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Luke
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 12:31pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Dramatis Personae

"Captive Pursuit" was just bland. "If Wishes Were Horses" was dumb. This one at least had something going for it.

Of course, that's all just my opinion. I could be wrong. :P
Chrome
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 12:11pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: The Defector

@Paul M.

I'd argue that the showrunners themselves made Tomalak the archetype. Need a simulated Romulan threat? Here's Tomalak. Need a generic Romulan threat to raise the stakes in Q's puzzle? Here's Tomalak.

The Romulan you liked played by Sloyan, was already dead in this episode. So, were stuck with Tomalak or Sela for Romulan antagonists. I still think Tomalak is the better of the two.
Yanks
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 11:44am (UTC -6)
Re: New Trek Series Coming in 2017

@ Robert
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 1:09pm (UTC -6)

Wait? He wrote SPIRIT FOLK?

Ok, he's dead to me.

------------------------------------------

Now come on Robert... we always get an episode based on the lead actors make-up/race/beliefs... 'Far Beyond the Stars' in DS9 and 'Spirit Folk' in DS9 :-)

Young minds, fresh ideas. Be tolerant. :-)
Del_Duio
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 11:43am (UTC -6)
Re: New Trek Series Coming in 2017

Hey, with Fuller aboard and apparently knowing Trek canon like the back of his hand I'm really optimistic that this new series will be:

A) Set in the Prime Universe and
B) Take place about 20 years after DS9 / Voyager

If they did this.. I mean, you could even base this series out of the fallout of the Dominion War. Damn, that'd be awesome.

P.S: VOY's "Alice" was a terrible episode, let's not count that one lol
Yanks
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 11:37am (UTC -6)
Re: Trailer: Star Trek Beyond

@ Demosthenes
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 8:53am (UTC -6)

@ Yanks

I love the way where you just skip over my first two paragraphs and go straight for the hyperbole. Your addressing only my silly way of blowing off some steam -- because I admit, watching that trailer actually makes me angry, probably a lot more than it should -- conveniently allows you to bypass my actual concern, and retain your own (I would argue) misguided optimism expressed earlier in the thread. Seriously, it's like you didn't even notice the abrupt change in tone. The shift to elevated in-universe references alone should have tipped you off. My God, I didn't think I would have to throw up "sarc" tags.

*** My bad. I was scratching my head reading that because I've enjoyed reading many of your posts in the past. I believe we've even conversed a couple times.

Since you apparently missed the thrust of my earlier comment, let me try again. Star Trek sometimes does action, but Star Trek is not an action franchise. Further, its attempts at grand-scale action setpieces (e.g., the buggy chase scene in "Nemesis", or the Scimitar-corridor shootout from the same movie) often come across both as underwhelming action and as inferior Star Trek. But even the deeply flawed "Nemesis" was hobbled in its attempts to Try Something a Bit Different by still trying to hold to the general tone of the universe. I see no evidence of any such hobbling in this trailer. The most logical conclusion is that Abrams and Co. are perfectly happy letting the tonal drift from the last movie proceed -- making another Star Trek flick that most hard-core Star Trek fans will barely recognize as such, in an attempt to put general-audience butts in seats for a "sci-fi" action-fest.

*** This always boils down to the same thing for me. Star Trek is made for and best shown on TV, not in the movie theaters. Sometimes it graces us with a movie that can make money and still be recognized as Trek, but mostly the "bad Star Trek movies" are the ones that most tried being relevant to the source material. ST2009 was a VERY good movie because it did what everyone expected it to do - brought together our heroes. STID has some great politically relevant story lines, but busted (for me) because they didn't keep our characters in character and couldn't get there head out of past ST movies. We all wanted something new, not rehashed flip-flopped old trek. STID could quite honestly have been the best ST movie yet.

Could the end product be more like Star Trek than the trailer is letting on? Yes. But after the terrible time I had at ST:iD, I'm not prepared to hand out benefit of the doubt. And I'm not keen on the thought of shelling out thirteen bucks for an IMAX ticket to watch "Star Trek: The Fast and the Pointiest." Looking at the trailer, you have to concede the possibility that it's headed in that direction. Really big stunts, way too much CGI destruction, one-liners to make you groan (or me, anyway) -- based on the evidence before us, my case is stronger than yours.
But you're too busy policing my last comment to see that. It's almost as if...as if you're trying to distract our attention away from the movie...until it's TOO LATE...

