Meeting 7 (10/23/99)
This seventh meeting of the Aeryn Sun Interpretation Society and Widow's and Orphan's Emergency Beer Fund will now come to order. I would like to remind the members of our motto: Will work for beer.
And isn't it great to be having our meeting here at the Tourist's Guide to the Uncharted Territories? Let's hear it for Kiki and Perri our lovely hostesses. (Loud, prolonged cheers, clapping, stamping of feet, and chants of KIKI, PERRI, KIKI, PERRI. The Society and Fund Symphony and Choir begin the "Ode to Joy", the members lift Kiki and Perri onto their shoulders. Through the picture window's we can see the fireworks. Oh, look they're spelling out "We Love Kiki and Perri".)
I see that some of you have found the bar. I can see that the fellip nectar is flowing tonight. Wait, what is that I see there in the back? A giant beer stein with a full size color picture of Aeryn Sun. Amazing. And on the other side is a picture of our Raven Haired Goddess, in the purple dress slit up to.... Oh, My GOD. UCSBdad is overcome with envy.
And I see the tee shirt sales are going well. "She gives me a woodie" , "I'm with Sebacean -> here", "Raven Haired Goddesses Rock" and "My other dad is a UCSBdad". I don't get that last one.
I think the Tribe must have put all of the quarters in the jukebox. We've had nothing but 'shipper songs all night. Let's listen, they're playing one of my favorites.
Take that ribbon from your hair,
Just the thought of our Raven Haired Goddess shaking her hair loose.... On the other hand, I am old enough to be her, er, uhm, older brother. And of course I am happily married to UCSBmom. But Claudia Black does give UCSBdad a woodie, although not intentionally, I'm sure.
I thought for tonight's meeting we could look back at some of the things we've covered in past meetings and try to consider their implications for the future. We, speaking with the editorial we, haven't been too successful at that last part.
We've covered just about every military organization around haven't we? Well, from the vastness of a youth misspent as a Liberal Arts major, ( Poli Sci major, History minor) I have come up with yet another army to compare to the Peacekeepers. Now aren't you glad I didn't decide to spend all of those years as a Business major learning to do something profitable? I remember when I was freshman, the best three years of my life÷. But, as usual, I digress.
Ever heard of the Force Publique of the Congo Free State? About one hundred and twenty years ago Africa was being carved up by the Europeans. There was a considerable to do over who would get the Congo River Basin area. (If you've been paying attention, what started out as the Congo Free State, became the Belgian Congo, became the Democratic Republic of Congo, became Zaire, and is now again the Democratic Republic of Congo.) It was finally decided to give it to Leopold, King of the Belgians as his personal property. The theory being that it was unlikely that the King would use the resources of the Congo to build up a massive army and overrun the rest of Europe. You can't really ask the Germans not to do that.
You know, I bet if I had been a business major, I would have thought up something like that for myself. " Excuse me, could I please have a million square miles of the planet for my very own? Why thanks, California will do fine." Like a damn fool, I never even thought of asking.
Back to the Force Publique. Leopold figured that he could make the most money out of the Congo by investing heavily in weapons and soldiers. The best part about it, was that since he owned the Congo Free State, he didn't have any nosy government asking embarrassing questions. Basically, Leopold's merry men extorted what they needed, mostly rubber and ivory, from the locals. Since they were a profit making organization, they had to be very careful to not waste money like governments do. For instance, if they fired a bullet, they had to bring in the ear of the person they shot to get another cartridge. Just to be on the safe side, they removed the ears of all and sundry they came across. They also made a point of recruiting the local cannibals for soldiers. This saved bundles on their food bills. Eventually, some one got ahold of the books and figured that Leopold was making way to much profit to be paying for his goods and the whole sad story came out. The Belgians took over and did damn little. Then along came the Cold War, the Congo became independent, and many people got involved in doing damn little, but the place got a new name, Zaire. Now they are back being the Democratic Republic of Congo and about all the damn little that can be done has already been done. (Note to self: Make sure no Belgians or Cold Warriors discover UCSBdad's secret identity.) The above of course is just a brief overview. If this interests you, I suggest you read the relevant chapters in " The Scramble for Africa", by Thomas Pakenham. There is also a more recent book, "King Leopold's Ghost", the author of which I have forgotten. And of course, Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness" was set in the Congo Free State and became the basis for the movie, "Apocalypse Now." Digressing once again, does anyone else associate "The Ride of the Valkyries" with Aeryn Sun in her Prowler?
