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SamSimon - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 2:49pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S7: Force of Nature

While I do agree with Jammer on all the weaknesses of this episode (basically, the fact that there are a couple of subplots just to fill the hour), I do believe that the final message alone deserves a couple of stars on its own. Simply great. And 20 years later, we are still destroying the only Planet that we have using fossil fuels, and we are not going to do anything at all to stop this in the foreseeable future...
Robert - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 10:40am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

I'm really not trying to say there's anything sinister or racist going on here, or that it's not progressive. As was point out, Picard didn't date people who aren't white... why should Sisko date people that aren't black?

I'm just trying to point out that given the lack of brown guest stars, the fact that Avery and Cirroc manage to get them as love interests so frequently points to intentional behavior.

Jake's mom probably should be black to reflect Cirroc's heritage properly. As to Fenna/Kassidy? Or the 2 black bajorans? COULD be a lot of coincidence, but seems intentional on SOMEBODY'S part.

And I'm not even saying it's jarring because Jake is black that he dated half the black Bajorans we've ever seen. Maybe if half the Bajorans on the station were black I wouldn't have found it so noticeable....
Robert - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 10:33am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

Maybe mandate was too strong a word.

Let's go at this from a different point of view. We'll play a game where you have 100 color swatches. The object of the game is to pair each swatch with 1 other swatch, creating 50 different set of stripes.

There are 6 swatches that are shades of brown, 4 that are shades of yellow and 90 that are shades of pink. We'll play the game for 5 rounds.

If EVERY round the pink swatch you're watching is paired with another pink swatch... your brain won't notice anything odd.

If EVERY round the brown swatch you're watching is being paired with another brown swatch.... your brain will notice.

That's what I mean by jarring. Given the amount of brown guest stars vs white ones, to always give the brown ones to the brown main characters in noticeable.

I will not make a value judgement here (in the sense of good/bad/otherwise), but I highly doubt that you could come up with an argument that would hold water where you could say that this was an accident (ie not intentional).

So if mandate/jarring are too strong for you... how do you feel about noticeable and intentional?
Josh - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 10:15am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

Why is it jarring? It strikes me as a rather suspect double standard that the romantic relationships of black characters are being subjected to this kind of scrutiny, that they are not sufficiently "interracial". Now, we may indeed be seeing the effect of Avery Brooks specifically with Sisko's relationships, but it's entirely unsubstantiated to suggest that there was any kind of "mandate" to maintain limited "mixing".

Because that is the substance of this claim, isn't it?
Josh - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 9:41am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S4: The Raven

While I agree that the Bomar certainly qualified as the Hard Headed Aliens of the Week, they did have a point about the appearance of incompetence after Seven's escape from the ship. Already not favourably disposed to Janeway, they see her rapidly lose control of a "rogue Borg" with no more than her say-so that she would get Seven back.
Robert - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 9:26am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

@Josh - It certainly wouldn't be more progressive if Kassidy was white. It's just particularly jarring that Jake found 2 out of the 3/4 black bajorans to date, that both of Sisko's wives were black AND that his only other real love interest (Fenna) was also black. Considering how few black (or brown if you prefer) performers there are on Star Trek there was clearly some kind of mandate to keep these characters paired up with people that look like them.
desultoryd - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 9:03am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S1: Encounter at Farpoint

the folks at missionlogpodcast (who have been doing a podcast of all the star trek shows and movies) are finally getting to ST:TNG.

Can't wait to combine the excellent reviews here with the audio commentary they provide.
Ian G - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 8:47am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S2: Paradise

I liked how this episode explores the dark side of leadership based on rigid political ideology. However the whole thing derails in the final scenes when the colonists aren't mad at Alixus and consider staying/turning the machine back on. It's ridiculous, she stripped them of their free will and condemned many of them to death. Her speech at the end is some ham fisted effort by the writers to try to show her as multifaceted, when the entire episode had built her up to be a pure villain.
Yanks - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 6:54am (USA Central)
Re: ENT S1: Dear Doctor

I don't know that the "prime directive" later in trek EVER prohibited the issuance of medical aid.

