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Thibodaux
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 11:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Scorpion, Part I

I find my enjoyment of this episode is diminished a bit by the memory of the next meeting with this species, where they pretend to be humans and are reasonable beings open to negotiation. It reduces some of the menace, and makes Janeway seem retroactively even more insane.
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SlackerInc
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 11:32pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

Remember upthread when I said I felt like this episode deserved a half star less than the pilot in some respects despite acknowledging aspects that were improved? Jammer's review shook loose the basic reason why: the turnaround to defy the admiral's orders was too perfunctory and not really imbued with the realism or complexity that was actually a strong point elsewhere in the episode.

I did like that she started out obeying the admiral's orders, and then dismissed the helmsman from the bridge for disobeying hers. (Similarly, dressing down the chief engineer.) But then how did she ultimately justify her disobedience if she expects others to follow the chain of command? Exploring that quandary would have been cool.

And then everyone in the mess was cheering her "bite me". But this is a brand new captain and XO. Would not at least some of them prefer following a fleet admiral's orders to going off on a mission that could get them all killed or imprisoned?
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Dave
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 11:21pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Learning Curve

Tuvok said he "cleared Deck 13" for the 10k run, and later we learn than he increased the gravity on the deck. But...it didn't seem entirely cleared, we saw them passed a few crew members in the corridor as they ran. Also, presumably some people live on Deck 13 and were in their quarters, enduring extra gravity.
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Dave
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 11:15pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Learning Curve

I never really understood why the Maquis, who basically just opposed a Cardassian treaty, adopted a Klingon-ish "Maquis way" lifestyle. The cell Mayqueez led in TNG's "Preemptive Strike" didn't seem to behave the "Maquis way".
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Dave
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 10:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Jetrel

A decent episode, but Jetrel was another example of someone with a disease that has a gruesome end but apparently produces no symptoms until that bitter end. Jetrel says the disease literally makes the body undergo fission, and later he says that he has advanced metremia and will be dead in days. So apparently the fission starts suddenly, but Jetrel somehow knows it's coming in short order. Also, how exactly did Jetrel get it?
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anchors away
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 10:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Projections

when the Doctor views the last log left by Janeway,.....who would stop RIGHT in the middle of a catastrophe to stop, chat to a camera,, and record a log?
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Cosmic
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 9:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

Great review, Jammer. It's cool to see you doing detailed reviews again. I think we're very much on the same page when it comes to this show.

"Unless The Orville's intended identity is simply "Rehashed Berman Trek featuring occasional MacFarlane one-liners," then this is a series with a serious identity problem. You want a 1990s retread — okay, sure. But I think they owe us more than an HD update of what is already available by the hundreds of hours on Netflix."

This is hitting on something that is constantly in the back of my mind while watching this show. It's going to be my "make or break" with this show (and any new Trek-style show for that matter) after watching a couple of episodes.

There is so much "good" Trek out there already... if I'm going to choose between spending precious time on a new "rehash" show with poor humor and recycled plots or re-watching actual Star Trek, I'm going to ultimately choose to watch actual Star Trek. Guess we'll see if it comes down to that.
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Duvac12
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 9:27pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

The director of Photography is Marvin V. Rush who held the same title from 1989-2005 on TNG, DS9, Voyager and Enterprise.
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Peremensoe
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 8:51pm (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: What Are Little Girls Made Of?

Trek fan: "At this very moment, in 2017, we have androids (see that freaky prototype in Japan) that look and act entirely human."

What? No we don't. There's nothing that *really* looks human. Close enough to be uncanny, but that's a valley short of passing.

The behavior, of course, is much harder and much farther away.
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Troy
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 8:03pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

This show needs a breakthrough character or performance; something like Voyager's EMH. My father didn't care for TNG or DS9 but found the snarky EMH entertaining enough to return to Voyager week after week.
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J.B.
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 7:13pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

@SlackerInc

And a big orchestra too. The pilot had a 75-piece one. Not sure if the regular episodes do as well. Star Trek TNG to Enterprise usually worked with a 40-50 piece orchestra, depending on the episode (and due to budget cuts, later Enterprise often didn't have live instruments at all).

The music is honestly my favorite part of the show so far, even with the obvious temp track influences. There's a cue in this episode that came straight out of Wrath of Kahn.
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Rahul
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 6:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Cause and Effect

Really clever and pure sci-fi episode, something rarely seen and therefore great to see. It's funny because I mostly associate Braga with some of the worse developments in the Trek cannon (screwing up ENT mainly) but full credit to him for coming up with this gem.

