Peacekeepers (Farscape)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Prowler (Farscape))
Jump to: navigation, search
The symbol used by the Peacekeepers

Peacekeepers are a galactic military organization in the fictional Farscape universe. Peacekeepers were originally bodyguards working for the "Peacemakers", but after they left, the Peacekeepers maintained order the only way they knew: with weaponry. This eventually turned the Peacekeepers into a military empire. The Peacekeepers are known to be ruthless, but extremely effective.

Peacekeeper Symbol[edit]

The Peacekeeper symbol is based on the Soviet propaganda poster entitled "Beat the Whites with the Red Wedge," by Russian artist El Lissitzky. In the poster, the intrusive red wedge symbolises the Bolsheviks, who are penetrating and defeating their opponents, the Whites, during the Russian Civil War.

Hierarchy[edit]

The Peacekeeper hierarchy is in roughly this form:

Society[edit]

Peacekeeper society is a harsh, unforgiving meritocracy. Success is rewarded quickly and richly, and failure is punished brutally. Individuals are expected to conform completely to the ideals of Peacekeeper life, including the belief that all other species are inferior.

While some Peacekeepers are forcibly "recruited" from non-military Sebacean settlements, including Crais and his brother, many Peacekeepers are born and reared aboard Command Carriers. They are trained from infancy to be elite soldiers and support staff and to follow orders without question. Reproduction is assigned in order to fill the ranks, and parents have no role in raising their children. It is a punishable breach of protocol for a parent to initiate contact with their child.

Peacekeepers are encouraged to be discreet but promiscuous with their sexuality. Having regular sexual outlets (called "recreating") is seen as a way of relieving stress and of fulfilling biological urges so they do not become additional sources of stress. Forming a close personal relationship with a specific partner, however, or even just "recreating" with the same partner over a long period of time, is strictly taboo. Unintentional pregnancies are not uncommon, but it is assumed that the woman will not know or care about who the father is. As such, the child always takes the mother's surname, despite the fact that neither parent's identity will be known to or have any effect on the upbringing of the child. Intentionally having a child with a specific partner, or, presumably, intentionally becoming pregnant when it has not been assigned, is seen as a sign of sentimentality (and thus, weakness) and is a punishable offence.

Subordinates usually display unwavering loyalty to their superiors, though there are examples of an ambitious subordinate noticing and exploiting a weakness in their superior that allows them to usurp power.

Sebaceans seem to make up the bulk of the Peacekeepers. One notable exception is the half-breed Scorpius, who had to prove his loyalty to be declared exempt from the Peacekeepers' racial purity rules. The Peacekeepers also employ several large groups as slave laborers, notably the Banik.

Origin[edit]

In the episode "...Different Destinations" the Peacekeepers are portrayed as having not always been the violent, predatory mercenaries they are in the present series timeline. Roughly 500 cycles ago, history recorded the bravery and self-sacrifice of a small detachment of Peacekeepers who gave their lives to defend innocent, unarmed nurses and children on the planet Jocacea.

Scorpius regularly argues that the Peacekeepers are essentially the only thing protecting the rest of the Milky Way Galaxy from being killed or enslaved by the Scarran Empire, which he thinks justifies their adoption of draconian measures.

In the Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars miniseries the tensions between the Scarrans and the Peacekeepers escalate into open conflict, due to Scorpius launching a pre-emptive strike against a Scarran battle-group.

In the ensuing conflict all Peacekeeper operations were presided over by Grand Chancellor Maryk, until he was assassinated (through poison) by Commandant Mele-on Grayza for suggesting a truce with the Scarrans. Grayza immediately took command of Maryk's fleet and launched an offensive against a Scarran armada that was attacking the last refuge of the Eidelon.

The Peacekeepers suffered defeat after defeat in the war, losing many systems under their control to the Scarran onslaught.

At the climax of the resulting conflict, Aeryn Sun discovered the true origins of the Peacekeepers: they were the acolytes of the Eidelons, who needed assistants to keep the peace they brokered. The Eidelons transplanted an unheard-of race from a "backwater planet on the outer spiral of the galaxy," the implication bring that the Peacekeepers' ancestors are genetically altered humans. With the disappearance of the Eidelons from the galaxy 12,000 cycles before the Farscape setting, these acolytes gradually transformed into the modern, militaristic Peacekeepers. Without the Eidelons' ability to inspire rational thoughts, the Sebaceans kept the peace the only way they could: at the muzzle of a weapon.