*** If I had seen the trailer and not listened to Pegg and Lynn afterwards I would agree. I'm more optimistic now than I was at the end of STID for sure. We'll see... it's gonna be an action movie for sure, we'll see how much trek gets sprinkled in this time. We don't want a 'Nemesis' now do we? I'll leave the real trek to the next series coming in January.

That's it, isn't it?! Clearly, you're in on the conspiracy! What part of J.J.'s vast Empire do you work for? Tell us right now, you gorram nerf herder, or I'll shove you in the nearest trash compactor. Or maybe it won't go that far...you see, contrary to rumor, there IS such a thing as a Vulcan death grip.

(Did you see it now, or do I have to pull out the "sarc" tags?)

*** LOL!! That just made my day (y)
Paul M.
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 11:36am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: The Defector

Just checked IMDB. Katsulas appeared as Tomalak in 4 episodes only. One of those -- Future Imperfect -- was a simulation, and the other was at the very end of the show in All Good Things. That leaves us with a total of TWO appearances in Season 3, in both of those for a couple of minutes.

Come on, let's not make some kind of cool Romulan archetype out of this guy.
Dom
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 11:33am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens

"He has so much respect for the franchise but close to zero respect for the people that worked on it before him."

@John TY, I think that really hits the nail on the head. Abrams has respect for the tropes of the franchise, but not the ideas and originality of it. TFA does a great job feeling like Star Wars, but a terrible job feeling like a continuation of the story from ROTJ. We didn't need a "happily ever after" ending, but TFA pretty much resets the OT.
Robert
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 11:09am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Dramatis Personae

@Luke - THIS gets a 6/10 over "Captive Pursuit"? And "Wishes" (which is equally stupid but more fun IMHO) gets 1/3 of the score?!

You were doing so well up until now too... :P
Robert
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 11:05am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Shadowplay

@JC - Soong could have given Data emotions. He gave Lore emotions. The problem was that he couldn't give a fully sentient being perfect human emotions and he thought part of the reason Lore turned out bad was because the emotions weren't "right". In this episode Odo and company certainly believe that these holograms "feel"... but are they sentient?

My pets aren't sentient, but they have emotions. I think that Soong was more worried about the problems that came from giving sentient androids imperfect emotions than he was unable to give them any emotions.
JC
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 10:59am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Shadowplay

As far as holograms go my big issue with episodes like this, the Moriarty episode in TNG, the doctor in Voyager, etc. is that computers seem to have no issue whatsoever realistically simulating reasonable, dynamic emotions, even dozens of simulated people at once, yet somehow it was extremely difficult for Soong to give his androids reasonable emotional programming.

I can never reconcile Data's entire core character issues with the fact that computers seem to have no issue generating emotional simulations. It seems like Soong, given his skills, would have at least considered using portions of a well-established, effective holographic simulation program as the basis for his creation's emotional capacity and interactivity programming.
Chrome
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 9:48am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: The Defector

@Paul M.

Romulans are all about intrigue. They engineer these crazy plans in order to test their enemies while gleefully watching them struggle. That's what Tomalak does, and he does it well in my opinion. I suppose they could've fleshed him out better, but TNG isn't really a war show, and Tomalak was unfortunately supplanted by Sela before he got more development as Jason R. pointed out.
Luke
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 9:10am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Dramatis Personae

"Dramatis Personae" is a rather unremarkable story with an unremarkable sci-concept and an unremarkable ending. Still despite that, it does have a charm to it.

What we have is essentially a story where almost none of the main characters appear, as all but two of them act like completely different persons. Yet, the way the mutiny unfolds in a slow-burn, the enjoyably kooky performances from everyone playing someone new and the general atmosphere of unease as the new suspicious characters play off against each other all manage to make it a somewhat enjoyable, if ultimately pointless, outing.

If there's any flaw it's the complete lack of resolution to the Valerian ship sub-plot. Before the wackiness even begins, Kira is determined to show that they're supplying weapons to the Cardassians. They eventually discover that they are, in fact, doing just that. However, once the virus has been dealt with, it's all just forgotten about. What happened to them? Were they turned over to Bajoran authorities? Was their cargo seized? Who knows.

