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Farscape Season 1, Vol. 4 - PK Tech Girl/That Old Black Magic

3.7 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews

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(Jun 12, 2001)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

"PK Tech Girl": Our crew encounters the drifting derelict of the most feared Peacekeeper battleship, Zelbinion. The discovery has a devastating effect on Rygel… it's the first ship on which he was imprisoned. And Aeryn is finding herself jealous of the attraction she witnesses between Crichton and Gilina, the PK technician they have met aboard the Zelbinion. But as our crew comes under attack by the Sheyangs, a race of savage scavengers, all must put their emotions aside and focus on the battle they face…

"That Old Black Magic": A simple trip to a commerce planet turns into a life-or-death nightmare for Crichton when he is tricked by the dark sorcerer, Maldis. As his spirit literally gets torn from his body, Crichton is transported to a dark supernatural world and forced to battle his arch enemy, Crais, in a deadly game designed to entertain Maldis. It is up to Zhaan to save Crichton, but to do so, she must rekindle a dark side within herself that she thought was buried forever…

Farscape established itself as a darker, more volatile alternative to the relative utopian ideals of the Star Trek universe, right down to its gloomy, claustrophobic look, but nowhere is that more apparent than its journeys into the hidden pasts of its fugitive heroes. The fourth volume of episodes features a peek into the pasts of Dominar Rygel and ninth level Priestess Zhaan as they hide from the fleets of Peacekeeper soldiers in the galactic frontier known as the Uncharted Territories.

Rygel spent years imprisoned and tortured aboard the Zelbinion, the most feared Peacekeeper battleship of all time, and when they find it a drifting derelict in PK Tech Girl, his memories come back to haunt him. While he battles his demons of the past, the defenseless crew takes on a fleet of ruthless, froglike scavengers ("They spit fire? How come nobody tells me these things!") while American rocket jockey John Crichton finds romance with the a pretty Peacekeeper technician abandoned aboard the wreck (resulting in emotional fireworks from the jealous Aeryn).

That Old Black Magic pits the crew against an evil magician that has been draining the souls of his planet for years and craves the fresh minds of Moya's crew. "I feed on death," the psychic vampire cackles while pitting Crichton against his bloodthirsty nemesis, Peacekeeper Captain Crais, and only Zhaan can save him by unleashing the angry, evil former self she had spent years burying deep within her soul. --Sean Axmaker

Special Features

  • Deleted Footage not broadcast in North America
  • Production Stills and conceptual drawings
  • Anthony Simcoe profile