Known Units[edit]

  • Pleisar Regiment - a commando unit
    • Icarion Company - the first company in the Pleisar regiment with the mission of being the first in harm's way.
  • Ustar Regiment - a unit Aeryn claimed to be a part of when a group of Peacekeeper commandos boarded Moya.
  • Peacekeeper Retrieval Squad(s) - commando unit(s) that performs covert work and recovery missions for Peacekeeper High Command.

Uniforms[edit]

Peacekeeper uniforms are generally black and trimmed with red, with several variants appearing in different episodes. These variants range from an all black to an all red. Additionally, shipborne technicians seem to have other colors added to designate their technical areas. In the Peacekeeper Wars, other personnel were observed to have large panels of red on basically black uniforms. Commando units are seen wearing brown uniforms, as Captain Larraq wears when his unit comes aboard Moya with creature containing the intelligence virus in episode 18 of season 1, "A Bug's Life". Crichton wears this brown uniform the next two episodes and modifies a PK uniform which he wears the rest of the series although a notable exception is when Crichton gets "twinned" in the middle of Season 3 and the crew is separated with one crew on Talyn the other on Moya. The Moya Crichton takes on a green shirt, but the Crichton on Talyn still wears the PK uniform. After the Crichton on Talyn dies, the remaining one ditches the green shirt and puts the PK uniform back on. For most of the episode, Crichton is in a captains uniform that is about half red, which is unusual in the standard PK uniforms seen through most of the show. The tech personnel seem to have an olive drab jump suit as a uniform, as seen in PK Tech Girl, Nerve and The Hidden Memory.

Weapons[edit]

Standard weapons used by peacekeepers are pulse weapons. Pulse weapons operate by releasing a drop of Chakan oil, a dense and highly volatile compound, into the weapon's "pulse chamber." The ordnance is then vaporized and excited to a high-energy plasma state by powerful, rapid-pulsing beam of laser-light and higher-frequency electromagnetic energies. The chamber itself is magnetically shielded, so the beams remain within the plasma cloud, which itself amplifies the power of the EM pulse due to properties of the chakan oil. The magnetic field is also present in the weapon's barrel, which accelerates the excited plasma cloud to an unknown velocity. The final result is a discharge of plasma bolts similar to a bullets being firing except with no shell casings.

Weapon types[edit]

Pistols[edit]

  • Mini Pistol - A small sidearm carried by Peacekeeper infantry, the Mini Pistol is a miniaturized version of the Peacekeeper Pulse Pistol. Meant for easy concealment, it is no larger than the palm of the hand. It does not have an ammo cartridge, but a reservoir of Chakan Oil that must be refilled. The number of shots possible before a refill is unknown. The user is often seen licking the underside of the cartridge, possibly because the taste indicates the amount of oil inside (i.e., the sweeter the taste, the more oil is in the reservoir). It shoots yellow pulse blasts.
  • Pulse pistol - The standard issue Peacekeeper sidearm, 7 inches in length, 6 inches in height. It fires small bolts of red plasma able to kill most species, but will not penetrate Scarran hide. The pistol can be set to stun, kill, or higher, but the standard setting used by most is kill. For ammunition, it uses Chakan oil cartridges that are loaded into the grip. The maximum number of shots per cartridge is 500, although Crichton's comments in one episode indicate that Winona (his personal pulse pistol) can fire 600 and possibly others can as well. The pistol can be set to overload, causing an explosion proportional to the amount of Chakan oil remaining. There is a mount on the left side, where a laser sight can be attached.
    • Scorpius's custom pulse pistol - Scorpius's own pistol most likely has all the standard features of a regular pulse pistol, plus extras. It is designed specifically for his hand, has an increased cartridge size and green panels of unknown function.

Snub-nose Repeating Blaster[edit]

Another type of weapon, something between a pulse pistol and a rifle. Its capacity is 100 shots/blasts (typically 3 "shots" per burst). It has two shooting settings: single, 3 shots per round, and semi-automatic, 2 bursts of 3 blasts. The weapon is similar to a submachine gun in shape and function. It can be held one handed like a pistol but has fast repeating fire like an Uzi. This weapon is seen used by Aeryn Sun's mother Xhalax Sun and Chiana.

