Starhunter 2300–The Prisoner (2003)   4 comments

Tanya Allen as Percy Montana


The Divinity Cluster occupies the heart of Starhunter series.  The Cluster was front and center for all but a few episodes of Starhunter (2000-2001), a fact which bestowed a magnificent unity to that series.  Starhunter 2300 (2003-2004) gets around to a serious treatment of the Divinity Cluster in episode #14, and does so in a wonderful way.  As good as Starhunter 2300 is, I wish that it had more episodes like this one.

Shall we begin?  Mais oui! 

The Prisoner begins with Travis and Callie at Clarke Station to collect a psych patient and transfer her to Ganymede Neural.  They are doing this because they need the money.  While walking and talking in a crowded corridor, they bump into a man walking in the opposite direction.

That man stops and looks intently at Travis and Callie, who continue to walk away.  Pay attention to this man; he is very important in this episode and succeeding ones.

Dr. Alora Kir and Jane Doe

Travis and Callie are at Clarke Station to collect Jane Doe, who suffers from amnesia and multiple personalities.  She has not spoken rationally in five years.  What trauma could have caused this?

Jane Doe

Jane stares intently at Travis.  She sees him not as a bounty hunter, but a Raider.  So she grabs a guard’s gun and shoots at Travis, injuring a guard instead.

Meanwhile, the new Orchard holds its first official meeting on Mars.

I know…characters speak of the Orchard in Pandora’s Box (  There is a simple answer found in the distinction between de facto and de jure.  This is the debut of the de jure new Orchard.  Now we resume the story recap.

Dr. Murchison

The leader, one Dr. Murchison presides over the meeting.  He speaks in messianic terms of humankind using hyperspace to move beyond the solar system.

Dr. Alora Kir

The bounty hunters, Dr. Kir, Jane Doe, and some guards arrive on board the Tulip.  We hear one side of her conversation with one Edward, who is elsewhere:

I don’t understand why you’ve reprofiled her, Edward.  This was an abherration.  She’s never exhibited violent behavior before.  (Pause)  But that would mean she’s going to Ganymede Max.  She’s not a criminal.  (Pause)  Fine, but I’ll be fighting this, Edward.  Goodbye.

Rudolpho and Percy

On the Bridge of the Tulip, Rudolpho argues with a Jupiter Federation official about having to take Dr. Kir on board.  He loses.  Percy tells him that he is afraid that Kir will diagnose him as a “lying, sexist, cheating pig, maybe.”  Rudolpho replies that “it takes one to know one,” to which Percy answers that this is a “witty reply.”

Jane Doe in the Brig

Travis puts Jane in the brig, despite Dr. Kir’s strong objection.  The counselor insists on staying in the brig, too, for the one-day journey to Ganymede.  Then Jane speaks to Travis.  “They should have killed you,” she says.


The other bounty hunters, who are on the Bridge, are discussing the very moody and unusually distant Travis, who is absent.  Percy encourages them to give him some space.  “He has some demons.  I think we’ll manage,” she tells them.


Callie makes a plea for some open communication from Travis, but Percy answers her, “Oh, and you always share all your little gremlins, do you?”

Jane Doe

Travis visits Jane Doe in the brig.  “I know you…from before,” she tells him.

Travis and Jane

Then Jane reaches though the bars and grabs Travis.  A blue light originates from him and envelops both of them.  It fades, after which Jane shouts, “It should have been you!”  Then Dr. Kir returns to the brig and orders Travis to leave.

The New Orchard

Back to the Orchard meeting…

Murchison complains that prior Orchard infighting prevented the completion of the Divinity Cluster project and led to the collapse of the previous version of the Orchard.  Yet, he says, “we” have “taken care of” those responsible for this interference and will do the same to anyone who acts similarly in the future.  The goal is the advancement of the human race, he says, and the ends justify the means.

