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Joshua
Sat, Nov 18, 2017, 2:32am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S5: Latent Image

It's arrogant for flesh and blood beings to say that, just because AI are programmed, they know how they work, then it means that they are lesser-class lifeforms. There is no mystery involved in their creation, meanwhile, humanoids are a mystery! Our evolution was processed over billions of years! Our brains are impossible to manipulate on such a level! Therefore, we are superior beings that can create life and toss it away just because they're not the same, and that we have the ability to, makes it so.

Going on an extreme end, how do you think the Q see humanoids and other intelligent life? The Q have shown the ability to rewrite, toy with, and utterly erase people like us and our brains, our memories, our function, and yet, despite their superior knowledge, they treat fleshies like actual lifeforms, allowing them to evolve and flourish. And humans call themselves enlightened.

AI prejudice is a pretty tired trope I've seen over the years, but hopefully there will be a nicely written story for their acceptance in society in ST someday!
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Josh
Mon, Nov 13, 2017, 7:53pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S1: Into the Forest I Go

I'm not as thrilled with the episode as everyone else, but it was enjoyable.

I think the main problem was that the resolution felt entirely unearned. We've seen very little of this war - eight episodes following one ship. During that time we never really saw the larger ramifications of the war, except for the episode defending the mining colony and another random ship being destroyed. The rest of the time it was always admirals telling Lorca how badly it was going. We never feel the gravity of the situation, the pain and anguish, the Klingons taking lives we care about or the possibility of the Federation being conquered or destroyed.

And then we have a scene with swelling music over Burnham saying "It's done. It's over." as if we had just witnessed Frodo carrying the ring to Mordor or the Rebels defeating the Empire. Those moments earned their epic triumphs. Here, I did not feel a thing.

This might be okay for a more episodic series like Voyager, but for a series that prides itself on being continuous I expect more.
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Josh
Fri, Nov 10, 2017, 7:09pm (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: Cupid's Dagger

@Ubik

I really do not think it is that simple. Where does "control" begin and where does it end? There are women and men who have incredible sexual magnetism, whether by pheromones or by charm, to the point that people find it hard to resist feeling very attracted to them in their presence.

Do we really have the control that we are led to believe? It is unfortunate the episode didn't touch more on this issue. The legal system simplifies the way biology works to make sure people are not taken advantage of sexually. In biology, things aren't so simple. The body reacts biochemically to the sensory impressions of a person to whom one is attracted. Not just pheromones, but someone's appearance, how their voice sound, their intelligence and how they express themselves. If there is enough attraction there, our cultural norms embedded in the memory engage the rituals leading up to sex.

Free will is simply a legal and philosophical convenience - neurobiology has essentially already disproved it. What our culture and legal system counts as consent takes place after the body's chemistry has done its work. The natural processes leading up to the giving of consent is no different from what we see between Darulio and his "victims".

Legally, the Captain and XO have consented. What makes Cosby's victims different? They were put to sleep by drugs, physically unable to consent. There is a world of difference.
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Josh
Fri, Nov 10, 2017, 6:06pm (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: Cupid's Dagger

@Lobster Johnson
Did the ambassadors sleep with each other? I must have missed that.
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Josh
Fri, Nov 10, 2017, 3:18pm (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: Cupid's Dagger

@Lobster Johnson

As I understand it, that was a synthetic pheromone based on Darulio's physiology. And we do not see the ambassadors engaging in any sexual assault.
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Josh
Fri, Nov 10, 2017, 2:58pm (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: Cupid's Dagger

The suggestions that Darulio "drugged" the Captain and XO are way off the mark. Think about how consent works in our own society. Two people meet. They are affected by the appearance, personality and pheromones of each other. Then they may decide, at some stage, to sleep with each other. How is the situation in this episode any different in principle? It's not. There's no suggestion Darulio even intended to seduce either of them (and even if he did, what's wrong with that?). Decisions to consent are always mediated by pheromones, by perfumes and colognes, by makeup and affectations, by behavior intended to seduce. We don't consider any of this "wrong" when it leads to someone wanting to sleep with another. If Darulio's conduct in refusing to turn down either of them was wrong and illegal, then practically all instances of consent to sex between humans are null and void.
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JoshH
Wed, Nov 8, 2017, 4:36am (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: Into the Fold

