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Reuben K
Tue, Jun 27, 2017, 3:37pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Think Tank

I can't think of the think tank as truly villainous. The intro segment was a legitimate deal, and that the blue fish-dude tried to lie his way out of it without the proper payment. Sure, their replicators "wouldn't work" by a plot contrivance, but there's more than one way to get/grow/trade/barter/buy food. Therefore the introduction was an attempt to make a legitimate act of helpfulness look sinister while the ones who were helped are cast as the victims, even thought they're the ones trying to deceive! Of course, later in the episode the Think Tank is much more villainous since they orchestrated the events to create a situation that would work to their own goals. (which made me wonder...did they create the trap that destroyed that planet? or was it those bounty hunters? Pretty extreme measures either way. Or can a planet literally explode randomly when you scan it?)

There was a jaw-dropping moment for me in the planet explosion scene. Voyager's shields are up and a chunk of the debris them, gets vaporized, and hurls Voyager backwards. Given the size, mass and speed of the chunk of 'sploded planet, there is no way in hell Voyager (or any ST universe ship) could possibly survive that. I mean, if Voyager's shields can block that, there's no way any weapons fire from anyone can get through. I know its just eye candy, but it's utterly ridiculous. I've always been critical of planet-busting visuals - starting with when I first saw Episode IV as a kid. The best depiction of planet 'splosion was in Titan AE. Those chunks were deadly. And the most realistic-looking (in my experience) is the Stellar Converter from Master of Orion II.
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Reuben K
Fri, Jun 23, 2017, 12:08am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Gravity

@Tmrn I agree with nearly everything you said. It would've been really engaging if the aliens attacking at the end were that desperate and Tuvok points out that they are not necessarily the enemy. Of course, that would require the original message that Voyager sent to include the information of what the idiotic and inexcusably inflexible aliens were doing to the sinkhole and what that would do to the planets therein.

My point of contention is the racist remark: "Is it because she is white and looks like a human and has sparkly stuff on her face while the aliens look less human and have darker skin?" Too often these days such a statement is brushed aside, accepted or simply ignored because it targets "the Man" or white people. Basically it's become acceptable to make disparaging remarks about a particular skin color because of the skin color - making a race-based judgement. I understand the history behind the accusation and for all I know it might be true! But that does make its tone any less racist than it is.

I mean no offense to you Tmrn. I just wanted to make the point that this kind of behavior shouldn't be accepted. Again, the trend you point out may have some basis in fact, but too often it is used by race-baiters on both sides to pollute the debate with their own agendas.
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Reuben K
Sun, Jun 18, 2017, 7:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Infinite Regress

A minor complaint. You would think that after the second time the "midnight snacker" struck the kitchen, they would've put cameras or something in the kitchen. Is that so hard? Screw the security detail, how about a basic level of passive security - especially considering that Neelix would probably not be so lit up about it if Seven wasn't throwing food everywhere. But I suppose its consistent with the other MAJOR complaint about ST:Everything. Most of the injuries on the bridge, and ESPECIALLY the shuttle crashes, could be avoided by using restraints/seat belts/duct tape/anything aside from nothing.

Also, how is there a "midnight" on a starship? Of course, there's an 0:00 hour, but does the ship shut down for 8 hours and everyone go to sleep? The ship should be crewed 24/7 and the galley should conceivably be open as well with "over-nighters".

On a good note, Naomi is very cute and a great actress. She's growing on me as well - dispelling the usual dread that comes with child actors.
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Reuben K
Sat, Jun 17, 2017, 12:13am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Drone

This was a great episode. Seven's words and expressions as One let himself die were tear-jerking. That being said, I wanted to make three nitpicks:

1. The death or removal of One was too telegraphed from the beginning. I literally had the thought, "This guy is too powerful. He gives them and easy way out of everything. He has the mobile emitter in his head. They are so going to kill him at the end of this."

2. You would think by now that the standard procedure for evaluating any kind of explosive/expansive stellar phenomenon is NOT to do it in a shuttle! Jesus Christ these idiots don't deserve to survive. It's so frustrating that it makes it harder to suspend my disbelief.

