Farscape was truly a journey into the fantastic. It was a science fiction epic that aired from 1999 to 2003 over the course of four seasons. During those four years, many people around the world came to love everything about the show. Some of the most appreciated aspects were the highly talented actors, the delightful use of puppets, and the completely unique universe that was created for the show.
It offered something for everyone: romantic relationships, hilarious comedy, amazing fantasy settings, new languages and words, and edge of your seat action, both on the ground and in space. All of these aspects combined into one amazing show which still captures people’s imaginations today.
One of the greatest things about Farscape which hugely factored into its popularity was the use of puppets provided by the Jim Henson Company. In addition to just looking great, they were able to do many things besides the standard talking and waving their arms around. The most enjoyable puppet on the show, the snarky and sarcastic Dominar Rygel XVI, ate almost nonstop and also often regurgitated that food in various forms. He also displayed a number of other bodily functions which made him a lovable little scamp that you hated as much as you appreciated.
Another aspect of Farscape that helped it last four years in an environment when most shows barely make it through a single season was the great acting. The main character of the show was the astronaut Jon Crichton, played by Ben Browder. He was a human in a world of aliens trying to find a way back to his family on Earth. Browder did an amazing job of realistically portraying every aspect and emotion that you could expect from a man in that situation. From the unrequited romance to fear of the unknown world he’d ended up in, he did it all.
While there were a number of main characters in this show, the other primary was Aeryn Sun, played by Claudia Black. In addition to being Crichton’s love interested, Aeryn Sun was an interesting and deep character torn between the world of authority that she knew and loved and the new world of freedom that she was thrown into when a misunderstanding landed her in the bad graces of her people. Claudia Black was able to portray those complex emotions without missing a beat, earning her many fans.
The realness of the characters was something else that really helped the show succeed. None of them were perfect or two dimensional. Every one of the characters had a back story and further character development which showed them to be generally fit for the role they were placed in, but also complex enough to ensure that they didn’t feel like the flat stereotypes that are found in other science fiction shows.
Overall, Farscape is one of the best science fiction shows of recent years. It combined every aspect of realism and fantasy that people love, and the fact that it was cancelled left many fans disappointed.