You can't introduce everyone in the first episode. When did we find out O'Brien was married to Keiko? That Picard had a brother in France?
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Josh
Fri, Oct 6, 2017, 10:59am (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: Pria

Honestly if this is the show being "pretty alright" let alone the "best" so far, then it's in big trouble. As I said, I don't get what this is supposed to be. And I thought the whole "practical joke" of amputating a leg was too over-the-top to be funny. It doesn't get any less memorable or original than this.
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Josh
Thu, Oct 5, 2017, 9:39pm (UTC -6)
Re: ORV S1: Pria

This is the first episode of The Orville I've watched and... it's really pretty bad. The acting is wooden and the tone is far too uneven and light for there to be any dramatic tension. Charlize Theron's performance was about as phoned in as it can get. I don't really get what this is supposed to be. All that's leaving aside the derivative plot and pedestrian characters. As it stands, this was a mix of TNG's "A Matter of Time" with a bit of VOY's "Hope and Fear". But much worse. The Isaac character is something of a mean-spirited Data by way of The Day the Earth Stood Still. The whole business with Mercer and his ex-wife and the strained "love triangle" involving Pria was the lamest of lame sitcom plots.

I will say that the score was pretty fantastic for a TV show. But the sets look cheap, none of the actors seem rise above the level of an SNL skit, and the plot was dull.
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Josh
Tue, Sep 19, 2017, 1:16pm (UTC -6)
Re: ENT S2: Precious Cargo

I am surprised at how much my take on the episodes is at variance with Jammer's take and I still think 11:59 from Voyager is the worst of the franchise but man he hits it on the nose here. This is definitely worth the zero stars Jammer gives it.
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Joshua
Wed, Sep 6, 2017, 11:01pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S6: Alice

If an episode bores you this much, maybe spare us the boring review. You can only type "meh" in so many different ways. Or come up with interesting things to say about the mediocre episode. Not to criticize anything grander, but this review seems as forced as the episode.
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Josh D
Sun, Aug 13, 2017, 2:11pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Progress

Star trek has had some really good episodes, and really bad episodes, but none I could say that were just flat out mind numbingly boring until now.
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Joshua
Fri, Aug 11, 2017, 8:09am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S2: Basics, Part I

The main problem I have with this episode is how adept the Kazon are at operating Voyager. No amount of 'training' by Seska could prepare them for operating it so perfectly within their short time frame, unless computer systems in the 24th century are that unreasonably accessible.
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Josh
Sun, Jul 30, 2017, 11:04pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Workforce

People have mentioned a couple of Stat Wars allusions: hiding in the asteroid; Nar Shaddaa (in SW EU) / Nar Shaddan (this ep). There is yet another similarity to The SW expanded universe: the planet in Workforce is "Quarra" and its inhabitants are referred to as "Quarren"; this is also the name of the squid-faced race briefly seen in Jabba's palace. Pretty remarkable coincidence although I guess if you have a million monkeys banging out Star Trek scripts it is inevitable one of them would contain three similarities to Star Wars.
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Josh
Thu, Jul 20, 2017, 10:33pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Imperfection

Like Ric this episode reminded me of soap operas, but not in a good way. All the histrionics of the Doctor, Janeway, and especially Seven and Icheb were ridiculous and bordering on parody. "I'm willing to risk my life for you!" "no, let ME risk my life for YOU!" Barf.

The episode would have been more interesting if Icheb was reluctant to donate his cortical node and the episode was about compelling him to do so; or if Icheb was a willing donor motivated by an infatuation with Seven.
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Josh
Tue, Jul 11, 2017, 6:42pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S6: Tears of the Prophets

The more I've seen it, the more I can't stand this episode. If Terry Farrell knew she would leave the show, make her death less circumstantial and abrupt. How could Dukat show up out of nowhere, magically beam onto the station and destroy the the orb? They seem to drag Dukat into these episodes because they have to. If the prophets said Sisko would be in danger by leaving the station, make him brush with death at least, running away to make does not symbolize danger. Also, I hate the prophets and their corporeal powers showing up when it does, it is okay for a one-time Trek episode but not on multiple occasions, let alone showing up as being a crucial part of the story.

