Farscape is genre television at its most ambitious, inspired both by the cult appeal of Babylon 5 and the continuing success of the Star Trek franchise, but taking a visual and conceptual leap beyond those shows. Making ex... more »tensive use of CGI, prosthetics, and state-of-the-art puppetry, courtesy of Jim Henson's Creature Shop, the Farscape concept has a freshness that makes it look and feel completely original. Leading toward the climax of the show's first season, "Nerve" and "The Hidden Memory" make for a bold two-parter in which Crichton is reunited with his Peacekeeper Tech girlfriend, Gilina, and emotions are strained as he infiltrates a Peacekeeper base to find a cure for Aeryn's wound. But the story's most important function is to introduce the dreaded Scorpius, who uses his Aurora Chair torture device to extract what he mistakenly believes is vital knowledge from Crichton. Scorpius, it soon becomes clear, is just not going to go away. --Mark Walker« less
"It's really nice to be able to stay up-to-date with our favorite television shows as they are now while still being able to look back from time to time. Right now, as FARSCAPE enters its fourth season, I still enjoy going back and watching the old DVDs. Each one has something excellent to offer; volume 10 has a LOT of excellent stuff to offer.The Sci-Fi channel's FARSCAPE series distinguished itself by taking a solid (if rather common) concept of an astronaut from the present thrown across the universe into a strange galaxy inhabited by even stranger lifeforms and drenching the entire series with character, creativity, and charm. Episodes "Nerve" and "The Hidden Memory" help to not only continue this tradition but mark a major turning point in the series for characters and plot-lines.For those who haven't yet seen the previous episodes, the basic story is this: meet John Crichton. John has been having a bunch of pretty bad days since his flight of the NASA spacecraft Farscape 1 where he was sucked through a wormhole into an interstellar battle halfway across the universe. After a few unfortunate mishaps (whoops, didn't mean to crash into that ship and send it spiralling into that asteroid - no, siree), Crichton finds himself the target of the Peacekeepers (a collection of tyrants, closely physically resembling humans, seeking to extend their control over the galaxy) and one Peacekeeper Captain Crais, seeking vengeance for Crichton's accidental killing of his brother (the pilot whose ship spiralled into the asteroid). He takes up ship with a group of escaped convicts: the Worf-esque Luxan warrior D'Argo, the Delvian (and very blue - literally) anarchist priest Zhaan, the deposed Hynerian ruler Rygel, and the outcast Peacekeeper Aeryn.Flash forward to this episode. After an unfortunate incident in the previous episode during which Aeryn received a Peacekeeper knife to the ribs, Crichton notices a sharp downturn in her condition - namely, her vomiting blood and coming very close to death. The only way to save her is to infiltrate a hidden Peacekeeper base and bring back a tissue sample. After arriving, Crichton finds himself involved with former love intrest Gilina (from episode 7, "PK Tech Girl") and the utterly evil Scorpius, the leader of the base. Of course, Crichton soon finds himself in a lot of trouble, thus establishing Scorpius as the new supreme villain of FARSCAPE.The story works out superbly, thanks in part to the signature directing of FARSCAPE (unorthodox, but very effective) and the superb acting that the cast is able to pull off, once again. Ben Browder (as Crichton) adds his usual genius and personality to the role, proving once again that the Emmys far too often overlook certain actors; Wayne Pygram, playing the role of the seclusive and almost frightening Scorpius, does a fine job playing a character that many others would downright fail at. Lani Tupu later enters as Crais, managing to put in even more hatred that usual and making his role even more convincing than it usually is. All of this is held together by great writing: Crais is hate-crazed, Scorpius is the ultimate thinking villain, and Crichton has all the usual one-liners and wisecracks. What more could you want?The price of the DVD may seem a bit high to some for only two episodes, but these ones are definitely worth your time. If you enjoy science fiction at all, you owe it to yourself to take a look at this one."
