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NoPoet
Thu, Nov 30, 2017, 5:13am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S4: Vis A Vis

The only thing wrong with this episode was some really weak writing. "I can make things VERY unpleasant for you" is just a terrible line, an almost laughable threat, particularly in this jaded age. Rick Berman's requirements that acting be restrained and dialogue be the rubbish, flat 24th Century style has always made Voyager and Enterprise seem irrelevant next to the Stargates and Battlestar Galactica, no matter how I love the Voyager crew. Few shows have as wildly erratic quality as Star Trek Voyager. It's either completely badass, or hampered by the writing.
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NoPoet
Tue, Nov 28, 2017, 5:56am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S5: Extreme Risk

This is going to seem like an anti-American rant, which it isn't, but this episode is pretty typical of American "pop psychology". Here in the UK we are deluged constantly with glossy, perfect shows featuring glossy, perfect people who all look like models, all of them with 20+ episodes per series (or "season"), all of them from America. The amount of mcguffins, plot devices, simple characterisation and rampant deus ex mechanics seen in American shows is just ridiculous, insulting the viewer's intelligence. Voyager is not really any different from the thunderstorm of new series which explode from the USA in these respects.

Hollywood is the bottom of the barrel film producer and American television networks are the absolute dross of the TV entertainment world. Occasionally we get something brilliant, including the many,many episodes of Voyager which had decent writers and decent directors. But people expect miles too much from this show, because they fail to consider who made it. This episode is extremely flawed, and Torres has always been weakly written and poorly portrayed, making her one of the least popular Trek characters. But at least Chakotay got something to do, and overall, bearing all of the above factors in mind, this episode wasn't bad. The bit where she turns a phaser into a force field was ridiculous though - I mean how? Just how? Kudos for obliquely referencing the Dominion War.
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NoPoet
Mon, Nov 13, 2017, 5:50am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S4: Prey

The "you missed" scene is one of my favourite Trek moments. The space suit scenes were incredibly atmospheric. Unfortunately, like Equinox, this episode paints Janeway at her worst. She forces a tactically unsound idea to carry a wounded, hostile alien away from the Hirogen shuips which Voyager cannot defeat - she's prepared to throw her life and those of 140+ crew away for the opportunity to feel better about herself. And when Seven takes the only action that can save the crew, she is heavily punished. I don't get it. Then again, Kate Mulgrew herself apparently said that Janeway was written so inconsistently that she ended up not knowing how to play her.
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NoPoet
Sun, Sep 24, 2017, 12:50pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: The Circle

Some of the guest acting was atrocious. The Bajoran Minister and the Bajoran war hero talked in flat, super-quiet tones that sounded like Kira had got them with rohypnol, and they sucked the life out of every scene they were in. We're talking Voyager's extras levels of acting here. Was Rick Berman involved in this episode?

This is in marked contrast to the brilliant, natural and frequently urgent acting from everyone else. The main cast have definitely found their comfort zone and the writers are mining DS9's premise for all it's worth. That's why this show will always be the best of Trek.
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NoPoet
Thu, Sep 21, 2017, 4:53pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Dramatis Personae

This was absolute toss that I switched off in horror after the first ten minutes, stripping naked and whacking my back with a wet towel (as I don't own a cat o'nine tails) until the episode was purged from my mind. I love DS9. I love the characters. So the last thing I tune in to see is the characters acting like a bunch of prats from a panto. Surely they could have found a better way to exploit the differences between the Feds and the Bajorans than this? Look at how Voyager handled it, with Tuvok's holoprogram being reprogrammed by Seska. Not only was the episode funny, it was exciting and finished with a brilliant twist which made Tuvok look epic. (I've dated women like Seska.)

Well the battle lines are drawn better in the season finale, even if they achieved this by using the horrible Keiko. Ugh.
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NoPoet
Thu, Sep 21, 2017, 4:46pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: In the Hands of the Prophets

Anyone else think Keiko is a huge bitch? I've never liked her. She is cold, stubborn, angry, always has a scowl on her face and her eyes are those of a terrifying murderer. She came across as ignorant and rude here, actually coming off worse than Wynn here in the first part of the episode.

This episode also represents what I, as a non-American, think is a very prevalent attitude in America's dealings with other faiths and cultures: that obstinate sense that their way is somehow innately superior, and that doing away with God represents some form of progress which everyone else must follow. Does this episode mark the beginning of American television turning against God?

