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Thu, Jun 29, 2017, 1:52am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: Rapture


Star Trek plastic for the win. lol
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Thu, Jun 29, 2017, 1:52am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: For the Uniform

Peter G - What did I miss?
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Thu, Jun 29, 2017, 1:11am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Chain of Command, Part II

Ok good, I hate last minute skills more than I hate the contrived need for established ones.
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 11:45pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: State of Flux

If this were a 2017 show this episode would have been one of many comprising a solid story arc. But alas, this was 1995. The Seska arc was mediocre at best.
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Andy in VA
Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 8:57pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Preemptive Strike

I too was fascinated by the Picard/Ro relationship in this episode... somewhere between master and protege and something else burbling under the surface, from the moment he paged her out of Ten Forward, to the intimate bar scene and all the way to the end shot of the captain staring, grim-faced, jaw set.

Clearly the writers intended to convey that under-current of an unspoken love or at least attraction, perhaps one that blinded Picard to the obvious, that Ro was too raw, too vulnerable to send on mission like this one, given where she came from.

As noted above, her "good bye, Will" moment with Riker acknowledges their history and an intimacy and informality they'd never otherwise have permitted one another.

Something qualitatively changed about Michelle Forbes since her previous appearance (maybe it was Rascals, not sure). She seems more confident in her role, more sensuous, more tragically beautiful. Too bad it had to end that way.
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 7:56pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Scorpion, Part I

Loved this episode - great review from Jammer. It did have a BoBW feel to it although it is not quite as good (BoBW is among the very best Trek episodes among all series for me).
I do feel VOY needed a good action episode with a threatening alien. The introduction to Borg space already adds a great dimension to VOY. Really can't go wrong with the Borg who are the best villains in Star Trek.
Many reasons to love this episode: the vibrant and sensible discussions between Janeway/Chakotay -- especially the last one about Janeway's plan where both had logical arguments. This was well planned out and written.
The medi-babble worked well for me. The idea of a solution to share with the Borg, negotiating with the Borg (deal with the devil) is a very interesting idea as is the medi-babble that represents the solution against 8472.
Plenty of interesting action scenes as Jammer describes -- always chilling when humans go aboard a Borg cube. The musical score was excellent as well. Seeing the Borg cubes blast past Voyager and then seeing them destroyed, seeing the Borg planet destroyed -- plenty of over the top stuff that isn't just for show -- it works with the context of the plot. Also Kes's premonitions were alarming -- seeing the mass of Borg -- all to make 8472 quite the formidable, scary new threat. That much all worked in this one.
Only 2 minor nitpicks that comes to mind -- like many others I think it's ridiculous about locking onto the bone minerals or whatever they did to transport them back. The stuff with Janeway/Da Vinci -- too much time spent on that just to give Janeway the idea to make a deal with the Borg.
For me, yes a VOY episode can get 4 stars. This one deserves it for sure. Really look forward to Part II, though I have to expect the Borg to not fulfill their word as per Chakotay's excellent scorpion analogy.
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Who you gonna call? TAL SHIAR!
Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 6:29pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: You Are Cordially Invited

No way: Sirella is racist... "Risian sluts, weak Trills... n****, jews... etc"... Sirella is a stupid racist asshole. Worf is a mad dog, Klingons are untrustable drunk space pirates (again), their cousin is... CRAP! Seriously: living worms in a sort of mud?

Federation: join an alliance with us: Romulus is the better choice!

*Better cuisine (and no worms in the mud)
*Blue beer
*Our cold war is a bluff... We only bark by the neutral zone to keep Starfleet awake
*And we don't attack your colonies and helpless hospitals
*We don't care of tribbles
*We let u call us "Romulus" in "Earthian" translation and don't cut your head with a bat'leth
*We dont have stupid bat'leths
*We resurrected Tasha
*We gave u a pendrive for Data's backup
*We copy-paste your favourite captain
*Our D'deridex ships are BADASSIC!
*Klingons, breaking Khitomer Agreement, attacked your colonies and betrayed u. We, breaking Algeron Agreement, gave u cloaking devices.
*We are a sort of amusing Vulcans
*Klingons are a sort of boring Kazons
*We had Jean-Luc Picard 2.0 as emperor. Klingons still have that Kahless 3.1 (as emperor)
*We have Donatra, Klingons have Sirella and her stupid fake grandma
*Tal Shiar is fine, Obsidian Order is OUT. We r cool!

