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james04
Thu, Apr 26, 2018, 2:23am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Fury

A confused (and confusing) mess, with no discernible purpose. “Threshold” was much better. 1 star.
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James04
Tue, Apr 24, 2018, 12:39am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Spirit Folk

Another episode to skip, after seeing about 10 minutes of it. My basic gripe about it is, that (apart from the irritating folksy Eye-rish tweeness), it and other holodeck episodes are an escape from the scientifictional genre of the story. I watch ST, and therefore, Voyager, because I enjoy science fiction; I don’t want to be fobbed off with something a zillion miles removed from science fiction, or, at most, only very tenuously connected to it. So episodes largely about WW2, or Ireland, or Renaissance Italy, or 1930s Chicago, feel like cheating - they feel like stories that count as science fiction only because they are parts of an episode in a scientifictional series.

The holodeck is in effect being used as an excuse for Voyager (and not just Voyager) to take a little holiday from being a scientifictional series. ST should not have to do this - it suggests a failure of imagination.
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james04
Sun, Apr 22, 2018, 2:51am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Barge of the Dead

That Tom Paris calls B’Elanna a “born-again Klingon”, in a way that shows his remark is intended as less than complimentary, suggests that Evangelicals will be not unfamiliar in the 24th century. If their function as figures of fun has been adopted by some later group after their extinction, that cannot be inferred from canon.

Gods can be killed - though whether this is a credible concept, depends on what one understands by the concept of godhood. Mesopotamian religion has several deities being killed, such as Tiamat and Kingu, who were killed by Marduk in the best-known of several Mesopotamian myths of creation. Horus is killed by Set in Egypt, and most of the Norse Aesir are killed at Ragnarok. So the myth about Ko[r]tar is not in the least implausible. It seems to be a mixture of Etruscan, Greek, Mesopotamian & Norse elements. The writers are to be congratulated on their ingenious mixing of familiar ancient motifs to produce something new. Gods who need to be refreshed by sacrifices (conceptualised as their meals) can presumably - in principle - undergo death.

What made Gre’thor ? Maybe, the Klingon gods, before, or even after, they were killed. Without knowing a lot more Klingon mythology, one can only make informed guesses using analogies from real-world ideas. The details of all these things are not incoherent, so much as fragmentary. A Klingon mythographer or theologian would presumably be able to fill in the masses of missing detail. Maybe Gre’thor is made out of the bodies of dead gods. Myths are characteristically resistant to harmonisation and systematisation, so one cannot expect a harmonious and internally self-consistent picture of the Klingon afterlife here. B’Elanna perceives it only in broken flashes, as might be expected of someone with a busy life like hers.

The sight of Gre’thor’s gates looks uncommonly like illustrations of the description the gates of the city of Dis in Dante, Inferno, canto 9. 7That the idea of killing gods seems implausible, is perhaps a testimony to how deeply Western culture has been saturated with Jewish & Christian ideas.

I found this episode rewarding to watch, because of its various narrative elements, which made it thought-provoking. As I have never had much of a head for the sciences, the scientific problems in this episode don’t spoil it for me, as they might for others. The last 5 or 6 minutes seemed not really to lead anywhere very much, but they were interesting for their echoes of earlier moments in the episode.

3/4, I think. A good episode in many ways, though not exceptional. And there was no reliance on holodecks.
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James04
Wed, Apr 18, 2018, 4:51pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Once Upon a Time

Detestable as holodeck episodes so often are, this outdoes them. Flot and Trev would be vastly improved by being obliterated. Where is Colonel Quaritch when he’s needed ? Or is the Avatarverse cloaked in utter inaccessibility ?

I like Voyager, a lot. But while Little Miss Half-Ktarian is tolerable even in generous doses, Itchy and Scratchy IN SPACE !!!! are puke-inducing. If Captain Planet were a Totally Right-On space vegetable, he would be as they are.

Having a good message - “Folk need one another, and need to realise that they depend on one another, so they really ought to drop all the narcissism, tribalism & chest-thumping” - does not make up for having a weak-as-water plot, shallow characterisation, and (yet again) more lazy Deus ex Holodeckery. One is used to wretchedly-confected Evangelical art like “Left Behind”, which sacrifices aesthetic value to the requirements of its message - but it is very disappointing that ST makes the same blunder. If a story is garbage as a piece of craftsmanship, it is sloppy and insulting to broadcast it, regardless of how good the message may be.

Neelix did something to prevent the episode being totally unwatchable, but not enough to rate the episode more than one star. There are worse episodes than this, so this one does not quite deserve zero, notwithstanding the efforts of Butthead and Bevis.
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