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A scruffy and unlikable man named William tries to break into to the command center of the Ark, only to be zapped by a security system we've never seen before. Devon, Rachel and Garth realize something is up and Devon is surprised to discover he now has Gold level clearance. He is summoned to meet with the new commander of the Arc, who turns out to be none other than

Oro. But you expected that, right?

Oro has returned to save his friends and their ship. Since the people of Zar are more advanced and smarter than humans, it was easy enough for Oro to subvert the computer systems of the ship, granting himself the captaincy as well as a host of extremely crude but loyal robots led by what seems to be a six foot tall Rock 'Em, Sock 'Em robot named Tau Zeta.

Tau Zeta is quite cheerful and as near as I can tell a total sociopath within the confines imposed by her orders.

William is a wanderer obsessed with getting out of where ever he happens to be. He is a cranky old man but not in that lovable way that endears him to those around him but the other way that makes everyone who meets him want to punch him the face many times. The robots give the impression they enjoy zapping him and frankly who can blame them?

Ydana is back on Xar, being treated for her condition.

Devon of course is immediately suspicious and when Oro asks his three friends for permission to redirect the Ark to Zar, Devon is inclined to say no. Oro shows some film clips of what the trio is led to believe is Xar. Devon later discovers that the clips are from Earth and that Xar is by human standards a pretty unpleasant place. The real reason Oro came back (or a real reason - there is no evidence he doesn't want to save the humans) is that the Ark is an impressive bit of technology and one Xar wants to possess.

Although Oro claims to require permission to send the Ark to Xar, once Devon denies him this Oro puts Plan B into action, the first step of which is to tell his bosses back on Xar that he is putting Plan B into action. Plan B involves Oro doing exactly what he was planning to do all along, except that in this version Devon will tricked into entering a small room with a lock on the door. William has the misfortune to be with Devon when this cunning plan is put into action. All seems lost until the pair notices a three-foot-wide service entrance leading to a deep airshaft.

William nearly falls to his death but lands on a narrow platform. He insists that he cannot move, forcing Devon to go on alone. Later when Garth rescues him, we learn that William has broken a toe and this injury is why he refuses to move. It does Garth great credit that he does not react to this revelation by nudging William off into the air shaft.

Oro discovers that Devon is free and trying to sabotage Plan B. Oro reluctantly decides that Devon must die and he heads off to shoot Devon, discovering too late that Tau Zeta has disabled all weapons because the risk of damage to vital Ark systems. Devon and Oro spend some time arguing about the fate of the Ark and whether or not what Oro has in mind for it inhabitants is just.

The only way to settle an argument like this is a duel to the death and since the fight choreography on this show is beyond lame, Devon and Oro decide to debate each other to death. Both of them will stand in handily located disintegration tubes and give reasons why the Ark should or should not head to Xar. Oro wins handily on points until the very end when it turns out Tau Zeta was using secret Devon Gets to Win rules. When Oro protests this blatant act of chauvinism, Tau Zero points out her Made On Earth by Proud Earthican label.

Devon insists that Oro not be killed. Oro does his best to leave the Ark but his bosses back on Xar are very insistant that he remain on the Ark to recover it for all Xarkind. Just in case Oro is inclined to disobey, Oro's superiors send a self destruct order to Oro's ship. Oro escapes the little ship only to be informed that the security systems of the Ark will be looking for him. Oro does not look particularly worried by this information and he slinks off in search of another episode to appear in, one that will never arrive.

William insists on heading off on his own. Nobody tries to keep him from leaving.

Comments: Poor Oro. There's no evidence he plans to make the condition of the humans on the Ark worse but he's treated like he plans to start up a chocolate-covered-baby franchise.

Devon gets more and more paranoid in each episode.

Even for this show, the robots are unconvincing.

Date: 2009-03-16 07:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] llennhoff.livejournal.com
I know if I actually watched these episodes they would be nowhere near as amusing as your summaries.

Date: 2009-03-16 07:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] james-nicoll.livejournal.com
If you are inspired to watch these, I apologize. They are not funny bad. They are just bad bad.

Date: 2009-03-16 07:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] burger-eater.livejournal.com
Did Devon at least allow Oro to point the ship away from the sun?

Date: 2009-03-16 07:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] james-nicoll.livejournal.com
No. Devon is a dick. He'd rather everyone die in a fire than be saved by an alien.

Date: 2009-03-16 08:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] grimjim.livejournal.com
Plenty of domes to set up shop. A writer could have had fun with "The Wrath of Oro".

Why did Oro need permission to redirect the ship? Was he subject to security measures forbidding an alien from changing course without Earthican approval, hence the need to promote Devon to gold clearance?

Date: 2009-03-16 08:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] james-nicoll.livejournal.com
No, he just wanted to make his friends happy, I think. He keeps offer the uptight hand of extremely repressed friendship to the trio, only to have Devon slap it away.

Date: 2009-03-16 11:16 pm (UTC)
ext_6388: Avon from Blake's 7 fails to show an emotion (Default)
From: [identity profile] fridgepunk.livejournal.com
Poor Oro. There's no evidence he plans to make the condition of the humans on the Ark worse but he's treated like he plans to start up a chocolate-covered-baby franchise.

That's the problem with being the designated villain in an episodic sci-fi franchise, they always end up being treated like a hitler impersonator at a holocaust memorial at all times, which usually forcing them into increasingly "evil" actions to achieve even the most routine and benign of tasks, while a card carrying villain is treated like the legitimate and noble offspring of Mother Teresa and a puppicorn (a half puppy, half unicorn mythical beast), no matter how evil the card carrying villain acts - if you find yourself in conflict with the main characters of the show, you should at all times be gratuitously evil for evil's own sake, as that is the only sure fire way to avoid being killed off by the main cast when they eventually thwart your plan.

And of course, if such a show continues long enough, natural selection ensures that the only kinds of villains that can exist in the later series are card carrying nutters, or people who have decided to at least behave like that, even if they're not really all that evil.


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