I have no connection to Farscape, Henson, or anyone involved with the show. Listed below are simply my opinions, based on extensive surfing of the net, on topics involving Farscape. Most of the questions are based on actual emails have received during the last three years. A few of the questions I just made up because nobody asked them, but they should have - that's the kind of guy I am. If an answer is technically incorrect please contact me and I will correct my answer.

 

Farscape the show:

Has Farscape been canceled?
When are new episodes coming back to the Sci-Fi Channel?
When are new episodes coming back to the BBC?
When are new episodes coming back to Australia?
When are new episodes coming back to Canada?
When does the season for filming new episodes start / end?
Which episode did Ben Browder write?
How much money do the actors make?
How much does it cost to make a Farscape episode?
How are Farscape's ratings?
Are the DVDs worth the price or are VHS tapes better?
Why Don't they show Farscape in Australia first. It's made there, you know.

Farscape the story:

Can you please explain the two-John thing?
Why does Crichton see a funny Scorpius (Harvey), but no one else can?


Farscape Fantasy:

Sometimes I see a "You are not authorized to view this page" message when visiting your site. What's up?
Why did you build this site?
Can I use the screen caps from your site?
What happened to your video clips?
What company hosts your site and how much does it cost?
Do you use a PC or Mac?
Can you send me episodes on tape?

Why don't you have the full-length episodes for download anymore?
You give some of the episodes very harsh reviews, are you sure you're a real scaper?
Who is Geoffrey the Giraffe and what does he have to do with Farscape?

Why did you say Ben looks "old." Don't you know that hurts his feelings?
There isn't any advertising on your site. How do you make money with it?

 

 

Farscape the show:

Has Farscape been canceled?

Unfortunately, yes. The Sci-Fi Channel decided not to buy a fifth season. More info >>

When are new episodes coming back to the Sci-Fi Channel?

All 88 episodes produced by The Henson Company have now been broadcast on the Sci Fi Channel. At the moment there are no plans to broadcast any more new episodes, only repeats.


When are new episodes coming back to the BBC?

If Henson produces a fifth season, and if the BBC decides to broadcast it, the series will be back in 2004 at the absolute earliest.


When are new episodes coming back to Australia?

Foxtel is broadcasting the third season right now.

When are new episodes coming back to Canada?

Spacecast is broadcasting the fourth season right now. You can visit spacecast's site by clicking here.


When does the season for filming new episodes start / end?

Actual filming for the 4th season started in January 2002 and ended in September. The shooting schedule seems to vary from year-to-year. Post-production, which may include more filming, can last several months and the creature shop is always busy.

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Which episode did Ben Browder write?

Ben penned Green Eyed Monster, which is the eighth episode of the third season. It was first broadcast in the US on June 22, 2001 and is very good. Ben's second authorship is John Quixote, which is the 7th episode of the 4th season and was broadcast in the US on July 26, 2002.


How much money do the actors make?

I have no idea. None of the actors are particularly well known, so it's safe to say none are earning a million dollars an episode. A major reason the show is produced in Australia is because the actors there aren't union. Therefore, production costs are cheaper and the actors make less than if the show is produced in LA. That said, Farscape actors must be making decent money, by real-world standards. Who would sit through the hours of makeup unless the pay is very good? Why would the actors place on indefinite hold whatever film careers they had before Farscape unless the money is good? Farscape's actors are doing fine - I wouldn't worry about them.

Well, you might worry about Ben Browder; I think they got him very cheap. Reading over the chat transcripts, I notice a pattern where Ben always starts begging for money so he can buy shoes for his kids. Personally, I think they should give Ben a raise or at least let him earn some extra bucks washing Anthony's car.


How much does it cost to make a Farscape episode?

I saw a Farscape show that was broadcast in Australia stating the budget was 2 million dollars an episode in 1999. I suspect they were referring to Aussie money, which would place the cost at about 1.2 million US. Recently it was revealed that the fourth season had a budget of about 1.4 million US per episode. The entertainment industry is notorious for using "creative" accounting practices, so I'm not sure if even The Henson Company knows for sure.


