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Dave in NC - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 1:26pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S7: Critical Care

@dlpb

Are you sure you're a Star Trek fan? It sounds like you've learned very little from the shows.
Dave in NC - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 1:20pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S6: Descent, Part I

And that wasn't directed completely at you, by the way. This is more a general observation than anything directly said by anyone.

I've noticed a undercurrent of misogyny in some of the reviews, both by Jammer and others. Yes, some female characters are written badly, but that's because the writers didn't understand women well and they were being forced by higher-ups to ramp up the sexual titillation.

There are some reviewers here that seem to revert to a "Ain't that just like a woman" kind of thinking rather than placing the blame where it belongs: at the feet of the writers/producers (and in the cases of Troi and Ezri, the ability of each actress to emote believably).

Then again, the flip side of this is that writers DO understand the male mind pretty well, which may be the reason why some reviewers react the way they do.

Of course Keiko is portrayed as bitchy, of course the female characters cry or scream at least three times a season, of course the women are either strangely prudish or super-promiscuous. This is how a lot of men see women, so of course this is going to resonate with many male viewers.

Well, that and the lingering shots of Deanna's ample boobage.
Dave in NC - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 12:54pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S6: Descent, Part I

I'm going to save my review for another day (this is one of those squandered potential episodes), but to reply to "Karaokejoe"...

I guess only the female crewmembers are capable of "nagging"? Not to be Mr. Thought-Police, I'm just pointing out that it is kind of sexist to only use this word in relation to the women on the crew. (Unless we are discussing Keiko, hehe).
Elliott - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 9:59am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S7: Critical Care

Okay, dlpb, you've just turned in your sanity card. Please show up on time for your straight-jacket fitting.
dlpb - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 9:17am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S7: Critical Care

More loading of the dice here, I'm afraid (despite being a good episode). The kid who is being refused care just happens to be a promising talent. Come on. The vast majority of people in the US that can't afford care are useless, lazy bums.
larmih - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 4:52am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S6: Sixth Season Recap

Opinions differ. But I found two episodes of DS9 season six I got intrested in Statistical Probabilities and Sound of Her Voice wore done on stories by Pam Pietroforte, which brought me to this site. No other information. Perhaps it was a brief participation of the writer in the franchise, but psychologically they were the most effective, so the author had great potential.
Joseph B - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 3:10am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S4: Rejoined

Just finished viewing the first season of "Arrow" which is a new super hero series based on the "Green Arrow" comics series. The show utilizes the tone of "The Dark Knight" movie to good effect and is reasonably entertaining as a result.

While viewing the eps it seemed to me that there was something hauntingly familiar about the actress playing Oliver Green's mother. Sure enough, it’s the same actress that played Lenara Kahn in this groundbreaking (at the time) DS9 ep. It seems incredible that this episode aired almost twenty years ago. And Susanna Thompson is still a very capable and attractive actress even after all this time.
Entilzha - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 2:07am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S1: Datalore

Another point to add to all those already mentioned:

The solution was to just beam Lore off the Enterprise and leave him floating in space?

He's not deactivated and I'm sure he can send some kind of signal that can be picked up, or just be noticed, by a space vessel flying close by. Not only would it enable Lore to resume his hostile activities, but if picked up by enemies of the Federation, his tech and knowledge can be used - imagine him in the hands of the Cardassians or the Romulans. It's very naive and sloppy solution by a crew who already behaved stupidly through most of this episode. I'm guessing not the smartest of writers were on board for this one.
Michael - Sat, Jul 26, 2014, 1:39am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S3: Yesterday's Enterprise

They looked like warbirds but they were heavy battle cruisers.
Why the Enterprise did not use photon torpedoes after the first spread?
Perhaps the rift in space....they did not want to destabilize it?
They knew the Klingons were on the way. No other Federation vessel could assist? Yes it is a time of war but this was an unusual event to put it mildly!!
Comments welcome
D. Albert - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 9:20pm (USA Central)
Re: BSG S4: Daybreak, Part 2

Jammer

I agree. The lack of planning cost the series dearly. Some stuff just doesn't add up. You mentioned the big two.

