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Picard Maneuver
Tue, Apr 7, 2020, 1:41am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Tapestry

If they waited until Enterprise to do this episode and used Carolyn Seymour in it they could have had a Quantum Leap reunion.

I like how Picard dried off instantly after the one night stand old enough to be his mother (of the younger Picard) threw water on him. Then he does a 180 and beds a 17 year old girl. Kinda hard to believe he never added Troi to his harem in retrospect. I guess she's just that annoying. Maybe he tried but he found distracting all the cries of "Pain! Such Pain! Pain!"
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skye francis-maidstone
Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 11:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

Thank you for the insightful and well written review - a return to fine form after last episode's blip :)

I'd rate it half a star higher personally but close enough. My main argument for that is that it's far better than either final of DSC. But the ratings across series don't necessarily carry across well.

Why on earth are people writing novels in the comments?

I need some more good sci-fi in this lockdown. I can't tolerate The Orville. Yet another Expanse rewatch required..
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 10:04pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2


So, only you are allowed to whine and complain about the behaviors of others, eh?

Got it. ;-)
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 9:57pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

@Brian L

"Not only did we have to wiz through a hundred other plot points to get here, to top it off they inject a very heavy-handed scene into the finale that really seems to come out of nowhere."

A lonely voice on the wind whispers "reshoots..."
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Brian L
Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 8:48pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

With the utmost respect, Jammer, I think you were far too charitable in your treatment of the writers making this series "about picard saying goodbye to data."
It was one scene at the end of a very long, labored series, that, while superficially satisfying, I don't think really holds up under scrutiny. First of all, it makes the series over-stuffed. Not only did we have to wiz through a hundred other plot points to get here, to top it off they inject a very heavy-handed scene into the finale that really seems to come out of nowhere.

"I always wished that I could have said I was sorry, that it was you and it wasn't me."

Come on, really? The dialogue is clumsy, written in a strange tense that creates disconnection between the viewer and the events unfolding on screen. And it's fan service--basically, totally meaningless for someone who hasn't seen the TNG movies.

"A butterfly that lives forever, is really not a butterfly at all."

Again, wordy, clumsy dialogue. And, then of course they go ahead and turn picard into a synth. So the butterfly really is a butterfly after all, even if its synthetic. Oh the depth! The magnitude!

Really? You would say this fan-servicey tacked-on finale made the show "about" something? You completely ignore how the writers left loose plot strings frayed all over the place, meandered incompetently all over the place? Relied on violence, gore, spectacle? And somehow one poorly scripted scene between Stewart and Spiner somehow fixes it all?

You are one charitable Trek fan, and I salute you :)
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 7:17pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

Perhaps there should be a corollary to Jammer’s rules, as there was one for the Monroe Doctrine: constantly complaining that you have been “offended” by someone’s alleged rule-breaking (sometimes in the very same message in which YOU are breaking the rules or are otherwise acting rudely).... knock it off.

I wouldn’t myself ban anyone from this group, but it is indeed a group. Not a Festivis airing-of-grievances-circle-jerk

There are people who go to this site to express comments about episodes and themes of Star Trek with their fellow fans. These people have the right to be heard, too, without being called names or otherwise dragged in to the circle jerk.

And don’t blame mental illness on your behavior. I am severely mentally ill as are many people I know, and being mentally ill does not give one license to engage in unsurceasing whining. Life is too short, anyway
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Dahj's Digistal Ghost
Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 7:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: One

This episode was so good they had to make it twice. But I have to admit, I think I liked the remake better.
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Dave in MN
Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 5:02pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Unimatrix Zero, Part I


That's also how I viewed her: she's literally a central processing unit (Unimstrix Zero) functioning as a mouthpiece.
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Dave in MN
Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 4:59pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S2: Home

@ Trent

I agree with his assessment on the rest of the season. Episode 6 kind of hinges on how much you can accept the premise (which I actually found believable, considering how much culture will change in the next few centuries), but everything after that is pretty much gold.

