Farscape episodes during the first season, and I thought it was the stupidest thing I'd ever seen! Then, around the start of the third season, I gave it another chance, and really liked it. Not really sure what changed for me.

MAL "You only gotta scare him."
JAYNE "Pain is scary..."


Sunday, October 30, 2005 8:16 AM


granted, the episode i saw was a very early one from the first season. i suppose it could've improved over time. but i don't think i can watch science fiction shows now and not compare them to how good Firefly is!


Sunday, October 30, 2005 8:25 AM


There's no place I can be since I found Serenity.

I kinda liked it when if first started, then lost interest after a while when I missed several episodes and lost track of some new characters and situations. The thing I liked least about it was the use of muppets.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 9:06 AM


well it is very different from Firefly,
it could hardly be more different...w/only one human and all aliens
and the Moya, the ship, being an alien too!
(and it seems even more weird w/so many characters being puppets)

But it is also a group of very different, disconnected people, with nothing in common...
bound together in an attempt to survive.
It had a lot of very imaginative, fun episodes...
and our 'hero' (the one human) is an interesting guy with more faults than virtues.

Personally I enjoy Farscape, I don't love it like I love Firefly, but it is very entertaining.

watch the R. Tam Session vids:
and buy the 'Serenity' comics published by Dark Horse,
and have you joined the Browncoats yet?


Sunday, October 30, 2005 9:25 AM


It does find its legs a little more later on. I do find that in Farscape, the individual episodes suck from time to time, and have really stupid premises about half the time. Individual episodes can range from dumb to fun to great, probably most hanging around the 'fun' level.

However, somehow, taken on a whole, watching seasons at a time, it's surprisingly compelling. More than the sum of its parts. One reason for this is characters do get depth - even people who seem to be outright villains, you'll start to see different sides of them and sometimes even come to root for them. Another is that they will take strange risks. I don't want to spoil it for those who haven't watched it, but I remember there's a moment in one of those episodes with a rather stupid premise... it was the sort of thing that you'd see a lot of SF shows try at least once (you know, sort of how like almost every SF show does at least one 'time loop' episode given enough time)... except the difference is, in pretty well every other show, what happens would be reversed at the end of the episode and everything would be back to normal... in Farscape it not only lasts beyond it, it's actually a key factor in the rest of the season.

If you want to know:

Select to view spoiler:

The main character gets duplicated - two copies, with both of them having equal right to being called 'the original'. Due to a crisis, they quickly go their separate ways each with half the cast, and the rest of the season alternates between the two of them.

Star Pilot Grainger
"Remember, the enemy's gate is down."
LJ: (real) (fictional, travelling through other worlds)
Unreachable Star: - Comics & SF News/Reviews/Opinions
This week: My spoiler-free Serenity review


Sunday, October 30, 2005 9:49 AM


I wholeheartedly agree - when it comes to MY first time watching it and yes the muppets really did it no justice.

But like some of the other responses here I too gave it another go and really enjoyed it. There are some fantastically quirky characters and parts to the show and I definitely agree that the arced episodes are better than the stand alones.

Big fan of Claudia Black and she is probably the closest character to Zoe. Very strong women with a sense of humour that is so dry it's dehydrated.

Give it another go...


Sunday, October 30, 2005 9:58 AM


I remember I was really looking forward to Farscape when it first started, but I actually found it dull and pretty amateurish. I wouldn't say it was worse than Andromeda though lol.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 10:14 AM


America loves a winner!

It took a while for me to get use to it. What kept me interested was Ben Bowder and Claudia Black. Their characters were fun to watch, if the rest of the show was a bit sketchy at times.

" They don't like it when you shoot at 'em. I worked that out myself. "


Sunday, October 30, 2005 10:14 AM


Yeah, from what I remember, never worse than Andromeda. Still not great for the first couple of years though...maybe I should give S3 a shot...