The eery feeling is so well created when Crusher -- who is really the main character here and is very well acted -- begins to have the realizations that she's been here / done that. I thought it was also very clever with the symbolism of always knocking off the glass and it shattering -- just to mean that no matter what the crew did, the ship kept getting destroyed.

It does seem odd to me that Riker's suggestion isn't initially followed. Why isn't it? Data makes the tractor beam suggestion and so Picard tells Worf to go with it? Is it just because Data says it after Riker?

In terms of drawbacks, the technobabble for what kind of field they were in, the phase shifts in Geordi's visor -- didn't "make sense" to me in that I'm not clear on how it factors into the solution.

And why can Data only pass back to himself the number 3 instead of a more elaborate message? But then the viewer is just taken aback as Crusher calls out the cards she expects to see and Data deals all 3s. Great stuff here.

What I also wonder is what time loop the Bozeman (and captain Frasier Crane) was experiencing for decades before the Enterprise enters 17 days prior and begins crashing into it.

A strong 3.5 stars for "Cause and Effect" -- excellent execution, creative idea. Only some very minor questions is what I am left with. Nothing consequential comes from the episode but that's perfectly fine -- this is a great hour of pure sci-fi and McFadden carries the episode really well.
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Startrekwatcher
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 6:26pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Ensigns of Command

2.5 stars. Average

Nothing really wrong with it. But not quite up there as far as being solidly entertaining

Everything works and makes sense just kinda mechanical. Data was best about episode and his ultimate approach to getting through to the colonists was good. The Sheliak were a welcome non humanoid race
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OmicronThetaDeltaPhi
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 6:20pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Darmok

Me and my wife are currently watching all of the Trek episodes in order (I rewatch, she's in for the first time) and tomorrow we get to "Darmok".

I envy the magical experience awaiting her, watching this episode for the first time. It is - literally - a once in a lifetime experience.




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Skriffto
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 5:37pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S3: Harbinger

This season has had a serious tone for the most part sor far. The way I see it, the characters are getting stressed out from their mission, and maybe the writers were too, so this episode is everyone releasing some tension. Fightin' and f**kin'. Why not?

It was nothing great, but sort of fun.

2 stars
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OmicronThetaDeltaPhi
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 5:35pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

For what its worth, I don't find the "drinks and drugs" thing funny, either.

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Cosmic
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 5:30pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

@SlackerInc

"I am glad you are keeping an open mind."

Of course. I see the potential of this series, especially after this episode.

"I also am beginning to see a pattern, that in general you frown at lighthearted or approving portrayals of drugs and alcohol. That's your prerogative, but just not one I share. I like that the show is "modernized" in this way (although I recall Scotty getting pretty wasted on Romulan ale or something like that in TOS)."

Not true, I simply don't like how those things are being used in the show so far. The "drinking and driving" gag in the pilot was in poor taste. The weed brownie was a cheap and easy joke that didn't service anything, sort of like turning to the camera and being like "See guys, I made a WEED brownie. Just in case. *wink wink*". Meh.

Scotty drank an alien under the table in a TOS episode called "By Any Other Name" (I know because I watched it a couple months ago). That was amusing to watch and it was in service to the plot. It also happened to involve a character that I actually care about - meanwhile the XO character (Kelly?) and the Scott Grimes pilot are easily my least favorite characters in the main cast.
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Rahul
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 5:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: The Outcast

Pretty slow-paced, dull episode that could have been edgier and actually taken a stance on something. Of course, Riker falls for the "girl" which gives us a plot -- out of character behaviour is not one of my favourite bases for an episode.

But this is really one of the Trek episodes that tries to "do something" about societal phenomena (homosexuality) but I'm not sure what it achieves since in the end Soren is cured and no longer in love with Riker. That is the most convenient way to end it as well as Picard can get the Enterprise on to her next mission and turn a blind eye to a PD violation attempt. That's not exactly what we want to see...

Early in the episode, it felt for me like it went on far too long with Riker wondering about a species having no gender and the alien species wondering about having male/female. So here the romance builds up. Plenty of awkward conversations…

"The Outcast" goes through the differences between men and women - not particularly intelligent or amusing. Just awkward at times.

With the "girl" Riker falls for, it's an allegory for being gay and the stigma around it etc. There's the usual Trek heavy-handed way of showcasing a problem in today's world via an alien race and their "archaic" customs.

Thought it was a good guest performance for Soren - her plea of not being deviant was legit and heartfelt.

2 stars for "The Outcast" -- just kind of meh. Probably an episode Frakes would want to forget for Riker's character who comes across as totally unprofessional, and lucky that the way things worked out, still has a career in Star Fleet.
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Chrome
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 4:55pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Old Wounds

Yes, the titles too. Thanks for reminding me.
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OmicronThetaDeltaPhi
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 4:49pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Old Wounds

@Chrome

"But, I'm more excited about Discovery, especially after reading the published episode summaries that OTDP posted the other day."