Some thoughts:

For me, Cavil's character arc flopped. He HATED humanity and thus himself. And Fate. And then, poof! He agrees to a a truce. And it was a truce, which is why he just blew his brains out when it broke apart. It just doesn't fit with his incredible bile.


At least the writers in part resolved the conflict between fate and free will in the character(s) of 8. Boomer and Athena show, as you point out, that Cylon biology/fate still depends on individual choice. I like that.
213karaokejoe - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 8:23pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S7: Descent, Part II

The incident with metaphysic shielding is a little confusing. The Borg ships stop and wait and the Enterprise stops, not taking advantage of the opportunity to put some distance between them.

Didn't like the "Innocent girl-mean man" dynamic at play with the junior officers.
213karaokejoe - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 7:58pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S6: Descent, Part I

I read a lot of comments in I Borg that the next Federation death would be on Picard's shoulders for letting Hugh go. Well, Franklin was killed and they took a Borg prisoner. Picard is certainly culpable for Franklin, but so is Crusher. When Picard wants to interrogate the prisoner Crusher gets all judgemental with him. I could have slapped her. Did she learn nothing? Her nagging helped cause the Hugh debacle.
D. Albert - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 5:13pm (USA Central)
Re: BSG S4: Islanded in a Stream of Stars

I really like that Boomer is so messed up. It shows how human she is.
D. Albert - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 4:18pm (USA Central)
Re: BSG S4: Someone to Watch Over Me

"How much individuality does Athena lose by having copies out there who know her well enough to undermine her like this? It's disturbing."

I see it differently. Athena would never act like Boomer. That shows how individual they are. Free will, and all.

Are we any different? I think not.
Elliott - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 4:05pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S1: Captive Pursuit

Teaser : ***.5 , 5%

Something's coming through the wormhole! Finally!
Dax : "It doesn't match anything in Starfleet files." Really? How odd that a vessel from 70K lightyears away would not be in your files. The NSA must have stolen them. The score's a little better than usual during this scene, it helps add to the feeling of discovery and urgency, two desperately needed feelings on the series so far. I realise that Sisko thinks O'Brien would be less intimidating to Tosk than a formal greeting party, but what if he were dangerous? No security for poor Miles? So far, this is the best teaser since the pilot.

Act 1 : ***.5, 17%

Seems like Meaney gets all the scenes where he's talking to thin air. Hooray for good actors! There's a classic sci-fi trick of nominal ambiguity in Tosk's self-designation. It's an interesting little insight into his psychology. The majority of this act is just O'Brien and Tosk chatting. Thankfully they're both portrayed amiably and with an understated thoughtfulness. No forced smiles, not awkward laughs, no wasted steps. It feels more natural and artful than nearly any other dialogue we've seen on the series. Unfortunately, it seems like Tosk is up to no good, however, as he searches the station's plans for weapons storage, thus making the ominous music cue justified for once.

Act 2 : *** , 17%

Things continue to be paced better and more naturally, but I am curious if Sisko has even advised Starfleet that they just met a new race. I mean, first contact is a big deal isn't it? It brings up the question as to whether anyone on DS9 or in Starfleet is trying to contact the Wormhole Aliens. We could have had a DS9-Cmdr Maddox whose curiosity about these new creatures led to a conflict with Sisko. Are they really just like, "okay, so our only means of accessing this remote part of space requires travelling through the territory of non-linear beings who can enter our thoughts and physically control the wormhole. I'm sure that doesn't need a followup."?

DS9's setting requires a lot of extras doing group-acting ("Dabbo!"). For budgetary reasons, this often leads to distracting little bits in the background. Ostensibly, all these extra people are supposed to differentiate DS9 from a starship, with its function-centric corridors and clean rooms, but the fact that so many of these extras perform so poorly ends up making the environment feel *more* artificial sometimes. Just a note. The same thing happened in Ten Forward.

Next good choice, adding Quark into the mix. Horray for good actors! I do think drinking beer out of coffee mugs is kind of idiotic, however. Was this a censor issue? Next good choice, cutting Bashir off mid-sentence!

