Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Farscape: Instructions For Use

I've been indulging in Farscape of late. Perhaps it stems from the knowledge it will be arriving on Blu-Ray this coming November. Merry Christmas and Happy Thanksgiving to me! Let me count the days. And so we wait.

Until then, Farscape, on regular ordinary DVD, has been receiving heavy rotation. Each episode of Farscape is like an event. The series has steadily become one of the most impressive and exciting science fiction journeys I've ever seen and I'm not sure how I missed it along the way. My hope is to bring you a dissection of each classic, special episode in due time.

Executive Producer David Kemper really caught my attention in Farscape: The Official Magazine. I pulled the first issue of the twelve issue run in the hopes of finding some fascinating new insights into Season One.

The final segment in the magazine is dubbed The Producer's Cut and features Kemper waxing poetic on Farscape. Most importantly were five fun bullet points instructing viewers on how to properly assimilate or absorb Farscape. These are probably not required for the intelligent fan, but it's always fun to have a fall back when things get a little crazy.

They are as follow:
5. DO NOT WATCH FARSCAPE AND DO OTHER THINGS [check]. Kemper expects you'll miss something if you are distracted so pay attention to the creators "dense and fast-moving" concoctions.

4. REVEL IN THE DETAILS, THEN STEP BACK [check-sort of]. This is a terrific point about smart television in general, but Farscape in particular here. I think DNA Mad Scientist is a great example of this point. Kemper emphasizes the big picture and stresses avoiding over analyzing. Sometimes, I have a hard time stepping back and avoiding the review of minutia, but when I do it's like a revelation.

3. PAY ATTENTION TO THE CREDITS [check]. I love credits to film and television and it's important to note who the players are in any production. Costume designers, set designers, make-up artists, music, creature designs, directors, writers, actors, guest actors, etc.. How can you not enjoy a good credit roll?

2. EMBRACE THE WORD "REALITY." FARSCAPE IS "REAL" [check] The characters of this show are placed in real situations and make "tough choices" and provide "honest responses" inside of a science fiction framework. Alien or not, these are not single-celled organisms and emotions are real on Farscape. It's one of the things we love about the series and this honesty is what connects us to it.

1. THE WRITING: FARSCAPE IS A NOVEL [check]. The novel has four sections. Each episode is a chapter. Minutes within episodes are "quick-turning, fun-and-danger-filled pages." It is indeed an eclectic thrill ride from entry to entry.

So, my oath [as recommended]:
I will enjoy the hours as they pass. I won't look at the last page. I'll make every effort not to be frustrated as the series wears on and goes in unexpected, unconventional new directions [this will be hard]. I will be patient and I will relish the experience. At least that's the plan. The Cylons on Battlestar Galactica had a plan too - so we were told.


PDXWiz said...

Those are five good recommendations for any sci-fi tv show! Very practical...

Gordon Long

The Sci-Fi Fanatic said...

Yes, it does tend to resonate. The new Battlestar Galactica comes to mind.