Sunday, October 30, 2005 11:10 AM


well, i'll be willing to give it a few more episodes before i really get judgmental.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 11:21 AM


Aww, I'm sorry to hear that, although I can understand. A lot of people either love or hate Farscape. I'm personally on the 'love Farscape' side. I love it as much as I do Firefly, I think. It has humour, action, and a fantastic use of special effects and animatronics in particular for a TV show.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 11:37 AM


see, maybe i'm one of the few who liked Farscape, and hated sci-fi canceling it. But i only watch sci-fi to keep myself from thinking about how i could be out with friends i don't have or w/e it may be at that time. It kept me glued to my seat through every DVD.. maybe its cuz i ain't a critic of the story like y'all or that i just watch TV ot be entertained *gasp* whatta concept. Anyways before I get flamed for this, lemme say that you can't compare Firefly to anything, it just makes it seem crappy in comparision, its like apples to oranges as they say, there just not in the same catagory.

Do not doubt me when i say that Firefly was the best damn'd show i ever did see. But that dont make the rest of the ones i've watched any less good.

"It's not that there HAS to be a sequel. It's just that I've got so many IDEAS..."-Joss Whedon
*Andersen AFB, Guam*


Sunday, October 30, 2005 11:37 AM


Farscape was an excellent show. It pushed a lot of boundaries in it's time, turned a lot of standard TV SF plots on their heads by not ending those episodes quite like those plots usually did. And it was more plot and character consistent than almost any other show on at the time, and many since.

To call the puppet characters 'muppets' is to do them a severe injustice. We got more story and characterisation out of Rygel or Pilot than we did from half the bridge crew in 'Enterprise'.

Plus, it gave us some of the wackiest and freaky episodes on television.... and some of the most horrifying and dramatic ones too.

Also, no show has done alien swearing and body fluids quite like Farscape!

It was great fun, and brilliant to get the Peacekeeper Wars mini-series so we could see them all again one last time. Another victory for fan pressure!

"My God - you're like a trained ape. Without the training."
"Come a day there won't be room for naughty men like us to slip about at all..."
I know the secret.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 11:49 AM


Something to bear in mind is that, when it first started, Farscape was basically a glorified "demo reel" for Jim Henson's Creature Shop. They didn't want to be typecast doing Muppets for the rest of history, so they created Farscape to show their full range.

Looking back, a lot of S1 seems alternately showoffy or half-assed. Lotta good stuff though, don't get me wrong.

It was only later (mid S1 or S2) that they realized they had a cult hit on their hands. Unlike Firefly, Farscape's writers were unabashedly making it up as they went along.

In fact, a lot of Farscape is primarily a matter of the producers/writers/cast going "wow, that turned out better than we expected; let's do it again!"

Scorpius, frex, was just supposed to be a one-episode bad guy du jour. And look where that ended up.

We applied the cortical electrodes but were unable to get a neural reaction from either patient.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 12:26 PM


And, of course, when Chiana was shot in the arm in the first episode she was in, that was the shot that originally was going to kill her.

Crais' arc was brilliant.

Scorpius... keeping him around was easily one of the best decisions they ever made. Such a superb, multi-levelled and excellently villainous villain.

"My God - you're like a trained ape. Without the training."
"Come a day there won't be room for naughty men like us to slip about at all..."
I know the secret.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 12:38 PM


Don't think Joss is above making it up. When shit goes well they try to maintain it, when it goes terribly, it is altered or supressed(generally, sometimes it can't be)

You REALLY think the plan was to keep spike around for SEVEN years?(one example)


Sunday, October 30, 2005 12:59 PM


actually I want to say something in defense of Farscape's first season...
the premier episode does a brilliant job of throwing a human through a worm hole and into an alien universe, and on to an alien ship (a ship which IS an alien) where no one trusts one another.

Now the cool thing is, the human has no skills, he has nothing to offer. He is as helpless as an infant in this new universe,
EXCEPT that he understands about the necessity of team work. He is the only thing that binds these escaped convicts together.
He finds ways for them to work together.

The entire first season shows him slowly convincing everyone else onboard that they can only survive if they become a family, and learn to trust and depend upon one another.

See, Mal never has that problem. The people onboard Serenity get that they only have each other out in the black...

