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Yanks
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 6:52am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

@ John Harmon

"I was really worried about Picard and I’m glad I was wrong."

Well, he's not Picard from 20 years ago, but I'm fine with the 80 year old version.

"Shockingly not everything in the trailer ended up in the first episode which I really thought would happen."

I'm not sure I like this. I think I would have rather had the trailer just reveal 'Remembrance' stuff and left us guessing for what's to come. I don't think they needed Jerry Ryan to sell this thing, or Riker. Kind of made the big reveal of the Borg Cube kind of blah.

"I’m sad that B-4 didn’t make it. I loved that aspect of the Countdown comic, that the memory transfer worked."

I'm not sad at all. B4 shouldn't have been able to handle "Data". If it could, why create Data in the first place? I'm not familiar with the Countdown Comic, but if was revealed by Dr. Agnes Jurati here that B-4 couldn't handle it.

"I’m confused as to how Picard’s rescue attempt on the Romulans was connected to the “rogue synthetics” destroying the Mars shipyard. That journalist was basically blaming him for it."

Me too... clarity forthcoming I hope.

"I’m also confused how Starfleet had a slave race of androids anyway. Wasn’t that the point of Measure Of A Man? I guess they weren’t sentient?"

MoM dodged the sentient thing all together. Data was only awarded the right to choose, not sentience.


@Rahul

"One part of the history I found dubious is the Romulan supernova and the Romulans reaching out to the Federation for help as if it was an emergency and they didn't see it coming. If anything, the Romulans are extremely good strategists and should have been able to predict their sun going supernova with plenty of time for evacuation/relocation."

I've thought this since ST2009. The whole scenario make no scientific sense what-so-ever.


@ Nolan

"I will say, that while I like DS9 for it's serialization, I don't know if Trek works as a fully serialized series. On-going plot threads, myth arcs, and some multiple episode plot arcs have shown to be really successful, in fact, DS9 and to an extent ENT showed how to do story arcs in Trek successfully, because in those there was overarcing stories and themes, but each episode maintained it's own identity and focus, whilst contributing to the bigger story, even if it was a one-off because it allowed for some pacing. I don't mind heavy serialization, but I'm starting to miss the semi-serial/episodic format. That's where Trek lives at its best I think."

I agree. While DSC appears to be stuck in the season long story arcs, I'm hoping for some sort of episodic format here, but I'm afraid I'm not going to get it. Modern TV seems to be serial... especially with the shortened seasons.


@ Tranya and Tonic

"Nice Disco tie-in with the boyfriend being a Xahean, like Tilly's friend Po."

Wow, nice catch. I completely missed that one.


I have no issue with Soji and her sister. Looking forward to learning how they made them. Having some sort of "Data" around for Picard will pay off I'm sure.

Something I forgot to post last night.... I smell Lore here... but knowing that Spiner was dead set against reviving Data I could be wrong.

Nice to see some new activity here.

Break...

Anyone know when DSC Season 3 will be available?
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Fenn
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 5:36am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S6: His Way

I also wanna say that Vic Fontaine is also kind of terrifying. He can just... drop into other people's holosuites? And somehow get access to the comm?

Is this guy gonna be the next Moriarty? Is DS9 gonna get re-recaptured by the Dominion and then fought off singlehandedly by a lone holographic lounge singer?
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Dave
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 3:51am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Hey Everyone

Delighted Jammer's site still has tons of followers and great discussion. Look forward to reading all the banter. Over 2 decades and this is still the best Trek discussion on the net!
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Tommy D.
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 3:32am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Loved it!
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Nolan
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 2:29am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Oh, I forgot to mention; how much does everyone think Lore might be involved in some of this somehow? I know, it's all early speculation at this point, but if I had to guess, Maddox used HIM for his experiments, and Lore using his "children", set Mars on fire.

Which, Mars being on fire. Interesting development.
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John Harmon
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 2:09am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

@Jammer thank you for continuing to maintain this site and your reviews. I don’t know what your job is or what has your schedule ever hectic, but thank you for making the reviews happen. Honestly it wouldn’t be Star Trek without a Jammer review to go with it.
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Ian
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 1:28am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Just watched ""Remembrance" and I generally liked what I saw. This was very much a set-up episode as there are still other characters we have yet to meet. It's just a kick to see Picard again but kind of sad to see out of Starfleet, "waiting to die" as he put it.

