A Snurcher's Guide to Farscape

Beware of Dog

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Production No. 213

Best Viewed As 2.14

Aired As
2.14 (US & UK)

Original Airdates
11 Aug 2000 (US)
09 Oct 2000 (UK)

1.6 (US)
2.65 (UK)

Beware of Dog
Abbreviations: BOD
Alternate Titles: (none)

Wassup? · Backstory · Reactions · Annotations · Microbes · Quotes · Cast & Crew

Writer: Naren Shankar
Director: Tony Tilse
Wayne Pygram...............Scorpius
Complete Credits


It's so hard to find good help these days.

When a commerce planet warns the crew that the goods they just brought onboard might have included a deadly parasite, Chiana buys a Vorc, a hunter that she is assured will quickly dispose of the infestation. The crew's problems quickly mount, however, and it seems that the Vorc is not doing any good -- in fact, the Vorc turns into the only deadly creature that they can find on board. Now, with a poisoned D'Argo fighting for his life, the crew has to work fast to find, and stop, the parasite.


Farscape World


Terra Firma


Farscape Fantasy


John has built himself a chess set.

Aeryn believed John was playing against himself (and that he might be cracking up from being in space for too long); however, John was actually playing against his continuing hallucination of Scorpius.

John is playing with a metal ball throughout the show that looks very much like the one Scorpy was toying with during "Family Ties" (not, however, the same one, per David Kemper's chat comments, quoted below); at one point, John uses it and a chalupa to play golf.

John has gotten more than a little trigger-happy. His first reaction now is to shoot instead of to investigate.

Aeryn just might have had some previous animal wrangling experience. When the Vorc tried to dodge past her, she easily grabbed it around its neck. Later, she worked with it on the hunt, carrying it across the ship.

The rest of the crew, particularly Aeryn, has noticed that John has been acting strangely.

Chiana seems to have a soft spot in her heart for pets.

The bloom is off the rose between D'Argo and Chiana, with D'Argo starting to show irritation with Chiana's more petulant, childish behavior.

Zhaan has a very sophisticated, holographic medical scanner available.

The DRDs have some interesting scanners, including thermal and acoustical scans. The DRDs were shown shining something that looked like a green scanning laser.

Moya's neural clusters can transfer energy to living creatures, strengthening them. Zhaan uses this capability to sustain D'Argo after he was poisoned.

Translator microbes can be used to communicate with sub-sentient creatures. Pilot is better at non-verbal communication because of his relationship with Moya.

When D'Argo thought he was dying, the only person he apparently trusted to find his son was John.

John finally admits to Aeryn that he's having hallucinations of Scorpius.

John has realized that he didn't deliberately spare Scorpius. He wanted to kill Scorpius, but something "inside" stopped him.


Questions (none)

Observations (none)


  1. At approximately the thirty minute mark, as John and Aeryn are following the Vorc down the hallway, watch the lower left corner of the screen -- you'll see a hand pulling a rope, to provide the Vorc with its means of locomotion.


Farscape World
Farscape Fantasy
AV Club
Tourist's Guide


Farscape World
Terra Firma


John: [singing] "He's a Cinderella Boy... [whispering] Oh, my, Bob...this is a...this is a big chance for the kid from the Uncharted Territories...he's about two feet off the green, here on the eighteenth, two strokes off the lead...question is...will he chip or will he use the putter?"

This is a reference to a bit of dialogue by Carl Spackler (Bill Murray) in the film CADDYSHACK:

"He's a Cinderella boy. Tears in his eyes, I guess, as he... as he lines up this last shot. He's got about a hundred ninety-five yards left, and he's got a...looks like he's got about an eight-iron. This crowd has gone deadly silent. Cinderella story... outta nowhere, a former greenskeeper now about to become the Masters champion."

John: "Hey, maybe that's what I saw -- a Vorc."
Aeryn: "It's about this size, naked, with a face like this."
John: "No, it was more like Tandoori Chicken."