Product Details

  • Actors: Ben Browder, Claudia Black, Anthony Simcoe, Lani John Tupu, Jonathan Hardy
  • Directors: Geoff Bennett, Ian Watson, Tony Tilse
  • Writers: Rockne S. O'Bannon
  • Producers: Andrew Prowse, Emily Skopov, Justin Monjo, Lesley Parker
  • Format: Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Section 23
  • DVD Release Date: June 12, 2001
  • Run Time: 50 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005AMQS
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #304,617 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Farscape Season 1, Vol. 4 - PK Tech Girl/That Old Black Magic" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Sharon Himmanen on June 14, 2001
Format: DVD
Well, actually, to clarify, I hate DVDs that have just *two* episodes and nothing more. I didn't mind so much when the episodes had commentary tracks because I didn't feel quite so cheated. Paramount started the disgraceful practice of two-episodes per disk but I'm not particularly interested in helping that notion become an industry standard. The people at ADV could learn a thing or two from MGM (who have their own DVD problems when it comes to movie releases, I'll admit), who just released a reasonably priced five-disk set of the first season of Stargate SG-1, with each episode letterboxed and anamorphic. And there were extras on each disk, including the four or five episodes per.
But hey, ADV, start putting four or five Farscape episodes per disk, and releasing them in season box sets, and I am *so* there with you. Until then, rather than spending my money on the Farscape two-episode DVDs being released slower than snails move, I'll just save my dollars for season two of Stargate SG-1.
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Format: DVD
It is a bit of a rip to only release 2 episodes per DVD. I was dealing with that fine. The commentary tracks on the past DVDs made up for it a bit. This one has NO extras at all and yet is still priced like the prior ones. ADV and Jim Henson should be ashamed. I think I will stick with my dub tapes rather than get this DVD. I returned mine. Sad to say though that people are still going to buy these no mater how overpriced they are. The episodes on here are great though. PK Tech Girl develops some of the emotions between Aeryn and John. That Old Black Magic shows some of Zahn's dark past.
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Format: DVD
I believe that it was ADV's president that said that this is the only way they could release the series. Henson demanded (and rightfully so) that the audio/video quality be high, so there are two episodes per dual-layer DVD (1 ep per layer). I believe the UK discs are two single-layer DVDs per pack with four episode (2 eps per layer). What this means is that there is nearly twice the bitrate on the American discs and the shows look fantastic.
Adding one more episode to the disc would be akward because it would mean a layer change in the middle of the second episode (as well as the diminished quality based on the bitrate). Adding another disc would make them more expensive, and the major retailers won't buy ...discs from smaller companies like ADV. Neither will they buy the bigger box sets...
So the choices are: (1) A little more expensive with knockout video (2) Reduce the quality (and I don't think this was an option because of Henson) (3) NO DVDs
Given these choices, we should be glad we're seeing these at all...
And it looks like V7 may start a slightly cheaper pricing scheme as well....
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Format: DVD
I've recently started watching the show on the sci-fi channel and instantly got hooked. The cast, characters and special effects is everything you could ever want in a weekly sci-fi epic.
I bought the first two DVD released by ADV to catch up on the story since we're well into season 3 now. Then I found out that ADV is releasing only 2 episodes per month. I will have to wait approx. 7 more months to view season 1. >:-(
Then there is the cost of... per episode that discouraged me even further. I ended up buying Farscape region 2 DVD's from the UK for about... for the entire season 1 and I'm mid-way through season 2 now. :-) It’s a bit expensive but I did save... and the wait, well worth it.
I had to switch the region code on my DVD-rom drive on my computer so I can view it. NO BIG DEAL but do your homework if you go this route.
Hopefully ADV and Jim Henson Co. will get the hint and start thinking about the fans and not about maximizing profits on nickel and dime DVD sales. I wanted to view the entire season and I would have preferred it to be in region 1 coding. Oh, well I lost patience and ADV lost my money. Too bad for ADV.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Well, it was bound to happen. The fourth DVD based on the FARSCAPE series came out, but it was the first one without any real special features at all. While the DVDs are nice to have simply because of the quality of the graphics and the extra footage not seen in North America, is that really enough? I don't think so.
This one starts out with "PK Tech Girl", one of my favourite Season One episodes. When the crew of Moya find the wreckage of a legendary Peacekeeper ship, the Zelbininon, floating in space, they go aboard to see what they can find starchart-wise. But the Zelbinion is not deserted, as Crais left a tech team to go over the ship, and the only survivor, Gilina, hits it off with Crichton. Meanwhile, Rygel must come to grips with having been tortured on this infamous ship, and the fire-breathing scavengers, the Sheyangs, who arrive on the scene don't make the situation any easier. This is a lovely story with some good stuff in it, marred only by the Sheyang at times, but the extra footage here doesn't really make or break this episode. Still, it puts certain story elements into the forefront, provides some background on Rygel, and give Crichton a lust interest that he's not really been given a chance to have yet. Plus, it acts as the catalyst for several storyline developments down the road (notably in "Durka Returns").
The second episode, "That Old Black Magic", has the crew of Moya visiting a commerce planet searching for a remedy for Rygel's case of flu. An evil sorcerer, Maldis, rules the planet through fear and intimdiation, and when he captures both Crichton and Crais and pits them against one another, Zhaan is forced to bring her dark side to the surface to save her shipmate.
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