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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 8:11pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

As everyone has said, it's great to have Picard back, to show how it should be done.
I loved that they didn't try to set aside the fact that age alters things, for example the way he was totally puffed out by running away up the stairs in the big fight, and not up to playing any part in it. (Contrast the way the ageing Kirk in the somewhat forgettable movie Generations bounced around the way he always had - Captain Tigger.)

I like the suggestion that's been made that at the heart of the story is going to be Picard setting out to redeem the Federation and Star Fleet so that it gets back to its true self. Succeed or fail, that would be the right way for his return to be used.

The mechanics of the plot are fun to speculate about, but basically that is just business. And it's far too early to work out much of how that is going to unfold.

As for the occasional gripe about how Star Wars should stick to just being entertaining and back off from stuff that verges on the real world, that's not how Star Wars has ever been. It's been done with a light touch, but always a key element has been an implied message about equality and fairness and a commitment to working together to achieve those things. And if the society around us has come to a fuller understanding of what those values imply, the Star Trek universe needs to take account of that.

And I'm pleased that, from the little we've seen, Picard is set to do that. Both Picard the man and Picard the series.

(As for the odd sneer about The Orville that's surfaced every now and then in the comments, I profoundly disagree. So far The Orville has held up the classic TNG way of representing and developing those values while being throughly entertaining. There's no need, and no value in being tribal about these things. There are more ways to skin a cat than one.)
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J Ryan
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 7:59pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Jammer, just want to say thank you for the comprehensive, insightful, well-written reviews. They've become part of the whole Star Trek experience to me. Each episode I watch I go right to your site and read your review. Excellent work. I hope you are able to keep it going.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 7:35pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S5: Silicon Avatar

This episode went right over your head, eh George?
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George Monet
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 7:24pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S5: Silicon Avatar

Anyone who thinks it wasn't right to destroy the entity is being foolish. The entity wiped out ALL LIFE on planets. If left alone it would wipe out ALL LIFE in the universe and then die itself. There is no compromise you can make with an entity that consumes life by the planetload to feed itself. This isn't some life cycle predator-prey situation where whales and crustaceans live, reproduce and die in an endless chain for millions of years. The entity WIPED OUT ALL LIFE FULL STOP.

This episode also raised issues it shouldn't have. Such as why Starfleet is a peaceful organization with no warships when 99% of the rest of the galaxy is full of hostile aliens and giant threats like the Borg. If there were really big threats like the Borg, or even just the Romulans, Klingons, Cardassians etc. then realustically Starfleet would be fully militiatized and producing large numbers of advanced warships constantly on patrol. The writers want to have their cake and eat it too by portraying the galaxy as being full of giant dangers but then claiming Starfleet would be a peaceful organization with zero warships but still have a military command structure. Bollocks.

Furthermore the crystaline entity was supposed to be an unknown but this woman is somehow an expert on it who has been studying it for years? And she is one of those TNG "experts" who actually knows nothing about the thing she is allegedly an expert on. And apparently despite the fact that multiple colonies have been lost to the Borg, the crystalline entity, Cardassians, Bajoran terrorists, Romulans, Klingons, etc., the Federation is still sending out colonists without planetary defenses or warships to protect them?

The writers really need to make up their minds. Either the Federation is peaceful or the galaxy is dangerous. You cannot have it both ways. Since they decided the galaxy is dangerous then Starfleet must be a military organization full of warships.
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Kevin Cutshall
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 6:54pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S2: Twisted

This episode was average to me. It's hard to fathom though, how the ship being stretched and twisted led to rooms not being where they should be. It seemed more like a rearranging than a stretching.

BTW, They use the pool hall too much. That's two episodes in a row.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 6:53pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Q2

Agree with Ben, JB, and Mom. Plus, I liked the kid’s acting. He cracked me up when he still had his powers. You really need a good sense of humour to appreciate how great this show was.

Loved every Q episode in Voyager. In TNG I couldn’t stand the character. Love the chemistry Mulgrew and DeLancie had together.

I haven’t come across a bad episode in season 7, yet. “Muses” was the last bad one and I see that that was season 6.
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Jamie Mann
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 6:47pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: The Ascent

Sadly, this one was a fairly meh episode for me.

As other people have noted, it's an episode which could have worked a season or two earlier, but at this point, the relationship between Odo and Quark has already been explored, and there's little new here, and a load of bickering which could pretty much have been lifted wholesale from the aforementioned earlier episodes.

It would have been more interesting to have more of a focus on Odo's struggles with being a Solid - while it does factor into the storyline, especially with the broken leg, this would have been a prime opportunity to explore the implications of his situation. In fact, it would have worked better if he'd been injured in the crash and then had to depend on Quark for survival...
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 6:18pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

I still don't have the brainpower to read through all the comments so I don't know if anyone has said it, but the twin thing didn't feel like something we were supposed to know and understand. It was the scientist who said it, in telling Picard - she knows why because she's worked on this stuff. He just didn't ask about it (or, hasn't yet; they will have to explain it at some point, hopefully along with a bit more about how positronic cloning is supposed to work).