6/10
Demosthenes
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 8:53am (UTC -6)
Re: Trailer: Star Trek Beyond

@ Yanks

I love the way where you just skip over my first two paragraphs and go straight for the hyperbole. Your addressing only my silly way of blowing off some steam -- because I admit, watching that trailer actually makes me angry, probably a lot more than it should -- conveniently allows you to bypass my actual concern, and retain your own (I would argue) misguided optimism expressed earlier in the thread. Seriously, it's like you didn't even notice the abrupt change in tone. The shift to elevated in-universe references alone should have tipped you off. My God, I didn't think I would have to throw up "sarc" tags.

Since you apparently missed the thrust of my earlier comment, let me try again. Star Trek sometimes does action, but Star Trek is not an action franchise. Further, its attempts at grand-scale action setpieces (e.g., the buggy chase scene in "Nemesis", or the Scimitar-corridor shootout from the same movie) often come across both as underwhelming action and as inferior Star Trek. But even the deeply flawed "Nemesis" was hobbled in its attempts to Try Something a Bit Different by still trying to hold to the general tone of the universe. I see no evidence of any such hobbling in this trailer. The most logical conclusion is that Abrams and Co. are perfectly happy letting the tonal drift from the last movie proceed -- making another Star Trek flick that most hard-core Star Trek fans will barely recognize as such, in an attempt to put general-audience butts in seats for a "sci-fi" action-fest.

Could the end product be more like Star Trek than the trailer is letting on? Yes. But after the terrible time I had at ST:iD, I'm not prepared to hand out benefit of the doubt. And I'm not keen on the thought of shelling out thirteen bucks for an IMAX ticket to watch "Star Trek: The Fast and the Pointiest." Looking at the trailer, you have to concede the possibility that it's headed in that direction. Really big stunts, way too much CGI destruction, one-liners to make you groan (or me, anyway) -- based on the evidence before us, my case is stronger than yours.
But you're too busy policing my last comment to see that. It's almost as if...as if you're trying to distract our attention away from the movie...until it's TOO LATE...

That's it, isn't it?! Clearly, you're in on the conspiracy! What part of J.J.'s vast Empire do you work for? Tell us right now, you gorram nerf herder, or I'll shove you in the nearest trash compactor. Or maybe it won't go that far...you see, contrary to rumor, there IS such a thing as a Vulcan death grip.

(Did you see it now, or do I have to pull out the "sarc" tags?)
RandomThoughts
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 8:06am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Birthright, Part II

Hello Everyone!

I'm sort of okay with this episode. A two-star that I kinda like but have a little disappointment in. Heh, I suppose that could be the definition of two-star. :)

I mostly liked the concept. It is an intriguing thought that if Klingons are not taught to be warriors, they might be fine being farmers. Not that they had a farm we could see, just a little hobby garden. But even in a warrior society, Someone has to be the scientist or farmer...

Upon first watching the original, and my recent viewing, I'm struck that Ba'el could argue for their peaceful community, when the only ones with the weapons are the Romulans. Yes, they have peace, but it is the peace of the sword. There are no Klingon guards, only Romulan. Perhaps since she grew up with it, and is part Romulan, these things seem natural to her. Yes they can leave the compound, but there is no doubt they have to return. Hmm... if they seem to be the only ones on the planet, why keep them all in a compound? The whole planet could/would be a prison, and they could all be a part of a fledgling agrarian society. But somehow I doubt many of the Romulans were tending the garden anyway. That was for the Klingons to take care of. Life in the compound seems like it would have been deadly dull.

And I kept thinking of K'Ehleyr while Worf was being a jerk to Ba'el. It just seemed... off... for him to be so (originally) disgusted by her lineage.

I'm thinking that when things started to go sideways, Tokath would have put Worf in one of the cells that must certainly still remain, since this was originally a prison. Killing Worf might make him a martyr, but the Klingons may have understood him being under lock-and-key. And I doubt he would have let anyone leave, even with their word they wouldn't tell anyone about the camp. Klingons seem to get loose lips when they've been drinking...

Now about Worf. The comments above by Troy about the Buddhist echoes my thoughts. Worf learned about Klingon society from the outside, and has an idealized version of it in his head. He knows how their honor should work, knows the stories, knows how they should strive to live. But there is a difference between theory and reality. Klingons should be above politics, be all-for-one, but reality is they have plenty. Worf always seems ready for battle, even at party events or in 10-Forward, but reality is they let their guard down a bit when off-duty (as shown in the mess hall when Riker served aboard one of their ships). And it was told that Klingons don't drink with their enemies, but reality is that if they are fighting each other, they do drink with them at neutral locations. These are compromises that are made with their beliefs. They know about their codes, but realize there are grey areas, and they are used to living with them. Worf, on the other hand, believes everything should be set in stone, because that is how he was self-taught. I think Worf starts to lose faith with Klingon society in general, because they don't live up to his expectaions. We see more of that a few episodes in the future.