3. Not a nitpick, but can you imagine what it must've been like for the Doctor to remove his emitter from One's head?
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Reuben K
Fri, Jun 16, 2017, 11:54pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Night

It would've been interesting if they kept the Void setting going for a few episodes. They could have easily made up for it with the "skip-2 years" Void at the end of it as a satisfying reward. It would've allowed for an extended process by which they encountered the Voidians (or whatever), fought them off, communicated, learned of their plight, learned of the Melons, tried diplomacy, etc. Maybe even flesh out how they could've evolved/developed in total darkness! How about there was a Precursor species who did something to create the void and died out. And the Voidians were a primitive species who adapted to the darkness over time on one of the planets within, found the technology and adapted it to their own needs. What if it turns out there ARE stars and planets, etc. but the Void obscures it all (a kind of dark matter? and there's the answer to the energy problem) and God help you if you steer into one of them!)

I agree with TMRN above regarding the Melon dumper. I understand they're trying to depict a good guy/bad guy duality, but c'mon! It's like the writers have no understanding or consistency of people who are motivated by profit. They offered him a means of addressing a species-wide environmental problem. And given that he literally had a monopoly on the Vortex, he would've had a monopoly on the technology. If he were that saavy, he would be able to see how much of a win this is for him as well as a benefit for his people, but NOOOOOOO! He has to be lazy too, otherwise we'll be giving his character more than one dimension and then how can we artificially depict our heroes as the righteous ones.

So many chances of exploring issues in a deep and meaningful manner just cast aside for the ease of black and white preaching.
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Reuben K
Tue, Jun 13, 2017, 4:08pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Demon

Janeway: How about launching a probe?
Tuvok: It would be incinerated in seconds.
Harry: I know, let's launch a shuttle instead...with people inside.
[Tuvok n' Janeway glare at him.]
Harry: ...or how about we just launch the entire ship at it...and land it...on the surface?
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Reuben K
Sun, Jun 11, 2017, 4:40am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Unforgettable

I know it wasn't the point of the episode and it was meant to be a one-off with a reset button, but seriously: These people use a particle beam that can pierce most shields?! Jesus Christ, screw Chakotay's love journal! Tell Harry and Seven to spend their time getting down that technology on paper so they can develop it for themselves. I doubt Voyager would become an aggressive conquering force (jokes about Janeway aside), but it sure would be one hell of a deterrent against hostile alien ships. (Run away! Run awaaaaaaaay!)

Also, the Netflix screen still for this episode showed what's-her-face in a profile shot, which really highlighted her ears (the only "alien" part of her species) and it got me thinking about the "hard-headed-alien-of-the-week" meme. Given how often the alien-ness is established by forehead ridges, ears and nostrils, I wonder what kind of selection pressure is so ubiquitous throughout the alpha and delta quadrant to produce it. I'd love to hear the technobabble BS explanation for that.
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Reuben K
Sat, Jun 10, 2017, 3:21pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: The Omega Directive

Ack. My mistake. I just watched it again and they were identified as a pre-warp civilization. My criticism of still stands, though and I definitely agree with Chuck from SFDebris that these people are pre-warp only as a plot convenience. They've got everything except for warp capability, which makes no sense. In the ST universe nearly EVERY starfaring species is humanoid (which they gave a reason/excuse for in ST:NG), can breed with one another (which is a violation of the definition of species and speciation), and are at about the same tech level (I swear it's either warp-capable, twentieth century, or cave man). So yeah. Plot convenience.
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Reuben K
Sat, Jun 10, 2017, 2:57pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: The Omega Directive

Oh yeah. And what was going to stop that species from doing it all over again. The dialog with that lead researcher made it seem like they were desperate for the Omega particle. Why didn't anyone bother to tell them about the potential dangers? Or maybe even talk to them and give them an alternative energy technology? If the Omega Directive is as draconian as it is portrayed here, it almost seems plausible that if this species refuses to stop pursuing it Janeway/Starfleet has no choice but to force compliance with threats, steal their tech and kill their researchers, bomb them "back to the stone age", or wipe them out. It's that or recklessly let them potentially put the entire galaxy in danger.
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Reuben K
Sat, Jun 10, 2017, 2:52pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: The Omega Directive

