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Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 9:23am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Body Parts

@Del_Duio - The fact is that Ferengi episodes are, for the most part, entirely garbage (exception being "The Magnificent Ferengi"). By that I mean episodes that are largely about Ferengi society.

On the other hand... the episodes that use Ferengi society as a backdrop to tell a story about Quark, Rom or Nog are often hidden gems. Obviously some people's mileage may vary and find them all insufferable, but the actors are good enough that when the focus is on the character drama (instead of something broader) it actually tends to work quite well.

Examples of those broader "Ferengi society comedies" that tend to fail are "False Profits", "Ferengi Love Songs" and "Profit and Lace". I know most of them pretend to have a dramatic center (Quark/Ishka's relationship) but they mostly fail.

Better Quark centered fare would be "Bar Association" and "Body Parts". I think "Magnificent Ferengi" was the one time they actually managed a funny Ferengi comedy, but considering how many times they tried (all the way back to TNG and dreck like "Menage a Troi" it's clear that it was a fluke.

And then there was "The Emperor's New Cloak" ::shudder::
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Intrinsic Random Event
Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 9:14am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Mind's Eye

It is a great episode for so many reasons highlighted above, but the best bit for me was Picard swearing in Klingon. Brutal.
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Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 9:04am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Liaisons

The dumbest thing about this episode is Picard's reaction at the end, where he seems to be positively delighted to have been taken into captivity. Compare this to his (rather more normal) reaction to involuntary confinement at the end of "Allegiance", and it's a total double standard. Picard should've remained furious at the Iyaarans.
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William B
Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 8:23am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: Brothers

Two points to add:

As even stated in Remember Me, the primary purpose of the Enterprise is exploration, along with diplomacy, aid, scientific research, defense, etc. Certainly risking families the way they do is an issue, though I think the idea is still that it's a calculated risk for most family members and life on starships may be safer than on colonies. But even if a single crew member can run the ship, in ordinary circumstances (Beverly could probably not stop a warp core beach), they couldn't do anything else. The Enterprise is like CERN and a military base and embassy and aid station all in one moving package, and the purpose of the ship is for these functions to be served by the crew.

On the issue of Data commanding a ship solo, that would be possible (not on the Enterprise with its mission, but maybe on a different ship) but I think it would depend on Data. Data does actually want to be around people, even if he does not suffer "psychologically" from loneliness acutely the way most humans (and presumably most humanoids) do. Starfleet probably avoids putting individuals alone mostly for psychological reasons and post The Measure of a Man, Data could presumably appeal putting him on a ship alone because he's an android as discriminatory if he does not want to do that mission.
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Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 7:31am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Body Parts

You know, for as much shit as people like to give Ferengi episodes they should really watch ones like this. Rewatched this again Saturday night and it's really good. Brunt is actually menacing for once, and doesn't just appear in Quark's closet which would have ruined the gag.

I honestly believe that once Garak told Quark he was going to surprise him and "you'll never know it's coming" he had decided he wasn't going to assassinate Quark at all. Especially since he could most likely tell from all those holo simulations that Quark really didn't want to die anyhow.
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Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 7:24am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: Brothers

@Nesendrea: "really make me wonder why Starfleet puts over a thousand people - including families! - aboard a dangerous ship that comes perilously close to getting blown up once a week."

You sound just like my daughter! She's had this argument with me for years now. 'Why would they put families (and babies) on a ship that's always in danger?' My counter is always that space is a dangerous thing and that's just where these people work. Kind of like a family in the DMZ, but obviously with a lot more action.

"And if it's only Data who's so competent (at least Beverly didn't have a hostile onboard presence with which to contend), shouldn't at least he just be given his own ship? As in, a spacecraft whose entire "crew" consists of only him?"

There was a good episode where they had to expand the fleet and temporarily gave Data the Sutherland (I think that's the ship). In it, he butted heads with many of the crew. I wonder if most of Starfleet sort of secretly holds a bias towards him which is why he never got his own ship full time. Also I don't think they'd ever even give him his own personal small ship / runabout class because they might not trust him without human counterparts to 'keep an eye on him'. Which is total crap when you consider that Data totally took out the Enterprise is about 10 minutes at the start of this very episode and none of the crew could stop him anyway.
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Latex Zebra
Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 6:39am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Generations

Watched this again recently and raged.
This film treats fans the same way Enterprise's "These are the Voyagers" did.
It shits on everything.
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Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 3:58am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: I, Borg

Why is it that when genocide is talked about in pop culture, The Jewish Holocaust gets brought up?