Murchison explains that the Divinity Cluster holds the key to controlling hyperspace.  He mentions the case of Dr. Eccleston, who used artificial means to activate all four of his Divinity Cluster genes then traveled through hyperspace.  Unfortunately, he also went mad.  (Follow these links to my reviews and summaries of the Starhunter episodes with Eccleston in them: and

Tristan Catchpole

Tristan Catchpole, the man from Clarke Station, enters the room.  He is the only human to have activated three of the four Divinity Cluster genes naturally.  And he has a psychic link with other naturally activated people.  O, and he knows about Travis and has the ability to phase in and out of our reality.

Marcus, in reply to a question from Dr. Kir, reveals the fact that Travis used to be a Raider.  Travis is quite angry and even more ornery when he learns of this disclosure.

Dr. Kir and Jane Doe

Dr. Kir persuades Travis to speak to Jane and help her as well as himself.  The bounty hunter touches Jane’s hand and…

…the two of them phase in and out of the room.  Actually, they travel in time, too.  Dr. Kir watches, astonished.  Travis and Jane revisit an event fifteen years ago, when he, then a Raider, killer her husband, David.  Now Jane recalls that her name is Maria Geddes, she begins to speak rationally for the first time in five years, and she can begin her recovery.

Dr. Kir contacts Edward and tells him what she saw.  Kir also asks him to request that the Ganymede authorities reprofile Maria so that she will not go to Ganymede Max.  Edward agrees.  And who is Edward?

He, a psychiatrist and Dr. Kir’s superior, is also the leader of the new Orchard.  He is Dr. Edward Murchison.


Travis asks Percy to reveal all that she knows about the Divinity Cluster.  So she does.  Travis is surprised to learn about his mother’s experiments on herself and their implications for himself.  He also finds the alien origin of the genes shocking.  Percy knows also that the first gene gives one a sense of invulnerability and that the second one grants one a view of hyperspace.  She has no idea what the third and fourth genes do.

Here we have a major difference between Starhunter and Starhunter 2300, thereby lending credibility to my parallel universes theory.  Follow this link for more information:

Maria Geddes

Maria speaks to Travis in Dr. Kir’s presence.  The former amnesiac says that she hates the man who murdered her husband.  External events cut this conversation short.

The Transutopian

A vessel identical to the Orchard ship at the end of Pandora’s Box overtakes the Tulip and grapples it.

Catchpole and Company

Catchpole and armed forces board the Tulip.  Callie and Percy, who are armed, watch them arrive.  Percy knows that Catchpole is from the Orchard when she sees him move very rapidly, but Callie has never heard of the Orchard.  The two bounty hunters fight the armed Orchard forces with everything they have.  Rudolpho and Marcus join the fight shortly later.

Travis and Catchpole

Meanwhile, Catchpole catches up with Travis and takes him via hyperspace to a planet 400 light years away.  The Orchard man tries to persuade the bounty hunter to join up, but Travis refuses.  What good is a human race devoid of humanity, he asks?

Travis grabs Catchpole and the two reappear on the Tulip, at the scene of the fighting.  Catchpole and his men leave, the Orchard vessel ungrapples the Transutopian, and the crisis is over–for now.  Yet the crew is left with questions about the Orchard and their captain’s past.

Dr. Alora Kir

Dr. Kir apologizes to Travis for unwittingly alerting “those men” to the bounty hunter’s position.  He accepts.

Maria Geddes

Then Maria forgives Travis.  Maybe he can forgive himself.


Next Travis returns to the Bridge, where he begins to answer all questions anyone has.

Catchpole and Murchison

Back at Orchard headquarters…

Catchpole reports to Murchison.  Travis is stronger and more resistant than Catchpole had expected.  Murchison is angry that Catchpole did not kill Travis, but the traveler replies that the Orchard needs Travis and people like him.  Travis will join the Orchard one day, Catchpole insists.

We will visit with Mr. Catchpole and Dr. Murchison again.

The end of The Prisoner leaves me with a sense of foreboding, one that hangs over the remaining episodes of the series.  The Orchard is back, and it is at least as nasty as ever.

Next:  Kate, in which we learn why a female ship’s A.I. is not necessarily superior to a male ship’s A.I.



All images are screen caps.  Watch Starhunter and Starhunter 2300 episodes via methods consistent with United States copyright laws, please.

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