Federals, enjoy Romulan Star Empire! We are COOL!
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 5:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Learning Curve

I completely missed that this was a series finale as I am box setting them, and had to double take when I realised I'd crossed over into S2. This isn't a finale episode tho I get that the 37 episode was originally intended to be so but fell foul of scheduling constraints.

In summary this episode is filler material but unfortunately is emblematic of the season as a whole. It really did do a terrible job of opening up the amazing vistas of the Delta quadrant. It might have been justified if it really poked at the maquis v fleet vibe but it skipped that bar this somewhat painful officer and a gentleman episode (plus Be'lanna beating up a rival earlier in the series). Way too much derivative TNG nonsense about anomalies and such. 2 stars at a push. Thankfully the series raised its game.
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 5:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Darmok

Maybe because he sensed, at least after the initial interaction, that he and Dathon were in the same boat together and and that Dathon was *not* upset, and therefore this wasn't a perpetrator/victim dynamic like in "Allegiance," where the aliens who did the kidnapping held the advantage over Picard and the other abductees. Rather, he saw it for what it was - an unusual attempt to communicate by the Tamarians. Also, he may feel a greater sense of obligation to restrain any anger because this is, if not exactly a first contact situation, still a potential first *meaningful* contact between the Federation and the Tamarians (since previous encounters had just left Starfleet confused).
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 5:38pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Living Witness

You know, an interesting concept for sci-fi to explore might be how our increasingly sophisticated information technology (in this case the holodeck) will change our relationship with history over time. Increasingly, it may become difficult for information to be truly "lost" or "destroyed" since it's no longer being recorded primarily on paper.

I suspect that the Kyrians might view the Voyager "exhibit" the way we might view, say, "Der Untergang," i.e. a realistic approximation of what happened using actual information from history but not a literal recording. We know that we're not watching a 100% accurate recreation of Hitler's last days, but we presume that the filmmakers did their best to capture his volatile temperament and strategically delusional state of mind based on recollections from people who were there.

Do the ordinary Kyrian citizens know what sources the museum staff had when they designed this simulation? I have to wonder whether, given the Kyrians' own technological sophistication, the story really did just become distorted over time due to everyone's tendencies to see themselves in the best light or if someone purposely doctored the records at some point and the simulation creators were working from deliberately falsified information. I also wonder whether the fact that they experience it as a three-dimensional simulation makes it feel more real to them than what we experience when we watch a movie/TV show or a read a book.

Anybody ever read any good fanfic on what the backup Doctor experiences after leaving and whether he ever makes it to the Alpha Quadrant?
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 5:22pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Unification

Was it clear if the entire Romulan military was in on this particular plot, or was it perhaps just Sela and a few other kooks?

I guess my take on the Romulans and why they don't launch a plan to conquer the Federation is that they don't, in fact, want a war with Starfleet even if they might be able to win, nor do they particularly want to be responsible for all the Federation's citizens and territory. They'd like to be more powerful than the Federation, but they're only willing to go so far in pursuit of that goal. Kind of like the Cold War, minus the 24th-century equivalent of nuclear weapons - neither particularly trusts the other, and each would be happier if the other retreated from the world stage, but an all-out confrontation isn't in either side's interests.
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 3:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Evolution

So the oft shared view is that Season 3 begins the improvement that saved the show.
Jammer rather dares us to say anything negative about the show.
I don't mind distancing myself from whatever it is TNG stands for.
That is easy since it doesn't seem to be able to stand for anything much at all unless its the rather unwarranted idea that everyone and everything is basically decent unless you have to phaser its head off of course.

Gates McFadden returns with a whimper and no explanation of the displacement of the vastly superior Dr Pulaski.

With the nanite plot we have yet another tedious Wesley the genius messes up story that retreads old ideas and the astrophysics premise seems a bit unconvincing too.
No, I don't know the numbers but why does the mad scientist not have access to hundreds of binary systems with neutron stars that he could send his probe into.
I guess the writers don't really care anyway as we have no idea what the egg is supposed to do.

1.5 stars from me
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 1:27pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Price

I identified with Troi... a girl just wants a Real hot fudge sundae ... and often we settle in the minute for replicator magic... she knew it was not real with Ral but a worthy distraction to boldly go beyond her boredom of the star ship..give s girl a break.. she was playing the player and maybe hoping there might be some reality but there never was or would be... I watched it twice and give it 4 stars!!! I think women can maybe more identify with this episode. One problem for me was Ral was no match for Riker and that is glaring... Rals character should have been chosen on how well he could go toe to toe with Ryker and the Ral- troi connection would have been magic instead of falling abit obvious and flat...but what do I know "I already have a job as counselor!"
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 11:12am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Chain of Command, Part II


"And seriously, is this the first episode where Riker's piloting virtuosity is ever mentioned? If yes, pretty thin."

