Farscape Encyclopedia Project
Orican Nilaam
The Nilaams.JPG
Nilaam (Both elderly and young)
First appearance 2.02 ("Vitas Mortis")
Gender Female
Species Luxan
Affiliation Independent
Age Deceased
Romantic Associations D'Argo
Known Family Presumably none
Weapon of Choice The powerful magic of an Orican
Portrayed by Melissa Jaffer and Anna Lise Philips


Before Farscape[]

Nilaam was a powerful and ancient Luxan Orican. Born on the Luxan homeworld, she lived for many cycles and traveled to many places. When Moya encountered her domain, she was nearing the end of her life. Studying in seclusion on an icy planet far from the Luxan homeworld, she realized that her death was close at hand, and she had become too frail to make the journey home. She quickly sent a message to a nearby commerce planet pleading for another Luxan to assist her in the Ritual of Passing, but her petition went unanswered. At the time Moya's crew met her, Nilaam had not seen another Luxan for nine cycles, had been bedridden for six, and was becoming resigned to the idea that she would die alone and friendless, far from her homeland.

Season 2[]

Finally, the old Orican's prayers were answered. The Leviathan Moya passed by the commerce planet where Nilaam had put out her plea for assistance, and the Luxan Ka D'Argo arrived to assist her in the Ritual of Passing. Beginning the ritual, Nilaam felt an intense energy source through D'Argo and ran away from the idea of death, chanting the Ritual of Renewal instead of the Ritual of Passing. Drawing strongly from this powerful energy source she felt, Nilaam managed to complete the Ritual and rejuvenate herself to a much younger age.

Overjoyed with her new, youthful body and effusively grateful to D'Argo for giving it to her, Nilaam embarked on a passionate tryst with him, planning to start a new life back on the Luxan homeworld and promising to take D'Argo there with her after locating his son for him. However, there was a problem: Nilaam had not taken the energy for her ritual from D'Argo, but from Moya, and the bonding was killing the Leviathan slowly but surely by causing her to age at a horrifically accelerated rate.

Although Nilaam attempted to find a way to keep both herself and Moya alive, consulting all of her books and her Tebek scrolls in an attempt to find a solution, she eventually realized that she had to choose whether she or Moya would die. Her instincts for survival urged her to try and run away again, as she had when she first cast the Ritual of Renewal, but finally, with D'Argo's help, she realized that her time had finally come. Unafraid, she again began the Ritual of Passing, and this time, with D'Argo by her side, she completed it and died.


  • (irritatedly) I'm not dead yet.
  • I know it's time. I'm old...weak and in pain. I know the next realm will welcome me. Still...it's not easy to...to let go. To enter the darkness. Perhaps that's why Oricans have attendants. To strengthen our resolve as much as our spirit.
  • You gave me this. I think it's only fair that you enjoy it with me.
  • D'Argo...the gifts you gave me. Youth, happiness, passion...I know I can't keep them, but, ah...I have treasured them.
  • I'm not afraid anymore. I've chosen my path. I just don't know if I have the will to travel it. I turned back once...I can't turn back again. I need your strength once more.


  • Melissa Jaffer, who played Nilaam in her old age, returned for season 4 to play Utu-Noranti Pralatong, a similar (albeit much crazier) character.
  • During the filming for the episode, Sydney was in the middle of a heat wave, which made the prosthetics and heavy costume of Nilaam almost unbearable for Melissa Jaffer.
  • Nilaam is the only female Luxan to appear in the series.