How are Farscape's ratings?

The show's fourth season got off to a rocky start in the U.S., with most of the episodes settling between a 1.1 and a 1.4 rating. 4.11 Unrealized Reality got a 1.5 rating, which is the highest rating in quite some time. Unfortunately, the ratings aren't good enough for a fifth season. More info >>

 


Are the DVDs worth the price or are VHS tapes better?

I didn't own a DVD player until the Farscape DVD's were made available in I the US in February 2001. The first thing I noticed was the level of detail that can be seen on the DVDs. The colors are so much deeper and the picture so much sharper that I no longer like watching the show on tapes I made from the broadcast. The audio, which suffers from a couple of minor problems in The Premiere, is stunning and the commentaries are, by themselves, worth the price of the disks. In the US, the first 6 episodes have commentaries. The UK (Region 2) disks don't have commentaries, but they are a full year ahead of the US in releasing the episodes. I heartily recommend purchasing the DVDs - they're worth every penny.

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Why Don't they show Farscape in Australia first. It's made there, you know.

This gets far more complicated than it should be. I'm not an expert on Australian broadcast law, but I'll try to explain this as Nine has explained it. When Nine partnered with Henson to make Farscape, they thought they were getting a G-rated family show. Nine knew Farscape would never attract a large audience, but G-rated shows can be broadcast any time of the day or night. However, Henson's primary customer for Farscape, USA Network's Sci Fi Channel, wanted the show to be darker and more adult oriented. About half way through the first season, the show took on the look that Sci Fi wanted.

The problem for Nine is that Farscape is no longer a G-rated show. According to Aussie broadcast law, new shows such as Farscape can only be broadcast during the evening. The evening is a high ratings period, which is bad for Farscape because it can't compete in that time slot. Nine is getting around this law by broadcasting Farscape episodes that have been heavily edited in some markets. Once those episodes have been broadcast, full-versions of Farscape, which will now be considered "repeats" will be broadcast at a competitive time slot. Apparently, laws concerning "repeats" are not as strict as those for new shows.

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Farscape the story:

Can you please explain the two-John thing?

In the sixth episode of the third season, Eat Me, part of Moya's crew encountered a dying Leviathan drifting in space. The ship was like a house of horrors, populated by a zombie-like crew and ruled by a madman named Kaarvok. Kaarvok fed on the brains of his victims, who were usually the dying Leviathan's crew. So he wouldn't run out of crew members to kill, he apparently developed a method of twinning them. During their encounter with Kaarvok, D'Argo, Chiana and Crichton were all twinned at one point or another during the episode. Kaarvok killed one each of the D'Argo and Chiana twins, but never got the chance to kill the Crichton twin. Moya's crew, including the two Crichtons, escaped the dying Leviathan moments before it exploded.

The two Crichtons were identical, both physically and mentally. They shared the same memories and possessed the same personality. Although it was impossible tell them apart, each Crichton insisted that he was the real Crichton and the other guy was simply a copy.

At the end of Thanks For Sharing, it became necessary for Moya and Talyn to go their separate ways for an unknown period of time. While one Crichton was on a planet dealing with the locals, the other Crichton joined Aeryn onboard Talyn. From this point forward, the two Crichtons would lead different lives, experience different adventures, and meet very different fates.

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Why does Crichton see a funny Scorpius (Harvey), but no one else can?

During the episode titled, Won't Get Fooled Again, it is learned Scorpius implanted a neural chip inside Crichton's brain while the human was a PK prisoner during late season one. The chip contained a clone of Scorpius' personality. The neural clone was charged with the task of keeping Crichton safe, preventing Crichton from ever harming Scorpius, and locating the wormhole knowledge locked in Crichton's brain. This was all to occur in Crichton's subconscious; the human was never to have known the clone was in his head until it was too late. However, early in season two, during an encounter with an alien named Traltixx, Scorpy's plan went somewhat awry.