One small literary factoid sidebar on the evolution of villainy in the 20th century. Anyone familiar with P. C. Wren's classic tale of the French Foreign legion, "Beau Geste"? In the 1960s movie of "Beau Geste" the villain was German. In the 1930s version with Gary Cooper as Beau, the villain was a Russian, who had been kicked of the Czar's secret police for being too nasty to prisoners in Siberia. In the original book, published in the 1920s, he was a Belgian who had been run out of the Congo Free State for being too sadistic. Belgians as the preferred villains? As bad as a horde of fierce Swiss. (And they were, once.)
Can anybody reading the above doubt that we are dealing with an out of control former liberal arts major?
Just on the off chance that someone remembers how we got off on this tangent, I will continue. Can't you just see Durka and Crais in this scenario? Shooting up anything that moves and many things that only appear to? Getting the tannot root workers addicted to tannot root so they can pay them in tannot root? I'll bet Durka and Crais weren't liberal arts majors. Not that I'm bitter or anything. I think that we can assume, however, if Aeryn says, " Are you going to eat that?' She's talking about the food cubes and not Rygel.
We've learned very little about the Peacekeepers since our last meeting. We did get to meet Captain Larraq and friends and discover that the PK are seriously into biological warfare. So, Larraq is not a bad man, but he's not a good man, either. Just your basic amoral soldier. Of course UCSBdad is one to talk. I can hear myself saying that the mission comes first, too, once upon a time. Perhaps the lesson here is that Captains, whether named Larraq or Hutchinson, are imperfect tools. Clemanceau was right. War is too important to leave to the generals. Too bad he didn't mention whom it can be entrusted to.
And speaking of His Feloniousness, back about the second meeting, we discussed high fashion and Farscape. I was upset that Zhaan had to traipse around in the same old blue dress all the time. But let's start with he who needs a fashion make over the most, His Greedyness. Let's face it. Making him look good is beyond my mere human capabilities. But what about his throne-sled? How about a little gun rack in the back, a holder for his long neck Lone Star Beer, a honking great sound system playing ZZ Top, and a bumper sticker saying " Goat Ropers Need Love, Too." (And thank you Jerry Jeff.) Would that be cool or what. You're right, it would be "or what". But it would be an improvement. And do you want that detailed?
I do confess to imperfection. But I'll deny it later of course. I thought there for a while that Rygel was going soft on us after The Flax and Jeremiah Crichton. Isn't it nice to see he hasn't really changed, now that we've seen him in action in A Bugs Life? What character on any other sci-fi program would try to steal a frozen plague carrier?
Okay, I confess, the blue clothing thing is probably the uniform for Pa'u's. Like Buddhist bonzes wear saffron. But can't we jazz Zhaan up just a little? Go look at Virginia Hey's website. She is a very attractive lady, both as the Devil in a Blue Dress and otherwise. Maybe a little dark blue, a little light blue, and a little silver trim? Yeah. It does sound like that $100 '57 Chevy I had. How about a red and white outfit to help John celebrate the 4th of July. Oh, yeah. Not a big Delvian holiday. It's really only celebrated in the US and Britain. Yes, Brits, we know that when you think we're not around, you sneak off and celebrate saying adios to us.
The one thing I do worry about is Zhaan becoming a mother figure to Chiana. Will "I've kicked more ass than you've sat on" Zhaan get domesticated? Will Blue Thunder be dressing up to vacuum Moya? Will we be getting recycled sit-com plots?