I seem to remember Beverly getting in Picard's face and winning the argument on a couple of occasions.
Yanks - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 6:35am (USA Central)
Re: ENT S1: Acquisition

So, "Ferengi on DS9 = funny" and "Ferengi on ENT = Lame and pointless"

I didn't want to see this on Enterprise either, but it's not a "bad" episode.

Combs brings his magic to the screen and there is some good comedy.

Hell, the gals are happy.... they get to see Trip running around in his space undies.

Clint Howard was fine and Eathan Phillips got to play a Ferengi again.

Just a fun episode. I thought all the characters were well played.

2.5 stars for me.

HolographicAndrew - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 2:50am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S2: Meld

Totally agree with this positive review. The scene with tuvok going out of control on Janeway blew me away.

This has to be one of the best episodes up to this point in the series, not to mention one of the best vulcan centered episodes.
Sean - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 2:30am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S7: Unimatrix Zero, Part II

"Something acknowledging they're forever changed would have been cool."

Voyager didn't acknowledge things that happened in previous episodes. Continuity was an extreme rarity. And even when continuity did happen, it made no sense and was fairly badly written, as in the early season and with Fury.
NCC-1701-Z - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 1:25am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S4: The Muse

Onaya felt like a villain right out of Doctor Who, specifically, the witch-beings in the Doc Who episode "The Shakespeare Code", basically aliens controlling Shakespeare in order to accomplish their evil plan of the week. Except "Shakespeare Code" was fun while "The Muse" was just lame.

And I still can't stand Luaxana. Jammer put it just right - a major stumble in what is otherwise one of DS9's best seasons. Odo had the best line though: "I trust I can count on you to accept me even if I just stand there and read last week's criminal activity report."
NCC-1701-Z - Wed, Jul 23, 2014, 1:06am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S7: Q2

I liked this episode...when it was TNG's "True Q".

Bleah. Voyager ruined the Q even worse than they ruined the Borg.
Tommy - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 6:13pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S7: Attached

SPOILER

I don't see the tricorder as being contrived, but it was a huge stroke of good luck.
Chris - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 5:31pm (USA Central)
Re: ENT S1: Acquisition

As much as I detest pretty much ALL Ferengi episodes, and the writing talents of Berman and Berman Jr, I actually found this to be the least offensive of the Ferengi stories. Just based on reading the first few lines of Jammer's review prior to viewing, I was expecting spmething much, much worse that this.

Combs did his usual admirable job at making the character his own and playing it convincingly, seeing 'Balok' return to Trek was a nice touch, and I thought Bakula channeled a bit of Kirk when trying to convince Krem to help him.

Really, it wasn't THAT bad .... As Ferengi episodes go. At least not one character uttered the word "moogie". God, how I hated that shit.
SkepticalMI - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 5:25pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S6: Man of the People

I think you have mentioned your appreciation before, and the feeling is mutual. For the record, I did not intend to imply that you agreed with Alkar in any way. I simply meant that if their intention was to make this a social commentary episode, they did a poor job of it (which you seem to agree with too).

I'm thinking that if they did want to go with this angle, of using this episode as a springboard to discuss whether or not it was ok for a politician to have moral failings if their cause is just, then changes would need to be made. For starters, I'm guessing that someone else (perhaps from the same species) would need to make the argument that Alkar was justified in doing this, rather than Alkar himself. That would fit with how politicians act; they try to avoid the subject entirely and if forced to discuss the matter, usually offer a hollow apology and say they are working on improving themselves (while the "machine" politicians work in the background to set the proper narrative). When Picard talks to Alkar and he defends himself, there's simply no denying that he looks like a common criminal offering lame justifications for his crimes.