Traltixx was a bad guy who distracted his victims by changing their personalities. Although he was defeated, the alien's devious work on the human's mind allowed Crichton some awareness of the Scorpy neural clone. At first, Crichton thought he was hallucinating; seeing Scorpy in beach shirts, drinking margaritas and eating pizza. As the season progressed however, Crichton's Scorpy sightings were becoming more realistic and disturbing. It's during this period that Crichton named the clone Harvey, as in Harvey the invisible Rabbit. In late season two, Crichton finally became fully aware of the neural clone and its sinister plan. Unfortunately for Crichton, his discovery came too late. The clone had done its job, finding the valuable wormhole data, and had already made arrangements for Crichton's capture by the real Scorpius.

The neural chip was removed from Crichton's brain, but the neural clone was inadvertently left behind. Now powerless to harm Crichton, "Harvey" the clone first wanted Crichton to commit suicide so they wouldn't have to live with each other. However, over time, the clone developed a personality different from the real Scorpius. More willing to help Crichton when it can, the clone has become a valuable advisor to the human. In a way, the clone has become less like an invisible rabbit to Crichton, and more like Clarence, the guardian angel.

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Farscape Fantasy:

Sometimes I see a "You are not authorized to view this page" message when visiting your site. What's up?

Farscape Fantasy is one of the few fan sites around that exists on its very own dedicated web server. Unlike traditional shared-hosting servers, I must administer this server on my own. Unfortunately, I am not a UNIX expert, which presents a problem. Somewhere within the server is a rouge code that shuts the site down for bandwidth overages. Funny thing is that this site is allowed over 300 gigs a month of bandwidth and is in no danger of being shut down by my hosting company. So far nobody has been able to isolate the code that periodically shuts the site down. The shut down usually occurs around 7 AM of the 15th or 16th of the month, and again around the 21st or 22nd. Turning the site back on is easy, requiring about 30 seconds to compete the task. Unfortunately, thanks to my work schedule, I'm usually still asleep at 7 AM and am in no mood to get up at that hour. If you visit the site and see the "unauthorized" message, it means I am still snuggled in my bed and will turn the site back on when I get up.

Why did you build this site?

In July 1999 I considered the possibility of building a fan site. However, I couldn't figure out what kind of original content that would be placed on the site. So, I just sat on the idea and went about living my non-life. In March 2000 a webmaster of an existing fan site was having trouble with their site. He wanted my assistance designing a new site, which seemed perfect! We could combine my interest in web design with their existing content. Unfortunately, our little Farscape union lasted about a week. He didn't like the design work I had created, which was radically different from what he already had, and fired me.

So, there I am, sitting with a weeks worth of Farscape graphics work and decided, "what the hell." For nearly two months I disappeared from the Sci-Fi Channel message board and spent all my free time designing this site. It has grown into quite a beast and is very high maintenance. But, I enjoy working with this site and will continue to update it until I get bored or die; whichever comes first.

Can I use the screen caps from your site?

Technically speaking, the screen caps on this site belong to the Henson Company. It's up to them to determine what is considered acceptable use of Farscape images. As far as I am concerned, you are free to use the screen caps from this site how ever you wish. If you use them on a website please credit and link back to www.farscapefantasy.com.

What happened to your video clips?

On September 7, 2001 The Jim Henson Company legal department requested that I remove the episode clips.


What company hosts your site and how much does it cost?

This site is hosted by CI Host (www.cihost.com.) I chose them because their corporate offices are located less than a mile from my house and I can keep an eye on them. They have 70,000 clients from all over the world and are one of the largest hosting companies around. Their service is quite reliable, but it's not perfect. They do have 24-hour tech support by phone and chat, which is how their support is supposed to work. Imagine their surprise when one of their clients (me) actually shows up at their office and bangs on their door if something goes wrong with their severs!