Even the few middling episodes have their own charm, in a sort of Voyager-esque pseudo-misfire way. The constant world building, character growth and mini-plot-arcs make them still worth watching.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 4:48pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Unimatrix Zero, Part I

@Jay, respectfully i dont think the Borg Queen introduction implied a hierarchy in the Borg. She was NOT their leader..just sort of their collective voice personified..which i think is a pretty unique concept..would you agree?
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 4:40pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S2: Nothing Left on Earth Excepting Fishes

This goes under because of Macfarlane's acting. He should not do drama, he can not do drama. I once had to clean myself after spiting on my shirt because I laughed so hard about his acting (min 46:05). I think it is no coincidence that the last good episode had very little Ed in it.

The story itself. Eh... the plot is very predictable. Maybe this is a meta comment on Discovery but I fail to see what that would be. I also would like to have more world/galaxy building. TNG, DS9 and TOS used the term neutral zone to Romulans or whatever as a signal for "this is dangerous." I have no idea how the whole Krill situation is developing.

SHip attacks shuttle. Takes them to bigger ship, bigger is attacked by even bigger ship. It is better explained then STP explains random fights in space. Remember the old Romulan warbird in STP? Why was it attacking them, never explained. It just happens for no real reason so that 7 can join the team. Here they at least say something about an attack on a colony.

Well, our two loverbirds/snakes are now on the run from orks? and through shared hardship and yawn... I think it is a crude representation of a tit for tat scenario, maybe. In the end he let's her go which, I guess, will not cost him his job. I think in wartime you can actually get shot for letting a spy such as her go. Oh well. I was slightly bored because the outcome was so obvious.

The B story is surprisingly the better one. It is told in an ok way and made me laugh a few times. When Malloy channels his inner opera diva and says "Ok, this a hostile work environment." I laughed quite a bit.

On the plus side. No dick jokes, no fart jokes. This space battle locked pretty bad I thought.

While this is by no means a good episode, the tone seems to be more focused and the jokes are ok and not embarrassing which is quite an accomplishment for this show.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 4:05pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

This season was a surprise. The Romulans are portrayed as either religious zealots or plain bigots against synthetic lifeforms, and Picard views them, and anybody who speaks against synths as such. Surprise: the Romulans were right! The synths (some of them) were plotting to end organic life, and possibly had means (or at least what they thought were means) to achieve that.

Jon-Luc Picard is thus stuck in a situation where both parties are right. The Romulans who say given a chance the synths will destroy the galaxy. The synths who say given a chance the Romulans (and possibly the Federation) will destroy the synths.

This series is a return after a long time to the "thoughtful" tradition of Star Trek. In a world that views every suspicion as bigotry to be shamed, STP takes the route of saying 'even though your suspicion may be warranted ... believing that destructive outcomes are inevitable is a lack of imagination'.

In not taking a holier-than-though attitude that a lot of contemporary politics and literature takes; in choosing to not depict a generic good / evil duality, STP goes where some good trek has gone before.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 4:02pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S2: Home

Well to be fair there were the two episodes in Discovery where they were on Saru's planet and on that planet with the small colony which were good, I think, both are around the same level as this. STP hasn't produced anything as good. Everybody loved Nepenthe. I didn't

Maybe you are right about the one foot approach. Maybe being hopeful and curious is so outlandish these days that you have to spice it with comedy as to make it watchable.

The thing is that this episode had barely any comedy.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 3:27pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S2: Home

One thing Orville starts doing really well in this season, is its fly-by shots of alien planets and cities...

There's a sense of wonder, and of joyous exploration, all capped off with a score evocative of 1980s Trek movies.

And this kind of tone is something JJ-Trek and Nu-Trek have been incapable of doing. And I don't think they'd be capable of pulling this stuff off if they tried. "Orville's" one-foot-in-comedy approach lets it get away with a kind of earnestness and visual naivete that most contemporary SF, because they're tonally on a different planet, can't touch.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 3:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

This review added greatly to my enjoyment of this already-enjoyable episode.

While there's a lot of good sci fi (and some bad) in this series filled with old beloved characters and some decent new ones, the notion of this essentially being the sad, inspiring and ultimately hopeful story of a man saying a 20-year-overdue proper goodbye to his dear friend is truly a study in "charting the unknown possibilities of existance"

See you out there...
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 2:32pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S2: Home

Booming finally likes an Orville episode.

