You better hide your wire hangers, Aeryn; Mommie Dearest is coming to visit.
Talyn is not totally ship-shape yet; so his crew has set down on a jungle planet to allow the heavy gravity and the misty environment to help him recuperate. Aeryn and John are enjoying some not-so-quiet time and Rygel is not happy about it; because thin walls and close quarters, you know.
In other news, a retrieval squad is closing in fast; so it’s time for a small war in the jungle. I’m sure the jungle is a set; I don’t think they have jungles in Australia with geysers of stinky steam. Maybe they borrowed the set from The Princess Bride. Anyhow, the comedy team of Rygel and Stark are guarding the ship, while the others go to deal with the intruders.
That was a fun to watch fire-fight they had in the jungle, with lots of sparks and pyrotechnics. I liked the way that Aeryn got separated from the group and John and Crais wound up together. They were quite the team; with Crais getting shot and John reluctantly helping him. Of course, John doesn’t really trust Crais and winds up using him as bait for the Colartas, or Pina Coladas, as John colorfully calls them. I really enjoyed John's and Crais's scenes together; they have come a long way since they met, but it is still clear that they are not friends.
Poor Aeryn has to deal with the leader of the retrieval squad by herself and it's not fun because the leader happens to be her mother. There are some painful to watch physical fighting matches between the two, but worse are the things that Xhalax Sun says to her daughter. Throughout the episode, Mom calls Aeryn: a traitor, corrupted, an aberration, and a coward. Thanks, Mom. Aeryn tries to act tough and not flinch away from her mother’s words, but it is clearly difficult. She tries to tell her mother that there is more to life than the Peacekeeper way, but Xhalax is unmoved.
What a sad, isolated life these Peacekeepers lead. They do form friendships, but anything deeper is taboo. They are allowed to “rec-reate”, but not fall in love. Just by loving a man, having his child and then telling the child that she was created in love; that was enough betrayal of the PK regulations to merit harsh punishment. Wasn’t it enough that Xhalax had to give her daughter to the Peacekeepers? I’d make a terrible Peacekeeper soldier, but I could be a tech, maybe.
The last parts of this story are very good. After John and Crais are reunited with Aeryn in the jungle, Aeryn knows that her mom must die to protect her friends, but John won’t let her kill her own mother. Crais says that he will kill Xhalax, so Aeryn gives one last anguished look at her mother as she remembers her as a lovely younger woman, seen so briefly when she was a child. Claudia Black is so good in these scenes. Aeryn’s eyes fill with tears as she knows that there is no saving Xhalax and that the deed has to be done. As John and Aeryn walk away, the camera slows down the action as the music swells and a pulse pistol fires just as Aeryn tries to turn back. It’s just so sweet the way John puts his hands over her ears and pulls her really close as he gets her out of there. Man, I love this show.
The closing scene is beautifully filmed. John and Aeryn are against a black background, their profiles outlined in pink as they rub foreheads in affection and solidarity.
Scorpy has a cameo; he shows up to point out to John that Crais is being helpful for likely selfish reasons.
Stark sewing the vines into Rygel’s wounds and into his robes was pretty funny.
Speaking of a wound; that was an awful big knife that Xhalax extracted from under her own skin. Couldn’t they have implanted something a little smaller?
Crais got shot and then had some stinging stuff put in the wound, was covered in foul gunk, then drenched in water and tied up as bait. Torturing Crais is always a good thing, IMO.
Aeryn’s Hair Report: A softer, looser ponytail.
Rygel: “She was bad enough, but Crichton; he was louder than she was! He actually sounded like he was exerting himself! What kind of a male is he anyway?”
Stark: “Friend or foe, friend or foe, friend or foe...”
Rygel: “Will you shut the frell up? Of course it’s a foe! We have no friends.”
John: “Okay, welcome to the butthole of the universe.”
Crais: “We could be going around in circles.”
John: “We’re not going in circles, you nimrod, cause we’ve never been here before; we’re completely lost.”
Crais: “They are using Colartas, expert trackers, if you leave me here bleeding then they will find me and kill me.”
This is one of Farscape’s best episodes. John and Aeryn finally being together, without Aeryn doing one of her disappearing acts, is quite wonderful. The pairing of Aeryn and her mother is heartbreaking; the society they were born into and their emotional battle scars give them too little to build anything upon, which is very sad. There was a good balance of action and emotion in this one.
Five out of five Pina Coladas.
Mallena loves her DVR, her Pug, anything in the sci-fi, fantasy and supernatural genres, and her family. Well, maybe not in that exact order.