Warning: This has turned out to be really long. I am sorry, but I seem to lack any powers of summation! Anybody has any to spare? It’s a mixed bag of meta, pics and direct quotations from the show.
Farscape without any doubt in my mind has given us THE greatest, most epic romance – John and Aeryn are still and will be for a long time unbeaten in my book.
However it also gave us a really great bromance – two apparently opposite personalities, from different worlds, with different values and upbringing were brought together, oh so well, by the writers and over the four years plus mini-series, their relationship bloomed, consolidated, intensified and resulted in a brotherly love, which always touches me a little (ok a lot, but most people think I am sad already so I was trying to play it down!) – yes you have guessed it, this is about John and D’Argo’s friendship and its growth over the cycles of adventures they shared.
As we all remember in Premiere, within a few microts of the two of them meeting each other, D’Argo slapped John against Moya’s wall, almost choked him and then tongued him – ok if you have never seen FS and you are reading this you are probably thinking this is going to be NC-17! Get your minds out of the gutter! D’Argo literally whipped him with his extra-long adaptive venom-filled tongue and knocked him out. A bad start, but a quite spectacular one!
Anyway at the end of the first ep, in spite of the fact that John just saved his and everybody else’s eema, D’Argo doesn’t spare words or feelings and tells him:
I don't know who you are, where you're from or what you want. But if you threaten my freedom - I'll kill you
So here we have it the start of a beautiful friendship (well almost)!
Now if we were to follow it step by step, we could be here forever, so below are just some stepping stones that in my eyes brought these two so tightly together:
Up and downs followed for the next couple of monens – they shared a very man-bonding moment at the end of Back and Back and Back to the Future when they acknowledged how about, in spite of all the differences, they miss horizontal female company.
Alas, not enough to soften D’Argo however, who in a bout of good Luxan hyper-rage in the very next episode, Thank God It’s Friday Again, forces John to hide for 3 days to avoid annihilation.
What I always enjoyed by the way in the first half of the first season is that John’s perceived haplessness actually brought together the two warriors of the group, D’Argo and Aeryn, and actually set the two of them on the path of mutual respect first of all and finally genuine affection – another story arc that always fascinated me and moved me – the moments that bring them together are not as frequent but they are extremely meaningful! Hopefully somebody else will explore them in this challenge!
Anyway, back to the bromance. The next stepping stone occurs in ‘Til the Blood Runs Clear, when for the first time, words of respect if not friendship yet are finally exchanged – John offers his hand to D’Argo and D’Argo takes it –
John: I ever come after you with a weapon? This isn't gonna work, is it? We're never going be friends.
D'Argo: Friendship is a lot to ask. (Ah D’Argo if you only knew what’s ahead!)
John: Then how about respect? We can be allies. Warriors on Earth did this to show that they weren't holding weapons.
The friendship is finally consolidated in Family Ties, when John and D’Argo face death together while attempting and achieving the destruction of Scorpius’s Gammak base. Love this conversation just before they leave the pod – this is it, they are now truly friends!
John: Hey - D'Argo. How come I'm not afraid?
D'Argo: Fear accompanies the possibility of death. Calm shepherds its certainty.
John: I love hanging with you, man. My Dad’s good luck charm.
D'Argo: Does it work?
John: I'm alive. So far. Kirk and Spock. Abbot and Costello
And when you actually think about it, Season 1 doesnt't close with an exclusively John/Aeryn cliffhanger but actually ends with that fantastic image of two friends who accomplished a mission together and are now about to die together holding each other.
That’s why I love Fascape!
Ok, I promise the next three seasons are not going to be as long.
In Season 2, John’s reaction to D’Argo and the Orican always made me smile in Vitas Mortis – is it just me or John acts kinda jealous in that?
There are great moments of true friendship between them in the Princess Trilogy – D’Argo’s philosophical approach to John’s destiny and his talking him into accepting it always tasted bitter-sweet. You can see both of their points of view and yet you feel that D’Argo cares and wants his friend to live and make the best of his life – is that advice so wrong?
I love this:
D’Argo: Look at what Fate has given you. Scorpius will no longer be a threat. And as a ruler you'll have power. Peace. Prosperity. You could create a family. Perhaps you've only just discovered your true destiny.
John: You've been spending way too much time with Chiana you know that?