One gripe is that Sisko still hasn't bothered to introduce himself to this new alien species. I realise he was trying to earn Tosk's trust by letting O'Brien deal with him, but doesn't Sisko have an obligation as a Federation commander to make a legitimate first contact? And now it seems he'd be willing to let Tosk leave without even meeting him!

Tosk is caught meddling with Station security and taken to Odo's office for questioning. Here's another good choice; O'Brien earlier remarked that he found Tosk's naïveté charming and disarming, and here we see that in action (this is in contrast to just telling us he's naïve, or worse, showing us and THEN telling us he's naïve).

Act 3 : **.5, 17%

Well, good job putting off meeting this guy, Sisko, because now first contact is happening in prison. And now you want to "hold him till someone shows up looking for him"? You should get a promotion!

"Allow me to die with honour." Oh no, he's a Klingon in disguise!

Unfortunately, the plot starts to take a dive here. The other Gamma Quadrant ship emerges and starts shooting the station. The results are identical to what goes on on Starships, things shake, no one fires weapons, shields down, "I've never seen this before." It's a gigantic space station against a tiny vessel. Anyone who claims DS9 didn't pull Trek clichés is delusional.

Act 4 : ****, 17%

So, we get this goofy little fire fight (also, why would hitting a Changeling injure him?) between the crew and Tron. And it turns out Tosk is designated prey in a "noble and honourable hunt." It's a little predictable, but a worthwhile bit of Trekkiness. It reminds me of a cross between TNG's "Suddenly Human" and "The Perfect Mate"; Tosk is bound by his conditioning (conditioning which, by any human standards is nothing less than barbaric), but to deny him the fulfilment of his conditioned purpose would be to rob him of everything he has ever cared about.

We get a moving little scene where Tosk refuses to request asylum from the Federation. Whatever injustice was done to Tosk is impossible to rectify. He's already bound to his fate. Either he dies unjustly with his socially-conditioned honour in tact, or not. Those are his only options. He cannot be saved. O'Brien doesn't plead with him, but silently walks away.

Act 5 : *.5, 17%

....So O'Brien tricks Odo by playing on his Starfleet resentment. Okay, good. Then Odo just leaves Tosk, his hunter and O'Brien alone with no other security monitoring. Wow. So O'Brien breaks Tosk free (violating orders and getting at least one of the aliens killed).

And here we go off the rails...we were doing so well, too. SIsko tells Odo not to hurry, other SF officers watch O'Brien go by and say nothing. No security alert. I realise that Sisko doesn't approve of the Hunt (nor should he), but you can't have it both ways. Either you're sticking to your oath or your principals. True, there are times when regulations need to be broken (see "The Drumhead"), but you don't get to hide behind a presumed morality like the Q. So what is Sisko's report to Starfleet going to say? "I tried to stop him, really." That's just a lie. He's a liar.

The fact is, the hunters are as socially-conditioned as Tosk himself. They may not deserve as much sympathy as the prey, but they aren't "bad guys," they're following their conditioning. They deserve pity just like Tosk.

So Sisko throws the riot act at O'Brien because of course he realised he fucked up royally in his Starfleet duty. Then has the audacity to smile, pleased with himself for helping O'Brien along. But I guess these guys just know that they're right. No moral ambiguity. Helping Tosk escape, violating their own laws and potentially igniting contact with a new species--all okay. But I'm sure there will be consequences...

Episode as Functionary : **.5, 10%

It's a good character piece for O'Brien. I'm not against his having a personal ethical code which overrides his duty, but there should be consequences to this behaviour right? Sisko dubious moral code is further flushed out. When Kirk, Picard or Janeway violated the letter of the law, they OWNED it. They decided to face the music and live with their choices because they thought they were right. Sisko plays this little game where he pretends to try and stop O'Brien so he can falsify his report to Starfleet. What a coward. And talk about a reset button! In spite of these issues, it's a more engaging watch than any of the previous episodes. Credit to better pacing, acting and dialogue along with a score that's at least an interesting shade of wallpaper instead of the usual beige.