I mean it makes sense to equate one fictional genocide with another but cmon. Every single time.
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Trek fan
Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 2:45am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Dear Doctor

By pure coincidence, I watched "Prime Factors" from Voyager Season 1 on Netflix right before I streamed "Dear Doctor" from Enterprise, and I had never seen either episode. In the Voyager episode, the hospitable Sikarians offer their planet for shore leave, where Ensign Kim discovers they have a technology that folds space and might be able to bring the USS Voyager home in a day. But the more advanced Sikarians refuse to share this technology with the less advanced Earthlings. As the Voyager episode unfolds, Janeway indicts this apparently hospitable people for being fundamentally selfish, as they refuse to share what they have in abundance with those who are in need.

Fascinating to me that the same Star Trek franchise that produced "Prime Factors" on Voyager could produce "Dear Doctor" on Enterprise. In "Dear Doctor," the Earthlings refuse to share warp drive technology with a less advanced civilization that pleads for help as it dies from a genetically contracted disease. Fair enough: The Federation in Star Trek generally refuses to share advanced technology, especially warp drive, with less advanced peoples. Yet the Enterprise crew also discovers a cure to the disease that they refuse to share -- and "Dear Doctor" labors to present this choice to let an entire people die as an act of respect for their natural (Darwinian?) evolutionary development.

The problem, obviously, is that this premise is hypocritical in the extreme: The Golden Rule, common to all cultures and religions on Earth, says "do unto others as you would have them do unto you." In the best formulation, this moral precept basically means "treat others as you would consent to be treated in the same situation." This episode breaks that rule. And it is hypocrisy: Whenever a Federation starship pleads for medical or humanitarian aid from a more advanced alien species on Star Trek, there is never any talk of "we'd better just die because that's the natural order of things."

It's too bad, as well, because I otherwise enjoyed this episode. The narrative framing device of the doctor's perspective, with all of the quiet character moments and observations, makes for a pleasantly meditative episode. There's lots of thoughtful stuff here. But when the episode goes from debating whether to share warp drive technology to making an argument against saving a weaker species from certain death with medical aid squarely within our grasp, this show really jumps the shark.

In many ways, "Dear Doctor" is the anti-Star Trek, representing a sort of scientific and clinically detached moral perspective on a basic question ("are we obliged to save the life of someone when we have the ability?") rather than the secular humanist perspective we usually see in this franchise. As this episode goes on, the abstract language it employs in dialogue about real people suffering gradually becomes more uncomfortable, until finally it comes down on the side of refusing to help people in need because they are less evolved than us. Hell, even TNG was never this cruel to a more primitive species: In the episode "Pen Pals," Picard bends the Prime Directive in response to a direct plea for help from a dying planet where Data has befriended a girl, noting that her request for assistance "changes things." In that show, the Enterprise solves the planet's unstable tectonics, and the doctor wipes the girl's memory to protect the PD.

Yes, the Enterprise episode "Dear Doctor" has generated a lot of debate on this web page, and maybe that's a sign that it strikes a chord. But philosophically and ideologically, this story's solution doesn't fit with anything we've ever seen on Star Trek before or since, as every captain from Kirk to Janeway has been willing to respond to humanitarian appeals from primitive cultures. Ultimately, the pleasant character vibes of this episode fall apart as soon as you recognize its moral tunnel vision in trying to justify an argument that dying people aren't entitled to help from those who can help them. There's something very off-putting about this one; had they only left out the discovery of a cure, it might have been a great show. As such, I give "Dear Doctor" 1 1/2 stars out of 4.
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Mon, Oct 17, 2016, 12:33am (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S4: Daybreak, Part 2

"If there's a truly unifying element in all the flashbacks, it's alcohol, which flows freely through all of Caprica."

In a sense, it's a unifying element of the whole show. One of the first scenes in the miniseries is the one in the rec room, when Kara hits Tigh, both of them obviously less than sober, and we've already seen Tigh consuming alcohol while on duty before in the tracking shot. From then on, alcohol is consumed en masse by many in countless episodes. They may have run out of water, out of fuel, out of antibiotics, out of food, out of toothpaste, but there was never a shortage of booze. The only competitor in this department is probably "The Wire" (and maybe the first series of "True Detective").

