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Top Hat
Thu, Dec 12, 2019, 9:58am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Nightingale

The story goes that the reason why they axed Jennifer Lien instead of Wang (Harry was all set to die, after all) for Season 4 was because Wang was included in that year's People's 50 Most Beautiful People (those pants! If you take that story at face value, it seems his additional publicity value outweighed how unhappy the producers were with him.
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Thu, Dec 12, 2019, 9:23am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Nightingale

Garret as beautiful? I figured he just didn’t share generously or something.
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Wed, Dec 11, 2019, 11:39pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Nightingale

It was a good premise to work with, and an un-stupid setup to address the idea of a true command for Harry, with real responsibility and consequences. The script even directly addressed the eternal ensign’s seven years without promotion, which should have seemed like at least an ironic sop to viewers who have felt either that HK is a character without promise (which is not the case - anyone remember how smash-face green and naive Julian Bashir was in the beginning, and HE certainly got growths, or has been badly underserved by the writers (my view).

Alas, they underserve him again. They didn’t HAVE to make him an indecisive, micro-managing, arrogant and unsympathetic middle manager. Those characteristics do not naturally emerge from earlier shows where he’s been shown to have more judgment and maturity. He could just as believably - and more rewardingly - have been allowed to demonstrate more ability here. The writers pranked him.

And they made it worse by saddling the episode with the unmotivated, unmitigated, and unconvincing B-plot.

Did the writers have it in for Garret Wang because he’d been proclaimed as beautiful, or was he a prima donna jerk to them?

I’m often an advocate for the underdog installment, but there’s little to redeem this snooze-fest.
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Peter G.
Wed, Dec 11, 2019, 4:40pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: Deja Q

@ James G,

"That line about changing the gravitational constant of the Universe. That would have have devastating consequences in billions of star systems in billions of galaxies, for the sake of one planet and its satellite. I don't like to think that Q has that power."

I see no reason to believe Q doesn't have that power. That being said, he might have meant that he would change the gravitational constant of the universe - but just locally. The "of the universe" is a term that means it's contant across the universe, but wouldn't necessarily mean that he'd have to change it for the entire universe to do this. All changing it locally would mean is that it's no longer a "universal constant"!

As an aside on this point, extending the warp field to the asteroid pretty does exactly what Q suggested, so his idea wasn't even far-fetched. It was supposed to sound ridiculous, but I think mostly in the sense that he would just do it by thinking it, whereas humans would have to come up with a technological trick to approximate that effect.

"Every time Q turns up, it's "oh jeez not you again", yet he is possessed of powers and knowledge that might transform the human experience for all eternity."

Yes, I've had this problem myself with early Trek's use of Q. It might be fair to surmise that after Encounter at Farpoint and maybe Hide and Q that Picard has his ego hurt by Q's power over them, and his attitude after that was to treat Q as an annoying blight. Maybe the only power Picard could ever hope to have over Q was to not treat him seriously. Personally I think that was a mistake, and apparently Q did also because in Q Who he took steps to rectify them taking him more seriously. By Deja Q I agree it would be illogical for them to suddenly treat him like he's useless and to be dismissed, so I think (and some of us here have sort of agreed on this point already) that Deja Q sort of breaks continuity and even Trek logic for the sake of a wonderfully comic and fun episode. Trying to make sense of the remaining Q episodes is a lot easier if Deja Q isn't counted among them. One reason being, it's hard to believe that Deja Q's story is canon-worthy if we're also supposed to believe the premiere and finale in terms of Q's role in helping humanity.
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James G
Wed, Dec 11, 2019, 2:03pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S3: Deja Q

I really like this one. It does require the massive suspension of disbelief that all 'Q' episodes ask of their audiences. But it's worth it. The comic performances from de Lancie and Spiner are spot on and the writers came up with some delicious dry dialogue.