D'Argo: Amongst all the fluff she can make a lot of sense. Our time was good John. We had each other when we needed each other. But now it's time to move past your fears. See what's on the road ahead.
John: If I do this - you have to be my best man.
D'Argo: Uh... I'm with Chiana now - John. (LOL!)
They then hit a rough patch in Liars, Guns and Money but I always justify it to myself by saying that D’Argo was truly distressed by the fate of his son…until we get to the very end scene of the trilogy when John is out of his mind crazy and desperate:
John: He's here and um - he blames me. Blames me for killing Scorpius, so I've been trying to... But I can't – (D'Argo seizes him and cradling John's face in his hands, makes him focus)
D'Argo: But you WHAT John?
John: (he stares at D'Argo for a long moment before saying, in a perfectly lucid tone) D'Argo - kill me. D'Argo please - kill me.
D’Argo just looks at his friend with pity, love and heartbreak while he gently strokes his face with his thumb.
And finally in Die Me Dichotomy when D’Argo lets a shackled John take his knife from him during Aeryn’s funeral - in spite of all that has occurred, D’Argo still wants to trust him and knows how broken and guilty he must feel.
In Season 3, we have John coming through for a suicidal D’Argo in Suns and Lovers but once the crew splits between Moya and Talyn, the writers gave us the funnier side of their friendship – well at least until D’Argo puts John in a coma in Revenging Angel – he didn’t mean it though it has to be said in his defence and he is Luxan, people, he can’t help his rage!
I adore their bickering in Scratch ‘n Sniff – they argue, they drive each other mad but they are solid, their friendship shines through – there is no doubt about it at this point.
However the funniest and the most poignant moments between them in this season for me come in Fractures.
The funny one first:
GreenJohn: D'Argo! Green or black?
D'Argo: Well - the black of course! I mean far be it from me to say - but I've always thought that the cut of that green shirt doesn't suit the shape of your body.
The poignant one:
D'Argo: Want some advice?
John: Nope. What? What?
D'Argo: (with deep compassion) Oh my friend I... I don't know what to say. I don't have any advice. It's difficult isn't it? You're - jealous of the other you aren't you?
John: He died. The other guy. The copy.
D'Argo: And now Aeryn thinks that you are the copy.
Ok he doesn't really give him any advice but he is there for him and feels his pain - what else can you ask for?
In Season 4 we just see their relationship solidify – D’Argo is now the steadier, wiser one of the two. While John deals with his demons, Aeryn, Scorpius, lakka, doubts, torment and everything that the poor guy is put through and puts himself through, D’Argo is by his side – a solid wall of comfort, ready to face anything, a true stalwart friend.
Their interaction is great in Mental as Anything but we see that profound empathy from D’Argo for John’s suffering once again in Bringing Home the Beacon in that last desolating scene when John realises the real Aeryn has been taken and he may never see her again:
D'Argo: You know - it's not Aeryn.
John: It was never Aeryn.
D'Argo: We're not gonna give up on her John. Sikozu said the Scarrans are taking Grayza to a place called Katratzi. Maybe that's where Aeryn is now.
John: She could be anywhere out there.
D'Argo: But we're not going to let her go. I give you my word.
And he keeps his word until the two are finally reunited.
That heart-wrenching scream from D’Argo when his two friends disintegrate in front of his eyes right at the moment when things seem to be looking up for them actually closes the season and the series in a very memorable manner. I know the miniseries took the anguish out of it, but every time I watch Bad Timing that scream gives me the woodies…I mean the willies!
So here we have it, the journey through the years of two great characters who against all odds find enough common grounds to overcome their differences and become brothers. I personally loved how, even in the most difficult, painful times, they always found the time for a laugh – their friendship was never portrayed as over the top, forced or manufactured – it grew with time like most real friendships do and it offered us drama, tears, heartbreak and lots of laughter – man, I love the way those two could always share a laugh!
I will leave you to the last words they exchange, which really sum all of the above up and make me cry every time
CRICHTON: You're the closest friend I have.
D'ARGO: You could've done better.
CRICHTON: Nowhere in the universe.
D'ARGO: You got a lot of life to lead, John. Do big things. Do me a favor?
CRICHTON: Name it.
CRICHTON: I'll look after her. I'll take care nothing's gonna happen to her.
D'ARGO: Go away. I wanna speak to Chiana.(VDog cries and laughs EVERY TIME! right here)