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Farscape Signs for 2 More Years 294

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the no-i-am-sci-fi dept.
Dimes noted that the scifi channel has signed Farscape for 2 more seasons. 44 more episodes of my favorite sci-fi on TV (Well, maybe Lexx gives it a run for its money ;). New episodes start in January, and I'm a happy camper. Related ramblings: TNN is doing a marathon rerun of all of ST:TNG all this week. And I finally watched Enterprise- that theme song really has gotta go. But I'd like to see more, if only I could get it in my area. So much potential if they don't screw it up.
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Farscape Signs for 2 More Years

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  • Am I the only person in the civilized world who DOESN'T like Farscape? I mean, maybe it's just me, but it just seemed kinda ...weak? How about some network picks up the Critic?

    ---
    evel aka matt
    "we got a might convoy, rockin' through the night"
    • FS kind of grows on you after a while. It's really quite a good show.

      pressure/grep

      rm -f /bin/laden

    • I have watched both this and Lexx a couple of times and they don't stand up to any of the classic sci-fi shows such as ST:TNG, The Outer Limits, Babylon 5, etc. I would even have to say DS9 was better (and I didn't care for that show too much either). The acting, stories, and characters are bad, boring, and weird. I sure won't be celebrating this announcement.

      Ashrael
      • I got into FS starting with Nerve and have been pretty impressed since then.

        As an all around TV SF fan, I dug ST:TNG, lived for B5 and put up with Voyager. I even watch Lexx, but only for ten minutes at a time :)

        What's impressive is not how many episodes of FS are good. What's impressive is how many of them are not dreadful. Even the most die-hard ST:TNG fan has to admit that there were too many Counselor Troi's Mother Gets Married - Worf's Son Gets In Trouble - Wesley Crusher Almost Gets Laid episodes. The best of ST:TNG was great, but the worst was unwatchable.

        Same goes for B5. Seasons 1 and 5 were simply not good. Season 5 was watchable only because by then you were hooked. Season 1 is watchable now because you know what's coming. Only Seasons 2-4 were truly great.

        There are a number of ho-hum episodes of FS (Back and Back and Back to the Future, The Flax, Jeremiah Crichton, Taking The Stone, Scratch And Sniff). But there hasn't been one yet, for me, that has been downright painful. Compare these against Picard Turns Into A Marmoset, Mua'Dib Wesley, I Left Data's Head In San Francisco, My Pet Borg and anything *anything* with Lwaxana Troi.

        Even compared against the the best of TNG (A Matter Of Honor, Yesterday's Enterprise, The Best of Both Worlds, Unification, All Good Things...) the best of FS holds its own (Nerve, Crackers Don't Matter, The Way We Weren't, Liars Guns and Money, Icarus Abides, The Choice).

        Someone else mentioned this, but it bears repeating. What makes FS good is the relatively light touch when it comes to invoking technobabble. Yes, the DRDs and the translator microbes do come in handy from time to time. But you rarely get the old TNG "If I realign the deflector to emit the Particle Of The Week, we might just be able to get out of this!" Thanks Geordi, here's your cookie.

        Oh, and here's a little something other sci-fi shows could pick up on. Notice how they actually move the camera from time to time and choose creative shot compositions? Again, I liked TNG, but sometimes it felt like it was being filmed by a set of surveillance cameras.

        None of this is to say that FS is perfect. For my taste, they're a little self-conscious with the made-up time and distance units (what's Moya's top speed, in metras per arn?) I understand the need for bogus expletives, but if Rygel says "yotz" one more time I'm gonna kick the frelling hezmona out of him. Also, these translator microbes must really be something. No one seems to notice that Crichton's not actually speaking Sebacean when he passes himself off as a Peacekeeper.

        But why quibble? If the Trek techs could rig the transporter to cure Dr. Polaski, why would anyone ever die of anything? On balance, FS is a decent show.
    • I've found that on a lot of those multi-seasonal science fiction shows, not catching it from the beginning will leave you thinking it's weak. At this point in the series, almost all of the character interaction is based on what's happened in previous episodes. Someone will make a comment, and a meaningful look will be exchanged. If you've seen it from the beginning, you know exactly what they're thinking.
    • No, you're not.

      I personally have never been impressed by Farscape.

      It's kind of like a "the muppets in space on crack" or something. The whole puppet alien thing really gets to me too. This was fine for the time of the first three Star Wars, or TOS. Moreover, it's way heavy on the fiction and light on the science too. Couple all that with some shoddy acting worthy of the first season ST:TNG and some uninspired plotlines (not that other scifis can't do that as well), and it's all very ho-hum.

      Again, I don't like it. But I think maybe ever since B5 left my television nothing else really compares... I guess I've been spoiled!
    • The Critic is on Comedy Central.

      And Farscape is incomprehensible in the middle of a multi-episode story arc. But watch a few episodes in a row and you'll fall in love.
    • In Farscape, the main character died in the final episode of this season. So it is going to be interesting to see how they continue the show.

      Seems to be the big thing to do. Kill off the main character, and see how to return them from the dead. Note Buffy of all things, which is pretty lame in this respect.

      At least in Bab5, dead was dead, and was pretty permanent for most characters.

      maybe it is all just a bad dream.

      • At least in Bab5, dead was dead, and was pretty permanent for most characters
        Unless you die on Zha'ha'duum (or however it's spelled). Then you don't really die for another 20 years. That was just as much of the cliffhanger-death-thats-not-a-death hook as other shows use. (Not that I mind, B5 was the best - but it did use that some old plot device just like everyone else did. The difference was that the event was planned from the very beginning of the show, so it seemed to "fit" better than in other shows where they do it.)
        • Unless you die on Zha'ha'duum (or however it's spelled).

          Funny thing about that, it's spelt Z'ha'dum even though it's pronounced "zah-ha-doom"... go figure.

          The difference was that the event was planned from the very beginning of the show

          And it had a damned good plot.
          and it had damned good plot continuity.
          and it had damned good graphics.
          and it had damned good characters.
          and it had damned good character development.
          and it had realistic plots.
          and it had realistic tech.
          (and I can go on) =)
      • In Farscape, the main character died in the final episode of this season. So it is going to be interesting to see how they continue the show.