A few thoughts anyway:

That line about changing the gravitational constant of the Universe. That would have have devastating consequences in billions of star systems in billions of galaxies, for the sake of one planet and its satellite. I don't like to think that Q has that power. Something a bit more modest and imaginative might have been a better bet (and he does of course fix the problem at the end of the episode - we can assume, I hope, that he hasn't made a fundamental change to the celestial mechanics of the totality of the cosmos).

Q's hair looks a little shorter in some of the scenes. Bit of a continuity gaffe.

Every time Q turns up, it's "oh jeez not you again", yet he is possessed of powers and knowledge that might transform the human experience for all eternity.

Still. All that said, it's a belter of an episode.
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Wed, Dec 11, 2019, 9:39am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

People really loved Star Wars for some reason. It is really funny to see how Disney is squeezing the last drop of milk out of that cow.
Oh capitalism, you are a heartless bitch. :D
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Wed, Dec 11, 2019, 7:34am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S3: Blood Fever

Good old Paris. Intentionally friendzoning himself only to get the long term mating. Classic long con
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Wed, Dec 11, 2019, 5:17am (UTC -6)
Re: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Damn, people are upset that Jammer gave this film a good rating, aren't they? Guys, people can have opinions that don't line up with your own, you know. There's a lot to like about the film, and Jammer stated them very well, in my opinion. Personally, I think The Last Jedi was just average, not the total masterpiece some people like to say it is, but not the worst film of all time either, I'm open to hearing other viewpoints though, and you should be too if you're going to be frequenting a review site.
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 10:43pm (UTC -6)
Re: Solo: A Star Wars Story

Why are we wasting time talking about all the prequels and requels that are not very good. Well maybe Rogue One is the best movie since Disney took over. We need to be talking about The Mandalorian because it is the best thing in the Star Wars universe since the Original Trilogy.
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 10:11pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S1: Angel One

@William B
"hope I'm not being a busybody, but I think Booming meant those 'more debate, silly!' 'will this madness never end' with emoticons comments in a tongue in cheek, 'Its fun to talk about this' kind of way, OTDP, which is to say I think it's not meant to be aggressive or insulting."

I never thought otherwise.

I'm just getting the distinct impression that - at this point - he is debating just for the sole sake of killing time, rather than for the sake of making an actual point and/or getting a clearer understanding of the issues at hand.
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 10:01pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: True Q

Well, this was definitely a better "what if human Q" episode than Hide and Q. It could've drawn in some of Riker's experience with sudden godlike being powers, but eh, I'm fine with forgetting all about that episode.

Still didn't have too much going for it. I don't think Amanda ever got elevated far above "generic", and you'd kind of hope a character's going to be a little more than just "generic" if you're going to give them godlike powers. (Sudden Q puberty. Quberty.)

Didn't get me laughing as much as Deja Q did (though John de Lancie is always compelling), didn't get me thinking or empathising as much as... any number of other episodes have. I'm gonna give this one a solid "eh, it was alright" -- a rough two and a half stars.
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 8:58pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Schisms

Bloody good one, this. My opinions pretty much fall in line with Jammer's review -- I certainly didn't expect an episode that began with Data's poetry recitals and a seemingly mundane sleepless Riker to build into genuine horror. The holodeck "table" scene was definitely a highlight, too -- I found it almost ridiculous to start out (ahh yes, the Enterprise crew collectively deciding how to construct a table, did someone misplace the IKEA instructions?) but grew into something far more sinister once it started to become clear exactly *what* kind of table they were remembering.

Not too often that TNG goes for this sort of tone. I loved it. The clicking in the alien room was a big part of the horror for me... and definitely helped offset any possible cheesiness from the design of the aliens.

also I love any appearance of the shi's barber, I want a haircut from him
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 6:33pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

Watching Voyager back to back for past couple months and whilst this episode is not perfect it is much better than the dross served up in some of the first 2/3 seasons.
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William B
Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 5:22pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II

Finale spoilers

Ah so THAT'S why Geordi became a writer and apparently successfully wooed Leah.
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 5:18pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II

I'm pretty sure Clemens ended up doing more for Guinan than Picard did. Picard pretty much only got the chance to stick around for a few minutes before Clemens got there.