There was also a lot of smoking involved -- mostly cigars, but also cigarettes. Making Doc Cottle a chain-smoker was one of those small but beautiful ideas that made BSG so great. Cottle's use of a kidney basin as an ashtray will forever stay with me as one the most hilarious moments of BSG. Also worth mentioning: Tigh's hand-rolled cigarettes in S3.

And let's not forget other drugs: Kat's abuse of "stims" ("Final Cut") and her past as a drug runner ("The Passage"); Kendra Shaw and Felix Gaeta had become addicts of "morpha" ("Razor", "The Face of the Enemy"); and another beautiful detail: Roslin and Adama smoking pot ("Unfinished Business", "Islanded in a Stream of Stars").

I guess there aren't many shows that would let the writers get away with this. BSG was one of them, and while I'm not supporting drug abuse, I think it just demonstrates the courage of the writers and producers of this show.

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Sun, Oct 16, 2016, 11:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: BSG S2: Flight of the Phoenix

Regarding Lucien D's question: BSG's science advisor mentioned in an interview that his idea was that of an incremental backup which would happen on a regular basis, but was never mentioned in the show.

What was mentioned, though, is the existence of a memory database for each copy that can be accessed by at least all copies of the same model. The update would also happen when a copy's memories were transferred into a new body ("The Hub").

In the episodes following FOTP we also learn about the resurrection ships.

My explanation: The Cylon fleet, including a resurrection ship, needed to follow the Galactica long enough to update Boomer's data, so Sharon on Caprica could access and use them for their mission. That doesn't explain why the Cylons had no clues about Sharon's whereabouts in "Final Cut". I guess the "skinjobs" had the ability to block updates, which would also explain why the Six and Doral models on Caprica quickly figured out that Sharon had switched alliances.

It's one of those technical things that the writers never bothered to explain and left to the audience's imagination, for which I'm grateful, because it's not really a sci-fi show but a drama.
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Sun, Oct 16, 2016, 10:47pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

One of DS9's worst, one of ST worst. Worf commits an act of terrorism on a Federation world. First of all no matter what, Worf would never, ever do such a thing. Second of all, there is no way Starfleet wouldn't hear about it. Worf would have been court-martialed the moment he returned to duty. Just a terribly written episode.
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Sun, Oct 16, 2016, 10:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: Favor the Bold

Good episode. Had only one failing. Earlier in the series O'Brien said about Nog "I just realized, when he graduates, I'll have to call him sir."
When Nog is made an officer and O'Brien congratulates him, it should have been, "Congratulations Nog...Sir" and have the Chief walk into the bridge leaving Nog with a very shocked look on his face. The Chief (who is an enlisted man after all) called him "sir"
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Sun, Oct 16, 2016, 10:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Generations

Agree with most of the other commentators. What also baffled me was why Picard's wife and children dressed in Victorian style clothing? The actress playing the wife, Kim Braden also appeared in an episode on ST:TNG called 'The Loss'. Did Picard secretly fancy her all along?
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Jasper Koning
Sun, Oct 16, 2016, 4:06pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Survivors

Funny, I'm rewachting all TNG seasons and after each episode I check these reviews and Den of Geeks. This might be the episode on which you disagree most (so far). I'm somewhere in between.
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Sun, Oct 16, 2016, 3:39am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery


Paramount allready agreed to the new series on the condision it will air at least 6 months after the release of STB. So it seems they have a say in the desicions for Discovery.
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Sun, Oct 16, 2016, 2:04am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: Brothers

Episodes like this one (the other primary offender being the otherwise phenomenal "Remember Me", in which Beverly runs the entire ship by giving orders to the computer) really make me wonder why Starfleet puts over a thousand people - including families! - aboard a dangerous ship that comes perilously close to getting blown up once a week. The Enterprise obviously doesn't need them. "Brothers" is proof that one officer can not only manage the ship's affairs by himself, but he can do it while simultaneously fending off active resistance by an annoyed legitimate bridge crew. And if it's only Data who's so competent (at least Beverly didn't have a hostile onboard presence with which to contend), shouldn't at least he just be given his own ship? As in, a spacecraft whose entire "crew" consists of only him? He has no need of life support systems, he doesn't suffer from loneliness, and he can obviously captain a ship so well by himself that an entire trained Starfleet crew is powerless to unseat him. Making him work with others seems like a waste of his talents after seeing this.