Those were not "episode summaries". They were guesses made by the press based on the episode titles.

Sadly, you won't see any "episode summaries" before the premiere on Sept. 24 due to the review embargo.
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OmicronThetaDeltaPhi
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 4:47pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Old Wounds

@Jason R.

You might be surprised.

The typical "McFarlane humor" is *very* toned down in the Orville. It's still there, of-course, but it's far less cringe-worthy then - say - Family Guy.

And keep in mind another thing: For some odd reason, the really heavy McFarlane-type jokes tend to cluster in the beginning of the episodes. So before you decide to quit the show after 5 minutes of watching, remember that the first 5 minutes are not representative of the whole thing.

(I have no idea why they're doing it in this way, but it happened in both episodes 1 and 2 so I assume it's intentional)




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Chrome
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 4:22pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

'And Thursday is a premium spot on the schedule, due to advertising for weekend movies (although scheduling is becoming less and less relevant with each passing year). This is when NBC used to rule the roost with "Must See TV": Cosby Show, Family Ties, Cheers, Frasier, Seinfeld, Friends, ER, and even The Apprentice were all NBC Thursday shows that were in the top 10 of weekly viewership.'

Come on man, all those shows are from the 90s when "Must See TV" was actually a thing. The only must-see TV nowadays is the On-Demand button on my remote.
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Canjobear
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 4:16pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: General Discussion

Sounds like the long dramatic episode names are a throwback to TOS. A good sign.
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SlackerInc
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 3:58pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S1: Command Performance

And Thursday is a premium spot on the schedule, due to advertising for weekend movies (although scheduling is becoming less and less relevant with each passing year). This is when NBC used to rule the roost with "Must See TV": Cosby Show, Family Ties, Cheers, Frasier, Seinfeld, Friends, ER, and even The Apprentice were all NBC Thursday shows that were in the top 10 of weekly viewership.

Nowadays, though, along with making money from later sale to streaming services and international markets, what counts in the short run is how a show does in "the demo" (18-49 year olds). A site that's very good at tracking all this stuff is TV By the Numbers. Their graph for the past week (that includes this second episode) show "Orville" in strong position both in the demo and in total numbers (but notice that the demo is presented first, as advertisers don't much care if a lot of 50+ folks are watching):

tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com/weekly-ratings/broadcast-top-25-and-network-rankings-for-sept-11-17-2017/

This is a weird graph, though. "Orville" is actually the only scripted show in the top 13 ("Marlon" is tied with a couple others at #14), and it's the only hourlong scripted show in the entire top 25 (in the demo: the old-skewing "NCIS" has a repeat at #14 in total viewers). That's going to change: this is still the end of the summer TV season, and when all the shows come back for fall (and new ones premiere), it will be a different story.

That said, "Orville" got a jump on the competition, and the second-week ratings are within the normal 10-20% dropoff for a second episode (though close to the high end). We'll have to see what happens when it moves to Thursday. When shows get a launch after something like "Big Bang Theory", they inevitably lose a lot of viewership when they move to their regular night. But I think there's reason to be a little more optimistic here. For one thing, football caused "Orville" to start at a really weird time this week (8:48). Secondly, it's supposed to be getting a boost from coming on after FOX's afternoon football game, right? But first you have to sit through a postgame show, not nearly as much watched as the game itself. And then, if you're into football, aren't you going to switch over to NBC and watch Sunday Night Football, the most popular "show" on TV? Not to mention that Sunday night in general is when networks schedule their most prestigious offerings.

Time will tell, and the numbers will be the numbers. I'm crossing my fingers.
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Skubbles
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 3:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S3: Stratagem

I don't really see how people are calling what Archer did torture.

They didn't really physically hurt him at all. Except the blood worm thing.

And psychologically, they made him think the weapon worked, which is what he wanted, and they told him his family was fine, so no worries there. They made him think that he was gone for 3 years when he actually wasn't, and that the insectoids had taken over. That's about it. He didn't even have fake memories of being in prison or anything.

He just rode around in a shuttlepod for a couple days, thinking he had lost his memory.

Then they just erased all his memories of the whole situation anyway, so how was he tortured? I didn't see torture.

What was done to various Starfleet crew members from various shows...now that was torture. Causing someone to think they are going insane, seeing horrific visions, being raped, brainwashing, beatings, actually having memories of being in prison for years implanted, reliving being murdered over and over, etc.

What they did to Degra was a walk in the park.

3 stars from me
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