        Well, sort of. Remember he was "twinned" several episodes back. One went off on Talon and the other stayed on Moya (sp?). The Talon one, who developed a relationship with Eryn and figured out how wormholes tick, died. The Crichton on Moya is still alive.

      • I take it you haven't seen several episodes in the third season, which doesn't end until January. Pa'u Zotoh Zhaan is dead for good (the actress who played her left the show) and one of the two John Crichtons died. Crichton was duplicated in the episode "Eat Me," with each copy eventually traveling on different ships while attempting to evade the Peacekeepers. The only character that was ever truly resurected was Aeryn Sun, but the process proved quite detrimental to Zhaan's health. All of the other characters only died in the sense that some hospital patients may die and be resuscitated while undergoing an operation.
        • by tap (18562)
          There have been a few more than that.

          In the episode with the Tavloids, er Tavleks, Rygel gets choaked to death by a guard before a commerical, then after the break he is brought back to life by the squid thing in the cell next to him.

          Stark is killed when he's dispersed as a punishment for blowing up the nuclear waste aliens' ship after D'argo rats on him. But then he comes back to life in another episode.

          Durka, the captain of the Zelbenion, is a dead corpse in the episode "PK Tech Girl", but in "Durka Returns" it turns out he faked his death and was captured by the Nebari and frozen for 100 years or so. His ship is sucked out of Moya and explodes at the end of that eposide. But then later it turns out he lived (he ducked when the ship exploded) and now leads the Zenetan pirates. He appears right before a commercial break and then Rygel kills him and sticks his head on a stick right afterwards.

          Maldus, the magic vampire guy, gets killed at the end of the episode, but then comes back in another and is killed again.

          In one episode Crichton appears to have killed Scorpius after his cooling rods explode, but then we find out he didn't die, just got a headache.

          D'Argo appears to get eaten in the episode "Eat Me", but then we find out the weird dude made a backup copy of D'Argo before eating him so he's still around. Chiana also gets eaten (not like that! maybe the uncut verison..) but we see her get copied first so it's not a return from the dead.

          The weak surgeon alien that took apart Chrichton's brain appears to die when Scorpius breathes on him. But next season we find out he was just passed out, and he survies just long enough to put Chrichton's brain back before a scaran breathes on him and dies for good.

          In one episode Chrichton is frozen in carbonite (it worked for Han Solo) and his head is cut off and tossed in a pool of hot acid. But carbonite is tuff stuff, so in the next episode they fish out his head, stick it back on, and revive him.

          Aeryn's mother Xhalax cuts Rygel in half when she escapes in the episode "Relativity". But then Stark stiches him back together with magic healing vine and he comes back to life.

          In that same epsidode, Crais kills Xhalax when they recapture her, but then she comes back in another episode because Crais just really just pretended to kill her.

          And Zhaan might not really be dead. The last episode ended with Stark staying Zhaan is trying to contact him from behond the grave (compost pile?) and he's going to leave Moya for a while and look for her.

          That's all I can think of off the top of my head, but clearly there have been quite a few "he wasn't really dead" plot twits.
  • It will really give a lot of the newer Science Fiction TV show a run for their money. I know at the beginning I was unimpressed with Farscape, but it has been developing, and the audience it has gained has acquired its taste. The Soap Opera-tic style combined with the comedic mannerisms really give the show a uniqueness that you don't really find in a lot of today's Science Fiction shows.
  • Sorry, I think it fits. 2151 is still a time of military rule, and exploration is just starting, not well underway.

    I like it.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      How does that make the theme song fit?

      Like the first person who replied clearly pointed out, the Trek franchise HAS a theme-- why they ditched it (and any instant recognition it had) is beyond ANYONE..

      • Like the first person who replied clearly pointed out, the Trek franchise HAS a theme-- why they ditched it (and any instant recognition it had) is beyond ANYONE..

        I kind of liked it; it went well with the montage opening. You know, after what, 20 years worth of episodes with the orchestral music on the previous 3 series, the old theme was getting a little played out. Especially since each consecutive show had duller and duller opening music.
    • If 2151 is still a time of military rule, why does the song sound so frickin' 1980s?

  • Y'know, from what I read on /. the day the show premiered (And thanks to the morons at DirecTV I don't get UPN), I expected something that was a total disaster.

    I was pleasantly surprised. I have to say I actually like it, a lot. It conveys the theme and mood of the series quite well - we're explorers, and tired of being held back. In a way, I think the music as much sets the pace for the entire series as well as it does for this incarnation of The Franchise itself. Humanity finally coming into it's own.

    I expect the series will have it's ups and downs, but really, how much stagnation do we -want- in Star Trek? Same Theme, Different Stereotypes?

    • by Jerf (17166) on Tuesday October 02, 2001 @11:18PM (#2381719) Journal
      The problem isn't so much the theme itself, IMHO, it's that in ten years, it will seem incredibly dated. (Actually, I'm willing to bet that it will seem dated in 2-4 years, but I'm being conservative here.)

      Even TOS theme isn't that dated, though it does bear a certain '60s vibe.

      Is that a crime? For any other show I'd say no. But for a sci-fi show (and this goes for damn near all of them, not just Star Trek), I don't want a theme that screams "Contemporary!!" In a subtle, yet real way, it pulls me out of the show and drops me back in the year 2001... where, I might add, I'm not much on pop, or light rock, or post-disco semi-calypso, or whatever the hell genre that fits in. (Like I said, I'm not much on it :-) )

      I don't watch a whole lot of other alternative Sci-fi shows... my cable system doesn't run many. But I do get syndicated Stargate SG-1 (which I think is excellent)... same music as the movie. Granted, it takes place in the present time, but still, the theme doesn't drag me into Hip Culture.

      In this day and age, psuedo-classical like the Voyager theme is very neutral to us; it probably wouldn't be if we could listen to our culture with truly fresh ears, but we are who we are. It doesn't take us to the universe of the show; but there's no music that could do that directly. It also doesn't firmly ground us in the early days of the millenium.

