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Andrew - Sat, Aug 23, 2014, 8:57am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S4: Clues

I didn't see how or why the aliens didn't anticipate the discrepancy in the condition of the plants or why Troi perceived someone else in the mirror or why those things wouldn't happen again. I would have also liked explicit mention of the events of "Brothers." I was kind of expecting/hoping that in the end Data would admit they had lost a day but instead it feels too much like chance.
SlackerInc - Sat, Aug 23, 2014, 3:20am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S2: Resolutions

I liked this episode, and I mostly agree with Mike--except that I'm not necessarily in agreement with the idea that Vulcans shouldn't be captains. I think the humans should be better at following the chain of command and not mutinying! Surely in the top militaries (navies, I guess, would be the closest analogue) in the world today, most of the lower ranking crew would accept it if both the officers left behind and the acting captain both were adamant that "we're not going back".

That aside, I absolutely agree that it was not the fault of the writers of this episode that the ground broken between Janeway and Chakotay was not explored in later episodes.

And Nic is right that the plasma storm did serve the purpose of getting Janeway to "let it go". However, I'm not sure what purpose the monkey served--but can't some elements just sort of add flavor to an environment?

We also got some interesting backstory on Janeway in terms of her family dynamics.

I also agree with Destructor that the space battle was actually pretty tense, and that Tuvok was awesome in the way he established a precise sequence of events and made sure everyone was clear on them before putting them into motion. I mean, if the objection is that "We knew the ship wasn't going to be destroyed; they were outnumbered and outgunned but used strategy and technobabble to save the day" then you basically are just dissing Trek, period.

Also really liked Corey's comments:

"I found this to be a tense and touching episode, and the 'reset button' only added to the poignancy. Janeway isn't just 'reset', but is tragically whisked away from family/home life. She's tragically 'relegated' to the role of captain/mother, a 'victory' that is bittersweet."

Yup, when they have that final scene discussing the systems checks they are each assigned to do, that's not really "reset". They both are carrying regret and hiding/burying their feelings as we watch. I'm sure things are truly "reset" in the next episode; but that's not this ep's fault.

Amanda, are you saying Kate Mulgrew refused to be involved in a romantic plot?
Quarky - Sat, Aug 23, 2014, 2:24am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S6: Honor Among Thieves

I'm just annoyed with how the show in the sixth season still wants us to believe that only obrien knows how to keep the station running. O'brien is not Scotty and ds9 is not a starship. The station was supposedly built by bajoran slaves or at least that's what Sisko claimed. The only way this is possible is if obrien is intentionally changing how the station works and not telling any of the crew so he can keep his job.

The ep itself was great. Obrien should have taken spent some quality time with girl bilby got him. Kieko would have understood it's part of his job. Is always wanted obrien and Keiko to divorce so obrien could find someone nice anyways
Domi - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 9:53pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S2: The Collaborator

Three stars? I could not be more bored.
Josh - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 6:50pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S4: Demon

I don't think I'd ever actually seen this episode when I first read this review. In some ways, it's not quite as bad as the rating implies, but it's certainly not good either. The Demon planet sets are a nice embellishment on the usual "planet hell", but they still show the limits of a TV budget from 1998. The character motivations really don't make a lot of sense, and some of the "comedic" scenes with Neelix and Tuvok or the Doctor feel very arbitrary and contrived. Allowing for the sudden deuterium "crisis", there's very little here that feels well motivated.

And it is slowly paced. The plot is all over the place and seems to struggle to create any rising action or conflict. I understand some of the comments above about a "TOS-style" story or "exploration", but there's nothing really that groundbreaking or different here. If I wanted Trek-style exploration plots done with a bit of freshness and humour, I'd watch Stargate: SG1. Voyager offers mainly technobabble and random jeopardy premises, and it's striking that this show can go from "Living Witness" to this in only a week.

About the only thing this episode has going for it is its sheer bizarreness - a bunch of random concepts stitched together that don't really amount to anything. The idea of the "silver blood" experiencing sentience is interesting, but it feels very underdeveloped.
Jack - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 6:24pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S1: In the Hands of the Prophets

Quite an absurd plot contrivance that Vedek Winn just happened to barge into the classroom on the day they happened to be learning about the wormhole. But since that contrivance is the only thing that made the episode possible...
Vylora - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 5:35pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S2: Basics, Part I

Admittedly, this is really an entertaining episode to watch. There's some great interactions amongst major and minor characters, outstanding direction, and the best space battle on Voyager up to this point. Unfortunately, there's a few steaming piles of horseshit.

