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Picard Maneuver
Sun, Apr 19, 2020, 2:39am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Descent, Part I

Funny, I hated Admiral Bitchayev when I was a kid, but she's totally right. Picard should have obliterated the Borg when he had a chance.

I like how data used his quest to find emotions as an excuse to consume porn. He should have called Bender if he wanted tips on being a perverted robot. It'd be funny if talking with Troi rekindled his memory of anger. Or introduced new feelings of boredom or despair.

The stuntmen earned their pay in this one, dressing up in all that makeup and gear and being repeatedly thrown into the wall by Brent Spiner.

LOL at the "Power Rangers Command Center" comment. Zordon's face appearing and spouting exposition would have made this a wild episode. As for the above comment regarding TNG becoming Voyager at this point, Jeri Tayor's increased influence is surely a factor.

Personally, I was pretty much done with the Borg after "I, Borg" and was moderately bored even the first time I watched this one. I think I recall feeling a little cheated that I'd basically have to watch it again as the first episode of season 7. I remember being surprised at the on-location shooting but it somehow looking every bit as drab as their awful "planet and cave" set.

I still enjoyed season 7, though some of the episodes are absolutely horrendous. If you're going to have reduced quality, the way it happened was better: relatively strong episodes mixed in with garbage. The worst is when everything is homogenized to a consistent substandard.

In retrospect, the problem is obvious: Including the concept phase of Voyager, Paramount was supporting three TV series simultaneously along with a new movie franchise. While theoretically it wouldn't drain too many resources, they were also getting aggressive with licensing at the time, resulting in video games with actor voiceovers and that MainView office automation software commercial that utilized the bridge set and Jonathan Frakes. Just one more way they were overstretching themselves. I think it's no coincidence that the eventually good DS9 took a while to make sense of itself with all this going on. It's actually a little surprising it didn't get cut after its second season or so as a casualty of overextension. But that's how hot Star Trek was at the time.
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Picard Maneuver
Sat, Apr 18, 2020, 11:56am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Timescape


So basically Picard and team successfully ward off the aliens and stop the warp core breach but leave a trail of fusion explosions in their wake.

"The ball is going so fast that everything else is practically stationary. Even the molecules in the air are stationary."

I thought about this before but not while I was posting: "How are they breathing?" There cannot possibly be enough oxygen inside the pocket and the carbon dioxide would build up. It's not like you can suck or blow air across a barrier where time basically does not move. I guess maybe the pocket is semi-permeable. We know it was for Picard but that seemed like an accident. Still, I'd imagine it'd be like sucking air through a straw. Maybe the armband doohickeys did life support, too.

While we're at it, how can they even see? All the photons would be suspended. Or, moving very slowly. It seems like it would be the smallest unit of brightness above absolute darkness and visual perception would be absolutely nothing resembling normal. I guess if the pocket is permeable, you could suck in the photons but then you probably could see only while moving and then encounter darkness when standing still. If you occupied the same spot twice it'd be dark because you already "used" the once suspended photons and time is moving too slowly to put new ones there.
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Picard Maneuver
Sat, Apr 18, 2020, 2:51am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Second Chances

So, the Rikers are trying to recover the database and Lt. Riker tells Cmdr. Riker to disable the file server. Then Cmdr Riker just goes along with it.

That was some awkward-ass Tai Chi Troi and Crusher were doing, lol.

It's kind of funny that Freedom Riker is all angry, brooding, and sulking while Imprisoned Riker is vibrant, spontaneous, and fun. Riker #1 probably should have accepted one of those 2,927 command positions previously offered.

Pretty presumptuous of Riker #2 to assume Troi was still available after eight years when he first kissed her. Well, knowing Riker, he probably didn't care. Troi missed an opportunity for a really weird, sad, shameful threesome. The Rikers wouldn't be telling Dad about it.

If I met my unexpected twin, I'd want to join forces. I'd know we'd get along because he'd be thinking the same thing. We'd divide labor, arrange pranks, and set up a system of plausible deniability by constantly blaming the other one even though it was us all along.
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Picard Maneuver
Fri, Apr 17, 2020, 2:20am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Timescape

Every time I watch this episode I think about what would actually happen to the objects if they were manipulated at something approaching the speed of light. The rotational force of the bridge console Picard manipulated would probably detach it. It might even spark or melt a little around the shaft from the friction, though these phenomena would take like a day or something to manifest. Picard--again!--would probably have shattered every bone in Worf's arm moving it from the transporter console, and this is minutes after he admonished Troi for wanting to touch Riker.