Rifles[edit]

  • A Pulse Rifle is a full-sized rifle, more powerful than the Peacekeeper Pulse Pistol, and more accurate at longer distances, 1 foot 8 inches in length, and 10 inches in height, with sight. Maintained fire can penetrate Scarran hide. It holds a larger Chakan oil cartridge than the Pulse Pistol, and comes stock with a telescopic sight, top mounted. It has a fully automatic option for continual fire. It is equivalent to an assault rifle. The maximum amount of shots it can fire is 1500.
  • Frag handheld-Long-barreled cannon - It is a full-sized rifle, more powerful than the Peacekeeper Pulse rifle, and more accurate at shorter distances. It fires like a shotgun. It fires in semi-automatic, one powerful pulse at a time. Its rate of fire is slower than a pulse rifle but has more stopping power than regular firearms. Fire from a frag handheld cannon can penetrate Scarran hide, and even shoot down small attack craft. It holds a larger Chakan oil cartridge than the Pulse Pistol rifle.
  • Heavy Pulse Rifle ("Sling Rifle")- Heavy Pulse Rifles are typically carried by at least one member of a Peacekeeper strike team, usually the biggest and meanest of the bunch. Some soldiers do not like these weapons, as they are so heavy they require a sling and the soldier must essentially shoot from the hip, throwing off one's aim a bit. Still, a skilled soldier carrying this weapon is enough to strike fear into the heart of even a hardened adversary. (Aeryn is usually shown carrying one.) Its ammo capacity is 30 rounds per cartridge. It can shoot 3 shots per round.

Pulse Burster[edit]

It is the largest handheld pulse weapon. Pulse Bursters release an explosive charge of pulse energy from all eight barrels of the burster at the same time. The charge explodes upon impact with any hard target, usually destroying it. These heavy weapons are hard to handle and are difficult to aim. However, they're unparalleled weapons for thinning out large masses of enemies who foolishly clump together. (Crais uses one in Infinite Possibilities). Its ammo capacity is 15 rounds per cartridge, each shoots through 8 barrels, so it can fire a total of 120 shots per cartridge.

Ships[edit]

Leviathans[edit]

They frequently capture living Leviathan ships, enslave them with Control Collars to force obedience, and turn them into troop or prisoner transports.

Command Carriers[edit]

The Peacekeeper fleets are based around Command Carriers and are commanded by a captain. Certain larger variants of Command Carriers exist and are attached to fleets as flagships. They have a crew of 50,000.

  • Frag Cannons are the primary weapon on a Command Carrier. There are 4 of these cannons located on the Command Carrier. Each cannon is made up of 3 smaller cannons with a range of 45 metras. The cannon mounts are able to move along the circular structure of the carrier; this allows a Command Carrier captain to concentrate the fire of several batteries on single targets anywhere around the ship. Command Carriers are protected on all arcs by several batteries of frag and pulse turrets (at least 50 for each "arc" of the ship). They may also possess pulse cannons and ballistic weaponry such as missiles and torpedoes.
  • Force Shields - they are also protected by a force field that wraps around the ship in an ovoid bubble, allowing nearby ships to be protected by the same field. The defense screen consists of two overlapping systems; when operational, the screen protects from both solid and energy based attacks. The system is maintained powered up due to the progressive power up system required to achieve full shield charge.

Command Carriers are often surrounded by several capital-class battleships and innumerable smaller vessels, and also have various attack craft aboard such as fighters and freighters. Command Carriers have two massive hangars that can house capital ships under 1000 meters in length as well as prowlers and marauders.

