Stark attends Zhaan, all out of it still. Seeing him do these things... I can't get away from the idea that if you saw John doing these things, as John, you might actually just fall apart. Like The Ring or something. The whole Harvey's Lovely Daughter thing that happens later on is so, so much more frightening, though, because of having to watch John do all these things in a coldsuit. Guys are just like this: you have to see the devil in yourself before you can see the devil in your beloved. John now, Aeryn later. And then, so much later: hell and back before you can see the love in your devil. Before you can Yensch, before you're big enough. And none of them have the option of putting Harvey's face on it, great acting job notwithstanding. It's still John, who never hurt anybody, who stayed strong even when the world was falling apart and he was acting like a fruit loop, who never moves to violence except by forces stronger than all the Peacekeepers put together. John, who weekly hands them some gonzo plan where nobody gets hurt, as though by coincidence. John, whose only useful skill is the ability to love completely.
This episode would be just as horrible if there were no dialogue at all, is how much we're privileging the visual this week; it's not a story you can tell in words. First there was light, and then there was darkness, and the light got confused and bent back against itself. Zhaan in an eyepatch. And the light burnt out the mother, burnt her to a crisp, for its selfishness. And the darkness won. Stark begs Zhaan to focus, to "purge the memory," but Zhaan's raving: "No! Crichton! Stark, he is no more! His body shelters some horrific evil! Crichton...Crichton's gone," she screams. And, being a consummate actor, Hey pulls off the line gorgeously; it's coming from her whole body. (And it's a story she already knows: it's every nightmare, coming true. What if your Harvey got control? What if that meant you were gone forever, blotted out -- or worse, screaming in some corner of your mind, watching your body act out savagery and thoughts you can't allow yourself to think? What if there was no difference?)
The Prowler tracks the module through the canyons of Hoth. Harvey rejoices in a barrel roll. "How's the ride back there, hmm? A little bumpy?" Aeryn says she's on his six, weapons locked. "Ah, the radiant Miss Officious. So sure. So confident in the void of space." That's all she's ever been allowed to be. In space, there are infinite options. "Crichton was trained to fly in atmosphere...against gravity. Welcome to our world, baby." If you allow yourself to hope, if you allow yourself to love, you lose options; you come down into gravity. She scrapes a wing; D'Argo calls her on comms. "Aeryn, Crichton has often said he'd rather die than fall to Scorpius." Tell me the difference. "If you get the opportunity, don't hesitate." She asks why the hell he would even think she'd do that. "Because if our positions were reversed, I would." I don't know what to say to that. I'm just glad D'Argo had his own shit to deal with this week, just two tonguelashes in a five-second scene and it was over. He could never come back from Harvey the way Rygel and Zhaan, even Aeryn, did. He's great in a lot of ways, but he couldn't come back from that.