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Graham
Thu, Sep 29, 2016, 4:47am (UTC -6)
Re: TOS S2: The Deadly Years

Found it disturbing that old age is automatically associated with dementia. Uncomfortable watching . . .
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Graham
Thu, Sep 29, 2016, 4:41am (UTC -6)
Re: TOS S2: Friday's Child

Red shirt attempts to attack Klingon with possibly lethal force, without the slightest provocation. Kirk says it was self defence, not sure how that would stand up in court !!
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graham
Sun, Aug 14, 2016, 6:20am (UTC -6)
Re: TOS S1: Dagger of the Mind

Air conditioning ducting large enough to stroll around in cliche
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graham
Sat, Aug 6, 2016, 2:00pm (UTC -6)
Re: TOS S1: Tomorrow Is Yesterday

Speed and gravity are not the same thing.
Acceleration and gravity are equivalent.
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Graham Malia
Thu, Nov 12, 2015, 1:17pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Progress

I can't really sympathize with Mullibok here. He chose to live on this moon because of the Occupation, but now that it's all over he can back and have a decent life on Bajor. Bajor is depicted as this beautiful planet that everyone would like to live. In fact, all the other inhabitants on the moon had already left precisely because they could relocate to their actual home planet and probably get some helpful compensation from the Provisional government.

Add to all this, the moons were under control of the Bajorans for what seems to be thousands of years, it really feels like Mullibock took advantage of the Occupation to live his nice private life on Bajoran property while everyone else had to put up with the brunt of the Occupation and back-breaking work to rebuild the core planet.

This episode brings up some great government-individual themes, but in the end you're left with the feeling that Kira putting in way more effort than she needs to deal with something that shouldn't be her problem as a military officer.
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Graham
Fri, Aug 3, 2012, 2:36pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S2: Twisted

Wow, can't believe the amount of people defending this episode. Just finished watching it for the first time and, boy, what a stinker. The premise itself was fine, but the whole 3rd act was just terrible. Both Janeway's comment to Kim and the Tuvok/Chakotay confrontation both just left me scratching my head. Where did they come from, and how were they at all relevant to what was happening? It's like the writers gave up about halfway through the script and just started stuffing in useless dialogue to fill time. Don't even get me started on the ending. Just a worthless episode all around!
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Graham
Wed, Jul 4, 2012, 12:50pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S1: Phage

@Chris - We only live as long as our bodies do, its not our brain that dies first it's our organs that fail. So yes, her lungs would only have a lifespan similar to that of her species as a whole.
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Graham Pilato
Mon, Feb 1, 2010, 11:49am (UTC -6)
Re: BSG S4: The Plan

Loved a lot of little moments in this. It really isn't essential viewing for anyone except us diehards, though. Still, it had some very interesting things to say about Cavil's journey as a leader here, which, as always, is interesting sci-fi discussion -- his scenes throughout the series were usually wonderful, with only a couple exceptions, despite the fact that an actor is talking to himself (no one). Never an easy thing to do as an actor... soliloquies can be played to an audience, but talking to someone that's just *not there*.
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Graham
Thu, Mar 27, 2008, 12:06am (UTC -6)
Re: BSG S3: Unfinished Business

Well, now that the extended version of this episode has come out on DVD, I think I'm even more firmly on the side of "great episode, too bad about the hints at the impossibility of a quiet life in it" than the "this isn't what I watch BSG for" side. I'm not a fan of boxing, but I can appreciate very well its use as a device here. I'm far more a fan of the drunken love scenes and the smoking. And the extended version isn't better, its just MORE. And more, in this case, is still lovely. The episode gets Lee and Kara a great chance to deal with their long-term issues far better than we've seen at any time since the first season. And it's a really amazingly well shot thing, well edited, and well staged. It makes one wonder about the New Caprican "nature" and just how possible comforts or real survival and endurance might have been there.