All US films and TV shows (and by extension, the internet) these days mock Christian beliefs as absurd, baseless and primitive. Look at the absolute disaster that Supernatural has made of Heaven, God and the Angels. Most shows wisely avoid showing these things, ignoring the "where are the good guys?" question. It seems that this same spirit of religion-bashing does not extend to most other modern faiths. Why is that, I wonder? Guess God doesn't pay the bills any more?
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NoPoet
Sun, Sep 17, 2017, 10:13am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: The Forsaken

For ambassadors, they came across as obnoxious and horrible. Let's hope they don't represent the Federation as such.
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NoPoet
Mon, Sep 11, 2017, 2:04pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Progress

Bugger it, a sentence got deleted from my above post. After the "plucky Voyager crew" bit, it should read "However, I've always hankered for the dark and gritty atmosphere of DS9, which I haven't seen in years and never seems to be shown on Sky."
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NoPoet
Mon, Sep 11, 2017, 2:02pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Progress

I started watching Voyager again because my ex girlfriend was a huge fan of it, and I've always had a soft spot for Janeway and her plucky crew. My initial view of DS9 was that it was rather bland with cheesy stories, or things I'd seen elsewhere. But I'm watching it through again from the beginning, and damn it, DS9 is the best Trek and probably always will be.

"Progress" has what appear to be plot holes, as it is very hard to imagine the Federation virtually abducting people to relocate them. But this was tackled in the later episodes of TNG and it would give rise to the Maquis storyline, which also supposedly fueled Voyager (well, B'Elanna went psycho when she found out the Maquis were dead, and we got one of the only brilliant holodeck episodes in all of Trek, when Seska reprogrammed Tuvok's security program). So they actually paid this off.

My only real problem with this episode was the stubborn old man. "I can see why you like him," Sisko tells Kira. Well perhaps he can enlighten me, because the old man was cantankerous in a rude and unpleasant manner. I recently lost my nan, and seeing this character twitching and talking in his sleep brought back painful memories. But the expected sense of bonding with that horrible man never happened. When he asked Kira to shoot him, she declines in horror, but most people would probably do it.

Kudos to the writers and actors for making the station a bustling place full of interesting characters who maintain their identities even during episodes which aren't about them. We never really saw this in TNG, VOY or ENT. (Eg Chakotay was only a Native American in Chakotay episodes.) In fact I struggle to think of characters from other Trek shows who were as deeply thought-out as the DS9 crew.
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NoPoet
Tue, Sep 5, 2017, 5:25am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Dax

*Dax, not Dad, in the above comments. Stupid CyanogenMod autocorrect.
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NoPoet
Tue, Sep 5, 2017, 5:24am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Dax

* The Federation would never extradite someone to a world where that person faced a death penalty.

* Jadzia Dad is clearly, clearly not the same person as Curzon. I am not sure why they even needed to present medical evidence to prove that an old man is not the same person as a young woman.

* The Bajoran judge, while obviously intended to be funny and badass, makes several arrogant comments that suggest her time spent doing her own job is worth more than Jadzia's and Dad's life.

* The "prosecution" was a violent kidnapper who effectively crapped over Bajoran laws and Bajoran jurisdiction, assaulted two Starfleet officers, and has a personal connection to the case which constitutes a conflict of interest.
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NoPoet
Sun, Jul 16, 2017, 5:10am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S3: Coda

Am I the only one who thinks The Visitor is hugely, hugely over-rated, and is sick of people constantly comparing other episodes to it? Maybe I watched The Visitor with massive expectations which no episode could ever really live up to, which means the episode could only be a disappointment. But come on, what's this episode got to do with The Visitor other than a Captain being in peril?
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NoPoet
Sat, Jul 1, 2017, 4:56am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S4: Fourth Season Recap

While I would also have appreciated more story arcs, that's no reason to constantly berate this shoe. They are travelling home at high warp, they are going to leave many of their consequences behind. Audiences seem to constantly clamour for shows which "boldly go" which is one reason why DS9 is the least popular Trek, despite being the best. Voyager was delivering exactly what Trek fans moan that they want. That's exactly what TOS, TNG and, later, ENT would deliver. I don't recall any of those shows having overreaching arcs or consequences or character growth either. But that's OK because they're not Voyager.
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NoPoet
Tue, Jun 27, 2017, 7:13am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S2: Persistence of Vision

From the first comment: "I think you're forgetting to ask one very important question: how often do Star Trek characters go to the holodeck to masturbate?"

To whom is such a question important? Some saddo from the internet who wants to get his rocks off to an episode of Star Trek?

I agree with this review in its entirety. A solid, very dark episode with fantastic imagery, reminiscent of TNG-era weirdness, slightly let down towards the end by dragging the whole crew into it. Janeway teaming up with Kes would have been awesome as they literally bounce off each other in this episode. Trek could have done with more creepy aliens whose motives are never explained beyond "I will do these things to you because I can" - that motive is horrible and frightening enough without doing what American writers usually do and dumbing it down with a lengthy explanation.
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NoPoet
Wed, Jun 21, 2017, 5:53am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S2: The Thaw

By far one of Trek's outstanding episodes. Been watching early Voyager and I forgot how good it was from the get-go, unlike DS9 which was boring and TNG which was unbearably naff.