To paraphrase a quote...

LAFORGE: What is it that you want in a man?
GUINAN: Me personally?
LAFORGE: As a woman. What's the first thing you look at?
GUINAN: His body of work.
LAFORGE: His body. Of course.
GUINAN: No, his body of work. I'm attracted to writers.
LAFORGE: Seriously?
GUINAN: Seriously.
GUINAN: Maybe because a writer was very kind to me once when I was hurting. Took care of me.
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Top Hat
Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 2:21pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II

Given that there are also extras in Indian garb (I think, going on memory) at the literary event, I wonder if the conceit is that Guinan is posing as a wealthy and educated African woman who is travelling the world.
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Peter G.
Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 2:17pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II

" I was talking more about the period near the end of the episode, where most of the Enterprise crew have returned to their time but Picard's stayed to look after Guinan. She's not trapped there, but he definitely is."

Yeah, I took this to basically be "where is that so-called deeper-than-family relationship they're supposed to develop?" And I totally agree. I have no idea if the showrunners were actually trying to show that backstory here (in which case they FAILED) or whether this was just a teaser for what was to come. They did in fact later try to fill this gap in Generations, and as it happens they FAILED again (or maybe for the first time). I guess we'll never know!
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 1:04pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II

@Chrome: ooh, thanks for the mini history lesson! I'm not American and didn't grow up learning their history -- always interesting to learn now.

@Jason R: Mhm, but to clarify, I was talking more about the period near the end of the episode, where most of the Enterprise crew have returned to their time but Picard's stayed to look after Guinan. She's not trapped there, but he definitely is.
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Jason R.
Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 11:29am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II

"I sort of expected more with Picard and younger Guinan trapped in the 19th century"

She wasn't trapped in the 19 century I.e. time travelling. She was simply alive then and visiting earth or so I understood.
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 11:09am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II


I’m with you on not being overly nitpicky on historical accuracy, especially in this case when it’s kind of out-of-universe issue. Even so, historically California was a free state before the Civil War and there were always a small handful of well-read free blacks who had money and political clout to do things other blacks could not. Given Guinan’s attire and the circle she’s rubbing elbows with, we can only assume she was posing as an ultra-elite black. I would just keep in mind this was an extremely rare exception back then and we can see Clemens’ intellectual relationship with a black woman as more about the historical fact that Clemens was an influential abolitionist of the time.
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 9:50am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S6: Time's Arrow, Part II

Actually found myself enjoying this rather a lot. I felt it was too short, though. I sort of expected more with Picard and younger Guinan trapped in the 19th century. And I could watch days of mucking about in the past. Loved Geordi switching from VISOR to dark glasses every time there were people about.

I am the type to love holodeck episodes, so I guess this appeals to me in the same sort of way. I found Twain a bit annoying, though.

RE: comments above questioning Guinan having no trouble in in the 19thC as a black woman, I'm fine with excusing things like this: we excuse a lot of "unrealistic" things about the future in fiction, so why not the past? Lets us do more in past-based stories with less bogging down in societal issues (not to say there shouldn't be stories involving that, even specifically time travel stories, but not *every* one has to. Sometimes we can just have fun.)
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 12:57am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Repression

It wasn’t a GOOD installment, but a combination of several elements made it “fun” and entertaining. It was a decent whodunit up front, though I guessed Tuvok before it was revealed. So I liked that the writers gave that away early, undercutting our self-satisfaction for having “got it.”

Which means something else is going on, and we have to figure out what. Then we got the ol’ split personality hustle, and could enjoy Tuvok being both the culprit and the detective, playing both roles earnestly.

Next it became a question of motivation which churned on for a few minutes, asking us to figure out why Tuvok would seemingly be attacking the Maquis, and what did it have to do with Bajoran extremysticism. Maybe Tuvok had suppressed a burning hate for the Maquis (after all, he’d been planted as a spy by Starfleet), and something had triggered his bloodlust at this late date.

