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Bone To Be Wild

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Farscape episode
“Bone To Be Wild”
Btbw
Episode no. Season 1
Episode 21
Guest star(s) Lani Tupu (Capt. Bialar Crais); Wayne Pygram (Scorpius); Francesca Buller (M'Lee); Marton Csokas (Br'Nee); David Franklin (Lt. Braca)
Writer(s) David Kemper & Rockne S. O'Bannon
Director Andrew Prowse
Production no. 10121
Original airdate January 21, 2000 (US); May 22, 2000 (UK)
Episode chronology
← Previous Next →
"The Hidden Memory" "Family Ties"

Mmm... hungry... The crew may be about to become food, amidst a massive power struggle...

SynopsisEdit

Moya is being scanned by Crais' command carrier whilst hiding in an asteroid field, following the events of (1.20 "The Hidden Memory"). The temperature has been reduced so as to avoid the scan. The scan passes leaving Moya and her offspring undetected, but Pilot picks up a distress call from a nearby asteroid, revealing an alien female is under attack from an unseen creature.

Meanwhile Crais is unhappy that Moya has still not been found, and wants to enter the asteroid field to find her. Scorpius disturbs Crais to suggest that he bombard the area with signals to try and make the offspring reveal itself in panic, figuring that the mother would not abandon her child. Crais says his orders stand, and the will change position.

Zhaan, Ka D'Argo and John Crichton go down to the asteroid, in hope they'll also find charts to help get them out of the asteroid field, since without charts they'll be stuck there. On the asteroid, they hear screams and encounter the beast attacking the female, and scare the beast off. The female reveals she is called M'Lee, and she does not want to be left alone. They return to the transport pod where the beast is lying in wait, and attacks, injuring D'Argo with internal injuries, before leaving.

Pilot tells Aeryn Sun on Moya that she is the only one he feels he can trust, and tells her that Moya is having problems communicating with her offspring; there is tension between them. He asks Aeryn to tell Moya why the Peacekeepers did this to her son, and since she should have more of an idea than anyone, could she go aboard the offspring to make him understand. Aeryn goes aboard and mentions what an astounding amalgamation of Peacekeeper and Leviathan technology the baby is. When Pilot suggests turning off the comm array since the Peacekeepers may use it to find them, Aeryn finds it quickly since panels keep lighting up, and she begins talking to the offspring.

Scorpius is in Crais' quarters, playing more mind games with him. Crais says he wants him off his ship, but Scorpius reminds him of all his failures, and threatens to take over.

On the asteroid, Zhaan is trying to heal D'Argo, but she requires more substances so John is about to go off to get some, as M'Lee begins to sniff Zhaan, saying her scent is different and she smells like outside. Zhaan reveals that M'Lee is right - she is also flora! John can't believe that Zhaan's a plant, even though D'Argo says that everyone knows Delvians are flora-evolved. Apparently flora species are quite common. M'Lee detects that the creature is coming, and she runs off after it. Crichton runs after her and when the creature comes, Zhaan disappears, camouflaging herself from the creatures view.

D'Argo is upset with John for allowing Zhaan to get captured, but M'Lee reveals she won't be eaten but taken to the beast's hunting ground and killed. John and M'Lee set off to rescue her, but M'Lee is getting hungry and attacks John in the foliage. The creature appears and knocks down John, while M'Lee runs away. The beast tells John he is not the enemy.

Crais meanwhile, is angry that Scorpius is undermining him with his bridge officers, saying if his command were under question then he would have been recalled. Scorpius reminds him that he was.

The creature, named Br'Nee, finds the atmosphere thin so was too out of breath to say anything to John, saying that was why he attacked him. Earlier in the transport pod, he was trying to warn them. M'Lee is a "calcivore" - she feeds on bone, and would have eaten John. Br'Nee is a botanist, who led a team on the asteroid, but M'Lee killed his team.

In the mean time, the Peacekeepers again scan, so Aeryn has to reduce the offspring's energy signature, but he won't let her. She makes him understand that though the Peacekeepers in a way made him, he must trust his mother, and trust her. The offspring reduces power.

Br'Nee makes some of the plant Zhaan needs to heal D'Argo, using a machine that creates a huge plant from a small sample. Br'Nee and Zhaan go off to heal D'Argo, leaving John to protect the lab. When they've gone, M'Lee returns. She wants to talk with John, and tells him Br'Nee brought her ancestors to this asteroid to rid it of herbivorous life, leaving only the plants. She says she knows she will starve eventually if she remains on the asteroid, so she'll control the hunger if John provides her with a more regular food supply.

Aeryn manages to charge the offspring's cannon, in case of an attack, and tells Pilot that they seem to have an understanding. Pilot says communication between Moya and her offspring is improving. Rygel thinks Aeryn should stay on it in case of an attack, but Aeryn says she will not drag it into a conflict not of its making.

Br'Nee has healed D'Argo, but John returns and reveals Br'Nee's secret. D'Argo and Crichton are upset that sentient beings were being murdered for "stupid plants", which upsets Zhaan, since she is a "stupid plant". D'Argo is about to throw him out and leave, but he reveals he has charts of the asteroid field. Zhaan, having a cool head, goes with him.

Scorpius interrupts Crais during a meal to reveal what is contained in his communication to Peacekeeper Command. He has told them everything Crais has done, and says he will see him personally stripped of rank and office. Scorpius reveals he's taken command of the carrier, and a physical fight ensues. Scorpius displays his physical superiority, and overcomes Crais.

