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Jason R.
Fri, Apr 6, 2018, 2:49pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: The Wire

On the subject of the Neverending Story, the book had characters in Fantasia destroyed by a force called "the Nothing" which transformed them from works of the imagination into lies and propaganda in the real world. In essence, the antagonist of the first half of the story (which was the whole of the first movie) was nothing less than the triumph of institutions like the Cardassian state and the Obsidian Order.

I never made this connection before until Peter raised it but it's a cool reference.
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Jason R.
Thu, Apr 5, 2018, 2:21pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: True Q

Chrome I agree this theme has been utilized before. But the concept is inherently nonsensical - like a child flapping his wings around pretending to be a bird and thinkimg he understands the bird's perspective. I agree super entities and humans with super powers can make a nice morality play or exploration of the corrupting influence of power, but as a scifi concept it's baloney. A human with that power wouldn't be recognizable as a human, any more than my hypothetical opera singing amoeba would be recognizable as an amoeba.
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Jason R.
Thu, Apr 5, 2018, 2:16pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: True Q

Peter I think the issue with Q and other beings of that nature is it's pretty much a conceit in the first place to imagine a human anything with that level of power.

An IQ of 2,000 cannot adequately address a being that can casually change the laws of physics to its will. Such a being would be to humans what we are to an amoeba, and so grafting such abilities onto a human or a human like entity (while leaving the human traits essentially intact) is as absurd as grafting the ability to, say, build a football stadium onto said amoeba.

The fraud is imagining that power of that nature could come with no apparent change in insight, perspective or appearance. The Dr. Manhattan character in Watchmen is probably the best portrayal of what a super being would really be like but even that only scratches the surface.
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Jason R.
Thu, Apr 5, 2018, 11:42am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: True Q

Chrome, while the notion of a being with "powers" essentially grafted on a human body with a human personality and intelligence is a well worn scifi trope, one must acknowledge it is a crock. It is as ridiculous as imagining an amoeba with the capacity to sing opera. The idea that such beings might "present" as human for our benefit is an adequate plot device I suppose, but sidesteps, rather than solves, the inherent absurdity of beings like the Q.
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Jason R.
Thu, Apr 5, 2018, 11:22am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Broken Bow

Peter I am mostly with you on the TNG movies which never quite meshed for me, even the generally well regarded First Contact.

But I did give Generations another look recently, which I found kind of dull when it first came out.

I still don't think that it was great or anything, but at least it felt like TNG, albeit like a mediocre later season episode.

I think the big difference versus later movies was they still had my beloved Enterprise D. Scrapping that lovely ship amd all the memories and personality invested in it turned out to be a big mistake. Alot of the alienation I feel watching post Generations TNG films was that the Enterprise E never really had a soul. I just didn't care when they wrecked it in Nemesis and it seemed more like a plot device rather than an integral part of the world the characters inhabited.

Fast forward to Abrams Trek where the Enterprise is as disposable as one of Voyager's shuttles and you see in part where the franchise went wrong on some level.
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Jason R.
Thu, Apr 5, 2018, 11:08am (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S1: Broken Bow

I managed to watch maybe the first three episodes when it aired and then gave up. It wasn't "bad" per say the way Discovery is, but worse, it was just boring.

I guess the problem for me was a lack of a sense of wonder, of the unknown. You would think that a show predating the Federation and the all-powerful ships we were used to seeing (with their magical technologies) would be exciting, but somehow it just felt like the writers couldn't really embrace this setting and before you knew it, transporters, universal translators and other staples of trek were seeping right back into the mix.

Instead of feeling like a mission of exploration of a new frontier, it felt like they were exploring the same frontier with a shabbier ship and a dimmer crew.
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Jason R.
Fri, Mar 30, 2018, 8:40am (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

Trent I think that was the plot of a 90s Jet Li movie which ends with evil Jet Li in a massive futuristic prison being attacked from all sides by prisoners and the memorable phrase "no you're my bitches!"
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Jason R.
Thu, Mar 22, 2018, 3:51pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

"The Defiant appeared a full year *before* the White Star. It can hardly be a case of "me too!"

