"With all the different planets in the galaxy, you're bound to have a few cases of parallel species development."Sargus 4 (also Sargas 4) is an inhabited planet with a culture resembling Earth in the 21st century.
"Sargus 4 is an acute example of this phenomenon." ― Ed Mercer and Isaac[source]
Similar to Earth, Sargus 4 appears to have large bodies of water around it's surface as well as land with diverse vegetation. One region of the planet is South Madaka, which hosts a large water reservoir. A scientist on television warns that industrial waste contamination threatens the reservoir. Another man retorts that "74% of the population voted that assessment as false."
Sargun species Edit
Sarguns are distinguished by varying ethnic groups, including the Kelvic people and possibly three other minority groups. Ethnic minorities preserve traditional attire, which they believe may be worn only by those within their group.
Formal Sargun clothing mirrors 21st century Earth, except that lapels have two layers and collars have creases. Perhaps the most distinct piece of clothing is Lysella's undershirt, where one shoulder strap "slings" across the chest in a style more closely resembling 25th century Planetary Union wear.
Sarguns use a paper fiat currency called a lod. The Orville forges lods for their away team using matter synthesis. John says that he donated "so many" lods to the Mella Giffendon Foundation for Disadvantaged Children. Fake Vote Badges can be bought for 40 lods.
Kelvic ethnic group Edit
Kelvic Sarguns are a cultural group that exist alongside the rest of the populace on the planet. They may be any skin color: a Kelvic man with white skin is seen in a coffee shop and John LaMarr is mistaken as Kelvic. Kelvic culture is considered traditional and separate from "mainstream" Sargun culture.
Nothing is known of the Kelvic homeland on Sargus 4, aside from the fact that it is not the same location visited by Planetary Union agents.
Kelvic Sarguns speak a language known simply as Kelvic, which is either a different language or dialect from whatever standardized tongue is spoken by the people of Sargus 4.
One identified item of traditional Kelvic culture is the nefolo, a high-topped, brimless headpiece. Kelvic heritage is fiercely guarded by other Kelvic people, and wearing Kelvic attire by non-Kelvic people is considered culturally taboo. When Alara Kitan wears a nefolo, a Kelvic man angrily tells her, "That's traditional Kelvic headwear; that's not a hat."
The nefolo is brimless, ovoid, with multiple fabric rolls wrapping around the sides. The nefolo of an unnamed Kelvic man has four rolls, while Lieutenant Alara Kitan's nefolo has three. The fabric appears soft and slightly fuzzy, and is seen in at least two colors: grey and light blue.
Criminal System Edit
An Apology Tour is a public request for forgiveness performed on the planet Sargus 4. The tour is not merely a social gesture but a legal procedure: an Apology Tour must be taken by anyone who has received over one million downvotes, and thus committed a crime against the State. Those who receive in excess of 10 million downvotes by the end of their tour are subject to Social Correction.
Apology Tour Edit
Sarguns with over one million downvotes are arrested by the Department of Corrections, and must undergo an Apology Tour in which subjects plea for the public's forgiveness in a series of live television appearances. Apology Tours are said to happen daily. Arrestees are not criminal defendants and there is no trial; a "conviction" already took place by exceeding one million downvotes. They are assigned a Publicity Officer to counsel them on their tour and are entitled to one other guest.
At the end of the tour, a Final Vote is performed, subjects are strapped to a chair and forced to watch their vote tally. If a subject receives more than 10 million downvotes by the end of an Apology Tour, he or she is "socially corrected" through a damaging neurological treatment designed to "to pacify any and all potentially negative impulses."
The duration of a tour is unknown.
Planetary Union anthropologists Tom and Lewis appeared on The Breakfast Show as part of their Apology Tour. The two were photographed sitting in bus seats without offering their seat to a standing pregnant woman. Tom says they are deeply ashamed. He shortly after attempts to flee his Tour and is killed by a Department of Corrections guard. Lewis fails the Final Vote and is corrected.
Lieutenant John LaMarr is sent on an Apology Tour after a recording of him performing a suggestive dance on a statue of Mella Giffendon goes viral, and he accrues over one million downvotes. He is assisted by Publicity Officer Willks. LaMarr makes at least two live television appearances but performs poorly, largely due to unfamiliarity with Sargun culture. Fortunately, LaMarr does not receive ten million downvotes and avoids correction thanks to Isaac onboard the USS Orville campaigning on the Master Feed.
Social Correction Edit
Social Correction is the name of a medical procedure and criminal justice punishment performed on Sargus 4 to persons with over over ten millions downvotes on their Vote Badge at the conclusion of a apology tour.
Social Correction is performed in the Department's Z Chamber. The detainee is strapped to a chair, and a helmet is attached. The procedure damages portions of the brain, leaving them docile and meek, but also simple and emotionless. Correction is a traumatic procedure, and the victim incurs permanent, irreversible brain damage similar to a frontal lobotomy.
Z Chamber Edit
The Z Chamber is a special operating room. After a week, the arrestee is subject to a Final Vote, wherein a subject awaits the final vote tally of their tour in a Z Chamber. When in use, a Department Z Chamber consists of a readjustment chair, a supervisor, the arrestee, the Publicity Officer, and Guards.
Department of Corrections Edit
The Department of Corrections is a law enforcement agency on the planet Sargus 4. The department oversees the planet's voting system, arrests, apology tours, and Social Correction. According to the episode credits, department police officers are called policemen, apology tour guards are called guards, and prison guards are called detention guards.
Department of Corrections Police arrest any Sargun who amasses more than one million downvotes, public votes of disapproval, on their Vote Badge. Arrestees are held in a detention center by detention guards, where the arrestees meet wtih a publicity officer and begin their apology tour. Guards accompany arrestees through their apology tour.
Democracy and voting Edit
The people of Sargus 4 practice a form of absolute democracy, using a vote system to determine everything from criminal convictions to matters of public policy.
Votes are a social currency on the planet. A higher number of upvotes means ensures the wearer is treated favorably, while a high number of downvotes makes the wearer a social pariah. For example, one unnamed coffee shop refuses to sell to people with 500,000 downvotes or more. A person in excess of one million downvotes are deemed to be criminals, and he or she is arrested and sent on an Apology Tour to determine whether a punishment is merited. When the crew of the Orville learn about this system, they observe that it marks a shortcoming in that opinion is being confused with knowledge, as voices are provided without thought for whether they are deserved.
Vote Badge Edit
Vote Badges are vote-tabulating devices worn by Sarguns over the age of 18 on the planet Sargus 4. Badges are part of a larger system of social control by majority opinion by allowing others to vote on their behavior by physically pressing a button on the Badge or by voting remotely through the Master Feed.
A badge has two buttons: a red down-arrow for downvotes and a green up-arrow for upvotes. Any member may voice their approval or disapproval through upvotes or downvotes respectively; the total number of which is displayed at the base of the badge.
Doctored Vote Badges are sold on the black market with pre-set vote tallies for 40 lods each.
Failure to wear a Vote Badge as an adult is considered a crime subject to arrest, as is the sale of fake Vote Badges.
Z Chamber Edit
Vote Badge Edit
Vote Badges were simple accessories that did not display vote tallies, so changes in votes were added digitally in post-production.
- Arrestees wear orange jumpsuits with the words "Department of Corrections" in English on the back.
- ↑ Bond, Jeff, Titan Books at 149 (2018).