Final Score : ***
Elliott - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 2:31pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S1: Babel

Teaser : ***, 5%

"You look like you could use some sleep!" Thanks, Kira. Maybe he'd have time if you didn't stand around bitching about everything. O'Brien's Bad Day is actually a decent bit of work, but dear god, how about some music [even some crappy music]? Or some snappy editing? So many seconds go by wasted where we watch O'Briend tap a console or replace a hatch. Anyway, there's a mysterious device in the bowels of the replicator system. Uh-oh.

Act 1 : **, 17%

And a repeat of the flaw in the Odo/Quark rapport from "A Man Alone"; they're sitting together casually shooting the breeze and are literally telling each other what could amount to character bios. This is not natural dialogue, it's ham-fisted character exposition. What is there for me, the viewer, to infer about their relationship? Nothing, they've just told me everything! Thanks for letting me turn my brain off, guys. On the other hand, it's kind of hilarious how easily Quark gains security access when Odo just left his presence.

So, O'Brien's fatigue starts to bleed into his manifesting odd symptoms until he finally starts babbling nonsense at Kira. This must have been fun to memorise...

TNG's S6 was an unfortunate period to air a new show. The bland, slow, padded style which characterised the direction of the series of that time was a poor vehicle for introducing us to this new series and these new characters. I found myself equally disenchanted by this style on TNG, but at least I already knew and cared about the crew and their mission. DS9 did not yet have that advantage. To me, this is a much bigger culprit in DS9's perceived lack of direction than its stationary setting.

Act 2 : **, 17%

Hmm...Star Trek : Gertrude Stein? It would have been nice if the crew's goofy dialogue were perceived as funny by the cast rather than "deadly serious." Yes, it's a serious problem, but come on, how about some realistic emotional responses, at least at first, before it becomes clear there's an epidemic.

Clunky exposition returns as the alien with the stew makes a second appearance just to give Odo his clue about Quark's security breech.

Others have pointed out the ret-con of Rom being a brilliant engineer despite his "being an idiot," but didn't we see him in the last episode being, well, not an idiot? He seemed like a normal Ferengi. So the writers later chose to take a normal character and make him both incredibly stupid and incredible brilliant. Let's keep this in mind, shall we? I am not certain that Rom was the only victim of this strategy.

So, it turns out Quark is inadvertently responsible for spreading a deadly virus to the entire station's population, including all his customers. I'm sure we'll see consequences to this.

Again, the story plods along at a snail's pace with the most lethargic attempts at character interplay sprinkled about.

Act 3 : *.5, 17%

Here's ANOTHER unnecessary scene--Kira is about to tell Sisko that she found the mysterious device (nice resolution to that mystery, by the way, if only O'Brien had thought to use his tricorder during his repairs), yet we have to actually be shown a 15-second clip of her finding it. Talk about padding.

Okay, what would be different, dramatically speaking, in making the "aphasia virus" just a damned virus, ie a disease which weakens and kills you? Is there a reason to make the sufferers aphasic? Do we get some metaphor, plot twist or even a little pathos from this gimmick? Nope! It's just a way to make the virus more science-fiction-y. Take Sisko's finding Jake sick--if Jake had been, say coughing or wheezing, feverish, sick in bed, would Sisko's reaction be less warranted? Instead, we are asked to feel the same based on Jake's random word-generator speak. So, we have to overcome a strange layer of suspension of disbelief for absolutely no reason. The consequences, resolution and empathy of the plot would not be hindered by making the virus act like a virus and not an internet meme-speak. Another unintentional result is we have to rely on the actors communicating their real feelings without the aide of coherent dialogue. Colm Meany could pull this off, but Terry Ferrel and Cirroc Lofton definitely cannot. Poor kid is just flailing his eyebrows about in an attempt to convey desperation. Without knowing this particular child-actor's strengths and weaknesses, it should have been an obvious bad move for the writers to demand something so subtle and strange from a kid.

Um, the Bajorans developed a complex virus (with this unexplained goofy aphasic side-effect) during the resistance? How, when?

Oof, Kira's friend whom she contacts over subspace gets the shitty acting prize on this one.

Act 4 : *, 17%

"This virus is a work of genius." My ass.