Have a Great Day Everyone... RT
John TY
Thu, Feb 11, 2016, 3:14am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens

It kinda makes any victories the good-guys had in the original trilogy a bit pointless doesn't it... Empire's back; Death Star's back; Luke has trained new Jedi but they're all dead (except for his nephew who's gone bad); You can learn to use the force, and a light-sabre, in about 5 minutes (all these theories about Rey's repressed memory are ridiculous - as Jason R was saying - there needs to be some indication from her, or those around her, that she is MASSIVELY exceeding her known abilities); Han is a smuggler again and he and Leia's relationship didn't really add up to much; Sith lords can use the force to read minds now - why didn't Vadar just "mind-meld" the Rebel Base info out of Leia's head in ANH? (I guess this is an issue with ROTJ as well when Vadar discovers he has a daughter by reading Luke's thoughts/emotions) If this is some Knights-of-Ren ability then some reference to that effect might have been handy. And as an aside, all this talk of getting-rid-of/minimising CGI only to have the main villain and a yoda-wannabe needlessly animated.

I think this is my problem with Abrams reboots: He has so much respect for the franchise but close to zero respect for the people that worked on it before him.

Then again, Star Wars is purely a corporate vessel now and he probably has to wear Disney's directives. At least when you get a Lucas-type running the show you know you're gonna see what they want and not what they've been told to show you.
Andrew
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 11:17pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Rascals

Did anyone else notice Riker flipping off the camera when he was explaining the feromantel drive? I might usually not read too much into that, but given the nature of this one scene, I assumed it was a deliberate part of the joke.

That was one of the funniest scenes in Star Trek, and I am definitely slaving my bilateral kelilactirals into the primary heisenfram terminal from now on.
JC
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 9:27pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Paradise

Lessons learned:

1. It's totally OK to perform your own mass social experiments without asking anyone involved if they want to be a part of it, as long as you eventually get them to drink the Kool Aid.

2. O'Brien can do things with a rock in water that folks living with no technology for 10 years couldn't even possibly dream of.

Thanks, writers.
JC
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 8:07pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Whispers

@BZ I believe the episode before this is OBriens first coffee order.

@Elliott Your reviews have been consistently entertaining. Any plans to continue? :)
RandomThoughts
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 5:14pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Tapestry

Upon first viewing, I was a bit lost when Picard was a blue-shirt. I figured after he stopped the fight, he would still have knowledge of Q and how he had been the captain of a ship. It took me a bit to realize he went on with his life with no knowledge of his alternate (captain) self. But I didn't understand why, when we see him in the blue-shirt version, he didn't remember anything about his life or how he got there. He didn't even know what his rank and duties were.

Perhaps changing his risk-taking, taking the safer course, would not have led him to captain a starship, but I cannot believe for a moment he would end up as a junior lieutenant at the same time he was a captain in the other version of his life. He would still have at least some of his passions, and if he was taking a different course towards being a blue-shirt, I believe he would go all-in. Even if he was a very passive man after avoiding the fight, he'd have had to screw up pretty badly to only get one promotion before he was 63. I figure whatever his job was, he would do it very well.

Or maybe he'd just go into archaeology. :)

Have a Great Day... RT
NCC-1701-Z
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 4:23pm (UTC -6)
Re: New Trek Series Coming in 2017

* 5 were 2.5 stars

...Phone keyboards *grumbles*
NCC-1701-Z
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 4:21pm (UTC -6)
Re: New Trek Series Coming in 2017

Now that I have a bit of down time, I went back and did my own mini-statistical analysis of Fuller's episodes, based off Jammer's ratings. Granted the star ratings don't always tell you the full story but it's a good overview (granted it should be taken with a grain of salt since VOY went off the air in 2000 and Fuller has had 15 years to improve his craft) to see where things stand.