Two of the best first season episodes
Wayne Klein | My Little Blue Window, USA | 05/22/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Farscape was a mixed bag during the first season; the best episodes rank with anything produced by the Trek franchise or Babylon 5. What made Farscape unique is the quirky sense of humor at the core of every episode. It's the first series since Tom Baker's Dr. Who era to wink at the audience while serving and exciting premise or boots to the floor action episodes for dinner. Both episodes feature Scorpi and Nerve in particular stands out during the first season. The premise is borrowed from an old Trek episode; Scorpi has a device that allows him to see inside the mind and pick apart the psyche of whomever is strapped into its chair. Unfortunately, Crichton becomes victim # 2 when Scorpi discovers that Crichton has wormhole technology buried in his brain by an alien race. Never and The Hidden Memory are among the best two part episodes produced for the series. The writing is sharp and the dialog witty. I'd recommend either episode as a fine taste of the Farscape universe which has, sadly,gone on to rerun heaven."
This series' finest hour (to date!)
Christian Klein | 04/04/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Farscape is the best action entertainment currently in production, and perhaps the most complex science fiction universe ever brought to life. The two episodes on this DVD continue a story with a lot of action and emotion - essential for understanding the complex relationships between the characters. A must see for fans of the Farscape series!After viewing the episodes, give a listen to the commentary by Claudia Black and Ben Browder on The Hidden Memory - it gives a lot of insight on behind the scenes and tells the reason Zhaan left the show."
Raising the Stakes, with Old and New Foes
John Kahane | Ottawa, Ontario Canada | 03/21/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As we reach the end of the first season of FARSCAPE in the DVD releases, one has to wonder what the future of the line of DVDs will bring, now that the folks at ADV are once more going to add all sorts of new features to future FS DVDs. This second to last DVD of the first season hasn't got any real special features on it, but includes two terrific episodes that form the first two-part story in FARSCAPE's history.The first episode, "Nerve," finds John Crichton and Chiana travelling to the Gammak based mentioned in the previous episode, "A Bug's Life," to seek a tissue graft for Aeryn, who is dying of the injury inflicted on her by Larraq. Crichton's chance encounter with a scientist by the name of Scorpius leads to his being captured and interrogated in the Aurora Chair, and even the arrival of Crais doesn't diminish the threat to Crichton from this new, implacable foe. However Crichton is not without his allies on the base, but it is still a race against time to save Aeryn's life. And back on Moya, it is found that the Leviathan is getting close to giving birth."The Hidden Memory" continues this two-part story with Crichton still in Scorpius's grasp. With the now partially recovered Aeryn leading a rescue mission to save Crichton, things are complicated by the birth of Moya's offspring and a surprising revelation about it, and Crais's falling into Scorpius's hands after a surprise is pulled on the two of them by one of Crichton's allies. These are two superb episodes that form a nice whole, although the story is marred by a lack of the potential of "Nerve" being lived up to by "The Hidden Memory." The new character of Stark is one who will have repercussions down the road obviously, and the additional footage in both episodes adds to the overall story and clarifies a few matters in both cases. The Profile on Wayne Pygram (Scorpius) is a terrific addition to the DVD, and brings to light some of the hidden depths of the character, as well as showing the actor sans makeup. These two episodes raise the stakes in FARSCAPE, and lead into the final pair of first season episodes. This DVD would have been tremendously enhanced by any form of commentary episodes or other extra material (the character Profile just isn't enough), but the high quality of the DVD and the two superb episodes on this one make this a good and worthy addition to any FARSCAPE fan's collection."
David Bonesteel | Fresno, CA United States | 05/29/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Nerve" and "The Hidden Memory" are a two-part story that gathers together the various plot threads of the Farscape story and launches some ambitious story arcs that will figure prominently for the remainder of the series. Crichton (Ben Browder) and Chiana (Gigi Edgley) infiltrate a Peacekeeper base to obtain genetic material that is necessary to save Aeryn's (Claudia Black) life while the remainder of the crew remains aboard Moya to attend the birth of her child. Crichton falls into the clutches of Scorpius (Wayne Pygram), a hybrid being working with the Peacekeepers who is determined to rip the secret of wormhole technology from his mind.
The biggest development here is the introduction of Scorpius, who deserves to be ranked among the great villains of science fiction. Other new characters introduced in this pivotal story are Stark (Paul Goddard), the former slave, and Talon, Moya's unique offspring. This is Farscape at its best, which means this is television at its best. "