      That said, your description: "conveys the theme and mood of the series quite well - we're explorers, and tired of being held back" can be equally well done in a more culturally neutral style, and in fact, probably better. (May be an unpopular opinion, but the style the credits are in now, whatever style that may be, is IMHO one of the least expressive styles imaginable. Plop in some sad words and flip the song to minor and you're a long way to "me and my baby broke up, but I'm screwing her sister so who really cares".)

      All IMHO, but that might help clarify some people's reasons for disliking it.

      Or they may just not care for that style of music.
      • Hrm, interesting. After hearing that theme song, the first image in my head was a dated 80s glam rock band. I already thought it was 10 years outdated.
      • It already is dated, it's some old Rod Stewart song (sung by somebody else)
      • Yes, the current theme song is somewhat contemporary, but in a very pop-music format.

        To combine on several threads, I'd like to see the opening theme go through changes as the series progresses. Farscape and Babylon 5 both did this, so maybe they'll do the same with Enterprise. Or better yet - how about different intros that reflect different world cultures?

        Now for theme song changes you won't see:
        -Enterprise theme song sung by Rob Zombie
        -Techno/Rave version of Enterprise opening
        -Enterprise theme song sung by Bjork (then again, maybe she should do this in light of the TOS theme song)
    • I enjoyed it as well. DS9 and Voyager kept taking place later and later in time, but there's this period of rapid change that takes place closer to our time. I wonder how often the Enterprise will return to Earth, knowing that the warp core only hits warp 5?

      Also, wtf is wrong if the theme song is sung instead of being electronically produced?
      • Who said anything about electronically produced? The themes of the other Treks were all orchestra music, not electronic. In case you can't tell apart the two categories, they consist of:

        Orchestra
        - Chopin
        - Mozart
        - Beethoven
        - Bach

        Electronic
        - Moby
        - Fatboy Slim
        - Orbital

        See the difference?

        Personally, I would much rather hear a theme song without singing in it - it completely ruins the sci-fi mood (bringing us back into the Real World of pop music). But maybe that's just me. I also wouldn't mind if it was electronic or orchestra. :)
      • Earth, knowing that the warp core only hits warp 5?

        The core currently only goes up to warp 5, but don't forget that there are races that have much more advanced warpdrives right now, and considering how earth-to-cronos is like 4 days or something (well, wait, let's not work out the math of that one) I don't think that it will be a limitation in how far they can travel.

        But they'll probably have warps higher than 5 by the end of the first season, no doubt. The first season will probably have a lot of newish technologies/tweaks/new ways of trying things going on. That's one of the benefits of already having those technologies laid out, you just have to plan how to get there.

        You know, a thought just occurred to me. Why would Bakula's Dad not have lived to see his drive hit warp? If Cochran already had a warp drive then there is no reason to see why Bacula's drive couldn't at least do warp before he died, if not warp 5.
    • From what i heard i agree that it fits nicely. Unfortunatly i havnt yet seen the whole episode tho, still waiting for Kazaa to download that one, you americans without UPN think your unlucky! Try living in Australia, right now were are only seeing for the first time Season 6 (YES SIX) of DS9! Not to mention season 5 of Voyager! I dont expect Enterprise here for a few years yet! :( (What about Farscape? You ask? Blockbuster's got it....)

      But i digress., :) From what ive seen it appears that the theme song is trying to play to the wider audience as well as set the stage / time of the show. I think it works, but i will go and re-listen to it again and think about it.

      One thing, it certainly breaks the 'same-old same-old' trend of the previous ST series, yet to be seen how much of a Good Thing(TM) that is..
    • I loved "Enterprise [stenterprise.com]". I loved it so much, I am actually going to write Berman and Braga a note, and tell them how amazing I thought it was...

      Strangely, the only thing that I really hated was the theme song...I suspect that the guy who composed that is going to be the new holder of the "Most Hated Man In Star Trek" title...if he calls, I'll hand over the badge to him...I know I have it someplace.

      I suggest, to anyone who feels the same way about the theme song, that you turn the volume down, and crank up Pink Floyd's "Learning To Fly". Not only is it a cooler song, but it goes very nicely with the visuals.

      The best thing about "Enterprise [stenterprise.com]"?

      Two words:

      Detox. Gel. [time-scape.com]
  • Is Farscape going to still be produced in Australia? Are the commercial networks going to run it here?
    • It may still be 'officially' shown but channel 9 are probably going to treat it like they have many other shows like La Femme Nikita, ie. move it to horrible time slots take it off for weeks on end put back on one night take it off the next etc. etc. etc.

      All this will be compounded by the fact that channel nine now have the *(&)^% footy and will have to squeeze the hours from somewhere, at least the dodgy matches will be given to channel ten so they don't have to screw up their schedules like seven have in the past, but I digress.

      If it continues to air here in Australia, it will most likely be a hit and miss affair.
  • Lexx owns you...
  • Lexx (Score:3, Funny)

    by Glytch (4881) on Tuesday October 02, 2001 @11:06PM (#2381678)
    What I really like about Lexx is how each episode starts off dull, but gradually gets weirder and weirder until you're asking "What the FUCK were the writers smoking?!"

    Oh, and the sex is good. Yes, I'm shallow, but dammit, I like it, so bug off.

    *sniff* Makes me proud to be a Maritimer.

    • Re:Lexx (Score:1, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      What the FUCK were the writers smoking?!

