Season 1 Episode 18

A Bug's Life

Aired Friday 9:00 PM Sep 17, 1999 on Syfy
out of 10
User Rating
262 votes

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Episode Summary

A Peacekeeper ship approaches Moya, so Crichton and Aeryn pose as Peacekeeper officers on a secret mission while everyone else gets locked into cells to make the deception seem realistic. The Peacekeepers that come aboard, however have some strange and dangerous cargo aboard which wreaks havoc when accidentally released by Rygel and Chiana snooping through the Peacekeepers' possessions.moreless

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  • This was a fantastic episode.

    This so far is probably the second best episode this series, the only episode that i thought was slightly better was 'A human Raection'. This episode focused on all of the main charactors. The main story, (the deadly virus) was an intresting story. I liked the way that the virus kept jumping host so we were never sure until the very end who was infected. I thought the best part of the episode was where Rygel was shot by the stun gun and put in the virus valt and to no surprise he wasn't even infected. I think that their will be consequences over whta happened to Aeryn at the end of the episode. Overall i really enjoyed this episode. This was a great episode which really is a double episode. Looking forward to the next episode.moreless
  • A body snatcher in space

    ‘A Bug’s Life’ is yet another fantastically well written and acted episode of Farscape. The creativity of this episode keeps surprising me,

    The episode begins with the farscapers changing their outfits. Aeryn and John are both clothed as peacekeepers and the other three are as prisoners.

    A ship with other peacekeepers walk in and they are going to take over the ship but John doesn’t let them. He comes very convincing over,

    Meanwhile Chiana sees that the peacekeepers have something with them and she decides to steal the key. When Rygell escapes out of his cage they open it and something strange comes out that goes into one of the peacekeepers and kills another. Then he kills whatever was in the machine and then he grabs Chiana and kisses her making something go into her and change the rules.

    When the other peacekeepers find her she tells that Rygell did it all along and that he’s hiding now. The peacekeepers captain says that it’s a virus that goes from person to person and it’s very smart, the person who was under it’s thrall won’t remember a thing after having it out.

    When the peacekeepers capture Rygell, Zhaan noticed something strange. Chiana and John are together and she is acting confused while Crichton is acting confident.

    The best thing about this episode were the peacekeepers toying with Aeryn and making her desire her home country again. Sadly for them, they all get squished. Crichton goes to the female and smashes her head in and then destroys a gun to stop it.

    But Zhaan doesn’t trust anything and believes that Crichton is possessed and tells everyone else, when they try to capture him he goes into someone else’s body but nobody knows who. Chiana and John can’t because they have already been possessed. Soon Zhaan, Aeryn and a peacekeeper joins them. It turns out to be the captain who kills his mate and then stabs Aeryn. He escapes in a ship but John tells the pilot to shoot it and destroys it.

    All in all, A bug’s life was a very exciting episode with a lot of twists and laughs. This episode can surely be added to yet another masterpiece of this amazingly well written and creative show.

Paul Leyden

Paul Leyden

Captain Larraq

Guest Star

Richard White

Richard White


Guest Star

Zoe Coyle

Zoe Coyle

Lieutenant Hassan

Guest Star

Gigi Edgley

Gigi Edgley


Recurring Role

Lani Tupu

Lani Tupu

Voice of Pilot

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (8)

    • Goof: At 42:56 when Chiana is thrown to the floor you can see the blue mattress the actress lands on to dampen her fall. At 43:17 this is not visible on the floor and therefore should not have been shown previously.

    • Terms:

      -To Snurch means to steal
      -A Gammak Base is a top secret Peacekeeper science and research installation
      -Kinkoid means crazy or weird
      -Tinked is an expression of disbelief, as in "Are you tinked?"

    • Nitpick: Everyone knows that the virus transfers from host to host by close physical proximity. And yet when they attempt to subdue Crichton, its current host, everyone dog piles on him, including Larraq and Thonn who have been chasing this dangerous adversary for a over cycle and would know better.