Pile 1:
- The crew has been traveling off and on for months since the last Kazon encounter. I understand the concept of species or alliances of peoples having large borders, as it were. The Federation, for example, has a boundary large enough that it would take roughly eight years at high warp to travel from one extreme point to the other. There's no indication anywhere that the Trabe were spread even close to as far as that and I highly doubt that the Kazon would be since the relatively recent uprising. They're just too unstable.

Pile 2:
- Janeway speaks on behalf of the entire crew in backing Chakotay's desire to rescue the stolen part of his tattoo. This is, of course, after some deep conversations while 'tripping' as opposed to actual conversations with said crew. Whichever writer thought this was a great idea should have packed his/her crap, moved into a cave, and ponder the musings of Dr. Seuss.

Pile 3:
- The secondary command and control alt delete processors are being smacked about like a red-headed step chicken. Logic would dictate not being fucking brain-dead and maybe actually review exactly what they're for if you can't remember. I'm pretty positive that said review would show they involve many things, including the infamous shiny apple-red history eraser button and the self-destruct sequence.

This episode coasts by solely on performances and entertainment.

2.5 stars.
Denny - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 4:52pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S3: The Defector

I could watch Data and Picard act out Shakespeare all day...
dgalvan - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 3:43pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S2: Shades of Gray

I think a clip show like this comes off as worse now that we binge watch the show on dvd or netflix. At the time it was shown, it had been up to 2 years since many of those clips had previously been seen, so it may have been a more enjoyable experience for viewers who were reminded of previous episodes they hadn't had a chance to see for a while.

And the framing for the clips is not as bad as all that. About 20-25 minutes of setup outside the clips, and some decent dialog between Picard and Riker about the how most lifeforms attack out of instinct to survive instead of malice, etc.

Not the best of course, but zero stars? nah.
Vylora - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 3:39pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S2: Resolutions

"Resolutions" aka "Two Officers and a Monkey or How to Consistently Have Good Ideas and Half-Ass Execution" is a tepid episode with a couple of bright spots. Most of what takes place on the ship plods along as expected but is pretty good. Planet-side, however, is cute at best; timid and pedestrian at worst. It is more often the latter.

If you want to kill forty minutes and see Tuvok in command, Janeway gardening with a monkey, Kim growing a pair for two minutes, Chakotay talking mostly random nonsense until his tattoo gets bigger, and Janeway in a bathtub (without the monkey); then this is right up your alley. Oh and Denara Pel is back for the Most Under-Utilized Minor Character As Part of a Major Antagonist Species That Is a Also a Missed Opportunity for Good Episodes of the year award.

Watchable, but frustrating.

2 stars
HolographicAndrew - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 1:38pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S4: Day of Honor

@Justin "The Cataati were desperate people who had lost everything and they acted out of that desperation. But it seems like what you're saying is that you wish Janeway had finished what the Borg had started. Instead, she was able to remain compassionate and find a more diplomatic solution. Kudos to Janeway for putting the Federation's best foot forward."

The voyager crew is desparate too, but you don't see them disregarding their morals in order to get home. Desperation doesn't mean you get to just mug people with no consequences.

Janeway basically taught these aliens that if they don't get what they want from the Federation, they should threaten Federation lives. The Federation should not be pleased...

Compassion ends when they try to rob you at gunpoint. It also is not consistent with the Janeway who coldheartedly sent Tuvix to his demise for the safety of her crewmembers. But it is more in line with the Janeway who wouldn't go out of her way to get Neelix's lungs back.

My jaw honestly dropped at the resolution of this episode, I couldn't believe Janeway did not even give them a stern warning. Instead she equips them with the capability to continue robbing and plundering any ships that pass by. Ridiculous.

I totally agree with Lt. Yarko's comments on this episode.
Yanks - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 1:25pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Field of Fire

I'nora, ja'kala vok 'za Ezri. Zhian'tara rek pora'al Zheem Dax tanas rhem Joran. 'za Ezri tanas rhem Joran. Vok Ezri, Joran tanas rhem.Tu Dax noh zhian 'vok j'zui. Joran rhem tanas Ezri.

(burp)

I guess that the "Zhian'tara" or the Guardian isn't needed anymore.

(burp)

Vulan's smiling

(burp)

Zero Stars.
HolographicAndrew - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 1:18pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S4: Nemesis

Not getting the confusion about Tom's motivation. He wanted to save Chakotay because he felt guilty for not flying the shuttle, which he feels would not have been shot down if he was flying. Seems good to me.