So, Kira has 12 hours to find the Bajoran genius or people start dying. Okay. So, Sisko, maybe you want to assign more than ONE person to work on this! Maybe help yourself instead of interrupting Kira to let her know she needs to hurry up. Geez.

Then, we get the scene where Kira tells Sisko she's leaving to find a cure, but fails to mention she won't leave the Runabout, just so Sisko can berate her for breaking quarantine. People are yelling! Drama must be happening! RARG!

Well, just in case the virus wasn't riveting enough, we've got the other contrived disaster, the exploding ship. That's right, trying to break away from the station doesn't cause his hull damage or impair his docking clamps, but triggers and EXPLOSION. That's some well-designed technology there.

Act 5 : *, 17%

Kira stealing Surmak from his office was hilarious. Total Janeway move.

Why is it that every time someone goes aphasic, it's always met with "what, what was that?" followed by awkward babbling.

Did Kira just sentence this man to death? Well, I'm sure there will be consequences.

Did Kira fly past the burning vessel about to blow up half the station and do nothing? No hail, no offer to use the Runabout's transporters or tractor beam? Huh.

30 SECONDS 20 SECONDS 10 SECONDS!!!!!! 'splosion!

I did like Quark's little comment about "hazard pay." Do Bajorans earn a salary working Federation jobs?

The bookending was really painful--all that was missing was one of those early TNG "that was cute and funny" music cues followed by Sitcom credits.

Episode as Functionary : *, 10%

What's to say? The plot is ludicrous, the danger at the end obviously manufactured and the titular "Babel" aspect is just a gimmick. We could have had an interesting subtext about the original meaning of the Babel myth--the dispersion of peoples, the multiplying of tongues allegorising the divergence of cultures. Instead we get generic danger and inexplicable justifications. I'm not sure if this underwent a rewrite, but it had, in this way, a similar feel to "Masks," where a potentially intriguing idea is dumbed down to pointless drivel. Much like "The Naked Now," it's also a really bad idea to air an episode which requires the actors to be weird so early in the series. It leads to a lot of uncomfortable scenes with darting eyes and confused expressions. The Odo/Quark stuff was okay in places, but nothing about it really added to their dynamic. Sisko's concern for his son does not inflect his actions in any way except during the designated "character scene." It felt cheap. Overall, it's a cheesy, contrived mess that needs no repeat viewings.

Final Score : *.5
Elliott - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 12:41pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S1: A Man Alone

I started doing little act by act reviews years ago and never finished. Inspired by the good work of William B. and a few others, I'm going to press on with these:

Teaser : **.5, 5%

Blue Shirts and Bubbles...Here's a good representation of those typical season 1 blues (most of the series have them); the writers are attempting to define these characters in prosaic, general terms: Dax is a Trill, she's old and she's smart. The "puzzle" gives her the chance to remind us of all these things (delivery still needs work, Terry). Bashir is young, motor-mouthed and hormonal. What I remember about early DS9 and VOY episodes is that they are dealing with many of the same freshman pains as early TNG, but aired in the middle of Berman's Beige Trek. So, while in TNG I could enjoy the wonderful scores and the interesting directing choices, here there's this general haze of bland boredom. Anyway, the teaser contains absolutely no meat on its bones, but it's inoffensive enough.

Act 1 ***, 17%

Odo's digression on "coupling" is one of those yet-to-be-patented DS9 banality indulgences (let's call them DBIs); a potentially interesting bit of character growth for Odo is reduced to sitcom-level clichés (of course, it's not football, it's "caronette" because we're IN SPACE). Is that really the depth we're going into on the subject of "coupling"? Meh. Jadzia and Sisko share a laugh over a bit of dialogue which someone labeled a joke but is not remotely funny (this episode's take on Past Prologue's "new suit" is apparently "steamed Azna"). Clumsy, clumsy dialogue in the exposition with these two: they have to spell out for us that they feel uncomfortable. Who tells their mentor that she is his mentor? It's so unnatural. One interesting thing about the structure of this act is all the pairs : Odo/Quark [rivals[, Dax/Sisko [old friends], Miles/Keiko [spouses], Jake/Nog [new friends] : all the little dialogues present a theme of companionship. This was a good and subtle choice.
Anyway, the "real" plot kicks in--it's good that Odo is still operating as he did under Dukat (basically his own rules). The murder itself is corny as hell--black leather glove holding that enormous dagger? Wasn't there a less 70s-horror-porn way to show this? In any event, the tone of this act is so different from the teaser, it feels like a different episode.

