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For Farscape fans in Chicagoland and the Great Lakes area.

Sep 17

*Unique* is Always Valuable

You know the saying about how truth is always stranger than fiction?

The news that KFC has locked up their secret recipe in a special bank vault would not have come as a surprise to any Farscape fan, who all saw John Crichton try to do the exact same thing in the first part of the Liars, Guns and Money trilogy.

Liars Guns and Money - A Not So Simple Plan

Akkor: What is your business?
John: This is a depository, right? We have something to deposit.
Akkor: What makes you think we’d be interested?
John: You ever hear of KFC?
Akkor: KFC?
John: It is, to my knowledge, unique in the universe, and unique Рis always valuable.  Now we have managed to procure all 11 secret ingredients. What we need to do now is discuss the terms-

Farscape has never been a show that hit you over the head with anything to do with their characters or their characters’ backgrounds.¬† Although the bare facts of what they say and do and where they have come from are plainly placed in front of the viewer, the finer points and nuances are left to be puzzled and teased out of their actions and reactions.

So, to my mind, John Crichton has always been the one on Moya’s crew to have the quickest reactions to most of their unexpected circumstances.¬† This trait is there in some of the earliest episodes.¬† In Premiere, for example, he figures out that if he doesn’t come to Aeryn’s defense, Crais will do something awful to her.¬† Although Crais pronounces her irreversably contaminated anyway, Crichton’s instincts were absolutely correct.¬† In I, E.T., Crichton figures out how to win Lyneea over to his side by playing on her fascination with extra-terrestrial life.¬† No one else, not even Zhaan with her kind empathy, could’ve siezed on this and turned it to their advantage.¬† When confronted with the bounty-hunter Worf (in ‘Til The Blood Runs Clear), Crichton the one who grasps his nature and starts the “alpha dog” routine, leaving Aeryn sputtering and speechless.¬† In A Human Reaction, after he figures out that the earth he was on is rigged, Ancient Jack tells him that he did well and that most species don’t do as well.

The other characters are by no means dumb, and I’m not trying to set John Crichton up as some sort of paragon.¬† Bialar Crais, for example, is a the sort of man who’s planned out his moves well in advance, and never does anything that doesn’t give him a personal advantage.¬† Both Rygel and Scorpius are well able to see several moves ahead, and make their plans cooly and without being swayed by personal feelings.¬† Aeryn is always cool and calm, and the actions she takes are always exactly appropriate for the situation.¬† She, more than anyone, never over-reacts.¬† Chiana is street smart, and her impulsiveness is driven by her general rule of “kicking, kissing, or crying” her way out of things.¬† It’s a rule that mostly serves her well.

Crichton, however, generally sizes up a situation more quickly, and generally has a fast, instinctive reaction — which sometimes works, and sometimes makes things worse.¬† He’s more like the Brett Favre of Moya’s crew, always finding a move that changes the game.¬† However, like Favre, who usually not only leads the league in passing but also in interceptions, Crichton’s crew mates find him as much exasperating as he is helpful.

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