Personally I thought that Farscape's first season was really good.

watch the R. Tam Session vids:
and buy the 'Serenity' comics published by Dark Horse,
and have you joined the Browncoats yet?


Sunday, October 30, 2005 1:08 PM


Farscape is one of the shows ever, IMHO. it has its weakpoints, sure. But on balance.

Andromeda is pretty bad. I think there was a real chance for andromeda at the beginning. They could have killed dylan hunt and gone on being pirates.
pretty bapretty pretty bady badd


Sunday, October 30, 2005 1:23 PM


After reading so many positive things about Farscape on numerous forums, including this one, I decided to give it a try when the BBC recently started to show it fom the beginning. I watched quite a few eps (up to where Moya got pregnant) and didn't like a single one of them.

I have no problems with the idea of using puppets, in fact I think it's good to have aliens who aren't just bumpy headed humans, but the stories were nonsense. I just could not get into it.

Now some people say it got better later. Maybe, but I gave it more eps than a lot of other shows get. And few Scapers say that the begining was really bad. So I'm in no rush to give it another chance.

Firefly was superb from the beginning, and got even better later on. There really is no comparison. IMHO, of course.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 1:49 PM


Okay, let me try this again.

Last time my keyboard fried, and when that happens, rather than just politely dying, it goes out with a bang. First it starts randomly going through what is in the keyboard buffer and then it does a magic cursor dance, and then it dies. It all happens quite quickly, maybe taking 5 or 10 seconds, but I get to watch in horror as it types in "pretty bapretty pretty bady badd" and then hits submit. I could have ended task, but I was still cracking up watching it go, it didn't occur to me that it would manage to send the damn thing. Anyway, I guess I've watched some farscape on this machine and so maybe it has an opinion on the show.

Overall, I think farscape is a lot of fun. In many ways it's excellent. It's far from clean, but it's the holy grail compared to star trek. Or star wars.

The flaws with farscape are:

1. It's inconsistant. Some times it's great. Sometimes the story doesn't work. It never ties together well.

2. Like buffy, it has that sort of flavor that doesn't ring quite real.

3. There are some annoying characters whoe should have died except the sci-fi channel wouldn't let them.

Mostly Aeryn. She whined incessantly.
Crais made a sucky villain, but he made an interesting hero in later eps, and scorpius was a better replacement villain.

Overall the peacekeepers are beautiful. I mean visually stunning. Often they didn't do nearly as well with sets as they did with creatures, but the command carrier was lovely. I want one.

Chiana of course helps the show. Not just for being a former miss australia, but she's a lot of fun to watch too.

Dargo starts out as a boring Worf warrior type, but he makes much better comic relief, which they realize at some point.

Crighton is okay. I don't know if he can act, but he says the sorts of upfront things I'd want a viewpoint character to say, and not PC dribble like Dylan Hunt or Picard is liable too.

After a while the sheer joyride of Farscape more than makes up for it's not so well constructed world weakpoints.

Watching any serial SF show is really a committment to watch a season, or it's not a fair judgment.

I don't know what to say about "Stargate Atlantis" since I think if I was forced to watch a season, I might expire.

But in it's own way, Farscape is truly a thing of beauty. It's not anywhere near as realist as Firefly.

Treat it like muppets in space. If you do that, you'll have fun.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 2:21 PM



Originally posted by StarPilotGrainger: Farscape, the individual episodes suck from time to time

...characters do get depth - even people who seem to be outright villains, you'll start to see different sides of them and sometimes even come to root for them. Another is that they will take strange risks.

I agree with this and your choice of spoiler as well. There are several other examples of similar reality bending that, while a similar idea may have been tried in other series, were never as successful as on Farscape.

The ep with animation (w/o spoiling too much). Made me laugh so hard with its post modernist references to a huge variety of other sources. I like this quite a lot when it's done well, and it makes my eyes roll when it's not. (MHO)

I think they did many things that were on a par with Joss' oranges, if not quite as magnificently realised.

Thanks Cybersnark for the details I hadn't heard re: glorified demo reel for Henson's Creature Shop. Also, the extension/expansion of Scorpy a la Spike I had not heard before this. Who would have wanted to do w/o either of them? A great villain is hard to find.