The season 2 premiere, together with this episode, is when The Orville started to firmly win me over.

This episode in particular reminded me of old SF book covers (the psychedelic skies, cities, "car" rides and horse-creatures), and 1950s SF homesteads. There's a visual boldness to this episode, and the coastal setting also offers nice atmosphere.

The things that bother you about the episode didn't bother me; I sort of accept this as a kind of cartoonish show, Seth as a Kirk-like Big Ham, the characters broadly drawn, the visuals deliberately veering toward the retro.

The home-invasion tropes didn't do much for me (shades of Haneke's "Funny Games"), but I thought the little action sequence with Ed in the gravity suit was quite original.

Jammer didn't like the next episode (2nd weakest of the season IMO, after the porn episode), but it has a very good ending, and I like the spirit of the episode. I also think it's self-consciously mocking the Ash Tyler arc in "Discovery", using similar character names and reversing several key things.

Afterwards you have "All the World is Birthday Cake", which most agree has a great first (first contact) half. Second half is IMO kind of generic. Then you have "A Happy Refrain"; not sure how that episode will go over with you, but it has a shuttle bay symphonic orchestra which is great. Shades of TNG's many musical sessions.

Then it's pretty much very good episodes till the end, with only one being a bit weak, and with at least two verging close to 4 stars (in the 4 stars TNG sense).
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 2:15pm (UTC -5)
Re: ENT S3: Damage

Anyone else have a suspicion that this episode was a way for Brannon Braga, after just seeing his ex-partner's new Battlestar Galactica miniseries, to say, "Hey asshole, I can do that too, you're not so special"?
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 12:47pm (UTC -5)
Re: ORV S2: Home

This is the first good episode.

Let's start with the bad/less good.
- The music is still too dominant. 10% or 20% less would be more.
- The aliens are again too human. The Xelayans seem to be identical to Humans. A little more going into how it is to belong to such a species would have been nice.
- The cameos became a little distracting. First David Puddy from Seinfeld as trunkman, then both doctors.
- The good bye was a little too much for me but only a little.
- Trunkman. His dialog felt out of place in this more genuine episode.
- Why do their parents hate the fleet? There is a little conversation between the sisters but the arguments are a little too convoluted. Soldiers vs science? brains vs muscle? Giving a little more detail why they have a low opinion of the military would have been nice.

the okish:
- The big reveal that she would stay on the planet became clear to me pretty early.

the good - pretty much everything else
- the story itself is probably the weakest part of the good things. It is effective but a little simple and Dr. Flox is not good at doing action. I was chuckling a few times when he moved around. But the twist that the guests are evil and that this would develop into a hostage situation was well hidden, I thought and appropriately dark. Why Mercer had to come personally to tell her about the procedure and be that persistent was a little to convenient. Still an entertaining story.
- there is one scene where in the first second I thought: uh this is going to be terrible (when she is riding that animal in her dreams/remembers) but no it really worked. It was a little shocking. Interesting visuals, short enough. Yeah.
- In general the episode stayed, for the most part, away from stupid humor and I believe no fart or penis jokes which I think is a first.
- The emotional beats are effective and that was the first (and apparently the last) episode where I thought she was ok and sometimes even good. From the beginning of the show she had problems with the role. An interesting idea but not a good fit. In this episode she gets more fitting material. Turning her from wonder woman into a disabled person and dealing with the numerous problems of being sick or weak in a physical and emotional way and having to deal with disapproval was a smart choice.
- The best of the episode, I thought, was the sense of wonder. I wasn't drawn into the scenery that much for a long time in a Star Trek (adjacent) show, it almost made me want to explore strange new worlds. To seek out new life and new civilizations. To boldly go where no one has gone before. The best thing about the best thing. It wasn't nostalgia or anything. It was it's own beautiful phenomenon. Good job.

3 stars. Let's see what Jammer has to say.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 12:46pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Dreadnought

I thought this was one of the best all time Voyager episodes. The only thing that bugged me was...if these missiles were so great, why didn't we see them all the time? Cardassian ships are considered to be slightly inferior to Federation why should a missile many times smaller than a standard Cardassian ship have such superior shielding and weapons (not even counting its warhead which apparently can take out a small moon).

