Having stayed up so late the previous night, I woke up a little bit later on Sunday. But despite certain Centauri-like excesses, I was actually feeling pretty good in the arthritis pain department. Thus, I decided to ditch the wheelchair for a day so that I could use the fraggin’ escalators for a change.
The Farscape discussion panel played to a full house, but that didn’t make our conference room any less cold – which, by the way, is something I’ve neglected to mention in previous installments. Last year, the convention hotels sweltered, and so, assuming that Hotlanta would once again live up to its nickname, I packed my gauzy summer gear for this go-around. This year, however, the Hyatt had apparently dialed its AC all the way up to “polar ice cap,” so every time I appeared on a panel, I sat there shivering and hoping that certain things weren’t standing out, if you know what I mean.
As I sat there resisting the urge to blow on my hands, Tom and Raster did most of the talking, though at panel launch, I shared with the assembled what searose had intelligently observed the night before: that the miniseries was intended to be a love letter to the general fanbase, that the general fanbase loves John/Aeryn, and that the writers thus delivered what the general fanbase wanted. I asserted that, as sweet as that was, some important things were sacrificed in the process, the character arcs for Sikozu and Stark being my primary concerns. Sikozu was outed as a spy without any build-up to explain why she would choose to do anything as monumentally stupid as trusting the Scarrans. And Stark was essentially soul-raped – and yes, I did use that term – but by the end, he already appeared reconciled to that abuse. We were, in short, deprived of a crucial personal forgiveness arc.
And that’s probably when blueaeryn left, because I’m pretty sure I was saying this at the five minute mark.
The primary focus of the panel was to answer the question, “Where does the universe go from here?” Everyone on the panel seemed to be in agreement that, wherever the universe goes, John and Aeryn’s arc appears complete – that “The Adventures of John, Aeryn, and Their Sprog” is a horrifying concept, and that it is time now for the supporting characters to shine. One could cover Hynerian court politics, or the quiet rise of the Nebari, who may end up being a far more dangerous superpower than the Peacekeepers or the Scarrans ever were because they are sneaky. I also cast doubt on the stability of the Peacekeeper – Scarran peace, saying that I was skeptical of any peace that depended in part on the subtle mind control of a third party. Once the purple light fades away, who knows what individual Peacekeepers and Scarrans may do?
And I had another idea that I didn’t really have a chance to advance – namely, the prequel option. Canon states that there was a time in the distant past when the Peacekeepers really were seen as peacekeepers. They were, in essence, the Eidelons’ blue helmets. A series of stories that starts with the obliteration of the original clan of Eidelons and chronicles the decent of the Peacekeepers into a brute force in the absence of their guides and mental enforcers could be a rather fascinating commentary on the human condition and the tragic persistence of war, I think.
What say you?