I never understood why the warp core breach was the only thing visibly moving. The Warbird disruptor shots probably should have been and/or the shimmering of the power beam. I imagine the strobe of the lighting would have been detectable. Crusher's torso should have been gradually chewed up while we watched it. Why was she rubbing it after time reversed? And then there was the stuff mentioned earlier like the computer consoles still working, which should have been a dead giveway.

The time reversal shot made it really, really obvious they simply overlayed an explosion animation over the Enterprise model.

Anyway, these are nitpicks. I always liked this one. I used to fantasize about all the cool time traveling things you could do with the "time pockets" those armbands created.
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Picard Maneuver
Thu, Apr 16, 2020, 2:56am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Rightful Heir

Doesn't the Enterprise have fire detection? It's hard to believe Worf would be able to ignite a bunch of candles and a firepit without a bunch of alarms going off. I mean even in the early 90s let alone hundreds of years after.

Picard must have been thinking, "Oh my God not this Klingon shit again. How many times does this have to happen? It's like every other week my chief security officer goes on some soul-searching sabbatical. I'll bet I'll have to use up the rest of my diplomatic capital bailing Worf out when he stabs some high-ranking Klingon to death. Again. I might even miss another conference and PowerPoint slides diverting the Enterprise to rescue him. God I miss Tasha. Girl grew up on Rapeworld yet didn't complain half as much as this crybaby Klingon. I wouldn't have minded giving her my painstick. Consensually, of course. At least beyond reasonable doubt."

They really didn't get how DNA worked, yet, did they? While it is possible for it to survive for 1,000 years, it does so frozen or otherwise preserved, not out in the open on a knife that's probably been handled as many times as years have passed. Any blood on it was probably from someone who cut himself within the past few years.

I love Gowron's cynicism. He was right about everything. But, man, I thought fake, left-handed holodeck Geordi had an existential crisis when discovering the truth. He's got nothin' on fake Kahless'. Also, why is Kahless a fat midget? I mean, really. He looks like a bowling ball. I expected a Viking god.

DATA: "Has this experience only deepened the spiritual crisis that originally sent you to Boreth?"
WORF: "Commander, I have discovered nihilism."

I like how Worf gets to decide the political and cultural overhaul of the entire Klingon Empire because reasons.

Christianity would be a lot more fun if people swung bladed weapons at each other after verbally sparring with Bible quotes. I think it used to be more like this.
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Picard Maneuver
Wed, Apr 15, 2020, 2:27am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Suspicions

I'm amazed a man with the name Peter Slutsker survived to adulthood. Well, at least until this episode.

I swear the camera focus gets softer every episode with Crusher. I think by the time I get to the Space Candle episode I'll be trying to wipe the Vaseline off my monitor.

So, uh, why does Crusher care about star shields? A little outside of her expertise. Shouldn't this be a LaForge episode or something? Hard to believe LeVar Burton slid so far down the totem pole that Gates McFadden got his stories.

Why can't they remote control the shuttle? Not only did the technology already exist, the 80s were defined by it. I don't want to hear any crap about star interference. If they can get a video conference stream, they can send a 200 baud signal to enable basic piloting commands.

"Mr. Worf, override the shuttle's computer. Return it to the shuttlebay."
What?! Bullshit!

"Sir, she has isolated her navigational control. It will not be possible to establish remote operation."
Okay now I'm positive this was a Geordi episode.

So what was the guy's plan to get away? What if the plan was to eject him into the sun after the autopsy? How can the shuttlecraft have a warp engine breach when it lacks a warp engine? What the hell is going on in this episode?

If I were Picard, what the Ferengi government thought of whatever would be like #50 on my list of concerns after all the crap their citizens put the Enterprise through over the years.

On the topic of the injection of "Mary Sue feminism" into mid-90s Trek, I almost turned Voyager off during the first episode when Harry Kim stammers through "Sir... I mean ma'am... I mean, uh uh uh" to which Janeway tells him to call her "Captain". This is the type of setup a teenager writes into her fanfiction about the time she looked really smart in class and how Becky was really embarrassed.