To me an interesting plot twist would have been if Cardassian had instead modified large asteroids to crash into enemy planets. Perhaps engines would have been embedded and hidden in the asteroids to make them more deadly. That would have been much more sneaky and logical to attempt.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 12:37pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Meld

Not a fan of this episode. Hollywood loves to portray murderers as robots that kill without reason...but in reality almost all murderers have very specific reasons. Usually it is a distorted sense of protection or justice.

The truly psychotic who actually kill for no reason are extraordinary rare and would not have been as stable and eloquent as Suder was...they would have been disjointed, arrogant, and perhaps with a twisted sense of humour. The motive part of the story just seemed to cliche for me.

Tuvoc going mad didn't work for me either. It was too one-dimensional, boring and predictable (like most going mad stories). Tim's acting wasn't top notch...he could have varied his cadence more, used more eye movement, vocal inflections, arm movement etc...even when emotional he came off as robotic. What bugged me was that Tuvoc was only suppressing violent emotions, when in reality vulcons suppress all emotions. Tuvoc losing control should have been more varied and not simply being turned into a robotic killer.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 12:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

If you insist on accusing innocent people of trolling, at least have the decency of doing it in English.

Thank you.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 12:28pm (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2

JB said:

"Drama is just for entertainment? If so, then what the hell are any of us doing here discussing Star Trek? There are hundreds, thousands of more entertaining pieces of drama available on TV alone."

Un - I didn't say that drama was just for entertainment. I said dramatic presentations are a form of entertainment.

Deux - There are thousands of more entertaining pieces of drama available on TV, in your opinion. I don't agree with you.

Trois - Vous semblez être un maître de placer l'appât sur un hameçon. ;)
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 12:24pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S2: Threshold

This episode wasn't THAT bad. The concept of breaking the Warp 10 barrier was cool as was the concept of occupying all points in space at once.

What hurt the episode were the middle acts where the focus is on Tom suffering from his transformation. It's too simplistic and also seemed like a horror cliche. Had the transformation to a lizard man happened much faster, it would have been a much better episode. We don't need to see Tom spit out his tongue...

The show missed a big opportunity not to keep Tom/Janeway's lizard kids on board. They could have been pets and the source of many interesting future stories. TNG had spot...Voyager could have had lizard kids.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 10:55am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S1: Eye of the Needle

I'm surprised at all the negative comments here.

For me, this is Voyager's best episode. You have the crew behaving extremely professionally and competently, and yet you also have a plot which explicitly focuses on the emotional and psychological stresses being placed on the crew.

This is also an episode which treats space as a vast, lonely, daunting place. And though there is no explicit action here, the episode is tense, generates thrills in classy and original ways, and hinges on an interesting series of scientific ideas (micro wormholes, time slips etc).

And, of course, we have villains who are treated with respect and sketched rather sympathetically. The scene in which Janeway, in her lonely cabin, talks with a "Romulan villain", is particularly great. Rife with suppressed yearning, and some mutual understanding (they're both scientists), the script dodges all the usual villainous cliches.

Couple this with the episode's overall aesthetic style - austere, elegant, patient, savoring moments of silence etc - and its ultimately tragic tone, and IMO you have Voyager at its peak. While there are many other Voyager episodes I'd class as great, they aren't great in the classy ways this episode is. And as the show became increasingly bombastic, this episode seems to recall TNG at its most elegant.
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Mon, Apr 6, 2020, 10:14am (UTC -5)
Re: PIC S1: Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2



As for your question:

It's not a "NuTrek ban".

I simply have zero interest in watching this stuff. I also see no point in forcing myself to endure it for the sake of "brand loyalty" or anything of the sort.

Life is short. It's better we spend it on stuff we enjoy and/or on making the world a better place.

Speaking of which: How are you proceeding with the Orville? The next episode on your list is widely regarded as one of the best. On the other hand, it's an Alara-centered episode, and I've heard you don't like her much... So I'm really curious to hear your opinions about that one.
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