But I don't want to appear negative on the episode. Fantastic story (save for the painfully contrived "sick little boy" subplot), and positively godly acting from Brent Spiner. It's a shame this is the only time in the series we get to see Dr. Soong outside of holograms and dream sequences. Top notch!
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Sat, Oct 15, 2016, 9:43pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Collective

FYI, AA, they don't keep juvenile drones in maturation chambers for years. They mature extremely quickly, as did 'One' back in season 5. It makes sense, if they have the tech to do it, because it wouldn't take much longer (if at all longer) than the standard assimilation process.
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Sat, Oct 15, 2016, 7:29pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery

*an attempted nod to TOS
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Sat, Oct 15, 2016, 7:28pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery

Hey Bufo... I broadly agree, and you're right to point out a Troi->Seven->T'Pol trend of worsening sexism in relation to each series's "woman in bodysuit" eye candy character in the flagship shows of the Berman era. I think with Seven (and Troi), as a gay guy I honestly never really noticed or thought about her breasts or costume and so was able to focus on the character and performance and just took her at face value, yet somehow T'Pol's presentation as sex object bothers me much more, probably partly because the character and performance is so much worse. Also with Seven, I think when she switched to the brown and blue suits it was an improvement, the initial silver suit was a little OTT. I believe Ron Moore also pointed out the issue with Seven's outfit during his brief tenure at Voyager, along the lines of "How is the audience supposed to take the character seriously when she's basically naked?" To DS9's credit, their "beautiful woman" cast member (Jadzia) wore a standard Starfleet uniform for the duration.

Regarding STD, this is 2016 and it will be the first Trek series in the social media era (and the era of Netflix and OITNB etc) - I think there'd be an online storm if they were to have a female main character dressed up as eye candy, one recalls the reactions to the ridiculous underwear scene with Alice Eve in STID. Plus Bryan Fuller is an intelligent writer, and a gay man - not that gay guys can't be sexist too, but I trust him enough not to due the blatant pandering that Berman/Braga did when it came to the "sexy chick" character. It's not Fuller's sensibility and he's a more skillful writer than that. I actually only watched Enterprise over the past couple of years - when it was first shown I found its whole tone offputting and unwelcoming because of the sexism in the pilot, which I think was partly an attempted not to TOS but ended up coming off much cruder - not just T'Pol and the decon chamber, but the men leering at the "sexy alien dancers" at the outpost, and the ceiling conversation about "women" etc...
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Paul M.
Sat, Oct 15, 2016, 7:06pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery

"If that were really the case, then why even bother setting Discovery in the prime universe rather than the reboot universe? The audience is going to be fragmented by default."

Because CBS doesn't have rights to the rebooted universe. They can't set their show there as that's Paramount's playground. If they are worried about confusing audiences with alternate universes (which honestly they shouldn't be, because... who cares except a few hardcore fans), one option is to pick a time before the split occurred -- and that's shortly before Kirk's time.
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Michael Z Freeman
Sat, Oct 15, 2016, 6:57pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S2: Pen Pals

Started off hating this episode because of wiping the poor girl's memory, but the comment by phaedon made a good point about the period this episode came out - first broadcast May 1989 according to Memory Alpha. The Berlin Wall had come down and been opened by November 1989 to give some historical context. So along with that and the other comments here I see this episode in quite a different light now.
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Sat, Oct 15, 2016, 6:04pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery

"I guess one of the reasons that the Discovery is set before Kirk might be that CBS doesn't want to risk fragmenting the audience between these two alternate universes. "

@Paul M.

If that were really the case, then why even bother setting Discovery in the prime universe rather than the reboot universe? The audience is going to be fragmented by default.

"To all those that are against prequels: have you thought that they are, perhaps, legal problems in doing a show after Nemesis? the events of the reboot start at the prime timeline after Nemesis: the destruction of Romulus and spock's attempt to save it etc. So perhaps Paramount would object to a series being set in that period."


