Crackers Don't Matter
Abbreviations: CDM, CRACKERS
Alternate Titles: (none)
· Cast & Crew
Where's our damn ice cream?
The crew picks up a scientist who claims he can outfit Moya with a cloaking shield, if they'll take him back to his homeworld. But on the journey, the sanity of the entire crew goes to pieces, culminating in the funniest impression ever filmed of a knight preparing for battle...
John: "Oh, great, so he's like one of those mechanics on 60 MINUTES who says he's gonna help, and then he screws us."
60 MINUTES is the notable news magazine show that's been airing on CBS since 1968, and which excels at investigative reportage. Among the reporters who've made their names on this show are Mike Wallace, Dan Rather, Morley Safer, Harry Reasoner, Ed Bradley, and Diane Sawyer.
John: "You know, I once bought a set of knives from this guy on TV. Cat swore to me that...that they could...they could cut through bone, metal, shoes... Hell, he could cut through my damn car, and still dice tomatoes. You know what? He was lyin'."
T'raltixx: "I...I don't understand. If...if you don't wish my...my services..."
John: "Bingo! Give Brainiac the fluffy doll."
John is alluding to the television commercials for Ginsu Knives, which very definitely implied that the knives in question could cut through anything, including sheet metal, and still be sharp enough to easily slice a tomato.
"Brainiac" is slang for a genius. According to Bartleby.com, it probably comes from the comic book supervillain who was one of Superman's primary nemeses. The original version of Brainiac, an evil humanoid robot, first appeared in 1958. In the mid-1980s, DC Comics revamped all of their characters in varying degrees, and the new Brainiac was said to be an alien scientist whose mind took over that of a human circus mentalist, the Amazing Brainiac.
The "fluffy doll" references carnival games, in which successful contestants are awarded a toy, commonly a stuffed animal or doll.
John: "You seen him? He's blind. He's got a big head, but he's blind. Barring the Yoda factor, if he gives us any trouble, we lock him up."
Another reference (see "I, E.T.") to the Jedi Master of the STAR WARS series.
D'Argo: "What's going on in here?"
John: "Go back to your mountain, Grizzly. You're not wanted here."
A reference to the huge "mountain man" Grizzly Adams, played by Dan Haggerty, first in a 1975 film, THE LIFE AND TIMES OF GRIZZLY ADAMS, and then a 1977 TV series. Other theatrical and made-for-TV movies followed, some starring Haggerty, some not.
John: "I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream. Baskin Robbins, Ben & Jerry's, Good Humor. What's your favorite? Creamsicle or fudgsicle?"
"I scream..." is a favorite kids' rhyme. Baskin Robbins and Ben & Jerry's are two of the more popular brands of ice cream. Good Humor is a old time ice cream company now owned by Breyer's that created a number of ice cream novelties, known as Good Humor Bars sold by trucks that would travel through neighborhoods. Creamsicles and fudgsicles are two popular forms of ice cream bar.
John: "Gilligan and Mary Ann. Maybe you're Ginger. I'd have to, ah, see you in a Wonder Bra to know. Where are you guys taking the Minnow?"
GILLIGAN'S ISLAND (see also http://www.gilligansisle.com/) was the classic American TV sitcom that has become a landmark of popular culture. Gilligan, played by Bob Denver was first mate of the S.S. Minnow, which was to take five passengers (plus Gilligan and the Skipper) on an ill-fated "three hour tour". Mary Ann [Summers] (Dawn Wells) was the sweet young thing from the Midwest, while Ginger [Grant] (Tina Louise) the hot movie starlet. "Who do you prefer, Ginger or Mary Ann?" became a popular "game" among many American men who grew up watching the series. The series spawned three TV-movie sequels in the late 70s and early 80s.
As for Wonder Bras, well...you can find out about them at http://www.wonderbrausa.com/.
John: "Heeeerrrrre's Johnny! Hiya, Honey!"
Aeryn: "Go away!"
John: "Hiya, kids. What's goin' on? This a...French Revolution type of thing?"
John's first line is a reference to a scene in Stanley Kubrick's THE SHINING (see also filmsite.org), based on the Stephen King novel, in which Jack Torrence (Jack Nicholson), in the grip of madness, goes after his wife Wendy (Shelly Duvall) with a fire-axe. He sticks his face through a hole he's chopped in the door to the room she's hiding in, and says, "Heeeerrrrre's Johnny!"
This is, itself, a reference to Ed McMahon's traditional introduction of Johnny Carson each night on THE TONIGHT SHOW.
The "French Revolution type of thing" refers to Aeryn having set up a barricade at the door to Command. While participants in the French Revolution of 1789 (see also http://www.woodberry.org/acad/hist/FRWEB/) did not actually make use of that form of defense, barricades did serve a prominent role in the 1832 Paris uprising immortalized in Victor Hugo's novel LES MISERABLES. John is likely thinking of the later musical of the same name.
Pilot: [in a slow, measured cadence] "I'm sorry, John. I cannot do that."
