On September 6th, 2002 Ben Browder broke the shocking news that Farscape would not be returning for a fifth season, even though the Sci-Fi Channel had crossed their hearts, hoped to die and stuck a needle in their eye.
Browder, who plays - sorry played - Commander John Crichton warned fans via an internet chatroom: "They're gonna take a chainsaw to David Kemper. Hurry." Within seconds of hearing the announcement David Duchovny and David Caruso were on the phone to Ben, offering him support and warm chicken soup.
The Sci-Fi channel's explanation for the cancellation came via a spokesperson who said, "Farscape isn't the kind of show this channel is about. I mean, it's got aliens and spaceships and laser guns in it. What is hell is that all about!!??"
Fans responded by taking out an advert in the industry trade paper Variety. The Sci-Fi Channel quickly followed suit with an advert of their own
This was then followed by fans mailing boxes of Crackers to the network's executives in a reference to the episode "Cracker's Don't Matter." Unfortunately, before this campaign could be coordinated properly some lateral thinking fans had already mailed a Dog, two Mad Scientists, some flax, a Thank God It's Friday menu and eight pounds of freshly chopped dichotomy.
It appears that the Big-Bad in all this is Michael Jackson, head honcho at Sci-Fi and self-proclaimed King of Pop. Rumour has it that Jackson initially picked up the show when he thought Pilot would make a great after-dinner companion, especially when he discovered that he positively thrived on having a hand stuck up his arse. However, Jackson quickly lost faith in the show when Pilot failed to return any of his phonecalls.
We asked a Sci-Fi executive (left) how he feels when fans send him boxes of crackers but unfortunately we couldn't understand a word he said because his mouth was full. However, Bonnie Hammer is reported to have shouted: "Get them to send some cheese and wine next time!"
Call it revenge. Call it puppet love. One thing's for certain the fans aren't taking it lying down. A rally was recently held outside the New York offices of the network, and in a touching twist a local branch of Simon and Schuster gave away copies of the new Farscape videogame to the assembled fans. A salesperson was was heard to say "It's no big deal, it's not as if anyone would buy that dren anyway. We've got frellin' thousandss left round the back..."
Farscape fans are fighting on, with many of them threatening to boycott the leading a normal life for as long as it takes. Tachyon TV salutes you...
Newsflash: David Kemper last seen talking to J. Michael Straczynski about tips on wrapping up the story in obscure paperback spin-off novels. Stay tuned.