I don't understand how the Prime Directive has any play here. I don't recall this species being identified as Pre-Warp as mentioned in an above comment - unless that was concluded based on the reference by Tuvok to the PD. Either way I thought it was very reckless of Voyager to torpedo the Omega particles for two reasons:
1. They planned to warp away right after they fired - I assume for safety's sake. Since they didn't bother to tell the other two ships, they were probably consumed in the blast (makes them a$$holes of the highest degree). Unless Voyager assumed they could warp away (which negates the PD argument) and which is a thoughtless assumption. I actually yelled WTF?! when I saw that.
2. You can torpedo something like the Omega particles? I know they technobabbled something to the torpedo, but jeez! Wasn't Seven working on a way to neutralize them? How does shooting them avoid the repurcussions of their destructive capabilities? (We must eliminate our nuclear stockpiles without the deleterious effects of their explosions. I know, blow 'em up!)

I found the epilogue with Janeway and Seven to be insulting. Here is the order of Janeway's dialog with Seven concerning her crisis of faith or whatever you would call it.
"Chances are it was a chaotic anomaly. Nothing More." --- "If I didn't know you better, I'd say that you just had your first spiritual experience."
Now switch it around:
"If I didn't know you better, I'd say that you just had your first spiritual experience."---"Chances are it was a chaotic anomaly. Nothing More." That's a pretty sh@#$ty approach to dismissing the experience of someone who is questioning their beliefs. It's also a very convenient dismissal of a phenomenon that seems utterly unlikely for the sake of the plot or personal ideology...but consistent with the atheistic ideology of the Federation.
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Reuben K
Fri, Jun 9, 2017, 6:01pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Caretaker

Can you imagine how tense that would've left the show, crew and audience? It wasn't their fault that they were dragged to the Delta Quadrant, but it WAS the Prime Directive that helped to keep them stuck there. That would be a strong complaint by the Maquis on the ship maybe even fomenting some unhappiness in the Federation crew. They could even debate the beliefs of the Federation and their situation (it would fall on the side of the Federation, since this is their show). The drama would practically write itself. Add to that the threat of a large number of Kazon (you would have to remove the Oompa Loompa and maybe enhance the menace of strength of numbers and being pissed off first, of coures) and you have a starship on the run with rebellion bubbling just below the surface. (Gosh! sounds like BSG.)
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Reuben K
Fri, Jun 9, 2017, 5:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Caretaker

+DLPB And I would add:

Caretaker: "Then you leave me no choice." His body starts to glow/shiver/shrink/whatever. Tuvok/Chakotay/Every goddamn Federation and Maquis in range detect an energy spike on their tricorders: the Caretaker is going into some kind of critical mass and will explode in just enough time to transport back onto the ship and back off. Kazon approach the array thinking they've fought off Voyager and are caught in the blast.

There, now we have a badass AND reasonable Janeway. She shoves his hypocrisy in his face and the decision to destroy the array is taken out of her hands. Sure, people will still complain that she should've been more accomodating with him and negotiated to send them back first, but at least there's MUCH less stupid to pin on her.

....and let the integration of the crew happen over the next few episodes, of course.
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Reuben K
Fri, Jun 9, 2017, 5:30pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Vis A Vis

Every time they said Coaxial Warp Drive was overloading or charging or whatever, I kept saying in my head, "Well, just unplug it!"
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Reuben K
Fri, Jun 9, 2017, 5:18pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: The Killing Game

What could have turned this episode into an even greater one would've been having the commanding Hirogen survive. That would've had consequences that could have been very interesting to watch. We could have seen him calling his people together and proposing his plans. We could have seen the struggles of acceptance and/or civil war. We could have seen Voyager stick around and share the Federation gospel (which I despise, but this is their show so it would be appropriate) as well as help in the transition. Maybe even imply that the Hirogen could become a smarter and slightly benevolent version of Klingons for the Delta Quadrant. You know. Consequences. The stuff that make stories really stick. I understand that killing the leader upped the drama, but it was the easy way out. (Lazy) And his survival would've made the cease-fire at the end make sense instead of the usual "Pulling-the-Captain's-log-out-of-our-asses-because-we-wrote-ourselves-into-a-corner".