Act 2 : **.5, 17%

FWAK! [that was the tone metre slapping me in the face] : a return to the teaser material and whacky antics from Nog and Jake. Dax/Bashir adds nothing to what we learned in the teaser. It's just filler. Jake's and Nog's prank is another example of the DBI (I think Michael Piller thought everyone's childhood is a version of "Stand By Me"). I laughed at the generic "serious crisis" music when the deputy grabbed the boys. God these scores are awful. So, Odo discovers his name on Ibudan's Ical circa 1992.
There are only 12 children on the entire station? That seems unlikely. In any event, I thought the conversation between Keiko and Sisko was pretty well done--but there's a thorny issue that wasn't addressed: Sisko rightly points out that there are a multitude of cultures living on the station. True, but the problem is that a school is a state function (unless it's a privately sponsored school). Which governmental body is responsible for the station? It seems like in civil matters, Bajoran law is respected (see "Dax"), but we saw earlier (and will see later) that Sisko expects Odo to operate under Starfleet regulations, implying that the criminal and military branch is controlled by the Federation. But the senior-ranking Bajoran is Kira, who is under Sisko's authority. Did they think this through? I know they're going for the whole "frontier" thing, but we're not talking about governments that you have to send telegrams to and wait weeks for a response. Both Bajor and the Federation are instantly accessible by subspace.
Another efficient and brief scene continues the murder plot. There's not much to say about it--it's plot mechanics and nothing more.

Act 3 : ***, 17%
Finally, we get a bit of character work in the A plot with an understated admission of trust between Kira and Odo. Unfortunately, that trend is dropped in the Promenade scene with the Bajorans and Quark. It dawns on them that Odo's history with the occupational government might make him a poor choice for security chief. Okay, good. Then Quark has to tell them (the camera) that Odo's a good guy, despite his gruffness and that Quark considers him a friend. The amity between Odo and Quark will of course prove to be one of the best character features of the series, but telling us flat out in such an omniscient expositional manner is very trite and lazy. If they're at this point now, exactly where are they going in the future?
I'm trying to figure out Keiko's motivations here. She's bored and thus wants something to do; O'Brien and Sisko help her found a school...why is she so persistent of Rom? Is there a quota of multi-ethnic children her new school must possess? I never heard mention anything about her wanting to play Ambassador to the Ferengi. Meanwhile, we get the ominous glare from Obi-Wan Bajori, followed by a scene that is literally just Bashir waving around fake instruments while the score continues to convince us we'd be better off napping. There's emmy-winning material.
The best scene in the episode occurs when Sisko relieves Odo of duty. Although Sisko is mostly a cardboard sounding board, sleepily professing is baseless belief in Odo's innocence, the writers make a really good choice in having Odo's dialogue flow directly from character. He's upset of course, but he's also unwaveringly cunning. Whereas perhaps most humanoids would appreciate the vote of confidence Sisko casts in spite of his dutiful actions, Odo sees the flaw in Sisko's logic and all but rejects wholesales his overture of collegial respect. It's worthy of a Spock/Kirk moment. Kudos.