Tandoori Chicken is a popular baked chicken dish from India.

John: "Dammit, Chiana! I don't trust Aeryn to wing that thing, and she's a good shot. We have to get it into a confined space where the gas grenade can do some good."
Chiana: "What did you expect me to use, harsh language?"

A reference to a bit of dialogue in James Cameron's 1986 film ALIENS":

Gorman: "Look...ah...Apone. Look. We can't have any firing in there. I...ah...I want you to collect magazines from everybody."
Hudson: "Is he fuckin' crazy?"
Frost: "What the hell are we supposed to use, man, harsh language?"

John: "Pilot, open sesame."

The magic phrase that opens the cave containing a treasure trove, in the story of "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves" from the collection of tales told by Sheherezade, most often called THE THOUSAND AND ONE NIGHTS or ARABIAN NIGHTS' ENTERTAINMENT.

John: "All right, riddle me this. Because we think we may have parasites on board, we get a Vorc, because someone tells us that Vorcs kill parasites. And all of a sudden, this other critter shows up -- this Ewok gone bad -- bites D'Argo, poisons him. Yeah? So we capture the parasite. And... surprise...the parasite and the Vorc are the same thing, but neither one of them is poisonous. So, for $10,000 and the Caribbean cruise...what poisoned D'Argo?"

"Riddle me this" was a catchphrase used by Batman's archvillain The Riddler.

Ewoks are the nauseatingly cute critters from the Star Wars movie RETURN OF THE JEDI, who got their own made-for-TV spin-off movies (THE EWOK ADVENTURE and EWOKS: THE BATTLE FOR ENDOR), as well as a Saturday morning cartoon show.

"So, for $10,000 and the Caribbean cruise" recalls the motivations given on game shows for the contestant to give the right answer.

John: "No, Aeryn, this is a good idea. Why don't we see if we can get the Incredible Vorc here to understand us?"

A reference to the Marvel comic book character Dr. Bruce Banner, who after exposure to intense gamma radiation, would change -- usually at the most inconvenient times -- into The Incredible Hulk. Just as the Vorc had a mild-mannered form which would turn into a fiercer form for attack.

John: "Look, Lassie here is trying to communicate with us."

Lassie is the beloved canine character created by Eric Knight for a short story "Lassie Come Home", published in THE SATURDAY EVENING POST in 1938, and expanded into a novel two years later. Several movies, a radio show, and a couple of TV series followed.

John: "Holy body snatchers. Start talking."

Another reference (see "My Three Crichtons") to the pods that replicated human beings in INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS.

Chiana: "What the frell is that?"
John & Aeryn [in unison]: "Sorry about the mess."

Another reference (see "PK Tech Girl") to Han Solo's line in STAR WARS as he leaves the cantina after shooting Greedo.

Translator Microbe Report

Sleep gas grenade defensive weapon
Transit madness insanity caused by traveling for too long in space
Vorc a parasite hunter with two forms; in its first form, it tracks prey by scent and hearing, then when it is close to its prey, it converts into an armor-plated killing machine


"The human doesn't want to talk." - Aeryn Sun

"What, they ran out of places to defile up here, so they had to do it in a transport pod?" - Rygel

"Our parasite problems are solved."
"Rygel's decided to leave us then, has he?"
- Chiana, Aeryn Sun

"What'd you expect to use? Harsh language?" - Chiana

"You understand shoot? K-tow K-tow K-tow. Ouuucccchhh" - John Crichton (to the Vorc)

"Whoah, whoah! That thing just gave us the slip. Why would it come back for us, unless it was leading us ..."
"... into a trap, what else?"
"Right -- as long as we both know."
-John Crichton, Aeryn Sun

"Imagine me ... food for something else!" - Rygel

"Crichton, if you need help ..."
"I'll ask. Just like you do."
- Aeryn Sun, John Crichton

"You'll never see it coming, John. When the trap closes, it will be too late." - Scorpius

Comments from Cast & Crew

Farscape Season Two Wrap, June 15, 2000

  • Moderator: <Enigmatic-Scully> to <Moderator>: Hey David! Now that season 2 is over, what would you say was your favorite moment of the season?