Last night I had a dream which included Bruce Maddox from something between MoAM and Picard, but with him looking like a sightly older version of Reginald Barclay. It was ... odd. But in my real life thoughts about Maddox, I rather like that he's gone from someone the audience is not supposed to like to presumably someone the audience will very much like for having continued Data's line, in a way.

Btw from the moment Dahj activated, I just knew she was Data's daughter - no idea how at that point, of course, but I was absolutely certain of it. It would be wonderful if somehow she is based on Data's research / experiments that led up to making Lal, but I don't know if that would work with the positronic cloning. I really did appreciate that there is a physical resemblance to Lal though, which I thought was very appropriate.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 6:04pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

I have to say I was thrown by the Irish Romulan...that's just not something I was expecting. But maybe the Universal Translator, or whatever it is, can simulate an Irish accent, why not?

Anyway, I enjoyed it, although Picard (and by extension, Stewart, obviously) does seem quite frail.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 5:18pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

First thanks to Jammer for the reviews/moderating etc of this site. Came across it just two years ago and have found it great when watching repeats of the Trek series. Even if many of the reviews are decades old, they're still interesting

Only started watching DSC this year on E4 and now Picard has started. Enjoying both.
The first episode of Picard was epic. Patrick Stewart's acting is that of an absolute legend! Liked how there was a lot to get through and the action moved quickly when away from the vineyard.

Title sequent was the only bit I didn't enjoy. Never liked VOY's titles much either. But then hey, who watches a show for the opening title sequence?
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 5:15pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

The year 2016 seemed to be a turning point for America, where it made a sharp turn away from heading for a future humanity like that depicted in Star Trek, and headed for one much more akin to the future humanity depicted in Avatar.

Looks like this show has recalibrated Starfleet accordingly, which would explain Picard's disgist.

The reporter than interviewed Picard seemed like she worked for One Federation News Network.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 4:40pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

I wonder what effect the "Romulan" supernova had on the Remans?
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Dave in MN
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 4:13pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

I do hope Booming continues watching The Orville because I really do believe he'll start feeling the Trek by the middle of Season 2.

I think it really gets old-school moral-dilemma Trekkish about then in all the best ways, who here WOULDN'T enjoy that?
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Dave in MN
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 4:10pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

@ Jammer

My 2 cent advice would be to resist the urge to binge them (since the episodes are only 22 minutes).I'd stretch out watching the episodes if/when you do review TAS. (like only 1 per sitting).

The repetitive soundtrack cues and recycled animation from episode to episode can occasionally distract from the story/fun.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 3:34pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

19 producers in the opening credits. I am 99% sure the payoff you all are wishing for, will not happen.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 3:18pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S4: First Contact

I just wanted to say my favourite character in this episode was the doctor, Berel. He was committed to the principles of his profession regardless of the subject in front of him, to the point of being dismissed.

While Mirasta and Krola represent the two main forces of thought that would take place among those with power in such a situation - do we advance or retreat? - I thought the doctor represented the “ordinary” citizen: namely, I have no idea what role you are going to play in my world but I choose to proceed according to the principles I’ve always espoused in whatever sphere of influence I have.
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Jamie Mann
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 2:20pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Children of Time

I'm... not sure about this one.

Once more, the entire bridge crew of the space station is swanning around for weeks in the gamma quadrant for $pointless_reason, at a time when hordes of Jem Hadar ships are wandering around the Cardassian border and taking pot shots at Federation and Klingon ships.

And once more, we find ourselves on a planet inhabited by a bunch of attractive Californians living in Generic European Rural Village.

But then there's a twist! A time travel twist! Though at least for once, it doesn't involve a trip back into some key point in American history.

Sadly, something doesn't sit right with me about the time travel elements of this episode. I think it's because it's not a closed loop - there's no indication that the crew were aware of the colony on their "first" trip back in time. Though I suppose it could be argued that Yedrin deliberately lied or concealed anything which would interfere with his plan.

(Though equally, the fact that O'Brien held out for a decade before giving up and (re)marrying also suggests that he didn't have any foreknowledge. And surely Yedrin Dax would have remembered that Jadzia Dax spotted the flaws in his faked sensor logs. And...)

That aside, the dilemma is an interesting one. Should the crew of the Defiant effectively sacrifice themselves to save the lives of the 8000 descendants (and their ancestors thereof, which would probably bump up the total to 12000 or so - oddly, this is never mentioned in the episode)?

To be honest, I'm not sure this is something which should have been decided by Sisco; instead, it should arguably have been put to the vote of the entire crew. After all, as O'Brien eloquently notes, many of them have marriages and relationships back home, so there's a cost in either choice (not to mention the personal aspects, such as the fact that O'Brien would have to break his marriage vows!). And then there's the wider picture - how would DS9 survive without it's only defensive platform and the entire bridge crew?

And I have to wonder what Star Fleet's Temporal Directives would say about this situation? I'd guess they'd probably recommend breaking the loop!

