and analysis by Dallascaper
Crichton, by Earth standards, is well-educated, technically gifted,
and an accomplished test pilot. Though he was not of military background,
IASA obviously was impressed enough by John's abilities and novel
approach to space travel to fund his Farscape project. However,
once he was thrown into the UT, in the opinion of many Moya crewmates,
John became a savage, higher brain-function deficient
who couldn't even open a door without assistance. When it comes
to UT technology, John may be ignorant and inexperienced, but he
isn't stupid. With practice, John has become a master of Moya's
doors and competent at day-to-day activities. John has now set his
sights on a new challenge: learning to pilot a transport pod. There's
only one soul on Moya brave enough to teach the human - Aeryn Sun
is up to the challenge.
and Aeryn set out for the lesson by choosing a region of space completely
void of any objects. John lacks confidence with maneuvering the
craft, but does seem to be developing the skills necessary to pilot
the pod. At least there isn't anything for John to hit, or so he
thinks. While piloting the vessel, John inadvertently slams the
small ship into an invisible barrier of some kind. The transport
pod struggles to break free of the field enveloping it, but it's
no match and becomes immobilized. Like a fly caught in a spider's
web, the leviathan pod is stuck and drained of power.
first, Aeryn blames Crichton for the mishap, but soon realizes that
the collision could not have been avoided. The phenomenon that caught
the ship is so powerful it swallows light and makes communication
with Moya impossible. Aeryn launches an emergency communications
buoy with enough information for Moya's crew to initiate a rescue.
Not satisfied to sit and wait, John and Aeryn stay busy repairing
the stricken vessel.
situation on Moya is very different from the drama occurring on
the transport pod. With no place to go and waiting for John and
Aeryn to complete the flying lesson, Moya's crew is experiencing
difficulty of their own. D'Argo is losing his patience - Moya's
pregnancy causes her to excrete foul smelling fluids that are irritating
D'Argo's sensitive olfactory system. He sees no purpose to teaching
Crichton to fly and considers the endeavor a complete waste of time.
Rygel is testing Zhaan's noted patience by banging on a musical
instrument and boasting of his past glory. Zhaan is in danger of
losing her Pa'u by killing the Hynerian slug when Moya receives
a strange visitor.
local junkman named Staanz comes aboard offering valuable information
to the crew. Zhaan and D'Argo doubt Staanz knows anything worth
hearing until he tells them about the Flax. Staanz explains that
the particular region of space the crew is occupying is the hunting
ground for a group of merciless thieves known as Zenetan pirates.
The Flax is used by the pirates to immobilize ships so their occupants
can be robbed of possessions and life. Staanz, who is a former member
of the pirate gang, is willing to chart a path that will allow Moya
to pass through space without being caught in the Flax. Of course,
Staanz is more than willing to accept a gratuity for his services.
When informed that Moya has a transport pod with crew members in
the area, Staanz informs Zhaan that her friends are probably already
to participate in a joint rescue mission, D'Argo accompanies Staanz
aboard his junk ship to find John and Aeryn. However, D'Argo has
an additional reason for joining the junkman. Staanz reveals that
there is an old Luxan warship awaiting scrapping by the pirates.
D'Argo believes starcharts and other valuable data that will help
him find home may still be located there. Detouring from the rescue,
D'Argo and Staanz spend precious time locating the derelict Luxan
ship. Unfortunately for Zhaan and Rygel, they aren't left alone
on Moya for long. The pirates have discovered Moya's position and
board the leviathan vessel. Realizing Moya is pregnant and not worth
the trouble of stealing, the pirate leader, Kcrackic, decides to
leave the penniless crewmates alone. Concerned the pirates will
now head for John and Aeryn, it's up to Zhaan and Rygel to stall
the killer thieves.