    • Zhaan's bedcover contains litmus fibers, and is a clue to Zhaan's true nature.

    • We learn in this episode that the Peacekeepers are active in the apparently mis-named "Uncharted Territories." Their activities in the Uncharted Territories are left vague at first, but it is later revealed that they are preparing for the increasing hostilities with the Scarrans. Also, they are researching wormhole technology.

    • When the Sergeant in Larraq's team sees Chiana he calls her an "honorary server." Apparently, the Nebari had been classified by the Peacekeepers, and therefore wouldn't be subject to the "purity regulations" mentioned by Crais in the premier.

    • Nitpick: From a strictly biological standpoint, viruses do not "lay/incubate spores." Certain bacteria, fungi and sporophyte plants use spores as part of their reproductive cycle. Viruses are bits of DNA packaged in a protein capsid, and do not use a "spore" as part of their replication cycle. This may actually be a translator microbe malfunction, however- the microbes may have used an inaccurate term for the so-called "Intellant Virus" because there was no other term in English that was similar enough in definition to use.

    • Goof: After the "Mexican standoff" scene, the Peacekeeper captain escapes then Crichton orders all the access door closed. If you look closely at 41 minutes 14 seconds in, you can clearly see the stage hand close the "automatic" door manually.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Aeryn: (referring to Larraq) He stabbed me, didn't he?
      Crichton: Yeah. You got lucky, he missed your heart.
      Aeryn: (to herself) Closer than you think...

    • Rygel: What are you doing down here, anyway?
      Chiana: Me? You're the one who's supposed to stay in his cage.
      Rygel: Well, Pilot said they were bringing something on board, and I thought I'd come down here and see if I could, erh...
      Chiana: You're here for the same reason I am: to see if there's anything inside worth snurching.
      Rygel: Snurch?! I don't snurch! I procure!

    • Larraq: Awful big ship for one little girl.
      Aeryn: Nah. I can handle big.

    • Crichton: Let's find Sparky before he screws this up.
      D'Argo: Yeah, let's find him before you screw this up.

    • D'Argo: If there is one thing I've learned from this fiasco it is that I will never be chained up again.
      Zhaan: I pray that will be the case.
      D'Argo: You can pray all you like. I was expressing a fact, not a hope.

    • Crichton: Okay, so the virus is inside one of you...and you all got guns, great!

    • Rygel: Oh! How dare you sneak up on me like that! I should make you wear a bell round your neck!
      Chiana: Keep your fantasies to yourself, frog boy.
      Rygel: Fantasies about you? Uggh!

  • NOTES (3)

    • Hints were dropped in the episode that foretold the virus' reappearance in future episode, but the idea never came to fruition.

    • With Crichton portraying a Peacekeeper in this episode, Ben Browder came up with the idea to play it with an accent to lend credibility to the role.

    • International Airdates:

      -This episode aired in Canada on January 26, 2000 on YTV.
      -This episode aired in the UK on April 17, 2000 on BBC-2.
      -This episode aired in Australia on December 23, 2000 on Nine.


    • Crichton: Rygel has been possessed by some Mensa-member virus...

      Crichton is playing on the term "intellant virus", by comparing it to the Mensa society, which describes itself as a group of "people from every walk of life whose IQ is in the top 2% of the population".

    • Crichton: Look, as soon as I leave here, I'm goin' straight to Hot Lips.
      Crichton's nickname for Lt. Hassan is a reference to Major Margaret "Hot Lips" Houlihan of M*A*S*H fame, played by Sally Kellerman in the original 1970 Robert Altman film, and Loretta Swit in the later TV series.

    • Crichton: You might think your magic pill worked, and then Rygel's up walking around the ship, coughing up the spores, cats and dogs living together.
      This line is one of the many ad libs by Ben Browder in season one. It's actually a line from the movie Ghostbusters.