It's difficult and daring to go beyond 2 legs, 2 arms, bumpy forehead, and I think the use of characters with totally different evolutionary paths really added to the richness of the character arcs and situational possibilities.

As Rel writes, "to call them muppets is a severe injustice"

Resorting only to CGI for this kind of expansion on archetypes gets boring for me. I especially liked the pilot. Rygel was small and hard to maneuver a camera around so I was pretty often too conscious of his wire and foam nature, but he was such a fine little betrayer that I was willing to overlook it.

Embers, I enjoyed your take on the pilot ep as well, and thought the premise of John bringing the concept of teamwork to the band of misfits was a good one, and I liked it that they stuck with that as a theme.

I really enjoyed that character in his struggles to stay on the path of doing the right thing in a place where all the rules were different and the consequences for slipping were greater.

Thanks guys, for your thoughts!

Shiny Trees! Yavanna made Shiny Trees!


Sunday, October 30, 2005 2:23 PM


Dreamtrove, outside of the fact that we both like Farscape, I don't think I agree with a single thing you said in your post. Crichton and Aeryn were my favorite characters, far and away.

Which, by the way, means it's a good show. Different people read different things into it.

I have had an experience with both Babylon 5 and Farscape of ***HATING*** the first season, and friends begging me to keep going. By the end of Farscape season 1, I was MAD that I had wasted my time on that. But I continued, and by the end, it was one of my 5 top shows ever. Babylon 5 was exactly the same way. (Going back, first season of both is at least enjoyable, knowing where it's headed, but it's still at best charmingly fumbled.)

Either way, I've since made it a policy to give any sci-fi show I start at least an entire season. These shows are hard to make, and often take a long time to hit a groove, since the premise is often very difficult to explain simply.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 6:52 PM


I agree with nearly everyone here.. I have to say I really did fall in love with Farscape, but it took some time. I saw it first when I was living in Wales and missing Canada so much, and it reminded me of home for some reason, but back at home I wasn't that into it. Then my boyfriend starting renting the whole series and we just got totally addicted. I love Crichton and Aeryn. They definitely had their silly episodes and bizarre plot lines, but wow was it ever creative, and the characters were real.

I don't think you can really compare it with something like Babylon 5 whose only redeeming quality was that the plot was actually planned from episode one and they followed it to the end.

I can't believe I actually watched every single episode of Babylon 5. The acting was just so... awkward. Andromeda is completely unappealing to me for some reason, i can't watch it at all.

I grew up on ST:TNG and other than DS9, nothing has really interested me until Firefly, which I really appreciate since ST: Enterprise basically destroyed my faith in sci-fi for a while.

So anyway after all that rambling, my point was, give Farscape a chance. It has great qualities, though it does take a while to get comfortable with the characters.

Wash: Don't you hate doctors?
Simon: Hey!
Wash: Present company excluded, of course
Jayne: Let's not be excludin' people, that'd be rude.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 7:13 PM


As a lot of others have said I didnt like Farscape and never really gave it a chance. There was a particularly dry spell for sci fi a while back so when I saw full DVD seasons of Farscape on special I bought them and really got into it! I love Farscape. Its got nothing on Firefly but nothing really does.

I gave Andromeda way too many chances.... It provides a sense of order to my universe that most people dislike Andromeda.


Sunday, October 30, 2005 7:30 PM


It's a good policy to give sci-fi more of a chance than you would a show about lawyers.

I grew up on star trek and D&D and both in retrospect suck. The thing that I enjoyed then that I still enjoy is Dr. Who, which has no scientific merit whatsoever and stories are often nonsensical, but that just shows that there are other points of merit.

I think only point of merit for b5 is really selling the show short. I don't think that's it's up to firefly or farscape, it's more of a star trek hybrid, but the complex political situations and the breakthroughs in non-studio animation on home pcs (amigas, nine of them) was a real feat. Like most people don't really credit the puppet breakthroughs in farscape. The farscape puppets can act in real time with the characters on the real sets, that's a major breakthrough.






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