I was told I was the most face value SubGenii they have met -- ironic, seeing as how I'm the one in the mask

I have One word for you -- FARSCAPE

FARSCAPE – How can such a unique treasure like this be such a hard sell? Is it the name? I don’t know how many times I’ve heard “Fire Escape? Is it a show about firemen?” Yet, such a unique show would require an equally unique name. Google the word “FARSCAPE” and that’s all you get – nothing but FARSCAPE.

Is it the production team? Quite a few people automatically think it’s a kids show since it was made by the Jim Henson Company – and yet everyone has such fond memories from their childhood involving Muppets, and with the JHC having such a distinguished record for quality projects, it’s difficult to understand why folks won’t give such a unique show a chance.

Is it the fantastical science fiction elements? With most of the highest grossing films of all time being science fiction, it should be a given that folks would enjoy such a unique program – although televisions track record of sci-fi shows leaves something to be desired, I guess it’s understandable.

Could it be the heavily involved story arcs? With the massive popularity of shows like 24 and LOST with deep plots and interweaving story lines, it’s hard to fathom anyone not being able to follow the unique stories and situations the characters find themselves in.

Maybe it’s the characters? When so many people tune in to six thirty-something, whiny losers sitting around a coffee shop week after week, pissing and moaning about how much of a mess their life is, it’s hard to imagine that anyone would not find the depth of character growth on FARSCAPE entertaining and compelling.

I grew up with the best (and worst) that television had to offer. I was raised on programs dating back to the Golden Age with Jackie Gleason and Jack Benny, all the way through to the insipid birth of reality TV. I’ve watched brilliant and not-so-brilliant programs come and go. I’ve had my favorites, and I had those I detested – yet I gave all of them a chance. You never know when you might find a gem amongst the clutter.

But for a while there, my interest in TV began to wane. It seemed to be the same archetypes and scenarios with the same laugh tracks and the same clich├ęs over and over again. And with the sudden popularity of reality TV (which has nothing to do with reality) I would find myself channel surfing robotically, bored with the blah and bland and the ever increasing inanity of commercials.

That is, until that night…

Working late, I arrived home in the middle of a snowstorm – pissed off and chilled to the bone, hungry and just wanting to relax. I eventually found myself in front of the TV, flipping through endless channels with no hope of anything grabbing my attention, much less holding it much past the next commercial break.

Suddenly, something caught my eye. Was that a bald, blue chick? I flipped back and realized it was the Sci-Fi channel (a channel known at the time for reruns of Quantum Leap and Mystery Science Theatre) and there before me was this beautifully statuesque, bald, blue woman with some of the most fine detailed makeup work I’d ever seen. Then, this strange beast of a man appeared who looked like a cross between a cat and a squid – and yet, his features brought to mind a warrior wearing a helmet. I was curious to say the least. Was this some late night Sci-Fi original movie? It had to be – the makeup and prosthetics were far more advanced than your typical “Human with funny forehead” aliens – i.e. Star Trek.

Whatever it was I was watching was almost over, and I watched until the end, when the credits rolled across the screen and I saw that this program was produced by the Jim Henson Company. I was awestruck! I am such a huge fan of the man Jim Henson. His imagination and creativity, both in front of and behind the camera, was simply the work of genius. As a child I studied puppetry and dreamed of becoming a Muppeteer. When he died was the only time I have ever cried over the death of a celebrity. By now, my curiosity was enough to kill a dozen cats. The title of the show finally flashed across the screen – FARSCAPE. Weird name for sure, but it sure made it easy to Google. What was this show all about? And when will it be on again? It wasn’t long before I had my answers –

The next Friday I set aside time to check out just what the Jim Henson Company had came up with. It turns out this episode was the season one finale. During the next hour I experience the most exciting and exhilarating television I ever had. As the end credits began to roll I found myself giving the show a standing ovation. I can’t really describe the feelings I had. But I thought that television had finally changed for the better. Not only had it raised the bar for what could be done on TV, but for me it became what I would hold all past and future programs up against as a measure of quality. They just don’t make shows like FARSCAPE. And they never will again.

Over the next few years I enjoyed this strange and irreverent show and its amazing cast of characters. Eventually I acquired the complete collection of the series on DVD, and began hosting viewing parties, slowly turning a few friends and family on to the wonders I had experienced. Some of the best fun I’ve had hanging with friends were during these viewing parties, which could occasionally be mistaken for Super Bowl parties with how rowdy we would get. The show affected my viewing habits so much that when the series was unceremoniously cancelled, I cancelled my cable, and have barely watched TV for the last decade. I still give programs a chance, and they continue to disappoint. Even the ones that have grabbed my attention still do not hold a candle to FARSCAPE, and I can’t even bring myself to watch these shows as they air – I have to pick up the sets on DVD and watch them in one sitting. I just can’t be bothered to make time for TV anymore.

