|Infinite Possibilities, Part 1:|
An unknown race has developed wormhole technology using John's data, and the Ancient isn't happy...
Click here to read the Farscape World synopsis for this episode.
I'm going to say straight away that "Daedalus Demands" was a great episode. Bouncing out of the short lull of episodes recently, it begins a huge, sprawling plot, and sets up a huge cliffhanger for the conclusion next week. It does everything it needs to, and does it well, to be a great first part of a plot that, like the best episodes this season, returns to some plot threads left hanging from season 1. This is one of the things I love the most about Farscape – it may take a while to reveal itself, but little is ever forgotten.
The episode begins with a nice scene in which John is apparently teaching Aeryn to read English, from a book. They're once again tucked up in bed, all nice and cosy (as they have been every episode since "Green Eyed Monster"), and you get the impression that things are going far too well at the moment, and it's all building to disaster. It has to be; this is Farscape and nothing stays this cosy for long! But it's nice to see their intimacy at this level for now. I've said it before and I'll say it again, watching these characters grow is just so wonderful, because they actually do grow and change. Anyhow, the cosiness doesn't last for the whole episode, as John sees that familiar image from "A Human Reaction" – a wormhole leading to Earth. Apparently he's had some kind of mental calling from the Ancients, and has been searching for them since. Well now he's found them, and daddy's not happy.
Apparently some previously unseen race has discovered wormhole technology, and has been using John's Farscape 1 module to fly through unstable wormholes. Yes, unstable. You see, they have also created a phase stabilizer, which solves the problem of liquification that has plagued Scorpius and his Peacekeeper cronies. "Jack" (the Ancient that takes John's father's form) obviously thinks this all ties in with John somehow, but of course he has no idea, so Jack and John want to get to the bottom of it. It's a wonderful excuse to bring another race into the fore, these being the Charrids. I loved the way they were tied into Rygel too, having invaded Hynerian space a thousand years ago, and of course the first bombshell – that the Charrids are allied with the Scarrans. This immediately gave me the impression that these Charrids had to be really nasty, and I wasn't disappointed, even if they do look suspiciously similar to the Vorcarians from related episode "Till the Blood Runs Clear". During the first conversation John and Aeryn have with a Charrid, Aeryn is told she should have brought along her sisters because she won't be enough to pleasure them, and that the Charrids will feast on them later, and their families the next day. The Charrids definitely gave a first impression of distinctly evil, and with Rygel's stories and the confrontation between he and the aforementioned Charrid, they came across as fitting allies for the Scarrans.
But how did the Charrids get the technology? Well, that fault lies in the hands of the ever-lovable Furlow. It was great to see both her and "Jack" back; same as they were in their previous episodes, since both threads left hanging with them were rather big, and in a sense drove the series since they took place. So she's been successful in using John's data to create all this technology, and hired the Charrids for security. The problem is, they turned on her. So not only are they a nasty race, but they can't be trusted either. Furlow also seems under the impression that they're not too clever. One other thing to note about Charrids though; despite their "superior strength," they're very easy to kill. John and friends pick off so many throughout the episode that I gave up counting. And despite this, only one Charrid scored a direct hit. It's amazing (and a long-standing tradition) that bad guys always seem to have such awful aim.
Throughout the episode, John and Aeryn had some wonderful interplay, and the early revelation that Aeryn would go to Earth with Crichton was subtle, yet distinct, and a nice evolution of her previous stance of being unsure of whether she would go with him or not. What continued to be odd though, was Stark's apparent obsession with Aeryn. It was hinted at earlier in the season ("Wait for the Wheel"), but has recently been brought back to the fore, with his comparing her to Zhaan in "Meltdown", and now here he continues the oddness when he gives Aeryn her goggles, and then later when he boasts to Rygel, "She likes me more than she likes you." I find this behaviour quite disturbing, and am intrigued as to where it may be headed. It may just be that he knows that Zhaan cared a great deal for Aeryn, and so he feels that he must too, or it may be more.
Rygel's aforementioned beef with the Charrids led him to agree, with a nice piece of reverse psychology from Aeryn, to taking control of a turret and taking them out. Rygel was kicking some serious ass, and it's another of those moments that you should savour. It's rare that Rygel gets in on the action in such a way, but when he does it's a blast, and it shows that he's more than capable of being able to fight alongside the rest of the crew. The puppeteers did another stellar job with him in "Daedalus Demands;" they really seem to pull out all the stops when they have great material like this. I love to see Rygel in the thick of things, as I love the character, but it almost always leads to him being left in a dire situation. The same holds true here, as cliffhanger number one is... is Rygel dead? Unlikely, but as so often happens on this show, an earlier line comes back to haunt them. Aeryn had told Rygel that if a mortar is fired into the turret he'll die, so what happens? A mortar is fired into the turret, and Rygel is wounded.