Just a few quick thoughts:

1) Wonderful to see the Enterprise D again, if only briefly and in a dream.
2) The opening credits and theme music were disappointing. I wasn't expecting the Jerry Goldsmith theme but it's nothing memorable. I was hoping for something that would stand out and that would bridge the gap between the TNG and this series.
3) Loved seeing Data again. He looks a lot better but there's only so much you can do with CGI. Brent Spiner is 70 years old. Besides, its Picard having a dream about someone he hasn't seen in years so does it really matter how Data appears now?
4)Maybe I'm missing something here but why wouldn't Starfleet and/or the Federation want to help the Romulans? What better way to help end decades of conflict and distrust? Maybe this will be explained later but what happened to the alliance between the Federation, the Klingons and the Romulans at the end of the Dominion War?
5)Picard didn't bother to ask Dahj what her name was until hours later after sunset?
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Reece Zimm
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 1:11am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Just great!
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Leif
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 12:53am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Where was Seven of Nine? Was anyone else disappointed she wasnt in this?
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AntonioE
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 12:34am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Impressive so far. Patrick Stewart is every bit the magnanimous actor he is always been. That interview scene gave me goosebumps and it was all because of Patrick Stewart’s wonderful, utterly convincing performance. Unfortunately this episode is not much to go off of since I know we have not been introduced to the other half of the main cast of characters. But so far it is looking promising. The writing is better so far than Discovery. The main titles and Jeff Russo’s main theme is certainly interesting and gets the job done but is a little too simplistic and around the middle of the credits sequence I felt very bored, Wondering if anything was going to happen. It was a strange feeling to feel during a credits sequence. Otherwise the music was fine.

The story is intriguing so far they. They have kept just enough hidden to keep me interested. So far the show is the very definition of slow burn but if that slow burn pays off that then I am in it for the long-haul. Overall, this was a very good episode and it is wonderful to see Captain Picard again.
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Nolan
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 12:21am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

@John Harmon

Yeah, say what you will about "Faith of the Heart/Where My Heart Will Take Me," but you know after binging six episodes at some point that song'll start spilling out. Don't think I could hum the Picard theme. And I don't think there's going to be any bloopers of the cast breaking out in a rendition of their theme after a particularily dramatic line reading either... "Dahhh, dadada, dadada da da..."
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John Harmon
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 12:11am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

If I had a complaint, it’s the music, or at least the theme. It was pretty bad. Not at all memorable or standout like a theme should be. Especially a Star Trek theme.
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John Harmon
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 12:08am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

That was quite a good a start. Considering Discovery was constant mind numbing action and melodrama from minute one, I was really worried about Picard and I’m glad I was wrong.

It was well paced. There was time for the story to breathe which was great. Shockingly not everything in the trailer ended up in the first episode which I really thought would happen.

Picard felt like Picard. As much as I usually groan at fan service, the moments like that in this were well done and definitely touched me.

There’s just no hiding the fact that Brent Spiner is a 70 year old man, but I quickly got over the looks. It helped that he was only shown sparingly. I’m sad that B-4 didn’t make it. I loved that aspect of the Countdown comic, that the memory transfer worked.

I’m confused as to how Picard’s rescue attempt on the Romulans was connected to the “rogue synthetics” destroying the Mars shipyard. That journalist was basically blaming him for it.

I’m also confused how Starfleet had a slave race of androids anyway. Wasn’t that the point of Measure Of A Man? I guess they weren’t sentient?

At any rate, I’m intrigued where it’s going. I was actually engaged and it felt both familiar and new, which is what I want from new Star Trek. I can’t wait to see more.
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Nolan
Fri, Jan 24, 2020, 12:00am (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

@Rahul

Hven't seen Star Trek: Nemesis or (2009) lately I take it, as both those answer your questions about Data and the Romulan supernova respectively. ;-)
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Rahul
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 11:47pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

The overly highly hyped premiere of PIC didn't disappoint -- pretty good but not awesome. Certainly a better premiere than TNG and DSC which I assume PIC will often be compared with. Great to see the character of Picard back and being urged to start living again instead of waiting to die.