      Cock.
  • Best Show Ever. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by antis0c (133550) on Tuesday October 02, 2001 @11:06PM (#2381679)
    3 simple words that describe Farscape. I don't think I've seen a Scifi show ever that is like Farscape. ST:TNG was good, but it was never as interesting as Farscape. I think it's partly because everyone can relate to John Crichton. Just a semi-regular guy who was in the space industry sucked into a wormhole and into the middle of another part of the universe. Completely stupidified by everything. It makes you think man what is he going to find out next. And it's the simple stuff, like the second episode of the series he finds out how the people he's with brush their teeth. There are plenty of unanswered questions, like why do Peace Keepers look so much like humans, why is Jool's DNA related to Crichton's, ton's of stuff. They haven't even really elborated on the characters in the show very much at all. Mostly basic stuff and a little extra here and there, there are worlds of ideas and topics they've yet to cover, and thats what makes this show so good and fresh in my opinion. Now I'll click Submit and check back for a fresh amount of flames because I said it was better than ST:TNG.
    • since I think LEXX is better. The episodes are definitely quirky and sort of like Moonlighting (the old Bruce Willis TV series) in space. The third season had extremely beautiful CG effects.


      I am sad to hear that this is probably the last season of LEXX.

    • Re:Best Show Ever. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Rogerborg (306625) on Wednesday October 03, 2001 @08:20AM (#2382648) Homepage
      • I don't think I've seen a Scifi show ever that is like Farscape

      I wrote it off because of the "damn muppets", and only eventually and very reluctantly sat down to watch an episode at the insistence of a long suffering friend, who just kept patiently plugging it while I teased him mercilessly.

      Oh my. Oh my.

      For those who haven't seen it, here's a taster of how slick and knowing it is. Picture our protagonists fighting off an attack by evil space pirates armed with powerful strap-on bracer weapons. Our ersatz-Klingon protagonist picks up a discarded weapon and straps it on. It injects some glowing green goo into him. After the pirates are beaten off, ersatz-Klingon is still angry and bellowing, and declares that he should lead the ship in this crisis.

      How would Star Trek handle this? Fifteen minutes of hammering the point home, while he cackles maniacally and the crew go "Gee, Dargo seems a little out of sorts today. Is he wearing black eye liner?" and we shout "He's evil! Get the weapon off of him! You idiots!"

      On Farscape, his companions exchange one subtle glance - and no words - and jump him the instant his back is turned. The writers expect us to know the genre and to have figured it out. No patronising exposition is required, no frustrating and uncharacteristic period of ignorance by the crew. I really appreciate that.

      This theme continues through most of the episodes. When the characters can't figure something out, it's not made obvious to us the viewer either. Sometimes the characters figure situations out before the viewer does. Often, there are no obvious solutions to their problems, and the solution is rarely if ever a Particle of the Week or a Deus Ex Machine.

      Farscape treats its characters and its viewers with equal respect. The characters never get conveniently dumb, and the viewers aren't expected to either. I really appreciate that.

    • Re:Best Show Ever. (Score:2, Interesting)

      by CS_Snapple (469132)
      I'd have to agree with you. I'd watched previews for the show for two years, and they NEVER made me want to see the an actual episode.

      Then one day, my friend brought over about 20 CDs with all of the first two seasons with of episodes. I sat down and ended up watching them all in about a 3 day period. I wasn't expecting to like it... and if I had seen two or three episodes at random out of the two seasons, I probably wouldn't have liked it... but it's REALLY a show that needs you to watch the episodes in the right order.

      None of this "planet of the week" crap like on Star Trek, with no real character development and very little continuity between episodes. Farscape builds off previous episodes. Characters CHANGE. They learn.

      The show is full of subtleties and nuances that would otherwise be missed if you hadn't seen the previous episodes.
    • I don't think I've seen a Scifi show ever that is like Farscape.

      Yeah, it's certainly original. The characters are more interesting than those on most TV shows (never mind other SF shows!). And it's the first space opera I've seen that admits that the future will be a messy place -- rather like the present.

      But if it's the Best SF Show Ever, it's only because the competition is so laughable. I'm most bothered by the weak science. (Helium farts? A very mammalian-looking alien who's supposed to be a walking plant?) I never miss an episode, but it's not the kind of show I enjoy watching over and over.

      What really bugs me is SciFi Channel's stupid scheduling. I don't mind that they counter-schedule, so their TV season begins when the regular networks' are ending. But couldn't they find a way to do it without a 4 month hiatis every fall? It means that Farscape and Lexx get cut off in mid arc. By the time the shows return, you've lost all your sense of continuity. Not the way to build viewer loyalty!

  • Good geek TV (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Sanity (1431) on Tuesday October 02, 2001 @11:10PM (#2381689) Homepage Journal
    Well, Farscape was always too "muppets" for me, but in the unlikely event that anyone cares, here is what interests me on TV these days :-
    • Stargate SG1
      Perhaps it is just a throw-back to those days in my youth watching McGyver, but this is a good show, scientifically plausable, interesting plot, and compelling characters.
    • Earth - Final Conflict
      Not actually on any more, but recent enough to be interesting. Amazing special effects, and an interesting plot where you never really know whether the aliens are good guys, bad guys, or somewhere in between (the reality being the latter). In that sense, it mirrors the complexity of real life.
    • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
      While the last season got somewhat depressing in places, the people behind "The Onion" have consistently provided a tongue-in-cheek, very funny dialog which, until recently didn't take itself too seriously. Also, new season just starting, can't talk long.
    • BBC World News
      One of the few ways to watch TV News which actually talks about that insignificant part of the world outside the US.
    • Law and Order
      There is just something about the consistent style, interesting plots, and slightly sick humor that makes this the best Cop show since "The Bill" (it's a Brit thing - Yanks need not worry).
    • Re:Good geek TV (Score:2, Interesting)

      by LordNimon (85072)
      The new season of E:FC is starting this week.
      • Maybe where you are.

        Here in Canada, it's all over. Just like First Wave.

        I'll miss them both, kinda. Although First Wave's ending was a bit ... lacking. Final Conflict went out in a much more interesting way. However, First Wave made up for it for being a much better show through the years.