Another interesting situation that developed was that because of the solar flares, both Talyn and Crais are now blinded. This poses a most interesting question – with a Scarran dreadnought on its way, how will they outmanoeuvre it? They have little defence, which of course prompts Jack to begin construction of the "ultimate weapon." There was also another small piece of dialogue that seemed to hint at something more. Crais mentioned, as he went to take manual control, that something didn't feel right. He said that it must have been the docking control. Now colour me paranoid but that sounds a little ominous to me. Is it possible that someone or something has boarded Talyn? Without sensors, they'd have no way of knowing. There's an interesting little thread to be picked up there.
So, once Jack decides they must construct the wormhole weapon, John is forced to tell him of the existence of Harvey, the Scorpius neural clone. It all began with Harvey pretty much begging John to not tell Jack of his existence, fearing that if John did then it may come to an end. But once Jack was told, Harvey changed his tune, threatening John by saying that in a battle, either they will both die or he will win. But finally, once Jack begins, Harvey goes back to begging for his life. He clearly doesn't want his existence to come to an end, but John and Jack both agree that they can't unlock the wormhole equations in front of him. Why? Well my initial thought was that this is because if Harvey saw, then he could then take over John, much like in "Die Me, Dichotomy", and then do with them what he will, be that report them to Scorpius or something else. I'm assuming that's the reason, and I'm assuming Jack, who seems to have heard of neural clones before, knows this is a possibility.
So they need to get rid of Harvey. I loved the backdrop for all this – a funfair, and particularly this final scene in which John and Harvey are riding a rollercoaster. Harvey is desperate to live, and seems to be throwing all he can at John, even offering to co-exist. I did find it interesting though that he mentioned that Jack was using John, and when he is finished with him he will kill everyone. This could be just taken as an idle threat, but couple this line with Furlow asking if Jack is really on their side, and Jack's different appearance in his true form compared to the last time we saw him, and you have me thinking that Jack may not be what he appears. I could just be being paranoid again – it could just be that they chose to use a puppet version of Jack because of budget constraints or that Jack's original CGI model was not available (since the CG team has changed since season one), but it just seemed like these lines were hints at something more, and Harvey's advice has always been sound before.
Anyhow, Harvey said that if he fought John he would win, and it appears as though he was speaking the truth. Both John and Jack are knocked to the floor following Harvey and John falling off the rollercoaster (into a wormhole background) in John's mind, and when Aeryn did CPR to wake John, she was met by someone else - it's the return of Scorpius-John! I was shocked by this turn of events, and what a cliffhanger it led us to! After a quick taunt to Aeryn, she pulls John's gun out, and points it at John's head (he's now in Scorpius makeup). With a tear in her eye, and his hand wrapped firmly around her throat, she's ready to fire... And that's where it ends! Blast those three words (no, not fight the future; to be continued).
There's no doubt about it - this was an awesome cliffhanger. With a number of intriguing threads left hanging, most notably Rygel being wounded and Aeryn about to shoot John, I am immensely looking forward to part 2. I was extremely happy that SciFi gave little away in their preview of the conclusion, because wherever it's headed I want to be surprised, just like I was here. This episode was the first script from season three's newest Executive Consultant, Carleton Eastlake (the other being series creator Rockne O'Bannon), and it's a corker, particularly so following the three previous episodes, which were somewhat lacking. This episode has an enthralling plot, some superb foreshadowing, and encompasses a whole host of previous plot threads. With an awesome final few scenes, and a superb cliffhanger, this great episode is one that deserves not to be missed. I also recommend multiple viewings, because there's so much here that you may not notice first time around. A big thumbs-up, and I can't wait to see how this all turns out.
I love to hear your views, whether you agree or disagree, so feel free to e-mail me your feedback. Review by Dani Moure.
To see Mary Wood's review of "Daedalus Demands", click here.
Did You Know?
Talyn seemed to be able to locate, and get to, Dam-Ba-Da awfully quickly. Have they been travelling in circles through the Uncharted Territories, or does it just not take them long to get to places they have charted?
"Daedalus Demands" is the first script from Carleton Eastlake; one of season three's Executive Consultants.
The Charrids have an alliance with the Scarrans, and a Scarran dreadnought is on its way to Dam-Ba-Da. The dreadnought has also downloaded enough information to be able to develop a phase stabiliser.
Talyn and Crais are blinded, so how will they manage to fend off any intruders or the impending arrival of the Scarran dreadnought.
Harvey is willing to fight for his continued existence at all costs, and is still able to take over John, as he does at the end of this episode.
"Jack" may not really be the same Ancient that appeared in A Human Reaction; his appearance was different here and a number of lines of dialogue suggested that he may not be on their side, and may be using John.
The subtitles of this two-parter are based on Greek mythology. Daedalus is a person from Greek mythology, and Icarus is his son. You can find more information here.
Till the Blood Runs Clear
A Human Reaction
Won't Get Fooled Again
Die Me, Dichotomy
Season of Death
Self Inflicted Wounds, Part 1: Could'a, Would'a, Should'a
Self Inflicted Wounds, Part 2: Wait for the Wheel
Infinite Possibilities, Part 2: Icarus Abides
Charrid: "You fear me!"
John: "No, you just smell."
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