But no...he’s not ANTI-Maquis, he’s activating them for a mutiny, and the crew injuries are just unfortunate side-effects. Well, whyever would he do that? And when we learn his function was engineered via remote control by the Bajoran cleric...well, okaaaaaay, but as Jammer asks about the cleric,

“What can he possibly get out of it? What purpose does it serve that helps any Maquis or former Maquis in any way?”

Three options work for me. As mentioned upthread, maybe he’s one of the South American Nazis who plotted a deluded return to power for decades after WW.II, and thinks Maquis with an Intrepid-class ship hi-jacked from the Feds would be a powerful (eventual) gathering point for a renewal of the cause.

Or maybe he just hates the Federation for what they allowed to happen to the Maquis, and finds some malicious joy in this belated act of revenge.

Or MAYBE he hated Tuvok, personally and for his undercover role, and took particularly malicious glee in breaking the vaunted Vulcan discipline - never mind how long the interval between offense and retribution. Along with this, he likely had some pride in his mind-control craft.

After the final twist that Tuvok was a remote-control agent, the plot descends into sheer lunacy, working out a mutiny played as farce. You couldn’t take it seriously, but you could enjoy the spectacle of our players in betrayals and shifts of allegiance.

Thus far I found it a suitably convoluted mind game for the viewer, with the successive reveals well paced.

The ending was simply lame, and I’d find it hard to accept that Janeway would forgive everyone so blithely. But ... all’s well that ends well, huh?

I enjoyed this romp.

I wish we’d had more Vulcans as core characters in the various ST series. We’ve really only gotten to know three well, but I’ve found them all well-written and compelling.

It’s hard not to consider Spock the greatest of them all, just for dignity and gravitas his example lent the race.

But then I don’t know where to rank Tuvok or T’Pol. I’m one of those freaks who thinks Jolene Blalock was fabulous in her role, and brought a lot of depth and dimension to our understanding of the Vulcan soul.

And I also think Tim Russ briiiantly portrays perhaps the most conflicted and complex Vulcan of them all. And one has to point out that, for all his seriousness and probity, he’s the Vulcan we’ve seen most often fail to maintain the discipline, often with serious consequences. Meld, Unimatrix Zero, and this episode are the ones that come first to mind - but, paradoxically, this most serious of Vulcans is also the most unreliable.

I like that.
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Tue, Dec 10, 2019, 12:19am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S7: What You Leave Behind

Until we meet again. Farewell Odo.
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Mon, Dec 9, 2019, 9:14pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: The Begotten

I was re-watching this episode right when I got a phone news notification Auberjonois died :( I couldn't finish it and had to watch it later. This episode is one of his best imo.

Really phenomenal acting in this episode. The scene where the baby changeling (changelet?) tries to make a face, and Odo is beaming ear to ear-- it's one of my favorite scenes on Star Trek. Really, really touching.

I agree with Jammer's assessment the Kira birth scenes and the cop-out ending. I wish Odo had either gotten his abilities back far later in the season, or through some other mechanism.

Fuck Shakaar. That guy's such a whiny jerk. Kira deserves better.

I did like the nice touch at the end where Kira is missing the baby, though. I like that they didn't make it a whole thing, or even give it more than a couple lines, but it makes sense to me that a surrogate mom would at least spend a little bit of time missing the life she carried with her for nine months.
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Top Hat
Mon, Dec 9, 2019, 4:32pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S7: Inheritance

He does, if only by name:

DATA: Doctor, I have scanned the journals of the colonists. There is only one Juliana mentioned in them. Her last name was O'Donnell.
JULIANA: That's me.
DATA: But there was no mention that my father was married to you.
JULIANA: Because of my mother. She thought that Noonian was an eccentric scientist who was too old for me. We decided to marry secretly to give her a chance to get used to our being together.
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