It's brought up many times, but perhaps most famously when Picard asks Riker to manually reconnect the saucer and bridge section of the Enterprise in "Encounter at Farpoint".
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 6:19am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Allegiance

This episode is so bad that the German spoof-redub from the 1990s ("Sinnlos im Weltraum") could actually improve it (by making the characters in the prison even more ridiculously cliché, and the Picard Doppelganger even more outrageous). And I'm saying that as a TNG fan.

Picard in Ten Forward (loosely translated from German, singing): "We'll drink until we drop! We'll drink until we drop! C'mon people, everyone join in: We'll drink until we drop!!"
Someone comments on Picard: "What's happening? That's really weird..."
Riker (putting on a stupid face): "Yeah, I don't actually know the song, either!"
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 6:13am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Chain of Command, Part II

Compelling viewing and acting but I have to agree with a couple of the earlier comments about how this is a bit too much of an Orwellian rip-off, rather than homage. Why "break" an alien commander when you have tech that has already excracted the truth from him?

And seriously, is this the first episode where Riker's piloting virtuosity is ever mentioned? If yes, pretty thin.

Anyway, much better than part 1 but I think having this sort of thing in TNG feels a bit forced.
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 3:34am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Unification

You probably hit the nail on its head that the invasion plot tried to show a sort of "safe invasion". With the two major problems, that 2000 people are not enough to conquer a planet like Vulcan, and that even if they were, the Romulans would have to fear a retaliatory strike. Those problems could be avoided if they went for something smaller - maybe a colony at the edge of Federation space, rather than directly for Vulcan.

I have to admit that there's a certain poetic appeal to the "Vulcan invasion" plot, because it is similar to the story of the wooden horse that was used to conquer Troy. Pretend that you're coming with good intentions, and secretly smuggle in soldiers. As I've said, might have worked for a border colony... but then we wouldn't have gotten the line "Unification will become a reality of life". I for once could have done without this line, as I could have done without Denise Crosby's performance altogether. Her silliness as a character came together with the silliness of the invasion plot and gave this episode a "low quality" feel, unfortunately.
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Peter G.
Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 12:52am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Unification

@ Steven,

My suspicion has been that the Romulans (a) don't have any many ships as they imply they do, and (b) don't have any capability of defending themselves from an all-out attack, both due to being spread thin with the fleet as well as having to spend considerable resources dealing with their own population. If they began moving large amounts of troops to other words and moving their fleet away from the homeworld they might risk insurrection. Sure, they might take down a few worlds in one sneak attack, but that alone would do diddly to powers like the Klingons or Federation, and the retaliation would decimate them (especially in lieu of the Klingon-Federation alliance). Their better strategy is to sit back and let other worlds destroy each other, and to take small advantages on the sly. I think Unification was an attempt to show their version of 'safe invasion' where they'd not have to deploy their fleet or many resources to do it.

That being said I agree that the plan, as scripted, is basically ridiculous. What, did they think they'd suffer no counter-attack or even a possible two-fronts war?
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Wed, Jun 28, 2017, 12:41am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Unification

I have always been wondering why the Romulans won't just position their fleet around the most important military installations of Starfleet, and then all decloak at once and hit them with all their firepower (similar to how they tried to sneak into the Gamma Quadrant in DS9 and bombarded the planet on which the founders supposedly lived). They could potentially coordinate hundreds of warbirds in an assault.

I told myself that either (A) key planets like Earth or Vulcan might have some sort of detection grid that protects them from cloaked assaults, or (B) the Federation's resources are simply too scattered throughout the Alpha Quadrant to hit them all at once.

And then, this two-parter comes along, and manages to do three things:

It dismantles both theories "A" and "B", and finally makes an alternate suggestion on how to invade a planet - with three meagre ships. Yeah, sounds great. The technology for a detection grid doesn't seem to be in existance, because one single Bird of Prey can just sneak into the heart of the Romulan Empire and even beam down Picard and Data without being detected. And the concern that the Federation's resources might be too scattered to hit them all at once seems to be a non-issue, because it suddenly becomes a sound strategic move to conquer a single (!) planet in the midst of Federation territory.