PIC is like an epilogue for TNG whereas DSC was like a prologue to TOS. PIC's main villains appear to be Romulans whereas for DSC it was Klingons. Personally, I've always found it a stretch that a people like the Klingons could accomplish anything with their warrior mentality -- can't think of 1 Klingon who you'd say could be a serious engineer and build a warp reactor, whereas it is much easier to see a Romulan accomplishing anything technical. Have always felt the Romulans were far more interesting adversaries to the Federation so if PIC is going that route instead of using Klingons prominently, that's an advantage over DSC.

What is a bit tiresome is that there is more discussion here about cloning, creating androids from flesh & blood. This topic has been beaten to death on Trek starting with Dr. Korby in "What Are Little Girls Made Of?" So now, it would be a violation of some treaty to re-create an android, but the Romulan reclamation site (Borg cube) seems to be doing just that.

One part of the history I found dubious is the Romulan supernova and the Romulans reaching out to the Federation for help as if it was an emergency and they didn't see it coming. If anything, the Romulans are extremely good strategists and should have been able to predict their sun going supernova with plenty of time for evacuation/relocation. So Picard leads the charge in helping relocate 900 million Romulans is the end result. Something doesn't seem right about this...

As for Dahj, she looks like an older version of Lal from "The Offspring". That much is nice continuity if it is meant to be so from the standpoint that Data would want to re-create Lal. But Dahj apparently has a human-looking mother so maybe it'll be revealed how she was created... and why twins have to be created -- sounds arbitrary.

Too bad Data is "dead" -- sacrificed his life for Picard on their last mission, which I assume is the destruction of Utopia Planetia on Mars. I guess this is the dream Picard has in the opening. Data was one of the strong points of TNG -- but looks like he's only appearing in flashbacks or dreams.

I guess Star Trek these days doesn't put the title of the episode on screen anymore. Still miffed about this as I always like to catch that when re-watching an old ep.

An episode like this is plenty of exposition and doesn't have to provide answers. Ultimately episodes will have to provide answers and they can be judged more harshly based on how good the answers are. So the questions to ponder for now are interesting -- more so than they were DSC. PIC benefits from characters we know and can draw on the more plentiful TNG cannon -- doesn't seem like there's a need for retconning, which is nice given that it's not being shoe-horned 10 years prior to TNG. I suppose the Romulan supernova is a retcon.

3 stars for "Remembrance" -- start of an interesting arc for a character everybody cares greatly for. Definitely an hour that held my interest. Obviously eager to see how TNG characters fit into the new plot. It would seem the Romulans are recreating "synthetics" as their soldiers, perhaps with Borg technology? I hope there is more to the threat than that. I'm sure there is. Pretty solid start for PIC.
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Nolan
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 11:23pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Picard airs on actual TV in Canada, which is nice, but does mean I have to wait and avert my eyes from parts of the internet for a chunk of the day, ah well.

I guess TV's made a resurgence in the 24th century (25th?) Given past series said it died and gave the impression all news was written.

However, the magic and holo tech plays so much better here than in Discovery. It feels like natural progression rather than sticking out like a sore thumb.

Good to see Ten-Forward again, though the CGI to recreate the iconic windows was a bit... ehh.

I am so glad that the Romulans are getting a big arc; they've been criminally under and misused so far. Though I'm still a bit miffed about Romulous getting destroyed. I always felt with proper use of the Tal Shiar, one could have a good Trek political/spy thriller on their hands, ala Bourne, Bond, Three Days of the Condor, or heck, even The Winter Soldier. And I'm still hoping for that ENT continuation (I know, I know)

That said, I found myself getting really invested in this, to the point it made me realize how casually I'd been watching other shows (lookin' st you, Arrowverse, with all your predictability and uninspiredness.)

And honest to god call-backs and reverence for what came before, rather than changing things for change's sake. Disco shoulda known that, but it was too busy being a cash grab. (Though, I guess I owe it somewhat, cause I doubt this show would've been greenlit if the interest wasn't shown to be there.)

