Summary:

Successful at subduing the crew with the use of drug-induced mind control, a Nebari operative named Varla easily takes over Moya. Joined by another Nebari government agent,Meelak, Varla is bent on returning Chiana to their homeworld. Already injured by a disastrous run-in with Peacekeepers, Varla will stop at nothing to achieve her goals.

It turns out Chiana is an unwitting pawn in the Nebari plan to take over much of the galaxy. Exactly why Chiana is so important to the Nebari plan is revealed by a startling discovery. Chiana's brother, Nerri, thought dead since TTS, is very much alive. Nerri is a leader of the Nebari resistance, a group the Nebari government feels threatened by. His little sister is the bait in a plan to capture him and crush the resistance.

Drugged into a harmless stupor, D'Argo, Aeryn, Zhaan, and Rygel are willing participants in the Nebari plan. The drugs have no effect on Pilot, but he is fitted with a collar capable of killing him if he disobeys his new Nebari commanders. Chiana is spared the drugs only because they have no effect on Nebari. John is drugged and tortured into submission, but the effects are temporary and he regains this ability to resist Varla. John's resistance to mind control isn't due to Human physiology, but something else: Scorpius.

Unarmed and running out of time, John must work with Chiana, Pilot, and some surprising allies to regain control of Moya before she passes into Nebari territory.

Analysis:

Well, seeing an unarmed Aeryn wearing a big smile on her face is enough to scare the hell out of anybody. Chiana and John realize this, but too late to keep Varla from taking over Moya.

An interesting scene in this episode, edited from the BBC broadcast, is John being tortured by the Nebari. Apparently, the mind altering drug must be administered by injecting it into the optic nerve of the victim. Strapped to a contraption, keeping John's head still, two metal claws grab his eyeballs and pull them out far enough for the drug to be placed on the optic nerve. To say the procedure is not pleasant would be an understatement. Not sure what this graphic scene adds to the episode, but it is technically impressive.

It is clear that Farscape, such a simple romp at first, is becoming more complex with nearly every episode. The Nebari government, already established as a powerful nemesis to the Peacekeepers in PKTG, is now attempting to take over the galaxy. Add to the mix Chiana's brother, Nerri, is a leader of the Nebari resistance, and what we have here is a whole other story woven into the world of Farscape. Where this leads our intrepid crew is hard to say.

Quick-paced and well-written with more than a few twists, A Clockwork Nebari is a solid and fun episode. And now on to the season two final four...

 

 

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Originally aired in the US September 15, 2000

Written by Lily Taylor

Directed by Rowan Woods

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