Then there's the actual descendants themselves, all of whom are suspiciously young and healthy looking, considering they've had 200 years of presumably dwindling technological and medical resources. I suppose it could be argued that they could use their replicators to replace stuff, but TNG and DS9 often point out how limited the replicators are when it comes to complex devices, except for when it's convenient for the writers, naturally. And even then, I'd question how much educational material and/or documentation would have been on the Defiant to train the 10 or so generations of kids who grew up on the planet.

Furture Dax and Odo are a bit off too. As ever, the role of the symbiote is unclear; in this instance, it's once again little more than an extended memory store. And Future Odo is just odd - he wanders around with a stoner glow and a blissed out grin. And the faux Klingons, running around hunting and blurting out cribbed bits of Klingon philosophy...

(Actually, what happened to Future Worf? We've previously seen Klingons running around and actively fighting at the ripe young age of 150, so Worf could have potentially still been alive - or only recently deceased...)

I dunno. It's an interesting dilemma, but the story they constructed around it feels off and the actual events are overly trite.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 2:00pm (UTC -6)
Re: DSC S2: Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2

Jammer you rule. Your reviews are great and I agree with them 99% of the time which is wild.

This comment probably won't be seen, but my biggest issue was that it seemed clear to me that the original idea was for the spore drive to be damaging to life in the spore world and for the tech to be abandoned for the sake of that life in a good star fleet decision. This was a better explanation that would make more sense instead of apparently only people on Discovery knowing it exist and there being no documentation outside of Discovery...

Anyway, THANKS for your reviews.
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Dan Davidson
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 1:15pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

I really enjoyed this pilot, and I think I'll mostly just leave it at that seeing as the nature of the series is that not all the answers are going to provided by episode's end.

Just a few thoughts:

~ It's awesome to see Sir Patrick back as Picard, and I think the writers did a great job showing him as a man affected by what's transpired, but not "broken" as I've seen other suggest. He's still the thoughtful, intellectual and compassionate man I remember. I trust we will *not* being seeing him taking down an army of Romulans/whatever with a phaser rifle in this series...

~ Also awesome to see Brent back as Data, and I'm glad they didn't retcon Data's death just so he can be there. Hopefully he has more appearances in store.

~ Loved the little things that touched upon the past (Ten Forward, poker, the Picard Day banner, etc.), but also that the show is clearly not going to be stuck there.

~ So much potential to being other past Trek characters into this show and see where they're at and how they might contribute to this storyline. I know several are coming up, but I find myself thinking about ones we have't seen in the previews. Hopefully the writers can find a way to do this without taking away from the main characters. With Voyager represented, I hope DS9 will find a way in too.
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Jason R.
Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 12:38pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

"Aside from the fact that I love Picard and yet still recognize that an objective person should acknowledge that cringe worthy is cringe worthy wherever you find it, you made a great "rebuttal." Fail more entertainingly next time"

Indeed, I have made it clear on this thread that I'm not objective. If they have Picard spending the next two episodes sitting on his porch filling out his taxes (do people pay taxes in the 24th century?) I will tune in.

But for the record, thus far things have been completely passable. Picard is still Picard - he hasn't shot anyone in the back, mutinied or started an interstellar war, so as far as I am concerned we are off to a good start.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 12:32pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

TAS is on the indefinite backlog.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 12:23pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

I will wait for answers but that daughter painting thing feels like retconning.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 12:04pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

One critical question to Jammer: why haven't you reviewed Star Trek: The Animated Series?
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 11:33am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Booming said: "How did he know a 30 year old painting that Picard kept at the archives and that nobody accessed (Picard asked the computer)."

IMO the Data connection is too strongly foreshadowed and too well emphasized by Picard himself for these two new androids not to be directly descended from the work of Data himself. Even if Data isn't the one who rolled these off the assembly line, somebody with access to his work definitely did. If Data knew what he wanted his daughter to look like 30 years ago, anybody directly copying his work would also know. As has been pointed out, Maddox was in continued contact with Data over the years. I wouldn't be shocked if Data willed him his technological inheritance after his death.
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Sat, Jan 25, 2020, 11:19am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

"Mostly me and Omicron. We skype and email each other about your transgressions and plot your various trials and tribulations in the hope of achieving satisfaction."

Don't drag me into this.

I was the one who told Booming to stop with the Orville if he doesn't like it. I still stand by that recommendation. People should not force themselves to watch stuff they don't like.

@Jason R.

"But seeing the Enterprise D and Captain Picard Day drawing pretty much sealed the deal. And yeah, it's Picard.... I feel like I've come home and found my long lost friend. They've got my money for as long as they want to put Patrick Stewart in front of the camera."

Ah. Finally an explanation for what's going on. Touche to CBS, I guess.

"You don't have a choice, it is canon."

Of-course I have a choice. We all do. As intelligent consumers of entertainment, it is up to us to decide what we accept and we don't.

Anyway, since nearly everybody here seems to be thrilled with new direction that Trek has taken, I'm not going to ruin your party. Enjoy.
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