Not necessarily Paul. Remember the DS9 people already had alot of Strazynski's conceptual plans when he pitched the show originally and was rejected. Given that B5 was pretty much pre planned from start to finish it's conceivable Paramount knew about the White Star before it even appeared on air in B5. Lord knows they plagiarized alot of B5's setting when they conceived DS9.
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Jason R.
Wed, Mar 21, 2018, 1:41pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

"One more reason why I just can't wrap my head around the logic that decided to base Discovery in the pre-Kirk era, or why the JJVerse movies sought to reboot the original series. "

Agreed 100%. Picard, not Kirk, was the face of the Trek franchise for my generation (born 1980) and you would think that alone would have pushed Abrams / CBS towards the TNG aesthetic, not backward to TOS. Certainly we are seeing a renaissance of 1980s themed television and movies, I presume owing to my generation's coming of age and commercial influence (much as we saw 1960s themed movies and tv 30 years ago to cater to the boomer generation)

But then again, I do think that anti intellectualism is rampant now, perhaps even moreso than in the 1980s, as well as an overall disdain for the kind of utopian ideals Picard espoused.

While I don't actually see Kirk as an anti-intellectual figure or even as contrary to the values Picard stood for (generally) I do think that many today have superficially branded Kirk with this label owing to his pop culture representation as an action hero / womanizer.

I think that philosophically, based on this false impression of the TOS era (via Kirk) Abrams may have seen a more hospitable setting for his brand of anti-intellectual Trek.

To be honest, I'm not sure what CBS was going for with Discovery. I wonder if they even put any thought into the decision to place it pre-TOS which seems like the worst of all possible worlds frankly. My personal theory is that someone liked the tagline "10 years before Kirk" and voila.
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Jason R.
Tue, Mar 20, 2018, 11:37am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: The Last Outpost

"You're right, I don't think I can take this episode seriously any more"

And another thing - why were the Ferengi so offended about Starfleet officers wearing gold? Wouldn't a society based on personal wealth be cool with its ostentatious display? What would they have done with it, used it for electrical cabling?
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Jason R.
Tue, Mar 20, 2018, 6:54am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: The Last Outpost

This empire had the power to literally move stars and yet was wiped out by a supernova?
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Jason R.
Mon, Mar 19, 2018, 2:27pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: The First Duty

Locarno told Wesley that Picard had nothing and if they just kept to their story things would be alright. I presume he was essentially correct. For whatever reason, there simply wasn't enough evidence for Starfleet to take definitive action, and Picard's theory was just speculation.

Picard couldn't have changed the outcome of the hearing. So really whether the Enterprise crew were better or worse investigators than Starfleet is beside the point. Picard was the only one who could convince Wesley to tell the truth.
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Jason R.
Thu, Mar 15, 2018, 12:42pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: Tears of the Prophets

Regarding the automated weapons platforms, I prefer to think that they were easy to fool because they were experimental and the Cardassians had to cut corners in getting them up and running in time to greet the fleet. I guess the targetting software was still in beta testing. I'm being glib but it kind of makes sense given the circumstances.

But this whole thing about their invincibility is bugging me still because it's just impossible to understand how the Cardassians can build weapons that can tank a fleet of Romulan, Federation and Klingon capital ships.

It's just so nonsensical and contrived. Why don't the Cardassians deploy these weapons everywhere? Are they really expensive? So Cardassia can build 100 of these things but not starships? (we are told that their ships are spread thin)

It would have helped if we saw the fleet taking down a few of the platforms with a concentrated attack but still suffering heavy losses. That would have been more believable.

And flashing forward to Season 7 - What you Leave Behind (spoiler)***

Just how was the Federation fleet going to destroy the dozens of these things they had in orbit around Cardassia? If quantum torpedos don't even scratch the paint, just what did the Feds have that would? I very much doubt the deflector dish trick was going to work a second time unless the Cardassians were idiots.

And this episode just exemplifies the wonderful chemistry you see between supporting characters on DS9. The exchange between Damar and Weyoun about gods was not only hilarious, but just a perfect reflection of the characters. Absolute gold.