The multiple contradictions that are exhibited here are just ridiculous. And since when can you conquer a highly populated planet with just 2000 soldiers? And what purpose would "being entrenched" serve? Wouldn't those soldiers just be cut off from the Romulan Empire, logistically? Where's the point?

The episode should never have gone into this territory. Frankly, it already bothered me that the cloaked Bird of Prey could beam down two people to Romulus; it seemed much too easy. The Klingons should have kept some distance to the planet and beamed Picard and Data onto a cargo vessel that was headed for Romulus, being sneaky. And the second episode should have given us something else than this ridiculous "conquest" plot.

Otherwise, I enjoyed this two-parter.
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Tue, Jun 27, 2017, 9:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Tin Man

This was a decent episode - one of the more "science-fiction-y" TNG episodes with the "Tin Man" alien (why's it called that?)
I guess a lot of the episode comes down to how one perceives Tam. He is supposed to be an unstable character as he gets bombarded with everybody's thoughts. I thought the actor did a decent job characterizing such a person -- somebody who is uncomfortable around others and who gets along with Data. It's pretty clear once he beams aboard Tin Man that he's in his own paradise and ain't coming back.
So some good things about the episode but there are also enough problems with it. I didn't like the use of the Romulans and I as much as I dislike the Ferengi, as SkepticalMI suggests, they'd be better suited for the role of the villain here. I don't think the Romulans should act so 1-dimensionally toward Tin Man. They've been built up in S3 as more deceptive, cunning.
The other flaw is Tin Man itself - so what can't this thing do? It can destroy starships, it can beam Data some 3 billion kms away, use telepathy to reach out to Tam light years away, and presumably escape from a supernova ... All very convenient for the writers. I also thought how Riker's role was conceived here was poor - comes across as too domineering toward Geordi, insensitive toward Tam (though it's his thoughts).
I can see why this is a bit of a polarizing episode, however I'd have to give it a fairly average rating of 2.5 stars. I enjoyed the sci-fi aspect of it and the union of Tin Man and Tam, but the other aspects of the episode weren't up to snuff.
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Borgth Degree
Tue, Jun 27, 2017, 9:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: Once More Unto the Breach

My-cho Qara,
endo-do keela,
bay doh chum
ka ree-do meela,
stum-pa rip-to,
Maah-la ee'qo,

ree-kaH! ree-kaH! ree-kaH!

Maah, so faH ka'lee
te cho-paH,

ree-kaH! ree-kaH! ree-kaH!
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Tue, Jun 27, 2017, 9:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: In a Mirror, Darkly, Part II

The Gorn was awful. The old CGI looks worse than the guy in the rubber suit. They may as well have had a Hanna Barbara Cartoon Gorn. And suddenly Gorn's can move fast? The fact they were so slow moving was how Kirk managed to stay alive against one.

The big problem with all the later Star Trek post TNG series is how derivative and unoriginal they are. The original Mirror Mirror was a brilliant premise and well written. This is just a weak copy of something great. The sad thing is that Enterprise could have been such a brilliant series. This is why I have strong doubts about Discovery. Hopefully they won't screw that up.
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Tue, Jun 27, 2017, 6:22pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: In the Cards


"As another example, you complained that DS9 often put forth an anti-Rodenberrian version of the ST timeline. Again, that implies a lack of understanding of the show you're watching, probably because again you are not interested in the show."

I know Elliot spews vitriolic comments on popular episodes, but this critique isn't completely wrong. DS9 reputably shows a less than ideal Star Trek universe, in contrast to the utopia Roddenberry envisioned in at least TNG, despite DS9 taking place in the same time period.

And that's NOT a bad thing. Many DS9 fans I've encountered, including Jammer, like that DS9 can apply a critical slant to optimistic perfection of the Federation. DS9's reveal of the often dark side of the Federation often comes off as a more realistic depiction of people in the future. It also shows that while the people of the 24th century may have advanced philosophically, perhaps deep down they aren't hopelessly far off from the people of today.
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Tue, Jun 27, 2017, 4:09pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Armageddon Game

Not a very scary weapon... It takes days to kill and it can be easily cured apparently.
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Tue, Jun 27, 2017, 3:57pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: United

Star Trek may be bad at inertia, but at least not bad as you: what should it mean "dead stop in space"? Dead stop in relation to what?
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