        Current shows I'm watching now:

        • Buffy - yeah. I can't believe it. This show used to suck so amazingly much, it made me physically ill to watch it. However, I started watching Angel, and consequently, discovered that the writing has improved, the acting has improved, and well... it's now a really good show. TV horror is usually awful: but this is different.
        • Beastmaster - Why this is my favourite show, I'm not sure. It's just really well-written fantasy, and dammit, they kill characters. It can be rather cheesy, though. (Well, it was my fave show last season, anyway.)
        • Wolf Lake - Speaking of TV horror... only two eps so far, but really good: better than expected actually. Which probably means it's doomed. Whenever I like a show this much, and it's funded by Americans... sigh. (Another example: All Souls. Gone after, what, 6 episodes? Brimstone... Fantasy Island (with McDowell)... Empire (4 eps in 1984)... Earth 2 (which actually got a whole season)... but on the other hand, Max Headroom only got one season too.)
        • X-Files - I really like Robert Patrick. Even if this is still a Carter show. Sigh. Carter comes so close to making excellent television.
        • Angel - Well, of course I'm still watching this, given that it's what got me watching Buffy. Tonight's episode was really good, I thought.
        • Outer Limits - Best SF show in a long, long while. Certainly the best Canadian SF show ever.
        • Immortal & Andromeda - Fun shows.

        Anyway, that's mostly it. There are other shows I watch sometimes, when I'm in the mood, and shows I watch in reruns. I'm pretty loyal to Open Mike now, too.

        I was mildly surprised to like the initial episode of Pasadena. We'll have to see if Delany can continue to hold the show together: although actually there are some pretty talented people in the rest of the cast, too.

        But I don't get Farscape. Maybe it's the best show on TV. Oh well. :)

      • by Sanity (1431)
        Thanks, I have programmed my Tivo accordingly
    • Stargate SG1 Perhaps it is just a throw-back to those days in my youth watching McGyver, but this is a good show, scientifically plausable, interesting plot, and compelling characters.

      Hey, how many Stargate teams are there? I watch this show occasionally and don't understand. Are there multiple "SG teams" or is there just the SG-1?

      Law and Order There is just something about the consistent style, interesting plots, and slightly sick humor that makes this the best Cop show since "The Bill" (it's a Brit thing - Yanks need not worry).

      No way. Best cop show in the past decade would have to be Homicide. Better writing, better stories, better chracters and characterizations.

    • Earth - Final Conflict just started a new season... I think the last, it is looking to be more interesting that the previous ones at that.

      • Gene Roddenbury Timeline:
        (reposted on Slashdot in an obvious attempt at karma whoring)

        - Earth: Final Conflict
        - Star Trek
        - Andromeda

        All were supposed to originally be Star Trek universe.
    • Dude!! You forgot West Wing... that's gotta be one of the best drama shows on yet...
      • Farscape was always too "muppets" for me

      Witty and knowing? Really, give it a try. It's the most complete show in terms of writing, acting and cinematography. Yes, the puppetry can look a little fake, but high budget puppetry still wipes the floor with low budget CGI. Did you see the Voyager episode with the flying spikey tentacled pyramid things? It was painfully embarrasing to watch the actors trying to wrestle with bits of empty space. Farscape avoids that by having physical beasties, and also by clever cuts and angles rather than monotonous mid range shots.

      • Re:Good geek TV (Score:2, Insightful)

        by GooberToo (74388)
        I agree. My wife and I were just watching a re-run of Farscape last night and mentioned to each other how well the "slug dude" (Rigel(sp?)) is done. For the most part, if willing, you can completely accept both Rigel(sp?) and Pilot as just another character. Both are done rather excellently. It's important to keep in mind that many people have problems doing that because they are so used to the stick-in-the-mud concept (okay -- brainwashed by lesser shows) that everyone should be bipedal humanoid and roughly the same size as presented in every other scifi shows since we were wee-tad kids. Farscape moves beyond that horrible preconcept.

  • by 575 (195442)
    Chrichton, a man lost
    Uncharted territories
    His doom, two more years
  • > So much potential if they don't screw it up.

    And even if they do screw it up, it'll still be on the air for at least five years.
  • Farscape Newbie (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jethro (14165) on Tuesday October 02, 2001 @11:17PM (#2381712) Homepage
    I've been hearing a lot about Farscape, but never watched it because I didn't want to jump in in the middle.

    Thankfully SciFi started re-airing it and this time I caught it. I think Season 2 just started on the reruns. Can anyone tell me what they're up to in the 'real' ones? I want to start watching those but I don't know where exactly they're at (Season 3 somewhere?)

    I'd have taken notice of Farscape a LOT earlier if someone had told me Jim Hanson's Creature Shop was involved. The look & feel of the alien muppets beats the living daylights out of the "Nose Of The Day Department" who seems to do Star Trek. Then again when Farscape does have Human-Like aliens it's usually "Different Skin Colour" aliens.

    I also love how everyone except Crichton has an Australian accent. And how badly they're trying to hide it. Yes, I know it's because the show's filmed there.

    Plotwise, it's ok. The first season did have quite a few "Standard SciFi Plot #42" episodes, and some corny stuff (Scorpius? I mean... come on...), but I still like it. The characters are a lot more real than in Trek.

    It's still not Babylon 5, but hey.
    • Re:Farscape Newbie (Score:2, Informative)

      by Pfhor (40220)
      The later into the series, they usually get more diverse aliens, but there are a lot of humaniods, not as close as star trek, where it really is most ly facial makeup changes. I don't know if anyone can find the actual article, but i remember reading somewhere some theories that pretty much said that other intelligent life out there has a good chance of being humanoid because of some basic ideas of convergent evolution (like how in australia there are species which look similar to ones in north america, but have a very different ancestry). I also think they threw in the humans with ink thing because at the beginning they didn't have a lot of money, so they probably spent a lot of their money on the big puppets (pilot, rygel, d'argo's costume, etc.) and were left with enough money for body paint and sparkly things.

      But it works.

      Chiana is hot. I am still unconvinced that andromeda is better (it's more of a hercules in space thing).
    • Re:Farscape Newbie (Score:2, Informative)

      by IBgrad (162010)
      Go to scifi's farscape page. You can read the "journey log" wich is essentially a teaser for each episode. It is best if you just read up to where you are to get an idea of what it going on. But the logs leave enough unsaid to still make the episodes worth watching if you are like me and loose control and just read all of them. Right now they are rerunning earlier season 3 stuff on fridays. This Friday they will be showing "Thanks for Sharing," and Wednesday they will show "Family Ties" the last episode of season 1. There will not be any truly new episodes until the season finale in January. After you read the journey logs there is lots of other interesting stuff, like the character profiles and Chrichton's notes. Though my personal favorite was the "character insights" with the director that are in the "farscape primer." The character insights more than anything will help you get an idea of what is going on in the show.