Escorts and smaller vessels[edit]

  • Scrub Runner - Typically the first ship young Peacekeepers learn to fly, Scrub-Runners are used to haul cargo. It is likely that they will be escorted by a small number of Prowlers, as they are virtually defenceless.
    • KL series scrub runner: Used to train young Peacekeeper cadets and soldiers to fly, with most progressing to Prowlers before the age of 14 cycles. The KL series are used to carry troops and cargo and also have rudimentary armaments, but are also likely to be escorted.
  • Prowlers - A Prowler is a one-man or two-man attack craft armed with two pulse cannons, one on each wingtip, used for short range missions. It is also capable of being outfitted with anti-ship ordnance such as missiles or torpedoes. Prowlers operate equally well in space or in a planet's atmosphere. It can also rotate its wings (where the engines are mounted) 90 degrees to allow vertical take off and hovering.
  • Marauders - Marauders are the primary recon/commando dropship in the Peacekeeper fleet. They have excellent scanner equipment and good stealth capabilities, and are typically used as scouts and troop transports for boarding missions. They are heavily shielded and carry up to 5 highly trained and well armed Peacekeeper commandos. In a combat situation a marauder can deploy its commandos through a bottom hatch without having to land. Marauders have a reported top speed of hetch 7. Marauders are equipped with pulse cannons and missiles, and occasionally with an immobilizer pulse that can be used to disable ships. Such marauders are usually part of a retrieval squad, often used to capture and enslave Leviathans.
  • Pantak-Class Vigilante - The second largest ships in the Peacekeeper fleet, the Pantak-class Vigilantes are used mainly for retrieval missions. As such, their main weapon is their immobilizer pulse, which renders any ship it hits powerless and unable to retreat or retaliate. Exact size and crew complement is unknown. It is likely the crew complement is larger than a marauder's but less than a Leviathan. Much larger than a Marauder transport, Pantaks are able to operate over longer distances and with greater flexibility due to the formidable offensive and defensive capabilities. The Vigilante's weapons vary upon their assigned target but all are fully staffed with troops and docking bays filled with shuttles and prowlers.

Other technology[edit]

  • Peacekeeper Defence Screens - The primary shielding technologies witnessed in Farscape were utilised by Peacekeeper Command Carriers. Upon activation, a reddish-coloured oval-shaped 'bubble' surrounds the ship, protecting it and any nearby vessels. On many Command Carriers the system is maintained powered-up due to the progressive power up system required to achieve full shield charge. Peacekeeper defence screens consist of two overlapping energy fields which can protect the ship from kinetic and energy based attacks and can even resist the effects of extreme gravitational forces. Single energy fields suffer from numerous imperfections, with some gaps being large enough for shuttles or fighters to pass through, but with two energy fields operating simultaneously the majority of these imperfections are resolved, and the ship can be protected completely.
  • Aurora Chair - A torture and interrogation device invented by Scorpius to extract information in lieu of less reliable conventional interrogation methods. Often referred to simply as "the chair", it is employed throughout the Peacekeeper military, both in bases and on starships, and is considered one of the most effective means of gaining information from unwilling subjects. The chair can painfully sort through its subject's memories, pushing farther and harder depending on the setting. It is designed to sort through and uncover the mind's "layers", until all thoughts and memories are exposed and displayed on a screen attached to the chair. Because of the pain caused by this process, the chair can be used as a punishment device in addition to interrogation. In some cases, the Aurora Chair can also permanently remove information from its subject's mind. Some species are more resistant to the chair's effects, notably Baniks and humans. Using it will kill a Hynerian without extracting their memories. Using it too long or intensely can destroy a person's mind.

Gammak base[edit]

A Gammak base is a designation of Peacekeeper research station. One such base, never officially titled but often known simply as "The Gammak base", was a crucial element to the series, and in particular the end of the first season. Its main use was to research wormhole technology for the Peacekeepers. A second Gammak base was mentioned later in the program's run. The Gammak base was located in the Uncharted Territories on a grey, oil-covered moon in orbit around a gas giant. The gas giant had a rather large asteroid field surrounding it, in which it was possible to hide ships without them being easily discovered. The base itself was underground, and had fewer sensors than one would normally expect from such a base, in order to disguise its whereabouts. Normally, Peacekeepers wishing to land at the base would have to identify themselves before being given permission to land; however these procedures were sometimes waived with very important personnel for increased security. The base was used for various things including making weapons, researching an intelligent virus that can move through and control the minds of hosts and, most importantly, the research of wormhole technology.

The base was destroyed in "Family Ties". Hoping to give Moya and her infant Talyn a chance to escape the asteroid field, John Crichton and D'Argo sent an unmanned transport pod filled with explosives into a collision with the surface of the oil-covered moon. The impact causes a reaction that ignites the surface of the moon and destroys the base in a brilliant fireball.

See also[edit]

References[edit]