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18 June 2014
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Episode Guide
Natural Election

Review

Farscape settles down to a traditional ship-based story for the first time this season, but a constricted stage doesn’t make this a minor episode.

This tense and cunningly paced episode made an advantage out of the series’ inherently claustrophobic setting, making us fear for the crew and feel for poor tortured Moya and Pilot. Given that it was just a load of twine, the vegetative enemy was unsettlingly nasty - a virulent and menacing infestation of space dry-rot.

As usual, the character dynamics are beautiful to watch, especially John and D’Argo’s growing rapport, and Sikozu’s clear infatuation with Scorpius. Wayne Pygram’s portrayal of the half-breed scientist gets ever better - his sardonic smiles, dryer than a rich tea biscuit in the desert, are absolutely irresistible.

Story-arc elements did appear, but in contrast to last week’s Promises, they were fully integrated into the action. In a turnaround that long-term fans will appreciate, D’Argo finally gained the authority he’d previously only pretended to. Aeryn and John’s relationship also spun itself around - now John’s keeping her at arm’s length, rather than the reverse.

It was sad not to see a little more of Aeryn’s old spark, and Rygel’s feelings of guilt didn’t quite ring true, but these are only minor quibbles. Everyone loves it when a plan comes together, as here - even more so when it comes with the hitches, hiccups and last minute salvation that are as traditional to Farscape as the shippy story.

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