After seven years of seeing females in command positions, including at least one admiral, it was absolute cringe seeing the franchise pretend we've never seen a female senior officer before. Sure, it was the first female captain showrunner, but the in-universe people shouldn't be reacting to media hype. I'm sure the Los Angeles focus group cheered loudly at the scene.

I felt sorry for Kate Mulgrew for inheriting such a shitty character, a character who ended up so irreparably damaged that they basically had to soft reboot the show halfway through. Actually, it would have been funny to see her in this episode as Mrs. Columbo.
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Picard Maneuver
Tue, Apr 14, 2020, 1:05am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Frame of Mind

One of the better performances from Frakes. I don't really expect him to carry high-tension for an episode but he does it.

It would have been cool if TNG was coming to an end but Berman or somebody wanted to create a sci-fi thriller and this was how they introduced the series. Minus the return to the Enterprise, of course. It turns out Riker is just a murderer with a vivid imagination.

If it's just a dream and he's going crazy, they could have gotten lewder with Troi. It's not like they never did that before. Maybe even Crusher. I thought I saw a Space Candle in the mental ward common area, let's get down.
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Picard Maneuver
Mon, Apr 13, 2020, 12:53am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: The Chase

This comment section may as well serve as the official "Is Norman Lloyd Still Alive" site. Currently he is 105 years old.

Linda Thorson was cute as a Cardassian. I liked her pigtails and melodic speaking.

I loled at the conference tension point. "Captain, we really have to get to the conference! We'll miss the PowerPoint slides and we won't get our nametags who will know who we are without the nametags?!" Really, they should know by now to schedule these things during the summer break where nothing ever happens.

I didn't realize the beings from Alien Nation were the universe's progenitors. Anyway, what are the chances that dozens of independent DNA samples stay intact enough to slot into a jigsaw puzzle four billion years later? None of those suns went nova? Did all of them even exist in the first place? Things were a lot different back then. All of those planets continued to support life? None of their atmospheres were burned off by solar winds or whatever?

Cardassian vessels look like seafood to me, like shrimp tempura or calamari or something.
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Picard Maneuver
Sun, Apr 12, 2020, 2:19am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Lessons

Good camerawork in this episode. Regarding Riker's posture, Jonathan Frakes suffers from a back injury. It's possible it was bothering him more than usual during filming.

When Picard and Crusher left their meal in a hurry to attend the concert, I wondered if there is mold in the future. It seems plausible their environmental systems would filter it out. When Troi sat behind Picard at the concert, I half expected her to say, "Captain, I sense you are quite randy."

I was amused when Picard was impressed by the technology of a novelty rollup piano that might have existed by this episode's filming. Its invention wouldn't have been far off otherwise; those things have been around for a long time.

It's fun to pretend that Picard is actually crazy when he's telling the story of his probe life. In reality, his date would be scoping the closest exit. Maybe Geordi can help Picard recreate his girlfriend on the holodeck and then have her find out about it the following season.
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Picard Maneuver
Sat, Apr 11, 2020, 1:54am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Starship Mine

When it was first airing, I watched this episode probably half a dozen times across various syndication slots, staying up way too late to watch it again. I liked the action and the tension from the "chase" of the sweep. The crossbow was also pretty hardcore. It was a nice touch that Picard had to use that door unlocking module while the power was off. It was more satisfying than merely prying the doors open. Good sound design, too. I like the terrorist communicator chirping and the ramping noise Geordi's visor made when incapacitating everybody.

I realize she inevitably gets eaten by the baryon sweep, but the second female outright vanishes in ten forward. It really seems like some sort of editing mistake. Same with Hutch's fate, which has to be assumed.

I'm just glad the guy from Spaceballs who ain't found shit ended up eating shit. I also like Hutch and Data Hutch.
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Picard Maneuver
Fri, Apr 10, 2020, 2:21am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Birthright, Part II

Richard Herd is a versatile actor. I enjoyed his performance as L'Kor.

When watching this episode on Amazon, one of the production notes said that the crew went on holiday and forgot to leave the lights on for the plants, which died. That kind of says it all about this episode.

Romulans really know luxury with the eggcrate mattresses.

I can't hear the Klingon victory chant without thinking of the Pogo Data & Picard song.
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Picard Maneuver
Thu, Apr 9, 2020, 1:05am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Birthright, Part I

I realize DS9 has a wild west type atmosphere to it, but I'm still doubtful a Starfleet officer could get away with holding someone over a railing 15 feet up with half a dozen other officers watching.