      Here a link to make it easy for you Farscape [scifi.com]
    • Do you have any idea where one can get a hold of Farscape episodes? I got a few on DVD, but I haven't been able to find many others and I haven't been able to watch past the first 9 episodes =(.
    • Re:Farscape Newbie (Score:2, Interesting)

      by chad_r (79875)

      I also love how everyone except Crichton has an Australian accent. And how badly they're trying to hide it. Yes, I know it's because the show's filmed there.

      Ever heard the actors in Xena or Hercules talk off camera? Or Marina Sirtis' real accent (or perhaps a lack of one, depending on where you live)? It really throws your brain for a loop, doesn't it?

      I think the gist in Farscape is that the Peacekeepers all speak with an Australian accent. Whenever Crichton tries to infiltrate them, he fakes a horribly done British-type accent.

      BTW, I agree with all the praise previously posted here. Top-notch writing that never spoonfeeds to the audience. I thinks it's unique in the way it has set up the characters and their interactions. The main characters are all (until the 3rd season) escaped prisoners, their dishonorably discharged captor, or a clueless alien (human) outsider. There is always an inherent mistrust that surfaces occasionally, just as it would in real life. They mostly work together out of mutual benefit, but ultimately they each want to go back to their home planet, and no one is going to sacrifice their chance so someone else can go first. They've backstabbed and stolen from each other, and even forceably cut off one of the ship pilot's arms (it regenerated) to trade for information. You do need to pay attention; if a character is lying or scheming, there won't be a wink to the audience to let us in on it.

      And if you're watching 2nd season in reruns, it gets even better. Scorpius royally kicks ass! What a truly frightening character.

      • Ever heard the actors in Xena or Hercules talk off camera? Or Marina Sirtis' real accent (or perhaps a lack of one, depending on where you live)? It really throws your brain for a loop, doesn't it?
        Yeah, I know that - the Marina Sirtis thing is just totally dumb (they didn't want to have TWO characters with a british accent).

        The Xena people seem to fake an American accent a lot better - on Farscape they don't try, which I think is great. I honestly wasn't complaining about it, I do find it funny that even Chrichton's father has an Australian accent.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Taco seems to be watching a lot of TV nowadays, in addition to the 12 hours/day of Anime. All he has left to do when VA closes is add his fat ass to the bottom of the welfare rolls...
  • If you happen to be unlucky enough to live in an area where you can't get Enterprise at all (no UPN, no WB) how can you see it? I heard the pilot is online somewhere, but heck if I can find it...

    Sure would be nice to see it for myself!
  • I am so happy to hear about the farscape renewal.. I think people generally like it because they seem to connect with John. There are not many "crew members" 5?6? so I think viewers seem to follow the show a bit better than say star trek.. when that unknown guy in engineering walks by or that guy in the yellow shirt that gets killed every episode...
    Farscape keeps me wondering what's next... The show rocks... One of the better shows Tivo decided to record.. ;)

    ChiefArcher
  • The best Sci-Fi since Mad Max (Road Warrior for you Yanks). Only problem is, we don't get to see it here. Season 1 is currently showing on Cable on the FoxKids channel, but that's it. It ran for about 4 weeks on free to air, on Channel 9, who incidentally are co-produces of the show, but they pulled it.

    LEXX is becoming more popular here, but still is only shown on Cable. Again, it was on late Sunday nights on Free to Air on Channel 7 here, but only for the first season.
    • How long was the first season?

      I think I saw about three or four episodes scheduled for on channel seven but I missed one of them, I saw the rest, but still, a bit short for a season.
      If memory serves me, I think the first one was either on christmas or boxing day at about midnight.
    • Unfortunately (for me at least) cable is the only real way to get most sci-fi shows here (in the US) is super late at night (aka 1-4 am) or cable. Most markets don't have a UPN station...

      I live next to the third largest city in PA as an example let me take you on a tour of local TV... ABC, NBC, & CBS (the three major networks) have all had stations here for years... PBS came in in the early 70's... & A local college started a fox affiliate back in '93 so we've had them for a bit (though fox eventually bought out the station from the college so no good shows have lasted)... Otherwise you'd best own cabble... & where I live (about 15-20 miles from the city I'm talkign about) the cable company is a monopolistic piece of crap, they don't care about providing good TV to their customers or price... They know quite well you don't have any choice unless you go satellite...

      So It's not just an AUstralian thing.... & I'd rather shoot myself than watch ABC/NBC/CBS, so I spend countless hours online instead... I do miss sci-fi shows though...
  • by p24t (312611)
    Farscape is a unique take on a space-exploring sci-fi show. Crichton is thrust into a completely alien environment, with no other humans. (although Sebatians don't really require makeup). Each of the other main characters are different species, a couple of them are non-humanoid, and are therefore puppets. The other planets and races they run into are strange and bizarre, and you never know what to expect.

    The ship itself, which the pilot is connected to biologically, is itself a living being, and sometimes makes decisions on its own. The show seems to have explored the living-ship aspect quite well.

    The show's main focus is usually on Crichton, who is confused from the start. He doesn't understand anything, much less how he got there. Of course, he learns quickly (Humans have to be good for something.) but is still considered by the rest of the crew to be inferior.

    The crew, being made of excaped prisoners, is always on the run, but they don't start off by trusting each other, except by necessity. On more than one occasion, one member has betrayed the rest. Each different species has their own quirks, and biological differences, from D'Argo's self-poisonous blood to Rigel farting helium.

    The language-barrier is tacked by implanted microbes, which, while something that has to be tackled by the type of show, doesn't immediately take effect on Crichton. The different languages also cause problems with other non-implanted beings later. But at least it's not the 'magic auto-translating badge' or other methods used elsewhere.