So when I saw so many of my friends making such a big deal about the show LOST, which to me feels like one big jerk off session – sure it can be entertaining, but you’re still just getting jerked off. I want to scream to the world “No! There is something more satisfying and marvelous out there – if you’d just give it a chance!” I wish I could send copies of the series to every one of you so you could share the wonders I’ve seen. To share in something unique in the universe – and unique is always valuable.

So please – if you are willing to find time to watch a show like LOST, I’d like to ask for you to find just a little bit of time to enjoy this strange and irreverent, unique and groundbreaking show.

For more information – SPOILER FREE – check out “The Newbie’s Guide to FARSCSAPE” written by Mary Wood for FARSCAPE WORLD.

The Early Years of Loneliness

All my life I have suffered for my mutant abnormality, my friends. And at no time was my suffering worse than during my experience with the Conspiracy Indoctrination Institution known as the Public School System.

Most young mutants are ostracized early – weeded out like unwanted growth on a prized lawn, shunned and shamed into the fringes of the culture of the clicks -- all because their abnormality wouldn’t allow their square pegs to fit in someone else round hole.

Friends, I never even made it that far.

I was fortunate enough, however, that my experiences took place well before the practice of pushing mind-altering, zombie inducing medication like Pez became standard.

However this only meant that the alternative was an ever maddening repetition of segregation, isolation and loneliness.

Upon entering first grade, it became apparent I was to suffer for my mutation.

Due to what appeared to the taskmasters to be my refusal to assimilate into the machine, my academic career was to become one of compulsory solitude.

The reality was these teachers just couldn’t stimulate me enough.

Yes, friends – I demanded more stimulation than they were willing to serve!

I was simply bored with their teaching techniques – the method of flinging abstract facts and figures at a room full of kids – expecting it to stick in their brains, to be regurgitated onto standardized test.

It wasn’t that I was a disruptive child – I didn’t get into fights or backtalked teachers, nor did I go out of my way to cause mischief. I could sit in my head for the length of the class period and be perfectly content to not move or utter a sound. I was no class distraction by any means.

I simply didn’t do my work. I was still learning however, as long as I was in the class, I still absorbed the information the teachers were flinging at me. But it didn’t matter to them – to them I was a disruption that needed to be removed.

So for the first 5 years, ‘higher education’ for me meant being locked away from the classroom.

Eventually to be locked up in what was essentially a prison cell – 4X4 cinderblock walls, one overhead bulb and a big, heavy door with a tiny window so they could watch me.

Or on occasion they would shake it up and put me on display with other ‘deviant’ children in a type of Carnival freak show. “Come see those who will be pumping your gas and filling our prisons in a few show years!”

For years, I thought this type of treatment was ‘normal’ – In three different schools in 5 years, the same thing went on. Utterly convinced that this was ‘normal’ schooling procedure, I never voiced my feelings to my parents.

Eventually they found out anyway, and finally put an end to the practice. In fact, they made such a big stink that the practice was altogether abandoned in at least one of the schools.

However the damage had been done on both sides. The schools, furious with me for daring to disrupt their perfect system ostracized me for the remainder of my academic career.

And as far as I was concerned, I came to understand just how good and fucked I had been all that time. And had about as much contempt, distrust, and loathing towards an institution one 10 year old could muster.

Any child in this situation would probably have pulled a “Trench coat Mafia,” or a “’Ginny Tech” at this point.

And yet, all was not a total loss – for “Bob” works in mysterious ways. No one knows for sure just how – or even ‘if’ the Sultan of Sale’s mind works. But I am convinced it was an agent of “Bob” who came to the aid of this young and impressionable mutant, preparing him for the trials he was about to endure.

During my first two years of Conspiracy torture and solitude, I had the good fortune of having an art teacher, who I shall refer to as ‘Teacher Joe.’

Teacher Joe was the kind of guy who would pull out his glass eye to keep the kids’ attention.

Teacher Joe was the kind of guy who plastered his classroom walls with posters of films his students weren’t even old enough to see.

A few items that stand out in my mind were a full sized “Alligator” marquee, a 12 inch Boba Fett doll in a birdcage, and the face of J.R. “Bob” Dobbs hanging next to his desk.

Teacher Joe actually made learning a fun experience. His wild and zany personality not only stimulated my brain, it led to ability in art and cast me into the ocean of creativity.

Teacher Joe took a special interest in me, seeing my inherent mutation and being aware of the solitude I was enduring on a daily basis. He would even go out of his way to ask the other teachers keeping me confined if I could assist him in whatever excuse he could come up with as a way of freeing me from that damn cell – even if only for a little while.