The end goes down with Pale Moonlight as one of the best Trek endings, the clown is never less than terrifying, the way Janeway outsmarts him is brilliant.

This is another Voyager episode that makes the moaning, complaining haters look like the muppets they are.
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NoPoet
Wed, May 17, 2017, 5:04am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S6: Memorial

I see that I "went off on one" in my earlier comments regarding this episode and I retract the anger in my post. I was having a bad day when I posted them.

I am just watching this again now on Sky Q and it is still one of the best acted and best written Trek episodes in my opinion. If Voyager's cast had been able to show their acting chops every week we might have had something really special. But Berman's "24th century dialogue" and his insistence that human characters show as little emotion as possible always blunted Voyager's potential. (Interesting to note that DS9 is the one Trek Bermaga didn't get their hands on, and it had the best characterisation in terms of growth and interaction.)
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NoPoet
Mon, May 15, 2017, 6:37am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S6: Sixth Season Recap

I think Voyager's direction as TNG-lite was inspired by the constant bitching and ignorance surrounding DS9. A lot of the themes you wanted Voyager to explore were done in DS9, and despite that shows brilliance, it's kind of the ginger stepchild of Trek. So the producers went back to a ship wandering in space.

Where was the continuity and character growth in TNG? Where was the immediacy, the commitment to exploring deep and dark facets of existence, or the fallibility of humans? Where were the season-long arcs, where were the consequences and repercussions? DS9 had these in spades, but apparently the public didn't want these things, so we got Voyager.

I don't really think there is much the creative team behind Star Trek could have done to avoid the situation we've got now: a hostile internet jumping on the hate bandwagon.
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NoPoet
Mon, May 15, 2017, 5:28am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S6: Virtuoso

To add my twopenneth on the comment argument/debate about DS9 vs VOY, it makes sense in some ways to compare the two as they ran concurrently (as in they were filmed and shown together, and they are set in the same time frame). I am a huge Voyager fan, as the basic premise (which I also agree was squandered) was the most appealing to me and I think it's got the funniest and most likeable characters. That said, DS9 was a better show week in, week out, as it was much better written, frequently made me gasp in shock (rape, prostitution, war crimes, suicide cults, demons), and just FELT like the most powerful and important of all Treks. But like I said, apples and oranges, comparable because they are sister shows.
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NoPoet
Sat, May 6, 2017, 5:19am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S5: Timeless

This is yet another outstanding episode of Voyager which is competitive against the best of DS9 and TNG. The Voyager crew are probably my favourite of all the crews because they are funny, warm and interesting, despite Rick Berman's incompetent handling of Trek characters and his very poor "24th century dialogue".

I am genuinely surprised to see people slating this episode but then again, I shouldn't be. The usual crowd will bay like jackals at everything that happens in every episode of Voyager. Yet another toxic fanbase, every bit as moaning and unpleasant as the Games Workshop's or World Of Tanks'.
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NoPoet
Mon, May 1, 2017, 4:55pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S5: Course: Oblivion

Well, I can certainly tell that Jammer has never read Lovecraft, or Poe, or played any variant of Call of Cthulhu or Delta Green. There is an entire genre of "We're screwed but we keep on fighting anyway" out there, and in this genre, people die. They die pointlessly, they die needlessly, they suffer trauma and grief, but just like this replica Voyager crew, they keep going because they give a damn. They want to win. They want to prevail. Or they just want to escape or survive. This genre, along with the dystopian and post-apocalyptic genres, can be difficult to like, depressing to read, and yes of course it is cynical. Even Star Trek isn't roses and light every episode. (Scorpion? Equinox? Q Who? In the Pale Moonlight? Damage? Balance of Terror?)

I find this episode to be almost extraordinarily painful to watch for two reasons. One, this is a very likeable crew who hold true to who they really are: Janeway clings to her Starfleet discipline and her mission to get everyone home, which is literally falling apart before her eyes; a distraught Paris falls back on his renegade ways; Chakotay remains the steadfast and compassionate voice of the crew; and to the last moment, Harry Kim is literally trying to hold the ship together. Tragedy isn't just impending, it is haunting Voyager's crumbling corridors. People we love are dying horribly, and we gradually realise that nothing can save them.

Reason two is that, as usual for Bermaga-era Trek, we see a one-off episode featuring huge progression that will be reset afterwards. The duplicate Voyager has an advanced warp drive that has cut nearly sixty years off their journey. Tom and B'Elanna are married. In their interactions, the characters are not simply prisoners of the plot, they seem more real, deeper somehow.

