Ahhhhh - the evocation of so many s-f films and stories from years past and yet to come.... a giant spaceship tumbles slowly end over end across the sky, silhouetted in stars...
The Lexx - obviously - and its crew - of necessity - are in trouble. Again.
We're plunged straight into the story with no introduction - which is probably the best way, under the circumstances. Those who are already familiar with Lexx - The Dark Zone Stories need no introduction, while for those who aren't, trying to condense the previous misadventures into an acceptably short intro would be nigh on impossible. And also unnecessary: the sense of disorientation which greets the unknowing (or should that read unwary?) viewer echoes that of the crew on awakening...
The sight that greets 790 on his monthly awakening from deep shut-down mode is intriguing - and highly unlikely. I tried, idly, to work out the physics involved in having two planets that close together, and came to the conclusion that it was impossible (without some kind of compensatory gravitational force, at any rate.) But for once it doesn't really matter. As an illustration of balance - albeit a somewhat precarious balance - it works beautifully. Looks beautiful too - perilous, slightly threatening, but nevertheless fascinating. The whole setting has an allegorical feel to it.
In Prince we have a truly superb 'villain'(if villain he is. I'm not sure if getting enjoyment out of terrifying Stan actually counts as villainy...) Forget the caricatures of series 2 - Brizon, Mantrid, Dr Khazan - Prince is the real thing. Intelligent, amoral, powerful, dangerous, astonishingly attractive... Personally I don't blame Xev for falling for him. There's something else too - a sense of purpose, perhaps, or fatefulness; I have the distinct impression that his "I have waited for you forever..." indicates something far beyond its usual romantic sweet-nothingness. I'm looking forward to finding out just what it is.
And the Lexx crew? Well, Stan seems to have learned some caution since series 2 - he doesn't give away all the Lexx' secrets the moment someone asks him. Instead, Xev does (although by doing so it appears that she might save Stan's life.) But I rather like this Xev. She seems to be somewhat more controlled than in the past - perhaps she's gained some mastery over the loveslave part of her being? And Kai? Well, Kai now has the irritation and embarrassment of having to endure 790's adoration. Unfortunately the robot head hasn't improved one iota...
I like the use of flashbacks to explain some of what is happening in the present: it's economical and allows the viewer (especially the newcomer) to keep up with the action. I hope it's used as a regular feature. And ending on a cliffhanger is a new feature for Lexx. It certainly leaves me looking forward to the next episode (although I don't doubt that Stan stays alive, at least in some form.)
I'm keeping this one short. So far the series looks extremely interesting; slower paced (which feels right, given the ongoing storyline), with at least one great new character, and a terrific setting. And all sorts of hints and clues about what's to come!
Xev's hair... Well, yes, I suppose it does add some emphasis to the Cluster Lizard side of her nature (those slightly irritating long bits at the front remind me of insect antennae) as well as looking a little more 'feminine' (though whether that's a good or bad thing I'm not sure...) And it's more attractive than the short, red barnet. But how come her hair has grown (and changed colour) while she's been in cryosleep, while Stan's hasn't?
So time is measured by battles? How long is a battle? How long is a 'standard year', come to that?
Prince refers to the Lexx as a comet, although it clearly resembles an insect. Does Fire not have any bugs?
So the other cryopods do work. Why weren't they used previously? (Or is it the case that Kai - who appears to be able to do everything: a handy corpse to have around - has repaired them at some point?) And do they have their own power source? Would sending Lexx to sleep have resulted in the shutting down of all his internal systems?
Why do the pump pedals go backwards? I know Prince has said he's good with pain, but if the aim is to keep the pumps going so that the cities can maintain human life, wouldn't it be easier to have them turn the other way (easier on the slaves pedalling them, I mean)?
© 2000 Joules Taylor
© 2000 WordWrights