Act 4 : **, 17%
On the other hand, the ransacking of Odo's office is pretty silly (boy, the Bajorans picked up English quickly). And the Quark/Odo dialogue is mostly the same clunky "tell don't show" stuff from earlier, but Auberjonois and Shimmerman display a wonderful chemistry that transcends the lousy writing.
In the middle of all this, Bashir and Sisko grab lunch. Okay. I appreciate that the writers are trying to flush out the Sisko/Dax backstory, but a lot of this is hard to swallow. Dax died of old age (we later find out, that Serena Williams literally fucked him to death). Sisko may not be as young as Bashir, but when exactly were he and Kurzon galavanting around, wrestling and picking up women? I could see the older mentor drinking Sisko under the table and maybe embarrassing himself in an attempt to pick up a woman, but it seems a little far-fetched. Worse is the fact that they seem to want to build the backstory on this kind of frat-boy meets midlife crisis camaraderie, but didn't Sisko marry Jennifer when he was fresh out of the Academy? When would Sisko and Kurzon have had these adventures? When Sisko was a teenager? What was their relationship like after Sisko got married? I doubt they were hitting on Amazons. Swing and miss, folks.
While we're on the subject of contradictions, why is Odo's shape-shifting ability seem to be the root of the mob violence? I thought the Bajorans resented his status as a former Cardassian collaborator. Why are they playing the race card? It feels like a forced way to try and make Odo's persecution more metaphorical, but it's damned sloppy and comes from nowhere. They *would* do this properly in S7's "Chimera."
Closing out the act, we have super-genius Bashir staring at the growing glob in the Infirmary. What could this clump of organic matter made from Bajoran DNA be? Jinkies, what a mystery. [Trivial bit: Morn is seen in the mob outside Odo's office. That's got to be awkward]

Act 5 : *.5, 17%

Why is the Federation helping these people again? "How do you get a rope around the neck of a shape-shifter?" I'm not suggesting that the Bajorans should have the evolved sensibility of humans (how could they after their history?), but this kind of blood-thirst is absolutely nauseating. You'd think they would have had enough pointless bloodshed by now. In reality, this "kill the shifter" bs is what RedLetterMedia's Mr Plinket properly refers to as a script's equivalent to a penis car (those ridiculous sports cars middle-aged men buy to overcompensate for their perceived lack of sexual virility); in order to artificially inflate the stakes, the mob has to want to kill Odo for...why do they hate him again? His collaboration (didn't seem to bother them before today)? His alien nature (ostensibly so, but what exactly is their objection?)? His alleged murder of one ill-reputed Bajoran we know nothing about? The only thing this approach achieves is to make the Bajorans seem cartoonish.
So, the big mystery is revealed: Ibudan cloned himself to frame Odo. Actually, pretty clever. So Odo tracks down Obi-Wan Bajori, who turns out to be Ibudan. All that was missing was Ibudan's "And I would have gotten away with it too if it weren't for you meddling shape-shifter!"
Closing the episode is Keiko's first class. Sort of cute, but we get nothing further from Rom re: his interest in putting Nog here, and there are NO other human children on the station? Scratch, that, Federation children? No other officers have kids except Sisko, so the only other kids who show up are Bajoran. See, this is another contrived conflict: given the size of the station, there should be at least a a couple of other officers' kids between the age of 4 and 18 who would attend Keiko's school, making the need to solicit Bajoran and Ferengi children superfluous. Again, unless Keiko's stated purpose had been to try and bridge the cultures on the station--but her motivation was to have something to do with her time, since her degreed profession was apparently not an option. Whatever, enough of this cheese-fest.

Episode as functionary : ** 10%

There's a bit of good character work for Odo, but there's WAY too much clunky exposition. For the most part, we aren't allowed to discover the characters' backstories or their relationships, we are just told about them (exceptions are Kira/Odo and Jake/Nog). Couple that with some really illogical history with Sisko/Dax and the totally botched motivation for the Bajoran mob, as well as Keiko's amiable, but rather flimsy B-plot and it's probably one to skip. It's worth a footnote that Keiko's school will become important later, but not really worth sitting through the hour to get that bit of information.

Final Score : **
Baron Samedi - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 9:52am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

A very good final season to a magnificent show. The resolution to the Winn/Dukat/Sisko story was ridiculously anticlimactic and the ommission of Bajor's entry to the Federation was disappointing, but otherwise this was an excellent string of shows. Ezri was a great character. I loved her speech to Worf about the failings of Klingnon culture. DS9 is my favorite Star Trek show and one of my top shows in general (up there with The Wire). I admire the vision and ambition that went into it. Not everything on DS9 worked, but even when it fell flat it was rarely for lack of trying. I wonder if there will ever be a time when a fairly big budget and such a great degree of freedom (though I'm aware many of the limitations) are put in the hands of such a talented group of writers behind a sci-fi series. Thanks for the wonderful reviews, Jammer.
Entilzha - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 6:49am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S1: Lonely Among Us

2 reasons:
1) It created Data's fascination with Sherlock Holmes.
2) It gave us Colm Meaney's 2nd Trek appearance which would later lead to Chief O'Brien.