A sly reference to Stanley Kubrick's 1968 film 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY:
Bowman: "Hello, HAL. Do you read me, HAL?"
HAL: "Affirmative, Dave. I read you."
Bowman: "Open the pod bay doors, HAL."
HAL: "I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that."
Scorpius: "Revenge is a dish best served cold, and you like revenge, don't you?"
John: "Shut up! I hate it when villains quote Shakespeare."
This is likely YASTR (villains quote Shakespeare in both THE WRATH OF KAHN and THE UNDISCOVERED COUNTRY). Contrary to popular belief, however, "Revenge is a dish best served cold" is not an old Klingon proverb. :-)
Nor is it, in fact, a quote from William Shakespeare. It's actually from the 1782 French novel LES LIAISONS DANGEREUSES by Pierre Ambroise Francois Choderios de LaClos. The original quote is: "La vengeance est un plat qui se mange froid." The novel has been filmed four times:
- in 1989 by Roger Vadim as LES LIAISONS DANGEREUSES
- in 1988 by Stephen Frears as DANGEROUS LIAISONS (actually a film version of a play by Christopher Hampton, adapted from the novel)
- in 1989 by Milos Forman as VALMONT
- in 1999 by Roger Kumble as CRUEL INTENTIONS
John and Aeryn's gun battle is reminiscent of the type of gunplay choreography that occurs in Hong Kong action films, particular those of John Woo.
John: "Try it, Medusa, try it. Down boy...roll over."
The first comment is a reference to the mythological character Medusa, whose face could turn men to stone; in place of hair, she had a mass of writhing snakes, to which John might be comparing D'Argo's tentas.
The second comment is a pair of commands frequently given to dogs, to demonstrate their level of training and obedience.
John: "My little black book...is all full."
A "black book" is technically defined as a book containing the names of people or organizations to blacklist, or a list of people who are out of favor. Modern social connotation, however, has given "little black book" an alternate meaning: a collection of contact information for romantic or sexual partners.
John: "Oh, no one's goin' anywhere. Not even to Disneyland. Not before we all have the breakfast of...losers. Oh, look, everybody, Sunshine's awake. Reynaldo! [kicks D'Argo] Even on a flesh wound!"
Disneyland: The Magic Kingdom. The sun, to which all other theme parks are but shadows. A popular TV marketing campaign of Disneyland/Disneyworld, that ran in the late '80s or early '90s, featured top athletes being asked by a "reporter" what they were going to do now that they had won the Super Bowl/World Series/Olympic gold medal, etc. ("Katarina Witt, you just won a gold medal! What are you going to do next?!", and they would reply enthusiastically, "I'm going to Disneyland!") This slogan, "I'm going to Disneyland," is now commonly used as a flippant response to someone asking what one is going to do next.
"Breakfast of losers" is a swipe at the slogan for the cereal Wheaties, which advertised itself as "the breakfast of champions".
The meaning of the remainder of Crichton's comments is unclear. Mark Morrison suggests that John actually says "Ronaldo", in reference to an astonishingly gifted Brazilian soccer player (hence the kick to D'Argo's knee), currently playing in Italy; this would not be recognizable to most Americans, however.
John: "Have I got your attention now? Good. So, class, today's assignment is...anyone? anyone? anyone? anyone? A brand new car! No, it's...T'raltixx..."
The first part is possibly a reference to the 1986 film FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF, the relevant quote being the one by the Economics teacher.
The way that Crichton says "A brand new car!" is imitative of the announcers on game shows describing the grand prize.
John: "Now, I've been acting twisted as well. Still am. Been seeing Scorpius like he's guest-starring on HAWAII FIVE-O..."
HAWAII FIVE-O is the long-running (12 years) TV crime drama starring Jack Lord as Police Detective Steve McGarrett. It's the source of the common quote "Book 'em, Danno", said by McGarrett to his partner, Detective Danny Williams (James McArthur). The Main Title Theme by Morton Stevens is one of the best known themes in TV history. It was recently used, to hilarious effect, in the Aussie film, THE DISH.
John: "Look at you two bozos."
Contrary to popular belief, the word "bozo" (meaning a foolish person) does not derive from the character Bozo the Clown, as the word predates the character by several decades. Bozo the Clown was the host of a syndicated children's program produced by individual TV stations across the country, with different people playing Bozo in different markets. Perhaps the most well known Bozo was Willard Scott, who played Bozo in the Washington, DC area circa 1960, and later came to prominence as the weatherman on NBC's THE TODAY SHOW during the 80s and early 90s.
John: [hums "The Ride of the Valkyries"]
Aeryn: "We are going to die."
"The Ride of the Valkyries" is a well-known tune from the German opera DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN by Richard Wagner. It's most recognizable to many people from its use in Francis Ford Coppola's film APOCALYPSE NOW.
