Season 1, Episode 14: “Jeremiah Crichton”
* out of *****
“Every once in a while, you reach an episode where everything comes together: the writing, the directing, the acting–all the production crafts–and you achieve a magic, magic, perfect episode. We’re here today to talk about Jeremiah Crichton because it is, absolutely, NOT that episode.” 
John gets fed up about being on Moya, goes out for a fly to clear his head, and accidentally gets stranded on a planet for 3 months when Moya has a little pregnancy-related uncontrolled starburst.
I really disliked this episode when I first saw it. The writing feels weird, and very few things particularly work. I’ve intentionally skipped showing it the handful of people that I’ve introduced to the show, as I was worried that it would scare them away before we even get any Chiana or Scorpius in the mix. Upon rewatching, I can at least say that it’s not AS bad as I remember it. The episode does LOOK good. (Well, not counting John’s beard. And the outfits, which the DVD commentary rightfully calls reminiscent of the Flintstones. But the location shots and the CG work, with the exception of Rygel’s , are quite nice.)
So since this is the episode everyone loves to hate, and the episode with its own commentary dedicated to saying, “Wow, this one really didn’t work, did it?” I’m going to simply list a number of things that I thought went wrong, and move on to “Durka Returns,” which is a much better episode…
- The episode/concept is played too straight, and isn’t turned on its ear in the way that Farscape usually does.
- John’s fake beard (described in the commentary as looking like Browder was wearing a ferret).
- D’Argo and Zhaan’s characters feel switched. D’Argo is the one saying they drove John to leave and that they should keep looking, while Zhaan is the one saying they should forget him and it’s all his fault. Even with Zhaan being different for her recent experiences, it still feels a bit much for her, and it definitely feels out of character for D’Argo.
- John and D’Argo are captured by nets that don’t even cover them down to their waists.
- The plot requires far too many happy coincidences for it to work.
- John’s being fed up and being a dick to everyone (Zhaan especially) seems to come just a little bit out of nowhere, as there just wasn’t enough time to establish it.
- Perfectly human aliens, who aren’t apparently Sebacean.
- And finally, it’s just…kind of boring. We know John’s not going to remain on this planet. We know they’re not going to be killed, and it’s too silly for us to lose ourselves in the story and forget this . The subplot on Moya with Zhaan and Aeryn looking for D’Argo, Rygel, and John, while it does ultimately affect the plot, is very bland and feels like little more than filler.
“Let’s hit the road.”
Even the great shows have a bad episode now and again.
 Executive Producer David Kemper, from the DVD commentary
 Stuff like that is forgivable if they can get other things right. In this episode, it just adds to the problems.
 It’s also before Farscape started killing people off.
Joe Weatherby says
No kidding on the beard! I had a tough time getting over that.
Had flashes of the Prime Directive when Crichton said he decided to live outside the village so as to not interfere.