I will say, that while I like DS9 for it's serialization, I don't know if Trek works as a fully serialized series. On-going plot threads, myth arcs, and some multiple episode plot arcs have shown to be really successful, in fact, DS9 and to an extent ENT showed how to do story arcs in Trek successfully, because in those there was overarcing stories and themes, but each episode maintained it's own identity and focus, whilst contributing to the bigger story, even if it was a one-off because it allowed for some pacing. I don't mind heavy serialization, but I'm starting to miss the semi-serial/episodic format. That's where Trek lives at its best I think.

All that said, I'm looking forward to getting back into new Trek with characters that have embodied the comfort zone. Picard still seems like someone it'd be a pleasure to spend time with, much like he did as TNG went on. And I also don't have to be on gaurd for some dodgy continuty to slap me in the face. (Although I still hate the title. Way to suck the drama out of it for newbs when they get to BoBW or CoC)

Is it next week yet?
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BZ
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 9:47pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

I am a bit reluctant to come to any conclusions this early, given that the pilot of "Discovery" was nothing like the rest season 1, but I mostly like what I see. It's refreshing to get most of the mysteries surrounding Daj resolved in the first episode, and not in the way everyone was speculating (she's not a Borg or a Q), even if she had to die (another surprise). Also, from what we see so far, the Federation and Starfleet have not been corrupted or taken over by fascists or anything. In fact, I wonder if Picard's resignation was an over-reaction.

The "reveal" that the Romulans are on a Borg cube is a bit disingenuous given it was in just about every trailer, but even that hearkens back to the TNG or at least Voyager era where reveals like this were often spoiled by trailers.

Given the hostility toward Romulans I almost wonder if Picard's "servants" are illegal immigrants.
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Yanks
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 9:44pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Just fantastic!! Super excited to see the rest.

Starting off with a poker game. Perfect.

Data was used expertly I thought. Not hitting your head over it but used in context beautifully.

Was this his brother's vineyard?

I think this opener did what it needed to do. Filled us in on the past and reintroduced us to Picard. The synthetic thing really surprised me. It also surprised me that Star Fleet got cold feet... I think they could have mentioned Spock's effort to stop the supernova. This did, of course, validate the "Kelvin" timeline. (as much as I hate calling it that) I like the look of the show.

The interview was a perfect way to fill us in. Dunkirk was perfect too. I only got the reference because of the recent movie.

Taj wasn't activated? .... hmmm... intriguing.

A tremendous job with the fight scenes I thought. The only part that caught my eye in a bad way was when she blew up and Picard was blasted what, 75+ feet? .... he's 80 you know ...

Was there an episode in TNG where Data actually painted that picture?

I got a little sentimental when Picard went into the storage room...

Nice insertion of Mattox I thought (someone that 99% of trekkies hate). It looks like he continued his work after synthetics were banned... made himself a couple of synthetics. Data is still unique and B4 couldn't handle the download during Nemesis. (THANK YOU!)

Flesh android? ... Why ban androids and not holograms?

Nice to see a couple of Romulans living with Picard.

I like the actress that plays Dr. Asher (Soji).

Then, of course, the big reveal at the end showing us a Borg cube.

The theme didn't grab me as the Discovery theme did. Not bad of course, (not Faith of the Heart for sure) but nothing special. I'm sure I'll grow to love it.

I can't wait to meet the rest of the regulars and get this show on the road.

I'm glad they release these earlier. I hated having to wait until 8:30 for a new episode of Discovery.

An easy 4-star opener for me.

Make it so!!
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Trent
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 9:29pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Almost every line uttered by Picard in this is masterful. Stewart is riveting here.

But there's a huge disconnect between the episode he is in, and the episode everyone else is in.

Almost everything beyond Stewart dips into overcooked melodrama, wild overacting, is rushed, or filmed with shots cut too short and given no room to breath or generate weight. Consider, for example, the opening "beauty shots" of space, all fading into each other, before we see the Enterprise D. All of these shots should be longer, allowed to be savored, as should the beautiful scenes of Picard wandering his vineyard with his dog, which are rushed with a series of frenetic fades.

