The New Systems Commonwealth Wiki
An Affirming Flame


Production #


Original air date

October 9, 2000

Written by

Robert Hewitt Wolfe

Directed by

Brenton Spencer

Developed by

Robert Hewitt Wolfe


Sherry Gorval

Executive Producer

Allan Eastman
Majel Roddenberry
Robert Hewitt Wolfe
Josanne B. Lovick
Jay Firestone
Adam Haight

Production Designer

Ken Rabehl

Guest stars

Steve Bacic as Gaheris Rhade
John Tench as Gerentex
Dario De Iaco as Brexos
Lori Stewart as Varastaya
Darryl Quon as Glasten
Ernie Jackson as Mercenary
Trish Schill as Android #1
Deb Macatumpag as Android #2

Preceded by

Under the Night

Followed by

To Loose the Fateful Lightning

"Some say the Commonwealth would have
fallen even without Nietzschean treachery.
They underestimate both the Commonwealth
and the Nietzscheans."
Yin Man-Wei
The Rise and Fall of the Systems Commonwealth
C.Y. 11942

"An Affirming Flame" is episode 2 of Season 1.


The Regular Cast of Andromeda Season 1


Tyr Anasazi goes through the Andromeda, taking out the service robots by various means. Beka Valentine and Rev Bem disable Andromeda's sensors. Trance Gemini suggests that perhaps they can get Dylan Hunt to surrender, but Gerentex instructs Tyr to kill him. Tyr makes his way to the Command Center, where he confronts Dylan, but Dylan escapes through a conduit.

Dylan re-arms as Gerentex's people attempt to seize control of the Andromeda. He confronts Varastaya, a female cyborg mercenary, accompanied by Trance. He overpowers the cyborg, and Trance runs away.

Beka goes to a store of ammunition to re-load, but finds Dylan planting explosive charges. Dylan alerts her before ducking out, allowing her to get to safety in time.

Beka, Rev Bem, Harper, and Trance discuss leaving, since they had only expected a salvage job, not a fight. Gerentex overhears them, and shoots and kills Trance. Beka, Rev, and Harper are forced to continue at gunpoint. Dylan has been watching this on the monitors, and decides to "end this".

Beka, Rev, and Harper discuss how little they actually knew Trance, since she was a recent addition to the crew. They also discuss what their next actions should be. Harper wants revenge. Beka is practical – she realizes that they cannot go against trained mercenaries. Rev is a pacifist.

Dylan confronts Tyr, Glasten and Brexos in the Andromeda Ascendant Hydroponic Garden. He overpowers Tyr, and escapes, taking the mercenary Brexos with him. He retreats to the medical deck, where he has also taken Trance's body.

Harper "jacks in" to Andromeda's Virtual Reality matrix. Andromeda confronts him (in VR), and kicks him out. It is at this point that he realizes that the ship is sentient.

Tyr and his cohorts move to disable Andromeda's computer even without explosives, stating they will shoot their way in. Dylan takes out Glasten.

Andromeda attempts to take control of the Maru via the communications system. Gerentex orders Harper to launch the Maru to prevent this, even though Tyr, Beka, and Rev are still on the Andromeda. After Harper launches, Gerentex takes the pilot's seat and gives the Andromeda a "push" towards the Black Hole.

As those on board the Andromeda realize what is happening, they consider their options. Tyr wants them to put themselves in cryogenic storage, where he finds two of the mercenaries that Dylan has overpowered. They revive them, and the mercenaries choose to take an escape pod and leave. The escape pod is immediately sucked into the Black Hole.

Andromeda tells Dylan that she has a surprise for him.

Dylan confronts Tyr, Beka, and Rev. He suggests working together for their mutual survival. He then reveals the surprise: Trance is alive. Trance says that Dylan and Andromeda saved her.

Dylan is surprised to learn that none of them knew about Andromeda's payload of Nova bombs. Gerentex had hidden the existence of the Nova bombs, only telling Beka and her crew about the salvage money that would be gained from selling the Andromeda Ascendant.