Loved the wide angle, low shot camerawork during the dream sequences.

James Cromwell is lookin' pretty bad. Did he go to warp 10 and have lizard babies with Janeway, too? It's really more the Janeway part than the warp 10.
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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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Picard Maneuver
Sun, Apr 5, 2020, 2:20am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Face of the Enemy

I agree with the comment above mine. Many of TNG's scripts seem to be written as if it's unexpected that the episode is ending soon, like they got all the way to filming before they realized it and had to rewrite on the fly.

Regarding Sirtis, as much as I love the show, I've always had problems with the direction. Everybody was bad in Encounter At Farpoint and it's obvious that the actors were just given scripts with some vague notes. It's a little amusing that despite the progressive platitudes, this show was probably below average in giving its females something meaningful to do. This episode was a big exception with the tension between two women being the centerpiece. Even more surprising that Sirtis held her own against a much stronger actress.

I enjoyed Megalomaniacal Troi when she was chewing out the Romulan guy. She also looked good in the sweater thing that I guess was a medical gown or something when she was in sickbay at the end. They brought this woman on for sex appeal and it took them six seasons to figure out how to dress her.

It's a minor thing, but in this episode, Worf is ordered to bring the traitor guy to Picard's ready room, and Worf goes to manually fetch him. Why? Does Picard really expect him to do it himself? There is a moderately tense diplomatic thing going on and Worf leaves the bridge to valet. Can't he just hail someone else to bring the guy to the bridge? It's a tubby, meek, and seemingly broken middle age guy, what's he gonna do that requires a Klingon escort? Softly complain internally?

Hope the Romulan engineer was never found out for leaking the cloak. He's kind of fucked if he is.
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Picard Maneuver
Sat, Apr 4, 2020, 2:09am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Aquiel

All these scenes with Renée Jones and LeVar Burton and no Emmy for outstanding acting? "i'M sCareD GeoRdi" should have been the clincher. At least the dog should have been honored. It was the best part of the show.

LaForge is such a simp and ironically the opportunistic nice guy women need to be wary of, even though I realize that wasn't what they we going for. She gets him back, though, by dumping him the moment his advocacy no longer has any use in getting her out of murder charges. Not even a cushy job offering does it for her; she wants to get away from him that badly and with a "I'm doing my hair that day" tier excuse to boot.

P.S. Just use a fucking putty knife to scrape some DNA off the metal plate! Jesus Christ how hard can it possibly be? God awful CGI on that goo, too. Yikes.
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Picard Maneuver
Thu, Apr 2, 2020, 1:10am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Ship in a Bottle

Much of Star Trek's best is when it's revisiting previous material. There are this episode, Wrath of Khan, and Best of Both Worlds, for example. Immediately figuring out that Moriarty devised a way to trap the crew in a simulation really didn't hamper my enjoyment. It helped that the theme of the episode was Sherlock Holmes to push the idea of deductive reasoning. The "Ship in a Bottle" name was also a giveaway. They had to still be in the holodeck. It was basically the only explanation. It was clever that the "confidence boosters", namely Crusher and LaForge, were fake. I was disappointed that Data was slow to figure it out. It really should have been a fake Data and he should have been found out due to his positronic system giving him unique behaviors that the ship's computer would struggle to replicate. Them splitting up and having unfettered access to the entire ship from the small holodeck room is a bit of a plot hole.

I wonder what happened to Moriarty's data cube when Troi crashed the Enterprise.

I like how Geordi almost literally goes to cry in the corner when he finds out he isn't real.

It would have been funny if Marina Sirtis were replaced with Fran Drescher in this episode as one of the holodeck glitches.
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Picard Maneuver
Tue, Mar 31, 2020, 2:06am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Chain of Command, Part II

It would have been epic if, when taking back command, Picard said to Jellico, "'re fired!"

"Crusher brought the same hyperventilating worried-mother routine to all her scenes"

Okay Tara, you've convinced me: Crusher is the Karen of the 24th century. I can totally see her going to Starfleet Academy and demanding to talk to the cafeteria manager, which is after she demanded to talk to Wesley's particle physics teacher about the B he got on the quiz.
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Picard Maneuver
Mon, Mar 30, 2020, 12:19am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Chain of Command, Part I

I know when I think "special ops" I think "mid-40s clinician who looks like a housewife" and "Shakespearean actor who has been 50 years old for decades". At least the Ferengi immediately figured out who they were. In real life it would be like sending someone like Colin Powell or Jim Mattis out undercover. Picard would probably be recognized by someone regardless of where he went. After a rough start, the Cardassians finally come into their own here.