The "girl with mysterious powers and in distress" subplot - a cliche ripped from Firefly, Jason Bourne etc - was also often rushed and cheesy. A better writer would have ditched the scenes with her and her boyfriend being attacked, and have her first appear on Picard's vineyard. Instead of having her then leaving Picard's vineyard, and then deciding to re-meet up with him (another cheesy scene), and then suddenly dying (another cheesy scene; an exploding disruptor kills her), a better writer would streamline this: have her leave the vineyard with Picard, visit the Federation archives with him, and be attacked whilst leaving together.

I also thought the show's action sequences were ridiculous. What's with Kurtzman and wire-Kungfu? The hand-combat scenes here are cheesy, belong in a Marvel movie, and scenes with our heroes flying/leaping, or in which an explosion hits Picard (why isn't he taken to a hospital immediately?), are laughably cartoonish.

Alfred Hitchcock used to say that everyone knowing a gun is under the table is more interesting than guns being fired; anticipation, buildup and tension are more exciting than space Kungfu. Surely there are more interesting, original and tense ways to cook up a sense of danger and threat than having ninja-Romulans beaming into rooms and throwing knives? Stewart deserves highbrow action sequences, clever, measured, patiently drawn-out and exquisite, not a 12 year old's conception of cool.

Like Spock's relationship to Michael is shoehorned into Discovery, we see Data's relationship with his "daughter" shoehorned here, a bit of fanbaiting which admittedly works to an extent (Spiner and Stewart are just so good), but nevertheless is wholly unnecessary. Alluding to Data/Lal and daughters indirectly might have worked better. But this episode doesn't do subtlety; characters overtly play with "meaningful rings", constantly have "explanatory dreams", paintings are literal rather than symbolic, reporters infodump decades worth of history and so on.

Finally, the spoiler-heavy credit sequence is awful on every level (the score begins nicely but never swells or climaxes with satisfaction). Indeed, the episode as a whole is over-scored, several times employing intrusive music when silence would work better.

So yeah, the pacing and melodrama issues of Discovery are still present to a degree. The show needs more grace and patience, and less comic book tropes. It has a tremendous asset in Steward, who dominates the screen and delivers more power than the best FX, and needs to be confident in his ability to command attention.

Still, this is nevertheless a strong pilot. Earth and its various Federation locales look great, Picard's sparring with a news-reporter is great (though too many buzzing droids), his dream-interactions with Data likewise, the Romulan music from TOS is a nice callback, and the plot's promises to "flesh out" the Romulans is interesting.

It's hard to know how to rank this in relation to other Trek pilots. With "Remembrance", one gets the sense that the episode does "less things bad" than previous Trek pilots, but also does "much less things". As it was shot as a two hour episode (or two parter), one probably has to see next week's installment to judge it properly.
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Geekgarious
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 9:28pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

Pretty good, I’m definitely intrigued. The score and ending Felt straight out of the JJverse, and I was sad to see Dahj go so quickly. Looking forward to learning more about her sister at least.
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Marco
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 9:16pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

I had forgotten what a good actor can do with ANY material! I am 63 and if Stewart were to yell at me to tie up my shoes, I would burst into tears...But I digress. This is a very good beginning. Clearly the two Romulan are not servant, they are refugees! And live in the big house, and they care for Picard . And when He gets righteously angry over the interviewer not knowing anything about Dunkirk...Chills.

The story line arc probably will drop off at one point (it is pretty nice though, right now) but, frankly, who cares. I can watch the Old English dude work his craft, and I'll be happy.
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Clark
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 8:58pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

4/4 for me and very interested to see where this goes, especially after that look ahead. With a serialized season arc, so much will depend on how this all ties together and how the rest of the cast gels, but really off to a great start. Was a relief to see that the didn't sit in the nostalgia but aren't forgetting what came before. If this is done well enough, it could add depth to re-watches of TNG.

