|Double or Nothingness|
|Original air date||
October 20, 2003
Colin Cunningham as Shig
And when they laugh,
Let the Gods of Nature
Finish what we have started."
Sigma Te: Director, Cultural Archives;
"Double or Nothingness" is episode 4 of Season 4.
A courier has brought a visual record to the Andromeda, showing the destruction of a High Guard ship, "Lancers Hope", by Nietzscheans in the Almagest system. Almagest is a Nietzschean system with a reputation for having the best shipyards, manned with slave labor. Dylan resolves to do something about it.
In the Almagest system, Andromeda's sensors are running at low efficiency, because of high solar activity, but she detects no debris or other signs of a battle. A welcoming message comes in from Almagest's Ministry of Visitors and Tourism, represented by two wildly dressed Nietzscheans, Shig and Lipp-Sett.
Shig and Lipp-Sett deny that there has been a battle in the system recently, but interference from the solar activity makes communication difficult, so Dylan Hunt takes a wing of slipfighters down to the planet, to meet with them in person. While he is in transit, a huge solar flare forces Andromeda to send the crew to shielded quarters and shut her systems down for a few seconds to avoid damage from the EMP.
Dylan's wing of slipfighters lose control. Dylan manages to pull out, but the other slipfighters crash.
After rebooting, Rommie discovers that she has accidentally released some hallucinogenic gas from her security systems into the ship. She moves into the sheltered side of the planet for protection from further solar activity.
Dylan meets with Lipp-Sett and Shig on the planet. They continue to deny any recent combat in the Almagest system.
With another EMP imminent, Seamus Harper is feeling the effects of the hallucinogenic gas. Andromeda announces that she has detected targeting lasers, which sends Beka Valentine into a paranoid reaction. Beka orders a bombardment of missiles to be fired at the planet just as Andromeda is forced to shut down again.
On the planet, the Nietzscheans blame Dylan for the attack. Because of the poor communication conditions, Dylan asks to return to the ship to find out what is going on. Shig offers one of their faster slipfighters, and Dylan accepts. When he gets in the air, he is attacked by four other fighters. He manages to shoot them down, but is damaged, and he detects no debris from the other fighters.
Lipp-Sett and Shig are surprised that Dylan beat the odds and survived the attack. They are taking high stakes bets, via comm screens, from a number of people on Dylan's performance and survival. As they are laying odds on Dylans survival in the crash landing, he ejects from the slipfighter.
Dylan ends up in a cave complex on the planet, unable to contact Andromeda. Lipp-Sett and Shig find him and arrest him, blaming him for the death of hundreds of thousands of people in the bombardment. Dylan accuses them of making it all up, and reminds them that he is investigating the destruction of a High Guard ship at their hands. They show Dylan images of the Andromeda being attacked and destroyed, and sentence him to death, to be digested in a pool of enzymes.
Dylan accuses them of playing games with him, but they raise a partially digested corpse from the enzyme pool, and once again call for bets on Dylan's fate. Dylan seems to be breaking down, emotionally. The Nietzscheans call for bets that Dylan will start praying, and urge him to do so. He does, but it turns out to be a play for time, as he has maneuvered so that the enzymes from the corpse are dripping on his bonds. Dylan breaks free of the weakened bonds, and tries to fight his way free, but he and Lipp-Sett fall into the pool, which proves to be an illusion and disappears. Shig tells Dylan that he will never make it back to his ship, but Dylan counters that he has just revealed that the Andromeda was not destroyed. Dylan runs through a nearby door, dragging Lipp-Sett with him.
Dylan finds himself in a room resembling a Japanese restaurant, populated by several people with guns, who take him prisoner. He evades their questions, despite their physical assaults. Finally, he fights back, grabs two guns, and takes control of the situation. He shoots everyone, stating that it is only a game or illusion.
A woman appears, calling to Dylan by name. Dylan recognizes her as his mother, then she disappears. He recognizes this as another illusory ploy.
Lipp-Sett has discovered that Shig bet heavily against the house, and they lost a lot of money. They plan how they will recoup their losses, and declare that Dylan will die in the process.
Dylan is trying to out-think the Nietzscheans, and wonders if the Collectors and Nietzscheans might be working together. Drawing on the fact that the entire situation is an illusion, he turns the gun on himself and pulls the trigger.
Dylan wakes up in medical, to find Trance and Rommie looking over him. He thinks over what has happened, and wonders if the Nietzscheans and Collectors could be deliberately causing the solar storms, using them as a weapon. Rommie claims that he has been on the Andromeda the whole time, under the influence of the hallucinogenic gas, and never went to the planet.
Beka blames herself for Harper's death, and refuses to let them take the body away. Dylan coordinates with Rommie to get Beka's gun away from her, but Beka fights back, and, in the struggle, Dylan throws her into the wall, which disappears, another illusion.
The illusionary Andromeda dissolves, and Dylan finds himself in a chair, on the planet, confronted by Shig and Lipp-Sett. Shig declares that they will move into the "final round" of the game, and places 300-to-1 odds against Dylan. Dylan protests that Shig and Lipp-Sett have not really risked anything in their game, and provokes them into raising the stakes: Their stockpile of weapons and the freedom of their slaves against Dylan's life. They accept the bet, but Shig tells him that it is no longer them vs. Dylan, but Dylan vs. himself.
Dylan finds himself back on the Andromeda, and he relates the events to Rommie. He tells her that he missed her, and leans in to kiss her, which confuses Rommie. A second Dylan walks into the room, and orders the first Dylan to let Rommie go. The Dylans fight, and Rommie pulls her Force lance, trying to decide which to shoot. She makes her decision, and shoots twice. The Dylan she shot collapses, and disappears. She explains that she was able to recognize the real Dylan's biorhythms.
Andromeda leaves the Almagest system, with a fleet of new slipfighters in tow, and freedom for the slaves secured.
- The title refers to the gambling tactic of "double or nothing" and/or "all or nothing".
Beka: (about Shig and Lipp-Sett) Hard to believe they dressed themselves!
Thug: Are you awake?
Dylan: Well, I certainly hope so, or this would be one sucky dream!
Rommie: (to Dylan(?), when he tries to kiss her) Dylan...?
Dylan(?): Sh-sh-sh... Captain's orders...