    The plots are good, the episodes are well-written and interesting, and the acting is great. While watching it, I forget that Rigel and Pilot are puppets. I recommend it to anyone who likes science fiction, just watch a couple episodes. It's not for everybody, but what is?

    p24t
  • I just started getting into Farscape. The first couple of times I watched it all I could think of was "WTF?" The plot arches feed on each other and it took a couple of shows for me to get an understanding of what was going on. Now Farscape is one of my favorites.

    btw, I just watched the Buffy season opener and now understand why people are such big fans. Now all I need is a TIVO and my few last hours of free time will be gone.

  • Scorpius, Claudia Black, and frilling hot grits.
  • Did Babylon 5 set a standard form Sci-Fi that all new series try to go for?
  • Uh. Otherwise it seems OK
  • at mightybigtv.com [mightybigtv.com] The link is slow, as they have been having really nasty server problems lately. But, when the server works this is one of my favorite sites (Ok, I watch a lot of TV). Sorry for the blatant plug, but I thought this was something that everyone might enjoy. Ahh, who am I kidding, this is just going to overload the server more. Don't click the link. There will be no clicking. You are getting sleepy..... Pete
  • ... isn't Furscrape or Star Truck or Legs or any of that garbage : the pinnacle of space SciFi on TV is undeniably Red Dwarf [reddwarf.co.uk].

    Disguised Aussie accents in Farscape ? Lister's accent [radioactivecat.com] sure beats the smeg out of it. Food replicators in Star Trek ? small potatoes compared to cow vindaloo [cervenytrpaslik.cz]. Data the android ? how about Kryten the 3000 series mechanoid [radioactivecat.com] ? and 790 the robot head is really ugly compared to Holly [tripodnet.nl].

  • But, Back in Sydney (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mrgrumpy (26629) on Wednesday October 03, 2001 @12:03AM (#2381846) Homepage

    It's ironic that Farscape is filmed in Sydney, Australia where I live, but Channel 9, co-sponsor of the show isn't showing it since season 1 finished last year. In the regular sci-fi timeslot of Tuesday and Wednesday nights they are showing ST:TNG (again) and Roswell. They aren't even repeating B5 yet!

    The I hear runours that it's showing in other cities in Australia, but still not Sydney. What's the story? It's even been taken off the Channel 9 web site, which makes it even harder to work out what is happening.

    It's quite surreal to see Sydney bush scenes, with the plants spray painted blue or something similar, or Sydney beach scenes (remember, I've only seen season 1) for what is primarily an American show.

    Oh, of course. How silly of me, it's on cable. Unlike the US, cable TV doesn't have the same market penetration over here yet. Well, I can always go over to my mum and dad's place and watc them ... at 3:30am!

  • I know for a fact that Farscape is keeping several production/post prod facilities afloat down here whilst our local industry is in a fairly bad slump at the moment. Don't know if the CG is done here though, probably not.
    They might also have been encouraged by the recent anouncement of hefty tax breaks for produtions worth more than AUS$15 (US$8)million.

  • ...and speaking of things that have got to go, what about that damn black bar on TNN? Who's the genius that cooked that up? I'd actually like that channel if that thing weren't there, especially since TNG looks better than it has in years, but I just can't stomach that bar, cutting off the bottom of the picture.

    And to lump a totally unrelated topic into this post, did anyone catch the season premiere of Andromeda last weekend? I think my local station accidentally ran it a week early. I really want to like that show (as someone here said once, it's all about the ladies, and yes, it is), and I keep waiting for it to improve, but it never seems to get better. Too many implausible plot twists to keep the story on the right track. If you saw the season opener, you'll recall a huge one, but I won't post that big of a spoiler.

  • Why I like it. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sawilson (317999) on Wednesday October 03, 2001 @02:09AM (#2382078) Homepage
    Farscape completely nails the space opera genre. Period. While nailing it, the characters are very well developed, and you actually care about them. The plots are incredible because:

    1. They don't always come out on top, or completely walk away supreme victors in conflict.

    2. A lot of the time (much like in cowboy bebop) they don't come out ahead in the end because of something they did, they do because of weird luck, or the source of conflict making a huge mistake. So it's not predictable.

    3. They focus a lot on things that happen in the past to season plots without overdoing flashback sequences (also like cowboy bebop)

    4. Their technical voodoo bullshit sounds reasonable.

    5. They will kill a character off.

    6. They have the soap opera feel, and the cliffhanger crafting completely nailed also.

    So basically, it's done intelligently. I hate watching a show and having my intelligence insulted. There's only been once episode (that crappy dance club, people milking episode) that truly sucked ass. I swear they accidentally let some brain dead shitty 60's movie director man the helm for some unknown reason. The only scifi I watch on TV at this point is Farscape, Outer Limits, cowboy bebop, outlaw star (more to see where they are going with it) and Stargate SG1 reruns. Even though Stargate SG1 is pretty predictable most of the time, it still has a big screen feel to it that I like. The characters are better than the plot, but good enough that watching it is still fun. I initially caught the first episode of farscape on scifi by accident at a friends house (Hey Dave) around the time it first aired, and they were playing it 3 times a day. I was hooked from then on. I had just grown completely sick of X-Files, and it completely replaced it. I can't wait for the new episodes. The awesome thing is that as the show matures, it gets better. My girlfriend and I were really worried that they'd apply the LEXX treatment to the show to try to push the ratings, or keep it on top. Then they brought the annoying big titted redhead on the show, and it really looked like it was going that way. I swear they must have changed directors or something for a little bit. Either way, things improved and it's me and my girlfriends favorite show at this point.
      • 4. Their technical voodoo bullshit sounds reasonable

      Joyously so. "Spare me the technobabble, gadget girl, let's just get on with it." I nearly wet myself.

    • There's only been once episode (that crappy dance club, people milking episode) that truly sucked ass.
      Man, that episode ruled! They let the director go all wacky with camera angles and music, it was like one long acid trip. I thought they did a really good job. (Not as good as Aranofsky, but very good nonetheless) That's one of the reasons I enjoy the show, not only is the plot different in each episode, but they're stylistically different. There are a lot of ways of telling a story, and they seem to be willing to experiment.