To me this is one of the strongest Voyager episodes so far. The weird language was way better than other Trek attempts at having altered speech. And the acting was really good by everyone in this episode.

My only criticism is that the entire propaganda plot twist, while mind blowing, literally comes out of nowhere. I don't think there are any clues that the viewer could have picked up on that what Chakotay was experiencing was not real.

The moral message seems kind of unclear to me but overall this is a strong episode.
Vylora - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 1:18pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S2: Tuvix

Moral dilemmas aside, this episode is ultimately a prime example of lack of follow-through of potential. There's some good scenes here to be sure. However, the crux of the matter is under-utilized and replaced with repetitive scenes involving Kes. Not that they were bad, just unnecessary. The crews reaction near the end was just plain bad writing. And the Captains decision amounts to meaning nothing when it's all said and done.

It's pointless to me to worry about the moralizing of an episode when said episode can't even match the premises potential.

1.5 stars.
Yanks - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 1:12pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: The Emperor's New Cloak

Ezri dressed up like a whore.

Zek.

Mirror episode.

ZERO stars.
Yanks - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 1:09pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Prodigal Daughter

Good episode. Not great.

The more I get to watch Ezri the more I'm impressed with Nicole's acting.

Average. 2.5 stars.
Yanks - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 1:02pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: It's Only a Paper Moon

Elliot,

"The weakness in the story has to do with Vic...the opportunity here was for the hologram to learn something about what it means to be a real person from Nog, dealing with a very real dilemma. Instead, he simply possesses all the wisdom and ability of a Guinan via virtue of some programmer (not to mention, he has ambition, passion and a desire for company...it's unsettling)."

Not a valid gripe Elliot. Vic DID learn something here. ... and it didn't take Guinan type wisdom to figure out what needed to happen.

Kristen's point about friendship is right on the mark. I'm surprised Jammer didn't comment on it.

A wonderful episode that had it not taken place would have cheapened the reality incurred in 'The Seige of AR-588' It would have been a shame not to address Nog's loss/hardship and it would have been even worse had he just showed up ready to go back to work.

Any comments directed at Ezri as a sub-par counselor are just dribble, illusory and boring. She did her job very well here. (as she did with Garak) Just because she isn't sitting there talking to Nog everyday (which Nog stated he was very tired of) doesn't mean she didn't aptly use the resources at her disposal. From her decision to let Nog stay in the holosuite with Vic, to making Vic realize Nog needed to move on - she was spot on. She also didn't do everything in a vacuum.

I don't know about any of you, but when Nog broke down and said he was scared I lost it. What a performance by Aron. Well done.

I loved it when Vic gave up his "life" for Nog and probably loved it more when Nog gave it back.

Another 4 star episode.
John TY - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 12:58pm (USA Central)
Re: TOS S1: A Taste of Armageddon

Actually I recall that Robert S McNamara made the comment that the US administrations he served had a very misguided/limited view of the nature and causes of the conflict in Vietnam. And we all know how that turned out.
John TY - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 12:16pm (USA Central)
Re: TOS S1: A Taste of Armageddon

Enjoyable - Kirk as quasi-villain is always fun to watch.

And some nice insight on the way casualties of war can become numbers and thereby facilitate the indifference of the general public. Topical stuff given the Vietnam War, and obviously still relevant today.

But in order to achieve a dramatic conclusion the show falls into a few TOS clichés. Most annoying is Kirk and co deciding they're going to dictate what's best for these people even though they've only just met them and know close to nothing about their war. Whether it technically breaks the prime directive or not, this kind of message is simplistic at best; encouraging very black and white thinking. It brings to mind many people's attitudes to ongoing (yet distant) conflicts around the world today - Israel/Palestine for example.

Anyway yes, at least no red shirts died in the filming of this episode.
Yanks - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 12:09pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Covenant

Downgraded to 1 star.
Yanks - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 12:05pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: Covenant

For gods sake, just how stupid ARE the Bajorans?

I so wish someone would have made Jim Jones (I mean Dukat) take one of those Promazine pills he gave everyone else.

I wish Kira would have killed him.

I don't like this character turn for Dukat.

2 stars. I really don't like watching this episode.
Yanks - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 11:51am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S7: The Siege of AR-558

"QUARK: Maybe, but I still don't want you anywhere near them. Let me tell you something about humans, nephew. They're a wonderful, friendly people as long as their bellies are full and their holosuites are working. But take away their creature comforts, deprive them of food, sleep, sonic showers, put their lives in jeopardy over an extended period of time, and those same friendly, intelligent, wonderful people will become as nasty and as violent as the most bloodthirsty Klingon. You don't believe me? Look at those faces. Look in their eyes. You know I'm right, don't you? Well? Aren't you going to say something?"