Not that this one change would make it a good episode...
Josh - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 4:11pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

The counterargument from the "real world" is that Kassidy's character allowed for a prominent recurring role played by black performer. I don't think there's anything more "progressive" about portraying Sisko dating a white woman instead! Also, as has been pointed out, Jake's most prominent love interest was Mardah - a Bajoran played by an apparently Caucasian woman. Way back in "The Storyteller" both Jake and Nog seem interested in another "white" Bajoran girl.

Otherwise, I'm pretty sure Harry is supposed to be of Korean descent (certainly Kim would be an extremely atypical Cantonese name), though according to Memory Alpha he's from South Carolina. So I figure he'd be speaking English too.

(And, generally, I prefer to avoid the translation issue! Too thorny.)
dgalvan - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 1:18pm (USA Central)
Re: Star Trek III: The Search For Spock

Christopher Lloyd was awesome in this.

Also, what was his dog/pet on the bridge of the bird of prey? It was not a Targ, was it?
Ian G - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 1:09pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S2: The Homecoming

I really enjoy this whole arc which starts at the end of the first season. The action sequences were from 90's TV so the standards were much lower then, but I still thought they held up fairly well. DS9 has a really funny trip of giving tiny Kira, who weighs in at a whopping 115 lbs, an iron fist that can knock any character, no matter how large and powerful they are, down with one hit. I also thought that it was odd that the nature of the political violence was toned way down to graffiti and branding Quark, compared to religious extremism fueled bombings and assassinations from the previous episode which seemed more appropriate for a society that fought a 50 year long insurgency with terrorist tactics.
Kahryl - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 1:00pm (USA Central)
Re: ENT S1: Dear Doctor

No, Petrus, you DON'T know exactly what will happen if you don't do anything. In fact that result is just as unpredictable as one in which you interfere. Deciding not to act, is in itself a decision and an action with distinct results.

Also, the idea that the best decision is the one with the most "predictable outcome" is ridiculous. How about destroying the aliena' atmosphere and killing them all - you know EXACTLY what the result of that will be!
Elliott - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 11:52am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

If not for Time's Arrow messing it up, we could have included Guinan in with Picard's love interests. While I understand why the subject may be an uncomfortable one, in this case, there seems to be something deliberate going on. I cite again "Badda-Bing" wherein Sisko makes a comment to Kassidy about "our people." Sisko's family seems to have settled in New Orleans. Of course, they could have settled there as late as his father's generation, but, assuming they've been there since our time, it is likely that Sisko's ancestry can be traced to the French slave trade. Is that Kassidy's ancestry as well? We hear her speaking English, but I always assumed that Keiko was speaking Japanese, Picard and Geordie French, Worf Russian, Kim Cantonese, Torres Spanish, etc. "Yates" is an old British surname, so it is likely that Kassidy's family can be traced to one of the empire's trades. The point is, the only feature Sisko can be referring to when isolating Kassidy, Jake and himself from the other humans is race. Without going off on too much of a tangent, this idea is another example of the writers failing to extrapolate in futuristic terms. These issues are only relevant to us now in this way. Until that episode, it didn't seem like humans paid race even the slightest attention. In fact, "race" was usually interchangeable with "species" (which makes more sense anyway, as there are actual genetic differences between different species). But now, we have to reevaluate Sisko's choices in light of this attitude, and his and his son's exclusive coupling with humans and aliens whose skin colour was the same as theirs is disturbing. Not to mention, as Robert noted, the only two non-white Bajorans we meet are Jake's love-interests. And there was Fenna, the only member of her species we ever meet, and she is played by a black woman. I can make exactly one exception to this rule--Sisko slept with mirror Dax (but that was mostly to keep her from suspecting his identity).
Robert - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 11:34am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

Memory Alpha's picture of Vedek Tonsa confirms you are right! I went through all of them and there is one. I didn't remember him.
Paul M. - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 11:23am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

Robert, as I remember, there were a few black Bajorans: a vedek, maybe some militia members...
Robert - Tue, Jul 22, 2014, 9:27am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

That should have read "more wrong". Must not post before coffee.
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