... just hoping we don't see Q or section 31 anytime soon
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Nobody Important
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 8:58pm (UTC -6)
Re: ANDR S2: Una Salus Victus

The motto, "una salus victus," is a misquotation: it should be "una salus victis." Sorbo consistently (across several episodes mentioning Argosy Special Operations) pronounces the last word "victus" (with a long u sound). The original line is from Vergil's Aeneid 2.354: "una salus victis nullam sperare salutem." For anyone who knows Latin, it's painful to hear and read "una salus victus." Somehow, that seems to encapsulate a lot of Andromeda: it had some good ideas that got wrecked in execution.
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Jammer
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 8:39pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

So a few quick things, now that Picard has officially premiered:

1. I did my best to get the new Picard section and the first episode page up ASAP after the premiere was released (I did prep work days ago behind the scenes), but CBS made it especially difficult by not releasing the episode titles in advance, and by also not making it obvious what time this would actually be released. (Discovery used to be released in the evenings; that's clearly not the case for Picard. I guess for Picard this is going to be midnight Pacific Time?)

2. This goes across the board for all shows, but I would really appreciate if you would NOT discuss episodes in places other than the pages for those episodes. In recent years, I've gone to lengths to try to get pages up before the review is written (by timing it with prepared automation) because I know if I don't put a place out there for people to discuss, they'll just start posting comments somewhere else. It'd honestly be great if you could just *wait* if the page for some reason isn't there (like if I can't learn the title in advance) -- but I'll make every effort to time it so the page is there when the episode hits the street.

3. I know I've said this a lot in the past few years, but I have no idea how long or detailed the reviews will be this time around. As a matter of sanity, I am committed to stay on schedule and not get behind by more than a few days, and certainly no more than a week, because I simply can't have the reviews pile up or I'm likely to just give up. I managed to find a way to still turn out good reviews for the past few years of Discovery and Orville, but I don't know what that will look like with my time-boxed schedule being even more limited than in recent years. We'll see how it goes. The fact I couldn't even muster a blog posting previewing this and have still not yet written the "Rise of Skywalker" review is probably not a great sign, but we'll see.

4. No promises, but I may see if there's a solution I can come up with to help delayed Picard watchers steer clear of spoilers in the comment stream. Hiding them all would be easy, but I don't know if that's the best option for everyone. For now, if it is labeled with "PIC S1," that's your cue to avoid it if that's your desire.

5. Play nice while I'm not moderating. I'm frequently a few days behind in reading comments. And for Picard, I may run behind as a regular practice.
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Karl Zimmerman
Thu, Jan 23, 2020, 8:36pm (UTC -6)
Re: PIC S1: Remembrance

On the whole it was very promising beginning to the season, but not a totally flawless one. Still probably the best pilot episode that a Trek series has ever had.

There were many things to love here, some of which have already been mentioned.

Stewart always elevates material - even when it's dreck like TNG's first season. Fortunately this is far from dreck, but his acting has only improved with age and every line he gives is a pleasure. Picard is back baby! Isa Briones surprised me in a very pleasant way as Dahj as well - the trailers didn't really show much of her after all, but she's a powerful enough force onscreen to not wither away in the presence of Stewart. Spiner is in perfect form in his two little bits as Data. Alison Pill's character leaves me a bit cold so far, but the supporting roles were generally speaking excellent.

I am very happy that this series is a lot slower paced, warmer feeling, and more naturalistic than Discovery. There was none of the jarring use of purposefully weird camera angles, fast cuts, harsh lighting, or loud music that makes Discovery episodes distracting. So far Picard knows that it's important to make the quiet parts quiet, and I very much appreciate that. Most of the dialogue seems natural and at ease. The focus on character so far reminds me quite a good deal of Deep Space Nine - my favorite Trek by far.

The one aspect I didn't like is the episode had a bit too much expository infodump for me. Two interactions in particular just stood out as not good. One was Picard's "interview." Although Picard's reactions to the interrogation were an excellent chance for Stewart to show off his chops - and the writers to show how many people in 2397 don't like Picard much - the questions the interviewer answers seemed like they were there for the purpose of elucidating us as the viewer. Worse still was the whole of the interaction with Jurati at the Daystrom Institute, which involved both badly-done exposition and some really suspect technobabble (Reconstructing all of Data's brain from a single positron? They always have to be twins? Seriously?). It's a shame, because except for these two scenes, everything was perfect.

On the whole I'd say in Jammer's rating system it is either 3 or 3.5 out of 4 stars. I'll be generous and give it 3.5 because he rated Emissary that high - and I think this is a better pilot.
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