"It really is a matter of life and death."
Well, what an episode!
Life, death, tests, pain, good and evil and which is which - and which side you're on: profound themes indeed. Of course, Lexx has considered most of them in the past, but generally speaking only in passing. In this series they seem to be assuming an overwhelming importance. And there's an inference that small things are very important - May's injury was tiny, but still caused her death. It may be a good idea to pay close attention to the details...
We've now had a glimpse of both Fire and Water. Fire is hot, brutish and nasty: Water is cool, civilised and serene. Or so it first appears... The cities on both are built upwards, tall towers reaching for the sky - or possibly each other. The assumption is that May is the ruler of Water (she "would have known" if Xev was on Water, suggesting that everything is reported to her), while Prince rules Fire. (The association of fire with the masculine and water with the feminine is traditional, I suppose - but it might have made a nice change if Fire had been ruled by a woman and Water by a man. But then the whole emphasis of the storyline would have had to have been changed. Perhaps it's better as it is.) So which is good, and which is evil?
A good question. "It's not that simple..." Stan, who has been poorly treated by Prince and fallen for the seemingly gentle May, naturally believes Water to be good, while Xev, who has apparently found her soul-mate in Prince, only to have him ruthlessly killed by sweet and innocent May, is certain that Fire is good. The viewer can't know at this point: Prince claims that Water will not share any of the water which they have in abundance, leaving the inhabitants of Fire to suffer, while May claims that Prince destroyed everyone she knew and 'took my world away from me'. And the war between the two planets has waged endlessly. For now, it's probably best to say that neither is actually 'good' or 'evil' - just 'human' (which is not necessarily something to be proud of...)
That whole scene in the cryochamber, between Stan, the apparently reincarnated Prince (I refuse to believe that Stan was dreaming all this!) and May is extraordinary. Prince as the archetypal Tempter? Maybe. He does seem to be testing Stan almost to destruction! Stan's refusal to destroy Water and have May 'not dead' again is noble - although I rather suspect he'd hoped that Prince would make amends for his previous bad treatment and return May to life anyway. (That would explain why, moments later, Stan changes his mind and offers to destroy the planet.) But why is Stan being tested..?
The use of balloons to travel between the two planets is as improbable as the two planets themselves - yet makes a certain, poetic sense in context. It has a nice resonance with Kai's comment (he remembered he enjoyed playing with balloons) in Lafftrack as well. An elegant, graceful and thoroughly daft way to travel! I love it.
Somehow, I'm not surprised that Prince and May appear to have returned to life. Definitions of life and death have always been tenuous in Lexx anyway - and I simply can't believe (OK, I don't want to believe) that Prince is dead. (Suppose I'd better make haste and watch the rest of the series!)
And the Lexx crew? Xev is, as Kai points out, emotionally vulnerable - she admits it, and I like her the more for doing so. It is possible to be tough and tender at the same time, without any diminution of respect. Stan's behaviour towards May is a delight (I've said before he can show great tenderness and chivalry), and his grief at May's 'death' understated but all the more powerful because of it. But May seems to generate that kind of response - even Kai is unusually gentle with her, almost drawn to her in some way, quite different to the unflinching loyalty he shows towards Xev. And the last of the Brunnen-G (yes, he's still calling himself that...) actually compliments her on her music! May must be something quite special - the dead don't usually volunteer opinions... And 790? I'll stay with my decision of series two and ignore the obnoxious piece of junk unless he does something outstanding. (Although I will just comment that he now, because of his love/lust for Kai, seems to think he's female. Aren't robots allowed to be homosexual? This is Lexx, isn't it?)
I could question Kai's foolhardiness in flinging himself off the Lexx towards either planet, not knowing what his landing was likely to be... I'm still happy to suspend disbelief, however, so I won't.
Moth breeders - a leftover example of Divine Order efficiency...
What was that strange, lizard-like 'ruff' on Prince's back? A device for losing heat?
Kai is mistaken for an inhabitant of 'Girltown'?? I dread to think...
Just what was that bizarre death ritual to which his followers subjected Prince? And why did it appear to bring him back to life?
The wording of Prince's request was odd. Surely Fire doesn't actually want to destroy Water; that would defeat the object of the exercise. It's the water they want and need. Destroying Water would leave them even worse off than they are at present.
The exact words - "She does not have to be dead" - are intriguing. Not, 'she can live again', but she can be 'not dead'... I hope we find out what this means. Back
Nigel Bennett's voice is perfect for the part of Prince - seductive yet commanding, strong yet hovering on the edge of gentleness - so many elements blended together into one....
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