And in answer to some queries about how Dukat got aboard DS9, he was clearly using a Dominion transporter, which have been established to have ridiculous range.
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Jason R.
Tue, Mar 13, 2018, 7:31am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: Extreme Measures

One of the questions that is raised is why, with all the resources of the Dominion, could the Founders not cure themselves? Consider as well the fact that the Dominion was clearly advanced in the field of genetics as evidenced by the creation of the Vorta and Jem'Hadar and in episodes like Quickening. You would think the Founders could cure anything cooked up by mere humans.

But this is where the irony of the Founders comes in. They are shapeshifters, but rigid and unmoving in their thinking and self conception, just like the empire they built. The Founders are both the greatest strength of the Dominion (with their awesome shapeshifting abilities) but also its Achilles heel.

Given their status as Gods, one would imagine that experimentation or even the most rudimentary study of their genetic makeup by the Vorta or others would be sacrilege in this society of rigid hierarchy. One does not study the genetics of one's Gods. Until the morphogenic virus, the Vorta scientists probably had never even seen changeling DNA. They were probably starting from scratch not even understanding the basics of what they were up against.

One can imagine that as Shapeshifters, medicine as we understand it would be unnecessary, almost beneath them. The Founders would have no need for such knowledge. They studied the genetics of solids but likely not themselves. Again, it goes to their rigidity - they believed themselves to be perfect, the pinnacle of evolution - why would they tinker with perfection?

So the Founders were the perfect target for this kind of weapon. It probably didn't even take a great genius to create the virus - just access to a changeling subject, which Section 31 had.
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Jason R.
Tue, Mar 13, 2018, 6:44am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: In the Cards

I was hoping to discover that the derelict ship and its collection auctioned by Quark was in fact Fajo's from TNG's The Most Toys. Sadly no. Fajo had a Roger Maris card, not a Willy Mays. And Fajo still had the original chewing gum with his. Shame.
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Jason R.
Fri, Mar 9, 2018, 1:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: Statistical Probabilities

To be fair Peter, the Prophets didn't *predict* the future in the way the mutants did; they literally knew it because they existed outside linear time.
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Jason R.
Thu, Mar 8, 2018, 4:12pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

Tim I think there was alot of growth in TNG and not all of it was just one off episodes. But we shouldn't deny the fact that most of TNG, like most of TOS, was episodic and could have been aired in any order. You can't say the same of DS9, especially in its last 3 seasons.

But that's okay. I used to disdain TNG's reset button formula and hold up DS9 as unambiguously superior. But you know what? I find myself coming back again and again to TNG while only occasionally watching DS9. There is no question that TNG is the series with tremendous rewatchability. The same is true of TOS.

I no longer see "arcs" or serialized storytelling as the be all end all.
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Jason R.
Thu, Mar 8, 2018, 6:02am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: Trials and Tribble-ations

I didn't see the Enterprise episode so correct me if I'm wrong but didn't the Klingons originally look like TNG era ones but they became human looking due to genetic engineering? If so, wouldn't the other Klingons in the bar have recognized Worf as one of their own?!

Also, was Sisko planning to keep Kirk's autograph after he gets him to sign off on that report at the end?
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Jason R.
Wed, Feb 28, 2018, 5:37pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S5: In Purgatory's Shadow

Jasper if DS9 was close to any Federation worlds or even in Federation space it wouldn't be "deep space" would it? Remember up to recently it was Cardassian territory.

As for the Bajoran fleet, they are clearly not a serious force. This makes sense - up until a couple years ago, the Bajorans were a subject species under occupation. They have nothing that can challenge a capital ship from a major power.
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Jason R.
Wed, Feb 28, 2018, 12:14pm (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

Nic it is amazing how even as late as the Voyager series, they go out of their way to avoid hurting others, even when those others are shooting at them. It isn't even a specific plot point that is part of the story like Spock wishing to avoid killing the Yetis in Galileo 7 or Picard not wanting to destroy the Crystalline Entity in Silicon Avatar. In Voyager they almost always choose to disable rather than destroy an attacker as a matter of course. The same was true in DS9, and certainly STNG.
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Jason R.
Mon, Feb 26, 2018, 10:41am (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

KT BSG stands for Battlestar Galactica not Babylon 5.