John goes to the lab and finds Br'Nee "injured", who says M'Lee took Zhaan. John goes after her, and then remembers Zhaan does not have bones, so Br'Nee was lying and returns to the lab. John confronts Br'Nee about Zhaan, and finds her miniaturised by Br'Nee's machine. After a fight with Br'Nee, John restores her but Br'Nee is caught by the laser and sliced in half. M'Lee appears as John and Zhaan are about to leave, saying she'll die of starvation, so she feeds on Br'Nee until the Peacekeepers come.

Back on Moya, the charts will allow them to exit the field. Aeryn tells John the baby is amazing, and Pilot thanks her since Moya and the offspring are now getting along. She says she did it for the good of the ship, and Pilot reveals that Moya would like Aeryn to name her child.

The Peacekeepers have searched the asteroid, and found M'Lee. Scorpius hugs her, showing "compassion", and tells the others "sometimes we must know when to give of ourselves". Just before the episode ends, M'Lee's head turns red again, she is hungry.

Memorable quotesEdit

John: Bone Appetite
Aeryn: Amongst all these PeaceKeeper systems I feel quite at home.
Rygel: We couldn't be happier. Honestly, you deserve a home where you're wanted.
Chiana: A distress call directed at us?

(Crichton and Chiana laugh)

John: How stupid is that?
Zhaan: Are you picking up any being's scent?
D'Argo: Zhaan, let me explain to you what is going on inside my nose right now. There's large pieces of green mucus and gunk and -
John: D'Argo, D'Argo - no no no no no, stop it with the Luxan poetry.
John: She said you were the monster.
Br'Nee: Yes, my parents believed so too, but it was just a phase all children go through.
Zhaan: There is much cruelty in the universe.
John: Yeah... we seem to have a treasure map to it.

Background informationEdit

  • Guest star Francesca Buller is Ben Browder's wife. She played a different character in each of Farscape's four seasons. ("Cool Farscape Facts" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • The last four episodes of the season as a single block, and Chris Neal (of Subvision) scored them as an ongoing piece of music. (Farscape: The Illustrated Companion)
  • At one point M'Lee was going to make an appearance in the season two episode "Won't Get Fooled Again". ("Cool Farscape Facts" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • There was originally a line explaining where Stark had gone after "The Hidden Memory", but it was cut. An explanation was saved until his return in "The Locket". ("Cool Farscape Facts" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • This episode was nicknamed "Monster Girl" during production. The cast and crew continued to refer to the episode by that name, long after the filming was complete. ("Cool Farscape Facts" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • This episode is one of Andrew Prowse's favorites of the first season, because he loved working with Francesca Buller. ("Cool Farscape Facts" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • Some of the cave scenes were filmed in a garage at the back of Fox Studios due to overcrowding on the studio floor. ("Cool Farscape Facts" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • M'Lee's animatronics took eight puppeteers to operate. ("Cool Farscape Facts" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • Rockne S. O'Bannon and David Kemper wrote the final two episodes together. O'Bannon felt that this episode "was a fun divertissement before the climax." He continued, "the idea for the episode was one that we had had way early on and had never quite found the plot for it, so we then decided that this would be the place. The original notion was supposed to be a reverse on James Cameron's Aliens. There, you've got the little girl, a sweet little cute thing who you're constantly protecting from the big ugly monster. What we wanted to do was have this sweet little cute girl, and she is the monster!" He noted that they had a tough time in Australia casting children because "they didn't seem to have a very big field of child actors." ("Farscape Chronicles" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • Buller remembered her first time on set as an actor saying, "I was overjoyed. The first day of shooting, we were outside Sydney in a bushland setting. I was wearing the costume for M'Lee, and all of a sudden Anthony came rushing towards me, then Ben, then Virginia – and I thought, 'Oh my God, I'm here!' [...] The first thirty seconds were quite an eye-opener!" ("Farscape Chronicles" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • O'Bannon noted that the moment "that affected [him] most emotionally from the first season" was when Moya asked Aeryn to name her baby. "The look on Claudia's face is so perfect. There's no dialogue, just that look. It just hit me in the heart." ("Farscape Chronicles" - Starburst Edition DVD v1.3)
  • Zotoh Zhaan's true nature is revealed in this episode - that she is a plant.
  • Gigi Edgley is added to the opening credits beginning with this episode.
  • Stewart Copeland's track entitled "Gulp's Overlook", a major boss theme in Spyro 2: Ripto's Rage was used as background music in this episode in the scene where Crais has a physical scuffle against Scorpius, who manages to pin him down and warn him that he's of the superior species.

Links and referencesEdit

StarringEdit

Guest starsEdit

Guest castEdit

PuppeteersEdit

with

Voice artistsEdit

ReferencesEdit

arn; beam down; botanistic pharmacology; botany asteroid; Brocus Histicalx; brocus seed; calcivore; cartilaginous fiber; chakan oil cartridge; chloroplast tintation; command carrier; comms; cycle; dag-yo; Delvian; dench; frell; Goddess of the Delvian Seek; gunship; hezmana; Juka; Karjick pulse; kijmot root; Leviathan; Luxan; Marauder; microt; Mister Rogers' Neighborhood; Moya; Peacekeeper; Peacekeeper High Command; photosynthesis; pulse pistol; Qualta Blade; regenerative fascia membrane; sonic ascendency cannon; Star Trek; stomata; Swamp Thing; Talyn; terok; transport pod; tuperadinous cellulose tissue; wakket hole; yotz;

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