Zhaan: " John, Chiana has two dates to the big dance. One is with a good looking stud, and the other with a nerdy sort who values Chiana for herself. What shall we do?"
John: "Fortunately, I see this all the time on Nick at Nite. She'll get stood up by both dates and learn a valuable lesson."
Aeryn: "Oh, Hi. Would anybody like some fresh baked cookies?"
D'Argo: "Lucy, I'm home. You in beeg trouble."
I just don't think I could handle that.
I bet D'Argo's outfit is his old uniform. I think the man would look outstanding in one of the leather Peacekeeper uniforms from ABL. And we could do something with his tentacles, you know, kind of like a beehive?
But D'Argo is one conflicted hombre. On the one hand he wants to head on out to pick up his son, Jonthee. But he really sort of has an obligation to the crew of Moya, doesn't he? And, he's probably better off with the group to back him up against Peacekeepers, Nabari, Zenatian Pirates and other assorted Space Trash. So, you can see this coming, can't you? He'll end up on Jerry Springer. You know, Dysfunctional Extra-terrestrial Living Starship Crews Have a Falling Out.
D'Argo: "Sure, I left them. I needed space. I had to do my own thing. Luxan's were never meant to be tied down to one crew. And my son needed me. He's in therapy, you know."
The Crew: (They say nothing, but glare at D'Argo.)
Jerry: "But there's someone else you left behind, isn't there? The Dominarette of Hyneria."
Entering from stage right is Staanz. Dressed in stiletto heels, fishnet stockings, a red leather mini-skirt, a see through blouse, two days growth of beard and a light coat of oil. She sits down by Rygel and puts her arm around him.
D'Argo: "You chose that slug over me?" Hyper raging D'Argo attacks Staanz, who counters with a purse to the family jewels. Peacekeeper security guards swarm onto the stage. Chaos ensues.
But, wait. John is putting his arm around Aeryn. He's kissing her shoulder, her neck, her lips. And.... a commercial? No, it isn't fair. Not again! UCSBdad watches lizards selling beer. (They're right, the ferret does look like a little European filmmaker.) Bob Dole peddling Viagra. A promo for a sitcom that will be cancelled after two outings. Finally, we're back. Staanz is trying to strangle D'Argo with his own tongue. A PK guard is beating Staanz with a blackjack. Jerry's attorneys are trying to cut off the cameras. The camera pans to John and Aeryn, cuddling in a king sized bed, red silk sheets over them. Nearby is an ice bucket with an empty magnum of Champagne, and two glasses. Black Peacekeeper clothing and two pairs of Calvins are scattered about. Is Aeryn's hand doing something under the sheets? Can we see that again?
Aeryn: "John, Dear, how are we going to make this confusing to our audience?"
†John: "That's what we have writers for, Love. They'll put together a dream sequence or two, or maybe the old alternate Universe. The rest is odd camera angles and lighting. And, of course, your uncanny ability to put infinite, confusing shades of meaning into one glance."
Aeryn: (Looking slantendicularly at John.) " You mean like this? "
John: "Don't do that to me, Babe. That almost made me forget I'm the male of my species."
Aeryn: " There's a commercial coming up, perhaps I can remind you. John, what is that high pitched wail?"
Nothing at all. The EMTs have given old UCSBdad a shot and I'll be fine now. They're going to let me go for a ride with them and I can work the siren. Wheee.
Chiana is another fashion victim. I'm sure that in the conformist, monochromatic Nabari culture, wearing black and gray together is the absolute height of rebellion. But Chiana has been out amongst them now. I mean, isn't she the Intergalactic Rebel Without a Cause? I just saw that movie last weekend. UCSBdad is old enough to have seen it when it first came out. God, I wanted a red, nylon jacket. It did me no good. I still didn't look like James Dean. But UCSBdad still gives it the coveted Golden Six Pack with Pizza Clusters for a portrayal of '50s middle class hoodlum wannabes. Chiana as Natalie Wood? An A-line skirt, with a petticoat, and color coordinated sweater? No, not really. I know, bell bottoms, a headband and a tie dyed tee shirt that says, " What if they gave a Nabari brainwashing, and no one came?" Well, we can keep working on this, but I think that Chiana does need to experiment a little with her look.