Jammer's review is spot on with the worry about Adama's point in his speech. But he's also proving himself, in that very human moment, to be quite the flawed voice of authority and wisdom. Sure, our foes must be fought when we mean to be soldiers, but what has ever made this man the end-all, be-all of wisdom on this show? There's a peace-loving side coming. The enemy will change its nature, and so will our human heroes. In order to survive together and get to the promised land together, this must happen. Just because he was bleeding, and partly right, for the good of the soldiers in the room, it doesn't mean he was ALL right. And this series is saying that, I think. The President is there to say that.
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Graham
Wed, Mar 26, 2008, 10:45pm (UTC -6)
Re: BSG S2: Valley of Darkness

The title here has a lot of nice economy... a lot of power in a simple phrase. It's an allusion to Psalm 23, a prayer on the edge of death. It's the visual imagery of Galactica at its most desperate when the power's out and the centurions are heading toward a big self-destruct contrivance. It's a valley of darkness between the relative security and order of the days before the Kobol arc and afterwards. It's the second season, as the peace and security and order of the fleet's waning stamina fades in this valley between the peaks of the status quo in "Colonial Day" and the status quo on New Caprica. If I were to pick an episode title from the second season and fly it on the flagpole of the whole year, it'd be this one.

Now, I fear that's a little game of mine that I can't seem to stop myself from playing when the opportunity arises. I love titles... they are often a very nice addition to any work of art or literature, as they define a thing from the top down or from the bottom up or from a sideways glance. They stand outside a thing and are affected by it as they affect it. And I think, ever since Babylon 5 brought this episode title as season title thing to sci-fi epics, I've started playing this game. Of course, you need a series with big themes and effective titles to feel the least bit like a title may be a little authoritative, but I think it's a silly pasttime works nicely for BSG. "You Can't Go Home Again" would be the titular episode of season one for instance, I'd say. And I suppose bringing any of this up here and now might seem a little obsessive and ridiculous, but I thought I'd just try and make the point that, having just rewatched this episode today, mostly out of wanting to see Starbuck's apartment again, I think I'm very impressed... and very much inspired to consider the depths of relelvant, cool, prescient stuff here.

It's all about aching for the new season... Please forgive the fannish moments of venting here. (Great episode, this. Starbuck's apartment scene is one of the series all-time best.)
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Graham Pilato
Tue, Nov 6, 2007, 4:20pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: The Best of Both Worlds, Part I

Well, this is the best season of TNG, hands down. I'll agree with anyone who mentions how wonderful the 4th and 6th seasons were too, but this one is just stuffed with awesome episodes and so, so much growth in the Star Trek universe. I think anyone who doesn't give the episodes Sins of the Father, The Defector, The Most Toys, Sarek, Yesterday's Enterprise, and Booby Trap full marks is missing out on the fact that this where TV Trek grew up in the 80s. The main characters and their cultures are deepened forever and the worth of the show to fans and the culture as a whole alike was massively greatened.
Oh, and I love Who Watches the Watchers. It's a little simplistic, but boy is it a beautiful illustration of the prime directive's necessity and the fascinating philosophy behind it. It's the best prime directive story, in my mind in all of Trek, still.
And no one needs to expound further on The Best of Both Worlds. It seems a little slow to me, actually, in terms of reconciling it with the pace of today, but it's still one of the world's greatest season cliffhanger/resolution two-parters... made even greater by the quality of the 4th season to come that builds on its momentum (especially Family).
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Graham Pilato
Tue, Nov 6, 2007, 3:30pm (UTC -6)
Re: BSG S2: Scar

I totally agree with viewjet. This is the best standalone of the season. What a great fighter pilot episode. Kara can take this kind of twisty stuff, I think. Lee's previous artificial darkening in Black Market never worked, while Kara is (as always) totally intriguing and believable here... at least as I see it. Her promise to Anders, all of the uncertainties she has about leadership here, the conflict between Kat and her -- it's all built up so well before this and pays off so well too. I say. The only stuff I don't like so much is Lee's automatic return to sex-bunny yet again after the Many Loves of Lee Adama episode just last week. Even though it's believable and their drinking scene is so good, the actual sex scene and the edit with Anders in it too... that was really awkward. I didn't like it, even if that was the point. Titillation should happen there. A little. But it was just damn messy.
But this was still a beautiful episode, at least as good as its first season predecessor in format, Act of Contrition.
9/10, yo.
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Graham Pilato
Wed, Oct 31, 2007, 1:08am (UTC -6)
Re: BSG S2: Flight of the Phoenix

Right on, Jammer. This is everything I would say about this very disappointing yet very pretty episode. It would have been better off, perhaps even, as two episodes -- one for each plot, to better develop them and give the characters some time to deal with the revelations therein. I mean, let's keep building the love a bit more clearly for Sharon the Cylon before raping her next week, right? Rather than simply making her look cool for a few minutes, let's look at what it means to have the Cylon save the fleet... as well as lead us to the Tomb of Athena.

