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mephyve
Sat, Sep 24, 2016, 8:59am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Critical Care

Great stuff!!!1 Whodda thunk the best character on the show would be a hologram. (****)
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mephyve
Sat, Sep 24, 2016, 8:00am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Repression

Tu vok or not Tu vok? That is the question (**)
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mephyve
Sat, Sep 24, 2016, 7:04am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Drive

Nice (***)
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mephyve
Sat, Sep 24, 2016, 6:06am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S7: Unimatrix Zero, Part II

Voyager continues to neuter the Borg (*)
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Randall B.
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 11:52pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Power Play

This was the first episode of TNG I ever saw. It got me into the show. Just saying. ;) :)
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dave
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 6:53pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: Apocalypse Rising

well, there is a little piece of trivia I didn't know. Thanks!
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Peter G.
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 3:42pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Counterpoint

@ Yanks, "I don't think the PD means for her to allow telepaths to be mistreated. Here instincts were correct and honorable."

In TNG it's stated as a fact that the prime directive has nothing to do with being sympathetic or honorable towards species in need. In "Homeward" we're told directly that an entire civilization should be allowed to perish rather than violating the PD. Smuggling a few refugees through alien space against their laws is strictly forbidden and supersedes all of the Federation's other laws and guidelines.

AA is quite right that the hypocrisy is palpable, but to be fair I wouldn't call it hypocrisy simply because if continuity is simply not a thing (i.e. the writing staff has no central control) then each episode is basically a piece of stand-alone fan fiction with slightly or completely different personalities for the main crew each show. That being said, even aside from the PD issues, which are massive, there is also the issue of Janeway needlessly endangering her ship and crew through an illegal and dubious plan to save a few refugees. This hearkens right back to "Caretaker" and proves that whatever Janeway is supposed to have 'learned in "Night" has been eliminated from continuity already. I would never trust a Captain who endangers the lives of everyone by interfering in local politics and laws.
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Peter G.
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 2:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Hollow Pursuits

Crap. You're right, Bole is the director and not the writer. In which case I've inadvertently critiqued his direction of the counselling session instead of praising him. Ah, to hell with it, he's awesome and he did a great job with the episode.
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William B
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 2:14pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Hollow Pursuits

Peter, great analysis and I agree that this episode is great. I love the point that the episode finds ways to show how everyone does badly outside their comfort zone, and that for Reg this is all the time (for the moment). Just an aside -- Cliff Bole is the director, not the writer. That his episodes tended to be strong does suggest that while (like most television) Trek is mostly writer-driven, a strong hand behind the camera does add quite a bit.
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Peter G.
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 11:36am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Timeless

Well everyone, we may have solved the quandry of how Seven could be drunk off synthehol: (just add the three w's)

independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/hangover-free-alcohol-david-nutt-alcosynth-nhs-postive-effects-benzodiazepine-guy-bentley-a7324076.html

Maybe synthehol is like this - makes you drunk but with no bad aftereffects. This would be consistent with previous episodes of Trek where people used to synthehol wouldn't be able to handle the adverse effects of alcohol. It would also explain why anyone bothers to drink synthehol in the first place.
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RandomThoughts
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 6:03am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: Distant Voices

Howdy Everyone!

Upon re-watching, I just realized there was no B-story, because there couldn't be one without giving away the premise. Hmmm... the premise...

I thought it was really creepy back in 95, but when you have an idea of what's going on, it's a bit hard to keep an interest. One small thing I did like was they kept making Bashir's uniform bigger and bigger, to show him wasting away.

As far as the other characters representing his different facets, I couldn't grasp O'Brien being sort of a coward in his mind. Nah... The angry hot-head maybe, but not someone worried about saving his own skin. Now if they had him as the hen-pecked one that gives in to avoid confrontation, that might've worked (yes dear, no dear, my fault dear).

*insert snappy finish here*... RT
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Peter G.
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 1:15am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: Apocalypse Rising

@ dave,

It was supposed to be Dax and not O'Brien, but Farrell was allergic to the makeup and couldn't do it.
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Dan
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 12:56am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Hero Worship

Entering a mysterious and dangerous nebula which destroyed a previous ship: sounds like a good time to separate the saucer section.
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dave
Fri, Sep 23, 2016, 12:26am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: Apocalypse Rising

I think the choice of people to go on the mission are correct...