The rest is boring.

So, historically we need this episode in the tapestry of Star Trek making, but we don't really have to watch it. :p
Entilzha - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 6:33am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S1: Where No One Has Gone Before

I loved the Klingon targ hallucination of Worf, and also the one with Tasha and her cat. It really showed something about the characters. After those two it seems the writers got tired from thinking and just decided to do strange things around the ship. What a missed opportunity.

The Traveller and Kosinski, and Wesley were also good. The rest of the crew were portrayed as very reactionary and stuffy.
Entilzha - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 6:20am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S1: The Last Outpost

Just notice how in each episode Troi's neckline is a little bit lower.

Also, the notion of women being 'less than' seems to be a universal one as it is presented by most of season one & two. Almost every single race sees females as a stereotypical weaker sex, or something to be viewed sexually. Really annoying. Seems the only true feminists on Trek so far are the Klingons. (Later there'd be the whole House of Duras inheritance that would wreck that :/).

This episode works if you see the first half as an action with a mystery story and the second as a comedy. It feels as if the director had a Jekyll and Hyde mental breakdown while working here.
Entilzha - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 5:11am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S1: The Naked Now

Worf: I don't understand their humor, either.
Wesley: It was an adult who did it!
Those two quotes can sum up most of this episode.

Wesley I liked. He is a bright kid who for some reason (through most of season 1) is surrounded by professional adults who act very stupidly: Why would the assistant engineer leave him in charge (It was before the infection took hold of him)? Why would his mother not notice her son sweating buckets after she knew about Geordi's and Tasha's condition?

Wesley being a very smart kid made sense for him doing all the things apart from the last 'saving the day' act. That just range false. I also loved this being a carefree Wes, drunk, happy and naughty. Much more enjoyable that his anxious to please everyone demeanor in later episodes.

The other good thing besides Wesley was Data's "If you prick me would I not leak." Love the Shakespearean paraphrasing. Also, that small part foreshadows great episodes to come in the future.

Small thing: both here and on Haven, Deanna calls Riker 'Bill'. Doesn't really suit him and I'm glad they changed that.

I didn't watch the show in episode order so for me it wasn't the second episode and the first time seeing it was quite amusing. But the unsophisticated humor fades very quickly after a couple of viewings. I found myself now laughing derisively at it rather than with it.
Mike - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 2:10am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S3: Yesterday's Enterprise

Wow, finally someone, with my same name, that pointed out my biggest gripe of this show! You're tell me that the flagship of the Federation after episodes like the survivors, q who, the best of both worlds, couldn't mop up three 20 year old warbirds?

Don't get me started on Generations...
LongKahn - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 1:48am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S2: Crossover

I would have liked it if the writers had used the mirror universe in the dominion arc. They could do it in many ways. Maybe as a way to escape in a grave situation like when the dominion took over the station. Or maybe they could have gone to the gamma quadrant in the mirror universe to get the cure for Odo. Oh well. Almost every mirror episode had the other side using our characters for their advantage. Once the station was taken over by smiley they should have gone there for something. I mean there was a whole universe that the dominion didn't have access to. Just a thought
Ian G - Fri, Jul 25, 2014, 12:34am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S2: Melora

This is a pretty dull and ponderous episode that try's to make some sort of ham fisted point about accepting handicapped people that would be fine in a 90's public service video but not Star Trek. Melora's predicament seems silly in the midst of all the medical marvels of the ST universe. The episode then degenerates further into a meaningless one off love story with her and Bashir. Melora herself is unbearable throughout, at first she's angry at everyone for no reason, then she's just a sappy love interest. Through all this we are slapped in the face by the script and told how awesome she is at everything lest we think all people with disabilities are meek and worthless.
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