the transport pod, John and Aeryn use the ship's remaining power
in a last ditch effort to break free of the Flax. The attempt fails
miserably leaving the ship in worse shape than before. The atmospheric
generators are malfunctioning resulting in air that is nearly pure
oxygen. John knows how to fix the equipment, but must use a welding
device to make the repairs. Unfortunately, the sparks created by
the torch will ignite the atmosphere and incinerate the entire ship,
its occupants included. Aeryn has a good idea that will make repairs
possible. She suggests they put on space suits, depressorize the
atmosphere, repair the generators with no risk of fire, then repressorize
the ship. John agrees to the plan, but discovers that only one of
two space suits on board the ship is left intact.
again, Aeryn has a plan. Included in the first aid kit are chemicals
that stop, then restarts the heart. Aeryn wants John to kill her,
quickly repair the ship, then restart her heart before there is
any permanent brain damage. John is reluctant at first, but agrees
to the plan. However, they discover that John's suit is the one
that is damaged and Aeryn's small helmet will not fit John. The
rolls are reversed and it is John that must temporarily die. The
problem with the new plan is twofold. First, the first-aid chemicals
are designed for Sebaceans, not humans. There is no way of knowing,
until John is already dead, if the kit will revive him. Second,
John is the experienced welder, not Aeryn. Not only must John show
Aeryn how to repair the equipment, she only has a few minutes to
do so before John's brain dies from lack of oxygen.
injects John with the killer drug and starts the repairs. In a race
against time, Aeryn is hampered by repairs that will take longer
to complete than expected. Aeryn must chose whether to continue
with the repairs - thus killing John permanently - or stop the repairs
and revive John so they can suffocate to death together.
first time John Crichton saw Aeryn he liked her. The first time
Aeryn Sun saw John she kicked his butt and slammed the hapless human
to the floor. It's taken a few months, but events have finally gotten
these two people together. Although there is much taking place during
this episode, The Flax is most noted for being the first true shippy
episode of the series. The Flax is also important for the character
development that occurs during a time of crisis.
John is slowly growing beyond the dumb human phase and wants to
expand his experiences and skills. John knows that in order to survive
and contribute to the crew he must learn as much about the new world
around him as possible. Apparently, Aeryn recognizes John's needs
and takes on the responsibility of teaching the human how to fly
a transport. It's clear that Aeryn possesses little patience with
incompetence, so she wouldn't seem well-suited as an instructor
for John. But Aeryn is also experiencing growth as person, particularly
when it comes to interaction with others.
Flax opens with Aeryn instructing John how to fly a transport pod.
When it crashes into the Flax, Aeryn immediately blames John, which
is an expected reaction. But instead of berating the human, Aeryn
works with John to solve the problem as best they can. Aeryn is
starting to trust John's judgment and technical know-how. When things
go bad, it's Aeryn that comes up with the space-suit strategy to
resolve the crisis. Aeryn is not a Peacekeeper tech, but she uses
her growing knowledge of technology to solve a problem.
all seems lost, and the two crew mates are sitting in the transport
waiting for their own deaths, the sexual tension building for months
finally explodes. Wasting little time with kissing, John and Aeryn
flop to the floor of the transport pod and start ripping each other's
clothes off. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on one's point
of view, the love session is interrupted before it really gets started
when D'Argo comes to the rescue. The look on Aeryn's face when John
says to D'Argo, "What took you so long?" is classic.
is the issue of what transpired between John and Aeryn while they
were in command at the end of the episode. John, still stunned by
the fact that the seemingly male Staanz is actually female, walks
up to Aeryn with a little smirk on his face and asks, "You
are the female of your species, right?" Aeryn simply
turns her head to John, gives a frell you look, and makes
a movement toward the human. The look of utter shock and delight
on John's face suggests something very interesting happened. It
has been assumed by many scapers that Aeryn, to prove she is female,
either grabbed John's privates or placed his hand on her nether
region. In a chat, Claudia Black says neither happened. Aeryn simply
made an aggressive move toward the human and that was all. Frankly,
I find Claudia's explanation disappointing and have decided the
woman doesn't know what she's talking about. Aeryn grabbed John
- end of debate.
Guide.....Jeremiah Crichton >>