Dylan has a plan: to use the Andromeda's 40 Nova bombs to reverse the gravity of the Black Hole, and push the Andromeda clear. As they begin to fire the Nova bombs, Gerentex, on the Maru, is stunned at the suicidial tactic. The Nova explosions create a White Hole, and Gerentex orders Harper to fly the Maru away, but Harper manages to leave a trail for Beka to follow.

Beka asks Dylan for his help to recover her ship. Dylan agrees, in exchange for an unspecified future favor.

On the Maru, Harper presents Gerentex with a bill for his services. Gerentex responds by listing all the bribes and other expenses that were required to make the salvage mission possible. While they are arguing about the money, Dylan, Tyr, Beka, Rev, and Trance board the Maru. Tyr, Harper, and Rev overpower Gerentex's remaining cronies, but Gerentex pulls a gun on Dylan, only to find that Harper has already removed an essential component from it. Dylan takes Gerentex down, puts him in a life pod, with enough supplies and fuel to get to safety, and sets him adrift.

Dylan now names his favor: 10 minutes of everyone's time, on the Observation Deck, in one hour. While waiting, Andromeda treats Harper's Triangulum Measles, observing that it would shortly have proven fatal without medical attention, and tells him that she did not do anything to revive Trance.

On the Observation Deck, Dylan invites the others to join him in his quest to restore the Commonwealth. Trance says that she will follow Beka, but likes the idea. Harper is enticed by the creature comforts of living on the Andromeda. Beka agrees, since it is more exciting than running salvage and smuggling missions. Dylan looks for an answer from Tyr, saying that if he is going to restore the Commonwealth, it has to be for everyone, including the Nietzscheans. Dylan quotes Friedrich Nietzsche for motivation. Tyr agrees to give it a chance since he believes it will be more challenging than being a mercenary.


  • The title is taken from the W.H. Auden poem 'September 1, 1939', in which appear the lines
    • Defenceless under the night
    • Our world in stupor lies;
    • Yet, dotted everywhere,
    • Ironic points of light
    • Flash out wherever the Just
    • Exchange their messages:
    • May I, composed like them
    • Of Eros and of dust,
    • Beleaguered by the same
    • Negation and despair,
    • Show an affirming flame.
  • The title refers to Dylan's quest to rebuild the Systems Commonwealth.
  • Rev Bem says Fiat Lux.
  • Tyr Anasazi says: "if you stare too long into the abyss, the abyss stares back at you".
  • Nova bomb arming
    • First Officer
    • Armsmaster
    • Fire Control Officer
    • Captain
  • Gerentex‘s expenses
    • Location of the Andromeda Ascendant -- 1,000,000 Thrones
    • Special salvage equipment -- 15,000,000 thrones
    • Fuel, supplies -- 500,000 thrones
    • Research, bribes, gifts -- 1,000,000 thrones
    • Mercenary team -- 700,000 thrones
    • Total -- 18,200,000 thrones
    • Seamus Harper’s wage/salary -- 84,000 thrones

Memorable Quotes[]

Harper: (to Tyr and Rev) Hey, if you guys are gonna kill each other, go ahead and be my guest, just don't get blood on my gear, OK?
Andromeda: (to Harper, standing in her hand) Welcome to my mind, now go home!
(blowing Harper away)

Harper: The ship! She's alive! And she is ticked off!

Tyr: I don't care if we wake up when the suns have all burned out and the universe is winding down to die, as long as I'm there to watch.

Beka: We're not saluting you, and we're not calling you Captain.

DVD Release[]

An Affirming Flame was released on DVD in a variety of formats. For more information see:

DVD Release
Andromeda: Season 1 Volume Releases
Andromeda: Complete Season 1
Andromeda: Series 1 Volume Releases
Andromeda: Complete Series 1
Andromeda: The Slipstream Collection
Andromeda: The Complete Boxset