      The other thing I love about the show is that stuff happens that you just don't expect. The show is FAR from predictable. They explore ideas that just don't occur to most people: Plants as sentient beings? What's the world like with a duplicate of yourself? Criminal insanity - "Family? Food? What's the difference?" Characters DIE. Characters can be ANNOYING FUCKS, but can still be worthwhile beings. Creative lifeforms -- living ships with symbiotic pilots?

      Good shit.

      --Bob

  • by Danae's Dad (522802) on Wednesday October 03, 2001 @02:20AM (#2382098) Homepage

    Until recently I'd never seen more than ten seconds of Farscape. They don't run it on any of the free-to-air channels in Sydney, much to the ire of many. I'm not much of a TV watcher myself, but I don't mind the odd episode of ST:TNG and happily admit to having been hooked by Babylon 5 when they were playing it on late night timeslots four years ago here in Sydney. I only knew about Farscape because my brother once played a bit part in an alien bodysuit for one episode. But now I've seen three whole minutes, and what's more, most of them not yet seen by the public, because last night I sang in the soundtrack recording for the penultimate episode (21) of the 3rd season at the Sony studios in Sydney. The production company contracted us (the Sydney Chamber Choir [sydneychamberchoir.org]) to provide sixteen male voices for a couple of hours. The music was dark and Mozart-Requiem-like with lots of low notes, and we had to make it sound as much like a Russian choir as possible (for the choral iliterati, that means cavernous and subsonic).

    SPOILER FOLLOWS

    In the scenes we accompanied, an immense spaceship was being destroyed, water everywhere, and there was a tense meeting between some human bloke and a mean-looking alien commander in a black leather headpiece with a shrivelled face and pointy teeth (seems it was his ship being pounded). They both wore identical technological amulets which they discarded while talking. This seemed to be significant. There was no dialogue track, so all we had to go on were the visuals. Does any of this make sense to you diehards out there?

  • Or (Score:2, Insightful)

    by sawilson (317999)
    you could actually purchase the ones you can get on DvD, and watch them every night at 8pm on scifi. Not to be a dick about getting something for nothing, but I'd actually feel guilty about getting pirated copies of this show. This is not your father's scifi.
  • love that farscape (Score:2, Insightful)

    by maxpublic (450413)
    I love Farscape - it's made more of an impression on me than any SF show since I first saw ST:TOS. Great characters, actors that can actually act, interesting plots, continuing story arcs (no Trek reset button), no inconsistent gaping tech holes, and, of course,

    BABES

    Claudia Black. Gigi Edgly. Oh my.

    I can't think of any other show I've seen where my favorite character is the *ship* and my second is a puppet (Pilot). Or where the women kick such ass, or the main character screws things up as often as he saves the day.

    Trek you can predict in the first two minutes of any ep. In Farscape you never know what's going to happen. Except, of course, that there'll be at least one or two hilarious moments, and that someone is bound to act like an asshole in a most unheroic - but most human - way.

    Max
  • by invid (163714) on Wednesday October 03, 2001 @07:44AM (#2382582) Homepage
    What I like about Farscape is that it is a retelling of the classic Edgar Rice Burroughs books, particularly the John Carter, Warlord of Mars series. These are pure escapist stories--literally. It is about escaping from familiar into the bizzare--into a land of danger, beautiful women, capture, rescue, and battles against evil. It is well done, has good eye candy, has a mishmash of appealing characters, and the plot twists are interesting enough to keep me involved. I like it.
  • Farscape rocks (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jjohn (2991) on Wednesday October 03, 2001 @08:34AM (#2382692) Homepage Journal

    It took me a good while to give it a chance, but damn is it good. Space opera is back with a vengeance! Farscape often tells stories better than any show I've on television. From the writting to visual effects, this show has it all. I think it's one of the best kept secrets on TV. It's not exactly the televised novel that B5 was, but many shows are connected and the series feels like it's going somewhere. Here's a few reasons to give Farscape a chance:

    • The main characters don't always get along. In fact, they often betray each other
    • Characters make decisions that have lasting consequences
    • Leather fetishists will adore the PeaceKeepers!
    • Muppets, what's not to love?
    • The human, for most of the first season, is treated as nearly useless
    • The series is set in a mildly dystopian near future
    • Talking, sexy plants!
    • The villians are credible and relentless
    • The way stories are told is often incredible. Non-linear stories, warner brothers-like cartoons, omninous endings. Farscape's got it all
  • by Kostya (1146)
    I know conclude that despite all of CmdrTaco's talk about anime and such, he is clearly a sci-fi poser. Lexx is the bottom of the barrel, below even all those bad Mark Hamill movies (which at least have the fact that they document the plummeting career of a scifi beloved going for them).

    Lexx is crap. Not Andromeda crap (i.e. sketchy scifi/science) which is still fun. Lexx is crap-crap. Utterly iredeemable. It is the TV equivalent of Battlefield Earth.

    • I know conclude that despite all of CmdrTaco's talk about anime and such, he is clearly a sci-fi poser. Lexx is the bottom of the barrel, below even all those bad Mark Hamill movies (which at least have the fact that they document the plummeting career of a scifi beloved going for them).

      Lexx is crap. Not Andromeda crap (i.e. sketchy scifi/science) which is still fun. Lexx is crap-crap. Utterly iredeemable. It is the TV equivalent of Battlefield Earth.

      Why was this inane comment moderated informative? The only thing the poster said was "Lexx is crap". That tells us nothing. For this to be informative, tell us why you think Lexx is crap; that would (possibly) be informative, or at least interesting. Are the characters unbelieveable? Do the plots have internal or external consistency? Is the writing poor? Are the sets so badly constructed that they wobble when an actor walks by?

      And some examples to back up your claims would be good.

      But just saying "Lexx is crap" is worthless. It is certainly not informative.

When speculation has done its worst, two plus two still equals four. -- S. Johnson

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