I originally wrote that I was neutral on what was then the Great Chiana Controversy. Now I'm starting to move in both directions on this. Look at that. UCSBdad talking out of both sides of his mouth. I ought to go into politics. But that takes money. If I had only been a business major. What I mean is that I don't think I would like a Chiana in person. If I met one, I'd head out the back door. But she will certainly make life interesting. Note that in our last meeting I suggested we'd soon see the "Chiana and Rygel Page of Shippyness". And some of you laughed at me. Oh, ye of little faith.
As far as arming John goes, it looks like I was right. Given the lead time the episodes have, they may have thought of that way before I did, but I'll take full credit anyway. From some of the pictures out there, it looks like John may be doing some serious hosing in the finale. I really don't like John in the PK leathers, though. I still thing a two day growth of beard, a lime green Italian silk Giorgio Armani suit and a peach tee shirt is the look for John. After all, I still have dibs on the jeans, white tee shirt and red nylon jacket.
And, at last to our Raven Haired Goddess. Fashionwise, I suggest something short, tight and low cut. Well, what did you expect? Isn't UCSBdad the one whose fanfic features Aeryn Sun in a skin tight white dress, and in a bikini? All right, my mind is in the gutter. But I notice it's a little crowded down here.
(Cut to a brief commercial. Cue the ferret.)
FERRET: Actually, I am a little European filmmaker. Please watch for my upcoming production of" The Which Beer Project", in which UCSBdad walks through a forest and turns into a bar. But for now, go to the TGUT fanfic archive when you leave here and read Earth, Too. And don't listen to those lizards.
So we've gone from 'shippy paradise in Through the Looking Glass, with John desperately looking for Aeryn, the two of them reciting Pilot's instructions at each other, John complimenting Aeryn and finally Aeryn's smile when John says he'll never leave her, to ABL. ABL features Aeryn snarling at John, Aeryn liking Larraq, and on to the finale. The Bumbling, Stumbling, Fumbling, Mumbling, Rumbling, John Crichton, who can't come up with a simple declarative sentence! We know he likes her. All John has to do is say something like:
"Aeryn, I like you"; or
"I enjoy being with you, Aeryn"; or
"Aeryn, I don't know what I'd do without you"; or
"Aeryn, I'd like to pour fellip nectar all over your naked body and spend six arns licking it off."
As a matter of fact, I think I'll file an official protest on behalf of the Society and Fund. They can't spend all these months together, kiss at least twice, and not have gotten around to expressing their feelings towards each other. Well, you're right, of course. We really don't know what they say or do when we're not around. I was the one who suggested they could have been sleeping with each other since Premiere. Sure, maybe while the cameras are on Rygel and Chiana, Zhaan is bitching about the piles of empty fellip nectar bottles everywhere. It won't do any good anyway. The suspense is what keeps us coming back, right?
But as I've said before, were not here for cheap, meaningless sex. Well.... No, it really wouldn't work would it? We're here because Aeryn Sun is a fascinating character. She is, I believe, the strongest woman on TV today. No, I take that back. She is the strongest person on TV today. And she uses that strength for good. What the Tribe wants, I believe, is to see in John and Aeryn, a strong, good pair of people that really are more than the sum of their parts. I think even the non-'shippers out there might accept this. How about it Fish Bunny?
†We did learn a little about Aeryn Sun in ABL. She apparently went through basic training and puberty at the same time. Doesn't that sound delightful? She's apparently originally a pilot, and does miss the old PK life. But, she realizes that is history.
Now we have four hours of new Farscape to look forward to between now and March 2000. I think I can best express my feeling by once again quoting from one of the great works of Sebacean literature, the Tragedy of Aeryn III.
"Now is the winter of our discontent, made glorious summer by this Sun of Sebacea;
But like I said, I'm not bitter. And remember, be careful out there.