Anyway, the episode was fun and enjoyable, but I definitely agree that it was full of cliches. Neelix was less annoying than usual, but annoyance with him is such a common element, there's almost no need to comment on it.
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Reuben K
Wed, Jun 7, 2017, 4:42pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Retrospect

Also. You would think that if the Doctor had downloaded all of Starfleet's database regarding therapy and the like, it would have included some cautions about Repressed Memories and the influence of bias. And if you want to propose the possibility of Future Developments making Repressed Memories an actual, proven and practiced therapy, then this episode shouldn't have happened at all.
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Reuben K
Wed, Jun 7, 2017, 4:00pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Retrospect

It's interesting to see the evolution of socio-political trends in the comments, especially how much more vocal the backlash against "listen and believe" has become in last few years. I actually worked with an older gentleman who was accused of molesting his own daughter after she saw a therapist and discovered "repressed memories". It was proven to be false and I know him well enough to know he didn't do it, but the rage coming off of him about that false accusation was so strong it was scary. (Keep in mind he was in his late 60s when I worked with him over 10 years ago and this had happened when he was a young man...so early 80's?) Can you imagine loving and raising your daughter only to have some "expert" convince her that you did something monstrous to her? This is the danger of "listen and believe". It doesn't minimize the pain, suffering and seriousness of a true experience to be skeptical of a claim, because it does maximize pain, suffering and seriousness to blindly believe any accusation. It makes it more likely for a charlatan or a liar to take advantage of such a situation, causing innocent people to suffer, and make it less likely for people to believe the true claims. It's actually quite small-minded and despicable to not care about that.

Which is why I think Kovin panicking and runnning was a great idea. It's completely understandable given his awareness of his own culture and what will most likely happen to him. AND it also makes him look more guilty to the ones hunting him and reinforces the assumptions of those who see him as guilty. I'm surprised so few people mention Kovin's initial trust in Tuvok. He makes it point to recognize that Tuvok is the most likely to offer an impartial investigation - another indication that logic is the best way to navigate through an emotionally charged situation like this.
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Reuben K.
Tue, Jun 6, 2017, 2:06am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Concerning Flight

Too much tech to think simply. When Janeway and da Vinci were on their way to the storehouse, they could only detect the mobile emitter, and weren't sure if Janeway was there. They were literally walking to the storehouse over the Southern California Desert landscape. Are there no telescopes on Voyager? They can detect specific details of the borders of space-faring races (Year of hell) from parsecs away (or really far away), but can't magnify a view of the surface of the planet they're orbiting?! How hard is it to look out the !@#$% window?
Also, it's obvious why the bad guys only shot once when Janeway and da Vinci glided away. They were utterly shocked at how ridiculous the situation was. How would you react if the people you were chasing suddenly decided to skate away using Hot Wheels tied to their shoes?
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Benny
Fri, May 26, 2017, 11:57am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Life Line

In pathfinder, Janeway said they wer sending through their log entries. Yet here we have the admiral asking about casualties, the Borg and the maquis. Are we to believe that either a) not a single crew member made a passing reference to any of those things or b) no one at starfleet bothered to read the logs?
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Ben S.
Mon, May 22, 2017, 8:50pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: The Arsenal of Freedom

As much as I enjoyed this episode, the gaping plot hole in the center of the story must be obvious only to me, given that no one else has mentioned it.

The Enterprise went to the planet to find out about the missing ship, the USS Drake, and Riker even seemed enthusiastic that the ship might still be around after encountering a fake version of his friend.

