This Looks Like The Beginning

"This Looks Like the Beginning" was the second episode of Starseeker and the second episode of the first season. It first appeared on October 13, 2008.

Plot

After Micheal Vera Cruz and Hauvie Cordaine get into a food fight in the Food Court, Captain Hiller punishes them by making them roommates.

Meanwhile, Starseeker happens upon an uncharted world circling J1640+2224, the oldest known star in the galaxy. On the planet, they discover a crystal covering the entire surface that naturally holds and amplifies any sounds that its exposed to. The research team, headed by Vera Cruz, sees this as a discovery that could lead to more advanced and efficient systems of data storage.

Back on the ship, Vera Cruz is so excited about his discovery that all animosity between Cordaine and him is forgotten until Cordaine attempts to seduce him.

Vera Cruz is offended and angry until Jaan Brin explains to him that Catians are pansexual and that Cordaine was behaving perfectly natural for someone of his species. Cordaine is also frustrated and confused by this event as he does not realize that humans do not have the same mating practices as his own people.

Starseeker is hit by a crystal fired from the planet despite the fact that there is no life on it. Starseeker sustains minor damage and easily moves to avoid any further collisions.

Vera Cruz, Cordaine, and Alexander Cole are assigned to a shuttle to sweep the area for anything that could account for the attack on Starseeker. The shuttle is damaged and crashes on the surface where, after a bit of arguing, Vera Cruz and Cordaine discover that the planet is inhabited by a lifeform that evolved from the sounds captured in the crystals.

Starseeker sets up a way to communicate with the sound lifeforms but it isn't apparent how long it will be if the aliens choose to use it to communicate at all.

Vera Cruz and Cordaine learn from their experience together and decide to try to be friends. In honor of this, the planet is assigned the name Veradaine.

Flashback

The flashback of the episode focuses on the first time that Captain Hiller and Ambassador Brin met each other. Brin appears on Hiller's front porch on Earth late one night soaking wet from the rain and completely naked. He was trying to negotiate a treaty with the Celimondians, a race of nudists, when they teleported him to the surface unexpectedly.

Hiller and Brin, clothed in some old clothes of the captain, speak into the night and the next morning, Hiller reports to Admiral Tiberius Flow about Brin's "above and beyond" actions in the negotiations. The admiral is so impressed that Hiller is ordered to ferry Brin to Celimondia on the Venture for further negotiations.

Weeks later, the negotiations are going badly and Brin is becoming more and more frustrated in the fact that the Celimondians refuse to trust Earth people who they see as rigid. During the final negotiations, Hiller shows up sans clothing to help bust the myth. With his help, the negotiations are a success.

Brin remains behind on Celimondia, but Hiller promises to stay in touch with his new friend.

Interference by the Intruder

It is not apparent if the Intruder polluted the timeline during this episode.

Writer's Notes

"This Looks Like the Beginning" is the story of two blossoming friendships between people who seem to have nothing in common. One begins smoothly, the other begins with misunderstandings. I thought it would be an interesting place to pick up if you illustrate that some members of this diverse ship have huge differences in beliefs and cultures and that those differences are going to cause some major trouble.

The idea of of pansexual race is something I've been wanting to do for a very long time, long before Captain Jack or Torchwood came along. The idea really began with the concept of a race that was sexually liberated to the point that they make every other race in the galaxy look like prudes. Thinking that this had been done before, I wondered how to take it a step forward and the "everyone's game!" attitude of the Catians were born.

In a sense, Catians represent the next step in sexual evolution. In their eyes, it doesn't matter if you are old, young, fat, thin, male, or female - it's all about gratification. Although they consider themselves culturally superior to humans, we have something that they lack - intense bonds of love. Hauvie experiences this in a flashback in a future episode and realizes that Catians aren't thet superior to humans after all.

Finally, the sound aliens. This was inspired by a line in 1987's History of the DC Universe when it references "rare instances when life evolved from sound." I've always wondered how that would be possible.

Episode Notes

  • There is a new political correctness in the future where all "homo sapien-centric speech" such as "humankind," "humanity," and "alien" are considered rude.
  • Ward is the disciplinarian of the ship while Hiller rules with a much softer touch. In a way, it is Ward's job to make the crew hate her.
  • Brin is still interested in translating the writing on Senter's trigger. By the end of the season, he is still working on it with minimal success translating only three words.
  • Brin speaks 42 languages as of this episode.
  • Brin mentions he doesn't get cold. His home planet is a world of ice and snow.
  • Brin appearing naked on Hiller's porch explains Hiller and Brin's "in-joke" reactions when Travis asks them how they first met.
  • Non humans must carry IDs at all times while on Earth.
  • The theory of silicon-based life that Ward explains to the crew is a real scientific theory.
  • By the 27th century, there still appears to be a human stigma against homosexuality, but gay marriage does exist and is apparently common.
  • By the 27th century, deterioration has led to humanity loosing much of its recorded history. The same thing has happened on Catia.
  • Vera Cruz initiates contact with the sound lifeforms by tapping out prime numbers.
  • There is life native to Mars.

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