Literally the only thing spoiling it is the predictable aliens of the week who simply shoot at Voyager. Honestly, how braindead is this, and it happens in nearly every episode. Voyager needs something desperately? Here come the hostile aliens. Isn't Trek supposed to be about communicating with new species?

This episode is hard to enjoy because it is a tragedy. And it hits very hard. There are some things you can't win. That's life. No-one survives life. Within a few decades of an average person's death, there will be no-one left who remembers them. Does that mean nobody's life has any context? To even suggest that reeks of nihilism, and misses the point of life: do the things you enjoy with the people you love in the time you have. If you do this, does it matter if no-one else will ever read your diary? Really?
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NoPoet
Sun, Apr 16, 2017, 6:44am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S5: In the Flesh

This is one of the flat-out best episodes of any Trek. Genuine diplomacy, with Janeway taking her finger off the trigger, signalling the end of a cold war. The tensions between species was extremely well played, the writing was good, Chakotay's bond with the alien woman was romantic and genuine. Far less staid and stodgy than many Trek episodes, well paced and extremely interesting.
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NoPoet
Fri, Sep 9, 2016, 5:32am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S3: Through the Looking Glass

@ Paul Allen - what on earth does your comment mean? The appropriate use of the word rape is demeaning to the word rape? The offended brigade are encroaching on Star Trek.

I need to rewatch this episode. All I remember of it is the appearance of Tuvok, who IIRC does very little in this episode. Guest character crossovers are so rare in Trek that each one should be celebrated. They shouldn't just be a face in a crowd with no impact on the story and no chance to interact with other Trek characters. What a waste.
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NoPoet
Sat, Sep 3, 2016, 6:08am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

This episode starts out well but "loses the plot". Rick Berman wouldn't allow his cast to show emotions when acting. This hinders Torres throughout the show's run - she should have been hilarious, flying into rages, yelling and insulting people, but instead she just offers one lukewarm performance after another.

It also hinders Paris here: for some reason I saw him as overweight and out of shape, and his chances against the Klingon looked laughable. I would have expected Captain Proton to behave with verve and sarcasm, but instead he looks like he's crapping himself (although in fairness, so would most people).

The usual Neelix bashing is totally out of place here. Neelix was hilarious from start to finish. His character has consistently embraced alien cultures, particularly Klingon culture, so the continuity basically came from Neelix in this episode. His long-running "friendship" with Tuvok featured when he crashed tuvok's quarters. I laughed out loud when Neelix had sex with a Klingon in Tuvok's quarters, wrecking the place in the process.

I also thought it was interesting (and funny) that Harry Kim is gifted a woman by the Plot Gods - but he didn't want her. Any woman who's eight feet tall, rips your head off and has gunk stuck between her teeth is a woman I'd probably want to avoid. And I'm sure that most men find that when a woman hits on them, it usually seems threatening, is inappropriately timed, and the advances are made by a woman who you're just plain scared of. That's how it usually is in my experience anyway. Kim is a rounded, decent young man, he does not automatically need to shag everything female. This is not American Pie.

The battle on the bridge was pathetic. Then again, DS9 proved that Kira and Sisko can take Klingon warriors hand to hand, why wouldn't Paris and Janeway be able to outshoot a few rogue warriors? It's not like Klingons exist for battle and Starfleet crew exist for peace.

Overall, an episode which could have been really good (as most Klingon episodes of Trek are) but which ended up somewhat bungled, and which does not appear to have been appreciated for the things it actually got right.
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NoPoet
Thu, Sep 1, 2016, 6:12am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Body and Soul

The male human languishes in prison. The male hologram is "killed". The woman is taken on dates, allowed to get drunk with the enemy captain, becomes a firm friend of the ship's doctor and is relied on by the enemy crew.

Sounds about right for modern society.
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NoPoet
Thu, Sep 1, 2016, 5:55am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Imperfection

This was another Voyager episode that brought my living room to a standstill. Excellent writing, brilliant acting, with the hand of Berman only visible during the brief "This is our debris field, screw your crew member, open fire" alien of the week scene which simply didn't need to exist. (Coincidental how they recently flew past a Borg debris field - why didn't they try to salvage what they could at the time?)

This is literally the only episode I remember where Echeb shows any sort of charisma. If he was allowed to act like this every week he would certainly have been a worthy addition to the crew. Jeri Ryan is one of the best things to happen to Trek and as usual she owns the episode.

Funny how Voyager, one of the most maligned Treks, produced two of Star Trek's all time best characters in Seven and the Doctor.
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