This episode just felt way too rushed.
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Josh D
Sat, Jul 8, 2017, 3:25am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S7: Force of Nature

This episode didn't make any sense

So if I'm to get this straight, Serova's goal was to get the Federation to take action on warp drives causing damage to space and to look at her research. But when the most prime opportune moment comes to achieve her goal, when she runs into Picard, she throws away her opportunity and leaves in a tantrum just because it would take too long for the science council to look at if even though Picard says he'd basically fast track it. Then Serova blows her warp core on purpose to open a rift just to say I told you so, completely endangering and altering her planet forever contradictory to her entire goal which was to avoid such a cataclysm in the first place by educating people. It would be like Earth's most leading and outspoken climate scientist saying oh well you don't believe me? I will blow up the ozone layer and then you will!!
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Josh
Wed, Jul 5, 2017, 7:51pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S6: Equinox, Part II

I agree with the sentiment of many commenters that this 2-parter started out strong but it squandered its potential. I loved the Equinox characters and I wish they had stretched this out over a longer arc. Would have loved to see Tom Paris conflict with Max Burke more. But the ending felt pre-ordained; when it became clear in the first part that Ransom and his crew did some heinous sh*t you knew that the show would have to end with a redemptive self-sacrifice, and Ransom's transformation was not convincing in the least.

And like other people have mentioned, the fact this show does not bother to track characters' relationships over time is a real problem. The presence of Equinox crewmembers on Voyager would pose huge complications (namely you have this group of Starfleet Nazis who should have to stand trial when you return to Earth) but I guess that was ignored. The fact that the EMH can turn on a dime when you delete his "ethical subroutines" poses real problems for the idea that he's a sentient being with rights (and should also cause him to question his identity as a moral sentient being). The fact that Seven now knows this and was in fact tortured by him should also pose a huge problem for their relationship. But for all of these issues, the ending suggests everything's copacetic shows the limited imaginations of the creators.
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Josh
Sat, Jul 1, 2017, 6:56pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S5: 11:59

I agree with the haters here. One of my least favorite episodes in all of Star Trek.

The biggest problem is that Kate Mulgrew has never been well served by the writing where Janeway spouts pseudo-profundities (usually in the last 5 minutes of many episodes). Unfortunately, this episode is chock full of her Shannon O'Donnel doing exactly that, and then you have Kevin Tighe spewing his own set of BS platitudes. The episode would have been marginally better if Mulgrew tried to not play O'Donnel pretty much exactly as Janeway, and better still if they got an entirely different actress to play the character. But it still would have been a bad episode.

And as others noted, there is so much that is just off. A skyscraper biosphere mixed with a shopping mall? People who pretend they are dining in Paris by propping a book open? TV news keeping a 24 hour vigil outside a holdout business?

And finally, I am bothered that the show was not true to Star Trek by (a) portraying a monstrous commercial development as some kind of moral progress and (b) giving early and mid-21st century Earth a bucolic depiction, ignoring prior continuity that it was instead a giant sh*t show (Bell Riots, First Contact).

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Cryptic Josh
Wed, Feb 1, 2017, 8:54pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Children of Time

So I was wondering, if the Defiant crew had stayed on the planet, and the time loop reset 200 years, would that have happened, or would the Defiant crew had just joined the 8,000 inhabitants? And if so, one would think that if the Defiant crew had left, as they did in the episode, wouldn't the 8,000 inhabitants have remained in existence simply because the Defiant crew had not actually slipped 200 years into the past? Time vortex episodes confuse the hell out of me sometimes. If so.some wants to open this discussion, my email Addy is penyroyaltea@hotmail.com . no spam plz.
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Josh
Thu, Dec 29, 2016, 12:23am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S3: Future's End, Part I