Hard to believe it took five and a half seasons to finally get Troi into uniform, which she actually looks good in. It's not that I object to a custom outfit, but most of them were shit. In retrospect, they probably should have put her in the uniform the entire time but given her some sort of accessory, like Crusher's labcoat or Worf's baldric. But knowing the costume designers they would have given her something ridiculous like a feather boa or some functionless pouch that made her look pregnant.

Around 16 minutes, some of the fluorescent lights near the hallway ground flicker as Riker and LaForge walk. I guess shooting was too tight to replace them. Worf's proximity alarm buster thingie sounds like an email notification.
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Picard Maneuver
Sat, Mar 28, 2020, 12:45am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: A Fistful of Datas

This season's "Brent Spiner wants a new demo reel" episode. Too bad it wasn't Alexander who was shot.

Amusing how leather pants and grandma's blouse are upgrades for Troi. Honestly I think I'd prefer it if she sat on the bridge dressed as a cowboy, constantly smoking blunts.
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Picard Maneuver
Fri, Mar 27, 2020, 2:34am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Rascals

I guess even L'il Picard needed to go to theater school to work on his accent. I did like him bossing everyone around. He did it with such confidence that I bet everyone would get used to it after a few days. Weaksauce method of The Enterprise losing to some scrubby second-hand Klingon ships. Instead of standing around talking about getting attacked and tentatively firing once, maybe Worf should have unloaded all the torpedoes and whatnot.

Why the hell did they want to be restored to their original bodies? It's a near universal dream to do your life over as a kid with the knowledge of an adult. I guess Miles would need a little Irish Whiskey to get used to the idea. Wait a minute, speaking of aging and de-aging or whatever, how did Molly age four times faster than normal?
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Picard Maneuver
Thu, Mar 26, 2020, 1:37am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: True Q

I like how everyone forgot that Riker once had the Q power and should have been the one coaching Amanda instead of Crusher. Actually, I was wondering if Marina Sirtis was pissed that, finally, there is a legitimate need for a counseling role and it goes to McFadden. Also, the medical busy work scenes were pretty stupid. No one is going to force her to do that kind of stuff after such a life-changing event, especially when Crusher noticed she was too distracted to proceed.

Finally, Olivia d'Abo is very cute, but her wardrobe was horrid.
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Picard Maneuver
Sun, Mar 22, 2020, 8:35pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Schisms

So many holodeck scenes completely miss the mark but this episode has one of the best scenes, and all it involves is a table in the middle of the room. I really like the holodeck being used for utilitarian purposes rather than for poorly written fantasy entertainment.
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Picard Maneuver
Sat, Mar 21, 2020, 10:42pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Relics

Apparently the TOS bridge was actually archive footage projected onto a blue screen plus some strategic rebuilding for foreground objects. It is interesting to note the significant advancement of special effects technology, or at least what was cheaply available, during this show's tenure.

Besides general interest from others, you'd think the ship's historian (I imagine there has to be at least one), would stick to Scotty like glue while as much first hand information as possible was pumped out. It'd be like how whenever one of the last native speakers of a language is left a bunch of linguists fly out and record hours of conversation at at time. It could even create an amusing parallel between how much Scotty likes to prattle on vs. how insistent and probing an overeager historian could be when encountering a literal time traveler.
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Picard Maneuver
Fri, Mar 20, 2020, 12:49am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Man of the People

12 year old me loved Toga Troi and Nightclub Tramp Troi. Well, so does 40 year old me.
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Picard Maneuver
Sun, Mar 15, 2020, 11:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: Realm of Fear

Something that bothered me about this episode is that Barclay didn't immediately rush to sickbay and insist on a deep scan of his arm. It's not out of character to expect this: he's always imposing on others to entertain his neuroses. Except this one time where they'd actually find something. I guess Barclay looked at the minute counter and realize he had to stretch things along a little more.

Another thing that bothered me is that there are actual best practices to reduce phobias that involve tackling the problem piece by piece. There really wasn't a need for Betazoid pseudoscience. Then again, it's Star Trek. Someone could pull a muscle and the solution would be to reionize the DNA substrate manifold to rebalance the deuterium carboid sternofiben.
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