But you criticism is silly in any event. Londo didn't marry Adira, he just had an affair with her. His nephew wanted to *marry* his love which is totally different under Centauri custom.

While Londo's affair was ill-advised and obviously caused him untold anguish (as we learn later) it was not at all the same situation as with his nephew. Londo did his duty to his family and married the women he was arranged to marry, despite hating them.
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Jason R.
Mon, Feb 26, 2018, 5:38am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: The Omega Directive

Watching this again reminds me how tiresome it was in Voyager for every episode to result in some trumped up space battle with hard headed aliens. In this case it was doubly laughable because those "prewarp" aliens shouldn't have been able to scratch the paint on Voyager. Voyager should have just tanked them with its navigational shields. It's ludicrous that they could pose even a nuisance to Voyager.

In TNG there would have been no pretense of a trumped up threat from these guys. The episode would have focused on the real meat of the issue: the ethical dilemma between the pure pursuit of knowledge versus the danger that knowledge may pose.
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Jason R.
Fri, Feb 16, 2018, 8:28am (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

The point isn't even whether it was murder or not (which it was). The point is Michael deliberately botched the mission she believed was necessary to stop the war. Whether she was right that killing him would make the war worse and capturing him could stop it, the important thing is she believed it. And she just shoots the guy in the back after deliberately deactivating the stun setting. Seriously.

And not ten minutes earlier she was ready to throw her career away and betray her mentor on the theory that she could prevent the war. Holy mentally unstable mother of $$$. This loose cannon was raised by Vulcans? Sarek and Amanda should be jailed.
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Jason R.
Fri, Feb 16, 2018, 7:55am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: Night Terrors

"A minor point: if I recall correctly, every "element" named in this episode, other than hydrogen, is fictitious. And finally, an even more minor point: the text written under the ship's archived image of hydrogen begins with the sentence "stored as deuterium". Yet, the actual picture depicts protium.

Yes, I am a nerd."

I am going to outnerd you and point out that it is inconceivable that an explosion generated from a chemical reaction with hydrogen, no matter what weirdo fictitious element the aliens had, could possibly equal even a fraction of the explosive force of what the Enterprise could already produce using its fusion reactors to say nothing of a matter anti matter explosion like what their photon torpedoes produce or what powers their warp core.
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Jason R.
Wed, Feb 14, 2018, 5:40am (UTC -5)
Re: DSC S1: Will You Take My Hand?

"I have a different theory: they went so far to left field trying to be edgy and dark in the pilot that after they fact they realized that the murder of T'Kuvma was irredeemable and could never be explained to the audience as being a well-meaning error. It was murder in cold blood, and no coming back from it. So they chose to simply pretend it had never happened and never mention it again, effectively retconning the events of the pilot as of the very next episode. I agree with you that it was an error on their part, but one that at the time they certainly intended. They were just too clueless about Trek morals to realize that such a despicable act wouldn't ever be acceptable in a Trek setting for a character that we're supposed to respect. So they just dropped it from their canon and that's that."

I guess we will never know Peter. But honestly, that scene doesn't play like a murder in my mind.

What it seems like is the mission goes sideways and Michael, partly in shock at seeing her mentor stabbed, shoots the man WHO IS IN THE PROCESS of stabbing her and is still attacking her.

Imagine a real life situation where a man is on top of your friend stabbing that friend as you watch. You take out your gun and shoot him in the back. Murder? Absolutely not! You are legally justified to save your friend, even if your friend might be doomed by this point. Using deadly force to stop a brutal attack on another isn't murder! Georgiou was still alive!

But that is what it would be in a world where "stun" settings don't exist. That is how the scene makes most sense to me - which is why I hypothesize that someone at some point in the creative process didn't know about the stun setting or didn't appreciate its implication.

I agree that Michael's act is undeniably murder in this context, but I really have a hard time accepting that was intended, regardless of what was shown on screen. I think this was a mistake in more ways than one. Signals crossed? The left hand not knowing what the right hand was doing? Someone adding the stun setting to kill setting change after the fact to fix the continuity problem of Michael killing a man with a phaser set to stun but inadvertantly turning their series protagonist into a murderer?
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