Yes, I have considered that, but then I realized that even though CBS isn't apart of Viacom, it's still controlled by the same company that owns Viacom. So, while I'm not ruling out possible legal issues, this isn't like Marvel asking to borrow Spiderman from Sony or Black Panther not being able to get with Storm because she's in the X-Men and under contract with FOX. Speaking of Marvel . . . I've seen maybe 3 Marvel superhero films and a handful of episodes of "Agents of Shield," and the Marvel film universe timelines are alluded to and weaved into "Agents." So, unless Paramount has plans to produce new Trek films set after Nemesis (which is highly unlikely since we keep getting these redundant TOS era reboots), then I don't see what the harm would be in a Post-Nemesis Trek TV series picking up when Spock left the prime universe.
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Peter G.
Sat, Oct 15, 2016, 5:44pm (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: Space Seed

@ Skeptical,

I hear what you're saying about McGivers. The case I would make about her isn't that she was right, or even being rational, but that she knowingly gave herself over to passion rather than intellect. Being an historian of things *great* rather than things noble, I would expect her worldview may have been that humanity had lost something in all of its advances, and that she personally valued some of the old things more. As a theme for the episode this very point is made directly in exchanges between Kirk and Spock, where they recognize Khan's greatness, in a sense, even while they decline to admire it, as you mentioned. Great does not have to mean good, and the admiration of greatness does seem hard wired into human beings despite everything to the contrary we'd like to believe. We are impressed with impressive things, like it or not. It take an act of will to suppress that and have reason win over. Trek itself believes that is the correct course, but not everyone might agree with that sensibility. Indeed, by choosing to go into exile McGivers is all but admitting that she does not fundamentally agree with the Federation's chosen ethos, and that she values more highly things that are at that point considered to be obsolete and antiquated. Her career may have been ruined anyhow, true, but I don't think we're meant to take away that she went with them because she had nothing better to do. I think it's clear she went with them because she wanted to; because she believed in them. Kahn, we may note, doesn't say of her that she made the reasonable choice. Her allegiance to him had nothing to do with reason, and that's exactly why he called her a superior woman: because she was finally rejecting the ethos of the weak intellect of those who use their advanced minds merely to find ways to passively do what they're told.

All in all I see the episode as a pointed observation that while the Federation is factually superior to what came before, it became so at a cost to human greatness and passion. We may well compare the Romulan outlook to the Vulcan in considering this message; can we rightly say the Vulcan culture is 'superior' in every way to the Romulan? It avoids the pitfalls, but at what cost? The message seems to me that this cost must be acknowledged while still recognizing that things are better the way the Federation does it. Even if individual greatness has been lost, after all, might we not speak of the greatness of the species? That, I think, is the point lost on Khan, who can only see the worth of individuals, and not of societies.
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Sat, Oct 15, 2016, 5:40pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery


"Eh, I think some of you guys give the prequel concept way too much weight. Discovery will live or die on the strength of its writing and overall quality, just like Enterprise lived and ultimately died because of its quality (or lack thereof). "

I'm perfectly fine with a prequel (and I actually liked Enterprise quite a bit).

I'm also fine with an official reboot of the Trek-verse, as long as they make it perfectly clear that it is - indeed - a complete reboot.

What I'm NOT fine with, is doing a sneaky reboot of the TOS era while pertending that it isn't a reboot. And unfortunately, this looks like the way Discovery is going to be.

I'll be happy to be proven wrong, though.

As for doing an actual prequel set 10 years before TOS... It could be a very cool idea, if done by someone who is really serious about doing it correctly. I'd just LOVE to see that era authentically recreated with modern production values. And there are plenty of stories to pick from (*cough* Axanar *cough*).

But by the looks of things, this isn't what we're going to get :-(

@ karatasiospa
"To all those that are against prequels: have you thought that they are, perhaps, legal problems in doing a show after Nemesis? the events of the reboot start at the prime timeline after Nemesis: the destruction of Romulus and spock's attempt to save it etc. So perhaps Paramount would object to a series being set in that period."

The solution to this problem is simple: Set the new series far enough in the future that the events of Nemesis and the beginning of ST2009 won't matter much.

They could have set it in the 26th century, for example. And it would also be a good idea to shake the political map of the galaxy a bit. We don't need another TNG/DS9 clone with Klingons and Romulans and Cardassians.

Or even simpler: Do a complete reboot and start afresh with a blank slate.

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