    Kemper: Tricky, tricky, you are. Several per episode. But I will reveal nothing to spoil.
    Kemper: Something in Ep. 10. One big one in 11. End of 11. All of 14. All of 9. 12. Tension in 13. All the sex in... wait I'm not gonna tell you THAT. You have to WATCH.

David Kemper, with Richard Manning & Ben Browder ("Bruno"), August 17, 2000

  • Moderator: For those who are just joining us, we're chatting with Farscape's major domo David Kemper.
    Moderator: <PyeCat> to <Moderator>: In BOD, Crichton is playing with a very familiar-looking metal ball. Is that indeed the ball that Wayne Pygram picked up off a desk?

    Kemper: "General" Domo, to you.
    Kemper: I don't think it is.
    Kemper: There is no way Crichton would have it on Moya.
    Kemper: We don't violate the rules of Farscape "reality" to
    Kemper: play a prank or an in joke.

  • Moderator: <stargatetravler> to <Moderator>: I love the "unity" that John and Zhaan share. Why does he not ask her for help with the "Scorpy in his mind" problem?

    Kemper: What Scorpy problem in his mind?
    Kemper: Does he think he has a Scorpy problem in his mind?
    Kemper: Maybe when -- and IF -- he ever does,
    Kemper: maybe he WILL ask her.

  • Moderator: <PyeCat> to <Moderator>: D'Argo knows that he can't have children with Chiana after LATP. We know that children are important to him. D'Argo also treated Chiana more brusquely in BOD. Is he already reacting to the knowledge that they are genetically incompatible?

    Kemper: Ooh.
    Kemper: PyeCat is VERY PERCEPTIVE.
    Kemper: See --
    Kemper: that's the kind of viewer I personally like.
    Kemper: People who are looking beneath the surface to see the
    Kemper: others layers that we (all of us, actors, directors, too)
    Kemper: work so hard to build in for your enjoyment.

  • Moderator: <SunAeryn> to <Moderator>: Okay, guys, you want deep questions, how's this, If Aeryn wasn't raised with love, how could she show so much love for Talyn and the Vorc?

    Kemper: Ahhhhh --
    Kemper: another great question.
    Kemper: Underdogs.
    Kemper: Those in danger.
    Kemper: Those unable to defend themselves.
    Kemper: Someone who's strong can go two ways with it.
    Kemper: 1) Oppress others.

    FrooniumRicky: She may not have been raised with love, but perhaps she's starting to learn what it's all about.

    Kemper: 2) Help others.
    Kemper: Those are natural instincts. However, that does not always translate
    Kemper: to "love." Love is something that is dangerous
    Kemper: and has to be learned.
    Kemper: As Dregon Carzenonva
    Kemper: not "Casanova"
    Kemper: told her in LATP#3,
    Kemper: love is painful and you have to learn to deal with it.
    Kemper: Great question.

Guy Gross, May 15, 2001

  • Moderator: <Gmmas> to <Moderator>: In the lighter episodes, like Beware of Dog, is it hard to make the music add to the humorous tone without going overboard?

    Guy: which was that ep again??

    Moderator: That was the one with the little alien scurrying around and humping Aeryn's leg.

    Guy: Oh ya, I loved doing that one
    Guy: could you tell it was a bit of an ode to Goldsmiths score to Gremlins
    Guy: But you're right, humour is really hard to score

Ben Browder, Mat McCoy (w/Fiona Gentle and Tim Mieville), Lily Taylor, & Richard Manning, July 12, 2001

  • Moderator: <Chi> to <Moderator>: to all of you. Which ep was hardest to do? and Why?

    Puppeteering Team: In season three it was an ep we just shot so we can't talk about it. You'll know when you see it. Last season it was definitely the Ravorc in BEware of Dog.