I like how you point out a major difference between BSG and Star Trek here in terms of how they manage plot time and character development time allowances. This episode has just the same problem as episodes such as DS9's "Shadowplay". And I think I could forgive DS9 for this sort of thing a lot more, too, because that kind of plot juggling is standard there. But then there's a recent episode of Heroes... (which is such crap this second year of it... I wonder what you think of it as series, Jammer? Have you seen it?) where this problem is exasperating and overwhelmingly widespread from episode to episode, with very little happening and every plot stretched so thin across a whole season while so many threads are only very gradually expanded. And it begins to make one hate the characters because one can never see them do very much at all, let alone develop and have them relate some internal insight or connect to others around them.
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Graham Pilato
Mon, Oct 29, 2007, 4:57pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: Progress

(continued) I think the "progress" of rebuilding after the occupation, growing from militant Bajoran people to more patient, more reasonable listeners and activists, made for a fantastic overarching theme -- at the same time as the Starfleet presence on the station had to grow and "progress" in its new relationship with Bajor and, now the endless potentials of a wormhole to the Gamma Quadrant. I see, perhaps because it was simply well-made, themes tied in to titles of DS9's series episodes in the same way that J. M. Straczynski titled his on Babylon 5, a show I am curious (though I suspect he is a hater) about Jammer, your opinions on.

The title episode of DS9's first season (so say I) was Progress, and there was such a lot of well connected themes, plots and arcs already underway here, whether the show's writers knew it or not, that this pattern would continue on through series end... even if, much to its success and its failure at times, DS9 was unlike its competitor and estranged cousin series Babylon 5, as it was never planned from beginning to end all novel-like as was Babylon 5.

DS9 was much funnier, more reliably well acted, and looked much prettier (at least for a time -- Babylon 5's fx got astonishingly good by its second half). There have already been millions arguments made on Babylon 5's behalf, but it was in fact, too glued to its own singular vision and one overworked visionary's writing to survive its five years without turning to some horrible, horrible, schmaltzy soap-opera-y stuff.

DS9 never stooped so low. And its uncertain beginning here, with some totally missable ill advised episodes, like "The Passenger" and "If Wishes Were Horses", made way, with the brilliance of an almost new sci-fi notion of a religion based on gods that are right there to be perceived in the Prophets, powerful creatures as real as they are really different, wonderfully alien aliens -- a rarity in 90s Trek unfortunately -- set the stage for a particularly smart and even deeper second season that will continue to discuss some deep issues to do with frontier living and a society that needs to adapt to the diversity of the universe around it or die on its own.
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Graham Pilato
Mon, Oct 29, 2007, 4:24pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S1: In the Hands of the Prophets

I agree with Joe Ford, Jammer, about the Ferengi episodes... not all, but several, I think are much more underrated than they should be. There is (or... was... it's nearly 15 years on now from this season...) a big fan following for those characters, but the greatness of the DS9 Ferengi world-building and world-deepening comes from the first season, and that was the main reason I fell for DS9 in its first year back in 1993. It was a much bigger and better developed world, a hundred times deeper than anything that was established in Star Trek up to this point, with the possible exception of the Klingons on TNG. Four DS9 Ferengi episodes in particular, I think, are just horribly underrated: The Nagus, Rules of Acquisition, Family Business, and Body Parts. A great Ferengi episode per season in the first four years of the show. Each of these episodes deepens things tremendously and, while maybe not a huge collection of big laughs, they're utterly true to the established characters and well played out. I cared more about Rom and Quark through the first five years of the show than just about any other character besides Odo and Kira.

It's the aliens who get well developed in sci-fi.

That was a key difference, of course, in DS9, that so many non-Federation, weird and unscrupulous people were about, with totally different cultures of their own that persisted for longer than one or two episodes of sterile, clinical investigation on the bland Enterprise or Voyager.

Of course, In the Hands of the Prophets then pulled all the political tension together so nicely, that a brilliant second season would succeed this hesitant, uncertain first. I think
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