So according to Jammer:

-Fuller has written 22 episodes total (I'm counting "Flesh and Blood" as one ep). Of those, 4 were 1.5 or less (18.18%), 2 were 2 stars (9.09%), 3 were 2.5 stars (22.72%), 5 were 3 stars (22.72%), 3 were 3.5 stars (13.64%) and 3 were 4 stars (13.64%).
-That means that 11/22 of his eps are considered "recommended" by Jammer. Not too shabby in my book.
-Yes, Fuller wrote the awful "Spirit Folk" and "Fury", but he also wrote (or had a part in writing) four episodes I consider Voyager Classics - "Living Witness", "Drone", "One Small Step' and "Flesh and Blood". I can forgive him one or two bad days.

Doesn't really tell us much though; we'll just have to wait and see what's on our screen in 2017. I imagine this is the point where news starts to trickle out a little at a time. My predictions: We'll get full casting/writers info in March-May, filming will start in June and go till August/September, and we'll get the first trailer in August/September.
Paul M.
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 3:35pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: The Defector

I suppose that's just it, Chrome: since Tomalak is pretty much the only recurring Romulan, he became the "cool" Romulan. But is he? I mean really, what do we know about the guy? What makes him tick? What does he stand for? What defines his character? What do you imagine he does when he's not on screen? I speak only for myself, but I'm clueless on all these questions. That, in my opinion, is not an interesting character. Sloyan's Romulan from this very episode left a much, much bigger impression on me than Katsulas ever did over however many episodes he appeared in.
RandomThoughts
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 3:02pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Face of the Enemy

I always like watching this episode. Even though the ending just sort of works itself out a little blandly, overall it was very enjoyable.

Now for my silly comments. :)

I believel this episode showed how they must have MiracleGrow for hair. If I'm not mistaken (and I might be), Worf's hair is suddenly down his back for the first time. And Troi's hair was probably cut when they gave her the Romulan makeover, but when she is in sickbay at the end, she has her full head of hair again. It must have been regrown.

So I figure, if Captain Picard really wanted a full head of hair, he could have it any time he wanted. In 5 minutes, he'd be heading to the barber for a trim. :D

Regards... RT
Jason R.
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 2:41pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Wars: Episode II — Attack of the Clones

"@Peter G
One minor flaw with your Order 66 theory. This was a republic so even if the Jedi were considered traitors they would have deserved a trial, not to be executed off hand. This would be true even if the Republic was under martial law. You also ignore the fact that the Jedi now had evidence that Palpatine had committed treason; they went to arrest him, not execute him (unless you believe the serial liar/deceiver Palpatine)."

Adam, what evidence did the Jedi have that Palpatine committed treason? None that I can think of. They knew he was a Sith Lord, but as Peter noted, it's unlikely there was a law against a Sith being chancellor.

Further, if they didn't have the right to arrest him, did Palpatine have the right to resist that arrest? They drew their swords against him first, didn't they? And it was Mace who attempted to execute Palpatine at the end against Anakin's protestations that Palpatine was entitled to trial.

No, Peter is correct. The Jedi had no evidence that Palpatine had committed a crime, thus their attempted arrest of him (by force) was illegal, as was certainly their attempts to kill him without trial.

Where it gets fuzzy is in the Order 66 scene and Palpatine's summary execution of the Jedi still out on the battlefield. Of course we don't know much of the laws of the Republic, but Palpatine could make a reasonable case that they were all part of an organized conspiracy to kill him.

Even today our government executes people all the time in distant lands and battlefields through drone strikes and special forces purely by virtue of those people being members in a criminal organization such as ISIL or Al Qaeda. In this case, Palpatine would have made a similar case.

Now slaughtering Jedi children at the temple... well I guess Palpatine might have had some trouble explaining that. But then again, when U.S. drones fire their hellfire missiles at terrorists, sometimes children die too. So even then you can see how it could be spun by Palpatine...
Diamond Dave
Wed, Feb 10, 2016, 1:59pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S4: Revulsion

I haven't said this much since the early series of TNG, but this was an excellent premise that suffered from fairly poor delivery. The concept of a disturbed hologram, and the Doctor's reaction to that, could have been really interesting. But instead we got a low budget slasher with some scenery chewing to boot.

The Seven/Harry story on the other hand was light but well-handled. There is a very dry wit developing here that is welcome - and her frankness in the face of Harry's bumbling made for a hilariously uncomfortable scene.

Overall though - "This could get tedious" indeed. 2 stars.
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