Aeryn's comment (ad libbed by Claudia Black during filming) is reminiscent of a scene in ANIMAL HOUSE in which several of the frat boys take dates to an all-black roadhouse. After coming in the door, and seeing that they are the only Whites in the place, one of them says in a calm, matter-of-fact manner, "We are going to die."
The comment is also similar to that from Indiana Jones to Willie Scott in INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM (1984), when he and Short Round are trapped in the shrinking room.
John: "Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall...And all the king's horses and all the king's men..."
A rhyme found in Lewis Carroll's ALICE IN WONDERLAND sequel, THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS. The full rhyme goes:
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall.
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king's horses and all the king's men
Couldn't put Humpty Dumpty in his place again.
In a deleted scene found on the R2 (British) DVD, Scorpius (and later John) sings "99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall".
"99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall" is a common tune usually sung by masochists and/or people who are bored to death or want to be annoying. It goes:
99 bottles of beer on the wall.
99 bottles of beer.
You take one down and pass it around.
98 bottles of beer on the wall.
And then the same verse gets repeated, with the number of bottles being reduced by one with each round.
Scorpius: "All work and no play makes John a dull boy."
An old adage (but substituting "Jack" for "John").
(see also www.crichtonisms.com)
Translator Microbe Report
Comments from Cast & Crew
Ben Browder, July 29, 1999
Virginia Hey, April 27, 2000
- Moderator: <aughra> to <Moderator> G'day Ms. Hey. Crichton and Rygel seem to make free with calling Zhaan to "bring her big blue a---" Zhaan seems ok with this; are YOU?
Virginia: Hi aughra. Yes, I think it's funny and I think Zhaan has a wonderful sense of humour, so she takes it in her stride. I think we give as we get! XXX
- Moderator: <SunAeryn> to <Moderator> Virginia, speaking of food. What were the crackers in "Crackers" made of? And did they have any taste?
Virginia: Hi sunAeryn, they were made of flubberaboodley doolally and they tasted like rice wafers here on earth. XXX
Justin Monjo & Rowan Woods, May 11, 2000
Farscape Season Two Wrap, June 15, 2000
- Moderator: <Scapefan> to <Moderator>: Hey there Ben, did you laugh the first take during the scene with Scorpy wearing a hawaiian shirt?
Ben: I laughed when I read it... But was appalled to see that Scorpie was wearing a shirt that I own.
- Moderator2: <Zerber> to <Moderator2>: Hi Ben, another carolina boy here. where did the hawaiian shirt in CDM come from? Oz? or USA? (gotta have one!!)
Ben: That's an Oz product... it actually depicted Sydney.
Ben: cool shirts
Ben: Mambo... loud shirts
- Moderator: <kronos2000> to <Moderator>: To all, was Crackers as fun to make as it was to watch/
TimFerrier: The challenge was to see how many crackers we could get in Rygel's mouth.
Moderator: How many boxes of crackers were used on that one, Tim?
Moderator: (the whole ep, not just Rygel's mouth)
TimFerrier: The factory is STILL baking.
- Moderator: <LrdBowler> to <Moderator>: tim, what kind of crackers were those in CDM? They don't look like any we have on the shelf at the local supermart.
TimFerrier: They were made from my mum's secret recipe ... each was handcarved from fine Tasmanian ash ..
- Moderator: <Vandi60> to <Moderator>: For Tim, What was the green junk they plastered Ben with. (in Crackers Don't Matter)
Ben: it was VOMIT?
- Moderator: <MaKeever> to <Moderator>: Tim, did you come up with the hysterical outfit for him when he confronted T'raltixx?
TimFerrier: That kind of stupidity could only come from DKemper.
Justin Monjo, February 08, 2001
- Moderator: <jag> to <Moderator>: Crackers Don't Matter is my Favorite Ep. Have a Klondike bar. What was your favorite part about the Crackers Don't matter Episode, hardest part to make/write?
JustinMonjo: Thanks! The hardest part was that we had to write it in a week, and it was just one of those episodes that came out well.
- Moderator: <stargatetravler> to <Moderator>: Which type of ep do you like to wirte best - a "shippy" ep (The Locket), an action ep (LGM3, "plan B") or a crazy one (Crackers Don't Matter)?
JustinMonjo: Oh, I have to say its either a crazy one or a shippy rather than an action, to be honest. I love the crazy ones
JustinMonjo: I do love to do stuff like the Locket.
JustinMonjo: Action ones are more of a technical exercise.
Paul Goddard, May 10, 2001
Ben Browder, Mat McCoy (w/Fiona Gentle and Tim Mieville), Lily Taylor, & Richard Manning, July 12, 2001
- Moderator: <xengland> to <Moderator>: my friend adam in the uk would like to know if there will be any more appearances of the mambo shirts in future eps
FrooniumRicky: Boy, I hope so
FrooniumRicky: hm, but so far, nary a Mambo in sight
FrooniumRicky: oh, btw, for those who don't know
FrooniumRicky: the very FIRST frame of John Crichton
FrooniumRicky: in the Premiere --
FrooniumRicky: That was a Mambo shirt as well