Victory goes to those
Who are willing to fail."
"The Test" is episode 10 of Season 5.
Beka Valentine and Doyle are aboard the Eureka Maru, tuned in to the musings of Virgil Vox when they see what appears to be an orb of energy fly out of a Route of Ages portal. It changes course drastically and comes after them, buffeting the ship with the storm of charged particles it trails behind. It pauses just outside their window and casts a dark cloud of fearful memories over Beka, who recovers only after it streaks down towards Seefra-1.
Dylan Hunt is playing a bad game of cards with on old man named Prieus when Beka interrupts him, reporting that the energy orb is headed straight for them. He looks out the front door and watches the orb burn down the main street and through the Oasis Bar door, narrowly missing Prieus before punching through the back wall. Dylan peers through the hole in time to see a dark figure emerge from the orb. He runs outside to follow the figure, but he only gets a few glimpses of him before he rounds the next corner. When Dylan tries to cut him off, the figure vanishes.
The next day, he and Beka discuss the orb in the Oasis Bar while a fierce storm brews outside. She is worried since her last episode with the Route of Ages involved her being possessed by the Spirit of the Abyss. She also blames Dylan for being stranded in Seefra.
Dylan is searching for the stranger in the storm. Trance Gemini is more interested in using the portal to leave this system. At the Oasis Bar, Beka refuses to eat the bland food given to her. Beka tells Dylan to show more self-interest. Dylan replies that Beka has lost interest in other people.
Seamus Harper is in negotiations with Prieus over something he claims will make them both exceedingly wealthy. The old man drops an unimpressive piece of cloth into his hand and Harper is skeptical until it dissolves into a puddle of clean water. Harper comments that the water is pure, unlike the "radiation rain" that appears once in a blue moon. But the potential rainstorm kicking up outside might render the whole deal moot so he holds off on his decision.
Telemachus Rhade and Beka watched the conversation and when Harper isn’t looking, he follows Prieus outside. Dylan finds Harper nervously hurrying down the street. He tries to talk, but Harper impatiently moves on. Dylan looks down quizzically at the water print left on his jacket and doesn’t see Beka in the shadows quietly cursing Prieus’ name after witnessing the water exchange. As Dylan continues down the windy street looking for the stranger from the orb, he comes across Prieus lying in the street and mortally wounded. He whispers something into Dylan’s ear and dies.
The next day, the storm shakes the bar as asteroids hurl by. Dylan is suspiciously accosted by Beka and Harper to find what the old man said before he died.
Dylan claims the man said nothing and wonders what he was selling that could interest the crew so much. The 3 remain silent, unwilling to give up any information on their business with him, when the Stranger walks through the front door. Dylan talks to him about leaving the system but the stranger replies that the cost is high and he will decide who will go. Trance tells Dylan that she is sensing the crew's fear and their loss of unity. Dylan realizes that the crew has fallen apart. Dylan says "You have to destroy the village to save it." Dylan is willing to take the gamble of letting him finish what he started in order to save the crew.
The Stranger interrogates Rhade, Harper, and Beka. Rhade is a narcotics smuggler, contract assassin, and a stone killer. The Stranger is the "Judge, Jury, and Executioner". Beka is an arms dealer/smuggler for rebels, attempted to overthrow the Tech Police, and sold narcotics. Harper is terrified of the Stranger's personality.
Dylan steps in and orders him to leave his friends alone. The Stranger declares them as a useless group of individuals but offers a deal: Dylan must kill Prieus’ murderer in order for the Stranger to show them the escape route. Rhade, Harper, and Beka do not like the deal but they know they can’t overpower the Stranger. He can manipulate their worst fears. Trance tells Dylan that the Stranger must be allowed to play his cards. Dylan agrees to be the "executioner" if the Stranger agrees to be the "travel agent".
He comes to each of them and, channeling Prieus’ energy, shows a hologram of their personal dealings with Prieus. Rhade arguing with him in the alley and throttling him before dropping him motionless on the ground over a broken deal gone wrong. Beka threatening him with her handgun over a late delivery. Harper conspiring when Prieus shows him the cloth that turns to water. The Stranger knows how badly Harper wanted it and the threat that he might give it to someone else is a clear motive.
Intermixed between the interrogations are conversations between the crew over who will die and who will escape. Trance tells Dylan that the crew is "sowing the seeds of their own destruction".
Rhade conspires with Beka about seeking out whatever device Prieus used that turned matter into water, the same way he conspired with Harper when Beka was undergoing her inquisition. The Stranger appears from no where, sickened that the 3 would conspire with each other against their friends. Dylan steps in to put a stop to it. He knows who really killed Prieus, just as the Stranger does, but demands first to know where the Stranger came from. He is not surprised when the Stranger tells them he came from the future. Everyone is shocked when Dylan admits to the murder and the Stranger shoots him down. The crew stands helplessly over his body as Trance pleads for them to do something. When she asks the Stranger for help, he simply says she needs patience. The rest of the crew blame themselves for standing by and doing nothing while Dylan was killed, realizing how self-centered they have each become here in Seefra.
Harper, Beka, Trance, and Rhade all stand over Dylan, paying their last respects to Dylan when he suddenly gasps for air and opens his eyes. He tells them to check on Prieus and when they pull back the shroud, the Stranger is lying there. Dylan finally tells them what Prieus whispered: He is a fellow Paradine sent by Dylan from the future to help him keep his crew together. He was their test and proof that they need each other to survive, now and in the future. When Harper tries to recover the body, it vanishes and in its place is a glass cube, containing what looks like a swirling galaxy. He recognizes it as a massive energy source, perhaps what he used to turn matter to water, and more than enough to power the Andromeda Ascendant.
- The crew turns on each other in anger and desperation.
- “The Test“
- “What Will Be Was Not“
- “We had to destroy the village in order to save it.” is a misquote of the quote “It became necessary to destroy the town to save it.”; said by Peter Arnett after the battle for Bến Tre.
- The title quote refers to accepting a short-term defeat to avoid a long-term defeat.
- Dylan: "You have to destroy the village to save it."
- Trance: "Dylan you have got to stop them. They are sowing the seeds of their own destruction."
|Aired:||January 7, 2005|
|Writer By:||Scott Frost|
|Directed By:||Brad Turner|
|Created By:||Gene Roddenberry|
|Developed By:||Robert Hewitt Wolfe|
|Executive Producers:||Majel Roddenberry|
Josanne B. Lovick
|Production Designer||Brian Kane|
|Intro||The Universe is a dangerous place. But in our future my crew and I fight to make it safe. I am Dylan Hunt, Captain of the Andromeda Ascendant, and these are our adventures.|
- Kevin Sorbo as Dylan Hunt
- Lisa Ryder as Beka Valentine
- Steve Bacic as Telemachus Rhade
- Gordon Michael Woolvett as Seamus Harper
- Laura Bertram as Trance Gemini
- Lexa Doig as Rommie
- Brandy Ledford as Doyle