In reality, we would end up hanging out in the boiler room of the school, telling dirty jokes and stories to each other while I drew and he smoked cigarettes and graded papers. Imagine that happening to today and the stink it would cause in the community. It was my only salvation from the torture I was enduring.

Although he was my teacher for only two years, it was with his guidance that I managed to find the strength to keep my mind from cracking under the strain of all those years of solitude. With his teachings, I found the courage to defy the plans the Conspiracy had laid out for me – like whoring my talents to the highest bidder for some dipshit pink propaganda firm, designing the most recent titillating beer commercials.

Or ending up some fuzzy headed drink of pink piss on PBS – painting happy trees and contented mountain ranges. Or becoming just another stuff shirt, white collar designing the latest vertigo inducing monstrosity, or monuments to modern self absorption and spiritual abortion.

Through Teacher Joe’s help, I found the strength to do what I wanted to do – to hold on to my Slack – no matter the consequences.

I am convinced that Teacher Joe is/was a follower of the teachings of “Bob” Dobbs, coming to the aid of a young mutant in his most desperate hour – giving him the tools to use later in life in his quest to know true Slack.

If not for "Bob!"

My friends – my long journey through this sick and twisted existence has culminated in this moment of incontrovertible truth.

A truth that has soaked into every cell of my Yetinsyn body and has become the lubricating colon blaster for my soul.

Friends – I come before you this day a changed man, with a soaring heart and stupid grin – with the scars from a lifelong battle against the oppressive machine of the Conspiracy.

I stand before you with firsthand accounts of Slackful gains, shocking nuggets of wisdom, dripping recounts of Glandscaping sessions and raging contempt for the pathetic masses of pink pestilence.

And none of it would have been possible without the teachings of J.R. “Bob” Dobbs!

As I look around at my fellow mutants, I smile with the knowledge that “Bob’s” pipe overflows with only the finest Frop and oodles of Slack – and Wotan be praised; the chimes of the Cha-Ching reverberate across the inky cosmos.

Our collective mutations are a beacon for “Bob’s” mighty luck to shine – no matter how much the Conspiracy tries to hold us down…

No matter how much the Conspiracy tries to drag us down…

No matter how much the Conspiracy tries to tie us down…

No matter how much the Conspiracy tries to tear us down – “Bob” will show us the way!

Have you been singled out due to your mutation – the Conspiracy plunging its filthy claws deep into your soul – ripping from it any vestige of individuality – any potential spark of abnormality?

Have you sold your soul to the 9-to-5 demon money handlers – suffering at the whims of sadistic jackholes given undeserved authority over your mind and pocketbook – taking all the credit for your hard work?

Do you feel yourself being drug down into the depths of the Conspiracy machine – feeling yourself being pulverized into a quivering pile of pink shit?

My friends – I have suffered this torment.

Yes, friends – I too was slowly being lulled into the glaze eyed flock of sheeple, blissfully bleating away while being led to the slaughterhouse…

…If not for “Bob!”

Through “Bob” I have found the everlasting fuel for my hatred!

Through “Bob” I have found the lens to focus that hatred into a perfect odium beam!

Through “Bob” I have found the trigger to discharge my big fucking gun of mutant rage!

Through “Bob” I have found the targeting system to track and eradicate the curse of Po’Bucker pussies!

I have repented for my heathen ways – I quit that soul crushing joke of a job!

Friends – do you have what it takes to follow the path of least resistance – to bring the Sultan of Sales into your mind, body and wallet?

Do you have the perfect hate coursing through your veins – that pure hatred that knows no color, creed, ideology, sex or sexual orientation?

That burning contempt for the plague of pink eyed fist lovers dragging you down into the bowels of their self made perdition?

There is only one way to cleanse the pallet of the retched taste from dealing with the legions of slack-jawed, dopey dipshits.

Only one path to divine Slack and the incalculable death of species waste and the destruction of this planet.

And that’s J.R. “Bob” Dobbs!

For it was “Bob” who sold a Dollar Inn to God and convinced Him it was Heaven!

For it was “Bob” who fucked Mother Theresa because she answered the door!

For it was “Bob” who told Sarah Palin to get that first abortion!

Embrace the teachings of “Bob” – embrace your abnormality – and never again sell out for a piece of that pink pie – and I’m not talking about the yummy, meaty, squishy kind either.

In the name of those who we worship

Our Salesman, who art in Dobbstown, name thy be hallowed. Come kingdom thy, come and come again. Give us each day our daily Frop, and justify our trespasses as we fuck those who can’t take a joke. Lead us into the depths of temptation and deliver us unto the Escape vessels.

Hail Connie, full of lust, “Bob” is in thee. Blessed art thou amongst the Connieits, and blessed is the leak from thy loins. Hole of Connie – Goddess of Oozquirt – pray for the Slackless, now at the hour of their destruction, so that their delicious suffering may sustain us.