By the end of the episode, however, this plot point seems to have been completely forgotten. There is no mention of trying to find the USS Drake or ever returning to see what happened to them. In the end, it served as nothing more than a convenient carrot to lure the crew into the plot.

A good episode, but some closure to all the given plot pieces might have been nice.
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Benjamin S
Sun, May 7, 2017, 7:37pm (UTC -5)
Re: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

I hated this film. The characters were flat and uninteresting. There's no depth or character building, and it's hard to care when you don't know anything about the people central to the story.

By contrast, The Force Awakens told us a great deal about Rey within the first half an hour, just as A New Hope showed us who Luke was before the action started. In this movie, all I know is someone's father was killed, but I can't tell you a thing about who she has become or why anyone should care so many years after the fact.

There's way too much fan service without substance. We didn't need a pointless scene where someone bumps into a minor character from A New Hope that doesn't lead anywhere. We didn't need a fake and plastic looking CGI Tarkin and Leia. What we needed were clear motivations and real characters with emotion.

Darth Vader was portrayed completely wrong. Sure, his lightsaber antics at the end are badass, and I could watch that scene all day long, but he still didn't feel like Vader, even with James Earl Jones voicing him.

There were a ton of consistency errors, some of which have been mentioned above and others that weren't. They bug me more than I can stand, and are far worse than any consistency shenanigans that went on during the prequels. Nothing here enhances episode IV in any way.

And, honestly, was this a story that needed to be told? Wasn't the first paragraph of the opening crawl of A New Hope enough to convey what happened?

This will be the one Star Wars movie that won't be in my collection.
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Benjamin S.
Sun, May 7, 2017, 7:18pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Wars: Episode II — Attack of the Clones

I have always felt this is the worst Star Wars movie ever made. Hated it in the theater and haven't enjoyed it in any viewing since.

The special effects haven't aged well at all. I watched it a year ago with a friend who had never seen the prequels, and he said to me: "Is this a cartoon?" Because, that's exactly how fake the clone troopers looked.

Horrible.
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Benjamin S
Sun, May 7, 2017, 7:13pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace

I must be in the minority. I loved Phantom Menace when I saw it at the theater and still love it to this day (I actually feel "Attack of the Clones" was the worst of the prequels due to it's horrid pacing and terribly forced love story). And in case you think I was a child when I saw it, I wasn't...I was 31 years old when it came out...I was a child when "A New Hope" hit theaters in 1977.

There was something in that movie that took me straight back to my childhood. I didn't even hate Jar Jar...but I think I understood from the beginning that he was there to appeal to children and he didn't bother me. So, unlike most of the world, I loved The Phantom Menace...and I feel blessed to feel that way. I went and saw it at the theater 7 times upon release. I just couldn't get enough of it.

I'm sorry others don't enjoy it on that level, but I guess it all evens out since I can't stand to sit through Attack of the Clones.
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Benjamin S
Sun, May 7, 2017, 6:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S1: When the Bough Breaks

What I don't get is this:

When faced with the problem given the planet, why did neither the inhabitants nor the Enterprise crew make the suggestion that perhaps they could adopt orphans in order to give them a good home? Or, perhaps, announce that they would take in settlers to their planet in return for the children of the settlers being taught to carry on their society? Certainly there are people out there looking for a home (what happened to the colony that they had to move during "Justice?")

I didn't have a problem with the episode or it's execution, but the fact that none of them suggested a less confrontational option was kind of silly.
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Marcos Bento
Fri, May 5, 2017, 11:26pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Innocence

I saw this episode recently (2017) and I think it aged well. It looks particularly better to someone who saw Benjamin Button before. Innocence makes more sense than Benjamin Button, despite the beekeepers.
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Benjamin
Thu, Apr 27, 2017, 12:19am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: Ensign Ro

Wow let me just say that all the comments on this page are entertaining. Incredible stuff.

As for the bajorans... Maybe most did leave bajor but once the cardassians left, most went back to bajor. So tng and ds9 match up?
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