Sisko - obvious reasons, captain, leader, and tough enough to be a Klingon
Worf- they needed him to get around , understand how to be a Klingon, the protocols and rituals, etc
Odo - they are going after a changeling, and he is a tough guy... needed to be there
O Brien - this technobabble equipment needed the chief.. I suppose you could have put Dax in there instead; however, I assume they wanted the comedy of the soft spoken passive chief O Brien having to play a tough Klingon.
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Jor-El H
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 9:37pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Wounded

If this isn't a 4 star episode, I don't know what is. And you don't have to be a DS9 fan to love this episode: I'm not and I do. Like many other comments here, I found the ending to be far from 'unproductive' - it adds a level of nuance that puts this episode over the top. It shows how deep Picard's calculations were, how sometimes even if you're right you need to look at the bigger picture before you act. And it prevents this episode from being a predictable, black-and-white affair. I think it's actually one of the best and most powerful endings ever to an episode of TNG.
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Marshal Dunnik
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 7:17pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: The Augments

In a previous episode, it was established that Klingon ships do not have escape pods - anyone with a passing familiarity with them would know why.

And yet here we have a Klingon ship with an escape pod.

Plot Device > Continuity
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Anonymous
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 7:00pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Everything Wrong With Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6x8B8sawTI
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III
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 6:53pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek Beyond

"Star Trek Beyond represents a deliberate attempt to take the reboot film series back to the primary roots of Star Trek"

The primary roots of a Star Trek film would have had the film being more about the crew using their skills and wits to solve a problem rather than getting into another fist fight and space battle with a boring main villain.

I could care less if the Enterprise ship is destroyed, unlike the TOS Enterprise ship, we grew attached to it, it's destruction in STIII had more meaning to it. It was done to stop the Klingons and to save Spock's life. Here, it's destruction is pointless, it's just, lets blow it up because it will look really cool... did reboot Kirk care if the ship was destroyed? No, he rather ride around in some dumb bike...

Spock and Uhura breakup... good, they shouldn't have been a "thing" in the first place. The fact that Spock sees his race being far more important than Uhura doesn't say a whole lot of his commitment to her. But that should have been resolved at the end of the 2009 film when reboot Spock said that his place is on the Enterprise. The fact that he needed to be re-told or influenced again that he should stay, is a sorry attempt at character development. Growing as a character should not being told that you should, having it spelled out for you (looking at a picture... really????).
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William B
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 6:33pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Hero Worship

That would be some trick, for him to give those films those ratings while also giving them 3 and 3.5 stars.
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Anonymous
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 6:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Hero Worship

If Jamahl Epsicokhan can somehow give Star Trek Into Darkness 4 stars and Star Wars The Force Awakens 5 and half stars... then he has lost all credibility in reviewing anything.
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Marshal Dunnik
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 5:48pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S4: Cold Station 12

Why does Cold Station 12 have not one but two sealed receptacles big enough for a man to stand in, with the ability to inject airborne pathogens inside of it? Do they test viruses and bugs on live people? Do they put scientists who have been bad inside? Because horror plot.

"Load photonic torpedoes," says T'Pol to Trip, who nods. Over her shoulder in this shot is an extra sitting at the tactical station. Extras are cheap, but cant' speak, but still, they could have had him just nod silently.

I swear Malik deserves to be recognized as The Most Awful Cartoon Villain in Star Trek.
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Rob
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 4:22pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Hard Time

I have a love/hate relationship with this episode. I loved it for the quality of acting. I hate it for the lazy way it was dealt with. There should have been either 1-A long term impact on the character of O'brein, or 2-A medical fix.
The idea that he could go through that and not be screwed up for life is unlikely. 100% certain he would be changed in some way.
If I was writing it I would have had the ending of Bashir and Sisko saying goodbye to the O'Brien's as they depart the station for Vulcan, where Vulcan mind meld techniques are going to be employed to remove/repress the memories. Something like that.
Have the Chief out of the next few episodes then have them returned from Vulcan whole and healed.
Extra note: I would have bought it more if instead of the Chief wanting to kill himself, it was the Chief wanting to steal the Defiant to go extract revenge on the people who did it to him by shoving a photon torpedo up their backsides.
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William B
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 4:01pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Thirty Days

Thanks. I agree that a sensible ordering of General Orders would have the most important first, and have the most important have the greatest punishment, in general; if Starfleet as any death penalty, it should generally apply to the Prime Directive?