I think you can get their "e-commerce" package for about $25.00 per month. For that you get 700 megs of space, "unlimited" bandwidth (actually 20 gigs), and lots of extras. Farscape Fantasy, due to its high drive space and bandwidth requirements, costs a little more than $25.00 to host, unfortunately.


Do you use a PC or Mac?

I use a PC to capture the raw video and screen caps. I use a Macintosh for everything else.


Can you send me episodes on tape?

If I sent Farscape tapes to everyone that offered me money to make them, I'd be rich. Unfortunately, The Henson Company has a thing about other people making money off their show. Also, my equipment at home isn't designed for mass-producing Farscape tapes. Therefore, I must refrain from sending out Farscape episodes. I would suggest leaving a message on a Farscape board asking for assistance from a scaper. You should expect to reimburse the other scaper for the cost of the tape and shipping.

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Why don't you have the full-length episodes for download anymore?

In the fall of 2000 I got an email from a scaper asking that I place They've Got A Secret - the entire episode - on my site for download. Intrigued by the technical challenge of doing so, I put the episode on the site. Before I knew it, I was getting requests for several episodes and figured I'd just put them all on the site. Not being stupid, I contact the Henson Company to get their official word on this. I didn't get a response, so I simply announced on the Sci-Fi Channel board that the episodes were available for download. I knew TPTB read that board and if they had a problem with the video downloads I would hear about it. Sure enough, my site got a visit from usanetworks.com (owners of the Sci-Fi Channel) and by henson.com shortly thereafter, and I heard about it.

In a polite and informal email, Henson stated that they have contracts with companies, such as Sci-Fi and the BBC, for exclusive broadcast rights to Farscape. It was explained that placing the episodes on the net could impact Henson's ability to sell the show to other broadcasters. They requested that I remove the episodes from my site. Realizing I didn't have a legal leg to stand on, I promptly removed the episodes from the site and haven't heard from Henson since. USA Networks and the BBC still check up on this site from time to time. Don't think they are here to visit with Geoffrey the Giraffe, but so far I haven't gotten any more complaints.

You give some of the episodes very harsh reviews, are you sure you're a real scaper?

I spend hundreds of hours and more money than I care to admit maintaining a 350 page - 1 gigabyte - fan site and somebody questions if I am a real scaper? Golly.


Who is Geoffrey the Giraffe and what does he have to do with Farscape?

Geoffrey the Giraffe is a figment of my imagination, sort of an alter ego. To learn where he came from be sure to visit the humor page.


Why did you say Ben looks "old?" Don't you know that hurts his feelings?

I didn't say Ben looks "old," just that he looked older in the early season two episodes than he did in the early season one episodes. Considering what John went though that first year, I guessed the aging was simply written into the show. During the Exodus From Genesis DVD commentary, Virginia Hey even mentions how young Ben looked in that episode. She compares him to a nineteen year-old and Brian Henson states they changed his appearance in later episodes. I promise, when I get around to updating John's biography, I will consider changing my "old" statement a bit. However, in the near future I will be posting a blistering article exposing the issue of Claudia's big feet.

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There isn't any advertising on your site. How do you make money with it?

Your question raises a sensitive topic between entertainment companies and the fan sites that promote their shows. Basically, The Jim Henson Company doesn't allow people to make money with sites that feature Henson trademarked materials. Fortunately, I have figured a way around Henson's rules and profit quite handsomely from this site. In fact, FF is one of the few non-porn dot-coms to make money last year. Here is a very basic summary of the Farscape Fantasy business model:

1. Farscape Fantasy is a money laundering front for the Samoan Mafia. They run about 200 million dollars through my site each year and pay me a kickback.

2. I secretly install very sophisticated spyware on the computer of every person who visits this site. The spyware not only tracks your every move through the internet, it also allows me to view visitors through their monitors. In fact, I'm watching you right now. After compiling my information on every person who visits this site, I sell the demographic data to men who fly black helicopters at a very nice profit. Your contribution to my lavish lifestyle is greatly appreciated.

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