So, why do we get Quark in this episode and why do we get him saying stuff like this? I think he brings some more realism to this episode. It's not only a statement to Nog to make him maybe open his eyes to what it REALLY means to be a soldier and what by default you may be transformed, but it's a statement to us to bring the soldier/ground troops segment of the war front and center.

This episode aptly depicts war/battle worn/hardened soldiers that have been "on the lines" too long. This makes me think of WWII and the Battle of the Bulge. US soldiers served in the front lines without relief for longer than 5 months to include horrid winter conditions.

It's not so much about the battle as it is about the people in those situations and the decisions they are forced to make. The landscape provides the stage for the impending battle. You can say that’s convenient, but think about it. If it had been any different the Jem’Hadar would have retaken the comm array long ago. They always win the numbers game. It probably makes sense that the comm array is located where it is. It’s an easier position to defend.

There were a couple “tough choices” in this one. First, Sisko’s choice to remain was a huge one. That took some serious guts and was the right choice. They needed numbers. Plain and simple. Even adding inexperienced Star Fleet personnel (not ground troops) was better than leaving these soldiers with an unwinnable task. The presence of “Houdini’s” posed the other. The "Houdini’s" were immoral when they were used by the Jem'Hadar, but once they were figured out they had no choice but to use them to survive. Obviously it had to be done, but it was still a revealing choice to make. War isn’t about the easy choices, it’s about the hard ones. I commend Sisko for making both of these hard decisions.

Nog ends up losing a leg and despite Quark’s constant input, what does he do? He apologizes to his Captain for not getting the job done and takes responsibility for the death of Larkin. Say what you want about Nog, but don’t you dare pigeonhole him as soft, undedicated or unmotivated. I’m very impressed with him. The only thing he lacks is experience. The kid has heart.

I’ll nit-pic this one issue: The Jem’Hadar sending in holograms doesn’t seem realistic. The terrain already forced the conflict to a small area. I don’t think this stunt would have revealed anything anyone with half a brain couldn’t have deduced.

“Hold” is the order. Not like any battle our heroes have sustained or fought before in the series. No chance to fight then retreat, no chance to just outsmart your opponent, no chance to out maneuver them. No shades of grey. Hold, or die.

So the battle ensues…. First the Houdini’s do their part (which was pretty damned eerie) then they fight them off from a distance, then in close hand to hand combat. Of course, we lose SF personnel we just met and our heroes win the day. But this wasn’t just a bunch of ships plowing through other ships, these were people fighting and dying. PEOPLE. I’ve always wondered what the Jem’Hadar loss numbers were. Cannon fodder comes to mind. Even Quark has to gun one Jem’Hadar down.

This episode does everything it needs to do. I got the feeling what I was watching was real. It meant something. That doesn’t happen too often in any series, not just Trek or DS9.

“Wars may be fought with weapons, but they are won by men. It is the spirit of men who follow and of the man who leads that gains the victory.” George S. Patton

(replacements arrive)
Reese refers t to them as childrenn.

“Not for long.” Benjamin Lafayette Sisko

4 Stars.
Vylora - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 11:41am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S2: The Thaw

Intriguing, strange, entertaining, brilliant. The amalgamation of fear is utilized in its many aspects from creepy to sinister to terrifying with doses of black humor in the range of subtle to outlandish. Fantastic performances and dialogue and an incredible ending. Very risky episode, indeed, but they pulled it off in spades.

Yes. I absolutely love it. Hands down one of my favorite Trek episodes.

4 stars.
Katie - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 11:25am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S1: A Man Alone

@Elliot:
WOW. This is what you call a "little review"? Please stop.
Vylora - Fri, Aug 22, 2014, 10:11am (USA Central)
Re: VOY S2: Deadlock

Definitely an enjoyable hardware show with an interesting take on one of many quantum theories. Very nice pacing with a few well-realized "omg" moments thrown in for good measure.

This is one of those times, though, that makes me wonder if the repair teams are manned by miracle workers. My hunch is that the newer Starfleet vessels, like the Intrepid class, are built to be more self-sustainable. Still, the damage here seems to be quite extreme.

Neither here nor there, this is an impressive episode on a technical level and everything else is above average to good with only a few quibbles. I'd rather have Tribbles than quibbles, but, as a famous philosopher once said: "You can't always get what you want."

3 stars.
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