My suspicion -- putting aside that they didn't have the Okudas, of course -- is that the Prime Directive is aka General Order One, and then there were five other General Orders of high importance by the time The Cage happened. I suppose according to Enterprise, Starfleet predates both the Federation and the Prime Directive, so let's assume that at some point the Prime Directive and other such rules were instituted. Either a few General Orders were instituted at once, or a few were established and then gradually others were added. If they were all instituted at once, they would all be in descending order of importance; otherwise, they'd probably be put in chronologically.

Whatever the case for the first six General Orders, General Order Seven is "don't go to Talos IV," which seems to have been thrown in, ad hoc, in the handful of years between The Cage and The Menagerie. Seeing what the Talosians could do with their mind control, Starfleet immediately created a new general order. I think the reason they added "death" here was probably a result of newfound panic that the Talosians could take over the universe if people got to close to them, which is probably a little bit exaggerated. I forget whether the Talos IV ban is ever brought up explicitly post-TOS; I would imagine that given enough time, and especially after encountering all the Godlike beings they encounter in TOS, the Talosian threat would seem less existential, or at least, less *uniquely* existential.

What's interesting is why Starfleet Command kept Talos IV, and why one shouldn't go there, a secret, and imposed the death penalty, which they apparently don't even give for the Prime Directive, as their deterrent. Probably they recognized how easily people would be taken in by the Talosians if they knew that the Talosians could give them whatever they wanted, and wanted to keep it a secret. However, given that they've kept it a secret, they cannot properly explain why going to Talos IV is so strictly forbidden. While they trust that Starfleet officers will abide by regulations that they understand, Picard's interpretation as he says to Data in Redemption, is that Starfleet would rather have people who don't blindly follow orders (without there being a good reason). So usually, while the Prime Directive comes with all sorts of ethical and pragmatic arguments, which they assume will be enough to (mostly) deter people, "Don't go to Talos IV" comes with none, and Starfleet falls back on death threats. It's perhaps overly optimistic to believe that less deterrent is necessary for the Prime Directive because there is an ethical argument for it, especially since (as we see in this site, for example), the general principles that justify the Prime Directive often break down in individual instances or break down under many ethical frameworks.
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Peter G.
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 2:56pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Thirty Days

Good research, William. For some reason I remembered it as being about the prime directive, and even as a numerical error it seems to me strange that breach of any general order beneath #1 could carry a more severe penalty than that of #1 itself. IIRC they are numbered in order of importance, which you would think means the punishments decrease linearly as you progress down. I'm sure the writers simply made the number up as you suggest, since they didn't have a continuity team like the Okudas that could be consulted. Then again past TNG it seems like they were dismissed anyhow :p

For now I'll have to settle on having remembered wrongly, unless some other episode (like Patterns of Force, etc.) mentions something about it. For my own personal 'inner Trek world' I'll choose to go on assuming that the supreme penalty comes from breaking the supreme directive. If it's serious enough to warrant the destruction of a ship and crew, the death of one person - albeit after the fact - doesn't seem quite so extreme any more.
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William B
Thu, Sep 22, 2016, 2:48pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Thirty Days

I was going off The Menagerie:

KIRK: What every ship Captain knows. General Order 7, no vessel under any condition, emergency or otherwise, is to visit Talos Four.
MENDEZ: And to do so is the only death penalty left on our books. Only Fleet Command knows why. Not even this file explains that.

However, in Turnabout Intruder we have this dialogue, after Lester-as-Kirk sentences death for the mutineers:

CHEKOV: Starfleet expressly forbids the death penalty.
KIRK: All my senior officers turning against me?
SULU: The death penalty is forbidden. There's only one exception.
CHEKOV: General Order Four. It has not been violated by any officer on the Enterprise.

The most probable explanations on the writer's level are, to me: 1. the writer was thinking about The Menagerie but misremembered the number (confusing Talos Four with General Order Seven), or 2. the writer just threw in that there is an exception because it sounded reasonable that Starfleet might occasionally have the death penalty. I think 1 is more likely -- I feel like the line plays more as callback than dramatically necessary for the scene, and the use of "General Order" suggests it's probably a reference to the earlier dialogue -- but I'm not sure. In-universe, either Chekov is misremembering the number (important to remember that he's an ensign and maybe not that much of an expert) of the General Order, or Starfleet has changed the rules surrounding death penalty recently, apparently reducing the penalty on General Order Seven while upping it on Four. Or maybe Starfleet simply renumbered their General Orders.

More broadly, though, it could just be a retcon which results from the changing dramatic needs of the universe.
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