One nit--I believe it was this episode (not Part II) where Neelix and Kes are watching American TV and Harry Kim says something about not understanding the appeal of non-interactive stories (and his comment goes unchallenged, implying it is a rather conventional point of view). This is at odds with the franchise's depiction of future earth society as highly cultured. Humans of the 23rd and 24th century enjoy Shakespeare and Dickens. There is also appreciation for genre works like Sherlock Holmes, and 1930s detective stories (although not science fiction). Yes, people enjoy interactive storytelling though the holodeck, but it seems grounded in cultural knowledge, and a couple of TNG episodes have exposed the crew to the dangers of excessive use of interactive entertainment.
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Josh
Wed, Dec 28, 2016, 5:53pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S3: Future's End, Part II

I have to side with the haters here--2.5 stars is far too kind for this episode. I'll just mention my nonredundant gripes:
* Ed Begley is weak as the villain. He did not convey the ruthlessness or menace that character needed to convey, nor the intelligence to master 29th c. technology.
* Allan Royal is pathetic as the muscle.
* that car chase sequence looked cheap
* usually in Star Trek when characters go up against some kind of prophecy caused by time travel, they come to realize that their efforts to avert the foretold disaster are the actual cause of it. I guess it's good this episode did not go back to that well, but resolving the situation by shooting a torpedo at Ed Begley actually seems worse.
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Josh
Thu, Dec 22, 2016, 5:39am (UTC -6)
Re: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

I loved it until the very last moment which raped my childhood.

What I liked was the way it made the Empire feel really oppressive and intractable. We go to different planets and see their reach. We see the power struggle of despots within.

The use of Vader I thought worked well with this. After being name dropped, we first see him in his Tower of Baradur in the land of Mordor. It gives him this mythic quality, the prime enforcer of the Emperor, a person whose name strikes terror into the hearts of anyone who hears it. His use at the end worked for that, even though some decry it as fanservice.

The Death Star was also very well used. It's size was better conveyed by having star destroyers swimming around it. This could not be properly conveyed in the originals.

But when it transpired that Captain Antilles' ship was actually at the big battle and fled right in front of Vader's eyes, that was dumb. I thought they were goi ng to receive the transmission from far far away. And they took the Princess into this big battle? Why?
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Josh
Wed, Sep 21, 2016, 10:56pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery

I don't know how common it was for miniskirt-wearing women to have a feminist motivation, but I really doubt TOS was being boldly feminist or empowering by outfitting Lt. Uhura, Yn. Rand, and Yn. Tamura in miniskirts. Miniskirts were a common sci-fi trope before the 1960s (the wiki entry on the miniskirt mentions their prominent use on a schlocky 1950s sci-fi show). Plus, rumor has it that Teri Garr hates Star Trek because Roddenberry made her wear one in Assignment: Earth. So much for escaping the rules men make about what women must wear.

Maybe you don't perceive ANY SEXUAL OVERTONES WHAT-SO-EVER but I imagine the producers were banking on those outfits being sexually appealing to their male audience members.
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Josh
Tue, Jul 26, 2016, 9:45pm (UTC -6)
Re: Star Trek Into Darkness

I'm much more negative about Into Darkness, not only because of the less "Trekkian" story or the pointless reboot of Khan, but because of the Destruction of San Francisco bit.

It's simple enough to contrast such scale of devastation with DS9 in particular. In "The Changing Face of Evil", Starfleet HQ is attacked by the Breen. The DS9 crew views images of the aftermath in the ward room and they are appropriately upset. Note that the extent of damage to San Francisco in that episode appears to be substantially less than in Into Darkness. Later, in "What You Leave Behind", Cardassia is devastated by the Dominion, leaving cities levelled and hundreds of millions dead. We see Garak's reaction, but we also see Sisko, Admiral Ross, and Martok on the planet, surrounded by the dead.

While I had a lot of issues with Into Darkness prior to the climax, the over-the-top CGI scenes of mass destruction with no consequences were overlong and boring.
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