Farscape and the Narrative Beauty of Screwing Up | Tor.com:
There’s a simple selling point I trot out when trying to get anyone to watch Farscape, and I think it still hits the mark nearly twenty years after its finale: “Imagine you were watching Star Trek, but this time, instead of your intrepid spacefarers helping people wherever they went, the crew of the Enterprise ruined everything all the time.” …
A perfect example of this dynamic is encapsulated in the episode “…Different Destinations,” an early entry in the show’s third season. Right on the heels of losing a very dear friend, John Crichton (that’s the human astronaut) and several of his cohort are visiting a planet shrine while their ship is undergoing repairs. Said shrine contains these weird temporal goggles that allow visitors to see back through time to a very important battle where thirty Peacekeeper soldiers died to defend kids and nurses from the Venek Horde, and eventually created terms for a ceasefire. This is already awkward on the propaganda front as the Peacekeepers of the current era are a purely fascistic force bent on galactic conquest, but things get trickier when their pal Stark has the goggles forcibly jammed on his head—they thought he’d enjoy a look at peace, you see—and Stark’s unique empathic spiritual abilities wind up shoving his friends back through time to the battle itself.
Farscape was fun. The first season was clunky and janky, especially where Moya’s crew individually looks at a junction node or something while an annoying alarm sounds in the background. It gets better fast.
Throughout, they fuck up. It can be glorious and intentional. It can also be horrible and intentional.