A Clockwork Nebari

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Strega: B- | Grade It Now!
The Happy Club

While Varla fusses over her instruments, Crichton insists, "You don't have to do this. You can just lock me up." Varla says that he'll thank them for this later. Milac starts poking something into the space above Crichton's eye, Christ, while Crichton shouts for them to stop. Varla says that they have to either cleanse him or kill him. He snaps, "Isn't that against your Nebari Prime Directive?" She says that these are difficult times. And then the clamps spin and open, move in, grab Crichton's eyeballs, and yank them out. Far enough that you can see about an inch of optic nerve. Crichton screams; I just whimper. Unless you have a strong stomach and are desperate to judge how accurate the FX are, I strongly recommend against clicking here. You're welcome! Varla says that struggling will just make it hurt more, which hardly seems possible. And then a little dingus clamps a metal disc onto the optic nerve. Varla explains that this releases a chemical into his neural system. She says, "You should feel the effects almost immediately." The clamps return his eyeballs to their proper place, and we fade out. Ugh.

Chiana is shoved into the galley, where Varla's grabbing a bite. She offers Chiana something to eat, and Chiana sneers, "I'd rather starve." Then we see Rygel hold out a bowl of food as he insists, "Please, take my plate." Heh. As Chiana stares, astonished, Varla says that all of Chiana's friends have been cleansed. Then Varla asks where Neri is. Chiana says he died months ago. Varla disagrees, and puts a little metallic iPod on the table. A hologram starts to play, showing Neri firing weapons at someone. Varla says, "He was positively identified as the leader of an assault on Nebari freight convoys less than ten solar days ago." Milac says that the Establishment has been sending out people to spread the contagion for almost 20 years. Varla expositions that the disease is symptomless: "It merely waits." Chiana asks for what, and Varla says, "A specific time, Chiana, ordained by the Establishment." Milac explains that when it becomes active, the contagion will throw the alien worlds into chaos, and make them easy to conquer. Having gotten the exposition out of the way, they return to the topic of Neri. Chiana says that she doesn't know where he is. Then she gasps and shudders as Varla activates the collar briefly. Varla insists, "You will tell us where he is, or we will simply use you to bring him out of hiding." Chiana wheezes that they won't use her again, and Varla activates the collar again. Chiana drools a little and collapses. You know, back when this aired, I thought the Nebari were going to be the focus of Season 3. Because Crais is the Season 1 baddie, and then we meet Scorpius late in the season. Scorpius is the baddie of Season 2, and late in the season we find out what the Nebari are up to. I thought that was going to be a pattern. It was a simpler time, before I'd learned that sometimes writers would rather defang a good villain than kill him off when they really, really should. But this is the last we'll hear of the Nebari. I'm pretty sure it's the last we hear of Neri, too, which is even weirder. I know Chiana's flighty, but sheesh.

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